Night Walker's Woman Ch. 02byTara_Neale©
The man stepped closer to her, pinning her against the wall. His hand came up slowly to caress her cheek. She sucked in a deep breath at the almost electrical shock as the rough pad of his thumb brushed her lower lip slowly back and forth. She found it hard to breath when he was this close, all she could smell was him. Fresh straw, animals, it all melted away and all she knew was him, fresh, clean and all man. Her man. Her eyes went wide at the thought. Her heart skipped a couple of beats.
He smiled down at her and nodded as he bent slowly towards her once more. "Yes, Mitawa Naya, all yours," she did not have time to deny it before his lips softly closed over hers. Unlike all the other kisses they had shared, where passion flared quickly and burned so brightly that she feared it would consume her, this kiss was tender and comforting.
And it scared her more than the others ever had. How easy it would be to simply give in, accept the crazy illusion that this handsome stranger offered? She had been alone so long. Born so much pain. Lived in almost constant fear of losing the one thing that meant the most to her. Sleepless nights, just watching her daughter breath, making certain that she did. Long days spent in hospitals, one test after another, one doctor after another. And nothing helped. Now she had this place and her career that she had to, simply had to, resurrect. It was all too much. But it was her life, her reality. And she had learned the hard way that she was the only one that she could count on. Alone, always alone.
She pushed against his chest and he drew slowly back from the soft kiss, but he did not let her go, keeping her wrapped in his tender embrace. He leaned his forehead against hers. So close that their breathe mingled, entwined and hung like a cloud about them, pillowing them in its intimacy. "No more, Jaycee, you are mine as much as I'm yours. That includes the burdens you bare. You will never be alone again. Never face it all alone anymore." His use of her name shocked her, she froze for a moment, then shook her head.
He drew her into his embrace, his hands smoothing her hair as he simply held her. She knew that she should she pull away, deny his words, fight him. But the truth was that those words had crafted such a hypnotic spell about her that she wanted nothing more than to believe them. So for several long moments, she pretended, leaned against him and allowed her fantasies to weave a web of love and security.
He was the first to break it as he pushed her back arms length. He gave her another of those dazzling smiles and bent to kiss the top of her head once more. "I want to stay here with you," he sighed as if under some heavy burden of his own. "But I cannot. Not yet anyway. There are things I must do, must see to, before we can truly be together as we are meant to be."
"And one of those things are the horses. I won't lie to you, Mitawa Naya, I have my reservations. Your land here is small for housing such animals. But more importantly their care is an immense burden on top of all the others those tiny shoulders already bare. But Hector assures me that you will have his help." His thumb brushed her cheek once more and she was helpless to stop herself from leaning into the tender caress.
"And make no mistake about it, I will help too. It is part of the bargain. If I agree to place one point two million dollars worth of prime horse flesh as you keep pointing out to me on this kiddy farm, I have the right to inspect them. Anytime. Do you understand?"
She frowned at this latest demand. Was he using his position unfairly? He shook his head, "Actually, Mitawa Naya, you are using yours to your advantage. Know this, I would not agree to this deal for anyone except you. Hell, my mind keeps telling me that I should not even now. I may damned well lose my job for this. But as with everything for the rest of our lives, you come first. And you need this."
She choked past the tightness in her chest as she nodded her agreement to his demands, "Thank you," she managed at last to whisper past the knot in throat and the moisture in her eyes.
"For you, anything and everything," he whispered before once more lowering his head and brushing another of those heart stopping kisses across her lips.
This time she could not fight it, fight herself. Her fingers wrapped in his soft curls, drawing him closer. It was she, who deepened the kiss. Her tongue that snaked its way between his lips, danced against his. For this moment she wanted to taste and feel all of him, all of this fantasy. Her body melded against his, she shivered when she felt the hard ridge presses against her thigh. Her right hand slipped between them again, moving surely over it. She felt him tremble, knew her power and used it as she toyed with him until she could hear their hearts pounding so loudly that it drowned out all other sounds.
She reluctantly broke the kiss, her hands dropping to her side. She did not want this game to end. It had been so fucking long since she had felt her womanly powers. If she were honest, too long since she felt anything other than worry, fear and despair. But it was all an illusion, a fantasy, she reminded herself. There was no room in her life for men, love or even sex. She had Angel, this place and her career. There simply was not enough of her left for anything or anyone else.
"Thank you for agreeing to this compromise, Mister Ranger. But I need to get back to Angel and I have work to do before those horses arrive," her voice sounded too throaty to carry the authority that she had hoped to convey.
He nodded, his thumb caressing the corner of her mouth one more time. "Yes, I too have obligations. But know this, Mitawa Naya, you and the child come before all else with me. You always will."
She stepped back and inhaled deeply, squaring her shoulders, "Mister Ranger, like I said thank you for agreeing to let the horses stay here until the court case. But that is all this can ever be, a professional relationship. I'm sorry if I led you on in any way," she studied her boots and stammered across the truth, "I lost my head for a moment. Sometimes we all dream of things that we can never have. But I mean it, there is no room in my life for a relationship. With anyone. And certainly not a man I met less than twenty-four hours ago."
He chuckled, "Bull shit, Jaycee. Say whatever you need to now, but if we both didn't have things that were so pressing, I'd take you into that stall and show you just how real this is."
She gasped, opened her mouth to deny his claim, but thought better of it. She could not lie to him or herself, if she had gotten the chance she most definitely would have taken the opportunity for a quick roll in the hay with this man. Looking at him from boots to slightly ruffled blond hair, she admitted, most women would.
"You are not most women, Mitawa Naya. And it would have been much more than a quick roll in the hay," he laughed.
Jaycee frowned, "And quit doing that. It's freaky. People can't just hear other people's thoughts."
"But I do. Hear yours. As for freaky, there are things in this world that defy explanations. That does not make them untrue. Good-bye, Jaycee. For now."
"Wait. When will you bring the horses? Should I draft an agreement of some sort?" Now that he was leaving, why did some part of her feel so bereft? So alone? She was making a fool of herself, trying to keep the man. She stopped the rising panic. There was no way she would allow him to 'hear' these thoughts.
But the slight smile curving the corners of his delectable mouth told her he already had. At least he had the good manners or good sense not to mention it. "I'll be in touch when I speak with my boss. And, Mitawa Naya, try to get some rest. Your tiredness beats at me."
"Tired doesn't even begin to cover it, Mister Ranger."
"Rex. Call me Rex, Jaycee."
She would have argued, tried to keep things on a strictly professional level, but the pile of hay caught her eye. That boat had probably sailed already, she thought. "All right, Rex. I look forward to hearing from you." She stammered again, "I mean about the horses."
Rex forced himself to turn away from his woman. Forced each step that took him closer to his truck and further from her. This trip had not been what he expected, but then again nothing about her was. He waved to the old man, who was puttering by the corral. He was thankful that his Mitawa Naya had the couple.
But now she had him too. He climbed into the truck and started the engine. He debated which call to make first. He choose the easy one. Punching in the speed dial number, he listened as it rang. Just once. It rarely rang more than that with his grandfather. He pressed the speaker phone button.
"Rex, my son, what do you need?"
He smiled softly, how like his grandfather to cut straight to the heart of the matter. "I don't know for certain, grandfather. Could you come down to Houston for a few days? I have something to show you." He watched the house recede in the distance. Saw her climbing the steps, her limbs seemed almost weighed down with the responsibilities those tiny shoulders bore. "Someone I want you to meet."
"Yes, grandfather. My Mitawa Naya. But someone else as well," he did not want to say any more to the man. He wanted his grandfather's first encounter with the child. With Angel, he reminded himself. To be completely untainted with his own opinions. His grandfather knew these things far better than he did, if the girl had the gift, the old man would recognize it. And he hoped have some of the answers that the doctors seemed unable to give his woman. "Please, grandfather."
"Of course, my son. I will leave right after my prayers."
"Thank you, grandfather."
The line went dead. Rex paused the truck at the end of the driveway. This next call would be far more difficult, but it needed to be made. He had to convince his boss, Tim Masters, to release the ASPCA's claim to those horses. And that was not going to be easy. He shook his head, hell, maybe it would be best to fight that battle in person.
He turned towards the highway and Houston. His mind and senses were still on overload, filled with her, but he tried to focus on the battle that lay ahead. He would win it. He had to. For her. He had given her his word and he would find a way to keep it. It was just the first of a lifetime of promises that he would always fulfill to his Mitawa Naya.