Home > Archangel's Prophecy (Guild Hunter #11)(14)

Archangel's Prophecy (Guild Hunter #11)(14)
Author: Nalini Singh

No, it was working at exactly the right speed for a mortal.

The problem was that Elena wasn’t mortal any longer.

Elena could feel Raphael vibrating with protective fury at her back. He was an archangel, unused—as he’d pointed out himself—to a lack of control. It was a big part of the reason she’d had to fight so hard at the start of their relationship to get him to treat her not as a cherished lover, cossetted and protected, but as a hunter, a warrior, his partner.

Not that she blamed him for backsliding tonight. She’d been fucking terrified, too. But the moment was past, and their relationship would crumble and die if she stopped being herself. Which was why she insisted on flying home under her own power.

Once airborne by gliding off a high Tower balcony, she didn’t only fly, she dipped and dived without breaching Nisia’s order of “no tricks,” and in so doing, succeeded in driving her archangel to insanity until he finally played with her. Spiraling up into the starlit sky together under Raphael’s breathtaking physical strength, they fell as one to the earth before separating and sweeping out toward the Enclave.

She was laughing when she landed on the snow, her wings dusted with flakes that had begun to fall from the sky as the clouds moved in. “Come on.” She grabbed his hand. “I’m so hungry I could eat my own arm.”

Eyes as blue as a high mountain lake held hers, Raphael’s hair flecked with snowflakes and his wings wrapping around her in an immortal embrace. “Elena.”

“I know, Archangel.” She and Raphael, they had been intimate friends with loneliness before their worlds collided. After that fateful collision, they’d made a promise to one another, to never fall one without the other.

To never leave the other alone.

“I know,” she whispered again, wrapping her arms around his body and holding on with desperate tightness.

He held her as fiercely in turn, but the cut on her forearm stayed unhealed, and one of her wings threatened to drop into the snow, an injured limb being dragged behind a healthy body.


Montgomery had set up dinner in their suite rather than on the library table that was their usual spot. “It’s as if he reads our minds.” Elena popped four small savory tarts into her mouth one after the other as she stripped. The flight and the snow had shaken off most of the dust and dirt on her wings, but she didn’t feel fully clean.

“I’ll be quick.” Much as she wanted to wallow in the huge bath—attached to this suite—that Montgomery had already run, her stomach was threatening to gnaw on itself if she didn’t give it more substantial fuel.

Raphael’s expression as he ran his gaze over her nude form spoke of another, darker form of hunger. The Legion mark on his temple blazed. A glow limned his wings. And in his eyes, she saw a tumultuous wave of emotion that threatened to haul her under.

Her archangel was in a mood.

“Do not follow me into the bathroom,” she ordered as her skin pebbled, her nipples tight.

Hauling her against his fully clothed form in response, he sat down in a large armchair built to accommodate wings. Then he reached one hand to the table and grabbed a plate overflowing with delicious hot treats. But it was his scent that had her mouth watering, the heat and rigidly muscled strength of him inviting her to forget her plans for a shower and get even dirtier instead.

He lifted a bite of food to her mouth.

“I should feel very naked right now,” Elena said after making short work of it.

Raphael ran his free hand proprietarily over the curves of her body and up to boldly cup one breast, rubbing his thumb across her nipple. “You do not?”

“Not inside.” She pushed her own fingers through his hair, fisted gently. “Not where it matters. Because it’s you.”

It was that simple.

“Eat, hbeebti.” He fed her bite after bite, each mouthful accompanied by a firm and erotic stroke of her body, breast to thigh. His eyes were hooded, his sensual lips unsmiling—and his wings continued to glow.

Skin hot, Elena drowned in his scent while her body melted, her pulse a roar. Her musk perfumed the air, her thighs pressed tightly together, and her lips feeling swollen. “You’re a demon in a mood, Raphael.” She kissed him, bit his lower lip, soothed the sensual punishment with her tongue.

“Do you need more food?” Rain fell in her mind again, a turbulent hurricane. We must fuel the changes in you.

“I need you.” Was desperate for the wildfire of what they became together to banish the echoes of an unknown future that whispered of death and separation. “I want to hold you so close that nothing will ever come between us.”

Elena. Setting the empty plate aside without watching to see if it hit the table or not, Raphael maneuvered her so she straddled his body, her hands on his shoulders. His kiss was a ferocious demand, the hand he thrust into her hair unraveling the near-white strands.

Elena kissed him back with just as much passion, just as much love, just as much need. Fear and worry and love and horror, it all entwined inside her to create a small, intimate madness.

Raphael’s hand was rough on her skin, his body unleashed power and desire. Thighs quivering and breasts plump with sensation, she pulled at his clothing until he helped her strip his top half bare. She dug her fingers into the magnificent width of his chest, rubbed herself against the hard, rippled strength of him.

Rising from the armchair on a surge of strength that had her going even wetter, his wings glittering under the light, he took her not to the bed but to the bath. The water was a kiss of heat against her skin when he sat her down into it. Sweeping her arms through the liquid silk of it, she watched him get rid of the rest of his clothing.

A shiver whispered through her.

God, but he was beautiful, all hard lines and lean muscle and hands that knew her every weakness. She returned to his lap the instant he joined her in the bath, once more straddling him as they kissed and stroked and comforted one another.

He lifted her up out of the water to suck her nipple into his mouth. Crying out, she arched her back, and he took advantage of her position to lick his tongue along the sensitive undersides of her breasts.

Sliding down until they were face-to-face, she took a breathless kiss, reaching down one of her hands to close her fingers over the iron rigidity of him. He jerked and tore away her hand, his eyes pools of unearthly blue flame. As on edge, she rubbed her passion-swollen folds against him. His response was an open-mouthed kiss without boundaries before he tightened his hands on her hips.

When he thrust into her, it was a hard claiming that made her shudder and clench convulsively around him, her arms locked around his neck and her cheek pressed to his. Raphael. A whisper from deep inside her, a shiver of pleasure and a sense of homecoming.

Nothing will take you from me. His fingers dug into her flesh. Not even the Cascade. The wind and the rain in her mind, a relentless storm she never wanted to escape. He was hers and she was his, and together they were a unit that could not be torn apart by forces either mortal or immortal.

Wrapped up in a fluffy white dressing gown while her archangel lay beside her on the bed lazily stroking his fingers up and down her thigh, Elena was inhaling another plate of food when she felt an itching over the exact spot that had been the center of the punch of debilitating pain. She was scratching at it before she realized the connection.

Raphael’s eyes zeroed in on her hand.

She shrugged. “It itches.”

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