Exclusive Excerpt: Jacquelyn Frank’s Bound In Darkness

Our countdown to Halloween continues with a sensual excerpt from Jacquelyn Frank’s paranormal romance Bound in Darkness. It is the final installment in the Immortal Brother series, available November 24. 

Sexy immortal Maxum has been cursed by the Gods, forcing him into a crushing tomb each night where he remains, buried alive, until day breaks. Though his body heals his soul cannot, forcing Maxum to embark on a mission to kill the God who cursed him. Of course, Maxum cannot accomplish this job alone, so he enlists the help of the alluring Airianne, as beautiful as she is cunning. Their mission helps to build a delicious tension that we see satisfied for the first time in the exclusive excerpt below …

When Maxum returned to the inn he found Airi in their room waiting for him. He immediately noticed that she had spent some of her gold on a sleeping gown made of the sheerest and shiniest silk he had ever seen. She lay on her side in the bed, her head propped up on one hand, her platinum blond hair spilling free about her shoulders. He could see every soft curve of her body, every swell and every hollow. Her nipples were dark and pointed, as if the room had a chill which, thanks to the fireplace within it, it did not. He could see the shadows beneath her breasts, the tuck of her waist where it led to her hip and the triangle of darker blond curls leading down to her closed thighs.

He had never seen a more provocative image in his life and he thanked Hella briefly for the fate and fortunes that had led him to that moment. It was not likely to be anything he forgot any time soon. This, he thought, might just be something worth fighting for.

“You’ve bathed,” she said, taking in his wet hair.

“Always,” he said. “Well, whenever I can. I take off my clothes whenever possible to keep the dirt out of them, but that doesn’t protect my skin and hair. I—” He broke off, realizing how inane the conversation was. She didn’t really care why he did it. Not right then. And she could figure it out for herself anyway. “You look very clean yourself.” He groaned inwardly. What an asinine thing to say! There she was, laid out like a sensual banquet and all he could say was she looked clean? “I mean, you look amazing. Beautiful. Delicious,” he added for good measure.

That last got to her and she blushed. The reaction must have made her uncomfortable because she sat up and drew her legs into her chest.

“Don’t,” he said. “Please. Please don’t cover up.”

She slowly dropped her knees and smiled, that confident smile he was more used to. The ballsy one that had gotten her this far in life. She then came up on her knees and shuffled to the edge of the bed closest to him. The hem of her gown got caught under her knees so the gown pulled taut against her breasts and belly as she reached out to him. He took her hand and let her draw him in close. The fronts of their bodies touched and she looked up at him with her bottomless jade green eyes that were, ironically, so much like his own. With their fair looks and matching eyes they would make a sickly adorable couple, if they weren’t who they were. No one could look at them and find them adorable.

He reached up and touched the sun-browned skin of her cheek. She was no pale, sheltered miss. She lived out of doors and took the sun into herself. It made her warm, and smooth, and vibrant. She had freckled a little, but it was mostly a uniform tan. It made the pale pink of her lips stand out and they shone when she licked them nervously.

“So you like what you see.” She made a statement of it, not a question, giving him no room for rejection or any power to damage what he suspected right then was a very fragile ego. Oh, she was strong, larger than herself, and had the confidence and personality to go with it, but right now she wasn’t showing how strong she could be . . . she was showing how soft she could be, and she wasn’t used to it.

“Yes,” he answered her anyway. “Can’t you tell? I can barely move from wanting you.”

That made her smile and he could see her confidence trebling.

“Is that why you still have all your clothes on? Because a girl might think other things if she was laid out in a gown like this and a guy just stood there without—-”

He was out of his vest in a flash, whipping off his shirt a second later, making her chuckle. He sat down on the bed beside her to pull off his boots and she got up to help him. When she bent forward the gown gaped at the neck and gave him a full display of breasts left pale and untouched by the sun, their fullness a thing of beauty. To think she had once been confounded by them, strapping them down and hiding them from the world. He was glad she had taken to the corset. On so many levels.

Unable to resist, he reached out and took her right breast in his left hand, squeezing to test the fullness of it, loving the way she filled his palm. She drew in a soft breath of surprise, but did not otherwise stop what he was doing. She let him fondle her as she pulled off first one boot, then the other. When she stood straight, his other hand joined the first, taking her free breast in hand and molding her slowly and firmly. Her nipples were so hard. He took them between his fingers and tugged at them, being as gentle as he knew how. He’d figured out a while ago that she wasn’t as experienced as she would like him to think she was. An experienced woman would have found out about potions like the one Doisy had given her a long time ago. Experienced women didn’t blush every time a man touched them intimately like she was doing now.

But she battled herself because of that lacking experience. She would rather die than confess to him or herself that she didn’t know exactly what she was doing. So he was left to wonder exactly what the sum of her experience was. She wasn’t a virgin . . . or . . . oh gods, he hoped he was reading that right. He was the last person in the world who should be allowed to handle a virgin. He didn’t think he’d have the patience to treat her right. Not the way he was feeling right then.

“I’m going to do so many things to you tonight,” he promised, “that you’ve never even dreamed of.”

“I have quite an imagination,” she warned him with a smile.

“I’m wrong. I can’t do it all in one night. I’ll start off slow . . . and work my way up.”

“You’re assuming there’s going to be more than one night,” she said with amusement.

“Oh, there will be. We have a long journey ahead of us and you are going to be in my bed every single night of that journey. Let’s get that much straight right now.”

She could have argued with his high–handedness, but she didn’t and it pleased him.

“Very well,” she said. “I needed someone to keep me warm anyway.” She punctuated the remark with a careless shrug.

“I’ll do that and more,” he promised, grabbing handfuls of the gown and in one swift movement shucking it up and off over her head.

She laughed at him, but he could tell she was trying to keep her courage up as she stood gloriously naked in front of him.

“Gods you’re beautiful,” he said as his hungry eyes roamed over her bare, delicious skin. She preened under the compliment, courage no longer necessary. Good. She should feel confident. She should always know how powerful and stunning she was in all things . . . but in this above all.

He reached out to bracket her hips in his hands and drew her in close between his knees until the soft swell of her breast was beneath his nose and pressed against his lips. It only took a turn of his head to brush his mouth over one of those distended nipples. He parted his lips and tongued her, the taste of her melting like sugar on his tongue. She tasted sweet and sexy, as if
she had flavored herself just for him, just to entice him. He drew on her until he heard her breath catch and
then he released her with a slow lick of his tongue. Then he switched to the opposite breast and did the same.

She released a little moan as he swirled his tongue around the fat juiciness of her nipple and it made him harden. He was already hard with wanting her from
the moment he had laid eyes on the delights displayed before him, but that little moan made him realize she was -capable of turning him on in so many more profound ways.

His hands were roaming her skin slowly and sweetly, caressing every curve, stroking into every hollow. He had never felt skin so soft, smelled anything so delicious and inherently feminine. And all the while he tasted her. His mouth drifting over her skin, his tongue catching her in luxurious, lazy licks.

He built her up like that slowly, savoring every moment. He then surprised her by twisting her hips in his hands, turning her fully around so that her back was facing him. Then his tongue was sliding down the channel of her spine, bumping over the vertebrae until his mouth was stroking into the curve of the small of her back, then tracing out into the splay of her backside. He licked her buttocks, nipping at them sensuously, and he felt her tense ever so slightly with every contact, as if
she was waiting for something she wasn’t comfortable with to happen . . . and yet found surprising pleasure instead. Her little sigh told him the latter.

He slid his hands over her exquisite curving ass and stroked down to her thighs. He shaped her lovingly, worshipping her as she deserved to be worshipped. Then he trailed light fingers down her thighs before bringing his hands back to her hips and turning her to face him once more. He leaned forward and pressed an openmouthed kiss to the space between her lower ribs, his tongue flicking gently against her skin. Then he trailed down to her navel and dipped his tongue in there. He sealed his mouth to her skin right above her blond curls and sucked at her gently.

He straightened and pulled her forward until she was straddling his legs.

“This is hardly fair. You’ve stopped removing your clothes,” she said breathlessly.

“You could always remove them for me,” he said silkily.

“I could,” she agreed, reaching down to toy with the ties to his breeches. She untied them slowly, thoughtfully, loosening the waistband until they barely clung to his hips. Then she boldly slid her hand down the front
of his pants and found him, wrapping strong fingers around his jutting length. He groaned at the blissful sensation. His pulse pounded in his ears and in his cock. It rose to her touch as if it had a mind of its own.

She stroked him from root to tip, the way she had done in the river. Only this was much better. There was no icy water to defray the heat of her warm fingers around him. His balls tightened with excitement. He wanted to be inside of her more than he had even dared to think. He had never wanted a woman so badly. Probably because she had been so hard to win. But this victory was a sweet one. As sweet as they came.

He pushed her back for a moment and stood up, shucking off his pants with her hand around him the entire time. She liked touching him. Which was just fine because he liked her touch. Liked it too well, in fact. The tip of his cock was oozing in anticipation of her.

When he was on his feet he towered over her, so he sat back down on the bed and pulled her close again. She parted her legs, one thigh on either side of his, and he could feel her moist heat against his thigh. He reached to engage her mouth with his and they kissed as deeply as two people could. As he kissed her he slid his fingers along her thigh, palm up, until he connected with her sweet damp flesh. She was wet for him. Wanting him. He found her entrance and slipped a finger inside her. She contracted around him, his intrusion both alien and wanted. She moaned softly into his mouth and he devoured the sound and her.

From that moment on a sense of urgency enveloped them. They’d been engaged in foreplay for days . . . longer even, and now they were so close they just wanted to crawl inside one another. He reluctantly withdrew his hand from all that glorious tightness, but he knew he wanted that tightness around him in other ways. Even better ways. And in order for that to happen he had to make way for himself.

He pulled her up his thighs until she came to straddle his hips on the bed, bringing her heat against him in fantastic ways. She still had hold of him and she stroked him even as she pressed him to her wetness. She guided him to her entrance, easing him inside and then moving her hand away so she could grip his shoulders and take him all the way inside her with a hot undulation of her hips.

Maxum groaned with the pleasure of it, the feel of her tightening around him, welcoming him with a flood of juicy warmth. He gripped her hip with one hand and embraced her breast with the other. He broke from their kissing to take the rosy tip of her breast into his mouth and reveled in the reaction of her tightening around him that was his reward. He cursed, hardly ready for the intensity of it, but far from ready to let it end. She began to ride him in slow, aching waves, the strong muscles of her thighs and belly used to clinging onto horseback now gripping him.

He laved first one breast then the other, sucking at her harder the more she rode him. He took his free hand from her hip and searched at the apex of her thighs for the sensitive nub that would give her her greatest pleasure. And he wanted to give her her greatest pleasure. He wanted her to come apart in his hands. To scream out his name. To know that he owned her now. In every way a man could own an independent, fiery woman, he would own her.

His fingers swirled against her and she gasped. She let her head fall back and her eyes close and he immediately stopped. Her head snapped up and her eyes narrowed on him.

“That’s right. Look at me. Look right into my eyes and make damn sure it’s me you see. Me you feel,” he ground out to her. He started to pleasure her with his fingers again and she kept eye contact with him this time. It trebled the intensity of what they were feeling, to be so connected like that. And he wanted that intensity. Wanted it more than anything. Maybe even more than freedom from a curse he no longer deserved.

The thought shook him to his core. It was something he normally would not want to acknowledge, but it was impossible to escape in that instant. And it gave him more pleasure than he thought could be possible. The urge to climax struck him hard and it was all he could do to prevent it. It shocked him how powerful it felt and why it felt that powerful. He knew when he reached that apex it was going to strip him bare and raw . . . but he would not reach it alone. He would make her feel it too.

He began to thrust up to meet her, one hand coming to grip her hip and buttocks the other buried in the nest of curls toying with her. She began to moan, guttural erotic sounds that built in intensity until she began riding him harder. Her eyes never left his but he could tell she wanted to . . . wanted to shut her eyes and shut herself away from acknowledging the depth of what she was feeling. But neither was she a coward. Never a coward. So she was gazing deep in his eyes when she came for him for the first time. She shattered like glass, splintered and sharp and clear. It was so incredible to see and feel that he came hard and fast. He shouted out, a primitive sound that came from the bottom of his soul.

And all the while they looked hard into each other’s eyes.

As they came down from the high of it, breathing hard and damp with perspiration, he felt her pulling back. Felt her closing herself off and away to somewhere safe. She looked away from him.

“Wow,” she said breathily, lightness in her tone. “Let’s do that again real soon.”

“Just give me a few minutes and I’ll be happy to oblige. But in the meantime . . .” He looked at her with a devilish glint in his eyes. Fine. She wanted to play? Wanted to keep it light as if the intensity of the past few minutes hadn’t happened? He was game for that. He was no more eager to search his soul than she was.

“In the meantime?”

He stood up, lifting her as if she weighed no more than air . . . which to him she did . . . and turned to lay her out on the bed. Seeing her stretched out, naked and waiting, was everything he needed.

For the moment anyway.

He turned her over onto her stomach, though she resisted the whole time, looking over her shoulder at him.

“What are you doing?”

“I told myself when I got you naked I would kiss every inch of your body.”

“Oh?” she said breathlessly.

“Yes. And I’m starting with the back.”

She sighed, long and deep.

“Be careful,” she said. “I could get used to this.”

“That is entirely my plan.”

Excerpted from BOUND IN DARKNESS by Jacquelyn Frank Copyright © 2015 by Jacquelyn Frank. Excerpted by permission of Ballantine Books, an imprint of Random House, a division of Penguin Random House LLC. All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.

Bound in Darkness will be available in print and digital on November 24. Preorder a copy: Amazon | BN | Kobo | iBooksAll Romance | IndieBound. In the meantime, you can find more paranormal romance reads on our Everything Paranormal page.

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