I’m busy with final edits for Someday In Dublin, so I’m going to be lazy and toss out an excerpt for Captured By The Hunter.” In this scene, runaway bride Drella has already gotten away from the hunter Jodan once, and she thinks she’s in the clear…
Drella made a sound of extreme relief when she entered the tent and pulled off the heavy veil and robe that covered her.
“There!” she sighed. “Much better.”
Her hand froze in mid-air, still holding the veil at the sound of that deep baritone voice. She closed her eyes, offering prayers to eleven different deities, but when she opened them again, he was definitely sitting right there, on the pillows that covered the floor of the tent.
“You found me.” She said it accusingly, her eyes narrowed.
“We’re back to monosyllables again? How quaint.”
She threw the veil down and stepped over to the water reservoir in the corner, dipping a cloth into it and washing the sweat from her face and neck. It was scalding hot on this planet, and she’d been here for weeks hiding out among the nomads of the desert region. She was wealthy beyond all standard here, and they treated her like royalty – which was good because it meant she got water regularly, and her own private tent.
Well, not-so-private now.
He was looking at her with unreserved interest, which was no wonder considering what she was wearing. The sheer, pale blue scarf looped around her neck, crossing over her breasts and tying at the back. Another of the same color and material draped low and knotted over one hip, covering her only to mid-thigh. It was cool, but didn’t leave much to the imagination.
Not that he needed to imagine much.
“I’d ask how you found me,” she said, “But something tells me you wouldn’t let me know anyway.”
She flopped down onto the pillows across from him, cross-legged, not even realizing what an excellent view she was affording him due to her lack of undergarments. Jodan’s nostrils flared briefly, and his jaw tightened as he reigned himself in, determined to stay in control.
“I’m considered to be a queen here, you know,” she said conversationally. “All I have to do is call out, and you’d be surrounded and decapitated in no time.”
He crossed his arms and looked at her with a smile pulling at the corner of his mouth.
She lifted her chin, staring him down, and then finally she rolled her eyes.
“Oh, very well. I’m not going to let them kill you. But I could order them to detain you.”
“I won’t be detained long.”
She threw her hands up in the air. “Of all the –’ she sputtered, “You are the most stubborn, obstinate –” she didn’t even know where to go after that. This man was just not going to give up. Someone had paid him to do a job and he was going to do it.
She leaned over, rummaging in a basket nearby and pulled out two goblets. Then she picked up a bottle of wine from a nearby table and poured for both of them. She reached out, offering him a drink. He stared at the goblet, but didn’t take it.
“Oh, go ahead,” she said. “You can take mine if you’d prefer.”
He looked at her skeptically. “Mix them together.”
She made an annoyed sound and carefully poured one goblet into the other, then half out again.
He reached for the drink. “Not yet.”
Two little words. That’s all it took and he might as well have pulled her beneath him on the pillows. She felt an instant flush to her skin and an answering heat somewhere low in her belly.
Get a grip, Drella, she mentally chided. You can still get out of this.
“I want to offer you a deal,” she began.
Jodan didn’t say a word, merely took a drink and raised a brow. She forced a smile to keep from showing him how annoyed she was.
“You’re obviously being well-compensated for bringing me in. Correct?”
His mouth quirked again. “Yes.”
She held his gaze. “I can offer you more.”