Authors: Lee-Ann Wallace
Tags: #Erotic Romance, #Science Fiction, #Adult
Our bags were packed beside us. One each was all we would be able to manage. Anything that didn’t fit would be left behind.
We had our plan. Prixy was going to secure the shuttle while I broke Manik out of the security office, and then we would have to make a run for it. There were a lot of things that could go wrong and we’d only get one chance, but we had to try. I had to do something. I couldn’t sit by while my mate waited for whatever authority was coming for him.
I pulled Prixy close and hugged her. Her arms closed around me and we stood in each other’s arms for a long minute.
If things went wrong, she was going to leave on Manik’s shuttle and make contact with his crew. They would come for us. They would come for Manik, and I had to believe they would be successful.
“Let’s go,” I said as I stepped back and turned towards the door.
We pulled our bags out and walked as quickly as we could towards the shuttle docking area. The station was eerily silent this late at night. We passed no one as we made our way towards our destination. Most people would be in bed at this time of the night. I’d specifically chosen the early hours of the morning, knowing scientists and the other people who made the station their home would all be in bed.
We’d already checked where Manik’s shuttle was. It was one of the things we’d done while we waited for the time to pass. We couldn’t make our escape in the middle of the day. There would be too many people walking around. There would be too many security officers on duty.
Stadden had been very free and easy when we had been together with information about how he ran the security of the station. He’d liked to talk about work while we were together and I’d innocently encouraged him, having no idea that one day I’d use that information against him.
There was one security officer posted to watch Manik’s shuttle. I left Prixy around the corner from the shuttle docking area. She knew what to do. I had my own task.
The security offices were almost on the other side of the station. I hurried as fast as my short legs would carry me, almost running to get there so Prixy wouldn’t have to wait long. Timing was everything. We didn’t want to get caught by the guards changing.
I stopped outside the doors to the security office. I’d been in there numerous times when Stadden and I had been together. I straightened my clothes, selected to display my assets to their best advantage, and checked my pocket. Everything was set. Taking a deep breath, I walked through the entry doors.
Nothing had changed in the time Stadden and I had been apart. The waiting and reception area of the security office was still boring and smelled strange. I’d never been able to figure out where the smell came from.
A hall led into the office area, doors on either side leading into Stadden’s and his lieutenant’s offices. At the end of the hall was a storage area for the security guards’ weapons and lockers, and behind that were the cells. In all my time at the station, I’d never heard of anyone being held in the cells. Manik was the first.
Moving across the reception area, I walked towards the hall. Stadden’s office was the first on the left, and the door was open. My heart started to race at what I was about to do. This could all go horribly wrong and I could end up in a cell along with Manik.
I stopped in the open door and leaned against its frame. Stadden was sitting behind his desk, his eyes glued to his view screen. A monitor on the wall showed the cell area and I could see Manik sleeping on one of the beds.
“You’re working late,” I said casually.
His eyes flew up and his focus locked on me.
“Elmertia, what are you doing here? I’m not letting the pirate go, so don’t ask.”
His gaze travelled over me. I looked good and I knew it. I was wearing one of his favourite outfits. Tight pants clung to my hips and outlined the curve of my backside. Cut low at the waist, they left my stomach bare, and I’d taken advantage of that knowing he liked the soft swell. I’d teamed my pants with a short top that was cut low to show off my cleavage and left my stomach and arms bare. Pockets had been essential in my outfit, and my pants had them on my butt as well as side pockets on the legs.
“I came to see you, handsome, and I don’t want you to let the pirate go.”
His eyebrows rose as surprise crossed his face before a frown quickly drew his brows low over his eyes.
“Then why are you here, Merty?”
“I told you, to see you.” I walked forward, the sway of my hips drawing his eyes for a moment before they came back to my face. “It took me all this time to work up the courage to come. I was worried you’d be angry with me.”
Glancing down, I trailed my fingers across the edge of his desk, before shyly looking back at him.
angry with you. All this time and you could have told me you’d found your mate. Every time I asked you to get back together with me, I was making a fool of myself.”
Lifting my eyes to look in his, I nodded. “You’re right. I should have told you, but I didn’t know if he’d ever return. I wasted so much time waiting for him, Stadden. I could have spent that time with you. Can you forgive me?”
He frowned at me. I could see confusion clouding his normally clear, pale, blue eyes. “What are you saying, Merty? You jumped in front of him. You saved his life.”
I eased around the desk towards him. He turned in his chair, swivelling it around so he was facing me. I stopped in front of him, between his spread legs, so close I could touch him.
“I did it for you, Stadden. You’ve never killed anyone before, and I didn’t want his life on your hands. I’m saying I made a mistake. I should have spent all that time with you instead of waiting for a man who couldn’t please me.”
Curiosity flashed in his eyes. His hands came forward from the arms of his chair and landed on my hips.
“But he’s your mate. I thought you couldn’t be with anyone after you’d been with your mate?”
Placing my hands on his shoulders, I leant into him. “We didn’t get that far. I put him off and told him I was too tired. I told him I wanted to get to know him better before we cemented our relationship.”
“So you haven’t bonded with him?”
My eyes widened as I looked at Stadden in shock. What did he know about bonding? We’d never talked about it before. There’d been no need. He wasn’t my mate, and we couldn’t bond even if we’d wanted to.
“No, I haven’t bonded with him and I’m glad, Stadden. I want to be with a man that pleases me and knows how to make me moan.”
His gaze bored into mine and I looked back, holding it steadily, making sure he knew I had nothing to hide. Taking a chance, I climbed up onto his lap. His hands tensed around my hips, but he didn’t stop me.
“Having him turn up showed me how much I’d missed you, Stadden. I’ve been lonely without you.”
I petted his shoulders, stroking the muscles and smoothing my hands across his shirt. Curling one hand around his neck, I leaned forward, his warmth seeping into my hand. I looked into his eyes, challenging him to stop me just before I pressed my lips to his.
He didn’t stop me, but drew my hips tight against him and kissed me back. I knew exactly what he liked, the best way to kiss him to make him forget what was happening around him. I teased his lips with my tongue, encouraging him to open for me. His taste was familiar and brought back memories of our time together. But it didn’t cause the inferno inside me that kissing Manik kindled. Our tongues stroked against each other and he moaned, his hands clenching tight on my hips.
Using every technique I knew to push him towards forgetting himself and where he was, I kissed him, nibbling and sucking and tasting him. When I thought he was moving towards that point, the one that would inevitably lead to sex, I reached down to my pocket and drew out the dermal applicator I’d stored there.
Still kissing him, I slowly raised my hand and just as he drew back, gasping in a breath, I pressed it to his neck and injected him with the drugs inside—drugs I’d stolen from medical earlier that evening.
Shock crossed his face before fury darkened his blue eyes. He shoved me off his lap and I sprawled across the floor with a cry of shock.
“You lying little bitch. What did you put into me?” He rubbed at his neck.
I remained silent. The next few minutes were crucial in my plan. I didn’t want to kill Stadden, but I needed him to open the door to let Manik out. The concoction of drugs I’d given him gave me a small window of time when he’d be disorientated and I could lead him into doing what I wanted. I just had to wait for the drugs to take effect.
He rose from his chair and towered over where I was still sprawled on the floor.
“Seeing as you want the pirate so badly, I think I’ll put you in the cell right next to his.”
Stadden reached down and grasped my arm, squeezing tightly as he pulled me to my feet. He started to drag me out of the room.
Pulling back I tried to get away. Being put in a cell wasn’t part of the plan. I had to stall him for just a few moments.
I twisted and pulled, wrenching my arm painfully. His hand squeezed my arm as he yanked me forward and I cried out at the pain.
Reaching out, I grasped the doorframe as he pulled me through and hung on with every bit of strength I had. Stadden slowed and his hand relaxed around my arm just a fraction before he looked back and yanked me away from the door. Pain ripped through my hand as I was pulled away from the door.
His steps were slower, more measured as he pulled me down the hall past the closed doors and through the security guards’ storage area where they kept weapons and other equipment, past the lockers and to a wide doorway at the far end. I fought him all the way, pulling and trying to get him to let go.
Stadden faltered as we reached the door. Shaking his head, he tried to pull me through the door, but the strength had gone out of his hold. He leant one hand against the wall right beside the door and shook his head again.
“What did you give me, Merty?”
His voice was slurred, but he managed to regain his bearings and pushed me through the door.
The first cell had an active energy field sealing it closed. Manik lay on the bed, his back facing the room. Stadden stumbled behind me and almost pulled me off my feet. By the time we reached the second cell, his steps had slowed to a crawl. The slight hum of the energy field seemed louder than I knew it was.
If he put me in one of those cells, it would all be over. Manik and I would have to hope and wait for his crew to come and rescue us.
his crew came and rescued us.
I needed a little more time, but I was out. We were at the cell and Stadden was pushing me inside. The minute he let me go, I dodged around him and danced back out of the cell.
He looked at me, confusion on his face, “What are you doing, Merty?” His words were even more slurred than they had been. He teetered on his feet, swaying dangerously close to the energy field.
I stopped a few feet away from him, far enough that he couldn’t reach me.
“You were bringing me down here so I could see Manik,” I told him.
His head swung around to look in the first cell. I looked, too, because Manik needed to be awake to escape. If I had to waste valuable time waking him up and explaining to him what was happening, we might not get away.
Manik was looking back at me, his eyes wide open and alert. A little bit of relief flowed through me, but we weren’t out of danger yet.
“You just need to lower the force field for me.” I pointed at the control pad on the wall between the two cells.
Stadden turned and looked where I was pointing, but made no move towards it. Confused eyes turned back to me. His pupils were dilated and his eyes had started to glaze over.
“What are we doing here?” He looked around him, a frown creasing his ridged brow.
I walked over and took his hand, leading him towards the panel on the wall. He swayed on his feet and almost pulled me down. I had to get under his arm and support him. It took but moments to get his hand on the control panel—then the panel beeped and the energy field blinked off.
Manik was beside me in an instant, pulling me away from Stadden.
I wanted to hug Manik in relief, but we hadn’t made it yet. We still had to get to the shuttle, which was on the other side of the station.
A warm hand grasped mine and pulled me into Manik’s arms. The hug only lasted what felt like a second and then he was pulling me out of the hall and towards the security guards’ storage area, leaving Stadden standing at the control panel. We had maybe ten minutes before the full effect of the drugs wore off. Manik stopped on the other side of the door and looked over the storage.
“What are you looking for?” I asked.
Manik didn’t look at me as he responded, but just started to pull me towards the hall.
“A weapon, but they have everything well secured. We’ll just have to make do without.”
We made it out of the security offices without any trouble. It was so late at night there was nobody around. Everything now hinged on Prixy having the shuttle up and running.
My heart pounded in my chest as we ran through the station from shadow to shadow, Manik pulling me along. I could barely keep up, his legs were so much longer than mine. We slammed into one of the night security patrols as we rounded a corner, knocking the man off his feet.
I thought my heart was going to explode as Manik pushed me past him and we kept going as the guard yelled, “Hey!”
I looked back to see the security guard running towards us. We were almost there. Almost to the shuttle. I hoped Prixy had been successful or we were in all sorts of trouble.
The drugs I’d given her would have knocked the security guard out. She just had to get them into him, but I had faith in her ability. The sudden blare of the station’s alarm sent a small noise of fright escaping from my throat.
Manik dragged me forward, pushing me to run faster. My breath rushed out of me in gasping pants as we rounded the last corner, the security guard running behind us.
A slumped form in the corridor and Prixy’s head poking out the portal door told me she’d been successful. We ran the last few metres and through into Manik’s shuttle. The doors shut behind us with a grinding noise that was almost as bad as the station’s security alarm.