Alien Romance: The Barbarian's Owned: Scifi Alien Abduction Romance (Alien Romance, Alien Invasion Romance, BBW) (Celestial Mates Book 1) (6 page)

BOOK: Alien Romance: The Barbarian's Owned: Scifi Alien Abduction Romance (Alien Romance, Alien Invasion Romance, BBW) (Celestial Mates Book 1)
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Chapter Seven

 

 

When Vaya reached the clearing, she and Garr had a terse discussion about the monster. Rae caught bits of the conversation as she lingered at the clearing’s edge, unable to take her eyes off the human-shaped animal she’d watched so effortlessly take apart that monster.

The sight of him had inspired many feelings in her—before the combat, irritation and outrage chief among them. She’d feared him at first, but in the way she would fear any powerful male who tried to cow her. She hadn’t understood until now precisely how inhuman a Ythirian could be.

He hadn’t moved like a human—he had been twice as fast and many times stronger. She’d seen a few professional fights, thanks to her father’s obsession with them, and knew just enough to say firmly that the things Garr could do in combat weren’t possible with a human’s physiology.

It wasn’t just in the physical speed or strength, but the mental acuity required to deftly avoid the types of strikes the monster had used.

She gathered from their conversation that the creature attacking them had no name. It reminded them of a mixture of two other species: an aquatic organism called a decabeast and a toothy land-based predator called a razza’gar.

There was an open question as to whether Lyr had created the aberration. After a moment of communion with the domé, Vaya confirmed that Lyr had no idea where the creature had come from.

“It’s definitely a war form, though.” Vaya’s tone was worried. “Haven’t been any in ages.”

“Only a domé could make this.” Garr had cleaned off the blood with help from his otoya clothing, and glanced now into the treetops.

“Take a sample. When we get to the tree house, you’ll carry the sample to Kaython’s Mouth and she’ll be able to tell us who made it.”

A tree house?
Rae wondered.

Vaya spotted the confusion on her face. “The tree house is a lodge at Kaython’s border. We based ourselves there.”

Rae’s mind reeled.
Not only has this alien kidnapped me, but he’s taking me to his tree house.

Vaya cut a sample from the beast’s gory remains. Garr also took a nine-inch talon from the tip of its largest tentacle, probably as a trophy. Rae shuddered at the barbaric act and tried to stick closer to Vaya when they restarted their journey.

Later, while crossing a wide, shallow river, Rae slipped on a slimy stone and Vaya caught her under the arms. “Thanks,” Rae murmured.

“You are my prime’s taliyar. I am always at your service.”

Rae glanced ahead at Garr, who had turned to peer at them from the shore. Rae immediately averted her eyes, terrified of the way he looked at her.             

“You fear him?” Vaya asked.

Rae opened her mouth to deny it. Then she sighed and nodded.

“Not uncommon. He terrified me the first time I watched him spar a senior soldier. We all have our gifts. Garr’s strength, speed, and battle prowess are his. He’s a force of nature on the battlefield, and doubly so if enraged.”

“It wasn’t human—not even close,” Rae whispered.

“Yeah, you’re the only human for like a bajillion light years,” Vaya mused. She knelt, to eye level, and offered an encouraging smile. “Relax. He’s not gonna hurt you. Ever. That I can promise you.”

“How?” Rae belted out. “You couldn’t possibly know him that well.”

“I know Prime Garr well enough to say this: he doesn’t do anything he doesn’t want to; and whatever he does want to do, he succeeds at. If he hurts something, it’s always on purpose. Since he would never want to hurt you, you’re safe with him.”

Rae wasn’t so sure.

Sensing her hesitancy, Vaya turned, continuing to wade. “He wasn’t always destined to be prime. Garr was low born.”

“Does lineage matter in your society?” Rae asked. She was intensely curious about their culture, though more from an anthropological perspective than anything else.

“The strength of an individual matters, and that’s got lots of genetics involved. As a result, yeah, lineage matters. For instance, our domé does what she can to predict a male’s compatibility with a female, and produces a number—we call it a genetic amplifier.

If the amplifier is over a hundred, it means the offspring will be stronger than the parents. Primes are very strong, so strong they almost never have genetic amplifiers above one hundred. They’re so mighty that the best they can hope for is that their offspring will be
close
to their strength.”

Rae nodded, absorbing that knowledge. The facts made her feel a little sad for their society.

“Garr wasn’t born as strong as the last prime of domé Kaython. His parents died… badly.” Vaya didn’t say anything more about it, but went on.

“He was adopted, and his adoptive father taught him to be kinda badass. While Garr wasn’t born that way, it was something he picked up. His victories accrued, his gifts from Kaython along with them, and now he’s among the strongest primes anywhere on Ythir.

So strong that when it was announced he’d found a mate with a 98 percent genetic amplifier, we were all excited. Primes as powerful as Garr never find such perfect mates.”

Rae blinked. “Wait. We couldn’t possibly be that well matched. We’re not even the same species.”

“You aren’t. Kaython can’t determine your amplifier, since you’re human. That was Yahlalla, the daughter of Kaython’s former prime—but Garr turned her down.”

“Why?”

“Because,” Vaya insisted, “Garr never does anything he doesn’t want to. And he didn’t want her.” Vaya tapped Rae’s shoulder. “He wanted you.”

Perhaps it should have made Rae feel better, but it didn’t. Worse yet, they exited the river wet, and her shoes were once again waterlogged. Near dusk, they scaled an incline until they were among high ridges, the valley shrinking smaller behind them.

The ridges were colder, particularly with the sun nearly gone, and it hadn’t been out long enough to dry her clothes. A brisk wind hit her damp body and elicited a shiver.

She also stumbled over roots more and more, and Rae wondered how long Garr would march them in the dark.

“Why are you tripping?” he growled, perhaps irritated by Rae consistently doing her best to keep Vaya in between them all day long.

Her anxiety at being so close to something so deadly had coiled inside her tighter and tighter all day long, and in that frustrated moment, it finally found its release: “Because it’s
dark
!” she shouted, the sound echoing off the trees and crags, louder than she’d expected.

Her heart caught and palms broke out in a cool sweat when she realized he was staring at her with those glittery-bright eyes in the dark. “Oh God. I—I’m sorry. I didn’t meant to holler, I’m just—”

“You’re night blind?” he asked, voice soft.

That gentle tone briefly made her freeze, unsure what to expect from him. “I’m human. We’re all night blind.” It frustrated her that he didn’t know, but she didn’t dare show it.

“That sucks,” Vaya said. “You can see colors at least, right?”

“Yes,” Rae said, swallowing her irritation behind a too-wide smile. “I can see freaking colors. Geez.”

“Good.” Vaya smiled. “The pollen leapers in Lyr have gorgeous infrared patterns and I’d hate for you to have missed them.”

Rae let out a long, pent up sigh and didn’t correct her.

“Maybe we should stop, boss. Unless you want to carry her.”

Garr grunted. “Ask Lyr permission to sleep here.”

Vaya settled into her commune-with-nature pose and Garr scanned the distance. Rae huddled against a squama, trying to siphon some heat from the rough scale.

It was subtly warmer than the air, and broke the worst of the breeze. Her whole body shook from the chill drilled into her by damp clothes and hair.

There was sufficient starlight through the trees for her to see Garr’s approach. She shrank into the squama, and startled when he took hold of her by the shoulder, dragging her against him.

Squirming in terror, she thought for one horrifying moment he was attacking her—but no. It was different. He wasn’t out of control anymore, and this was no attempt to harm her. It was just Garr behind his usual, handsy self.

He settled back and held her against him, her back to his front, and his arms wrapping around her middle. She gripped his forearm, mind buzzing with quiet alarm, but the longer he stayed like that the more her pulse settled.

His arms were warm flesh melted over coiled steel, and Rae steadily realized how protective the gesture really was—and how much warmer it was tucked against him.

Tired from the long march, she ultimately stopped wriggling and her mind went curiously blank. She merely savored the first moment she’d had around him since the clearing where she wasn’t afraid.

“Better?” he asked. He liked being behind her, she realized—he was pressed close and speaking over her shoulder. Whenever he did it, her body reacted.

Her tingling skin and trembling hands didn’t care one bit about his inhuman strength and speed. On a primal level, she was attracted to this inhuman being’s proximity.

“Still not better than my hotel back on Earth,” Rae murmured.

“I won’t apologize for destroying that beast.” He stroked the inner crook of her elbow in a way that felt so good she wormed away from it for fear she’d like it
too
much.

It had hitched her whole body, tightening a spot in the pit of her abdomen, and the ghostly memory of it wouldn’t quite fade. “I don’t want an apology. I don’t want anything from you at all,” she lied.

“You do. And a Ythirian wouldn’t be too proud to admit what she craved.”

“How could I want you when I’m terrified at every moment that you’ll… I don’t know…
hurt
me?”

“I would never harm you.”

She snorted. “You already kidnapped me.”

“I claimed you. I won’t harm you, but you
are
mine.”

She twisted in his arms and dared to look up at him. Swallowing, Rae knew she had only one more card to play. She wondered if she even could…

***

Garr had wanted to mate with her from the moment he met her. In the pool, he’d been near to prying those wet clothes off her body and holding her flush against him.

He knew she hadn’t been ready, but when she spun in his arms and looked up at him, he could see the desire in her breathtaking eyes. The blue rings had flecks of green, possessing more shades and depth than Ythirian eyes. He was lost in them.

The impossible softness of her full breasts pushed into him. He could feel the scrape of her hardened nipples through her wet bra and silky shirt. He wasn’t certain if it was the cool air or arousal, which had sensitized them, but he could feel them because they pressed into one of his striped markings along his abdomen.

Through a similar marking that ran down the palm of his hand and across two of his digits, he stroked her cheek and could sense her racing pulse.

“You want something, taliyar?” He stroked a ribbon of that hair, usually golden blonde but darker and heavier now from the river, so that the natural waviness was stretched slightly taut.

“Take me home,” she whispered. “My warm hotel has a huge bed.” She sucked on her lower lip and her breath tickled the nova marking over his heart, making him shiver. “I’ll mate with you there. But you have to take me home first.”

He smiled at her obvious ruse—he knew her arousal was real, but that her promise was not. And he would not have taken the offer even if it were real.

“When we mate, it will be because you pleaded for it. And it will be here on Ythir, where you will stay. I do not want to claim you once—I want you now and for always.”

Her sweet promises transformed into a glower, though he could sense she was still too afraid of him to demonstrate it in anything but an expression.

Vaya chose that moment to rise and glance their way.

“What is it?” he asked.

“Lyr told us to bed down, but she’s not sure that was the only monster. She wants us away from the tree line.” Vaya pointed out to a stone precipice along the ridge, barren of all vegetation.

Garr followed her finger’s point. “It’s bare stone. Sleeping on squama would have been warmer.”

Vaya shook her head. “She wants us there. I’m sure of it.”

“Very well. The rock it is.” Garr stroked another lock of Rae’s hair, but she flinched from his touch. “It will be cold.” He offered her his hand.

She flitted from his hold and strode for the precipice, putting as much space between herself and Garr as she could. It put her directly in the path of the chilly, nighttime wind.

He shook his head, tamping down his irritation.
If all human females are like her, how did there come to be six billion of them?

***

The ledge Rae lay back on was her first opportunity to look up at Ythirian skies without the obstruction of a forest canopy, and it took her breath away.

BOOK: Alien Romance: The Barbarian's Owned: Scifi Alien Abduction Romance (Alien Romance, Alien Invasion Romance, BBW) (Celestial Mates Book 1)
2.3Mb size Format: txt, pdf, ePub
ads

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