Christina Phillips - [Forbidden 01]

BOOK: Christina Phillips - [Forbidden 01]
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Table of Contents
Published by the Penguin Group
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South Africa
Penguin Books Ltd., Registered Offices: 80 Strand, London WC2R 0RL, England
This book is an original publication of The Berkley Publishing Group.
This is a work of fiction. Names, characters, places, and incidents either are the product of the author’s imagination or are used fictitiously, and any resemblance to actual persons, living or dead, business establishments, events, or locales is entirely coincidental. The publisher does not have any control over and does not assume any responsibility for author or third-party websites or their content.
Copyright © 2010 by Christina Phillips.
All rights reserved.
No part of this book may be reproduced, scanned, or distributed in any printed or electronic form
without permission. Please do not participate in or encourage piracy of copyrighted materials in
violation of the author’s rights. Purchase only authorized editions.
HEAT and the HEAT design are trademarks of Penguin Group (USA) Inc.
Heat trade paperback edition / September 2010
Library of Congress Cataloging-in-Publication Data
Phillips, Christina, (date)
Forbidden / Christina Phillips.—Heat trade pbk. ed.
p. cm.
eISBN : 978-1-101-44292-0
I. Title.
PS3616.H45455F67 2010

For Mark.
I owe a huge debt of thanks to my fabulous critique partners—Amanda Ashby, Sara Hantz and Pat Posner—for their support and encouragement over the years. Even when I came close to giving up on myself, they never did, and for that they deserve mountains of chocolate, rivers of wine and a juicy pineapple. You girls keep me sane.
To my incredible agent, Emmanuelle Alspaugh, who loved Carys and Maximus and their forbidden love right from the start. Thank you for always believing, and for helping to turn my dreams into reality.
Many thanks to everyone at Berkley who has worked so hard on
, especially my editor, the lovely Kate Seaver; it’s a pleasure to work with you. Thank you for asking the hard questions! And to Katherine Pelz for her patience in answering mine!
To Gordon Crabb and the Berkley art department—thank you for creating such a beautiful cover. Every time I look at it, I fall a little more in love!
For the wonderful friends I’ve made through the Romance Writers of Australia, Romance Writers of New Zealand and the online romance community—your support is invaluable and very much appreciated.
And, as always, to my husband Mark and my children, Victoria, Charlotte and Oliver—who was very excited at the thought of me writing a Roman historical until he found out it was also going to be a romance. Sorry about that!
Author’s Note
It was likely the Romans who called the ancient peoples of Europe and Britain
They would have called themselves by their own tribal names.
For clarity, I have taken the liberty of using the term “Celt” in reference to the ancient tribal peoples of Cymru as a whole.
Chapter One
Carys held her breath as her secret lover entered the sparkling waterfall, buried deep within the leafy shadows of the forest.
She pressed her fingers against the rough bark of the tree, and inched a little farther along the branch where she lay hidden from his sight.
From this angle she had a perfect view of his magnificent naked body. Even from this distance she could see the numerous battle scars that marred his tawny skin, but they marked him as a warrior. A hero who faced death without reservation and emerged triumphant.
He was the enemy of her people. And yet she couldn’t tear her fascinated gaze from him.
They had never met. They
never meet. Such a catastrophe didn’t bear thinking about. Yet she thought of this tough, brutal warrior constantly. Ever since she had first stumbled across his irregular bathing ritual three moons ago.
He turned within the shimmering rainbows of the waterfall, fingers raking through his short black hair. Carys released her breath in a shaky gasp and her body moved restlessly against her perilous ledge. The men of Cymru had long, flowing hair. How would it feel to touch such severely cropped hair? Sharp, like the points of reeds? Or—not? She couldn’t imagine. And yet she imagined endlessly.
His hands massaged his broad shoulders, and Carys’s fingers dug into woody crevices as she fantasized rubbing her own fingers over his knotted muscles. It had been fifteen days since he had last been to the waterfall. She knew because she had waited here, each morning.
But the wait had been worth it, and her imagination hadn’t enhanced his powerful muscles, his commanding height or his dark, exotic beauty. Her breath shortened as her heart rate accelerated, and her thighs tightened around the branch in reaction.
Slowly his hands slid over wet skin, fingers trailing through the sprinkling of dark hair that dusted his impressive chest. Lightning flickered in the pit of her stomach, and instinctively she rubbed her pussy against the abrasive bark.
Her only lover, whose possessive grip she had finally escaped three years ago, possessed no body hair aside from on his head. How would it feel to press against a masculine form so unlike any she had previously seen?
The tip of her tongue slid over her lips as her secret lover sluiced water over his rigid stomach. And then his fingers curled around his semi-aroused cock.
Carys stretched to the very edge of her branch, risking safety and the threat of discovery, but temptation was too great. She had seen naked men without number in her life, knew how insanely proud males were of their treasures, but she had never been impressed by that part of the human body before.
Not even her ex-lover’s.
not her ex-lover’s. And yet this man’s cock, this man who would murder her without compunction if he knew who she was, held fascination beyond reason.
His fingers slid over his burgeoning penis, squeezing the dark head, and without conscious thought Carys’s hand slipped between her thighs. Sweet Cerridwen, she had never wanted a man so much as she wanted this one. But she knew better than to ask her goddess to intervene, for intervention would cause untold suffering to her people.
But still, she wanted this man. With all that she was.
Even through the soft wool of her gown, her throbbing clit reacted instantly to the pressure of her finger. She sighed, and her eyelashes flickered as her hips ground against her finger, against the roughness of the tree. She imagined her Roman conqueror touching her there, spearing his finger into her wet slit, and tremors burned through her womb, tightening her muscles, spiraling through her innermost channel.
She rubbed her breasts, heavy with arousal, against the bark, and imagined his hands cupped her. Squeezed her. Pinched her nipples between his calloused fingers. Rough, battle-forged fingers. How different would they feel from the smooth hands of her previous lover?
She imagined him ripping her gown from her body, until she was naked before him. Could feel the heat of him as he loomed over her. See his eyes—she longed to see the color of his eyes—and if she lifted her hand, she could run her fingers through his short, military hair.
BOOK: Christina Phillips - [Forbidden 01]
5.1Mb size Format: txt, pdf, ePub

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