Excerpt from Lost Souls...

When he felt her hands tuck around his face, he leaned forward involuntarily. He had no idea what was on his mind. She seemed to spiral the thoughts he had into a tightly woven ball. There was no way to untangle them and no room for any others. Her hands slid around to the back of his neck and she pulled him closer. Her mouth touched his, gently, at first. Just the slightest pressure, the sense of something warm and soft against his lips. He heard her sigh as she drew away and her tongue peeked out to run over her lips. He waited for her to move her hands, but they stayed locked around his neck.

"What are you doing?" Luke asked.

"Kissing you," she said. "Don't you like it?"

"I like it fine."

"Do you want me to stop?" she whispered.

He shook his head. He couldn't find any more words inside of him. She seemed to force them from his head. The scent of her was intoxicating. A mixture of horse, sweat, soap and the pure feminine smell of her swarmed through his head like a fog, stealing his thoughts.

Her lips touched his again and after that, he was lost. She kissed him harder this time, her mouth open, wet, filled with soft breath, her hands tightening around his neck. He let his hands find her waist, waiting for her to tense and pull away. When she didn't, he drew her closer until her body was pressed against his.

She continued to kiss him, her lips roaming across his with a small amount of suction that made him crazy. Her tongue bravely dipped into his mouth, lightly, quickly. He wanted to pull it in, devour it, crush his mouth against hers, but he couldn't because she might stop. This was the first advance she had made toward him and he was determined not to ruin it.

Her hands were on his shoulders, clutching him, kneading the muscles under his shirt. He let his hands slide down from her waist to her hips. She scooted closer and pressed her pelvis against his. Now it would all end. She would feel the hard need of his body, know what thoughts were always on his mind and realize she had made a disastrous mistake in trusting him.

But her mouth roamed down to his jaw, then up past his cheek to whisper in his ear. "Lift me up, Luke."

His hands slid lower, cupping her. When he lifted, her legs wrapped around his waist and her arms curled around his shoulders. Her breasts pressed against his chest, perfect shapes, he could feel through the shirts between them. Her nipples peaked against him. He wanted to feel them naked under his hands again. She pulled the tie from his hair and dropped it onto the sandy path. She raked her fingers through his hair, her nails scraping with a delicious torture over his scalp.

"I've been wanting to touch your hair," she whispered.

She wound her hands through it, lifting herself higher in his arms. Her face was hovering over his. Did she realize what she was doing to him? Was she even aware of what might happen if she kept this up?

His hands were holding the bare flesh of her bottom, almost cupping the part of her that burned with heat. If he moved his hand slightly he could press his fingers against her most intimate parts. That would shatter any resistance she might have. She would melt in his arms. Could he do that? Take away any resistance she might have today with a flutter of his thumb across her flesh? He wanted to do it. He should do it. His own body was lunging toward her, eager to have what was being offered.

But she wasn't really offering. She was testing him, wondering how far she could push until he broke down. She wanted to see just how much control she would have over him so she could trust him. She was taking a very big risk.

Her mouth came down on his again. Hard. Urgent. This time, when her tongue swept into his mouth, he tugged at it greedily. He heard her moan and almost released her, but didn't. He kissed her back with the same hunger, the same need and she didn't pull away, she didn't cry out, she didn't tell him to stop. Her mouth locked onto his with such avid greed he couldn't take it any more. He tore himself away.

"What are you doing here, lass? 'Tis notů"

"Not what?" she whispered. Her mouth touched his again, her tongue sweeping along his bottom lip. "I love your mouth, Luke. Kiss me."

What choice did he have? He kissed her so hard, so long, so thoroughly he felt the need to drop to the sand and take her where they stood. He couldn't take another minute of the pressure building inside of him. Her touch was sheer torture.

"Celia," he breathed. "Stop."

"You said another man would want me, Luke. You said you might be that man. Did you mean it?"

"Oh, aye, lass, I meant it, but we need to stop. Now."

"No, I'm not stopping," she said. Her lips roamed across his face. "I want you to be that man, Luke. You've something I need. I want you to give it to me. I don't know what it is, but it's inside you, and I mean to have it. Today."