Closeup on man showing muscular body on black


His fingers slackened on the buckle. “You don’t want your freedom?”

“I do, but you’ve pushed for it more than I have. It makes me wonder.” She eyed the dead Viking, his body pummeled by the waterfall. “Actually, I’ve a good many questions this morning.”

“Such as.”

Sestra’s shaky hand swiped wet curls from her face. “What did you say to me last night…those foreign words when you were inside me?” Her arms spread before flopping to her sides. “And why the change this morning? We kiss and all of a sudden you push me away? I vow you’re more inconstant than a skittish virgin.”

“You ask a lot of questions.”

“And you’re short on answers.”

Water skipped over rocks, its cheery gurgle a contrast to drenched, angry woman standing before him thigh-deep in the stream. He finished unclasping the buckle and let the leather straps hang loose. 

“By my count you’ve got one left.”

Cinnamon lashes spiked wide. “The fearless Viking hides behind his game of three questions,” she said, head shaking slowly. “No wonder you’re alone.”

High cliffs shadowed her. Much had passed between them on this unfulfilled quest, but she was right.  He was alone by design because he wanted it that way — until a certain flame-haired thrall worked her way under his skin. 

He scowled, his body tense, bracing for the blow. “Your one question…what is it?”

*   *   *

Brandr’s coming.

Why not grab him now?


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