Protector Lexa Clash has her orders: bring back the Queen’s sex slave or don his slave collar.
But Regus Anchon is more than a handsome, pleasure toy and the tables are quickly turned. The hunter is now the prisoner and Lexa has met her match.
Raw fear shot through Lexa. The Protectors had foiled a rebellion, and the surviving rebels had escaped into the Wildlands. They’d formed a community within the lawless region. The Wildlanders and the Protectors were sworn enemies. “If they see my Protector tattoo, I’m dead, but before I die I’ll make sure they know that Queen Helisan will pay a royal ransom for your handsome hide.”
His mouth quirked, and for a second Lexa thought he might crack a smile. “Let’s keep a low profile and do our best to avoid the Wildlanders.”
“How about the horse? He looks big enough to carry us both.”
“I pushed him hard to get here. We’ll proceed on foot.”
She started walking, her gaze constantly sweeping the barren terrain for signs of the enemy, but nothing stirred, not animal or bird. Her boots kicked up the ashy silt that blanketed the valley floor for miles. Thankfully, the sun was warm and the wind was mild.
By the time the sun was low in the sky, Lexa’s stomach rumbled and her arms and legs ached. She hadn’t eaten a full meal since yesterday. She figured it had been three days for Regus. As they approached a cluster of boulders, Lexa glanced over her shoulder. “Any chance we can stop? I understand the winds pick up at night.”
Regus nodded. “Best not to get caught out in the open, we’ll camp here for the night.”
Lexa sank down in a shaded spot. “My arms are aching.” Lexa rolled her shoulders. “I won’t try to escape. I give you my word.”
He shook his head. “It’s a Protector’s job to escape captivity.”
“I’m hungry. I assume you removed the supplies from my airglide,” she said, hoping he’d release her hands while she ate.
He removed the pack from the saddle and dug out a sealed energy square. The small squares were designed to feed soldiers in the field. He broke the corner seal, triggering a chemical reaction in the package. The lining of the package heated and expanded, cooking the cube into a thick, spongy, nutritional cake. Lexa’s mouth watered as Regus peeled open the package and the smell of spice cake wafted in the air.
Regus put half the cake aside. “For the horse.”
Then he tore off a piece and fed it to her.
Her lips brushed his fingers as he continued to feed her. She watched him as she ate. His gaze remained on her mouth.
She took another bite, capturing his finger between her lips. Lexa saw the challenge in his eyes. He was daring her to bite him. She held onto his finger for a few seconds before letting it go.
When she’d swallowed the last piece, she asked, “What about you?”
He fed the cooled portion to the horse. “I’ll eat in the morning.” Then he stood and removed the laser rifle and untied the stable blanket from the saddle.
Lexa was a Protector, a member of an elite warrior class, yet this slave had proven to be a formidable adversary. He was tough, and he made her feel soft and inept.
“How does a resourceful man like you become a slave?”
His turned to look at her, his gaze quizzical. “You’re wondering if I willingly became a sex slave?”
He shook his head. “The last thing I remember was a sharp sting in my neck. When I awoke I was wearing a jewel-encrusted slave collar.”