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Dark Secrets Unveiled
Author: I. T. Lucas








Fear is the enemy of reason.

Sari had reached that profound realization while lying awake in bed and staring at David. Her eyes were burning from the lack of sleep, but she hadn’t dared to close them and doze off even for a minute.

What if she woke up and found him dead?

Talk about overreacting, but no amount of self-talk could quell her anxiety.

What if he started transitioning and slipped into a coma while she was asleep?

She needed to watch him closely, listen to his heartbeat and monitor his breathing, and check his forehead for fever. The moment he started to exhibit symptoms, she would transfer him to the clinic and have Steven hook him up to the monitoring equipment.

Why was she gripped by such intense anxiety though?

The induction ceremony had gone well, and like most inductees, David had woken up from the venom trip about half an hour later, feeling a little woozy but none the worse for wear. She’d been so relieved when he’d opened his eyes that her fear had subsided, but the reprieve hadn’t lasted long.

After the ceremony, they had returned to her apartment and gotten busy with the pampering she’d promised him. The moment David had fallen asleep, though, the fear had returned in full force. Fortunately, her guy was a sound sleeper, and he hadn’t woken up when she’d checked his fever, which had been every five minutes or so.

Unable to help herself, Sari did it again, but David’s forehead was just as cool as it had been all the other times.

Was it possible to lose consciousness without showing any of the other symptoms of transition?

Maybe he was unconscious already?

Panic seizing her, she shook his shoulder. “Wake up, David!”

His eyes popped open in alarm, and he bolted upright. “What happened?”

Sari let out a relieved breath. “Nothing other than a minor panic attack. I wanted to make sure that you are just sleeping and not unconscious. How are you feeling?”

“I’m perfect.” He wrapped an arm around her waist and plopped back down on the bed, pulling her down with him. “I’m just tired.” Holding her close against his warm body, he caressed her back in leisurely up and down strokes. “What time is it?”

“It’s a little after six in the morning.”

He eyed her from under his long, dark lashes. “Did you get any sleep at all?”

“I couldn’t.” She kissed his bare chest. “I was watching you.”

He smiled. “I know that I’m a good-looking fellow, but that’s no reason to lose sleep.”

“You are so full of yourself. I was listening to your heartbeat, monitoring your breathing, and checking your forehead for fever.”

His eyes softened. “Oh, sweetheart.” He hooked a finger under her chin and lifted her head so their lips were aligned. “Give me a kiss.”

When she didn’t respond quickly enough, he fused their lips for a closed-mouth kiss, probably because he was concerned with morning breath.

Sari couldn’t care less about that, and she wanted more kissing, more caressing, more of everything, but to start something now would weaken David, and he needed his strength. Reluctantly, she pulled away. “I’m sorry for waking you up. You should go back to sleep.”

“So should you. You’re exhausted.” He patted his chest. “Put your cheek right here so you can listen to my heart while you sleep.”

The offer was too tempting to refuse, and even though Sari knew that sleep was not going to come, she closed her eyes and let herself enjoy the closeness.

David dozed off in no time, and his deep, even breaths combined with the steady beat of his heart were like a lullaby, luring her into the oblivion of sleep.

Feeling herself drifting off, Sari forced her eyes open.

“What’s wrong?” David’s hand on her back resumed its slow caresses.

“I can’t sleep.” She pulled out of his arms. “I’m going to make myself coffee. You should go back to sleep, though. You need to preserve your strength.”

As she got out of bed and reached for her bathrobe, David’s eyes roamed over her nude body. “How can I possibly lose consciousness and miss waking up to this magnificence?”

“Regrettably, it’s not up to you.” She shrugged the robe on.

When she closed the two halves and tied the sash, David let out a disappointed sigh. “I’ll join you for a cup of coffee.”

“Stay in bed. I’ll bring it to you.”

“Only if you bring yours here as well. I like having my morning coffee with you. But first, nature calls.” He flung the comforter off, got out of bed, and stretched his arms over his head.

With his perfectly-shaped physique and impressive morning erection on display, she couldn’t help but stare.

He was a fine male specimen and, given the way his lips curved in a satisfied smirk, he was well aware of his effect on her.

“Do you like what you see?” He sauntered up to her and pulled her into his arms.

“You know that I do.”

The feel of his hard length pressed against her soft belly evoked a jolt of desire, but as tempting as it was to push him back on the bed and have her wicked way with him, Sari couldn’t act on her impulse. As it was, she’d taken a risk making love to David last night. She shouldn’t have drained his energy when he so desperately needed every little bit of it to transition successfully.

“Go.” She pushed on his chest. “You said that you needed to answer nature’s call.”

“I do.” He let go of her and walked toward the bathroom with an exaggerated swagger.

“Show-off,” she called after him.

Glancing at her over his shoulder, David smiled and flexed his butt muscles. “Are you sure that you don’t want to join me in the shower?”

“I’m sure.”

“If you change your mind…” He flexed again before closing the bathroom door behind him.

As she waited for the coffee to brew, Sari wondered how she would survive the next few days. While David was awake and she was with him, the fear subsided, but she couldn’t be with him every second of the day or keep him awake all night. Both of them needed to sleep.

Perhaps she could ask Steven to hook David up to the medical monitoring equipment at night? Those things sounded the alarm when something went wrong, so she could sleep without worrying that she wouldn’t wake up in time.

But that meant spending the nights in the clinic and sharing a narrow hospital bed with David.

Perhaps she could move her bed down there?

Everyone would think that she’d lost it, including David, but Sari didn’t care. The most important thing was to keep him alive, and everything else was secondary to that.

Once the coffee was ready, she took their two mugs to the bedroom.

David was already back in bed, and he’d even shaved.

“Here you go.” She handed him a mug and climbed into bed holding hers. “Now that you are awake, tell me how you are really feeling?”

“Excellent.” He took a sip from the coffee. “Kalugal’s bite was one hell of a trip. All through the night I kept dreaming about the things I saw while floating on the euphoric cloud his venom bite brought about.”

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