He approached her, his voice taking on a seductive tenor. "Shall we seal it with a kiss, then?"
Callie caught her breath and stiffened at the question. Ralston smiled at her obvious nerves. He ran a finger along the edge of her hairline, tucking a rogue lock of hair behind her ear gently. She looked up at him with her wide brown eyes, and he felt a burst of tenderness in his chest. He leaned close, moving slowly, as though she might scare at any moment, and his firm mouth brushed across hers, settling briefly, barely touching before she jumped back, one hand flying to her lips.
He leveled her with a frank gaze and waited for her to speak. When she didn't, he asked, "Is there a problem?"
"N-No!" she said, a touch too loudly. "Not at all, my lord. That is- Thank you."
His breath exhaled on a half laugh. "I'm afraid that you have mistaken the experience." He paused, watching the confusion cross her face. "You see, when I agree to something, I do it wholeheartedly. That was not the kiss for which you came, little mouse."
Callie wrinkled her nose at his words, and at the nickname he had used for her. "It wasn't?"
Her nervousness flared, and she resumed toying with her cloak tassel. "Oh, well. It was quite nice. I find I am quite satisfied that you have held up your end of our bargain."
"Quite nice isn't what you should be aiming for," he said, taking her restless hands into his own and allowing his voice to deepen. "Neither should the kiss leave you satisfied."
She tugged briefly, giving up when he would not free her and instead pulled her closer, setting her hands upon his shoulders. He trailed his fingers down her neck, leaving her breathless, her voice a mere squeak when she replied, "How should it leave me?"
He kissed her then. Really kissed her.
He pulled her against him and pressed his mouth to hers, possessing, owning in a way she could never have imagined. His lips, firm and warm, played across her own, tempting her until she was gasping for breath. He captured the sound in his mouth, taking advantage of her open lips to run his tongue along them, tasting her lightly until she couldn't bear the teasing. He seemed to read her thoughts, and just when she couldn't stand another moment, he gathered her closer and deepened the kiss, changing the pressure. He delved deeper, stroked more firmly.
And she was lost.
Callie was consumed, finding herself desperate to match his movements. Her hands seemed to move of their own volition, running along his broad shoulders and wrapping around his neck. Tentatively, she met Ralston's tongue with her own and was rewarded with a satisfied sound from deep in his throat as he tightened his grip, sending another wave of heat through her. He retreated, and she followed, matching his movements until his lips closed scandalously around her tongue and he sucked gently- the sensation rocked her to her core. All at once she was aflame.