This brief scene appears in Cold Steel and is appropriate as a themed snippet for Valentine’s Day.
If you have read Cold Fire the scene contains no spoilers because the event it references takes place in Cold Fire.
To set the stage at its most basic level, our heroine Cat is dreaming:
♥ ♥ ♥
I slid into the fog of dreams as if in the belly of Leviathan I, too, became a dragon dreamer. Streaming rivers of mist welled up from the deep, currents flowing in vast circles that penetrated close to the gleaming surface before pouring away into darker, smokier depths. Swimming shapes brushed me, hot and cold by turns, rough to the touch and then slickly smooth like eels slithering in coils around and around me.
I startled awake, shuddering, to find myself lying in Vai’s arms on the bed he had built for us. His embrace was so strong and comforting that I could have reclined in its orbit forever and not missed the world.
“Catherine,” he murmured in a drowsy, contented voice. “You were dreaming and mumbling. It sounded like ‘There are greater battles awakening in the world.’ What is it, love?”
The feel of his body stretched the length of mine, his skin to my skin, made me want to purr with simple pleasure. “I dreamed I was swallowed by a dragon. And now I have to pee. Do you think those two things are related?”
Chuckling, he kissed me on the lips. After stroking a hand along the length of my torso, he kissed me again, and then longer and with more concentration, until I really did have to get up even though he clearly had other activities on his mind. He rose with me.
“We’ll go the washroom,” he said, swinging me up into his arms. My hip pressed against his belly. “We both need a wash.”
I giggled, for the night was warm and the room stuffy despite an open window, and we were both sweaty. “It’s the middle of the night.”
“All the better. No one to disturb us.” A pinch of light sparked into existence. Cold fire swelled to a fist-size bubble whose light dappled the clothes strewn over the floor beside the bed.
I brushed my cheek against his short-shorn beard, the hair just long enough to tickle instead of scratch. “You must spend hours getting your beard to look just this decorative way.”
When he looked at me with a smile of tenderness and mischief mixed so sweetly, I could scarcely breathe, much less think. “Why, Catherine, you were watching me all that time, weren’t you?”
The currents ripped me away from him just as I realized I was dreaming the night we had consummated our marriage.
♥ ♥ ♥
Publication date: June 25, 2013.