The Three Fates of Ryan Love

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Authors: Erin Quinn
whoever is sending me signs will help me free them.”
    â€œWhat if they don’t?”
    â€œThat’s a bridge to cross when I reach it. I must follow my destiny, my fate. Just as you must follow yours.”
    He smiled. “I don’t believe in fate.”
    She smiled back. “Fate does not require belief.”
    He snorted softly. “Fair enough.”
    They remained as they were, poised with the room spread out between them, Ryan reclining, his jeans open at the top, the intriguing arrow between hip bones and muscle pulling her gaze down.
    â€œDon’t you get tired, not sleeping?” he asked, his voice rough and deep.
    Sabelle jerked her gaze up and found him watching her, his eyes filled with male awareness. She could almost taste the tension sparking in the quiet.
    â€œWhen our bodies require rest, we’re sedated,” she answered, the words rendered meaningless by that look in his eye. “But that sleep comes without dreams and so it feels . . . counterproductive.”
    He nodded slowly, taking it all in. Probably seeing right through her.
    â€œEven then someone monitors our breathing, making sure we stay dreamless.”
    She wished he’d say something, but he only continued to watch her with those knowing eyes. They dared and coaxed, teased and seduced. He was so . . . manly. All muscle and bone, hard angles, rough edges.
    She glanced around the room with feigned interest, trying to ignore the vulnerable way she felt.
    â€œSometimes hu—people . . . I mean normal people . . . they sleep together,” she said, as if it had just occurred to her. As if she hadn’t fantasized about it many times over.
    â€œSometimes,” Ryan agreed in that velvet deep voice. It curled in her stomach and spread like a disease until her whole body felt it, that timbre, that soft rasp.
    She cleared her throat and went on. “Couples. Mothers with their children. Siblings . . . friends.”
    His eyes glittered. “Do you want to sleep with me, Sabelle?” he asked softly.
    More than anything.
    She shook her head and tried to imitate one of those laughs that said, Don’t be silly . But the only thing silly in the room was her.
    Ryan stilled, his gaze so hot that she felt it against her skin. His voice dark as honey, warm as amber, he said, “Come here.”
    Quickly, she took a step forward just in case he changed his mind, but paused when she realized how much that hasty movement had given away.
    His brows went up in that way of his. The one that dared her to deny what he already knew. It was a hard look, a dangerous, masculine look that burned like a hunger inside her and pulled her to him like a towing line.
    â€œI don’t know . . .” she mumbled, and she didn’t know what she didn’t know. The bold being who’d dared to escape her chains had deserted her, leaving Sabelle exposed and uncertain.
    â€œSuit yourself.”
    He closed his eyes and adjusted his pillows, as if he didn’t care what choice she made. But there was tension in his body, in the cadence of his breath. He was waiting for her. Nervously, she perched on the edge of the bed.
    Ryan didn’t move or give an indication that he’d felt the dip in the mattress or her presence beside him. Tentatively, she swung her legs up and curled on her side, as far from him as she could, trying to cause as little disturbance as possible. But he’d pinned the covers at the bottom with his legs and she was cold.
    Ryan let out a weary breath, rolled over, hooked an arm around her, and pulled her back against his chest, fitting her into the curve of his body. His arm went beneath her pillow, his leg between hers and his hand curled over her ribs. He was warmer than any blanket, so big and strong that she felt safe for the first time in maybe . . . ever.
    â€œGo to sleep, Sabelle. I’ll

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