(takes place during the Earth women's first day on Ishira...)
“They did take showers, but these mites tend to hang on rather well. It takes a special formula to make them release and to kill them.” Jace grinned and tapped a button above her bed. “You should probably tell them what to expect,” he said ruefully.
She quickly did so, stressing that the men weren’t attempting to hurt or molest them, and to do exactly what their ‘teams’ told them to do, to get rid of the mites. When she was done, she lay back, eyes closed for just a moment, catching her breath. When she opened them again, though, both Jace and Hunter were looking down at her expectantly.
“What?” she asked.
“You need to get bathed, too,” Hunter said with a shrug. The gleam in his eyes told her he was about to enjoy this.
“I can… I can bathe myself,” she said, stammering just a bit. “I’ve been doing it for years.”
“You could,” Jace said, inspecting her belly, where she could feel the tiny mites crawling, nibbling on her. “But if you have another reaction, you could die before we knew you’d even fallen. And you can’t reach some areas right now, because of your injuries. You definitely can’t wash your hair. Just relax, Commander. We’ll do everything.”
“Hey!” she cried out as Hunter stripped the blanket from her. He leaned down just enough to catch her gaze.
“What did you just tell your women?” he asked gently. “We’re not going to hurt you or take advantage. But we really do need to do this for you. It’s not a trick. Even our warriors had to get help washing their backs when the mites infested the first time.”
“It might be necessary,” she muttered, glaring at him, “But you don’t have to enjoy it!”
“I really don’t have a choice in that, now do I?” Hunter joked, winking at her.
She looked into his mind and saw that, while he was planning on enjoying the bathing, he was also truly concerned about her. They honestly did need to make sure they got every mite off of the women, and it would take two or three men for each of the girls. The washing had to happen quickly, otherwise the mites would simply escape to another body part.
Ri sighed and nodded her capitulation. Hunter scooped her up into his arms and carried her to a shower room off the medical center. Once there, he deposited her on a small stool, eased the medical gown off of her, and then stepped back as Jace moved to take away the bindings from her ribs. When she saw Hunter again, he wore nothing but a loincloth. Ri’s heart rate shot through the roof. Jace quickly followed suit, stripping down before stepping into the bathing area with them.
Oh, great googly-moogly… Ri’s brain threatened to short-circuit.
She was naked with two incredibly well-built warriors standing close enough to touch, wearing nothing but loincloths… She would have to be three days dead not to react. Her gaze roamed helplessly over them both as they prepared to bathe her. Ri had always had a healthy appreciation for a nicely muscled, sexy man. Right now, though she was hurt and weak and itching like hell, she wanted nothing more than to trace their hard muscles, follow the dips between muscle groups, explore every inch of those beautiful bodies. She closed her eyes, forcing her libido down. She felt light-headed and decided that her reaction was related to the events of the day and the most recent adrenaline rush.
Ri’s heart was absolutely thundering.
She knew the bath was medically necessary, knew that neither of the men had any intention of taking advantage of her weakened state, but she still felt vulnerable and small, sitting naked on the stool with the two huge warriors moving so close to her. The feeling of being so tiny, yet completely safe, was… erotic.
Hunter turned on and adjusted the water. Behind a curtain, in the shower stall nearby, another team was doing the same for Amy, and yet another was preparing to bathe Alicia. Both girls were more than a bit stunned, but Amy seemed to enjoy the attention after a bit. Jax and his team had taken over Kim’s care. The only thing that made Ri feel better about her libidinous reaction to Hunter and Jace was the fact that the others were having similar reactions to the men tending them. Good! She wasn’t the only one!
“Ready?” Hunter asked, stepping in front of her with a vial of bluish soap and a soft cloth. The heat in his eyes told her that not only was he going to enjoy this process a lot more than he let on, but that he’d read every thought in her head as she watched him. Realizing that he knew what she was thinking, about both him and the doctor, and seemed okay with it, only made Arianna’s breath catch in embarrassment and wonder. She still couldn’t believe that this gorgeous, intelligent man seemed to want her.
Then the itching began in earnest as the water hit her and all those tiny mites tried to dig into her flesh to hold on. She whimpered as the things bit again, hanging on, but apparently she had enough meds in her system to counteract their poison. Jace kept several adrenaline syringes handy, just in case. Still, she was shaky and weak by the time the soap started doing the trick and removed the tiny devils.
Though Hunter had joked about enjoying himself, the shower was fairly quick and professionally done. Hunter and Jace did a decent job of keeping their attention just on what it needed to be on, though Hunter’s gaze wandered to hers often. Usually when the cloth rubbed over part of her that was more sensitive than other areas and made her catch her breath. He seemed to take note of each of those areas. When she blinked at the realization, he grinned and sent her a sweet mental promise that he’d take advantage later, when she was better. And she wouldn’t mind at all, when he did. The assurance in his mental caress and tone made her breathing catch once more, her heart race just a bit harder. Her body spasmed sweetly in anticipation. What the hell was wrong with her, she wondered, her eyes widening as she realized she was wet from more than the soap and water streaming down her body.
Hunter moved behind her, his hands moving smoothly and competently over the skin of her back and shoulders. It felt so amazingly wonderful to have him touching her, rubbing sore muscles. And to be clean, not just with the rub-down the medics had given her earlier, but truly clean. It felt marvelous.
At Jace’s quiet order, Hunter’s hands moved around to her front, gliding easily over her soap-slicked skin. Those big hands once more moved beneath her breasts, opening his fingers and lifting her ample flesh easily. This time, though, he suited thought to action and, as Jace carefully scrubbed beneath her breasts, Hunter’s fingers slipped up to rub soap over her nipples.
Ri gasped softly. Her back bowed in reaction, thrusting her chest out slightly. Jace stilled a moment in his cleaning, arching a brow up at her. Seeing her eyes closed, her lips parted, he realized what had happened. He couldn’t help the grin that tugged at his mouth. Hunter’s expression was one of intense desire. One of his long arms moved around Arianna, holding her gently as his other hand moved over her, very thoroughly spreading the soap over every inch of her breasts. Jace’s mouth went dry, watching, then he shook himself and poured a bit more soap into his palm.
“I think that’s got them all,” Jace said, sitting back from his inspection of her tummy and legs. He held up a small scanner, slowly moving it from her head to her feet. A tiny chime had him frowning. “The oils in the soap should limit further allergic reactions and kill any remaining mites, but the scanner says there are more...”
“Did you get…” Hunter began, his fingers still spread so that her hardened nipples rested between them. Jace’s mouth watered, wanting a taste of those velvety little nubs. Meeting Hunter’s gaze, he grinned and winked. He didn’t have to be a Reader to know that here was a golden opportunity. And with Hunter in her mind, he knew that they would not do anything the little commander objected to. Judging by her body’s reaction, she was perfectly content with their bathing techniques so far.
“Not yet,” Jace said. He touched Ri’s face, urging her to look at him. Their gazes were level though he was kneeling in front of her. “Arianna, we need to make certain…”
Hunter’s mental image was what brought bright color to her cheeks.
“I can… I mean, if you think it’s necessary, I can wash down there,” she said thickly.
“It will only take a minute,” Jace assured her with forced professional detachment, pouring a bit of the soap into his palm and lathering it between his big hands. She sensed Hunter doing the same thing behind her and her eyes went wide. She was in too much of an erotic stupor to do more than follow their instructions as they stood her up between them. Jace ordered her to lean back against Hunter, to keep any weight off her bad leg, then reached out, gently spread her thighs, and began a very thorough cleansing of her upper thighs and her thatch. Behind her, Hunter’s soapy hands were doing the same for her buttocks, the crease where her butt met her legs, and absolutely everything in between.
When Jace hit particularly sensitive spots, she cried out softly, her head falling back against Hunter’s chest involuntarily.
“What the hell?” Jace asked, his eyes widening, his hands stilling where they were between her nether lips. He hadn’t been touching her hard enough to hurt her. Her breathing hitched and she turned wide, glassy eyes down toward him.
“I… I’m sorry!” she gasped, her hips moving spasmodically across his fingers. Behind her, Hunter’s breath shuddered in, then out, as he picked up on the growing desire their bath was sending through her. He could also sense her embarrassment at feeling that way, especially since there were two of them. That part confused him a bit. “I don’t know why I’m… I didn’t mean…”
“It’s okay, little one,” Hunter said huskily, his breath in her ear, his hands moving slowly, erotically, toward her core. Jace might be confused, but Hunter was in her mind, knew what she was feeling, knew that she’d been attracted to them both from the start, and knew that while she wasn’t prepared for what she was feeling, she also didn’t want their touching to stop.
She nearly collapsed as both men sent their hands gliding between her legs. Hunter’s fingers spread her nether lips so that Jace could more easily clean her down there. And just to be certain, Jace sent a long finger into her core, spreading the soap liberally over her inner walls, paying particular attention to the front wall of her core. Ri cried out brokenly at the sensations, her hips bucking against his touch. Hunter’s head fell forward, leaning against her neck. He breathed heavily in her ear, their breaths synchronizing, as Jace cleaned and then rinsed her.
Ri wanted nothing more than for the two men to lay her down and take care of the incredible ache they’d managed to build in so short a time. Hunter wanted that above all else, as well.
But she was hurt, she was coming off an adrenaline injection, and her body was not entirely hers to control. He knew that from his own experiences with the effects of adrenaline. Growling low in her ear, he leaned his head against hers for just a moment, his fingers flexing where they held her open. She gasped his name, her back arching, then gasped in pain when that arch overextended her torso, reminding them all of her broken ribs. Hunter’s hands immediately came up to gently grip her hips, holding her steady until she caught her breath.
“Good gods,” Jace breathed, his heated eyes meeting his brother’s before locking on hers. “Are all humans this sensitive? This responsive?”
“I don’t know!” Ri practically wailed, her face ten shades of red. “Please… are we about done here?”
“Just about,” Jace told her. Nodding to Hunter to hold her steady, Jace took the shower wand and rinsed her just as thoroughly as he’d washed her. The water jets must have hit other sensitive spots, because her hips moved and she gasped a number of times before the men were certain that she was as clean as they could possibly get her. When Jace ran the scanner over her, front and back, she was clean of the mites.
It was a weak, shaky, very confused and sexually frustrated Ri that settled back into her bed a short time later. Too weak to stand at that point, the warriors had steadied her between them then gently, carefully rubbed her down with warm towels. Hunter carried her back to her bed where he once again held her breasts while Jace wrapped her ribs. A medic brought them a clean medical gown. They dressed her and tucked her beneath a fresh set of warmed sheets. Then the men disappeared into the shower room to dress themselves.
She noticed that while she and the other girls had been cleansed, the sheets had been replaced. She shuddered at the thought of tiny, alien insects all over her. Then she shuddered again, thinking of the incredibly erotic way the Commander and his second-in-command had bathed her. Holy crap! That had to have been the most sexually charged bath she’d ever experienced, and she’d actually had sex in the shower a number of times. Her breath shivered out at the memory.
The mites had almost been worth it.