For Faith and Mark, the telepathic connection they’d shared for years was nothing compared to the scorching physical connection they realized as adults. From the first moment they came together, erotic was too pale a word to describe their relationship. Together they explored each other’s deepest, darkest desires.
But now Mark, survivor of an ambush to his Delta Force team, is a prisoner of a terrorist group in the Peruvian jungle, and his telepathic communication with Faith is his only contact with the world. While she searches for help to save him, they survive on dreams that took them beyond all sexual boundaries.
Publisher’s Note: This story was previously published elsewhere under the title ALWAYS ON MY MIND and has been revised for Ellora’s Cave.
Read an Excerpt
This excerpt contains explicit sexual material and is intended for readers 18 years of age and older.
Faith Wilding stared at her computer monitor in frustration, the screen empty except for the annoying cursor winking at her. The first three chapters of her latest political thriller were due to her agent by the end of the month and she hadn’t even written the first word. Not once since she’d sold her first manuscript had she ever been stricken with writer’s block. Today, however, it seemed as if something had swept her mind bare, knocking out every word or phrase that might be taking root.
She looked around her den, usually a place of comfort and inspiration. The warm earth tones on the rug that had been her grandmother’s were an accent on the polished hardwood floor. The couch and chair, covered in navy denim, showed traces of wear from all the times she’d lain or sat there reading manuscript drafts. The walls were lined with family pictures, faces smiling down on her with encouragement and support.
Usually this room unlocked her mind and opened the gates for her thoughts to flow freely. Not tonight. She could have been sitting in a sterile room for all the good it was doing her.
She rotated her head, easing the tension in her neck and shoulders. Maybe she should fix another cup of her favorite chai tea. Its energy might kick-start her brain.
I need you.
The familiar voice blasted through her mind.
Mark! Oh God, Mark.
Stunned, she tried to focus her thoughts but a white-hot pain pierced her body, stealing her breath. She clenched her fists against it and as it faded an image of Mark’s face, bruised and lined with pain, flashed briefly and was gone.
Faith leaned back in her chair, using the skills she’d been taught to control her breathing and slow her racing pulse. Running her hands up and down her arms she discovered a fine sheen of perspiration on her skin.
She tried to pull the image back but it was gone.
Captured! Dear God. He’d reached out to her from wherever he was. But how could she find him? He could be anywhere. She felt as if a part of her body had been severed. Closing her eyes and pushing everything else from her brain, she concentrated on sending a reply.
I heard you. Where are you?
She sat perfectly still, eyes still tightly shut, blocking out everything else, focusing as she’d been taught, to strengthen her message.
She waited but the only thing that answered her was the heavy silence. Either his strength had given out or something—or someone—had blocked him.
Finally she pushed her chair away from the desk and headed to the kitchen on legs not quite steady. Tea was definitely in order.
The last time she’d heard from Mark Halloran was two years ago. That time she’d been sitting in a Starbucks drinking a mocha latte and checking her schedule on her PDA when the message hit her. Startled, she’d nearly spilled her coffee and looked around to make sure he wasn’t just standing two feet away.
That whiskey-smooth voice had warmed her blood and made her smile. And remember the one long weekend they’d had together before he’d left on a mission.
Hi. Where are you?
An image of him in a helicopter danced before her eyes, helmet securely on his head, rifle and other gear strapped to his body. As a Special Ops soldier, a member of the famed Delta Force, he was always in some far corner of the world on a mission that no one could discuss. Usually he was concentrating so hard on what he was doing there was no opportunity to clear his mind and reach out to her.
Miss you, came the next message.
Me too. You’ll never know how much. You still have my heart.
The image had changed to one of him naked, grinning, his blue eyes laughing at her. Her body had heated and every pulse point had begun to throb. She’d looked around her carefully, sure every eye was on her but everyone had appeared to be attending to their own business. She’d carried that short message and those images with her for a long time.
And now, tonight’s message. Shocking in its pain. Mark, stolid and steadfast. Bastion of strength. A soldier with special skills who’d stared at death more times than she’d ever know about. Mark never asked for help. The anguish in his voice filled her with a sense of dread. Fear drenched her and a cold knot of it tightened in her stomach. For him to send her this message the situation had to be out of control.
But where was he? What had happened to him? And what was wrong that the only cry for help he could get out was telepathically to her?
Leaning against the counter, sipping the hot tea, she thought about the first time they’d discovered their telepathic ability to communicate.