Claimed Princess (Princess Series Book 3)(8)

By: Alexa Riley

Then time speeds up and I’ve got her draped over me as I run through the orchard and up to the palace. She’s kicking and hitting me the whole way, but I just ignore her. No one knows the orchard like she and I do, and I know they won’t be able to track us through it. I’ve known her long enough to know her tantrum will end just as soon as she sees through her cloud of anger.

“Calm down or I’ll lock you in the tower until you can be polite.”

“Damn it, Carlos! You punched Karim! What the hell were you thinking?”

She’s shouting every word at me, and I just grip her hip tighter as she tries to kick her way off my shoulder.

“I said be quiet. You’re about to be a queen. You should act like it.”

I feel her fists pounding on my back at that, and I smile. That probably pissed her off more than me punching Karim.

“Out of my way,” I growl to Romy as we pass him in the hallway. He laughs and pushes up against the wall, shaking his head.

“Romy, make him let me go,” Heavenly pleads as we pass him, but he puts his palms up as if to try to keep this situation away from him. “Damn you, Romy!”

“I said watch your mouth.” I squeeze Heavenly’s thigh as I take the stairs up to my wing of the palace. “I didn’t realize you had such a colorful vocabulary, Princess. Looks like I’m going to have to teach you some manners.”

“Carlos, if you don’t put me down right now, I swear I’m going to bite you on the ass.”

I reach up and slap one of her ass cheeks with my hand, feeling the slight sting on my palm. “That’s one, Princess. Keep it up and you’ll get three next time.”

I feel her teeth sink into my ass cheek, and I have to bite my bottom lip to keep from crying out and laughing at the same time. I can’t believe she actually bit me.

I give her three quick slaps to the ass as I carry her up some more steps, and she squeaks out in shock.

“You haven’t bitten me since you were ten,” I say, slapping her ass one more time just because I love the way it feels on my hand.

“I can’t believe you’re spanking me! I’m not a child, Carlos, and this is embarrassing.”

“The only thing you should be embarrassed about is running from your king. You should know better.”

“If this is what you’re going to do every time I run from you, then - ”

“There won’t be another time, Princess. Your pretty little ass is going to sit down and listen to what I have to say before you jump to conclusions.”

“There’s nothing you can say that will make me change how I feel.”

There is so much weight in the words she’s spoken. It’s as if there’s a sadness at the end, and it makes my heart ache.

“That’s exactly what I’m hoping for, Princess.” I give her ass one last smack, just because I can, as I walk through the doorway of my bedroom.

“I didn’t even say a bad word that time,” she complains as she smacks my ass back.

“I know. I think I just discovered I like spanking you. We’ll keep testing it to see.”

She makes a growling sound that makes me think of a baby tiger, and I smile. It makes me want to cuddle and protect her just like I will our young.

I toss her off my shoulder and onto the middle of my bed. The fluffy blankets on it cushion her fall, but as soon as she lands she’s climbing off of it and stomping over to me.

“How dare you punch Karim. What’s he ever done to you?” She points her finger in my face and looks mad as hell.

“He stood in the way of what’s mine. I’ll remove anyone and anything that stands between us, Princess. You belong to me now. So act like it.”

I snatch her wrist in my hand and move her finger out of my face while jerking her body flush to mine.

“All those nights you snuck into my bed, and now that I throw you into it you can’t wait to crawl out.”

“You asked me not to do it,” she throws back at me with a smug look on her face.

“Because I knew at any moment I’d take your innocence and smear it across my bedsheet like a badge of honor and hang the sheet out the window for my kingdom to know you were mine and mine alone like it’s three hundred years ago. I knew if I let you lie in my bed one more night that I’d breed you as my queen long before you came of age, and I didn’t want to bring that shame on your family. On you. You know I always protect you over everything else. Been doing it from the first moment I laid eyes on you.”