A deep voice interrupted his thoughts. “Good day, Admiral Piras.”
Piras jerked and turned to see a hulking Nobek standing inside his office. Despite an almost brutish facial structure, he somehow managed to make it attractive. Broad forehead. Lips curled in a near-smirk. Nose crooked from who knew how many fights. Blue-purple eyes that riveted on Piras in a knowing gaze. His muscular frame strained the red-trimmed fleet formsuit. Sleeveless, the uniform displayed his scarred arms to advantage.
Those arms ended in big hands. Big, capable hands, the fingers calloused so that even the gentlest touch had a rough aspect to it.
Piras slowly got to his feet and returned the other man’s bow. Swallowing his surprise, he said, “Captain Kila. I’d heard your destroyer had returned from the border.”
“So it has. Happy to see me?”
Shocked would have been a better description. Piras had not expected Kila to seek him out, not after the night they’d spent together a few months ago.
As always, he couldn’t help but compare this Nobek to Lidon. Piras compared every member of the warrior breed to his former lover. He had to admit, Kila stacked up pretty good. The sex they’d had had confirmed it.
Kila’s brow rose. “You look surprised that I’m here.”
Piras realized belatedly that he’d been silent for several seconds. “Shouldn’t I be?”
“You mean after how we parted last time?” Kila’s enigmatic smile deepened. Mocking, secretive, a little cruel…that smile drove Piras crazy. It was impossible to know what was going on in the man’s head when he looked like that. He said, “You gave me a lot to think about after our…encounter.”
“Is that why you’re here?”
Instead of answering, Kila called out, “Door close and lock.”
The mechanism obeyed him with a click. Piras frowned. He was Kila’s superior officer and they were on duty. The captain had no business acting like he owned the place.
With any other man, Nobek or not, Piras would have served him the sharpest side of his tongue. Not in a sexual manner either. He should be doing that with Kila now. That the captain had caught him so thoroughly off-guard brought a wave of anger.
Ready to put Kila in his proper place, Piras opened his mouth to deliver the ear-scorching diatribe he was known so well for. Before he could, Kila strode up to his streamlined metallic desk and slapped a sound-blocker on its surface. Its hum filled the room.
Piras’s eyes widened in understanding. “You’re my contact for the mission.”