The Bosses: Underworld Mafia Romance Box Set
Thirteen years later…
The body falls to the ground. A glass vase shatters. The puddle of cloudy water merges with the pool of blood. It spreads all over the floor, oozing through the gaps between the tiles and painting them a sickening shade of red. It flows on and on and on until it almost reaches my bare feet. I’d move but I can’t. I’m frozen in place and the sea of blood keeps inching closer.
It seeps under my toes. Still, I can’t move. I can’t even scream.
Someone help me. Someone… please…
A voice snaps me into consciousness at the same time a hand shakes my shoulder. I open my eyes. As the haze of sleep gradually fades, I find myself staring at a man wearing a cap and a dark vest over a collared shirt. The familiar logo of a bird with spread wings embroidered on his vest jolts me back to reality.
Right. A bus company. I’m in a bus. On my way to… well, wherever this bus is headed.
“You said you were getting off at the end of the line,” the bus driver reminds me. “Well, this is it.”
I glance out the window. Sure enough, I realize that the bus has stopped. Past the mist that’s starting to fade in the morning sunlight, I also see a sign that says ‘Welcome to Summerset’ hanging above a bench in the empty bus stop.
Summerset? I’ve never heard of it. Not spelled this way, anyway. I take that as a good sign. This means I won’t be easily found, which is exactly what I want.
A place I’ve never heard of filled with people I don’t know. Perfect.
I get on my feet and pick up my backpack. As I slip my arm into one of the straps, my gaze falls on the bassinet in the seat next to mine. In it, a baby wrapped in a pink blanket sucks on her thumb. When she sees me, she stops. Her blue eyes grow wide.
I, too, freeze in shock. What is this baby doing here? I know her father asked me to watch over her earlier at the bus stop. He said he was just going to go to the restroom. I didn’t want to. I was sleeping, actually. But it seemed everyone else had already left the bus and he had already set down the bassinet on the empty seat next to mine, wedged between two armrests. The baby was asleep, so I said yes. I was sure he wasn’t going to take long, so I went back to sleep too. I thought the baby would be gone not just from my side but from the bus by the time I woke up. And yet, she’s still here. Right beside me. Right where her father left her.
Does this mean he never came back? But why?
“Ma’am, I ain’t got all day.” The driver lifts the bassinet and carries it down the aisle. “Come on.”
He’s taking the baby? Where?
I look around, hoping to find the baby’s father asleep in his seat just as I was a few moments ago. There’s no sign of him. The bus is empty.
He’s really gone?
“Ma’am,” the driver calls my attention again. “Please. I been driving all night, I need to get home and get to sleep.”
“Sorry,” I mumble as I follow him. “But have you seen a man with a…?”
Shit. What did he look like again? I was half asleep so I don’t even remember.
“Ain’t no one else here,” the driver says before stepping off the bus. “If you were with someone, you should just call them. I can’t help you anymore.”
He turns around and waits for me to get off the bus. I can’t delay him any longer, so I do that. As soon as I’m on the platform, he hands me the bassinet. Then he tips his cap and goes back into the bus. Moments later, the doors close and the bus leaves the stop, disappearing from my sight in the next minute.
So here I am all alone, in a place I’ve never heard of, full of people I don’t know, with a stranger’s baby in tow.
Great. You’re doing just great, Triss.
I stare at the baby, who’s back to sucking her thumb, completely unaware that she’s just been abandoned.
To my surprise, at the sound of my voice, she pulls her thumb out of her mouth and smiles at me. My breath catches.
It’s such a simple gesture. It probably doesn’t mean anything, either. And yet, my chest wells up with joy. Then it clenches in pain.
Why do parents have children only to cast them aside like trash? What did children ever do to deserve such a cruel fate?
My stomach churns. My teeth grind against each other as my jaw tenses. My fingers tighten around the handle of the bassinet.
Why? Why do heartless parents exist? It’s unfair. Unacceptable. Unforgivable.
As soon as my gaze falls on the baby, my anger vanishes. Even though her smile is gone, her eyes still seem to sparkle like a pair of aquamarines as they stare at me intently, curiously, expectantly.
I give her a smile as I sit on the bench. I put the bassinet down beside me and stroke her cheek.
“What am I going to do with you?”
The obvious answer would be to report the matter to the police so they can find this baby’s family. I can’t do that, though. If I go to them, they’ll ask questions about me. They might not even believe that I just found this baby in a bus. What if they think I’ve taken this baby from someone and throw me in jail? Worse, what if they find out what I have done?
I shake my head. No, I can’t go to the cops. I didn’t come all this way just to turn myself in.
What, then? I can’t keep this baby. I have no money. I spent most of the cash I’d saved up to buy bus tickets. I have no home, no family. I don’t know the first thing about taking care of babies. In fact, I don’t know a lot of things. I dropped out of school in fifth grade and I’ve spent most of the past eleven years locked up. How am I supposed to take care of a baby when I’m not even sure I can take care of myself?
Then there’s that matter about Jim. Even if the cops don’t come after me, his friends might. Maybe they won’t be able to find me since I changed buses three times and made sure to hide my face from the cameras at the different bus stops – that much I learned from watching TV. But there’s still a chance they will. Even though I’ve cut my hair, they can still recognize me.
I can’t run with a baby in tow. If they catch us, they’ll kill us both. I can’t put this baby’s life at risk like that.
I brush the mahogany curls away from the baby’s forehead.
“I’m sorry, sweetie, but I can’t keep you.”
As much as I hate the thought of abandoning this baby who’s already been discarded once, my only option is to leave her on someone’s doorstep. Hopefully, that someone will do the right thing and bring this baby to the cops so they can find her parents. Or maybe they’ll be kind enough to find her a good home, maybe with a childless couple who will love her like their own and take better care of her than her own parents. Whatever the case may be, she’ll be better off with someone other than me. I’m just a courier, the stork that has to deliver her to her home, the ferrywoman who has to get her where she needs to be. After I fulfill my task, I’ll leave. I was going to start over here, but I can do that somewhere else instead. It’s fine. I’ll just sell Jim’s watch to get money for another bus ticket.
I draw a deep breath. One thing at a time. First, I have to leave this baby somewhere safe.
I get off the bench. “Shall we?”
I take the bassinet and start walking away from the road. I’ve only taken a few steps when someone bumps against my shoulder.
“Ow!” the other person complains.
I realize it’s a woman around my age – or maybe she’s younger than I am? Her oval face is framed by long locks of dark hair and she has a purple scarf wrapped around her neck. She looks angry, too. At least, she does at first. As soon as she sees the bassinet, her expression softens.
“I’m so sorry,” she apologizes quickly. “I didn’t see you.”
I shake my head. “It’s okay.”
I didn’t see her either. I didn’t think anyone would be here this early. Besides, the baby seems fine. She stares at the stranger with her wide eyes.
“Hi there!” The woman’s voice rises a few octaves higher as she leans over the bassinet and smiles at the baby. “How are you? You are so cute. Yes, you are.”
I try not to roll my eyes. Who would have thought someone talking in a baby voice would sound so annoying?
“What’s her name?” she asks me in a normal voice without taking her gaze off the baby. Then she goes back to her baby voice. “I bet you have a cute name, don’t you? A beautiful name fit for the beautiful little princess that you are.”
“I don’t know,” I answer in a snide tone.
I didn’t mean to be rude. I guess her voice just got to me.
The woman straightens up and turns to me, no longer smiling.
“I’m sorry. I thought she was your baby.”
“No. I just…” I start but stop when I realize that maybe it’s better for me not to tell anyone about the baby. It may be better for me not to talk to anyone, actually.
“Hmm.” She scratches her chin as she brings her face closer to mine. “I don’t think I’ve seen you before. You’re not from here, are you?”
I look away. Didn’t anyone teach her not to stare?
“Are you visiting someone?”
“I’m sorry, but I have to go,” I tell her. “I have to get this baby somewhere safe.”
The woman’s eyebrows furrow. I realize too late that I’ve said more than I should, so I walk away before I say more. I walk briskly in the direction of the town, lifting the bassinet up to the level of my waist so it doesn’t collide with my knees. That makes it harder to carry, though, and the bassinet starts to feel heavier as my arms start to tire. I have to stop to catch my breath. The air is still cool, and yet I feel beads of sweat on my brow.
I set the bassinet down at my feet and glance behind me. The woman’s gone. Good. I look ahead. I don’t see anyone in that direction, either. It’s just trees as far as the eye can see, their tops gleaming in the glow of the sun that is slowly making its way across the sky.
I continue walking. The longer I take, the higher the chances of me being seen leaving a baby on a doorstep. If I get caught, I’ll be questioned, or worse, dragged to the police for them to do the questioning, which will nullify all my efforts. I can’t have that. As much as possible, I should avoid being seen by anyone else in this town.
After a few more minutes, I stop again. The bassinet is getting heavier. The air is getting hotter. Without food for roughly the past eight hours, my body simply doesn’t have enough strength. Still, I can’t give up. I’ve survived a day before without food and water. Sure, I didn’t have to walk then, just stay still inside a dark closet, but I’ll be fine.
I tell myself that as I continue down the path. When I realize I’m slowing down, I consider ditching the bassinet but decide against it. True, I can carry the baby in my arms, but what if my arms suddenly give way and I drop the baby? What if I end up collapsing anyway?
Another option is to just leave the bassinet here by the side of the road. Someone will walk by soon, and they won’t miss her.
I end up deciding against that, too. What if some animal gets to her first? What if the bassinet gets hit by a car?
No. I have to accomplish my task. I have to leave the baby somewhere safe, somewhere I’m sure she’ll be found.
That goal pushes me onward step by step. I ignore the ache in my arms and legs, in my empty stomach, in the back of my head that’s started to throb. I ignore the sweat trickling down my face, too.
Finally, I see a house. It’s just beyond some trees. Like a magnet, it pulls me forward and I walk faster. Once I’m right in front of it, I stop.
A two-story house with a blue and white facade and a front porch. A silver truck sits in the driveway.
A beautiful house. Hopefully, it belongs to good people.
I approach the house carefully and set the bassinet down on the front porch. As soon as I’ve done that, I start to leave. Just when I think I’ve pulled it off, I hear someone shout.
Shit. I start running.
I keep going. Without the bassinet, I can move faster, but I’m still weak. I know I can’t be caught, but my body just won’t go fast enough. I can hear my pursuer coming closer.
After a few more seconds, he grabs my arm. My legs give way and my knees sink to the ground. As I fight back tears of frustration, he kneels in front of me. His hand rests on my shoulder.
“Are you okay?”
I lift my chin and find myself gazing into kind blue eyes. They remind me of the lake Jim brought me to once – calm, mysterious but not forbidding, stunning under sunlight. They don’t seem to belong among such rugged, thoroughly sun-kissed features fringed with bristles of honey-colored hair. Yet that’s exactly the face I see in front of me, the last sight I behold before the last of my strength leaves me and everything goes black.
to be continued…
Secret Desires: A Contemporary Romance Box Set
When Gavin said “home”, I thought of a mansion just like the one where the masquerade party was held. Instead, I find myself in a penthouse apartment.
I suppose that’s to be expected of a bachelor.
I try to keep up with him as he goes from one room to the next- I never realized how long his strides were. I try to listen to him, too, as he explains the rules, but my mind keeps wandering, distracted by all the things I’m seeing.
Damn, this place is huge. And clean. I don’t detect a speck of dust anywhere or a single object out of place. A bit too cold for my liking, though- and I don’t mean the temperature. I prefer cozy- woolly rugs instead of stiff carpets, cotton upholstery instead of leather, wood instead of metal. But that’s a personal preference, I suppose. In fact, this apartment seems just like its owner- cold, calm, no-nonsense, a bit rigid and just a tad intimidating. I’m eyeing that loveseat over there against the wall of the library, which looks like I might end up covering it with wrinkles if I sit on it, and that shiny black urn in the corner. That doesn’t have a person inside it, does it? There’s a lot of glass, too, that I fear I might end up breaking.
I draw a deep breath. This is one apartment that’s not to be messed with.
Finally, we reach my room. I was afraid it would be as formal as the rest of the apartment, but it’s strangely- and fortunately- more inviting. The four poster bed is covered in a quilt with violet and pink squares, the pillows in maroon cases. A vase with fresh flowers sits near the window next to an armchair and a footstool that’s just shouting at me to prop my feet up. There’s also a beanbag at the foot of the bed between two large floor pillows, the perfect place to sit while watching TV. What I probably like the most, though, is the fact that instead of a table by the bed, there’s this quaint wicker basket for me to just toss stuff in. Genius.
“The bathroom is right through there.” Gavin points to a door on the other side of the room. “Past your closet and dressing room.”
I have a dressing room?
“I’ll have Tony bring your things in. If you need anything else, you can shop for it tomorrow on Fiona’s website. I’ll give you your own laptop.”
My eyes grow even wider. My own laptop? And a shopping spree? Wow. I’m really living the dream here.
“As I mentioned earlier, you’re free to go around the apartment,” Gavin adds. “You can leave your room anytime, but when I need you, you better be here.”
He grabs the doorknob. “Good night.”
With that, he leaves. I let out a sigh as I sit on the edge of the bed, then let myself fall on top of it. The quilt feels so soft that I have to close my eyes and let out another sigh.
If I were a cat, I’d be perfectly happy right now. But I’m not. I’m a woman, and Gavin just reminded me that I’m his woman.
I open my eyes and snort. Jerk. Just because he spent money on me, he thinks he can do whatever he wants with me, control my every move. Like he can just snap his fingers and I’m supposed to go on all fours like a dog.
Well, technically, he can. I’m supposed to obey him, to do everything to please him. And I was planning to. I told myself I’d be a good girl. But there’s just something about him that rubs me the wrong way and makes my temper rise.
Maybe it’s because he thinks he’s so hot- well, he is hot, but does he have to act like he’s some gift from God, or like he’s a god himself? Or maybe it’s that beard of his- I hate beards, even though his strangely makes him look even more attractive, which makes me hate it even more. Or maybe it’s because of the way he looks at me, like he’s undressing me with his gaze and setting my skin on fire.
I place my arm over my eyes as I feel my cheeks grow hot. Shit. Why does that have to turn me on? Why did his words have to make my heart pound? And why did his touch make me feel like I was melting, like I was ready to surrender, even though I said I would never give myself to a man completely ever again?
I shake my head. Gavin is a dangerous man. I don’t trust him and I don’t like him. I sure as hell don’t belong to him.
That man at the party thought I belonged to him. I let him believe it and look what happened to me. Never again. I’m going to work for him, that’s it, just like any other employee, and someday, I’m going to leave this place with my baby and my money.
I open my eyes and stare at the ceiling. I just have to survive until then. And I will. I’ve already been through so much. I’m strong enough.
Not even arrogant Gavin Scotsfeld and his sexy beard can change that.
Those thoughts make me feel better, and I give a hopeful smile.
I can do this. I just have to take it one day at a time.
In the morning, I wake up to the sound of shuffling feet, of something rustling. At first I think it’s Mandy barging into my room again, searching the drawers and riffling through the stacks of magazines for a secret stash of cigarettes, but then I see the charcoal gray ceiling and remember I’m not in Mandy’s apartment anymore.
I sit up. So who’s in my room?
As I walk to the closet, rubbing my eyes during the first few steps, I suspect Gavin, but then I can’t really think of what he’d be doing in my closet. The door is slightly open, so I just pull it out all the way. As soon as I do, I find a brunette who doesn’t look much older than me wearing glasses and a dark blue dress. She gives me a look of surprise, then quickly gets up on her feet.
“I’m sorry, ma’am,” she says with her head bowed. “I didn’t mean to wake you.”
I glance at my open suitcase at her feet and then at the open drawers which now contain some of my clothes.
“I thought it might make it easier for you if I unpacked your clothes.” She tucks a strand of hair behind her ear. “I hope you don’t mind.”
I shake my head. “No, not at all. And you didn’t wake me. I’m… just an early riser, that’s all.”
I notice her glance sideways at her watch, so I ask her, “What time is it?”
I chuckle. “I guess it’s not that early.”
The last time I slept in this late was the day after a competition, when my muscles felt sore all over. I must have been tired.
“You had every right to wake me,” I tell her.
“No, ma’am.” She shakes her head. “I would never.”
“Well, I sure hope you’ll wake me if the apartment catches fire.”
She gives me a confused look. “Um… I guess.”
I smile. “Relax. I don’t think that will happen. Something tells me this place has its own fire suppression system or something. Anyway, don’t call me ma’am. I’m Leah.”
I offer her my hand.
She reluctantly takes it. “Giselle. I’m your personal maid.”
My eyebrows go up. “Really? I have a personal maid?”
“Wow.” I lean against the wall. “And not so long ago I didn’t even have my own toothbrush.”
Giselle looks shocked.
“Just kidding,” I tell her. “I had that. I didn’t have much, though.”
She purses her lips like she wants to say something but she’s not sure if she should. I get the feeling I’m making her uncomfortable. I should probably leave her alone and let her work. But I’m new here and I feel alone right now, especially with Gavin acting like such an ass. I could really use a friend.
“You can keep doing what you’re doing,” I tell her as I sit on the stool by the door. “I’ll just sit here. I hope you don’t mind. It’s just that it feels nice to meet someone close to my age.”
“It’s okay.” Giselle kneels on the carpet and continues fixing my clothes.
“How old are you?” I ask her.
I nod. “I’m twenty-two.”
Her eyes grow wide behind the lenses of her glasses.
“Yup. I’m twenty-two and I’m two months pregnant.” I touch my belly. “What on earth was I thinking?”
“Did you have a boyfriend?” Giselle asks.
I smile in spite of the question because it’s the first she’s asked about me. “No. Can you believe it? I had sex for the first time with a man I didn’t know and I ended up pregnant. Stupid.”
Giselle frowns. “I’m sorry. I shouldn’t have asked such a- “
“No, it’s okay.” I kneel beside her and hold her arm. “I’m glad I have someone to talk to. And you can talk to me, too. It must be hard having to just quietly work by yourself all day. I know because I used to work as a waitress and I tried to focus on my work, keep my mind busy, but it felt better when I would talk with the other waitresses, even the kitchen staff. It made the work a little lighter.”
She gives a slight smile.
“Of course, some of them were hard to approach, especially for someone shy like me, and even then, some weren’t nice, but yeah, it helped.”
Giselle grins. “You don’t seem shy to me.”
I shrug. “Maybe it’s because I see a kindred soul.”
I hold her hand.
“I know you think that you and I are different and that you work for me, but I would really love for us to be friends. Do you think that’s possible?”
For a moment, Giselle remains still. Then she nods and her lips form a smile.
“I’d be happy to be your friend, ma… I mean Leah.”
“Thank you.” I give her a hug. “You have no idea how much better that makes me feel. I mean, I’m all alone here in this big… sterile apartment.”
She laughs at that word. I love the sound.
“You’re funny,” Giselle tells me.
No one’s ever used that word to describe me before.
She nods. “You’re not at all what I thought you’d be. I thought you’d be selfish and vain and… perfect, like a doll or a princess.”
“Because Ms. Jensen said you were a prize or something.”
I shrug. “Well, as you can see, I’m not perfect.”
“And I thought you’d be mean,” Giselle adds as she folds one of my shirts. “Ms. Jensen said the last one was mean.”
My eyebrows arch. “The last one?”
Giselle stops. The blood drains from her face.
“Shit.” She clasps both hands over her mouth. “I’m sorry. I wasn’t supposed to tell you. Ms. Jensen told me not to. Please don’t tell her.”
“I won’t.” I take her hands off her face. “I promise.”
She lets out a breath of relief.
I, on the other hand, am worried. I didn’t know there was someone before me. I never even considered the possibility.
Another prize. But if Gavin already had one, why get me? Are men allowed to have two prizes?
No. Giselle said “the last one”, not “the other one”, which means she’s not here anymore. Why? Did she have her second baby and leave already? No. Something tells me it didn’t end that well. Otherwise, why keep it from me?
“Do you know what happened to her?” I ask, unable to restrain my curiosity.
Giselle shakes her head. “I’m sorry. I’ve only been here a few months.”
Which means she’s been gone longer.
She takes my hand in both of hers. “Please don’t tell Ms. Jensen.”
I don’t even know who Ms. Jensen is. The housekeeper, I guess. I suppose she knows what happened, too, but no, I can’t ask her and get Giselle in trouble.
“I won’t,” I promise her again. “After all, there’s no point digging up the past, right?”
She smiles. “Right. Thank you.”
No point digging up the past. I tell myself those words over and over as I watch Giselle unpack my suitcase. Still, I can’t help but wonder about what happened to “the last one”. Something tells me it’s important.
Maybe I’ll ask Gavin.
I can’t bring myself to, though.
Right now, I can sense that he’s tired. Of course he is. It’s nearly midnight and he just came home from work. I thought he’d go straight to his room, actually, but he’s here in my room, sitting comfortably in the armchair by the door. Now I know what it’s there for.
His coat is gone, along with his tie. So are his socks and leather shoes. He still has his pants on, though, and his white shirt with the top three buttons undone so I can catch a glimpse of the hair on his chest. A glass of whisky sits between his fingers, the liquid gleaming golden beneath the light of the lamp beside him. Every now and then, he takes a sip.
I sit on the edge of the bed in my pajamas, a pillow on my lap.
No. I don’t think I should ask him now. Maybe I shouldn’t even ask him tomorrow, not until I’m sure Giselle won’t lose her job. I don’t want to lose the only friend I have.
“What are you thinking of?” Gavin asks me after taking another sip of his drink.
“Nothing,” I answer.
His eyes narrow. “What are you wearing?”
I glance down. “Pajamas.”
Dark blue cotton pajamas with rainbow-haired unicorn heads, to be precise. Childish, I know. But I got them for just two dollars and they’re the most comfortable sleepwear I have.
Gavin frowns. “Wasn’t there anything more… age-appropriate in Fiona’s catalog?”
“There was,” I answer as I recall the list he’s referring to.
There were many items in the sleepwear section, in fact- some made of silk, others of lace. Black. Red. Purple. Pink. But they all looked uncomfortable to sleep in. Giselle agreed with me. Plus they all seemed so… skimpy. What if I caught a cold?
“I didn’t like any of them,” I say.
“I see.” Gavin taps his fingers on the arm of the chair. “So you prefer to go naked, do you?”
“What?” I’m not sure I heard that right.
He gulps down what’s left of his whisky and sets the empty glass down.
“Take them off.”
I look at him with wide eyes, then down at my pajamas.
“Take your clothes off,” he elaborates his earlier command as he gets out of the chair. “I won’t say it again.”
The look in his eyes tells me he means it. It also warns me that I don’t want to get on his bad side. Not now. The voice in my head agrees.
Just do what he says.
I put the pillow aside and begin to unbutton the top of my pajamas. With those eyes watching me, I fumble with the first two buttons. When I finally get them all undone, I shrug the top off my shoulders. Then I stand up and bend over to push my pants down. They fall around my ankles and I step out of them.
When I straighten up, Gavin is standing just a few feet away. His eyes are still narrowed, his gaze still icy. At the same time, though, I see a fire in them. Ice and fire. A deadly and breathtaking combination.
I cross my arms over my breasts and suppress a shiver.
“All of it,” he says hoarsely.
I’m so caught up in his gaze that I almost don’t hear the words. All of it?
I glance down at my hi-cut cotton panties. I don’t really want to take them off. I’m not ready to let him see me naked yet, even though Fiona told me I should be. But I don’t want to test his patience any further, either, so I hook my thumbs into the waistband of my underwear and push it all the way off my legs. I toss it aside and cross my arms over my chest once more.
Immediately, I feel his gaze between my legs. There isn’t any hair there- Fiona insisted on having me shaved- so I feel even more exposed. A blush coats my cheeks.
“Put your arms down,” comes the next command.
I reluctantly let them fall to my sides.
Gavin approaches me and circles me twice, like a vulture. Each time, I feel his eyes tracing my curves, studying every nook and cranny of my body. The fire in my cheeks spreads down.
Thank goodness it’s fairly dark. Only the moonlight drifting in through the curtains and the lamp in the far corner keep the shadows at bay. If all the lights were on, I’d be melting by now.
Suddenly, Gavin stops behind me. He grips a few strands of my hair near my nape.
“Have you always kept your hair short?” he asks me.
“Yes,” I lie.
“Let it grow out. You’re forbidden to cut it from now on. Is that understood?”
I want to argue with him, but I know I can’t. “Yes.”
His fingers travel down my back, crisscrossing over my spine. They’re feather-light, and still I shiver.
When they stop just above the crevice separating the cheeks of my ass, I tense. I hold my breath as he drags them lower, but he stops and squeezes my cheeks instead.
I let out a breath, but my relief quickly fades as I feel Gavin’s chest pressed against my back. His hand grips my hip.
His other hand moves over my face and finds my mouth. His fingers trace my lips. He licks the back of my ear and I gasp. His index finger slips inside my mouth and brushes against my tongue.
As he continues to trace my lobe with just the tip of his tongue, he slips in another finger and pushes them all the way in, pinning my tongue down. His nails touch my soft palate.
“Suck,” he orders against my ear.
I wrap my lips around his fingers and obey. By now, I know that it’s my only option. Besides, it’s not like I can utter a word of protest.
As I suck on his fingers, Gavin sucks on my ear, then blows lightly on it. My knees tremble.
He does the same to the other, and the pleasure slowly creeping into my mind distracts me so that I don’t notice that his other hand has moved up until I feel it brush against the underside of my breast. I stiffen and my tongue grows still.
Gavin rests his chin on my shoulder. He peers over it, watching his fingers as they circle my swollen nipple. I feel it tingle. Heat swirls in my breasts. When he pinches my nipple, I moan. He tugs on it and I feel a surge of simultaneous pain and pleasure that makes my knees grow weak.
He alternates between pinching, tugging and rubbing my nipple as he licks my neck. My pulse quickens. Then he starts moving his fingers in and out of my mouth. My hands curl into fists and my nails dig into my palms. A moan escapes my throat as heat stirs between my legs. I feel some of it leak out.
He stops teasing my nipple and cups my breast. I feel him smirk against my shoulder.
“I think I know some of your weak spots now,” Gavin says triumphantly.
The knowledge sends a shiver of fear and excitement up my spine.
“And now, let’s see if I can find the best spot.”
He takes his fingers out of my mouth. They brush against my other nipple before dipping between my legs.
“Spread your legs,” he tells me.
I swallow and obey. His wet fingers trace the already drenched folds of my skin. They enter me and I let out a sharp breath and a soft cry.
“Soaking wet already?” he teases me. “You may have put your walls up to keep me out, but your body is opening up to me nicely and giving me a warm welcome indeed.”
He reaches in deeply as if to prove his point, brushing against a spot inside me that steals my breath and causes pleasure to burst in my veins.
“See,” he gloats.
I recover. “I never- “
The rest of my words vanish as Gavin withdraws his fingers only to brush them against the nub above my entrance. He teases that bud of flesh as he plays with my nipple once more. The sensations combine into one and my entire body begins to tremble. My back arches against him. My toes dig into the carpet. My hands grip his arms as my head falls back against his shoulder.
God! Shit. This is good. So g-
Suddenly, Gavin’s hands leave me. I hear myself whimper. Or was that me?
He throws me on the bed and looks down at me with smoldering eyes- all the ice has melted now- as he hurries to take off his belt and his pants. When he’s done, he climbs on top of me. The bed creaks. He captures my mouth as he spreads my legs. I feel his tongue entwine with mine as he enters me with one thrust.
I moan into his mouth. My trembling hands grip the sheets.
He starts pounding into me, his thick cock rubbing every exquisite spot inside of me, and I am lost. I throw my head back against the quilt as the pleasure overcomes me. My hips rise off the bed. My nails scrape cotton.
I pull my mouth away from Gavin’s so that I can breathe. My chest hurts from lack of air. I wait for the haze to fade, for my head to stop spinning, but it doesn’t. The waves of pleasure just keep coming, each one knocking me back down beneath the current again.
Gavin keeps moving. Each powerful, precise thrust rips through my body and keeps the fire in my veins burning. Moan after moan spills from my lips. Tears sting the corners of my eyes.
As soon as he’s said that, he grunts and buries himself inside me. My mouth opens wide to let out a silent cry. My hands grip his shoulders as his fingers dig into my thighs. Our bodies tremble in unison.
Only afterward do I feel the tide of pleasure begin to recede. Exhausted, I let my arms fall to my sides. My chest heaves as I pull air back into my lungs.
Gavin lets go of my thighs as well. The backs of my knees hit the bed, which gives one last creak as he climbs off me. Through tear-blurred, half-lidded eyes that I can barely open, I see him fixing his clothes.
I should probably put mine back on too, but I have hardly any strength left. I simply crawl under the quilt. As soon as my head rests against the pillow, my eyes close once more.
“Good night,” I hear him say.
“Good night,” I mumble.
What was it I was going to ask him again? I can no longer remember.
The last thing I do is tuck my hand beneath my cheek before I allow myself to slip into oblivion.
One Hot Neighbor (The Johnson Brothers Book 3)
Chapter 14 -Violet
The waves had lulled her to sleep, and the sun through the small window in the master bedroom had woken her. Violet yawned as the scent of coffee wafted in the air around her. She turned her head to see a mug filled with fresh coffee, causing her to smile lightly. She lifted herself against the bed, sitting back against the headboard, enjoying the gentle rolling feeling of the yacht as she sat up.
She took the mug into her hands carefully, so as not to spill it. Violet couldn’t help but chuckle to herself at the thought that she was on a yacht. She hadn’t even gone fishing before, let alone stayed overnight on a boat, much less a billionaire’s yacht.
She thought of Liam as she brought the warm coffee to her lips. He’d really outdone himself. She’d never had anyone do anything even half as romantic as what he’d planned for her. He had flaws, yes, but all people did. With a family like his, she couldn’t deny that his issues were linked to what he’d dealt with from his father. Violet had learned that he might actually be the amazing gentleman she’d first met in Greece.
The coffee was creamy, despite not having any milk in it. The aftertaste was rich and smooth as it passed over her tongue slowly. She savoured the rich taste as long as she could, enjoying the comfort that it brought her. Even the coffee was better on a yacht.
She held her coffee closer to her chest as she removed the thick comforter off her legs and stepped out onto the cool wood floor. There was a careful grace to each movement, trying her best not to let her sudden vertigo cause her to fall over. Even after being on the yacht for over twelve hours, she still hadn’t fully gained her sea legs.
It was on the chair at the end of the room that she found her dress, perfectly folded with her belongings. She couldn’t help but wonder if he was the one who did it or if he had a maid set everything up so nicely for her. If so, she couldn’t believe that she’d slept all the way through the night, even when someone had entered the room. Back at home she was always paranoid when she fell asleep, since she lived alone.
She dressed and opened the sliding door, taking the mug with her. The hallway led out to the stairs and the deck above. She could already feel the wind against her face before she stepped out, smelling the ocean from where she stood. All around them was the water and far off into the distance she could see the Californian shoreline. It was one thing she never expected to do in her life – have coffee on the deck of a yacht. She didn’t even know if she should add it to her bucket list just to cross it out, but it felt as though it would be an important memory that she would cherish, much like the night in Mykonos.
She stopped at the top of the stairs when she saw a cook pass her by. He was with the waiter. She wanted to step out and thank them as they passed, but overheard the two men talking and paused, hidden, to listen.
“Second girl here in two weeks,” the cook said, and laughed. “Must be nice.”
There was a heavy feeling in her chest.
The waiter shrugged. “I’d do the same if I had his kind of money.”
She nearly dropped the mug in her hands. She backed up down the stairs, feeling sick. The second girl? He did this every week? Her hands started shaking and she jumped at the feeling of a hand on her back.
“Not going up on deck?”
She wanted to throw the coffee in his face as she turned to look at him. She could feel the tears forming in her eyes. Once again, she’d been played by him. “I need to get back home,” she said, her tone sharp. “Can you get me to dry land? Now.”
He held up his hands. “Whoa. I thought you weren’t in a rush, so I thought we could enjoy the day a little more.”
“No. Take me to dry land and I’ll get an Uber home.”
“I can drive you,” he said, his expression showing his discomfort. “You live right next door to me, so it’s not a problem.”
“Take me to land. Now.”
She pushed past him and headed straight back to the bedroom and slid the door closed. She locked it and waited, the tears streaming down her face. Another moment where she was an idiot. This guy really knew how to play her.