I wasn’t quite ready when Caleb dipped his free hand into her panties and her knees buckled. My body moved all at once to stop her from falling and recoiled in pain. It turned out my efforts were wasted. Caleb held her firmly in his grasp. He looked into my eyes, which were now misted over, and kept his hand busy inside Celia’s panties. I felt angry…and scared…and physically hurt…and…and…hot.
I wanted to curse at him, but why, I wasn’t entirely sure. His chest rose and fell faster than usual, and I knew he was all worked up. Suddenly, he pushed Celia forward onto the bed and her arms reached out to catch her, landing on my knees. I heard her panties rip as Caleb pulled the delicate material in one swift jerking motion and discarded them.
“Turn around and spread your legs,” he said, huskily. Celia scrambled to obey and I sat in unabashed horror as her head rest on my knees.
Caleb undid his pants and slid everything down, his thick cock sprang upward like something that shouldn’t be there, and I couldn’t help but close my eyes.
“Do not fucking look away,” he sneered. I opened my eyes. My tears fell.
Caleb dipped his head between Celia’s legs and said something about loving a bald pussy before he buried his face between her thighs. Celia was somewhere else after that. She moaned and her head went from side to side. Her hands reached up toward me, and she made fists into the hips of my nightgown. I tried to pry her hands off of me to back away, but the bitch held on tight.
“Please,” she said on a sigh. “Please. Let me come.” She repeated the word please like a mantra. My heart raced.
Caleb emerged from Celia’s thighs and took absolutely no notice of me as he sucked and kissed his way to her nipple. He reached down and must have put himself inside her because Celia all of a sudden went perfectly still. Her face turned a ridiculous shade of red and an ungodly groan came out of her. Caleb looked at me, fire and hunger in his eyes.
He whispered, “I could have made you come like that. If it were really what you wanted. If you weren’t such a liar.” Before I could grasp the words he’d spoken, he grabbed the back of my head and kissed me – the taste of Celia saturated my mouth, and something in me snapped. I shook loose of the kiss and slapped Caleb across the face with so much force my hand stung.
I ran into the bathroom before he could recover. I was breathless. I pressed my back against the door, terrified of him bursting through it and some horrible scenario playing out between us. I cried pitifully, and wiped at my mouth with my free hand to get the taste of Celia out of my mouth. It wasn’t that the taste of her was altogether unpleasant, it had more to do with the fact it came from Caleb’s mouth. Of all the emotions running through me, why was the nagging sense of betrayal one of them? I couldn’t deny it, I was hurt, and I couldn’t put my finger on exactly why.
Nearly fifteen minutes went by and Caleb still hadn’t come to confront me. I pressed my ear to the door and I could hear them. They were still fucking. I could hear her moaning and the rough timbre of his voice. He was saying things, but I couldn’t make them out. I should’ve been happy he wasn’t interested in making me pay for what I’d done, but I wasn’t. That familiar and unsolicited feeling I had earlier was still present, growing inside my chest, and keeping the flow of tears coming to my eyes – jealousy.
The idea I was jealous consumed me for several hours as I lay on the tile. Why was I jealous? Of whom? I don’t think I was jealous of what Caleb was doing. I had no reason to care. No reason, except, for more than a month he’d been trying to seduce me, and draw me in, and trying to make me feel something I didn’t feel – for what? So he could turn around and fuck someone else? And her! Walking around my room as if she were some sort of victim. I actually felt sorry for her, up until I saw that smile of hers, up until she made it obvious she was better than me in some way. Tears of frustration rolled down my cheeks, and no matter how I thought about it, I still hurt.
Later still, after the tears faded, I finally decided to leave my self-imposed prison and face whatever sick punishment Caleb undoubtedly had in store for me. I opened the bathroom door. Light from the bathroom spilled into the dark room, and there was a deep pinch in the middle of my chest when I saw they were both cuddled up together in what I’d come to think of as my bed. I stepped closer. They were both obviously naked and the sheet only covered them from the waist down. Celia’s face was still flush, and her lips looked swollen from kissing. She looked content. Caleb held her in his possessive way, as if he didn’t want her to get away, though I doubted she would try. I swallowed past the lump in my throat and looked around. Where am I supposed to sleep?
I paced around the room, knowing I’d probably end up on the floor, but not able to accept it yet. I walked past the door to the bedroom, and my heart skipped at the thought the door might actually be open. I looked back toward the bed and saw Caleb’s face within the sliver of light coming from the bathroom. He slept peacefully. I put my hand on the latch and pressed down, and I held my breath as I pulled back gently, and the door opened.
Soft light gave the long hallway an eerie glow and I almost had the feeling of being in a hotel, but my door seemed to be the only one down this hallway. At the end of the hall, I could make out a railing, and just beyond it, a large chandelier hung from the ceiling. I took a step forward onto the soft carpeting and I was suddenly overwhelmed by the urge to pee. What the hell are you doing? I crept further out into the hall, not knowing what I intended to do once I reached the end. As I reached the middle of the hallway, I looked back toward the bedroom door and was suddenly overwhelmed with the memory of the bikers. Immediately I knew I wouldn’t be running away. More than anything, I just wanted to look around – but I didn’t want to risk Caleb’s temper any more than I already had. I turned back. I closed the door behind me, as gently as I had opened it.
“Did you find what you were looking for?” said a husky male voice.
“I wasn’t looking for anything,” I replied, my anger gave my words a harder edge than I intended, and it belied my surge of fear at being caught. Caleb sighed. I watched as he disentangled himself from Celia and rolled over on his side to face me. Celia groaned and wrapped herself around my pillow and continued to sleep.
“Come here,” he said softly, but I knew it wasn’t a request. Conveying a confidence I didn’t have, I crossed the short distance between us and stood next to the bed.
As I stood there, trying not to let my knees knock together, he looked me up and down, and from that alone my entire body grew uncomfortably warmer. He reached out with one hand and ran his fingers from my elbow to my wrist. He pressed his lips to the inside of my wrist.
“You slapped me,” He said. He looked up into my eyes and I swallowed.
“Yes, Master,” I whispered. I hoped addressing him properly would please him. He intertwined his fingers with mine, and pressed firmly. I winced.
“Before you, I’ve never known a woman to get away with that.” Tears fell from my eyes. I couldn’t pretend to be brave.
“Please, don’t hurt me,” I sputtered.
He looked at me calmly, with a smile playing across his lips. “Well, it wouldn’t take much would it? You’re already broken as it is. It wouldn’t be any fun for me.” I let out a deep breath I didn’t know I was holding, and took another. “Still, I can’t exactly let it go.” Without thinking about it I squeezed his hand when he spoke. “What are you bracing for?” he asked. “I already told you I’m not going to hurt you.”
Inexplicably, sobs caught in my chest, but I managed to respond, “You’ve already hurt me, Caleb. Why would you do that? Why?”
He was silent for a long moment before he responded, “This thing between us…it has to stop. I don’t like it. I’ve tried to make this easier for you, as ridiculous as it sounds. I can’t keep you, Livvie. Stop trying to make me.”
My heart clenched in my chest at the sound of my name. He remembered. I hadn’t imagined those moments with him. They were as real to him as they had been to me and it was almost more than I could bear. Everything he had said was true. I’d been trying to manipulate him since the night he’d told me the truth. The night I realized I was nothing more than an object, a thing to be bought and traded.
I had no guilt over it, either. Caleb wanted me to survive and I was trying my fucking best. I’d chosen my path and carefully placed my moments. Caleb was my way out of this whole thing and I was set on doing all I could to bend him to my side. What I had never anticipated was the way my feelings would develop.
“I don’t know what to say,” I finally replied.
He smiled sadly, “Don’t say anything. I shouldn’t have. Just get in the bed.”
A look of shock crossed over my face. “I’m not getting in there with the both of you,” I said matter-of-factly. “Besides, you’re naked.”
His laugh was a low rumble that made me feel like a petulant child, but I didn’t care. He sat up, and the sheet did a bad job of covering his thickening penis. He put his hands on my hips and gently urged me forward. Heat spread through my belly and I looked up past his head, my eyes landing on Celia’s sleeping form.
His breath touched my belly through the thin fabric of my nightgown as he spoke, “I’m not asking, Kitten.” I was about to say I didn’t feel right sleeping next to Celia when his hot mouth closed over my puckered nipple, and an unbelievably hard tug inside me quickened my pulse and made the lips of my sex swell.
He let go quickly, but the damage was already done. The residual wetness left by his mouth continued hardening my nipple as the air touched it. My breath was seemingly harder to come by, but Caleb seemed calm and in control.
“Now,” he said over the roar in my ears, “are you going to get in this bed and go to sleep, or are you going to give me a reason to torture you in a thousand different ways that don’t hurt?” A whine escaped my throat.
He coaxed me toward the bed, but I dug in my heels and gently refused to move. Caleb sighed deeply.
I knew I was testing his patience, but I wouldn’t relent. “Please make her go,” I whispered.
“Wouldn’t that be mean?” he teased me from previous conversation, and I smiled in spite of myself. He regarded me for a few moments, then rolled his eyes playfully and yelled, “Celia!” I jumped. Celia woke with a start and rubbed the sleep from her eyes.
“Sí, Señor?” she said, alarmed and groggy.
“Go back to your room.”
Matthew sat in silence for a few minutes, trying to soak in the story. What could he say? There wasn’t necessarily any relevant information to be gleaned, but he was beginning to become curious about Caleb and the kind of man he was.
Caleb seemed like a very conflicted person. To Matthew’s thinking, the conflict didn’t excuse Caleb’s actions, but as he sat in Olivia’s hospital room struggling not to notice the throb of arousal he experienced every time he shifted in his seat and thought of Sloan, he wondered if he didn’t share something in common with the man. It wasn’t a comforting thought by any stretch, but there it was. He was curious.
As Olivia spoke, he recalled their earlier conversation about whether or not monsters were born or made. He believed they were made, as did Olivia, but Matthew had trouble with the notion that cruelty, justified further cruelty. Or a lust for it.
In Matthew’s case, he felt he should be able to subjugate his need to be humiliated and dominated sexually. His desires were a remnant from a childhood spent taking care of a weak woman and getting verbally and physically abused by an even weaker man. That Matthew had become a strong-willed and self-assured person was a blessing, but his need to be abused from time to time was a curse he struggled with in every romantic relationship he had.