Bound to be Taken (Emergence)

BOOK: Bound to be Taken (Emergence)
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Dedication

To my fantastic, fabulous editor, Christa, without whom this project wouldn’t be half as good. She made it shine! And to my wonderful beta reader, Lea Griffith, who means the world to me and cheered me on exuberantly every step of the way while I wrote this book.

Chapter One

“I’m telling you that woman is super intelligent and more than capable of handling this promotion.” The deep voice rumbled from around the corner.

Stephanie froze in her spot just outside the break room. She held her breath, but her heart pounded.

The voice came from her boss, Jack Cane, co-owner of Seabring Inc. She wondered who he was talking to. Or more importantly, who he was talking
about
.

“I don’t know, Jack. I don’t care how smart she is, she looks like a librarian. She’s too stuffy. How are the clients going to relate to her?” Harold Reeves responded.

Well, that answers one question.

Her hands shook and she inched back to ensure neither man saw her in the doorway.

“Stephanie can do it. I just know it,” Jack stated. “I’d bet anything that under that façade lies a perfectly normal sexy woman.”

And that answers the second question.
She was up for a promotion. The decision would be made Monday morning, one week from today. And the owners of the company were discussing her. That was a good thing. Wait. Did he say
sexy
?

“You could be right, but unless she shows some signs of humanity between now and Monday, I don’t see how we can promote her,” Harold retorted.

Stephanie closed her eyes and leaned against the wall. Talk about being in the right place at the right time. Or perhaps, she was actually in the wrong place. It was early, not even seven a.m. yet. No one else was in the office. She had lofty goals of making a good impression this week, however. And the best way to do that would be to make a huge dent in the files on her desk. A giant stack of nicely color-coded files, one for each IT client she needed to wrap up.

At this point it wasn’t even going to matter how hard she worked.

“I’ll make you a deal.” Jack chuckled. “The company party is this Saturday. If that woman shows up for the party, socializes appropriately and brings a date, we give her the promotion. If not, it goes to one of the other senior managers.”

Stephanie had to bite her lip to stifle a groan. These guys were placing a bet on her.

It took Harold about two seconds to seal her fate. “Deal.” The man laughed, a deep belly laugh that made her cringe. “Do you suppose she even has a boyfriend? I can’t imagine that frigid woman having sex with anyone.”

Stephanie winced, picturing their faces. They were totally mocking her. And how inappropriate to base her entire future on how sexy she was, how social she could be and whether or not she had a date to a party.

“Oh, and Harold?” Jack added. His voice trailed farther away. He must have turned his back.

“Yes.”

“No interfering. Neither of us is allowed to speak to her about this matter. Whatever happens happens.”

“Agreed.” Stephanie could actually visualize Harold reaching out a hand to shake on the deal.

She inched back toward her office, making no sound.

Fuck.
She didn’t know whether to be elated at what she knew the stakes were or pissed to realize how high the bar had been set. Could their discussion of her be considered sexual harassment? Probably not. After all, they thought they were alone. Still, their demeaning words ate a hole in her soul.

A date. Now she had to get a man to attend a company party with her in five days and make it look as if she hadn’t plucked him off the street.

She eased into her office, still walking backward.

As she shut the door with a silent click, she turned and leaned against the cool wood. Head hanging, she glanced down at herself. They were right about one thing. She did look like a librarian most days. And it worked for her. It kept men from ogling and pawing at her everywhere she went.

She didn’t need or want a man. All they brought to the picture was trouble. She was perfectly capable of taking care of herself.

But God she wanted that promotion. So bad she could taste it. She’d worked so diligently to prove herself, staying late most nights, arriving early. After all that hard work for the last year, it sucked to find out the only way she would get that promotion was to be exactly the kind of person she didn’t ever want to be. Somebody’s girlfriend.

 

 

Aiden moaned into his pillow. Judging by the line of moisture running up his back and sending goose bumps down his spine, he’d guess naptime was over. A smile spread across his face, even though Dane couldn’t see it from behind him. The man could do wicked things with his tongue.

Life was good. The best part about owning a restaurant together was having the occasional leisurely afternoon free between the lunch rush and the dinner crowd to relax with each other. There was just one thing missing that would make their lives perfect… Icing on the cake…

“Do I have your attention?” Dane stroked a hand down Aiden’s side and across his hip.

“Hmm…” His cock jerked, pressing against the zipper of his jeans.

“I love it when you fall asleep with your shirt off. Gives me all this glorious, smooth, muscular skin to admire.” Dane whispered the words so close to Aiden’s ear a chill ran through him.

When Dane reached one hand around Aiden’s front and wiggled it between the sheets and the jeans, Aiden moaned louder. What had he been dreaming about that made him so horny so fast?

Oh, right.
He closed his eyes in an attempt to seal in the image formed in his sleep. Visions of what he imagined the inside of a fetish club looked like. He could picture all manner of people dressed in lace and leather and almost nothing, bumping and grinding into each other as they danced and watched the show. Ahhh…

“Whatcha thinkin’?”

Aiden’s grin grew bigger, and he turned onto his side to stare into Dane’s eyes. “I’m thinkin’ we need a date for Friday night in a big way. I don’t want to miss that party.”

Dane smiled back, his hair rumpled from sleep, the dark brown locks falling across his forehead and begging Aiden to run his fingers through them. “And where do you propose to conjure up such a person in the next five—no make that four—days?” Dane leaned in and nibbled a path across Aiden’s face until he reached his mouth and took it in a rough, no-holds-barred kiss that sucked the brain cells out of Aiden’s head.

The man could kiss. And while he took control and slipped his tongue into Aiden’s mouth, Dane nudged Aiden onto his back and climbed over him.

Ah, the pressure. There was nothing in the world that could equal the feeling of having Dane covering his body while Aiden’s cock swelled and knocked against the other man’s. Even through the two layers of denim, it was apparent Dane was as turned on as Aiden this afternoon.

Dane pulled his face back only enough to mutter, “Need you…” He grabbed Aiden’s arms with both hands and tugged them over his head. Resuming the kiss, Dane fumbled blindly with the headboard.

Aiden’s dick throbbed harder as he realized the path he was on. He pulled out of the kiss. “Guess it’s your turn to Dom.” He chuckled.

“Mmm hmm…” Dane kissed a line toward Aiden’s neck and nuzzled him there until Aiden tipped his head to one side to give the man more skin. God, it felt good to have Dane’s mouth and warm breath in the crook of his neck. Aiden let his eyes roll back as cool air rushed over the moist skin left in the path of Dane’s wet kisses.

A click sounded, and Dane lifted his face a few inches to glance over Aiden’s head. “Ah, there it is…” A firm tug forced Aiden’s arm higher, and then both wrists were locked to the headboard.

Aiden lifted his torso off the bed to gain more purchase against his lover’s cock. “Did someone do a little silent planning while I napped?”

Dane winked and then scooted down the bed. He popped the button on Aiden’s jeans and tapped his hip in a silent request that Aiden lift his ass off the mattress.

Aiden complied without hesitation. The sooner Dane had his jeans off, the sooner he could get the rest of him off too.

“You’ve got this down to a science,” Aiden murmured. He stared at Dane’s sexy tousled hair, but Dane had his gaze locked on Aiden’s cock as it sprang free from the confines of his pants. In seconds, Aiden was naked.

Dane ignored Aiden. “Spread your knees.” His voice was hoarse. A low command.

Aiden didn’t hesitate. Of all the things they’d learned in the last months of workshops, the hardest thing for Aiden had been allowing himself to be wide open and vulnerable. Even though he’d been with Dane in a committed relationship for almost three years, it still went outside his comfort zone to assume the sub position.

But, holy fuck, was it hot. There was something fundamentally titillating about allowing another person to demand compliance in the bedroom.

“That’s it, baby. Hold your knees open like that. I like to see your balls as they tighten under my gaze.”

Yep, fucking hot. Aiden’s knees shook. “If you don’t stop teasing and suck me off, I’m gonna blow without your touch.”

“Really now?” Dane raised one brow and stared into Aiden’s eyes. “I’d like to see that.”

When Dane moved to lean back, Aiden wrapped one leg around the man and tugged. “Don’t even think about it.”

“Nah, that’d be no fun. I’d miss out on the flavor of your cock.” Without pausing a beat, Dane lowered himself between Aiden’s legs, gripped his thighs and sucked his entire length into his mouth.

A short chopped scream escaped Aiden’s mouth at the shock, and he bucked into Dane’s open lips.

“Christ. You should warn a guy,” he managed after the initial astonishment subsided.

Dane released Aiden’s cock almost as fast as he’d inhaled it and propped his chin on Aiden’s groin. “That’d be no fun either. I love it when you make that little squeal and my aim is always going to be to get you to do it.” He lowered his gaze once more and licked a line down Aiden’s length until he reached his balls.

The feeling of having that firm tongue swirling around Aiden’s sac was mind numbing. “Yeah, just like that…”

“Hmm, I don’t think you get to choose this time. It’s my turn.” Dane lifted off Aiden’s body and stood next to the bed. He busied himself with the side table drawer while he continued his languorous speech as if they had all the time in the world.

Unfortunately, they did. They didn’t have to be back at the restaurant until five. That wasn’t for another two hours. Aiden froze. Dane was perfectly capable of stretching out an orgasm for that length of time if he wanted.

“If I recall correctly…” Dane glanced up at the ceiling, “…you fucked me pretty hard last night, blindfolded, over the ottoman, and took no prisoners. I owe you. Or, maybe I should say you owe
me
.” He chuckled.

Damn. He should have known Dane would take notes while Aiden tortured him. Payback was always a bitch.

On second thought, that might have been exactly what he’d been secretly thinking while he’d slammed into Dane from behind while the man lay facedown across the wide leather footstool with his arms tethered to the legs in front of him.

He really loved the heady experience of dominating Dane and making the man squirm under his touch and moan. However, Aiden wasn’t completely convinced he didn’t enjoy being the sub even more. When he was at Dane’s mercy, his dick stiffened quicker and firmer.
You might want to keep that little piece of info to yourself.

Dane climbed back onto the bed and situated himself between Aiden’s legs once more. “Open.”

Aiden glanced up and froze when he saw the ball gag in Dane’s hands. He swallowed hard and commanded his dick to simmer down.

Dane grinned lasciviously. “Got your attention again?”

“When did you acquire that little addition?” They’d slowly been collecting bondage toys over the last few months, but usually they shopped together.

“Can’t a man have a few surprises?” Dane leaned forward and tapped Aiden’s lips. “Open,” he repeated.

Aiden did as he was told and tried to rein in his lust while Dane popped the rubber ball between his teeth and fastened the gag behind his head.

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