Descended (The Red Blindfold Book 2)

BOOK: Descended (The Red Blindfold Book 2)
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DESCENDED
BOOK TWO

ROSE DEVEREUX

Copyright © 2016 by Rose Devereux

Cover
design by Sarah Hansen at Okay Creations

Ebook
formatting by
Jesse Gordon

All rights
reserved. No part of this e-book may be used or reproduced in any
manner whatsoever without written permission except in the case of
brief quotations embodied in critical articles or reviews.

TABLE OF CONTENTS
PROLOGUE


One
last thing before you go, my lovely Sophie.”

As
if Marc held an invisible rope drawing me back to him, I stopped.
Desperate to feel something solid and real, I clutched the door
frame.


What?”
I asked.

There
was a long pause, and then the cold sound of metal tinkling.

I
closed my eyes. A little chain. Handcuffs. The handcuffs he would use
to vanquish me if I lost my mind and stayed.


You
don’t think you’re here by accident, do you?” he asked.

I
frowned. His words made no sense.

Here
by accident. What did he…?

A
long shiver snaked through me. I gripped the door frame so hard my
fingers went numb.


What
do you mean?” I whispered.

I
could almost feel his cool power infusing the air. “You think I
haven’t had a hand in your being here?”

I
turned slowly and looked at him. “I don’t know what you’re
talking about.”

He
crossed his ankles. “Then I’ll explain. Your editor, Katherine,
is quite an accommodating person. Persistent, too. She knows how to
get the stories she wants, even from someone as reluctant as I was.”


You
spoke to her?”


Several
times. I called her from my office on at least three occasions.”

The
room seemed to spin around me. “No,” I said, shaking my head.
“She talked to Eleanor.”


I
asked Katherine to keep my involvement private. If I was going to
give her access, I wanted control.” He snapped the handcuffs shut
with a sound that I felt in my spine. “She was kind enough to email
me dossiers of her writers. She sent quite a lovely picture of you.
Your innocence comes through even in photographs. I must admit, I was
captivated.”

I
felt a coldness, like ice melting over my heart. “You knew about
me?” I whispered.

He gave me a faint, almost
pitying smile. “I didn’t just know about you, Sophie. Don’t you
see? I chose you. You were mine before you boarded the plane in New
York.”

I stared at him. I was
struck silent.

All I could feel was my
racing pulse and the shameful burn of humiliation.

A minute went by before
I could think again. And then a hundred thoughts battered my brain,
with one rising to the top.

This
changes everything.

He’d targeted me.
Chosen me as his prey after he’d endured eight long years of
deprivation.

And he’d tricked me
into believing it was all my decision.

The last ten days tore
to shreds in my memory, reordering themselves into something I could
hardly understand. Chaining myself to a bed was nothing compared to
this.

“So that’s why
Katherine offered me another assignment,” I whispered,
disbelieving.

Marc smiled. “And
it’s why she’ll send you to Provence to house hunt with me. The
more she cooperates, the more I do. She wants an exclusive article
about the vacation home I buy, and she’ll get it as long as I get
you.”

My fingernails pierced
into my palms. Damn Katherine. Damn both of them. I was not their
pawn.

“You told me to ask
her about that trip,” I said, my face blazing. “You wanted me to
think I was talking her into it.”

He waved away my fury
with a flicker of his hand. “I wanted it to be your choice, that’s
all.”

“It turns out none of
this was my choice.” Arms crossed like armor, I shook my head. “And
all this time I thought Katherine sent me to France because I earned
it.”

“She did,” he said,
his tone both tough and soothing. “After I requested you, she told
me you were her first choice all along.”

I twisted my mouth. “Or
maybe she told you what you wanted to hear. As you said, she knows
how to get the stories she wants.”

“She was telling the
truth, Sophie. You’re very talented. I’ve read every article
you’ve every written.”

I peered into his face,
trying to find the elusive truth in those steely gray eyes. Marc
didn’t take half-measures. If he’d read every article, then he’d
done much, much more.

“That’s not all, is
it?” I said, my voice a jagged blade. “How much did you know
about me?”

He shrugged. “Quite a
lot. As much as I could uncover. Once I began to suspect my desire
for you, I had a duty to find out who you were.”

“You stalked me.”

He smiled. “I
performed due diligence on a journalist like any smart businessman
would do.”

“Journalist, or
victim?”

“Victims don’t
choose their fate.”

I wanted to claw his
skin and draw blood. Every time I thought I’d made a point, he
ducked around it and made me feel like a child. He was always three
steps ahead.

I planted my hands on
my hips. “How did you know I’d give in to you, anyway?”

“I could see it in
your eyes, even in photographs. You looked…breakable.”

My skin tremored as a
thought began to form in my mind. Suddenly it became a horrible
certainty I couldn’t ignore. “You knew my parents died, didn’t
you?” I said in a shocked half-whisper.

He kept his gaze
trained on me. “Yes, Sophie. I found their obituaries. My heart
broke when I read them. I felt terrible for you.”

I clenched my teeth so
hard my jaw ached. I remembered sitting with him at lunch, my broken
heart on full display as I’d told him what happened. His reaction
had been so convincing. And so goddamn false.

My eyes swam with hot
tears. “You felt terrible for me, yet you allowed me tell you about
it like a fool when you already knew.”

“I wanted to hear it
from your lips,” he said. “I needed to know your feelings. It was
important that I understood you, considering what I had planned for
you.”

I glared at him.

Planned
for me?
All you did was push me away, over and over again.”

He reached up and took
my hand. Though I tried to pull it back, he held it too tightly.
Under his calm manner was a simmering force, a dark heat that
skittered up my arm like an electric charge.

“Listen to me,” he
said. “When you arrived, everything changed. You were so…perfect.
I’ve always loved innocence, but yours was real. I felt something
for you from the start. A responsibility. I wanted you, but I
couldn’t bear to destroy you. I fought with myself from the moment
I saw you. But every time I tried, I failed.” He kissed the back of
my hand and let it go. “The fact is, your desire is too strong for
me.”

I gaped at him. He was
so calculating, a master of flipping reality on its head. “
My
desire? Don’t you dare.”

“Don’t dare tell
the truth?” he asked, brows lifting. “You’d never been fucked
properly and you radiated it with every breath. All I have to do is
look at you to see years of craving in your eyes. You need me. And I
need you.”

I
need you.

His words flowed over
me, making me feel warm and weak.

I didn’t want to hear
it. I wanted to be incensed. Goddamn it, I
deserved
to be.

But I’d never felt so
singled out, so…special. He made it so easy to hate him, and so
hard.

Didn’t he realize? I
was just an ordinary girl. I didn’t inflame passions, certainly not
in a man like this from half a world away.

I knotted my hands
together, trying to keep my tone strong. “But why me?” I asked, a
quiver in my voice betraying me. “Why now?”

He let out a long
breath. “At first I just wanted to vet the journalist writing my
family’s story. I read your resume and some of your articles, and I
was very impressed. But when I saw your picture, Sophie…” He
trailed off. His eyes were like an iron cage I couldn’t escape
from.

“What?” I
whispered.

“I loathed myself for
what I wanted to do to you,” he said. “I had to have you. I’m
sorry.”

A warm droplet of
wetness trickled down my thigh. I was not excited. I couldn’t be. I
was on my way out the door.

Wasn’t I?

The strap of my handbag
felt like a brick on my shoulder. I’d forgotten to put on panties,
and there was nothing to stop my wetness, or disguise it.

Marc reached under the
hem of my dress.

My lips parted as my
breath came faster. All I had to do was turn around and go. I had my
article, and my Parisian adventure. I never needed to see this
manipulative, impossible, tormented man again.

So why couldn’t I
move? Why did I feel paralyzed, unable to remember why I’d been
furious only sixty seconds ago?

He stroked my pussy as
if I were a skittish colt. Wetness flooded his fingers as I lost my
last hope of control and tipped my hips toward him.

“That’s it,” he
murmured huskily. “Just like that.”

I was frozen in place,
a marble statue he was bringing to life. Arousal lit like a bonfire
between my legs, catching every nerve in its path and flaming across
my skin.

His cock was huge, a
thick, long outline under the sheet. I stared at it, my lips open,
saliva pooling under my tongue as I imagined sucking him. He caressed
my clit back and forth, with a gentle rhythm that wore my defiance
down to dust.

I despised him, and I’d
never wanted him more.

Five minutes ago, I’d
been on the brink of freedom. Now I was lost. So lost I couldn’t
find my way back.

I came with a
shuddering rush that seemed to stop my heart. I gripped his wrist
with both hands and cried out as blissful spasms whipped through me.
My handbag slid down to my bent elbow, but I hardly noticed it. I
couldn’t see or breathe.

I was his. Every atom
inside me burst apart and disappeared in a shower of white light. My
knees shook, barely holding my weight.

“Marc,” I whispered
through trembling lips.

“Yes,” he murmured.
“Say the name of the man who owns you.”

A slave to my
instincts, I moaned and bucked against him.
Please,
let this moment never end. Let my whole life be just like this, with
him.

When I could open my
eyes again, I found Marc watching my face. He held the handcuffs in
one hand and my drenched pussy in the other. His curved, sexy mouth
told me everything I needed to know.

He’d won this round.
He’d won every round so far, and he planned to keep doing it.

God help me, I’d
given him exactly what he wanted.

Bastard.

He’d lied to me.
Maybe he’d wanted me, but he’d deceived me. And now he wanted me
to chain myself to his bed and sleep in subservience.

Though my mind whirled,
I knew I had two choices. I could run like a frightened lamb, or
challenge him like an underestimated opponent.

He wanted me to cry for
mercy. He wanted to break me down. Maybe part of him even wanted me
to leave, so he could strangle his dominant impulses again in peace.

Forget peace.

Forget breaking me
down.

Forget taking care of
that enormous erection throbbing seductively against his hard
stomach.

What was it they said
about succeeding? That the only way to fail is to give up?

Remember,
he needs you.

I dropped my purse to
the floor. Marc’s eyes burned through mine. Stepping out of his
reach, I pulled my dress off over my head and tossed it onto the bed.

“We’ve had a long
day and it’s late,” I said, putting out my hand. “I’ll take
those cuffs now.”

BOOK: Descended (The Red Blindfold Book 2)
9.22Mb size Format: txt, pdf, ePub
ads

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