Authors: K. Bromberg
My mind flickers back to Colton demanding that I tell him that I want to be fucked our first time together. Of him pushing me to the brink by taking me hard and fast. Of him whispering the explicit things he wants to do to me when we have sex—lifting me up, pressing me against a wall, and grinding us toward release. Of how the knowledge of any and all of these things can cause me to ache with a need so intense that it unnerves me.
My cheeks flush at the thoughts, and I am grateful he can’t see my face because he’d know exactly where my mind has wandered. I exhale a shaky sigh, trying to stifle my mortification at the direction of conversation and my own self-revelations.
“That’s one of the things I like about you. You’re so uninhibited.”
I feel like looking around the room to see whom else he is talking to. “
” I croak.
“Mmm-hmm,” he murmurs. “
.” His voice feathers over my cheek, the movement of his lips grazing my ear.
His words leave me motionless. He’s echoed my thoughts of him despite the chaos and hurt from earlier. Maybe this combustible chemistry between us is because I possibly mean more than some of his others? He’s sending me all of the signals to validate this claim, and yet hearing it would mean so much more.
He lathers his hands up with a bar of soap and then proceeds to run them over my arms and down the front of my chest. I suck in a breath as his fingertips slide lazily over the peaks of my breasts and his mouth licks its way up the curve of my shoulder. “I don’t think I could ever get my fill of you.” Proving my point exactly.
Words that say it but don’t really say it
. “You’re always so reserved, but when I’m in you…” he shakes his head, a low hum deep in his throat “...you lose all sense of everything, become mine, submit completely to me.”
His words are a seduction on their own, never mind his thickening cock pressed up against the cleft of my backside. “How does that make me uninhibited?” I ask, angling my head back so I can rub against the coarse stubble on his jaw.
Colton’s laugh is a low rumble that reverberates through my back. “Let’s see…we’ll put it in baseball analogies for you since you seem to be so keen on them. Almost third base in a public hallway. Twice.” He chuckles. “Second base on a blanket at a beach.” With each word I can feel my cheeks redden. “Homerun, pressed against the window of my bedroom,” he pauses “...that overlooks a public beach.”
“What?” I gasp.
Oh. Fucking. Hell
. What is it about him that makes me lose my head? My ass was pressed against a glass wall while we had sex, and anyone could have enjoyed the show. I think dying from humiliation is a viable option right now. I have no other choice but to shift the blame. “It’s all your fault,” I tell him as I push away and splash water at him.
A cocky grin lights up his face. It’s a welcome sight from the haunted look from earlier. The dark and brooding bad boy has returned and is sitting across from me, knees and torso peeking out from above an overabundance of bubbles with a playful look on his face. Is it no wonder I’ve fallen for this man who’s such a juxtaposition of characteristics and actions?
And fallen damned hard without a safety line to hold on to.
Fuck, I’m so seriously screwed.
“How’s that?” He splashes water back at me and catches my wrist in a quick grab when I try to retaliate. He pulls me toward him playfully, and I resist in turn. He gives up and I flop back, sloshing water out of the tub at all angles. We both erupt in a fit of laughter, bubbles floating through the air at my sudden movements. “I’ve been with plenty of women, sweetheart, and most aren’t as sexually candid as you’ve been, so you can’t blame me.”
I’m glad that we’re laughing when Colton makes his off the cuff remark because I can see him tense even though a smile remains on his face. I make a quick decision to remain playful despite the pang his remarks cause. I really don’t want to think about the
plenty of women
he’s been with, but I guess I can’t ignore them either. Maybe I can use this slip of his to my advantage, get more information on my fate as well as make a little point of my own.
“Oh really?” I arch a brow and scoot closer, a smile playing on my lips. “Plenty of women, huh? Glad I can surprise such an experienced man such as yourself.” I toy with him as I run my finger along the line of his throat and down between his pecs. His Adam’s apple bobs as he swallows at my touch. “Tell me,” I whisper suggestively as my hand dips beneath the water and rakes toward his already erect cock. “These plenty? How long do you usually keep them around for?”
He sucks in his breath as my fingers graze over the tip of his shaft. “This isn’t the right time to—aarrgh!” He whimpers as my hand cups his balls and massages them gently.
“It’s never the right time, but a girl’s gotta know these things.” I lower my mouth to suck on one of his flat nipples, tugging it gently with my teeth. He groans deeply, his mouth parting when I look up at him from beneath my lashes. “How long, Ace?”
“Rylee…” he pleads before I take his other nipple between my teeth at the same time I press the pleasure point just beneath his balls. “Four or five months,” he pants out in response. I laugh seductively, hiding the jolt that tickles up my spine at knowing the clock is ticking on my time with him. I lick my tongue up the line of his neck and tug on his earlobe. “Ah...” He sighs when I trace it around the rim.
“Good to know…”
He remains silent, his shallow breath the only sound. “You play dirty.”
“Someone once told me that sometimes you have to play dirty to get what you want.” I breathe into his ear, repeating his words back to him. My nipples, chilled from the air, skim over the taut skin on his chest.
He chuckles low and deep, and his eyes alight with humor because he knows he’s not the only one affected. I slide my other hand down his chest beneath the water, and I watch him watch my hand disappear. He looks back up at me and raises his eyebrows, curious as to where I’m going with this. When he just continues to stare at me, I grip the base of his shaft with one of my hands and twist it up and back on his length while the pad of my thumb on my other hand pays special attention to the crest. “Oh God that feels good, baby,” he moans. The look he sends me smolders so intensely with need and lust it’s enough to ignite my insides.
I stroke him a couple more times, enjoying this game I’m playing. Enjoying the fact that I can create such a visceral reaction from this man. I stop all motion and Colton’s eyes that have closed partway in pleasure fly open to meet mine. I smirk slowly at him.
“Just one more thing...” I can see the confusion on his face, his jaw grinding as he silently begs for the pleasure to return.
Now that I’ve gotten his attention, I continue again, altering my grip and angle of stroke. Colton hisses out at the difference in sensation, his head falling back against the edge of the tub. I stop again and cup his balls in my hand.
“Look, I know you were upset, but if you ever treat me like you did this morning again...” I enunciate each word, the teasing humor in my tone gone as I gently squeeze my hand around him “…disrespect me, degrade, or push me away by humiliating me, understand now that I will not be coming back like I did today—regardless of your reasons, how I feel about you, or what’s between us.”
Colton meets my implacable stare and doesn’t flinch at my threat. His mouth slides into a ghost of a smile. “Well it seems you have me by the balls both
literally and figuratively
, don’t you now?” he taunts, mischief dancing in his eyes.
I squeeze him softly, fighting the smirk that wants to play at the corners of my mouth. “Is that understood? Non-negotiable.”
“Crystal clear, sweetheart,” he says to me, his eyes conveying the sincerity within his response. Satisfied he understands what I am telling him, I shift in the water and release my hold on his balls. Keeping my eyes locked on his, I slide my hands up to his rigid length and repeat the motion that rendered him agreeable moments before. Colton groans a long, drawn out, “Non-negotiable.” And I don’t respond to his answer because I am so turned on watching his reaction. “
,” he grates out, grabbing my hips and pulling me toward him. “You like to play hardball, don’t you?”
I accept his nudging and position myself over the top of his shaft. I lean forward, tunneling my fingers in his hair and place my cheek against his. As I lower myself at an achingly slow pace despite his hands urging me faster, I whisper in his ear, his own words back to him. “
Welcome to the big leagues, Ace
“Are you sure you can handle it?”
“Yes,” he drolly calls out from the kitchen.
“Because if you can’t, I can whip something up real quick.”
“The image you just brought to my mind of you with a whip, high heels, and nothing else on is exactly what is going to prevent me from getting breakfast done.” His laugh carries outside onto the deck where I sit.
“Okay, I’ll just sit here quietly, enjoy the sun, and leave you with those images while I wait for my food.”
I can hear the carefree note as he laughs again, and it lightens my heart. He seems to have tucked away the earlier nightmare and ensuing incident, but deep down, I know it’s lingering just beneath
the surface, always waiting patiently to remind him again of whatever atrocities he endured as a child. Nightmares. Shame. The overriding need for physicality with women. Memories so horrid he vomits with the reappearance of them. I can only hope the causes that flicker through my mind from my past work with other little boys with similar post-traumatic stress symptoms does not hold true for Colton.
I force myself to sigh away the sadness and soak up the welcome warmth of the early morning sunlight, to enjoy the fact that we’ve turned this morning around from the disaster that it began with. I can only hope that maybe, in time, Colton will trust me enough to open up and feel comfortable talking to me. Then again, who am I to think that I’ll be the special one and make a difference in a man who’s emotionally isolated himself from everyone for so long?
The speakers on the terrace come to life around me, and Baxter lifts his head momentarily before plopping it back down. Stretched out on the chaise lounge, I watch the early bird exercisers on the beach. I guess it’s not that early now after our diversion in the bathtub. I swear I don’t know what came over me and prompted me to act that way. That is so not me, but it sure was fun making Colton putty in my hands. And when all was said and done, with the bathwater growing cold, he made sure that my whole body ended up just as boneless as his.
And then there’s the down side to our whole bathtub time. His admission that his average shelf life with a woman is four or five months.
. Tawny might be right. He’s going to get bored with me and my lack of bedroom prowess. I shrug away the notion time is running out for me. The thought causes my breath to catch and panic to fill my every nerve. I can’t lose him. I can’t lose how I feel when I’m with him. He means too much to me already, and that’s with me trying to be reserved in my emotions.
Jared Leto sings about being closer to the edge. I close my eyes thinking how I already have both feet over and beyond that edge that Colton has explicitly explained he does not want to teeter on. But how can I not plummet off it when he makes me feel so incredibly good. I try to rationalize that it’s just the incredible—and it’s mind-blowingly incredible—sex that’s making me feel these insane feelings after only knowing each other for three weeks. And I know that sex does not equate love.
I need to remind myself of this. Over and over and over to prevent the fall.
But his words, his actions, tell me that I’m just more than an arrangement to him. They all flicker through my head—different things over the past three weeks—and I just can’t see him not thinking that there are definite possibilities here. If not, then he has me fooled.
Matt Nathanson’s voice fills the air around me, and I hum along to
Come on Get Higher
, my thoughts scattered and disjointed, but oddly content.
I open my eyes to see Colton lower a plate onto the table beside me, and when I see its contents, I laugh loudly. “It’s perfect, sir, and I so appreciate the depths of your fine culinary skills.” I reach over and take a bite of my toasted bagel and cream cheese and moan dramatically in appreciation. “Delicious!”
He bows theatrically, obviously pleased with himself, and plops down beside me. “Thank you. Thank you.” He laughs, grabbing a half off of the plate and taking a large bite of it. He leans back on an elbow, washboard abs bare and board shorts riding low on his hips. The sight of him is enough of a meal in itself.
We eat, playfully teasing each other, and I silently wonder what’s next. As much as I don’t want to, I think I need to get home and put some distance between the two of us before the night we’ve spent together and the feelings it solidified accidentally come stumbling out of my mouth.