Alpha, p.16
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       Alpha, p.16

         Part #1 of Alpha series by Jasinda Wilder
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When we were finished, Roth cleaned up for us both and then took my hand. “Ready to go?” I nodded. “Do you need anything? A purse?”

  I shrugged. “Not really. ”

  Roth seemed surprised at this. “All right, then. Let’s go. ” He brought me to the door to his private quarters, held his finger to the plate, and then shoved the door open.

  Beyond was a wide hallway with high ceilings, thick cream carpet, and dark wood-paneled walls, which were lined with black-and-white photographs. I paused to examine the photos. They were amazing, artistic, vividly focused. The subjects ranged from portraits to landscapes, most of them taken in Asia. There was a photo of an old Chinese woman, a scarf covering her head, wisps of gray hair sticking out around her ears, her toothless mouth grinning, eyes crinkled. There was a tall, curved-roof pagoda, a rice paddy, an ox with shaggy fur and baleful eyes, and then several more portraits. It wasn’t until I realized that Roth was watching me examine the photos with a blank expression that I thought to look at the bottom right corner. There, written in white marker or pen, was the same scribbled “VR” signature from the checks.

  “You took these?” I asked.

  He nodded. “A hobby, you could say. Something I haven’t had much time for lately, much to my regret. ”

  “They’re amazing,” I told him, sincerely impressed. “That first one, the old woman, it’s like something you’d see in National Geographic. It’s really good, Roth. ”

  He smiled at me. “Thank you, Kyrie. ” He took my hand and pulled me forward, and I followed him, although there were several more photographs I wanted to see.

  Later, perhaps. If I was lucky. We passed a few open doorways, one leading to a half-bath, another to what looked like a security room, monitors showing security camera views of the foyer, the kitchens, the library, the main garage, two elevators, another garage, and the roof. No surveillance of my rooms, though, but there were blacked-out monitors, so it was hard to say.

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  Roth followed my gaze to the security room. “There are no cameras in your quarters, I promise you. You have your privacy there. ”

  I only shrugged. I wouldn’t have been surprised if he watched me on a camera while I slept, and I wondered at myself, at the fact that I wouldn’t have been too pissed off had there been cameras in my rooms. I mean, if he’d watched me pee, that would be a bit weird, but I didn’t expect it from him. He was security-paranoid, not creepy.

  Another door showed a large office, the same thick cream carpeting, a huge dark desk with a massive iMac, and a floor-to-ceiling wall of windows. There was an exercise room, a hallway dead-ending at a doorway and, opposite that, a pair of French doors, beyond which was Roth’s room. I caught a glimpse of it in passing, and realized it was probably the most impressive room in the house. It was a corner room, so two entire walls were glass, with a balcony at the apex of the corner. The bed, from what I saw, was huge, dark, and built into a platform. I didn’t see much more than that before Roth guided me down the dead-end hallway to the door.

  “I’ll give you a tour of my rooms later,” Roth told me, his voice buzzing in my ear.

  I turned, halfway out the door. “Promise?”

  His eyes narrowed, flicked down to my cle**age and back up. “Yes, Kyrie. You will become very well-acquainted with my bedroom. ”

  I shivered, felt my ni**les harden. “Sailing can wait, don’t you think?”

  Roth’s grin was predatory. “Eager suddenly, are you?” His hand curled around my waist, and he jerked me against him. My breath left me in a whoosh. I was assaulted by the familiar spicy scent of his cologne, the hard breadth of his chest. “Are you tempting me? Trying to get control of this situation?”

  “Eager…. ” I breathed, barely able to stutter out the word.

  His eyes were intense, pale hot blue, his hand splayed on my waist and the swell of my ass, crushing me to him. “Eager, hmmm?”

  “Yes,” I answered, looking up at him, my eyes wide, my breath shallow and short.

  His other hand brushed my hair away from my eyes, then slid down my back. Found the zipper of my dress. “I think you’re trying to prove something. ”

  “I’m not. ”

  “The power of your seductive beauty is undeniable, Kyrie. ” His fingers drew the zipper down, the rough pad of his fingertip tracing up my now-bare spine. “You make me lose control when I start touching you. When you put your hands on me, I forget myself. ” He brushed the sleeves off, and the dress billowed to the floor, pooled around my feet. “But don’t think you can control me that way, Kyrie. I let you have your moment this morning. It had been a long time since I’d felt a woman’s touch. I’d been saving myself for you. But don’t think you can manipulate me with your body. ”

  “I wasn’t—”

  “Tell me the truth, Kyrie. ”

  I swallowed. “Maybe I was, just…trying to see what effect I had on you. That’s all. Not control, just…assessing. ” The heat in his eyes, the thinly veiled anger frightened me. He wouldn’t hurt me, but what would he do?

  “Assessing. ” He flicked open my bra, pulled it off. Set it aside. Hooked a finger in the elastic of my panties at my hip, tugged them down around my thighs. “Off. I want you naked. ”

  I stepped out of them, stood before him totally naked. Breathless, waiting. He shut the door, pivoted behind me, and pushed me across the hallway and into his room. Positioned in the middle of the room, I was bathed in a square of brilliant midmorning sunlight. I stood still, back straight, forcing my breathing to be even, to seem confident, unafraid.

  “So now you’re just eager?” Roth moved around behind me, not touching, but close. So close. Too close, yet too far, too clothed. “Who is in control, Kyrie?”

  I felt rebellion surge up in my gut. I clenched my teeth together. I wasn’t going to play this game. Not this one.

  “Seeking punishment, are you?” His voice rumbled in my ear. “I’ll ask once more. Who is control? Who controls you, Kyrie? Answer me. ”

  You. That was the answer. I knew it. He knew it. But I refused to say it. Rebellion, or curiosity? Both, maybe. Equal parts defiance and desire.

  “Not going to respond?” I heard a smile in his voice. “I was kind of hoping you’d refuse. ”

  His foot slid between mine and knocked at my feet so I was suddenly and unwillingly standing with my feet shoulder-width apart. Another nudge, and my stance widened a bit more. Unnatural, uncomfortable, vulnerable. I bit my lip and forced myself to remain calm. I’d asked for this, after all.

  “At any time, answer my question, and we’ll go sailing. That really was my intention, you know. But you’ve sidetracked us. ” He slid his hand over my hip, curled his palm over my belly, pulled my ass against his crotch so I felt his erection. “You’re not getting what you wanted, you know. I’m not going to alter my plans. Right now I’m going to torture you, just a bit. Nothing painful, mind you. Just a bit of…teasing. ”

  He pulled away, took a handful of my hair, gripping at my nape, and shoved my head down so I was bent over double.

  “Hands on your knees. ” I needed to brace myself for balance, so I had no choice but to do as he’d told me. “Now, I’ll ask you again, Kyrie. Who is in control?”

  I remained silent.

  He laughed, and trailed a finger down the knobs of my spine, between the globes of my bu**ocks, over the bud of muscle. He hesitated there. “No answer?” His fingertip touched me, and I flinched, tensed. “I wonder if I could make you come, just by touching you here? Let’s find out, shall we?”

  A pause, and I heard him spit. Wetness touched me; the pressure increased slightly. I felt the knot give just a bit, and his lubricated fingertip slid in. I bit back a gasp, forced my hips to remain still. He would get no help from me, not this time. Roth’s fingertip wiggled, and I felt a tension in my core, heat building. I squeezed my eyes shut, bit my lip, tried to hold back the thrill of pl
easure at his touch. I shouldn’t like this. But I did. I couldn’t let him know, though.

  He withdrew his finger a bit, so there was only the very smallest edge left in me. His other hand released my hair and reached down to cup my boob, squeezing, holding, and then letting go to pinch my nipple. I felt the heat and pressure rise at his touch, and I knew it was only a matter of time before he got what he wanted from me. I’d come, but I wouldn’t admit what he wanted.

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  Roth pushed his finger in deeper, and a gasp was torn from me. I felt full, felt his thick finger penetrating me, creating a boiling well of fiery pressure at my core. A faint tinge of desperation touched me. He flicked my nipple, pulled his finger back, and my stomach muscles contracted, my hips rolling of their own accord. Another push, deeper now. Most of his finger had to be inside me now. I gritted my teeth to hold back the gasps and moans that threatened at my lips. He withdrew almost all the way, and then slid in again, repeating the motion, and I had to exert every ounce of will to stop myself from moving with him. His finger f**ked my ass**le in smooth, slow strokes, and his hand caressed and kneaded and pinched at my breast and ni**les, and I was growing needy, feeling frantic. I needed more than this. I needed him. I needed him to put his fingers in my pu**y, I needed his cock, I needed his mouth, I needed something. What I got, though, was desperation flooding through me, his finger in my ass bringing me to the verge of a dark and primal climax.

  And then…he stopped. Pulled his finger out of me, left me bent over in the middle of his bedroom. I straightened and pulled my feet back together, gasping, frantic and angry with need and frustration and shame, aching, and watched him go through a door, where I heard water running as he washed his hands.

  I shook all over, hair messed up, lip throbbing where I’d nearly bit through it. I tried to gather myself, to compose myself, but it was a vain effort. Roth sauntered back toward me, a slight grin curving his lips. He stopped in front of me. Waited, eyes searching me.

  “Anything to say?” he asked. I could only shake my head. “No?”

  I needed him to finish me, but he wouldn’t, and I knew it. That was his ploy. I was pissed off, too, feeling degraded. Bent over in the middle of his room, finger-fucked in the ass, all to get me to admit he was in control? Left hanging? Doucheknob.

  I turned away from him, knelt to gather my clothes.

  “Oh, I don’t think so,” I heard Roth say behind me. “You don’t get away that easily. ”

  He wrapped an arm under my middle, lifted me bodily, scooped his other arm under my knees, and flipped me to my back, catching my head with the crook of his arm. I writhed in his grip, pissed off at his behavior and now at his brazen manhandling of me.

  I stilled, realized struggling was futile, settling instead for glaring at him, spitting fire from my eyes. He only grinned at me, carrying me to his bed. He tossed me like a doll, and I bounced on the soft mattress. Before I could so much as blink, he was on top of me. I caught my breath as his mouth crashed down on mine. I forgot to struggle as the surprising heat and tenderness of the kiss caught me off guard. My hands stole up to his back, grabbed at him, but he pulled away and caught both my wrists in one hand, held my hands over my head, and then resumed the kiss.

  “Is this where you wanted to be, Kyrie? Naked, beneath me, in my bed?” He whispered, his lips moving against mine. “Well, here you are. A few moves, and I’d be inside you. ”

  My mouth quivered against his. “Yes…. ” Fucking stupid desperate ho, I chastised myself. I was exactly where I wanted to be, and exactly where he wanted me. Flushed, aroused, desperate, naked. But it had happened on his terms, and he was winning.

  “If I let one of your wrists go, will you do what I tell you?” I nodded, and he released one of my hands. “Good. Unzip me. ”

  I undid his pants, reached into his underwear, and freed his heavy cock. I almost came just from the feel of his thick shaft in my hand, knowing he was inches from my core, seconds from satisfying me the way I needed.

  “Push my pants down. ” I did so, shoving his pants and underwear down around his thighs.

  I held my breath as he lowered his hips, touched the broad head of his c**k to my entrance. I bit my lip, watching his expression tighten, harden, eyes narrow, and then he pushed in. I wanted to weep. It was just the tip, but it spread me apart, filled me already. I gasped in relief, threading my hand between our bodies to grasp his erection by the root, my knuckles against his body, holding him, pulling him toward me.

  “Kyrie…. ” he growled. “You’re so f**king tight. ”

  “Valentine…God…more. ”

  He growled again, a wordless rumble in his chest. He grabbed my hand and pulled it away, caught both of my hands in one of his again. And then pulled out of me, sitting back on his haunches.

  I did cry out then. “NO! Valentine, please—” I bit off my words, realizing his game.

  “Say it, Kyrie. ”

  I closed my eyes. I ached. I’d had him inside me, and that brief moment of fullness had been glorious, a fragmentary glimpse of what it would be like with him inside me. I wanted it. I needed it. I felt something inside me give way, capitulating. “You, Valentine. You are in control. ”

  He leaned over me, kissed me. “Good. Don’t forget it. ” And then he was rolling off the bed, tugging his pants back in place.

  “Wait! I thought—”

  He turned to face me. “Not yet, Kyrie. Not that, not yet. ” He put his hand in his pocket and adjusted himself. “I’m torturing myself just as much, you know. But do you remember what I told you when you first met me?”

  I closed my eyes. “That I’d beg you for it. ” I opened my eyes and pinned him with an angry glare. “I did, Roth. Just now. Last night. I asked. I told you I wanted it. I’ve played your game. If you knew me at all, you’d know how hard that was for me. But you’re still playing goddamn games. ”

  He took a step toward the bed. “You tried to make it happen on your terms, love. That’s not how this works. ” His eyes roved over my naked body. “You’re frustrated, aren’t you?”

  I nodded, pressing my thighs together. “You know I am. ”

  “You have two choices, in this moment. You can ask me to make you come, right now, with my hand. Or you can wait until I’m ready. Tonight, if all goes well. ” He moved to sit on the bed beside me.

  I sat up, pressing my knees together and folding my legs to one side, using my arm as a bra. “Why tonight? What’s so special about tonight?”

  “Nothing in particular. ” He shrugged, tracing the line of my leg from heel to hip with a finger. “I’ve dreamed of that moment, Kyrie. The moment when I take you. Would you like to hear the dream?”

  I nodded. “Yes. Tell me, please. ”

  He let out a long breath. “It’s at night. This room is dark, lit by candles. You have lingerie on. Something red and silky. I’ve got you tied up. Not tight, just a scrap of lace around your wrists. You’re lying here, right where you are, and you’re looking at me with those soft blue eyes of yours. You’re so bloody beautiful, Kyrie. All wrapped up like a gift. Just begging me with your eyes to tear the clothes off you. You can’t hold still, because you want me. I make you wait, though. And when you can’t take it anymore, you open those sweet plump lips and speak, and your musical voice fills my room. You ask me to make love to you. You don’t beg, because that’s beneath you. You merely…ask. And you reach for me. Your quick, soft little hands peel my clothes off me and you pull me down to you, and you kiss me. And when I slide my c**k into your tight wet cunt” —his voice lowers, rasps, and I gasp at the way he emphasizes that dirty, unexpected word “—you make such sweet little sounds. You wrap yourself around me with your arms and legs, and you don’t let go until I’m buried deep inside you. ”

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  I shook all over, eyes closed, imagining the scene he’s setting with his words. I pre
ssed my thighs tight together, seeking pressure, seeking relief, hot and wet from his teasing, and now made all the more desperate by his sexy, expressive voice murmuring in my ear, describing exactly what I’ve envisioned myself.

  “You’re so tight, Kyrie. I can almost feel you, clenched around my cock. You’ll feel so good, Kyrie. So tight. Almost too tight. You can barely take me, but you do, and it drives both of us mad. ” His voice is barely audible, and his accent seems a bit thicker, more noticeable. “I’ve had this dream a thousand times, Kyrie, love. I’ve imagined feeling your tight little cunt around my c**k and…feeling it just then, I know it’ll be even more perfect than dreams could ever show. You tempt me, Kyrie. Sitting there, naked, so composed. I want you right now. Bare, skin to skin. I was just inside you. I had you. But…I want to make that dream come true. I want to see the moonlight on your skin. I want to tear that lingerie off your body. I want to lick every sweet curve of your body until you’re mad with desire. That’s why I’m waiting, Kyrie. ”

  I was tensed, on the verge of coming just from his words. I was there, right there, just from the sound of his voice, the promise, the scene he’d set in my mind. If he were to touch me, slip one finger inside me, I’d explode.

  I pushed away my pride and rebellious streak, reached out to grab his hand. Rolled to my back, let my legs fall apart. Brought his hand to my soaked folds. “Please…. ”

  He groaned. “Kyrie…you tempt me. You make me so crazy. ” He, unconsciously it seemed, stroked my cleft with a finger. “If I touch you, I’ll not be able to stop. ” He backed several steps away from me, ran his hands through his hair. “I want you desperate, Kyrie. ” He eyed me, chest heaving. “Don’t think this is easy for me. It’s not. ”

  I slid off the bed and gathered my clothes, tossed them on the bed. Getting dressed again only took a moment. When my dress was zipped and I felt somewhat composed, I turned to him. “Let’s go sailing, Valentine. ” I held my hand out to him, threaded my fingers through his. But I pulled him back when he started walking, met his eyes. “You’d better follow through. ”

  “What do you mean?”

  I gestured at his bed. “What you described just now? You’d better give me that. ”

  He pulled me against him. “I promise you. That…and then some. ”

  9

  THE DATE

  Roth’s private elevator took us down to an underground garage. It was a cavernous space, well lit, eight-foot ceilings, shiny blue epoxy floor, whitewashed walls lined with ’20s and ’30s-style vintage posters depicting a day at the beach, race cars, cruise liners, now-defunct cigarette brands and Italian wine companies. There were rows of red and silver Craftsman tool cabinets, several racks full of yet more tools, a work bench scattered with greasy parts and disassembled engine bones.

 
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