Forbidden pleasure, p.7
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       Forbidden Pleasure, p.7

         Part #8 of Bound Hearts series by Lora Leigh
 
Page 7

 

  Not that he could blame her. Hell, he had taken her in the barnyard against a greasy tractor. When he finished with her she had been flushed and streaked with oil, and nervous.

  That nervous uncertainty would be the death of him.

  Maybe he should just lay it on the line. Tell her what he wanted and take his chances.

  He vetoed that idea instantly. Keiley was a brave woman, but if he gave her a chance to think about it first, then he was a goner. His wife would deliberate actions for months before making decisions. She weighed angles the way a criminal attorney weighed evidence. Looking for every loophole, for every possible crack in the defense of her privacy.

  Privacy was golden to her. A product of the hell her parents had put her through as a teenager. The social humiliation had been decimating to her when her father’s crimes had been revealed. She had been ostracized, criticized, and left to bear the burden of her mother’s suicide and creditors who had no mercy on an eighteen-year-old girl with no means of paying the astronomical debts her parents had accumulated.

  And he was asking her to risk that private part of herself with another man. Because he craved it. Because the sexual intensity and excessive hungers that drove him demanded it.

  She had learned how to handle gossip, how to handle desire. Could she now learn how to handle loving two men?

  Like Keiley, Mac was a product of his parents’ actions and reactions. Unlike Keiley, he hadn’t faced a public crucifixion for them; rather, the results of those actions had left him darker, harder than most young men.

  And like Keiley’s father, Mac’s father had begun his journey into hell. His strict fervor and railing against sex had driven Mac to acts that had only increased his father’s wrath. That had driven the man to drive his son to the edge of madness.

  Joseph McCoy had been a nutcase. Mac swore his father had caused his mother to lose the will to live with his idiotic railing. Screaming at her whenever he imagined another man looked her way. Denigrating her supposed dark lusts, and accusing her of sexual crimes that had so humiliated the timid little Debra McCoy that she had finally given up.

  But Mac hadn’t given up.

  His father had first suspected him of having sex at the tender age of fourteen. And he was. With a much older girl who had begun teaching him the ways of pleasing a woman without stepping over the line into hard-core sex.

  The beatings had begun then. Mac still carried the scars from that first beating. And the mental scars from the lectures that followed. Lectures that had only driven Mac to push more boundaries, to break more rules. By the time he had graduated from high school he had already learned the delicate act of giving a woman anal sex. His first year in college he had mastered it. Then came his first ménage.

  Sweet heaven, it had been good. He had watched his lover’s face as he shared her with an older, much more experienced man. A mentor who had seen the darkness in Mac when he first met him. Had seen it and understood the danger inherent in it if he didn’t learn how to direct it.

  Ian Sinclair hadn’t been much older than Mac, but he had been much more experienced. A natural sensualist, a lover of all things female. He had taught Mac how to direct those hungers and how to still them. And Mac’s love for sharing his women had been born.

  It was forbidden fruit. It was the most sensual pleasure a man could give a woman. It was an affirmation that he would never, ever become anything resembling his father.

  And now, more than a decade after sharing his first lover, Mac had accepted his shortcomings. It wasn’t something most women could accept. He had married Keiley knowing she might not be able to accept it. And yet here he was, a cigarette in one hand, his cell phone in the other, contemplating pushing her that much closer to another man’s arms.

  He was going to risk the destruction of his marriage and his life because he had been too certain she couldn’t handle the truth before he married her.

  It was addictive, he admitted. Like a drug, watching a woman lose herself in a sensation that could come only one way was almost impossible to resist. He loved his wife, loved her with all his being, loved her enough that he wanted her every sexual limit satisfied.

  Was it reason enough, he asked himself. Of course it wasn’t. He knew that if he were to ask any man he knew in his hometown if he would share his wife, then the response could become violent. But he knew men whose eyes would gleam in pleasure and anticipation. And other men who understood the pleasure of sharing a lover and did so with regularity and with strict privacy.

  He knew one of those men was only a phone call away.

  He stubbed out his cigarette, flipped open the cell phone, and hit the speed dial.

  “Do you know how late it is?” Jethro answered instantly.

  “Three in the morning and you’re still awake, dumbass,” Mac laughed, careful to keep his voice low.

  “Yeah, well, it’s been one of those weeks. ” Jethro sounded disgusted.

  “I thought you were on vacation. Started yesterday, didn’t it?”

  “Vacation,” his friend snorted. “That’s a good word for suspension, I guess. ”

  “Hey, take the blow, take the vacation. At least it’s paid this time. ” Jethro wasn’t known for his self-control when it came to ripping a rapist off his victim, as he had done the month before.

  “Yeah. It’s paid,” Jethro sighed. “So what has you calling at three in the morning? Other than rubbing salt in the wound here. ”

  Mac stared into the night, watching the shifting shadows in the forests around him before he spoke.

  “Why not take a real vacation?” he finally asked. “Come to the farm for a while. ”

  Silence filled the line.

  “Why?” Jethro’s voice was wary, but deeper. Interested.

  “I need a third, Jethro. Keiley knows you. You’re familiar. I want you to be her first. ” Her permanent third.

  Jethro blinked at the blank wall across from him, not more than a little surprised. It had been more than three years since Mac had married Keiley Hardin. They had kept in touch by phone, but Jethro had never suspected what he heard in Mac’s voice now.

  His friend was riding the edge of his sensuality. The restlessness and hunger were in his tone, and Jethro knew the hunger would be reflected in his eyes.

  He knew because he was the same way. He could handle it for a while, doing without sharing a lover, but eventually it caught up on him.

  It was catching up on Mac now.

  “Anytime, you know that. ” Jethro hoped the anticipation spilling through him now wasn’t spilling through the phone line.

  Mac chuckled. “Still lusting after my wife, Jethro?” His voice was knowing.

  “Hell, you know it,” Jethro breathed out roughly. “She’s one of the sexiest women either of us has ever seen, Mac. Any man would be panting for her. ”

  But only a few would be panting with the emotion to back it up as Jethro did. Not that he could ever reveal that to Mac.

  “What does Keiley think about it?”

  The silence came again.

  “She doesn’t know,” Mac finally answered. “She suspects. ”

  “How do you intend to play this?”

  “Your favorite sport, Jethro,” Mac drawled. “We’re going to seduce my wife. ”

  “And she’s seduceable?”

  “She’s seduceable,” Mac admitted. “Whether or not she’s willing to forgive being seduced is another thing. We’ll take it a step at a time. ”

  A step at a time. His cock was so hard he could feel the driving pain of arousal ricocheting up his spine. The thought of Keiley—sweet God, soft, sweet Keiley—the woman that had tormented him for over three years, sandwiched between him and Mac, would make him crazy before he ever made it to Mac’s hometown.

  “Agreed. ” Jethro stared around his apartment, instantly planning his trip from Virginia to North Car
olina. “I’ll arrive tomorrow evening. Does she even know I’m coming?”

  “She’ll know tomorrow. ”

  “But will she suspect why?”

  “She’s a smart woman,” Mac pointed out, something Jethro was already well aware of. “She’ll suspect. I’ll make my decision regarding how far it goes as I see her reaction. ”

  Her reaction as the seduction progressed phase by phase, Jethro knew. It was an interesting conundrum, he admitted. Seducing a wife. Jethro had never done that, not within or outside a ménage.

  The women he had shared with their husbands had known up front what was coming. They had looked forward to it, anticipated it. They were aware of what was going to happen every step of the way during the ritualistic dance of the knowing seduction.

  “Maybe this vacation won’t be as useless as I anticipated,” Jethro sighed. “If we have the time, we can run some scenarios on that old case of yours. ”

  “The stalker?”

  “He disappeared for a while. Showed back up about six months ago. We’ve had two attacks so far. The last one was an attempted rape. He couldn’t get dinky-doo to come to attention, though, so he just scared the hell out of his victim with threats to kill her husband, her kids, and her dog. ”

  After three years of silence, it was confusing why the man named by the Bureau the Playboy Stalker had reappeared in the area.

  “How many victims in the past six months?” Mac asked.

  “Two,” Jethro breathed out roughly. “One in Virginia, one in West Virginia, and a potential in D. C. The Bureau has a task force on him, but I don’t like what they’re coming up with. Doesn’t feel right. I believe he’s going to kill soon, Mac. The task force thinks he’s still playing. ”

  “He beat the crap out of the last one I investigated,” Mac said thoughtfully. “When did he go back to just threatening them?”

  “He disappeared right after you left town, right off the radar. Showed back up six months ago and started fresh. He’s not following a pattern and that scares the shit out of me, I’ll tell you right now. ”

  “Bring what you can with you,” Mac said thoughtfully. “We’ll find the time to go over it and see what we can find out. Are there any suspects?”

  “Nada. We have a profile, but even that feels more like a shot in the dark than a real analysis. ”

  He could almost feel Mac thinking through the phone.

  “We’ll discuss it when you arrive,” he finally repeated. “I’ll expect you tomorrow evening. ”

  “I’ll be there. ” Jethro smiled in anticipation. He wouldn’t have missed it for the world.

  As the call broke off, Jethro ran his fingers through his disheveled hair and glanced at the closed bedroom door. Behind the panel his sometimes lover lay sleeping peacefully while he had sat out in the living room in the dark, staring at the door, wondering what the hell he was doing.

  Janet Billings wasn’t a romantic interest, no more than he was for her. It was an itch to be scratched, and he was damned tired of just scratching an itch. Sex used to be fun. It used to be enough to still the memories ripping through his mind. Not anymore, and he had finally started facing it.

  He was tired of cold, emotionless sex. He wanted more, and he wondered if visiting an old friend would provide that. He and Mac had always had the unfortunate pleasure of going after the same women. It was one of the reasons they had gravitated toward each other at Quantico and then Sinclair’s Club.

  It was one of the reasons they had worked so well together in the Bureau.

  He tilted his head back against the chair and closed his eyes, pulling up Keiley Hardin McCoy’s face. She looked like a pixie with her stubborn chin, angular face, and pert little nose. Golden hazel eyes, high arched brows, and a short cap of dark hair that framed her high forehead and cheekbones.

  She was damned beautiful. Innocent as sunrise, as Mac used to say, and sexy as hell. He had jacked off to fantasies about sharing her with Mac for years.
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