Claimed

January 26, 2013

The cuffs closed about his wrists and she wondered for a moment if they felt the same to him as they did to her. She spared a moment to

The Collar by ~mobiusco-photo

glance at him. Hair mussed, lips parted, he slept with the same careless ease that carried him through the day.

He was all sunshine and mild summer days, and she had loved him for that. She had loved the way he was leveled, grounded. Nothing fazed him, nothing shook his confidence.

She had loved him. Had loved that unwavering sense of control.

She knelt by the chair, the leather cuffs heavy in her hands.  Practiced fingers slipped the cuffs about his ankles and tightened the buckles.

He stirred. She leaned in, a hand checking the blindfold over his eyes. Satisfied, she brushed her lips against his ear.

He groaned, his wrists jerked up against the cuffs, but the handcuffs kept them fastened to the arms of the chair. “What-” She relished the quizzical note in his voice.

“You fell asleep in your office again.”

She could feel his wariness slip from him. “Zoe.” The inflection on her name was playful, bemused. “What are you up to?”

“This and that.” She tore off a strip of tape.

She  leaned into him as his fingers drew small circles against her thigh. “This and that?” He tugged lightly on the strap of her garter belt, the links of his cuff clinking. A soft, pleased sound rumbled in his throat. “What’s the point in dressing up if you’re going blindfold me?”

She took a deliberate step back. Staying away from the armrests of the chair, she leaned in and smoothed the tape over his lips. “It’s for myself.”

In the space between the tape and blindfold, she read his surprise. Then his shoulders relaxed. He leaned back, patient, fingers resting easily on the arms of the chair.

There it was again. Composed. Unflappable confidence. A smooth veneer that she could make flicker, but could never break.

Coaxing herself to unclench her fingers, she circled around to the back of the chair. Her fingertips brushed along his collar and slid soundlessly down along his chest. She fumbled with the buttons, pushing them through the small holes.

He tilted his head, his ear catching her shallow, uneven breaths. She exhaled, steeling herself and leaning in.

His gasp was satisfying. She tightened her grip in his hair and pulled his head further back. The tape was cool to her lips. She could feel the contour of his lips beneath the tape, moving against the adhesive.

Two sharp tugs later, the neatly pressed shirt was pushed off of his shoulders. She walked about the chair again, fingers running across his shoulders, then down his chest. Her lips followed the path, nipping and kisses down the center of his torso. His abdomen flexed, shifted against her lips and teeth, subtle movements that was all but lost against her trembling lips.

Her lipstick stained his hip, bright red against his skin. She pulled back and steadied herself, watching him. The pull of the tape belied the smile tugging at his lips. Confident, almost cocky, tempered only by the curiosity in the raise of his eyebrow when she stopped.  Damnable unfailing veneer.

No. That wasn’t entirely true. She’d seen him once, heard him, unguarded. He didn’t know though, that she’d seen the way his shoulders squared when he saw the display on his phone, the way he suddenly sat up, the way his profile softened when he heard her voice. He didn’t know that she’d heard the anticipation, eagerness in his voice, the brusque tone and notes of frustration.

The way that he had run his fingers through his hair was unfamiliar, rough, and not a little hesitant, lacking his usual unhurrying ease. He’d leaned over, brushed his lips against her forehead, telling her that a friend was in trouble and he would be back shortly.

He had came back, shortly, as he said he would. And he was happy. It had startled her, back then. She hadn’t realized that with her, he was merely content, mild and warm. His happiness- true happiness- was bright, exuberant, infectious.

She leaned forward again, her fingers trailing over the waistband of his jeans. With a tug, she popped the button out of the hole. Her lips twisted in a small, sardonic smile watching his hip jerk a little in reaction.

It was well in the beginning. She had been confident, sure. She knew her worth and she’d never been the type to worry about straying eyes. When the man strayed, obviously things have run their course, and just as obviously, it was time for her to go. They had nothing of hers, could claim nothing. Maybe because she had never given them anything to claim.

But him. He claimed it all. Or rather, she’d given it all. That was a far cry from him claiming it all.

Her eyes ached. She blinked fast and stared up at the ceiling. She shook her head, her fingers pulling down the zipper, listening to the part of the metal teeth. Read the rest of this entry »

Audiophile

August 2, 2012

The low growl in his voice drew a teasing finger down her spine.

She arched into it, sheets wrinkling beneath her, damp fabric clinging to her thighs. Liquid, rich timbre weighed against her chest, rolled in her belly, calling forth a familiar, singing ache that reverberated between her thighs in steady, demanding thrums.

Her breaths escaped in gasps. A hand balled itself into the blanket, nails digging into the fabric. The CD cases clicked and clattered against each other, sliding over the bed with each tug of her hand, each jerk of her body.

The headphones hugged her ears, deafened her to all else but the sultry, ragged croon.  Her free hand danced over the swell of her breast, fingertips slick and wet, catching a hardened peak between them.

A sharp, keen cry escaped from her lips, her hips rolling up involuntarily. Seeking. She pulsed to the beats, vibrated to the strings, each strum gliding up her legs in a silky stroke, coaxing her legs to fall wide.

Impatient, eager fingers skipping down her belly, drumming out quick triplets in wet, slippery taps. They followed  his voice, dipping low to the hot, swollen apex of her thighs.

She rippled to the crash of cymbals, her voice rising in breathless harmony against his. Fingers plunged, filled, and emptied in sharp staccatos. Body pulled taunt, she rode the crescendo, heels digging into twisted sheets, wordless cries drowned in the swelling cadences. She peaked, breath, hip, fingers arrested, under the suspended note.

Breaths quick and shallow, she closed her eyes, fingers drawing lazy, wet circles over her stomach, the quiet whirring of an empty track echoing in her ears.

Power

May 21, 2010

talk about getting walked all over...Monday.

“You want me.”

A low laugh. “Is that a question or a statement?”

“You should know.”

“Yeah.” A pause. “I should.”

“Are you going to tell me that I’m wrong?”

“You’re so sure, aren’t you?”

“It’s a talent. Are you?”

“Yes.”

“Liar.”


Thursday.

“How much do you want me?”

“This again?”

“Yes.”

“You’re operating under the assumption that I do.”

“You’re not fooling anyone, least of all, me.”

“See, that’s where you’re wrong. For once. There’s one person that I know I’m definitely fooling.”

“And you’re stalling again. Tell me.”

“I’m not stalling. Just pointing out the flaws in your logic.”

“Tell me.”

“I did.”

“You know what I meant.”

“One-tracked mind as always. Would it kill you to multitask once in a while?”

“Stalling. Tell me.”

“Tell you what? About how much I want to feel the weight of your cock on my lips? The heat of it against my tongue?”

“Yes.”

Her tongue wet her lips. “No.”

“No?”

“No.” A shaky exhalation. “I rather feel your nails digging into my hips, your teeth biting my neck.” Her voice quivered, grew breathy. “I want to hear the slick sounds of our bodies sliding against each other, the hard slaps of skin against skin. I want taste the sex in the air, the flavors of us, the bite in your kiss.

“But most of all, I want you to devour me, break me. Take me, hard, fast. Don’t let me breathe. Don’t let me think. Fill me. Fuck me. Mark me. Claim me. ”

The silence stretched between them, trembling on the fine thread of her gasping breaths. Endless. Infinite.

“That wasn’t so hard, was it?”

“Yes, it was. Not the only thing that is though, is it?”


Friday.

“Do you want me?”

“Yes. But I want something that you can’t give too.”

“So sure.”

“It’s a contagious talent.”

Captivity

May 5, 2010

I wanted to see what it would be like to write high fantasy erotica. It’s harder (much, much harder) than I thought.

The way that he moved was memorizing, even Kal couldn’t deny that.

Of course that might have to do with the fact that his head was bobbing in Kal’s lap, his tongue was doing the most exquisite thing. But that didn’t change the fact that ere long, he was going to meet the sharp end of Kal’s blade. If he could find it.

His captors had made sure to snatch it away, right before they set out to break him.

Seven days. They came close to it on the eighth.

The shackles about his wrists chaffed, the chains jingling as he tested its strength again. They burned, scathing more his pride than his skin. Lash-scarred shoulders tensed, muscles-corded arms jerked, but the chains held. He slumped back against the wall.

Why, for the love of the High Bitch, was it forged of silver?

He struggled to keep his face impassive as the flaxen hair whispered against his thighs with each move. Humiliation, anger, angst, fear, and, he was horrifyingly aware of it, lust- They chased each others in wild circles, blurring into a large, volatile mess.

It wasn’t enough that he was made to watch them killed his clan, not enough to be powerless while they robbed the dead while the young laid dying. No. He was auctioned off like some animal to serve some pampered prince a decade younger than him.

His hips trembled and he turned his head away with a groan. Granted, this wasn’t what he had in mind.

Hot, slim fingers traveled along his sides, drawing small circles over the bronze skin of his hips, tracing the raised scars there. He gritted his teeth, barely stopping himself from buckling up into that lovely tight, wet cavern.

“Do they educate all of their princes to be pleasure slaves ?” He forced the words out of his lips, praying that they would hold evenly. “Should have known.” His growl hid the desire roughened voice. Only the slight ragged breath at the end belied the illusion of unaffected air.

A slick, wet pop. The sound slithered down down his spine, as did the look of his new owner. Wet lips curled into a smile. “No. I imagine I am alone in that aspect.” Hot, moist breath fanned against Kal’s neck, a single arm threw about his shoulders. The single, seed pearls woven braid swung against his throat as the youth pressed his nose into the crook of his neck, his breaths fanning Kal’s own dark tress. “Fortunate for you that I bought you, it seems.”

If the brat would just move a little to the left…Kal’s teeth ached to feel the break of that pale skin against them, to feel the slight resistance. They killed his kinsmen with a savagery that his world had long renounced, it wouldn’t be too terrible if he return it in kind now, would it? The large vein running through the youth’s throat sang in agreement, bubbling blood enticing him to follow his instincts.

It was by sheer will that he pulled himself back. The brat deserved no kindness, but neither did he deserve the tattered shreds of Kal’s humanity as his funeral companions. “You have no idea what you are playing with, whelp.”

A heavy-lidded smile. Nimble fingers curled about his member and stroked, coaxing beads of moisture forth, wetting them both. “I assure you, I most certainly do.”

“You-” He snapped his mouth shut, stifling the groan threatening to spill from him against his arm.

Tight. Hot. He curled his fingers about the chain, fighting the urge to thrust up against the slim figure. Lust, desire, they gnawed at his control relentlessly.

He flinched when those slim, slick fingers pressed against his chest. Panting, the youth swept the sweat-plastered hair out of his eyes, his hips still grinding against Kal in a languid rhythm. “Me?”

He gnashed his teeth, the muscles along his thighs flexed, quivered. “You will die by my hand.”

A mirthless chuckle.

“So you say, my love.”

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Final snippet: fourth of four.

His voice was low, intimate- the sound of candlelit bedrooms and moonless nights, clandestine meetings and fevered kisses. And somehow it scared me more than anything he’d said or done. I wet my lips. “Not that you’re complaining.”

Arms trapping me close, the smell of him lingering about us, he’d surrounded me with him. The fingers about my wrists tightened. He growled. The noise rolled down my spine in a delicious cascade. He released my chin, his hand slipping down, whispering against the collar of my shirt. His breath brushed against my cheek. “Not at all.”

Quinn stalked forward, stopping close enough that I could see myself distorted in the glass eye of the camera. He stooped a little and I caught the flush of red at the base of his neck. Beneath the camera, his lips quirked in a small smile; bemusement rang in his voice. “And you aren’t either, are you, Cam?”

The fingers that curled beneath my chin and tilted my head up were hot, steady. The lights flashed in my eyes again, but I kept them open, letting the bright dots subside. Quinn didn’t really need to hold me. The camera itself held me arrested, capturing me even before my image hit the film. I couldn’t look away, even if I wanted to.

The cool night air hit my chest. I gasped, jerking back against Lukas. The lights flashed and he captured my shock and want. The grip on my jaw tightened when I tried to look away. I swallowed, pulse fluttering frantically against my throat as Lukas pushed off the shirt of my shoulders.

My nipples puckered and stiffened against my bra. Each breath I took dragged them against the fabric of the bra; sizzling sensations pulsed through me, making my breaths uneven and shallow. I shivered; my panties clung to me, damp from my arousal.

Lukas chuckled. “Cold?”

My face burned. So did my entire body. I wanted to look down, to check if my body was as obvious as I felt, to cover up and hide the evidences. But Quinn’s fingers kept my gaze fixed on the camera and Lukas’s grip remained tight on my hands.

Quinn’s hand tilted. A shuddering breath fell from my lips as the camera paused at them, performing for him unthinkingly. The focus of the camera slipped lower.

There was nothing gentle or polite about the descent. Insistent, blunt, it stripped me of all possible illusions modesty with a stunning force.

And, God help me, I could feel my body answering the silent call.

I wriggled again and clamped my thighs together, trying to ease the throbbing ache there. The seam of the jeans dug into me and pressed hard against the ball of nerves there. The sensation jolted up my spine, pulling me taunt and my back to arch. Need plowed into me, overwhelming me in both its intensity and urgency. I drew in a sharp breath, my fingers balled up against my belly. It didn’t help when Lukas’s free hand dragged over my jeans, a shadow away from the source of my distraction and distress. Just a few more inches down and then…The plea caught in my throat and instead, low whine flew from my lips.

The ache there built at a terrifying speed, engulfing all of my senses with a near tangible desire- the desire to lick, claw, bite, suck. The raw, primal edges to it shocked and rattled me, enough so that I reined myself back in, away from the precipice that they’d succeeded in dangling me over. I bit down hard on my lower lip, tasting the salt there. What the hell was I doing? That all the blood in my body was being contributed to the monstrous blush on my face must have left me unable to do simple things like, oh, retain common sense.

As if sensing the change, Lukas brought a hand down, slipping it between my legs. He dragged his fingers over the rough fabric. It caught and released his nails; the tugs strummed against my sex, the inner muscles there twitched and clenched in response. My hips jerked and he pulled his hand away. I groaned, frustration and fear robbing me of my words.

“Tsk. Tsk.” I could hear the smile in his voice. Bastard. “Come on, Cam. Use your words.”

But the movements of his hips belied the patience in his words as did the way he flicked open the button of my jeans. I gritted my teeth, shuddering as his fingers slipped along my inner thighs then stopping at the apex of them. The heat of his hand burned me even through the denim, and I could feel myself opening, hungry for attention even against the fabric.

Through my daze, I heard the sound of the teeth of the zippers clicked against each other with each teasing tug.

I froze. The blood drained from my face, leaving behind prickles of numbness. So maybe the camera had uncovered the exhibitionist in me, but like hell I was going to be photographed in all of my naked un-glory.

Whatever showed on my face made Quinn lowered his camera. The grip on my chin softened into a caress. He swept his thumb over my lips. I fought the urge to lick at it, to take it in my mouth, and if I hadn’t been shocked out of my lust-hazed state, I would’ve. But I still couldn’t stop myself from leaning into the steady, warm hand, feeling frighteningly vulnerable and protected at the same time.

His lips swallowed my gasp. Vaguely, I felt the hand about my wrist tightened. Demanding, his mouth devoured my lips, confident, deepening the kiss slowly, as though he had all the time in the world. I melt into the dance of tongues, the brief dual for dominance that inevitably ended with his victory. He nipped at my lower lip; the sharp stab of pain shot straight to my sex, making me shudder against Lukas.

He pulled away, his voice low and rough. “Turn her around.”

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The Fourth Wall

April 21, 2010

The music murmured, barely audible over the low chatter. The bass vibrated up the legs of her chair in lethargic thumps. A saxophone wove in and out between the chords of the piano in wanton sighs.

She leaned against the bar, the edge of the bar table pushed against her ribs, digging into her with each breath that she took.  The lights overhead fell over her, a spotlight of her very own in the shadowy room. But of course it did. She’d chosen the seat for that very reason, after all. She knew the way her auburn hair shone almost copper in the light, that it highlighted the creamy swells of her breasts and slopes of her crossed legs.

Stirring the drink with the mixing straw, she swept a sardonic gaze over the characters in the room, her audience for the night.

Their eyes followed her hand as she smoothed her hands over the slinky little black number, fingertips trailing over the curves of her body, brushing away the invisible lint along the deep vee of the dress.

Their gazes were hungry, demanding. But it wasn’t for them that she was arching her back as she threw back the rest of her drink, the liquid burning its way down her throat.

A fresh drink was pushed into a view. She stole a glance at the sheet of glass as she lifted the drink in a salute to its buyer.

He was watching. Of course he was. And he should know any doubt that all that she did, every flirtatious smile and bat of eyelashes, was for him- more than whoever he’d paired her with. But what was even better were the times when she could feel his presence in the room, sometimes close enough that she swore she felt the air stir from his breath. In moments like those, she reveled in knowing that she consumed his thoughts, that she had emblazoned herself into the very nature of his being.

Even if they never last long.

She felt it tingling on her skin this time before it actually hit, the sense of displacement about her. Against the wall, the grandfather clock stopped, pendulum mid-swing.

Her stomach clenched as time screeched to a stop. She grabbed the edge of the table to steady herself, waiting for her body to find equilibrium in the sudden stop.

The glass shimmered. She frowned as he moved out of the view. But when he returned, she found herself wishing that he would stay out of it.

The brunette laughed throatily. It was entirely much too loud and desperate. So was the way she slipped her hands down along his sides and into the pockets of his jeans.

She grimaced. No one knew the art of subtlety better than her. And no one knew what he liked more than she did. Satisfaction surged through her. No. The airheaded twit couldn’t do anything better than her.

And yet, she was the one popping the buttons off of his shirt. And she was the one that he was kissing, touching.

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This is actually probably less of a series and more of a short story snipped into a few parts to avoid a big block of text. Anyway, part three. To find part one and two, scroll down or click the tag. And here’s part four.

The sure and steady touches told me that he was back in the mind frame of an artist once more. The way he dipped in and out of it was thrilling, leaving me both breathless and not a little wary. I’d known him for a good part of a decade and worked with him almost as long. This, though, was new.

I hissed as he shoved me against the footboard, the edge of it digging into my hips. The bangs that I’d kept pinned up to the side started to fall into my eyes. “Do you mind?”

“No.” He moved briskly, able, nimble fingers pulling my shirt this way and that. “It’s going to be your shadow, Cam.” I jumped when he freed the top button of my blouse.

“Ow!” My buttock burned from the slap. The sizzling sensation darted through me, alerting every single nerve ending in my body. I curled my fingers against the footboard. “What the hell was that for?”

“Hold still.” There were no rooms for argument in those words. He tugged the collar of the shirt down a little and pulled at the excess fabric. The fabric wound about me, seams tight. “If I don’t do something for your body, it’s going to look like Lukas’s trying to seduce a man into the bed.” I bit back a protest when he left me and went to readjust the soft boxes. One of the lights hit me in my eyes. I squinted. “Now stay there.”

“But I-”

“You’re not in the frame, Cam. I’m just using your shadow.”

The lights flashed with a series of pops. I blinked, my vision going spotty with white circles.

“It helps if you don’t look into the light.”

Lukas.

Quinn’s spiel had unnerved me enough that I’d forgotten about him. Blinking away the glare of the light, I glanced back at the bed.

He’d settled back to the top of the bed. The slacks hung low on his waist, the hard edges of his hips peeked over the top. His pants dipped far enough that I could see the slight curves where the muscles on his stomach began to taper off, drawing my gaze even lower.

I choked on air as I traced out the bulge there.

He chuckled. “My eyes are up here, Cam.”

“Sorry.” Cheeks aflame, my eyes flicked back up to his face. If there was a smile on those lips moments ago, there were no traces of it left. “I, I just-”

“Don’t talk so much.” He shifted slightly. The lights flashed again. Unfazed, he tilted his head. “Or if you do, don’t move.”

These two were switching gears faster than I could manage to follow. They left me off-balanced, feeling as awkward as a newborn giraffe stumbling on uneven grounds. The steady throbbing between my legs intensified, as to remind me of my body’s displeasure at the direction the conversation was heading. “I didn’t move.” I paused. “Did I?”

Quinn had circled around the bed. He nodded Lukas, gesturing with his hand. “You did.”

“Sorry.”

Lukas crawled across the bed, shoulders rolling lazily. “You know, Cam,” he tugged me over to one of the bed posts. “You do have a delicious little body under all those layers. Why don’t you show it off more?”

I let him arranged me against the bedpost, not trusting myself to not make a fool out of myself if I tried. “I wouldn’t be able to run about and do my job if I did. And you know Quinn. He gets grouchy if he doesn’t get his coffee.”

Settling back on his heels, Lukas studied me. I jerked back reflexively when he reached out. A corner of his lips lifting, he twisted a strand of my hair about his fingers. “I don’t think he’ll complain, Cam. I think you’re just scared.” He tucked the strand behind my ear and glanced at Quinn. “This works?”

The lights flashed. “Looks good.”

“I’m not scared.” I held still, fingers wrapped around the wooden spiral, feeling silly and awkward. Perhaps if I were like Lukas or Quinn, confident, unfaltering. “I’m not.”

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Part two of their story. Here’s part three.

I choked on a mouthful of coffee, the hot liquid scalding the roof of my mouth. Coughing, I thumped myself on my chest. “What?”

Quinn leaned forward. “You’re not doing anything-”

I frowned at Quinn. “I’m observing. Like always. You were the one that told me to stay out of the way anyway.”

“-And you’re a woman.”

The way that they stared at me was unnerving. It was all too…eager. And neither man made it a habit to appear to be eager about anything, even when they were. Something about preserving their masculine points and keeping their scores high. “Thanks for noticing.”

Lukas chuckled. “What Quinn is saying, awkwardly so-”

“-Shut up-”

“-Is that we need your help.” His voice dipped into that low, husky rumble. Desire warmed my skin and shot straight to my core. “Please, Cam?”

His gaze bore into me, holding me captive. Tease. Half-lidded eyes shadowed, they made his blue-gray eyes darker, as though his pupils were dilated. I swallowed, my fingers tightening about the cup. “Damn it, Lukas. Don’t try pulling one of your tricks on me. Especially not the one that I taught you.”

So it might be an illusion. But what a powerful one it was. And while my brain understood it, my body was having a hard time reconciling with the fact.

His lips curled. “So it works then?”

I had a sudden renewed sympathy for the mouse that Mao had cornered. It scurried left and right, nose twitching furiously, trying and failing to break past the cat.

Somehow, I didn’t think that Quinn was going to rescue me as I’d done for the mouse.

“What works?” Oh yeah. Sure. Real convincing.

“Oh it works.” I glared at Quinn. He continued, smirking, amusement tinged his words. “Come on, Cam. All you have to do is stand there and try to look pretty. Don’t worry, I’ll protect you if he tries to jump you.”

“Ha ha.” Not that I was worried about it. Lukas was never the type to “jump” anyone. Or rather, he’d never had a need to. His preys always came willingly to him. “Fine, fine. I demand sushi afterwards though.”

Lukas cocked his head. I busied myself with finishing up the cup of coffee, trying to ignore his gaze. “Of course. Quinn, fix her, won’t you?”

“Fix me?” I lowered the cup and scowled. “I’m not going to be in the picture-Hey!”

The empty cup rolled across the floor. I winced as it stopped by the ornate legs of the heavy vanity at the side of the room. At least it made it past the Persian rug. Quinn spared it no second look, his fingers already working through the braid that I’d kept my hair in. “You might not be in the picture, Cam, but you know Lukas hates using his brain too much, so he’s going to need to a little help.”

The barbs all but rolled off of Lukas’s shoulders. He gave me a crooked smile. “Mm-hmm. Don’t worry, Cam. Quinn will pretty you up.”

I rolled my eyes and batted Quinn’s fingers away. “You have a funny way of asking people to help you, Quinn.” But being friends with Quinn for so long had made me immune to his jabs. I pressed my fingers into my scalp, massaging free the strands. “There. Happy?”

“Ecstatic.” And he did look it for once. Ugh. I liked the surly Quinn better. I crossed my arms as he gave me a once over. Grabbing my elbow, he spun me back around to face Lukas. “This work?”

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The story is multiple parts. This is part one. Here’s part two.

“Come on. Just a little more.”

Thump.

“Damn it. Don’t start moving yet!”

A crash. I winced. Oh. That sounded like a soft box.

“For the love of-Haven’t you ever fake it before? It’s the same thing!” A pause. “Ugh…Are you serious? This is what they send me?”

Another thump, then the sound of high heels clicking across the tile floor.

I jumped back as a streak of stain and lace flew out the heavy double door, wrinkling my nose at the waft of cloyingly sweet perfume that followed it.

“Cameron! Get your ass in here! I know you’re hiding out there!”

Uh-oh. Full name this time. With an extra emphasis on “c.”

Taking a deep breath, I pushed past the doors and stumbled through the piles of props that Quinn had tossed about in his “inspired-state” earlier. Though it seemed like that state had continued even after I’d left.
I took a moment to take in the scene, waiting for that flush of anger to pass at the mess that had managed to migrate from the side over to the set itself- the set that I’d spent six hours painstakingly make sure that every single stitch in that damn blanket was neat, and the blankets were cast just so, not to mention trek through the entire furnishing district to find the perfect four-poster bed since Quinn found the original one in the room not “striking” enough.
The man may be a good friend and a genius, but damn if I didn’t want to wring his neck sometimes.

“God, Quinn, I come a few minutes late and you chase a model out?”

Quinn rounded on me, scowling. The ends of his auburn hair were standing up, as though he’d been dragging his fingers through it. Repeatedly. The sleeves of his shirt had been rolled up and his pants were wrinkled, patches of dirt dusting over his legs. “We’re on a tight schedule. I don’t have time to be babying and coaching amateurs. If they can’t behave professionally, they should get off the set.”

I sighed and cast a look at the remaining figure on the bed. “Are you getting ready to leave-” I recognized the lazy, languid way he untangled himself from the blankets before I saw his face. “Lukas?”

He padded over on his barefoot, moving with a prowling grace that made my pulse jump. Stopping by us, he looked down at me, a corner of his lips curling. The top of his shirt was undone, leaving a thin strip of golden skin that just begged to be teased and nibbled on. “Are you insinuating that I’m an amateur, Cam?”

God, he still had a voice to die for. The low, soft croon that made me melt in the most delicious ways- even before I saw him. His face might’ve compelled me to drag Quinn out to see him- despite his many heartfelt threats of murder- but it was his voice that had captured my attention.

Though his hair was as tousled as Quinn, he looked a good deal more composed- if no less predatory- and Quinn looked like he was getting to the point where he would take the “predator” role literally. “You know that I don’t ‘insinuate’ anything, Lukas. If I’ve got something to say, you’ll know it beyond a doubt.” At his grin, I turned back to Quinn. “What happened? I would’ve thought you would be half way done by now. And where’s everyone?” Read the rest of this entry »

Office Meeting

March 27, 2010

“You wanted to see me, sir?”

“Miss Croft, for fuck’s sake, can you tell me why the mid-quarter report isn’t on my desk yet?”

“Frank in accounting is still putting together the file, sir.”

“But it’s in your job description to keep track of these deadlines, Miss Croft. Or have you forgotten? I can easily hire someone from the temp agency, you know. I’m pretty damn sure that they would be at least as competent, if not more.”

“I haven’t forgotten, sir, but-”

“I should hope not. Four years of college and all you’ve learned there is how to staple papers together- If that’s all you’ve learned, you should at least know how to do it well. And what happened? Henry told me you didn’t finish compiling the packet yesterday either. You asked me for a longer lunch break, I give it to you, and you repay me by not doing your job?”

“No, sir, I gave you the folder this morning. I just took it home to finish.”

“Speaking of which, Madeline, you are aware of the fact that our competitors are trying to edge us out of the market, aren’t you?”

“…”

“I expect an answer when I ask you something, Miss Croft. It’s common courtesy.”

“Sorry. I thought it was a rhetorical question.”

“I don’t make a point of wasting my energy with questions that need no answer. What I’m saying is that you have to be aware of the fact that, like as not, our personal lives are under scrutiny right now. Including yours.”

“You might want to take care about bringing your mistresses to the meetings then.”

“Excuse me?”

“Nothing, sir.”

“That’s what I thought. Now Henry was curious as to where you’d vanished off so hurriedly last night.”

“Wait, sir, I can explain-”

“It’s no excuse, Miss Croft. I write your paycheck, I know the amount you’re given is more than enough to support yourself-”

“Your third wife might disagree.”

“-Without having to moonlight as a stripper.”

“Mister Richards!”

“You’re going to have to go close the door if you’re planning on speaking at that volume-No need to lock it now, Miss Croft. Now where was I-”

“As I was going to say, sir, I’m not a stripper. Had your associate decide to venture inside, he would have found that out. Very quickly.”

“Miss Croft, you will not speak out of turn.”

“Mister Richards, you will not speak to me as though I’m a child.”

“Excuse me?”

“No. I’m sick of playing your nanny, scapegoat, and errand girl. But most of all, I am tired of catering to your spoiled, selfish demands.”

“You’re forgetting your place-”

“Duly noted. And ignored.”

“I hope you’re not expecting any severance pay.”

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