Slowly the outside world invades my senses, and oh my, what an invasion. I am floating, my limbs soft and languid, utterly spent. I’m lying on top of him, my head on his chest, and he smells divine: fresh, laundered linen and some expensive body wash, and the best, most seductive scent on the planet… Christian. I don’t want to move, I want to breathe this elixir for eternity. I nuzzle him, wishing I didn’t have the barrier of his t-shirt. And as rhyme and reason return to the rest of my body, I stretch my hand out on his chest. This is the first time I’ve touched him here. He’s firm… strong. His hand swoops up and grabs mine, but he softens the blow by pulling it to his mouth and sweetly kissing my knuckles.
He rolls over so he’s gazing down at me.
“Don’t,” he murmurs, then kisses me lightly.
“Why don’t you like to be touched?” I whisper, staring up into soft gray eyes.
“Because I’m fifty shades of fucked-up, Anastasia.”
Oh… his honesty is completely disarming. I blink up at him.
“I had a very tough introduction to life. I don’t want to burden you with the details.
Just don’t.” He strokes his nose against mine, and then he pulls out of me and sits up.
“I think that’s all the very basics covered. How was that?”
He looks thoroughly pleased with himself and sounds very matter-of-fact at the same time, like he’s just marked another tick box in a checklist. I’m still reeling from the tough introduction to life comment. It’s so frustrating – I am desperate to know more. But he won’t tell me. I cock my head to one side, like he does, and make an enormous effort to smile at him.
“If you imagine for one minute that I think you ceded control to me, well you haven’t taken into account my GPA.” I smile shyly at him. “But thank you for the illusion.”
“Miss Steele, you are not just a pretty face. You’ve had six orgasms so far and all of them belong to me,” he boasts, playful again.
I flush and blink at the same time, as he stares down at me. He’s keeping count! His brow furrows.
“Do you have something to tell me?” his voice is suddenly stern.
I frown . Crap.
“I had a dream this morning.”
“Oh?” He glares at me.
Double crap. Am I in trouble?
“I came in my sleep.” I throw my arm over my eyes. He says nothing. I peek up at him from under my arm, and he looks amused.
“In your sleep?”
“Woke me up.”
“I’m sure it did. What were you dreaming about?”
“What was I doing?”
I throw my arm over my eyes again. And like a small child, I briefly entertain the thought that if I can’t see him, then he can’t see me.
“Anastasia, what was I doingI won’t ask you again.”
“You had a riding crop.”
He moves my arm.
“Yes.” I am crimson.
“There’s hope for you yet,” he murmurs. “I have several riding crops.”
“Brown plaited leather?”
“No, but I’m sure I could get one.” His gray eyes blaze with excitement.
Leaning down, he gives me a brief kiss then stands and grabs his boxers, oh no… he’s going. I glance quickly at the time – it’s only nine-forty. I scoot out of bed too and grab my sweat pants and a cami top, then sit back on the bed, cross-legged, watching him. I don’t want him to go. What can I do?
“When is your period due?” He interrupts my thoughts.
“I hate wearing these things,” he grumbles. He holds up the condom, then puts it on the floor, and slips on his jeans.
“Well?” he prompts when I don’t reply, and he looks at me expectantly as if he’s waiting for my opinion on the weather. Holy crap… this is personal stuff.
“Next week.” I stare down at my hands.
“You need to sort out some contraception.”
He is so bossy. I stare at him blankly. He sits back on the bed as he puts on his shoes and socks.
“Do you have a doctor?”
I shake my head. We are back to mergers and acquisitions – another 180-degree mood swing.
“I can have mine come and see you at your apartment – Sunday morning before you come and see me. Or he can see you at my place. Which would you prefer?”
No pressure then. Something else that he’s paying for… but actually this is for his benefit.
“Your place.” That means I am guaranteed to see him Sunday.
“Okay. I’ll let you know the time.”
“Are you leaving?”
Don’t go… stay with me please.
“How are you getting back?” I whisper.
“Taylor will pick me up.”
“I can drive you. I have a lovely new car.”
He gazes at me, his expression warm.
“That’s more like it. But I think you’ve had too much to drink.”
“Did you get me tipsy on purpose?”
“Because you over-think everything, and you’re reticent like your stepdad. A drop of wine in you and you start talking, and I need you to communicate honestly with me. Otherwise you clam up, and I have no idea what you’re thinking. In vino veritas, Anastasia.”
“And you think you’re always honest with me?”
“I endeavor to be.” He looks down at me warily. “This will only work if we’re honest with each other.”
“I’d like you to stay and use this.” I hold up the second condom.
He smiles and his eyes glow with humor.
“Anastasia, I have crossed so many lines here tonight. I have to go. I’ll see you on Sunday. I’ll have the revised contract ready for you, and then we can really start to play.”
“Play?” Holy shit. My heart leaps into my mouth.
“I’d like to do a scene with you. But I won’t until you’ve signed, so I know you’re ready.”