“Tell me you want it, Kyrie. Tell me what you want me to do.” Roth’s voice was an insistent murmur in my ear.

His finger slid in, moved deeper, brushed against the tight bud of knotted muscle, and I felt myself tense, felt my heartbeat hammer harder. The decision was already made. At every step, with every new thing he asked of me, I fought him. Said no at first, acted like I didn’t want what he intended. Yet I always gave in, always realized I did want it. I did want him.

“Do it, Roth.” My voice was stronger than I felt. “Touch me.”

“Where, Kyrie? Touch you where? I want to hear the words.” His fingertip pressed in, a slight pressure, just enough to tantalize me.

The vibrator was buried deep inside me, buzzing crazily, and I couldn’t move, couldn’t breathe, couldn’t do a damn thing except want him to push that finger in and bring me to completion.

“In…in my ass. Put your finger in my ass, Roth. Do it. Please.” Was that my voice? That husky, demanding rasp?

Roth growled. “Like…this?” As he said the words, he pressed gently and with increasing pressure.

I forced myself to relax, to take it. “Yeah. Like that. Just like that. Oh…shit.”

“So tight,” Roth murmured. “So f**king tight.”

I barely held back a shriek as he slid his finger into me up to the first knuckle. And then he wrapped his other hand around mine and forced me to get the vibrator moving, and his tongue dragged over my nipple and flicked it, and I was helpless, screaming, coming just like that, and he was wiggling his finger deeper and the vibrator was thrusting into me hard and fast, guided by both our hands, and I was clutching at him with my one free hand, seeking him, needing him. I found his hair, curled my fingers into a fist and held on, rode the tidal wave of climax with shriek after shriek, my voice going hoarse at the end, my hips rolling.

Breath left me, dizziness washed over me, and then my body went utterly limp. I couldn’t speak, couldn’t even move my tongue inside my mouth. Couldn’t move my hands or my legs. I couldn’t even twitch.


I felt him draw the vibrator out of me, and his finger, and then he left the bed. Faintly, I heard water running. I was a puddle of jelly, boneless, helpless. Unconsciousness flooded through me, but just before it did, I felt the bed dip. Felt his presence beside me. Felt fingers tugging at the blindfold, taking it off me. I felt his skin against mine.

“Sleep, Kyrie. Sleep now.” HIs voice was low, nearly inaudible, and gentle. Tender.

It was still a command, and I obeyed.

But not before I realized he had me tucked against his chest, his arms around my waist, one hand threading his fingers through my tangled hair.



I woke up slowly, gradually, and intermittently. My first sensation was one of warmth, and then of the kind of drowsy, all-consuming, cocoon-like comfort that makes you never want to move again, except to burrow deeper into the blankets. My next sensation was one of…I wasn’t even sure. Something…off. Some strange and unfamiliar sensation. I tried to suss it out without opening my eyes, without really moving or altering my breathing. What was it? It was connected to my sense of soul-deep comfort. The warmth, the softness. I burrowed into the blankets, seeking to go deeper, back to sleep, and that was when I realized what it was: skin. Muscle. A faint thumpthump….thumpthump under my ear. I wasn’t lying on a pillow. I was naked, and I was tangled up in sheets and blankets and arms and legs and flesh.


In bed.

With me.

I didn’t have my blindfold on.

I tried not to freak out. What was going on? Had he fallen asleep by accident? That didn’t seem like him.

“You don’t have to pretend to be asleep, Kyrie. I knew the moment you woke up.” His voice was in my ear, sleep-thick and muzzy.

“You’re in bed with me.”


“I’m not wearing the blindfold.”

“No.” A pause. Then his massive paw-like hand cupped my cheek. “Open your eyes, Kyrie. It’s time.”

I blinked my eyes open. His chest was tanned gold, scattered with a smattering of blond hair. The sheets were rucked around his hips, and I saw a hint of an Armani Exchange logo peeking out. I took a breath, shifted slightly. His hand was on my back, his arm wrapped under my head.

We were…cuddling.

I had never, not ever once, cuddled with a guy, during, before, or after sex. Not on the couch while watching a movie, not in a car, not in a movie theater, not in bed, not standing up or sitting down. I didn’t cuddle. Guys didn’t try. Even Steven, who I’d been the most serious about, who I’d dated for the longest amount of time, hadn’t really cuddled with me. We’d never spooned, never spent the night together. We did what we did together, and then he left, or I did.

Now, here I was, cuddling with Roth.

This, more than any other moment so far, had me terrified of what was developing between us.

The fear came from the fact that I’d never felt safer, never felt more comfortable, more at peace. I liked cuddling. I liked feeling his arm around me. Feeling his chest under my ear, against my cheek. His leg thrown over mine.

I was delaying. Roth, however, was still and quiet, simply waiting.

I tilted my head up, pulled back slightly so I could take him in.

Holy shit. He was nothing short of male perfection. Sharp, high cheekbones, a strong jaw, luscious, kissable lips curved in a faint smile, eyes the color of a clear winter morning sky, palest blue. Blond hair sweeping over his forehead and across his temple, messy and effortlessly gorgeous. As we lay face to face, my toes barely brushed his knees. I could run my big toe over his shin, if I stretched.

I felt my heart swell and crack. Of course he was the most ruggedly, powerfully beautiful man I’d ever seen. Of course he would be. Of course he would stare at me with eyes so understanding and expressive and intelligent that I couldn’t and wouldn’t dare look away. I licked my lips, feeling a driving need to bolt, to run into the bathroom and lock the door and have a breakdown sitting on the closed toilet seat.

“You’re beautiful,” I blurted.

“Thank you.” He ran his thumb over my cheekbone. “Speak your fears, Kyrie.”

“This. Us. Everything. You. You scare me. Because you’re…amazing. I didn’t want you to be…so incredible. I wanted you to be a rich arrogant ass**le. I wanted you to force yourself on me as repayment so I could hate you. I wanted you to be ugly and cruel so I could walk away.” Where were these brutally honest words coming from? Somewhere deep inside me, where truth resides. “But you’re not. You’re compelling and confident and understanding and smart and f**king gorgeous. You look like some kind of…Viking warrior. A Norse king. Is that stupid? It is. It’s stupid.” I blushed, my cheeks hot, and squeezed my eyes shut, tilted my head down, and buried my face against his chest.