This man, p.47
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       This Man, p.47

         Part #1 of This Man series by Jodi Ellen Malpas
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Page 47

  Author: Jodi Ellen Malpas

  I notice he uses past tense. ‘Do you still?’

  He sits back in his chair and studies me, stroking his glass of water. ‘More than anything,’

  A little gush of air escapes my mouth. I’m not sure if it’s relief or desire. I know nothing anymore. ‘I’m yours. ’ I say resolutely. That’s it. I’ve just thrown my heart on the table for this man.

  His tongue slowly sweeps across his bottom lip. ‘Ava, you’ve been mine since you turned up at The Manor. ’

  ‘Have I?’

  ‘Yes. Will you spend the night with me?’

  ‘Are you asking or demanding?’

  ‘I’m asking, but if you give me the wrong answer, then I’m sure I can think of something to change your mind. ’ He smiles slightly.

  ‘I’ll spend the night with you. ’

  He nods in approval. ‘Tomorrow night?’

  ‘Yes. ’

  ‘Take the day off. ’ he demands.

  ‘No. ’

  His eyes narrow. ‘What about Friday evening?’

  ‘I’ve arranged to go out with Kate on Friday night. ’ I inform him, resisting the temptation to reach up and twiddle my hair. He can’t assume I’m there at his demand. I hope she’s free.

  His narrowed eyes instantly darken. ‘Cancel. ’

  Now, this is something I do need to clear up, pronto – his neurotic unreasonableness. ‘I’m going out to have a few drinks. You can’t stop me from seeing my friends, Jesse. ’

  ‘How many is a few drinks?’

  I can feel my brow knitting. ‘I don’t know. That depends on how I feel. ’ I look at him accusingly. I suspect I might be gagging by Friday if he keeps up with his crazy behaviour. He’s giving me brain ache as well as body ache.

  He starts chewing his bottom lip again, and I can see the cogs of his mind going into overdrive. He’s trying to work out how he’s going to get around this. I haven’t done myself any favours by getting in such a state last Saturday. That was his fault. Should I tell him that?

  ‘I don’t want you out drinking without me. ’ he says firmly.

  ‘Well, that’s a bit of bad luck, isn’t it?’ God, I’m being rather brave. What percentage is this wine?

  ‘We’ll see. ’ he muses to himself.

  We sit quietly, looking at each other across the table, him scowling, me hiding a small smile. After a few moments, he leans back casually in his chair at a slight angle, his eyes rapt with intention. I don’t shy away from his concentrated stare. I meet it with equal intent, in a barefaced come on. I want him desperately, despite his challenging ways.

  Luigi comes over and clears our plates, intruding on our moment. ‘You like?’ he sings.

  Jesse doesn’t fracture the connection. ‘Great, Luigi. Thank you. ’ His voice is throaty and he’s tapping the table with his middle finger. I feel his leg brush against mine, and that’s all it takes to hitch my breath up several notches and spring my nerve endings to life. I’m blazing from head to toe. . . and he knows it.

  ‘The bill, please, Luigi. ’ he demands, his friendly tone altering into one of urgency.

  Luigi seems to get the message because he doesn’t offer us the dessert menu. He just scuttles off, returning, almost immediately, carrying a black plate filled with mints and a piece of paper. Without looking at the bill, Jesse stands and pulls a wad of notes from his jean pocket, slapping some down on the table.

  He reaches over and seizes my hand. ‘We’re going. ’

  I’m hauled from my chair, leaving me to grab my bag and throw my napkin on the table as I’m rushed to the door. ‘Are you in a hurry?’ I ask as I’m guided to the car by my elbow.

  He makes no attempt to slow down. ‘Yes. ’

  When we reach the car, I’m whirled around and shoved up against the door. His forehead meets mine, our heavy breaths merging together in the small space between our mouths. His erection is painfully hard against my lower stomach.

  Oh God, I want him to take me here and now. Damn anyone who wants to watch.

  ‘I’m going to fuck you until you’re seeing stars, Ava. ’ His voice is harsh as he grinds his hips against me. I whimper. ‘You won’t be going to work tomorrow because you won’t be able to walk. Get in the car. ’

  I would, but I already can’t walk. Suspense has rendered me immobile.

  After a few seconds have passed and I’ve still not convinced my legs to shift, he pulls me out of the way, opens the door and gently shoves me into the passenger seat.

  Chapter 25

  Our journey back to Lusso is the longest I’ve ever endured. The sexual tension bouncing around in his car is excruciating, and Jesse is almost violent when he gets stuck behind a Sunday driver.

  ‘Some people shouldn’t be allowed on the fucking road. MOVE!’ He performs a highly illegal manoeuvre, overtaking the car on a single carriageway.

  He frequently adjusts his groin area, and in the dim light of the DBS, I see a shimmer of sweat across his brow. Oh, he’s a man on a mission. He skids to a halt outside the electronic gates of Lusso and presses a remote to open them, his hand drumming on the steering wheel as he waits impatiently for them to shift.

  I smile. ‘You’re going to have a seizure if you don’t calm down. ’

  He pauses with the drumming and looks at me, all smoky. ‘Ava, I’ve had a fucking seizure every day since I met you. ’

  ‘You’re swearing a lot. ’ I muse as the gates open and he pulls into the car park, fast and carelessly.

  ‘And you’re going to be screaming a lot,’ There is no humour in his tone. ‘Out. ’ he orders.

  I’ve no doubt I will be, but I do love it when he’s in these frenzies. I take my time getting out of the car, and when I’m finally vertical, I glance up and find he’s stood in front of me, with a very irked look on his face.

  ‘What are you doing?’ he asks incredulously at my leisurely pace.

  I gaze around at the black night-time sky and down to the docks. ‘Do you fancy a walk?’

  His mouth drops open. ‘Do I fancy a walk?’

  ‘Yes, it’s a lovely evening. ’ I return my gaze to him, doing a rubbish job of hiding my smug smile.

  ‘No, Ava, I fancy fucking you until you beg me to stop. ’ He bends, grabs me around the back of my thighs and hoists me over his shoulder, kicking shut the door of his ridiculously expensive car.

  ‘Jesse!’ My stomach catapults into my mouth at the swift movement. ‘I’ll walk!’

  He starts striding into the foyer of Lusso. ‘Not fast enough. Good evening, Clive. ’

  I brace my hands on Jesse’s lower back, craning my head up to find Clive observing me draped over Jesse’s shoulder. What must he think of me? The last time I entered Lusso I was being carried too. ‘I’m not drunk!’ I yell, watching Clive disappear from sight as Jesse carries me into the elevator and punches the code in harshly. In my sassy state, I slide my hands beneath his jeans, onto his fantastic, tight arse, to feel the tense and swell of his muscles and smooth, warm skin as he strides out of the lift.

  ‘No fucking about. I want inside you now. You fuck about, I swear to God. . . ’ He’s deadly serious.

  ‘You’re so romantic. ’

  ‘We’ve got all the time in the world for romance, lady. ’

  Have we?

  He barges into the penthouse, slamming the door behind him. I’m a touch disorientated when he lowers me to my feet in the kitchen. I stand before him, my hands resting on his shoulders, trying to get my bearings.

  ‘You know, you’re really not going to be in a fit state to work tomorrow. ’ His hot breath is leaving condensation on my face. ‘Strip, now. ’

  I’m shaking – visibly shaking. I demand my hands to remove themselves from his shoulders, but they’re having none of it. I try to pull myself together, but it’s impossible when he’s looking at me like that. I feel his hands la
y over mine and peel them away from his shoulders. He places them on my stomach.

  ‘Start with the shirt. ’ His voice is throaty, tinged with a bit of desperation.

  I can do this; I can be audacious. ‘So, am I in charge?’ I ask, inwardly bracing myself for his scoff.

  It doesn’t come. He looks at me, the slight surprise at my question clear, but he doesn’t laugh. He can’t be in control all of the time.

  ‘If it makes you happy,’ He unclasps his Rolex and slides it onto the island.

  Oh, it does. I give myself a mental pep talk. I can do this, I can do this. I take a deep breath and, staring him boldly in the eye, raise my hands to my top button, willing my fingers to co-operate. Every button I undo, his face strains harder, and I become bolder. If this isn’t fucking about, then I don’t know what is.

  I release my shirt, letting it hang open, and watch as he scrapes his eyes down my torso, his tongue running across his parted bottom lip. Liking this response I’m getting, I take my hands to my shoulders and pull my shirt away, accentuating the slow push forward of my breasts when I lower it down my arms. Like the wanton sex fiend that I am, I hold it out to my side for a few seconds while his eyes travel back up my body. Then, when our eyes meet again, I dramatically open my palm and let it fall to the floor, leaving my arm outstretched and hovering at my side for a few seconds. His eyes are blazing, his forehead damp. Oh, I’m really doing this well.

  ‘I love you in lace. ’ he whispers.

  I smile. I’m really into my stride now. I lower my steady hands to the fly of my trousers and lazily undo one button at a time as he watches. His panting is increasing by the second, and the drain on his self-control has him chewing his lip to the point of drawing blood.

  Once all the buttons are undone and my trousers are gaping open, I stand with my hands tucked in the front, ready to drag them down my legs, but I don’t. I’m too enthralled by his reaction to my shameless strip. I like this role reversal.

  He looks up at me, his eyes blazing and desperate. ‘I could rip them off in two seconds flat. ’

  ‘But you won’t. ’ My voice is husky and alluring. I’m stunned by my own brashness. ‘You’ll wait. ’ I kick my shoes off, sending them flying a few yards across the kitchen.

  He follows their course before looking back at me with raised eyebrows. ‘Taking this a bit far, aren’t you?’

  I smile sweetly as little by little, inch by inch, I slide my capri pants down my legs and kick them off. I’m stood in my coral lace underwear before this glorious man, and I’ve lost all my inhibitions. It’s an eye-opener. Who would have thought I could be so brash? I like being in charge!

  He lifts his hand to stroke my chest. ‘No. ’ I utter firmly, his hand floating over my breast bone. It’s not touching me, but the heat emanating from it has me nearly hyperventilating. Here’s me telling him to wait, and I’m as desperate as he is. My self-control is wavering, but I really love this power.

  ‘Fuck you. ’ he mumbles, dropping his hand.

  ‘Please do. ’

  He smirks. ‘Beg. ’

  Beg? How did this turn around so quickly? I don’t think so. ‘I would rather go without. ’

  ‘Leave your hair alone, Ava. ’ His eyes darken further. I drop my hair, while he drops his eyes. ‘You’re still wearing your underwear. ’

  I glance down. ‘What are going to do about that?’

  ‘I’m going to do nothing,’ he shrugs. ‘Unless you beg,’

  ‘I don’t think so. ’ I say coolly. I’m not backing down.

  ‘We might be here a while then. ’

  ‘We might. ’ I agree.

  ‘Maybe longer than Friday,’ He’s pokerfaced.

  Oh, the sly sod! He just can’t let it drop, can he? I narrow my eyes at him as he raises his eyebrows at me. So, we’re in a stand-off, neither one of us wanting to make the first move. He should! He’s the one who declared he wanted no fucking about, so help him God…
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