Now she couldn’t even remember why she’d justified what she’d done. Back then, her reasons for marrying Denny seemed quite simple and yet now, the idea of her ex-husband represented life complications. Two years ago, her thought process had placed her in front of one hurdle and then another.
More than anything, she’d been afraid. She’d been running scared for far too long. She’d feared disappointing her father, infuriating her mother, but more than anything else, she had feared if she’d given herself to Allister and then to his friends as well, a part of herself would forever remain out of her reach.
If she’d given her heart to them, they would’ve owned her. Allister in particular would have the power to destroy her.
Allister, Ryan, Derek, and Bradley were the four best men she knew all rolled up into one when they loved her together. The trouble with that was the unusual part of their relationship.
She knew how to love them together. She didn’t know how to love them one on one.
“Allister, we need to talk.”
“We don’t need to talk right now,” he said, cradling her hips and nuzzling her hipbone. His nose seemingly followed the tiny pastel lines in her pajamas before he stalled at the juncture between her thighs.
“Allister, what happened before?” Her lips twitched. Her pulse raced. She was five seconds from spewing a lie, but she still said, “What happened between us, between me and you, Ryan, Derek, and Bradley? It can’t happen again. It won’t happen again.”
Instead of firing back a rebuttal, Allister stood and tilted her chin to his. He gave her a feather-light kiss before he rasped, “Oh you’re right about that, Ellie. The past won’t repeat itself. Not this time. Not ever.”
He marched to the bathroom and slammed the door. A few minutes later she heard him brushing his teeth, apparently helping himself to one of the disposable toothbrushes in the medicine cabinet.
When Allister reentered her room, she nervously awaited him to join her by the bed. She wasn’t sure if she’d moved a muscle since he’d left. He was so different than what she remembered, a harder man maybe, a more determined man for sure.
His arms were powerful, muscular, and ripped. He seemed taller, larger, and much more confident in his speech and his actions. He still possessed those playboy features with chiseled cheeks, thin lips, a slender nose, and boxed jaw, but his demeanor made the difference between the boy she remembered and the man he’d become.
Like most women, Ellie noticed a guy’s backside, and Allister’s firm ass had always looked good in any pair of jeans, but more than his physical features, he had been charming, friendly, and trustworthy. He had been her friend, someone she could count on.
She often wondered if their sexual connection had screwed up their chance for a solid relationship. Had they taken their friendship to the next level too soon, before either of them had contemplated what kind of repercussions they might face?
“Allister, I’m serious.”
“You think I’m not?” He gripped her hips with a firmer hold. He gazed longingly into her eyes and said, “Ask Bradley what he thinks. While you’re at it, talk to Ryan and Derek, too. You’re where you belong, Ellie. You belong in Trouble. You belong with us.
“As far as we’re concerned? You took the long way home but you’re here now and that’s what matters.”
“But I don’t know if I’ll stay.”
“You’ll stay. You’ll stay because you’ll never have a good enough reason to walk away.” He kissed the tip of her nose. “Get some rest.”
She felt abandoned as soon as he walked away. Her heart hammered against her chest and her palms went clammy. With each step he made, she felt the distance he put between them.
He made it to the other side of the room when she said, “That’s why Denny always won.”
“What’s that?” Allister came to an abrupt stop and she sensed his heated gaze working its way over her back and hips, settling on her ass. “What are you talking about, Ellie?” The tight edge in his voice proved she had said enough to demolish his well-guarded control.
She kept her back to him. “You always wanted to be kind, gentle, and loving. You were my trusted confidant, my best friend. I think back to when we were kids and I can’t think of anyone who was a better friend to me than you.” She finally turned and walked toward him, but left the remaining steps between them for a purpose. If he wanted her, he’d meet her halfway. “I said, ‘That’s why Denny always won’ and I didn’t stutter.” She lifted her chin and looked him square in the eye. “If you want me, come and get me, Allister. If you want to win my heart, take my body. You can’t have one without the other. And you can’t be easy and gentle with somebody who only wants to be wild and free.
“You take me, Allister, but don’t treat me like a fine china doll. Don’t kiss me like you’ll bruise me or love me like I’ll break. I’m a woman with needs, Allister, and right now I need you.”
No matter how many times she played this out, one constant remained with her. Whenever she thought about their weekend in paradise, she always clung to memories of her time alone with Allister. No matter how brief, they’d shared a special intimacy right from the start. Now here they were, eight years or more had passed since their first kiss. Two years had come and gone since he’d been inside her, stroking her, fucking her, loving her like there was no other woman worthy of his love.
And he still looked at her as if he admired and respected her.
How could she question his feelings for her when he’d always been so kind and gentle?
She dipped her hand in his jeans and tugged his cock free. She didn’t look away from him as she steadied her hand on his length, pushing down, sliding up.
He was wet, hot, and she wouldn’t be content until she tasted him, until she felt the swell of his erection mashing against her tongue. She went to her knees and took his jeans with her.
One look up and she was nearly destroyed. She swirled her tongue around the crest and suckled his head, carefully pulling him to the roof of her mouth while watching the lust add pure fire to his eyes.
He pushed down on her shoulder and threw his head back. “Ah baby. Your mouth is so sweet.”
She pulled his length between her cheeks, riding him with her mouth, teasing herself as much as him as she took one pull, paused, lowered her mouth to the base and then rose to the tip once more.
His excitement coated his slit, oozing with succulent temptation. She flattened her tongue against the tiny opening. Oh God how she loved his spicy rich taste, the way he knotted his hand in her hair and pulled her back then thrust her forward.
“That’s it, sweet vixen. Mmm baby.” His voice was broken and his breathing changed. When he parted his feet and shifted his hips, she had him.
She lifted her gaze and tucked her hand under his balls, supporting him more than teasing him. One hand pumped. The other cradled. One hand teased. The other caressed.
Ellie stroked his shaft, sucking him to her throat, releasing him, and taking him to the back of her mouth once more. “Come.” She flicked the skin underneath the crest and watched the glimmer in his eyes, the renegade of a man coming forward with more passion, far more desire, than she’d noticed previously.
“Oh Ellie.” He squeezed his eyes shut and his body jolt drove her. “Um God yeah, baby.”
His hand tightened in her hair, his fingers locking around independent strands as he guided her up and down. God bless, he was sexy as hell.
She bore down on his length as his cum shot to the back of her throat. He dumped his release in spurts, jerking like mad when she gripped his ass and slammed her face against his groin, sucking his cock to her throat and jerking her head side to side as he filled her mouth with his hot semen.
“Ah baby girl,” he breathed out then as if he’d been holding his breath just waiting for the perfect time to utter a few sentiments. “This is how good it is with us.” He pulled her to her feet and grabbed his jeans.
Retrieving his wallet, he tucked his fingers underneath a foil wrapper and let the condom fall to the bedspread. Another one landed right beside it.
She grinned up at him. “Feeling confident?” She rubbed her cheek against his leg and inhaled his manly scent.
“Not yet,” he whispered, spreading her legs and then tossing them over his back. “Give me a minute. In the meantime, I want this to be as good for you as it was for me.”
“It already is,” she whispered, willing herself to lay still and enjoy him.
He kissed up and down her thighs before he gave her one luxurious tongue-driven intimate kiss and for a moment, just a split second, she was certain if he gave her one more of the same, she’d throw her body forward and meet his loving lips with one rapturous grind.
“So sweet, Ellie. You always taste so sweet.” She bit down on her forefinger, wondering what she’d been thinking, questioning the young and stupid girl who had chosen the wrong man over the right man who clearly wanted to love her, adore her, and cherish her the way a woman wanted to be cherished.
Willing the horrific memories away before they resurfaced and ruined her time with Allister, Ellie refused to let thoughts of her ex-husband ruin her special time with the one person she’d always easily admired and unconditionally adored.
“You don’t think I’m—” She stopped midsentence.
Unfortunately, he stopped, too. “I don’t think you’re what?”
Her lips quivered and she acknowledged the anger. She had so much hostility inside her, so much rage. And as much as she tried to shut Denny out, she could almost feel his sinister smirk at her back, telling her in that evil voice of his that she could run, she could hide, but he’d always find her.
Allister folded his arms over her thighs and looked up at her. He clasped his hands over her pussy and rested his chin on his knuckles. “I think you’re spectacular.”
“You don’t think I’m damaged?”
“Why would I think you’re damaged?” He rolled his head to her hip, nuzzling her then.
“Because I…” She closed her eyes and kept telling herself to refuse the sadness, to ignore the undertow, the violence that had turned her into such a skeptic.
“Don’t be afraid to talk to me, Ellie. We’ve always been close.”
“We’re pretty close now,” she teased, wishing she hadn’t opened her big mouth. If she hadn’t allowed thoughts of Denny to interrupt her most pleasurable moments, she would’ve been screaming Allister’s name by now, pulling his hair, and fucking his mouth and fingers like a wild and reckless lover.
She stilled at the thought.
She’d been the wild and reckless lover. Now, regardless of what she’d said to the contrary, her needs and desires were much different.
Now what she truly wanted seemed a little dull, but in fact it was far more exciting.
She wanted to be loved.