She gave him a small smile, and lifted her gaze to his face.
And stilled. It would have taken more than an effort of will to drag her attention away from his fascinating eyes. They would be plainly described as hazel, but that didn’t begin to describe the nuances of color she could see in them. Close-up, they were greenish-gold, but with flecks of darker bronze, as changeable as a spring sky. “Thank you,” she managed to say, feeling heat rise to her cheeks. She willed it down, praying it didn’t translate into a blush.
It seemed it had. He raised his hand, then dropped it back, regret shading the green-gold. Regret for what? That he couldn’t touch her? It couldn’t be that. He was here for Lavinia. Or that he’d embarrassed her. That was more likely.
She leaned back, trying to put some distance between them. His proximity disturbed her, made her uncomfortable. The heat in her cheeks wasn’t the only place on her body that responded to his presence. The old attraction still pulled her and it shouldn’t. However much she told herself that he was here for Lavinia, she still wanted it to be her he wanted. She avoided glancing down, afraid her gaze would go to the forbidden place between his legs. And that he’d notice.
Thinking of his—male attributes—had her thighs dampening with the product of her cunt. That hadn’t happened for some time. Too busy, too concentrated on business and fashion, and anything else that took her mind off her more personal concerns. But this man had effortlessly broken through every defense she’d set up, without even trying. Or, probably, meaning to. Handsome, intelligent, and amusing, but more than that. A pull, something intangible, made her know every time he entered a room, every time he was near. And she couldn’t make it stop.
If Lavinia didn’t take this man, she’d be insane. Carlotta would be equally insane to allow it. Lavinia couldn’t handle him.
She mustered all the cool society behavior she could manage. “You wished to see me privately? I can’t offer you very long, but I think I know why you’re here.” Forcing that mask, she should find it easier to deal with this situation.
He raised a dark brow. “I’m glad to hear that.” His voice purred along her skin, raising goose bumps. “I waited as long as I could, but I burn for the answer.”
“Explain.” She tried for a graceful wave of her hand, but it came out clumsy and stilted. Quickly she restored her hand to its place in her lap.
“I shall.” He moved, turned toward her. “My dearest Lady Denny, you cannot be unaware of how I feel.”
She forced a polite smile that felt like a grimace. “I have some idea.”
Nervousness shortened her breath and tightened her throat. She’d never imagined she’d feel like this when a man proposed to her daughter. She hadn’t been as nervous when James had proposed to her, but then, she’d expected it for a month and their parents had already drawn up the marriage contract. At the time it had been no more than an agreement with someone she liked. This was different. As far as she knew, her mother had never had feelings like this for James.
“Lady Denny, are you feeling quite well?”
That was all she needed. Now he’d think her a frail widow with a sensitive disposition. “Perfectly, thank you. You were talking of my daughter, were you not?” She tried to regulate her breathing.
He frowned. “Was I? Lady Lavinia is a charming girl to be sure, if a little young, but no, why would you think that?”
She blinked at him. Had she made a mistake? Why else would he want a private interview with her? No. Not that, no, surely…Her breath shortened.
Leaning forward, he captured her hand. “Did you think I meant to make an offer for Lady Lavinia? Surely not. She’s young enough to be my daughter.” His frown deepened. “Dearest Lady Denny, it’s not Lavinia I wanted to talk about. It’s you.”
She held her tea-dish on its saucer in her free hand, wanting something to hold on to. Gripping the chair arm would have appeared too obvious for a man as perceptive as this one. So overcome by his statement, she shook and her hold slipped. She dropped the dish and saucer.
“Naked with your lovers,” Piers said in a low rumble. “How does it feel, sweetheart?”
Carlotta wasn’t sure she could articulate the emotions coursing through her. Fear, exhilaration, and an odd sense of freedom. She had nothing to hide now. They could see it all. She lifted her arms, held them away from her sides. “Odd. Like what you see, gentlemen?”
Slowly, she pivoted, tensing her body to stop the trembling she feared might persuade them she was afraid. They watched her, and as Piers’s dark, avid gaze went out of view, Wyn’s appeared. He was already unbuttoning his waistcoat. “I love it.” His mouth curled in a smile as intimate as any she had ever seen. He had fine lips, cut as if a sculptor had gone to work on them, clear, like the rest of his features. Where Piers was darkly satanic, Wyn was built on classical lines, fine-featured, athletically built. But his muscles flexed when he reached for her and his body was as warm as Piers’s, his cock as hard. His kiss as passionate.
He opened his mouth against hers, and sucked her tongue, the kiss as close to the act of love as it could possibly be. Her breasts pressed against his chest, but then Piers stepped up behind her and rubbed his body against hers.
His naked body. His thick, hard cock left a spot of dampness against her lower back as her buttocks pressed against the rough texture of his thighs. He shoved a hand between Wyn and her, so he held one of her breasts in his hand. Wyn moved back slightly, giving Piers room to stroke and tease, tug her nipple into a greater state of awareness, while he pressed small kisses to her neck and upper back.
Her senses awoke, prickling under her skin, a tingle creeping up her backbone, raising every fine hair on her body.
Still kissing her, Wyn stroked down her flank, shaped the curve of her waist and hip, grazed the side of her bottom, and then one finger idly traced her thigh, up to her hip, along the line between her hip and her belly. She shuddered, and Wyn sighed into her mouth.
A three-way response. Interesting. But Carlotta was too far gone to think properly. She could barely remember what she’d agreed to, except those few words from Wyn. Go with it. She’d made up her mind then. This once, she’d follow her instincts and not her intellect.
Her nipples hardened even more, and she moved from side to side, the better to feel them, agitating instead of soothing them. Piers’s voice came to her. “You are so sweet, so ready for us. Can you take me now?”
When he stepped back, cool air swept over her back, even though the fire was blazing merrily. Wyn held her closer, responded to her sinuous movements with several of his own, then with a swift, unexpected movement, pushed her back into Piers’s arms. “Take her like that,” he said. “Let her watch me strip and ready myself for her while you fuck her.”
“With pleasure,” Piers growled.
He touched her thighs, impelling her to take a step to the side, opening them for him. Her cunt was wet, enough to dampen her legs, and Piers’s approval came as honey. “You look wonderful, Carlotta. Sweet enough to eat. Which I will be doing in the course of time.”
Shuddering, she sank back, trusting him to support her. His cock nudged her folds, and then she felt his hand slide down between them so he could control it. He held one of her hips, keeping her steady for his first thrust.
“You’re tight.” He pushed harder. He couldn’t get inside her at this angle, surely. He must have bent his knees in order to get down to her level, but he felt rock-steady as he drove until her body gave way, and her passage embraced him as he forged deep.
“Ah!” Her wordless cry pleased him, it seemed, as he wrapped one thick arm around her waist and jerked her closer, so his cock went deeper.
“Bend her over a little,” Wyn said. “Watch me Carlotta. Watch me strip for you.”
A sight she’d never expected to see. A young man, his eyes saturated with desire for her, unwinding his neckcloth with slow intent. He snapped it between his hands, pulling the fine fabric taut before he tossed it aside and undid the buttons on his waistcoat, one by one, in a tortuous progression. And still he watched her. Watched Piers fuck her.
Carlotta felt like a whore, a woman whose only function in life was to please men. An odd kind of liberation crept over her senses. She need think of nothing else. Her cares peeled away; the cares of a large estate, land disputes, late harvests, recalcitrant tenants, the concerns of bringing up three children in an exemplary manner, servants who gossiped. None of that mattered here, and with Piers forging a path deep inside her, ramming his cock into her pussy, she finally understood what they meant. Piers, Carlotta, and Wyn. Nothing else. Nobody else. Unwittingly she’d created a sanctuary for the three of them.
A place they need answer to no one.
Her senses rose, peaked, and she gasped as Wyn slowly disrobed. She couldn’t block out the sight of his chest, smooth muscle delineated every masculine line, the muscles in his upper arms flexing and bulging as he stretched to pull off his breeches and underwear. He bent, and she caught sight of his back, long and smooth, and his buttocks. Her hands curved in desire. She wanted to hold them, to pull them closer.
“That’s it, sweetheart.” Piers’s thrust harder, his strokes quickening, his body damp with sweat when he slammed against her. “Lean forward a little, stick out that delectable rear.”