Blindfolds made her nervous, but Keegan was insistent. He’d gotten her into the car, then slid the black satin sleep mask over her eyes.
“I don’t know why…”
“This is your Dom talking. You don’t need to know just now. Trust. You do trust me, right?”
OH, how she hated when he pulled that card out of his pocket. Of course she trusted him. He’d worked with her for weeks after the attack, using a mixture of dom tactics and vanilla love and cuddles to help her through those first rough days. It helped too that the trial was behind them, that Roderick was in jail for a long, long while, thanks mostly to Fae. When Mandy added her testimony, it sealed his fate. But that was done, over, and she was a different woman these days than she was a year ago.
She’d been surprised by the cupcake sitting on the table in her cleaning office, a gift from Jakob to celebrate her first anniversary at Nettles. How had a year rolled past so quickly? And hadn’t things changed dramatically for her in that time?
The car slowed, pulled to a stop. Before she could lower the blindfold, his hands covered hers.
She remembered that they were on “Dom Time” and sighed quietly.
His door opened, closed. She counted silently, getting to 11, when her door opened.
“Let me guide you.”
His hands unfastened her seat belt, then guided her out of the car. She felt him standing behind her, his hands on her shoulders. Resting her head on his chest, she could hear his heart thumping steadily. His hands lifted and tugged the blindfold. For a moment, sun dazzle blinded her.
“Well, what do you think?”
What did she think? What the hell was he talking about? She twisted her head, looking back and up at him.
“It’s a house.”
“It could be our house.”
“What are you talking about?”
“You know, if you’d marry me. It has a nice big finished basement which would make a lovely private dungeon…”
He paused, enjoying the total confuddled expressions crossing her face.
“It has a nice kitchen, a decent sized living room, lots of windows…perhaps you’d like to go inside and see it?”
She spun fully around, slapping her hand on his chest.
“Wait just a second. Just…wait. Say that first part again.”
“It could be our house?”
“No, no, no! You know the part, the next part. After that.”
“It has a basement that could become a dungeon?”
He put on his best stupid face, which made her crazy. Her brows drew together and her lips pursed as if she was ready to yell at him. He was crazy….about her. He bent, and kissed her firmly.
“What were you saying?”
She shook her head. When he kissed her that way, his fingers in her hair, it made her feel small and hot and floaty.
“….a wise and wonderful Dom?”
She bit the inside of her lip to hold in the laughter. He was slick bastard, no doubt.
“Are you asking me to marry you?”
“That was in there someplace too, yes.”
“As simple as that, kitten?”
His smile made her heart do a slow tumble. She’d never thought she’d get into the “scene” at Nettles, never thought she’d be interested in a “Dominant”. And she had given up the dream of being in love. She thought she was broken, but it seemed that walking into the job at Nettles had led her down a less-traveled road.
“Yes. As simple as that. I love you. I haven’t said that to many people…but I’ll say it to you now, and show you later how much I mean it. I’m not sure what you’ve got in your bag of tricks…but I’m excited to see what’s coming.”
“Be a good girl…and you’ll be the one coming.”
The giggle–and the blush–came at the same time. It never failed to embarrass her how frank these people were. She guessed they were her people now. But she doubted she’d ever get used to talking about coming and body parts. He took her hand and led her up the sidewalk to the house.
Back in the car, blindfold back in place, they drove away from the charming house. The best part, from her point of view, had been the lovely back yard. She could have a dog, and a garden. ‘I like naked gardening,’ he’d replied when she mentioned it, laughing at her as she sputtered and dissembled. She wasn’t sure if he was joking about that part or not. She supposed she’d find out. And that brought her a tingle of excitement, and a deep glow of ‘happy’.
When the car pulled over again, she waited for him to take her out of the vehicle. This time he kept the blindfold on as they walked across a bumpy sidewalk. He steered her through a door. A bell chimed above them; from a distance came the sounds of pulsing rock. There were some strange smells. Not food. She wasn’t sure what it was. It wasn’t unpleasant, just something she couldn’t quite place.
“This the one?” A gruff voice asked.
“Ye-up,” replied Keegan.
She was propelled forward again, the sound of guitar riffs and ripping drum beats growing louder. The floor creaked under her feet, and she felt the soft press of a curtain as she passed through it.
He tugged her hair.
“Dom time,” he reminded her.
“Sir” she whispered. She was embarrassed to say it aloud, outside of the club, outside of the bedroom.
“Speak up, girl, and address your Sir properly.”
The gruff voice addressed her.
“UHM…Sir….where are we?”
There was the sound of male laugher. She had no idea where she was, who the guy was, or what Keegan’s next move was. She was pushed into a chair. The blindfold was tugged away. She still had no idea where they were.
“Based on the picture you sent me, I worked this up.”
The man, who was definitely the stereotypical ‘biker guy,’ passed a paper to Keegan. He looked at it, then smiled.
“This is exactly what I was looking for–without knowing exactly what it would look like. Brilliant, Jimmy.”
Keegan sat on a stool beside Mandy.
“Kitten, this is the plan. This,” he pointed to the paper in his hand, but not showing it to her, “is the diagram of a tattoo I’ve had Jimmy design for us. You could call it our joining mark. It won’t erase the past.”
He laid the paper on her lap. In it, she could clearly see the three parallel lines branded on her wrist. Yet, the tattoo artist had crafted a “K” and an “M”, interwining them over the mark. Surrounding the entire design was the faintest outline of a leaf. She could see that end result would change the lines into something new, just as she felt Keegan had changed her.
“That’s a nettle leaf,” Keegan added, pointing to the outline. She swore she could feel her heart smile.
“I like it.I like it so much!”
“I do as well. And I’ll be wearing that same mark on my wrist.”
She didn’t want to cry, but no gesture could have touched her more. She squeezed Keegan’s hand hard, then looked back at Jimmy, wiping away the one happy tear that had escaped.
“Will it hurt?”
“Not as much as that did,” he replied, pointing at her branded wrist.
She took a deep breath, and laid her unmarked hand in Keegan’s.
She took a deep breath.
He lifted her hand to his lips, biting into the pad of her thumb. She smiled at that small pain. She’d gone from lonely to being included in a wildly eclectic group of weird freaks. Not only was she was genuinely fond of them, but she’d become one of them. She was with a man who was exciting, who thrilled her, and who loved her as much as she loved him. She’d gone from being ‘broken’ to being whole. And she owed it all to her job. Later she’d thank Jakob for taking the chance in hiring her. But for now she was going to focus on the present. Her free hand encased in Keegan’s, she watched as the tattoo artist took up his tools and began to transform her from ‘victim’ to ‘owned submissive.’
afterward~or in the new beginning….
Prepping for Saturday’s crowd, Jakob took inventory of his stockroom. He made a note on his master list that he was running low on Nettles custom bar napkins. In the middle of counting glassware, Bill poked his head around the corner.
“Boss? You got company.”
“Yeah? I’m busy here.”
“Well, that’s just too damned bad.”
He knew that voice, and he had to forcibly bite back his irritation. He did not have time for this. The lanky redhead slid into the stockroom uninvited.
His voice was terse and unwelcoming.
Her head canted to the side, smiling that killer smile at him. He definitely did not have time for this. He ignored, he swore he ignored, the skintight leather pants, the leather bustier that was laced tight, the swell of an impressive rack.
“I believe I was supposed to start work tonight.”
“What, you don’t make enough as a detective, Detective? Sorry, got no room for dicks in here.”
She laughed at the double entendre; her tits jiggled enticingly. His cock shifted. He did not have time for this. Down boy, he growled inwardly at his penis.
“Hey, you hired me, and here I am. Lots of cops have other jobs on the side. I choose to spend my time in places that feed my….proclivities.”
“And what might those be?”
Despite himself, he was drawn in. Damn her.
“I like the scene. I like hot, naked bodies, the whistle of a whip as it sails through the air, the sharp snap when it connects…”
He didn’t want to know, but his mouth formed the words anyway.
“And which side of the whip are you on?”
“I guess you’ll have to see–after my shift. No playing on the clock. My boss said so.”
She slid out of the small space, her heels clacking. He could hear her husky voice at the bar. For now he was going to go back to counting glasses. And ignore the stab of lust that speared straight to his balls.
*of course, if you’d like to know more about what happens with Savannah and Jakob, do let me know…their story has yet to be fully explored… ~nilla~