I felt like I’d sold my soul to the devil, and yet sometimes the devil appeared sweet and caring. Chase seemed genuinely concerned about me and my state of mind, which I appreciated because this whole thing felt like a big mistake.
But now he was touching me again, and all my fears and doubts were gone. All there was was sensation: his lips on my body, sweet torture building, the rush of pleasure. All of it was growing again as he pushed inside me. There was no pain, but a little discomfort as his size filled me. I was glad when he held still, letting my body adjust.
“You alright?” his voice was rough, as if it was difficult for him to hold back.
I lifted my knees up, opening to him. “Yes.”
He withdrew and pressed in again. “Jesus, you’re so tight.”
“It feels good.” The friction of him sent sparks of electricity zapping from my core outward.
He groaned as he pulled out and thrust in again, this time a little harder. “Fuck, I can’t hold back.”
I wished I could hold him, but he remained upright, looking down at me.
I reached down to where his hands gripped my hips and covered them with my own. “Don’t hold back. I want to feel you.” I understood that sex didn’t mean there was love, and yet, with him inside me, burning for me, I felt connected to him in a way I’d never felt with anyone.
He let out a growl and then moved in and out of me in steady, hard strokes. “So fucking good, Sara.”
I was pleased that my body brought him pleasure. We wouldn’t have the love that other couples had, but maybe we’d have respect and friendship. Maybe we’d even continued to have sex. Right now, all he cared about was making a baby, but men like Chase had needs, and I was more than willing to fulfill them.
“Touch your clit, Sara,” he said roughly. “Make yourself come. Ah fuck, I need you to come.”
I wasn’t sure I wanted to do that in front of him, yet at the same time I wanted to make him happy.
He was pistoning inside me and each thrust made me gasp as need coiled tighter and tighter. I slid my hand down over my belly and lower and then rubbed myself.
He plunged in and immediately my body exploded with pleasure. I cried out and arched as ecstasy raced through my body.
“Yes!” Chase yelled out as he thrust inside hard and ground himself against me. A warm rush of liquid filled me. He withdrew and plunged in again, and again, until finally, he released my hips, and relaxed back on his heels as he caught his breath.
He looked down at me. “You okay?”
I nodded. He was still inside me and yet, now that his physical need had passed, he felt disconnected from me.
“Are you hungry?”
I shook my head. It wasn’t too late, but I was tired.
He withdrew from me and rose from the bed going into the bathroom. While he was there, I looked between my legs, noting the wetness from his release. We may have just made a baby. The idea of it was heady and again brought into question the wisdom of my actions. Too late now.
He came out of the bathroom and picked up his pants, sliding them on. Disappointment filled me.
“Where are you going?” I asked.
“I’m going to get something to eat. You can join me or stay here. This is your room. You’re welcome to decorate it anyway you like.”
I stared at him wondering what was going on. We were married, shouldn’t we be in the same room?
“The bathroom has everything you should need, but if not, let me know and I’ll make sure you get it.” He slipped his shirt on but didn’t button it. He stared at me and frowned. “You sure you’re okay?”
“Just a little overwhelmed.” I couldn’t tell him I expected we’d live more like husband and wife. He’d probably laugh. This was a business deal. It was then that I realized that while my brain knew what was going on, somewhere deep down, I’d hoped for more. I planned to play house and pretend I had the family I’d always craved. What an idiot. I’d have the security, but I was still alone, at least until I had a baby. That’s what I needed to focus on. I couldn’t expect Chase to care for me, no matter how kind he could be sometimes. Just like everyone else in my life, he’d disappoint me if I expected more. But my baby would love me, right? Oh how I’d love it. I ran my hand over my belly, hoping that Chase had been successful.
“This is your home now Sara. You’re welcome to help yourself to anything in the kitchen and to enjoy the facilities.” He stood at the end of the bed with his hands on his waist.
He stared at me for a moment, then with a nod he left the room. I squeezed my eyes shut not wanting to cry. I didn’t think it was possible to feel more alone than I already had, but at this moment, I felt like I was in a void. Forcing myself not to wallow, I got out of the bed.
The room was lovely. There was a dark teal accent wall behind the bed, but the rest of the room was light. One wall was all windows, although it was too dark to see anything but lights outside. The bed had wonderfully soft sheets done in a dove gray. The room was more masculine, but still sophisticated. At the moment, I didn’t feel like I needed to change anything, but I also didn’t feel at home. I wondered if that would ever change.
The whole penthouse was amazing. It was the sort of thing a woman like me would dream about. The place took up the entire floor, which meant nearly every room had large windows. It was dark out now and the last time I’d been there, but I suspected it had spectacular views.
I went to the bathroom and nearly gaped. It was larger than my studio apartment had been. A large tile shower with glass surround sat on one side. A huge tube was under the window. I imagined what it would be like to lounge in that tub looking out at the view with a man I was in love with. I shook my head. There wouldn’t be love or romance in my life. But I could still enjoy the tub.
I filled it with water and found some fragrant lavender bath salts. I climbed in and tried to focus on all that was going right in my life. I didn’t have to go back home or to Glen. I didn’t have to worry about money. I didn’t even have to work, although I couldn’t imagine what I’d do all day. If I was lucky, before the year was out, I’d have a child to love and fill my days with joy.
I lay my head back letting the heat of the water and lavender scent of the steam relax me.
“Sara?” Chase knocked on the frame of the door I hadn’t bothered to close. Instinct made me want to cover up, which was ridiculous.
I opened my eyes. “Yes.”
He walked in carrying a plate. “I brought you some cheese and crackers. You should eat.” He pulled over a little table and set the plate down. Then he sat on the edge of the tub. “If you’re pregnant, you need to take care of yourself.”
He was right, although I doubted I was pregnant quite yet. Didn’t it take time for the sperm to reach the egg?
“Yes, of course.” I reached over and picked up a slice of cheese and a cracker, taking a bite. The minute the food hit my tongue, my stomach growled. I guess I was hungry after all.
Chase watched me for a moment, his gaze drifting from my face down to my breasts. Was he feeling amorous again? Part of me wished he was because I longed to have the feeling of connection again even if it was only for that one brief moment of intercourse.
His gaze returned to my face. “Is there anything you need?”
I shook my head. “No, thank you.”
“If there are other bath items you’d like, I can arrange them. Soaps, lotions, spa things.”
I laughed. “I wouldn’t know what I’d like. What you have is lovely.”
“Do you feel as out of place as you look?”
“Is it that obvious?”
His smile was sympathetic. “I know this is awkward, but one thing you can count on is that you’ll be provided for now. Before long you’ll be used to all this.”
I wasn’t so sure, but I nodded. “It definitely beats my closet-sized studio.”
He cocked his head as if he was trying to figure something out about me. “What was your dream, Sara? Why did you come to the city?”
“I hoped to finish school and make my own way.” I left out the part about seeking a place to belong.
“You can still finish school if you like. I’ll pay for that.”
I laughed. “Can’t have a Raven child with a mother who only has a high school diploma.”
His eyes narrowed. “I didn’t say that.” He stood, and I hated that I’d offended him. “I’m trying to make this situation more palatable to you.”
“Yes, of course, I’m sorry.” I felt like a spoiled child.
“Of course, it was your plan to stick around, so I assume you won’t get involved in activities that take you away from raising the child.”
He spoke as if the baby was a done deal. I supposed eventually it would be. That was the plan. I wondered if he’d stop having sex with me all together once we had a baby. Would he want more babies? I knew he’d had an orgasm, but perhaps I wasn’t his preferred sexual partner. After all, I didn’t know what I was doing. Still, he said he’d teach me.
“I’ll want to be a full-time mom,” I confirmed. I couldn’t imagine a more important or fulfilling job.
“What if I gave you the ten million, plus another two million a year for ten years?”
My heart stalled in my chest, and tears sprang to my eyes. “I won’t sell my baby for any amount of money.”
I guess I wasn’t the only one feeling awkward about this situation. And clearly, he didn’t want me sticking around once I had a baby. I supposed I couldn’t blame him. I didn’t fit in his world.
“I’ll stay out of your way and will try not to embarrass you, but if you want to continue this deal, raising my child is the term of this deal.”
He nodded. “Alright. Just so you understand that this arrangement is just that. We’re business partners. I’ll expect you to play the part of my wife on occasion, although I’ll try to minimize that.”
God, could he be any crueller? Why did he make this deal with me if I’d be too much of an embarrassment to him?
“I’ll get a book on Audrey Hepburn and learn to be more posh.” I wasn’t normally one to be snarky, but I wasn’t going to let him insult me.
“No, Chase. I know I’m young and poor, but I’m not trash—”
“I didn’t mean to imply—”
“You think I’m ignorant and beneath you.”
“I think you’re innocent and naïve about my world. People like me can destroy people like you with a single move.”
“I know.” I looked into his eyes, hoping he’d understand that his words were destroying me now. “But people like you often underestimate the personal power of people like me. You’ve been propped up by your money and family. But I wonder how you’d do if you lost it all?”
The tension in his jaw suggested he didn’t like that idea.
“In a world without money and power, I’d fair much better than you. So, don’t underestimate my will or determination, Chase.”
He nodded. “Fair enough.” He took a deep breath. “Well, enjoy your bath. I’m heading to bed.”
When he left, I sank down into the tub. “Good lord, Sara. What have you gotten yourself into?”