I was a bit lost in the vastness of the upstairs bedroom corridors. This house was mazelike for sure, but up here, the gorgeous day outside easily penetrated. A continuous run of skylights brought both Catalina warmth and sunlight into the heart of the otherwise secretive villa.
A lazy afternoon so far, Doris had given Gordon a set of tennis whites, and now my boy and Lloyd were playing on the clay court surrounded by cypress trees on three sides.
I had just popped up the servants’ stairs to fetch a book before heading back down, where I’d sit on the terrace and watch like a dutiful boyfriend.
It was the day after our awkward dinner at the Casino, and I have to say I felt somewhat guilty for being in a mood like that – like I was – practically spoiling Doris’ outing. It helped no one for me to sour my Gordon’s high spirits either, but later, in our room alone, I was able to explain a bit more about that creepy vision I had in the woods, and although he seemed a concerned, he made me see it’d just been some random thought anyway. “Overly tired” he explained, and I had a weird feeling that he knew I was with Doris when the smelly, primal face flashed before me. Anyway, I laughed at myself for letting it get to me like that, and more importantly, my boy forgave my pissy-ness with a hug.
Now I’ve flipped the leaf and vowed to relax and have a good time at Lloyd’s considerable expense.
I snapped out of my thoughts all of a sudden and realized I was thoroughly lost. Somehow I’d passed out of the sunlit public spaces into a darker, more intimate section of the house. My light-fingered ways came back to me; private spaces meant secret nooks where valuables could be subject to pilfering. A little stealthy scouting was called for.
I came to a door that appeared different than the others, but in the dim light, it might have been my imagination.
A quick scan up and down the passage assured myself I was alone, so I reached for the knob.
As quietly as I could, I twisted it, and to my surprise, it opened.
The room beyond was like a converted dressing room with red walls and no windows.
Again I looked, and seeing yours truly remained unobserved, went in.
On one of the side walls was heavy drapery, but I could see a faint pool of light puddling at the curtain’s feet. Slowly, one hand drew the fabric panel aside.
Astounded but still, I opened the other one too.
What I saw was a shrine of some kind. A pair of red-bulbed candle lamps cast a crimson pall on a painting in a gilt frame. But WTF! Who was this guy?
He looked like a slick-haired accountant, thin mustache and all. He wore a ranchero shirt in white with black pocket flaps; wrapping his neck was a black and white scarf arranged like a tie; the expression on his mid-forties face was placid and saintlike.
There was a kneeler in front of the picture, and a sort of garland of silk magnolia leaves, pink roses and sunny sunflowers. This draped the area between the portrait and the place to worship.
I leaned in closer, because pinned to the wall all around the man’s painting were passport-sized photos. Most were black and white, formal studio shots, but all were of young men with dark hair and determined expressions.
Before I got nervous and retreated, I noticed there was a placard attached to the gold frame. I didn’t know what it meant, but it said: “El bandido generoso.”
Drawing the curtains so nothing was out of place, and leaving this shrine as worthless to my goal, I had my thieving hackles raised.
Turning around, there was a piece of furniture on the opposite wall: a cabinet with doors underneath. The top had two fancy Roman columns supporting a flat pendant.
I went there and delicately worked the folding doors like shutters between the Corinthian pillars.
Slowly, my heart rate accelerated; bit by bit, a glimpse of gold met my covetous eyes. ‘Lotto!’ I thought.
Inside this second shrine, a marble pedestal supported an old-as-fuck looking statue of a naked man. His rippling muscles were all shown in jeweler precision, while a three-pronged fishing spear rose from his right foot up to his hand.
I picked it up. It was not attached to the base, but heavy nonetheless. The gleaming surface of ‘the god,’ and the pound or two of weight for such a portable, pocketable treasure, told me this was a high karat of pure gold.
Itching to nab it now, I placed it carefully back as it was and closed up the shrine.
‘Later,’ I thought, ‘when the time is right.’
I hurriedly left the room, shut the door as quietly as a rat, and headed back the way I suppose I’d come.
Rounding one blind corner, I ran squarely into Trọng. We jumped for a second in surprise, and I quickly scanned him; he was also in tennis clothes with a fresh towel around his neck, a Dolce & Gabbana headband was in place, and the man held a racket and Gucci gym bag in one hand.
“What are you doing here, in me and Lloyd’s private—”
“I got lost,” I laughed. “This place is too enormous!”
The Vietnamese guy smiled, unguarded. “I know. It’s great, huh?”
I nodded my head, happy he suspected nothing. My thought was truncated though, for with his white polo shirt being open as it was, I spied a heavy gold chain around his neck for the first time. By the lump in the fabric, I could tell there was a weighty pendant at the end, but I couldn’t see what it was.
“Going back outside?” Trọng asked.
“Yep. Lead the way.”
“Sure, handsome. Follow me.”
As he started to walk, his tone dipped a bit seriously. “And be careful where you wander, Kohl.”
I was silent.
“Oh, really?” I asked.
“Yes. I’d advise you to be wary of stray mountain lions.”
I was astounded. “There’s some on Catalina Island?!”
He paused just as we re-entered the sunlit public corridor. “Yes, Kohl. There is at least one thirsty cougar in this house for sure.”
After a moment or two of just staring at one another, we both burst out laughing.
Trọng re-shouldered his bag and led on.
“So, that part of upstairs is for you and Lloyd. What about—”
“Doris has her own domain on the other side of the house – her fortress of solitude – where she’s welcomed to stay, as far as I’m concerned.”
“I see, but don’t you two come into conflict?”
“What’s life without a little spice?” He smiled wickedly.
Chuckling, I admitted, “That’s true.”
“She has her interests, and I have mine.”
We neared the grand staircase leading down. I stopped him at the top step. “But Doris does not mind you living here – so close to Lloyd?”
He sailed on down the steps, tossing back a flip reply. “Why would she?! Better to keep your rivals close to hand, where you can see them, as the old saying goes.”
I followed and caught up with him at the first landing.
He continued with his original line of thought. “Don’t feel sorry for her. She makes out all right in this fucked-up world. She doesn’t suffer in her role as ‘beard.’”
We arrived on the ground floor’s marble tiles. “But, still she must be lonely.”
That statement made him chuckle.
“She compensates herself freely with Lloyd’s money and political connections. She’s no Little Bo Peep lost her sheep; as I say, more a female predator than anything else.”
I laughed. “You warning me?”
We stopped at the glass doors to the terrace overlooking the tennis courts. “Advising you, and you’re welcome to the advice, as it’s free. Any favor she asks you to do for her may not come with the same guarantee.”
He winked before pasting on a grin and sallying forth into the sunshine.
I trailed, going with my book to a table shaded by an umbrella. In a few minutes, I was settled and watching Trọng ‘tapping out’ Lloyd from the match.
The sexy man spotted me and made his way over. Meanwhile, Gordon and the Vietnamese guy started to play. Whacks from tennis rackets and tightly-wound spheres of felt and rubber bouncing on the compacted clay wove a background tapestry of sound.
Lloyd pulled out a chair and sat across from me. The front edge of his hair was moist from perspiration, although the expression on his face remained cool.
Youthful grunts were added to the ambient noises of smacking sounds, and blended with them to transition into regular beats like a heart; me and Lloyd just observed one another without words, frowns or smiles. None of them seemed necessary.
A bead of sweat rolled down his throat and collected in the sexy tanned divot below his voice box.
He inhaled and gestured to a servant. The uniformed woman brought over a silver tray, from which Lloyd lifted a box and dismissed her again.
Drawing his seat closer to the table, he cocked his head like invitation for me to come and see.
I did just in time for him to open a dark-green case with a gold crown logo embossed in the lower corner. Out came a heavy Rolex watch.
“Hold out your hand,” he said.
Swallowing, I did.
He slipped it on and brushed the most sensitive part of my inner wrist as he closed the latch. Lloyd looked up and held my eyes. “Feel that?”
He meant the weight; I did.
“It’s 18k. Solid gold, diamonds around the face.” He pushed the empty box towards me. “And it’s yours now.”
The reverberations of the game faded far into the background. I was dizzy and hoped Lloyd assumed it was from emotion. In truth of fact, I was assessing how much I could get for it back on the mainland – the ‘no questions asked’ price at the ‘no receipt required’ pawnshop.
My eyes filled simultaneously with alligator tears and dollar signs.
I suddenly realized I must have been grinning too, for I could see Lloyd’s hopes were up. Deciding to play into them, I rose in my seat, took the man’s clammy cheeks in both hands and kissed him, with tongue.
The heartbeat sounds completely stopped.
When I opened my eyes, Doris was standing there with a tray of icy glasses and a pitcher of lemonade.
She set the tray down with equally frigid motions and waited there. “Am I interrupting?”
The sounds returned.
“No, dear!” Lloyd leapt to his feet and turned her cheek to kiss it, loudly. At the same time, behind her back, his free hand made a broom and dustpan pantomime towards the tabletop, and I got it.
While she was distracted, I swept the Rolex box into my lap and lowered my wrists to remove the watch out of sight.
“You sit,” Lloyd told his wife. “I’m going to shower and change. I’ll be back in a little while to join you in some of your sweet lemonade.” He left her to silently turn her wrath on me.
I smiled and gestured to the seat.
While Gordon and Trọng continued to play, she poured me a glass, eventually sitting across from yours truly looking rather suspicious. “What was that about?”
“Um – just showing some appreciation. It’s been such a lovely stay so far.”
Silently, she dispensed a glass for herself. “Good. I’m glad you feel you’re one of the family.” Her glance wandered to the court and landed briefly with a frown on Trọng.
Maybe I shouldn’t have laughed, but I couldn’t quite help it. Under-table, I popped the watch into its box.
Doris sipped, then picked up my paperback. Sarcasm dripped from her voice as she read off the title. “Shifters in the Dusk…?”
“Yeah. It’s a really cool take on high school were-panthers and their hot chick girlfriend cheerleaders who are a coven of were-witches.”
She rolled her eyes. “God. What next – shifter-frogs and vampire mosquitoes?”
I half chuckled. “Well, if they are teenage alphas and their straight fuck buddies, folks will pay to read it.” I shrugged. “It’s our escapist age, I suppose.”
“Yes. Reality is getting more and more unbelievable, so we run away to only slightly more outlandish escapism.” Again her gaze shifted to Trọng, and I started to feel uncomfortable.
She must have sensed it because Doris smiled and invited me to drink.
When I set my glass down again, she was holding a wrapped gift. It took me a moment to realize it had been lying on the tray the whole time.
“Here, Kohl. A little something for you.”
I took it. It was rather thin and about the size of a piece of loose-leaf paper. “Are you sure? You don’t—”
“Please. I want you to have it.”
I turned it over in my hand. It was surprisingly heavy for its size, and tastefully wrapped in Asian-style gift wrap.
I released the bindings, and held up a brand new electronic tablet.
“I took the liberty,” Doris informed me, “of uploading my e-book library of about a thousand titles – everything from The Satyricon, to Dignity. I hope you enjoy.”
I depressed the power button and watched the screen come to life, thinking that this one might be easy to liquidate at a swap meet. “Cheers, Doris. It’s thoughtful and handy. I’m – speechless. Your gener…osity….”
I looked up, and the woman was tapping her cheek for a kiss as well.
When I leaned over, Doris quickly turned and planted a wet one on my lips.
She said, “I have another gift for you as well.”
“One you’ll find laid out in your room once you return.”
“All right. Can’t wait to see it, and thank you.”
She pulled me down for another kiss, positively purring, “You’re welcome.”
The bright light of my cellphone screen made me wince in pain. 2:01AM, it said.
I turned it off and snuggled down on my pillow again. Gordon thought I hadn’t notice him get out of bed and sneak out of our room more than an hour ago; he thought he could engage in his extracurricular activities without me being any the wiser – but he was wrong. So, I’d been biding my time, waiting to catch my skanky boyfriend red-headed, or handled, whatever it is.
In the meantime, I tried not to fume, told myself it would be unwise to make a big scene in our hosts’ house in the middle of the night – especially the house of our hosts so liberally sprinkled with goodies to lift.
Instead, I rotated my head to the right and watched the moonlight inch across the carpet. An ironic thought crept into my mind, one that made me chuckle softly in the darkness.
I didn’t want to sleep with either husband or ‘wife’ – not with Lloyd because I assumed he was a total top like me – but Doris was the type of woman my ex would love to ‘slam.’ I laughed to think how Assauer was getting his schoolboy uniform torn and backside beaten right now by Hojax, while all the while I had this hot woman I couldn’t use. He’d be so ‘sore’ and jealous – downright upset, I guess – I’d have to make sure and feed him all the sordid details. I’m cruel, I know…but he’s the same. It’s part of what makes me and my ex click so well together. Years ago, when we were late-teen-age roustabouts on the mean streets of Braunschweig, both at university going after our teaching degrees, I grudgingly had to accept Assauer’s Bi inclinations – habits, tendencies, proclivities, fetishes, ‘choices,’ whichever is most PC – and realize he couldn’t help it; the poor fuck was born that way. I mean, like it or not, we have to accept shortcomings in the ones we love, right…? Even if it’s something as emasculating as a hoo-ha addiction.
Anyway, we had our good times – me and Assauer – and he did help me out of the jam…staying true to me, or to our love, for what it was worth. But we’d had our bad times too, and I suppose there were nights just like this one where one or the other of us were in bed, alone, on the verge of inciting ‘a scene.’
As far as my boy and Assauer, they did have one thing in common though – they could both drive me to total distraction! Another chuckle accompanied a sigh and a changed view as I counted shadows on the ceiling.
Dinner intrigue! Gott im Himmel, that had been more than a scene: more like a whole Act for sure, as eating with people in my life has come to be these days.
Once I re-entered our room this afternoon, I found a brand-new Armani suit laid out on the bed. The perfumed note on top said: “Kohl, I thought you should look nice. Lloyd never wore this, but I think you should. Doris.”
The slick fabric of the trousers gave me a boner as I accompanied my boy down to our evening meal; the suit fit well, and I knew I looked sharp with Gordon on my arm, and Lloyd’s 18-karat gift on my wrist.
A dining room of sea views, with open French doors and gauzy curtains, looked stunning in the summer sun of late evening.
However, as the meal progressed, I felt like a painter invited to the Last Supper. While Lloyd sat next to me, Doris, Gordon and Trọng were all arranged on the long side opposite us. And the two rivals engaged in shocking behavior: Doris fixing my boy’s napkin under his chin and engaging in other sick motherly stuff to the point of making me want to toss my salad. Hell, I’m surprised she didn’t cut the boy’s meat and spoon feed him.
Trọng, literally on the other hand, was flirty and touchy-feely. Frankly, if I didn’t know any better, judging by the Vietnamese guy’s groping, I would have thought they were boyfriend and boyfriend already.
To divert my hot tendencies, I complimented our hostess on the décor of the room, the fineness of the Ginori dinner service, the luxe of the food, and told Doris she had “angry skills.”
The others puzzled a moment, and Gordon laughed his ass off at me. “He means ‘mad skills,’ and Doris, I agree.”
The smile he gave me then – like a little boy in his mommy’s kitchen in front of a rack of cooling cookies – made me sick.
After I had had my fill of this sticky display, I’ll admit it, I resorted to the tactics of jealousy. To Doris, I openly thanked her for the suit, pinching the cuff fabric, and enjoying the slow recognition in both Trọng and Lloyd’s eyes that the ‘Lady of the House’ had given me some of her lord and master’s best attire.
It was also the first Gordon had heard of the woman’s gift.
Then, to really drive home the mistrustfulness in my boy, I pulled up my sleeve and pointedly looked at the time.
“Thank you so much, Lloyd,” I said, lifting and kissing the back of his hand. “It’s the nicest gift I’ve ever received.”
Ha-ha. Now no one was happy! Trọng fumed at the extravagance of his partner’s bauble to win my affections – or ass, as the case might have been. Doris ground her teeth to know her own present had been effortlessly bested. And Gordon looked stunned to see me indulge in PDA with our sexy-ass host, which was how the boy himself described the sea captain.
And what of Lloyd? Unlike the pot-boiling, steaming-mad vibes coming from the three across from us, the man by my side appeared calculating and turned on.
But now, 2 in the morning, I was half-tempted to get out of bed and go to the room Lloyd had showed me after dinner with the words “Come to me later, if you want.”
Did I want? Maybe he’d be happy just to suck my dick, but I doubted it.
‘What was that sound…?’ I wondered.
There was a shadow beneath the door to the hallway too. I quickly turned on my side towards the window, prepped a waiting finger on the lamp, and pretended to be asleep. I’d catch my guilty teen-Engel red-herringed….
The door opened quietly as a whisper. It closed again in the same manner, and after a few moments of silence, I felt the sheets move as someone climbed into bed next to me.
I flipped the switch, lurched to a sitting position and yelled at the top of my lungs: “SLUT!”
Doris blinked back at me with innocent eyes.
I leapt out of bed wanting to apologize, but covered my nakedness instead.
“Not you! I thought you were Gordon.”
“He’s busy with Trọng.”
“But what are you doing—”
“I thought you’d be pleased….”
Looking around and not seeing my boxers anywhere near to hand, I grabbed the corner of the sheet and carefully slid back into bed.
Doris, who was wearing a frilly black nightgown and robe, kneeled and reached out with unflappable ease to stroke my arm. “You looked so fine this evening, Kohl, and word got to me that you were on your own tonight – well, I thought I’d stop by for a visit.”
I gulped down a lump. “A ‘visit,’ at 2:30 in the morning?”
“And to give you this.” She sheepishly pulled a dark red box from the pocket of her dressing gown and placed it in my hands.
It was surprisingly heavy – a familial theme in Lloyd’s household – and Cartier was emblazoned in the lower-right corner. “Are you sure?” I asked her.
She appeared slightly hurt by my inquiry. “Yes, I’m sure. When I saw what Lloyd had given you…I, well, I wanted to let you know, I care too.”
‘Scheisse!’ I thought. ‘Rich people only know love via a price tag.’ But, I grinned appreciatively and cracked the container open.
At first I couldn’t tell what it was. It looked like a black billfold, with a huge diamond and platinum clasp and corner guards, but opening it up revealed an 18-karat gold cellphone case – the windows for the camera and flash were also encrusted with diamonds.
“Wow,” I said, fumbling over the worthlessly precious item.
“I hope you like it.”
“I do. You don’t have a use for it—”
“No, it’s yours now, Kohl.”
“Thank you.” And although it seemed ludicrous, considering I was trapped in bed with a rich and beautiful woman at 2 in the morning, I shook her hand, much to her bemusement.
Doris suddenly let out a burst of air, and collapsed like a Hollywood starlet, arms draped across my scantily covered legs.
I tugged myself to sit fully upright with my back against the headboard.
Her beautiful brown eyes peered up at me. “I’m lonely, Kohl. None of this is easy.”
I was not sure what to say.
“That day in the woods,” she went on sadly, “you wanted to ask me how I came to be married to Lloyd, didn’t you?”
I nodded; she clearly had understood even then.
“Well, I’m sorry to say, I am a slut too. Not for dick, as you kids might say, but for other things. A good life, a suitable position—”
“But you don’t have to stay married. You’ve done your duty to stop the rumor mill.”
She sat more erect, gracefully kicking her legs out from under her frilly coverings.
“It’s worse than that, Kohl. You see, Lloyd and I signed a prenuptial agreement. He agrees to support me financially throughout the marriage as I see fit, and I agreed to accept nothing in a divorce settlement if I initiate a split – a non-equal disposition of the nuptials, as the lawyers wrote it.”
“Oh. So you’d be broke.”
“But…” an oddly inappropriate sparkle attached itself to her. “There is another clause, one that benefits me, if it’s ever activated.”
She inched her way up my body. “If Lloyd ever outs himself – for whatever reason – the ‘dutiful wife’ gets a cool 100-million, tax-free.”
I got goose bumps, and she noticed.
“You see, Kohl. I am a generous soul. If that little, itty-bitty clause”— her fingers caressed the hair around my belly button—“ever comes into effect, I’ll gladly peel off a million or two to show gratitude to a helping hand.”
‘Wow,’ I thought. ‘Trọng’s cougar-crossing warning had been a good one.’
As I was seeing more dollar signs in my eyes, she launched herself at my mouth, all lipstick and tongue.
Just then, wouldn’t you know it, Gordon walked in. “What. The. Fuck!”
We paused as we were – caught red-handed – and looked over to see him still standing in the open doorway, fingers on the knob.
“Oh, dear,” Doris said, as she climbed off of me. “Looks like I climbed into the wrong bed.”
Me and Gordon watched in silence as she stood, arranged her teddy and robe, and then mussed her hair back into place with a great deal of dignity – all of this before making her way to the exit.
My boy stood aside.
“Silly me,” she said to him, but smiled like the least silly thing in the world.
As Doris closed the door behind her, she said, “Night, gentlemen. And Kohl, do remember what I told you about that little contractual matter, all right…?”
Click. She was gone.
“What was that about?” my boyfriend asked.
“Some scheme she’s got with Lloyd to get a shit-load of money—”
“No! I meant her being in our bed, her face-sucking out your soul.”
I stood up and went to him – it looked like the scene would be coming after all, but not the one I envisioned. So, I hugged him, pressing his lower back into me.
“She’s lonely – stuck in a loveless, passionless relationship. Thank God that’s not us, huh?” I kissed the nape of his neck, raising duck flesh there and making him moan as he gripped onto me for support.
“Poor sad bitch,” he mumbled.
“Yes.” I kissed around to the front of his throat and up to his chin.
He pushed me back a bit, using his sweatshirt sleeve to rub it across my mouth with a frown. He held it back so I could see it smeared with lipstick.
”I’m sorry, baby,” I pleaded. “I am sorry.”
The moment I bit my lip in genuine remorse, he kissed me, grabbing the side of my head and making me know instantly I was forgiven.
I pulled off his shirt and lowered his JP bottoms. A moment later we were cuddling in bed, my boy’s head resting against my heart.
“Let’s not quibble,” he said.
And I stroked his wavy locks in agreement. “We’ve been through so much together.”
“Hard to believe eighteen months ago….”
“Yeah. Things have moved so fast since Aptos High.”
He paused; I felt his body tense up. Nudging his chin so I could see his eyes, I asked, “What is it?”
“Um. Nothing. I just got lost in a moment thinking about the night we ran away, and about my father.”
I hugged Gordon. “Don’t fret about him, or your mom either.”
“Her I don’t worry—” He halted mid-thought and started again. “That is, I have faith that they’re all right. As for bringing a scandal down on their heads, they’re not the type to spread rumors concerning their own flesh and blood.”
I knew my how my boy felt, at least partially. We shared the pain of a sudden separation from den Eltern.
“Did I ever tell you…?” Gordon’s voice had slipped into storytelling mode. “It was hard being the youngest Sanchez boy at the nursery. They all saw our dad play favorites with me; they all got yelled at, while I got patted on the head for my screw-ups. They didn’t want to stay there; maybe never felt invited to, and so, off they went to college and careers outside the family business – leaving the nursery and Dad far behind.”
I felt a tear on my chest. “Oh, honey—”
“You know the story of Joseph, right?” my boy asked.
“Mary and Joseph, Joseph?”
“No, the other one in the Bible. How the teenage Joseph was the youngest brother, and the Queer one too; how his brothers beat him and left him for dead at the bottom of a dry well because their dad gave him a coat the bros thought was too ‘gay.’”
“Ah, yes, that one. Why…?”
He wiped his nose and let out a single laugh. “Cuz that’s how I felt. My dad looked to me to be the one anyway. The one who’d take over and run the operation someday. And, now….”
I slowly swiped a precious tear from his eye, and then brushed his hair back. “Sometimes I’m not sure what we’re doing in life.”
He used my chest for support with his hand. “But I don’t regret it, Kohl. Just so you know.”
“I know, baby. I don’t regret it either, not for a moment.”
He settled down again and I continued stroking his hair with my hand.
I inhaled and spoke with new resolve. “Let’s just stick to the plan and look for opportunities to escape with some of these 1%-er’s good stuff.”
“Yeah,” he agreed.
After a silent moment or two, my calm was fully restored, so I could ask with a slight chuckle, “You sexy little throt; I’ve seen the way you’ve been flirting with Trọng.”
He defended himself with an easy, carefree grin. “The same thirsty way you’ve been acting with Lloyd and his wife, you mean?”
“Yeah. I guess so.” I don’t blush, so I know I didn’t right then. “But the sea captain’s our host! I have to string him along.”
“Well, Lloyd’s partner is our almost-host; I have to do the same.”
“So, did you get tired of Trọng?”
He chuckled and climbed on top of me, sitting in my lap with hands on the headboard. He knew I was defused, and could speak truthfully.
“Yeah. He’s an indifferent bottom – just lays there like a carp, mouth open. Plus, he’s got this pendant that kept distracting me.”
I rumpled my brows. “A pendant?”
“Yeah. A weird one – like a winged dick in gold. He said it has meaning to him, but he wouldn’t tell me what.”
Queasiness rose in my gut. “He has, one of, those…?”
“Yes. Says he never takes it off. Why?”
“No reason.” I changed the subject with a smirk. “An indifferent bottom, huh? Not like you, my little power pathick lover.”
Gordon smacked me, then laughed. “I never should have taught you that word.”
“Why? I love it. Love it when you are under me; love it when you moan my name and lock eyes on mine.”
“Love it when I make you cum, saying you’ll love me forever.”
“Yeah. And I will, you know.”
He leaned down and grazed his mouth across mine. “Good.”
We wound up hugging, and I was glad he couldn’t see the dread concern on my face.