When Davis finally talked her into showing him where she lived, he knew he was getting somewhere with this woman. He pulled in to her apartment building’s garage, and parked the car to take her to her apartment door. He literally laughed at the astounded look she gave him. “I’m capable of getting to my door,” she informed him.
Going to her car door he opened it up for her, taking her hand to help her out. “Yeah, but the southern hospitality of a gentleman says a man should always walk a woman to her door at night,” he told her, guiding her by the small of her back into the building.
“You know we’re in Boston, right?”
He smirked as he shrugged. When they stepped into the elevator she leaned up against the back wall, very at ease.
“What floor, sugar?” he asked.
“The third,” she said, her arms crossed over her chest, watching him, and that need to touch her was hard to hold back after what had transpired between them this evening. As they stood next to each other, Davis found that he had to touch her once again, and slipped his hand around her waist, pulling her close to him. She glanced over at him and he knew the smile he gave her was one full of promises.
They walked down the hall on the third floor was and came to a neat and tidy door, in a nicely lit hallway. “So this is your apartment?” he smiled at her.
“No, this is my best friend Allie’s apartment. I stay with her or my other best friend Kitty when I’m back home.”
His hands slid to each hip, feeling the contours of her body, and his mind was racing with ideas. “And why don’t you have your own apartment, Ms. Black?”
She gazed up at him. “Who said I didn’t? But I’m not home all that often. So instead I stay with my friends when I’m here,” she whispered, looking at his lips as she spoke.
He growled when he couldn’t do what he just wanted to do. Instead he took it slowly. “I’m going to be asking for some vanilla before I leave you this evening, Abie. Lord knows there’s more I want to do with you. But my sister’s at my place.”
She smiled up at him. “That’s fine. Just make sure you realize that’s a tradeoff for a spanking that you’ll owe me…Davis,” she purred.
“Damn it!” he whispered before pulling her into his arms and taking her mouth. She opened for him, letting his tongue slip into her sweet mouth. Her hands came around his neck, as her fingers ran through his hair before taking hold of it in her fist. He was shocked that he liked that little bit of aggression when she pulled it.
When he finally could manage to release her, his eyes bore down at her. “When can I see you again?” he managed to get out without opening the damn door to the apartment, and just taking her like he wanted to.
“I work all week, and I have prior engagements that I have to be at,” she told him, but it came out a little breathy to his ears. With that he had to kiss her again, and did.
Once again he fought not to take her. “I’ll see you tomorrow. We can work out the rest of the week then,” he ordered.
Her hands ran down the front of him then, going to his ass. “Has anyone ever told you, you can be somewhat pushy?” she asked with a smile.
Davis grinned, keeping her tightly in his arms. “Yeah…they have.”
She gave him a pinch on his ass that made him jump, and then she laughed. “I’m the sorta woman who pushes back.” She smiled, going for her door.
“I’ll be here at three,” he informed her. She shrugged, stepping through the door and shutting it behind her. Hell, at this point he wasn’t even sure she’d be here when he got there tomorrow. Shit! This woman had him in knots.
Once he finally made it to the penthouse, it was really late. It was only a sixteen-minute drive from Revere back to Boston. But after the night he’d had, she was lucky he didn’t just go into her place and stay the night. Then he’d give her a good taste of old-fashioned fucking vanilla.
Adire Black… Abie. Shit, he liked that name on her. She was so damn beautiful, with so much personality.Now he just had to find a way under that protective shell she wore around her heart. And see why this woman was so damn defensive when it came to men.
He smiled as he waved to the night doorman. Holy shit, he never thought he’d be happy to say that he had a serious woman back in his life. After Jenna’s betrayal, honestly he’d never thought about sharing his heart again.
Now he had to think of something fun and interesting to take her out to do, when all he wanted to do was bring her back to his place. He groaned, knowing even though he got a good start tonight, it wasn’t going to be enough.
Damn, he couldn’t wait for tomorrow night. But for tonight he was going to need a nice cold shower before he laid down for bed. He went into the kitchen and pulled out something to drink before he headed back for his shower, when his sister came in from the back rooms. “Hey bubba, you made it home. And look to be in one piece to boot,” she chortled at him.
He took off his jacket and threw it on a stool. “Yeah, but at the same time, it was a great fucking night, Jess.”He smiled at her before he took a drink.
She sat down on one of the stools, inspecting her brother. “Holy shit, bubba! Are you telling me you agreed to be, like, getting your ass whipped and shit?” she asked him in complete amazement.
“Well, no, not as much as what you’re thinking. We came to an understanding with what we’re both willing to give each other, and let’s just say she’s expanding her horizons in the world of vanilla.” He leered and headed back to his room, and she followed after him.
She didn’t go into his room, just stood by the door, and he knew she had loads of questions running through her mind. “Hey, do you think you could stay somewhere tomorrow night? I’m taking Abie out tomorrow, and I’d like to bring her back here to show her the penthouse.”
His sister shrugged. “Yeah, I can do that.” He turned to see her watching him. “What, Jess?” he asked, getting annoyed. It was late and he wanted this day to be over, so tomorrow could begin.
“Nothing. Well, nothing bad. It’s just been a while since I’ve seen you this interested in a woman. I’m taking it, this is more than getting in her panties?”
He leaned back against the dresser and ran his hands through his hair. “Hell, Jessie, I think she would’ve preferred for just a couple rolls in the hay. I think that’s what she expected as well; I was the one who had to ask for more,” he laughed.
Jess leaned on the door jam. “Looks like you finally caught one who’s going to keep your ass busy, Davis,” laughing right along with him. Then something popped into her head.“Oh! One more thing I forgot to tell you about. Poppa is on his way to back to Boston for a bit.”
Davis sat heavily at the end of his bed. “Holy hell, when is this supposed to be taking place?”
“Not sure. Momma did tell him she wants a divorce, though; she even gave him the papers this time. I guess when he was caught with his…pants down, she was really done with cheating this time around.” She sighed. “To say that Poppa’s losing his mind would be an understatement I would think.” Jess still leaned up against the door jam, picking at her long nails. “I think he’s going to want to talk with you about keeping him on the board or something, Davis. You know he’s going to end up with nothing if you don’t help him.”
He looked up at his sister, who looked genuinely upset. “You know he did this to himself, Jess. What he’s done to Momma all these years, he was a fool to think she’d always take his shit,” he said. “Now it’s come back to bite him in the ass. There’s really not much I can do about it, or truthfully want to, for that matter.”
She nodded at him. “I know, bubba. And you and he have always been at each other’s throats. But now that you’re all fancied up, and working in the company, maybe he’ll go easier on you.”
His hands dropped to his lap. “I don’t want this life, Jess. I really do want to be back on the ranch. This is fine for now, and I’ll get everything in place so the company will stay in the Gravin name. But then I want out.”
Jess ambled over to him and sat next to him on the bed. “I know, Davis. It’ll all work out in the end, so don’t stress…okay?” she said lovingly.
Morning came much quicker than I expected. I really wanted to see my mom today, and I needed to get some things done before Davis showed up at my door this afternoon. Rolling out of bed, I made my way out into the kitchen where Kitty and Allie were sitting at the counter in conversation.
“Good morning, ladies.” I yawned, still trying to wake up, then decided to give Kitty some crap.“And Kitty, you’ve finally let your man off you to come see me this morning? Wow, what a treat. His penis must be worn raw by now.” I snickered at her crossing her arms at me.
“I’m not that bad, A.B.,” she fumed.
This was when Allie chimed in. “So…”
I went to the coffee maker, put in the pod and turned back to her, stretching. “So, what?” I replied, and I knew I was killing her.
“Don’t even go there, A.B., Kitty told me some hottie took you by the waist leading you out of the club…and you let him! So now tell us who the mystery man is who was given special permission to manhandle you?” she yelled excitedly at me.
I laughed, turning around to start my coffee. “Adire Apple Black!” Allie now yelled at me. “Who was that man?”
“Okay, okay, don’t get your panties in a twist. It was Davis Mills,” I told them, going to get the sugar and creamer out.
“No way! Is that who brought you home last night as well?” Kitty asked, practically jumping in her chair and making her red ponytail bounce along with her.
Standing against the counter, I took my first sip and looked at my best friends, letting them stew for just a moment before I answered them. “Yes,” I replied, and they both started screaming. Allie came and gave me a hug, and Kitty was bouncing, I kid you not, like a damn ball.
Allie pulled away. “So when are you going to see him again?” she asked curiously.
Shrugging at her giddiness, I rolled my eyes at their enjoyment. “He’s supposed to pick me up today at three. But I’m not sure what time I’ll be back, is that okay with you? I mean I know Peter just left and all…”
She was smiling widely now. “Hell yeah, I mean our A.B. is actually going on a date! The first date in…how many years, Kitty?”
“I think we’re on eight now.” She paused. “Holy shit, eight years since…”
That made me hang my head, and Allie threw the dish towel at her. “Shut up, Kitty!” she yelled at her.
Kitty seemed upset. “Sorry, A.B. I know you don’t like to think about…it,” she fretted. At this moment it really didn’t matter to me. I guess I was really ready to move on…finally. “Kitty honey, don’t worry about it. The past is the past, and I guess I’m ready for something a little new right now. So let’s just drop it,” I told them.
“I’m so happy, sweetie!” Allie said, putting away the plates on the counter. “Look, I have to get to the restaurant early today. We’re trying a whole new menu for the holiday season. I think we’re going to add a little spice, which will rock!”
Kitty came and gave me a squeeze. “I can’t wait to meet Mr. Hottie in person, chickie,” she said with a wink, and headed to the door. “Hey, where you going?” I asked, as she got ready to leave.
“I’ve got work today. I’ll only be gone for about five days this time,” she told me, with a wink and her chirpy tone…damn stewardess.
“Fine. Have a safe trip,” I hollered as she shut the door behind her.
Lord, now I had to go prepare myself for seeing my mother today. If she was still in distress then I might have to talk to Dr. Bill again about upping her dose on her happy pills. If I were lucky, she’d be okay, and then maybe I could have a chat with her.
I went to the bedroom, thinking how in the hell I could possibly have a talk with my mother about men, after what she’s gone through in her life, and witnessing what I’ve gone through in mine.
No, maybe Lucy would be the better alternative. I mean, she was the one I told about the BDSM, and she didn’t judge me. In fact her with her Georgian sweetness, she helped me through some things when no one else could. Maybe she would be the one to help me sort out this whole Davis situation I now found myself in.
I brushed my teeth, washed my face and, makeup free, I threw on my oversized bulky sweater, black stretch pants, nerdy black-rimmed glasses and my grandfather’s ascot. I glanced at the clock on the wall, and was almost out the door when my phone started to ring in my trench coat pocket.
When I saw the number, my heart started to beat out of my chest. Grayson was calling me again; he was becoming more persistent with trying to get hold of me. At this moment I didn’t have time to talk to him, so I declined his call.
I got into my cab, sat down dialing Yvette’s number, and looked at the driver. “Morgan house on Salam Street, please.”He nodded and started off, and Yvette’s phone just rang once more, then went to voice mail.
“Yvette, it’s Adire. I’ve had your pet Grayson calling my number for the last couple weeks now, and he’s all crazy on me. I was hoping everything was going good with you two. Just give me a buzz to let me know that you’re okay.” I took a breath to calm down as I watched the streets pass by me through the window. “I’m going to call Inga and see if she’s spoken to you as well in the last couple of weeks. If you are okay, and this is one of your twisted pranks you love to pull, I’ve got to tell you, not funny, and you’re freaking the shit out of me. So give me a call! Okay? Well, talk to you soon.”
Hanging up the phone, I just had a bad feeling in my gut about this whole thing.Subconsciously my hand took hold of my cap, fixing it, needing to do something with my hands other than twist them off with worry.
Soon I was at my destination and as I paid the cabbie, my phone rang twice, then stopped. I pulled it out once again, checking the number, only to see Yvette’s. I was standing in front of the building when I quickly called her back. But no one answered; once again, it just rang. “Shit!” I swore before I walked inside.
Lucy was inside at the desk, drinking her diet soda in a can with a straw. That always cracked me up. I always accused her of thinking she was in some eighties soda commercial. “Morning, Lucy, is Mom already awake?” I asked, leaning against the desk.
That’s when I noticed her very well manicured appearance this morning. Her hair was done in a fancy twist, her dark skin looked fresh, and she even had some makeup on. “Well my, my, isn’t the Georgia peach looking yummy today!” I joked with her, trying to give myself a southern accent. She smiled and waved me away with her hand. “What’s Miss Lucy Bell all gussied up for?”
I swear she was blushing. It’s times like these when life is good! “Oh, you sweet talker. You just hush now!” she scolded me with a smile. I draped over the desk, kissing her cheek, and waving hi to Marybeth.
“So how’s Mom doing? I gotta tell you, I’ve been freaking out since all that happened with her,” I confessed as we walked to her room.
“Well, she was admirable, the day after. Almost like she turned off her brain to whatever bothered her,” she told me. We opened the door and my mother was still asleep in her bed. Her body was all scrunched up, like being in that position would keep her safe from whatever haunted her dreams.
I glanced back at Lucy and then at my mother. “Shouldn’t she be up, and all primped out? I mean, it’s ten o’clock. Mom should have her earrings and lipstick on, and her hair already done, looking like June Cleaver.”
Lucy shut the door, putting her arm around my shoulder, and walked me to the sitting area outside. It was freezing, but at least it was sunny out when she sat me down on a bench. She lit up a smoke before she addressed me.
“Your momma’s been tired lately. Bill took some blood work to see if something might be going on with her.” She could see my shocked and anxious expression, and started patting my knee. “Now don’t you get yourself all worked up now, sweet pea? You and I both know your momma has these swings sometimes. Bill’s just being cautious, which is a good thing,” she assured me. “Now I’m just letting her get some extra rest is all.” She then inspected me.“Something tells me you’re in a little bit of a pickle yourself with that look on your face… Am I right?”
Sulking where I sat, I kicked a piece of ice off the bench with my foot. “Lord, you’re good.”I pouted, pushing some snow off one of the seats. “You see I’ve met someone, and…”
“Oh lord, now what man wants you spanking his ass?” she chortled at me.
I kicked some snow at her with my boot. “That’s the problem, Luce, he’s not that kind of a guy!” I sighed, exasperated by her ribbing.
She stopped laughing quickly at my attitude. “I’m sorry, sweet pea, normally you’d find that funny.” She moved closer to me. “So what’s going on with you?”
Sighing, I looked up at the sunny sky. “I like this man, I mean, I really like this man. There’s something intoxicating about him, and I’m very attracted to him.” I glanced over to her. “He’s not into the whole dominance thing. He’s very much a man, Lucy. And I find myself wanting to give him some control over things that I normally wouldn’t. Truthfully it makes me feel weak, and out of control of the situation around me. Hell, the man wants to date me. And I’m talking about a real relationship…can you believe that?”
She laughed softly. “Of course I could believe some handsome boy wants to date you. You are an incredible young woman!” she retorted at me.
I glanced over at her with a soft smile. “Are you sure you’re addressing the correct person? Or have you’ve forgotten, I’m thirty-seven now,” I grinned.
Now she took my hand in hers. “That’s young in my book. And age doesn’t mean anything, sweet pea, you might be thirty-seven, but you look twenty-nine.” She winked at me, then sighed at my downcast face. “Life makes us wiser. We learn from our mistakes. We grow from life lessons, and the hardships from our past we try like hell to avoid in the future.”
She squeezed my hand now to make sure I was paying attention to what she was about to say. “You, darling, have had a very dark and troubling past. And you’ve been hurt emotionally, as well as physically by a man who you loved, and thought loved you as well.
“You saw the damage of what a man did to your momma both mentally and physically, when you were very young. As well as your father walking out on the two of you. I think any grievances you have with the opposite sex are grounded in your experiences.
“I know you found healing with what your friends Inga and Yvette showed you, and that’s why your momma and me stayed clear of your feelings on it. You got yourself through all that heartache and all that darkness by ways you sought to work through it, and you did! Now look at you. You’re smart, beautiful, and good to everyone around you. Don’t put on the fake front in front of me. I know who the real A.B. is,” she said lovingly.
I wanted to pull out her pack of cigarettes and just light one up, but refrained. “And this man, do I jump in feet first like he wants? Do I change myself to fit his mold? Because at this moment, Lucy, I feel a little lost,” I said, frustrated with myself.
Her shoulders sagged. “No, sweet pea. You’ve never changed for any man, and that’s what makes you who you are. This boy who wants to date you. He fell for the woman he met, not the woman you think he wants you to be.”
Leaning back against the cold bench, I accepted her words to me. “It’s been so many years since I’ve opened my heart to a man. I’m not sure how to let someone in anymore. Even now when I’m talking to him, I want to bend him to submit to me. But it’s fun to see how he comes back against me as well,” I chuckled.
She laughed. “Oh lord girl, this man is going to have his hands full with you. You want my advice?” she asked.
“Yes, I would love some advice, Lucy,” I told her sincerely.
“Be yourself, sweet pea. If you like this man, and if I know my girl you haven’t gone easy on him, then he likes you as well. But with this man maybe let more of the softer side that you don’t show to everybody peek through. Show him the loving woman under the tuff female exterior.” She stood up, patting my head like I was twelve-year-old girl.
“If anything comes back with your momma, I’ll let you know, sweet pea. You have fun on your date today. Just remember to be yourself. And if that means being all hot and dominant, along with soft and womanly…you’re the only person I know, A.B., who could pull that off!” She grinned and put out her cigarette.