This Is What You Do To Me
The evening hadn’t started off with a plan of seduction. Far from it. Which is why Alaine is so upset. All she had in mind, was to survive the night. Her only intention was to attend the dinner and do the job she is being paid to do.
Somewhere between the time Lucas picked her up at her apartment and the time they entered the hotel suite, something had changed drastically. The lines got blurred somehow.
Alaine cannot pinpoint the exact moment she’d made the decision to offer herself to him. There was no defining factor where she just knew what she wanted.
She supposes that it could have been a combination of things – little encouragements that had accumulated over time urging her to test herself. Or him. Or both of them together.
She thought she’d made it pretty plain what she wanted when she said she wanted to kiss him back. Climbing into bed with a man after telling him you want to be kissed seems like a pretty clear message to her. The way he was behaving, she thought he wanted the same thing. Lucas turning down her offer is not what she expected.
Maybe she was supposed to do more than that – like blurt it out loud. Either way, she won’t be making that mistake again.
Alaine tries to direct her thoughts to anything but the way he pushed her aside and ran.
She rummages through the overnight bag her sister packed in search of sleepwear as she mocks herself for her stupidity.
After pulling out item after item, she stares in shock at the small pink box of condoms tucked in the little side pocket of the satchel. Shock and dismay. She can’t believe that’s what Delah meant when she said ‘be safe’.
Naturally, her discovery channels her thoughts back to Lucas and what hadn’t happened between them. Disappointment that he’d chosen not to stay with her rises anew. Like the idiot that she is, Alaine still wishes that he had.
What will he do if she goes to him now?
Her mind tells her that his reaction won’t be any different from what it had been earlier. If he had wanted to stay, he would have. So she dismisses the idea as what it is -- foolishness.
She’d completely misread the situation. Lucas hadn’t wanted her. Now that she’s thought about it, she realizes that it was stupid of her to think he had.
How could he when he has women like Darcy Peters and Natasha Ingram chasing after him. They’re older, taller, more experienced than her. Of course, he would choose them. What would he want with a prude who doesn’t even know how to kiss?
His rejection hurts. Her first time trying to seduce someone had been an epic fail. And the victim is Lucas Bright! She may never recover from this level of humiliation.
At least, there’s a silver lining that she can think of. She may leave this place with her ego in shambles but at least she will leave with her virtue intact.
Shaking her head against the memory and the tears prickling the backs of her eyes, Alaine returns to the task at hand.
Delah was very generous packing toiletries and cosmetic products for sure. However, she was very stingy in other more important things, like clothing.
Alaine holds up the worn-out, V-neck, white T-shirt to the light. Granted, it is her favourite thing to sleep in because it’s so soft and light. But there is no pajama bottom and this thing offers nothing in the way of modesty.
At this late hour, with her tiredness and her wounded spirit, she doesn’t even want to consider the skimpy outfit laid out for the morning.
She rubs her forehead in frustration. This is a problem. Especially after what happened with Lucas. What is he going think of her now when she appears before him half-clothed?
Most likely, that she came here with the intention to seduce him.
Briefly, she entertains the idea of asking him if he has something decent she could borrow. Maybe a larger T-shirt. As quickly as the idea forms, she banishes it. It’s the worst possible thing she could do right now. Besides, she’s not ready to face him as yet. What had Delah been thinking?
Accepting that this is the situation that she is in, Alaine tugs off her evening gown and slips the t-shirt over her head. It barely covers her butt and her breasts strain against the fabric.
Since Lucas has no designs on her, she doesn’t bother with locking the door. She gave him ample opportunity and he hadn’t taken advantage. So she has nothing to fear from him. Still, when she climbs into bed, she ensures the duvet is secured up to her neck.
While she lies there, Alaine tries to figure out if she had done something wrong that had turned him off. She can only come up with two hypotheses. Either Lucas really doesn’t want her or she has no idea how to throw herself at a man. Whichever of the two it is, they’re both sad commentaries.
More and more relentlessly, thoughts of Lucas beat against her mind, tormenting her. They make it impossible to sleep. Worse yet, she’s dying of thirst. It’s been hours since she last had a drink of water.
Hoping that Lucas isn’t experiencing sleep deprivation like her, Alaine slips out of bed. She tugs her flimsy shirt as far down as it will go and tiptoes unnecessarily across the plush carpet.
Opening the bedroom door slowly, she peers into the darkness and listens for the sound of movement. Hearing nothing and with no sign of him, Alaine races silently through the living area to the minibar.
“Very stealthy, Ms. Knight,” she hears just as she ducks into the refrigerator to grab a bottle of water.
The sound of his voice nearly makes Alaine jumps out of her skin. She yelps and tugs down so firmly on the flimsy t-shirt that the neckline rips.
“I thought you were sleeping,” she exclaims.
Lucas eases into a sitting position and runs a hand over his face. How can he tell her that he’s being kept awake by thoughts of making love to her? He’s seen her in so many different forms since he retired to the sofa. In his mind, he’s taken her in every different way, starting right here on this sofa.
He rises with the intention of availing his sudden thirst as well but Alaine’s sumptuous silhouette unveiled in the faint light of the refrigerator stops Lucas dead in his tracks.
The gentleman in him tries to convince him to look away. But his eyes have a mind of their own. They are fixed and lit with carnal longings upon her little exhibition.
He takes his time trailing a path down her body. The sight of her breasts stalls his breath. They’re round, firm and buoyant. He can imagine them fitting into his palms. How, for such a tiny thing can she have breasts so perfect?
Whether it’s from the cold of the refrigerator or his attention, the peaks harden and strain toward him.
Seeing her this way, Lucas regrets that he hadn’t pursued the opportunity she’d given him earlier. How he longs to run his tongue over her nipples and suck them into his mouth. Would she gasp softly? Or cry out his name?
His exploration continues to outline of her small waist and the flare of hips. Like he did when his eyes met her breasts, Lucas pauses at the juncture between her slightly parted thighs.
He drags his teeth over his lower lip and swallows to choke down a groan of pleasure over his next thought.
The step he takes towards Alaine is uncalculated. It’s the automatic reaction of a starving man presented with a buffet. He wants to partake but the visible way she stiffens halts his advance.
Just one look at the innocence in her features when he finally concludes his sweep down her trim legs and returns to looking at her face and he knows, although Alaine might be pliant, she really is not that sort of girl. That’s the reason he’d walked away from her in the first place.
Despite his philandering nature, he couldn’t bring himself to initiate his original plans for her. He couldn’t do it then when they were in bed together and he won’t introduce her to pleasures of the flesh for the first time against a kitchen counter.
She needs time to understand and decide if a casual relationship with him is what she truly wants because that is all he can give her.
“Why are you up at such an unholy hour?” Lucas asks.
“I’m thirsty. I was getting some water,” Alaine mumbles.
She doesn’t know where to align her attention. Just as openly as Lucas explored her, Alaine can’t help but do the same.
His hair is bed ruffled, his handsome face irresistible. His eyes are alit with wickedness and the hungry way they rove over her makes something inside Alaine clench.
His chest is bare. Alaine has the distinct longing to run her fingers over his torso that should only belong on sculpture. She tries to control the trek her eyes take, but they sink lower on their own, maybe a little too slowly and remains on the front of his pants. The steady rising there draws Alaine’s eyebrows together.
It’s strange that Alaine’s body knows what it wants even before she does. A slow wet ache builds in her core. The longer she keeps her eyes on Lucas, the more she recognizes what can only be desire. It’s powerful and keeps her eyes pinned to that part of him that wants her the most.
Lucas doesn’t try to feign modesty. He wants her to know. This is what you do to me, baby, he thinks as he studies her reaction to the evidence of his desire.
He’s never been bashful about this part of his body and he won’t be now. He wants her fully aware of the effect she has on him. It’s both a warning and an invitation.
The curiosity painted on her features makes him groan as he hardens further with the thought of how fun it would be to watch her discover what it is that happens between a man and a woman.
The force of Lucas’ lust leaves him feeling faint as more blood rushes from his head to gather in his quivering loins as he pictures Alaine coming apart under his tutelage.
She drags her eyes away from the tent in his pants to climb up his body and he moans her name softly.
“Alaine,” Lucas pleads.
His perusal of her and her blatant perusal of him makes her fidget. What must he think of her standing there on open display in the light of the refrigerator in such a skimpy get up?
A shocked gasp escapes her when she looks down at herself. Immediately, Alaine shuts the refrigerator door, shrouding them in darkness.
“My sister packed my bag,” she offers in an attempt to explain her sleepwear. “She didn’t pack much. I didn’t check it before I left.”
“Don’t worry, Alaine,” Lucas tells her. “As much as I want to back you up against that kitchen counter and have my very wicked way with you, you are safe from me tonight.”
Without a good night or any other word for that matter, Lucas turns on his heels to escape from the kitchen and her innocent attention.
Flustered, Alaine stares at his retreating back, more confused than she was before this incident.
I’m fifteen now and still so skinny. Tall but skinny. It’s sickening. I sit in the middle of my bed at 9:30. It’s a cold night but I prefer to stay shirtless. I like to feel of the chill. I enjoy the different sensations, other than the fear and anger and hate. It detracts.
Kurt isn’t home yet. I’m cautiously optimistic that he is dead in a ditch somewhere. The thought pleases me as I read the words in my textbook. I don’t really need to read it. I see the pages and I remember automatically but I like doing it, anyway. Like the cold, I find it distracting.
“Happy Birthday Luc!” I hear him coming for me and I freeze. I want to climb out the window and disappear into the night, never to come back but I won’t.
His fists still hurt, his hurtful words burrow deep... Nobody loves you, little shit. Nobody wants you. You’re useless...worthless...nothing. He’s right. I believe him now. But I don’t cower anymore. I’ve grown used to it. I’m still afraid but I wait for him and the blows to come.
Save me ,Alaine.
He is belligerent and bellows as my door swings open. I stiffen atop the bed but meet his stare. Something insidious has crept into the dark pools. It chills me to the bone.
Since the doctor said he won’t be returning when Kurt ‘accidentally’ stabbed me with a poker from the fireplace, the look in his eyes has grown more terrifying.
“You’ll kill the boy, Kurt,” the doctor said. “And I won’t be dragged down with you.”
It had hurt more than anything he’d done to me before. I’m proud of myself that I didn’t cry.
He grabs me by my arm and I smile. I cut my hair again. It’s stupid but I feel slightly victorious that I’ve taken that small frisson of pleasure he derives from yanking at my hair away from him.
I want to ask where he is taking me but I know better than to antagonize him. I am dragged downstairs. Claudia must hear the commotion but she doesn’t come. I’ve grown used to that by now too. I’ve long stopped calling for her and my dad. I still want to be saved. Nobody saves me, ever.
Silently, I am commanded shirtless into the freezing night’s air and to the backseat of the car.
Maybe he’s finally lost it. He’ll kill me tonight. The thought is frightening but death has to be better than this existence. I war between the two. The battle finally breaks me and silent tears stream down my face. Death, I’ll welcome you.
Please, save me, Alaine.
I must have fallen asleep because he punches me hard in the stomach. I groan with both surprise and pain. Where are we? Out in the dark desert. Death maybe.
I am led to an underground building and a room. There is a young girl there. She is naked and sitting on a bed; the only piece of furniture in the dingy room. It smells funny.
She is older than me. I can tell. Maybe eighteen. Kurt tosses me inside and looks at me expectantly. “Happy birthday, son.”
I cringe at the term. I’m not his son. I’m glad I’m not. And I know it’s not said in love. I remember Arlington. He calls me son and my boy. It makes me feel good when he does. Like maybe he might still love me. I need him to love me.
“Don’t just stand there!” Kurt growls and hits me hard against my temple. I want to rub it but I don’t. I am pushed further into the room.
“I trust you know where to put it.” That’s all he says before leaving.
The girl gets up from her post and comes to stand before me. It’s the first time I’ve seen a naked woman in person. It does something to my body and I close my eyes, turning to look away from her.
She takes my hand and leads me to the bed. I don’t want to do this, but she pushes me down to sit on the edge.
“No,” I tell her. “I don’t want this.”
There is a girl at school I like. I am finally working up the nerve to talk to her after all this time.
“You have to,” the girl implores in a thick accent. “He is watching. They’re all watching. He will hurt me if you don’t.”
“He’ll hurt me either way,” I confess, feeling wimpy and weak.
Her hand goes to the front of my pants and she rubs. Her large breasts press against my knees and I try to school my features. I try to rule my body’s reaction. But it is disobedient and willful. I feel myself lengthening, hardening pleasurably as she continues her attentions.
I try to fight my body’s reaction to her gentle stroking and plead with her to stop. I push at her hands but she is relentless and it feels good. She looks up at me with wide brown eyes and smiles prettily. She’s so pretty.
“You want it, your body does, see?” she says.
I look down at myself. My flesh is hard beneath my pants, growing harder still and aching under her soft hands.
“Please don’t let him hurt me,” she pleads as she begins to tug down on my waistband.
I am ashamed but lift my hips and she smiles even brighter. She drags the pants down and holds me, throbbing and painful in her hands. While I look down at her and she looks up at me, she takes me into her mouth.
Despite my efforts, a groan escapes my mouth when she wraps her fingers around me and sucks. I think I might really die as my heart rate skyrockets.
Somewhere at the back of my mind, I remember I don’t want this but the warning voice fades and all I have is the sensation, building inside me.
Thoughts of Kurt and my mother float away as a girl, I don’t even know her name, fills me with pleasure for the first time in my life.
I thrust into her mouth now. I want more. She takes me all the way to the back of her throat and swallows. I don’t know what’s happening but I am completely enraptured by it. I erupt in her mouth, gush after gush as I groan loudly with breathless abandon.
She looks up at me, but it’s no longer her face I see. It’s another girl. A beautiful girl with dark hair and green eyes speckled with flecks of molten lava.
“Alaine?” I say her name. Her hypnotic pair of golden green eyes looks back at me, with tears, accusation, and judgment.
“No, Alaine,” I cry. “Not you too. You’re supposed to save me.”
“This is what you have to offer her,” I hear Kurt’s sinister cackle taunting me.
Please, Alaine, save me.
Lucas continues to mumble in his sleep. Mostly incoherent things. But every now and then he says something loudly and clearly enough that the sound travels through the night.
Sure that she heard him call her name, Alaine sits up against the pillows and listens. All is silent. She couldn’t have heard right. Why would Lucas be calling her?
Telling herself that she’s lost her mind and this thing she feels is becoming an obssession, Alaine settles back into the pillow and closes her eyes.
A tortured cry has her shoving the duvet aside. She reaches for the phone in her bag, ready to call 9-11 or Seth in the event that something is wrong or there is an intruder. She'd prefer to hide, but Lucas is out there by himself. Hesitantly, she creeps toward the door and peeps out into the hallway.
Then she hears it again. Lucas calling her name. She definitely heard it this time. Concerned by the tearfulness in his voice, Alaine throws aside caution and hurries down the dark hallway.
Her heart thumps loudly as she approaches the sofa cautiously. She’s surprised to find him asleep. It’s easy to tell that he isn’t resting peacefully with the way he fidgets and whimpers and mumbles jumbled sentences that she cannot make sense of.
He says her name. Save me. And something about what he has to offer.
Seeing him this way shatters her heart. Finally giving in to the temptation to soothe him, Alaine kneels beside the sofa.
“Lucas?” she calls and gives his shoulder a shake. “I’m here. Shhh, wake up. It’s okay,” she croons.
The soft voice filters into Lucas’ nightmare and the touch of a warm hand, the gentlest caress he’s ever felt, reaches in to free him from its clutches.
He inhales sharply and opens his eyes. Disoriented by his strange surroundings, Lucas’ eyes dart around frantically in the dark, trying to gain his bearings. Taking a few heaving breaths, he tries to calm his racing heart and uneven breathing.
As sense returns he remembers that he’s already left the sufferings of his past behind. He’s not a scared little boy in a dank cellar somewhere out in the cold desert at the mercy of an evil, deranged, lunatic. He’s in a hotel. In Washington. Sharing a suite with Alaine.
It's with that thought that he starts to take notice of her presence. Recognition comes slowly. It begins with that light fragrance that perfumes her skin and assaults his senses in the most delicious fashion. Then he feels the branding of her hand on his bare chest until finally, he looks up to see her angelic face keeping guard over him.
“Alaine?” he questions groggily.
Though her presence is comforting, Lucas tries to figure out why she’s hovering over him. Absently, he reaches for the hand resting over his slowing heartbeat and closes his fingers around it.
“What are you doing?” he asks.
“You were dreaming,” she answers and takes a seat beside him.
Lucas closes his eyes and curses softly. This is something he would have preferred she never witness. Resisting the urge to turn into her warmth and ignoring the longing to be cradled by her, Lucas releases Alaine’s hand like she had suddenly bit him.
“I’m sorry,” he tells her he pushes himself into a seating position.
Belatedly, they both note the physical manifestation of his significant state of arousal.
“Are you, okay?” Alaine asks, despite the heat flaming in her cheeks.
“Fine,” he responds tersely, the embarrassment that she caught him in this moment of weakness making him sound harsher than he wants to be. "You should be in bed."
“I’m sorry, ” Alaine tells him. “You called my name. I thought...” She trails off and stands quickly.
It doesn’t matter what she thought. Her thoughts were wrong. That retort obviously means that her presence is unwelcome. “I’m going,” she concedes.
“Shit,” Lucas mutters. “Alaine,” he calls as he watches her walk back to her room. “Wait.”
In obedience to the soft petition, she turns around and takes a step back in his direction. Lucas can’t see her face in the dark, but he wants to. The words stay with me, crawl up his throat and rest on the tip of his tongue.
“Nothing,” he tells her as she waits.
“Okay,” she replies and slinks away from his view.
The residual thudding in Lucas’ heart is now burdened by sadness from his unwarranted bark at Alaine. He knows she’d only been trying to help but he never wants her to see him as weak. If she ever looks at him the way she had in his dream, it would simply destroy him.
He lies there thinking about that night and every other night in his unhappy existence.
What does he have to offer a woman like Alaine? Just what Kurt said in his dream; nothing but a tainted and sordid past.
The things he’d done with that girl. The things he’d had to do with all of them just to survive. He never even found out her name, though he’d tried to.
“Damn,” Lucas mutters into the darkness. “This is what I have to offer, Alaine,” he repeats, shame about that night and every other night washing over him.