The Pursuit of Pleasure

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Chapter 12

The car came to a halting screech.

“Are you fucking crazy?” Nikolai roared as Victoria slammed the door shut.

She didn’t wait around to answer him but instead started walk in the opposite direction. She didn’t want to be in his presence anymore. After the day that she had, being insulted by him was the last thing she need.

Her finger clenched painfully around her bag as began to scan the road once more for a taxi. This was her fault. She should have just ignored him in the first place and wait for a taxi. By now she could have been home, in her tub, relaxing.

“Damn it, Victoria!” She heard him curse and her pace quickened at the sound of his door slamming shut.

Oh God! Was he going to follow her now?

She had half a mind to start running but didn’t. There were a few people walking by and she had provided enough entertainment for the day.

“God, you’re so goddamn stubborn.” She heard and her jaws tightened.

What did he expect her to do? Sit there like a mute idiot and smile at his insults. It may work on all of his bimbos but she wasn’t dead in the brain, and she certainly wasn’t going to take any orders from him.

Nikolai took long strides trying to catch up to her. For a woman with short legs she sure as hell was fast, or maybe it was the determination of getting away from him.

Hell, he wasn’t in the habit of running after a woman, let alone anybody for that matter. So why in the hell was he running after her. He had half a mind to go back to his car and drive off but he couldn’t. He had upset her and he didn’t even know what he said to cause her to jump out a moving car. Thank goodness he wasn’t going fast.

With two more strides he caught up with her. He grabbed hold of her arm and yanked her back to him in full force.

It all happened quick before Victoria’s brain could register what was happening. Before she knew it, her face collided against Nikolai’s firm chest.

“What the hell?“She winced in pain, rubbing a hand against her nose.

She glared up at him, chest heaving. He looked just as angry as she was.

They nerve on this man had to look at her as if she was at wrong!

Why the hell was he angry?

“What the hell is your problem? You got a fucking death wish or something?” He barked, shaking her as he did so.

“Get your hands off of me you brute. I told you to stop the car.” She spat angrily back at him.

“You could have gotten hurt, Victoria. That was a bloody stupid thing to do.” He yelled, his eyes flared with undetermined anger.

“Yeah, well it would have been better than to sit in that car with you. So. Let. go.” She returned, trying to free herself to no avail.

His hands tightened it’s hold around her.

“You’re being ridiculous, Victoria and you’re causing a scene.” He said through clenched teeth.

She casted a quick look around and drew out a sharp breath. He was right, everybody was watching them.

“Then let me go. I’ll go my way and you’ll go yours. End of story.”

He raised a sharp brow at her. “Not a fucking chance sweetheart. I’m not about to leave you standing here. I’m not a complete asshole.”

“Aren’t you?” Her eyes narrowed in on his face, her palms pushing against his hard wall of a chest. ” You’ve done nothing more than insult today. What is it you want Nikolai? Why do you insist on coming after me?”

Why?

Nikolai brows furrowed. He didn’t know why, wasn’t he just asking himself the same question a few minutes ago?

“Victoria, I’m --”

A police siren sounded behind them and they both turned around. Nikolai let out a curse under his breath, “See what you’ve done now?” He hissed.

Victoria gasped, struggling against him, “What I’ve done?” She gaped, “Why you arrogant ass-”

“Is there a problem here?” The officer asked as he made his way to where they stood on the side pavement.

Nikolai’s hands loosened around Victoria and he slowly drew his hands to his side. He gave her a sharp glance then turned his attention back to the policeman.

“No officer. We were just having a little lovers tiff.” He said, offering him a reassuring smile.

Lovers tiff my butt, Victoria thought, folding her hands over her chest, trying to calm her breathing.

“Is that true, Ma’am?” He asked gazing at Victoria. His eyes trailed on her as if seeking confirmation.

“No.” She bit out instantly, “He’s being an ass and --” she stopped, returning the same deadly glare that Nikolai was throwing her.

It was as if he was silently warning her that if she didn’t watch what she was saying, then this could end up bad for the both of them. Him especially.

She swallowed down the rest of her unspoken words and offered the officer a curt smile.

“We weren’t having a lovers tiff, it was more like a disgreement.” She said, rolling her eyes at Nikolai.

The police officers gave them both a hard stare before he spoke again, “Well, I suggest that do it somewhere else. Preferably behind closed doors.”

Nikolai nod, “It’s exactly what we were about to do, officer.” He said, placing his hand around Victoria’s waist.

She stiffened at his touch and almost died when he added, “Shall we, sweetheart?”

She grazed her teeth together at the bitter taste that his so called ‘pet name’ left in her mouth, “Of course, sugar plum.” She returned, smiling all to brightly at him but her eyes however, was telling him something entirely different.

“You both have a great afternoon now.” The man in uniform said before returning back to his car.

Victoria watched as he sped off and she hissed, “Get your hands off of me.”

“Oh, I don’t think so sweetheart. I rather like having you close.” He had said that to goad her, but didn’t expect to actually mean it. Hearing her calling him sugar plum, although it was meant to sound sarcastically, did spread an unusual warmth at his heart.

Victoria’s head immediately snapped up to his, “You’re pig!″ She spat hastening her pace. The faster they got to the car, the sooner she would be out of his arm.

They sat in the car in silence. Victoria heard Nikolai release a few deep breaths but she ignored him, determined to stay quiet.

When the car sped past the antique shop, she sighed in relief. She was almost home.

“I’m sorry.”

She stilled. Wondering whether she had just imagined Nikolai apologising to her. She brows creased into a light frown as she turned around and glanced at him.

“Excuse me?” She quipped.

“I said I’m sorry. I said a few nasty things and I shouldn’t have.”

“Then why say them?”

“They just...slipped.” He said, returning her glance. “Am I forgiven?”

“How do I know for sure that you want let another one slip in the future?”

He smiled.

Victoria’s heart soared.

God, did he have to look the way he did? Drop dead gorgeous?

“I here on out give you permission to slap me the face if I do.”

Her lips twitched at the corner as she tried to stifle a laugh.

“You’re giving me permission to slap you?”

“Yes,” He nodded then smiled, “And don’t hold back. I’d rather you do that than jump out of a moving vehicle.”

He was right. It was dangerous. But he made her so mad that she wasn’t even thinking straight. All she had wanted was to be as far away from him as possible.

“I guess, I’m sorry too.” She muttered.

Then car pulled to a stop infront of her building. Nikolai cleared his throat.

“Well, here you go.” He said, giving her a short smile.

“Thank you for the lift.“She said, then bit down on her lower lip.” Do you, uh- would you like to come up?”

She couldn’t believe that she had just asked him that. Wasn’t distance what she was after. She wanted to slap herself in the face. What was she thinking?

“Uh-” Nikolai looked stunned. His lips moved but he then closed it again.

Raking a smooth hand through his hair, he turned his attention back to the road. “I don’t think that would be a good idea, Victoria.”

“You’re right.” She said, all too quickly, her face flushing from embarrassment.

Of course, he didn’t want to come up. He had already wasted enough time with her already. She knew that he was a busy man. Busy in ever sense, with a business to run, properties to buy, people to fire and women to satisfy.

So why in the hell had she just invited him up? And to do what exactly?

You’re such an idiot,Victoria!

“I’m sorry. I don’t know what I was thinking. Thank you for the ride and goodbye Nikolai.”

Before he could say anything else, she was out of the door and was making her way inside her apartment building.

Nikolai sagged against the leather seat of his car, and released a heavy breath that threatened to choke him.

Why did the sight of her in distress tug at his heart?

Damn, he should just drive off and go about his day. He fist hit the stearing wheel in frustration, then he switched off the engine and removed his key from the ignition.

He was really going to regret doing this.

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