Coffee, Tea? Or me?

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Take my arm, break it in half

Say something, do it soon

It’s too quiet in this room

I need noise, I need the buzz of a sub

Need the crack of a whip, need some blood in the cut.


Lucy opened the door of James’ flat and as an unfamiliar voice came from inside, she stopped in her tracks and stood just outside, listening.

“Look at you James, what the hell? First that lad a month ago and now this? What’s going on? I thought you had your issues under control!”

James’ feeble, tired voice came back.

“No one’s gonna pursue anyone...”

The other man raised his voice. “That’s not the issue here, that we can take care of! I worry about you! Are you struggling again?”

James didn’t reply and Lucy took advantage of that moment of silence to walk into the flat, James was sitting on the sofa with his back to her and a good looking man in his fifties was sitting on the coffee table in front of him. The lights in the flat were off and they looked somewhat distant in the cold blue light of dawn. As the door locked behind Lucy the man looked up, only then noticing the girl staring at them. He observed her for a moment and if the face he had seen in pictures wasn’t enough, her uniform gave her away.

“You must be Lucy,” he said and walked to her and shook her hand.

“I’m Ian, James’ agent.”

James didn’t turn around nor moved. Lucy reciprocated the handshake.

“Nice to meet you,” she said distracted, her eyes focused on her boyfriend. “What’s going on?” She asked then to the man in front of her.

He shook his head. “I better leave you two alone,” he said, grabbing his jacket from the hook on the wall. “James needs to rest, I’ll call him later today.” He added and after giving Lucy a gentle pat on the shoulder he left.

Lucy removed her uniform coat and placed it on a high stool near the kitchen counter, then walked around the sofa and as she saw James she gasped, her hand to her mouth

.James’ face was tired with dark circles under his eyes, a bloody cut ran from his left eyebrow down to the top of his cheekbone and reddish-purple bruises were forming around it. Another cut split the skin of his nose and some coagulated blood rested right under his nostrils, his lower lip was also broken and a cut ruined the plump flash. A purplish bruise was forming on his left jaw and red scratches covered his right hand, with cuts on his middle and index finger knuckles. Dried up blood stained his grey shirt. After the initial shock, Lucy sat beside him.

“Oh my God James, what the hell happened?” As the girl talked James seemed to wake up from his trance and he looked at her.

“I’m OK.” He said, his voice tired.

“Did you go to the A&E? Have you been checked?”

James shook his head.“No, Lucy but I’m good.”

“You don’t look good!” Lucy walked to the kitchen and took a can of beer off the fridge, then she went back to the sofa and handed it to James. “It’s obviously too late but put this on your face, please?”

James distractedly took the can and put it on his knuckles instead, Lucy brushed away a strand of hair from his forehead. “James...”

“Maybe we should go to bed? Talk about this later? You must be exhausted...” James cut her off.

Lucy observed him for a moment and saw pain in his eyes. She needed to know what had happened but she, for one, knew not to pressure someone who didn’t want to talk.

“Do you want to be alone? Should I go home?”

James quickly moved his hand on hers and locked their fingers together. “No, please. Stay...”

Lucy rubbed his scratched skin with her thumb. “Ok, let’s go to bed.”

James placed the beer on the table, got up from the sofa and walked upstairs, Lucy stopped in the kitchen, filled a paper bag with ice and wet a kitchen towel then joined James in the bedroom. When she walked in James was unbuttoning his shirt, as he turned to her, Lucy noticed more bruises on his abdomen with red-purple circles staining the area between his belly button and his underwear line. Lucy looked at it for a moment with concern but didn’t say anything, removing her uniform and slipping on her nightdress instead.

As they both laid in bed Lucy grabbed the wet kitchen towel and gently cleaned the dried blood on James’ face, careful not to hurt him or to reopen any coagulated wound, James closed his eyes and let Lucy work on him with her soft and expert fingers. When Lucy was satisfied with her work, she placed the towel down and took the bag of ice, carefully placing it on James’ cheekbone. James didn’t move for a moment, soothed by Lucy’s touch then suddenly looked at her with an illegible expression. He hastily took the bag from her hand, put it on his nightstand and pulled Lucy over so that she was straddling him, his bruised hands started to slowly move up from her knees.

Lucy placed her hands on his and stopped them.“No, James.” She said softly.

James looked at her in silence and after a moment his hands moved again, lifting her black silky nightdress until they reached her hips and started to peel down her underwear.

“James, stop it.” Repeated Lucy, her voice almost a moan.

“You’re mad...” said James, his deep voice hard.

Lucy closed her eyes briefly, then scanned his wounded face again as she reopened them.

“I’m not mad James, I’m worried and tired.”

James quickly licked his lower lip and winced in pain, without saying anything his hands resumed their movement and he pulled Lucy’s underwear further down, his eyes fixed on hers, he lifted his hips slightly pressing his erection against Lucy’s open legs. A soft moan escaped Lucy’s lips then she shook her head and grabbed his hands again.

“I said stop it, James! I’m not having sex with you like that, not until I know what’s going on!” Her voice low but firm.

James ignored her protests and reached for her nightdress thin strap and let it fall on her shoulder, tugging at the fabric until her breast was exposed and he started to play with her hard nipple. Lucy held her breath for a moment, trying not to let the burning sensation in her groin distract her, then reluctantly moved her chest away from James’ hand and attempted to come off him but he tightened his grip on her hips, holding her down and pressed his erection against her again.

“James!” Lucy screamed in a mix of pleasure and anger.

“I think you are mad...” said James then and when Lucy looked at him she couldn’t decipher what she saw: pain, sadness, anger and something like contempt flickered in his eyes as he said “I know you are! Don’t hide it, give me your rage!” And grabbing her hips tighter he pushed himself against her once more.

Lucy’s eyes became dark with anger and she hastily grasped his wrists and pinned them down over his head without resistance from James, then with one hand she helped him inside her starting to move roughly up and down, her hand back on his wrists.

“Is this what you wanted?” she asked, her voice now angry.

James closed his eyes in pleasure, still, his face was crossed by a grimace of pain and sadness.Lucy started to move faster, letting go of his wrists and placing her hand on his stomach where the bruises were, James opened his eyes as a wave of pain hit him.

“Does it hurt?” Asked Lucy, no concern in her voice.

“Fuck,” replied James, and Lucy couldn’t tell if it was out of pain or pleasure.

Lucy then slowed her rhythm, like James liked when she was on top and could see the look in his eyes change. “Like this?” She asked, her voice velvety.

James licked his lips and looked at her. “Are you not mad anymore?” He asked before a moan escaped his mouth.

Lucy sped up her movements a little, purposely rocking her hips in a sensual swing, her hands back on his wrists. James swallowed hard, tilting his head back and closing his eyes briefly, Lucy knew he was close to orgasm.

“Oh no baby, I’m mad alright,” she said drily. “But I’m not gonna give you what you want...” And right before James could reach his orgasm she lifted herself up and disappeared in the bathroom.

James swore between his teeth as he watched Lucy disappear behind the bathroom door which she slammed close, he rubbed his face with his hands welcoming the painful sensations from his bruises and cuts. He never meant to hurt her but he wanted a reaction from her that wasn’t worry or empathy because he knew he didn’t deserve that; he was too ashamed to talk about what had happened and had used her to punish himself, without taking into consideration the emotional impact this could have on Lucy. He was scared of her judgement and wanted an excuse for her to loathe him.

He rolled in his side and got up from the bed, gently knocking on the bathroom door. “It’s opened.” Lucy’s flat voice came from inside.

James pushed the door open and walked in, Lucy was naked, playing with the water faucet in the shower.

“Lucy, listen...” James spoke slowly but Lucy cut him off.

“Care to join me?” She asked, hinting at the water flowing behind her.

James nodded, relieved and followed Lucy into the big black granite shower, hot water falling from the big rainfall showerhead. Lucy combed her now wet hair back with her fingers and grabbed James’ sponge, squirting some bath gel on it, then turned to face him and gently started to rub his chest. She looked up at him from under he lashed.

“You don’t have to tell me anything if you don’t want to, I know exactly how it feels when you’re hurt and the last thing you want to do is talk. And I don’t know what that was,” she hinted towards the bedroom. “But something distressing must have happened for you to act as you did now.”

James closed his eyes for a moment. “I’m sorry,” he said, letting out a breath.

Lucy locked her fingers in his. “I know. James, I trust you. I know you wouldn’t normally act this crazy and it makes me worry even more than your bruises do. I need to know what happened, but I can wait. I just hope you’re ok here and here.” She said touching his heart and his forehead.

James took her free hand and kissed her palm, looking at her in the eyes, a glare that burned through Lucy’s soul.

“I love you so much Lucy, you’re the most precious thing to me. I don’t want to lose you.” Said James caressing her cheek.

Lucy lifted herself on her toes and gave him a gentle kiss on the lips, careful not to hurt him.“I’m not going anywhere.

“James gave Lucy another kiss and held her for a moment, letting the water wash away his frustration, letting her dissipate his fears, hoping she would stay true to her promise when she learned the truth.

“Let’s go to bed now, when we wake up I’ll tell you everything”.

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