J O H N
John opened his eyes to see Mari awake, looking dazed and wide-eyed. In this state, she looked like a deer in headlights. Big, beautiful doe eyes that looked terrified. Like a scared baby. She climbed down off the bed and slowly stalked towards him, her teeth running through her lower lip.
“Mari? Go back to sleep,” he commanded, although it didn’t stop her from coming closer.
Something was different. He could feel it in the air, the tense suffocating air. And all that was saving him, giving him air was her. She was both intoxicating and his lifeline.
When she placed a hand on his chest and slid it down to his abs, he clutched that hand tightly, more to stop himself than her. What was she doing? Why was she acting like this?
She straddled him and he was beginning to lose all of his senses. He was utterly confused. He should have pushed her away before but now, now it was becoming difficult.
“Mari? What-” He smelt the alcohol on her breath and concluded that events that had transpired. And he wouldn’t do anything knowing that she was fucking drunk. “What did you drink?”
“Drink? I’m too young to drink,” she slurred, her head rolling around and landing on his shoulder. Before he could do anything, her lips were kissing his skin, sucking and nipping. He resisted a groan as he attempted to push her away. He detached her head from him, and their eyes connected. “You want me, don’t you?”
“Mari…” She smashed her lips on his, and his doubts left him instantly. He wasn’t thinking with his brain anymore. That was certain. His brain would have ruled against it all in a heartbeat. But she was there, on his lap, in his arms, drunkenly kissing him.
“I know what I want. You do too.” Her hands moved down to his belt buckle, attempting to undo it. But his hands reached hers first. He grasped them and locked them behind her back. And she just looked at him curiously.
“Not like this.” He had confirmed something to her, although he doubted that she would remember it. But he had said it out loud. He had said he wanted her out loud. And that made it all the more real.
“I’ll only have the guts to do it like this,” she whispered, fluttering her lashes lightly.
“Do you really want me? Not this… you but sober you? Deep down inside of you?” She ceased all movement and just stared at him. She wasn’t as drunk as he thought she was. She was more coherent than that. She knew what she was doing. Was this what she wanted? Was this why she hadn’t run in a while? Was this why she took a bullet for him? All these questions swimming in his head distracted him from her actions.
She stood and yanked him up with her. And then she pushed him on the bed and climbed on top of him.
“Mari… you need to stop.”
“If you want me to stop, stop me,” she whispered into his ear, nipping his earlobe.
This girl wasn’t as innocent as she seemed. The alcohol was making her frisky but was it bringing out her sexual desires? Did she truly desire him? She wouldn’t come onto him this strongly if she didn’t. But he couldn’t take advantage.
He rolled her onto her back and hovered over her. Her lust-filled eyes weren’t helping his restraint. She fueled his longing, his passion for her. He hadn’t ever felt this way in his life. He hadn’t ever felt a stressing need for anyone. He never needed his parents; he brought himself up. He never needed love or care. He was an independent man by the time he learnt his parents were useless shits and he never believed he needed anything more.
And here he was, needing her.
And she wanted him.
“What’s stopping you?” she asked.
“I’m taking advantage of you,” he replied, remaining in the exact same position. He was frozen. His conscience stopped him from pushing forward and his lust for her stopped him from pulling away. So, he was stuck.
“Not if I want this.”
And that was the final straw. He couldn’t stop himself. They couldn’t stop themselves. He was fucked in the head and he knew it. She had fucked with his head. She had made him like this. How did that fucking happen?
He woke in the middle of the night, his arms still around Mari’s naked body. She was pressed against his chest and her legs were tangled with his. They shouldn’t have done that. He shouldn’t have done that. He was older than her, he had more experience, she was a fucking virgin. How could he do this?
Yet, he was feeling… satiated.
She was going to get married if he gave her back to Alessandro. He had now crossed the line. He had taken things too far. And John wouldn’t be able to give her up. He just wouldn’t.
He wouldn’t. He… couldn’t give her back… And then she would have won… And she would finally be free because she had seduced him…
He detached her body from his, slipped on some clothes and sat up. And then he stared at her.
This was it. This was her plan all along. She didn’t look too drunk last night because she wasn’t. She was exactly in her right mind. But taking it this far? That was what threw him. That was what still confused him.
He knew this was definitely her plan. She hadn’t tried running in a while and he knew something was brewing. And somehow, she had won without him even knowing. He supposed sleeping with him sealed the deal, sealed her escape. He would just let her go. But he didn’t know she would go that far, that she would compromise her dignity. He assumed she had some pride.
He didn’t know what to do now. This was it. She had defeated him. He couldn’t take her back now, even though he knew this was all her plan. He had slept with her. And he couldn’t take that back.
“John?” Mari called out, snapping him back into reality. She rubbed her eyes and sat up, furrowing her brows in confusion. “Are you okay?”
“Yes. I’m fine,” John replied darkly, attempting to keep the rage from his tone.
How could she have done this? He hadn’t felt anything for anyone ever. And she managed to get him to feel. Yet, it was all fake on her part, all of it.
“Is something wrong?”
“Like I said, I’m fine. Go back to sleep.” They wouldn’t hash this out now. She should sleep, bask in her fucking victory. He wouldn’t give her the satisfaction of seeing him like this. He was distraught. And furious.
And if he stripped all of that away, the feeling of betrayal, he almost felt impressed. The little girl he first met would never go that far. And within months, her determination for her freedom strengthened. Had he strengthened it? Had he driven her there?
She won. Shit, out of everyone he had faced in the past, it was the little girl, who he had orphaned, to take him down.
Was this why she did it? Was finding out that he had played a part in killing her mother what drove her to the edge? Was she really that spiteful? She manipulated him. How long had this been going? How long was she trying to make him care about her? How fucking long was he playing the fool?
“Okay. I’ll go to sleep,” she muttered in a small voice and pulled the covers over herself. She was so fucking beautiful. She deserved to win. She deserved to win after doing to fucking well. She wasn’t as innocent as she was made out to be. She clearly wasn’t so clueless. She knew what she was doing and acted as if she didn’t know at all. She played it off as youthful innocence. She quite frankly had to be the smartest woman he knew.
He had been up all night, maddened by her, sullen because of her, and admiring her. She had made him officially restless. When she woke, he threw some clothes at her coldly and told her they would be leaving today. She seemed shocked about that decision but didn’t say anything about it.
So, she did know she had won. Well, she thought she had won. She thought sleeping with him would crown her victorious. And he would keep her thinking that until he couldn’t any longer. Perhaps when he got just outside the bar, where he planned on taking her before turning around, he could just leave her there, he could go through with it on impulse.
He thought that unlikely, but both of them could do anything on impulse. She certainly could. That was her MO. He should try that.
He said a short farewell to his sister, very half-heartedly, and left with Mari.
“Strap in,” John grunted before taking off.
Congratulations, Marcella De Luca.