His lips quirk up in a smile to my stupid opening line.
My cheeks flush as I approach him. I have to walk past him to get back inside and I’m very happy about that.
“What language were you speaking?” He asks curiously.
I can barely focus on his question. My brain turned to mush at the sound of his voice.
So deep, so sexy.
I clear my throat and try to dispel my horny thoughts. It’s been too long since I’ve got laid.
“Polish,” I reply breathily.
“It’s beautiful,” he comments, making my face warm at his compliment.
“Thank you,” I reply. I hesitate for a moment and decide to introduce myself to this handsome DM. “My name is Anastazja, you can call me Ana.”
I hold out my hand to him.
I wouldn’t normally act this forward around a Dom. This DM is definitely a Dom, no way in hell is he a sub. However, tonight he’s only a DM and I’m taken, so my boldness doesn’t matter.
At least, I don’t think it does, but the heated look in the DM”s eyes might say otherwise.
“Nice to meet you, Ana,” he replies. His large, warm hand encases mine and he gives it a gentle squeeze. “I’m Kasen, but everyone calls me Ace.”
“Nice to meet you,” I mumble on autopilot.
My body is still reeling at his touch and the smell of his musky, insanely heady, cologne.
“You don’t have much of an accent, I take it you grew up here?” He asks conversationally.
He wants to talk to me!
“Yeah, I did. My family are Polish, my parents moved here before I was born,” I explain and Ace nods with interest.
“I wish I knew another language, but I’m afraid I never was very good at them at school,” he says, and I can hear the genuine disappointment in his voice.
People either love my “foreign” background or hate it. Thankfully, this God chose the right one.
“It’s difficult to learn a new one, I’ll admit Polish isn’t the easiest,” I tell him with a laugh.
He smiles, revealing his gorgeous teeth.
Is there anything about this man that isn’t perfect?
“Anyways, I’m going to go now...it was nice meeting you, Ace.”
I internally curse myself.
You’ve already told him it was nice meeting him.
You’re such an idiota, Ana.
“I’ll see you around Ana, be sure to come back,” he says. He winks at me, and I nearly lose my footing as I step back into the main room.
Get me out of here before I embarrass myself further.
Sunday morning is spent at my friend, Rowan’s, house. Her and her husband, Dale, have just moved in and I offered to help them make all their furniture.
“Please tell me why I had to wear make-up and perfume?” I ask Rowan as soon as I step into the house.
Her text, that came through this morning, was completely random:
Hey, I know you’re gonna be doing hard labour today but wear something nice! Put mascara on and some perfume! You’ll thank me later ;)
Rowan giggles and pulls me into the chaotic kitchen. There are boxes on every available surface.
“Dale has asked one of his friends to help today as well, I think you’ll like him. He’s handsome as hell and he’s been single for ages!”
I scowl at her enthusiasm.
“You’re trying to matchmake? Woman, you’ve just moved house, one giant task at a time, please,” I groan and rub my temples.
Rowan scoffs and brushes me off with a dismissive hand wave.
“Honestly Ana, I think he’s perfect for you. Besides, if you don’t want anything more, you can just use him as eye-candy today. Why else do you think I’ve got Dale putting up the decking?” She says with a wink.
I followed her hungry gaze out of the window and see Dale, shirtless and gleaming with sweat in the garden.
“Wow. You’re such a pervert,” I jokingly admonish her.
She shrugs. “It doesn’t count when it’s your own husband.”
I guess she’s got a point.
The doorbell rings and subtly, I pat down my hair and smooth my sundress over my hips. Maybe this man is attractive, and it’s been so long...I should give him a chance. Besides, he might take one look at me and not fancy me in the slightest.
I feel giddy and nervous as Rowan answers the door. I remain in the kitchen, twisting my fingers.
“Hey, Ro, how are you?” A very familiar, very sexy voice echoes down the corridor.
Before I can stop myself, I leave the kitchen and enter the corridor.
Both Rowan and Ace look up at me. The surprise on his face mirrors my own.
“Ana?” He asks with surprise.
Rowan looks between the two of us.
“You know each other?” She says confusion all over her face.
“Yes,” Ace replies and then realisation dawns on him.
BDSM is usually a private aspect of a person’s life. I can practically hear the thoughts in his mind as he tries to work out whether Rowan knows about me going to the club and how to get out of this.
I panic and answer for us.
“We met in a bar the other night, how crazy that we’re both friends with the Moore’s, huh?” I quickly state. I give Ace a look that says play along, please.
Rowan does not know about my sinful indulgences in BDSM. We’ve only been friends two or so months. It’s a new friendship, but we get on like a house on fire.
Ace recovers quickly and smiles charmingly.
“That is crazy. Lovely to see you again, Ana. Rowan, where do you want me? What should I do?” He asks, conveniently changing the subject.
Dressed in a white t-shirt and faded jeans, Ace looks fucking hot. His weathered Timberlands only add to his sex appeal. He looks like a sexy builder.
A mischievous look comes over Rowan’s face and I narrow my eyes at her.
I know that look.
“Well, actually, I was thinking you and Ana could put the beds together upstairs? Dale is busy with decking and I’m all thumbs with those fiddly screws, so I’ll cover the kitchen if you two are happy to do that?”
The puppy-dog, please-say-yes look is the nail in the coffin on deciding that Ace and I will be working, alone, upstairs.
Ace looks at me and smiles.
“Sure. Sounds good.”
I give Rowan some subtle side-eye and walk to the stairs. Ace gestures for me to go first, gentleman.
I sway my hips a little on the way up. Might as well give him a treat for his chivalry.
We go into the first bedroom, where a flat-packed bed is waiting in the empty room. Together, we unpack the box and get out all the pieces and parts.
Ace spreads out the instructions and we work together to follow the steps.
Once we’ve sorted out all the screws, bolts, and tools, we start building the frame. Silence falls as we concentrate on our assigned jobs.
I’m tightening a couple of screws when Ace breaks it.
“So, what do you do, Ana?” He asks casually.
He’s taken his shoes off, and his large body is spread out on the ground, near to me.
“I work as a translator. Companies contract me to translate documents for them,” I tell him. “What about you?”
Ace looks over at me and grins.
“Well, you know I work as a DM, but mostly that’s just to keep me busy in the evenings. It’s only twice a week. The rest of the time, I work on my parents” farm. Without trying to sound like an ass, I’ve got enough that I don’t really need to work, but I enjoy it.”
We converse some more. I tell him about sister in Poland, about how my parents moved back there five years ago, and I still hate only seeing them a couple times a year.
“I know, I should go more, really,” I say distractedly as I try and tighten a particularly stiff screw. “But something always comes up. They have ridiculously busy social lives and when I visit them, more often than not, I end up in the house alone!”
Ace chuckles and shakes his head. “Yeah, that doesn’t seem worth the hassle of catching a two-hour flight.”
“And it’s a two-hour drive from the airport.”
Ace grimaces sympathetically. “Ouch.”
Soon enough, we put together the bed frame.
“I think I saw the mattress in the hallway,” Ace says, and we find it leaning against the wall.
It’s a super king, and super hard to get around the corner of the hallway, past the top of the stairs and through the doorway.
“Right, I’ll drag from the front, and you push, okay?” Ace orders.
He’s taken charge with the bed and the mattress, but as someone who is naturally submissive, I love his control. It’s what I need. I need respect, but I also need to know that someone else is calling the shots and I don’t have that pressure or responsibility.
He needs control and I need release.
I shove my whole bodyweight against the mattress. Ace’s thick fingers dig into the material, his face becoming sexily focussed on the task.
The veins pop in his arms and I’m momentarily distracted by them.
“Ana? You alright back there?” Ace calls and I snap out of it.
I realise that we’ve managed to get the mattress round the corner, but now it’s stuck in the doorway. Half of it is in the doorway, the other half is hanging over the staircase.
“Yeah! But I think it’s a bit wedged,” I comment from the top step.
The mattress is diagonal in the doorway and doesn’t appear to be moving anytime soon.
“Let me have a look,” Ace says.
He steps into the gap between the mattress and the doorjamb.
He tries to move the mattress. His biceps flex in his arms and I damn near swoon at the sight.
It shifts slightly forwards. It’s no longer hanging over the stairs and is well and truly filling the doorway. Ace assesses the situation, and he nods.
His hands are holding the mattress in place, stopping it from sliding back down the stairs.
“Okay, let’s swap positions, I’ll push, and you pull,” he suggests.
I go around the back of the mattress, to the side he isn’t on.
“Um, Ace? I can’t squeeze through this way.”
“Okay, come to my side.”
I round the mattress and step near to him. There’s a tiny gap between him and the mattress inside the doorway.
He looks at me, the gap, and then his hands, which are holding the mattress from falling. He gives me a sheepish smile.
“Do you mind squeezing past?” He asks amusedly.
I raise my eyebrows and shrug.
“Okay, breathe in,” I joke.
I lift my left leg and point it through the gap. I find my footing inside the room and my body follows.
But now I am wedged in the doorway, too.
In one doorway, there is Ace, me, and a super-king mattress.
We did not think this through.