I knew I’d spend the night. But it’s when the back of his fingers brush the thin strap of my bralette that I knew...
I try to take a deep inaudible breath, as Judah slips the other strap away. My whole body gets nervous.
I had taken off my lace dress, to change... But Judah never gave me the chance.
Judah stares down into my eyes, leading me towards his big bed. He steals the rose out of my hair, undoing my bun, and letting my hair fall.
I close my eyes, and his hot lips touch mine. The delicate feeling sends a rush below my stomach. He slightly pulls away, and pushes for another kiss. I feel his tongue skim its way into my mouth.
I don’t know what it is about Judah, but I want to be with him like this more than anything else. I want to go where he’s taking me—and I don’t care about our differences.
My bold hands lift to hold his waist. I go on my tiptoes to have more control on this kiss. But Judah quickly takes it away, and grabs my thighs, hoisting me up onto his solid body. My mind asks me if I’m ready, as my back is cushioned onto the bed. My eyes open and bite my lips. I feel myself sink down in the bed.
My eyelids blink rapidly, because Judah’s face is so close. His gaze is soft, and, for some odd reason, I feel secure in his arms.
Staring into his flawless face, I see him smile. It’s barely visible, but I know it’s just for me. My hands travel up his torso to his tatted chest, feeling his muscled abs. How in God’s name did I end up with someone so hot?
Strands of Judah’s hair sweep my forehead. I stare in his eyes, while he relaxes between my legs. My palm rests above his beating heart—his is steady and strong, whereas mine is flimsy and palpitating. I enjoy how close we are, though.
Suddenly, Judah gives my hips a quick thrust. I gasp and tense up. I must have looked uncomfortable, because he retracts a bit and smirks apologetically. I then watch him take his shirt off.
Judah forces himself to go slowly with me, like I need him to. He leans in and kisses me tenderly. I go back to closing my eyes and taking deep breaths. My hands slide to the back of neck, faintly pressing my fingertips on his spine, while he pulls off his pants.
He envelops his hands around my bare chest, trying not to squeeze too hard. His lips press into my my jaw and downward. I don’t know what to do, when he reaches my collarbone.
“What are you doing?” I whisper, raising my shoulders.
My cool skin feels Judah’s warm breaths. His thumbs circle around my nipples, overwhelming my sense of touch. I listen for his answer.
Without warning me, his mouth takes the place of his hands over my breast. My lungs inhale sharply, and I feel an uncontrollable throbbing between me.
“And closer,” he says, going to the other one.
Breathing so heavily only makes me push myself out more. I can’t even help it.
Judah’s mouth takes its time devouring my skin, making me squirm. He lifts his head, leaving my chest to freeze. I pull him to me for warmth. But he decides to undress me more, reaching for my underwear.
I open my eyes and mouth, wanting to say something, though I don’t know what that something is. It’s hard to concentrate with his pressing bulge.
“Can I take this off?” he asks, leaning in my ear.
I nod, “Yes.”
With one hand, Judah elevates my hips. With the other, he slips my underwear down my legs. He does it slowly, watching me shiver under him. I’m afraid he might stop, because I don’t seem so confident. I’d hate to disappoint him.
“And you can look,” I add, going against my timid nature.
Judah smirks, perhaps liking my permission, even though he wasn’t going to wait for it. Everything inside me heats up, as his eyes take me. He puts his hands on my sides, leaving them there. There’s nothing on my body left to see, but he stares still. I smile under his smile.
“You know how beautiful you are, Rose?” Judah whispers, pressing his forehead on mine.
I must’ve believed him this time, because my mind completely glazed over. No brain cell of mine can register what’s happening. My breath quickens. Now, we’re naked and making out.
I feel Judah against my opening. The contact surges my hips to contract. He gradually applies some pressure. But my body hitches up. I just get even more tense, grinding my teeth together.
“Mmph,” I groan in his mouth.
He pushes again. My thighs jam tightly around Judah’s waist.
He sighs, “Relax for me, Rose.”
I open my mouth, trying to take a few breaths of cool air. I release my muscles.
Judah moves my thighs, pushing them wider apart. He glides his warm palms down my inner thighs, and strokes my lips between my legs, relieving the tension from my body.
My deep breaths come out as small moans. He then pushes his body, easing all the way inside me. My heart leaps, and my arms hold him more. I gasp.
“I got you.”
His deep voice is low and calming. The unyielding stings goes away, as Judah gently thrusts in and out. My body slowly accepts him, taking him in. Pleasure washes me over and I find myself enjoying every moment of Judah’s embrace.
I feel Judah pacing a little faster. I lift my head. His breaths are heavier. I guess it’s hard for him to be so aroused, and yet go so slow.
He slows down for me, as his throat swallows hard. I’m surprised he isn’t being greedy and just forcing himself onto me. Maybe he knows how much this means to me.
Maybe... he knows I love him...
My ears hear Judah’s deep voice speaking. Sunlight hits my eyelids, and I try to wake up. My body feels a bit sore from last night. I remember it clearly in my mind. The feeling of being so close to someone.
I rub my eyes, listening to Judah’s voice coming from downstairs. It sounds like he’s on the phone. It’s still quite early in the morning. I sail across the king size bed and pull on a black t-shirt—Judah’s t-shirt. It has a faded scent of smoke and burnt rubber. I slowly take steps down the stairs. My knees stay stuck together.
He smokes a cigarette, walking up and down the hallway leisurely. Noticeably, there are already two burnt ones sitting in the ashtray. He’s already dressed in dark-washed jeans and a dark grey top, seeming ready to go someplace. There’s no telling what he’s even talking about, though I know it’s nothing near good. Judah is nothing near good, period.
His eyes raise to look at me standing by the foot of the staircase, but don’t acknowledges me. He continues his conversation on his phone and walks by the open window.
My skin feels the temperature plummet, missing the warmth of the bed, as I resume my way into the kitchen.
I help myself, no longer feeling so shy, to the fridge and examine what’s there to eat.
Luckily, I find eggs and decide to scramble them. I pop fresh bread in the toaster for Judah.
He doesn’t eat often, mainly because he eats in restaurants—and even then he rarely goes.
I occupy my mind and think about what we are. Judah and me... I watch the bread go brown, before it pops up. This is the second time I’m making this man breakfast.
Am I his plaything? I guess so. Or am I more? I just hope so.
It becomes quiet in the house, so spin and face Judah. I was expecting a ‘good morning, sweet cheeks’ and I won’t lie. But Judah only stares at me pretty flatly.
“What’s the matter?” I ask.
He shakes his head, “Nothing.”
“I’m not hungry,” Judah walks up to me and leaves a peck on my cheek, “But thanks.”
It’s the second he draws away that bugs me.
“Take a shower. I’ll bring you home,” he then tells me, sounding monotone.
I frown, scratching the crust off my sandwich.
“Why can’t I stay with you?”
I don’t know how to live without him anymore. I wouldn’t know the first thing to do if I were alone. I seem to forget how things used to be before he appeared. I’m aware how unhealthy this is—to want to do anything for Judah.
His full attention is on me. He stares me down with a playful smile.
“If you stay, I’ll do things to you,” he attempts to bite my neck.
I push him away, and Judah grins. I purse my lips together, remembering to fear him.
“Where I’m going isn’t a place for pretty girls like you,” Judah says in a more serious tone, picking up his car keys from the counter.
I stuff my mouth with eggs and say, “I’m coming.”
Just as he opens his mouth to refuse, I race up the stairs and quickly get dressed.
Judah drives across a long bridge. I stare at the wide river that’s trying not freeze over. It’s exceptionally cold out today. I tuck my chin in my scarf, enjoying the heated seats in Judah’s car. I’m also enjoying his warm grasp on my thigh.
I stare at his large hand before holding it and interlocking our fingers together. It’s quiet, until Judah stops at a red light.
“Are you feeling alright?” Judah asks.
He speaks so low; I can barely hear him. My head turns to him and nods, not sure whether he’s talking about last night or now. He’s not usually this caring. It’s a big contrast to the stern look on his face, as he stares into the road ahead.
I don’t know why, but he makes me feel special.
Then we pass an exit that reads ‘Maximum Security Correctional Facility’. My mouth goes dry. I try not to move or look like I saw the sign. Judah did warn me, regardless of how vague he was.
The car coasts on in a one-lane, surrounded by flat land and snow. The prison comes into view over the horizon. There are a couple of walled up buildings scattered to the right of the plains.
The parking lot isn’t very big, and it already holds three cars. I’ve never been near a prison. I’m not sure why we’re here, but I refrain from asking questions.
Judah pushes the gear into park, before glancing at me. The car door opens and the short beeping noise goes off.
“I have to see somebody,” he says, coming out and shutting the door.
I follow him down the pathway, trying my best not to stare at anything for too long. There are flag posts hanging high in the sky. There are plants decorating the landscape. Even though the area looks clean and well-kept, the whole idea of it being a maximum prison is intimidating and nerve-racking.
We pass through the gliding doors, where it marks ‘visitors’.
“Who are you seeing?” I ask.
Judah shrugs his shoulders and stuff his hands in his jacket pockets. We quietly stand in line.
Now I feel awkward just standing here. We reach the reception desk, and Judah is given a form to fill out. I watch him write skillfully in cursive letters. It’s funny to think how a mafia gang member has better handwriting than I do. I strain my neck a bit a read his full name.
He hands back the clip-board, along with his licence. It’s also mind-blowing that he’s part of the mafia, yet no one working here seems to know. Maybe he’s not a wanted criminal, which sort of puts my mind at ease.
They ask for his licence plate number. I guess they have to search cars.
We then begin a security screening and are told to put our belongings in a small locker. Judah opens it and places his jacket inside. I pull my thick scarf above my head. I try to brush my hair back to normal.
“I’ve never been in a prison before,” I say, just to cut the silence.
Judah unzips my coat for me, because I’m too busy with my hair and wasting time.
“It’s not scary,” he replies.
Did I sound scared? I then remember the first thing he said to me when we met. He said he had just gotten out of jail. We make a short eye contact, before he shuts the locker.
After, we go through what feels like an airport metal detector. Once I cross through it, I’m met with a dog that swiftly sniffs me for drugs. I’m surprised the trained dog didn’t take an extra minute on Judah, even though he just had a couple of cigarettes. But when he comes up behind me, my nose concludes that he just smells good.
We have to go through a second metal detector. Staff leads us to the door marked ‘Non-contact box visit’.
We trek a long off-white hallway with doors on each side. The suspense in my head grows. Who is this person Judah’s visiting in prison? I have no clue.
One staff opens the door for us, using a key. Judah sits on the bench casually, like he’s been here many times. I hesitate sitting next to him. There’s no one on the other side of the glass yet, but we wait.
My eyes look up in Judah’s face. I can’t read his mind, but he doesn’t seem troubled.
“Hm?” he turns.
“What made you come rescue me... that night we met?” I ask.
I know he doesn’t particularly like questions. But answers will help me stop racking my brain. He slightly presses his shoulder on my shoulder, still looking straight.
“Yeah,” I sigh, “You know, at that club, from Everest—”
“Who’s Everest?” he scorns, furrowing his brows.
“I know you know what I’m talking about. Answer me,” I roll my eyes, and sigh heavily.
I watch his face soften, as he turns to look me in the eyes. “What made you come for me?”
“It was the look on your face—like you’ve never been protected before. It bothered me,” he says, “I wanted to protect you.”
I can feel my heart fluttering away and my face blush. My shoulder pushes back onto his.
Then, I feel Judah’s lips kiss my forehead. Perhaps this is why I can’t live without him now. I never thought it was possible to feel so connected—so close to someone...
My mouth hangs open for a moment.
A loud buzzing sound goes off, jolting me upright. The heavy door on the opposite side opens, and an inmate dressed in an orange jumpsuit walks in. Every inch of his skin is inked and scarred. His head is shaved. His left eyeball is jagged black. His arms and ankles are chained up. Security attaches his cuffs to metal grates. Just the sight of it all turns me cold inside out.
Judah and I watch the inmate sit on his bench, in agonizing silence. Nothing is said or heard, other than the clanging of chains. This mysterious inmate tilts his head back, staring straight at Judah from below his eyelids.
“What are you driving these days?” the inmate asks.
His voice is extremely raspy, like he’s got a blade stuck in his throat. Though, I wouldn’t be surprised, if it were a fact.
“An Aston Martin One-77,” Judah says.
They spoke as if they talked two days ago. Blade-throat nods. I start making up conspiracy theories in my head that the two are talking in some code language—like in the movies. But what they say next is underwhelming.
“Oh, nice. I like those cars. They’re smooth.”
Judah nods, in agreement.
“Remember when we used to drive the Exelero?”
“Racing in the Exelero,” Blade-throat nods, stretching his face into a distorted smile, “Those were the days, huh?”
“Racing was fun.”
“Nothing beats Spade seashores.”
Then it’s quiet. There isn’t anything for me to decode—they’re really just talking about cars, like typical men.
“I’m sorry about—”
“It’s okay,” Judah sighs.
“I know you liked that kid,” Blade-throat shakes his head down.
Judah rolls his watch around his wrist.
Blade-throat asks, “Are you sure you’re okay, man?”
Judah nods, not good with words.
“Don’t let them get to you, man,” he advises Judah.
“Yeah,” Judah says.
Blade throat then cracks a short laugh, “They cut down on hash browns. Can you believe this place?”
“Starch isn’t good for your health, anyway,” Judah grins lightly.
“You’re some kind of doctor, huh?” Blade-throat scoffs.
Judah shrugs and laughs.
I begin to understand Judah’s world a little more. It’s easy to judge people who turn to a life of crime and whatnot, but they undoubtedly share some kind of brotherhood, a tightly knit bond—and that no matter what happens, it will always exist.
The boys I remember being on a sports team or the frat would never take a bullet for someone else under any circumstance. But I feel like these two would. I feel like Judah would take one for his friends, Humphrey and nose-ring boy. It’s like an unwritten law they have amongst each other. Judah is protective by nature—even towards me. There aren’t many close to him, but those who are have his back.
“So, uh...” Blade-throat clear his throat, “You’ve seen boss?”
Judah shakes his head.
“He’ll find me, when he wants me,” he resolves.
“He listens to you. You know that?”
Judah pauses and casts his eyes down for a moment. Blade-throat’s functioning eye looks into mine for the first time.
Then time is up and the buzz turns on again. The door opens and the security takes the inmate back to his quarters. They haven’t spoken many words to each other, but I could tell that much was said.
I follow Judah, as we get ready to exit the facility. We take our stuff and walk back to the car. He walks faster than I do.
Reading Judah is like reading a different language. But after a good while, you start recognizing the same characters that keep coming up.
“How long is he in there for?” I ask, after Judah hits the gas.