My Twisted Lovers - Book Two of The Forbidden Lust

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Chapter 172

“What.... How...?”

He doesn’t let me finish a sentence, hell he doesn’t even let me finish a thought before he’s sat next to me with his perfect plump lips pushed against my own. Oh god, these lips...

I try to reach up and grab his head to pull him in closer but my bandaged hand won’t coordinate with my intentions. His arms wrap around my hips, making sure their hold is strong without placing any pressure on my ribs as he draws me into him. What the fuck is he doing here? He shouldn’t be here...

My lips move with hunger despite my emotional protest at his presence in my home, I never thought I’d be able to taste him again, feel him again. I never thought I’d ever get to see him again. I can’t stop.

He pulls away gently when he realises I’m not capable of stopping myself, staring at me with those incredible chocolate eyes and running his thumb along the cut to my cheek gently. I flinch under the sudden sharp pain and he takes his touch away from my skin instantly.

“I did not know Amore. I swear to you, I did not know what she planned to do with you or what that vile creature had attempted in the elevator. If I had, I assure you he would not have lived to take another breath beyond that moment. I had left that day with my brother on business, I returned later to discover he was in the hospital but believed it to be a matter of his own doing. I was near the hotel that day bellissima... It pains me I could not get to you before you experienced this...”

I never doubted he couldn’t have known what Tommy did, Clarisse was smart enough to realise it would’ve cost Tommy his life had Antonio found out. I guess it did in the end anyway.

“How did you know to come back for me then? When Clarisse was going to kill me?”

He moves in closer to my body, his unmistakable scent surrounding me and clouding my thoughts of anything but him. He can see the pain I’m in sitting like this so places gentle pressure on my shoulders until I’m leaning back against the headboard with his hand now stroking my waist. Such a delicate and nurturing gesture from a man so fearful and strong.

“I’m afraid I did not know. Clarisse had arranged a golfing trip for myself, Jordano and Christopher. We were on our way when Christopher had a call to say there was a sinkhole on the course, a freak accident. It was the only reason for our return to the house. Upon my arrival I heard the shot along with your scream, it was then I came to you. I believe it was an act of god that brought us together that night Amore.”

Or the work of a meddling angel...

I love you Harley.

“My only wish is that I arrived sooner.” He moves the blanket back, exposing me to him before slightly lifting my little vest top and observing my bruised ribs. Running his fingers along the purple skin with so much concern in his eyes I feel no pain, having his familiar touch on my body is bringing me more relief than any amount of pills ever could.

Then he lent down and began to kiss the battered flesh and I couldn’t hold it in anymore.

This man killed someone, he killed them before my very eyes without so much as a blink and still shows no hint of remorse. He’s dangerous, probably the most dangerous person I’ve ever met, yet I’m never afraid with him. He could kill me, I know that, but I also know he’d die before he saw me hurt.

Slow gentle kisses litter my skin, travelling over every cut and bruise. He travels up, kissing along my chest bone slowly and sensually until he reaches my neck. I don’t fight him, I don’t even try. I want to soak in as much of him as I can while I still have him here with me.

“I thought... I thought you left...” My voice breaks before I have time to hide the weakness he’s bringing out in me.

He moves up until he’s kissing my jaw and travelling towards my ear, with my body caged against the bed with his own. These moments with him, the moments when it’s just the two of us intimately without complications, they will be my most lasting memories.

“I made you a promise Amore, one where I said we would meet again. I always keep my promises.”

He’s right, he does. The night of the engagement party he saw the bruising on my shoulder and promised me he would kill the person to do that to me, the person responsible for hurting me, he did just that.

Taking his head in my shaky hands I pull him to face me. The moment our orbs meet I know why he’s truly here, we can’t keep pretending this isn’t happening.

“You’re leaving now, aren’t you?”

His forehead falls against my own, the light outside growing darker until all I can see now is him.

“I must Amore, there is nothing more I can do here... Tell me... If I asked you to come with me Amore, to turn your back on this place and run with my heart in your possession for eternity, would you?”

Fuck... I wish I could.

I wish I could just abandon it all and never come back. I wish I had nothing keeping me here, but we both know we can’t do that. I would never leave my family, I would never be truly happy without them. Truthfully, he doesn’t want me too either, he doesn’t want me in that world, a world he himself can’t escape.

“Antonio-”

He places his finger to my lips to stop me before the words have the chance to leave my tongue, an ocean of emotions in his eyes flooding out into my own.

“Don’t tell me amore, I don’t believe either answer could bring me satisfaction.”

Moving to the side of the bed he gently lifts me and places me into his lap just as the first tears leave my eyes. This is it isn’t it? This is where he says goodbye to me.

“What would it have been like? Our life together there without all the bad stuff?”

He smiles as I place my head against his wildly beating heart, his lips meeting the back of my head with such affection before he speaks in a voice far more fractured than one I’ve ever heard from him before.

"I would've taken you home amore, my true home. The wine I sent you at Christmas was from my mother’s family vineyard, somewhere I promised her before I left that I would take my true love to build our family one day. Our lives would've been waking up amongst the Italian sunrise every morning, we would've dance and drank and fucked until we were too old to care what the rest of the world thought of us. We would’ve laughed until we cried, made love until we could no longer walk. We would’ve been together Amore, forever.”

A life with Antonio; a life of terrifying adventure, of incredible highs and woeful lows. We would’ve been together, but we would’ve been alone doing it.

“Do not hold onto this Amore, I made my choice a long time ago. I know who I am... I only want your life to be full of all the passion I have for you now. Promise amore, promise me you will find someone that only wishes to fan your flames, never suppress them. You are a beauty no man will ever be worthy of, not even myself, so choose whom brings you the most electrifying spark of life if nothing else."


I know this is the only thing I can do for him in this goodbye, a deal for always that he can hold onto when he thinks of me. For my Antonio, I will allow him to believe I shall find happiness. "I promise."

He moves my head, leaning my face up from his chest to face him before kissing me again, this time so slowly I know he’s trying to make it last.

I once said that he was not a beast and I was not his beauty. We’ve proven that statement untrue so many times and yet here we still are, a man with a monster hidden deep within and a lost princess trying to find her way home from his castle.

Antonio holds me close as the kiss ends, never wanting to let me fall from his clutches despite the fact we both know he must soon. He can’t stay here, I won’t let him spend his life behind prison walls for me.

Reaching into his pocket he pulls out his wallet, taking out a folded piece of paper and handing it to me. As I unwrap it a second piece falls to my lap. He tries to snatch it back but I’m too quick, pulling it from his reach and opening it quickly.

Oh god... he kept it.

‘Forgive me, amore.’ The note I left him at the hotel, still sitting here in his wallet.

“It was the only part of you I could keep Amore.”

A small chuckle leaves my lips as I lean over into my drawer and pull out the small box. Opening the lid I take out the perfectly folded paper, the edges worn from repeated readings of the simple words.

“Me too.” Antonio takes the paper from my hand, a smile on his face as he realises I have kept his note all these years.

“Amore...” I turn and kiss his cheek delicately before returning to the original piece he gave me. Unfolding it completely the tears spring free of my eyes, her smiling face staring back at me with nothing but peace. It’s the photo of Granny from the folder Clarisse had on me, a tiny blood stain in the corner not even able to rob the image of its beauty.

I never thought I’d see this again, I think it’s the last photo ever taken of her.

My sobs threaten to mask my words so I pull them back before they do.

“Thank you... The file, the police couldn’t find it... Did you read it?”

Antonio places a small kiss to the side of my neck as I look down at the picture shaking in my hands. That file had everything on me, I never want anyone to see it.

“Only some, I had to make sure Clarisse had no precautions put in place that could harm you before I destroyed it. This photograph is all that remains now Amore, it was my belief you would not wish for all the knowledge of that file to reach the public.”

No I don’t.

“I am aware of what happened to you bellissima, of the monsters that haunt your nightmares. I believe I should tell you now, those that hurt you will not live to see tomorrow’s sunrise.”

There should be a part of me that feels bad about this, shouldn’t there? Yet, I feel nothing.

Lowering the photograph to the bed I wrap my arms around his waist and bury myself deeper into his hold. I know we don’t have long now, he can’t stay here.

“Why go back for it? Why risk going back to that house at all? It must have been crawling with police.”

Antonio smiles as he kisses the back of my neck before I feel something cold and metal slip around it.

“I had to retrieve this, I only stumbled upon the folder when leaving.” Hearing a clip lock together at the back of my neck I look down to see a delicate chain necklace now hanging around it, a smaller replica of the cross he wears around his own with five sparkling diamonds set in the silver.

Antonio leans forward, presenting his own necklace and showing the gap where the five diamonds once sat in it.

“I wished for you to have a part of me, always amore. I had this made the day you left me at the hotel, in the hopes one day I would see you again and be able to leave you with something you would not wish to return.”

I didn’t wish to return the first one.

Watching the diamonds capture the basking white moonlight that surrounds us through the crack in the curtains, it fills me with a happiness I didn’t know I could have. A part of him, if nothing else, I have this part of him.

“I must leave now Amore, my father is awaiting my arrival and my brothers patience is unfortunately...”

No... no, it’s too soon.

Gripping onto his shirt, I pull myself further up into his hold as he cradles my whole body against him. This is it.

“Can you ever come back? I won’t tell anyone, I swear to fuck... Just-”

He chuckles before silencing my rambling with another kiss, this one far more heated than before as he runs his hands up my back and claws at my skin. I don’t even flinch at the pain caused by his touch when he increases the pressure and deepens the kiss. How am I supposed to not kiss this guy again? How can this be it for us?

“I only ever wished for you to have the world Brianna. The man you choose to give you that will know your worth... or I shall see to it he knows nothing again...”

We shouldn’t laugh at his words but we both do, although I have no doubt in my mind that he means them.

“Antonio...”

His name leaving me is too much, his hands running all over my body like he’s trying to memorise every inch of me for a final time. I don’t stop him, I let him feel every part as I do the same, our kisses healing a piece of our soul into the torn cracks of the other. This man, a man who called himself Antonio even as a whore because he loved the sound of his name on a woman’s lips so much, he could’ve been both my end and my beginning if I’d let him.

Breaking the kiss before he can regret it, he looks deep into my eyes to make sure I hear his words clearly.

“I will be there amore, at my true home, if you ever need an escape again. I will always be waiting for you, always.”

I can’t... it’s too much.

His lips press to mine and I know I will never feel them again, I could never be a part of his world. I savour every second as his tongue takes in the taste of me for the final time, a taste that has saved me more times than he understands. Holding in the tears I know he would never wish to see me shed, I can’t even breathe or I know I’ll break.

He changed my whole life, even if we were never meant to be, I know I was meant to meet him.

“Brie? You upstairs?”

Fuck. Josh’s voice travels to meet us and we both know this is it.

I can’t hold them in anymore, the tears bursting free as he smiles at me for the final time and swipes them all away.

“Do not cry my love... Noi siamo per sempre amore.” (We are forever amore.)

With that he lowers my shaking body to the bed beside him, my soul crumbling as he removes his hands from me and walks towards the window. Stepping out onto the roof of the porch he looks back for a final time, the smirk I saw on him that first night in the square room staring back at me as if no time has passed.

I force myself to smile back, if this is the last time he sees my face I want it to be with the knowledge that no matter what, I’m glad it was him.

“Forever.”

My bedroom door swings open and Josh pokes his head in before I jolt back to look at the window.

But he’s already gone.

“Hi babes, wasn’t sure if you were sleeping. You okay?”

I nod. I’ll tell him later, right now I need to sleep.

Josh walks towards me and moves into the spot on the other side of the bed, a small dirty card in his hand.

“That for me? Because that’s a piss poor attempt at a get well soon card babe.” I try to sound steady despite my heart breaking in my chest.

He laughs, handing it over to me.

“No, I tripped over the welcome mat on the way in and that was underneath it. I think it must have fallen off one of the flower bouquets you had for Granny. I wasn’t sure if you wanted to keep it.”

Oh shit, I remember knocking one off back then. Opening it up my broken heart almost stops all together. The card is a bit water damaged after all this time but the writing still clear.

‘Your loss is great, but your strength is valiant. She raised you to be a great woman amore, you shall be that for her today.’

Antonio. Even then, even when I was pretending he never existed, he never stopped thinking about me.

I will be the woman she raised, I will be the woman he’s always believed I could be, the woman he saved.

I will be worthy of being loved.

“Brie? You okay?”

Smiling up at my best friend, for the first time in a long time I know the answer to that question.

“I will be.”
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