…and I try to keep my word, so here you go. Enjoy!!
“I have something for you.”
That got my attention. “Breakfast?” I asked, my eyes falling to the dishes beside him. My tummy rumbled in anticipation.
“In a moment, perhaps.” He straightened and looked me dead in the eye. “Take off your robe and come here.”
Everything inside me went cold. I hugged the robe around me, trying to stave off the inevitable. “Why?”
He said nothing, and I looked up to see him watching me. There was no emotion in his gaze; as far as he was concerned, I was to disrobe and go to him merely because he said so. Because I’d signed a document saying I would do what he said, something I’d only done because he had given me no other choice. The glittery trappings around me did nothing to disguise what they were: a cage, designed to keep me off balance and at his mercy.
Finally, finally, I got mad. “Why me? Why all this?” I gestured around the room.
He cocked his head to the side. “Why not you?”
He was turning my questions back around at me and it was pissing me off. “I was nothing in your life, a pair of hands to type data into a computer then tossed when she was no longer useful. So why am I here?”
His lips thinned but he said nothing. Moving across the room to a large marble table, he picked up a crystal carafe and poured himself a glass of the amber liquid it held. “My career consists of me looking for potential,” he said, swirling the liquor around as he regarded me dispassionately. “It’s my job to find businesses that I can buy or sponsor, fix up, then sell for a profit.”
“So what am I, a project?”
A tip of his head sideways confirmed my suspicions. “You were ambitious, clever as a college student, used to a certain kind of existence. Life dealt you a hard hand, brought you down lower than you thought possible.” He saluted me with the glass before taking a sip. “You would never have turned down a chance to get back on your feet, no matter what the cost.”
“So give me a job,” I said, the sarcasm dripping off my tongue. “You didn’t need to strip me of my dignity, make me… The elevator, the garage–”
The thump of the glass on the serving tray shocked me out of my anger. “You rode that elevator every morning,” Jeremiah said in a low voice, staring at the crystal carafe, “giving me those little glances, getting close but not too close.” His eyes met mine, and I sucked in a breath at the fire I saw there. “I knew your scent, knew when that need rolled across you. Those secret little smiles, not knowing what was going through your head…”
My breath caught as he trailed off, the fingers clenching the top of the glass white with strain. I don’t believe you. “I’m nobody,” I said, my own words driving daggers through my heart.
His free hand clenched into a fist against a hard thigh as his jaw tightened, then his body relaxed. He strode up to me and I fell back a step, trying in vain to keep the last of my anger as a shield. Being so close to him was intimidating; my heart thudded in my chest as I looked to the side, unable to be strong any longer.
A finger came under my chin and lifted my head until I was staring up at him. His face was as implacable as ever but his voice was mild as he repeated his earlier request. Demand. “Take off your robe.”
His proximity was doing strange things to my mind again, speeding up my heart in totally different ways. The words reverberated through my body and I found my hands untying the belt then allowing the robe to slide back off my arms onto the floor. Fully exposed to him for the first time ever, I closed my eyes against his perusal, a tear squeezing out between my eyelashes.
When he put his arms around me I stiffened, but his hands stayed on my shoulders as he turned me around. “Look at something,” he said, and when I didn’t immediately open my eyes he repeated, “Look.”
A large oval mirror stood in front of me, and I cringed at my reflection. “What do you see?” he prompted.
Flabby tummy and thighs, big hips, boobs that need a bra to look good. I’d always been my own worst critic. “Me.”
I saw his frown in the mirror, then he tilted his head to study my reflection. “I see a beautiful face,” he started, running a finger down my cheek and along the side of my neck. “Soft skin, the right curves.” He leaned in close to the side of my head and breathed deep. “You smell good enough to eat,” he added, his words almost a growl.
My breath caught, his lips next to my ear making my belly tighten. His hand covered my breast, fingers tweaking one nipple, and this time I gasped aloud. His grip on my shoulder tightened as the hand circling my breast dipped lower, skimming across my belly and leaving a trail of fire in its wake. “So beautiful,” he murmured, and my head fell back onto his shoulder as the hand splayed over my hip, fingers digging deep into my skin. I watched him in the mirror, my heartbeat loud in my ears, as that hand smoothed over my mound, not sliding lower but feeling its shape.
Abruptly he stepped away and let me go, leaving me confused and off balance. “Don’t move,” he said, his voice a whip, and I froze. My instinctive obedience disturbed me but I stayed standing as Jeremiah picked up the box I’d seen him carrying in the lobby and handed it to me. “I was going to save this for later but now seems a better time.”
Suspicious, took the package and opened it, pulling back the tissue paper. My eyes widened as I ran a finger along a pair of nylon leggings and under the satin straps of a white bustier. Speechless, I looked up at my boss then back down to the contents of the box, not sure how to respond.
Jeremiah took the box out of my hands gently when I didn’t do anything for several seconds. “Turn around.”
As I did what he said, he pulled out the skimpy articles then, to my further surprise, began dressing me. First the white bustier which he laced up behind me; it covered my breasts and belly, with straps that hung down to the top of my thighs. I stepped into the tiny panties then the thigh-high stockings to which he connected the straps from the bustier. There was something incredibly sensual about the whole affair despite how professional he went about it; I’d never in my life worn lingerie like this, certainly not for a man, and it was an interesting experience. I’m too fair to wear white, a cynical part of me thought but I kept that observation to myself.
When he was finished he took me by the shoulders and turned me around again so I was facing the mirror. “Now what do you see?” he asked, leaning close to my ear.
I blinked, unable to believe what I was seeing. Wow, so this is what you get with high dollar lingerie. The white fabric managed to hide what I’d always hated and accentuate what I never realized I had. My hands ran down my waist, only modestly cinched by the corset strings in the back, and over my hips to finger the satin straps running down the front of my legs. The whole ensemble wasn’t overly restrictive but tight enough to pull parts in and push certain things up – namely my chest, which I’d never considered particularly impressive. Looking good now, I thought, gliding my fingers across the firm tops of each breast.
Suddenly remembering he’d asked a question, I cleared my throat to answer but didn’t know what to say. I locked eyes with him in the mirror and he nodded, obviously seeing my answer there. “Glad we see eye to eye,” he murmured, running his hands up my arms and across my shoulders. “Now that we have that squared away…”
A hand twisted in my hair and my head was wrenched back. I gave a small cry, my hand covering his in surprise, as I looked back at him. His face had grown cold as granite, green eyes intense, but his voice was smooth as silk. “I don’t like being contradicted. When I tell you to do something, I expect it done immediately or there will be consequences.” The hand in my hair tightened.
“On your knees.”