Bennett Ryan looked like he was on the verge of losing his lunch and razzing all over the table.
“I’m going to pass. Lap dances aren’t really my thing.”
His brother Henry leaned forward, horrified. “How is an unfamiliar and extremely hot woman dancing on your lap not your thing? Are you warm-blooded?”
Bennett mumbled some excuse, and I couldn’t really blame him because, fuck, I wasn’t about to have some strange bird climb on my cock. But he had no idea what was waiting on him in the back. I had to get him out of that bloody chair and into the private room so we could get this night started off right.
“Bollocks,” I told him, waving to where Johnny stood, waiting near the private hallway. “This is your bachelor party, and a lappy is a requisite.”
Johnny raised his chin in acknowledgment and finished his conversation with security before making his way through the room, taking his sweet bloody time. Every second that ticked by saw my own impatience build. The longer it took Johnny to get here, the longer it would take Ben to man up and head back, and the longer my girl waited for me.
When he finally stood in front of me, Johnny flashed me a knowing smile. “Heya, Max. How can I help you?”
“I think we’re ready to begin the festivities.”
Johnny nodded, slipping a hand into his pocket. “Chloe is in Neptune. Down the Blue Hallway, to the left of the stage.”
I nodded, waiting. Finally, when he hadn’t offered more information, I prompted, “And Sara?”
“She’s in the Green Room, down the Black Hallway. The one to the right of the stage,” Johnny said. He leaned in a little to add, “Positioned how she requested.”
I stopped short, slipping my hand into my pocket to hide the fist that had instinctively formed. “She asked you to position her?” What in the bloody hell did that even mean?
“Just a little ribbon here, a little ribbon there.” Johnny watched me, a small grin giving away how amused he was by my reaction.
I looked around the dark room, at the scattered clients sitting on black leather couches or leaning against the sleek charcoal granite bar. I could feel my pulse in my jaw from clenching my teeth together in what I knew was an uncharacteristic scowl.
I was conflicted: curious at this growth in their trust, but needing to know what he’d seen, and where he’d touched her. It was rare for Sara to be tied up at Red Moon, and each time, it had been my doing. “She let you touch her?”
Johnny looked at me, smiling wider as he rocked on his heels. “Yep.”
He didn’t shrink under my heated attention. He just let me ride over the hot flash of jealousy, knowing that more than anything I was filled with gratitude. Over the past nine months or so, Johnny had done so much for us, and even through my haze of anger, I knew it wasn’t a simple favor he was doing for me tonight, with both Chloe and Sara taking up valuable rooms in his busy club.
I looked over at him, smiled. “Right then. Thanks, mate.”
Johnny patted my shoulder, nodded at someone behind me, and murmured, “Have fun tonight, Max. You have an hour before the next show goes into the Green Room.” With that, he turned and returned to the Black Hallway, the one where I would also find Sara, in position, with ribbon.
I felt the frenetic longing grow in my chest. A tightening; the way I feel at the start of a rugby match . . . but deeper inside me, and everywhere. It spread from my thorax out to the end of every limb, pulsing hotly in each fingertip. I needed to get to her, give her what she’d begged to come to Vegas to do.
When I told Sara that the only weekend we could do Bennett’s bachelor party was Valentine’s weekend, her first reaction was to laugh and remind me that she hated Valentine’s Day. Her ex had always fucked it up, she’d said, and I was secretly pleased she didn’t want to make a thing of it anyway. We celebrated our relationship almost every fucking night in my bed, and most definitely every Wednesday night in our room at Red Moon. Valentine’s Day was an insignificant blurb on the calendar compared to all that.
But Sara’s second, lingering reaction was to step closer, run her hands up my chest, and ask if she could come, too. “I promise I won’t crash the rest of the party,” she whispered, eyes wide and mysteriously combining uncertainty and lust. “The bachelor weekend can go on as planned; I just want to play at Black Heart one time.”
Before I could even find the single word to answer her, I’d bent to kiss her, and that kiss had transformed into her hands in my hair and my mouth on her tits. And that had moved on to hard and fast sex on my kitchen counter. Afterward, I’d collapsed onto her, panting against the damp skin of her neck: “Fuck yes, you can come to Vegas.”
Rearranging my features into something calmer, I sat back down and felt Bennett’s attention on my face as I picked up my drink.
“What was all that about?” he asked, watching Johnny disappear behind the black rope.
“That,” I answered, “was about the room that is being prepared for you.”
“For me?” Bennett pressed a hand to his chest, already resisting. “Again, Max, I’m going to pass.”
I groaned, giving him a skeptical glance. “The fuck you are.”
We argued a bit longer, until I could see him give in. His face grew determined and he hesitated, contemplating his vodka, and then downed it.
“Fuck it.” He put his glass down, shot up from his chair, and marched determined down the hall.
It was all I could do to not similarly bolt from my seat. Sara’s name echoed in my every heartbeat. I loved her so wildly, it was a wonder this wasn’t also my stag weekend. The number of times I’d almost proposed to her was bordering on absurd. And somehow, I knew she could see it in my face: that moment when I started to beg her to leave for the weekend with me, marry me, move in with me . . . and then thought better of it. Without fail, she asked what I had meant to say, and I told her she looked beautiful instead of releasing the words, “I’m not going to feel sorted until we’re married.”
I often had to remind myself it had been a mere six months—almost nine including our initial arrangement—and Sara was skittish about all things matrimonial. She’d kept her apartment, but honestly I don’t know why she bothered. For the first month or two after we reconciled, we’d split our time at the two places, but my home was larger, better furnished, and my bedroom had better lighting for the photographs I loved to take of her. Soon she was in my bed every night of the week. She would be mine forever, but—fuck—I had to remind myself we didn’t need to rush it.
After what felt like an appropriate amount of time since Bennett left, I put my own tumbler on the table and looked up at Will and Henry.
“Gentlemen,” I began, “I’m headed down the hall to have a fabulous Vegas bird dance on my lap.”
Both barely looked away from the dancers on the stage, and I was fairly confident I could leave and they wouldn’t think to look which hall I was headed down.
The hall to the left of the stage led to private rooms named after the planets. These rooms were for lap dances mainly, much like the one Bennett was currently getting. In my opinion, the only interesting thing in those rooms tonight was the fact that he was getting his dance from Chloe.
But the rooms to the right of the stage, labeled simply by color, were for an altogether different purpose. No one could enter those save for certain club employees and a very select group of clientele. The roped-off section was for the patrons who paid for the privilege of watching sex acts. Much like Red Moon in New York, Black Heart in Vegas catered in part to a population of the rich and passionately voyeuristic.
As I’d expected, neither of my mates looked up as I stood, moved around the back of our group of plush leather chairs, and slid first to the back of the room before moving to the far side wall. Even if they weren’t looking, I still didn’t need to provoke their attention by making a beeline for the private hallway.
I moved along the wall to the front, where a man almost my height stood, wearing a black suit and an earpiece. With a nod, he unlatched the heavy silk rope and let me pass through the thick velvet curtain.
I had full access. None of my partners in crime were to be allowed back here, however, no matter how influential or smooth-talking the Ryan brothers were. I’d made Johnny promise they would not accidentally stumble upon me and Sara.
I’d been in Red Moon so many times with her now that I didn’t need to see inside any of the other rooms to know what I’d find there.
In the Red Room, a naked woman being whipped by one man while another dripped hot candle wax over her breasts.
In the White Room, a man’s hand up to the wrist disappearing inside a woman lying spread eagle on a table.
In the Pink Room, I caught a glimpse of three women, all making love to the same man.
The carpet was thick, silencing my steps. Here, unlike at Red Moon, the one-way windows looking in on each room were smaller, though there were more of them. It gave the feeling of seeing a different show through each one, a different view of the same scene: standard voyeuristic fare. I’d learned in the past few months that the performers—while fetish-driven and daring—rarely portrayed anything beyond graphic, emotionless fucking. Which was fine; according to Johnny, most patrons wanted only to see the extreme sex acts, things they wouldn’t find on television or—in-deed—their own bedroom.
But there were the few, our unknown regulars at Red Moon, who came on Wednesdays specifically to watch me with Sara. Our nights there came above almost any other obligation, whether it was work or friends or family; Red Moon let us express something we both needed. In the past months, we had fully embraced our shared exhibitionist fetish, discussing it for hours afterward in her bed or mine.
There wasn’t anyone watching our room yet when I approached, so I could slip in unnoticed. As I knew it would be, the door to the Green Room was unlocked. No patron allowed back here other than me would dare try a stray doorknob in one of Johnny’s clubs.
It was a small room, like all the others, empty but for two props: a plain metal chair and table. The empty décor meant that every ounce of my attention—and the attention of anyone watching from the hallway—would be drawn to the naked woman currently bent over the table.
She was blindfolded. The curve of her perfect ass lifted in the air. Her spine was straight and relaxed. When the door clicked shut behind me, she pulled her lower lip into her mouth, and I could see a shudder pass through her body.
“It’s me, Petal.”
She didn’t need me to say it. I could tell from her posture that she’d known who had come in, but I wanted to reassure her anyway. She looked completely relaxed, her head turned to the side, cheek resting on the table, and I took a moment to let my eyes move over her.
Each ankle was tied to a table leg with the ribbon Johnny had mentioned, spreading her wide enough for me to have my way with her however I liked. She was bent at the waist, her hands tied loosely behind her back. Her skin was smooth and flawless, her mouth wet and slightly open now. I scanned her body again and, as if she could sense where I directed my attention, she pushed her ass a little higher.
I moved to her, pressing my palm to the skin between her shoulder blades. She jumped a little, moaning in pleasure, as my hand slid down her spine and over the curve of her backside.
“You look fucking beautiful, darling.”
“Your hand is cold,” she whispered. “It feels so good.”
Indeed, her skin was hot. I imagined she was flushed from excitement and the anticipation of not knowing when I would show up, and not knowing who might see her before I did. I slid a finger down her ass and lower, dipping into the source of her wetness. She was already slick. My cock grew rigid at the sight of her, the feel of her seduction on my fingers. When I slid two deep inside her, she jerked on the table, and I was relieved to notice Johnny hadn’t tied her up very tightly.
Sara had finally met Johnny by daylight soon after she’d come back to me, last August. Although they had been introduced briefly after our first scene at his club, Sara wanted to sit down with him away from that whole world; she said it would make her feel more comfortable about what we were doing if she could see the man behind it all. We joined him for coffee in a tiny coffee shop in Brooklyn. Johnny—like the rest of us—had been smitten the moment Sara had leaned into him and kissed his cheek, openly thanking him for everything he did for us.
They just clicked. He understood her from the moment he saw her, in a way I think only I had before. He was crazy for her, protective of her, and—as of this evening—was the only man other than me she would ever let touch her, and even then only to prepare her for this special occasion. The trust she gave him was a testament to her faith in me as well.
I took in her cream curves, the starkness of the red ribbon around her wrists and ankles, the strong, smooth line of her spine. My chest constricted with an ache so deep, when I tried to speak my voice came out a touch strangled. “How long have you been here?”
She gave a little shrug. “Johnny left maybe ten minutes ago. He said you would be here soon.”
I nodded, bending to kiss her shoulder. “And here I am.”
“Here you are.”
“Was it hard to wait?”
She licked her lips before answering, “No.”
“A few people are down at the next room,” I told her, kissing down her back. “I imagine they walked past this room and saw you alone in here, waiting.”
She shivered against me, exhaling a tight burst of air.
“I bet you knew that. I bet you bloody loved it.”
“You know how much I love you?”
Again, she nodded, and a blush spread from her neck down her back. More than anything, Sara craved the knowledge that someone was watching us make love. She wasn’t very often tied up for me; sometimes she was in charge, climbing on top and sliding down over me, or taking me in her mouth. In those times she liked to watch my face. Her eyes would take in every one of my fascinated reactions, as if it was still hard for her to believe how obliterated I was by her affection.
But sometimes—only a handful of nights at Johnny’s club—she wanted to be blindfolded, left to imagine how I looked when I saw her, and felt her, and fucked her.
I reached up, untying the ribbon around her wrists, and felt a bit like I was unwrapping a gift. Sara flexed her hands and then slid her arms up, reaching to curl her fingers around the far edge of the table.
“Did you know I was going to suggest you do that?”
She smiled over her shoulder at my general direction, the blindfold keeping me from her sight. “I had an inkling.”
And then we both heard it at the same time: a crash in the hall, the sound of someone dropping what must have been an entire tray of drinks. We’d never been certain when we were being watched before. At Red Moon, the rooms were soundproofed; here, the walls were thick but not as insulated.
In front of me, Sara shivered, her back arching.
“Apparently they plan to stay long enough to have some drinks delivered.” I took off my suit jacket, folding it over the back of the chair before I bent and slid my hands between the table and her body, palms up to cup her breasts. “Beautiful girl.” I kissed her shoulder, her neck, and down her back, letting my hands slide down the front of her. Licking, nibbling; I couldn’t get enough of her fucking beautiful skin.
“Bloody brilliant,” I whispered, pulling the metal chair close enough for me to sit down and press my teeth into the curve of her ass. “Think we only have time for a tiny taste.” With my hands on the back of her thighs, I spread her open, bending forward to kiss her clit, taste where she was warm and sweet.
“Max.” Her voice was strained, wrapped tight around the single syllable.
“Hmm?” I tasted her again, letting my eyes fall closed. “You’re so perfect right here.” I kissed her right where she would take me inside. “Right fucking here.”
“Please. Now.” Her thighs trembled in my hands.
“You don’t want to come on my mouth?” I asked, already pushing to stand and unfastening my belt.
“I know we don’t have a lot of time. I want to feel you inside before you have to leave.”
Pushing my boxers down my thighs, I teased at her entrance, sliding my cock up and over her clit. “Before we begin, I need your thoughts on something.”
She moaned, pushing back into me. “Need to know where to put it?”
I bent and kissed her back, laughing. “No, you naughty fucking girl. This will be too quick for that.”
She licked her lips, waiting.
Poised just barely inside her, I asked, “Shall I take you bare? I do have a condom in my pocket.”
Her breath hitched. “Bare.”
My chest squeezed and I stared down at her, wanting to absorb the moment just a little fucking longer. She was tied to a table, naked and ready for me. My silk tie dragged along her spine as I bent over her, and the deep blue contrasted perfectly with the pale flush of her skin. Bloody hell, she was hot. We never used condoms at home, but here in the club and with her whole night ahead of her, it was a little different.
I slid in so slowly I felt every fucking centimeter of her stretching for me. She cried out, tilting her hips up to take me deeply. In this position, with the difference in our heights, I could curl along the entire length of her spine and speak right into her ear. “Are you sure?”
“Because now I’ve just pushed inside you, with no protection, Petal. If I come inside you, the drink-spillers out there will know you belong to me.”
She moaned, fingers curling right around the edge of the table. “And?”
“And you’ll have my come inside you after I leave; is that what you like?”
“You’ll know it’s there,” she whispered, rocking up to meet my movements. “That’s what I’ll like. When you’re out there, sitting with the boys, or at dinner later, you’ll be thinking about how I can still feel you.”
“Too fucking right.” I slid my hand around her hips and pressed my fingers all along her sex, giving her friction everywhere.
I started slow, teasing, watching myself disappear and emerge, wet with her. But the reality of the night pressed in on my little private bubble and I knew I didn’t have hours to relish this. This would be quick pleasure only; I would find time to drink her in much more slowly later.
She gasped when I pulled back and returned to her roughly, building a rhythm so hard and fast the table squeaked on the floor, the hinges groaned. Sara took it all with her perfect arse in the air, pushing back into me as hard and fast as I moved forward.
With a quiet moan, she whispered, “Max, I’m there.”
I circled my fingers over her clit, pressed harder, moved faster. I knew this woman’s body as well as my own. Knew how fast she needed it, how hard. Knew how much she loved the sound of her name in my voice.
“Petal,” I groaned. “I’m dying to feel you come around my cock.”
Arching her neck, she pressed the back of her head into my shoulder, letting out a smooth, effortless moan. “More. More.”
“I fucking love you, Sara.”
That did it; her fingers gripped the table edge so hard her knuckles went white, and her orgasm surged around me, pulled from her in the same rhythm as her hot little sounds.
“What are you feeling?” I managed, lips pressed just below her ear. “Power? Control? Here you are, blindfolded and tied to a table and I’m fucking lost in you. I’m so fucking lost I can barely catch my breath.”
Exhaling heavily, she seemed to sink into the table, sated. “Love.”
My release teased along my back, hovered low in my stomach as my hips sped up. “‘Love’?” I repeated. “You’re tied to a metal table, having just orgasmed in front of God knows who, and you feel love. . . . You must be lost in me just the same.”
She turned her head, capturing my lips. Sara gave me her mouth, her tongue, her hoarse hungry sounds, and I was done for, groaning as I lost my rhythm, my hips slapping her backside as I grew fevered until finally, my whole body tensed in release.
I stilled, dizzy and relishing the feel of her kisses when she was like this, slow and languid after her orgasm. The room disappeared, and as clichéd as it sounded, time stopped. Everything in this night became about her body, and her lips, her eyes opening and meeting mine as we kissed.
Slowly, I pulled from her, and forced her lips to slow their soft, hungry assault so I could just enjoy the shape of her mouth. I ran two fingers over her pussy, relishing the way she jerked beneath me. Pressing two fingers inside her, I could still feel the heat of the friction, the evidence of my pleasure.
“Dirty fucking girl,” I whispered, pushing deep into her.
I tugged my fingers back and smiled at the way her body seemed unwilling to let me go.
But she needed to stand, and stretch; and I needed to carry on with my night.
I stood, fixing my trousers, and then kneeled to untie her legs. She straightened, arching her back before turning and pushing up to sit on the table, pulling me by my tie to stand between her legs.
“What are you guys doing next?” she asked, smoothing her hands over my dress shirt.
“Dinner, I believe.” I stepped away only long enough to retrieve her robe from the corner of the room. I was done letting others look at her. “And you?”
“Dinner,” she said, shrugging. “Then I’m not sure.” She looked up, gave me a teasing little smile. “Maybe we’ll go to another club.”
“And what?” I asked, laughing. “Watch some blokes in banana hammocks wiggle their tackle in your face? No, Petal.”
Her eyes widened in slight challenge. “Well, you go have your fun night, I’ll go have mine.”
With a smile, I leaned in to kiss her, letting her deepen it with her hands on my face, sliding into my hair and around the back of my neck. “I feel like I could fuck for hours,” she whispered into my mouth, and I almost lost it right then; Sara rarely swore, and when she did, it always made me hard. “I just feel a little hollow with how much I want you tonight.”
I groaned and pressed my face into her neck.
“I know, I know,” she murmured, and when she pressed her hands to my chest, I stepped back so she could stand. “I’m sure Chloe is done. We should go.”
We exited from the same door I’d come in, which, unfortunately, was the only way in or out of the room. I preferred the separate exit at Red Moon. It was one thing to know people were out there; it was another thing to possibly see them.
But luckily whoever had been outside had disbanded before we emerged, most likely having already seen me wrap Sara in her robe. When we passed down the hall, we slipped behind other patrons, and I couldn’t help but wonder, had they seen?