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Stolen Touches: Chapter 15

Salvatore

Tormenting Milene has been as satisfying as it is frustrating. While I enjoy toying with her and wondering when she’ll finally succumb, the entire endeavor has turned on me because I can’t get her out of my head. I don’t let anything stand in the way of business, but recently, I’ve been thinking more about Milene than about investments and the problems which should concern me.
It’s been a week since I first asked her to go with me to the office, and she’s been coming every afternoon since. She’s insisted on taking one of the chairs to sit on while replying to emails. I said no. She tried to argue, but when that didn’t succeed, she relented and now she automatically sits on my lap once she’s walked through the door. Like now.
I watch as she approaches, a perfectly neutral expression on her face. She lowers her perky ass onto my thigh and pulls the laptop closer.
“Another contract,” she says. “Any comments on this, or should I forward it to Greg?
“Just forward it.”
Milene nods, sends the email and opens the next one. “A local school is asking for a donation. What should I say?”
“Just ignore it.”
She turns her head and eyes me over her shoulder. “You’re loaded.”
“So?”
“So, you can afford a small donation.”
“I can. But I don’t see why I should start giving money away.” I let my gaze fall from her eyes down to her chest. She’s wearing a white silk blouse. The first two buttons are undone, and from beneath its sheen, the ghost of a pale pink bra is taunting me.
“Because you want to be a better person?”
“I don’t need to be a better person, Milene. I’m quite satisfied with what I am.”
“And what is that?”
I lift my eyes off her cleavage and focus on her face. Her hair is down today. I move away the blond strands to reveal the delicate skin of her neck.
“Plain bad.” I tighten my hold around her waist, enjoying the way she tenses. To unnerve her even further, I plant a light kiss at the back of her neck, brushing my lips across her soft skin. I meant what I said in the kitchen that day. She doesn’t know it yet, but she will end up in my bed very soon. “Tell them they’ll receive laptops for the high-achieving students but that I’ll be sending someone to make sure the tech actually ends up in those students’ hands. If I find out that even a single item is being used someplace else, they won’t see another cent from me ever again.”
She nods and starts typing, but her fingers tremble slightly as she does so. I kiss her neck again, a little higher this time—under her ear, and enjoy the way she shudders.
“You’re distracting me, Salvatore.”
“You need to work on your concentration,” I say and move my right hand down her thigh until I reach the hem of her skirt. “Let’s practice.”
Milene opens her mouth to say something, but as my palm slides between her legs and presses against her core, she gasps instead. I brush the tips of my fingers over the lacy material, then apply slight pressure once again.
“What are you doing?” she whispers.
“Helping you.”
“With what?”
“Working on your concentration.” I push her panties to the side, feel her wetness, and gently rub her clit in a circular motion, increasing the pressure at just the right moments.
Milene doesn’t move for a while. She simply sits stone-still on my lap, then takes a deep breath and places her hands over the keyboard once again. I watch as she takes another breath, hits enter, and resumes her quiet clickety-clack against the keys.
She’s pretty quick. Much faster than I’d expected. For the first time I can remember, I’m up-to-date with my correspondence. I can type, but with one hand, it’s mere pecking, and it takes far too much time. I usually focus on only the most pressing matters and handle the rest via phone. I once tried typing with both my left and right hand, but the results were a mess. It took longer to fix the mistakes than it does to just use one hand to type.
“What do you want me to do with those documents Greg sent?” Milene’s tone is even when she asks, but I detect a slight tremble in her voice. She’s trying very hard to feign indifference and pretend my exploring fingers aren’t affecting her in the least.
I bury my nose in her hair and inhale. “Leave it. I’ll check them tomorrow,” I say flicking my thumb over her clit.
A low whimper leaves Milene’s lips. “Please, stop.”
“Why?” I brush the tip of my finger along the wet lips of her pussy. “You don’t like it?”
She turns around in my lap and bites her lower lip. “I don’t.”
“All right.” I start pulling my hand away but her legs clench, trapping my hand in place. The mix of anger and confusion on her face is priceless. I wonder if she’s aware her ire is misdirected. It’s not me she’s mad at. She’s furious with herself because she’s enjoying this. Her eyes move lower and come to rest on my lips.
The moment her hold of my hand loosens, I slide my hand inside her panties and tease her again. A gasp leaves her lips when I slide a finger into her. She widens her legs, her breathing quickening. Warm breath fans my face as I slide my finger in and out. A tiny mewl leaves her mouth, and my cock swells upon hearing it.
“I’m so looking forward to fucking you senseless, cara,” I say, looking into her eyes.
“Dream on,” she chokes out, then whimpers when I add another finger.
“I already do. I imagine myself slamming into you, wrecking your sweet pussy every fucking night.” I thrust my fingers all the way in, enjoying her erratic panting. “But I only end up frustrated because you are so damn stubborn.”
“I don’t like you!” she says through her teeth.
“No? Well, it looks like your pussy likes my hand quite a lot. But maybe I’m wrong.” I pull my fingers out and lift my hand off her pussy.
Milene stares at me with her teeth clenched together and her eyes wide. She looks like she’s going to combust.
Someone knocks on the door. Milene quickly turns her head away and looks back at the laptop screen.
“Enter,” I say and remove my hand from under her skirt.
Nino walks in but falters when he sees Milene sitting on my lap. I motion for him to come, and he takes a chair on the opposite side of the desk.
“We have a new development regarding the snitch,” he says. “Leaking the info worked.”
“Do you know who it is?”
“No. But he was in the group of five men.”
“Their phones are clean?” I ask.
“Yup. No way to discover who it was unless someone confesses.”
“Take all five to the old safe house and lock them in a room under video surveillance. All together. No guards inside. No food, no water.” I lean back in my chair, pulling Milene with me. “But before you do that, take the one who’s least likely to be the snitch and tell him what’s happening. Let it be known that if no one confesses by morning, all five will be dead in a ditch.”
Milene’s body tenses. Maybe I shouldn’t discuss such things in front of her. “We’ll continue tomorrow, Milene.”
She looks at Nino, then back at me before getting up and leaving the office and I can’t help but notice how pale her face is. When she closes the door behind her, I turn back to Nino.
“At least one of them must have seen the rat using the wrong phone or acting strangely, but they’ll need the incentive to remember. Put two of your men to monitor the feed. Let’s see whether they start accusing each other. The culprit might float to the surface.”
“And if he doesn’t?”
“As I said, kill all five of them. There will be no rats on this ship.”
“Consider it done.”
“Tell me about Fitzgerald. Anything new on that?”
Nino’s giving me updates on Fitzgerald’s whereabouts when the phone on my desk rings loudly. I glance at the caller ID and see that it’s the security desk downstairs. For a moment I consider ignoring it, but then decide to take the call after all.
“Mr. Ajello, I wanted to inform you that your wife has just left the building.”
“What?” I spring up from the chair. “Alone?”
“Yes. I . . . should I have stopped her?”
I squeeze the receiver in my hand. “Is she still downstairs?”
“No, she successfully hailed a cab and left.”
“If you’re still there when I get down,” I sneer, “I will fucking shoot you in the head, Steven.”
I grab my phone and car keys off the desk, and head toward the door.
“Boss?” Nino calls, hurrying behind me. “What happened?”
“My wife happened,” I snap, get into the elevator with Nino on my heels, and call Milene.
“Yes?”
“Where the fuck did you go without a security detail?” I yell.
“You said you had work to do. I’m heading to Pippa’s for coffee. I’ll be home in two hours.”
“Tell the driver to turn around and get back to your bodyguards. Now, Milene!”
“I’m not taking four bodyguards to my friend’s tiny place. The taxi will drop me in front of Pippa’s building, and I’ll come straight back afterward.”
I hit the button for the garage. “Tell the driver to make that fucking U-turn!”
“Don’t yell at me, Salvatore. I’m not going anywhere risky, and I’ll be back soon. If you feel that next time I should take security, we can discuss it later and find some sort of compromise.”
Oh, I’ll give her a compromise. “The address?”
“Why?”
“I’m coming to get you. Do not leave the taxi until I’m there.”
“Stop overreacting. We’ll talk when I return.” She cuts the call. I dial her number again, but the call goes directly to her voice mail.
She hung up on me. No one fucking hangs up on me. I close my eyes, take a deep breath, and head toward my car.
“Boss?” Nino speaks up behind me.
“Find me the address of Pippa something!” I get inside the vehicle, leaving the door open as I continue my conversation. “She works at St. Mary’s as a nurse.”
“I’ll have it in five minutes,” he says and stares at me. “Boss, are you all right?”
I put the key into the ignition. “Why wouldn’t I be?”
“You were yelling the whole way here. You never yell.” He nods toward my hands on the wheel. “And your hands are shaking.”
Of course, my hands are shaking, I’m so full of rage it feels like I’m going to explode, and I have no idea how to process that shit.
“Find me that address. Now!” I slam the door closed, start the car and hit the gas.
I ignore the red light as I exit the garage, pressing down harder on the accelerator. The way I am acting is completely unreasonable, but I don’t give a fuck. I can’t stand the idea of not knowing where she is. It’s gnawing at me from the inside out, like a rat in a cage. I grip the steering wheel with all my might and take a deep breath, trying to calm down. It’s not working. Where the fuck is she?!

Milene

“What the hell happened?” Pippa jumps at me with questions before I’m even inside her apartment. “Why did you resign? Where have you been for the past few weeks? I came to your place twice. I thought you’d been kidnapped.”
“Sorry, I just didn’t want to talk about it over the phone. It’s a long story.” I flop down on the sofa and, leaning back into the soft cushions, close my eyes. I’ve missed this. The ordinary world. A normal life. I spent fifteen minutes in front of the building, taking deep breaths so I could calm down  enough to come upstairs.
When I left Salvatore’s office, it seemed as though the walls were suddenly closing in on me, and I couldn’t draw a breath. I couldn’t make myself go up to the penthouse. I had to get out and go somewhere, anywhere but there, so I called Pippa. I guess spending four years trying to avoid everything about Cosa Nostra has made me soft. I’ve forgotten how a lot of problems are handled. Killing five men, four of whom are innocent, is normal in our world.
“Talk!” Pippa says and sits down on the sofa next to me.
“Remember the mysterious guy?”
“Yes.”
“Well, we like each other,” I say, aware how utterly stupid the rest of the explanation will sound. “And I decided to follow your advice.”
“What? You married the guy?” She stares at me. “But you’ve known him for, like, a month!”
“We really like each other.” I shrug.
“Whoa, Milene. That’s . . . it’s crazy.”
Yeah. She doesn’t know the half of it.
“So, you’ve been with him this whole time? Who is he? Is that why you resigned? I . . . wow. I still can’t believe this. You never seemed like an impulsive person.”
“I realized my life had become too boring, and I should . . . you know, spice it up a bit.”
Pippa laughs and shakes her head. “Oh, you definitely spiced it up, babe. Did you at least get his name before you married the guy?”
“Yes. It’s Salvatore.”
“Italian? Nice. I can’t wait to tell the girls at work.”
A loud bang echoes against the front door, and it flies open to reveal Salvatore standing on the threshold. His lips are pressed into a pale thin line, and the darkness in his eyes shows he’s mad as hell. It’s as though tiny daggers are shooting out of his pupils, all directed at me. How on earth did he find me so fast?
“Milene,” he says with forced calmness.
I see it on his face, though. He’s ready to drag me back, by the hair if necessary. I let out a sigh. I shouldn’t have left without security, but I was freaking out. Now we’re here, and he’s going to make a scene.
“I have to go, honey,” I tell Pippa and rise off the sofa. “I just wanted to drop by and say hi, but I’ll call you, and we’ll go for coffee one afternoon. Deal?”
She looks at Salvatore, who casts a long shadow on the floor of Pippa’s apartment, and back at me. “Is everything okay? You can stay here if you want.”
“Everything is fine.” I lean in to kiss her on the cheek. “I’ll call you next week.”
I walk toward the door and lift my chin to meet my husband’s stare. He’s still waiting to pounce like a lion with its prey in sight, but I’m not backing down. “Later,” I say in a low voice.
He doesn’t say anything, just takes my hand and leads me toward the elevator.
When we get inside the car, he leans his forearms on the wheel and stares off into the distance. With both of us looking straight ahead, we sit in menacing silence for at least five minutes before he finally breaks it.
“You will never do that again,” he says and hits the steering wheel with his palm. “Never, Milene.”
I lean back in the seat and close my eyes. “I freaked out, Tore. I had to get out of that building.”
Strong fingers wrap around the back of my neck, and I open my eyes to find Salvatore’s face a couple of inches from mine.
“Why?” he asks through his teeth and slightly tightens his hold on my neck.
“Hearing someone state they’re willing to execute five people as though they’re speaking of tossing out overripe fruit, well, that may worry a person. I suppose you can understand that a little.”
“You know very well how things work in the Family, Milene.”
“Yes. Which is why I left. Or tried to, at least.”
He curses, then presses his mouth against mine in a hard and angry kiss. I gasp, both shocked and confused.
“Never. Again,” he says against my lips and again squeezes the back of my neck. “Understood?”
“Okay.” I nod.
He watches me through narrowed eyes, and I wonder if he’s going to kiss me again. But he just nods, then releases my neck and starts the engine.

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