Vickey Romano is the girl with a secret you don’t want to bring home to mum.
Beautiful, hunted and on the run, she works a series of temp jobs under fake names and never lets anyone get too close. Until that is, she met Jake. The living definition of dark and dangerous, who tells her almost nothing about himself, keeps a SIG P226 in his bedside table, and can make her go weak-kneed with just a word.
She knows she should stay away, but this young Sean Bean lookalike has her caught in his web and she’d helpless to resist.
All she can do is hope her past doesn’t kill him in the process…
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“ohhh fuck, Jake! Don’t stop… don’t stop!”
Panting hot lustful breaths as her slender fingers buried themselves in his spiky jet-black hair; Vicky tried to fight back her moans as her lover’s sly tongue parted her folds swivelling deep, Its silky smoothness teasing her senses into delirium. Desperate for more, she opened her legs wider, surrendering herself and opening up to him in the most intimate of ways. ‘Damn him…mmm! How can he be so good at this?’
Within moments he had her crying out, her strength and dignity seemingly forgotten as a fiery serpent spread from his villainous tongue to coil within her belly, heat seeping through her being in a flood of white-hot pleasure. It was so incredibly delicious, she feared she might go insane until – “Oohhhh! There, right there!”
“So do you like it when I lick your clit?” he whispered, his voice reverberating against her most sensitive spot and blowing wisps of air inside her to feed the fires of her desire. The tremors it caused made her buck and writhe against him, deep throaty moans flowing from her parted lips as her eyes squeezing shut against waves delirious pleasure.
“Yesss.. oh fuck! Don’t stop. Don’t stop. Don- oh my fucking god! I’m gonna cum!” She gasped, her voice trembling as he buried his head between her thighs, eating her with a starving hunger, tongue drinking in her flowing nectar before swirling around her clit. Then he was sucking, checks hollowing, drawing her little bud from the safety of its hood and into sensory overload that had Vicky’s head spinning.
“Look at me angel.”
Her body obeyed.
His eyes gleam up at her from between her thighs. His hot, predatory gaze burning into hers. It was so erotic. So…
“Vicky! Hey, hello? You still with us other there?”
Vicky blinked through her haze to find Erika sitting across the table, waving a dainty but expertly manicured hand tipped with silver and white nails. Angela sat beside her, not saying anything but just that sly little grin pulling at the corner of the fiery redhead’s mouth was enough to assure Vicky that her flatmate new exactly what was going on.
Heat blooming across her face, Vicky Romano dropped her gaze to their table, refusing to meet the other two women’s eyes. Damnit, I did it again. Why do I keep doing this?
Why can’t I get him out of my head?
“Geez Vi, you could make a cherry look pale,” Erika observed, dropping her hand to take a long sip of her sip of her colourful cocktail, draining the glass. “Mmm…that’s good. My usual now Mike” She called to the burly chap behind the bar. Though not exactly their local, they were regulars enough to have a slate and paid off just enough that Mike, the publican, and his staff would let then slide when they wanted a drink but we’re having a bad week. Or if the fiery redhead showed off a bit of thigh and asked nicely. “So, who were you thinking about?”
Vicky shuddered. The Crown was a quaint, old fashioned sort of establishment that one would expect to find in a Somerset Village centre rather than the heart of south London. Decorated in dark colours, with oak beams running across the ceiling. a piano in one corner, and a huge old oak bar. A quiet pub where friends could meet and chat after work, but hardly a place to discuss the man in her head, constantly sagging her senseless whenever she closed her eyes. I’m fazing out so often now, it’s a miracle I don’t pass out at any moment.
“Oh I know.” Angela cut in. “It’s him. Right? The guy you were seeing.” The small grin spread into a smile that was surely evil incarnate “The one you’ve been pinning for-”
“Fuck you Bitch!” Vickey rounded, forcing a smile but unable to resist rising to the bait.
The redhead shot a sideways look at Erika and winked. “He’s all she thinks about.”
“Goddamnit! I told you to stop listening to me… Well, um…” Heat was practically radiating off her now. “Just stop listening into my room when I go to bed. Alright!”
“Wish I could Vick. But you’re a screamer, and I live Vicariously.” She laughed as Vicky gave her the finger.
“Isn’t it bad enough you steal my clothes when I’m out? Don’t think I don’t recognise that top you’re flaunting.”
Angela’s smile dropped. “Aww… come on. You know this looks so much cuter on me.”
“Is that you’re idea of an explanation? I know the only reason you want it is so you can show off your tits to every guy who walks by our booth.”
“Exactly.” She gave an exaggerated wiggle that had her already emphasised breasts jiggling within the confines of the plunging halter. “They get a show. And in return, I get my free drink. Isn’t that trade worth you sacrifice?”
“No. I want my top back.” Vicky countered dryly, refusing to back down. She needed to stay on the attack, keep the conversation moving.
“Now? What, you want me to strip off right here? In front of everyone?” She grinned and gestured over her shoulder to a nearby table where a group of lads were clustered around a tallboy. “I know it’s Christmas Vick, but shouldn’t I wait to let one of those lucky guys open his present.”
“Don’t act like you wouldn’t.” Vickey countered. “Anyway, I bet it’s not something half the guys here haven’t opened before.”
“You bitch.” Angela laughed. She was checked, however, by the sudden appearance of a waitress bringing a fresh tray of drinks.
“These are from the gentlemen at table 13.” The waitress explained. A natural head turner with sun-kissed curls and rosy cheeks, she was made all the more noticeable by the little two-piece Santa uniform that showed off plenty of thigh and midriff. When she gestured, not to the group of guys sitting nearby however, but to the opposite side of the club where a forty-something guy with a knot-top was dropping like a mound of suet in a suit, Angela visibly deflated.
“Thanks” she mumbled to the waitress’s retreating back, then pushed the drink over to Vicky. “Ok, bad example. But I-“
Erika looked up, eyes suddenly bright. “Wait-a-minute! You mean that guy, right? The one you said was a marathon man? Looks kinda like a youngish Sean Bean, only with a goatee. Ohhh… he was hot. But didn’t you ditch him last month?”
Immediately aware of both sets of eyes fixing on her, Vickey dropped her gaze down to the drink Angela had passed her. Eyes watering, she refused to let either woman see her cry and instead focused on the bubbles rising up to pop on the murky top of the rum and coke. Had it really only been a month? How can four weeks feel like forty?
And to think, she had been so happy.
It was such a strange idea. Her, Happy. For the first time she had been truly happy.
That was why…
She’d told herself it was time.
That’s how it had been with the others. A few dates, that was all. Then she’d end things. No attachments. No teary farewells or goodbyes. No commitment. No emotion. It was the best way. Best for her, and most certainly best for them.
And every time Vicky had been fine with it. They were just men, after all. If necessary, the best parts of them could be replaced by a pair of Triple-As and a trip to the Anne Summer’s toy aisle. But with Jake…
It was madness, pure madness, but in the space of a few weeks he had completely consumed her in a way no other man had. Made her feel complete, safe. Happy.
Her eyes began to water. Now, he was gone. And it was her fault.
Sipping the rum, she wiped the tear burning her check away with the side of her hand.
Anglia didn’t buy the act for a second. “What’s with you!”
“What?” Vickey asked, avoiding the redhead’s scrutinising stare.
“What?” She parroted, then arched a long elegant brow. “Come off it Vick. Don’t give us that load of old pony. You never go out with a guy for more than a handful of dates before cutting him out of your life. But this guy comes along and you’re suddenly attached to him at the hip. You sicken us with a routine that would make Shakespeare sick. Then you break up with him out of the blue. Now I have to drag you out by your hair just to get you to come out for a drink on Christmas eve.” Her smirk dropped. “Seriously Vick, what is it about this guy?”
Angela rolled her eyes. “Really? Because I could have sworn that was The Only Way is Essex you were watching when I came home earlier.”
“You hate soaps.” Erika countered, cutting her off before she could even finish the lie.
Vicky shot the blonde another glair, but made no effort to defend the program further. A veteran of all things soap, reality and celebrity tv, if Erika said it was crap, then there was no argument.
She sighed and put her glass down, defeated. “It’s nothing. He’s…different.”
“Different?” Angela asked. “Different how?”
Vickey Shrugged. She couldn’t explain it. Jake wasn’t like other men. Not the kind her friends understood. He was dark and dangerous. Full of that confidence which boarded arrogance, but with that sexy, irresistible bite. Dominating but not overbearing. Scary without terror.
He was a complete enigma. Even to her. “Just…different.”
Erika and Angela shared a look that made Vicky’s belly flip-summersaults. She knew that look.
“So, what does he do?” Erika finally asked, taking a long draw on her cider, watching her across the glass.
Vickey blinked. “I-I don’t know”
“He didn’t tell you?” Angela lent forward, scrutinising.
“I never asked.”
“But how come?”
And there it was. The question she dreaded. How could she tell them she was afraid to ask? Afraid of what his answer might be.
Vickey wasn’t a lair. She’d grown up with lairs, came from liars. She’d learnt to lie before she could walk. She was possibly one of the greatest liars who’d ever lived. And she’d seen the hurt they caused. She hated lying. She certainly didn’t want to lie to two of the only true friends she’d ever had. But she’d seen the pistol. Jake never made a big deal about her finding it that time, but it was there. Stashed away in his draw, between a packet of paracetamol and A box of condoms. A Sig Sauer P226. Only certain men carried those.
And known of them worked occupations that made good gossip. Or good, healthy gossip anyway.
“It just never came up.” Vickey just shrugged, trying to appear nonchalant. “But he worked a lot of strange hours and kept himself in shape. Not very toned, but healthy, like he does a lot of running. And his stamina is amazing, so maybe he’s a personal trainer.”
That, at least was a half-truth. She’d never liked those muscle-bound guys. They were so heavy and slow, all show and no bite. Jake had been just her type. Tall and lean, but with muscle in all the right place.
Erika was suddenly bright eyed. “Maybe he’s married”
“Married, and was seeing you on the side.”
“Well where does he live?”
“I don’t really… I know In a tower block. But we only went there a couple of times and I never really paid attention.” Because you were too busy cumming on his hand in the back of a cab.
“No. He’s not.”
“Oh Come on Vick, he doesn’t tell you anything about himself, works weird hours, takes you back to a flat that could be anywhere in South London. What about his phone?”
“What about it?”
“Was he on it a lot? Did he ever try and hide it from you or not like you having it?”
“No, Erika. I never asked to use his phone. But he never made a big deal out it or anything? He’s not married so just drop it.” Heat was burning across Vicky’s checks and her nails were starting to hurt from the way she was grasping the edge of the table. “And what does it matter now? It’s over remember, I broke it off. Me!”
“It’s nothing to be ashamed of.” Continued Erika, regardless. “You certainly wouldn’t be the first. My mum once met this guy who had a girlfriend and a wife and told them all he drove juggernauts so they wouldn’t-“
“He’s not married!” Vicky snapped, with more certainty than she had any right to have.
The hot ice of her tone immediately had the other woman going quiet, her eyes dropping to stare at her half-empty glass.
Seeing her friend’s hurt look, Vickey immediately regretted being so sharp with her. She hadn’t meant to be, but she couldn’t help it. He wasn’t married, she just knew it. Men lying about their marriage didn’t turn up with the sorts of bruises Jake could sprout overnight. Or look at her the way he had, as if he was looking into her, to the centre of her being. No one had ever looked at her that way before. He couldn’t have been married. He just couldn’t!
Angela nervously cleared her throat. “What did he think about your dad’s breakout?”
“He didn’t know.”
“But…how.” Erika looked up, her surprise evident. “Your dad’s escape from Belmarsh was all over the news.”
“I told him my surname’s Romano. It was my mother’s maiden name.”
“So you never…” Ericka paused, trying to find the words.
Angela interceded. “Told him about your family.”
Vicky snorted “Of course not. God, what do you suggest? Shag him senseless then go “Hey babe, that was wild. Oh by the way, you know that escaped murder who’s been all over the news, that’s my dad.” I’ve heard of some crazy pillow talk but that about takes the biscuit. Then just for kicks I could add “Oh and if the wrong person sees us together, Terrance Daily is likely to cut your cock off and feed you your balls.” She gave a second dry laugh then threw back the remains of the rum and coke, ignoring the way her friends exchanged worried looks at the mention of Daily.
Forty years ago, Terrance Daily, or just Terry to his friends, police interrogators, and Daily Mail readers, had been an infamous enforcer of Freddie Foreman. Five years ago The mail had called him the people’s king of London. But, to her, he had always been Uncle Terry.
Just the mention of that name was enough to make her shudder. And then she was their again. In that room. The night cold and crawling over her skin, fingers grasping her chin, sour breath reeking of whisky hissing in her ear “Good Girl, now lie down on the bed and let Uncle Terry see…”
Angela and Erika stood around her, “You’re as white as sheet Vick? What’s wrong? You feeln’ alright?”
“Y-yhea. I’m fine.” Christ, where did that come from. She shock her head, trying to clear the fog, and suddenly all to aware of the sweat clinging to her brow. Hen with a start she realised just about every head in the bar was watching them. Need to get outta here. “Listen… I’ve got to go.”
“Where are you-”
“Are you sure you’re-?”
“Want us to come-?”
“Maybe we should get you checked out-”
She shook them off. “No. No it’s fine.” Grabbing her jacket from the back of the chair, she slung her handbag over a shoulder. “I just need some air. To think. Yeah I need to think and get a bit of air. I’ll go for a walk then catch the tube back to the flat. See you later.” Then she was running, eyes glassy and heart pounding.