Page 17 of Owning Olivia

When he looked at me, I felt like the world stood still and it was just me and him moving in orbit toward each other. His hands on my skin were like the searing touch of fire burning slowly but steady, becoming hotter until I felt I’d burst into flames in his arms. I wanted Silas. I belonged to him. I was his. I knew I owed Silas nothing, but to him I wanted to give. I wanted to surrender.

“You need to be careful with what you say to me, Oliva. You need to be sure, because once you agree to be mine, you are mine. There is no going back from that. I’m not the kind of man to let go of what’s precious. You will be mine, completely and unequivocally.”

I’m not sure if his words were meant to scare me off, but being there in his arms, having his fingers comb through my hair, made me want to be his forever, especially if it meant there would be more moments like these.

His basement movie room was cozy, wall to wall couches and a screen nearly as big as a theatre. The ambiance of the whole house was comforting and I was used to nothing but squalor. All of the décor embodied the man, sleek, sparse, and elegant. The house, large and somewhat intimidating, but full of comfort at every turn.

Silas abandoned my hair and used his thumb and forefinger to tilt my head up, forcing my gaze to his. His blue eyes were mercurial like the ocean—they could be calm one moment and turbulent the next. Within the beautiful deep azure hue was a reservoir of pain. I saw worry and uncertainty, emotions that didn’t seem to fit with the Silas I knew. Maybe he didn’t want me, maybe I was being too forward, men tended to want what they couldn’t have, at least the men in my world. Maybe my earnest nature turned him off. I was stupid. I resolved to back off in order not to embarrass myself any more than I already had and give him the space that he must need. I pulled away, but separating myself from him was harder than I’d anticipated.

“Don’t run away from me, Livie. I need you.” His words stopped me in my tracks. I couldn’t move. I was stuck there, grounded by three little words. Silas wasn’t the kind of man who admitted to vulnerabilities. All I wanted was to feel his arms around me, to root myself in the safety that only he could give me. He gently touched my face and my worries dissipated. On a reflex, I grabbed for his hand and touched the rough texture, allowing his skin to bring me comfort and warmth. Silas dropped his hand and pulled me to his chest, holding me tightly in his embrace. His arms firmly encircled my waist making any escape impossible. It occurred to me that if Silas actually wanted to hurt me, he could break me like a twig. I was no match for his massive size and tremendous strength. Although his arms held me fiercely, he made me feel like they’d protect me from any threat, even himself. He kissed the top of my head paternally. He slowly leaned back on to the sofa and pulled me to him again. I was pinned against his chest, a happy egg in a warm nest. He shifted his hips and I felt the bulge in his pants. My mind roamed back to him naked in his bedroom and I recalled how well-endowed he was. I’d never been with a man.

I looked at his eyes, into a prism of intense piercing blue. His gaze was intimidating, but gave the impression that he was a man always in control. Even aroused he was in complete control, while I, on the other hand, was spinning. I wanted him to feel like he was spinning too, like life was now spun into chaos because we were here together and touching— because that’s how it made me feel.

I slowly and deliberately touched his face, being careful not to surprise him. Maybe he felt vulnerable being touched on those sensitive scars, maybe no one ever had before me. I brushed my finger from his temple to his strong jaw line. He was dangerously handsome, not in an average Hollywood way, but in an unsettling way. A man who could make you lose your mind, break your heart too, if you let him in. I’d never felt attraction before, so strong and so consuming. I was swept up in the pull of his tide and struggling against the current wasn’t an option.

Maybe it was the way his eyes softened when he looked at me or the sweetness I saw hidden deep inside him. I looked at him tenderly until something came over me, it was impulsive, it was bold, and it was completely out of character for me. I leaned over and kissed him. He parted his lips for me and I savored the taste of his tongue, a mixture of smoky alcohol and sweet raspberry jelly. My arms went around his neck and my fingers gently felt the indents of the rippled scars along his hairline. It was my kiss, but Silas took control in an instant. His hand fisted my hair holding me in place while he deepened the kiss, drawing me in to him even more. Then it ended as abruptly as it had started with Silas pulling me off him as if he’d been burned. He looked at me in horror like he’d done something terribly wrong, but it was me who kissed him. He was reading everything wrong.