Page 39 of Corrupt Kingdom

“You think you have the upper hand? It’s cute.”

“I do.”

“I let you believe that, but you don’t.”

“Tonight, I do.”

He leans forward, placing his elbows on the table. “And how do you figure this?”

“Well. Normally, you make me eat, but today, you’re eating. Which means the ball isn’t in your court anymore. Actually, I think it’s in mine, and you owe me.”

Beautiful dark eyes smolder at me, reminding me of silky-smooth satin. The type of satin Cyrus would probably use to tie me up with.

The memory of earlier becomes vivid and clear in my head. The feel of his fingers haunts me. The way they teased and tortured. There is no denying how my body reacted.

My cheeks burn from the images playing in my mind. I try to push the thoughts out, but instead they bury themselves in deeper, making my blood soar through my veins, and the unquenched hunger that I thought I had under control now rekindles in my core.

“What are you thinking?” His voice dips low and only serves to make me feel warm all over.

I shake my head and try to think of something to say. “Um. How about you owe me answers? How about for every bite you take, you answer?”

“Or . . .” he drawls out. “We each answer questions.”

“Can I ask—”


“Why not?” I find myself pouting, and I want to slap myself.

“It’s better this way right now. You have to trust me.”

That word again. There is no way that is happening. Hell, when he’s around I can’t even trust myself. “I can’t do that.”


My head drops down and then lifts up. “Fine.” At least this way I might be able to find out something about my host and stop staring at him. Maybe I’ll find out something that will make me stop fantasizing about the way he touched me. As if he can hear my mind, he starts to drum his fingers on the table. A choke escapes my mouth, and I know that all these lusty thoughts have turned my cheeks red from how hot I feel as I stare at his masculine hands.

“You okay, over there?” he asks, sexy grin large and very happy with himself and the feelings he so obviously brings out in me.

There’s a part of me, that wants to stand from the table and put an end to this game of cat and mouse, but instead, I school my features, extinguish my desires and pretend I’m talking to a stranger, and not a stranger I want to kiss.


Not doing a good job of pretending.

With a deep inhale, I try again. “I’ll start the questions. What exactly do you do?”

“I run a bank. Next question.” His answer is short, and I file it away as something I want to find out about.

“What is it you do, Sun?”

I narrow my eyes. “I thought you knew this?”

“Nope.” His answer doesn’t meet his eyes, but maybe I’m reading into things too much.

“I work at a flower shop. Or I did.” I can’t help but feel the loss as the words pass through my lips. I shake away the thoughts and smirk. “Are you as evil as I think you are?”

“More so,” he responds, not missing a beat.

“For some reason, that I believe.”

His lips tip up into a heart-stopping grin. “I’m more wicked than you could ever imagine.”

“I don’t doubt that for a minute.”

“And you, Ivy.” His dark eyes sparkle with mischief, “Have you ever done anything wicked?”

Don’t fall into the trick.

My cheeks turn hot at the inquisition, my body obviously a traitor. “Maybe. But I’m not telling you.”

“Live a little. No one’s here. It’s just you and me . . .” The husky tone in his voice makes me think of decadent chocolate, sinful and delicious and probably not the best thing for you. “I won’t tell.”

Jeez, this man. The way he speaks, silky smooth with innuendo should come with a warning label.

Careful when engaging, highly combustible.

I need to steer this conversation into safer waters.

“Do you have a girl—” I stop myself before I finish my ridiculous and totally not safe question. Hopefully, before he notices, but unfortunately from the way he grins, it’s obvious he heard me.

Someone save me.

Cyrus Reed will never let this go.

“Girlfriend? Ivy. Were you asking me on a date?”

“What. No. That’s not what I meant.”

He leans in, elbows on the table, head cocked as he stares at me, or better yet undresses me at the table. “No. I don’t.”


He is sinfully delicious.

I need a life preserver to sit at this table with him. Especially with the ambiance set. At this point, all that’s missing is sexy music.

That would be bad.

The longer he stares at me, the hotter my cheeks get, I swear they are going to catch on fire, because he just won’t stop.

I can’t think of anything else to ask. I need something. Anything.