Page 47 of Corrupt Kingdom



It takes over an hour to clean up all the blood and dispose of the ruined towels. By the time I’m done, I’m hot and gross, and in desperate need of a shower, but first, I need to check on my patient.

I walk into the kitchen to help Cyrus move somewhere more comfortable, but the kitchen is empty.

“Where the hell did you go?” I mumble to nobody. I search the lower half of the place, and when I come up short, I decide to check upstairs.

The master bedroom door is open, so I walk in. “You shouldn’t have climbed those steps,” I lecture, but he isn’t in there either. I hear a commotion through the half-opened door to my right and proceed toward it.

“Dammit, Cyrus, you should be in bed, not walking around. You’ll split open your stitches,” I bark before halting in my tracks.

The door is open just enough to showcase Cyrus lowering his briefs to the ground, as steam from the shower rolls into the room. He doesn’t see me, and I take full advantage. He stands bare with his back to me.

My breath hitches at the sight. I know I should turn away. I should not be looking, but I can’t force my eyes from him. He’s single handedly the most beautiful man I have ever seen, and my body reacts in ways it never has before. Want and need beg me to press forward while my head screams for me to look away.

“Like the view, Ivy?” His cocky remark does the trick. Cold seeps into my once hot flesh.

“I-I just came to help you get settled. I must now bleach my eyes,” I say lamely, and he roars with laughter. “It’s not funny, Cyrus. I’m scarred for life.”

“Liar,” he accuses, and I don’t say another word.

“Just call when you’re done, and I’ll help you. You shouldn’t be pushing things. If that breaks open, I don’t have the proper supplies to help you. You’ve lost a lot of blood.”

“I just need to get this blood off me. I’ll be five minutes, Ivy.”

I swear under my breath, making my way back into what must be the room he’s claiming. I go through drawers and find that it is stocked. I pull out a pair of athletic shorts and a T-shirt, but it’s when I stumble across briefs that I once again go down the rabbit hole of want. God, will my body and brain ever be on the same damn page? It’s pissing me off.

Sure, he’s beautiful, but he’s evil. I try to drill that truth into my head, but with every negative thought, two sexual ones take root.

What the hell is wrong with me?

Has it been that long that I’d find just about anyone worth sleeping with?

That has to be it.

My celibacy is the root problem. Well, there are other ways to handle that problem that doesn’t include giving my body to my kidnapper.

I need space to clear my head. Being close to him is not a good idea right now.

Once I get him situated, I have to get the hell out of this room.

I’ll take care of him for the injury I caused, but I won’t spend a moment more with him.

It isn’t good for me. I’m beginning to be one of those idiot girls who fall for their captors.

Yep. Stockholm syndrome, it is.

I’m ninety percent sure that’s what I’m coming down with. It’s a real thing, and I can’t be blamed for my lapse in judgment.

He’s doing this. It’s his fault.

I straighten things on the dresser, dust the windowsill, and turn down the bed. Anything to keep my hands and mind occupied. I’m so engrossed in what I am doing that I don’t hear him approach.

I don’t know he’s there until I feel his touch.

One finger grazes down my spine, leaving goose bumps in its wake. I shiver all over and hate that my body reacts to his touch. There is no denying it. He has to feel my body shake.

“What are you doing, Sun?”

There it is again, that stupid freaking nickname.

I have yet to figure out what it even means. I look at him over my shoulder warily. Droplets of water trickle down his carved chest, and I follow them as they make their way down his toned abs.

A towel hangs loosely on his hips. I swallow, turning my head, but his fingers grab my chin, easing me to look at him. His eyes burn with something I don’t want to think too much about.

Not while I’m this close to him.

Not when my senses want to leave completely and just give in to this insane chemistry floating between us.

We are two strangers on a deserted island, completely and utterly alone. He is beyond attractive. Can’t I just pretend he is someone else for just a few moments. Just long enough to get lost in his touch.