When I could speak again I looked at her. “Take off your dress, Scarlet. We’re just getting started.”


I DESERVED TO be the queen of bad choices. If there was a title for it, then I would definitely wear that crown. Even though I knew the choices were bad I chose them anyway. For example, lifting my arms and pulling my dress up and over my head because a man told me to—bad choice. Wrong decision.

I did it anyway. Just like I had become a raging ball of lust when he’d kissed me. No matter how many times I told myself I wasn’t going to do this with Bray Sutton I found myself doing it. Sex up against a truck should not feel that good. It should be uncomfortable.

My head knew better but my body was in control here. I was standing naked in front of Bray while he openly gazed at me with a hungry expression that made me shiver. It wasn’t cold out here, but I knew what that look meant. What it was going to lead to.

His tux jacket came off and was tossed aside in the grass. His shirt followed. I watched as he undressed until neither of us were wearing anything. There was no going back. I’d passed the point of right and wrong. I was firmly on the wrong side and apparently enjoying it over here.

I was expecting some action when he turned and walked to his truck. Confused I watched him and saw he had a blanket in the back that he took out and brought over, spreading it on the ground.

“Lie down, Scarlet,” his voice was husky.

I did as he instructed and felt vulnerable under his watchful gaze like this.

The sun was setting, and I knew Dixie had to have noticed we were missing by now. But the tingle between my legs and the blood pumping through my veins didn’t seem to care.

“Bend your knees and open your legs,” he said still standing over me.

This was Bray. It was how he did sex. He ordered you around then made you want more of it. There was no questioning him. The way he looked at you made you his puppet. Or I was more unstable than I realized and needed therapy instead of just the meds I’d been prescribed the last time my “father” had me evaluated.

He lowered himself to the ground between my legs and kissed my left knee before trailing kisses down the inside of my thigh. My hands made fists at my sides and I began panting. I knew where he was headed and how well he knew what to do when he got there.

His tongue darted out to tease me. I gasped and lifted my hips silently begging for more. “You’re trembling you want this so bad,” he said as his mouth hovered right where I wanted him to kiss.

“Please,” I begged not needing to be reminded that I was weak when it came to him. Weak for the euphoria I’d only known with Bray.

He didn’t make me continue the limbo of anticipation. That was unusual for Bray. Normally he drew it out. Made me crazy. Instead, he pulled my clit between his teeth and had me screaming his name. My hands were in his hair and I was desperate to hold him there.

The talented tongue played along my sensitive folds and I cried his name, pulled his hair and crashed through another orgasm as his hands left marks on my inner thighs. Before I could come down off the cloud he’d sent me to, I was flipped over onto my stomach and his hands were on my hips jerking my bottom up. I sucked in a breath just as he entered me hard and fast. The wetness he’d created made it easy.

“Jesus, I missed this pussy,” he growled as he began pounding into me from behind. “Fucking dreamed about it. Nothing compares to this.”

His words and thickness were sending me toward another blissful explosion. I held onto the blanket with both fists and took the rough sex that hurt and excited me at the same time. To say I hadn’t dreamed of it to would be a lie. Being with Bray was always this perfect. I wondered if other girls enjoyed him this much or if it was my psychotic tendencies that reacted to this.

The pleasure came before I realized it and crashed down over me so quickly I rocked back into him and screamed his name. He gave me two more pumps then he was out of me.

“Fuck!” he yelled as I felt the warmth from his release on bottom.

I stayed there like that out of breath. Completely wiped out. Unsure what this meant. If I was going to be able to recover from this. Just how badly this choice would affect me. Closing my eyes, I tried to remember this was worth it. Not to regret it.

Bray began to clean off his semen and when he was done, I relaxed and rolled over to my side so I could see him moving to sit down beside me. The after-sex talk. What did we say now?

He stayed naked, completely comfortable with his body. Leaning back on his hands he turned his gaze to me. “You’re not leaving after that.”

This was where I got a backbone and didn’t let a man tell me what I would and wouldn’t do. My choices, however, as I already knew were not the best ones.

“Staying will never be an option,” I replied. I wouldn’t come back to this life.

He frowned. “What does that mean? It’s over with Brent. He’s moved the fuck on. You’re not his. Hell, Scarlet you never were.”

I had never loved Brent the way he deserved. I was ashamed of the way I had used him. That girl and her sins couldn’t be explained by my whacked-out head. I knew it was over with Brent. That was done. My coming back had never hinged on them. But Bray could never know the real reasons. “I don’t deserve to stay here. To be happy. Not after what I did.” He expected that kind of response.

“What we did,” he corrected me. “And that’s bullshit. It’s over. Let it go.”

His taking part of the blame was nice but I was the one who used Brent to make him jealous. To get his attention. I’d wanted Bray so badly I hadn’t thought of anything but myself. That girl was gone. I never wanted to be her again. She was like my mother. I wasn’t going to be like my mother.

“I used Brent. I don’t deserve to be here.” And you don’t know me. That was the biggest part. We could never have anything more than sex.

“Scarlet you’re being ridiculous. The whole talk in the barn was bullshit. You don’t regret this. You want it as much as I do. You missed me . . . and damn it, I missed you too.”

The last was hard for him to admit. Bray Sutton didn’t show weakness. At least not often. My heart jumped and there was the wish. The desire to be normal that I shouldn’t get attached to. His missing me was not enough to fix the secrets. In the end, more pain would come if I didn’t cut this off.

“Bray,” I paused then took a deep breath sitting up, pulling my knees up and wrapped my arms around my naked body. I wasn’t as comfortable in my skin as he was. I wanted to reach for my dress and slip it on before finishing this. I was already emotionally vulnerable. Nudity didn’t help. “I can’t care too much again. It hurts. Being here . . . being with you but not with you . . . the kind of relationship you want with me. That’s not enough.”

I expected him to say something to persuade me to agree to his idea of a relationship.

“What do you want from me? Just ask.”

I hesitated. Confused. Those weren’t words Bray Sutton would say. To anyone.

“Tell me Scarlet. What do I need to do to get you to stay?”

I opened my mouth and closed it several times. Unable to form words. He’d shocked me. Bray rarely shocked me. The real answer to his question was nothing because he couldn’t erase my past or change who he was. Instead, I said the word I knew would scare him off. Shut this down. “Commitment,” I said firmly. The one word that wasn’t in Bray Sutton’s vocabulary.

Tags: Abbi Glines South of the Mason Dixon Romance
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