I rolled my eyes, slightly insulted that he had to ask. “I’m a modern woman. Obviously I have a vibrator.”

“Where is it?”

I hesitated, suddenly feeling as shy as I was modern. “In my underwear drawer. Why?”

He planted an open mouthed kiss on my inner thigh that made me gasp.

“Just wondering. Continue.”

I obeyed, letting my fingers fall into a rhythm that my body knew well. The movements were easy and smooth because I was already wet. He could be inside me so easily now. No resistance.

“You’re beautiful down here. So pretty and pink. I want to shave you sometime. Lick all the soft skin. Have you ever done that?”

I shook my head. I wasn’t sure how I felt about this up close analysis of my lady parts. He was throwing me for a loop. I just wanted him to suck or fuck me already.

“I can’t do this.” For the first time in my life, pleasuring myself was starting to piss me off. I wanted his hands on me. I felt like I was settling for less, embarking on the solitary journey to orgasm as a means to an end. Nothing like the unexpected and deliriously pleasurable adventures that Blake took me on.

“Are you embarrassed?”

“No… A little, maybe. But I don’t want to come this way.”

“You won’t. You’re giving me what I want, and trust me, nothing and no one’s going to make you come but me from now on. You’re going to show me how you touch yourself, and then when you’re just about to come, I’m going to put my cock in you. Can you handle that?”

“Can you use your mouth?” I pleaded.

He propped himself on his elbow and half rolled his eyes. “You know, Erica, you’re not exactly being obedient. I’ve given you the game plan, which, lucky for you, doesn’t involve any props because they’re in my apartment. But if you keep talking, I’m going to just throw you over my knee and spank the hell out of you. Get it?”

I giggled, but my laughter faded. His gaze was dead serious. Oh, he wasn’t kidding.

I took a deep breath and closed my eyes so I wouldn’t be tempted to laugh. Challenging Blake was too fun, but I didn’t want to be spanked like a petulant child right now.

I kept my eyes closed so I could concentrate, trying to forget that Blake was watching everything. I tensed and tightened, grabbing my breast, arching into my own touch. I was getting close, my motions becoming more urgent, less graceful. My mind spun. I imagined Blake was there instead. His name left my lips again and again. I needed him inside me. I was about to come when he caught my wrists, holding them tight to my sides.

“Have to taste you for a minute, baby.” His tongue flattened and lashed across my clit. The slow and steady climb to my orgasm sharpened into a steep one. I cried out as the sensation of his mouth on me launched me perilously close to the precipice. I bucked my hips, desperate for him, for more delicious Blake contact. He tore away, but before I could protest, he’d buried his cock in me balls deep in one single thrust, quickly followed by another.

“Blake, oh God, I’m coming,” I cried, my body shuddering with the searing pleasures overwhelming me.

“That’s right, I want to feel you fist around my cock. You’re so fucking tight already.”

He kept up his punishing thrusts, thumbing my clit in careful circles until I came with a wild string of cries. I swore, in my mindless release, that nothing had ever felt that good. Ever.

Blake found his own pleasure somewhere in the blur of my orgasm and collapsed over me. We lay there in a wasted heap, our breathing shallow and uneven.

“Good girl,” Blake whispered.


I decided to go in late to work so I could see Alli off the next day. Heath and Blake were in the living room, talking quietly, catching up. For four people who cared about each other so much, we all had a lot of catching up to do.

I helped Alli pack since she’d lost time staying the night with Heath. I could tell from her frazzled and sleep deprived state that they’d had an intense night. Probably no less intense than the one that Blake and I had shared. She was right about these Landon men keeping us on our toes. Heaven help us both.

But her color was back and her mood was lively again. She struggled to zip up the luggage that always seemed to grow after a visit even though we hadn’t done any shopping. She conquered it and stood back, hands on her hips. I checked the time. We only had a few more minutes before we sent her off to the airport.

“I guess this is it,” I said. I tried not to think about how much time would go by before I saw Alli again.

Tears spilled over onto her cheeks. She pulled me into a tight hug and sniffled into my shoulder. We’d had a great visit, but I knew her tears weren’t all for me.

“It’s going to be okay, I promise.”

“You promise?” She pulled back, holding my hands tightly in her own.

“I promise.” Come back and we can all be together, I thought but swallowed the words. No point in going there. That was her choice to make. She knew she could always come back.

“Heath loves you and I love you.”

“And you love Blake!” She giggled through her tears.

I hugged her again. We separated once Heath popped his head into the bedroom.

“Time to go, babe.”

She gave me a little squeeze and waved goodbye, disappearing through the doorway with Heath.

Blake came up to me as a tear fell down my cheek. Damn it. I would miss that girl. He wiped it away and pulled me into a hug. I wrapped my arms around his waist, thankful that at least I’d never have to say goodbye to Blake any time soon. I couldn’t and didn’t want to imagine it, ever.


“Are you sure it’s going to fit?”

I waited impatiently as Marie unzipped the garment bag and peeled away the enclosing plastic from the dry cleaners.

“I think so. I had the top taken out a bit.”

I laughed a little as I held a modest arm around my breasts, which had always seemed a little too full for my petite frame. I stood in my bedroom in my underwear as Marie unveiled the dress. The floor-length gown was a rough black silk with a pattern of faded teal velvet embellishments.

I stepped into the dress and Marie zipped me up. The sweetheart top tightened around my chest comfortably. Grateful I wasn’t busting out, I shuffled over to the mirror to see how the rest of the dress fit. The mermaid cut gown hugged my waist and hips perfectly, and the large swaths of the vintage fabric flowed out at my knees.

Marie stepped beside me, almost a head taller and looking as vibrant and gorgeous as ever. She’d been my mother’s best friend, but over time she’d truly become one of mine as well. Sometimes she was the mother I needed, other times just a friend I could talk to about things I couldn’t imagine talking to my mother about. Times like these though, she looked at me the way my mother would have. Her eyes clouded a bit as we admired the beautiful gown together.

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