I do hate her father. I hate her whole damn family. I expected to hate her.
“I don’t hate you, Emma. Don’t give me a reason to start.”
“You’re pissing me off, Jax. Maybe I hate you.”
“Are you serious? Show you?”
“Angry sex is a great damn way to deal with death, Emma. I told you. Use me.”
“And you’ll use me?”
“Damn straight, baby.” And that’s the most honest I can be with her right now and for reasons I can’t explain, considering her family’s connection to mine, I want to be honest with her. My mouth covers hers again, tongue licking into her mouth once more, drinking her in, and then I taste her pain, so fucking much pain. I feel that pain, I feel it like a demon snapping and biting inside me, all the emotions I’ve suppressed since waking up to my brother’s death raging inside me.
I tear my mouth from hers and search her face, looking for the woman I thought I would find, looking for the woman I thought she would be, hating how much I don’t want her to be the woman I thought her to be.
“You’re still angry,” she whispers.
I turn her to face the opposite direction, pulling away her coat and tossing it on the table just inside the door, uncaring when it falls to the floor. It’s a distraction. Everything between me and this woman is a distraction I don’t welcome. My hands go to her arms and I lean close, inhaling her sweet scent.
“I am angry,” I agree, brushing the dark strands of her hair away from her delicate neck and kissing the pale skin, while my fingers catch on her zipper, dragging it down her back. “What are you going to do about it?” My hand slides under her dress to her bare skin, my intention to slide the dress down her body. She shivers, twisting in my arms as if hiding this reaction, this vulnerability from me, and when she faces me once again, I catch her waist before she can run.
“I’m not your submissive. You want to fuck me, be it in bed or out, you have to look me in the face to do it.”
I narrow my eyes on her, that word “submissive” grinding through me. A word that comes from her time with York if the stories I’ve heard are to be believed. York frequents an underground world, one my dead brother also frequented. A world I suspect ate Emma alive. “I don’t want to own you, baby. That doesn’t mean I don’t occasionally like the view from behind.”
“I don’t know what to think about you, Jax North.”
“Nor I you, Emma Knight.”
“I’m feeling pretty angry myself right now,” she says, her eyes blazing. “Really angry, actually.” She yanks at the tuxedo tie at my neck, pulling it free. “But I haven’t had sex in a really long time, so you want to be used? Fine. I’ll use you. I’ll use you, not the other way around.”
I shrug out of my jacket and toss it on the damn floor, not even trying for the table this time. I just want it gone. Her hands run up and down my body, my cock thickening in response. “Define a really long time,” I order, catching her hands before she pushes me so damn hard that I fuck her hard and fast and start this all over again.
“No,” she says. “I don’t believe I will.” She pushes out of my grip and slides out of her dress and lets it fall to her feet, leaving me with a view of her in a lacy bra and panties, paired with thigh highs, and high heels. Holy hell, she’s gorgeous.
I catch her wrists and drag her to me, kissing her hard and fast, nipping her lip hard enough that she should react, but she doesn’t. Because he made her fear what came after she showed pain. I know it. I feel it in her and I should kill that bastard. “I don’t know what he did to you,” I say, “but I get him wanting you at his mercy.” I want her at my mercy but at the will of my tongue and cock, not chains and whips.
She sucks in a breath and looks away. I capture her face and walk her backward until she’s pressed to a large velour-covered chair, my legs catching her legs. She grabs my shirt. “You know nothing about me.”
“And yet, I find I want to know everything.”
“And yet, we both know you won’t tell me everything.”
She’s wrong. I might. Or I might not. I don’t trust her right now, but I want to trust her and on some level, that grief-driven level, I understand her.
“With me, everything is about pleasure. Everything is about what you want and what you need.”