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Authors: Elle Michaels

Aston's Story (Vanish #2)

BOOK: Aston's Story (Vanish #2)
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The Vanish Trilogy:

 

Aston’s Story

 

 

by

elle michaels

 

copyright May 11,
2016

all rights reserved.

 

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1.

 

I’ll take whatever the hell I want. Money, power, women. Auna.
Her perfection is something wholly unparalleled, exquisite, precious,
unfathomable. Angels weep at her feet. And she’ll be mine. Her skin, something
crafted from satin and feathers, I can’t keep it from my thoughts, even while
I’m supposed to bully this two-bit dealer trying to fuck me. What he doesn’t
understand is his macho facade shows transparently to me. I’m not driven by
balls, though I don’t retreat from their show.

Christ, I need a fix of her. I’m agitated, I can feel it in
my skin. I need a release. I’ve arranged a night with her after, a special
occasion in the poolhouse. I purchased this vintage, hundred years or more old
wine, I can’t remember exactly what year. Something I know she’ll appreciate.
She loves wine. She’s told me. I can provide an answer to her every whim.
Anything she desires, so long as she’s mine.

Focus, Aston.

I plug my palms into my eye sockets, grind them against my
vision, then sigh as I lower my hands. He’s still there, and he’s still
grinning. Al’s fucking smile is the most infuriating image I’ve had the
displeasure of viewing. It’s smug, but with a dose of self-awareness, like he
wants to be perceived as a douchebag. Like it’s his thing.

I sigh. Goddamnit.

“Look, Al, the package hasn’t shown up, my sources with
badges tell me they would’ve found it, so something’s not adding up.”

Al leans forward, placing his elbows into his knees, rubbing
his hands together in the space before him. He pulls a breath in between his
teeth. “Aston, it’s like I told you, buddy. These guys, real professionals.
Black masks and machine guns. Zipped in, zipped out. We got fucked in the ass
on this one.”

I’m grinding my molars against themselves listening to his
story over and over again. We, he says. Right, like I was a part of his
mistakes. Admittedly, there are few downsides to being the son in a billion
dollar family. If I wasn’t, though, I could’ve been in there, watching the
package, making sure not to play carelessly, making sure I didn’t get fucking
robbed.

I’m worked up. Auna warned me about that. Stress ages in
double time. She already looks out for me. She knows me. I crave her. I have to
finish with Al.

“You got fucked in the ass?”

“As uncomfortable as that is, it’s what happened. Pegged as
fresh to the game. It’s a lesson. We’ll know better on the next one.”

“Next one?” I’m about ready to punch him. He assumes I’ll
accept any financial loss like my family’s complicitly backing this operation.
Or really, what’s worse, he thinks I’m soft from the money. I know he calls me
a pussy behind my back. Everybody does, who isn’t rich like me. None of them
understand the responsibilities of wealth, the familial obligations, the
technicalities that keep you from accessing the lump sum of your trust.

I’m on an allowance. My youth didn’t exactly encourage
confidence, so now I’m spending my twenties with my fortune tied up behind red
tape. It pisses me off, the way they don’t trust me. I’ve always been a bit of
a black sheep, billionaire bad boy, scourge to the family name. The Moore clan
was begging for a wayward son, between all their stuffy pretentions and their
elitist isolation, it was inevitable one of us would embrace something real.

If I’m being honest, though, I wouldn’t have thought it
would be drugs. I’m twenty five now, and the college antics of my youth evolved
into some unconventional business investments for a trust fund kid to strike
out on his own. I embrace it. Sitting here, in the back of the strip club, it
feels refreshingly real, exciting, sexy. Drugs and women, a classic combination.

But Al’s doing his best to spoil the flavor of it all.

“Without the sale of the first, there is no second one,
jackass,” I tell him.

He scowls as he leans back in his chair. “Don’t rock the
boat we’re both floating in, Aston.”

“The fuck does that mean?”

He laughs. Christ, I’m fuming. I exhale through my nostrils,
straighten my suit jacket, and lean back. Show a little self-control. “Cool it,
Aston. You wouldn’t want to lose your head. Not when there’s dangerous elements
about.” He mocks staring suspiciously around the room and laughs again, to
himself.

I know he’s bullshitting. He took my package for himself
without ever intending to pay. I lean forward, planting one elbow on the
chair’s arm and lifting an accusatory finger at Al. I part my legs and rest my
other arm in my lap. It’s a confident pose that carries a belittling tone when
you’re wearing a seven thousand dollar suit, something I learned from my
grandfather. Even in his feeble twilight years, he managed to intimidate.
“Don’t underestimate me,” I say, voice low, quiet, slow. It stops him from
laughing, but it doesn’t quite wipe that shiteating grin off his smug face. I
stand and button my jacket before him, eager to find Auna and leave, but I know
this business with Al isn’t over. Not by a long shot.

I walk through the hallway towards the door that exits back
into the club, a narrow, dark space where I wash my mind free for the night,
let go for a few hours the drugs, money, and betrayal. The door pulls back to
the thumping noise, the flashing lights, the naked women and glamour. I feel a
smile creep across my face. Debauchery just feels comfortable. Tonight, I will
banish loneliness with it. I peer across the room and my eyes find her
instantly.

Auna.

 

2.

 

The mix of this Manhattan is terrible, but having been made
in a place like the Pussycat Lounge, there’s a certain charm to it. Flavor in a
place like this is more about character than taste. The drink is rough, which
matches the atmosphere. Here’s a place you’ll find broken souls, dangerous and demure,
and you can’t tell them apart. It’s rich, in a way money never made anyone.
It’s vibrant, and edgy, and sweet Jesus, “Auna, your hair, my God.”

She flips it over her bare shoulder and stares back at me.
“What, you like my new shampoo? It’s dollar store. You know, the place where us
bums shop.” She loves jabbing me for my money. She always has, since high
school. Those were different times, back in high school. I was just a little
shit, and she was flawless. Straight A report cards, six extracurriculars,
sports, cheer, student council, etcetera. Never hung around the bad crowd,
never touched a drop of liquor nor smoked a puff of weed. Not even uppers,
which proved a favorite among the wealthy private school twerps we went to
school with. I was one of them, but I was different. She attended on
scholarship, my family paid my way. We made close friends. Until our paths
diverged.

The warmth of her skin radiates from the plushness of her
buttocks as they slide down from my chest into my lap. They settle, then grind,
while she leans back against me. We’re in the middle of the floor, where all
the pathetic patrons watch her bare chest as it rises and falls with each heavy
breath. One in particular, a balding, red faced man, Marcus, or Michael, or
something, doesn’t even bother blinking. He’s been here more frequently lately,
I vaguely recollect having shots with him at the bar. His eyes are the widest
in a sea of gawking.

The fact they ever get to touch her disgusts me. She doesn’t
deserve that treatment. How did you wind up here, Auna? It took some finding,
and when I came to the Pussycat Lounge, I assumed my intel was wrong. But there
you were, dancing with the lights wrapped around your pure form, sullied in the
sights of the men that ogled you. You fell from your false pedestal, into this
pit. You fell into my arena. I made my descent first, learning the truth about
life, that its grit outweighs its sweetness. Money made a cocoon around me, it
was only a matter of time before I burst from it.

She tilts her head and my lips nuzzle against the incredible
softness of her neck. The scent is euphoric. I can’t help but to suck against
her skin.

We were given roles, Auna. The good girl. The rich son. We
denied them. So they sent us into exile. Here, we met again. It’s a whole new
world now. And it’s ours for the taking.

“Aston,” she moans. “Not in front of the other customers.”

I groan, but I acquiesce. “Sorry.” I certainly don’t want to
give any of these pigs the impression they’re allowed to do the same to her. I
can only imagine the lines they already cross on a regular basis. I know what
some of the other girls do in the private booths, I’ve seen the exchanges. The
fact Auna’s been able to sustain herself here without bowing to that speaks to
her strength.

She stands and pivots, twisting her perfect body before me.
Her tits bounce a little as she stops, and my eyes drag down from them along
her glistening front, a stretch of skin the color of a desert, but as wet as a
jungle, smooth, dear God, smooth. The sheen of her sweat glows with the red
lights that flash around us. Her thong buries itself between her legs, its
strings rising out and over her hipbones, wrapping around to the rear, where
they disappear again into her voluptuous ass. Her fingers slide along her frame
until they slip beneath the strings. She pulls them out in a teasing fashion,
drags them down, allowing the sliver of fabric to pull from between her cheeks,
but the tiny triangle stays over her slit. It’s low enough to see she’s
completely shaven, the space above her pussy is a smooth, golden zone of
perfection I can’t wait to lay my lips on. It drops a little lower, just low
enough to see the top of her vagina, a beautiful wet line revealing her
excitement. She pulls the thong back up, raises it into her ass and over her
pussy. She straddles me and I realize how rock hard I am.

“Auna,” I moan. “Is it time yet?”

She pulls back and looks me in the eye. It’s the stare that
envelops me in a sea that suffocates. I don’t understand it, which is why I
can’t stop seeking it. She has the body of Aphrodite, and her moves, too, but
these eyes hold a cherished secret that sets her apart from every other woman
in this room. It’s a whisper in a stare, loud enough to say it’s the world, but
it’s just too quiet to discern.

Her eyes steal away from me, glancing at what I know to be a
clock on the wall behind me. While she squints to see it, I catch the gaze of a
man from across the room. It’s a hazy, drunken stare, not uncommon at the
Pussycat Lounge. But the man is the good side of forty, ripped, and handsome. I
can make out some ink across his arms. What is this? Some sort of bad boy? I
scoff. He’s got no clue what Auna is, and it drives him mad not having her. She
has that effect on men of a certain age, those who still hold hope in their
futures. Their rare here, but when they show, it’s her they pine for. Sometimes
it irks me she pities them.

With his eyes on her backside, I casually raise my hands and
grab hold of her ass, wrapping my fingers around her cheeks, which feel like
perfect satin cloth. He downs his dark colored drink. That’s right, friend.

She lowers back down into my lap and stares into my eyes
once more.

“Alright,” she says. “We can go.”

 

3.

 

The wheels screech when they’re tearing out of the parking
lot, I see for a split second the image of the forlorn bad boy receding in the
rear view. I can’t help grinning. Auna wears her customary torn jeans and tank
top, a far cry from the scintillating outfits she wears in the Pussycat Lounge.
That’s alright. She’s radiant whatever she wears. Whether I see the thin red
strip disappear between her gorgeous ass cheeks, or I see her face in the
morning with only the slightest trace of what makeup she wore the night before,
there’s something unique about her visage. She is simply a beautiful person.
Her hair dances about her face while the wind rushes through the open windows,
and she smiles. I get giddy looking at it, the dimples that form from her
expression. I’m a little boy around her sometimes. In all other arenas, I’m a
face of confidence, a strong-willed force. That melts away with her beside me.
I cling to it, but I’m only faking.

I reach over and place my hand against her knee, my finger
plays with the fraying material. She places her hand over mine and squeezes. I
can’t stop myself, I lean over and plant my lips against hers, sucking the
taste of them before I let my tongue meet hers. She places a hand against my
cheek and inhales. She pulls back.

“Aston!”

I’ve taken my eyes from the road. I don’t care, we’re fine.
I know exactly where my car is going, I’ve driven this road a thousand times. I
just want to take her in. I lean forward and she lets me kiss her one more time
before she pulls back and refuses another.

She shakes her head, but she’s still smiling. I lean back
into my seat, twist my hand around the top of the wheel and kick the gas. We
feel the revving engine reverberate through our seats, and I watch her mouth
open. It excites. It always does. I’ll show her the meaning of adventure.
Whatever she wants.

The car screeches to a stop as I approach the gate. It opens
once I enter the key number, the metal latches unhinging and the pointed gate
swinging inward. I pull in slowly and flip off the headlights. The soft
crawling of the wheels over the pavement is overrun by the crickets filling the
night’s silence. The lights in the house are all off, but I see their cars are
parked in the six door garage as I pull into my spot. I figured they’d be
sleeping, they’re out of town in the morning for three weeks to Europe on
business. The whole family is going, without me. It might’ve once perturbed me,
but I’ve come to realize I have little interest in their business. They’re
slowly realizing it, they should’ve realized it years ago. A mother, a father,
a younger brother, like strangers now. I’ll remain under the trust’s umbrella
for a few more years, await the day I’ve replaced the income. It’s tragic,
having to stifle my personal growth for the tether of money. People think me a
shit all the time, but they don’t understand what this life is like. Destiny
curses you with the suffocation of dynasty. Billionaire families are the modern
day royalty. Princes once enjoyed luxury same as I do. Which is how I know they
suffered for it by having to serve the family. All this grandeur fuels
nihilism. You see the way the world works from atop the ivory tower. I know how
money controls. It’s disgusting. It’s the truth. Like anything toxic, it
pollutes the handler. The Moores are no exception. This is why I have to get
away.

I’m losing track of the night, my mind always spirals like
this when I start thinking about my family. Fuck them. I round the back of the
car and approach the passenger side. I slip my fingers beneath the handle and
lift. The door rises and I offer my hand to the stunning beauty I’ve secured
for myself. She takes it and lifts herself from the recessed seat.

“You, my love,” I kiss the back of her hand, “are the most
valuable treasure known to man.”

“Hm,” she offers in return. “You would know.”

She playfully presses against my shoulder and walks out of
the garage, stepping onto the brick pathway that winds around the side of the
mansion. I watch as she stares back at me from over her shoulder, her bottom
lip slipping beneath her teeth. I feel a shiver slip through my spine. I look
once to the rising mansion before me and it spoils the moment. Four stories
filled with superfluous rooms for dining, parties, reading, dancing, changing,
games, and drinking - the way father likes it, with godawful brandy in his
smoky study in the basement. He tried teaching too many lesson there,
fashioning me into a man of his image.

I shake my head and return to the sight of her pink lips
curling towards her ears as she disappears behind the corner of the mansion. I
undo another button of my white shirt before I give chase, in a way suiting a
refined gentleman. I rush to the corner, where I pause to round it with style.
She’s walking backwards alongside the pool, the ripples augmenting the lights
to cast flowing lines across her face. Behind her, the poolhouse awaits. I’ve
set it up for her, cleaned and set the mood. Several candles await flame,
scented with fine rose petals, something the shop owner explained was
exceptionally romantic, and particularly arousing for women.

I slowly close the gap between us, never letting her look
away. Her foot inches too near to the edge of the pool and she wavers. I reach
out an arm and wrap it around her, pulling her into me to avoid an inevitable
plunge into the serene water.

“Thanks,” she whispers.

“Don’t mention it.” I let her walk out of my grasp towards
the pool house, where the glass doors stand open, inviting her entrance. She
crosses the threshold of the interior, feet slipping out of her heels for her
toes to appreciate the fine, black carpet. It’s a small space, but I’ve made it
mine. It consists primarily of a living room, where a plush set of chairs and a
couch face the pool, beyond which sits the counter that I’ve made into a bar. I
built the shelves behind it myself, with lights shining up from underneath the
glass, dimly illuminating each bottle’s label. On the counter, I’ve already
arranged the wine and two glasses, which she approaches first.

I stand close behind as she examines the bottle, her
delicate fingers tracing the raised lettering before swiping the dust away.

“Jesus, Aston.”

“The finest.”

She turns to face me, holding the bottle by the neck in one
hand. “I feel like we can’t drink this, it’s too special.”

I take the bottle into my hand and swipe the opener off the
counter with my other hand. “I think we should only drink it if it feels right.
So tell me,” I lean in, pressing my body against her while her hands wrap
around the edges of my suitcoat, and place my lips between hers, only briefly.
I keep close as I inquire, “Does it feel right?”

She holds a pause, staring into my eyes, hiding a grin. She
looks back and forth with her lustrous brown eyes, like pools of oak. She bites
her lower lip again, I think she knows it drives me crazy. “I don’t know,” she
answers. For a moment, my heart sinks. Then, “But I don’t suppose we should
ruin a good evening on that account.” She pulls the bottle and the opener from
my hands and goes to work. I stifle a laugh watching her pull against the cork.
With one good tug, it comes free, and she nearly loses her grip on the bottle.
She giggles while I retrieve the two glasses and hold them before her. She
pours each just over half.

“Quite the pour.”

“Loosen up, Jeeves.”

“You’ve got that backwards,” I tell her.

“Oh?” She says, returning the bottle to the counter. She
turns back to me, her palms placed on its edge behind her back. “How’s that?”

“Jeeves is the butler.”

“Ah,” she says. “You aren’t my butler?”

I flash her a toothy grin. “I suppose it’s only right, after
you served me so well.”

The statement makes her turn towards the bar, her eyes
scanning over the liquor bottles. Sometimes I’m a little crass. In other
circumstances, I’ll be uncompromising, but I’m willing to adjust myself for
her. I want so desperately to install her into my life, on a permanent basis.
If that means hiding parts of me from her presence, I’ll do what needs to be
done. I will have her.

I step back towards the couch and take a seat. I wait a
moment, then, “Your wine.” I lift her glass above the top of the couch and wag
the stem of it. She takes a moment before she accepts the gesture, rounds the
edge of the couch and takes a seat beside me. I place the glass in her hands
and watch her take a sip. It turns into a gulp, and then two. She lowers it
back down before her knees, rotating it in perhaps a nervous manner.

“Why did you bring me here, Aston?”

I’m caught off guard. I thought my intentions were anything
but masked. “Auna,” I start. I put the glass down and scooch an inch nearer. “I
needed to see you.” It spills out, I wasn’t sure what else to say, and it felt
true as it left my lips.

“Why?” she asks, tersely.

I pull a breath in and hold. I could lose this so easily. It
comes out in a great release, and I feel my mouth suddenly shift into motion,
“I can’t help feeling this bizarre attachment to you, Auna. Like you’re running
around my thoughts, planting them, and uprooting them.”

“I’m the gardener in your mind, eh?”

“Of sorts.” I feel awkward. I’m not used to this. My hands
unconsciously play with themselves between my knees. They don’t stop until I
stare down at them. When I look up, she’s grinning. She enjoys me off-kilter.

“I suppose I like that,” she says. “Seems I’ve left my
garden in disarray, though.”

I sip the wine again. The flavor washes over my tongue and I
appreciate it for its age, the bitter flavor that tingles the underside of
my--I don’t know if this is any good. “Yes, I think you have. There are
considerable weeds that need grooming.”

“Hm,” she says. She does it in a way where her lips press
together and her dimples show. Her eyes smile when her full mouth doesn’t. “I
think you look at me too much.”

“I don’t think it’s quite enough. Or enough of you.”

She rolls her eyes. “Oh, you’d like me topless in that thong
all day long, wouldn’t you?”

I look into her eyes. “It’s much more than that.”

Her eyes narrow into a skeptical glare. “What more?” She
straightens her back on the couch and crosses her legs. Her hands slip into her
lap. “Why shouldn’t I think your interest is anything other than a rich boy’s
want of the one thing he can’t buy?”

“Women can be bought.” Goddamnit, Aston.

“I’m sure some can, but that’s precisely the point, isn’t
it? You want one that can’t be. And the fact that I’m a stripper, combined with
a childhood friend, adds some sort of fetishistic sentimentality, doesn’t it?”

Jesus. “My parent’s paid three grand an hour to some jackoff
in the city to shrink my head ten years ago when I first started acting out. He
didn’t get very far.” I feel flustered. I’m not sure what I was expecting,
maybe she has a point about all this. Everything was so comfortable at the
club, I had to go ahead and change things.

Shit. I can’t stop my fingers from fumbling as I watch the
wine glass tumble to the carpet beneath me. It lands on its side, spilling the
extremely expensive wine across the fine carpeting. Where it soaks, I see the
black strands take on a red tint.

She giggles. It breaks my frustration, I turn an incredulous
face up towards her.

“Laugh,” she says. “You’ll feel better.”

I feel my lips rise. A light chuckle escapes them. My
shoulders slump and I feel more relaxed. I remember when I crashed my first car
when I was sixteen, she rode with me to and from school. I slammed the side
into a guardrail because I was playing with my new sound system. I stared at
the damage swearing incessantly, and when I ran out of steam, I noticed Auna
dancing. When I asked what she was doing, she told me to look on the bright
side - my sound system was top notch.

I rise from the couch and round the bar, snatching a random
bottle from the first shelf and a pair of shot glasses from underneath the
counter. I place them before me and fill each to the rim. She looks over the
edge of the couch at me. “What are you doing?” she asks.

“Cutting loose,” I reply. “Care to join?”

She stands from the couch and joins me on the other side of
the bar, planting herself on one of the leathertop stools. “That’s more like
it,” she says.

I slide one shot into her hand and raise the other in the
air between us. The glasses tink and spill over the edge before we throw them
back. She grimaces, I grunt, and the glasses come back down onto the counter. I
pour another.

“Well, well, well, Mr. Moore.”

“Something’s gotten into me,” I say, playfully.

“Should I be afraid?” she asks, playful with a dash of
concern.

I lift the shot glass before my lips. I just smile and take
the shot, and watch as she throws hers back in turn.

“Oof,” she says. “I feel that burn.”

She shakes it off and her eyes fall into mine again, and I’m
just staring back at her. “A little pain never hurt anybody.”

Her eyes grow wide, but she bites her lower lip. “That’s
exactly what it did, Aston.”

“Only a little bit.” I want her. I don’t want to wait. And
yet I could hold this pause for a lifetime. Something about her scent gives me
the power to hold out. Like a taste holding me over.

“Aston,” she whispers.

I reach across the counter and place my hand over hers. It’s
warm, a little wet from the spilled liquor, and a touch clammy. “Auna.”

“It’s sweet that you want me,” she says while her eyes lower
to our hands. “It’s nice. It’s...an escape.” She looks back up, swiping a bit
of her luscious brown hair behind her ear.

“I want you in so many ways,” I say, and I think I hear my
voice waver a little. Damnit, the booze made me emotional.

She bites into her red, plump bottom lip again. “Tell me,”
she says.

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