Read Cowboys Know Best Online

Authors: Breanna Hayse

Tags: #cookie429, #Kat, #Extratorrents

Cowboys Know Best (6 page)

BOOK: Cowboys Know Best

The girl leaned forward, staring at the endless miles of open fields and gentle hills dotted with cattle. Everything was so different here! Even the air smelled strange to her. She stuck her head out the window to feel the hot breeze on her face and breathe deeply, reminding Hank of his old hound dog.

“What is that
smell?” Perlita asked, holding her nose as they traveled through a small town.

“Chickens and cow manure. Heavenly, isn’t it?” Hank laughed. “We should be there in another two hours, Perl. Settle down now,” he chuckled, patting her thigh.

“Will I like it there? Do I still have to call you Papa in public?” she asked expectantly.

“I think so, and no, you don’t have to call me that anymore. We’re out of target range.”

Perlita shrugged. She had grown accustomed to his gruffness and come to enjoy the protective, almost parental manner with which he watched over her. He was still very private, not caring to share anything about himself that he didn’t have to. She was determined to break him down, though. She did not like not knowing his secrets.

“Can I still call you that in private?” she asked, suspecting he liked it when she allowed him to nurture and care for her in that role.

“Well, yeah. I s’pose if you want to.” Hank hid his delight at her request. He had to admit to himself that he liked the sense of control he had over her as a ‘little girl’. She was much easier to guide if she was in that mindset. He suspected that she derived a sense of comfort and safety as well, especially with the recent loss of her family.

He also reluctantly admitted that he was truly starting to enjoy her company. She was intelligent, quick witted, observant, and always keen on learning something new. She asked endless questions about the ranch and how to live outside of the convenience of the city. He admired her ability to embrace a bad situation and turn it for the better. That was a characteristic he hadn’t expected to see from a city slicker and it had earned her some respect.

Hot wind whistled quietly through the cab of the truck as they continued down the dirt road. Perlita found herself dozing off, and she slept soundly through the rest of the trip. She did not awaken as Hank carefully lifted her out of the truck and placed her in the big four poster bed that had once belonged to his mother. He removed her boots and affectionately tucked the light blanket around her sleeping form after drawing the curtains closed to block the mid-afternoon sun. With a tender kiss to her lips, he left the room.

She mewled as she dreamt peacefully.
The moon was shining brightly, lighting the path that she and Hank were walking on in a large, sweet scented meadow. He pulled her to a little bubbling creek that splashed into a nice-size water hole. Without shame, she stood before him as he stripped her of clothing and took a moment to admire her body, his large hands skimming over the curves of her hips and the roundness of her bottom. How she loved the feel of those hard, callused hands there, parting the plump cheeks and holding them in his grasp! He pulled away from her to step out of his denims and she caught a glimpse of his rock hard chest before she modestly turned her eyes away. A splash told her that he had entered the water and she slowly followed, easing herself in. His arms had wrapped around her and his lips pressed into hers…

She awoke with a start, her body trembling with a new sensation as the setting sun glared brightly on her face. An uncomfortable ache had settled between her legs and she reached between them to feel wetness. Startled, she lifted her hand to her face, seeing the glistening moisture on her fingers. She reddened, knowing that she should not be touching herself in that manner, but the ache was too much to bear. Hesitantly, she reached down again, finding the swollen bud of her womanhood. Gently she caressed it, her mind replaying the glorious dream over and over. She stifled a cry as she brought herself to pleasure, imagining it was Hank’s fingers upon her rather than her own.

Hank. The man was nearly old enough to be her father, although in her family it was customary to marry older men to young, naïve women. But why would she even be thinking this way? He was handsome and strong, but he was also stubborn, bossy, and impossibly arrogant. Plus, he truly despised city women. He made no secret of that. She chalked off her imaginings to just being grateful of his help and a momentary crush on her protector. Still…

Slowly, she stood and looked about the room. It was bright and airy, with large fluffy goose down pillows, a hand-made quilt, and fluttering white curtains. She found the wash basin and a pitcher, amused by the simple way of life. After using the water closet and then rinsing off her face and hands from the dust of the road, she made her way downstairs.

Hank was nowhere to be found inside, so Perlita ventured outdoors, and was assaulted by the hot, humid air. Used to the off-shore breezes of Long Island, this sensation floored her instantly and she felt her legs buckle.

“Perl!” Hank called out, running to her as she wobbled to the deck of the wooden porch. “You ok, baby?”

“It’s so hot. Sorry,” she blushed, accepting his hand.

“Get your backside back in the house. You need to eat something,” Hank demanded with a frown.

“I’m not hungry,” she argued as he firmly sat her at the wooden table and opened the ice box for some cold tea.

“Don’t you start fighting me, young lady. Do you want to start your first day here with a paddling? Drink!”

“Why are you so bossy?”

“Why are you so stubborn?”

The two glared at each other for several seconds until Perlita broke her gaze and picked up the glass. It was cold and refreshing, instantly lifting her spirits. Satisfied, Hank sat across from her.

“My rules stay as they are, missy. I got good hands here, but they are still men and I don’t need to be killing off my own crew because of you. No wandering without me and I expect you to do your chores.”

“Chores?” A blank look spread across the girl’s pretty face.

“You heard me. You’ll be cooking and taking care of the house, plus some gardening and milking.”

“I… I don’t know how to cook ranch food. Or do any of that stuff. I’m sorry,” she looked down, ashamed.

“Not to worry, child. I’ll teach you. Hey, no crying,” Hank said kindly, reaching to pat her hand with reassurance. He was starting to really hate when she cried. It made him feel so helpless.

“You will? Really?” she looked up, biting her lower lip. “Does this mean you’re not going to throw me out because I don’t know how to help?”

Hank looked at her with genuine surprise and a pained expression traveled over his brow. “Do I really seem like that type to you, Perl? I know I have my rough edges, but I’m a man of my word. I promised to teach you what you need to know and to take care of you as long as you are in danger.”

“I’m sorry, I didn’t mean to insult you. I’m having a hard time trusting right now. I didn’t think Don Piccoli would really want to kill me. He and my father used to be the closest of friends, like brothers. Don Piccoli grew up with my mother’s family as an adopted son. He was so good to me. Until I refused Joey’s proposal. This is all my fault… I miss my father,” the young woman suddenly broke into loud sobs as she permitted herself to feel the extent of her loss and the guilt that ripped into her soul. Wrinkling his forehead, Hank scooted his chair next to hers and pulled her into his arms.

He rocked her gently, smoothing out her luxurious thick hair, and kissed the top of her head. His heart started to twist as her hot tears soaked his shirt. He could no longer fight back the need to protect and comfort the frightened woman, let alone ignore the feelings of desire he was having for her. It wasn’t about the age difference—most couples he knew had a significant number of years between them—but her innocence about life. She was spoiled, no doubt, yet so
He longed to kiss her tears away, to make love to her until she forgot her pain and loss. He had never wanted anything so badly in his life, yet he denied his own desires out of concern for her well-being.

Wrapped in his burly arms, Perlita felt strangely safe and cared for. The sound of his heart pounding next to her ear gave her hope, and his scent… something about how he smelled sent shivers to her groin. He sighed and pushed her away from him, once again trying to ignore that desire to hold her intimately.

“How about if you get freshened up and I’ll take you around to meet the crew. It’s starting to cool down a bit and we’ll roam around once the sun sets.”

Si, grazie.
I’ll like that.”

“Do you know how to make any of that Italian food?” Hank asked, trying to change the subject.

Perlita blushed, nodding. “I can make pasta and sauce, and some biscotti di Prato. Really nothing more.”

“How about if you whip that up for dinner?”

“Mr. Billings… Hank, a good sauce takes love and time,” Perl smiled through her tears. “I can do that for tomorrow.”

“Whatever happened to calling me Papa? Fickle females…” Hank grinned. “My boys have a stew brewing so we can grab something at their camp. Can you make biscuits? No? Very well, I’ll show you.”

After an hour of attempting to teach the girl how to make proper biscuits, they headed out to the barracks where Hank’s ranch hands were sitting around a fire and relaxing after a hard day’s work.

“Gentlemen? I want you to meet Miss Perl. She’s gonna be our guest for a while. I need your sworn promise to look after her and help keep her safe.”

“Welcome to Double Bar, ma’am. I’m Butch, the foreman,” the short, husky man said as he stood and reached to gently shake Perl’s hand. “Please set a spell and grab some grub. Boss? Ya want some?”

Hank studied the scene before him as his men fell over themselves to wait on the pretty girl. A surge of jealousy rose as one of the younger men started to flirt with her, telling her about his skills as a dancer. Before Hank could intervene, Perlita politely informed the man that she did not dance and, having two left feet, possessed no desire to learn. She glanced in Hank’s direction, seeking instruction on how to escape her uncomfortable situation. As a mafia princess, she had never been permitted to be with any men other than her family and she felt herself wanting to flee the onslaught of attention. She sighed gratefully as Hank stood, catching the hint.

“Boys, I wanna thank you for the grub, but I need to get Miss Perl down for the night. Butch? I want to set her up with a ride in the morning. Perl? Time for bed.”

“Got just the mare for her, Boss. Sweet and gentle, just like her new rider. Night, Miss Perl.”

“Good night, Butch. Thank all of you so much for your generosity. Dinner was wonderful,” Perl said graciously, accepting Hank’s hand and following him back to the main house.

“I’ll get you all settled in and then I have some work to do,” Hanks said as they entered the house.

“But I slept this afternoon! I’m not tired.”

“Girl, must you argue with me every time I tell you something?”

“Must you always boss me around and tell me what to do? OW!” Perlita yelped as his hand landed squarely on her back-end, bluntly answering her question. Pointing to the stairs, he ordered her to bed. She scowled, staying out of his reach. “I’m not tired. I can help with your book-keeping. I’m good at that,” she said hopefully, wanting an excuse to sit up with him for a brief while longer before being dismissed out of sight.

“You have until the count of three to high tail it out of here, young lady,” he warned, looking tired as he sat at the large desk to work on his accounts. “One…”

“You’re mean!” Perl stuck her tongue out at him.

“Two, Three!” he shouted, running after her. She shrieked, taking off up the stairs and being caught at the top. Laughter erupted from her lips as he slung her over his broad shoulder and smacked her bottom playfully as he carried her into her new room. Tossing her on the bed, her hair tousled and half unbraided, he leaned over her with a stern look.

“Did you stick your tongue out at me?”

“Yes, like this,” Perl said, repeating the gesture with a grin.

“That’s not very respectful,” Hank informed her, trying not to lose the false expression of disapproval on his face. She erupted in a high pitched giggle and repeated the gesture, this time blowing a raspberry at him. Hank’s mouth hung open in shock, absorbing the sound the girl had made with her tongue.

“You are so asking for a spanking. Go to bed and stop playing around.”

“I’m not sleepy,” she grinned, challenging him.

“Go to bed,” Hank tried not to laugh at her sudden change of disposition, easily getting caught up in her unusual bout of playfulness.

“Make me.”

Lifting an eyebrow, the man grabbed her ankle and easily lifted her into the air with one arm. Perlita screeched, hanging upside down with her head nearly touching the floor and trying to grab his booted ankle to keep herself from swinging.

“Put me down!” she ordered, still laughing out of control.

“Are you going to go to bed?” Hank gave up trying to stay stoic, and laughed heartedly.

“I’m not tired!”

Grunting, Hank plopped on the edge of the bed and easily placed her over his knees. His hand rested with familiarity on her squirming bottom.

“Are you sure?” he asked, hooking his finger in the waistband of the denims she wore.

“Yeah, I’m sure.” Perlita answered back, twisting to stick her tongue out at him again. “You don’t scare me, you know.”

“Hmmm, I guess I should work on changing that. Little girls who don’t mind their Papas get paddled.”

“Nu uh! We get cuddled! No!” she shrieked again, laughing as she tried to escape his clutches while he expertly pulled her trousers down past her chubby, wriggling globes. She didn’t know what had suddenly gotten into her, or why she felt this desperate need to play ‘rough’ and include Hank, of all things! Hank certainly did not seem to mind, either.

“No, naughty little girls get spanked before they get cuddled. You’re being very naughty, young lady.”

“Hank! Put me down! I’ll be gooooood, I promise.”

“For some strange reason, I don’t believe you. Let’s get some color in these pretty little cheeks and see if it motivates you to mind me,” Hank lectured, his eyes drinking in the perfection of her squirming bottom as it wiggled enticingly under his hand, occasionally exposing the soft lips of her little cunnie. He knew this game they were playing was not ‘decent’, but it had been a long and stressful trip for both of them. A little play wouldn’t hurt anyone, right? Well, except the naughty bottom that jiggled under his hand. With a grin, Hank lifted his hand and popped Perlita vigorously on the peak of her left cheek. She hissed, twisting to look at him.

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