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Authors: April Emerson

Out of the Dark

BOOK: Out of the Dark
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Contents

Title Page

Copyright

Introduction

Prologue

Chapter One

Chapter Two

Chapter Three

Chapter Four

Chapter Five

Chapter Six

Chapter Seven

Chapter Eight

Chapter Nine

Chapter Ten

Chapter Eleven

Chapter Twelve

Chapter Thirteen

Chapter Fourteen

Chapter Fifteen

Chapter Sixteen

Chapter Seventeen

Chapter Eighteen

Chapter Nineteen

Chapter Twenty

Chapter Twenty-One

Epilogue

Also By April Emerson

Acknowledgements

About the Author

Out of the Dark

By

April Emerson

 

First published by The Writer’s Coffee Shop, 2014
Copyright © April Emerson, 2014

The right of April Emerson to be identified as the author of this work has been asserted by her under the
Copyright Amendment (Moral Rights) Act 2000

This work is copyright. Apart from any use as permitted under the Copyright Act 1968, no part may be reproduced, copied, scanned, stored in a retrieval system, recorded or transmitted, in any form or by any means, without the prior written permission of the publisher.

All characters and events in this Book – even those sharing the same name as (or based on) real people – are entirely fictional.  No person, brand, or corporation mentioned in this Book should be taken to have endorsed this Book nor should the events surrounding them be considered in any way factual.
This Book is a work of fiction and should be read as such.

The Writer’s Coffee Shop
(Australia)
 
PO Box 447 Cherrybrook NSW 2126
(USA)
 
PO Box 2116 Waxahachie TX 75168

Paperback ISBN- 978-1-61213-287-7
E-book ISBN- 978-1-61213-288-4

A CIP catalogue record for this book is available from the US Congress Library.

Cover image: © depositphotos.com / nelka7812,
© depositphotos.com / kwest
Design by: Jada D’Lee

www.thewriterscoffeeshop.com/AEmerson

A man’s errors are his portals of discovery.

~ James Joyce

Prologue

In the dark, I become a stranger.

Once an expert at following rules and expectations, I’m contradicting everything—naked with his muscular body hovering above me. When he’s gone, I’ll feel terrible . . . but I’ll want more.

I don’t hold back, and neither does he.

I sit on the edge of the oak desk and face him. Piles of papers that were valuable to someone are now soaked in my sweat. The evidence of what we’ve done is all over me. I’m tired of hiding and being afraid. Sick of the guilt, I want to leave clues. I want him to leave his mark. This man who calls to my soul. My equal. My love.

Although I can barely see him in the dim light, I hear his fast and even breaths. When we hide like this, together in secret, he always keeps his voice down.

His skillful movements are muffled from practice. He goes hard and deep, steady, with his eyes locked on mine.

He rolls his lips and tongue against mine, and I savor the way he tastes. We only have a few more minutes and he knows it.

He moans and glides his hands over me, making memories. “I’ll think about you tonight, when I’m alone. I’ll think about this,” he whispers against my lips in his gritty voice, and his rough fingertips tickle my ribs as they slide over my skin.

The desk rattles as he becomes more forceful with my body. It’s a dangerous sound, but I’m so close and he’s so close . . . our need for release overtakes our need to conceal this tryst. We only have this brief time to make our forbidden dreams of each other come true.

I place the palm of one hand on the desk and the other around his neck in an effort to lift myself up, to try to stay quiet, and to help him go as deep as he can. “Don’t stop.”

His gaze meets mine.

“Don’t stop. Please . . .”

He closes his eyes. “Fuck, fuck, fuck . . .” His words match the speed of his thrusts and his usual effort to be gentle is gone. The desk bangs into the wall and his body slams against mine. His lips are at my ear. “Cari, say it.”

“I love you.”

“Again.” He pulls me into him, pinning my body to his.

I wrap my legs around his waist and say the words we both love to hear. “Enzo, I love you.”

Everything is forgotten as he pulses against my burning, aching body. My flesh vibrates against his stuttering movements, and he braces himself by grabbing my hair. I feel his huge hands and fingers brush against my tingling scalp. The shivering sensation contrasts with the burn as he invades my innermost places.

The way he handles me is so sexy, and I can’t help but put words to what my body is screaming. “Yes, yes, yes . . .” My eyes cloud over, and my whole being shakes. Waves of heat and chills flash over me.

In this moment, nothing else matters. I’m evil, and he’s evil, and neither of us care. It’s flesh and heat and sweet release.

This is how it should always be. Nothing else matters
.

These stolen moments are what we both live for now. Our black-and-white lives are streaked with these rare bursts of color. The volume has been turned down on everything else. We can’t predict when we’ll be able to do this again.

His thumb brushes my cheek and I want to say something, but I have no words for what I feel.

Then there’s a noise—an intrusive, startling sound that shouldn’t be there.

“Carina? Is that you? Why is this door locked? What are you doing?”

The familiar booming voice on the other side of the thick door is like thunder, and I shudder.

In Enzo’s eyes, I see the inevitable terror I expected, but I also see glimmer of relief, and that, I did
not
expect.

I’m frozen.

Even though we both knew this day would come, we have no idea what to do.

We have met our fate. There’s no escape. There’s no choice but to face him.

A man that I fear.

Stefan.

One year earlier . . .

Chapter One

“Are you sure you have your passport?”

“Mom, you have to be kidding.”

“Carina, just because you have your clothing packed alphabetically and arranged by color doesn’t mean you can’t forget your passport.”

“She has it, Jane. She’s had it the last six times you asked.” My dad winks.

My mother sighs, walks toward me, and takes me in her arms. They are bony and thin.

I hug her gently out of fear that I might break her.

“I’m just going to miss you. That’s all,” she whispers and kisses my cheek.

“I’m going to miss you both, too. Are you sure you don’t need me to stay? I don’t have to go, Mom.”

“I won’t have you putting your life on hold for me. I’ll be just fine. I’m in remission, remember?”

“Don’t worry about your mother, Carina. I’ve been taking care of her for many years, and I’ll be here with her for many more. You get on that plane and you live a little. You’ve been worrying about everyone but you. It’s time for you to enjoy yourself.”

I embrace my father, and my mom wraps her arms around us both.
 

After a last goodbye, I walk toward the airport security checkpoint and glance back over my shoulder to find them waving and smiling despite their watery eyes.

I follow the flight attendant’s direction and locate my seat, shutting my eyes and sinking back into its roomy comfort. Having flown economy class during my few previous flights, I’m excited to be on this side of the curtain and eager to partake in all the luxuries I’ve only envied before—perks like unlimited alcohol and not having to beg a cranky flight attendant for a blanket.

As passengers go by and the cabin fills, I greedily eye the vacant window seat beside me.

Just when I start to think I’m in the clear, a pair of suit-clad legs approach.

“Pardon me.”

I stand to let the intruder pass, and my jaw drops as I’m met with absolute refinement.

He’s tall and dressed in an expensive suit, his black tie tight around his neck. He’s clean-shaven and his trim, silver-black hair is combed perfectly into place. He’s . . .

Hot
.

This is no frat boy or pervy, old professor, but a real
man
—gorgeous, maybe twice my age, with a rugged elegance and brutal beauty—and he’s watching me while I stand before him stupefied.

Heat rushes over my cheeks as he looks down my body and up again. He smiles, and I feel connected to this handsome stranger almost as if I know him . . . but I don’t. Our eyes meet and his rich, spicy cologne invades my senses. Everything outside his magnificent face fades from vision.

He touches my hip as he maneuvers past me. The weight of his fingers on my body intensifies the excessive attraction I feel for him, but the contact is fleeting. He sets his briefcase at his feet, smooths his suit, and then sits.

I do the same, finding my mouth is suddenly very dry.

As if on cue, the flight attendant approaches and leans down to inquire about what I’d like to drink.

I’m able to answer her in spite of my frazzled state.
“What wines do you have?”

“You’re in luck. Today we’re featuring Chianti from Savano Vineyard as our red and Ravine Creek Riesling as our white.”

My experience with wine up until this point has been that of a poor college student confined to boxes, jugs, and the occasional cheap bottle, so either sounds fine. “I think I’ll have the white.”

“Good choice,” she says, and I think I catch her winking at my neighbor. “And for you, sir?”

He waves his hand and smiles. “Nothing for me, thank you.” His voice is raspy but sweet, carrying with it an undercurrent of sensuality.

The flight attendant moves on to the next set of passengers, and I’m left with my
Frommer’s Italy
guidebook and the most attractive man I’ve ever seen. I’m certain I’ll spend the entire flight vying for the armrest with this incredible specimen of a man who couldn’t possibly be interested in someone like me.

The silence is uncomfortable.

I want to speak and fight to think of something to say, but I’m relieved when he does first.

“Is this your first time?”

“What?”

“Italy. Is this your first time?”

“Oh, um, yes. Yes, this is my first time.”

And back to awkward.

The pilot saves me when the speaker pops on and he rambles about the weather and the length of our flight. Then the safety video comes on the monitor to walk us through fastening our seat belts.

The engines roar, the plane picks up speed, and we are airborne.

As we approach the clouds, I glance left to see the fading city through the window but find a pair of penetrating blue eyes fixed on me instead. I want to look away, but I study his face. Gentle brow, hard jaw—a face aged and laden with life experience.

BOOK: Out of the Dark
12.95Mb size Format: txt, pdf, ePub
ads

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