Authors: Ann Marie Walker,Amy K. Rogers
Tags: #Romance, #Contemporary
Hudson turned and his lips parted on a sharp intake of air. “Allie . . .”
Her mouth watered at the sight of him, lit only by the moonlight filtering in through the arched windows above the doors. Everything about Hudson Chase set her blood on fire, from the way his blue eyes burned bright with excitement to the way his impressive erection strained heavily against the fly of his jeans.
“Do you trust me?” he asked. His voice was gentle but firm.
Her pulse raced but her breathless answer was honest. “Yes,” she whispered, because it was true. She trusted Hudson not only with her body, but more and more with each passing day, her heart.
He approached, pulling something out of the back pocket of his jeans and holding it up for her to see. Allie recognized it immediately as the airline sleep mask Hudson had used on her the day she’d been cuffed to the beam in his game room. Heat pooled between her thighs at the memory of that afternoon. He’d teased her relentlessly with his fingers and tongue, bringing her to orgasm again and again. Being bound and helpless against the onslaught of pleasure had been an experience unlike any she’d ever known. And even though she had no idea what he had planned this time, she already knew it would be a night to remember.
Hudson led her to the bed, where she noticed the blue silk necktie that had been placed on top of the duvet. Once she was seated, he slipped the mask over her eyes. Almost instantly she became keenly aware of everything around her. The sound of her own breathe, coming much too quickly. The feel of the cool air, making her nipples harden against the rough lace of her negligee. And the masculine scent of Hudson’s skin, all the more intoxicating given the current state of his arousal as he stood mere inches in front of her.
“Your other senses will be heightened this way, but I only want you to focus on what you feel.” His hands were on her hips, gathering the fabric of her lingerie before sweeping it over her head. That didn’t last long. She almost smiled at the thought but then his fingers cupped her jaw, tilting her face toward his, and the only thought that remained was how badly she wanted him to kiss her. “As much as I like the nightgown, I prefer you naked.”
She licked her dry lips, eliciting a noise from Hudson that was more growl than groan. In a heartbeat he sealed his mouth over hers. There was nothing gentle about the way he kissed her. It wasn’t slow and savoring but hungry and raw, and made her restless for what was still to come. He hadn’t even touched her and yet she felt as though she were already melting in his hands. She wanted to reach for him, to pull him down to her, to feel the weight of him against her. But this was Hudson’s game, and as much as her body silently begged for more, she couldn’t deny the thrill she felt from being under his control. So although her heart hammered against her chest, she let him set the pace, kissing him back with the same passion he showed her but taking it no further.
When he finally broke the kiss she was more than ready to do whatever he commanded.
“Lie back on the bed.”
Her body hummed with anticipation as she did as she was told.
“Give me your hands.”
She followed his orders without hesitation. Hudson bound her wrists together with the silk tie, tugging the fabric until it was snug against her skin. Then he pulled her hands above her and secured them to the headboard.
“Is it too tight?”
She shook her head. The way he’d restrained her gave her little room to move, but it didn’t hurt.
“Good.” He moved off the bed. A moment later she heard the metallic sound of a zipper and the rustle of denim as he removed his jeans. The mental picture of him standing there naked made her entire body clench with need.
His fingers curled around her ankles and pulled her legs apart. “I want you open for me.”
Cool air rushed against her. Even without the benefit of sight she knew he was watching her, drinking in every detail. She could almost feel his gaze as it traveled over her skin. But to her surprise she didn’t feel vulnerable or exposed. Instead she felt sexy and wanton.
“You look so beautiful like this, Allie, bound and waiting for me. You have no idea how hard it makes me.”
She sunk her teeth into her lower lip. “Show me. Please.”
The mattress dipped and she knew he was beside her. “Open your mouth.”
She obeyed and a moment later the tip of his erection brushed her lips. Her tongue darted out to flutter over the smooth skin, already slick from wanting her. She couldn’t use her hands, but she lifted her head, taking him as deep into her mouth as she could. A sharp breath hissed between his teeth as she sucked him rhythmically, and after a moment his hips began to flex, thrusting himself into her greedy mouth.
“That’s enough,” he said, stopping abruptly and pulling back. She almost whimpered from the loss. “I have plans for you and they don’t involve my cock. Not yet.”
He moved away.
And then nothing.
She waited, listening intently, but heard nothing that gave any hint as to what he had planned for her. In fact, the sound of his breathing, slowly returning to normal, was the only indication he was even still in the room.
After what seemed like an eternity, something brushed across the nipple of her left breast. Her body jerked in response.
“Still, baby. I want you to be still for me.”
She bit back a moan. A moment later it returned, softly tracing the curve of her breast. She was more prepared this time and concentrated on the sensation, trying to determine what it was. A feather, maybe? Hudson dragged it along her rib cage and across her stomach. She quivered beneath its tickling touch but fought the urge to pull away, remaining as still as possible.
“Good girl,” he said.
The unexpected warmth she felt from his words had barely registered when something cold trailed down her inner thigh. Ice. But as quickly as it appeared, it was gone again. Then the bed shifted and Hudson’s lips surrounded her nipple. The ice was in his mouth now, and as he sucked and tugged her tightened flesh, she was overwhelmed by what could only be described as icy heat.
Then the feather returned, stroking between her legs. It was just enough to make her ache, but too soft to bring her any relief. Her body trembled as the gentle brush of the feather contrasted with the cold bite of the ice. Her nerves came alive under the dual assault, but she could do nothing more than absorb the riotous sensations Hudson elicited from her body.
He moved lower with agonizing leisure, teasing and taunting her with a trail of cold, openmouthed kisses, all while the feather brushed against her wetness.
She pulled on the restraints, her hips lifting, desperate for friction. “Please, Hudson, touch me . . .”
“Is this what you want, Allie?”
Her entire body tensed as his finger finally skimmed her entrance.
“God, yes.” She was practically panting with need.
“You’re so wet for me.”
“Please . . . I want you inside me.”
“All in good time.”
She groaned as his hand fell away. Then his tongue licked the length of her sex and her hips bucked from the bed. She wanted to reach for him, to twist her fingers into his hair and hold him tight against her. But bound as she was, she was helpless to do anything but submit to his delicious torture.
“I love the way you taste,” he murmured, his warm breath fanning over her damp skin.
“You’re driving me crazy.”
“Do you want me to stop?” His voice was low and rough and vibrated against her sensitive flesh. But he didn’t stop. Even when her head thrashed against the pillow, he kept her thighs firmly spread, licking, nipping, and sucking her until she could finally take no more.
“Yes, stop,” she panted. “I can’t take anymore.”
She swore she felt him smile against her skin. “Are you sure?”
Then his mouth was on her again, his tongue plunging into her quivering body.
“Ah, God,” she screamed as a massive orgasm rolled through her. Sensitive and swollen, she tried to squirm away, but he didn’t let up until she came a second time against his lips.
He moved over her, his face just inches from hers and his erection pulsing hot against her sex.
“Tell me you what you want,” he said, his voice tight with restraint. A second later the blindfold lifted away. “Open your eyes and tell me that you want me.”
Allie opened her eyes. But she wasn’t in Hudson’s arms. He wasn’t about to make sweet love to her for hours in a cabin high above the treetops. She was in her brownstone apartment and the love she’d felt for him that night was nothing more than an illusion built on lies.
She looked down at the pink lace nightgown, fisted tightly in her hands. With a sharp tug the fabric was torn to shreds.
Just like her heart.
The interrogation room sat in the back of the precinct, as far as you could get from the foot traffic of the sex-for-hires and drunks being hauled in for any litany of infractions that ended with being caught with your pants down—literally, with the former. The room was about the size of a cubicle and practically naked. No pictures. No computer. No how-to’s on CPR or evacuation procedures. The place was designed to maximize a suspect’s discomfort and sense of powerlessness from the moment he stepped inside. Exposure, unfamiliarity, isolation, and a shit-ton of get-me-the-hell-out-of-here: all part of a masterful game of cat and mouse.
The ultimate mind-fuck.
Hudson crossed his legs at the knee. He could feel himself being sized up through the two-way mirror on the opposite wall. But he was calm, cool, and collected, which meant whoever was watching him through the looking glass had learned absolutely nothing in the fifteen minutes he’d been sitting there.
The lock behind him disengaged with a soft click. Hudson turned, tracking the movements of the female detective as she shut the door and rounded the table.
“Mr. Chase, I’m Detective Green. We spoke on the phone.” She met his stare. Her green eyes were intelligent, Sherlock-fucking-smart. This was a woman who could bounce a quarter off her bed, all business. And probably the sense of humor of a paper napkin. “Thank you for taking time out of your busy schedule to come down here.”
“I didn’t get the impression this meeting was optional.”
The detective dropped a manila folder on the table and the corner of an eight-by-ten glossy slid out of one side. Without looking Hudson knew it was a crime scene photo he had no inclination to see. The news and media outlets had leaked enough of the gruesome scene.
“Are you sure you wouldn’t like to have your attorney present?” she asked, taking a seat in the metal chair across from him.
“You’re not charging me with a crime, Detective Green, simply requesting my cooperation. And with the exception of perhaps a few unpaid parking tickets, I have nothing to hide.” Hudson smiled, but the word ‘motherfucker’ ricocheted inside his skull. Fact was, he didn’t want Chicago’s finest digging into his closet of skeletons.
“We’re questioning everyone.” The detective’s tone was a mix of suspicion and pissed-off frustration that was no doubt the result of having an unsolved murder on her desk.
“You wouldn’t be doing your job if you didn’t.”
The navy suit and the heavy-on-the-starch white button-down she wore creased as she leaned forward and rested her elbows on the table. “You seem like the type of guy who doesn’t thrive on bullshit, so I’ll cut to it. Where were you on November first?”
“I was in Wisconsin.”
“On business?” She pulled a pen out of the interior pocket of her jacket.
“No, I was visiting my brother at a rehabilitation facility.”
Green nodded. “Seems drug addiction runs in the family.” She flipped the folder open and began reading her handwritten notes. “Parents deceased. Mother OD’d, father—”
“I’m more than happy to cooperate,” Hudson interrupted. “But I have no interest in running through my family tree.”
She set the top sheet aside, revealing a more formal report below. “Your brother has quite a rap sheet. In and out of foster homes, ran away from one, short stint in juvie.”
“Teen rebellion is blowing curfew, not taking a neighbor’s car for a joyride that ends in the lake.”
“Your point, Detective?”
She raised a brow. “Nothing stronger than the bond of siblings. But I digress. Did you spend the night or return to Chicago?”
“It’s rehab, not the Hilton.” Hudson’s gaze was rock-steady as he recalled the lady at the front desk of the facility. She’d been drillsergeant strict on protocol, insisting he sign in, wear a visitor badge, and surrender his phone. Being bossed around was not something he was accustomed to, but Nurse Ratched was now his alibi and he was thanking his lucky-fucking-stars he had a paper trail to prove it.
“But you own a home out there on,” she glanced at her notes, “Lake Geneva.”
“I own a cabin there, correct.”
She whistled through her teeth as she looked over the next piece of paper. “Judging by the real estate records, it’s a pretty luxurious cabin,” she said, accenting the last word. “What was the rush to get back to Chicago?”
“You’re right, Detective Green, circling bullshit isn’t my game. There were any number of issues requiring my attention that day. I run a company with numerous subsidiaries around the world. There is great responsibility that comes with that.”
“Your most recent venture being Ingram Media?”
“Quite the score for your portfolio.”
“No argument. I’m a businessman who seizes opportunities when presented.”
“But Richard Sinclair was standing between you and controlling interest of the company.”
“Hardly.” Leveling his stare, Hudson leaned forward and rested his elbows on the table. “I had no motive to kill Richard Sinclair, Detective. I’d been purchasing shares at an accelerated rate. It was only a matter of time until I secured the necessary percentage to gain a majority stake hold.”
Detective Green set the last page of notes aside, revealing the stack of crime scene photos. The first was a shot of Richard Sinclair, slumped over his desk, blood pooling on the leather top. “On October twenty-eighth you took a meeting with Mr. Sinclair?”
“What was the nature of your business?”
“I offered him a lifeline.”
“To save his company? Why would a corporate raider like yourself propose striking a deal?”
“Sinclair’s company was going under. I met with him to make a generous offer that would pull Chicago’s most iconic company out of financial ruin.”
“What was the offer?”
“I would take ownership of the conglomerate with Ingram Media becoming a subsidiary of Chase Industries. Richard Sinclair would still run the day-to-day operations.” He leaned back in the chair. “In essence nothing would change, other than I would be his boss.”
“I’m assuming he wasn’t interested?”
Hudson smirked. “Pride commeth before the fall.”
“Richard didn’t want to work for me. He preferred to keep the business in the family. He was convinced he could salvage his company using the funds he’d secured from Julian Laurent.”
“And Mr. Laurent is his daughter’s fiancé?”
“My mistake.” She eyed him speculatively before making a notation in the margin of one of the pages. “So Sinclair cut off negotiations at that point?”
“I believe his exact words were ‘go fuck yourself.’” Hudson glanced at his black pearl-faced Rolex. “If you have no further questions, Detective, I have pressing business to attend to.” None of which involved him spending the afternoon under a spotlight while Chicago’s finest poked around in his past looking for trigger points.
“That’s all for now.” Detective Green gathered her notes and stuffed them back into the folder. As she stood, a uniformed officer opened the door from the outside. “I’ll be in touch if anything else comes up.”
Hudson shook the Detective’s outstretched hand, and just like that, he was out of there. But as he exited the interrogation room he could feel her watching him, and something in his gut told him he hadn’t heard the last from Detective Green.