From Sanctum with Love
Masters and Mercenaries, Book 10
By Lexi Blake
Coming February 23, 2015
Psychologist Kai Ferguson has had his eye on Kori Williamson for a long time. His assistant is everything he’s ever wanted in a partner—smart, caring, witty, and a bit of a masochist. More than a little, actually, but that’s the problem. Kori won’t admit her own desires. She’s afraid of him and what he has to offer. Luckily for her, helping patients face their fears is one of his specialties.
Kori knows she wants Kai. Her boss is the most amazing man she’s ever met. She’s also smart enough to stay away from him. Having been down this road before, she knows it only leads to heartache. She’s just found a place where she can belong. Another failed relationship is the last thing she needs. It’s better to guard her heart and let Kai think she’s frightened of his dark, dominant nature.
When Kai is recruited for an operation with McKay-Taggart, everything is turned upside down. Kai’s brother, international superstar Jared Johns, is in town and Kai must juggle his family issues along with a desperate hunt for a serial killer. The investigation throws Kori and Kai together, and they quickly discover the chemistry between them is undeniable. But even if their newfound love can survive his secrets and her lies, it may not be enough to save them both from a killer’s twisted obsession.
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Kori heard some movement and then felt the whoosh of air caress her skin right before something thin and hard thwacked against her flesh. A gasp made her chest pulse as pure fire licked over her backside.
“This is a cane,” Kai explained. “It’s bamboo, nice and not too flexible. It leaves a mark if you apply enough force.” He brought it down on her again, this time on her thighs. Again, she struggled for breath. “Are you bored now, Kori?”
“No, Sir.” She barely managed to get the words out of her mouth.
“Excellent, then we’re making headway.” The cane came down again and again. “Where are we on the stoplight?”
“Green.” She didn’t even hesitate. The pain was doing its job, heating her up and making her soft. Each strike of the cane lit her up and then brought her back down, sinking deeper and deeper into that soft, fuzzy place of submission.
“Now we’re getting some truth.” He kept up his punishing pace. “She didn’t take her time trying to find a way out of what she didn’t want to say.”
“Why would she lie?” Jared asked.
“That’s a good question.” The blows continued, making her ache as Kai spoke. “I suspect she didn’t want anyone here to know that she’s a naughty masochist who can’t get off without a little bite of pain. Or a big one. She hasn’t accepted her nature. Or she has and expects that no one else will.”
“I accepted my nature a long time ago,” she managed to say.
The caning stopped and suddenly Kai’s boots were in view again. He dropped to one knee, that hard hand in her hair again. “Then tell me why.”
She couldn’t tell him. It was too much. “I’m yellow now, Kai. Don’t make me safe word out over an explanation I’m not ready to give.”
“Fine.” His hand moved from her hair down, skimming over her skin until his fingertips found her breast. Kai Ferguson was touching her breast. God, he was cupping her and she couldn’t breathe. “How about I put a scenario forth and you think about it for a few days. I think the reason you didn’t mention your utterly beautiful and sexy inclinations is me. You didn’t want me to know because you were perfectly aware that I’m the only one here who can possibly give you what you need. You knew that once I found out, I wouldn’t be able to help myself because you’re the only one who can do the same for me, baby. Do you know how fucking good I feel right now? How good this makes me feel?”
He rolled her nipple between his thumb and forefinger and twisted with a vicious bite that left her panting.
She squeezed her eyes closed because she couldn’t look at him, couldn’t see how beautiful he was. “It won’t work, Kai.”
Another nasty twist got her squirming. “It’s working right fucking now. Darling girl, your ass is up in the air and that means I can see how wet your pussy is. Tell me some other Dom here got you wet and ready.”
“You know I can’t.” She tugged at her restraints, but they didn’t move. The rope rubbed across her skin, keeping her here with him. She couldn’t run, and she had to admit she didn’t want to. She wanted this moment with him. Her pride might make her get up and stride away but every other part of her begged for what she’d denied herself for so long. He was the only man here who could give her what she needed. It wasn’t about who hit the hardest. Any of those other Doms could have adequately provided her with pain. She needed more. She needed connection, the ebb and flow of pain and pleasure coming from a man who was there with her.
Her dark shadow lover. Kai.
“I’m not the exhibitionist you are,” Kai admitted. “And that’s the only reason I’m not fucking you right now, but we’re going to have a long discussion in the morning about the way this needs to go. For tonight, I’m going to start the process that will allow you to remain friends with all those people you lied to. So you are going to give me everything I want. You’re going to cry for me. You’re going to let go and show them that you’ll cry for me.”
She shook her head. “You’re asking too much.”
“It’s cry or come, baby. One or the other, unless you want to find yourself in Big Tag’s office. Let me show him I can handle you.”
“I can’t. I haven’t done either in a very long time.” She hadn’t cried since leaving LA. She couldn’t. Wouldn’t. She hadn’t come either. Not a man-given orgasm. Her mind worked overtime. He wasn’t joking about getting called into Big Tag’s office. Whatever punishment Kai could come up with—nothing would touch Big Tag’s disapproval. They were all mad at her. It was enough to make her want to run away again.
Except it wasn’t that they wanted to see her humiliated. This punishment wasn’t about hurting her. It was about this group of people knowing that someone among them could take care of her. When she looked at it like that, it didn’t seem like punishment at all. It was about the Dominants giving a shit.
Morgan hadn’t cared when she’d lied to him. All he’d wanted was the next bit of work from her. After a while, he hadn’t cared about her finding subspace or her pent-up sexuality. He’d doled out the pain like it was bait for his trap. He would give her enough to ensure she stayed around and did what he needed her to do.
This wasn’t the same thing at all.
“I don’t want to cry in front of anyone, Kai.”
“Then let me show them you can let go in another way.”
“Please gag me, Kai. Please.”
“With pleasure, baby.”
She could hear him moving around behind her, and when he came back he had a fresh pair of her undies in his hands.
“Unlike a lot of Doms, I personally enjoy pretty panties. They make such good gags when we need to keep our games private. Open. Since you won’t be able to talk through this spanking, all you have to do to get me to stop is hold up your left hand.”
He was giving her a way to safe word without speaking. She had to admit that the idea that her friends were right down the hallway and Kai was about to do dirty things to her aroused her unbearably. “I can do that.”
“Stand up and ask me to gag you again. Does my sub need a gag in her mouth so she won’t cry out?”
Her nipples were rigid against her tank top. “Yes, Sir. I need it.”
“Open your mouth.” His right hand caught her, forcing her head up. “And I damn straight meant what I said about stopping me if it’s too much. I know you like it, but I won’t damage you for anything. Take it.”
He was rough as he shoved the panties into her mouth. She would never be able to look at those the same way again. He pressed them, filling her mouth and making her jaw ache. It was the right side of pain, exactly enough to start up the chemical reaction in her brain. Some people got runner’s high. She found such peace in this place.
And it was better this time because she could trust Kai.
Because Kai was the one.
“Back down,” Kai ordered.
She turned again, placing her hands down on the bed. She could scream as much as she liked now. For the first time in forever, she could actually let loose.
“Have I ever told you how beautiful you are? I like having you gagged because you can’t talk back and argue with me. Did you think I didn’t notice that every single time I give you a compliment, you negate it somehow? When I told you that dress was lovely on you last Monday, you told me you had borrowed it from Sarah and I should see how she filled it out.” His hand smacked on her ass, fire skimming her skin. “I don’t care how Sarah fills it out. I care about you. I watch you. I fantasize about you.”
They were not words she’d ever expected to hear from him. Not once. She’d dreamed about him, but she’d convinced herself that nothing could ever happen between them. Tears pricked her eyes, sweet and pure emotion running through her.
He rained down on her skin, the soreness from the previous night making every strike more visceral. She groaned around the gag.
“So that’s a new rule. When I tell you how pretty you are, you’ll thank me. Maybe if you hear it from me enough, you’ll start to believe it, though I think you should know that while you’re gorgeous, it’s not the thing that attracts me to you the most.” Another long volley where all she could hear was the sound of his hand hitting her flesh and then the flash of heat that sank into her bones.
Fuck but she felt alive.
“No, what attracted me to you was the fact that you are the single kindest person I’ve ever met.” He smacked her on the underside of her ass, making her jump slightly, the sensation so close to her rapidly moistening pussy. “You try to hide it, but I see you. I see how you treat people, how you protect them and take care of them. I also see how you never ask for anything yourself.”
He made her sound like a martyr, but it wasn’t like she could defend herself. There was nothing to do but take Kai’s discipline and listen to his words. Over and over her skin lit up and she took in the pain before shaking it off and letting the sensation change deep inside her body. Metamorphosis. It was how she always felt when playing. Like she began as one person and changed somewhere in the middle into someone else—someone stronger, more at peace.
“I’m going to take care of that because I’m going to take care of you and you’re going to let me. You’re going to trust me to take care of you emotionally the way I’m taking care of you physically. I know that’s hard, but I promise I won’t let you down. After last night, after the connection we had, I can’t let us go back to what we were.”
She could see that now. How had she thought for a second that she could breeze back into the office and pretend nothing had happened between them? What happened the night before was more meaningful than simple play. They’d needed each other, filled something that had been missing deep inside.
The pain focused her, helped her to push aside those voices that always seemed so close to the surface. All her nasty doubts and self-loathing melted away when tested against Master Kai’s discipline. She knew so many people who would judge her a freak for needing this, but she’d learned long ago that smart people accepted who they were, what they needed.
She needed Kai and in more ways than one.
Her backside was on fire as he continued, his rough voice keeping a count. Ten and then fifteen. Twenty and more. Somehow he knew exactly what to give her to make her ache for more.
“Thirty.” His hand moved over her skin, holding the heat in as he stroked her flesh. “I don’t want to be finished with this, Kori.”
Neither did she. There was no reason to hold him off. They’d had years of friendship to build a trust like nothing she’d known. She wiggled her ass against his hand because she couldn’t talk and hadn’t been told she could move yet. Rubbing against him was the only way she had to communicate that she wanted him.
He hauled her up, turning her to face him. “You know what I want. I believe I told you the first rule I wanted to change.”
Kisses. He’d claimed he wanted kisses. He gently pulled the panties out of her mouth, tossing them to the side. He lowered his mouth to hers, lips pressing down. He didn’t allow her to control this kiss. His hands sank into her hair and tugged her head back, giving him full access to her mouth. His tongue plunged deep, rubbing along her own in a silky glide. He kissed her over and over again, sinking deeper. She didn’t give a crap that her pants were still around her ankles. All that mattered was the feel of his lips on hers, the way his hands gripped and dominated her. There was power in how he held her, how he moved her, and it made her submissive and willing.
“Please, Kai,” she whispered. She’d spent years without and it had been all right. She’d survived and not even thought about sex. Now she couldn’t stand the thought of him not being inside her. Not one second more. She needed him.
“Tell me you want me.”
“I want you.”
NY Times and USA Today bestselling author Lexi Blake lives in North Texas with her husband, three kids, and the laziest rescue dog in the world. She began writing at a young age, concentrating on plays and journalism. It wasn't until she started writing romance and urban fantasy that she found the stories of her heart. She likes to find humor in the strangest places and believes in happy endings no matter how odd the couple, threesome, or foursome may seem.
Amazon Author Page: http://www.amazon.com/Lexi-Blake/e/B005JVSDJ0/ref=sr_tc_2_0?qid=1450204047&sr=8-2-ent