Being a single mother running a catering business isn’t easy. Finding time for love is nearly impossible. Adding in a man with his own family issues could be a recipe for disaster.
Ethan is at his wit’s end. Gina, his brother’s ex-wife, has threatened to reveal that Ethan is a member of the Playground, an exclusive BDSM club, unless she gets more alimony from the family trust fund. The scandal that would arise from such a revelation must be avoided at all costs—not only for the sake of Ethan’s reputation, but for the future of his relationship with his treasured sub, Rebecca.
Rebecca is a single mother working hard to expand her catering business. The only peace she finds from her building stress is in the handcuffs of her strong Dom, Ethan. But Rebecca’s life is not her own. Her teenage son is not handling Rebecca’s divorce well, and Rebecca feels the responsibility for her son’s happiness like a weight on her shoulders. Between her business and her son, she has little time for herself—or the growing emotional demands from her Dom.
Ethan is determined to take their relationship to the next level, and Rebecca is equally determined not to upset her son further by revealing that she has a new man in her life. Fortunately, Ethan is a Dom with a passionate interest in seeing that his sub is happy—even if he has to whip some sense into her. He’s making progress until suddenly his own problems take a turn for the worse. His brother Zach has gone missing under suspicious circumstances, and now it’s all Ethan can do just to keep himself out of jail. The cat, as they say, is out of the bag.
As their lives spiral out of control, will Ethan and Rebecca be able to find a way back into each other’s arms?
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Copyright © Rose C. Carole 2015. All Rights Reserved, Totally Entwined Group Limited, T/A Totally Bound Publishing.
Rebecca was feeling a mixture of apprehension and excitement the likes of which she hadn’t experienced since the night before she’d entered culinary school. As she looked through her to-do list before she left to be with Ethan, her mind kept wandering, imagining what he might have in store for her on their first full weekend away together. How would it feel to be submissive to him for all that time, not just for an evening at the club or a stolen afternoon while her son was at school? Who, by the way, she had to make sure her ex-husband, Luke, picked up today from the batting cages instead of school. Picking up her cell, she dialed Luke’s number.
“What, Rebecca? I know I have to pick up Andrew today. It’s my usual weekend with him. I don’t need you to remind me,” came Luke’s defensive reply to her ring.
“At the batting cages, right? He’s going there after school with his friends from the team, remember?”
Rebecca made an enormous effort to curtail her impatience at his attitude. Luke hesitated just enough that she knew he had forgotten, but she didn’t call him on it. The last thing she wanted was to have an argument with him before she left, ruining her good mood.
“Yeah, I know,” he finally mumbled.
“Sorry. I don’t mean to interfere with your time with him. But I never want Andrew to feel I’ve forgotten to take care of him.”
“I know, Rebecca. I guess I’m not offended. Thanks for the call. Talk to you—”
“Enjoy your weekend with him. He really looks forward to spending time with you, Luke. Talk to you Sunday.”
She hung up, tamping down her annoyance at Luke for forgetting. What was important was that she could relax, knowing she’d made sure Andrew was okay, and turn her attention to packing for the weekend. Although she didn’t need much. Ethan had made it clear that any time they were in the cabin she would be in her uniform—garter belt, stockings and heels. So she just needed to pack her toiletries, maybe a robe for after a shower and a few things in case they went out—and her knife roll.
She never went anywhere she might be cooking without it. She could make do with all kinds of inferior equipment she might find in someone’s home except dull knives, and they were so easy to take along with her, she usually did. She was planning to seduce Ethan with her cooking, even though she knew she wouldn’t have to work too hard to make him pay attention to her. He was never lacking in that department.
She made a quick inventory of all the things she had to do before she left, checked them off then loaded up her car. As she drove up the Palisades Parkway, her mind wandered. Ethan had a way of keeping her off balance when they scened. Each time she tried to control an aspect of their play, he veered in an unexpected direction that pulled the rug right out from under her, and she loved every minute of it. With him she could let go completely and forget for a few delicious moments all the problems of running a busy catering business and raising her teenage son without his father in the house. It was an exhilarating adventure in pushing her limits and exploring pleasures she hadn’t experienced in a very long time. She couldn’t wait to get there and see what he had in store for her.
The sound of a blaring horn roused her from her thoughts. Heart racing, she turned the wheel quickly to avoid fully drifting into the adjoining lane and hitting the car that was trying to pass. Pay attention, Rebecca. You don’t want to ruin the weekend before you even get there. Needing to collect herself, she pulled into a nearby rest area, stopped the car and got out. She walked to the edge the cliff looking out over the Hudson River and willed herself to calm down.
It was a beautiful day, the leaves just beginning to turn, reminding her that the busy party season was coming soon. But she forced herself to relax and enjoy the moment, to relish her few days of freedom with the man she could be learning to love—if she would let herself admit it—Ethan, the handsome, patient, sexy, provocative, so kinky man who had wormed his way into her life by bringing out her passionate side that had been dormant in so many of the years of her marriage.
She had forgotten what it was like to feel sexy, but Ethan made her feel that way every time he regarded her with that hungry look on his face, as though she were the feast he had been waiting for. Whenever she doubted, he made her believe. And though he pushed her limits, he never crossed the line past where she could go, and so her trust had grown to the point where she was ready to be alone with him for a full weekend. And she finally had the time, as well.
She took one last deep breath, soaking up the bucolic river view, and once again got in her car. She was ready to open herself up to Ethan and follow his lead. She just had to keep her mind off the exquisite tortures she imagined he could devise so she could get there in one piece. He’d only surprise her anyway.
Ethan looked out the window again, trying to see if Rebecca had arrived yet. What the hell was wrong with him? He was like a teenager on his first date. Rebecca was the first woman in a long time with whom he wanted to spend more time than just playing at the club. It wasn’t only that she was beautiful with that wonderfully curvaceous body—it was that she challenged him as a Dom and as a man. He liked the fact that he was never quite sure what she would do or say when they played, that she kept him on his toes, forcing him to be creative whenever she tried to wrest control from him, often in very subtle ways.
And she was such a capable woman in her own right. She didn’t need him to take care of her. But she brought out his protective nature, wanting to provide a place for her where she could feel safe and relax in ways he knew she couldn’t do in her day-to-day life. She was often on the defensive, wanting to keep her worries to herself, and it was a difficult challenge for him to find a way to give her what he believed she needed without overstepping the boundaries she had established in their relationship, boundaries he was hoping to erode over time so that she let him help her.
He finally gave in to his restlessness and went outside to wait for her. He expected her any minute, and anyway, he had plans that required him to meet her at her car when she arrived. And, of course, he’d want to help her with her things. He distracted himself by roaming around the grounds, looking over the new plantings he had put in that fall. As an environmental engineer, he had been working to create a natural setting on the property while still providing good protection for afternoon reading. He had just put in a few beautiful northern red oaks that he anticipated would be shade-worthy in only a few years. Already the leaves were turning their characteristic copper color, adding to the splendor of the yard. Rebecca would look beautiful restrained under that tree, the color of the leaves bringing out the same color highlighting her hair.
He heard her car come up the lane and went to meet her. He directed her to a spot where she wouldn’t block him in if they wanted to go out during the weekend and approached. He walked up to the car, opened her door, then took her hand and helped her out. He embraced her and gave her a quick kiss.
She looked delicious in a simple blue sundress that brought out the blue in her eyes, which at the moment looked that deep azure color he recognized when she was full of expectation, confirmed by her half smile. Good. She would play right into his plans.
“Welcome to my home. I’m so glad you could make it.”
“Me too. I’ve been looking forward to it all week.” She regarded him shyly through her long lashes.
“Our D/s dynamic starts right now, Rebecca. Give me your car keys, then get out your uniform. I’ll bring the rest of your things into the house. I want you to go around back into the fenced area. You will find your instructions on the bench. Once you follow them, I will meet you there.”
A momentary look of panic crossed her face and he wasn’t sure she was going to do what he’d asked. But he didn’t push her at this point. He needed her to go willingly, so he just waited until she squared her shoulders and calmed herself.
“Yes, Sir,” she finally said in a clear voice.
“That’s my girl,” he assured her. “Now go.”
She proceeded to the back gate, and he set about collecting her small suitcase, the knife roll and the bags of groceries she had brought. Once inside, he put the perishables into the fridge, glancing out of the window on a regular basis to make sure she was okay. Then he left the house, cloaking himself in his serious Dom mode. He had a point to make, and he wanted to make sure she understood how important it was that she got it.