“You’re late,” Eduardo said as Maisy entered the performers tent. It was still messy from the previous night, but major attempts had been made to tidy it up. Eduardo seemed to have chased everyone away when he commandeered the area for their rehearsal.
Maisy checked her phone, it was three minutes after twelve, not exactly late. Besides, she’d had to clean up after the crazy night, make breakfast for Rose and take one last check through the Cirque for signs of Cara. Once again, nobody had seen her. She’d seemingly disappeared into thin air in the course of Rose taking a piss.
“I’m sorry,” she said and slid the phone back in the pocket of her jeans.
“When we work together, I expect a high degree of professionalism. Being tardy will not be tolerated. Do you understand?”
He spoke to her in a slow voice, as if she weren’t mentally capable of comprehending a simple order. She hated it.
“I understand,” she said and waited for his next direction.
“Next time you need to wear loose, comfortable clothing. We’ll practice a little today, but you need to be more flexible,” he said.
“What are we going to do?” she asked. He hadn’t even mentioned the fact that she’d turned him down yesterday. He was so arrogant that he’d forgotten her stubborn protest already.
“I am going to strap you down, spin you and throw knives at you. We are going to go through a few rounds, and I will hit you. A very bad, direct hit. Lots of bleeding. You might work on screaming, making it sound like you’re in pain. Play it up, and all that.”
“That sounds awful,” she said and shuddered, thinking of the blades sinking into her flesh. The blood, the healing, the risk of infection, it was all horrible to think about.
Eduardo crossed the few feet between them and pointed at her upper arm. “I will hit you here,” he said, “it will bleed a lot and look dramatic. It will also heal very well.”
“What if you hit something important? Like the bone or a nerve? I won’t know anything is wrong unless my arm stops working or I keep bleeding.”
“My aim is perfect,” he said, “You will remain unharmed. Now let’s do this.”
She was reluctant to follow him to the stage. She hesitated, weighed her options and found her only choice was to follow him. She stopped at the edge and looked at his set up. He had a rack with at least a hundred knives of all shapes and sizes lined up in order of largest to smallest. Twenty or thirty feet across the space, there was a large wheel that resembled a roulette table. Four straps were attached to it.
“You want to tie me to that?” she asked and thought again about leaving. Walking away and going back to Canada.
But Cairo. And Cara. And the emptiness that waited for her back in Vancouver.
She would stay put, even if it meant getting herself sliced up in the process.
“I will strap you in and spin you,” he told her, “it’s all very exciting. The crowd loves a good knife act.”
“What happened to the last girl?” she asked.
“She’s working in your old job, selling tickets. Now please stand in front of the wheel and let me strap you in.”
Understanding very quickly that it was impossible to disobey Eduardo, she decided to follow his direction. She stood where he asked, spread her legs and held her hands up. She realized the wooden circle was covered in thick corkboard, and this was completely covered in knife punctures. She was beginning to feel an awful lot like a pin cushion.
He grabbed her wrist and held it tightly to the wooden circle, buckled a leather strap around it, and repeated with her other hand.
“Is she upset?” Maisy asked as he moved to her feet.
He looked up at her, annoyed. “Who?”
“The girl who used to do this. The one I took the job from.”
He strapped her foot in, then the other. He stood up, still a few inches taller than her, and looked at her face. She was unable to move, she felt immensely vulnerable. It occurred to her that he could do anything he wanted at this moment, and she couldn’t do a damn thing about it. Why did she get herself into these situations?
“I didn’t ask,” he said with a slight curl to his lip, “it doesn’t matter.”
“Did you cut her?” she asked.
“She wasn’t like you. I would hurt her if I did.”
Maisy didn’t know why she asked the next question, it bubbled to her lips before she could stop herself. The moment it was out in the space between the two of them, she regretted it. She was afraid of his answer. “Did you want to?”
He looked her in the eyes, his were a dark brown but lacked the depth and soul of his son. He was completely unreadable and he replied, “Yes.”
He turned and walked to the knife rack, stepped on a foot paddle she hadn’t noticed before and the wooden wheel started to spin slowly.
“You may feel a little sick at first,” he said, “but you get used to it. Please don’t vomit on your costume when you get one. If you have to throw up, warn me and I’ll stop movement.”
“Okay,” Maisy said, her voice a little shaky as the world tipped upside down, righted itself, and repeated over and over. She lost sight of Eduardo, everything becoming a blur of motion and colour until she wasn’t sure which way was up anymore.
She heard the knife before she saw it. A rush of air followed by a solid thwack in the cork next to her. She twisted her head and saw at least a twelve inch blade sticking from the surface of the board near her right arm. She squeaked and continued to spin.
“Don’t move your head!” Eduardo barked at her and threw another knife. Thwack, this one landed on the left side of her. “I am going to hit you once only, at the very end of the performance. And I don’t want you disfigured, by taking off an ear or hitting your eye. You are a beautiful woman, that will bring more people than a scarred one.”
He threw several more knives and she felt her stomach lurch. She was surprised that she’d held it in this long, given the wine she’d had the night before. Adrenaline coursing through her body didn’t help and she felt it twist again as he tossed another knife, this one landing somewhere very close to the top of her head.
“Stop!” she yelled and tried to calm her roiling insides. Her head was still spinning when the wheel slowed and he came to remove her.
“You were drinking last night,” he stated, as though he knew the answer already. “Don’t drink while you work with me, and I won’t drink while I work with you. You got that?”
She was alarmed at his admission, that he was a drinker. She hadn’t figured him for the type or he would have a less dangerous act, wouldn’t he? She shuddered as his hand brushed her arm and he unbuckled the final strap.
Unable to hold it much longer, she jumped off the stage and found a garbage bucket near a row of chairs. She let loose the contents of her stomach with a most unattractive retching sound. She dry heaved, tears coming to her eyes and her stomach clenching over and over until she felt spent.
When she gained awareness of her surroundings, she saw Eduardo watching her, his face a hard mask of contempt. “Come tomorrow at ten,” he said, “and we will work on this some more. Do not drink tonight, am I clear?”
Maisy stood slowly on weak legs and wiped her mouth with the back of her hand. She didn’t bother to wipe the tears off her face. “Yes,” she said, her voice quavering with fear and self loathing. She never got hang overs, this must have been directly from the wheel, but she couldn’t protest or explain herself. Not to him, he would never buy it.
He turned and walked off the back of the stage, leaving her alone and shaking next to the garbage full of her vomit.
She just prayed the rest of her days with Eduardo would go better than this one.
After her failed rehearsal with Eduardo, Maisy had gone back to her trailer to join Rose and some friends in a search for Cara.
They’d turned up nothing.
Cairo had gone back to Canada to clear up some paperwork at the border, the Cirque had some difficulties with their strong man and a pair of conjoined twins who were going to be joining the show.
Maisy already missed him and spent a restless night worrying about Cara and fantasizing about Cai’s pierced cock. She was guilty for wanting him so badly when her friend was missing, but couldn’t help herself. The thought of fucking him consumed her, so even when she tried to bring herself to orgasm late that night, she was unable to.
She wanted only him. Her body wanted his, and wouldn’t respond without his touch.
She ended up punching her pillow out of frustration and reaching for her phone to text him that she missed him and was thinking of him. Fuck the rules, fuck playing hard to get, fuck her fears and insecurities, she wanted him, full stop.
It was past three in the morning and she noticed a text from him sent just twenty seven minutes earlier, when she’d been trying so desperately to get herself off. It read:
“Missing you and thinking of you. Can’t wait to get back. xoxo”
She fell back on her bed and held the phone to her chest, a wide grin on her face.
Before this, Jacob had been her most intense relationship, and looking back on it she wanted to laugh. She’d never realized how tasteless their supposed love had been, no wonder she’d never been able to come, and no wonder he’d gone sniffing after Becs. She almost felt like texting them back to wish them well together.
Maybe not, she wasn’t feeling that generous.
She texted Cai back, “Me too <3” is all she wrote, but she felt like he would know what she meant.
She fell back asleep finally able to find some peace before day two with Eduardo.
Maisy, it turned out, was a natural on the wheel and an expert at bleeding dramatically. The second day of rehearsals with Eduardo went much better than the first, in spite of her inability to sleep until she knew she was on Cai’s mind as much as he was on hers.
Eduardo had barely spoken when she’d arrived, ten minutes early this time. He’d strapped her in and thrown several knives in quick succession, explaining that the night of the live show he would take more time in between. It was all about the performance, all about the drama.
He paused and watched her spinning around, she could find his face in the midst of the blur and motion and used it to center herself. He said, “This one is going to make contact, I need you to react. You have to scream, carry on like you’ve been mortally wounded. We want the crowd to think they’ve witnessed a disaster. Can you do that?”
“Yes,” she’d said and kept very still as he’d drawn back his hand with at least a twenty inch blade and let it go.
It hit her with a solid thud, deep into the flesh of her upper right arm. She felt nothing but the odd sensation of being pinned to the board behind her. It had gone straight through.
She screamed and cried out, writhed on the board without moving her arm in order to keep it from tearing, and whimpered as Eduardo approached.
His eyes shone with bright approval and a fiery excitement. She felt a small flutter of joy in her chest at his positive reaction. She felt like a little lap dog, begging for its owner’s attention.
“Very nice,” he said and let her down. Blood streamed from her arm and she didn’t know if she should continue to act as thought it hurt. “You seem very terrified, anxious, downright horrified. Perfect.”
“It doesn’t hurt,” she replied in a calm voice, her tears already drying as she spoke, “But it’s a strange feeling, being pinned against the cork like that.”
“Good, use it and give them a real show on Friday. Go get cleaned up, we have two more rehearsals before the big day. I won’t cut you until the night of the event, but you need to train yourself to keep still when you’re being spun. I noticed you still wobble a little, and I truly don’t want to maim you.”
She was touched, for the first time he seemed genuinely kind towards her. He was usually so filled with disdain, she had a hard time believing he could show her his soft side, but she appreciated it nonetheless.
“Thank you,” she said and walked off the stage.
“Maisy,” he called out to her as she left.
She turned around, one eyebrow raised and asked, “Yes?”
“Good work,” he said, “Very well done.”
She smiled and hated herself for responding to his praise, hated the part of her that wanted so desperately to please him.
My god, I might have daddy issues, she thought as she left the tent. She had to laugh though, very typical that she would be the one to find out after an older man threw a knife into her flesh and patted her on the head for it.
Dysfunction reigns supreme yet again, she thought and walked to find a medic.
Cairo had to stay yet another night in Canada, and Maisy was feeling anxious without him by her side. Although his father approved of her as a performer, she suspected he still wouldn’t want them hooking up. Every minute he was gone, she worried that he was going to see things from his father’s point of view and decide that she wasn’t the right girl for him.
She hadn’t heard from him all day, and finally texted him at dinner time, just to let him know she was missing him, and he didn’t reply.
She considered calling him, just to hear his voice but didn’t know if she could afford it, calling from the US. She considered texting him again, but fought her urge and decided to find Rose instead.
Her friend was sitting with a group of workers in the staff concession. Maisy got her dinner and a tea and sat down. She listened to the talk as she ate her lasagna slowly, taking her time so she didn’t have to head back to the trailer by herself.
The talk turned to Cara, and Rose started to tear up again over the entire thing. They’d reported her disappearance to the Seattle PD that day, but nobody thought the cops could do much of anything. This was a circus problem that would be best solved by circus folk.
“Should we be talking about this in front of her?” one lithe, Goth girl asked. Maisy had a vague recollection that the girl worked in laundry and costume repair. It took her a moment to realize the girl had been talking about her.
“Why not?” Rose asked before Maisy could respond. “Cara is our room mate, if anyone has a right to be in on discussions about her, it’s Maisy.”
“She’s a performer though,” the girl said and to Maisy’s shock, several of the people at the table nodded and agreed with the Goth.
“I’m just a circus employee,” Maisy said, “I’m not exactly a performer. And even if I was, what’s the difference? I’m just me, nothing’s changed.”
“Everything has changed,” the Goth girl said and sneered at Maisy, “We know how it works around here, you get way more money, way more status and suddenly you’re looking down on those of us who wash your panties. It happens every damn time.”
“It’s not going to happen this time,” Maisy said, “I didn’t know there was a division between performers and workers, and I refuse to let it get to me.”
“You took my job,” said a stunning beauty at the end of the table, “I sell tickets now and can barely afford to save for college. So thanks for that.”
“I didn’t know,” Maisy said, “Eduardo asked me and I couldn’t turn him down or he was going to send me back to Canada.”
“Right,” the girl said and muttered something to the goth.
“What was that?” Maisy asked.
“I said I guess it has nothing to do with the fact that you’re fucking his son, right?” the girl replied.
“I’m not fucking anybody,” Maisy said and felt tears at the back of her eyes. She hated to cry and refused to cry in front of people who would take joy in it.
“Guys, calm the fuck down,” Rose shouted at last, “Maisy’s good. I don’t care who she spends time with or where she’s working, she’s good people. Can you just get to the whole fucking point of this little meeting? Why did three of our girls disappear and who took them?”
Maisy felt foolish, she hadn’t realized this was a meeting, she’d assumed it was a casual dinner gathering. Now gorging on her lasagna seemed so uncouth and callous.
“Why doesn’t she ask her boyfriend?” Goth girl said but her gaze dropped when Rose stared her down with an angry challenge.
“Nobody is asking Cairo anything,” Maisy said, “he is as freaked out about this as all of us.”
They went down a checklist of new security regulations and the group voted on which ones would be implemented.
After it was all over, Maisy finished her cold dinner and gulped her drink. She and Rose walked back to their trailer.
Halfway back Rose stopped in mid stride and said, “Holy shit!”
Maisy stopped and turned to look at her friend. “What?”
“You didn’t deny that he’s your boyfriend!”
“What do you mean?”
“When Emo princess called Cairo your boyfriend, you didn’t correct her.”
“So, that’s huge,” Rose said with a big grin, “it means he might be.”
“He isn’t,” Maisy protested, “but he might be eventually.”
Rose giggled and punched her arm. “I knew you liked him more than you were letting on,” she said and they started to walk again.
Maisy smiled back and accepted the gentle teasing. She still hadn’t heard from Cai though, so in spit of her admission, she wasn’t sure if he ever would be.
How could she be sure of his feelings if he didn’t get back to her?
Thursday was their third rehearsal and Maisy practically sleep walked through it, she was so tired. She hadn’t heard from Cairo and had finally given in sometime around midnight. She’d texted him something short and sweet, then called him. It had gone to voicemail after one ring and she left a plaintive message, hating herself as she spoke the words in her sad little voice.
“Hey Cai, just me thinking about you. Call me!”
She wished she could go back and erase it. Was it possible to get dumped before you were even dating? Had she just broken a record or something?
“Pay attention!” Eduardo barked, breaking into her daydream and pulling her into the present. They’d gone through several variations of his routine, pretty much all of them ending with him tossing varying sizes of knives at her. She didn’t think she needed to pay much attention to that.
“Sorry,” she said, “I didn’t get much sleep last night.” The spinning slowed and she came to a stop. She had learned the wheel was weighted so it always landed upright when he pushed the pedal to slow it down.
“I asked you if you’ve heard from my son,” he said with a dark look on his face. His thick brows were furrowed and he looked almost vulnerable with the concern that played around his eyes.
“I haven’t,” she said, “not since the night before last. Is he okay?”
“I’m asking you,” he said and walked to stand in front of her. She looked up at him, her hands and feet still tightly bound. “He seems to be more interested in slumming these days than spending time with his family,” Eduardo continued and reached up to touch her face. She thought he was going to slap her and winced when he made contact, but he stroked her cheek instead.
It was a horrible sensation, his finger drawing across her face, like a snake moving across her. It was strangely erotic, but full of fear and tension mixed with disgust. At him, for touching her, and at herself for almost liking it.
He was undeniably an attractive man. He took care of his body and she’d caught glimpses of his thick muscles under his tailored white shirt. She could appreciate him on some level, hot, fuckable, powerful and demanding.
But on a gut level, somewhere deep inside her reptilian brain, he repulsed her. There was something about Eduardo that felt wrong, like he possessed some kind of madness that, once it was loosed, could destroy her with its hunger.
“We spend time together,” she said and didn’t break eye contact. Never one to back down from a challenge, even when she was facing off with her boss, a knife throwing, hot, weirdo who had her completely at his mercy.
“I told you I want it to stop,” he said, not removed his hand. He cupped her face and repeated, “I want you to stay away from him.”
“Why?” she challenged, “Why should I stay away? We’re grown ups, he’s an adult, we’re free to make our own decisions.”
“He’s engaged,” Eduardo replied and pulled his hand away, watching her reaction. “The girl is exquisite, a contortionist from Bulgaria. From a prominent circus family, they’ve been in the business for generations.”
She did her best, she tried to keep everything to herself, hang onto her poker face and walk away from Eduardo with her dignity intact, but she cracked.
“You’re lying,” she said, hot tears already rolling down her cheeks.
“I’m not,” he said, “where do you think he is right now? He’s arranging his fiancé’s papers to come to Canada and meet up with us in the US.”
“There’s no way he is,” she said, “he’s a good man.”
“He is a good man,” Eduardo replied, “which is why he will obey his father and fulfill his mother’s dying wish.”
She didn’t reply as he removed the straps. When the last one was free, she thought she was going to tumble forward and fall on the floor, her body was shaking so hard.
Eduardo caught her, held her in his powerful arms, looked her in the eyes and said, “I didn’t want you to get hurt. I tried to keep you away from him, I could see how fast you were falling for him.”
“I thought you hated me,” she said and found her legs again but didn’t pull away.
“I don’t hate you,” he replied softly, “I just know what kind of effect my son has on our employees. You’re not the first one he’s hurt with his careless ways, and you probably won’t be the last.”
She took a step back at last, composed herself and said, “Well, if this is true then you don’t have to worry about me any longer. I won’t have anything to do with your son when he returns.”
She decided to leave, took several steps towards the tent exit and had the strangest feeling that Eduardo was watching her like a hawk. She turned back and saw a very sly smile on his face, as if he’d just become the victor in a battle she knew nothing about.
She shivered and kept walking, ignoring the weight of his gaze on her as she left the tent, determined to find out what the fuck kind of game Cairo was playing with her.
She supposed it shouldn’t bother her this much, she’d barely known Cairo after all. It hurt though, more than the stinging annoyance she’d felt with Jacob’s betrayal. This felt personal somehow, much more directed at her. Like he’d drawn back his arrow and pointed it directly at her heart.
There had been some news about Cara. A friend of a friend had told Rose that Cara had been spotted back in Canada. Maisy and Rose were both skeptical, but somehow it seemed easier to accept that reality than the alternate…that Cara was lying lifeless in a ditch somewhere.
They couldn’t figure out why she would have gone home without telling them, and logic demanded that they still look for her, but both of them had come up empty handed over the last day and didn’t know how to keep looking. Neither one had the power, money or know-how to initiate any investigation. Cairo would have to tell her what his assistant had discovered when he returned.
Thursday night found her lying on her bed, listless and half awake. She’d been checking her texts every so often just in case. In case he decided to actually fucking get back to her, in case Eduardo was insane and planted the thought in her head to tear them apart.
Rose had gone for dinner without her, but only after she’d asked Maisy a hundred times or so. She was worried about her friend, and with good reason.
Maisy was a mess. Truly a pathetic mess of a woman, and all over a man.
And she wasn’t even sure if Eduardo was being truthful, she needed to hear it from Cairo’s lips before she believed a word. Her gut told her it felt right, there was something else going on in his life.
A knock at the door dragged her from half sleep. She held her breath, listening, not entirely sure if it had been from the dream side or this side of her brain.
She heard it again, it was real.
She got up, pulled her robe tight and went to the front of the trailer.
“Who is it?” she asked and peeked out the window.
Before he even answered, she saw his face, Cairo.
“It’s me, Maisy,” he said through the closed door.
The moment of truth, her hand shook as she unlocked and opened the door, swung it wide and saw his grin.
“Fuck, you look amazing,” he said and stepped into the space that suddenly felt miles too small. She backed away and looked him up and down. He was fucking delicious
“Where have you been?” she asked and crossed her arms in front of her. It was hard to be angry when he looked this good. Why did he have to look so damned good? “I even called you, I was worried.”
“I lost my phone,” he replied. She wanted to believe him, he sounded so sincere. She shot him a skeptical look and watched him squirm. “I left it in a cab in Vancouver. I had to get a replacement, but they couldn’t keep my old number and I don’t have anybody’s contact information.” He held up an obviously brand new phone, his old one had been beaten up and a few years out of date. She’d loved it though, it marked him as so against the grain.
“You couldn’t get a hold of your father? He was asking about you this morning.”
“You’ve been working with him? Has he been okay with you?”
“Yes, and you didn’t answer my question.”
“No, I don’t know my father’s number. I couldn’t text. I knew I was coming back anyways, so it didn’t seem like a big deal.”
She stood with her feet apart and her arms crossed and started him down. Finally she got the courage to ask the question she’d been dreading, simply because she was terrified of the answer.
“Cai, I want you to be honest with me. Are you engaged?”
He sucked in his breath, ran his hand through his long, tangled hair and started back at her. She could almost see the gears moving in his head as he formulated his response. By the time he whispered his reply, she already knew what he was going to say. “Yes,” his voice broke with emotion and she could almost see whatever they’d been building crumble slowly into the sea.
“Please leave,” she said, her voice low and steady. She needed him to leave so she could collapse along with the fledgling relationship she’d been imagining.
“It’s not like that, Maisy,” he said and took a step towards her.
“It never is, is it? I said go.”
“Let me explain, please.”
“How could you possibly talk your way out of this one?”
“It’s not how it appears, I promise. You mean so much to me, you’ve changed everything. Everything I meant to do or say or tell my father to forget, I couldn’t do it until I met you.”
“We barely know each other,” she replied. Her voice was flat, devoid of emotion and she almost choked on her words. “You’re nothing to me, please leave.”
“You know that’s not true,” he said, his eyes pleading with her. “I’ve felt it, I know you’ve felt it. This is like that lightning strike, one in a million, the thing that people talk about, Maisy. You know it’s real, you can’t deny it.”
“You need to leave,” she said with a tinge of hysteria creeping into her voice. “GET OUT!” she finally screamed, losing control and starting to cry. She rushed at him and pounded his chest with her fists. He tried to grab her wrists but she pulled away. “You fucking liar,” she spat, “I won’t be that girl, the other woman. I won’t ruin your fiancé’s life because you can’t keep your cock in your pants!”
That cock, that stupid beautiful, thick cock. She hated herself for wanting him, even now in the midst of his lies and their ruin.
He backed up towards the door and turned to leave. As he hit the ground, he turned back and looked up at her. “If this is what you want, I’ll go,” he said, “but I’ll make things right for you, Maisy. I will convince you to give me another chance. I don’t give up easy, so be prepared for me to come for you when I’m free and clear.”
She didn’t answer, she simply twisted the lock as he shut the door gently. She stumbled back to her room and threw herself across the bed to process the shit storm she found herself in.
Nothing could have prepared her for the intensity of the emotions racing through her at that moment, nothing could have helped her forget about Cairo and how much she’d wanted him to be the one. Her one.
As much as she kept reminding herself of the horrible reality that he was a liar and a cheater, worse than Jacob even, she couldn’t prevent her mind from drifting to the intimate moment’s they’d spend together.
All the little actions that make up a sexual encounter. Every little noise, whisper of skin on skin, thrill of another person’s touch. And his mouth, on hers and sucking her clit. His eyes, the way they shone when he brought her to orgasm. The guttural exclamation when he ejaculated in her mouth, his hands woven in her hair as though that were the one thing that kept him grounded, steady on the planet.
And his mouth, always back to his mouth. The tickle of beard as he kissed her and breathed out into her, the slide of his tongue as he reclaimed the breath and brought it back into him. In and out, back and forth, circling and cycling for what she had hoped would be longer than a fucking day.
The time it takes the earth to spin on its axis, and her world was turned upside down.
She hurt, she curled herself into a tiny ball and let herself cry.
It hurt like a mother fucker, like nothing she’d ever felt before, and for once this wasn’t a good thing.
For once she didn’t want to be like everybody else and feel this pain. For once, for possibly the first time, she wanted her heart to be as dead as her skin, immune to the sharp shards of hurt slicing her to bits as she cried.
She refused to be late for rehearsal, she refused to let Cairo and Eduardo get to her, so she forced herself up out of her bed and into the shower.
She even looked normal after she’d finished with her makeup and hair.
She walked to the performers tent a few minutes early and saw the other performers leaving, rushing out of there in Eduardo’s wake.
She smiled and said hello to the girls leaving at the end, tall beauties who were joined at the hip. They had two torsos, two legs, and a couple of huge grins when Maisy greeted them. Shit like this didn’t even phase her anymore, that’s what three weeks of working at Cirque did to a person.
Give her another month and she’d be desensitized to it all.
“You’re very early today,” Eduardo announced as she approached the stage. Like she didn’t fucking know.
“I am,” she declared as she stood in front of him, “tonight’s the big night.”
“It is,” he said, “we will go to wardrobe after this and find you a costume. We will practice, but I will not hit you. I just need the same level of drama you managed the time I drew blood. I will aim for the other side,” he continued and touched her shoulder, “here.”
“Sounds good,” she said but he didn’t remove his finger. He was looking at her skin, as though able to see beneath the surface to her muscle, blood and bones. She felt naked before him, his gaze was so intense. “You want to strap me in?” she asked to break the uncomfortable silence.
As though breaking his spell, her words snapped him out of it, he pulled his hand back as if burned and said, “Yes, very well.”
They made it through rehearsal and Maisy found she could now turn on the wheel on autopilot. If she didn’t think, things went smoother for her.
It seemed like all of life was like that these days.
She was walking across the Cirque grounds to wardrobe with Eduardo when they ran into Cairo.
“Did you get the reports I sent you?” Cairo asked his father, but he stood in front of Maisy and looked her in the eyes.
“Yes, yes,” Eduardo replied in an uninterested tone. He waved his hand dismissively and said, “We have things to do, so excuse us.”
“Where are you going?” Cai asked, still not looking away from Maisy.
“Wardrobe,” his father replied.
“Good, I’ll tag along,” Cairo said and wouldn’t be dissuaded by the dark look Maisy threw his way. He simply raised an eyebrow and smiled at her.
Why did he have to be so damned charming, and why did her body have to respond the way it did every time he was near?
Eduardo didn’t seem very pleased by the time they got to wardrobe. He dragged a couple of costumes off the racks and tossed them towards Maisy. “Try the red one on first, it will compliment my tie.”
She went behind the curtain and dragged herself into the tight little dress. It was strapless but hung below her knees. She could barely breath though, it was so snug. Luckily it was a somewhat stretchy material, so she could manage a few shallow breaths at a time.
She could hear Cairo and his father talking in low voices outside, but couldn’t quite pick up on what they were saying. They sounded pissed off.
She held still and focused on their voices, determined to listen in. She caught Cairo’s voice, deep and angry, like a growl. “Stay the fuck out of it, you have no right.”
Eduardo’s voice was low and dangerous when he replied, “I have every right, you are my son.”
“Let’s not do this here,” Cai replied and both men fell silent. Maisy took this as her cue to come out, so she swept the curtain back and stepped into the light.
The reaction was immediate, both men jumped to their feet, their jaws agape. Maisy almost laughed at their expressions, father and son wearing the same one. Eduardo’s looked a little more feral though, dangerous, while Cairo looked like he could bury his beautiful face in between her thighs and force her into rolling wave after wave of orgasmic pleasure.
She focused on Eduardo, ignoring Cai. “Is it okay?” she asked and tugged at the dress under her armpit, it felt like it was bunching up and being strapless, she couldn’t wear a bra. She felt naked.
“It will do,” Eduardo replied in an even tone, but his eyes betrayed his hunger. Maisy tried not to shudder around him, now more than ever. She deliberately didn’t look at Cairo when she turned back to take it off. As she slid the curtain back in place, she did catch his look…his face was shining with pure desire with something else playing across his features.
If he wasn’t engaged to some contortionist from Eastern Europe, she would have thought it was love.
But it couldn’t be love, it would never be love, not while he was a taken man.
She slid the dress off and felt relief and sorrow when Cairo called out to her, telling her he’d see her later, he had business to attend to.
She didn’t want to be cruel, she wasn’t a heartless person, but she was too broken to respond. He waited for her reply, she could feel his anticipation hanging heavy in the air, and his disappointment as he drew in a breath and finally left.
She put on her own clothes and draped the dress over her arm, fixed a smile on her face and pulled the curtain aside once again.
She hid her own disappointment when she saw Eduardo waiting for her. She really wasn’t in the mood to keep up her act for much longer. She wanted to head back to her trailer and curl into a ball of misery.
He nodded towards the door they’d come in and said, “Wait here, Gert will be along to fit you with shoes and work on your hair and make up.”
He left without another word. She drew in a long shuddering breath and sat on the stool next to the curtained change room until Gert arrived and broke her out of her melancholy ponderings.
By the time the older woman was done, Maisy looked incredible. Her hair was tamed into elaborate braids with crystals and woven pieces of colourful cloth. Her make up was dramatic, much more so than Maisy was used to, but she had to admit she liked it.
She was also full of Cirque gossip, none of it useful to her for finding Cara or deciphering Cairo, but it was entertaining to hear about the antics of her fellow performers.
It solidified the idea that had been growing in the back of her mind, the idea that in the Cirque she might find acceptance. Among the freaks she was normal.
She had found family, in spite of the upheaval she felt around Cairo. She wanted to stay, and had decided she would do whatever it took to remain with the group.
Even if it meant facing him and his future bride. Even if it meant her heart breaking every time she saw them together.
Even if it meant cocooning her heart and letting herself give up on love.
She would do it to stay, to feel normal and welcome for the first time in her life.
The massive main stage canvas tent was packed elbow to elbow with excited people. Maisy kept peeking out the curtains at the audience, imagining them naked to calm her nerves.
It wasn’t working. Stupid advice, she thought, whoever came up with that wasn’t facing this many people at a fucking circus.
Eduardo was the ringmaster of the entire show, she hadn’t known that. He was brilliantly charming and had the crowd eating out of the palm of his hand. They laughed when he told jokes, gasped when he dramatically swept his hand to display one of the performers, and held their breath when he explained the danger involved in some of the acts.
Maisy was under his thrall when he was on stage, gone was his singular intensity, his feral predatory presence. He shone in front of a crowd.
Maisy wasn’t so sure how she was going to do. She wanted to believe she’d be a natural at it, but now that she was faced with the crowd, she wasn’t so sure.
Their act was the final performance of the evening, the grand finale in which she was going to be injured, by accident according to the crowd. They would be ushered out and left wondering if the girl on the stage would be okay.
It would create the drama that Eduardo so desperately needed.
“You’ll be fine,” Cairo said from behind her. She jumped, turned and faced him. “You’ll be better than fine,” he added.
“I know,” she replied. She was playing it cool, keeping her nerves calm by pretending she had no feelings for him. She wasn’t doing a very good job at it, her stomach clenched and she felt a creeping warmth rising through her body. “Your father has taught me a lot in the few days we’ve had together. For example, how your mother’s dying wish was for you to marry some girl from another circus family”
“Let’s not do this now,” he said and grabbed her arm. “Can we talk afterwards? I need to explain what’s going on.”
“I think you’re beyond explaining,” she spat, “all I need to know is yes, you have a fiancé. That’s it, case closed. I won’t be the other woman, I won’t be like Becs.”
“Who?” he asked, confused. Maisy forgot that she hadn’t told him anything about Becs and Jacob. It was strange, they hadn’t known one another for long, but she felt as though she’d shared so much with him. Like they should automatically know about each other’s lives.
“My best friend, fucked my boyfriend, you know…oldest tale in the book. I won’t be her, the other woman. I won’t break your fiancé’s heart. I can’t do it.”
“You keep saying fiancé like it means something,” he said, “it means nothing. It’s a stupid arrangement. You know it’s just about the money. My father owes a lot of it to the wrong people and he’s counting on her family’s money to dig him out of the hole he’s in. I’m done with it though, I’m sick of rescuing the fucking family and not living the life I want.”
“Then walk away,” she said, “I dare you! You know you can’t do it. You tried it once already.”
The stage manager motioned for her to get ready, she took one last peek at the audience, there would have had to be almost a thousand people crammed in there.
“I won’t take no for an answer,” he said. “We need to talk about this. Promise me you’ll meet me later.”
“I can’t promise anything,” she said, “and thanks for fucking up my first performance. Now I feel sick to my stomach.”
He gripped her arm tighter and the stage manager was getting restless with Maisy’s lack of movement into place. She gestured again and mouthed the words, “Get over here.”
“You will be magnificent…but I won’t let you go unless you agree to talk,” he said in her ear. He didn’t loosen his hand, so she believed him. She would try to keep her off stage and ruin her first night working with Eduardo. She might end up fired and homeless after all.
“Let me go,” she said and tried to pull back. He held her tight, and she could hear Eduardo wrapping up the performance before theirs. “Fine, I’ll talk to you. Just let me do my act.”
“Perfect,” Cairo said, loosed his grip at last and moved his hand up to her shoulder. He rubbed it and she couldn’t resist, she let him keep it there. “You’re so beautiful, the crowds will love you. They’ll eat you up, and I don’t blame them.”
He leaned and kissed her, brushed away a stray strand of hair from her neck and landed his lips in its place. From her mouth to her shoulder, her skin was on fire. “I’ll be waiting for you, here with the medics,” he murmured against her neck and she shivered at the contact. Damn, he already knew what it took to make her forget her surroundings and her anger.
“Okay, I have to focus,” she said, breathed out and walked towards the manager who was gesturing wildly for her to get moving. “Here goes nothing,” she mumbled under her breath, turned back once to see Cai’s bright eyes watching her, and entered the performance area.
“Ladies and gentlemen,” Eduardo spoke into his mic. It was hooked to an earpiece, like a telephone headset. Hands free was helpful when you were a knife thrower she supposed. “I would like to bring you to the final act of the night. As you exit, remember, the Freakshow tents will remain open until midnight if you didn’t have a good look before the main event.”
The audience was quiet, enthralled with Eduardo’s dynamic stage presence and low, accented voice.
“I would like to introduce you to my lovely assistant for tonight,” he said and waved his hand for Maisy to come forward. “This is Nadia, direct from Russia. She doesn’t speak a word of English, otherwise she never would have agreed to this act,” he continued, “so let’s give her a round of applause.”
The crowd’s reaction was immediate, and Maisy was immediately addicted. The roars, cheers and clapping was all directly injected into Maisy’s veins like a drug. The excitement washed over her, and she began to play it up for the crowd, bowing and waving like she truly had no idea she was going to be strapped to a spinning wheel and have knives thrown at her.
Eduardo motioned for her to stand against the wheel, when she pretended she had no idea what she was supposed to do, he grabbed her hand and strapped it in, followed by her other hand and feet.
It was very business-like and performed in front of hundreds of people watching, but she found the act strangely intimate. He kept eye contact with her almost the entire time, and spoke to the crowd on his mic, but she felt as though it were just the two of them.
She hadn’t expected it, but she was a little turned on by it all. She could feel the thrum of the crowd, the weight of their expectation, Eduardo’s pleasure, the touch of his hand on her skin, the fear that something could go wrong and the exhilarating belief that it will all go right.
Eduardo stepped back and two assistants rolled out a rack of knives. The crowd went silent, she could hear the distinct sounds of throats being cleared and people shuffling in their seats.
He pumped the foot pedal and she started to spin, slowly at first but she sped up fast. She felt as though she were going faster than the first few times she’d been on the wheel. She focused on Eduardo’s face to keep herself centered.
He was the picture of concentration, his eyebrows furrowed and his full lips narrowed into a straight line. He removed one of the larger knives from the rack and pulled his arm back.
The thwack of the first knife drew exclamations from the crowd, these grew with each knife throw as the knives got larger and larger. Everybody was on the edge of their seats, secretly hoping one of the knives would hit her, every human had a morbid side if they were forced to admit it.
Eduardo handled them expertly, he already had them eating out of his hand by their performance, but now he had them in awe of his deadly talents. Between tosses, he would entertain the audience with tales of knife throwing through the ages, and his own personal experiences. This served to ramp up the crowd’s anticipation.
He finally got down to the final toss of the show, the one that would penetrate her body and create the illusion of a grand mistake. Eduardo made an off hand light remark about never hitting a single one of his human assistants, pulled his hand back and paused. The crowd was still, as thought frozen in time, hanging on his every movement. Maisy could see a flash of light off the polished blade as she spun around, and he let it fly.
It landed exactly where they had planned, he was a brilliant shot, she’d give him that. She felt it sink through her flesh like a heated metal through the proverbial stick of butter, and she was pinned to the cork board on the wheel behind her.
She almost forgot to scream, she was so focused on the knife in her shoulder. Half a breath in and she remembered. She really let loose, a long drawn out shriek of pure terror. Her throat vibrated with the energy she put into it, she was worried it would be too dramatic and not very convincing.
Eduardo stopped the wheel from turning and the crowd went wild when they realized what had happened. People were exclaiming and standing in their seats vying for a better look, they had bought into her act. Maisy was pleased with herself and tried to contain her satisfied smile.
Eduardo’s two assistants came rushing out to help him take Maisy off the wheel and offer a steady hand to guide her to the stage floor where he would assess the damage.
She was bleeding fabulously and continued to cry out as if in intense pain. It turned out she was a natural at this entire performance thing, she had acting in her blood. She’d pretended to be normal her entire life, so this wasn’t much more of a stretch for her.
She imagined this would bloody hurt if she had any feeling. She moaned and rolled back and forth when they took her down. She allowed Eduardo to drop her to the floor with a dramatic flourish while the assistants rushed to get a stretcher.
She writhed in Eduardo’s arms and he said, “You’re doing amazingly well. Keep it up, and you’ll be the star of the show.” She smiled at him, fully thrilled that he had given his approval. She was enjoying this too much to hate herself for needing his feedback.
The medics loaded her up and whisked her off stage. She heard Eduardo apologizing for the terrible thing that had just occurred and promising to keep Freakshow open a little longer just to make up for the emotional trauma anybody might have gone through.
Of course, Freakshow had a fully licenced bar attached to it, and after a shock like that, the gathering crowds would surely need a drink.
Maisy was checked over, her wound bandaged up and was told she was free to go. She had to give it to Eduardo, he was a brilliant showman and knew exactly what it would take to get a crowd worked up and spending money.
She subconsciously rubbed her shoulder and looked for Cairo. He was standing a few feet away watching her, an unreadable expression on his face. He approached when he noticed she was alone.
“That was brilliantly well done!” he told her, “you had every one of them eating out of the palm of your hand. It was extraordinary really.”
“I think it went pretty well,” she said, “I was skeptical at first but your father was right…people love disaster.”
“They love you,” he replied and took her hand. He tugged gently and she followed him outside. Who was she kidding? She wanted to talk to him, she wanted to believe him and prayed he would make this all right. Besides, the performance had been so invigorating, there was no way she could possibly go back to her trailer and sleep.
“Where are we going?” she asked as he led her across the grounds of the Cirque. It was after eleven, nothing was near by, so she hoped he was taking her to his RV.
“The concession,” he said and she hid her disappointment. She felt high, giddy with the stimulation of public performance and felt like it would be a convenient reason to explore his pierced, thick cock again. “They serve drinks at night, did you know that?”
She shook her head, she didn’t as she was usually in bed long before this.
“It’s handy, if you have any money left on your employee card at the end of the month, you can spend it on booze. That’s why there’s usually a bit of a party once a month, so staff can use up their credits.”
“So you’re okay with that? As the boss?”
“I’m not the boss,” he said, “I know I keep this beast afloat, but I’m not exactly in charge of anyone.”
“Who is then?”
“That honour would go to the big bad wolf, my father. You should know that by now.”
“I know people have been treating me different since we hooked up that night at the party. I know people think I’m in with the boss so I’m automatically a snotty bitch,” she said. It wasn’t exactly fair to him, but she knew showing up with Cai to drink after her first performance would set her apart from the other employees more than anything else. But she wanted to be with him, talk and spend time. It was a self destructive compulsion, she didn’t want to lose the comfort she’d found with her coworkers, but she couldn’t help but follow him into the tent.
He ordered them each a vodka tonic – he’d remembered her drink – and settled in at a table near the back, where the lighting was dim and the crowd had thinned out a little. She ignored the pointed stares from other Cirque employees and sat with him as though she were meant to.
She knew they would whisper, that she’d only gotten the sweet gig with Eduardo because she was dating Cairo. It wasn’t like that though, and she didn’t have the time or energy to try and explain herself to anybody.
Speaking of explaining, she sipped her drink and waited for Cai to start stuttering his lame excuses for not mentioning his fiancé.
“I know you must hate me,” he said and took a long draw of his drink. Liquid courage. “The thing is, my life is pretty fucked up.”
“Whose isn’t?” Maisy snorted and chewed on a cube of ice.
Cai managed a small, ironic smile at her reaction and went on, “As you know I was in school. I’d been out of the lifestyle here for several years. I was happy.”
“Were you clean cut and free of tattoos…and piercings?” she asked and glanced towards his lap, then flamed bright heat at her attempt to not think about the elephant in the room. The giant pierced cock just a couple feet away from her. God, she was insane for it now.
He didn’t seem to notice. “No, I actually got all the work done in university, it was my rebellious stage. The beard came later, when I moved back.”
He had another drink and took a deep breath. “My mother got cancer. We all knew she was sick, and getting sicker, but my father was relentless with the touring schedule. She should have gotten medical care months before she was able to. My sisters begged him to stop for the year and let her go to a doctor, but he refused. It wasn’t until I showed up that he relented, and by then it was too late.”
“I’m so sorry,” she said and looked at her glass, felt ashamed for her lack of compassion. Her own parents had been taken dramatically, instantaneously with no time to prepare or say goodbye. Somehow it seemed a blessing, rather than watch somebody you love slowly fade before your very eyes with no power to prevent it.
“It’s okay,” he said and gave her a small smile, “that was two years ago now, she didn’t make it long. She died in Montreal, that’s where she’s buried. Anyways, her dying wish was for me to get married and take care of the Cirque. She’d come from Eastern Europe, from a traveler family who went back countless generations performing in the circus.”
“It’s so strange that this entire performer world exists, and has existed for eons, and I never knew a thing about it,” she mused and let him continue his story…and excuse.
“Part of the tradition of our people is that the eldest son must take over the family business, and marry a girl suitable to his family. As you might have guessed, it’s pretty much out of date and people do what they want.”
“Which is probably for the best, right?”
“Yes, most everyone is on board with it. The older generation have trouble though, they believe that’s the reason circuses and freak shows are dwindling and dying out. I think it has more to do with shifting trends in entertainment, but I couldn’t tell my parents anything. They insisted I agree to marry Mila, and I finally agreed with them in the end. But only for my mother’s sake. My father understood this at the time and hasn’t brought it up since then.”
“So what changed? When did he start talking about it again?”
“The night after our first date,” he said softly, “do you remember that?”
“It wasn’t that long ago,” she said and laughed, “and maybe I didn’t think it was a date.”
He didn’t laugh back, he just looked at her with his deep, dark, soulful eyes and said, “I think we both knew what was going on.”
His seriousness wiped the smile off her face and she was hit with a sudden vision of his face between her thighs and couldn’t breathe for a moment.
Then a smile played around the edges of his eyes and finally reached his lips when he said, “Just to make it clear. This is a date.”
She had to smile back, and replied, “Okay, point taken. I give up. This is a date. But why did that prompt your father into bringing up Mila?” Even saying her name hurt Maisy, she would rather pretend there wasn’t a stunning contortionist named Mila with rights to her man. At least she assumed Mila was stunning, and even if she wasn’t, she was certainly bendy enough to make up for it sexually.
And stop the presses, her man? What was wrong with her. He wasn’t hers…yet. But it felt so right to say it…in her head at least.
“Money,” he replied, “with him it’s all about money. He’s had some issues with alcohol over the years, but my mother kept him on the straight and narrow. Over the past year he’s been drinking again, but he added gambling to the mix.”
“I’m sorry,” she said and genuinely meant it. She couldn’t imagine the pressure he felt to keep it all together, to give up his own life’s dreams to make this life work. Not just for him and his father, but his sisters and the hundreds of people who relied on the Cirque for steady employment and a surrogate family.
Cai leaned forward across the table and grabbed Maisy’s hand. He stroked her thumb as he talked and made it extremely difficult to concentrate on what he was saying. “The Cirque barely stays afloat as it is,” he told her, “I have to get pretty creative at tax time and make sure the employees keep their tips under the table to make this worthwhile for them. Somehow, against the odds, I was keeping us going and even bringing in some money for the family. When he started gambling, I lost my grip on it all. We’re seconds away from losing it all, Maisy, and it’s pretty fucking hard to admit that.”
“So Mila has money?” Maisy asked and the words almost choked in her throat now that she knew what his marriage would represent.
“She does, her family will inject our circus with half a million dollars once she’s legally wed. They want her to come to North America.”
“Fuck,” Maisy said, “that’s a lot to take in.”
“It really is,” he said and finished his drink. “Do you want another?” he asked her and shook his glass, the ice rattling and jarring her back into her body.
“Not really,” she replied and decided right then and there that she was going to fuck Cairo tonight. Not just because he was hot and made her feel desperately out of control. Or because he’d given her not one, but two feral, savage orgasms.
She wanted to fuck him because he needed her, and she needed him, and there was no more perfect reason in the universe to her right then.
Need, love, it was all a mixed up jumble along the same spectrum, and in the end, as long as they spent the night whispering and kissing and touching and easing each other’s grief for a brief few hours, what did it matter?
She stood and held his gaze, reached out her hand and said, “I have a better idea.”
“Are you sure about this?” Cairo asked and pulled away from their passionate kiss. “If I get started, I’m warning you now, I won’t be able to stop.”
“I would kill you if you stopped, even now. Just shut up and take me back to your place,” she replied and stood on her tippy toes for another kiss.
His hand was wrapped in her hair and firmly fixed to the back of her neck, his other hand was on her back and she felt completely and utterly at home in his arms.
“Yes ma’am,” he said and kissed her again. She felt him lift her up off the ground and press her against the back of a storage container. They weren’t far from the staff concession where they’d left ten minutes ago, but hadn’t been able to keep their hands from one another.
She climbed him like a spider monkey, finally knowing what it felt like to hang off a man who could hold her like she weighed nothing. She loved it, floating along in his arms as he moved them towards his RV.
They managed to somehow find it in the midst of groping, kissing and playful banter. She dropped to the ground as he fished for his keys, they weren’t that coordinated after all. Certainly not worthy of a side show, and she was no contortionist.
She forced the pang of jealousy to the back of her head and focused on the now. The fact that this gorgeous, intelligent, hilarious man wanted her, and she wanted him. They were into each other and nobody in the world mattered.
He got the door open, picked her up and carried her into his space. He kicked it shut and leaned to lock it. It was so quiet she could almost hear the sound of her own heart pounding in her chest and his matching rhythm.
He kissed her, and all she heard was the soft sigh of his breath as he moaned against her lips and tongue. She could feel his hard cock pressing through his pants against her leg. Her tight red dress began to ride up even further as he pulled her higher against him, her legs wrapping around him instinctively now.
He pulled back and said into her ear, “I wanted to tear this off you the moment I saw you in it. I was so hard, and ready to fuck you right there in wardrobe, did you know that?”
“ I had a suspicion,” she said and giggled as he nibbled her neck. He backed into his living room and sat down on his low, leather sofa. She straddled him and let him continue to trailed kisses and nibbles down her neck.
“I had to leave or I wouldn’t be able to control myself,” he told her in between kisses and bites, “I came back here and I jerked off, thinking about you in this dress.”
“Are you serious?” she said and smiled. The thought of him wanting her that badly made her feel so powerful, so exotic and desired. She pulled the hair tie from his head, released his thick mane and wrapped her fingers in it. “That’s so fucking hot,” she said, “can you show me now?”
“You want me to jerk it in front of you?” he asked, seemingly surprised by her bold request. She herself was surprised by it. He said, “Only if you touch yourself for me.”
She agreed, so she inched up his thighs towards his knees, placed her feet up on the sofa and exposed her pussy to him. His sharp intake of breath was all she needed for encouragement. She kept her panties to the side and slid her own finger along her slit and found her clit. She was soaking wet.
“Your turn,” she said and moved her finger up and down slowly, sensually. His eyes didn’t move off her little show and he unzipped his jeans. He pushed his underwear and pants down just enough for his magnificent cock to pop out.
It was her turn to be mesmerized, it was bigger than she remembered and seeing it exposed, pierced and thick and veiny, turned her on more than she could have imagined.
“Play with your clit,” he said and stroked his cock, fisted the head and gripped the shaft, “show me your beautiful cunt.”
She obliged, she spread herself wider and he growled, took his other hand and palmed her pussy. He slid a finger inside of her and began to fuck her slowly, matching the pace of his own stroking.
“Cai,” she whispered and looked at his face, “this is crazy, it’s so hot.”
“It is, beautiful girl,” he replied and stared into her eyes, “do you know why?”
“No,” she said and bit her lower lip. She pushed a little harder on her clit and could feel her pleasure intensify.
“Because of you,” he said, “you do this to me, to us. You make all of this so fucking sexy, it almost hurts.” His breath grew ragged and he increased his pace, both on his cock and inside of her.
She threw her head back and felt as though she were going to fall, she was so high on the energy of the moment. She sat up again and watched him play with them both, decided right then and there that this was the sexiest fucking thing she’d seen in her life.
“I want to come again,” she begged him, “the way you made me before.”
“You will,” he said, “but wait until I tell you.”
She felt a jolt of pleasure snake through her spine at his command. She moved her finger against her clit and didn’t break eye contact with him. He leaned forward and kissed her, slipping his tongue against hers as he fucked her with his finger. She wasn’t even aware of his cock any longer, such was the self centeredness of her own masturbation.
She gasped as he curled his finger upwards, he hit a spot she’d not felt before. She jumped each time he passed roughly across it, and fingered her clit and felt her orgasm building again.
How was it that he had this control over her? How did he manage to make her feel this loose and free with her joy when nobody else had ever gotten close, not even herself?
“Come for me,” he ordered and stopped moving his finger. He applied steady pressure on the inside of her and she raked her finger over her clit, found the sensitive bundle of nerves she’d been seeking and increased her motion.
She was panting by the time she got to where she wanted. “That’s it, beautiful girl,” Cairo said, his voice deep and commanding, “come on my finger, let me feel your sweet juice all over me.”
She obeyed, something that had been dammed inside of her let go. She sobbed with the overwhelming emotion that it brought out of her, and shuddered her gasping, panting orgasm against him. She clung to him, seeking something solid in the midst of the wave upon wave that washed over her, threatening to drag her under with its force.
Her pussy pulsated and finally clenched a final release and she felt a shock of horror as she gushed all over his hand, unable to control herself.
“Oh my god,” she panted, “what was that? I’m sorry.”
“Don’t apologize,” he said and held her against him as he slowly removed his hand from where he’d been cupping her pussy. “That was natural, normal and fucking exquisite.”
She leaned against him and pulled her finger away from her clit and wrapped her hand around his throbbing, hot cock. “Now this is fucking exquisite,” she said and kissed him. He thrust against her and his groan was barely perceptible, but she could feel it on her lips.
She sped up her stroking and felt his hand cover hers as they both worked his cock. His breathing deepened, his body tensed and his other hand gripped her arm.
She felt him shudder and knew he was close. She kissed him harder and let him fuck her hand until he came.
She’d never felt such a sense of smug self-satisfaction over bringing a man to orgasm. There was something inherently primal about jerking Cai’s cock though, something that connected her with some deeper mystery to the way of things. She’d never had so many emotions mixed up with physical sensation, and she’d never felt the need to please a man so desperately.
“Good girl,” he said against her lips as his body stiffened and he came. She felt it, hot and thick down her hand, and for once in her life it didn’t disgust her. She was fascinated by everything Cai, and this seemed completely natural given their current circumstance.
She pulled back, grinned, held her hand to her mouth and slowly licked his cum off her skin. He groaned as he watched her work her tongue through it, sensuously, deliberate, and dirty. Cairo made her feel like a dirty girl in the best possible way there could be.
“Come here,” he said and pulled her to him. He kissed her, their tongues working against each other. She felt her panties slide back into place and was suddenly overcome with the need to be naked with him, to feel their bodies against each other. He as much read her mind, he stood, still kissing her, and moved towards the back of his RV.
“I’m going to fuck you,” he said and nudged the door open, he set her back on the bed and stepped away. He looked at her, his face full of challenge and promise, and he said, “I am going to fuck you so hard, and so long, that you won’t remember Cairo as a city in Egypt.” He pulled his jeans down and dragged the off his long, thick legs. His cock was already hard and ready for her. She licked her lips and watching him unbutton his shirt and continue, “Cairo will mean one thing to you at the end of the night, and one thing alone.”
He pulled the dress shirt off his muscular torso and his arms bulged as tossed it to the side. He was so broad, so thick and muscled…and so tattooed…she almost didn’t know where to look, it was a feast for her eyes.
“And what’s that?” she asked, with a glimmer of anticipation and amusement in her eyes. She almost wanted to challenge him, to make him work harder. She wasn’t sure if she’d survive it though, the pleasure might overtake her and leaver her catatonic under the weight of it. It would be the best way to go though.
“He stepped between her legs, dropped to his knees and was level with her. He hooked his thumb in her panties and tore them off with one swift movement. “Pleasure,” he said and smiled, “Cairo will simply mean pleasure to you from this night out.”
She smiled back and took a long breath in, as though about to plunge into the depths of the ocean. In a way, she was.
She couldn’t help herself though, her smile widened and she said, “Prove it.”