Chapter Sixteen



As I watch Lorelei with Alessandra it strikes me how little I know about her. And just how much I want to know about her. I might know all the superficial things that Jessica dug up, but I don’t know the important stuff. Things I’ve never really cared to know about a woman before.

What inspires her to strive for her dreams?

What wakes her up in the middle of the night in a sweat?

What is her greatest regret in life?

Who she gave her heart to the first time?

“Ashton, did you hear what I just said?” Alessandra asks, drawing me from my thoughts.

I drink the rest of the scotch sitting in front of me and give them my full attention. “No.”

“I said that I want you and Lorelei to come for dinner this week.” She looks at me expectantly and I know I’ve got no hope of avoiding this. Alessandra has never taken it upon herself to become involved in my relationships; she clearly wants to with this one. And stubbornness runs in our family.

“Next week,” I fire back. I want Lorelei to myself this week.

Alessandra’s mouth spreads out in amusement. “Oh, you didn’t hear the part where she said yes already? To this week.”

I place my hand on Lorelei’s leg. “I’m sure you two will have a nice dinner, but I can’t do it this week.”

Lorelei’s hand lands on mine. “Next week is good.”

Alessandra smiles as she takes that in before holding her empty wine glass out to me. “Next week it is. I’ll have another drink, Ashton.”

“You’ve already had two, Aly.”

She stares at me. “Your point?”

“Are you planning on staying here the night?”

She shrugs. “I might.”

“Does Malcolm know?” It wouldn’t be the first time she’s spent the night after an argument with her husband, but I’m not in the habit of encouraging it.

Her shoulders tense before she lets out a frustrated breath. “He’s the one who suggested it.”

“Jesus,” I mutter. Usually she’s the one who calls time out. “What happened?”

She moves off the sofa and begins pacing. “He’s being an asshole, Ashton. This isn’t all my fault.” I have to give her credit; she has enough self-awareness to understand her contribution to their arguments. Most of the time.

I don’t reply, but simply wait for her to continue.

She finally stops pacing. “He’s always at work. Always. Nights, early mornings, weekends. And when he is home, he spends most of his time arguing with me. I can’t take it anymore.”

There’s something off here. “None of this is unusual. What’s really going on?”

Her eyes are everywhere but on me and her posture isn’t as confident as usual. I take in the dark circles under her eyes that I missed noticing earlier. She bites her lip and when she speaks, her voice lacks the certainty it usually holds. “He’s got a new assistant…”

I stand and move to her, placing my hands on her shoulders. “Aly, Malcolm adores you.”

Her eyes find mine and I see so much doubt there that it hits me in the gut. This is not my sister. Where the fuck has she gone? “He used to adore me. I feel like we’re strangers half the time these days. We’re both so damn busy with work and the kids.” She glances down for a moment before looking back up at me. Her voice cracks on her next words. “What if I’ve fucked it all up?”

I don’t let her go. “How would you have fucked it all up?”

“I’ve changed and I don’t think he likes the person I’ve become.”

Lorelei clears her throat behind us. “Do you want me to go, Alessandra? So you two can talk this through.”

Alessandra shakes her head. “No. We don’t need to talk about this. I just need to get a good night’s sleep and—”

I cut her off as I let her go. “No, what you need to do is talk this out. You’re not going anywhere until we do that.”

Her shoulders sag. “God, I should never have opened my mouth.” She eyes Lorelei. “I don’t want you to go, but I understand if you don’t feel comfortable staying.”

“I’ll make tea.” Lorelei makes her offer as I turn to face her.

“Thanks,” I murmur. She’s never been to my home before, but she leaves us without any further questions. Her take-charge attitude impresses me and I spend a moment watching her go, before turning back to Alessandra. “Are you seriously worried about his new assistant?”

She hesitates for a moment. “I trust him, Ashton, but at the same time, I’m not sure how strong we are anymore.”

I nod at the sofa and once she takes a seat, I sit on the coffee table in front of her. Resting my elbows on my legs, I lean forward and speak the only truth I know. “Aly, you’ve been married to Malcolm for nearly a decade and you’ve been with him for longer than that. If anyone knows how difficult you can be, besides me, it’s him. But that man loves you more than I’ve ever seen a man love a woman, and I hardly think he’d throw what you two have away for a quick fuck with an assistant.”

Her eyes are wide as she takes that in. “Yes, but yo—”

I shake my head. “I wasn’t finished.” She closes her mouth and sits back a little, waiting for me to go on. “For a smart, accomplished woman, you have insecurities a mile wide. It’s time you sorted through them and started to believe in yourself where Malcolm is concerned, because I can tell you that he’s going to grow tired of always having to prop you up.”

She swallows hard and I’m certain tears aren’t far away, but she manages to blink them away. “He doesn’t always prop me up.”

“Yes. He does. And you know it.”

“God,” she mutters, standing. “You are such a bastard. I came here for your support and you say this shit to me.”

I watch her as she reaches for her bag, and I stand as she takes a few steps in the direction of the hallway. “Aly, you know it’s true.”

Spinning around, she glares at me. “No, what I know is that you never have my back where Malcolm is concerned. You’ve always sided with him when we’ve fought. I thought this time you might let me talk and listen to my side, but I was wrong. You never change, Ashton.”

I grip her arm and halt her progress as she tries to leave. “There isn’t sides in this. There’s you and Malcolm—two people trying to make a marriage work, and all I’m interested in is helping you do that. I don’t want to see you struggle in your marriage, and to do that you need to face the facts.”

“And what are the facts?” Tension settles over us and it would be easy for me to mistake it for anger, but I know that it’s really fear.

“You’re afraid to give yourself completely to Malcolm. You don’t let him all the way in, Alessandra, and it’s time you did. Because not letting him in is what’s causing all these fights and doubts in your marriage.”

She yanks her arm out of my grip. “You don’t know what you’re talking about. You haven’t even been married or hardly had a real relationship, so how do you even get to say that stuff to me?”

“I get to say that stuff because I’m your brother and no one else says it to you. Everyone else in your life just panders to you, but what you really need to hear is what I just said.”

“Yeah, well I’ve changed my mind; I don’t want to stay here tonight.” With that, she stalks out of my house, slamming the front door behind her.

Lorelei joins me in the living room after Alessandra leaves. I rake my fingers through my hair as I take in the expression on her face. “If you’re going to give me hell for what I just said, I don’t want to hear it.”

She shakes her head. “No, I’m not going to give you hell. You just said all that to her for two reasons, didn’t you? Because you believe it to be true, and because you knew it would force her to go home. To her husband.”

I snake my hand around her waist and pull her close. “You’re a smart woman, Lorelei.” I press my mouth to hers and kiss her, before adding, “I’m not waiting for tomorrow to fuck you.”

A sexy smile settles on her face. “Those are the best words that have come out of your mouth tonight.”

“No, the best words to come out of my mouth are these—take your clothes off.”



Chapter Seventeen



A shiver runs through me at Ashton’s words and I suddenly feel shy in front of him. Weird, because the man stripped me last night and made me come. But the way he’s looking at me now is making me self-conscious and all kinds of confused.

I move out of his hold and take a step back. “I’m not stripping for you in here. Jack could walk in at any moment.”


He guides me out of the room and down the hallway to a flight of stairs that are encased in glass. Indicating for me to go first, he follows closely behind as I do my best to ignore the butterflies in my stomach.

Why am I so damn nervous?

It’s not like I haven’t slept with a man before. I love sex. But there’s something about Ashton that I’ve never experienced with a man, and right now it is crashing into me in a big way.

He’s so dominant.

I’m beginning to think that Ashton might be the kind of man I could lose myself in, because if he doesn’t give me space now to keep him at arm’s length, he’s sure as hell not going to give me space once I’ve handed him my heart. I’m not sure I can survive him if this relationship turns into something that consumes me like that.

We enter what I presume is his bedroom, and the closing of the door as he follows me in causes me to turn and face him. “This room is stunning.”

Ashton has expensive taste. Floor-to-ceiling windows fill one wall of his room, the view a jaw-dropping panorama of Sydney. The city lights up his space in a beautiful wash of colour, highlighting the opulence that even his minimalist style can’t hide. Only a few pieces of furniture occupy the room—a bed that I’m pretty sure is larger than a king, bedside tables and a leather armchair—with a couple of lamps scattered around. He clearly loves the rich tones of brown; various shades of the colour are splashed throughout. But it’s the large pieces of art adorning the walls and the textured grey paint on those walls that really make this room.

He doesn’t stop or acknowledge what I’ve said, but rather keeps moving towards me. The hard set of his jaw and shoulders, coupled with his stride causes my heart to beat faster.

I swallow hard.

I’m not sure I can do this.

I need more time to figure this out.

I’m not ready for this man.

“Why are your clothes still on?” His words are a demand that match the flare of command in his eyes.

My mouth is so dry.

I need water.

Oh, God, I need a lot of things. Number one is to get my head together.

When I don’t reply, he growls, “Lorelei. Clothes off. Now.”

“I’m not ready,” I blurt out and instantly feel the flush of embarrassment stain my cheeks. He’s going to think I’m some naïve little woman now. The last thing I want Ashton Scott to think of me.

“Yes, you are.” My words don’t even slow him. He just keeps on coming. “It would seem, though, that you need some encouragement.”

“Ashton, I’m more than ready for sex, but—”

Before I can stop him, he reaches his arms around me and unzips my dress. As he slides it down, he says, “I told you I would fuck any remaining hesitation out of you and that’s what I intend to do.” My dress drops to the floor. “So, stop talking and start doing what I say.”

I stare at him as I make a mental note to stop wearing dresses with zips when I’m with him. His eyes meet mine and his hands move to undo my bra. When my breasts are bare, I suck in a breath at the cool air. Or maybe it’s the way Ashton’s attention remains fixed on my face. Where any other man I’ve ever been with would be moving this forward, he’s finally stopped and appears to be waiting. For what, I’m not sure.

He looks so intent.

So driven to make this happen.

Without shifting his eyes from mine, he runs two fingers down the front of my panties. His thumb rubs my clit through the silky fabric and my back arches.

It feels so good.

I can do this.

I won’t allow him to consume me.

Pushing my reservations away, I reach for his tie. Once I’ve removed it, I slowly unbutton his shirt, revealing chiselled muscles unlike any I’ve ever seen.

His lips claim mine in a searing kiss as he steps closer, pressing his hard body up against mine. Strong arms circle me before he takes hold of my ass and pulls me in close.

His lips leave mine before he demands, “Do we have a problem?”

I frown. “With what?”

His intense eyes bore into mine. “With me burning my name into your memory forever.”

“We never had a problem with that, Ashton.”

His eyes continue to search mine for a few moments before dropping to rake over my body. He lets me go and removes his suit jacket before moving to the armchair in the corner of the room and leaving it there. He then finishes unbuttoning his shirt so he can deposit it on the chair also. When he stands in front of me again, his belt is undone.

I reach for his zip and our hands meet. His skin scorches mine and I lick my lips in anticipation. This man turns me on more than any man ever has.

I’m in over my head here.

His hand wraps around mine and he helps me push his zip down. A few moments later, we’ve shed every last barrier between his body and mine, and I sweep my gaze over his muscles. Ashton must spend hours working out, because his body is a work of art.

“Lorelei.” His deep voice snaps me out of my inspection and I meet his gaze again. Such a shame, because I was drooling over his cock. His larger-than-I’ve-ever-had cock. While I’m imagining all the things he could do to me with it, he surprises me by wrapping his arms around my body, picking me up and walking me backwards.

He’s caught me completely off guard and I scramble to hold on tight. My back hits the wall and without giving me even a second to prepare, his mouth crashes down onto mine.

Any last lingering thoughts about not being ready for him are forgotten in this moment. Ashton has asserted his power over me and I’m helpless to fight him. Tonight, I’m his.

As his mouth dominates me, he reaches down between us to slide his finger through my pussy. Dragging his mouth from mine, he growls, “You are more than ready for me, Lorelei.” Pressing his mouth to my ear as he pushes his finger inside me, he continues, “But just so there’s no leftover doubts I’m going to finger-fuck you until you’re screaming for my cock.”

His dirty words cause my core to clench.

While I love what his fingers are doing to me, I need his dick inside me.

My hands glide up his neck so I can grip his hair. “It’s not your cock I’m unsure of, Ashton. It’s you.”

He reaches deep inside me while his eyes remain firmly on mine. “I know.” He adds another finger. “I’m going to show you there’s nothing to be unsure of.”

I arch my back, pressing myself against him and tighten my hold as he builds my pleasure. Each second he’s in me is a sublime promise of what’s to come.

We watch each other while he fucks me with his fingers.

No kissing.

No talking.

It’s the most erotic experience I’ve ever had. The sounds of our breathing only intensify this feeling. I’m almost panting and Ashton’s breaths are coming harder.

When my orgasm hits, I squeeze my fingers tighter in his hair and moan a bunch of words I don’t even recognise myself.  The orgasm takes over, rendering me useless. It’s a burst of light and emotion and intense bliss that I never want to end.

Ashton’s lips find mine and he kisses me hard before a deep growl cuts through my thoughts. “Watching you come is something I need to do more of.”

I blink, trying to catch my breath and my thoughts. Smiling, I agree. “We could make that happen.”

He trails kisses up my neck. The way his teeth graze my skin is hot; I want more of that. When he reaches my ear, he rasps, “I’m going to make it happen right now.”

Depositing me on the floor, he strides to his bedside table and searches the top drawer. After he locates what he’s after, he returns to me, condom in hand.

Ripping the foil packet open, he takes hold of his cock and rolls the condom on. Then his eyes settle on mine again as he reaches an arm around my waist, pulling me close while at the same time, kicking my feet apart. Bending his knees slightly, he pushes his dick up against my entrance. He doesn’t enter me fully, just teases me by pushing in and then out, over and over until I’m a hot mess of desire.

Desire for him to give me what I want.

Him inside me.

Right now.

“Ashton,” I moan, gripping his biceps. “Just fuck me already.”

Heat glazes his eyes. “I see you’re practicing your dirty talk.”

“I want to be practicing a lot more than that.”

He thrusts up into me on a groan. “Fuck.”

Oh, God, I’ve died and gone to heaven.


His cock fills me and I loop my hands around his neck while he holds my ass. He pulls out and when he pushes into me again, he grips me harder, pulling me close at the same time. All while keeping his eyes firmly on mine.

He then begins the dance of sex and our bodies move together in a perfect rhythm of slow, sensual thrusting. And once again, Ashton shows me just how erotic this can be. Everything about him, from the way he watches me, to how he takes charge, to the way his powerful body moves effortlessly is sexual. The man commands every second of my attention, and in return gives me sex I won’t ever forget.

He was right when he said he was going to burn his name into my memory.

His rhythm picks up and he enters me with more force. The look of determination in his eyes heightens my arousal and I dig my nails into his skin as I reach desperately for my release.

Our slow dance turns into a rough chase of pleasure and Ashton switches it up when he pulls out of me and spins me around. Taking hold of my hips, he orders, “Hands on the floor, baby.” I do as he says without hesitation. I’ve never had sex this way, but I’m pretty sure that if Ashton is demanding it, it’s going to be good.

He holds my waist and enters me in one quick motion.



He’s so deep.

And it’s so damn good.

Before I can catch my breath, he pulls out and thrusts deep again. This isn’t going to take long. This angle is fucking heaven, each thrust causing the delicious friction I need.

And then he blows my damn mind.

Keeping one hand firmly around my waist while he continues to thrust in and out, he reaches his other hand around so he can rub my clit.

Beautiful circles of bliss.

Around and around.

Thrusting in and out.

Over and over.

Ashton delivers me straight into his own little piece of nirvana and all I can do is squeeze my eyes shut and pant in ecstasy.

My mind explodes.

It’s like a glorious sunset.

Colours that collide behind my eyes, painting a masterpiece of pleasure.

I’m adrift.

Floating along that rush of joy.

And then he grips me harder and climaxes, and we’re joined in our pleasure.

I lose track of time.

I don’t know how long we stay connected like that. It’s not until Ashton pulls out and turns me to face him, that I gather myself again. Blinking, I find him staring down at me. “That was amazing.” My voice sounds all breathy, so unlike me.

His expression is still so serious.

So intense.

“That was just the beginning, Lorelei. You won’t be leaving this room tonight.” He sounds so growly, so forceful.

Sliding both arms around him, I lean against his body. I’m still floaty and breathy. Thoroughly fucked. “I don’t want to leave this room tonight.”

He removes my arms from around him. “I want you on my bed. On your back.”

My eyes widen. “I think I need a breather, Ashton.”

He stares down at me. “On my bed. Now.”

His words are an order and this time I obey.

I’m figuring out pretty fast that when Ashton Scott demands something of you in the bedroom, you don’t argue.



Chapter Eighteen



I shake Marc Brentley’s hand. “I’ll be in touch.”

He nods. “Are you free on Thursday night? We’re holding our annual charity gala. I’d like you to be there.”

“I’ll make it happen.”


As he leaves my office, my mind wanders to his proposal. It was a good one, and I’m almost certain we’ll be doing business together.

“He looked happy.” I glance up to find Jessica entering the office.

“He should be.”

“You think you’ll say yes to him?”

“I’d say so from what I’ve seen today, but we’ll do the research and see if it pans out.” Marc’s group is heading a multi-million dollar development in the heart of Sydney and he wants me to invest in it.

“I heard it would be the tallest building in Sydney if it goes ahead. Is that true?”

“It is.” I hand her the documents he left with me. “Can you get the ball rolling on this?” Jessica will begin the research and after she presents me with her findings, I’ll finalise it. In the years we’ve worked together, I’ve trained her to know what to look for. And she’s damn good at her job.

“I’ve already started.” Of course she has.

I check my watch. The meeting with Marc ran over, so I’m more than ready to get out of here. Giving Jessica my attention again, I ask, “Anything urgent come up this morning?”

“Alessandra called and asked for you to phone her back. And your new real estate agent returned your call from yesterday.”

“He can wait.” I reach for my phone and car keys. “Did you finalise my plans for today?”

“I did.” She grabs my phone off me and presses the button to light up the screen and reveal the time. “Lorelei will be receiving her first delivery right about now.”

I take the phone when she hands it back. “Call me only if absolutely necessary.”

“And you still want me to work from your place today so I can be with Jack?”


“What about tomorrow? How long do you envision this gig will last?”

“Let’s play it by ear. I’ll assess his frame of mind tonight and let you know. We might need to work from home tomorrow, too.”

“You do know that at some point you’re going to have to ease up on this, don’t you? You can’t spend every minute of your life watching him, Ashton.”

I purse my lips. “I’m going to be there for him as long as he needs it.”

“Yes, but—”

“No buts. Don’t argue with me on this, because you won’t win.”

She sighs. “No one ever wins against you.”

My phone rings, interrupting us. I glance at it to find Alessandra’s name flashing on the screen. “I need to take this. Was there anything else?”

“No, you go. And don’t worry, I’ll take care of Jack.”

“I was never worried, Jessica. As much as you say you disagree with me, we both know you’d be there for him at any time of the day.”

She lifts her chin in the direction of the door. “Go.”

I place my phone to my ear as I head out of the office. “Aly. I see you’re still talking to me.”

“Only just.”

“What’s up?”

“I wouldn’t be calling unless this was important.” She pauses and I wait for her to continue, intrigued as to what would cause my sister to ask for help that she clearly doesn’t want to ask for. “I need a babysitter tonight. Are you free?”

I reach the elevator and stab at the button. “I am.”

“Oh, thank God.”

“What’s going on? You sound stressed.”

“That’s because I bloody am stressed.” She blows out a breath. “Malcolm and I are booked in for marriage counselling tonight.”


“What do you mean, good?” She shrieks. “We had another huge fight after I left your place last night and he told me that if we didn’t get counselling he’d be considering his options.”

I ride the elevator alone down to the car park. “Have you two discussed counselling before?”

“He brings it up every now and then.”

“But you refuse?”

“Of course I bloody refuse. Talking stuff out with him only causes us to fight more. This is the last thing I want to be doing.” Her fear is laced through her words. My sister would be one of the only women I know who doesn’t want to talk about this kind of stuff.

“So you’d rather continue on, not knowing what he’s feeling? That makes no sense.”

She’s quiet and I have to prod her. “Aly?”

“I’m honestly scared about where this will end up, Ashton. I think Malcolm wants to leave me.”

The elevator reaches my destination and I exit it to head towards my car. “No, if he wanted to leave you, he would have done that. When a man wants to talk, he wants to stay and fix it. What time’s your appointment?”

“It’s at seven. Can I drop the kids off at about six?”

“I’ll make sure I’m home by then. And Aly?”


“He loves you. Remember that.”

“It’s kind of hard at the moment when all I can think of is the way he looked at me last night—”

“No. Forget that. People say and do shit they don’t necessarily mean when they’re angry. Think about the fact he cares enough to want to do this with you. If he didn’t love you, he wouldn’t bother.”

She’s silent for a beat. “I’m sorry I was a bitch to you last night.”

I unlock the car and slide into the driver seat. “Were you? I don’t recall you being any different to usual.”

“Smart ass,” she mutters.

“I’ll see you tonight.”

I end the call and start the car.


Lorelei is waiting for me less than fifteen minutes away and my cock is hard as hell thinking about her.

I call her and she answers on the third ring. “Ashton.”

“I’ll be there in about fifteen minutes. Did you receive the delivery?”

“Yes. I’m staring at it. What exactly do you want me to do with it all?”

“I want you to choose your favourite. Another delivery is about to arrive. You can open it but then put it aside for me.” I adjust my pants as my dick pushes against them.

“Okay.” I can tell by the way her voice drifts off that she’s already deep in thought about those deliveries.

“I want you to get yourself ready for me, Lorelei.”

“What? As in, you want me to… ummm—”


I love her inhibition.

I’m going to fuck that out of her.

“As in I want you to touch yourself and get that tight pussy wet for me.”

She sucks in a breath.

I grip the steering wheel hard.

When she doesn’t reply, I growl, “Lorelei, I want your fingers inside you for the next fifteen minutes so that your pussy is dripping for me when I get there. Are we clear or do I need to stay on the phone and direct you?”

“We’re clear. And Ashton?”


“My fingers are already inside me.”





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