The next two days were fairly calm. The first was an off day, with only a few interviews, the second was a show day.
Veronica was looking forward to actually having a whole day off. She needed the break. Despite her best efforts, Jon’s constant....nearness... was getting to her, and her mind and body were conspiring against her, reminding her of how good they’d been together, what it had felt like when he touched her, how he tasted when he kissed her, the heights of ecstasy he’d taken her to. She shivered at the memories. Yes, she definitely needed the break.
“Ronnie.” Jon got her attention as they were getting ready to leave the bar. “Why don’t you come out to the house tomorrow?”
She eyed him warily. “Why?”
He raised his hands. “No ulterior motives, I promise. I just thought you’d like to come out and relax. I have a hot tub. You could have a good soak and just rest before the party.” The next day was Halloween and Jon was hosting a party.
“Thanks for the offer, but I think I’ll just stay here. I’ve got a little shopping to do.” Expecting her answer, Jon sighed and handed her a piece of paper. Her brow rose. “What’s this?”
“A list of Yoga classes in the area with openings tomorrow.” At her surprised look, he shrugged. “I thought you might be interested.”
She was stunned. Did he actually remember something I like to do and find a way for me to do it? “Thank you.”
“Enjoy your day off. But I expect you to come to the party.” He held up a hand. “No excuses. The entire staff will be there as well as some of my friends and associates.” He started towards the door, stopped, and turned back. “Don’t forget your costume.”
The next afternoon, Veronica walked down the street idly window shopping. She felt much more relaxed, more...centred... than she had in days, thanks to one of the Yoga classes from the list Jon had given her. She was almost looking forward to the party. She sighed. I guess I’d better try and come up with something for a costume. A display in the window she was passing caught her eye and she stopped. A slow grin spread across her face and she headed inside.
Veronica stared at the house as the van pulled to a stop in front of the main door. No doubt about it, Jon had done well for himself. The house was huge, in the design of a French chateau. Dorothea’s house. When the door opened she took a deep breath and stepped inside.
Jon had been watching for her. When the van that had picked up the group from the hotel arrived he moved to stand in the doorway to the foyer where a member of his household staff was waiting to take the guests’ coats. He smiled at her pigtails, but as her coat was removed, the smile turned into a leer, his body hardened, and the breath stopped in his chest at the sight of the knee high socks, short skirt and button up blouse whose hem didn’t quite meet the top of the skirt of her schoolgirl uniform.
Across the room, David nudged Richie. “Ronnie must have arrived.”
Richie looked around. “Why?”
David nodded to where they could see Jon standing in the doorway. “Jon just came to a point like a bird dog.”
“Can I carry your books for you?” His hot breath in her ear sent shivers down her spine.
She chuckled and turned around to survey his costume. “No, but you could drop and give me twenty to show me what a big strong jock you are. Although, if you tried you might split your pants. Is that Jesse’s uniform?” The football jersey fit fine, even with a few pads underneath, but the pants showed every muscle in his legs, the dimples in his ass.....and it was very obvious he wasn’t wearing a cup.
He tugged the jersey down a little self consciously. “It’s my shirt, but yeah, they’re his pants.”
“As much as it would be in my best interest not to notice, and I definitely shouldn’t bring it to your attention, but you’re not exactly built like a twelve year old, you know. Don’t ever accuse me of putting you on display like a stud for undoing a shirt button again.”
He chuckled. “It’s not that bad.” She kept her tongue firmly between her teeth. “Come on. I’ll give you the tour and introduce you to the people you don’t know.” He slid an arm around her waist and guided her deeper into the house.
Forty-five minutes later, she was standing in the livingroom talking to Obie while Jon went to get her a drink when she once again felt a hot breath in her ear.
“Well, hello little girl. Would you like some candy?”
She jumped as something slid under her skirt and poked her in the ass. “Hey!” She turned to see the devil incarnate standing behind her complete with horns and tail – and pitchfork-, his brown eyes sparkling with mischief. “Well now Lucifer, it depends on the kind of candy you’re offering. Is it soft or hard?”
Obie just about spit his drink. Richie grinned. “Hard, with a creamy filling.”
“Mmmmm. And is this candy something you bite or....suck?” Veronica purred and licked her lips.
“Oh you definitely don’t want to bite it. You’ll want to suck it slowly and savour every inch of it.”
“And will it last a long, long time?” She ended on a breathy whisper.
“As long as you as you want it to.”
“You guys are sick.” David had come up to join them and had caught enough to follow the conversation.
“What’s the matter Phantom? Nobody been playing your organ lately?” Richie retorted
David’s scowl could only be half seen since his mask covered the other half of his face. “Not that it’s any of your business, but Lexi plays my instrument quite regularly.”
“That may come to an end if I tell her you’re trying to corrupt schoolgirls.” Jon warned him as he joined them, handed Veronica her drink and drew her protectively to his side.
“It wasn’t me, it was Satan here!” David protested. “And from the sounds of it she was already corrupted.”
Veronica put on her best innocent look. “Who me? Oh no, you must have me confused with someone else. I’m a good girl.”
“And to keep you that way nina, I’m going to take you away from the devil’s temptation to dance with me.” Tico appeared at her other side.
She looked him up and down and noted the sword hanging at his side. “Are you going to brand me with your mark Zorro?”
He stroked his chin thoughtfully. “That may not be a bad idea. Then people will know that you have my protection.” Despite the light-hearted mood of the conversation, the look he gave Jon was very serious. Jon smiled wryly.
A few hours later, Veronica opened the sliding door to the patio and stepped outside. She needed some fresh air, and a break from the crush of people inside....and Jon. He’d hardly left her side since she got there, introducing her to his friends and associates, making sure she wasn’t hungry or thirsty....treating her like she was his date. She’d become so used to his touching her over the last few days, she hadn’t even noticed it tonight until she’d caught a few speculative looks from some of the women present. She sighed. There was no point in calling him on it or asking him to stop. It was too late for that. He’d set her up nicely. By starting out slowly, and in front of industry people and others she wouldn’t want to make a scene and embarrass him in front of, he’d acclimatized her to his touch to the point that it felt strange to be with him in a group of people without his arm around her. If she complained now, it would look like he was getting to her and it would only encourage him. The problem was he was getting to her. Joking around with him and the guys tonight reminded her of how good it had been when they were together. It would be so easy for her to give in to those memories and feelings and see where it led. But she already knew where it led...to pain and heartache. She couldn’t let his charm and appeal make her forget that. But she was so damn tired of being alone!
“Ronnie? Sugar? Are you okay?” Jon had been looking for her and his concern grew when he happened to glance outside and saw her standing there, staring at the sky.
“Yeah, I’m fine. I just needed some fresh air.” She looked around. “I can see why you built here. It’s very peaceful.”
“Yeah. With my crazy life I needed a place where I could relax and just....breathe.”
She nodded her understanding. “It’s beautiful.”
“Mmmhmmm.” He wasn’t looking at the view.
She slated him a look. “What?”
She just smiled and moved to lean against the side of the house. He followed her, blocking any escape route.
“You don’t believe me?” She shrugged. He stepped closer and lifted his hands to frame her face, forcing her to look at him. “It’s true. Your hair is all the shades of the night.” One hand rose to thread through a pigtail. His voice was barely above a whisper. “It feels like silk wrapping around my fingers.” Letting his hand drop slightly, he stroked a brow with a fingertip. “Your eyes are like amethysts. They sparkle like stars when you’re happy. They’re unusual and unique and extraordinary. Just like you.” The back of his fingers stroked her cheek. “Your skin is so soft. Like velvet. It makes my fingers itch to touch it. Your lips...” He traced them with his thumb. “Your perfect bow of a mouth. So soft and warm...” He leaned towards her. “....lures me to taste.” His lips brushed hers. “Again.” Another brush, but a little firmer. “And again.” Even firmer this time. “And again.”
“Jon.” It was a breathy sigh. As much as she knew she should, she couldn’t pull away, she couldn’t even look away. She was mesmerized by the intense desire she could see in the sapphire depths of his eyes, his scent surrounding her, the gentle touch of his hands and the soft feel of his lips burning her, making her yearn for more.
“Yes. Let me in Ronnie. Let me taste you.” His teeth nibbled lightly on her lips. “I need to taste you.” His mouth pressed down on hers, silently asking for entrance.
She surrendered with a soft moan, her mouth opening beneath the pressure of his. As his tongue swept into her mouth, he swept aside her wits. Her hands rose to grip his arms for support. For long minutes she struggled to breathe and absorb the sensations racing through her body. He was only touching her face, but she felt it everywhere. Her knees went weak.
Feeling her start to sag, Jon moved closer, holding her up with his body pressing hers against the house. Veronica groaned at the feel of his hard body and his obvious desire. Breaking the kiss, she gasped for breath, shuddering as his mouth slid along her jaw to her ear where his tongue traced the curves and swirled inside before sucking on the lobe. Next he moved down her neck, nuzzling, licking kissing and nibbling. One hand stroked down her side to her waist, slid underneath her thin blouse and reversed direction. Her stomach contracted at his touch. Biting her lips to stifle her cries, she couldn’t suppress a moan at the feel of his hand cupping a breast and teasing the stiff peak. Her body arched into his, one hand speared into his hair, the other gripped his side. “Johnny!”
His heart skipped at the old nickname. “Nica.” His mouth reclaimed hers, tongue thrusting deep. His lower body pinned her to the wall.
Loud laughter close by shook her scattered wits into place. She released her hold on him and pushed at his chest. He ignored her weak protest. She pushed harder and managed to tear her mouth away. “Jon, stop.” He nuzzled her neck. She shoved again. “Jon, don’t. Please. Stop.”
He leaned back until he could see her face. “Why?”
“I can’t do this.”
He stroked her cheek. “Why not?”
She turned her head. “I just can’t. Let me go.” She pushed him again.
Blowing out a heavy sigh, he stepped back, released her and watched her flee inside. He raked a hand through his hair in frustration, grimaced, and with a soft curse, set off towards the river. He needed some time to let his body cool off before facing the crowd inside. Maybe wearing Jesse’s pants wasn’t such a good idea after all.