This novel is limited to 100 free copies due to its part in Inkitt’s Novel Contest.
Layla woke to the sound of her phone’s default alarm tone. She hit snooze before rolling over and closing her eyes. As her brain began to reconnect with reality, she recalled that Larson would return from his holiday today. Well, he returned late last night, but he would be at work today. Layla had missed him. She hadn’t spoken to him while he had been away. He never called her, and she was always wary of calling him.
It had been almost six months since they had started seeing each other and while things were good between them, compared to how they were, Larson still remained evasive. On the nights they spent together, he was better, he would relax—sometimes he would even laugh with her—and he was attentive in the bedroom. When they were not together, he would never call or text her, and if she ever called him, he would be less than thrilled.
Layla was okay with that. He had told her he liked his own space, and she rather enjoyed hers too—especially now she had finally managed to buy her own place. But she hadn’t expected him to not call her at all when he was on holiday for two weeks nor had she expected him to return and act as though he had never been away. It was wishful thinking on her part, but she hoped he had missed her just a little even if he did not show it.
His last holiday was a month after they had started seeing each other and he was still establishing his boundaries. She hoped this holiday would mean he was more relaxed as she had respected his boundaries and not hounded him, but he still had not called her.
She knew she shouldn’t—she had agreed to this—but she couldn’t help feel just a twinge of sadness. Not just sadness because of the way Larson was—that was him, she couldn’t change that—she was sad because she knew, as before, there would only be so long that she could tolerate it before she would want more and then their relationship would be over.
She didn’t want it to be over. She loved spending time with him. She looked forward to her nights with him all week. She would go to his house—usually on a Thursday and Friday—straight from work. They would have dinner, they would play, they would sometimes watch movies, and then they would fall asleep together. Occasionally, they would go out for a meal or to the theatre on a Friday night, and then they would sleep in on Saturday morning.
Everything was wonderful between them for two days, and then they would barely speak until the following week. Larson never greeted her with a kiss when he arrived in the office—sometimes he wouldn’t even greet her at all—and they rarely ate lunch together unless it was for a business meeting. He had not wanted to do anything with her during the Christmas holidays and hadn’t even bought her a present. He ignored valentines as he said he would. She hadn’t bought him a present or a card, though she did send him an e-card which he did not acknowledge.
Layla sighed as her alarm began to ring again. She dismissed it and dragged herself from her bed towards the shower.
Layla arrived at the office before Larson and was working through her emails when she saw him enter the open plan office through the parting in her office blinds. She hoped he would call in to see her, but he went straight to his own office. She gritted her teeth to keep her sadness at bay and continued her work. She became a little excited when an email from Larson arrived in her inbox, and then she deflated again when she saw she had been copied into an email to a client.
At least he’s remembered I exist.
Layla remained in her office throughout the morning. She was determined that she wouldn’t bound into his office and tell him how much she had missed him like she did last time. No. She would play it cool. She would wait for him to speak to her.
He finally knocked on her office as he was about to leave for lunch.
“Hey,” he said from the door. “I’m going away again on Thursday until next Wednesday, but the Colwyns have got an annual review on Monday, can you go in my place?”
This is the greeting I get. I didn’t even know he was going away again.
“Sure,” she said. She was pleased that he trusted her enough to attend a meeting with their new clients without him, though she would likely not need to make any decisions. Still, it was progress.
“Thanks, I’ll tell them. Has everything been okay?”
“Yes,” she replied. “A few late payers, but they’re sorted now.”
He nodded. “I’m just going for lunch. I’ll speak to you later.” He turned and left.
The end of the day arrived, and Larson still had not spoken to her again.
I’m going to have to be the one to make the first move as usual.
She knocked on his door.
“Hi,” she said. “I was wondering if you’d like to join a few friends and me for drinks tomorrow for—”
“Sorry, Layla,” he replied, barely taking his eyes off the screen. “I need to work late each night to catch up before Thursday.”
“Of course,” she said. “Well, I’m off tomorrow and Wednesday, and then I go on holiday next Wednesday for two weeks, so I guess I’ll see you when I get back.”
“Sure,” he said. “I’ll email you the details about Monday. There are a few questions I want to ask, but it should be straightforward.”
“Thanks. I look it over at home. I’ll let you know if I have any problems.”
“Goodnight,” she said, closing his door.
She left the office and walked to her car.
I guess he’s ignoring my birthday again.
She pulled her car door closed hard in irritation.
Forget him. I’ll have a perfectly lovely birthday and then a perfectly lovely holiday without him.
Layla returned to the office on the Thursday after her holiday. She saw Larson in his office, but she went to her own. She logged onto her computer and groaned at the sight of her inbox. She was about to work through them when she received a calendar notification informing her of a business lunch today. She accepted the invitation and continued her work.
Layla and Larson left the office for the meeting and travelled in Larson’s car. They exchanged a few polite words about work, and Larson asked how the meeting with the Colwyns had gone. He mentioned nothing about seeing her that night—their usual night—and nor did she.
Larson sat beside her at the lunch table, and Jake Colwyn took the available seat beside her. Layla had met Jake when he attended the annual review instead of his father. “Hey, Layla.” Jake smiled at her. He was very handsome. She blushed. “Did you have a nice holiday?”
“Yes, thank you.” She smiled back. “Thank you for the tips—the museums were awesome. Larson, do you know Jake Colwyn?”
Larson shook Jake’s hand politely. “No. We haven’t met,” he said. “You’re involved in your father’s business?”
“I am now,” Jake replied. “I’ve been travelling for years—I’ve just returned from San Francisco, which is why I gave Layla tips for her holiday. My father wants to semi-retire, so I thought it was time I settled down and take over some of the business.” He turned to wink at Layla. “Then I plan on finding a wife and producing an heir.” Jake smiled as Layla laughed.
Larson regarded him coolly. Jake obviously did not know Larson as people who did know him were not so vocal towards him. “Nice to meet you,” Larson said diplomatically, though he gave a good indication that he did not wish to exchange more than pleasantries.
Jake turned his attention to Layla. “Hey, I wanted to ask you last time I saw you, but I was feeling a little shy.” He smiled. “Are you single?”
“Erm…no, not really,” she replied, casting a nervous glance at Larson who sat disinterestedly at her side.
“That’s a shame.” Jake sighed.
“What did you mean by that?” Larson snapped at her as she closed the car door.
“What?” she asked.
“What did you mean by ‘no, not really’? We’re an item as far as I’m aware.”
“I don’t know, Larson. I never know where I stand with you.”
“Don’t give me that crap, Layla. You were trying to make me jealous. You were trying to play me off against Colwyn.”
“I did no such thing,” she exclaimed.
“No? You weren’t trying to make me buck up my ideas before you leave me for a man who wants to marry and have kids?”
“No,” she snapped. “No, I was not.”
“If you weren’t, then why add the ‘not really’?”
“Because it is not really with us. We’re not forever, are we?”
He shook his head and sneered. “You can leave me anytime you like for whoever you like, Layla, I do not care, but don’t ever make a fool out of me again.”
Do not cry!
“There’s no need for that, Larson,” she said, gritting her teeth to stop her lip from quivering.
“It’s the truth,” he said nonchalantly.
She did not respond, and the rest of the journey continued in silence. Layla left a few minutes before the end of the work day so she would not meet him and went straight home. As she expected, he did not call her to apologise or invite her to his house and nor did he call at her apartment.
Larson called in Layla’s office the next afternoon after she had avoided him all day.
“You’ve made your point,” he grumbled, taking a seat at her desk. “You’re mad at me—I get it.”
“I am mad at you,” she said, her tone irritated. “I did not try to make you jealous. I know you care nothing for me and you would never get jealous, so why would I even try?”
He rolled his eyes at her. “Quit being so dramatic,” he said. “I was a little harsh, but I’m not going to beg for forgiveness.”
She did not answer and continued to type.
“Fine,” he said, exasperated. “I’m sorry. Now, are you going to forget this and come to my house?”
She turned to look at him, he sat with his arms folded like a child forced to apologise or he would get no sweets. “You’re only apologising because you want sex,” she said. “You still meant what you said.”
He looked momentarily wounded, but his expression was soon as unreadable as ever. “Believe that if you want,” he snapped, standing and marching towards the door.
“Larson,” she called before he left. He stopped but did not look at her. “I’ll come.”
“I’ll see you later then,” he said, leaving the office and closing the door behind him.
Layla followed Larson to his house in her own car. He had brightened by the time they arrived there and even kissed her as she entered his hall. He had finally gotten around to hiring a decorator and had replaced some of the furniture, though he had kept his mother’s antiques. He had stored the furniture he had replaced in his attic, which was now half kinky sex dungeon and half chintzy second-hand shop.
Larson hadn’t replaced many items, though. Despite his fancy suits and car, he was quite frugal. He liked to give the impression of the stereotypical successful businessman to his clients, but in his home life, he spent very little money. The clothes he wore around the house were things he had owned for years, and when he went on holiday, he did not stay in fancy hotels or travel first class. He didn’t drink champagne unless he was celebrating something and when they went out as a couple they did not attend the fine dining restaurants he attended with his clients or his friends. Frequently, he would find them a quiet pub. The first time he had taken her to the theatre was because the tickets were two for the price of one.
The real Larson suited Layla. She wasn’t flashy with her money either, and she hadn’t even developed a business persona. She had considered buying some designer clothes and a nicer car for work, but she had changed her mind when she considered the cost. She wanted to travel instead and was continuing to shop on the high street so she could fund her holidays.
“I thought we’d order from that new Greek takeaway,” Larson said, lifting a menu from the table in the hall. “There’s twenty percent off your first order.”
“Sounds good,” she said, glancing through the menu.
They chose the food and Larson placed the order. Layla smiled as she watched him on the phone. She always felt guilty for being angry with him when she was in his house. When she was with the sweet (ish) guy that no one else ever saw.
He might not buy me birthday presents, but he does pay for everything else.
He had never let her pay for a single meal or drink while she was with him.
She’d had a rather strange conversation with him one night after she had insisted on paying for their meal. She hadn’t completely understood what he was getting at—he became shy and awkward when talking about his feelings—but he seemed to imply that he wanted to pay for everything because he would invest less emotionally into their relationship than she would and wanted to make up for it. She didn’t know why he thought the money would make up for it, but he was certainly less invested. Outside of his home, she could almost believe he did not like her at all, but while he was home, it was as though he was a different person.
He was still intense, and moody at times, and he would never tell her how he felt about her. She had no clue if he had any feelings for her, but he was friendly towards her and appeared to enjoy her company. Outside of his home, she was frequently met with his cold persona. It was as though he had spent so much time in character that he could not shake it. He was a puzzle. He was an exciting puzzle, though. And one she had missed for the last month.
Larson rarely took Layla to his attic anymore. He would still spank her frequently, but he liked to do it elsewhere in his house. Usually, it would be his bedroom, but he had also had her bend over the kitchen table where he beat her with a wooden spoon and had tied her to his stair bannister on several occasions.
Larson took her to his bedroom tonight. He kissed her hungrily as he pulled off her clothes.
Layla didn’t know if Larson ever saw anyone else. She didn’t want to know. She didn’t want to think of him spending time with other women while he was on holiday. He frantically removed her clothes and pushed her back onto his bed. He was certainly eager. She liked to imagine that he had spent the last month waiting for her, that he might have thought about their nights together and become excited about seeing her again.
Knowing Larson, it was unlikely that he thought about her, but his enthusiasm convinced her enough to excite her. She moaned as he sucked her nipples. He knew what she wanted and responding, he squeezed the flesh between his teeth. She gasped and ran her fingers through his hair, pulling him closer, encouraging him to bite her harder.
He snatched her wrists and pulled her hands from his hair, pinning them to the bed. He loomed over her, the weight of him pressing her wrists into the bed as he worked on tormenting her other nipple.
He turned her onto her stomach, and with one hand at the back of her neck, he pinned her to the bed as he rummaged through his bedside drawer. Finding what he was looking for, he then snapped one of the padded handcuffs around her left wrist before feeding the cuffs through the iron bed frame and securing her other wrist.
He turned her onto her back so he could secure the nipple clamps tightly to her hard and swollen nipples. She groaned at the exquisite pain they gave her. He flipped her back onto her stomach and ordered her to raise her bottom. She obeyed him. He ordered her to open her mouth. She obeyed him. He placed a tie in her mouth like a bit and held the ends at the back of her head like a bridle. He then pushed himself inside her pussy and began to fuck her. As he did, he pulled on the tie and pulled her head back.
The handcuffs dug into her wrists as she pulled against them to relieve the tension in her neck. Larson relaxed his grip a little but maintained his hold. It was better, she could breathe. She could enjoy having her man restrain her. Enjoy having him dominate her as he pulled on her head and pounded his terrific length into her pussy.
Larson slid his free hand between her legs and began to rub at her clit. “Do you like that, you little slut?” He growled. Her muffled response through the gag told him she did. “You’re a dirty fucking whore.”
Layla’s pussy throbbed. Blood rushed to her clit at the excitement of his words and from the pleasure of his touch. His cock thundered into her, and he matched his pace with his fingers on her clit. Pleasure exploded through her pelvis and her vision blurred as she climaxed. He wasn’t done, and he kept working her. He released his grip on the tie and squeezed the clamps harder on her nipples.
Layla screamed as she came again. He still wasn’t done.
She gasped as he powered her through another orgasm. She couldn’t take anymore. She wanted him to stop. She bit the pillow as he found another gear and increased his speed. She felt relief when he removed his fingers from her clit, he then took hold of her hips and thrust himself deeper into her.
She cried out as she gripped the bed frame between her hands in the limited space the cuffs would allow. Larson moaned as he was approaching his finish. Impossibly, he moved faster before slipping from her and spraying his offering over her back and her ass. He gave a satisfied groan and relaxed onto the bed. He unfastened Layla’s cuffs and lay back on the pillow. “Clean my cock, slut,” he ordered.
He loved to degrade her like this, and it excited Layla. Still covered in his come, she moved down his body to lick his come and her pussy juices from his cock.
zoheusher20: What more can I say? The writing style and little details drew me into the book and for the entirety of the story I was Juliet. I felt her turmoil and emotions and every trouble or triumph as they arrived. This story was very different and had quite a few little but unexpected twists that made it...
Elise Faith: I found this story sensual, captivating and honest. I enjoyed the use of crude language, it made me able to relate to the character more. The idea, however unoriginal was well executed and the story is delivered clean and crisp as the characters themselves are.
maewilde25: I am so in love with this story!!! captivated me till the very end, there wasn't a dull moment. Didn't particularly enjoy the lay out and some bits of info was missing along with how a 21 year old man amassed so much wealth that needed to be explained other than that and a few spelling errors, th...
christylynnr5: This was beyond amazing! I loved this book. The characters seemed so real. It was amazing how the author let Zak and Kaylees personalities slowly change. This story was very sad and eye opening. It could teach some people a very worthy lesson. It was a great combination of romance, mystery, and a...
annie08c: I really like this story, I can relate to it a lot and with how she feels, the boyfriend and the events that happened but I'm a little bit younger. It was really good plot, really liked how you stuck to the topic and you had a new title for every chapter making me guess what's going to happen. Ma...
Marijana1: The melancholy present throughout this story has the power to influence and etch into the minds of the readers, to stay there and refuse to leave even after they have finished reading the story. This is a deep, powerful story, making the readers wonder about everything – about love, about their e...
rudyoxborough46: An action-packed, mystical adventure awaits anyone wishing to read this novel. I’m amazed at how well you’ve managed to flesh out the characters in this book, and I hope to read more of your work.I’ve read books about goblins and elves and all that mumbo-jumbo before, and most accounts of these c...
Samantha Speed: There were several punctuation, grammar, and missing word problems but it did not detract from the story. This story was very well done, enjoyable, and had an interesting enough plot. It took a while to finish. This story is not complete. I love it, but I want to see another book or have more cha...
emmaneal74: I loved this booked. Would definitely buy it when published and read it again. The story flowed in such a way I just couldn't put it down. I was never confused about the characters or their roles in the story which can happen sometimes with so many lead. I'd recommend this to anyone wanting to r...
Stephen Warner: To start off, I am thoroughly impressed. The writing style is somewhat unique, and the plot seemed to move at a nice and steady pace. However, I was not expecting this to be a vampire book! I am usually not one for novels about vampires, but I was pleasantly surprised! You wrote with such grace a...
263Adder: Okay so I adore this story. I only knocked one star off plot for historical inaccuracies because I'm a bit of a stickler for that. The ending broke my heart though, considering you already changed history couldn't you (SPOILER) change it a bit more and have them together!!!! I want an alternative...
ynez2005: I LOVE THIS BOOK SOOOOO MUCH!!!!Though you really need to make another book,more Princesses!!! Whoooo!!!Girl Power!!!Mabey it could even be Devona's BFF???That would make it even better!!!Plus can you pleeease make Akki come back,together with Thea and Authur amd the whole family is back!Other th...
OpheliaJones: This story took a different kind of spin on the "normal girl lives with definitely not normal guy" plot. The plot points of Frey's father, Liam's family, and Frey's view of Liam's world were good to read. She did not fall in love with him in the first couple weeks. Their lives were not smooth in ...