Excerpt: LAID BARE

Copyright 2009, Lauren Dane
All Rights Reserved, The Berkley Publishing Group

Todd walked back with her, loving the way the breeze ruffled the bottom of her dress. Her hair, so shockingly pink, looked like soft cotton candy. He nearly laughed aloud at the thought that he’d ever find such a description romantic much less beautiful but there it was.

On her it all worked. Because she was simply one of a kind. One of a kind and nervous as the shadows had lengthened into night.

She’d jumped several times as sudden laughter or talking had drifted from a doorway, from the fronts of the cafes and stores marking their route back to her building.

Her eyes cut left and right and her spine vibrated with tension.

This was not the woman he’d fucked in an alley ten years ago. That woman had been totally fearless and he ached for whatever had happened to her to rob her of that.

“Why don’t you tell me what happened?” he asked gently as he led her into her house and helped her out of her sweater.

“What do you mean?” She toed out of her shoes and set them on a wooden rack near the door and he followed suit.

“I know a little bit about the attack. Not a lot. I know you lost a child. Tell me what makes you jump at shadows.”

She turned. He noted her knuckles holding her bag had gone white.

“I don’t want to talk about it. Yes, I lost a child. I nearly died. You can imagine the rest.”

She had no fucking idea. Todd worked to keep himself relaxed, even as his body wanted to go and pick her up, force her to tell him and hold her forever. “I can, and it scares the shit out of me. Share it. You can trust me to catch you when you fall.”

She took a step back and dropped her bag on the table. “It’s not that. I just don’t like talking about it. And I don’t mean any offense, but I trust three people. Me, Adrian and Brody.”

He thought of what he’d say in response. It hurt, there was no denying that not being included with her brothers sliced through his gut. But he understood. He loved her and he saw her pain. He got why it would be hard to trust. And he’d show her she could add his name to that short list. There was no small amount of irony that their situation had flipped from where it had been before. Back then she’d been coaxing him to open up to her and he’d been scared shitless.

A sickening thought occurred to him. “At least tell me he didn’t do this to you. Jeremy, the guy you loved before.”

Total surprise washed over her face and he relaxed a bit. No it wasn’t the ex. The ex who made a child with her, with the woman Todd loved.

She shook her head, hard. Her hair spilled into her face. “No. God, no. Jeremy loved Adele. Loved me. He never would have hurt either one of us.” Her voice caught and he was wrapped around her before he even thought about moving.

They remained there, just hugging until the tenor of the moment changed, deepened, thickened and he had to step back because his cock hardened against her.

She looked up into his face, her eyes lost. “Help me feel alive,” she whispered.

He nodded.

Erin watched his face change and her cunt bloomed at the sight of the birth of the very potent dom he was becoming. She didn’t think in terms of dom being capitalized and sub being lowercase. To Erin, D/s wasn’t about one person being worthy of a capital letter and the other not. It wasn’t about unequal worth, it was about two equals sharing power, sharing sex and emotion. She didn’t submit to him because she wanted to be debased or harmed, because she needed to be lesser than anyone. She was aware some people got off on that, and hey, whatever floats your boat. But when he dominated her, she felt cherished and adored, cosseted in those perfect moments between them—in a way she never achieved with anyone else.

She liked that he looked her over carefully, she knew to be sure she was ready for whatever he planned to dish out and God help her if she didn’t want to fall to her knees right then.

He nodded once, apparently having decided she was on board with his plans and jerked his head toward the living room. “Naked and bent over the arm of the couch. Now.”

Blinking rapidly, she reached for a calming breath even as a flush worked through her body at his command. Trembling hands managed to get the side zipper on her dress down so she could step from it. Her bra followed. Walking over to the couch, she bent forward, bracing her hands. The air in the room was cool against her bare skin, the slight nub in the fabric on the couch abraded her belly and thighs.

Would he use his hands on her ass? Would he fuck her hard? What was his purpose?

The questions wisped through her brain idly as she sought to find a quiet spot in her head. Waiting.

“Mmmm. I do love looking at you like this. No panties either, just the way I like it.” She heard the jingle of his belt buckle and the slither as he pulled it from the loops. Her pussy softened at the sound combined with raw desire in his words. He looked at her and saw the beauty there. She pleased him and in turn, that pleased her.

He drew the thin but sturdy leather over her bare back, leaving shivers in its wake. Her breath caught at the soft/rough caress.

“I’ve never used my belt on a woman, hell on anyone but myself. I’ve craved it for so long.”

She swallowed, trying to wet her mouth enough to speak. “On yourself?”

“I…” he hesitated, his thigh against hers, denim against bare skin. “I used to wrap it around my hand when I jerked off.”

Her heart skittered in her chest a moment at the very powerful image he’d just given her. But even more that he’d shared such an intimate detail.

“Todd, please use it on me. I need it,” she noted the slight slur in her words. God, he made her pleasure drunk.

His shirt fluttered to the ground in the corner of her vision and she heard five pops of the buttons on his fly. Those pops had become a potent aphrodisiac. Each one, knowing it went lower and lower, exposing the front of his boxers, made her wetter and wetter. Anticipating his touch, what he’d do to her next, her body burned. It was like this only with him. There had never been another who’d done this to her body. And soul.

4 comments to “Excerpt: LAID BARE”

  1. Beverly Diehl
    June 30th, 2011 at 1:25 pm · Link

    Note to self: If you are dumb enough to read Lauren Dane on your lunch break, be smart enough to bring clean dry panties next time. Holy smokes, lady! Hot stuff!

  2. Jen B.
    June 30th, 2011 at 7:15 pm · Link

    Todd and Erin are one of my favorite all time couples. And when they add Ben, the love story is just amazing. Thanks for the excerpt. I might need to go re-read before Adrian’s book.

  3. Lauren
    July 6th, 2011 at 4:57 pm · Link

    Beverly, LOL!

    Jen – aw thanks! BTW, I’ll be revisiting Erin, Todd and Ben next fall in a digital short with Berkley…

  4. Jen B.
    July 6th, 2011 at 5:46 pm · Link

    I am officially a fan girl. When I read that there would be a short story coming out soon, I think my blood pressure elavated! Thank you for the reponse. I will be looking for the short. 😀