“The dressing room is through there,” she said pointing to a door. Then she turned around and started walking back towards the room.
I followed her.
In the middle of the room she stopped and turned around to face me. She pointed towards a bell on the wall by the bed. “There’s the service bell if you need anything. Press it and someone will come to you, or if you just have a query, you can pick up the phone and dial 9. You can have breakfast brought up to you here, or you can have it in the sun room. If you require a full cooked breakfast, please give us half-an-hour notice. Dinner is served at eight. Attire is formal. If you require nothing else, I bid you goodnight.”
“I require nothing else,” I said.
She nodded and withdrew from the room.
When the door closed the tension in my body snapped. I walked over to the bed and sat down on it. My finger stroked the rich damask bedspread. It felt cool and silky under my skin. It felt real. And yet… in a state of disbelief, I looked around me. Was this really happening to me? It felt like a dream. Utterly unreal. I stood and walked to the romantic windows.
My window faced the front of the house. Below I could see the lion fountain, and follow the line of lamps that lit the driveway, but most of the estate’s grounds were shrouded by the darkness of the night. I turned my face towards the sky and found it full of twinkling stars.
Even though it was freezing outside, I opened a window and leaned out to look at them. For a second, I felt as if I was a charmed Princess in a fairytale. And just for that fleeting moment I forgot I was a bought woman. Then the enchanted air was shattered by the thunderous engine of a high-end sports car. Headlights appeared at the end of the driveway and instinctively, I pulled back, and stood hidden behind the curtain.
A canary yellow Lamborghini screamed to a stop in front of the stone steps. The driver’s door floated up and rap music blared out. A balding, portly man, hopped out. He was wearing a blue shirt, and had his sweater slung flamboyantly around his shoulders the way men from the Mediterranean sometimes did. In his hand, he carried a large envelope. Nimbly, he ran up the stone steps and disappeared from my view.
Frigid winter wind blew into the room I was in, but I didn’t move an inch.
I couldn’t see her face, there was a young woman in the car, a redhead with very pale hands. I watched her change the channels of the stereo. She pulled down the visor mirror and applied lipstick. Then she examined her nails. Afterwards she pulled a small tube of cream from her purse and creamed her hands.
The man reappeared. The car door floated up once more. Pop music blared out. He got in and the car roared off. I realized the room was now freezing cold and I was shivering. I closed the window and went to sit on the bed and wait. There was a steel claw tightly furled around my heart.
I didn’t have long to wait.Chapter 8LucaI pushed open the door to her room. The room was cold and the only illumination was the lamp by her bedside. Still wearing the same white dress she’d worn to the party, she perched on the edge of the bed. In yellow glow from the lamp, her blonde hair shimmered like spun gold. She seemed ethereal, almost unreal. I felt as if I’d snared an unsuspecting angel into my lair of sin.
I shut the door and leaned against it.
We stared at each other and I could feel the lust spreading through my veins. I couldn’t remember the last time I’d felt this pure, visceral, uncontrollable lust for a woman. I was intrigued by the effect she had on me. I understood that it was not just her beauty. There was something about her… something I couldn’t put my finger on. From the first moment I’d noticed her walking towards the summerhouse, even before I had seen her face properly, my attention had been arrested.
Yes, I wanted to listen to her scream as I brought her past the brink of sanity, her body quaking and shuddering at the storm of pleasure engulfing her, but it was more than that. I was already falling into the trap Salvatore had fallen into. I wanted to keep her, make her mine for a long, long time. I pulled back the thought. That was moth to flame stuff. No, she was here for a month and not a day longer, and whatever this ‘fascination’ was had to be completely and totally purged by then.