Salvatore:A Dark Mafia Romance(7)

By: Natasha Knight

The day we’d signed the contract, the day I’d stood by and allowed her to be humiliated, something had happened to me, some obligation had formed, some bond between us. Maybe it was the disgust I felt for myself for standing by and letting it happen. At the time, I told myself, I’d had no choice, but I tried not to lie to myself. Not anymore. After that day, something had changed. I owed her something. What that thing was, I did not know. An apology? Seemed stupid, a waste. My protection? She would have that, she already did. But she was my enemy and the spoils of war. My father had tried very hard to drill that into my head, but he hadn’t seen that look in her eyes that day—the desperate, terrified plea inside them—nor did he see it every time he lay his head down to sleep.

I wondered if my father lost sleep over anything at all, actually.

You were twenty-four. What could you have done?

No, not good enough. Not anymore.

“You know what it’s like to lose someone close?” Her tone dripped sarcasm. “My father and I weren’t close.”

I studied her, feeling my face tighten, my eyes narrow infinitesimally.

I did not speak.

“But let me ask you something. Do you know what it’s like to watch people you love killed before your very eyes?”

I did, but still, I remained silent.

“To have everyone taken away from you? To become the property of your enemy?”

Oh yes. Yes, I did.

“To be sent to live on your own among strangers with not a friend in the world? Under constant watch. I don’t think you know those things, Salvatore, because if you did, you would feel. You would have some compassion. Be human.” She gave me another once-over. “But there is one thing you do know, isn’t there? You know how to stand by and do nothing at all.”

My hands clenched into fists, and a sudden, hot anger burned inside me. I saw the driver’s eyes flash back at us in the rearview mirror, but he kept driving, slowing down as we passed through the cemetery gates.

“Be careful,” I warned, my tone low and quiet. But it was true, wasn’t it? What she said was true.

Lucia’s eyes narrowed, and she tilted her head to the side, one corner of her mouth rising into a smirk. “Did Daddy give you his seal of approval that day? Did he pat you on the back later? Call you a ‘good boy?’” she taunted.

My fingernails dug into my palms, and I made it a point of looking out the window as the driver parked the car.

“Is that it, Salvatore?”

She misunderstood my silence, mistaking it for weakness.

The driver killed the engine. “Give us a minute,” I said. He stepped out of the car and closed the door, standing just outside.

I turned back to her.

“Are you Daddy’s little puppet?” she asked.

Her eyes spewed hate. Did she know she toed a very dangerous line? That she broached a truth that had kept me in a state of constant struggle these past few years?

I gave a little snort and relaxed my body, smiling, leaning just a little closer. I could see the pulse at her neck working, telling me her heart pounded hard, telling me that on the inside, she wasn’t so sure.

“Lucia.” I said softly, raising my hand.

Her gaze shifted to it, then back to my eyes.

I touched her face with the backs of my fingers, caressing that soft, creamy skin. “So pretty,” I said, my eyes on her lips when I gripped her chin. “But such a big mouth.”

She swallowed, her eyes widening.

I leaned in close enough to smell her perfume, something soft and light and somehow, even now, erotic. I inhaled deeply before drawing her to me, my eyes still on those lips. She held her breath. “So, so pretty.” My other hand traveled to her chest, to the soft swell of one breast, coming to rest on her pounding heart. She knew I knew I affected her.

I turned her face to the side, rubbing the scruff of my jaw against it before bringing my mouth to her ear. “Be careful,” I whispered, feeling her shudder when I ran my tongue over the ridge of her ear before sliding it inside.

She gasped. Her hands came up to my chest, but she didn’t push.

“When you try to bite the wolf,” I said, “he just might bite back.”

To make my point, I took her earlobe into my mouth and gently drew my teeth over it, drawing it out. Beneath the hand that rested against her heart, her nipple hardened.

A moment later, I released her and sat back, victorious. I tapped my ring against the window, absently glancing at the family crest. The driver opened the door.

“Let’s go put your father in the ground,” I said, climbing out. She emerged a moment later, the net of her hat back in place. I buttoned my coat jacket. “Fucking stifling here.” I gestured for her to go ahead. She did, refusing to meet my gaze or make a comment. I smiled, putting one tick on my side of the column marking my win for this round.

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