Which brings us to now.

I really tried to dress appropriately tonight and found that I couldn’t. I don’t have married clothes. I only have single, let’s fuck, clubbing clothes. As we walk down to his sexy Impala, his baby, Ash finally took a second to look at me and says, “That’s what you’re wearing?” I simply nodded knowing he wouldn’t be the happiest camper that ever lived. He raised his head heavenward as if in prayer and mumbles, “Of course. Fuck me. Fuck me. Fuck me hard. Amen.”

I scoot over on the bench seat to be closer to him. As soon as I’m within grabbing distance, he hooks an arm around me and smiles to the road ahead. We have a lot of times like this. Times where we don’t need to say a thing. We just get each other like that. And it’s nice.

We arrive at The White Rabbit and Ash parks the car. When I get out of the car, Ash growls. I turn to him with narrowed eyes. He stomps over to my side of the car and pushes me back into the passenger side door. He places his hand at the back of my thigh and I take in a shuddering breath. Almost nose-to-nose, we look into each other’s hooded eyes and his hand starts to climb up and under my hot gunmetal colored mini-dress. As soon as he touches my bare ass, he growls, “No panties? No fucking panties? Jesus, Nat!”

Suddenly defensive, I explain all too quickly, “This dress shows panty lines and I hate that.”

Glaring at me, he says, “You couldn’t wear something else?”

My heart squeezes. I ask quietly, “Don’t you trust me, baby?”

He leans back, looking at me like I’ve lost my mind and says, “That’s what you think this is about? Pretty girl, I trust you. I trust you more than I trust anyone. But…” He says that but a little harshly and pauses a moment before he goes on, “…how the fuck am I meant to concentrate on work knowing you’re dressed like this?”

Oh!

Dipping my head, I smile to myself. His fingers come under my chin. His eyes crinkle in the corners, and he utters, “I got the sexiest wife and I’m proud of that.” His nose scrunches. “But tonight every fucker’s gonna see what’s mine and try to get in on that. That, I’m not cool with.”

His fingers dip between the backs of my thighs and into my heat. My eyes drift closed, my head falls back and I moan softly. Ash says firmly, “This. Is. Mine.”

Nodding vigorously, I reach up to grip his shoulders. His mouth comes down on mine hungrily. He eats away at my mouth, and a flow of wetness seeps through me. I try to close my legs tight but when he groans into my mouth, I know he’s felt it. Not able to think straight, I slide my hands off his shoulders, down his hips and work his belt. Kissing me deeper, he says hoarsely, “Gotta make it quick, girl.”

This belt. This fucking belt!

His belt is more like a Rubik’s cube. When I finally manage to undo it, I pop the top button on his jeans and slide my back down the car. Ash places his hands on the top of the car, looks down at me with a smirk and mutters, “Super happy fun time?”

Sending him a saucy smile, I pull his hard length free of his jeans and stroke it a few times before I take it into my mouth. He groans, “Oh yeah.”

Working him with my mouth and hand, I stroke him while I suck him. He thrusts into my mouth gently and I see his stomach tense and twitch.

This needs to be quick so he’ll get quick.

His eyes have closed in bliss and I whisper, “Baby, watch me.”

His dark gaze settles on me and I open my knees wide to show him my bare mound. I lower my hand and work myself while I work him. His eyes close again and he pants through his whisper, “Fuck. She likes it dirty. Love my girl.”

A few seconds pass and I feel his stomach tense. He says, “Not gonna last.” Pulling him deeper into my mouth, I bob my head and hollow my cheeks with every out stroke while moaning. His hips jerk uncontrollably and he pants, “Deep, baby. It’s coming.”

Taking him as deep as I can, he stills and growls his release. Warm saltiness hits my tongue and I swallow it all up. Sucking gently, I bob my head slower and slower and finally release him with a pop.

He opens his eyes and looks at me through an almost sleepy gaze. Reaching down, he cups my cheek and mutters, “My dirty girl.”

Smiling up at him, I hear the security door open and squeak. Ash looks across the room and says to the mystery person, “I wouldn’t come over here if I were you.”

Max replies, “Why the fuck n- Oh man, are you gettin’ lucky?”

I quickly do up Asher’s jeans and stand. Max bursts into laughter when he sees my head ascend and chuckles, “Shit, guys. Warn a brother. Did you at least finish?”

Ash smiles big and fluffing my hair, I tell Max, “I never start something I don’t plan to finish.”

Ash wraps his arm around me and Max shakes his head. He says, “Well if you two don’t mind, I think I’m gonna make this a blowjob free zone from now on.”

Ash mutters through a smile, “You’re just jealous, bro. Take it like a man. You missed your chance.”

Max smiles and teases, “True. But don’t act like you didn’t steal her out from under me, you sly dawg you.”

When we walk past Max, I wrap my free arm around his waist, pull him close and tell him, “You know I love you, right?”

Max’s eyes gleam when he replies, “Forever and always, babe.”

Surrounded by my two favorite men, I feel it in my bones.

Tonight is going to be a good one.

***

Tonight is grating my nerves!

It started great. We all sat at the booth drinking, talking and laughing for a while before us girls decided we needed to dance it up a little. So Ash being Ash, he sits at the bar across the way watching us.

Okay, so the guy is ultra-possessive and over-protective but not in a creepy way. I told him not to bother. All he had to do was utter the name Cole and I gave in.

Ten minutes pass and every time I look up at my husband, a new floozy tries to occupy the stool next to his. It’s not like he’s flirting or anything, but I can tell he doesn’t want to be rude so while he watches me, he talks to them but never looks at them. And they just don’t give up!

One woman actually reaches up to his cheek and pulls his face to face her. What a ho!

Take a hint, honey!

When the umpteenth woman tries her hand at my husband, I’ve had it. I tell the girls I need a drink and head over to the bar. Once I’m in hearing distance, I yell out, “Asher, honey!”

He turns to face me with a smile. Miss brunette with glitter eye shadow does not.

Putting on my best dumb bimbo, I squeak, “There you are. I need your help.” Doing a really slow and obvious wink, I whisper loudly, “I need you to touch my no-no again. It’s all tingly.” Pouting, I say, “And I like when you touch it.”

Miss brunette gapes and says, “And you are?”

Not missing a beat, I roll my eyes and tell her, “His sister.”

And she actually gags.

Ash’s body shakes with silent laughter and we both watch as Miss Brunette scurries away. Pulling me to stand between his legs, he says, “That was cruel and gross. But I give you an A-plus for creativity.”

Turning to face him, I utter, “So much for the guys coming onto me. All the women are hanging off you tonight!”

A slow and surprised smile graces his gorgeous face, “Jealous?”

I scoff, “What? No! Hell no! Not even a little.” He just smirks knowingly and I concede, “Maybe just a smidge.”

Stefan the Sheriff comes over to us and from behind the bar, he looks me up and down not so discreetly. Holding his heart, he says, “My God, Nat. You can’t wear shit like that and expect me to be able to work without watching you every other minute.”

Ash scowls at him and opens his mouth to say something, but I cut him off by telling Sheriff on a loud whisper, “I’m not even wearing panties, honey.”

Sheriff blinks once, twice, three times. Then he asks hoarsely, “What are you doing later?”

Ash looks at Sheriff like he’s going to kick his ass and I burst into laughter. Wrapping my arm around Ash and leaning into him, I tell Sheriff, “Have you met my husband, Sheriff?”

Ash wraps his arm around my waist and says, “Don’t think I’ll ever get sick of hearing you call me that.”

Sheriff looks to Ash and splutters, “N- Nat. She- She was the one. The talk…”

Ash smirks, nods and tells him, “I got my girl. Well, technically, my wife.”

I have no idea what they’re talking about, but they seem to know, so I don’t bother asking. Sheriff turns to me and says sincerely, “Congratulations, guys. Let me get you some champagne.”

When Sheriff returns with our glasses, we each take one and raise them. Smiling I say, “To us.”

Ash looks up in thought and says, “To happiness.”

Nodding, I utter, “To a long life together.”

Ash smiles, reaches up and grips the back of my neck. He pulls me closer to him til we’re nose-to-nose and mutters, “That’s a good one.”

I peck his lips and say between kisses, “You sure you can handle me, big boy?”

His body shakes with silent laughter. He runs his nose up the length of mine and says, “Baby, you were made for me.”

Stilling, I whisper, “That’s a good one.”

He kisses my lips and I close my eyes.

To happiness.

***

Fuck my life!

I’m running late to work for the first time in ever, but in my defense, I seem to have drunk too much last night and am hungover.

I didn’t say it was a great defense.

My head throbs, my stomach aches and I can barely open my eyes. I feel like I’m gonna ralph any second and as I walk through the door to Safira’s, Tina booms, “Good morning, hon!”

Okay, so she doesn’t say it all that loudly, but it feels like my eardrums are going to explode.

Cringing, I tell her, “Quiet, please. I feel like crap.”

A look of guilt crosses her face and she whispers, “Sorry!”

Great, now I feel like shit. Making my way over to her, I hug her and tell her, “Don’t be. It’s my fault. I’m hungover.”

Tina looks confused before saying, “Okay, well how about you do some nice relaxing inventory today?”

Sitting on my ass all day at a computer rather than having to listen to whiny customers and see the light of day which, by the way, is burning my retinas to a crisp, sounds like a plan. I’ll take inventory with a big yes please!

Squeezing her, I tell her, “This is why I love you, babe. You’re the greatest.”

Shuffling my way into the store room, I throw my bag down, take out my bottle of water and aspirin, chug two and sit behind the desk. I don’t think I’ve ever been so hungover before. When I click on the inventory software to open, all the letters and numbers look jumbled together. I can’t see clearly and the screen is making my headache worse. Lowering my forehead to the cool wooden surface of the desk, I breathe deeply and try to calm myself.

Now is not the time to get frustrated. Besides, if I am going to be frustrated at someone, I only have myself to blame.

No sympathy. Walk it off and get to work.

Shaking my head to clear it, I try again. Looking up at the screen, it seems a little clearer and I get to work.

Before I know it, three hours have passed and I’m almost done. My stomach rumbles and I realize I skipped breakfast. Taking my bag, I walk out of the store room and Tina greets me with a big smile. “Hey, you look a lot better. How are you feeling?”

Smiling back, I tell her, “A lot better. Thank God for aspirin. Are you hungry? I thought I’d go get us some subs from Silvio?”

Tina scrunches her nose and pats her belly, she explains, “I shouldn’t eat deli meat while I’m pregnant, so I’ll pass, but get me a cookie.”

Waving to her, I walk out the door and over to Silvio’s. As soon as I’m through the door, the smell of meat, cheese and baked goods hit me and I cover my mouth.

Oh shit. I’m going to ralph!

Quickly stepping back out to the sidewalk, I breathe deeply and decide on going to the drug store for some seltzer tabs. Once inside, I grab the stomach settling remedy and walk toward the counter. Looking to the left hand shelf, I stop suddenly. My heart skips a beat. I grab another few items off the shelf, just in case, and take it all to the register.

The little mature woman smiles knowingly, “Green around the gills, are we?”

Chuckling, I tell her, “Just a little.”

Needing to get somewhere quiet quickly, I basically run back to Safira’s and take my bag of medicine into the bathroom with me. Thoughts of lunch disappear with a new wave of nausea. I turn quickly and kneel, just in time to throw up in the toilet bowl.

Thoughts rush through my head and I open the drug store bag with shaking hands.

I hold up the long narrow box and open it before I can change my mind.

***

Closing my eyes, I lean my head back on the cool bathroom mirror.

When I think enough time has passed, I pick up the stick and gasp.

No fucking way.

I’m pregnant.

Chapter Thirty

Everything happens for a reason

Six months later…

My stomach aches. My back hurts. I haven’t brushed my hair today or my teeth. Wearing no makeup and dressed in sweats, I sit next to Ash and wait.

Always waiting.

I hate the fucking wait. It makes me nervous as hell.

Pulling my hands into the arms of my sweater, I wrap my arms around myself and go somewhere deep within myself. Somewhere safe and happy. In the void that is my mind.

I haven’t been happy for six months, and it’s taking its toll on my marriage.

Ash loves me and I love him just as much. I know he would do anything for me, but right now, no one can do a thing for me. I’m stuck in my head. In my thoughts. Somewhere I promised I’d never be again.

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