Caleb wanted nothing more than to know what she was thinking, but he was too terrified to ask. The feeling of terror was foreign and unwanted. The last time he’d felt it, Livvie was in a house, bleeding, broken, and barely holding on to her life. He’d been terrified then and he’d barely known her. The way he felt for her now paled in comparison. He dared not ask what was in her heart. He knew he couldn’t bear to hear it.
“I can’t stand the smell of him on you,” Caleb sneered.
Tears sprang to Livvie’s eyes and trailed down her temples. She closed her eyes and turned her head away from Caleb.
He put his hand on her face and forced her to face him.
Fuck! I’m going to ask.
He needed to know. He needed to know if her love for him was real. He needed to know hope was not lost and he could still, against all odds, repair the damage he had done.
“Did you enjoy it?” he asked. He tried not to make it sound like an accusation, but he knew he fell short. Livvie raised her hands to her face, covering her eyes and mouth as she began weeping. Again, Caleb refused to let her hide. He reached for her hands and pressed them into the bed above her.
“Tell me!” he snapped.
“I don’t know what you want me to say!” she cried.
“Tell me the truth! Did you like sucking his dick? Did he eat your pussy better than I do?” Caleb’s thoughts were suddenly murderous. He had meant to be kind, he had meant to be gentle, but it just wasn’t his way. He no longer knew what ‘his way’ was.
“Yes!” Livvie screamed, “Yes, you son-of-a-bitch. I liked it. Isn’t that why you made me do it? So you could parade me around like a trained fucking poodle?”
Caleb saw red. He squeezed Livvie’s wrists until she cried out in pain and he forced himself to let go. Her words hurt him.
Mine! You’re fucking mine!
Caleb pulled away from Livvie and reached for his belt. He unfastened it quickly and pulled it free in one swift jerk. Livvie gasped, scrambling backward across the bedspread. Caleb caught her ankle and dragged her back toward the edge of the bed. She folded her knees and crossed her arms over her breasts.
The plug in Livvie’s ass was clearly visible and the sight sent the strangest series of emotions through him, not the least of which was lust. He leaned forward above her and braced his arm across her legs to keep her bent. He chanced a glance up at her face and saw the terror in her eyes as she strove to remain perfectly still.
He reached down and pressed his palm against the plug. Livvie groaned and shut her eyes, but made no move to stop him. Caleb knew it was cruel to keep her in such a position, but his anger and lust kept him from gentling.
Caleb’s fingers traced the rim of Livvie’s hole, stretched around the plug. “How about this, Kitten? Do you like this? Should I invite everyone downstairs to watch?”
Livvie closed her eyes and turned away with a whimper.
“Look at me,” he said and tugged gently on the plug until she complied. “Do you want me to take this out?”
“Yes, Master,” she whimpered. Tears ran down her temples.
“Ah! It’s Master, now, is it?” he said. “You’re so much more obedient when you’ve something rammed up your ass.” He tugged again.
“Please, don’t! I only did it because you told me to!” she sobbed.
“Quiet! You don’t want to provoke me,” he said. His body trembled with rage.
You’re scaring her, you idiot. You won’t get to her this way.
Caleb knew he was hearing the voice of reason in his head, but he seemed unable to help himself. His fingers traced the edges of the plug, over and over until he could feel Livvie’s hips rocking on their own.
“Tell me you like this,” he said. Lust edged his voice.
“I like it,” she whispered.
Caleb continued his gentle, but sadistic exploration. He watched as Livvie’s tears wet her face, but her teeth nibbled on her lip. She felt pleasure, but she also felt shame. It was a feeling Caleb understood all too well.
Slowly, he pressed on her muscles and pulled on the plug. He wanted it out. He wanted all evidence of the past twenty-four hours stripped away from her body and from his mind.
“Relax,” he snapped, when he felt her tighten up. “Push the plug out,” he ordered.
“I can’t,” Livvie sobbed.
“Push, now!” he said and spanked her upturned ass. It wasn’t much of a slap, but his point was made. Livvie squeezed her eyes shut and pushed at the same time Caleb slid his finger in around the plug to loosen the suction created by Livvie’s ass.
Slowly, he wiggled the plug back and forth as Livvie pushed, until finally, it popped out. “Oh!” Livvie cried out.
As Caleb dispensed with the toy, Livvie turned onto her side and wept into his bedspread. He returned shortly, at a loss for how he wanted to proceed. He needed to make her his. He pulled her up off the bed and turned her toward it. His heart ached when she didn’t resist.
Easy, Caleb. Don’t break her. Win her.
Caleb wrapped his arms around Livvie and pulled her close. He needed her close. She trembled in his arms, her chest heaved with sobs. Caleb buried his nose in her neck and shut his eyes tightly.
“I’m sorry,” he said. “I know. I know you only did it because I told you to.” Livvie gasped and squirmed in his arms as she tried to turn around, but Caleb held her in place. He needed to say things to her and he couldn’t do it unless his eyes were closed and her body was pressed against his. That was his way.
He’d confessed so many things to her in the dark. He’d whispered to her as she’d slept. He’d held her close to him and fantasized about all the things he wanted and yet felt could never be his. He’d discovered a secret place inside himself in those moments.
He was done fantasizing. He wanted his desires to become reality.
“I’m fucked in the head, Livvie. I know it. I know I’m wrong,” he whispered and held her tighter. She was frozen in his arms.
“I felt like I didn’t have a choice. Felipe’s been watching us since we got here. He has cameras everywhere,” he continued. Livvie gasped. “But I did have a choice. I could have told him to go fuck himself. I could have killed him right then and there – but I didn’t.”
“Rafiq will be here soon and I…. I needed a way to let you go. I needed a way to remind myself I can’t keep you.” Caleb could feel himself getting choked up. His skin crawled with heat and shame. He was weak to express so much, but now the floodgates had opened, he could do nothing but hold tight to Livvie as he was battered against the rocks.
“I’ve lived a horrible life. I’ve done terrible, unspeakable things. You have to know, I’m not sorry. I’ve never killed anyone who didn’t deserve it. The scars on my back are the least of what I’ve suffered. And it’s only because of Rafiq I’m alive.”
“No, Caleb,” Livvie whimpered.
Caleb squeezed her again, too roughly. He loosened his hold when Livvie whined, but he couldn’t let her go. “I don’t know how to make you understand. I don’t know how to tell you how much I owe him. I owe him everything! But God, help me – I can’t….”
He couldn’t say it. He couldn’t tell her how much she had come to mean to him. She could destroy him with her rejection. If she had feigned her feelings for him – if he’d bought into her lies and her quest for freedom…. He wasn’t sure what he would do. He could hurt her.
“I couldn’t stand to see you with that motherfucker downstairs. I wanted to beat him unconscious. Even now, I can smell him on you and it makes me sick!” He growled.
Livvie cried. She struggled in Caleb’s grasp until she freed her arms. She placed them over his hands and squeezed them. “I didn’t want to,” she sobbed. “But…you’re just…you’re all over the place! One minute, I think…you must feel something. You have to care! But the next…. Caleb, you’re awful. You’re cruel and you…you break my heart.”
Caleb held her as she sobbed in his arms and never had he wished he could just let go, so much. He wished he were capable of letting everything come out of him. He wanted to cry. He could feel the tears in his throat. Everything hurt, his heart, his throat, even his eyes as he kept them tightly closed. His arms ached with the intensity of his hold on Livvie, but he couldn’t let it out. He’d trained himself for far too long and unlike the job he’d done with Livvie, he’d trained himself much too well.
“I can’t take it anymore, Caleb. I’ve tried, but I can’t,” she sobbed. “Every time I think you’re coming around, every time I let myself hope, you crush me. You rip everything out! Sometimes I think I fucking hate you. Sometimes I know I hate you. And still! Still, Caleb – I love you. I put my faith in you. I believe you when you say it’s all going to be alright.”
“I’m done,” she said with a determination capable of stopping Caleb’s heart. “I’m done, Caleb. I’ll kill myself!”
Pure rage slammed into Caleb. He turned her in his arms and pushed her onto the bed. His body came crashing down on top of her and he held her down. “Don’t you dare! Don’t you dare say shit like that to me. That’s the coward’s way out and you know it,” he spat.
Livvie’s eyes burned with a rage to match Caleb’s own. He could see it. He could feel it. “You’re the coward, Caleb. I’m not afraid to tell you how I feel. I’m not afraid to admit, that despite everything you’ve done to me, I love you.”
She loves me.
“Do you have any idea how stupid I feel confessing to you?” she continued, “You kidnapped me! You’ve humiliated me, beat me, nearly gotten me raped, and just a moment ago you had me suck a complete stranger’s dick in a room full of twisted perverts. I love you, but I’m not the coward, Caleb. I deserve to live or die on my own fucking terms.”
Caleb stared down into Livvie’s face and the steel he saw behind her eyes shook him to his foundation for the second time. Livvie was no coward. He knew it, had even told himself he’d never accuse her of such a thing again, and this had been why. Livvie would do it. She would end her own life. Caleb couldn’t breathe.
“I’m sorry,” he whispered. It seemed to be all he could say, all he was capable of saying. He relaxed his hold on her and rested his head next to hers on the bed. He made himself breathe, past the pain, past the anguish lying in wait in his throat. Slowly, deeply, he breathed.
They lay in silence for several minutes. Caleb could feel Livvie’s tears as they slid down her face; they wet his own. It was as close to crying as Caleb could get and for a moment he imagined they were his tears. They were his confession. They said all the things he couldn’t…because he was a coward.
Slowly, Livvie stirred. Caleb wasn’t sure what to expect, but then he felt her arms slide around him. Caleb’s stomach dipped, his heart felt squeezed. She shouldn’t be holding him. He knew it was his place to comfort her since he was the one responsible for all of her suffering. Still, Caleb was selfish. He let her be the one to comfort them.
“I thought about you,” she said numbly, “while he was touching me. I thought about you.” Caleb pressed into her in a silent plea for her to stop talking. He didn’t want to hear this, but Livvie was done listening to him, and he knew it. “I wanted to make you jealous. I wanted to make you feel, even a fraction, of what I felt, the night you fucked Celia in front of me.”
Caleb winced. His heart felt even tighter. He hoped Livvie’s words meant he hadn’t lost her yet. Somehow he’d find a way to make it right with her, and Rafiq.