Filthy Beautiful Lies Page 18

Her eyes lift from the book and settle on mine when I sit down across from her.

"Find something good?" I nod toward the book in her hands, which I assume has come from my personal library.

"Charlotte Bronte." She holds up the cover of Wuthering Heights for me to see. It’s a dark and twisted love story. Story of my damn life.

"Have you read it before?"

"In high school. But I don’t remember much of it." Setting the book down on the cushion beside her, she folds her hands in her lap and looks at me expectantly. She’s curious about what’s going to happen next.

"Are you hungry?" I surprise her by asking.

She nods carefully. I’m starving after the long afternoon spent on the course and when I reach for her hand, she carefully places her palm against mine. I tell myself that it’s important I get her comfortable with me, but in actuality, I just like touching her.

I lead her into the kitchen. Sunday is the only day I don’t have a staff here to prepare meals, but Beth usually leaves me with enough leftovers to survive for one day without her. I find the fixings for club sandwiches left in plastic containers and labeled in Beth’s efficient script. Turkey, strips of crisp bacon, avocado spread, gruyere cheese, and thick slices of tomato marinated in vinaigrette.

We assemble the sandwiches at the island and take our plates back into the den.

"I’m curious about why you’re here…" I pause, watching her reaction. It’s obviously for the money, but I can’t figure out why a girl like Sophie would be desperate enough to sell herself. She’s a clean cut, normal girl by all outward appearances – I strongly doubt she has gambling debts or a drug addiction to fund. I take a bite of my sandwich and wait for her to answer. Honestly, I have mixed feelings about finding out more about her and making this personal, but I’m too damn curious not to ask.

She seems hesitant at first and chews her food slowly, stalling for time. "My sister’s sick," she says softly, so soft I can barely hear her. "Her care is very expensive," she continues. It isn’t what I’m expecting and her honesty surprises me.

"The money…it will help?" I ask.

"Very much so," she whispers. I can tell she has mixed feelings about all this. As relieved as she seems at taking care of her sister, I sense there’s some lingering guilt about leaving home during a time of hardship.

I have no intention of baring my soul as completely as she’s done. I can’t. I doubt she’d stick around if she knew the real reason she was here. And I’m certainly not ready to let her go, especially before I’ve fulfilled the promise of her sweet, tempting body.

Her answer makes me feel the tiniest bit less selfish. I may have spent a million dollars to bring her here for my own egocentric needs, but knowing the money is going toward a worthy cause helps my conscious the slightest bit. "So you sold the only thing of value you had to save her." It’s more a statement than a question, but Sophie nods.

She’s an interesting girl, and not at all how I assumed she’d be, watching her stand up on that auction block, defying us all by covering herself. She’s sweet and timid and something in me knows I should be careful with her. I recall the way she slept against me last night, letting me spoon my body around hers and gripping my thumb like a newborn clings to its mother once sleep finally found her. Her selfless choice to come live here with me, a virtual stranger, strikes something within me. She is fearless. A woman worth knowing.

We eat in heavy silence, each of us seeming to process this new revelation about the nature of our relationship.

"How did you lose your virginity?" she asks.

I choke down the last bite of my sandwich and take a swig of water. Shit. Is she seriously asking me that? Though I suppose I’d rather answer questions about my past than explain why I’d bought her. "I was seventeen. On vacation in Italy with my family before I started my senior year of high school. I met a local girl and…" I lift one brow and Sophie chuckles. What more was there to say? It still brought a smile to my mouth to think of Luciana. She was four years older and not afraid of her raw sexuality. The sex had been phenomenal. Though to be fair, any sex would have been phenomenal to the seventeen-year old me.

"How were things with Marta today? I trust you got everything you needed?"

She nods. "Yes, thank you. Marta’s…nice."

The way the word hesitantly rolls off her tongue tells me there’s more she wants to say.

"She is," I confirm. She can also be tough as balls when she needs to be – which is why I trust her with my personal affairs. "She’s a regular around here. She’s in charge of my household staff and does any personal work I need her to as well."

Her eyes lift to mine. "Are you sleeping with her?"

"I don’t think that’s any of your business, Sophie." My voice holds the edge of a warning. Just because I’m being amiable and pleasant doesn’t mean I’m going to discuss my personal life with her and she might as well get used to that. She’s here for one purpose and maybe it’s time we both remembered that.

Her gaze falls from mine and she shifts uncomfortably in her seat.

"Do you remember what I said to you just before I left today?"

She nods. "About my…my mouth."

I lift a hand to her cheek and brush away a stray crumb of bread, letting my thumb rub against her lower lip. Her mouth parts at my touch and she sucks in a breath. I hold her eyes with mine, running my thumb along her plump bottom lip. "The only thing I want you worried about when it comes to my cock is how deep you can take it." The double entendre causes her chest to flush with heat.

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