VelvetValentines, page 1
VJ & Sierra Summers
Book 1 in the Velvet Scenes series.
Elise and Derek have the perfect relationship—or so she thinks. When she discovers an invitation to a Valentine’s Day Bacchanal at Club Velvet Ice, she begins to wonder. Especially since it’s addressed to Master Derek. Forcing Derek to come clean about the secrets of his past also forces Elise to confront her own desires, as Derek puts her love—and her courage—to the test. Now they must discover if they have the strength to trust in their own feelings, and in each other, so their love can survive
A Romantica® BDSM erotic romance from Ellora’s Cave
VJ & Sierra Summers
Come and spend the holiday with us – and don’t forget the handcuffs.
Velvet Ice is hosting our annual Wicked Winter Night on February 14th.
Your room is ready and waiting, enjoy our Valentine’s festivities.
Complementary gift bags for all our members.
Don’t forget your golden coin.
Lust is in the air!
The Staff of Velvet Ice
Elise Sanders re-read the silver writing inside the black invitation. What in the world was Velvet Ice, and why was Derek being referred to as “Master”? She’d read the thing three times and it didn’t make any more sense now than the first. She looked back down in the desk drawer the invitation had been in. Lying under the invitation was a shiny gold coin, stamped with a V on one side and a whip on the other.
“Hey baby, did you find the stamps?” Derek’s deep voice came from behind her. “Can’t mail cards to your nieces without stamps.” He nuzzled the side of her neck. She closed her eyes for a second and enjoyed the feel of Derek’s tongue behind her ear.
She couldn’t help but melt back into his embrace. It had been that way since the first time she’d seen him, staring challengingly across the courtroom at her. She’d met his soulful brown eyes and had forgotten, for just a second, the judge and jury. She’d even forgotten the terrified young man sitting behind Derek at the defense table. For that split second there’d been no one in the courtroom except them, and Elise had known her life was about to change forever.
Two years later Derek could still turn her mind to mush with a look. All he had to do was trail a finger down her shoulder and her body melted like candle wax. If she sometimes thought she saw a shadow of dissatisfaction in his eyes, she blamed it on her own insecurities. Now, having seen this invitation, she wasn’t so sure.
Elise grabbed the coin on impulse and slipped it into the front pocket of her jeans. “No, but I did find this.” She turned to face him, holding out the invitation. “Why is it addressed to Master Derek?”
Derek snatched the thick, embossed paper from her hand and crumpled it up, tossing it into the small wire trash bin next to the desk.
“It’s nothing, baby.” He tried to wrap his arms around her but Elise maneuvered her way free.
“It doesn’t look like nothing. It looks like something you ought to tell me about.” She wasn’t normally a suspicious woman, but something about the words on the invitation was nagging at her.
Derek crossed his arms over his chest and blew out a long breath. “Elise, it’s just something left over from my past. My past, baby.”
“If it’s part of your past, then you shouldn’t have any problems telling me about it.” The uncomfortable expression on her lover’s handsome face sent her nerves twanging, compelled her to push him a little more. “Derek, we’re supposed to trust each other. It can’t be so bad that you’re afraid to tell me.”
Streaks of red marked his cheekbones. She wasn’t sure if it was out of embarrassment or anger. Elise felt a knot of worry begin to twist in her stomach. She stood quietly waiting for him to say something, anything. When he refused to even look at her, Elise lost her patience.
“I love you, Derek, and I’ve shared the most intimate things about my past with you. You say you love me, but apparently you don’t feel you can do the same.” Her anger died, drowned under a wash of hurt.
“Don’t ever question my love, Elise.” His eyes snapped and she didn’t have to wonder anymore why his face was red. The man was pissed. “You are everything to me. Everything.” He pinned her with a hard stare. His lawyer stare, designed to cow the most resistant witness. “You shouldn’t have been snooping in my stuff in the first place.”
Elise froze—no way was Derek Thomas going all legal on her. Her normally easygoing nature went up in flames as the famous Sanders red-headed temper took over, pushing the hurt aside.
“I wasn’t snooping in your things. The damn thing was lying there when I went to get the stamps. You’re the one who told me where to look.” He was so not going to blame her because she’d found something she apparently wasn’t supposed to see. “What else are you hiding from me?” His deep-brown eyes widened but no words passed his lips.
Frustration drove Elise on. “Dammit, Derek, you look like I ran over your dog. What’s so difficult about answering my question?”
He closed his eyes and clenched his jaw so tight she was surprised he didn’t crack a tooth. Then he drew a deep breath and met her gaze.
“Fine. You win. Master Derek is who I used to be.” He turned and walked into his bedroom. She heard him open his walk-in closet and rifle loudly through the contents.
When he came out he had a whip wrapped around his arm. Her mouth dropped open in shock. The thing had to be at least six feet in length from handle to tip. He held it comfortably, like he’d used it many times before. He stroked his long fingers over it the way he’d touch a lover. His whole demeanor was different. Her passionate, playful boyfriend was now serious, dark, almost menacing.
Elise thought she should be afraid, but she wasn’t. Instead she was confused and a little bit nervous. Not in a bad way. No, this kind of nervous made her heart race, her nipples tighten painfully and her mouth water. She’d never experienced this side of Derek, hadn’t known it existed. Their lovemaking was always so sweet and gentle—he treated her body as if she were made of crystal.
“Yes, baby, it’s exactly what you think it is.” He walked over to her, behind her. His hot, moist breath slid across her nape.
“In that past you are so desperate to know about, I was a sexual Dom, Elise.” She jumped as the handle of the whip slid across her shoulders and around her throat to brush over the tops of her breasts. A shiver worked its way through her, starting at her core and shaking her whole body. Her nipples peaked and her panties grew damp. “My lovers were my submissives, and Velvet Ice is the club where I would go to play with them.”
The moment he mentioned ex-lovers the spell he was weaving broke and Elise was left frozen where she stood, unable to form a coherent sentence.
“What’s wrong, baby? Can’t imagine yourself tied to my bed while I do all kinds of dirty little things to you?” The disgust in his voice broke her heart. The brief touch he’d just given her was far from being dirty. No, that small demonstration had only managed to fire up her curiosity and make her wonder what else he liked to do. And whether she’d like it too.
“Derek…” She paused, not sure what to say. She didn’t understand his anger. He was the one keeping secrets. She was the one who had the right to be pissed off.
He moved to stand in front of her and let the whip fall to the floor at their feet. He cupped her cheek, his big hand infinitely gentle.
“Baby, I don’t want you to know that part of me.”
A lump formed in Elise’s throat when she saw the sadness in Derek’s eyes.
“Why not? Derek,
“Remember our first date?”
Elise remembered it like it was yesterday. They’d had dinner, then sat at a little jazz club downtown until closing time, sharing their life stories.
“I knew that night that I wanted something more with you than a few dates,” he told her earnestly. “I was attracted to everything about you.” A little flame kindled in his eyes, echoed low in her belly as they both remembered their first, electric kiss.
He sighed. “That night you told me about your first lover. How he spanked you, and how much you hated it. You told me how he hurt you when you had sex.”
“Derek, wait a minute. I think you misunderstood what I was really saying.” He cut her off with his finger to her lips.
“No, baby, I understood you perfectly. I knew that night I would have to choose between my old way of life and a new way, with you. I chose you.” He stroked her lower lip with his thumb, cradling her face in his hand. “I still choose you.”
In the back of her mind, Elise knew that he’d given up part of himself for her, and at some level she was overwhelmed. In awe. But only at some level. The rest of her was even angrier than before.
“I never asked you to change for me, Derek,” she began, fire in her tone.
“I know,” he interrupted. “But I also know you couldn’t handle what I liked doing. You’re too sweet, too delicate for that kind of lifestyle. Especially when I already knew you didn’t like it.”
Elise backed away from the man she loved. He was making her question every aspect of their relationship, and it terrified her. Left her feeling adrift and alone. She grabbed her anger and held on tight. At least angry she could ignore the soul-deep hurt.
“You arrogant son of a bitch. How dare you sacrifice yourself for the sake of my sweetness and delicacy?” She didn’t even try to keep the sarcasm out of the last three words. “I don’t even know you, do I?” He flinched at the disbelief in her tone, and her heart broke a little bit. “And if that’s how you see me,” she shook her head, “well, then, Derek, you’ve never really known me, either.”
Derek moved in on her, grabbing her arms above the elbow to prevent her escape.
“Yes you do, baby. You know me better than anyone ever has.” She turned her face away, unable to look at him as she imagined all the lovers, the submissives, who’d known him far better than she ever had. “Elise.” He caught her chin between his finger and thumb and gently forced her to face him. “I’ve never kept any secrets from you except this. And this is a part of my past.”
“It’s only in your past because of me. I’m not stupid, Derek. I know enough about psychology to realize that when something is a big part of your life, it’s a part of who you are, not just something you do.”
“Baby, listen to me.” There was something close to desperation in his voice. “I’m no longer that guy.”
She wanted to believe him, but the doubt was there in his eyes. She felt cheated, cheated out of a large part of who he was.
“For how long, Derek? You already miss that part of your life.” She cut off his denial. “I saw the look on your face when you touched me with that whip. So how long, Derek? How long will it take you to blame me and then resent me for what you gave up?”
Elise pulled herself from Derek’s grasp and he let her go. He swiped his hand through his hair, leaving it in dark, silky spikes around his face. “What do I have to do to get you to believe me?”
She backed up toward the front door. “Why didn’t you cancel your membership at this club?” He didn’t answer, but she didn’t really expect him to. It was just another hint, another piece of evidence that he wasn’t as free of his past as he claimed. She sighed, suddenly exhausted. “I don’t know, Derek.”
She was heartsick and soul weary as she made her way to the front door. “I love you, but how can we make a future together without trust?”
Unable to face his agonized dark eyes any longer, Elise grabbed her jacket and keys and stepped out the door, out of the warmth of his condo and into the cold Michigan night.
Derek slammed his fist into the closed front door. Goddammit, why the hell did she have to find that damn invitation? He scrubbed his hands over his face. Why the hell hadn’t he pitched the damn thing when he’d received it?
He turned and walked to the small trash bin. Bending over, he retrieved the crumpled vellum and smoothed it out, stroking his thumb over the embossed silver lettering.
If he were honest with himself he would admit that he missed that part of his sexuality. But fuck, making love with Elise was beautiful. He loved every contour of her body. Her every sigh and whisper stroked over him, warming his soul. When she came, he reveled in the feel of her wrapping herself around him and holding him tight. He loved her, loved her more than he could ever have believed possible.
He’d watched her face as she told him the story of her first experience with sex. It tore at him to know that the man she’d given herself to had turned her first time into something ugly and painful. Derek had known in that moment that there was no way in hell he could tell her about his Dominant tendencies, much less about Velvet Ice.
The notorious Detroit club looked like any normal nightclub on the first floor. It was only by special invitation that a person made it to the second, and only members made it to the third floor play area and individual rooms.
He hadn’t stepped foot in the place since his first date with Elise. Instead he’d put his coin in a desk drawer and let it gather dust. Picking up the whip from the floor, he moved over to flop onto the couch. He rubbed his fingers back and forth over the supple leather. He’d forgotten how good it felt just to hold the thing in his grip. For a moment when he’d run the handle along her neck, Derek could have sworn Elise’s breath had hitched and her skin quivered.
He groaned as his cock hardened. He’d been half aroused from the moment he’d seen Elise with the damn invitation. It just fucking figured that the forbidden thought of Elise under his whip, his flogger, would make him hard as a rock.
He gave a little groan and pressed his palm over his erection as if he could subdue it by sheer determination. The slight stimulation just made it worse. What the hell, he decided. He was hard and Elise had left him alone and in need. Derek closed his eyes, tipped his head back on the couch and gave in to the fantasy he’d been denying for the last two years.
Pictures of Elise floated behind his eyes and he popped the button on his jeans. His cock made a desperate bid for freedom, tenting his dark-green boxer briefs and forcing the zipper down. He slid his hand under the stretchy cotton and freed his cock, grunting a little at the sensation of skin on skin. His hand was rough, the skin tough, nothing like the silk of Elise’s hands.
He imagined her standing before him, her slender body wrapped in a tight leather corset. It would be white, he thought, the color a perfect match for her angelic heart, but the leather hinting that if she was an angel, it was a naughty one.
He ran his hand the length of his dick, strumming his thumb over the tip as he pictured her perfect breasts lifted high and proud by the supple leather, her pale-pink nipples darkening to the rich rose of arousal.
A bead of pre-cum glistened on the head of his cock and he smoothed his thumb over it, using the moisture to slick the sensitive skin. His other hand drifted down to his balls, which were drawn tight. He palmed them and slid up and down the length of his shaft.
Her skin was pale and perfect, as fine-grained as a baby’s. He knew her ass would pinken up so fucking beautifully if he spanked it. He’d bury his fingers into her tight, wet pussy and flog her ass until it was criss-crossed with red stripes. He moved a finger to the ultra-sensitive skin behind his balls, rubbing the spot and moaning as another image took over.
Beautiful Elise, between his thighs while he sat back in his chair. Her hands tied to the arms of the chair as she used her sassy, sexy mouth on his dick.
He stroked faster, pre-cum leaking out, lubing his hand. The
His hips surged. He would push as far into her mouth as he could, until she was deep throating him, until the pleasure was too much, too intense, and he came down her throat in an explosion of perfect ecstasy. And she would swallow every fucking drop, the contractions of her throat drawing out every last bit, taking him into her, making him a part of her forever.
Opening his eyes, Derek moved his hand up to his stomach, where he’d spilled himself when he came. Damn. He couldn’t imagine ever going back into the lifestyle without her. He flat-out didn’t want anyone else. Vanilla or not, Elise Sanders was the only woman he ever wanted to have sex with again. The ring in his pocket proved that. He only hoped he hadn’t driven her away for good with his secret.
Two days later, Elise fidgeted anxiously in her chair in the business office on the third floor of Velvet Ice. She’d waffled endlessly before calling the club, and afterward she’d picked up the phone a dozen times to cancel this appointment. But she’d put it down without dialing every time. Something deep down told her that if she and Derek were going to have a future together, they needed complete honesty and complete trust between them.
She’d spent hours since walking out of Derek’s house Friday night online researching BDSM and Dom/sub relationships. She’d never considered herself to be someone who’d enjoy rough or painful sex—God knew her first experience with sex had been so rough and painful that it had been years before she’d been willing to try it again—but the more she read, the more she understood that it wasn’t so much about the pain. No, the kind of sex Derek craved required complete surrender and complete trust. Now Elise realized that, while she’d trusted Derek with all her secrets—all that she was—he hadn’t felt like he could trust her with a fundamental part of his personality. She couldn’t believe how much it hurt that he hadn’t felt safe enough to share all of who he was.