I could take any one of these women.
I’m stood by the bar watching the throb and sway of the women on the dance floor. I laugh inwardly at my own thoughts.
That doesn’t matter if I don’t want any of them.
I keep my frustration internal, nodding my head in acknowledgment as the tall, willowy, barman points his spindly finger towards my empty whiskey tumbler.
Trousers rumpled, fingernails bitten, sunken eyes, keeps checking his shirt pocket and rubbing his reddened nose. A man whose casual use of cocaine is starting to become a full blown addiction which is taking over his life.
I knock the whiskey back, awaiting the few minutes of numbness that will wash over me before my body metabolises the alcohol and I’m sober and alert again. Since I was a teenager, alcohol has given me mere minutes of relief. Even when I craved months of it.
“I like a man who likes his whiskey,” a tall, confident redhead approaches me, curling her long fingers around my arm. “Let me buy you another one.”
Firm bust, tight waist, pale skin with glittery shit all over. Looks starving, no bra, no knickers.
“No, thanks,” I give her a polite smile before looking past her to the dance floor.
Her fiery red curls remind me too much of my sister-in-law, Elise. Although her eyes are grey not green and lack the sharp intelligence of Elise’s.
“Come on, handsome,” she coos, pressing her tight frame against mine. “Let yourself have a good time.”
This time, when I look at her, the politeness in my expression is gone. My features are set in a firm, cool look of disinterest. This is the expression I wear in my working life, the expression that makes me so good at what I do.
I see her physically shudder as she pulls away, stumbling over her admittedly sexy high heels before she merges back into the anonymity of the crowd.
If she hadn’t reminded me of Elise, would I have gone for her? No. Of course not. You can be as curious as you like but I’m a man who knows what he likes and she wasn’t it.
I find myself wishing I could call up Claire and fuck her like I did yesterday but that’s not the way our relationship works and I doubt her dom would approve. Our agreement doesn’t work like that.
Go home, why are you even out?
The fact that I’m questioning myself is a good sign that I need to call it a night. I have a lot on with work. I have Elliot Vanders right where I want him but we’re in the final innings and the risks are higher than they ever have been.
We can’t afford a single mistake which is lucky because I rarely make them. I want to go home but I’ve been watching a couple on the other side of the room since I got here and I’m not convinced the woman wants to be here. It looks like she’s on the verge of tears but her partner doesn’t seem to care. I’m not prepared to leave until I can observe them a little more closely. I’m getting a bad read off the gym rat.
Tight polo, greased hair, designer stubble, scuffed trainers, tacky tattoo. Trouble all over him. Aggressive and possessive with no self-control. Control is everything.
I take a few steps in their direction with a route to navigate the edge of the dance floor already in mind. I avoid an energetic twerker, glide around a girl who is lying on the floor in a drunken heap with her friends, and re-evaluate and take stock of the room.
With absolutely no warning, my brain stalls. That might seem normal to you but my brain never stalls. It’s constantly reading the space around me, taking stock of every single detail, position, and possibility that others may deem insignificant.
My mind hasn’t gone blank, the situation isn’t that serious. With my military history, my ability to be perpetually aware of my surroundings is one which has saved my life on several occasions and being without it makes me feel exposed.
In this occurrence, all my neurons seem to be firing in one direction and one alone. All my senses are awakened as I approach her. Her light brown hair sets the depths of her dark brown eyes in steep contrast. I can identify the lightly floral scent of her perfume over the sweat and alcohol of the room. It’s a feminine, layered aroma which draws me closer.
Her dress is tight, just above the knee, but could easily be worn in an office. Judging by the sensible, kitten heels, she may well have come straight from work.
My feet move me in her direction because it’s not enough to see her and smell her. I want to touch her, to taste her.
I come to a stop and lean against the wall to her right, observing her as she takes tentative steps into the large room, her full chocolate eyes scanning the space as if she’s looking for somebody.
She might not realise it yet but that somebody is me. My mind is made up.
She’s mine tonight.