"I'll get you something to eat and drink before we go."

"Huh?" I queried, still a little confused.

He cocked his head to one side. "That's if you're up to seeing your brother." He smiled, a humorous spark in his Prussian-blue eyes. "That's if you can walk."

I blurted out immediately, "I can walk."

I lied, of course. At that moment, I had no idea whether my legs would support me or not. I had no idea sex was so intense. But heck, I wanted to see my brother. I wanted to make sure he was really okay and this Matt person hadn't yet murdered my brother for the sake of his fun.

"Can you?" he questioned as if he doubted my statement.

I frowned. "I can walk," I declared.

He folded his arms over his chest and leaned himself lazily against the doorframe, awaiting proof of my claim.

I bit my lip for a moment, praying my legs wouldn't make a fool out of me. Then I flung off the bed sheet. I regretted it the moment I did, as my naked body flashed before my eyes and undoubtedly the eyes of James as well. Quickly, I pulled it back up against me, clutching it against my chest.

"You destroyed all my clothing," I accused him darkly. "Like master, like dog, ruining all my belongings. Does it run in the household, by any chance?" I asked sarcastically. I meant to ask, Does it run in the family? But of course, a dog certainly didn't relate to its owner by blood. So household was the best I could come up with.

"Clothes don't suit you," was his blunt reply. "You look better without any."

I blushed profusely at his suggestive comment. "How rude," I muttered. "Now what am I supposed to wear?" I demanded indignantly.

"I'll buy you new ones," he said.

"You better, because I certainly don't have the budget to go shopping every week just to replenish my wardrobe."

That got him laughing. My words weren't meant to amuse him. They were meant to piss him off.

With my head held high, I wrapped the bed sheet around me and then put my feet onto the floor. He watched me like a hawk as I did so. Then slowly, I lifted myself from the bed. God, I felt heavy, just like that time during my hospitalization after the car crash.

Once I stood, I felt quite proud of myself for getting that far. First, I took one step and then another, and it was going good. Then I took another, and my legs couldn't take my weight. They went out from under me, and I collapsed to the floor with a puff.

James was by my side in an instant.

"Such a nuisance," he said, scooping me into his arms.

I glared at him. "Thanks to you," I retorted, my face red with both anger and embarrassment.

"You're not supposed to be walking," he said, smiling, his eyes on me. "Not after what I've done to you."

"Do you always do that to your women?" I couldn't help asking. Inside, I wanted him to say no. I didn't know why I wanted him to deny my statement, because really, I didn't have anything to do with his other women. I was merely his mistress, wasn't I?

To my disappointment, he didn't respond to my query. Instead, he said, as he descended the stairs, "What do you feel like eating?"

I was determined not to think about him and his other women, especially that beautiful Sophie back at his mansion, and said, "Just whatever you have is good."

"Hmm." He nodded.

He planted me on the very soft, comfortable sofa in the living area instead of the barstool in the kitchen. I guessed the barstool would be too hard on my backside. How very considerate of him, I thought sarcastically. He even turned on the TV for me to watch and arranged the cushions around me for me to laze myself on.

I eyed him as he headed to the kitchen and then proceeded to prepare something for me to eat. Even though the TV was on, I wasn't paying any attention. I was too busy thinking about Mr. James Maxwell, my eyes on him.

What had he done to me in that bath? I wondered. Did he take me again even though I'd been asleep? I couldn't believe I'd fallen asleep in the bath.

James lifted his head and looked at me a brief moment, a hint of a smile on his lips. I quickly looked away and turned my attention to the TV. I arranged myself properly on the couch, making myself comfortable.

While I sat there awaiting my meal and staring mindlessly at the program before me, I was aware my body was aching something dreadful. I tried to ignore the pain, but it was hard. I wondered if I should take a pain killer. Did most females feel like this after sex?

James appeared before me with plates of sandwiches in his hands. He placed them on the coffee table and left again to get some drinks. Once two mugs of hot coffee were done, he returned and joined me, sitting right next to me. He was even nice enough to hand me a sandwich.

"Thanks," I said, taking it from him. Then I proceed to eat. "It's delicious." I couldn't help it. I was hungry after all.

James relaxed back on the sofa and watched me chomp down my food as he sipped his coffee. I was just on my third piece when he said, "I got you some clothes."

I turned my eyes to him. "Oh... Thanks..." I cocked my head to one side. "When?"

"While you were sleeping," he said.

I blinked. "How long did I sleep?"

"Four hours," he said. "Quite a long mid-afternoon siesta, don't you think?" There was a hint of a tease within his tone.

I blushed. "I don't usually sleep during the afternoon."

"It wasn't exactly in the afternoon when you dozed off in the bath," he explained, taking another sip of his coffee.

"Huh?" I slowly bit into my sandwich. As I chewed, savoring the taste of lettuce, cucumber, and cold chicken, my mind wandered. His words made me wonder how long we'd spent having sex. Surely we hadn't spent all morning and the majority of the afternoon doing it? Right?

Suddenly, I felt his hand stroking my long hair. I turned my gaze to him as he dipped his head and kissed my cheek. When he moved his lips toward my mouth, I pushed him back and said, "I'm full. Thanks for the food."

He still didn't move away from me as he continued to stroke my hair.

"James?" I began, licking my lip. "My brother?"

He moved back then and sighed. "I suppose," he said and stood. "Come on. Let's get you dressed."

I stood, intending to take myself up to my own room to get ready. He wouldn't have any of that, however, and scooped me up into his arms.

"You know I can walk, right?" I stated as he ascended the stairs.

"I know you claim you can walk," he said. "But whether you can or you cannot is another story."

I pulled a face at him. I couldn't help myself.

Once we were in my own bedroom, I noted the bed was all made up and the room itself was tidy and clean. I wondered if the billionaire himself had clean the place or had he phoned one of the maids and requested a clean? Either way, I was quite pleased with the result.

As he put me down, I noted a dress and some underwear neatly folded on the bed.

"Are those for me?" I asked, staring at it. I knew ev

en from this distance those items weren't cheap.

"Hmm." He turned on his heel and headed out the door. But before he left, he said over his shoulder, "Do you want some help?"

I shook my head vigorously. "No. No. I'll be fine," I said quickly. "I promise I won't take long."

He nodded and then left, shutting the door behind him. Alone, I turned my attention to my new clothing. First, I picked up the dress. It was a lovely summer dress of a floral design, and the material was so soft in my hands. Then I picked the underwear as well and headed to the bathroom. Of course, my body was still sore as I walked, but I managed somehow.

In the bathroom, I unraveled the bed sheet from my body, relieved I didn't have to clutch onto it as if it were my lifeline or something, afraid it'd unwrap itself from me without me knowing. I was just preparing the panties when I noticed myself in the length of the mirror.

My eyes widened in shock as I mindlessly gaped at myself. Shit! I couldn't believe it. My body was bruised with hand and bite marks and black and blue everywhere.

My whole body involuntarily shook, and I whispered, "James!"

I couldn't believe it. My body looked like I'd been tortured brutally. I couldn't believe sex with James Maxwell did this to me.

I decided then I really needed to talk to him about our sex routine and he must tone it down. That decision made, I returned my attention to getting myself dressed.

Once done some moments later, I stared at myself. The bite marks along my neck and arms were still visible. I needed something long to hide those. At least the dress suited me and the underwear, too, to my surprise. I wondered how James figured out my size. Suddenly, the thought that he'd gone through my stuff while I was asleep didn't sit well with me. It was just plain weird. Another question I needed to ask him.

I headed out the door, got my now very light backpack, and then descended the stairs.

"James?" I called out.

The great man emerged from his office. "You're ready?" He was heading my way, and I noted he had small traveling luggage ready. Was he going on a business trip out of town somewhere?

* * * * *


Tags: Alexia Praks Dark Billionaires Billionaire Romance
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