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Second Thoughts (Sequel to Stange Reparations)
damien listening guitar
Title: Second Thoughts
Rating: R (language and sex)
Author: rogoblue
Summary: Sequel to Strange Reparations. Alpha sticks his nose in Adelle’s and Dominic’s business again.

Adelle DeWitt admired Laurence Dominic’s profile as he drove her home as promised—the strong line of his throat, the stereotypical Roman straight nose if you ignored the slight cant to one side he’d probably earned in some youthful misadventure. He’d been so calm, so normal, so eminently professional when they’d returned to the House after Alpha had given them both a drug that had inspired some of the best sex of Adelle’s life. Dominic had acted as though nothing untoward had occurred. As she’d expected. As she’d hoped. As she now was coming to despise. “I could have taken a cab home, Mr. Dominic,” she said, more to break the silence than to offer a mild rebuke or minor complaint.

Blue eyes never leaving the road before them, Dominic said, “A cabbie wouldn’t check to be sure your house is empty except for you before he leaves. I will.”

“Surely you don’t imagine Alpha will be waiting to ask if I enjoyed myself last night?” Adelle challenged, imbuing her tone with more than a hint of amusement.

“I don’t pretend to know what Alpha will or won’t do,” he said, finally glancing her way, expression closed, “but I can imagine a lot of nasty things he might try.” Adelle perused his obviously tense, well muscled shoulders. “You never told me what happened between you and Alpha before I arrived, ma’am.”

“Nor will I.” Adelle ignored Dominic’s passable effort at a long suffering sigh as she harkened back to the evening of the previous day.

* * *

Adelle DeWitt curled up in a large, exceedingly comfortable and hideously expensive chair, a book of essays in her hand. Her gaze, however, strayed to the sun beginning to set over the Pacific Ocean. She sighed. The view is beautiful. I should spend more time here. Sharp, bitter laughter sounded loud in her bedroom. I’m quite sure my superiors at Rossum would wholeheartedly approve of me contemplating the beauty of so much water in light of how much blood was so recently spilled in my House.

“Hello, Adelle.”

She had never given any credence to the concept of blood running cold. She did now. “Alpha,” Adelle said, without looking away from the view, trying to place the sound she heard.

“Please let me go. Oh, God, please just let me go.”

Adelle’s head whipped around to face Alpha and the battered, extremely frightened woman he held in his grip. “Do as she says,” Adelle commanded, rising to her feet and tossing her book aside.

Much to her surprise, Alpha did. Pointing imperiously to the chair in front of Adelle’s make up table, Alpha said, “Sit.” Regina Benedict balked until Alpha held a scalpel a quarter of an inch from her right eye. As the young woman Adelle had seen give Laurence Dominic all he could handle in a martial arts demonstration meekly did as she was told, Alpha gestured to Adelle’s bed. “If you would be so kind, Adelle.”

“I will not.”

“Good.” Alpha smiled like the predator he’d become as he stalked toward her.

Adelle held her ground and cursed her decision not to arm herself. Mr. Dominic had sent an excessive, to her mind, security detail of ten people to stay with her last night and throughout her day off, and Adelle had seen little need to take the extra precaution. Deprived of the time to properly consider the rarity of both her and Mr. Dominic being wrong by Alpha’s measured approach, Adelle placed her hands on her hips and called a look of utter disdain to her face.

“There’s no need to be afraid, Adelle,” Alpha murmured. “I didn’t come here to hurt you. If I had, it would already be done. I find I’m not long on patience these days, particularly with those most responsible for all these people in my head. Tell Topher Brink to watch over his shoulder for me.”

“I’m not afraid.”

Alpha rested the blade of the scalpel against her throat. Lapsing into a passable British accent, he said, “Why ever not?”

“As you said,” Adelle murmured. “If injuring me had been your intention, you would have acted already. Which begs the question, Alpha. Why are you here?”

“To balance my karma,” Alpha said. Before Adelle could begin to contemplate what that might mean, Alpha brought the flat of his hand down hard on the back of her neck. Adelle felt her knees buckle before she lost consciousness.

* * *

“What are you thinking?” asked Laurence Dominic, blue eyes a tad too perceptive for Adelle DeWitt’s taste.

“How much I’m going to enjoy a hot bath and a glass of bourbon.” Dominic’s expression practically shouted skepticism but he merely nodded and returned his attention to the road. “And what are you thinking, Mr. Dominic?”

“I’m having second thoughts about letting you talk me out of assigning you another security detail.” Tension betrayed by the death grip he had on the steering wheel, Dominic said, “I’ll give the order in as soon as we get to your house.”

“Please don’t, Laurence.” Adelle didn’t know whether to laugh or sigh at his startled reaction to her soft spoken request. The calculated use of his first name put him off balance as she’d intended. Never one to fritter away a tactical advantage, she said, “I am not a victim and I won’t allow Alpha to make one of me.”

“Your safety—.”

“Is my concern,” Adelle said, smiling slightly to reduce the sting of the interruption.

“But it’s my responsibility, ma’am.” She heard the steel beneath his words that bespoke how seriously he looked upon his duties.

“Unless I am very much mistaken, you intend to search my house from stem to stern before you allow me to set foot out of the foyer. My security system is state of the art.” As Dominic turned onto her street, she said, “What’s more, Lisa Grayson assures me that the heretofore undiscovered design flaw Alpha exploited is not present in the locking mechanism she had installed this day.”

“You’ll keep your personal firearm within reach at all times.”

“Yes, Mr. Dominic,” Adelle replied, even though there had been nothing interrogative about his words. She sensed the battle waging within him and did him the courtesy of giving him as much privacy as was possible in order to resolve the internal conflict. Adelle wasn’t certain Dominic had reached any conclusions when he parked his car at the end of her driveway. Ignoring the forceful slam of the driver’s side door, she waited for him to come around the car and open hers—an expectation of his it would serve no purpose to dash. He opened the door and offered her his left hand, gripping a 9 mm in his right. Taking his hand, Adelle murmured, “Thank you.”

Eyes darting everywhere, hand at the small of her back, Dominic propelled Adelle toward her front door at a speed just in excess of comfortable. She allowed her minor irritation to show when she met his eyes prior to keying in her security code. Dominic stepped inside first, surprising Adelle by pulling her in behind him, shutting the door and activating the lock. “Stay with me, ma’am,” he murmured.

“You wish me to accompany you?”

“The floor plan is too open for me to search either the basement or the upper floor without exposing you to anyone coming from the opposite direction.” The logic of his position was unassailable. “Where’s your gun?” he asked.

“My bedroom,” she replied.

“As good a place as any to start the sweep,” he muttered, taking the stairs two at a time, pausing at the top to wait for Adelle. As they moved down the hall, Adelle tried to decide if she was disturbed or impressed that Dominic required no instruction as to the location of her bedroom. As she stepped across the threshold, the memory of her last time within surged to the fore.

* * *

Head pounding, heart racing, eyes darting, Adelle DeWitt struggled even though she knew the effort was futile. Bondage games were not and had never been her cup of tea. Had they been, rest assured she would not be the one restrained while naked. Never would she willingly make herself this vulnerable.

“Did you enjoy the preview?” Alpha asked, sitting on the bed next to her, also naked, spreading Ms. Benedict’s blood across his chest. “The tiny blonde sure did. She didn’t look like a screamer, but when she got into the spirit of the sex … wow. Volume!” He sighed. “She died much quieter. That’s as it should be, don’t you think?” Alpha regarded Adelle for a long moment, watching her eyes track his bloody hand. Laughing, he squeezed one of his own nipples and grinned at the shiver of arousal that flowed through Adelle. “You are definitely ready for the feature presentation, my dear.” Cocking his head to the right, Alpha asked, “So who’s it going to be?” Amused by her confusion, Alpha said, “Who’s the lucky guy or girl who’s going to make you scream?” Alpha slapped his face, leaving a partial bloody handprint. “What was I thinking? I withdraw the question, Adelle. I’ll replace it with this one. Who’s the lucky guy or girl who’s going to scream for you? Who will the omnipotent, usually, Adelle DeWitt make beg for an orgasm?”

Adelle looked away and closed her eyes. The knowledge there was likely no way out of this put her in a damage control frame of mind and that was more Mr. Dominic’s purview than hers.

“C’mon, Adelle, you can be straight with me,” Alpha murmured, the sensual tone slipping past her quite meager defenses. Rossum’s pharmaceutical research program had produced an excellent product—her sex drive had been stoked and her inhibitions were falling by the wayside. “I’ll bring you anyone from your precious Dollhouse, except Echo,” Alpha said. “She’s mine. You can have any active, chef, personal trainer or janitor that’s ever caught your fancy. And, somewhat more important to you right now, I imagine, they can have you.” His whispers felt like caresses of appalling and embarrassing intimacy. “Who will you let ravage those impossibly sexy lips? Who do you want to tease your breasts until you promise them anything they ask to fuck you? Give me a name, Adelle. I want the name of the guy, I’m thinking, who is going to have your tongue in his mouth, among other places. Who is it that you fantasize about straddling in order to make him forget his name, rank and serial number? Who do you imagine thrusting into you hard and fast—?”

Adelle moaned. Alpha laughed. “Give it up, Adelle. I want the name.”

“Dom … Dominic.”

“Laurence Dominic. Why am I not surprised?”

Adelle’s eyes flew open and sought Alpha’s. “You’re not … surprised?” she ventured.

“Nah. I’d have done him the other day, if I could’ve gotten him alone without an assault rifle between us.” Alpha looked beyond Adelle as if remembering. “He looked so damn hot waving that thing around.” Attention returning to Adelle, he added, “And I loved the suit. It so went with the big gun.” Tapping Adelle’s left thigh with his clean forefinger, Alpha said, “Now, I’ve told you why I’d have considered picking Dominic. Why did you?”

“Because he won’t take it personally.”

“Adelle, sweetie, you two are going to fuck each other blind. How is that man … how would any man not take that personally and not reflect upon it with great personal pride to boot?”

“Mr. Dominic is different. He’s a professional.”

“The rifle toting, suit wearing, consummate professional security dude is going to screw his boss from dusk until dawn. That changes a person.”

“Not him.”

“You’re kind of sweet on him, aren’t you?” Alpha laughed, bouncing on the bed annoyingly. “That isn’t like you, Adelle. Going all soft and gooey like that.”

“I am neither soft nor gooey, Alpha.” Adelle was proud of the disdain in her tone.

“You are most definitely soft,” Alpha whispered, eyes slowly raking over her body. “Just look at that skin. I hope Dominic appreciates what I’m doing for him.” Smiling happily, “I admit, it’s probably more accurate to say wet and swollen in the nether regions, but gooey is so much more concise yet still evocative.”

“You don’t have to do this,” Adelle whispered.

“Oh, but I do, Adelle, I surely do.” Standing, stretching out his right triceps, Alpha murmured, “I have no choice.”

* * *

Adelle DeWitt and Laurence Dominic stood in her living room, both staring at the coffee table in front of her couch. Resting thereupon were two wine glasses and a full decanter. The DVD remote was arranged artfully among the glassware atop a terse note signed with the first letter of the Greek alphabet. “He’s been here again,” Dominic muttered. “Impregnable lock notwithstanding. I’m calling in a security detail.”

“Let’s not overreact, Mr. Dominic.”

“I’m not overreacting,” Dominic said, reaching for his phone.

Adelle stilled his hand by the simple expedient of catching it with her own. “Aren’t you even the slightest bit curious?” she asked, nodding toward the coffee table. He glanced down, widening eyes telling Adelle he’d read the note. “What do you suppose we’ll see when we press play?”

“Nothing, because we aren’t going to do Alpha’s bidding. Not again.”

“What shall we do with the DVD then?” Adelle asked.

“I’ll take it in to the House tomorrow and have …” Dominic frowned, obviously reviewing his plan and finding it lacking. “I’ll take it home, play it and let you know what’s on it after breaking it into very small pieces.”

“A wiser course of action than having it summarized by a member of your staff,” Adelle said, smiling up at Dominic as she poured wine into both glasses. “But I’m far too intrigued to allow you to abscond with this DVD.” Offering him a wine glass, she said, “Shall we settle in for Alpha’s show, Mr. Dominic?”

“You can if you want to, I’ll just …” His eyes darted around her living room as if assessing the defensibility of their current position.

“Drive yourself home?” she suggested, as he had earlier in the day when they discussed him driving her home.

“Not just yet,” he muttered. “I’d like to have another look around to see if I can figure out how Alpha got in here this time.”

“Feel free to wander at will, Mr. Dominic.” Adelle sipped her wine, allowing a pleased expression to speak to its quality. “I’ll wait for you to begin.”

* * *

“I like this room,” Alpha said, gesturing grandly to encompass Laurence Dominic’s bedroom in an upscale condominium tower with every amenity imaginable on site. “Very masculine but still … warm.” Alpha grinned. “Inviting even. Don’t you agree, Adelle?”

“I do not wish to discuss décor or anything else with you,” she snarled.

“Now the ride over here wasn’t so bad, was it?” Alpha asked. “I know, I know. You’re accustomed to being transported in higher style than wrapped in an often used drop cloth and tossed in the trunk, but refusing to converse over a slight so trivial? Surely not, Adelle.” She glared at Alpha. He glared right back, his eyes as cold as any she’d ever seen. “Do you really want me to do all of the talking?”

“No,” Adelle admitted.

Nodding sagely, Alpha ran the edge of his scalpel along the inside of Adelle’s thigh. She bit her lip in an effort to distract herself from the sensation. Alpha switched to the other thigh, the slow meandering path of the blade maddening. “So, how long have you had a yen for your Chief of Security, Adelle?” Alpha asked.

“What?” Adelle murmured, shifting her gaze to Alpha’s face, willing her legs to perfect stillness, having no desire to be cut.

“How long have you wanted Dominic?”

“I haven’t and I don’t.” For the first time, Alpha’s laughter unnerved Adelle. “What is it that you find so amusing, Alpha?”

“Let’s just say I’m impressed by how vehemently you state your lies. Truly and I’m not easily impressed.” Alpha sighed and poked her very lightly with his scalpel. C’mon, Adelle, be honest with Uncle Alpha. I watched the two of you walking around the House, moving together as if you were doing the tango. All the actives do.” Adelle felt as though the bed had been snatched out from beneath her. Grinning, undoubtedly at her expression, Alpha said, “You didn’t realize? Really? Mr. and Mrs. We Know Everything About Everyone, Particularly The Things You Really Wish We Didn’t were completely unaware.” Alpha’s grin got wider. “That’s so freakin’ amazing.” Looking sidelong at Adelle, Alpha said, “You’re kidding me, right?”

“The actives … observe Mr. Dominic and … and …,” Adelle found herself unable to finish.

“Why wouldn’t they?” Alpha said. “You two are … well, like mom and dad, I guess. Kids are naturally curious about their parents and what they get up to when they’re alone, even if most could never actually admit it without years of therapy. Actives are similar, without the squeamishness requiring therapy.”

Refusing to openly admit to being even mildly disconcerted, Adelle said, “I find it difficult to believe that anyone, even an active, attributes parental traits to either of us.”

“Think about it,” Alpha challenged.

An image of a scowling Laurence Dominic crossing his arms in front of him when faced with Topher’s explanation for just about anything appeared in Adelle’s mind. Forced to admit that such a posture might be construed as a skeptical father giving a mischievous son enough rope to hang himself, Adelle muttered, “We do make the rules.”

“You handle the praise, smooth any and all ruffled feathers, unless you want them to remain ruffled, of course.” Alpha poked Adelle again and whispered, “Don’t you, mom? Daddy Dominic is the disciplinarian of the couple.”

“I assure you, Alpha, I am fully capable—.” Adelle managed to catch herself before actually being drawn into an argument with Alpha over whether she or Mr. Dominic was best qualified to mete out discipline.

“So … how long have you fantasized about getting Dominic naked?”

“Go to Hell, Alpha,” Adelle said, wondering what he’d heard when Alpha put a finger to his lips.

Alpha leaned close. “Daddy’s home,” he whispered. “Be quiet and ready to shout, ‘Surprise.’”

* * *

Adelle DeWitt had just poured herself a second glass of wine when Laurence Dominic stalked back into view. To Adelle’s eyes, he seemed worried and, upon closer inspection, exhausted. Recalling he’d slept very little in the last four days almost made Adelle relent with respect to Alpha’s program. “Ma’am?”

“Yes,” she replied, patting the couch to encourage him to sit, mildly surprised when he did, barely suppressing a smile as he obviously noticed that she’d kicked off her shoes and tucked her legs beneath her in an uncharacteristic informal manner.

“Does Alpha know your security code?”

Masking her shock with anger, she said, “I most certainly didn’t give him that information.”

He closed his eyes and took a slow steady breath. Reopening them seemed to require some effort. “Did Regina Benedict know it?” he asked. Understanding dawned and Adelle nodded. “I told her because … because I was to stay in the car with Mr. Ericson while the team swept the house.” She frowned. “Where do you suppose Alpha was hidden while the sweep was conducted, Mr. Dominic?”

“I’d guess the deck. It was dark and Alpha could beat the lock on that door in his sleep. Once he came in, I’m not sure. Probably your closet, it’s big enough.”

The thought of Alpha whiling away the better part of a day among her clothing was too uncomfortable to dwell upon. “You believe he walked up to my front door and blithely keyed in the code?” she asked, picking up his wine glass. That he took it without hesitation when she offered it was a product of his fatigue. If she hadn’t already known of his tiredness, Dominic’s confusion upon spotting the glass in his hand when he nodded in response to her supposition would’ve given it away.

“I’d have changed the code,” Dominic said. “But everyone’s too damn tired to think of every little detail.”

“Will you tell Ms. Grayson of this?” Adelle inquired, knowing Dominic liked and respected, perhaps even desired, the younger woman.


“Will you … rub her nose in it?”


“Playing favorites, Mr. Dominic?” Adelle nearly laughed at the instantaneously improved posture and hostile narrowed eyes. “The question needs asking.”

“I don’t need to do anything other than tell her what happened. She’ll beat herself up over the lapse more effectively than I ever could.”

“If it had been Pamela Martin?”

“I’d fire her.” He sighed and rubbed his eyes with thumb and forefinger. “She’s screwed up before. More than once. Three strikes and you’re out, Adelle. No questions asked. That’s how it’s always been in my group.”

“Try your wine, Laurence.” She smiled inwardly as the combination of her soft spoken words and his first name drew his eyes to her.

“I shouldn’t—.”

“Perhaps, not,” Adelle allowed, nodding to the gun he’d placed on the arm rest next to him, “but I wager you could hit a target a large as Alpha even with a glass or two of excellent wine in your system.” Watching him, she sipped her wine. He followed her example, smiling slightly.

“Are we really going to do what Alpha suggests?” he asked.

Staring into bloodshot blue eyes, Adelle pressed play on her DVD remote. “Hello, Adelle,” Alpha said, countenance imperfectly centered upon her television screen. “I hope you’ll forgive my presumption of designing a second evening’s entertainment for you. Dominic, a pleasure to quote-unquote see you again too.” As if in response to Dominic’s frown, Alpha said, “Please. You aren’t going to leave until you’re satisfied I’m not lurking somewhere inside or still able to get in somehow.” Stepping closer to the camera, grinning, “Did you figure out how I did it yet? I bet you did. Don’t blame the little blonde. She did her best in all respects.” Tension flowed through the man sitting next to her and Adelle wondered if she should comment on the white knuckled grip Dominic had on his wine glass. “Without further ado,” Alpha intoned, bowing deeply, “I present a piece I call ‘Her.’”

It took Adelle a moment or two to identify what she was seeing as herself—herself astride Laurence Dominic, utterly out of control as he caressed her breasts. The scene shot from another angle allowed her to see Dominic’s eyes focused on her face, while his hands stimulated her breasts. They were extremely sensitive when she was aroused and she clearly was at this stage in the proceedings. Suddenly, Adelle recalled which of the bouts of sex of the previous night this was. She’d have blushed if she were anyone other than Adelle DeWitt of the Los Angeles Dollhouse. Privately, she admitted she’d been another woman during that encounter—one who’d surrendered to passion for the man with her, one who’d given over her vaunted control in exchange for intense pleasure and had not been disappointed. She watched her image, back arched, head thrown back, throat exposed. A pulse of lust passed through her to settle between her legs, the throbbing forcing her to clench them tight, a maneuver offering little relief.

She snuck a peek at Dominic. He watched the video, face at first glance impassive. Examined more closely, his lips were ever so slightly parted, his respiration a tad elevated, his eyes, once again, focused on her face. Observing Laurence Dominic watch her come hard on television the moment he’d sucked on her right nipple brought Adelle perilously close to the edge. Dominic looked … entranced was the only word she could think of to describe the way he stared. When his eyes closed, Adelle gazed back at the screen. She was slumped against Dominic’s chest, smiling as she dropped a quick kiss on his breastbone. Adelle remembered the loose limbed satisfaction of the release she’d experience and the thrill at the realization that he was still hard inside her. Then she recalled the softer, gentler insidious emotions that lifted her lips to his. On screen, they kissed and kissed and kissed.

She gulped her wine and nearly jumped as Alpha’s voice sounded. “You don’t want to know for how long the two of you locked lips. You truly don’t. This was supposed to be fucking, people. The maximum pleasure, the most number of times. Yet you guys take a break to snog for a long time. A seriously long time. What’s up with that? You don’t want me to get the wrong impression, do you? That this isn’t just about the sex?” Alpha shook his head gravely then adopted an impudent grin. “On to our next segment entitled ‘Him.’”

“For Christ’s sake, Adelle, turn the damn thing off.”

Adelle might have, truly might have, if the next image hadn’t been one that nearly stopped her heart at the same time as it almost drew a moan from her lips—Laurence Dominic desperate, wild eyed, drowning in desire. His fist made a mess of the sheet he clutched, sweat beaded on his forehead, his eyes drifted closed, shot open and closed again as he groaned her name. She didn’t need the shot of her going down on Dominic to place the images of him she wished to see because she obviously hadn’t yesterday. Aroused almost to the point of pain a few minutes after Alpha had made the switch back to the original camera, Adelle glanced at Dominic. He was staring out into the darkness. Smiling, Adelle slid a hand beneath the dress he’d chosen for her that morning and removed her underwear. Adelle poured herself more wine, sighed at the state of Laurence’s glass—full minus the sip she’d witnessed him take earlier—and closed the distance between her and her Chief of Security.

Only then, did she allow her attention to return to the screen. Adelle couldn’t have formed the words to describe what she saw if her life had depended upon uttering them. Dominic looked frantic, beyond needy, far past desperate. She leaned forward in shock. He’d mouthed the word, “Please.” He hadn’t said it aloud. Never had in their hours together, but he had mouthed it at least just there. Adelle was tempted to reverse the DVD until she saw him do it again. And again. And again. Impossibly aroused, she turned to Dominic in time to see him drain his wine and shift delightfully uncomfortably on the couch. Fortunately, she wasn’t distracted enough to miss the sight of an orgasm hitting Laurence Dominic like a meteor.

“Well now,” Alpha said, smiling at the camera. “Wasn’t that something? Adelle DeWitt taking a lot of time to see to someone else’s pleasure with not a thought to her own, although I’m wagering she’s pretty damn close to some serious pleasure of her own at the moment.” Alpha paused, as if he was anticipating the quick look Dominic flashed in her direction. Adelle smiled at Dominic in a way she knew would disconcert him. “Such selflessness is commendable, even laudable, definitely made Dominic’s day.” Alpha seated himself in a threadbare armchair as though it was a throne. “And, now, for my masterpiece entitled ‘Them.’”

Adelle siezed the opportunity Dominic’s empty wine glass afforded, thinking Alpha must have poured two bottles of wine into her decanter. She refilled him and shifted closer, her wine glass resting on his shoulder, her free hand on his thigh, her upper body molded to his side. “Adelle,” Dominic murmured, “I need to get the cameras out of my condo.”

“In due time,” she whispered directly into his ear.

“And remove the ones in this room, wherever the hell they are.”

She glanced about, considering his words, sipping the wine, feeling heat surge within her body. “No doubt.” In near perfect unison, as they did so many things, Adelle and Dominic turned toward her television screen. She gasped.

He muttered, “Fuck me.”

It was their first time, when hormones were building crazily within Dominic. Adelle lay beneath him, driving him onward with her body, pleading with him not to stop with her mouth, willing him to fulfill her with her mind. The coupling was the antithesis of them—uncontrolled, unplanned, undisciplined, hard and fast and awesome. Adelle watched her image claw Dominic’s back as she moaned. Dominic caught her hand as she released him. To her surprise, she turned her hand in his, entwining their fingers. She didn’t recall finishing that intense, frenetic bout in that fashion.

“Holding hands,” Alpha said, almost as though he’d heard her thought. “What the fuck is up with that? Were you both having flashbacks to high school?”

Alpha continued but Adelle tuned him out, instead deciding to draw her silk underwear along the crown of Dominic’s ear all the way to the lobe, to the sensitive flesh beneath and along the line of his throat to his shoulder. “Adelle, stop,” Dominic managed through clenched teeth.

She did, shifting her attention to unfastening his belt buckle and pressing her hand just below, along the line of his zipper. “Stah … stop,” Dominic panted.

“No,” she whispered, immensely enjoying the tremor that worked its way through him as she caressed him though his pants.

Unzipping him, Adelle slid her hand into more intimate contact, relishing Dominic’s low moan, even if the word he spoke was, “No.”

Catching her wrists in his hands, Dominic said, “Show’s over. I need to get home.”

Glancing at the screen—sighing at the smirking unmoving image of Alpha, Adelle said, “That is most decidedly not what you need.” Using his grip on her wrists to her advantage, Adelle shifted to straddle Dominic, hiking up her skirt to settle in more comfortably when he released her. “Would you like to know what I need, Laurence?” Smiling in a manner he’d seemed susceptible to yesterday, she rocked her lower body against his. Gratified by his likely involuntary reach for her, Adelle repeated the maneuver. When his lips parted, she kissed him as though she had all the time and patience in the world, which she most certainly did not, as aroused as she was, but he didn’t know that. She smiled against his lips when his grip tightened on her hips. Retreating slightly, Adelle stared into Dominic’s wary eyes, challenging him not to look away. Her hands meandered downward to tug his shirt out of his pants. The moment Dominic shifted position, lifting slightly and pressing his back against the couch to make things harder for her, Adelle changed targets and slid his pants and boxers over his hips. “I need this,” Adelle murmured, lowering herself onto him, quickly and at just the right angle, not in the least bit embarrassed by the orgasm that ripped through her and the attendant sounds of pleasure that escaped her lips. “God, I needed that,” she murmured when the tremors finally subsided and she felt in control once more. “Now then, let us see about you.”

“Adelle,” he said, her name ending in a sigh as she slowly lifted her lower body. “Alpha is … Christ, Adelle … playing us.”

“At the moment, Laurence, I’m playing you.” His frown became a gasp as she lowered herself quickly. “I have a very long and decidedly complex program in mind. I hope that meets with your approval.”

“If … it doesn’t?”

“I trust you will suffer stoically and in silence broken by the somewhat frequent inadvertently uttered sound occasioned by your physical pleasure.”

Just as he opened his mouth to speak, she lifted again, more slowly than last time, celebrating achieving the apex of her motion by sliding her tongue into Dominic’s mouth. In no hurry, she didn’t mind having to coax a response from a stubborn partner. Dominic forcefully lowering her was another matter. “No,” she said.

“No?” he asked, confusion looking quite charming on him.

“Sit back, relax and let me set the pace.”

“But—.” Her finger across his lips silenced him and her vaginal muscles tightened when he bit the tip lightly.

“I promise you won’t be sorry, Laurence.” Forestalling any argument with another slow lift and sensual kiss, Adelle proceeded to tease them both unmercifully for quite some time. When the urge to move faster became nearly unbearable, Adelle stopped.

Dominic blinked at her a few times before he said, “What the fuck?”

“I need a moment.”

“That is most definitely not what you need,” Dominic growled, grasping her hips, raising and lowering her with greater speed and single minded determination. Her orgasm exploded through her a few moments later, its power and ferocity left Adelle clinging to Dominic’s shoulders, limp, exhausted and smiling. Satisfied green met dazed blue eyes. Adelle watched a lazy smile spread across Dominic’s face. “I don’t think anyone’s ever called my name that loud.”

“Smug doesn’t become you, Mr. Dominic.”

His eyes narrowed. “Don’t call me that.”

“Smug?” His glare held a measure of true anger now. Not to be cowed in any way, she asked, “What shall I call you, then?”

“What you just did, only at a more reasonable volume.”

“Of course, Laurence.” Her sensual whisper inspired Dominic to kiss her as he lifted her off of his lap and shifted them both to recline on the couch, kicking off his shoes in the process. “Since you asked so nicely,” she added, once he’d settled them to his satisfaction. Chuckling softly, Adelle worked his tie loose and removed it. “Your suit is hopelessly wrinkled, I’m afraid.”

Tucking a lock of her hair behind her ear while she unbuttoned his shirt about half way, Dominic murmured, “Small price to pay.”

“Indeed,” she said, frowning at his jaw cracking yawn until she recalled that he’d slept a scant three hours in the last four days. “Close your eyes,” Adelle whispered, snuggling closer, slipping an arm around his waist.

“Can’t.” Dominic yawned again. “I’ll fall asleep.”

“Sleeping isn’t a crime, Laurence.”

“Alpha knows your alarm code, Adelle.”

She couldn’t help but smile. “So your threat to leave earlier was an idle one?”


Adelle stroked his cheek with gentle fingers. “My gun is on the coffee table. Yours is on the arm of the couch. I’ll be able to defend myself for a few hours.”

They stared at each other for a long time. She hid a smile when Dominic’s eyes drifted closed and then shot back open. “I need coffee or something.”

“You need some rest.” After kissing him lightly on the mouth, Adelle rubbed the back of his neck gently, softly, rhythmically.

“We can’t do this again,” Dominic whispered, words slurred slightly by extreme fatigue.

Adelle was tempted to ask what he meant but she knew and suspected he knew she knew. Sex under the influence of drugs, they could justify. To a lesser extent, the same could be said for sex under the influence of Alpha’s stimulating video. Sex deriving solely from the desire to have each other was unacceptable. The complications were too vast. “I know,” Adelle whispered, then smiled when she realized Dominic had fallen asleep. She watched him for a time, reveling in how different he looked in repose. Relaxed rather than intense. A small smile as opposed to a smirk or a scowl. Posture falling far short of picture perfect. With a soft sigh, Adelle sat up and stared at the remote control. On a whim, she pressed play and fast forwarded to see if Alpha had anything else to say.

Some time later, the still image faded to black. Alpha’s immediate reappearance prompted Adelle to push play. “Was it good for you, Adelle?” Alpha asked, expression serious but his eyes appeared amused. “Finally letting Dominic sleep, I hope. The man’s expended a lot of energy on your behalf in the last few days. Hell, in the last few years, I guess I should say.” Alpha sighed and looked directly into the camera. “So what happens now?” After pausing for a time designed to allow her to respond, she supposed, he said, “If you have him tomorrow morning, he’s yours—mind, body, heart and soul. Is that what you need, Adelle? Or would you rather have business as usual—a scowling Chief of Security to keep you and your House safe? I know what you told me you wanted. I think we’ve proven what you need over the last two evenings. Which is it going to be—want or need? Only you can decide. Good night, Adelle. Pleasant dreams.” The screen faded to black. Adelle shut down her electronic equipment and turned off the one lamp they’d lit.

When you sit in the dark, no one can see you cry.

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(Deleted comment)
Thanks for saying such kind things. At first, I thought this story was really going to be about sex. And it is. It just turned out to be about a whole lot more than that. I suppose that shouldn't have surprised me, but it did a little.

I hope the rereading went well.:)

Oh Alpha, your mind games will never not be interesting or without purpose (crazy purpose usually, but purpose). Plus, I love that his entire video was to discredit what Adelle originally said the evening would be about (Dominic wouldn't take what happened personally) by showing her the reality (hand holding, kissing). Then leading her to decide between what she wants and what she needs as the two are really quite different.

Excellent! I was so excited to see this posted!

I really really really try not to think about how easy Alpha flows for me once I get started. I truly think he thinks he's making amends for the bloodbath at the Dollhouse by doing this--by helping Adelle answer the question she asks of and often answers for the clients--what does she need.

And, yes, vis a vis Dominic--the differences between appearance (the time in the Dollhouse in the previous story) and the times when he and Adelle are together with noone (other than Alpha evidently) to see.

I tried to maintain both of these things from the show in this departure.

I hate to ask this because it usually puts the author on the spot (and that's the last thing I want to do) but do you think you will continue this departure? I am just curious because this really is phenomenal (and I love reading your work, it’s original and very well done).

Truth be told, I don't know. I didn't plan a sequel and when I saw your message, I thought, "I don't know where to go with this." Of course, a few minutes later, a thought occurred to me.

The thing in favor of maybe continuing is that this was a lot of fun to write and it flowed very quickly. So ... I guess that's a definite maybe.

Thing is--don't be afraid to ask me this question. What happens next is the best question ever for a writer to get.

I love this, but the end is really sad and the way the story becomes more serious is very powerful.
The Alpha mind games work well, makes me think we should work on that E2 fic after all.

The end--when it came to me--made me really sad, but I couldn't think of another sensible way to do it and stay anywhere close to canon and the type of story I wanted to tell.

Alpha just ... intrigues me, I guess. I'm not sure how I'd do with the kinder, gentler version, but, yeah, that E2 fic. I was thinking about that just today.

For some reason, I was very pleased at how Dom came off in this, even though none of it was from his perspective. Not sure why.

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