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I heard a chuckle from beside me. “Poor kid was about to wet himself, I think. ”

  “He did seem a bit nervous. Especially when he had to tie the blindfold on me. ” I touched the knot. “Speaking of which, I think I’m losing circulation, he tied it so tight. Can you loosen it for me?”

  Strong fingers worked at the knot, loosened the blindfold, and then retied it. “He couldn’t take his eyes off you,” Roth said as he fussed with my hair, feathering his fingers through the ends. “I don’t blame him, but he was…rather openly ogling you. ”

  “Ogling? I don’t think he was ogling. ”

  “He was ogling. Staring down your front, actually. ” He traced the line of my clavicle, and then down, down, closer and closer to the opening of my cle**age. “It’s not his fault, though. Not entirely. You are…impossible to look away from. You aren’t his to look at, however. ”


  “No. ”

  “Then whose am I?” I knew the answer, but I wanted to hear his reaction.

  “Mine, Kyrie. You are mine. You belong to me. To me alone. I won’t share you, not even with harmless children like our friend Michael the server. ” At that moment Michael returned, and Roth replaced my empty glass with a full one. “Thank you, Michael. Now, that will be all until intermission. Here you are. ”

  “Th-thank you sir. That’s…very generous of you, sir. ” Michael’s voice was awed, stunned, and I imagined Roth had given him a massive tip. A hundred-dollar bill, maybe.

  The door closed, and the orchestra began playing.

  Within the first five minutes, I was hooked. I couldn’t understand anything, but it didn’t matter. I couldn’t see anything, but I didn’t care. The music, the singing, it was rapturous, hypnotic, needing nothing else to be magical. For a while, Roth and I sat side by side, merely listening, and then I felt his hand on my knee. I tensed, but allowed his hand to remain. And then…his hand slid upward. Just an inch, but enough to make my heart rate increase. Another inch, and now I knew he was playing a game. How far would I let him go? Every nerve ending in my body was on fire, and his fingers were barely at my thigh. I swallowed and tried to tune out the feel of his palm on my quad. Tried to listen to the singing, to the orchestra, but it was in vain.

  I felt his breath on my neck. I forced myself to keep my head upright, even though every instinct was telling me to tilt my head aside, to offer him my throat. His mouth was hot and moist on my neck, kissing just beneath my ear. I could barely hear past the thunder of my heartbeat in my ears. His hand was sliding higher now, and it was becoming intimate, becoming dangerous. I was trembling now. Unable to move, frozen stiff. The music faded to the background.

  A warm palm cupped my cheek, turned my head to the side. “A kiss, Kyrie. ”

  I let out a breath I hadn’t realized I was holding, and leaned in. I knew better than to deny him a kiss; I knew better than to deny myself a kiss. He tasted of Scotch, smoky and fiery, and his breath was slightly cold from the ice, his lips soft and damp on mine, moving with strength and confidence. His hand was at my hip now. His tongue ran along the seam of my lips, once, twice. Tasting, inviting. A third time, demanding now. I opened my lips and felt his tongue graze my teeth, and then my own tongue flicked out to touch his, and that was when I knew I was lost. The kisses we’d shared before were delicate, exploratory. They had been introductions. Slow, and soft, and easy.

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  This one was not. It was hot, hungry. It demanded my attention, demanded that I give in, that I give back. I kissed him back, and I did so because I wanted to. I wanted his kiss.

  But…his hand. It was resting on my hip, fingers pressing into my flesh through the fabric of my dress. Bunching, gripping. Our kiss continued unbroken, and I had to turn toward him, to pivot my body to face him. I reached out and clutched at him, tangled my fingers in the material of his coat and shirt, pulling him closer. He moaned, a vibration in his chest, an approval.

  The heel of his palm slid low, over my hip, over my belly. I pinched my thighs together, breaking the kiss. I wanted to ask what he was doing, but I was afraid of the answer.

  His fingers crawled over my thighs, fingertips brushing the material of my dress, a feather-light touch. I was shaking, my forehead against his, breathing raggedly, my hands fisted in his dress shirt.

  “Roth?” It was all the question I could manage.

  “Kyrie. Don’t make a sound. Okay? Keep quiet for me. ”

  “Keep—keep quiet?”

  “Yes. I’m going to make you come. ”

  “You’re…you are?”

  He didn’t answer. At least, not with words. His mouth found mine, and I was taken away again, transported by the skilled power of his kiss. His hand rested on the space between my thighs, over my dress, an inch from my core. I felt his fingers curl against my thighs, slide upward. My legs were pressed together, and my dress was tight. But yet, when his fingertips grazed over my core, even through the dress I felt it, and I shuddered. Another brush over the apex of my thighs, and I felt my legs fall apart, just slightly. His lips on mine were demanding, unrelenting, stealing my breath, his tongue swiping over my teeth and tangling with my tongue, tasting my lips.

  His fingers pressed in, and I gasped into his mouth.

  “Oh, Kyrie. So beautiful. And I haven’t even really touched you yet. ” His voice was a low murmur, his breath hot on my lips. “You want me to touch you?”

  I couldn’t answer. I didn’t know how. I did, yet I was afraid to let him. I knew if I did, if I let him touch me, let him make me come, that I’d be even more lost to him, to his game. But I already was, wasn’t I? I’d given in to him. I’d let him blindfold me. Let him kiss me. He’d seen me braless, in a T-shirt and underwear. I was already aching for his touch.

  “I asked you a question, Kyrie. ” His fingers slid down my thigh, toward my knee. I felt him lean down, grasp my ankle and lift my foot. He grasped the hem of my dress. He pulled, gently and implacably sliding the fabric up, up, baring my calves, my knees, and now my thighs. “Do you…want me…to touch you? It’s a simple question. Yes or no will do. Do you want to orgasm? Right here, right now? In this theater? Surrounded by thousands of people? You’re probably already wet for me, aren’t you? A few strokes with my finger, and you’ll come apart, I bet. I’d just have to slide my finger inside you, and you’d be whimpering. I bet your clit would be so sensitive, so tender. You’d be tight, too. So tight. When you came, you’d clench around my fingers, and you’d have to bite down to keep from screaming. You want that, don’t you, Kyrie?”

  I let out a shuddering breath, let my head thump back on the seat. “Y—yes. Yes. I do. I want that. ”

  My dress was bunched beneath my thighs now, and his hand was curled over my thigh, caressing the round muscle and sliding up, up. “Say it. Tell me what you want me to do. I need to hear you say it, Kyrie. Tell me what you want me to do to you. ”

  “Unh…” I couldn’t make words form in my head, or on my lips. All I could do was gasp and breathe as his fingers drifted between my thighs—still closed together—and grazed the scrap of silk over my folds. “I—Roth…I want you to—to touch me. ”

  “I am touching you. You’ll have to be more specific. ” His lips nibbled on my earlobe, over the shell of my ear, kissed behind it, down and around beneath it, kiss, kiss, kiss, to my throat.

  I wiggled my bottom on the seat, wanting to open my thighs but still afraid to totally give in. “Oh, god…I want—I can’t say it…. ”

  “Then you don’t get it. ” His touch moved away, back to the top of my thigh.

  He traced the length of my leg from knee to hip with one finger, back down. Moved in slightly, traced the same path from knee to apex along the inside of my thigh.

  I moaned in frustration, trapped between desire and fear. “God, Roth. ”

  “In your life, at this time, those two words could be considered synonymous. ” He