This is wrong.
This is a sin.
This could get us both killed.
"But she"s worth it.
I grumble as I fold my arms over my chest and glare at the silver Cartier Ballon Bleu watch on my wrist. But then, looking at this freaking watch is never something that improved my mood. Because to me, in this world I exist in, it"s more of a handcuff than a piece of jewelry. It"s not pretty to me, it"s a reminder of how kept I am.
Just the same, I glance at it and huff. Yeah, he"s late.
I drop my arms and look up at the ladder I"ve got set up under the chandelier in the foyer of the opulent house. There aren"t a lot of perks of getting a bodyguard detailed to you, let me just say that. It means some brooding, knuckle-dragging thug of Gino"s will be following my every move. Hovering in my peripheral vision, hanging outside the bathroom when I freaking pee. Yeah, fun fucking times.
Pauly was the last one " six-feet-who-cares of single-word sentences and a neanderthal brow. Before that, it was Christo. But Christo liked stealing my underwear, apparently, and Gino found out. I in all honesty do not want to know what happened to Christo after that. Comparatively, Pauly was fine. But that"s before he got nailed trying to run his own girls on the side. And that did not sit well with Gino either.
Not one bit.
So, I"ve got some new mob meathead coming today. But like I said, there aren"t many perks to having a bodyguard, but one positive thing, if you want to look for a silver lining, is that you at least have some big hulk of a guy around to do some heavy lifting when you need it. And today, the heavy lifting is replacing this stupid flickering bulb in the foyer chandelier.
That"s part of my "duties" " part of the arrangement of me being here. I fake a smile, I act like some trophy housewife from 1952, and I keep the house clean and organized.
I play the part.
And I do all this because I freaking have to.
But having my new knuckle-dragging shadow here would be pretty damn helpful right now with this stupid chandelier. For one, I"m not exactly big on heights anyways, and this light fixture is so high up that it"s going to take me standing on the top stop on freaking tiptoes just to reach it. But the second reason having someone else haul up a ladder and fumble around with the big heavy chandelier"
"Because I"m still sore.
Deliciously, heatedly, lip-bitingly, panty-meltingly sore. From last night. From him.
My face burns hot as it comes rushing back to me, and I squeeze my legs together tight, feeling that ache there between them. Fuck, what I did last night was so incredibly dangerous but I had to. With Pauly recently gone and no one hounding my steps, it was the only time I could get away " the only time I could have one burst of freedom.
I had to do it. I had to feel something besides feeling like a caged bird in here. Gino"s little pet, chirping away like I"m supposed to do. None of this is ever what I"d envisioned. Not the big gaudy house, not the ludicrously expensive jewelry. Definitely not being married to the sixty-four-year-old psychopathic head of the Moretti crime family.
"Hell, I"d never even planned to come back to Vegas after I"d left for school. It was my mom"s cancer that brought me back here after college. Then it was this stupid, stupid idea that if I stayed, I could help my scumbag of a father finally get out from under the thumb of the bigger scumbags he worked for.
Yeah, that"d turned out well.
My father was a driver for Gino, and when he ran off with a shipment of coke and two-million in cash, well, things have a way of not going so well when the mob gets ripped off like that. In another storyline, they may have just killed me or worse, but that was before Gino decided he had a better plan for me.
"To be his wife.
I know I could"ve refused, or run, or whatever. But I had other people to think about. My grandmother in Reno, for instance, along with my little cousin Melody who lives with her. Me running or refusing" Yeah, Gino only had to smile that sick smile of his to let me know what"d happen to them. So, I did what I had to do, and I married the devil of Sin City.
The one sliver of a silver lining" Gino"s never touched me. And I do me never. But that"s part of it " part of being a caged bird. I sit in my cage, playing the part. Gino can do whatever he pleases, but me" Nope. Nothing. It"s also one of the reasons I have a bodyguard, I"m sure. But, c"mon, I"m twenty-four years old, and a girl has needs. A girl needs release, right" And me, well, I need more than a release.