View Full Version : The Panama Connection
Alexis Morell Carrington loved yachts.
Well she loved other people’s large expensive yachts that chauffeured her around the Caribbean or between jet setting hot spots such as St Barts or Acapulco. She especially loved the fit young ship hands that usually came along with them, and who with a little flirting were more than happy to keep Alexis entertained after her affair with their boss had long since lost its sizzle.
What she didn’t like was being stuck on a yacht in a damn dock due some problem with a permit of all things and having to put up with the leering glances of the heavyweight military officials who kept having to come on board for some reason. God why had the USA ever agreed to start handing over control of the canal back to the Panama government, Alexis would never understand it?
What she did understand was that this damn delay might mean she missed the party of the season. It had taken more than a little of her best persuasive tactics to secure her invitation to a certain Hollywood movie star’s exclusive private retreat. Isla Taborcillo was a reported paradise and only the crème de la crème of European and American society would be there. So when her newest conquest, a blue blooded Spanish don who had more money than sense thanks to his mining operations in Brazil and Columbia, offered the use of his fifty foot personal yacht to ferry her there in style Alexis could hardly have refused.
Now however Alexis was having second thoughts.
Yes she would have savoured her sister’s green face when she turned up in a yacht bigger than Zach Powers, but now she ran the risk of not seeing Cassey whatsoever and Alexis flatly refused to allow her little sister the pleasure of rubbing that fact in her face the next time they bumped into one another.
Her mind made up Alexis jumped up from her sun bed causing the young man who was massaging her feet and shooting her puppy dog eyes to start in surprise.
“Señora…I do…wrong something?”
Waving him aside, Alexis didn’t have the time to waste or the slightest inclination to sooth his ruffled feathers….Then again as she took in his toned tanned physique, perhaps she might find a use for him after all. Catching his hand Alexis all but dragged the smiling boy back to her cabin. His smile quickly sliding from his face at Alexis’s next command.
“My bags…mis maletas…pack them.”
It was a testament to her own determination and just how much she wanted to get to this party that saw Alexis arrive in Panama city late into the evening, having almost lost her lunch and dinner when the light aircraft she had been travelling seemed to bounce up and down in the air like she was on a fairground ride. It was far too late to take a car from the city down to Punta Chame from where you could catch a boat out to the island.
Besides the prospect of arriving at such an exclusive retreat on some fisherman’s scow was so far beneath Alexis’s sense of dignity not to mention there would be no living with Cassy if Alexis turned up like any old commercial traveller!
It was already dark and Alexis had been travelling for hours and was exhausted. It wasn’t like she had been able to catch her beauty sleep on the plane. Checking into a hotel was always an option but that simply put off the problem of how to arrive at Isla Taborcillo in style… something to make her sister’s jaw drop with shock and jealousy…But also complete with an escort that would manage to make the handsome millionaire Zach Powers seem like a consolation prize.
For any other woman it would have been impossible but then Alexis Morell Carrington wasn’t like other women and her little black book was an extensive list of the most handsome and well-connected men in the world. There had to be someone in its pages who could fill that tall order?
Smirking as her eyes fell upon one name in particular, who after that little spat with his father had withdrawn over here to lick his wounds. Alexis strode over to the public telephone booths, fumbling in her purse for what little currency she had bothered to change. It wasn’t until moments like this that Alexis ever needed her own money; normally her companion of choice took care of such little details. It had enabled her to invest her funds in far more important things, like her wardrobe!
Finally able to find something that would fit in the phone booth, god knows how long it would give her, Alexis dialled the number, relieved when the private number was picked up an answered. “Ahmed Residence.”
“This is Alexis Carrington put me through to Rashid.” Alexis never bothered with niceties like please with the hired help.
A moment later a familiar voice caressed her ears. “Alexis! How wonderful to hear from you, what can I do for you my darling? The last time we parted you were off to sail the Caribbean with Don Pedro don’t tell me the poor man is a wash up in bed as he is at the roulette table?”
“Well I cannot attest to his gambling skills but he is lacking in other areas!” Alexis snorted, mentally adding the ability to get his paperwork in order being one of them. “Rashid I need your help…I’ve got this party to go to at Isla Taborcillo tomorrow and I am in need of dashingly handsome escort!”
“And you thought of me?”
“Who else?” Alexis teased. “I am in Panama City at the moment and I know you have a hideaway nearby…”
“And you were hoping I would put you up for the night…well we have to negotiate the rate for board and lodgings my dear Mrs Carrington…” Rashid drawled suggestively.
“I look forward to bartering with you darling.” Alexis retorted her playful tone turning panicked as the damn phone started to pip and she didn’t have any more change. “Rashid I can take a taxi from the airport but I am somewhat short of local currency…and I need your address.”
“Oh don’t worry my dear I will settle with the taxi driver when you arrive, we’ll just add it on to your bill.” Rashid drawled suggestively. “Just have him bring you to the Villa Lucra, San Miguel….”
“Rashid.” Alexis called out but it was no use the pips had finished and the line was dead. Still she had the address and Rashid would compensate the driver for any detours needed to find the place.
Signalling to the porter who had been hovering with her luggage Alexis strode confidently out to the waiting taxi line, avoiding by instinct the dangerous looking hawk eyed younger men who immediately began to clamour for her business; approaching instead a short and portly older man who hadn’t even glanced up from his paper.
Clearing her throat the old man all but had a heart attack yet he regained himself quickly. “Senora?”
“You speak English?” Alexis asked, her Spanish was tolerable and had improved after a few weeks with Don Pedro, although most of the new words she had learnt weren’t really fit for polite conversation.
“Yes yes.” The driver answer beaming and revealing a gummy mouth. “English…Queen Elizabeth…”
Curbing revulsion Alexis nodded politely and stepped into the cab after her driver opened the door and hurried to load his trunk with her copious luggage, in the end her small vanity case had to come inside the car with her as there simply wasn’t enough room. Giving the driver Rashid’s address Alexis finally allowed herself to relax and her mind to wander…imagining just what Rashid had in mind for payment.
Resting her head against the back of the seat she closed her eyes a wicked smile playing about her lips as the gently vibrations of the car and her exhausting schedule finally caught up with her and what Alexis had meant to be a moment to recollect and rest her eyes saw her drifting off to sleep.
08-10-2011, 09:21 PM
Nice! I hope that she makes it to Rashid's villa. Since she fell asleep, who knows where the taxi will end up. I would be interesting to read about an Alexis/Rashid romance. I hope that there's more to this story.
The dim lights of the local taverna shone brighter and more welcoming than the bright gaudy lights of Las Vegas. However after days trekking through the thick jungle, afraid to sleep for more than a few minutes at a time for fear his pursuers or even the local wildlife might take a fancy to him, any sign of civilisation no matter how grubby would have been a welcome one.
Right now he needed a drink and something to eat and perhaps if he was lucky a room for the night but it probably didn’t even need to be a room, he was so tired a chair or quiet corner would have been enough…although he would feel a damn sight safer resting behind a locked door until he could contact someone and get the hell out of this lawless sink hole.
Any county that could permit the routine capturing of hostages for ransom was not one he wanted to remain in for long…not with those rather angry kidnappers hot on his heels that was.
Still he had time for a drink and hopefully a hot meal…patting his pockets for the loose change that he had on him…he could only hope he had enough for that. God knows how he was going to pay for his transport out of here, and somehow the prospect of walking all the way to Panama didn’t really appeal.
Yet if that was what it took he would walk every single step back to the United States rather than give those Columbian extortionists the satisfaction of getting their hands on any of his money.
It was the sudden braking that woke her. The driver having slammed on his brakes for some reason that had Alexis half siding off of the back seat. Having regained her balance before slamming into the back of the drivers seat Alexis retained her grip on her vanity case. Glancing out the window even in the darkness Alexis felt her confusion mounting.
All around her were tall dark looking trees, they were on a bumpy road in the middle of nowhere and squinting at her watch Alexis was aghast to realise four hours had passed since leaving the airport. She should have been at Rashid’s hours ago; his villa was close to the airport.
Perhaps it was because she had just woken up but it took a good few moments for the thought to occur to her…She was being kidnapped.
“Where are you taking me?” Alexis screeched startling her driver as she leant forward and smacked him on the shoulder; causing him to swerve dangerously off the road, and come to a stop a hundred yards from some run down shack that probably passed for the social high life in this back of beyond.
“Where am I…donde estoy?” Alexis repeated her question in Spanish when it became clear her driver really had no English to speak of, punctuating her question with another smack.
“San Miguel!” The Driver retorted hotly his tolerance for being slapped by his passengers far lower than expected.
“No this can’t be San Miguel!” Alexis spat shaking her head as her dark curls bounced emphatically. “You’re lying…mentiroso.”
However if her driver objected to being slapped he took being called a liar to his face even harder. In fact he was so furious that he got out of the car and stomped round to open the passenger door, reaching inside to take Alexis by the arm and dragging her protesting form from the car.
Screaming out her outrage at being so manhandled Alexis smacked at the old man with her vanity case, yet despite his appearance the old driver was reasonable strong and had her out of the car and dumped at the side of the road.
“How dare you….” Alexis began her anger turning to disgust as her heel sank into something soft and moist sounding. “I demand you take me back to Panama City at once.”
Huffing the driver shook his head, mumbling under his breath undoubtedly about crazy foreign ladies who didn’t know where they wanted to go. Holding out his hand expectantly the driver rubbed his thumb and finger together. “Two hundred.”
“Two hundred!” Alexis screeched.
Scoffing in disgust Alexis refused there was no way she was paying this incompetent senile old cretin two cents let alone two hundred dollars that she didn’t even have on her.
Clearly that had been the wrong answer as the driver decided to cut his loses stomping back to his own door and getting back in. Hearing the engine start up Alexis began to panic, she was not about to let some old fool drive off and abandon her in the middle of nowhere…and certainly not with her luggage in the damn trunk!
Yet before she could stop him the old man had thrown the car into reverse, pulling back onto the road, before executing a high speed three point turn and speeding off back in the direction of Panama City without her. Shivering in the dark as the taillights of the car grew further and further away, and with it all hopes of a reunion with her one of a kind couture wardrobe housed inside her three Louis Vuitton suitcases. Alexis only had two options left to her, start walking…or the roadside shack.
08-11-2011, 12:48 AM
Alright! It's a romance between Alexis and someone new. So, no Rashid. That's okay. This sounds like it might be a romance/adventure like Romancing the Stone. I can't wait to read more of this! I hope that you will still continue your other story because I enjoy reading that just as much. Thanks.
yep this is heavily influenced by my recent watching of that film
He noticed her the moment she entered the bar.
Even if he hadn’t been sat with his back to the wall facing the door, so as to keep an eye out for his own pursuers, he would have noticed her entrance. The general hubbub of men complaining in a variety of languages and the clink of glass against wood stopped the moment she entered the room.
She had balls, that was for certain…either that or she was as stupid as she was beautiful?
Still as she swallowed her fear and made her way towards the bar he couldn’t help but admire the courage that must take, with every greedy male eye in the room on her, most of which would be less than welcoming.
Women…well decent women didn’t exactly enter a place like this, and judging by the fine clothes and expensive jewellery this lady was a lady…or she was incredible successful at not being a lady. Either way it painted a large target on her and he couldn’t help but be concerned…damn his heroic tendencies.
He was already half to his feet by the time the first drunken bastard made a grab for her. A few seconds later and his fist was connecting with the man’s large face, the force of the blow causing his folded jowls to wobble as he slumped down from his seat to the floor unconscious.
That first victory was brief as several others got to their feet and he was forced to step back to avoid the blows.
His time in the jungle had made him sluggish and too many blows connected, but no one had said he had to fight fair and when down on the ground he used his legs to take the feet out from under a few of them before getting back to his feet and breaking a chair over their backs.
They had the sense to stay down then.
“Anyone else wanna give it a try?” He called out to the room grunting as the other men either retook their seats or avoided his gaze.
“Thank you perhaps you could help me, I…” Her voice was low and warm like honey the English accent most attractive but her thanks would only get them killed.
Right now the others had backed down because he had kicked their arses and because their drink was calling them. Yet given enough time they would whip themselves back into action and he didn’t have the strength to take on all comers.
No there was only one way out of this without another beating, win the crowd…
Grabbing the back of her head he threaded his fingers into her hair yanking her mouth up to meet his as the bar patrons applauded their approval by banging their glasses on the table. Pulling her struggling body against his he pushed down the disgust at his own actions as he ran his hand suggestively over her curves.
Breaking for breathe he didn’t waste any time, doing his best to ignore the way his ribs ached he lifted the struggling woman, slinging her over his shoulder, hiding his wince as she proceeded to kick and punch him. Catching her ankles he smacked her pert backside in punishment causing the drunks to laugh out loud before turning to the barman.
Snorting the barman nodded over his shoulder and he followed the man’s directions, taking his struggling prize out through the back of the bar into what could have been a kitchen or storeroom. Scanning the room he sighed in relief at the back door. Fumbling with the lock and stepping outside the fresh air was a blessed relief after the heat and stench of the bar.
Unloading his burden he winced as the woman used that opportunity to swing her vanity case and smack him hard about the shoulder before making a break for it.
“HELP….” She began to scream and seeing no other option he tackled her to the ground, covering her mouth with his hand.
“Shut up unless you want to kill us both…I am trying to help you….I just saved your life or at the very least stopped you from being raped…Jesus…” He hissed when sharp little teeth bit into the skin of his palm. “Well that’s gratitude for you…Lady you had better do exactly as I say or I really will leave you to those dogs in there!”
Her answering glare told him exactly what she thought of that proposal yet having no other choice he hesitantly removed his hand.
“Dear god don’t you ever wash your hands they are filthy!”
Of all the things he was expecting she might say that was not one of them and for a moment he could only stare down at the woman trapped beneath him in stunned surprise.
“Are you deaf as well as unhygienic?”
“Sorry Your Highness, next time I will be sure to wash and moisturise my hands before you bite them!” He retorted sarcastically rolling off of her. “Look I don’t know what the hell you are doing out here but this is not a place you want to be staying in for long…What the hell are you doing in San Miguel anyway?”
“Not that it is any of your business but a friend of mind has a villa here…or at least I thought it was here.” Alexis retorted finally calming down long enough to look at her kidnapper/rescuer.
The accent was American, or at least American sounding. Yet that ratty beard, greasy hair and bodily odour that smelt like he hadn’t bathed for weeks were hardly that of a civilised man. Not to mention his breathe when he had forced that kiss on her was hardly minty fresh.
“Sounds to me like someone got their San Miguel and their San Miguelito mixed up!”
“Says the man who can’t even find his way to nearest bathroom.” Alexis spat her eyes narrowing in disgust. “I only hope you don’t have anything contagious!”
“Well if I did now so do you….share and share alike as my dear old mother used to say. Look lady if you have a way out of this place may I suggest you take it now, before Manuel and Juan in there decide I’ve had you all to myself long enough!”
“Why do you think I entered that dive in the first place?” Alexis scoffed. “My taxi driver abandoned me here…drove off with all my luggage…where ever here really is.” She added running her fingers through her hair before a sudden spark of an idea came to her.
“You could take me back…To Panama City…I’d pay you…well I don’t have the cash on me but you could have my watch or ring.”
“Look Your Highness I don’t want your jewellery. I am as much stuck here as you are….although…”
Perhaps she might be of some use, if he could get her back to Panama City or even just further back towards civilisation La Palma wasn’t that far away. If she really was supposed to be visiting a friend, then that friend was bound to be wealthy and have connections….connections that could help keep him safe from the very people out for his blood long enough for him to get out of the country.
“Alright I’ll help you but you’ll have to trust me and stay quiet…this isn’t going to be entirely legal.”
Frowning at the way he said that Alexis’s better judgement warred against trusting this vagabond but then she really didn’t have any other option. “I am not going anywhere with a stranger and what do you mean not entirely legal?”
Huffing at her incessant attitude and questions he rolled his eyes snapping back in a provocative tone. “People call me Dex…now tell me do you have much experience hot wiring cars?”
08-12-2011, 05:14 AM
Finally, a name! This is going to be so good! I just know it!
“I don’t like this.”
Gritting his teeth Dex tried to ignore the repetition, yet if his tag along was deliberately trying to get on his nerves she was succeeding beautifully.
“I heard what you said Your Highness.” Dex snapped not caring if he bit her head off, all she was doing was standing their complaining not doing anything productive to help. She wasn’t even doing her one job of keeping a look out properly, preferring instead to stand over him asking pointless questions and complaining about how long it was taking.
“Look you have two choices we walk or ‘borrow’ a car…of perhaps you’d like to head back inside and ask one of those charming gentlemen to give you a lift? So I suppose that would be three choices, it’s up to you lady!” He added swearing as he banged his head on the damn steering wheel he was crouched under.
Still as the engine roared to life Dex forgot all about his sore head, letting out a whoop of excitement. “Nurse we have a pulse!”
“Thank goodness.” Alexis sniffed making her way around the car and staring at the door expectantly even as Dex slipped behind the wheel, making no move to get the door for her.
“Well get in Your Highness.” Dex huffed caving in and leaning across the cab to pop the other door, but that was as far as he was prepared to go, what more did she expect? For him to get out and hold the door open for her, perhaps lay down a red carpet as well?
Biting back her own petty comment Alexis struggled with the heavy door and the step up into the truck, something not exactly easy in a pencil skirt. The amused smirk of her would be rescuer irritating her further and she all but flung her vanity case at him in retribution.
“Jesus lady why are you carrying this thing around?” Dex muttered wincing as the surprisingly heavy case made contact with his already bruised side. “What do you have in here, gold bars?”
“My make up if you must know.” Alexis huffed, choosing to omit the fact that along with her makeup there was also a whole tray of expensive jewellery, some of which had been leant to her so she could showcase it at the party….A party that right now it looked like she was going to miss.
“You need that much makeup?” Dex huffed his eyes raking over her features which even in the moonlight he could tell were pretty much flawless, why on earth would she need to trowel makeup on looking like that?
Choosing to ignore that question Alexis instead gazed around the truck, her delicate nose crinkling at the smell and the dust and dirt everywhere. Still since it was her only real option and so she chose to keep any comments about why he chose to steal this particularly old truck instead of any of the others parked outside the taverna to herself.
The sudden vulgarity surprised Alexis as did the way the truck suddenly accelerated and she had to grip onto the door handle for support. Yet one glance in the wing mirror and Alexis understood the reason. The sight of a somewhat drunken bum waving his fist as he tried to chase them down was all the clue she needed.
“I think we might be getting a little company….”
08-13-2011, 11:23 PM
Oh, man! I hope they make it out of there.
Dex’s grip on the steering wheel was so tight his knuckles were white, yet his iron grip was necessary considering the way the old truck bounced around as it seemed to hit every pothole on the old road as he pushed the engine to its very limits. Even his verbal companion had the good sense to realise that now was not the time to interrupt him with inane comments…although the fact that he had told her to keep her opinions to herself might also have had some impact there.
In fact Alexis had her full lips pressed together tightly as her fingers dug into the edge of the seat and the door handle to try and keep herself from flying into the air at every little bump.
“Damn it.” Dex huffed as one glance in the mirror confirmed his suspicion their pursers were catching up with them and Dex could only imagine the fate that would befall both of them if they were caught…and as much as a bitch as his companion was no woman deserved to go through that.
If they were going to get out of here he was going to have to do something drastic.
“Hold on I’m going to try something.” Dex barked as the truck barely made a bend in the road and the headlights briefly illuminated a smaller track just up on the right. Reaching out he switched off the headlamps and swerved the car off of the main road and onto the dirt track, driving practically blind in an effort to lose their pursuers.
“Are you insane?” Alexis all but squealed as she bounced up and down like a jack in the box, her posterior sore and probably already bruising from the abuse.
“No and I don’t recall you coming up with any other suggestions.” Dex grunted as he stepped off the gas a little, squinting at the moonlight that managed to filter through the narrow gap in the trees. It seemed his idea had worked, at least for now as the trucks following them had carried on passed the small turning…Yet considering the way their luck was going that was unlikely to last.
“I distinctly remember a certain person telling me quite rudely to shut up!” Alexis spat back. “So forgive me if I thought I wasn’t allowed to contribute ideas.” She added testily, unable to contain her sigh of relief when this ‘Dex’ seemed to slow down a little.
Yet both of their relief was short lived. The sudden glow of headlights in the gloom behind them, even if it was further back than before, showed that they hadn’t lost all of their pursers.
“Bloody hell.” Dex spat cursing whatever divinity he had offended as he was forced to floor the accelerator and the already juddering truck groaned under the strain.
“For god’s sake turn on the headlights before you drive us straight into a tree or something!” Alexis exclaimed, her horror growing as this maniac she had ended up with continued to drive like a maniac into the dark gloom of the jungle.
“I do that and they’ll no for sure we are here!” Dex retorted, ignoring the fact that she might have a small point, there was little point of escaping if he was only going to kill them both. Yet as he hurtled around a bend at the last minute the decision about whether or not to turn the headlights back on suddenly became mute as the dense canopy of trees opened up…
Alexis’s scream rang out clear and loud as the truck shot out, going to fast to stop and Dex struggled to straighten it out, yet there was no fighting gravity…
The front of the truck shot up into the air as the tires smacked into the small rail that ran the length of the bridge. For a mocking moment the vehicle seemed poised for flight, and then the back tyres clipped something and the truck span in the air before plummeting like a stone into the river below.
The sudden coldness came as a shock, the darkness and feeling of panic Alexis had somewhat been expecting but for some reason the icy coldness that seemed to freeze her in place came as a shock. Yet as she gasped at the top of the truck’s cab where there was a small pocket of air remaining even as the water level continued to rise it didn’t take long fear to overcome even the paralysing cold.
Taking a breath Alexis ducked under the water struggling to see in the pitch blackness, feeling with her fingers for the door handle she first found her vanity case, then some floating cloth…cloth that had a limp arm inside…
Oh god what if he was dead….the moments leading up to their descent into the water were all one horrid blur but Alexis could distinctly remember the crack of Dex’s head as it collided with the steering wheel.
Panic overwhelming her Alexis couldn’t control her breathing, rising back to the rapidly diminishing air pocket she gulped for air before the rising water forced her back under. This time she knew she had to get out here. Finding the door she tried the handle but the damn thing just wouldn’t open…then it hit her and she fumbled for the old fashioned wind down window.
The sudden inward rush of water as the last of the air escaped didn’t phase her, how the hell she was going to get them both to the surface was far more worrying…
Inwardly screaming in frustration Alexis fumbled around in the dark her hand closing on a wrist, following it along to find a surprisingly toned bicep, then looping her arm around his muscular chest Alexis tugged with all her might surprised at how easily he moved. Squeezing them both out through the window was another matter entirely and for one panicked moment Alexis actually thought they were stuck and they would both drown.
In the end it came down to a choice and as Alexis reluctantly let go using her now free hand to push on the side of the truck, freedom was assured but at a price.
Kicking hard against the current, part of her wanted nothing more than to give up now…she was cold she was tired, the air burned in her lungs screaming at her to breathe…Then relief as she broke the surface, too tired to fight the current she let it take her where it wanted.
It felt like an age but when in fact it was probably only a few minutes later that the brush of foliage against her back made her realise how close she was to the bank. Groping for a branch with her free hand it was all Alexis could do to hang on at first, then using the last of her energy she kicked and crawled onto the low back, dragging her burden with her.
With little ceremony Alexis could only pound at Dex’s back, willing the stupid idiot to live if for no other reason than she could yell at him. When that didn’t work she turned him onto his back, smoothing back that disgusting beard and covering his lips with her own, breathing into him. The chocked splutter of water, followed by a rattling breathe was the first positive sign and Alexis didn’t even care when most of it was spat up over her, she was already soaked to the bone what more could a little water do?
Sinking back beside him in the mud Alexis stared up at the stars twinkling in the sky, they were far brighter here than she could ever remember seeing them. It was like a thousand glittering eyes staring down at her, and with the stars keeping watch over her and Dex’s slow but steady rattling breathing beside her Alexis Carrington fell into well deserved and exhausted sleep.
That was Dex’s first conscious thought. His head felt like it had been jumped up and down on and was now being squeezed in a vice for some reason.
His sides ached every time he took a breathe and that didn’t come close to the feeling of needles being driven into his eyes when he dared to try and open them and the bright sunlight nearly blinded him.
By contrast the sudden sensation of someone gently stroking his hair out his face and something being placed against his lips to encourage him to drink was incredibly reassuring. Wherever he was…whatever had happened at least he wasn’t alone.
Then he tasted the earthy tainted water, as his nose crinkled at the smell of socks of all things and the memories began to trickle back.
Panama…the rescue mission to retrieve the European survey team that had been kidnapped and offered for ransom by a bunch of Columbian dissidents…the mission a success until someone had rumbled them and a distraction had been needed…Dex ignoring Daniel’s order to stay with the team instead leading the rebels on a merry dance through the jungle away from the rescued hostages.
Then that bar and her…
Groaning as the realisation struck him who it probably was stroking his hair soothingly and talking in a low tone, Dex could only wonder that miss high and mighty had enough compassion not to have left him behind. But then again she probably still needed someone to get her back to civilisation…
Then the chase…the bridge…
Dex could remember the feeling of terror as the car began to fall, could recall his companion’s scream and then…nothing…
There was nothing else but pain.
How had they survived? How had they gotten from a truck at the bottom of a river to here…wherever the hell here was?
Forcing his eyes open ignoring the pain it took a few moments for the blurriness to go away and for Dex to be able to focus on his surroundings, yet when he did the vision before him damn near stole his breathe away. He had thought her beautiful in the dull unflattering glare of the neon lights of the taverna but in the light of day with not a scrap of makeup on and her dark curls hanging wild and messy about her face she was breathtaking alright.
Emerald green…It was strange that of all the things he could have focused on, knowing the colour of her eyes was strangely satisfying. Her eyes were very emotive, even with her full lips drawn in a line as she scowled a little at him, those eyes told a different story…concern…relief…fear…
Perhaps he had been a little quick to judge her.
“Well are you going to lie there staring at me like a damn fool or are you actually going to say something?” Alexis spat testily shifting slightly uncomfortably at the intense scrutiny of those knowing chocolate brown eyes. “Get up we haven’t got all day you know!” She added getting to her own feet and breaking their gaze.
Groaning Dex forced his aching body to cooperate, scowling as his companion’s complaints made his headache worsen…maybe his first impression had been the correct one after all?
Her feet were killing her and they had only been walking a few hours. Not that that was unexpected, her heels had not been designed with this sort of terrain in mind, the concrete jungle yes, the actual jungle no!
However despite her complaints Alexis now knew better than to actually voice them out loud. It seemed her rugged companion had a somewhat short fuse when it came to her griping and the last time Alexis had dared to ask for a break to catch her breathe he had stormed off telling her she could rest if she wanted but she shouldn’t expect him to wait for her.
Still she really was in pain this time. By now she could only imagine her blisters had blisters and Alexis dreaded the state of her feet when she finally took her shoes off, they would undoubtedly look terrible, bleeding and sore just like after the ballet classes she had been forced to attend as a child.
Yet she forced herself to try and keep up with Dex’s long strides, whilst inwardly fuming at his ingratitude…damn it she had saved his life…had pulled his heavy carcass out of the damn river and breathed life back into him, but from the way Dex was acting it was like she was the one who owed him a favour!
The last straw appeared suddenly in the shape of a large tree crossing their path and a small muddy stream that had turned all the ground around it boggy. Dex scrambled up on to the trunk easily, carefully balancing as he made his way along. Yet for all her efforts Alexis just didn’t have the strength to pull herself up and her damn pencil skirt stopped her from lifting her leg high enough to get a foot hold to help her climb the damn thing.
Smothering a scream of fury Alexis smacked her hands against the bark when she slid down once again, the mud seeping over her shoes and in between her toes.
“It’s just a bit of mud there is no need to fuss so!” Dex’s chiding voice mocked from above and Alexis lost what little hold she had left on her temper so when Dex bent down to off her his hand she couldn’t help but give in to the petty impulse that rose within her.
One quick tug later…
And a stunned and now very muddy Dex was staring up at her from the boggy ground.
“Oh dear.” Alexis simpered. “Well it’s only a little mud…” She added mockingly her green eyes glinting with malicious humour, before squeaking as Dex slung a handful of the foul smelling gunk in her direction.
“That was incredibly childish.” Alexis huffed.
“That coming from the woman who dragged me into this mess in the first place.” Dex retorted struggling to try and get to his feet until Alexis offered him a hand.
Staring at it for a minute Dex raised his gaze to meet hers. “Oh lady I am not falling for it twice.”
“Suit yourself.” Alexis huffed leaving him sitting there as she once again tried to get up on to the damn log before failing spectacularly. Alexis was so engrossed in her own attempts that until a pair of large strong hands settled on her hips, she hadn’t even realised that Dex had managed to extract himself from the bog.
“Wha…” Alexis began mildly panicked at the sudden presence at her back, her heart beak quickening as there was a moment when Dex seemed to circle his thumb over her hip bone…then he was boosting her up and Alexis could only scrabble as she found herself pushed onto the damn log.
For Dex his lingering irritation at being turned into a walking bog momentarily vanished as his eyes locked on the firm pert backside encased in a fitted skirt that was now directly in his eye line. The way it was squirming was entirely too distracting and despite his headache and ever present tiredness Dex couldn’t help but be affected…he could only imagine what a sight it would be without the skirt on at all…a pale ripe peach perfect for sinking his teeth into.
A muddy heel smacking into his chin soon brought that particular fantasy to an end and Dex couldn’t help but scowl at the pleased expression on Her Highness’s face, the bitch had probably done that on purpose. Climbing the trunk himself Dex felt his patience tested as the woman before him seemed to take forever, taking ridiculously small hesitant steps.
Resisting the urge to push past her Dex bite his lip. His hand just reaching out in time to steady her when she began to wobble on those ridiculous heels of hers…why did women wear such impractical footwear?
Finally they reached the end and Dex waited for her to jump down ahead of him, his patience at and end when she just stood there dumbly.
“What are you waiting for a stepladder? Jump woman!” Dex grunted.
“I can’t its too high…my shoes and skirt…” Alexis protested. Her comments cut off when suddenly the sound of renting fabric filled the air. It took a moment for what Dex had done to sink in and then Alexis was filled with righteous fury…How dare he?
“Now jump!” Dex commanded trying not to be too distracted by the goodly amount of thigh and surprisingly enough stocking top that was now on display from the new side split he had added to her stupid tight skirt.
Gritting her teeth Alexis bent down and slipped off her shoes, wincing as her blisters protested, then turning she shoved the muddy shoes into Dex’s chest before turning back and jumping down to the forest floor. Yelping as she landed on all fours Alexis was relieved when nothing seemed to smart too badly, before scrabbling out the way to allow Dex to jump down.
Which he did without any fuss, landing softly on his feet with a smug smirk on his lips.
“Here you go Your Highness.” Dex drawled patronisingly throwing the shoes at Alexis’s feet. “Now lets don’t dawdle we have at least another mile before we can rest again!”
Cursing him, his father, grandfathers and all his forebears Alexis forced her battered feet back into the heels, blinking back the tears as she watched Dex march off into the jungle without so much of a backward glance…Swearing that when she got the chance Alexis would make sure Dex suffered for this…even if it meant smothering him in his sleep…he would pay!
It was a good hour later that Dex knew he needed to stop the walking had been mostly up hill through heavy terrain. He had pushed his body as far as it could go and if he didn’t stop soon he doubted he would have the energy to find them something to eat or a safe place to stop for the night.
Then it seemed something or someone upstairs decided to give him a break.
He could hear the rush of water first and the ground suddenly began to grow rockier and steeper. Then suddenly the forest canopy cut away as did Dex’s breath when he caught sight of the view.
The ground before him was cut away in terraces, the softer rock worn down by the flow of water, which now dropped down in a waterfall into a clear plunge pool.
Nodding Dex for once agreed with his companion. “You sure wouldn’t get this with the usual tour guide that’s for sure.” He quipped his dark eyes scanning the safest route down.
“Come on.” He added reaching out for her hand, surprised how small and soft it was and how easily it fit into his own…not that he was seriously considering how nice it was holding her hand…but if she fell and hurt herself on the way down Dex would never hear the end of it, nor did the idea of carrying her fine arse through the rest of this jungle appeal to him.
Even if Dex surprised himself by being able to imagine just how that might feel…he had no intention of every sweeping this high maintenance woman off of her feet period!
No woman no matter how beautiful or even with an arse that was practically sculpted perfection was worth tying himself down for long. Dex had endured enough of his parents’ marriage to know how a partnership of unequals panned out. Not being able to stomach their daily rows had been one of the main reasons he had ran off and joined the army as soon as he was legal.
Then living day to day on your luck and wits tended to stop you planning for the future…not that Dex was really the settling down kind, at least not yet at any rate. Daniel just joked that he just hadn’t met the right girl yet. Jokes like that earned Dex’s former commander a salute of the two fingered variety.
Besides he liked his life the way it was, Dex Dexter worked and played hard.
Most of his time was dedicated to building his own empire from scratch, and then when the urge and Daniel Reese came knocking Dex couldn’t help but jump at the chance to put his skills to the test. His father called him reckless, he said Dex had to have something wrong with him in the head to need to go off and ‘play hero’. Well Dex didn’t give two figs for his father’s opinion, Sam Dexter wouldn’t know what a true hero was if one came and kicked him in his fat useless arse!
“Do you think the water’s safe?” The tentative question jarred Dex back to the present.
“Probably…Why don’t you jump in you’ll soon notice if any little critter starts nibbling on you.” He mused ignoring his companion’s irritated huff at his flippant reply.
Dismissing Dex as practically useless Alexis hobbled towards the pool, lowering herself down on to one of the rocks and gazing into the water. There was some fish in there but they didn’t seem to be aggressive and Alexis’s feet were so sore…Deciding to chance it she slipped off her shoes and sank her ruined feet into the refreshingly cool water.
“Oh god that feels good.” Alexis sighed arching her back and staring up at the blue sky as she trailed her feet through the water. Even the insects that buzzed around couldn’t ruin this moment, after a day spent traipsing through the tangled jungle, accosted by biting insects and assailed by the humidity Alexis was about ready to drop.
The sudden splash of water had her eyes snapping open though and Alexis couldn’t help but glare at the man responsible…Yet her gaze lingered for another reason entirely…Damn he was toned.
Swallowing as her throat felt dry all of a sudden Alexis couldn’t tear her gaze away… at the moment all she could see was his broad back…golden tanned skin…broad shoulders tapering down to a toned waist and hips…then as he suddenly dived down under the water Alexis got a glimpse of a tight arse in wet cotton shorts and muscular thighs covered sparsely with dark hair.
Fanning herself lightly Alexis forced her gaze away lest Dex suddenly remerged and caught her staring…then when she started to examine her poor feet she wished she hadn’t. They looked like something out of a horror movie, red and sore, the water had washed away the blood and pus from her blisters but still they looked enflamed and very angry.
Still the water cooled them and Alexis could only gaze longingly into the cool depths, the rest of her could do with cooling too and she could only imagine how she must smell by now…at least Dex had to smell worse and considering the stench under his own nose from that vile moustache and beard of his Alexis doubted he would be in any position to comment if she smelt less than fresh herself. Still the water looked very tempting…perhaps if Dex wasn’t here…
Groaning as the water eased his aching muscles Dex tried to concentrate on trapping and catching a couple of the larger fish and not on the woman sitting on the rock with her feet in the water. Yet the way she was leaning back, her back arched, pressing her breasts against the thin silk fabric of her blouse was making that simple task a little more difficult and Dex could only wonder how that transparent that shirt might go if he accidentally pulled her into the water.
Pushing his dirty thoughts aside Dex retrieved his shirt from the rock where he had left it; using it as a makeshift net Dex smirked when after a few false starts he was able to capture two reasonably sized fish.
Flinging the makeshift net up onto the rock Dex couldn’t contain his shout of triumph, instinctively turning to his companion expecting praise, and getting merely an eye roll.
Damn she was hard to please.
Now all he needed was some wood to start a fire and a couple of green sticks and maybe some wild banana leaves if he could find them and they could have themselves a BBQ.
Pulling himself out of the water Dex ran his fingers through his dark hair, trying to comb it back into some semblance of his usual neat style, before running his nails through the beard that had grown during his week long trek through the jungle. God he hated his facial hair, it grew like a bushman’s, the sooner they got to civilisation and he found a razor the better.
Glancing quickly at her highness Dex wasn’t surprised to see her eyes closed as she rested on the rock. Taking advantage of her distraction he kicked off his wet underwear and reached for his trousers, missing the moment when Alexis opened her eyes only to get an eyeful.
Dragging her gaze away as Dex buttoned his fly and turned back to her Alexis did her best to contain the flush of appreciation on her cheeks…It wasn’t everyday that she came across a man who was actually as big as his ego!
“I’m just going to go collect some firewood.” Dex explained his irritation growing when her highness didn’t even bother to meet his gaze. “Do try not to get yourself into any further trouble whilst I am gone!”
“I’ll try to contain myself!” Alexis spat back, god the nerve of the man, just because he was hung like a donkey didn’t mean he had to act like an ass! Still at least this meant she would finally get some privacy and perhaps there would be time to slip in a little swim of her own before he got back?
Dex Dexter couldn’t sleep and it wasn’t for the want of trying but his damn brain refused to stop…or more to the point refused to stop playing a certain memory across his brain.
Grunting as he shifted on the hard ground Dex tried to control his own natural reactions, something that was far harder than it sounded…and dear god speaking of hard…
Things had been going so well. Dex had found himself relaxing a little, the spell alone in the jungle had calmed him down a little and Dex had been full of quiet satisfaction when his foraging had found not only leaves he could use but also a bunch of ripe wild bananas as well. He had been quite chuffed with his own ingenuity as he made his way back to the little oasis, so caught up in his own thoughts that it wasn’t until he was about to step out from the cover of the jungle that he actually realised what he was seeing.
When his brain finally caught up with his eyes Dex had stopped dead, his feet refusing to move another step…
Naked perfection standing underneath the waterfall, hands raised above her head as she ran her fingers through her trying to wash out the dirt and sweat and probably work out the knots. The expression of pure delight on her face sent a jolt of excitement to his groin and Dex had to stifle a groan.
His eyes moved of their own accord downwards.
Full breasts and pink nipples hardened by the cold water…Dex could imagine taking those between his lips and satisfying his growing hunger. God the way they moved with her every stretch and every time she raked her hands through her long wet curls.
Following the water down Dex couldn’t help but stare, her waist was tiny then flared out to curve at the hips, long slender thighs and…swallowing down his lust…Dex couldn’t help but stare at the strip of thick dark curls at the junction of her thighs, chortling to himself at the realisation that someone wasn’t just obsessed with the bodily odour of others but herself liked to stay neat and tidy… everywhere it seemed.
Then the sound of a bird breaking cover startled them both and Her Highness seemed almost panicked, rushing back over to her pile of clothes and Dex couldn’t help but feel a sliver of shame for standing there watching her in such an intimate moment. Only perverts spied on women when they weren’t aware and Dex had always liked to think that despite his many faults that at least he was a gentleman.
He had never pursued a woman who had asked him not to, he had never pushed one into a situation they didn’t want, or used alcohol to their lower inhibitions. Those were tactics his father used to get his own fat useless arse laid. Dear god Dex doubted there was a secretary at Dexter International who hadn’t been “persuaded” to give it up to the big boss by one means or another.
So Dex allowed her time she needed to get dressed, then whistling loudly he took his time before reappearing and began to make himself busy trying to light a damn fire. Concentrating on those tasks and forcing certain images to the back of his mind and it had worked…until now that was, and now with nothing else to occupy his hands or mind Dex found himself held captive by his photographic memory and libido.
Shifting onto his back he stared up at the stars and began to count, sighing to himself when a bird squawked and he lost count and had to start again.
“Dex are you awake?”
For a moment Dex considered ignoring the question but something about the almost hesitant tone made him reconsider. “Unfortunately.” Then realising how rude that must sound he added stuttering…unsure when just talking to this woman had turned him into a nervous wreck… “Ground’s a little firm for my tastes.”
For a moment he was almost certain she had seen through his hasty cover and had taken umbrage at his abrupt tone.
“Well it’s not the most comfortable bed but not the worst either.” Alexis added chuckling to herself as she added. “At least this one isn’t moving.”
Frowning it took Dex a moment for his brain to catch up. “Get seasick do we?”
“Only on small yachts, but yes stuck on one of those catamaran thingys in the middle of the Mediterranean during a storm definitely beats this in the dreadful bed stakes!”
“At least the company had to have been better?” Dex quipped depreciatingly pleased when he got a loud snort of laughter in response.
“Actually no!” Alexis snorted as certain memories played out. “I was lulled aboard with a false promise of secluded beaches, cold champagne and well…you can guess the rest…” She trailed off smirking to herself.
“And the sailor didn’t live up to expectations?” Dex couldn’t help but ask; having only spent a day in her company Dex was in no doubt about her demanding personality and he could only assume that also carried over to the bedroom as well.
“That sailor was a blustering playboy, who knew as little about real sailing as I did!” Alexis snorted.
“He spent most of the trip hogging the bathroom or throwing up over the side. In the end we had to radio the coastguard to come and rescue us but there were a good few hours when I thought I might not live to see dry land again…this trip has been equally eventful…”
Alexis paused snorting once more in amusement. “But at least you haven’t thrown up on me…not yet at any rate, not properly and I suppose water doesn’t count.”
Chuckling along Dex couldn’t help but pause at her last words. “I did what?”
“When I got you out of the river, you weren’t breathing so I tried CPR and then you decided to thank me by spitting up water all over me.” Alexis answered simply surprised when her companion suddenly turned onto his side to stare at her in surprise.
“I assumed you had guessed but then I suppose you did hit your head pretty bad.”
“You…Saved my life…Thank you.” Dex spluttered in surprise his dark eyes widening as he looked, really looked at his companion as if seeing her for the first time and something about his intense scrutiny made Alexis thankful for the darkness as it would go someway to hiding the embarrassed blush.
Lust and desire she was used to seeing in a man’s eyes but gratitude and respect was far harder to come by.
Turning back on to her back so as to avoid that piercing dark gaze Alexis could still feel his gaze on her and it unsettled her…but not in a bad way…there was something exciting about having a man look at her like that again, to be valued for something other than her looks, wit and skill between the sheets.
“You’re welcome and I couldn’t just leave you there, besides you stepped in to save me in that bar the least I could do was return the favour.” Alexis added relieved when her voice contained none of the breathless excitement she was feeling, trying to convince herself that it was simply the circumstance she found herself in and had nothing whatsoever to do with the sneak preview she had gotten earlier.
She did not find him attractive…honestly…nor did thoughts of what might be lurking under that vile beard keep her distracted and away from sleep.
A slightly less awkward silence settled between them as both tried to get comfortable enough to get some sleep. “Good night Dex.”
“Good night…” Dex paused the realisation coming to him suddenly that he didn’t even know her name; the woman had saved his life had he hadn’t even bothered to ask her name before now. “I…urghh this is awkward…”
Smiling at his hesitant boyish tone Alexis couldn’t help but smother her smile, yet he could probably hear her amusement in her voice anyway as she answered. “Alexis, my name is Alexis.”
They were close; Dex was so certain of it he could almost taste it. Although the way the jungle had gradually thinned and given way to land that was farmed had been a pretty good clue that they were at least heading towards civilisation and not in completely the wrong direction. His optimism had him picking up the pace and it took him a good few minutes before he realised Alexis had fallen behind.
Alexis…the name rolled easily off the tongue and it suited her…it had just the right regal tone to it without being stuffy and commonplace.
Things had been different between them today. Or perhaps it was his new view of the lady that had changed the way he reacted to her. Either way she seemed to complain less today…or perhaps it was simply that Dex found himself looking forward to the occasions when she spoke to him that he found himself ignoring or not even noticing any complaints she might have muttered.
He was so wrapped up in pondering that thought that it wasn’t until he turned to ask Alexis if she wanted to rest for a few minutes that he realised she wasn’t just behind him like normal. In fact she was about fifty yards back leaning against a tree and she seemed to be fussing with her shoes.
Biting back his small flair of irritation Dex walked back to her, his irritation quickly smothered out when he caught sight of her feet. They were red raw and Dex couldn’t help the feeling of guilt as he remembered his behaviour only twenty four hours before when he had quite coldly told Alexis to keep her complaints about her sore feet to herself.
At the time he had believed her to be exaggerating when she said her feet were killing her. Now it seemed that statement wasn’t that far off the mark…some of those sores could quite easily get infected.
“Sorry I’ll just be a minute…” Alexis began before attempting to force her battered feet back into her shoes, surprised when Dex reached out to stop her.
“These are nasty.” He muttered and the genuine concern in his voice surprised her. “Why didn’t you make me listen?”
Shrugging aside his question and trying to ignore the gentle way he touched her sensitive feet Alexis suppressed the shiver of something that ran up her leg and up and down her spine, it was as though the feeling of his bare skin on hers sent a jolt through her body causing her hair to stand on end.
Reaching into his jacket for the small emergency first aid kit Daniel made the carry, a precaution Dex had always scoffed at before now…After all what good was a length of gauze and tape, and some antiseptic wipes against a bullet? Still now he found himself thankful for his old commanders old wise head.
Leaning back against the tree Alexis watched as Dex delicately and thoroughly cleaned her wounds before binding the nastiest looking ones in some medical gauze. When he had finished with one foot he moved onto the next and Alexis found herself mesmerised by his thorough and thoughtful attention, even if she had to bite her lip when he used the wipes on her already smarting flesh.
“There that should help until we can have a real doctor look at them.” Dex pronounced pleased with his work but knowing that it left them with one big problem.
“They feel much better…I’m sure I can…”
“No!” Dex insisted as he realised she was just going to force her battered feet bandages and all back into those tiny shoes. There really was only one other alternative, one that would require another clothing adjustment. “I’ll have to carry you.”
“Carry me?” Alexis scoffed, sure Dex was buff but she was hardly a featherweight.
“Yes carry you.” Dex added cutting off any further objections. “A piggy back…please you can’t weigh as much as some of the pack’s I’ve had to carry over the years…although it will require a small sacrifice.” He paused waving down to her skirt with a blush that made him seem far younger than his twenty-nine years.
“If you’d allow me?” He added, remembering to ask for permission this time.
“Be my guest.” Alexis replied softly her breathe quickening slightly as Dex knelt back down and took the other side seam of her skirt in between his strong hands and with one tug rendered it split up to the top of her thigh.
“Sorry about that…” Dex fumbled getting up from his feet as he tugged nervously on his ear. “It was a nice skirt.”
“It is…was couture.” Alexis snorted. “Well I guess it is still one of a kind.”
“It’s definitely that.” Dex mumbled trying and failing to keep his eyes off of her legs and from dwelling on the knowledge that in a few moments those slender pins would be wrapped around him…Trying to keep his thoughts from automatically drifting to what else he could get up to with those fine thighs wrapped around him.
“Well shall we?” Alexis asked breaking the awkward tension that had built between them. Yet as the moment came as Dex crouched down and Alexis placed her hands on his shoulders and lifted one leg feeling his large strong hand on her thigh she couldn’t help the heat that seemed to build in her flesh at his very touch.
Similarly affected Dex forced his eyes shut and gritted his teeth to stifle his own groan as he felt her breasts press up against his back and her legs spread and wrap around his hips. Standing up he felt Alexis panic her grip on his neck becoming almost suffocating, so he reached back and with an impressive show of strength boosted her higher. Now with her thighs able to grip onto his waist and his own hands looping under her knees Alexis was moderately more secure.
Still as he took a step forward and then another Dex had to realise he had traded one impossible situation for another…yes they were moving at least…but when with every step he could feel the heat from between her thighs against his lower back and the teasing brush of her breasts as she slightly rose and fell with his movements…Dex could feel the blood rush south...This was going to be the longest walk of his life!
Alexis wasn’t exactly heavy yet Dex was still somewhat relieved when a passing farmer had agreed to give them a ride on the back of his cart amongst the fresh fruit and vegetables until they reached the outskirts of the two horse and one street town that could only be La Palma.
Jumping down from the cart Dex automatically reached out to help Alexis down, his hands firmly on her hips as he lifted her down carefully as if she were fragile porcelain. Then as their arrival seemed to be drawing a little attention from a few old boys who had nothing better than sit on rockers and watch the world passing by, Dex tucked her in under his arm and kept her there.
“Come on lets get you to the doctor’s.” Dex insisted his dark eyes glancing up and down the street for trouble pleased when most people seemed far too engrossed in their own business to give the pair more than a passing glance. It wasn’t hard to find the only doctor’s office the red first aid cross painted on the whitewashed building was somewhat a give away. Then depositing a somewhat annoyed Alexis there with a nurse that looked trustworthy and at least a hundred years old Dex promised to be right back…he just had to pop to the bank.
Well the closest thing this outback town had for one, the pawnshop.
It took a good ten minutes of haggling but Dex was able to get a reasonable figure in exchange for his gold pinky ring. It was a fair price for the weight but not the sentimental value… Dex had bought himself that ring with his first proper paycheque, one he had earned through his blood, sweat and tears and not one of his father’s pathetic handouts.
He could have gotten more…The pawnbroker had really been interested in the antique gold set Rolex but there was no way De would part with that…It had been his grandfather’s and Dex earliest memories of the man were tied with that watch, being held safely as he rode in front of his grandfather on one of the ranch horses, his young fingers curling over his grandfather’s wrist and holding onto that watch as some sort of safety blanket.
Still some money in his pocket was better than none, now they had enough to get a couple of bus tickets out of here, enough for food and a place to stay overnight…probably even with a bed and roof over their heads…Although sharing both would help save money Dex mused…
He was so caught up in thoughts of what else they might end up sharing that it wasn’t until some old man tapped him with his cane to move along that Dex looked around him. People were starting to trickle out into the streets, tables were being set up in a long line and lanterns were being hung up. Wondering what was going on Dex turned to the old man who was huffing and grumbling in some local dialect.
“¿Qué está pasando?”
The old man seemed to find hi question hilarious as he burst out laughing and stared at Dex like he had grown another head.
“Martes de Carnaval.”
Of course Dex had been so long in the jungle he had forgotten the passage of time, and it wasn’t like Dex was the type to keep track of religious holidays that he didn’t share…sure he knew how big Easter was in the Latin countries but being raised in a somewhat more dull Episcopalian tradition Easter was more a time of fasting and reflection than an excuse to throw a party.
Glancing at his watch Dex took a quick glance at the shops which were still open and doing a thriving trade…perhaps these people had it right, after everything they had both been through in the past few days and yet survived, perhaps now was the time to celebrate after all?
OK they weren’t quite what she was used to but they were clean and reasonably attractive if a little more ‘ethnic’ than her usual style…but more important than any of that was the fact they fit and weren’t ripped and covered in god knows what she had carried back from the jungle. Even the slippers looked comfortable, well that was what the flat little leather shoes looked most like to Alexis and Dex had at least been amused and not offended by her observation.
That he had even thought about her discomfort at all gave Alexis a warm feeling inside…a feeling she was not accustomed to.
True many men had showered her with expensive gifts and presents over the years but that was more about them showcasing how wealthy they were and trying to get into her knickers, it wasn’t about giving her something that would please her.
That he had relinquished the tiny hotel room to her was another pleasant surprise…and it seemed this ‘Dex’ was a young man full of surprises…as before he had left, after handing over the bundle of clothes he had bought for her, he had instructed her that he would call for her in one hour.
An hour that was rapidly passing.
Alexis had managed to squeeze in a shower and as slow and as tepid as the water was…Alexis didn’t care…She didn’t even care about the lack of shower curtain or the crack in the tiny vanity mirror over the only sink. Compared to the last few days this was paradise itself.
Drying herself off with the only towel provided, a small yellowish rag that was patched but at least was clean, Alexis squeezed as much water as she could from her curls before turning to the clothes she had laid out on the bed.
The white peasant style blouse, fastened with a drawstring at the neck meant wearing her bra was out…and Alexis couldn’t help the frisson of excitement that knowledge brought to her, or more to the point what effect that knowledge might have her companion.
Not that she was really attracted to him…well he was wonderfully built and underneath that rough exterior she suspected lay a well protected heart of gold…but that beard had to be there for a reason, no man grew something like that unless he had something to hide.
Still it seemed her body didn’t particularly care about his facial features judging by the way her pulse quickened every time he laid so much as a finger on her…perhaps if they kept the lights off…but then she would miss out on ogling that incredible body.
Cursing her own uncontrollable libido Alexis dressed quickly, forgoing underwear since it seemed Dex hadn’t had quite that much foresight and even though she had washed out her knickers they were still far to wet to put on. Besides with the knee length patterned skirt complete with ruffled edging it wasn’t like anyone would notice.
Still it was probably a good thing that there was no full length mirror in the room as Alexis had no desire to see how she looked, lest she lose the courage to leave the room entirely. Yet she couldn’t help but wish there was something she could do about her hair…the lack of makeup she could just about cope with having always had a good complexion.
Huffing as she paced the room and tried to rake her fingers through her wet curls which as usual knotted themselves together, Alexis was just about to scream in frustration when she spotted it…lying on the patchwork bedspread half sticking out of the shawl that completed her Dex selected outfit…and in that moment Alexis made the decision that beard and possible facial disfigurement aside a certain someone was getting lucky this evening.
All because he had bought her a comb.
Alexis couldn’t stop staring.
Even as her companion wound his way through the crowded street over to one of the many vendors who had set up a small stall in order to procure something for them to eat. Even as he chatted and joked with the rotund chef and picked up a couple of bottles of something…Alexis couldn’t drag her eyes from his face…and more specifically those dimples.
Dear god those things should be labelled extremely dangerous…simply because all women within a hundred yards vicinity of them were in danger of reflexively dropping her knickers whenever they were flashed….At least in this Alexis was somewhat lucky, having no knickers to drop she was in only slightly less danger of embarrassing herself.
Yet that didn’t stop the unattached girls at the carnival and half of the married ones eyeing him like a particularly fine piece of fillet steak they would like to sink their teeth into.
Perhaps that was why Dex had grown the beard in the first place? Perhaps he had gotten tired of having to constantly fend off horny women and decided hiding those adorable dimples underneath a bushman’s beard was the quickest and safest method for all concerned…or of course Alexis could just accept Dex’s explanation that there weren’t many barbers in the jungle and that he had been dying for a shave for days.
Yet Alexis had been too struck dumb on opening the door of her hotel room, her stubborn nature had already been half won over by Dex’s gentleness and consideration…well that and his incredible body might have had a little to do with it. On opening the door for a moment she had stared blankly at the ruggedly handsome young man before her, her eyes automatically raking over his figure and liking what she saw. Then he spoke…
“You look beautiful…come on you don’t want to miss the party.”
And the penny dropped…that was Dex…still if her unusual silence had struck Dex as odd he was too polite to comment on it, instead grasping her hand and tugging her along behind him.
Once out of the street the loud music and party atmosphere made conversation a little difficult, instead Alexis enjoyed the feeling of being protected and envied at the same time as Dex tucked her in under his arm and kept her close at all times. She didn’t even have to do more than flutter her eyelashes in order to get him to dance, instead he surprised her with both his willingness and dancing ability, even if he clearly preferred the slower numbers to the faster tango beats.
Although he did seem to enjoy any excuse to pull her against him, and every time Alexis’s pulse jumped in response, her nipples hardening through the thin blouse as their chests brushed and judging from the way Dex’s grip on her back tightened he must have noticed. For a while on the dance floor things had almost become dangerous. Dex’s dark eyes had bored into her before dropping to her lips and Alexis couldn’t fight the impulse to moisten them in response.
For a moment she was certain he was going to kiss her…and she was going to kiss him back audience be damned.
Then the music had stopped and some local official got up to speak and the moment and the mood was broken…that was when Dex suggested they get some food and Alexis agreed even if right now the only thing Alexis wanted to eat was Dex himself.
Dex Dexter was nervous, not shaking hands nervous, he had that much control at least but definitely butterflies in the stomach…except his weren’t just fluttering about, the butterflies in Dex’s stomach were doing a polka!
Covering his nerves Dex joked with the chef pulling together their enchiladas, before taking a long hard pull on his beer as his eyes automatically flickered back over to their tables…
Yes Alexis was still watching him.
The hungry way her emerald eyes seemed move over his body set his blood aflame and Dex had to struggle to control his reaction, taking another sip of his beer. He was hardly a naive ingénue and before now Dex would have categorised his style with women as suave and smooth. True he did tend to go for the older more experienced type.
Dex had always avoided younger women simply because they tended to be clingier and assumed that a hot night in between the sheets inevitably led to a relationship. Whereas women in the thirties had either already been married and were in no hurry to tie themselves back down or they had at least been around the block enough to realise a one or two night stand for what it was…good sex and nothing more.
However as a result he now found himself in new territory, he wanted Alexis…that wasn’t earth shattering…she was one of the most beautiful women Dex had ever seen and in normal circumstances he would have probably have bedded her already. Yet their unusual situation had meant Dex had focused his attention on getting them out of the jungle in one piece, and sex no matter how attractive the partner was the last thing on his mind.
It had meant he had actually spent time getting to know Alexis a little, she was demanding and perhaps more than a little spoilt but she was also brave and strong and funny. Dex had been surprised to find himself enjoying her company and he had been so focused on their survival and controlling his libido that he hadn’t even seen the real danger he was in until it was upon him.
As preoccupied as Dex was with protecting them from dangers all around them clearly he had taken no such precaution with his heart.
For as experienced as Dex Dexter was in the matters of the flesh when it came to matters of the heart he was a completely unprepared…he had never been in love, not properly in love with anyone and so the suddenness and intensity of these new feelings were overwhelming.
It almost felt like a boy with his first crush; even a half smile when Alexis directed it at him had his blood pumping. Then when he had actually touched her as they danced his palms had gotten hot and sweaty and embarrassed Dex had tried to cover that up by sliding both his hands around her waist. The feeling of her breasts as they brushed against him had the blood draining from his brain and Dex had dumbly clung to her, his eyes transfixed by those inviting emerald before dropping to gaze hungrily at those damn fine tempting lips.
He wanted to kiss…he wanted to do more than kiss her and it seemed Alexis was receptive to such ideas if her hardened nipples were any indication. Yet part of Dex was hesitant. He wanted her but he wanted more than just one night in her bed. The idea of having her and then having to let her go froze the fire in his veins and he even in the tropical heat he shivered.
Yet how could he convince Alexis to consider the possibility of more when Dex himself didn’t even know how a relationship was meant to work?
It was crazy to be even thinking it but since their return to civilisation…or close enough to it…Dex hadn’t so much as glanced at another woman and he knew there were plenty of pretty young things giving him the eye but with Alexis here they all paled in comparison. She was all he could think about and it was driving him insane with desire and an ache in his chest that seemed to physically pain him when they were apart.
He could only imagine that when they finally returned to Panama City and she took a plane back to Europe and left him behind, that the sudden separation might actually prove fatal…and what was worse was that Dex felt powerless to be able to prevent it.
What the hell was taking so bloody long?
Alexis Morell Carrington was not a woman accustomed to waiting and right now she couldn’t work out what game Dex thought he was playing. One moment he couldn’t stop touching her, taking her hand, tucking her under his arm, pulling her close when they danced…almost kissing her…making her heart beat wildly…leading her on…
Then he was pulling away…running away!
He had left her to wait alone at a table whilst he went and got food and beer of all things when what he should have been doing was dragging her back to the hotel and if he had such an appetite eating her instead! If she didn’t believe it to be impossible Alexis would almost think he was a blushing virgin from the skittish way he was behaving.
But please one look at that man and the way other women were drooling over him and there was no way on earth Dex could still be a virgin…not unless he had really grown up in the jungle or perhaps some vast Wyoming plain with only his horse for company and not a whorehouse in riding distance.
If she had been an insecure woman Alexis might have assumed it was her, that Dex didn’t find her attractive but although some might call her arrogant Alexis knew the effect she had on men regardless of their type. Even one of her gay male friends had often declared she must produce some sort of pheromones as even they found her physically attractive. Besides Alexis knew Dex wanted her…the telltale bulge in his jeans as he swaggered to the bar told her that much.
So that meant he was consciously choosing not to act on the attraction that sparked between them, he would rather suppress the chemistry that was bubbling than act on it, and that could only mean there was somebody else…perhaps a little wife at home…or a steadfast little fiancé waiting on the front porch all earnest and true and disgustingly annoying.
Well Alexis Carrington had never let another woman come between her and what she wanted…the bond of marriage was only as strong and sacrosanct as the partners willpower…besides after all that she had been through trekking through the jungle, loosing her couture clothing and half a million dollars worth of jewellery Alexis felt she was owed a little compensation and if orgasms were her currency of choice then Dex had better start paying up immediately if he wanted to expunge his hefty debt before Christmas.
It was the sight of a smiling Dex surrounded by several local girls that finally caused her to act. The flair of anger akin to jealousy was quickly stomped down as Alexis fixed her eyes on her prize and settled on a strategy.
Pushing herself out of her seat Alexis strode through the crowd, catching Dex’s gaze when she was still a few feet away from him. Smirking as he seemed both relieved to see her and suddenly nervous Alexis had no qualms whatsoever in pushing through the girls who huffed and complained.
Alexis took no notice of them. Her attention was focused on a pair of dark eyes that seemed to burn into her own.
Closing the foot remaining between them and using the element of surprise she stood up on her tip toes her hand reaching up to cup the back of his head as she pulled a dumb Dex down within her reach. A moment later and her lips were covering his.
Stroking her tongue along his lips as she teased him Alexis was oblivious to anything else. What she had meant as a simple marking of ownership quickly changed…
It was like a switch had flicked…one moment Dex was stood frozen in place, shocked by her forwardness, the next he was alive with lust and fire. The kiss that Alexis had started he quickly gained control over, his mouth opening under her inquisitive tongue as his own came out to play. Lips, tongue…hands one moving to thread into her hair and the other to cup her backside and pull her body firmly against him.
Feeling his arousal press into her stomach Alexis couldn’t help but groan into Dex’s mouth, her own body burning with need as she rubbed her breasts against his firm chest.
Panting they pulled apart and Alexis couldn’t contain her victorious smirk and the look of total lust and abandonment on Dex’s face. Raking her finger through the hair at the nape of his neck Alexis gazed up at Dex through her lashes…
“Do you want to get out of here?”
Did he want to get out of here?
Was that a rhetorical question?
Could there be any doubt as to his answer…it was like asking if the earth circled the sun or was rain wet?
Of course he wanted to get out of here! Unless Alexis wanted to have sex in front of an audience leaving right now was the best idea she had ever had.
And yet even as Dex’s lust had him halfway to the hotel by now part of him cautioned him to try and put on the brakes…he wanted her, oh god did he want her…but he wanted Alexis to realise that this was more than just about sex, that although he was physically attracted to her it was more than just her body that had caught his interest.
Swallowing in order to lubricate his dry throat Dex could only stutter his reply. “If…y..you want to…but what about the food?” He added hesitantly glancing back at the chef who seemed particularly amused by his predicament.
“Food?” Alexis spat, unable to believe what she was hearing. She was offering him sex and Dex was more concerned with the contents of his stomach. Dear god perhaps he was a virgin after all?
Sensing the souring of Alexis’s mood and realising she was about to pull away Dex tightened his hold on her, convinced her that angry pout was just as attractive and alluring as the soft sensuous look she had worn a moment earlier.
“I want to…I want you.” Dex insisted pulling Alexis’s hips firmly against the bulge in his jeans. “Oh god do I want you...It’s just you haven’t eaten properly for days and you’ll need all your energy for what I have in mind.”
Momentarily appeased Alexis stopped sulking her pout turning playful as she slid her free hand down between them and relished Dex’s groan as her fingers cupped him through his jeans. “Oh really and what exactly did you have in mind?”
Bucking as he felt her touch him even through the fabric of his jeans Dex had to breathe through his nose in an effort to contain himself...They were in public and although most people were watching the dancing couples Dex could still feel a few eyes on them.
However clearly this lady liked to push buttons and boundaries as a moment later her hand was sliding down inside his jeans and taking an eager part of him in hand. “Alexis….” Dex whined gritting his teeth as he struggled not to come then and there.
“My my who’s a big boy!” Alexis teased biting her lip thrilled by the power she had over him and the illicitness of stimulating him in public. “Now tell me exactly what you want to do to me!”
Closing his eyes as he fought for control Dex couldn’t help but tighten his hands on her buttocks and grind himself against her. Yet the tightening of Alexis’s hand around the base of his shaft and the sudden stilling of her movements meant he wasn’t off the hook.
“I want you here now…I want those thighs wrapped around me as I lift you off the floor…I want to fill you and hear you scream…I want to **** you so hard you are begging me to let you come. I want to take one of those pert tits of yours in my mouth and suck on it as I finger you…And then when you are screaming out my name I am going to come so damn deep in you…”
“Good!” Alexis whispered standing up on tiptoe to place a soft almost chaste kiss on his lips as she removed her hands from his trousers. Then glancing over Dex’s shoulder she winked at the chef who had eyeing them both with some amusement.
“Mantener los cálidos.” She instructed him before leading Dex, who right now would have followed her anywhere back over to the dance floor.
“Alexis?” Dex called out to her confused as she merely glanced back over her shoulder at him and smiled suggestively. Yet he followed her clueless as she weaved through the mass of bodies and then out the other side.
Then grabbing him by the shirt Alexis pulled him in for another searing kiss.
Pulling away his confusion only growing as they seemed to be heading away from the hotel and not back to it, the answer only dawned when a moment later Alexis stepped off of the main street and into a narrow alleyway between two stores.
Pushing a stupidly smiling Dex into one of the discrete alcoves and up against somebody’s front door Alexis added commandingly. “Now how did that plan of yours go again?”
08-20-2011, 08:24 PM
I love it so far!!!!
08-21-2011, 03:26 AM
This is great. It's better than any romantic adventure that I've seen on TV and/or the movies lately.
Not posting the lemon on this site as it has no age control so you'll just have to use your own imaginations.
Leaning back against her pillow Alexis didn’t care if the sheets were poor quality and a little scratchy…who could possibly care about such a thing when the rest of the contents of her bed was so very fabulous. Turning on to her side she nuzzled into her personal pillow, pressing a kiss followed by a playful bite to the most gorgeous plump pectoral muscle.
Stretching out Dex Dexter couldn’t keep a grin off of his face. Taking another sip from his bottle of beer Dex swallowed before running the edge of the bottle along the exposed curve of Alexis’s back. When she shivered and goosebumps broke out all along that gorgeous soft skin Dex used that as an excuse to pull her close and press a kiss to her forehead before working his way down her face…her nose…her cheek…her lips.
Sighing contentedly Alexis sank into the kiss. The way Dex kissed her was intoxicating, he kissed her like she was the most important thing in the world and as if he couldn’t imagine doing anything else but kissing her…and the more he kissed her the more Alexis couldn’t imagine doing anything else either.
Substitute this dingy little hotel room for her villa in Acapulco or even a five star suite anywhere around the world and Alexis would have been content to stay in bed with him forever.
Sliding her thigh over Dex’s hip Alexis smirked as Dex groaned as she brushed against a part of him that was surprisingly still interested in playing. Digging her nails into his firm backside Alexis giggled as Dex yelped before reaching around and capturing her wrists and rolling them both over.
“You cannot still be hungry.”
“Why not I didn’t gorge myself on enchiladas.” Alexis retorted smugly. “Don’t tell me you’re too tired to keep up?…That I’ve gone and worn you out?”
Pressing his arousal against her thigh Dex smirked. “Does that feel like I am tired.”
“Well I guess not.” Alexis answered with a smile of her own, her smile turning to a pout when simply kissed her briefly and rolled back onto his back to take another sip of his beer.
“It’s not polite to keep a lady waiting Dex….”
“Even if it’s to build the anticipation.” Dex teased gazing across at the woman next to him with her mussed hair and her porcelain skin flushed from good sex she was breathtaking. “Besides we have plenty of time…I have no intention of letting you out of my sight.”
“Well I wasn’t planning on going anywhere tonight…”
“Or tomorrow…or the next day.” Dex added confidently leaning down to tease her lips. “In fact lets round off the week and call it payment for my expert survival guidance.”
Snorting Alexis shook her head at his arrogance. “If anyone has a bill to pay Dex its you!”
“Yes you.” Alexis retorted tracing the outline of his lips. “I saved your life remember.”
“And I yours.” Dex countered. “Not just in the bar but you wouldn’t have survived the night in jungle without me.”
“Perhaps.” Alexis shrugged her shoulders her eyes narrowing as Dex smirked confident of his victory waiting until he had just taken a large swig of beer to add. “But saving my life didn’t cost you half a million dollars.”
Dex choked…raising his hand as he all but spat his beer out… “What are…Half a million dollars…How?”
Suddenly coy as those dark eyes bore into her Alexis shrugged her elegant shoulders again. “My vanity case…well I couldn’t get all of us out of the river and I had to leave it behind, and lets just say it didn’t just have my makeup in it.”
“Jewellery?” Dex asked his spirits sinking when Alexis nodded. “I’m sorry I hope you were insured.”
“Oh well mine were…but there were a few things in there that are irreplaceable regardless of their monetary worth, family pieces you know…I don’t know if the Tiffany pieces are insured or not…well I hope they are I would rather not have to face a lawsuit considering they were only lent for the party I was going to.”
“I’ll pay you back.” Dex insisted. “I promise Alexis when we get out of here...”
“In what nickels and dimes?” Alexis scoffed shaking her head, no there was no need, the insurance would cover her loses besides how on earth could a man like Dex pay off that sort of debt, it was sweet of him to offer no matter how unrealistic.
“I mean it…” Dex began opening his mouth to try and explain that he was not without means and that although half a million wasn’t exactly pocket change he could afford it. Yet Alexis’s soft sweet lips cut him off and Dex returned her kiss just as softly.
“I know you mean well but let’s be practical.” Alexis whispered as she reached up and stroked through his thick dark hair. Dex was sweet and gorgeous and fantastic in bed, which already meant he had to have some other woman stashed somewhere. There was no way rich could also be part of that list, if it was there was no way on earth Alexis wouldn’t already know him or of him, that would also mean there was no way he was still single.
“Of course we could always settle on another type of currency…say a thousand dollars for every orgasm…that should only take you until Christmas to work off.” Alexis added in an effort to lighten the mood.
“What as your kept man…live in stud?” Dex scoffed. “As attractive as that might sound I am a working man Alexis, I pay my own way…I look after my women not the other way around.”
“And just how many women do you look after on a regular basis?”
Smiling at her loaded question Dex felt a frisson of excitement at her obvious jealousy. “Well I have just met this one girl…she’s kinda perfect really…killer legs and incredible in bed…drives me crazy…”
“Yeah and she has the most amazing eyes.” Dex added as Alexis’s question could have cut glass. “The most brilliant shade of green I have ever seen, reminds me of emeralds. Now she is one classy dame but I figure if I keep working on her I might be able to persuade her to give me a chance.”
“A chance at what?” Alexis asked rolling her eyes at his baiting even as she blushed at his compliments.
“Letting her guard down and letting me in.” Dex answered softly knowing he had hit pay dirt as Alexis suddenly dropped her gaze, avoiding his.
“Why would you say that?”
“Well she puts up this front for everyone, acts all demanding and spoilt when underneath it all she is kind and sweet and funny…If I had to take a guess I would say someone hurt her badly once and she’s been keeping her guard up ever since to stop anyone else from doing it again.” Dex added reaching out and catching Alexis’s chin and bringing her eyes up to meet his. “Which is such a damn shame because I think she is pretty terrific.”
“Oh and are you psychic amongst your many skills?”
“No.” Dex answered his tone even despite the sarcasm in Alexis’s tone. “But I am a tracker and I can read signs remember…I wouldn’t hurt you Alexis.”
Pushing his hand away Alexis sat up in bed pulling her sheet around her. This conversation had gone from light and flirty to deep and serious so damn quickly she was getting dizzy. Normally right about now she would be pulling on her clothes and storming out, that or ordering him to leave…but here there was nowhere to go and Alexis wasn’t ready to try and make Dex leave not that he would take any notice if she did.
“Dex don’t push please…” Alexis whispered surprising herself at the emotional break in her voice.
Sighing Dex sat up, wrapping his arms around her body and pressing a kiss to her shoulder. “Alright.”
Sighing and smiling Alexis leant back against him feeling his strong arms wrap around her and just keep her safe no questions asked. Turning her head she caught his lips, their soft chaste kiss suddenly turning desperate as Alexis turned around and all but crawled into his lap, pushing Dex back down into their rumpled sheets.
Talking was too dangerous…sex…especially good sex…was far easier to handle.
Stretching out Dex Dexter sighed in contentment, even with sleep still fogging his brain the memories of last night still flashed through his mind in epic clarity. Arching his back Dex turned onto his side his hands automatically reaching out for the woman who featured heavily in those memories. It was only when his arms turned up empty, clutching nothing save a bunched up sheet and a rumpled pillow that Dex came back to reality with a bump.
There was no answer and that set Dex’s heart pounding. Jumping out of bed he grabbed at his jeans tugging them on as he first checked the tiny bathroom, hoping against hope that Alexis was just under the shower and hadn’t heard him call out. However the bathroom too was empty and Dex felt his heart begin to clench.
Had she left? Just gotten up in the middle of the night whilst he slept and run out on him?
Then he realised the door was slightly ajar…If Alexis had run out on him then surely she would have shut it behind her?
Staggering out of the door and onto the veranda that ran along the length of the outside of the motel Dex felt his panic increasing…there was no sign of her…
Surely he would have woken if Alexis had been snatched from the bed beside him?
Yet if she had stepped outside for a breathe of fresh air…their room was a little stuffy thanks to the lack of air conditioning. Taking the stairs on the rickety old wooden stairwell two at a time Dex was at street level in no time at all. Glancing up and down the length of shops that were only just starting to open Dex squinted against the glare of the early sunlight.
Then he saw her…making her way down the road as though she hadn’t a care in the world. Dex felt a rush of relief so strong it was palpable but it went hand in hand with a fury he had scarcely ever felt before.
What did she think she was doing? Surely Alexis knew how dangerous it was to wandering about by herself? Had the last few days taught her nothing at all?
Dex was so furious that he stepped into the dirt road without looking properly and it was only the honk of a startled driver that gave him enough warning to jump back and save his own skin.
“Shit!” Dex cursed running his hands through his hair as heart beat wildly in his rib cage.
“Dex my god are you alright?” Alexis’s concerned voice took him by surprise, as she appeared out of thin and Dex couldn’t even try to curb his reaction, staring down the road at the tow truck that had almost ran him over…and more worryingly at the familiar battered old truck it was pulling.
“I’m fine! I’d be a hell of a lot more than fine if you hadn’t pulled a Houdini act on me…Dammit woman what the hell were you thinking?”
Startled by his curt tone Alexis stepped back as if slapped. “I was thinking what I do is my business Dex. I didn’t realise I was required to ask your permission?”
Reaching out as he captured Alexis’s arm Dex tugged her after him ignoring her protests in his effort to get her off of the street. They were far too conspicuous standing here on the street, true he at least was without a beard this time but Alexis’s beauty was made to stand out and they weren’t safe yet.
“Well you wouldn’t need to check with me if you used your brains…or did you lose your common sense along with your jewellery?”
Pulling her arm free Alexis felt her own temper slip. “How dare you?”
“I dare because I have spent the last few days trying to keep you alive and safe and then the first moment I let my guard down you do something like this!” Dex spat back resisting the urge to reach out and strangle this bloody stupid stubborn woman. “What the hell could have been so important that it couldn’t have waited until I was up…or was that it?”
“Was that what?”
“Was that why you left?” Dex repeated his eyes boring down into Alexis’s emeralds. “Because you wanted to get away from me…from how close you let me get…Is that what you do Alexis, draw a man in then when he is hooked cut him loose?”
“Now who is paranoid?” Alexis scoffed. “If you must know I walked down to the exchange to place a phone call to my friend asking him if he could send a car to pick us up. Now is that alright with you Dex or do I now need to start letting you vet who I can and cannot talk to as well?”
Biting his lip as the frostiness in Alexis’s tone was a wake up call even Dec couldn’t ignore. “Look I’m sorry alright…maybe I over reacted a little bit but we aren’t safe here…you especially aren’t safe and I was worried…I care about you Alexis the thought of you being hurt…your safety is my concern…”
“Not for much longer.” Alexis spat back still smarting from Dex’s insulting comments. “In a couple of hours Rashid will be here and you will be rid of me…Now if you will excuse me I could do with taking a shower…alone!”
True to her word Alexis had showered alone…In fact she had managed to shower, dress and attempt to calm her wayward curls all without so much as making eye contact with Dex or answering his questions with more than one or two word answers.
She was mad at him and Alexis was not about giving Dex the cold shoulder in order to reinforce that point.
Alexis had made the mistake once of allowing one man to dictate terms to her. She had foolishly believed in the notion that true love conquered all and that if she was loved her husband enough that would be all she needed to secure her future happiness…
That foolish notion had died a death when her first child had been cruelly taken from her and Alexis had been forced into a better acquaintance with the real world. Her rose tinted spectacles had shattered and those shards had dug deep into her, causing wounds that still bled and ached, never healing properly.
Love could fail…it could tarnish and twist…The man who one day was declaring you were the centre of his world could change his mind…Now instead of an angel you could be the devil incarnate and if you didn’t take the proper precautions to protect yourself you could find yourself cast adrift having had your most treasured possessions ripped from you.
No man would have the power to do that to her again…Alexis refused to give anyone that sort of power over her…and even if soft warm chocolate brown eyes beseeched her to relent and their owner tried to pull her close, Alexis knew better.
Dex may believe he was falling in love with her, and perhaps he was. Alexis herself could feel the something between them, it was practically tangible and more than simple lust. It could be far more, she could love him probably if she let herself but Alexis had made a promise herself as she stared out of the back of that taxi which had spirited her away from the mansion and her beloved Fallon and Steven…Never to fall in love again…never to let her guard down and give any other man the power to break her like Blake had done.
No Dex was far too dangerous…there were moments with him that Alexis found herself forgetting…moments when that constant ache seemed to vanish and she found herself just living and enjoying the moment…living and forgetting and risking everything she had spent the last ten years trying to scrap together.
So instead of caving into Dex’s emotive dark eyes and resolving their little tiff Alexis held on to her anger, using it like a shield to keep herself safe…she had already let Dex get far closer than anyone else but not too far that she couldn’t still stop this.
She only had to hang on to this resolve for a little while longer, until Rashid arrived and rescued her from herself.
Dear Rashid they really were both the same person, Rashid was the only person Alexis had felt comfortable confessing her resolution to never fall in love again. And Rashid instead of being appalled by her decision had applauded it…love was a complication neither of them wanted or needed in their lives…for Rashid he considered it too much of a distraction from his primary goals of expanding his influence and fortune.
Instead they got to enjoy all the benefits of a relationship without any of the drawbacks…the sex was very very good…Rashid was nothing if not a perfectionist in all he did and for some reason he had an obsession about being the best she had, and considering the results Alexis had no reason to try and desist him from that particular goal.
It was the ends that mattered and so if the way he touched her was more calculated than spontaneous…his moves practiced and studied than a certain someone’s genuine spontaneous to explore every inch of her….
“I take that must be him?” Dex’s sudden question jarred Alexis back to the present and away from the heady memories of the night before and just where else those lips had been but a few hours before.
Frowning slightly at the hint of ridicule in Dex’s voice Alexis followed his gaze…That was Rashid alright and he clearly had come intending to make a point. The three large expensive Mercedes and muscular bodyguards getting out of the front and final car hammered home the message that this was not a man to be messed with.
If Alexis had been alone or frightened than she might have welcomed the over the top show of force, as she was neither of these things she found herself surprised to find herself annoyed at her friends constant need to play the Arab Sheik. It had backfired on him before, in Monte Carlo when certain exiled eastern European autocrats hadn’t taken kindly to him muscling on their poker game and trying to walk away with the pot…Rashid had been lucky to escape without his legs broken.
Still Rashid was her only ticket out of this backwater and Alexis could stomach his gauche need to stomp his superiority over everyone if that meant not having to walk back to Panama City.
“Rashid Darling.” Alexis called out from over the balustrade alerting the stocky Arab to her whereabouts.
“Alexis?” Rashid called out, lowering his sunglasses and staring at this unkempt version of the woman he knew. “Is that really you? My goodness what on earth has happened to you, I wouldn’t have recognised you.” He added with a titter seemingly oblivious to way Alexis tensed at his less than flattering remark or Dex’s fists clenched minutely.
Forcing a welcoming smile on to her face Alexis took the stairs slowly, keen to keep what little dignity she had as she approached Rashid and could clearly see his amusement growing as his gaze looked her up and down.
“What an interesting outfit….going native?”
“There were limited choices.” Alexis retorted just as bluntly. “Native clothing or go naked.”
“Well I know my preference.” Rashid chortled, his gaze finally shifting from Alexis to the tall dark shadow that was a merely pace behind her. “And I know yours…picked yourself up a little souvenir? I suggest you leave him behind as I doubt he’ll fit in your hand luggage.” He asked raking his eyes up and down Alexis’s latest conquest.
Bristling at the nerve of the man Dex was just about to step forward and let the cocky little sod have it, first for insinuating that Alexis looked anything less than perfect and then for implying he was a disposable toy to be dropped at whim. However the sudden soothing presence of Alexis’s hand on his arm stopped him dead. That was the first time she had willingly touched him since their argument and Dex was glad she had done so as out of the corner of his eye he could see Rashid’s bodyguards eyeing him like a piece of trash they were just waiting to toss out.
“Actually this is Dex, he saved my life.” Alexis answered simply and pointedly, her own lack of amusement at Rashid’s little quip the closest she could come to telling him not to act like an arse. “He’s been the one taking care of me.”
“Then the whole world owes him a debt of gratitude.” Rashid gushed, clearly getting her message and trying to make amends by turning on the charm…not that Alexis or Dex could be fooled by such a sudden turnaround.
“Indeed you have my thanks Mr…Dex? You must allow me to show my appreciation for all the help you have been to my dear Alexis…allow me to compensate you for your efforts…”
“Alexis safety and well-being is all the thanks I need.” Dex cut in before Rashid's could insult him further and actually offer him money for doing what Dex considered to be the right thing.
“If you want to thank him then you can give him a ride with us to Panama City.” Alexis cut in before things could escalate further. Dex’s refusal to roll over and play Rashid’s game clearly irritated Rashid who was not used to anyone talking over him, let alone a scruffy nobody.
His smile now a little forced Rashid nodded. “Of course that is the least I can do…I am sure there will be plenty of room for Dex in one of the cars.”
One of the other cars Dex was certain of that much…somehow he couldn’t seen Rashid inviting him to ride with them, but Dex wasn’t willing to let Alexis go just yet…not without a fight and certainly not to a man who despite claiming to be her friend clearly had no idea how sensitive Alexis was underneath all that armour she carried around. So as he accepted the seat sandwiched in between two silent and intimidating bodyguards Dex resolved to play along for now…
The villa was beautiful Dex had to at least give Rashid that; the man certainly enjoyed the finer things in life.
As he looked around his room admiring the pieces of art and sculpture Dex could only wonder about the decoration in the rest of the house as he very much doubted he had been given one of the best rooms considering Rashid had only grudgingly allowed him to stay the night in the first place.
Dex could only wonder what Alexis had said during the car journey? It must have been something significant to have prompted Rashid to offer him a bed for the night when only a few hours before the Arab had been reluctant to even allow him room in one of his three Mercedes, and even then Dex was relegated to the third car with the bodyguards.
Perhaps Alexis had guilted Rashid into it? That Alexis had bothered to interfere on his behalf at all after their previous argument gave Dex hope…Alexis still might be mad at him but for whatever reason it appeared she didn’t want him vanishing off and fending for himself in Panama City.
Whatever her motives Dex allowed himself to hope that perhaps her reasoning wasn’t even explainable to Alexis herself…that she too felt this inexorable pull between them…a chemistry that could be more…much more if given the chance.
He also allowed himself to enjoy the perks of Rashid’s hospitality, a long soak in a hot tub in which his aching muscles finally began to unwind. A shave and a change of clothes…they were a little bulkier for his toned frame but they were the right length and so Dex could only amuse himself that clearly they had been donated by one of the bodyguards since Rashid’s lack of physical stature.
They weren’t anything flash, a simple pair of dark trousers, a nice leather belt to synch them in and a pressed white shirt but Dex almost looked like himself…somehow he doubted Rashid would approve of the change as on a bad day Dex would still consider himself a threat to the stocky balding Arab regardless of the aphrodisiacs of his wealth and power.
Dex supposed it would come down to what Alexis valued more money or the man…Perhaps it was foolish of him but Dex wanted to be sure that if Alexis did choose the chance of a relationship with him over this arrangement or whatever she had with Rashid that it was for him alone…
For that reason alone Dex decided to keep his own relative wealth to himself, at least then he could be certain if Alexis chose him it would be for him alone and not his money.
Hearing a knock on his door Dex walked over and opened it trying to keep his disappointment in check when instead of Alexis there was one of the house servants waiting for him.
“Mr Dex I have been sent to tell you that dinner is being served on the terrace…if you would care to follow me?”
Nodding politely Dex signalled his agreement to follow the older man…dinner with the competition…that should prove enlightening.
God she wanted the ground to open up and swallow her…either that or for god to strike their little dinner party with lightning…well one person in particular.
“Such a shame that you missed the party Alexis. It was definitely the highlight of the season but then there were so many important and beautiful people there that I doubted you were missed. In fact I don’t recall anyone even asking where you were…Did they Zach?”
“Actually I do recall a few people asking after you Alexis.” The ever charming Zach Powers answered before shooting a piqued Caress a pointed look from his dark eyes. A look that Caress did her best to ignore, the way Zach rushed to defend Alexis making her more determined than ever to put Alexis in her place once and for all…If she didn’t god knows how long it would be before Alexis decided to get her talons into Zach?
Forcing her smile Alexis felt her grip tighten on the stem of her champagne glass, thankful at least for small mercies. Dealing with Cassie was difficult at the best of times…Alexis refused to use her sister’s new moniker… but Alexis could only imagine her sister’s unholy glee if she had spotted Alexis’s outfit only a few hours before.
Alexis would forever be grateful to Rashid that he had managed to track down the taxi driver who had abandoned her in that hell hole and after introducing the old man to his bodyguards had been able to recover her property more or less intact. So at least Alexis had been able to dress appropriately for dinner even if she had been forced to forgo the appropriate accessories which were probably languishing at the bottom of that damn river by now.
“Still I can’t believe you missed the party of the year.” Caress scoffed her almond shaped eyes locking on her sister before flickering across to the younger man who had been strangely silent since Alexis had introduced him to her and Zach simply as ‘Dex’ the man who had come to her assistance in San Miguel.
“And all because you got lost.” Caress added her full lips tugging into a smirk as she continued to assess the handsome and well built saviour of her older sister.
“It was hardly a situation I would have chosen Cassie dear.” Alexis retorted patronisingly as her emerald gaze narrowed on her sister who was paying Dex far too much attention for her liking…sizing him like he was particularly fine stallion she had a hankering to ride…not that she cared, Caress could screw whomever she wanted and Dex was a free agent…it was simply he was too good for the likes of her bitch of a sister.
“Still I am sure it had its compensations.” Caress retorted suggestively reinforcing her point by glancing over at Dex one more time who shifted uncomfortably under this viper’s intense scrutiny.
Leaning forward over the table, flashing Dex a little too much cleavage as she did so Caress launched into her interrogation. “Tell me Dex what is that you do, besides rescuing damsels in distress?”
“I was in the marines.” Dex answered honestly, surprised when he suddenly had everyone’s attention, even Zach Powers and Rashid managed to tear their gazes away from Alexis’s beauty long enough to favour him with their fleeting attention. Still he would have preferred they all went back to ignoring him…especially Alexis’s sister whose interest in him seemed to be far from platonic
“Was?” Rashid asked picking up immediately on the salient point. “So what do you do now?”
“A little or this, a little of that.” Dex answered vaguely. “I joined the military straight out of high school and after I was discharged I wasn’t so keen to tie myself down into one career…I had to be sure whatever I ended up doing was what I really wanted…You only get one shot at life, you’d be foolish to waste it and I am not a fool.”
“So you’re a hedonist then?” Zach asked seemingly genuinely intrigued.
“I wouldn’t say that I don’t devote my life to simply pursuing pleasure…I believe in the benefits of discipline and hard work, I would never have survived in the military otherwise but I do believe that when you find whatever makes you happy that you shouldn’t let it go. Real happiness is too fleeting to be squandered needlessly, just like true love it is too rare and should be nurtured and protected.”
“Ahh so you’re a romantic.” Zach pronounced gleefully, delighted that he seemed to have gotten the measure of the enigmatic young man after all.
“I too am a romantic…love in all its forms is to be celebrated and pursued…the whims of the heart and cupid’s arrow should be followed regardless of where it may take you. No matter the cost!”
“I wouldn’t say no matter what it might cost…” Dex countered Zach surprising the shipping tycoon who scowled slightly before masking his annoyance with one of his shark smiles.
“If following physical attraction hurt someone else I cared about for example.” Dex answered this time catching Alexis’s lowered gaze as she feigned disinterest in their conversation and fussed with her food. “Love cannot survive without two things…trust and fidelity.”
“Sounds to me like you are a hopeless romantic.” Rashid suddenly cut in bluntly. “But then you are still young, you’ll learn love is not hearts and flowers it is an endless battle which each party trying outmanoeuvre the other.”
“If learning means I sacrifice my beliefs then I will happily stay a romantic no matter how hopeless that might be.” Dex retorted coolly before glancing back, this time surprised and pleased to find Alexis’s gaze openly on him. “Taking the chance of finding someone who can love me, just for me, regardless of my faults and hopefully because of them…I think a love like that is worth waiting and hoping for.”
“Then I predict you will have a dull lonely life.” Rashid scoffed. “Doomed to disappointment.”
“Perhaps.” Dex shrugged. “But then I am willing to take that chance.”
Alexis could pretend that Dex’s words hadn’t affected her but then she would be lying, not only to the others but more importantly to herself. She hadn’t heard anyone talk like that since she was a naïve seventeen year old about to marry a much older man she had fallen head over heels in love with.
To hear a man, a grown man, talk so reverently about love like that…of course it could all be a rouse? A way to get her to drop her barriers and get back into her bed…a not unpleasant prospect. Yet it was hardly a strategy guaranteed to succeed and there were far more effective means to get into her knickers if that was Dex’s sole objective. Those dimples alone had power enough to get her aroused. Yet if this wasn’t a strategy to get her into bed, if Dex was serious…
“Alexis you are being too quiet.” Zach’s sudden attention drew Alexis back to the party. “Are we boring you?”
“I am merely tired…It has been a stressful few days...I really haven’t slept properly.” Alexis answered catching Dex’s eye and his infectious grin, one that she couldn’t help but return. After all last night had been practically sleepless, albeit for a different reason than the two nights before. “I guess I really should be retiring soon.”
“Of course don’t force yourself to stay up on our account…We will have plenty of time to catch up.” Zach insisted graciously leaving Cassie and Rashid no option but to agree. “In fact I insist on it, you and Rashid and young Dex here should join us on my yacht tomorrow, in fact pack for a couple of days and then we’ll have a relaxing little trip around the cove.”
“Zach I had plans for tomorrow…” Rashid cut in yet from the way he sideways glanced at Dex Alexis could tell it was more the inclusion of Dex in the invitation that had him riled and Alexis could only wonder what new mischief Zach was up to.
“Well cancel them or don’t, it’s up to you.” Zach countered with a shrug. “Alexis and Dex can still come and I imagine they would benefit from the relaxation far more than you would.”
“It sounds wonderful Zach thank you.” Alexis cut in before the two Alpha males could start a pissing contest proper. “I would be delighted to accept.”
“As would I thank you.” Dex added his eyes meeting Alexis’s across the table once more as a frisson of excitement passed between them…even if they weren’t alone the opportunity to see Alexis in a swimsuit was not one to pass up.
“Well then it seems I have no choice but to accept.” Rashid muttered and Zach beamed as the opening stages of his plan seemed to come together.
Playing Dex and Rashid off against each other was high stakes and the risk of things backfiring was high but the possibilities were worth the risk…whilst those two fought against the other Zach could be on hand to provide the much needed shoulder to cry on…the voice of reason.
A chance to finally trade one Morell sister for the real prize in the family. Before the weekend was over Zach Powers would have Alexis Carrington in his bed and as for Cassie, well a boating accident had worked well enough once before…
So this was how the super rich lived?
Dex had to admit to being impressed with the yacht it was a thing of beauty all dark polished wood and opulence carefully tempered with practically. It was here more than anywhere that it became obvious that Zach Powers had grown up with the sea in his blood…he was a sailor and not merely a millionaire splashing out on a new toy. Still as much as he admired his taste Dex couldn’t imagine wasting his life like this. How on earth had Zach managed to make his fortune in the first place if he was able to simply abandon his business and flit about in his yacht whenever the mood took him?
Racking his brain Dex had never been one for society gossip but he did remember something about a rich first wife…an heiress to a shipping line…a company that Zach had clearly made his own since there was no obvious sign of a wife anywhere about…still it wasn’t like Dex could find someone to ask, so for the time being his questions would have to remain unanswered.
Besides who wanted to spend time thinking about Zack powers when there were far more pleasant distractions…Alexis not just in a swimsuit but dammit the most gorgeous white bikini Dex had ever seen.
Dex had managed to scrounge up a pair of plain black trunks, yet despite their second-hand origins they showed his physique to best advantage…or at least Dex could only assume as much considering the amount of times when he had been ogling Alexis he had caught her watching him as well.
There was definitely still heat between them…heat enough to light them both on fire…but they had an audience, Dex could feel Caress’s probing gaze on him even hidden behind her sunglasses and Rashid had set up camp under an parasol and he didn’t even try to hide the fact that he was watching Dex’s every move carefully.
So it had been somewhat of a relief when they had stopped and anchored the boat and Dex had found the opportunity to dive into the blue water…the cool water had helped sooth a certain ache that had been difficult to control and considering his brief swimwear control was more important now than ever before. Exorcising his frustration by using this opportunity to wear himself out a little Dex swam a few laps around the fifty-foot yacht before putting his goggles and snorkel to good use and exploring the water below him.
Finally when his stomach began to growl Dex headed back to the boat, using the rope ladder slung down by one of the hands to climb back up onto the sun deck.
Dropping his kit down on to the floor Dex sighed and leaned back against the side reaching up and brushing his sopping wet hair out of his face much to the delight of both the ladies on deck as the stretching showed his physique off to perfection…unknown to Dex the shimmering of the sea water as it trickled down his toned tanned frame drew the eye to his every sculptured muscle and then down to his trunks which now wet clung to him like a second layer of skin, highlighting just how well armed Dex was.
“My my don’t you look edible.” Caress teased drawing her eyes away from Dex’s body to glance across at her older sister who was equally effected judging by her bikini top which was emphasising rather than hiding Alexis’s opinion of Dex’s edibility.
“What?” Dex questioned shaking his head and unblocking his ears…surely he must have misheard.
“I said we are about to eat…lunch…perhaps you would care to go dry off…I can’t imagine it would comfortable sitting through lunch all wet.” Caress added her full lips smirking as she drawled suggestively before once more glancing across at her sister. “Don’t you agree Alexis, or does Dex here strike you as a man who likes to stay wet?”
“I imagine that is up to Dex.” Alexis snapped back fully aware of the crude insinuation her sister was making, thankful at least that Rashid had headed inside a few minutes before to talk to Zach about some deal or other and therefore their little spat only had Dex as a witness…somehow she didn’t think with Dex she needed to keep her gloves on, he already seen her at her lowest.
“Honestly Cassie leave him alone and just have them serve lunch out here if you are so worried about your rugs getting damp…though god knows why, I doubt it would do them any harm, I doubt very much they have seen a thorough washing in months!” Alexis added spitefully pleased when her sister huffed and swung her feet off of the sunlounger to stomp back inside.
“You two don’t get on particularly well do you?” Dex asked as he sank down onto the free sunlounger at Alexis’s invitation, thankful for his dark tan since it hid the blush of embarrassment, women in Wyoming didn’t talk like this that was for sure.
“Oh we get on well enough but Cassie is always trying to get one over on me…poor little thing grew up in my shadow and has spent the rest of her life trying to get out of it.”
“And you cast a mean shadow huh?” Dex teased raking his gaze over her long slender body, lingering on her breasts for a moment longer than was proper.
“So people say.” Alexis retorted a playful smile pulling at her lips before another thought took its place. “You know if you are planning on just staying in those shorts you really should put some sun lotion on…I can imagine Cassie’s gloating if you burnt.”
Nodding at her sensible suggestion Dex accepted the lotion, pouring a generous amount into his hands and running them over his legs and then his chest…aware that Alexis’s gaze was following their every movement.
“I don’t suppose you’d help me out…I have many talents but even I’m not double jointed.” Dex joked holding out the lotion and nervously presenting Alexis with his back.
A moment later and slick soft little hands were moving over his shoulder blades and Dex didn’t even bother to suppress his little sigh of contentment. Alexis seemed to be taking her time, methodically covering and massaging the lotion into his skin, her fingers trailing from behind his ears and running down his neck, along his spine until she reached the top of his shorts where much to Dex’s surprise she slipped her hands underneath the elasticised band at the top and gazed her nails across the tops of his buttocks.
Smirking as Dex tensed Alexis quickly removed her hands and lay back on her sunlounger. “All done.” She added breezily unwilling to admit even to herself just how difficult it had been not to carry right on with her massage and ensure every inch of Dex was covered…the man was just so damn edible…on that her sister had been right for once and right now Alexis wanted nothing more than to lean over and take a large bite!
“Thanks for being so thorough.” Dex quipped as he turned back around to face her.
“You’re more than welcome.” Alexis all but purred in reply…a noise that went straight from Dex’s ear to a far lower part of his anatomy. Unwilling to be caught half aroused Dex reached to Caress’s abandoned cocktail glass, hoping the ice cold drink would cool him down, yet one glance at his hands still slick with sun oil and Dex was first tasked with finding something to wipe them on.
The sudden arrival of a pair of manicured feet practically in his lap caught him completely by surprise.
Glancing up Dex caught Alexis’s wide smile.
“Waste not want not.” She offered by way of explanation, surprised by her own recklessness…yet as Dex’s strong hands began to massage her feet, before sliding up her calves and then rubbing behind her knee Alexis suddenly didn’t give much of a damn anymore…parting her legs she mentally urged him higher…
“Alexis lunch is re…ady.” Rashid’s sudden timely arrival was like a bucket of seawater being thrown over them and Alexis was forced to cover her irritation and frustration with a smile.
“Oh good I am hungry…Thank you for helping me with that cramp Dex…it’s amazing how you can get them whilst laying here doing nothing.”
Swallowing down his own frustration Dex could only nod dumbly as Rashid’s fuming gaze bore into him leaving Dex in no doubt that if the Arab had a choice in this moment Dex would have found himself overboard in a second. Bereft as Alexis pulled out of his grasp and reached for her sarong leaving Dex scrambling to gain something out of the situation.
“Exercise helps with cramp…after lunch you should go for a swim…Perhaps I can teach you to snorkel if you want?”
Shrugging her shoulders Alexis couldn’t help the flicker of excitement that being alone in the ocean with Dex elicited…“Perhaps.”
“Are you sure you know what you’re doing?”
If it had been anyone else and if he hadn’t been able to hear the genuine concern in her voice Dex might have been insulted that his ability was being called into question…However since it was Alexis and she was staring at him with those huge emerald eyes wide with apprehension Dex couldn’t help but laugh.
“Sure I do.” He teased watching Alexis’s reaction closely as first he spat in his goggles then washed them out before placing them on his head. “Go on now…I promise not to telephone the society gossip columnists and tell them you can spit just like the rest of the population.”
Scowling at Dex’s poking fun at her expense and calling her on her squeamishness Alexis girded her resolve and spat as daintily as she could manage into her goggles before quickly rinsed them out.
“Now with flippers or without?” Dex asked not surprised when Alexis shook her head, undoubtedly in her opinion the flippers would make her look ungainly despite how much easier it would make the swimming. “Ok then make sure the mask is fastened nice and tight…if you breath in through your nose it should suck the mask in…which means you’ve created a vacuum and will keep the sea water out…Ok ready to jump?”
“Jump…?” Alexis began as Dex grabbed her hand tugged her to side.
“Come on its much easier than climbing down the ladder…”
“Dex!” Alexis screamed in outrage as Dex had the nerve to bodily pick her up bridal style and then simply step off of the side of the boat.
Hitting the water Alexis held her breathe until they both came to the surface, and as soon as Dex’s grinning face was in range she smacked him as hard as she could on the shoulder.
Laughing at her insult Dex caught her little fist and pressed a kiss to her knuckles before releasing her. “Easy there killer…now put your snorkel mouth piece in and remember to blow out first just in case there is any water in there…we don’t want you getting a mouthful.” He added mischievously, putting his own in and putting his face in the water before Alexis could respond verbally.
A moment later and Alexis joined him face down in the water and even with the distortions Dex could make out her eyes wide with wonder. Smiling around his mouthpiece Dex reached out and caught her hand, linking their hands together and tugging Alexis to follow him.
And for once Alexis was happy to follow someone else’s lead, she didn’t even try to free her hand from Dex’s grasp…for some reason she chose not to quantify it felt nice just to have someone hold her hand.
“So you enjoyed it?”
It was a simple question and yet there were many possible layers of subtext to it that for a moment Alexis hesitated. Yet regardless of whatever Dex was implying…the snorkelling…spending time alone with him…sharing this experience together…holding hands the entire time up until now as Alexis’s were now grasped on the bottom of the rope ladder hanging down from the yacht…there was one simple answer to all of these.
“Yes I did.”
Beaming like he had been awarded some grand prize Dex couldn’t contain the way his heart leapt at Alexis’s answering smile. “Well you’re a natural…have you really never snorkelled before?”
“No never before you were my first!” Alexis retorted teasingly, delighted by the way this grown man seem both delighted and embarrassed by her reply.
“Thank you Dex it was fun…far better than having to sit and listen to Cassie moan most of the afternoon.”
Laughing Dex could agree with that. It seemed to be Caress’s sole purpose in life to try and upstage her sister…well that and to reinforce just how much she believed Dex didn’t belong as part of their little party…a belief clearly also shared by Rashid who had spent most of the lunch glaring holes into the side of Dex’s head.
“Yeah she does that a lot…it’s almost impossible to believe the two of you are sisters, although I guess I can see why she is so jealous of you…you got the beauty, brains and charm and there was little left over for her…hell even her boyfriend paid your more attention than her but then considering how much she was scowling I can’t say that I blame him.” Dex commented.
“I also can’t say that I liked it much…” He added softly more to himself but it was clear from the way the smile slipped from Alexis’s lips that she had heard.
“Jealousy doesn’t suit you Dex.”
“I know but I am only human and I like you Alexis…hell I more than like you.” Dex spluttered. “I’m sorry if that makes you uncomfortable but I’d be an even bigger idiot if I felt like this and didn’t try and do anything about it…It’s just that I see you surrounded by all this luxury, surrounded by everything anyone could ever want and you look empty.”
“No please let me finish…please?” Dex pleaded his dark eyes wide as he caught her arm. “You may think you have everything you could want here…money and people waiting on you hand and foot…men flattering you with their every word and look but Alexis you are worth more than this!”
“And you have known me precisely how long?” Alexis scoffed turning intent on climbing the ladder and getting away from this man with his soul probing eyes and his brutally honest words that struck her to the quick.
“I’ve known you long enough to know that you are not happy. You may think you have everything in the world right now but it is all as empty as ashes without love and you know it!” Dex added. “You deserve to be loved Alexis.”
“You don’t know what you are talking about.” Alexis spat back, turning to face him with fire in her eyes. “You think it is that easy…you think love solves everything well it doesn’t, sometimes love isn’t enough! Sometimes you can love someone with all your heart and soul and it isn’t enough, life still ruins everything…Life maybe emptier without love Dex but it sure as hell is a lot less painful!”
Reeling from that explosion Dex had no choice but to let her go. Yet for a moment he had seen beyond the armour Alexis wore, for a moment her guard had slipped and he had seen the terrible pain deep at the core of her. A pain that struck him and he ached at the sight of it…a deep terrible symbiotic throbbing…his heart clenching at the raw hurt that he just wanted to reach out and wipe away but knowing nothing on this earth could do that.
And along with that realisation came another just as startling and as terrifying…he loved her…somehow he had fallen in love with Alexis in the short few days of their acquaintance, Dex Dexter the man who didn’t have time for love had finally lost his heart completely and it was to a woman so completely traumatised by the very thought of love that she fled at the mere mention of it.
God he was royally screwed.
She wasn’t hiding, honestly she wasn’t, it was just this damn headache she had gotten from being out in the sun for too long…
Hell she was hiding, who was she kidding?
Alexis couldn’t keep lying to herself and she was damn sure no one else bought her excuse of a headache keeping her in her cabin and away from dinner…or more precisely certain dinner guests.
God Cassie was probably gloating, her moon face cut in half by a grin so wide it was a wonder her face didn’t split. Yet even the prospect of cutting her sister down to size wasn’t enough to get Alexis out of her sulk and out of bed. Alexis Morell Carrington prided herself on being able to conquer any challenge, of not being afraid, but she was afraid of Dex…of what feelings just being close to him stirred up.
Was it too late to stop this?
Burrowing her face into her pillow Alexis tried to will her feelings away, to go back to the safe equilibrium that she had existed in for the last few years, to the hard won control that she had clawed her way to after the spectacular crash and burn of her marriage.
Not letting people in…hell even giving up her youngest child shortly after her birth had all been a way to protect herself. The men she loved hurt and abandoned her when she needed them the most so she was better off without them. Her children wormed their way into her heart so completely and she had no known defence to stop it and yet every child had caused her such pain…
Adam’s loss had forced her to grow up, to step out of her naïve dream world and face reality, which was harsh and cruel. Her next two children had gone some way to healing that hurt and then they had been used as weapons to gut her by the man who once upon a time had sworn to love her for better or worse.
Was it any wonder that as broken as she had been back then Alexis had forced herself to cut ties with her newborn infant, her beautiful little Amanda, before that child could be used to destroy her utterly?
So what if her life might seem worthless and empty to Dex…who the hell died and made him judge and jury?
How dare he stand there and lecture her on love?
Hadn’t she already given her all for love? Hadn’t she bled and wept and suffered all in love’s name? What the hell gave a man who admitted to still be searching for love the right to judge her who had found it and then was forced to pay the price?
Angry…No Alexis was now beyond anger…her grief had pushed her into fury and right at this moment she wanted to be able to stand toe to toe with Dex and demand answers.
Like how dare he come pushing his way into her life, making judgements about her and what made her happy?
Wrapped up in her fury she didn’t pause to pull on her robe, her bare feet pounding against the polished oak as she made her way out of her cabin, not even so much as pausing as she came to the smaller cabin down the corridor that Dex had been assigned. In fact she pushed open the door without so much as knocking only to discover the cabin in darkness…
Dex wasn’t even here and Alexis felt her anger abate slightly and her rationality return slowly…dear god what had she been thinking? Rushing into a stranger’s bedroom without even pausing to put her robe or slippers on.
Clearly someone was looking after her since Dex wasn’t here and she hadn’t made a complete idiot of herself in the bargain.
Putting her hand on the door Alexis was just about to open it when she heard footsteps on the floor outside coming closer…Panicking she glanced about the darkened room, her eyes lighting on the closet which she opened and slipped inside closing it almost shut just in time before the door to the cabin opened and someone else stepped inside.
Someone that wasn’t Dex…the figure was too short.
Covering her mouth lest her raspy breathing should give her away Alexis stared through the small crack watching as the shadowy figure paused just inside the doorway…then without turning on the light they made their way over to the bed where Dex had left his only other change of clothes.
Watching as they seemed to fumble with the jacket before sliding their hands into the inside pocket only to withdraw empty handed. Alexis frowned, her confusion only growing when a second later they lay the jacket back down on the bed before creeping out of the cabin as secretively as they had entered it.
Burning with curiosity Alexis slipped out of her hiding place, taking up the jacket herself she slipped her hand into the inside pocket. Her fingers trailed over a wallet before they brushed against something else…something smaller and…there were two of them.
Pulling her hand out Alexis glanced down at her palm…at the two small gold and diamond inlaid cufflinks…cufflinks that were somewhat familiar considering the number of times they had ended up on her bedside table over the last few years.
“Rashid you bastard.” Alexis muttered before jumping in surprise as the light was suddenly switched on. Dropping the jacket Alexis turned around to face an equally surprised Dex for whom surprise turned to a frown as he took in the situation…Alexis in the dark in his cabin with his jacket.
“What the hell is going on here?”
08-29-2011, 10:44 AM
Such a good story! It keeps readers wanting more!
For a moment Dex could only stare at Alexis…she was here in his room…she had been standing in the dark…
“I’ll say it again, what are you doing in here Alexis?” Dex repeated closing the door behind him and crossing his cabin. On the bed Dex could see his jacket had been interfered with and one glance at Alexis’s startled face gave him the guilty culprit.
“I was just….”
“Snooping?” Dex cut in, had she been looking for his wallet…perhaps his passport? Why else would she be in here in the dark?
“No.” Alexis spat back her own temper flaring. “I came to give you a piece of my mind…”
“Oh and since I wasn’t here you thought you’d go through my things to keep yourself amused? Sorry did I interrupt before you were finished? Should I step back outside and let you continue?” Dex spat trying to ignore how the angry flush to her cheeks enhanced her beauty. Instead he forced his gaze from her face and those bewitching emerald eyes…glancing down he caught sight of her clenched fist.
“Or perhaps you already found what you were looking for?” Dex added grasping her wrist and forcing her hand open…suddenly confused by what he found there.
“What the hell?”
“Are you quite finished throwing accusations around?” Alexis hissed, the desire to throw the damn cufflinks in his face rising up, as did the desire to leave him to suffer through the consequences of Rashid’s little plan.
“What are these…” Dex muttered turning over the very expensive cufflinks…for a moment the possibility or Alexis leaving them for him as an apology suggested itself before a far more sinister idea took its place. “You were planting these…”
“NO!” Alexis all but screeched.
“Then why have them here?” Dex countered shaking his head in disgust and disbelief, how could he have misjudged this woman so completely…how could he possibly feel anything for her…and yet clearly he did considering the way his heart clenched painfully at the thought of such betrayal.
“It wasn’t enough for you to stomp all over my heart was it, no you had to find someway to get me out of the picture for good…So what was the scheme you steal these and plant them on me and then when Zach…or are they Rashid’s? When one of them finds them missing you conveniently remember seeing me lingering near their cabin or something…or would you pay off one of the staff to play the starring role of chief witness?…”
The sharp slap of Alexis’s little hand across his jaw caught Dex completely by surprise, he was so wrapped up in his little rant…Yet when she threw the damn cufflinks at him he was prepared and he grabbed her arm before she could escape.
“Let me go….” Alexis began fuming her eyes flashing with fury.
“Nobody uses me!” Dex growled, panting as he reeled in Alexis like she was a struggling carp fighting him every inch of the way. “And nothing is over until I say it is!”
“It never even started!” Alexis hissed through clenched teeth, fighting the way his warm body felt good as he pulled her against him…dammit but Dex was an incredibly built self-righteous bastard.
“Really then what the hell is this…” Dex mocked her. Fingers splayed on her back and others reaching up to grasp her hair roughly Dex pulled her mouth to his, his lips moving over hers bruising…controlling the kiss…owning her lips completely.
She fought him…as best she could and for as long as she could. Yet every time she managed to break away, to take a gasp of breathe Dex was following her, his mouth finding her hers and fitting them together. Perhaps it was the lack of oxygen to the brain, or perhaps it was simply that after a few minutes of being kissed by Dex Alexis couldn’t remember the reason why this was a bad idea anymore.
She kissed him back…hands running up over a toned chest to lock around his shoulders…fingers running into his hair and tightening the silky threads between them.
When Dex finally released her mouth, his own moving to kiss and suckle at her neck, Alexis gasped for breathe before moaning loudly as Dex sucked at the sensitive sweet spot below her ear. “Oh god…Dex…”
Hearing Alexis moan his name was the final straw. Dex lost his control, within two steps he was pushing her back onto the bed, Alexis encouraging him all the way. Still neither Dex nor Alexis would have been quite so giddily oblivious if they had realised that their heated encounter had not gone off without an unwanted element…an eavesdropper who was far from amused.
It was early…very early… the sun was still low in the sky and beams of light bounced off of the water and danced across Alexis’s face waking her slowly. Sighing in contentment and with a body that felt satisfied if a little sore Alexis’s eyes slowly drifted open.
Slowly the reason for her aches became apparent…a toned chest underneath her cheek, strong and yet gentle arms holding her close, and the teasing softness of someone else’s breathes against her forehead causing her wispy fringe to dance in the breeze.
Oh god she hadn’t…they hadn’t…oh they had…The memories of the night before came back in startling clarity, everything they had done imprinted in her mind and running once more before her eyes like a roll of film replaying the night before every word and every gesture.
It had been incredible. The way Dex had touched her, one moment with the reverence of a devotee before his goddess, the next he was taking control and showing with every touch how well he knew her…how he could play her body like a composer did his own masterpiece. Alexis had never felt so desired or treasured by a man and somehow the depth of his devotion seemed to frighten her a little.
Oh she knew it was possible to love someone that much but she had always assumed the ability to love that intensely was unique to women…oh men paid lip service to love but did any of them feel it…really feel it the way a woman does?
With Dex she didn’t need to hear him say it…she felt it…she knew in her bones that for some reason he loved her. It was a knowledge that both exhilarated and terrified her in equal measure, and it wasn’t like she could bury her head and try to pretend not to know how he felt because Dex had told her.
True she had been dozing…languid in that state when her arousal had been spent and she felt cocooned in a world of perfect contentment…strong warm arms around her and a strong shoulder to rest her head on. Dex had been equally sated, his hands drawing slow lazy circles on her hip as they both slipped closer to sleep. Alexis was on the cusp of falling into dreams when Dex pressed his lips to her forehead, his words low probably not even meant for her ears…not yet at any rate…
“I love you Alexis.”
At the time so removed from anything of pain and reality and on the verge of dreams Alexis had accepted his declaration without concern, a smile pulling at her lips as she pressed a kiss to his chest.
She had fallen asleep…Dex had dropped that bombshell onto her and all she had done was fall asleep.
Yet now she was awake and if Dex remembered telling her that then he would be expecting some sort of response from her…a response Alexis couldn’t give…
Oh god it was all messed up, she was all mixed up, Alexis’s feelings were all over the place…she certainly wasn’t indifferent, Dex had gotten to her and made her feel things…but was it love? Either way he made her feel and that was dangerous.
She needed time and space to work this out…neither of which she would find if she lingered here much longer.
Still even self preservation couldn’t numb the acute sense of loss that pierced her as Alexis slid from Dex’s arms and his bed, relieved when in his sleep at least he let her go without a fight. Part of her wanted nothing more than to give in a crawl back into that warm cocoon beside Dex and let go, let the tide take them wherever it wanted. Yet the larger stronger part of her labelled that naïve little romantic girl who still lived inside her somewhere a fool, and stomped her down once again.
Crouching on the floor Alexis quickly found her nightgown and pulled it over her head before the glinting of something else caught her eye. The cufflinks, one was lying on top of the rug, the other took a moments search but Alexis found it hiding under Dex’s shirt
Maybe it was too late to protect Dex from her, to protect his heart from being broken but it wasn’t too late for her to protect him from Rashid’s machinations. After all the suffering she had caused it really was the least she could do…
Glancing back at the bed one last time where Dex lay sleeping contentedly as if he hadn’t a care in the world Alexis couldn’t stop herself from reaching out brushing the hair from his eyes, whilst resisting the greater urge to lean over and kiss him goodbye.
Slipping out of the cabin quietly Alexis sighed with relief as she made it back into her own without anyone catching sight of her…whilst back in his cabin Dex Dexter finally opened his eyes after a few long painful minutes of feigning sleep, his dark eyes brimming with the tears he refused to shed. Alexis was gone and this time he had a terrible fear that somehow she wouldn’t be coming back.
“Headache all better?”
Scowling as she took a sip of her coffee Alexis tried not to react to her sister’s smug tone before she had at least gotten come caffeine into her. At least Dex had yet to show his face, in fact it had been Alexis’s plan to try and finish her breakfast before gaining any company but it seemed today for some reason Zach and Cassie had risen earlier than usual.
“Much better thank you.”
“So you slept well then?” Caress added her blue eyes wide with faux concern.
“Well enough thank you.” Alexis replied tersely finally lifting her gaze from her coffee cup to glare back at her sister who had the nerve to sit back in her seat and smirk right back at Alexis.
“Oh that is good, you had me worried you know.” Caress continued playing her part to the hilt, mostly for their audience’s benefit. “I even went to check on you after dinner…gave me quite a scare when you weren’t in your cabin.” Caress added her eyes narrowing on Alexis who to her delight seemed to freeze for a moment.
“Wasn’t I?” Alexis stalled. “Well I did take a walk to try and ease my head…the fresh sea air is supposed to do wonders, I’m sorry if you were worried but as you can see Cassie I am fine, reinvigorated even.”
“Oh that must have been some walk.” Caress retorted gleefully whilst stabbing her grapefruit with her fork. “Something has put colour in your cheeks at any rate...hmm perhaps I should take moonlit walks on deck if that’s the effect.”
“Your sisterly concern and affection is duly noted.” Alexis retorted her tone clipped, ice enough to alert Zach who up until now had been ignoring them both in favour of reading the paper that had been delivered from the mainland.
“My dear if you are truly concerned for your sisters health may I suggest you let her finish her breakfast. At least let her finish her grapefruit before you continue your interrogation?” Zach added his tone droll.
Irritated at being chastised Caress opened her mouth to add no doubt more fuel to the fire when distraught looking Rashid suddenly appeared at the breakfast table.
“Good morning ladies…Zach could I have a word please…” Then he paused glancing back at the two women before adding. “Perhaps it would be better in private?”
“Why in private my friend you know I have no secrets from my dear Caress and Alexis is the soul of discretion.”
“It is just it is a delicate matter…I would prefer not to cause you any further distress than necessary.”
“Cause me distress?” Zach scoffed. “Come my friend out with it you look like you will burst if you keep it to yourself much longer.”
“As you wish, I am sorry to have to report that some of my belongings are missing from my cabin…I do not want to make an accusations but we are talking about something of considerable value both monetarily and sentimentally. A pair of gold and diamond cufflinks given to me by my father…I took them off my linen suit and left them in my cabin last night when I changed for dinner then when I went to dress this morning I couldn’t find them and I always put them back in the same box it is a matter of ingrained habit…an idiosyncrasy.” Rashid explained and even Alexis couldn’t fault his performance, even knowing the truth as she did Rashid would have her fooled otherwise.
“Why that is awful!” Zach gasped rising to his feet. “I will have the boat searched at once…The perpetrator will not get away with this I assure you.”
“But who could have done it?” Caress demanded. “Someone must have seen something?”
“Caress is right it is impossible that someone wouldn’t have seen someone where they shouldn’t have been, first we will conduct a search and then if we don’t find anything begin to interview the staff.”
“Might I suggest we start by looking in Rashid’s cabin?” Alexis’s quiet voice of reason took the irate group by surprise and so she flashed them a placating smile.
“Alexis I told you…”
“I know darling and I believe you but surely it is better to be doubly sure…I mean just think of all the fuss and upheaval if this is just a case misplacing something. However if Zach and Caress and I also confirm that the cufflinks are nowhere to be seen…I am just thinking of you Darling, no one wants to have to go through the process of interrogating and accusing people unfairly…Just think of the scandal if it got out!”
Nodding Zach had to agree Alexis had a point; the last thing he wanted was to unsettle his staff all of whom had proved their loyalty to him over the years. “Very well I agree with Alexis there is no point turning the yacht upside down or upsetting people until we have made sure of the facts.”
Glumly Rashid had to concede to logic of what Zach was saying and it was a grim party that made its way down to Rashid’s cabin. When they arrived Alexis made the decision to wait just outside in the hallway, claiming it was too crowded in there already without her getting under foot as well. Instead she stood just outside with the door open so she could watch everyone’s progress.
It was whilst standing there waiting for the inevitable to happen than something less expected occurred…the door to Dex’s cabin opened and before Alexis could think of a reason to flee she was face to face with Dex himself.
“Good Morning.” Alexis managed after an awkward silence.
“Morning.” Dex forced himself to answer, although from his point of view there was nothing good about it so why pretend there was. However his curiosity was piqued by the open door and the sounds of people moving things about, enough to get over his initial reluctance.
“What’s going on…” Dex began only to have his question interrupted by a triumphant exclamation from inside the cabin and he joined Alexis standing at the door to peer inside.
“What…You found them but that’s not possible.” Rashid began as Zach emerged from the bathroom cufflinks in hand.
“Don’t worry about it my friend.” Zach began reassuringly. “We all misplace things from time to time…”
“But I didn’t misplace them…I didn’t…” Rashid began hotly. “I put…”
“Rashid darling don’t worry about it we all get a little forgetful as we get older, you’ve got them back no harm done and at least you found them before you went and accused anyone of stealing them.” Alexis cut in pointedly drawing both the Arab and Dex’s attention before adding. “I would hate to have seen you made such a fool of yourself…Still at least now you will be more careful and we don’t have to worry about having a thief aboard.”
Swallowing Rashid could only nod when faced with the knowing look and cool anger in Alexis’s eyes.
“Yes you’re right…this was definitely for the best…”
“For everyone.” Alexis finished for him before glancing at Dex who was looking at her strangely, it was a look that was making her nervous. “Now perhaps we should get back to breakfast, it is the most important meal of the day.”
Dex was confused. One moment he is convinced he has just about figured Alexis out and then she goes around and does a 180 on him leaving him reeling.
Grunting Dex forced his body through the water pushing himself to do ten more circuits of the yacht…hoping the exercise helped to clear his thoughts before he had to go back inside and face everything he was currently avoiding.
Last night had convinced himself that this was going to work. He had rattled her so much that Alexis had stooped so low as trying to frame him for theft in order to push him away…Well Dex Dexter had never let anyone dictate to him and so he had pushed back just as hard, with far more pleasurable consequences than even he could have imagined. The athletic sex had been incredible but after they had both purged their angry feelings in each other’s bodies then things had changed…they had made love.
Now Dex got the difference…it wasn’t just a prettier name for sex… it was a completely different entity and lying in the after glow of the most incredible experience of his life Dex had said the words that described exactly how he felt. It had just felt right and Dex had fallen asleep on top of the world.
The morning had brought him down to earth with a bump.
Alexis had slipped out of his arms and the instinct to draw her back had been so strong it had taken every fibre of his restraint not to act on it. He had lain there and let her decide…part of him hoping that she was just going to the bathroom…his breaking heart knowing that she was just running away…away from him and his feelings.
He had been so depressed that Dex had considered hiding away in his cabin, the thought of having to see Alexis tearing at him…the desire to see her warred with the pain he knew he would feel when he did. Still there was only one way to avoid that and that was to get off this damn yacht as soon as he could.
That was where he had been heading when he had stepped out into the corridor, cursing fate when the first face he saw was Alexis’s. If he had been more of a coward Dex probably would have retreated back into his cabin but even if it pained him Dex couldn’t deny the draw towards Alexis and he naturally gravitated towards her.
Now he couldn’t decide if giving in to that impulse had been a wise move or not as now he was only more confused than ever.
Alexis had protected him…at least that was what he thought she had done. Rashid’s little slip hadn’t gone unnoticed by Dex, nor had the frosty atmosphere between Alexis and her Arabian part time lover. So Rashid had set him up and either Alexis knew about it or she had found out somehow…the only thing that was certain was that somehow Alexis had switched things around without Rashid knowing…the look of shock on the Arab’s face had been genuine there was no way he was that good of an actor.
So that only left one question, the only question worth having an answer too and the one question for which Dex had plenty of theories but nothing concrete…
Why had Alexis helped him…and why had she deliberately antagonised her lover by letting him know it was her?
Tugging his hands through his hair Dex struggled to cope with all of the possible answers, his heart leaping with hope one moment before plunging in despair the next. He wanted…no he needed answers…but the only way he would get those was by confronting Alexis and asking her…but even then there was no guarantee the answer he would get would be the truth.
Pulling himself out of the water Dex quickly climbed the rope ladder and grabbed the towel he had left on the side, scowling to himself as he heard the sound of laughter from inside the yacht. It seemed as though Zach was taking it on himself to keep Alexis entertained this morning. A fact that didn’t sit easily with Dex as the Spanish millionaire was handsome and charming and more of a threat than Rashid Ahmed…if it were not for the fact that he was dating Alexis’s sister…
“Are you planning on just standing there all vacant and dripping all over my deck?”
Starting in surprise Dex all but jumped at the voice. Turning his head he caught sight of the lady in question, Caress had been lying so still sunbathing that Dex hadn’t even noticed her before she spoke.
And when he did notice her Dex couldn’t help but stare at her lack of bikini top and the tiny little g string that was barely covering her modesty…so that was how she avoided tan lines…“Sorry…” Dex stuttered dragging his eyes away before he could be accused of staring, still she did have a nice pair of…
“Don’t be sorry dry yourself off.” Caress snapped back, her eyes watching his every movement amused by the way he seemed embarrassed at catching her sunbathing topless…he really was gorgeous even if his brains weren’t comparable to his musculature. Nice large strong hands…which judging from her sister’s groans last night must have some talent.
Perhaps since Zach was keeping Alexis entertained she should do the same with their other guest…she was the hostess after all.
“Sorry I’ll just head in and get changed.” Dex muttered his eyes fixed on the deck where around his feet a small puddle had formed.
“No need to rush off actually you could give me a hand first…I wouldn’t want to burn.” Caress pouted reaching out for the suntan lotion and chucking it at Dex so he had no option but to catch it.
Turning onto her stomach Caress tilted down her sunglasses and winked at Dex over the top. “Be nice and thorough now, you wouldn’t want me to burn because you missed a bit.”
Awkwardly Dex paused for a moment…unable to think of an excuse…Caress’s request was reasonable even if the way she said it and looked at him made Dex feel like a piece of meat. Pouring lotion into his palm, Dex rubbed his hands together before half crouching down and smoothing the lotion over Caress’s back, surprised when she arched under his touch.
“My what rough hands you have.” Caress purred…no longer any doubt in her mind as to why her sister had brought this little toy along for the trip…well they were sisters and in her book sister’s shared.
Having finished covering Caress’s back, his hands barely skimming below her waist and her exposed buttocks Dex was just about to pull away when the woman below him surprised him once again…this time by rolling on to her back and seizing his wrists…bringing his lotion covered hands back down on to her skin…but it was where in particularly that struck Dex dumb for a moment.
Covering Dex’s hands with her own Caress massaged them, encouraging his strong hands to squeeze her breasts and arching under his touch as his rough palms rubbed against her stimulated nipples.
“Nice to see you are so thorough Dex...” Caress teased amused by the young man’s stunned expression. Reaching up before he could start the protest that was forming on his lips, her fingers griping in his hair as she tugged a stunned Dex down on top of her.
In a tangle of limbs Dex already unbalanced was easy to manipulate. Giggling as she wrapped her lotion slick legs around his own Caress rolled them; Dex hanging half on half off the lounger was trapped and at her mercy as she straddled him rubbing her bare breasts against his chest as she tugged his mouth close for a kiss, her tongue sliding into his mouth and silencing whatever stupid protest he was going to make.
Stunned and too horrified to object it wasn’t until Caress’s tongue was halfway down his throat and she was straddling and rubbing herself against him that Dex could even gather his thoughts to react. At first he tried to push her away, but the damn minx was too close wrappeda round him like a creeper and his hands kept slipping over her lotion slick skin unable to get a hold and Dex was too much of a gentleman to willingly physically hurt her.
Instead he tried to settle for not returning her kisses or interest, hoping that she would get the message or that at least an opportunity to escape would present itself.
Feeling her hand slip into his swimming trunks however was the last straw…her little fingers were certainly talented, and despite his feelings for Alexis Dex was still a man and there was only so long even he could resist an beautiful naked woman who was determined to seduce him.
Gripping her arm tightly enough to cause pain Dex was just about to force Caress off of him when a sharp horrified gasp caused them both to stop.
Now able to easily push Caress away Dex was able to pull himself back up on to the lounger, yet when he was able to see he really wished he hadn’t bothered.
Alexis pale faced and furious was standing just inside the doorway and behind her and equally fuming Zach Powers.
“Zach darling I can explain…” Caress started. “He surprised me when I was sunbathing…I didn’t want him but he wouldn’t take no for an answer…”
Snorting in disgust Zach took in the scene before him his hand going to rest on Alexis’s back as she seemed to shake with rage before him. “You were on top of him Caress…just how stupid do you think I am?”
“Not as stupid as I am apparently.” Alexis hissed her emerald eyes narrowing as she absorbed every detail, imprinting it into her memory so she would never forget why falling in love was a fools game. “You said you loved me and I idiot that I am actually believed you…I was actually considering…”
“I do love you…” Dex protested yet even he knew how bad this looked. “I didn’t want this but your sister grabbed me…”
“And you couldn’t fight her off?” Alexis scoffed shaking her head. “And we can see just how much you were hating every second Darling!” Alexis added her eyes dropping to the still sizable bulge in Dex’s short, the tight material stretched over his arousal. “Bastard.”
“Alexis please…” Dex pleaded his heart lurching at the sight of tears glistening in Alexis’s eyes, tears that he had put there. Finding his feet Dex stumbled towards her. “You have to listen to me…”
“Actually she doesn’t have to do anything.” Zach mocked as he wrapped a supportive arm around Alexis’s waist pulling her towards him, inwardly smirking as Alexis turned into him and rested her forehead on his shoulder.
“The only ones who have to do anything are the two of you…may I suggest you start by putting your clothes back on and then by packing as I will be having the two of you put ashore at the nearest port...It is not that far maybe an hour or two so I suggest you get started.”
“Zack you can’t I love you.” Caress pleaded her eyes wide with horror as Zach merely smirked at her plight.
“Fortunately for me my dear I do not feel the same way.” Zach retorted before ushering Alexis back inside. Things had turned out even better than he had hoped…now there would be no need to engineer Caress’s not so accidental demise and frame Dex for it…instead they had hung themselves and left him to comfort a hurt and angry Alexis, things could hardly get better than this.
Alexis gladly accepted the large brandy Zach offered her, taking a large sip she relished the way it burnt the back of her throat, she would gladly take a measure of physical pain over the emotional turmoil she was currently feeling. However even the strong alcohol couldn’t numb that pain for long.
That was the only question running through her mind. Why had Dex turned to Cassie…he hadn’t shown any interest in her sister before…or was that only whilst Alexis had been around? Had he behaved quite differently when she was absent?
Yet why did she care? Why did his choice hurt her so deeply…it wasn’t…she wasn’t in love with him…she was Alexis Carrington she didn’t do love and yet this pain was far greater than simple wounded pride…
“Young men are all the same…They only think with their lower emotions they haven’t suffered as you and I have and they have no concept of the damage their philandering ways can cause…I am sorry Alexis.” Zach’s voice was low and soothing and yet instead of calming her Alexis found his attempts to placate her irritating. She wasn’t a child and she certainly didn’t want or need anyone’s pity…she had received enough of that after her first divorce, enough that she had almost choked on it.
“Don’t feel sorry for me Zach.” Alexis snapped pulling together the shredded fragments of her dignity. “It was the shock more than anything, it wasn’t like Dex was anything more than a momentary diversion.”
“Well then I am relieved for you.” Zach answered carefully Alexis was a complex personality, and clearly he had misjudged his approach and must pick his next words with care.
“You are by far and away too good a woman to waste your time of such worthless men, you deserve someone who can appreciate all of your qualities…your strength as well as your beauty.”
Shrugging aside the compliments Alexis was barely listening to Zach, out of the two of them he had been the one who should be in pieces considering the fact that he and Cassie had been together nearly a year…but then again their relationship had always struck her as being more of an advantageous relationship than a love affair…at least on Zach’s part, Cassie was more in love with the idea of being in love with a rich man when it was really her lifestyle she was actually in love with.
“You deserve someone worthy of you…who can give you everything you desire.” Zach continued unable to keep a sense of exasperation from his voice as Alexis seemed to still be ignoring him. “Alexis are you sure you’re alright?”
“Of course I’m fine.” Alexis scoffed taking another sip of her brandy as she stared out of the large panoramic window out at the ocean and the beautiful sunset…When had it gotten so late…they would surely be docking soon and Zach would have Cassie and Dex thrown off the yacht and she would never had to see him again.
A prospect that seemed to cause more pain when it should have eased it…
It was for the best, they had nothing in common, their lifestyles were completely incompatible and Dex wanted more from her than she could ever give him…that was providing she believed a word of drivel he had poured in her ear…love, trust, fidelity.
Alexis wanted to scoff out loud at his hypocrisy. He probably even thought that she would be content living in some isolated ranch with a front porch and white picket fence with no one for company but the horses and cattle and children he would no doubt insist on. She’d end up wasting the best years of her life elbow deep in diapers and being barefoot and pregnant all of the time, whilst Dex cheated on her with every slapper around.
Oh dear god she could picture their children…
That was like a knife plunged into her breast and Alexis’s breath caught in her throat as that realisation spread throughout her body.
Throughout her life there had only been one other man she had been able to see as the father of her children. Then the realisation had been instant like their attraction. Their eyes had met across a room and one dance later Alexis had known in her bones that Blake Carrington was the man she would marry and the man who would father her children. In the ten years since their divorce there had been too many lovers to count, there had even been several proposals but no man Alexis could picture herself marrying or starting a family with so she had turned them all down.
It was safer that way.
Until now…until some jumped up nobody with a wandering eye barged his way into her life and apparently her heart. Dex had made her believe that he loved her, he had made her feel safe and content in his arms and even though she had fled from him in order to stop herself from falling in love it seemed her idiotic heart had gone ahead and ignored her and done that anyway.
And now Dex had ruined everything by cheating on her with Cassie!
“Alexis did you hear what I said?”
“What?” Alexis snapped her emerald eyes flashing dangerously as she whirled around on Zach who had dared to touch her arm in order to gain her attention, before shrinking back as Alexis hissed at him.
Swallowing as he found himself confronted with the full force of an angry Alexis, something Zach had never seen before not even when some fool had mentioned Blake Carrington before her. Then her iciness had become a thing of legend, yet that banked rage paled in comparison to this tsunami. A tsunami that if he wasn’t careful threatened to destroy him and everyone in its path…and Zach Powers didn’t have a death wish.
“Perhaps you would prefer to have a little time to yourself…or perhaps I could find Rashid for you?” Zach offered resigned that his plans for the evening might need revising as Alexis hardly looked amenable to falling for his charms…perhaps after she had calmed down she would be more open to his suggestions…
“I would like to be by myself.” Alexis answered curtly before remembering her manners and adding a delayed. “Thank you.”
“Of course.” Zach replied nodding and beating a hasty retreat. “If you need anything…”
Waving Zach away Alexis returned to staring out of the window, trying to make sense of this latest revelation. What she needed was go back in time and stop this disaster from ever taking place but since that was impossible the only thing she needed now was a way out of this mess…the trouble was she had no idea where to start.
This was not happening.
Dex Dexter paced his cabin like a caged lion. It wasn’t like he had anything of his own to pack. He had changed out of his swimwear and back into his mission attire, the dark shirt and trousers better suiting his current mood.
Outside his room two muscular sailors stood guard, clearly under orders from Mr Powers to keep Dex in his room and out of trouble or more to the point away from Alexis. Dex could only curse himself for not seeing it earlier, Zach had always been far more attentive to Alexis’s needs than Caress’s and now thanks to Caress’s libido and Dex’s own stupidity he had practically handed Alexis over into Zach’s greedy grasp.
Was it any wonder that Zach would do everything in his power to keep Dex from reaching and talking to Alexis…maybe the wily Spaniard was merely taking all possible precautions or maybe Zach really saw Dex as a threat, either way it didn’t change the fact that Dex was stuck in this room until they docked or…
Until he found his own way out?
A way out that right now was through two opposing forces. Still Dex had training and he could arrange the element of surprise but first things first he needed to get them to open that door.
Smirking his eyes fell on some of Zach’s decorative possessions, starting first with a porcelain vase Dex took great pleasure in raising it above his head and smashing it noisily. Furniture followed anything that made a loud noise, hearing muttered swearing and the key turning in the lock Dex quickly stepped back, pressing his back against the wall behind the door.
A moment later and as a confused and angry sailor entered Dex brought his joined hands down firmly on the back of his neck forcing the surprised man down to his knees where a quick follow up kick to the stomach had him winded and out on the floor.
One down one to go…except this one Dex had to face head on, the element of surprise lost as he charged out of the cabin door and into the corridor, hurling his whole weight against his other jailor and pinning up against the wall. Yet this opponent was tougher than the first and for every blow Dex landed on him he received one of his own.
Then he felt strong arms grabbing him from behind…clearly the other guy wasn’t as out for the count as Dex had hoped. Struggling as his arms were held behind him Dex recoiled, as now free to retaliate without Dex’s attack the larger sailor was able to plan and pick his points of attack, landing more powerful blows. First on his jaw and Dex choked, as he tasted his own blood, then it was the stinging noxious taste of bile as two powerful punches met his stomach.
For the first time he felt a frisson of fear…this wasn’t the first time he had been beaten but this was the first time he couldn’t think of an escape route…and it seemed somehow unlikely that this time there would be any Daniel Reese to come to his rescue.
Groaning as one of the thugs caught him once more in the face, Dex could have sworn he heard something crack…
“Stop it! God damn it stop it! You’re hurting him. Let him go right now!”
Wincing as the two sailors took that command literally and dropped him to the floor like a rag doll, Dex stared up through blackened and rapidly swelling eyes as Alexis appeared like a guardian angel. A beautiful raging angel, at least time her rage seemed to be directed elsewhere…although punch drunk as he felt that was a little difficult to judge for sure.
“Alexis…” Dex hissed through his thick lip, raising a hand to try and wipe the blood away, coughing up more when he tried to crawl towards her. “Please I need…”
“You need to stop playing the hero and lay still.” Alexis retorted sharply closing the distance between them before turning to glare at the two sailors. “Well what are you standing there for go get a first aid kit…move!”
Now able to see his wounds clearly Alexis recoiled…If she had been only a few minutes later in heading to her cabin god knows the damage those thugs could have done. “Oh god Dex…what did they do to you?”
“Probably what they were ordered to.” Dex grunted, rolling onto his back and wincing as his bruised and probably cracked ribs protested the movement.
“They were meant to keep me in my room…when that failed I imagine they…” Dex trailed off shrugging. “It was worth it though…I get to see you…Well sort of see you…” He added snorting at his own terrible joke as he waved to his swelling eye that was already shutting up.
“You’re an idiot.” Alexis snorted taking in the wounded man in front of her, unable to resist the urge to touch him and reassure herself that although he was hurt, none of the damage was life threatening.
“Maybe I am a fool…a fool in love…with you…only with you.” Dex whispered yet he knew Alexis heard him; her gentle touch on his arm was suddenly withdrawn.
“Why do you keep saying that?” Alexis finally answered. “Why do you persist in this…it’s pointless…I know you don’t mean it Dex…I saw enough…”
“I do love you Alexis, I know you won’t believe me after everything that has happened but I had no control over what happened earlier and I never even looked at your sister in that way…Why would I? It’s you I want and know even if you won’t admit it that you do care for me too.” Dex insisted reaching out and grasping Alexis’s hand, trying to keep her beside him even as she half rose to flee.
“You may be a fool Dex but I am not…I may care for you more than I should but I won’t give you a chance to hurt me…besides what you want from me…I can’t give you that. I won’t give up myself and my life for a man, never again!” Alexis muttered shaking her head and prising her hand free.
“What have I asked you for other than for you to love me back?” Dex demanded his one good eye narrowing on Alexis.
“I know that frightens you…I know someone you loved hurt you so badly you probably swore never to give another man that power over you but Alexis you already have that power over me…you have been breaking me into pieces since the first moment I laid eyes on you and only you have the power to heal me…hell you can rebuild me in whatever way you wish I am yours and I always will be.”
“I never asked for any of this…I never asked for power over you.” Alexis began refusing to let herself listen and believe…Dex had sucked her in once before.
“Too late you’ve got it!” Dex snapped back exasperated with Alexis’s refusal to listen to him or even her own feelings. “I will only ever be miserable without you, so I’ll be whatever you need me to be…live in stud or even unpaid lackey I don’t care I’ll have you on your terms…I need you in my life even if you never need me in the same way.”
God what had she done? Where was the strong powerful man who had declared himself his own man…had she killed him? Would Dex really give up everything that made him who he was just to be near her? “Dex…”
“I would move heaven and earth just to see you smile again.” Dex pressed sensing Alexis wavering.
“Words…They are just words.” Alexis insisted closing her eyes to block out the image of the beaten man lying at her feet begging her not to walk out on him. “I can’t trust you Dex…I can’t trust anyone anymore…”
“Then let me prove it to you!” Dex retorted, catching Alexis’s attention as her eyes snapped open, those emerald eyes had had come to love meeting his gaze even through a sheen of unshed tears.
“Give me one last chance to prove in more than words that I would rather walk through fire than deliberately hurt you…please Alexis don’t throw us away before we even have a chance.”
“How?” It was whispered softly and although it wasn’t the unequivocal yes he had been hoping for it was enough to have hope soaring once more in his breast.
“I don’t know yet.” Dex answered honestly grappling for something as Alexis went to walk away. “Give me a week…stay in Panama for a week longer…after that if I haven’t proven to you how much I love you then I give you my word I will let you go. I won’t pursue you or hound you anymore.”
A week to do the impossible. Alexis knew there was nothing Dex could do that could change her mind…yes she may love him but she couldn’t take the chance on loving him no matter how much part of her was screaming at her to. A week wasn’t too much to ask for and after everything Dex had already risked for her, first his life and now his peace of mind, surely she could give him that?
“Alright one week and after that you let me go?” Alexis whispered sealing her part in the deal just as the sailors returned with the first aid kit.
Lying back as Alexis began to gingerly tend to his wounds Dex fought the instinct to wince, catching Alexis’s hand he held it gently for a moment waiting until their gazes met before adding. “Thank you…I won’t let you down I promise.”
Shrugging Alexis pulled her gaze and her hand free, forcing her attention solely to cleaning up the mess the two thugs had made, forcing herself to answer noncommittally. “We’ll see.”
“Well what do you think?”
The question was asked so earnestly and Dex’s tone was so eager and hopeful that Alexis struggled to remember that this week wasn’t about enjoying a romantic getaway with a handsome young man but about convincing Dex there was no chance for the two of them. That was the resolution Alexis had come to after leaving Dex in his cabin and going to her own to pack. That was the explanation she had given albeit reluctantly when first Zach and then Rashid questioned her sanity for disappearing yet again with a young man she barely knew.
“Alexis?” Dex prompted his companion as she continued to stand in the doorway of the small villa he had borrowed for the week. True it was nothing fancy like the house Rashid owned nor was it the lap of luxury like Zach’s yacht but it was far nicer than the hotel room than had stayed in La Palma. Dex had to remember to thank his friend Bob for lending him his holiday hideaway, especially at such short notice when he got back to the states.
“It’s fine.” Alexis answered simply avoiding Dex’s gaze so she didn’t have witness his crestfallen expression.
“Here let me take your bags through into the bedroom…perhaps after you’ve unpacked and freshened up we can go for a walk along the beach.
“It’s late Dex.” Alexis answered and for once that was the truth, the sun had set hours ago and after all the messing around they had done in Panama City and the time it had taken to get here… “I just want to crawl into bed and sleep.”
“Well alright…Of course it’s late we’ll take that walk tomorrow.” Dex replied doing his best to hide his disappointment as he carried Alexis’s heavy bags through into her room. Why she insisted on bringing all of her things he would never understand, although perhaps she was just paranoid about being separated from them again? Still it was a burden his already bruised and battered body could really do without having to carry.
Setting them down just inside the door to the villa’s large bedroom suite Dex could only stare longingly at the comfortable king size bed…however somehow he doubted very much he would get to enjoy its comfort any time soon as despite Alexis’s agreement to give him one last chance her attitude since had been distant and decidedly frosty.
“If you need anything, anything at all, I’ll just be…” Dex hesitated in the doorway, watching as Alexis potted about the room, immediately unzipping one of her many cases, god knows how she tells them apart, and retrieving a silky looking nightgown and robe…just imaging how that would look on her…and more importantly off of her sent Dex’s pulse racing.
“Good night Dex.” Alexis pointedly waiting until she was certain Dex had taken her hint before she sank down onto the bed, her head in her hands. How the hell was she going to pull this off, keeping a man like that at arms length for a week was going to be a task of herculean proportions…especially when even when her back was turned on him Alexis could still feel his hungry gaze moving over her body…the need within him sparking a familiar fire within her.
She would just have to keep herself withdrawn…not allow Dex to draw her into his plans, no matter how much her heart and those puppy dog eyes of his pleaded with her to relent. It was for the best, for both of them. Surely it was better to make the break now when the recovery should hopefully be of short duration for them both and the parting could almost be amicable. The longer they left things the harder it would be and the last thing Alexis wanted or could bare the thought of was Dex out in the world thinking ill of her and cursing her name…one ex-husband already doing that was more than enough for any woman.
Stretching out on her towel Alexis sighed as the warm sun beat down on her body and the gentle sound of waves lapping at the shore lulled her into relaxing more. Even the sound of children playing some sort of ball game further up the beach barely disturbed her, at least they were far enough away that she didn’t have to worry about getting hit by the ball. It was practically perfect…
“Can I get you anything from the house?”
And then Dex had to go and speak and ruin the moment.
“No thank you.” Alexis answered frostily, doing her best to ignore the hurt expression on Dex’s face as she deliberately turned onto her stomach and reached for the well worn paperback she had found in her bedside table…not that she had ever been much of a great reader but if it kept Dex from asking her every five minutes if she wanted anything Alexis was prepared to read just about anything. Perhaps then Dex might get the hint and realise his hovering and over attentiveness was slowly driving her nuts.
“How about joining me for a swim? The water must have warmed up enough by now.” Dex tried again, anything to get Alexis to pay him the slightest bit of attention.
Yet it seemed Alexis was even cooler towards him today than she had been the night before and it was slowly driving him crazy. He could understand that she was hurt and angry with him but he could deal with that if only she would talk or even yell at him…the cold shoulder routine was something Dex had not a clue how to deal with.
“No but you go ahead.” Alexis muttered adding silently before I take you out there and drown you myself.
“Well if you’re sure you’ll be alright here by yourself?”
“Dex I am perfectly capable of taking care of myself I have been for years!” Alexis snapped, slightly regretting her harsh tone when Dex recoiled as if struck. Yet even in the face of those chocolate brown eyes filled with barely hidden hurt Alexis refused to allow herself to weaken.
She was doing this for the both of them…Dex was deluding himself if he thought this could work, Alexis knew herself too well, she was too selfish to compromise enough to make such an unequal relationship work. Plus for all his faults…the still uncertain nature of his encounter with Cassie not withstanding…Alexis knew that Dex was a decent man, kind and loving, and he deserved a woman who wasn’t so badly damaged by love and who could return his feelings openly and without reservation. He deserved a wife who wanted to share her heart and her life with him, to raise miniature boys with wild black hair and chocolate brown eyes.
Closing her eyes as visions of dark haired dark eyes boys and a tiny curly haired green eyed girl danced across mind Alexis shook those thoughts away.
No…there would be no more children for her…the four she had already given birth too had caused more than enough pain already.
Standing in the surf Dex tried to will up the desire to move…perhaps vent his frustration out in the waves as he fought against their pull just as he fought against Alexis’s determination to keep him at arms length.
When Alexis had agreed to give him one last chance, a whole week in which to prove how he felt to her and convince her somehow they could make this relationship not only work but thrive, Dex had been certain it wouldn’t take anywhere near a week. After all it had only taken a few days for the initial attraction that had sparked between them to build into something far deeper, something so strong that it tugged and pulled on Dex’s heart…every moment spent emotionally distant from Alexis was a form of torture in itself.
Yet finding a way to prove his love was genuine was proving far trickier than even Dex had supposed, and considering Alexis shot down his every attempt to talk, to do anything for her or together…How the hell was he supposed to prove anything?
Slapping his palm down in frustration Dex strode out of the surf, the idea of a swim loosing its appeal. Stalking down the beach he didn’t care where his feet were taking him…as long as it was away from Alexis and this impossible situation between them. Even so it was something of a surprise when he suddenly found a ball at his feet. Bending down to pick it up Dex started and stared across at the group of boys who were waiting patiently for him to throw it back.
Smirking Dex tossed the ball back, standing and watching for a moment as the appointed bowler then pitched the ball at the lad with the bat, who unsurprisingly as he was the youngest swung and missed.
“No that’s all wrong you took your eye off of the ball.” Dex muttered before walking over, smiling down at the young lad who couldn’t have been more than eight who stared up at Dex’s height only slightly intimidated.
“Urghhh ojo…” Dex stumbled with the right Spanish pointing to the lad’s eyes. “ojo en la bola.” He added pointing towards the ball which one of the others had retrieved.
“Here your grip is wrong too.” Dex muttered not knowing if the lad could understand him, yet all of the boys gathered around to watch this strange foreigner instruct them on the finer points of baseball in his garbled Spanish. Then after demonstrating the correct stance and swing Dex handed the bat back, standing back as the bowler threw another ball and this time the lad’s bat connected and knocked the ball away across the sand.
“You did it!” Dex exclaimed holding up his hand for a high five, laughing as the young lad had to jump up to slap his palm….Perhaps there was something to be salvaged from this morning after all?
Meanwhile further down the beach Alexis had given up her pretence of reading her book. Laying on her side Alexis couldn’t help but watch Dex interact with the children over the top of her book…he was a natural and one day would make a wonderful father…which only went to prove that she was right in her decision, he deserved that chance and she didn’t have the right to take it from him.
Still that didn’t mean it didn’t hurt…she should have gotten up and gone inside.
Yet Alexis couldn’t find the will to move from her place and even if it would hurt more later, if only for a little while would it be so terrible to lay here and watch Dex play with the children and live a little in the fantasy that they were somehow able to find a way to work this out…and that those were their children Dex was playing with?
Mission accomplished…well pretty much well on its way.
Alexis had succeeded in keeping Dex at arms length throughout the whole day and although it pained her to see him slowly losing hope and growing more and more frustrated with her. Still that was the whole point, to acquaint Dex with her less than pleasant traits so that by the end of the week, if he even lasted that long, Dex was more than delighted to be away from her.
The possibility that Dex might out last the week still holding a torch for her was so ludicrous in Alexis’s opinion that it didn’t even occur to her.
Still Alexis made certain to exaggerate her bad points. The only time she deigned to converse with Dex was to complain about something. She made certain to look down her nose at all of his suggestions, to pick listlessly at any food put in front of her and find fault with everything. In essence to be the selfish spoilt brat her mother had always accused her of being.
To Dex’s credit he had taken most of her criticism with a stoicism worthy of a Buddhist monk. He had swallowed down any hurt feelings when Alexis shot down his every attempt to do something nice together. He had shown patience beyond his years when Alexis refused to eat the food he had prepared…the steak first too underdone and then too tough for her tastes. Every time going back to the little kitchen in an effort to find something to tempt her, even if it meant his own meal became cold and inedible.
Yet even Dex had a breaking point it seemed.
When Alexis had refused to join him for a walk on the beach to watch the sunset together Dex had stormed off out of the house before he could really lose his temper.
Feeling guilty at pushing him to the edge Alexis had retreated to her bedroom, her guilt only multiplying as she caught sight of pillow and blanket stored by the side of the sofa, which doubled the makeshift bed Dex had been forced to make for himself…having only spent a few minutes sitting on it Alexis already knew it was far from comfortable and yet had taken it last night without complaint; even though more than once today Alexis had caught him wincing when he accidentally knocked his bruised ribs.
Since there was little to do in her room Alexis had settled for taking a bath…it was a wonderful old pedestal bath and had taken an age to fill and had probably used up all the hot water in the villa but as she sank into and felt her muscles begin to unwind Alexis couldn’t feel too guilty.
Lolling back against the high porcelain back Alexis allowed her eyes to close, staying like that until she could feel her skin begin to prune. Not that she had any real desire to get out but it wasn’t like she had her favourite body lotion to hand to replace all the moisture lost first from sitting in the sun and now from soaking herself in the bath.
Opening her eyes Alexis reached down by the side of her bath for her towel…A scream ripped from her throat as something furry brushed past her fingers. Dropping the towel Alexis curled up in the bath, screaming once again as the large furry eight-legged monster scurried out from under the towel to sit watching her in the middle of the bathroom mat.
A moment later and her bathroom door burst open and Dex stood there poker in hand ready to do battle with whatever vile scum had dared to try something whilst Alexis was in her bath. However the bathroom was decidedly empty of any potential rapists of peeping toms…in fact the only occupant was a decidedly wet and naked Alexis, for whom the bubble bath was doing little to hide her ample charms.
“What is it what’s wrong?”
“There!” Alexis shrieked pointing down at the hideous monster that seemed to be sizing her up with all eight of his glinting dark eyes.
Following Alexis’s direction Dex had to blink in surprise…it was a spider…a reasonably large house spider but hardly a tarantula or something worthy of such a reaction. Swallowing down his laughter in the face of Alexis’s genuine terror Dex realised that now probably wasn’t the best time to mention the countless spiders he had come across during their trek through the jungle, spiders that made this one look like a baby by comparison.
“Just get rid of it…I can’t stand it looking at me!” Alexis hissed her fingers tightening on the edge of the bath.
“Ok…no sudden movements now.” Dex played along, creeping towards his oblivious pray and snatching it up in the bath mat and whisking it out of the bathroom. A moment later flush with victory Dex returned laying the now empty mat back down in front of the bath.
“Oh thank god.” Alexis sighed raising a hand to her chest, a movement that drew Dex’s gaze.
Flushing uncomfortably as he tried to draw his gaze away from Alexis’s breasts Dex began to edge towards the door, he didn’t exactly want to leave but considered it the wisest course of action. Alexis had been biting his head off all day for the smallest of infractions, he could only imagine how she would react now catching him blatantly ogling her.
“Wait.” Alexis called out before Dex had reached the door. “Are you sure they’re aren’t any more…can’t you check?”
Smiling at the genuinely fearful and polite tone Dex nodded. “Sure.”
Starting at the furthest corner he poked into every nook and cranny he could find, relieved when his search didn’t turn up any other spider. “Nothing here.”
“What about under the bath?”
Resisting the urge to roll his eyes Dex crouched down scanning the dark and dusty hidehole, he was just about to declare this space arachnid free until his eyes fell on the tiniest little spider.
Smiling as he reached out and scooped the baby spider up with his hand Dex made the mistake of resting that hand on the bath.
“Only a ba…” He began cut off by the sudden wave of water as Alexis tried to vainly get as far away as she could and pushed at the water to splash the threat away…succeeding in that and soaking Dex into the bargain.
“Ooops.” Alexis muttered innocently, biting her lip as Dex glared up at her from under his eyebrows.
Wiping his hands down his now sodden shirt Dex had no option but to unbutton it and peal the soaked slinging material off of his shoulders.
Swallowing Alexis watched his torso, the muscles moving as he reached to unfasten his cuffs, the glistening as the beads of water that clung to his pectorals and the bubble that lingered on his chest hair reflected the light.
“Thanks for the wash.” Dex muttered staggering to his feet, cursing as even his jeans were wet and clung to his thighs.
“You’re welcome.” Alexis laughed her amusement growing as Dex continued to scowl, his disapproval delighting her more than anything, and a devilish idea sprang to mind and Alexis acted on it without thinking.
“Ooops seems I missed a bit!” Alexis teased scooping up a handful of water and splashing Dex full on in the face. “There that’s got it.”
“I suppose you think that was funny?” Dex deadpanned wiping the water and suds from his face. Yet it was difficult to keep the smile from his face, if it made Alexis laugh and joke with him Dex was prepared to be dunked completely in the bath…Speaking of which….
“Well not as funny as…” Alexis began to splash him some more only to have Dex seize her hands. A brief tug of war resulted.
Leaning over the bath as Alexis giggled and tried to pull him in…Dex resisted for as long as he dared, making a show of resisting before suddenly unbalancing on the wet floor and allowing her to pull him in.
Crowing her victory Alexis splashed a soaked Dex. “I win.”
Huffing as he allowed Alexis to rub bubbles into his hair Dex held up his hands in supplication. “Yes you win Your Highness…Now are you going to let me up? I need to get out of these wet things.”
Biting her lip Alexis couldn’t help but trace her fingers down the line of wet dark hair that trailed from Dex’s chest down over his stomach before disappearing under the fastening of his jeans. There were a hundred reasons for her to stop this now, her resolve to keep Dex at arms length no longer seeming quite as appealed…and faced with a half naked wet Dex there was only one thing on Alexis’s mind right now.
Popping the button Alexis moved to pull down the zip, her canary smile growing as once more it seemed Dex was living up to his military training.
“Alexis what are you…” Dex groaned closing his eyes as her soft wet little hand slipped into his jeans.
“Why just helping you out of your wet things…I wouldn’t want you to catch cold Dex.”
“That’s…very kind.” Dex grunted lifting his legs and pushing his wet jeans completely off before bringing his whole body into the large bathtub. “You know you missed a bit yourself.”
“Did I?” Alexis whispered arching as Dex’s hands remerged from under the water to gently cup her breasts and roll her nipples between his thumb and fingers.
“Yeah just there…” Dex muttered.
“You’re very thorough Dex but are you sure you found everywhere?”
“No missed a bit…here.” Dex added leaning down to press his lips to her long bare neck.
“And here.” He muttered against her goose pimping skin kissing his way down to her breasts, his hands moving to circle Alexis’s waist and lift her tiny frame to straddle him before slipping down to cup her slick buttocks.
Threading her fingers into Dex thick dark hair Alexis held his mouth against her breast as he suckled and nipped at them with his teeth, rocking and rubbing herself against a part of Dex that seemed to relish the attention. Yet every time she tried to inch herself up higher and foster a deeper introduction her wet thighs lost their grip and she slid back down.
“Need a hand there?” Dex’s baritone was low and sexy by her ear, his mouth closing on the lobe and sucking it teasingly.
“God yes.” Alexis hissed, relinquishing herself into Dex’s more than capable hands. Biting her lip as his grip on her backside tightened and he put his impressive upper body strength to good use. Moaning as she slid down on to Dex, feeling his girth and heat fill her, her fingernails digging into Dex’s shoulder for purchase as she began to ride him, not that Dex seemed to mind in the slightest. Setting a fast rigorous pace Alexis knew this encounter would be over sooner rather than later…still it was early and they had the rest of the night.
It was only as Dex’s fingers slipped between them, rubbing and pinching her clit, sending Alexis suddenly and roughly over the edge before she collapsed on top of him boneless, his warm wet body pressed against the length of hers, that Alexis realised her plan or irritating and ignoring Dex into leaving had flopped spectacularly…and she would need to swap to Plan B…of course first she would need to devise a Plan B!
Yet as Dex’s firm lips found her and coaxed her mouth open, his tongue teasing and caressing her own, Alexis realised coming up with Plan B would have to wait…besides she still had the rest of the week.
Sighing in contentment Dex took a long slow pull on his beer, smiling against the rim on the bottle as he felt Alexis’s soft lips kiss his chest, whilst her fingers idly raked through his short coarse chest hair. Reaching out with his free hand Dex stroked his own fingertips down along the exposed slope of Alexis’s back, marvelling at her skin’s soft silky texture under his rough fingertips.
“Now this is how I prefer spending my mornings.”
“mmmmm.” Alexis purred arching slightly as Dex’s rough fingertips tickled the sensitive skin of her back. Dex certainly had a point, spending the night and then the following morning in bed was better than languishing about on the beach any day.
“In fact I think we should spend the rest of the week in bed…we could eat, sleep and well plenty of the other…” Dex trailed off smirking suggestively.
“You’d get bored of even that eventually.”
“I could never be bored of you!” Dex insisted emphatically.
Laughing at his earnestness Alexis shook her head, ruffled bed hair brushing against her cheeks. “Don’t make promises you can’t keep Dex…besides eating anything other than breakfast in bed is uncivilised and I hate getting crumbs in the sheets.”
Frowning at the certainty in Alexis’s voice, this apparent deep-set immediately negative attitude whenever he tried to hint at holding deeper feelings for her, Dex had to wonder why. Alexis seemed to have convinced herself that he wasn’t serious about her despite his many declarations of love, despite everything they had gone through together, still she seemed convinced that he was insincere at worst or delusional at best.
“I am a man of my word Alexis.” Dex answered softly watching as his words seemed to make his bed partner even more uncomfortable. “Some else wasn’t though was he? That’s why you keep pushing me away, just because he broke his promises to you doesn’t mean that I am going to.”
Shifting uncomfortably Alexis felt the urge to run bubble up inside her, yet as if able to read her body language Dex’s grip tightened on her, and besides it wasn’t as though she actually had anywhere to run to, not this time. So instead of flight Alexis settled on attack. “This conversation is becoming boring…”
“And you’re trying to shut me down.” Dex countered reaching out and catching Alexis’s chin as she avoided his gaze. “You are frightened I get it, but you can’t let fear of getting hurt again ruin the rest of your life Alexis…Dammit we can have it all, we could be perfect together if you would just let that wall down a little and let me in…I won’t hurt you the way he did I promise.”
“You can’t make promises like that Dex, no one can!” Alexis spat back her cheeks flushing with anger and her throat closing up as she tried to stamp down on her errant feelings.
“I can promise to try my hardest not to hurt you.” Dex countered. “I love you Alexis that is not going to change no matter what happens between us. I have unknowingly spent years looking for you, and I had no idea just how empty my life really was until you stumbled into it. I can’t just let you go now…I wouldn’t survive it.”
“Oh you’d find a way to survive…there is always a way, it may not be easy, it may never really get any better but despite what the books say people don’t really die of a broken heart.” Alexis answered bitterly her eyes narrowing as she became lost in her own memories. There had been a time she had truly thought she would die from her emotional pain too but life found ways to force you to go on, even if you would rather curl up and die.
“Is that what you are doing? Merely surviving? What about living, living life to the fullest do you do that or are you too frightened too…Damnit Alexis what the hell did this man do to you?” Dex demanded hotly watching Alexis closely, watching as her face contorted twisting from her pained expression to bitter rage.
“He destroyed my life, he took everything I loved away from me, he humiliated me and then he made sure that he could go on punishing me for the rest of my life by banning me from seeing my own children!” Alexis hissed.
“I cheated on my husband because he would leave me all alone for weeks on end, he starved me of any affection and so I went looking for love where ever I could find it. Then when he found out it wasn’t enough to punish me by forcing a divorce, by then I our marriage was dead anyway I would have probably have been happy to agree to one. No he had to take my children, he knew how deeply that would hurt me, I had already had my first born taken from me and that had almost destroyed me and clearly Blake planned on finishing me off by taking my other babies from me to.” Alexis paused in her rant panting hard as the tears that she had been fighting spilled out from her eyes and down her cheeks.
“Oh Alexis I…” Dex began softly reaching up to brush her tears away, yet Alexis beat him to it, turning her face away and wiping her tears away with the back of her hand.
“So are you happy now? Now you’ve got all the sordid little details…”
“Darling no.” Dex answered softly pulling as resistant Alexis closer. “I am sorry I shouldn’t have pushed you but all I could see was you in so much pain…I thought talking about it might help?”
Snorting Alexis shook her head. “Nothing can help…unless of course you are offering to use some of that military training to off my ex-husband?”
“Well that wasn’t quite what I had in mind.” Dex answered honestly, rubbing his strong hands soothingly down Alexis’s back, rubbing circles against her soft skin. “You must miss them very much.”
“Every moment of every day.” Alexis answered hollowly closing her sore eyes as she burrowed her face into the slope of Dex’s neck. “It’s been ten years…and it still hasn’t got any better…They’ve spent longer living without me in their lives than we did together, and thanks to their father they probably hate me by now.”
“I am sure they love you, they may not understand the whole picture, they may be angry at you but underneath all that you’re still their mother and that kind of bond is special.” Dex whispered softly against his lover’s ear stroking her mussed hair back from her face, relieved when she seemed to relax and calm at his touch.
“You’ll be together again, when they are old enough to make their own decisions you can find them and talk to them, try to explain your side of the story after all this time their father can’t have that sort of influence over them...Alexis?”
Keeping her eyes closed and feigning sleep Alexis allowed herself to believe Dex at least for a little while, it was a nice fantasy, but Dex only knew half the story…and she doubted he had ever encountered a man like Blake Carrington before.
10-11-2011, 10:38 PM
Interesting... but where do they go from here we wonder.
It was surprisingly easy to relax around Dex Dexter that was something Alexis Carrington had learnt in their time spent together at the villa. He wasn’t a man who gave great thought to things before he said them but he seemed to really mean them all the same. In fact Alexis was at times convinced Dex’s thoughts barely filtered through his brain before slipping from his tongue and Alexis found this unusual artless directness unnerving at first and indefensible against.
When Dex paid her a compliment it was direct, almost blunt and gauche, but it was honest and she could tell he meant it…even if hearing your backside was perfectly round and plump like a peach he wanted to…and then did sink his teeth into, wasn’t the most flattering compliment she had ever received.
It was refreshing to be around someone so uncomplicated. Alexis had always assumed people who were direct and didn’t play the sort of emotional mind games that she herself excelled in, would bore her after a while. Yet there was something to be said for being able to lower your defences…or at least some of them…
Alexis wasn’t foolish enough to let her guard down completely when she was around Dex. She had already failed to keep a physical distance between them, but then considering the divinely sculptured form the man boasted Alexis could excuse herself that slip…she wasn’t a nun for heavens sake. Still there was a difference between physical and emotional intimacy and Alexis had by necessity become a master at keeping the two separate.
Still Dex wasn’t making that easy for her.
It was just so damn difficult to forget at times…or more to the point being around Dex for long enough made her forget…the pain, even herself and Alexis found herself returning Dex’s little gestures of affection more often than she should.
Like now for instance…Alexis Carrington doesn’t play…or more the point she hadn’t for a very long time but there was something about those dark puppy dog eyes that made saying no so damn difficult.
Still as Dex all but body tackled her into the surf Alexis resolved to try harder next time.
“Dex my hair….god dammit your swore blind it wouldn’t get wet…”
Laughing away Alexis’s rant as she pushed sodden curls out of her lightly bronzed face Dex couldn’t contain his broad smile even as Alexis continued to glare at him.
“And what the hell are you grinning at…damn Cheshire cat.” Alexis muttered grumpily as sea salt ruined curls hung in unattractive clumps around her face. “You may think this is funny but now I have to go wash it out before it ruins my hair…”
Dex’s smile did slip as true to her word Alexis moved to stomp out of the surf and up the beach back to the house…not that Dex had any objections to the house, or more to the point the bedroom, they had spent several pleasant days in there already but having only just convinced Alexis to come out and enjoy the day with him Dex was hardly thrilled by the sudden change of plan.
Still that didn’t mean he couldn’t change things himself.
For Alexis there was no warning until a pair of strong muscular arms were wrapped around her waist and their owner was dragging her down, rolling her over, Dex’s mischievous laughter ringing loudly in her ears as he took them both down.
Laughing Dex continued to roll them both at the water’s edge before coming to a rest with Alexis sprawled inelegantly on top of him.
For a moment Alexis stared down shocked and dazed into Dex’s laughing grinning face before bunching up her fist and smacking his chest. “You bloody oaf!”
Laughing at her anger Dex merely caught the little fist that battered him, bringing it to his lips. “Darling you say the sweetest things…”
“Don’t call me darling.” Alexis answered as if by rote, this now familiar exchange once more bringing the canary grin to Dex’s face.
Since the first time when Alexis had distractedly not corrected Dex on using such familiar endearments Dex had claimed that gave him precedent and so proceeded to call her darling whenever the opportunity arouse despite her objections…it was a testament to just how adorable Alexis found his dimples when he did so that he was still alive and breathing.
“Yes Dear…” Dex replied in a contrite tone, his grin growing as Alexis’s glare turned up several notches and she went from merely trying to escape, to escaping and causing him bodily injury at the same time.
Not that Alexis could really hurt him but her attempts gave Dex the perfect opportunity to run his hands all over…something he had been aching to do ever since she had slipped on that tiny little white bikini and sauntered out on to the beach to get a little sun.
“Dex…stop it now…” Alexis hissed through gritted teeth, her eyes instinctively scanning the beach for any onlookers, relieved when the only people were off in the distance and if she was unable to make out their faces then surely they wouldn’t be able to see just where Dex’s hands were heading.
“Someone’s ticklish…interesting…” Dex teased, enjoying the way Alexis squirmed against him her soft body brushing against his as she tried half heartedly to evade his mischievous fingers.
“Dexxxxxxxx.” Alexis squealed, giggling as Dex’s strong arms wrapped around her and pulled her bucking body firmly on top of him.
“Well well look at what I have here.” Dex smirked pulling a wriggling Alexis against his chest. “Now what am I going to do with you now that I have you?”
“If you need me to tell you Dex then I think I have had the wrong man in my bed perhaps I might have better luck further down the beach?” Alexis retorted smugly biting her lip as Dex raised his eyebrows suggestively his hands exploring along his lover’s body.
“Well I do have an idea or two.” Dex replied, cupping the plump cheeks of Alexis’s backside and massaging them before allowing his fingers to slip down between her thighs, stroking the sensitive skin there softly.
“Only one or two?”
“Or three or four?” Dex amended unable to contain his broad smile as Alexis grinned back up at him before lifting her lips to meet his.
“Then might I suggest you put that impressive strength of yours to good use for once…inside…now!”
Laughing at the commanding tone in Alexis’s voice Dex wasted no time in obeying her command, scooping Alexis up into his arms and striding off towards the house…perhaps heading back inside wasn’t such a terrible idea after all?
It was late…or was that early but Dex Dexter couldn’t sleep. A condition that unfortunately wasn’t currently shared by his companion of choice; Alexis had previously been curled around him like a creeper had since turned onto her side. Dex felt somewhat lost from the loss of contact and so had followed her, careful not to wake her as he spooned her body and wrapped his strong arms around her slender frame.
Yet despite the lateness of the hour and the warmth of his lovers body as she rested in his arms Dex couldn’t stop his mind from whirling away. The last few hours ran through his mind on a constant replay as he tried to determine if he really had heard what he thought he had…
“I love you…”
Had Alexis really said that aloud or was it his own brain playing tricks on him? Imaging wishful thinking on his own part, as their week together was coming to an end and Dex was still unsure just what would come next.
“I love you Dex.”
Closing his eyes Dex could remember her breathy sigh, he could picture in his mind the wide sated smile just as it had spread across Alexis beautiful face as the two of them came down from their final round of lovemaking. The way Alexis had turned and practically snuggled into him, her leg creeping over him like a vine as her face burrowed into his shoulder.
Dex himself had laid back against the cool pillow and felt his limbs turn to lead as he ran his fingers through Alexis’s curls brushing them back from her sweaty forehead so he could press a kiss to her skin. It was then he thought…he could have sworn he heard her say it. Softly as if barely muttering it as her breathing slowed…
“I love you…I love you Dex…So…very….much…”
Those words had been like a bucket of cold water that jarred Dex back awake, robbing him of sleep’s beckoning embrace. Yet he had to lay there as Alexis drifted off leaving him to hope and wonder.
He had just heard her say it…hadn’t he?
12-18-2011, 04:41 AM
Is there more?
12-18-2011, 06:34 PM
Yeah, the author added the ending to the story on another site. She publishes her stories on two sites. The ending is at www.fanfiction.net/tv/dynasty.
12-18-2011, 06:39 PM
Okay, that link wasn't right. It didn't lead to this story. Here is the link so you can read the ending: http://m.fanfiction.net/s/7353081/7/.
12-18-2011, 09:07 PM
Okay, that link wasn't right. It didn't lead to this story. Here is the link so you can read the ending: http://m.fanfiction.net/s/7353081/7/.
Thanks Corporate Paige! I wasn't aware ss9 posted on 2 sites.
oops sos I will post it all here now sorry!!!!
Folding her last silk blouse Alexis Carrington sighed sadly as she laid it down in the case on top of her other clothing, all neatly folded and packed away. It had been a wonderful, almost magical week, and Alexis couldn’t deny she was sad it had come to an end but it had to…for both their sakes.
Everything ended after all, it was merely a question of when and why, and Alexis had made her mission to ensure the when and why were now at her decision and discretion. Still that didn’t help solve the problem of the handsome young man sat on the end of the bed watching her calmly pack her belongings in disbelief.
Dex’s expression had been a mixture of pain and sheer disbelief since earlier that morning when Alexis had calmly risen from their bed and asked him what time they would be heading back to the city as tomorrow she was booked on a flight back to Acapulco. Clearly the fact that she intended to stand by her decision to leave at the end of the week, despite the pleasurable time they had enjoyed together, hadn’t so much as occurred to Dex.
His naivety and belief in his own irresistibility was both endearing and a touch arrogant, but being somewhat arrogant herself Alexis hardly found it off putting. Not when a man had the goods to back it up that is…
Still that didn’t make standing by her decision any easier.
“You’re really leaving then?” Dex stuttered, rising from the bed when Alexis snapped her case closed, pacing the length on the small snug bedroom that had been the extent of their world for several days.
Days they had spent exploring each other and indulging in pleasures that expanded the horizons of even a man of the world as Dex considered himself to be. He had held nothing back, Dex had showered Alexis with his love and attention and she had seemed to revel in it. Yet still she was leaving at the end of the week, and although Alexis had always made her intention to leave clear and as agreed, never in his wildest nightmares had Dex expected her to actually do it. Not when Alexis appeared to be just as caught up in their love affair as he was.
“You asked me to stay a week Dex, well I did as you asked and now I am leaving just like I said I would…Those were the terms of our agreement weren’t they?”
“Agreement…Yes…” Dex spluttered the word sounded so cold and clinical, like the terms of a business arrangement and not a love affair. Dex knew he had no right to demand she stay longer. He had promised to let her go after a week if that was what she wanted but that had been before…
“So you didn’t mean it then?”
Flushing slightly Alexis turned and busied herself with fiddling with her hair, trying to squash down the guilty twisting in her stomach as she bluffed. “Didn’t mean what?”
“You know what!” Dex huffed reaching out and catching Alexis hand as it twirled a curl nervously around her fingers. Turning her around to face him Dex could tell by the flush in her cheeks and the way Alexis couldn’t meet his gaze that she was playing dumb on purpose.
“We’ve said a great many things Dex perhaps if you were more specif…”
“Last night after we were made love…and yes it was love and not just sex…Now I know there is a difference.” Dex cut off as Alexis opened her mouth to object.
“And how do I know this?” Dex continued as Alexis glared up at him from below her eyelashes. “Because I distinctly recall a certain someone saying so…You told me you loved me last night Alexis.”
Biting her lip Alexis couldn’t hide the flush of heat and embarrassment that flooded her cheeks…Part of her debated denying the whole thing, of fronting it out, and yet the way Dex’s dark eyes bore knowingly into her own Alexis knew he wouldn’t buy it. Dex knew what he heard it seemed and Alexis knew herself well enough to guess that even if she couldn’t recall saying it per say that didn’t mean she hadn’t.
“Well at least you’re not trying to deny it.” Dex muttered as he searched his lover’s face, reaching up to brush his fingers over her cheek before running his hand into her hair and pulling her close.
“God dammit Alexis I love you and if you really do love me why are you running away?”
Squirming uncomfortably in Dex’s grasp Alexis pushed her palms against his toned pectorals, trying to give herself a little breathing space. “I am not running away!”
“Funny your packed suitcase says otherwise…” Dex bit back.
“My suitcase is packed because our little holiday is at an end, you asked for a week, I gave you one but I never had any intention of letting this little affair of ours go on any longer than that. It has been wonderful Dex, and I will remember it and you very fondly…and maybe I am more than a little bit in love with you but that will pass. I’ll go back to my life and you’ll go back to yours and that will be the end to it.”
Grunting in frustration Dex wished there was a wall he could bash his head against. None of this made the slightest bit of sense to him. “Why does that have to be the end of it?”
Snorting at his total cluelessness Alexis shook her head at the stubborn young man holding her captive. “Because this can never work out there…not in the real world Dex. You’ll want and deserve the sort of relationship I can never give you and if you settled for what little I could offer it would only end up making you resent me. It is better for both of us that this ends here…”
“Oh so now you know what I want all of a sudden?” Dex demanded hotly. “Exactly when did you become a mind reader Alexis? Because I don’t recall once having asked anything of you, other than that you give me a real chance, but hey you couldn’t even do that could you?”
Scowling at Dex’s patronising tone Alexis doubled her effort to wiggle out of his grasp, yet Dex showed no intention of letting her escape, his grip on her hair tightening as he slipped his other arm around her waist.
“Let me go!”
“Not this time lady!” Dex argued back hotly. “Just what exactly do you think I would want from you…dammit all I want Alexis is you, I don’t care how little or how much of you can give…I need you and I won’t just let you pack up and walk out of my life.”
“Oh and I suppose you think you’re just the man to stop me huh? Well other men have tried to cage me Dex and not one of them have succeeded. I won’t be owned by anyone…”
“Who said anything about owning you?” Dex spat back. “That’s all you lady, I just want to be with you…I’ll have you on your terms if that is the only way…”
“Oh how very modern of you.” Alexis drawled sarcastically, rolling her eyes for good measure.
“That’s how it starts, and then it’s amazing how quickly light and casual turns into demanding and possessive. I won’t let any man treat me like that again, not be made to feel like a object, whose only reason for existing is to be there for a man…a pretty bauble to be shown off…a warm body in the bedroom…a brood mare for his dynasty…” Alexis choked off tears closing her throat. “Always him and never me…”
“Don’t call me that!” Alexis all but screeched, this time pushing Dex away with all her strength, relieved when this time he let her go. “I hate it…I’m not your darling…I’m not anyone’s darling!”
“Ok…Ok…” Dex whispered soothingly raising his palms in a gesture of appeasement. “You’re scared of this…of me…of what we could be…”
“I am not scared!” Alexis retorted petulantly, yet even she found that assertion somewhat hollow considering she had to pause to brush tears from her cheeks, hiding her face from Dex as she did so.
“Fine not scared then…worried…apprehensive…pick a word that you don’t have a problem with. Perhaps we have rushed into this and that is my fault, I’ve pushed you into an affair, instead of taking it slow.”
Snorting in amusement despite her earlier outburst Alexis couldn’t help but quip. “I don’t recall fighting you terribly hard Mr Dexter.”
Cracking a smile Dex let out some of the breath he had been holding.
“You’ve had your moments but I know how pig headed and stubborn I can be. Once I set my sights on something I want I don’t give up trying until I succeed and until you I’ve never met a woman who made me feel like this…I guess I just applied that same approach to wooing you without even thinking about how that might make you feel. I know you’re not a prize to be won and I don’t want to own you Alexis…I want you to be happy…I want more than anything to be the one that makes you happy.”
“I really think you do mean that Dex.” Alexis answered softly. “Or at least you think you do and that’s more than most men would do but it doesn’t change things not really…I am just not the relationship type…I’ve been married and it didn’t work and I’ve never wanted or needed another relationship like that.”
“I would never treat you the way he did!” Dex insisted, unable to contain the hurt tone in his voice. Did Alexis really think so little of him? “The things he did, neglecting you…taking your own children away as punishment…do you think I…”
“Oh I know you wouldn’t.” Alexis answered gently reaching up to cup Dex’s cheek. “I didn’t mean comparing you to Blake, I meant being committed to one person, belonging in someway to them…I can’t give that much of myself to anyone again and you deserve a hell of a lot more than the open shallow relationship I could give you. You deserve someone who can love you without reservation, someone to raise a family with…and that someone can’t be me…I am sorry and I do love you but I just can’t Dex.”
Reaching up to cover her hand Dex fought the tears that threatened, blinking them back. “And I love you…There’s really nothing I can say that will change your mind is there?”
Smiling sadly Alexis didn’t trust herself to speak. Shaking her head instead she watched as Dex sighed and forced himself back under control for her sake as much as his own. Then leaning forward she brushed her lips gently against his, their chaste kiss bittersweet as they pulled apart. Allowing Dex to pull her into a hug Alexis buried her face into his neck, breathing in the scent of him and his warmth and strength. Alexis knew she would miss this man. She did love him…she was in danger of falling in love with him in truth, but she would only end up hurting him. She had to let him go for his own sake, because as hard as it would be let him go now, it would hurt a hell of a lot worse if he ended up hating her and then pushing her away.
And he would…eventually…everyone always did.
Bored…Bored and wistful and full of a sort of sad longing…
Far off in the distance Alexis could still hear the music from the string quartet out on the villa’s terrace. The terrace where the party was still going on without her.
It had been a beautiful evening, the air was filled with the scent of Jasmine and the sound of delicate strings, the champagne had flowed and the gentlemen had been handsome, charming and attentive and yet Alexis had felt jaded and removed from everything.
It was almost as though she was outside herself looking on at the scene around her and not feeling part of it. She smiled and made conversation with the rich playboys out to charm her into bed. She sampled the champagne and picked at the sumptuous spread laid out for the partygoers but it tasted dull on her tongue.
So Alexis had drifted away from the party, drawn to the sound of the ocean as it caressed the beach just down the cliff from the villa.
Sitting on the sand Alexis dug her bare toes into the damp sand, smiling to herself that at least that felt real. Hugging her legs Alexis rested her chin on her knees squinting out to sea where lights from anchored yachts and distant stars twinkled in the dark. Here in the dark she was alone, no need to play the effervescent and alluring Alexis Carrington, the darling of the society set, the woman all other women were jealous of and scrambled to copy and the woman all men wanted to bed just so they could say that they had.
Oh people invited her to their parties but no one really wanted her there, no one liked her for her…but since Alexis Carrington made a party either by what she turned up wearing or who she ended up leaving with…well people invited her for that reason if no other.
“Oh so this is where you ran off to…Your little Jacques and Pierre were most miffed when you vanished on them.”
Scowling at the interruption Alexis didn’t even bother to lift her head to glare up at her sister. If she had known Caress had also been invited this evening then it would have only made it easier to have turned down the invitation. As it was it had taken all of Alexis’s restraint not to simply turn and walk out when she had first caught sight of her sister across the room.
“Still too good to talk to me?” Caress prodded further when Alexis remained unusually restrained. “Personally I think I should be the one angry with you. You destroyed my relationship…I mean you surely don’t expect me to believe that you didn’t enjoy getting your revenge on me with Zach?”
“Believe what you want Cassie personally I don’t care, and I didn’t break up you and Zach, that you accomplished all by yourself.”
“Oh not all by myself.” Cassie drawled suggestively. “That hunky boy toy of yours also had a hand or two in it!”
Feeling a flush of anger, sharp and sudden and to the quick Alexis couldn’t help but rise to Dex’s defence. “He has a name you know…and he was only involved because you threw yourself at him like some desperate slut and he was too afraid of really hurting you if he shoved you away like he wanted to.”
“Oh he didn’t try very hard…although something else…”
“SHUT UP! Just shut up, you know nothing about him…you just treated him like a piece of meat, well he is a person and he has feelings too and you tried to use him…”
Barking in laughter Caress shook her dark curls, her almond eyes narrowing as she locked on to her sister. “Oh my god…you love him don’t you…you’re in love with that nobody.”
For a moment Alexis couldn’t speak, her breath caught in her throat. How had her sister known? Was it that obvious? Or was Cassie just good at guessing?
“He’s not a nobody.” Alexis croaked out in reply her fingers closing into fists.
“So you’re not even denying it then?” Caress scoffed. “My I thought you were scraping the bottom of the barrel when he was just a pretty little toy…I mean I could at least understand the attraction, but to actual fall in love with a nobody!”
“Stop calling him that!” Alexis spat back, her body taking a life of its own as she punctuated her demand with a slap across Cassie’s face.
For a moment her sister recoiled stunned. “You hit me! How dare you hit me?”
“I…I…you deserved it.” Alexis stuttered. “You shouldn’t talk about Dex like that, you don’t even know him!”
“Not as well as you do it seems.” Cassie retorted sarcastically holding her bruised cheek. “Honestly Alexis I thought you were out of your mind when you threw over a sure thing like Cecil Colby for that wildcatter Blake Carrington but at least Blake had potential to be something even if he was more interested in drilling for oil than drilling you! But Dex is nothing and nobody…he doesn’t even do anything…he’s a good looking bum and you’re a fool to fall for him!”
Reeling from the venom of her sister’s taunt Alexis barely restrained the desire to hit her again and this time not a simple slap but a full on punch in the face. Yet the longer she stared into Cassie’s beautiful face twisted up with anger and jealousy the more her anger seemed to seep away. Cassie couldn’t accept Alexis’s feelings for Dex because she had never felt the same…Cassie had never loved anyone but herself.
Wrapping her dignity around her like a cloak Alexis picked up her heels and the hem of her dress, it was probably already ruined by the sand but the force of habit was too strong to ignore. Turning back to shoot her sister one last pitying look Alexis added softly, more for her own ears than Cassie’s. “No I would have been a fool not to!”
“Where the hell have you been?”
“Away.” Dex grunted. He was tired; it had been one hell of a trip. Still that had been expected Daniel had told Dex he was mad to even attempt it but then again love had been known to drive men crazy before.
“I know that!” Sam Dexter replied his dark eyes narrowing at his silent son who had once more reappeared out of nowhere. “What I asked was where?”
“That is my business.” Dex replied as he stowed his still packed case under the bed for safety before practically dropping down on to his bed.
“It’s my business too when you blow off important jobs for Dexter International, that was a prime contract Dex and if you are serious about making your own way in the world then you can’t afford to turn down helping hands. As it was I had to let it go to someone else and you only have yourself to blame…I need someone reliable and god knows where your head has been the past few weeks but it certainly hasn't been on work!”
“I’ve met my obligations.” Dex replied bluntly. “Now if you don’t mind I am tired and I have to be up early in the morning.
“Oh finally getting back to work are we?” Sam taunted his scowl deepening as his son had the nerve to try and sleep and not explain himself.
“Soon I have something else to see to first…” Dex replied cagily laying back, wishing that for once in his life his pigheaded father would take the hint and leave him to get some rest…not that the chances of that were likely, not when every time he closed his eyes all Dex could see was her.
When he did sleep his dreams were filled with Alexis, her face, her laugh, the warmth of her body against him…and then…then he woke and he reached for her only for his arms to close on empty air. It broke his heart all over again.
“There is something not right with you Dex, even I can see that…Whatever is the cause of this funk of yours I wish you would snap out of it, you’re mother is worried you are sickening for something!”
Gritting his teeth Dex could only nod. Clenching his fists Dex wished his father would just leave already, he was tired and he had an early start. “Yes sir.”
“Well I’m glad to hear it, so we’ll see you at breakfast…”
“No not tomorrow…I have something I have to do first…It should only take a few days and after that…after that everything will go back to normal.”
Epilogue Part 2:
The sunlight twinkled off the water and Alexis Carrington squinted against the bright light tugging her large floppy hat further down over her eyes as she absentmindedly bit the end of her paint brush. As hard as she tried to concentrate on her still life abstract Alexis found it impossible to stop her thoughts from wandering.
However memories of dark warm eyes and firm strong arms about her were far harder to push aside than Alexis expected...as were certain feelings that should have faded by now.
What made Dex different? What made him harder to get over than the others?
Yet Alexis didn’t dare search too deeply into her thoughts and feelings for a response…already she had a nagging suspicion that she had made a terrible mistake but Alexis had only survived so long by being overly cautious. What if she had romanticised things in her head?
After all how well did she actually know Dex….dear god she didn’t even know his last name!
Yet despite repeating all of these arguments, despite reassuring herself that she had made the right decision…the sensible decision…Alexis couldn’t help but feel like it had been a mistake, but she was too much of a coward to admit it out loud or do anything about it.
She had just been burnt too many times and too badly to be brave when it came to love.
Sighing Alexis set down her brush turning to stare at her housekeeper. The housekeeper who she had given specific instructions just that morning that she wasn’t to be disturbed and if anyone called that she wasn’t at home…it had been hard enough dealing with a jilted Jacques and Pierre last night at the party without having to take their phone calls this morning as well.
“I thought you might like some tea?” The Latina housekeeper offered nervously, edging closer, worried that depending on her mood her mistress might choose to actually throw the tea back at her.
However Mrs Carrington had been in a surprisingly quiet and calm mood, more introverted than usual since her return from Panama and Maria had been pleasantly surprised when her employer had barely once raised her voice to her. There had also been a shocking lack of male visitors. Normally Maria found herself crossing herself at least once a day and muttering to the almighty for Mrs Carrington’s immortal soul as she had to tidy up after her employer’s ‘guests’.
“Oh and just a few minutes ago there was a delivery…A young man…I did as you asked and told him you weren’t at home.”
“Good.” Alexis muttered taking the tea Maria poured, concentrating on the strong flavour and pushing day dreams aside. “Flowers?”
“No Madam…I don’t know what was in it…it’s wrapped.”
Probably chocolates Alexis mused…not that she ever normally ate chocolates but right now. “Bring it out will you Maria?”
Nodding the housekeeper scurried back inside, returning a few moments later with a much larger box than Alexis was expecting.
Frowning as Maria placed the box down on the side table Alexis moved and began unwrapping, her hands suddenly freezing as a vanity case appeared, it was brand new and expensive but bore a stunning resemblance…
Swallowing nervously Alexis reached for the fastener, the brass clip popping open and she lifted the lid…the reflected light dancing in sparkles across her face. “Oh my god…” Alexis gasped her hand trembling as she closed the lid.
“The man who delivered this…what did he look like?”
“Oh handsome…American…He was dark and tall…”
“Did he have a scar on his cheek?”
“Oh..uhhh…he might have…” Maria blustered in the face of her employers sudden animation.
Getting to her feet Alexis grabbed for her discarded wedges dragging them on. “He was here a few minutes ago?”
“Well yes I had just put the water on for the tea when the doorbell rang.” Maria answered following her employer as she made a mad dash back inside the house and towards the front door. “He must have come on foot…I mean I didn’t see a car…”
“Thank god for that!” Alexis exclaimed pulling open the front door and she was halfway towards the gate before she paused long enough to call back. “And thank you!”
Flinging open the gate Alexis glanced up and down the lane, there was no sign of anyone but since it was downhill into town where most of the hotels were and where you could catch a cab she took a wild guess and started off jogging down the slope.
With every step her pace increased, gravity increasing her momentum and after a while Alexis doubted she could even stop gracefully, instead it was all she could do to keep her legs moving…Ignoring the stunned expressions of passers by as she barely dodged them it was beginning to dawn on Alexis how futile this all might be…
Perhaps Dex had driven and Maria hadn’t seen…or perhaps he had a taxi waiting for him down the street…or what if he had turned off down one of the many winding side streets?
Reaching a busy junction and gasping for breath Alexis all but crashed into a newspaper vendor. Ignoring the old man’s outraged demands at almost being bowled over Alexis could only stutter apologies. Looking up and down the busy street Alexis could feel her disappointment surge up, the pain of loosing Dex for the second time and once more it being her own doing.
“Dammit…” Alexis cursed her eyes scanning the crowd, but there were too many...Still if she couldn’t see him, maybe he might hear her? “DEX!…DEX!”
Heads turned in her direction but none of them were the face she was looking for and shame and embarrassment flooded Alexis cheeks, especially as the old newspaper vendor returned to harass her, pointing at his scatter piles of newspapers and rubbing his fingers together as a sign for compensation.
“I’m sorry I don’t…” Alexis stuttered. Having fled the house in little more than her lounging robe and wedge sandals it wasn’t like she was carrying any loose change.
“So you do cause commotion everywhere you go…” A familiar rough voice whispered near her ear and Alexis’s heart leapt into her throat as she whirled around to be greeted by a broad teasing smile.
“DEX!” She exclaimed, causing that grin to widen as Alexis all but threw her arms about his neck knocking them both off balance.
“Woah there lady….” Dex laughed twirling Alexis around his arms wrapping around her waist. “So do you greet all your guests like this? Running down the street after them in your dressing gown.”
“It’s a lounging robe…and No…Only after very very special ones.” Alexis answered breathlessly, before biting her lip nervously her previous courage suddenly abandoning her. “I couldn’t just let you leave…I…”
“You?” Dex prompted when Alexis fell silent, his confident smile slipping somewhat when Alexis paused. The joy at seeing her and of having her come looking for him gave way to momentary doubt and fear of yet more rejection.
Seeing the fear and pain in Dex’s expressive eyes it was all Alexis could do not to cry herself. She had done this. Made this open and caring man afraid of her and why shouldn’t he doubt her now…she doubted herself and she had already given him hope once only to dash it.
“I’m scared out of my mind right now.” Alexis admitted feeling lighter when the words were off her chest and out in the open. At least it meant the look of fear in Dex’s eyes lessoned somewhat to be replaced by curiosity…and perhaps a hint of hope.
“I ran away before…I admit it…I was frightened and so I ran…”
“Frightened of me?” Dex prompted drawing his brows together in confusion. “Alexis I would never do anything intentionally to hurt you…”
“I know…I know that.” Alexis cut him off reaching a hand to cup his face gently. “I wasn’t running from you exactly but how I felt about you…I never wanted a serious relationship again and then suddenly there you were and I…I was scared because of the way I feel about you.”
Smiling softly Dex splayed his fingers across Alexis’s back pulling her flush against his chest. “And just exactly how do you feel about me?”
Returning Dex’s teasing smile with a tentative one of her own Alexis bit her lip again, this time gazing up at Dex from beneath her eyelashes seductively as she pushed herself up onto her tiptoes enough to press a kiss to the corner of Dex’s mouth.
“Can’t you guess?” Alexis whispered softly threading her fingers into his hair.
“Maybe…perhaps you could give me another clue?”
Smiling broadly Alexis kissed him again, this time full on the mouth, she could briefly feel Dex’s smile under her lips before he gave into temptation and kissed her back, their passion igniting once more like a fire that had merely been banked but not extinguished.
The honking of cars and the sound of arguing bought them both back to reality.
“I love you…I really do…” Alexis confessed almost blinded by the way Dex’s face lit up.
“I love you too…oh Alexis you don’t know how much I have wanted to hear you say those words again…I really thought I had lost you.” Dex sighed threading his fingers into her curls and pulling her close for another kiss.
Their second kiss was shorter and more chaste but it still brimmed over with barely restrained passion and suddenly it didn’t seem quiet so difficult anymore…in fact from the moment Dex released her lips Alexis couldn’t stop the words falling from her lips, it was like a dam had burst.
“God Dex I do love you and I’m scared out of my mind but I don’t care…I must be mad but I want an us…I want the whole package…a home…children…hell even the white picket fence, I’ll even learn to cook if I have to!”
Laughing at her sudden outburst Dex pulled her close, so close he could feel her heart hammering against her chest and his. “I don’t think we need resort to such desperate measures I am pretty certain I can afford a housekeeper…besides you mentioned children.” Dex added with a smile. “I think they will keep us both more than a little busy.”
“So you do want them then?”
“With you? If you want them…then yes.” Dex whispered reaching up to brush a lock of hair out of Alexis’s face. “I think we’d make some pretty amazing kids.”
“Well then.” Alexis replied emphatically stepping out of Dex’s arms and grabbing his hand tugging a surprised Dex along behind her. “We’d better get started, I’m not getting any younger and a baby doesn’t make itself!”
Laughing Dex caught up with her his hand wrapping around Alexis’s waist as they hurried back up the hill. “Now that’s sounds like my kind of plan!”
Now that's finally the end!!!
12-18-2011, 11:15 PM
Haha it was a very good ending, ss9!
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