Friday, April 25, 2014


Heard you made an appearance at Toolshed. 
Slumming it?

Fuck. I should’ve known Aro would find out. Tried to fly under the radar.

HA! You might as well take out an ad on the front page of the Times. 

Sorry, Aro.
No disrespect intended. FUCK!

I’m just busting your chops, Andrews! I found your freak.

My cell phone just became a live grenade. Do I have the guts to pull the pin? What’s his deal?

Dude gets around. Pushes the envelope but knows just when to back off so he doesn’t get kicked out.

Not real popular with the owners?

To say the least.
How do you want to handle this?

The more I learn the more I hate the fucking guy!

I’ll follow your lead on this.

I need to think about what’s best for Dane.

Of course. As you should.
I’ll keep my eye on him.
Don’t want the fucker slipping through our fingers.

Does he have a sub right now? I can hardly bear the idea that someone else is suffering at this bastard’s hands.

Seems to have his favorites at each club. No collars.

Do what you can to keep them safe?

I’ll do my best.
We shouldn’t wait too long to act.

Thanks, Aro.

You bet.

The train ride out to the suburbs does little to calm my nerves. This guy needs to go down hard and fast, but I absolutely won’t jeopardize Dane’s wellbeing. 

I’m a tactical planner; it’s what I do. Like a chess player mapping out each move and likely counterstrike, I visualize one scenario after the next and watch each play out before my eyes, assessing the damage to both sides.

I could take care of everything without Dane’s knowledge. Sure, because that worked so well with Sean. Yeah, I basically promised him just this morning I wouldn’t do that. Besides, how would it help Dane move forward if he never knew? I’d still have to tell him afterward, but I’d be taking away his victory and sending the message I didn’t think he was strong enough.

And is he?

He gets better every day, I argue. More laughter, more twinkle, and how about that singing today?

And you’re an expert now?

No, dammit. He’s going to see the therapist, and I’m going to keep watching for triggers, and we are going to get through this thing together.

I find my car in the long-term lot and ease behind the wheel. Three times I have to remind myself to watch the road. Excellent, Marcus, why not get yourself killed? That would solve all the problems.

Okay then, if the alternative is to include Dane, it has to be on our terms: when Dane is ready, in a place where he can feel totally safe. I’ll be right there, of course, but so will the Waynehole, and he’ll try to work his awful mind games on Dane. I can only imagine the lengths the jerk will go to when he sees how glorious Dane is now, how he’ll want to break him all over again and use him for his own sick purposes.

Now that Wayne is real, I can’t seem to get him out of my head. I storm through the garage into my house, shedding my shirt as I cross the living room floor. The adrenaline is coursing through my body as I take the cellar stairs in galloping pairs. By the time I push through the dungeon door, my whole body is pulsating with tension.

After hanging the eighty-pound punching bag from the ceiling hook in the center of the room, I pull down the bull whip from the wall. It’s not much of a stretch to picture the sonofabitch as the thick, dense bag I thrash at with a growing vigor that feeds on my hatred.

For taking away Dane’s beautiful voice.

For depriving him of his joy.

For making Dane put his faith in such an unworthy ass.

For humiliating him, bullying him, and abandoning him.

And worst of all, for making Dane lose himself.

All the venomous deeds and words I’ve had to choke down in Dane’s presence now flood my system. My entire being is steeped in loathing, vengeful thoughts. With each strike, my body expels poison.

My right arm protests after I don’t know how many strokes, and I drop the whip and collapse to the floor in a lump of spent muscle, sweat, and release. I’m exorcised and exhausted, but I will never purge it all—not until we actually do something to shut down the monster.

The hot shower helps a little, especially when my thoughts return to Dane singing “Ol’ Man River” this morning.

Dane. Singing Dane. Happy Dane. Happy me.

God, I need to do right by him.

One thing at a time, Marcus. Waynehole can wait, especially with Aro’s watchful eye on him. My priority is keeping Dane on a forward-moving path.

And how might Master do that? Pick a scene, any scene . . . he said he could handle a more intense bondage scene. Hmm, maybe I’ll work him over with rope tonight, see if I can tie him down a little tighter this time.

Unlike the Fillmore, this shower does have a hot water time limit, and I’ve just about exceeded it. My own Turkish combed cotton towels feel even more luxurious after settling for hotel grade for a week, and the heated floor tiles are an added extravagance my feet appreciate anew. Yes, I’ve spoiled myself silly, but now I burn to share the wealth with Dane. The hotel isn’t home, by any means, and soon I’ll miss having the dungeon, too—now that Dane’s more game—but together is together is together. For now, I’ll settle for bringing the comforts of home—and certain hand-picked discomforts of the dungeon—to the hotel.

Sliding hangers across the closet rack, I search for my more casual clothes. I should probably let Riley update my look as well, I muse. Oh yes, with Dane and Sean looking on and having a grand old belly laugh. Pffft, I don’t think so, though the concept of Riley as a personal shopper does intrigue.

Ah, here’s an old friend—a dark heather Armani pullover that looked good on me once upon a time. Let’s see now . . . I tug the thing over my head and take a gander in the mirror. A little quarter turn to check out the profile, and . . . well, what do you know? I don’t look half bad!

Leaning into the bureau mirror, I study my face. Hey, I actually look good! Lifting my shirt, I take a cautious look at my stomach. There’s a little definition that wasn’t visible last time I checked and maybe a wee bit less love in the love handles? Maybe.


Encouraged, I dig deep into drawers where long-forgotten clothes died a quiet death. Maybe some shouldn’t be resurrected—okay, even I know styles have changed—but the ones that ended up shoved to the back because they were a little tight around the middle, I’m giving those another go.

With a pile of new old stuff (and a pile to drop at Goodwill) and a resolve to update my wardrobe, I’m dressed and packed—from the upstairs. My return trip to the dungeon is a slower journey, a flight of imagination and hopeful projections about where we might be after another week’s time. Not that I can’t come back out to the suburbs to restock, but being prepared is always better.

Much like the contents of my clothing closet and drawers, there are implements and toys in my dungeon that haven’t quite “fit” up ‘til now. With a fresh eye and a bit of optimism, I can see us trying out clamps and ropes and cock rings and . . . do I dare grab a crop? Hell, why not? It doesn’t cost extra.

Except it’ll be burning a hole in your duffel until you bring it out to play.

My little spin around the dungeon leaves me hard and wanting, but I’m a big boy. I can holster that need until I’m with Dane. I think I’ll work him a little bit harder tonight to make up for our long day apart. With a jangling bag of new tricks and a suitcase packed with fresh clothes, I’m out the door again and on my way back to Dane.

It wasn't Waynehole, but at least Marcus was able to punch out some of his aggression. And BAM! Aro's got the jackass in his sights! How about that gray Armani pullover? Hard and wanting, are you, Marcus? Nom nom nom.  xxx


  1. See? It is capable for a man to learn from past mistakes. LOL Marcus realized that he hurt Dane's feelings when he went behind his back with the Sean situation. So I am glad that he isn't going to authorize or implement dastardly deeds on Wayne without a little pow-wow with Dane. I think it would be disastrous for Marcus to go behind Dane's back in this situation. Good intentions or no.

  2. I think this is going to be a first for me to say, but... I'm
    Really digging Aro! Lol
    Get that JERK! But, I agree Dane needs to be in the know.
    It's just one of the reasons I love Marcus! He is thinking of his boy first. And boy oh boy is he thinking of him. :)
    I'm glad Marcus was able to get his aggressions out. That had to feel good for him.
    The visuals I have! Eeeeee!!
    Dane and ropes, Marcus in his Armani, and yessss! Riley needs to take Marcus shopping. Dane would love it tooo! Oooohhhhh!! Dane could dress him!!! Oh looord. That dressing room would be steamy!

    1. BAHAHA!! You know, a sadistic creep has his place in the world! LOL

      Mmhmmm. *waggles eyebrows at Pates*

  3. Please tell me the Marcus/Riley shopping trip won't be just alluded to! I love those two together. Interesting way to get his frustrations out, bet it was a beautiful thing to watch. Marcus really is making an effort for his boy. not only by making sure Dane knows what is going on, but also updating his look. So cute when the big bad Master is concerned about his appearance. Looking forward to the wayne the Weenie smackdown. xoxo

    1. Heehee, your comments made me smile. Yeah, it was a beautiful thing to watch in my head, V! Hope you enjoyed yours too. Sigh...

      Marcus is just better than ever with Dane. What can I say? Remember in the prologue when Bella remarks at Sean and Riley's wedding how great M looks? Yeah...smiles. And lol on big bad Master and his troubles in the mirror. Yup.

  4. hmmm, color me intrigued- How might Marcus have thought that Aro would have interpreted his visit to the club as in any way disrespectful?? Maybe he was just a little shocked at having been found out so quickly and didn't know how Aro was going to react, so he erred on the side of respect?? interesting hierarchy there, as you know I love.

    I find it very interesting that Marcus is now contemplating how he can deal with Wayne so that Dane knows about it but feels completely safe, respected, and not like anyone is acting on his behalf behind his back. I'm curious to see how they handle that. I kinda hope Aro stays involved, I'm very curious about him.

    I like that Marcus got some of his pent-up rage out of his system. Dare I say, it was kinda sexy...? lol Never seen him all angry like that (whether with someone else or a punchig bag), adds another layer to him. ;)

    Like that Marcus got to see himself in a new light a little bit with the clothes- i wonder how much more toned he looks or if he's just in a much better place emotionally, both, I would guess!

    Favorite line: "For now, I’ll settle for bringing the comforts of home—and certain hand-picked discomforts of the dungeon—to the hotel." ohh those 'discomforts,' can't wait to see them in action. ;)

    1. Marcus didn't visit Aro's club (Downstairs) so he's maybe a wee bit jealous! ;) I believe most of your curiosities will be addressed, young lady! Don't forget Bella comments on his improved looks in the prologue so it's not all in his head. Thanks, as ever, sweet Digi!

  5. The pace of that chapter was fast, I could feel Marcus' adrenaline throughout and the punch bag as Wayne? It's a wonder the stuffing didn't come out.

    I am also glad that Marcus isn't going behind Dane's back with Wayne but I wonder if Dane is not going to be receptive to the retribution. He may want to forget it and not drudge up old memories and hurts and Marcus will feel that Wayne definitely has to be dealt with to protect future subs. I so hope that this scenario does not cause problems for them.

    I'm sorry Born but I just don't like Aro, that earlier scene you painted so well for us, involving him and his two subs gives me the willies, the man's a despot and I'm even cringing as I type ;) I bet he would frighten the life out of Dane too, us gentler types have to stick together.

    I trust Marcus with the new implements from the dungeon in his bag, he won't go too hard or fast with his sweet boy but I'll admire the crop at a distance thank you :) He mentioned before about getting Dane in the dungeon again before the trial period is up perhaps the next Monday(Dane's day off?) they could spend some time in there.

    Shopping with Riley, Sean and Dane sounds like fun for us and Dane needs lots of fun in his life, come on Marcus don't be a killjoy....

    Thank you Born and congrats on your half century of chapters, here's to many more (half centuries, that is)


    1. Love that you felt the adrenaline of this chapter as Marcus's fists went flying on that bag! You don't have to like Aro- we can still be friends! :) I definitely do not agree with all of his methods, but I like to present contrasts to my characters so you can judge for yourself. What I hope you do see is the mutual respect the two men have for each other, if not the deep friendship Marcus shares with Edward.You can be sure that Aro will not harm Dane.

      It's a challenge to get Dane back to the dungeon, but maybe something will shift...? Thanks for the well wishes! I don't think this one is going to hit 100 but I've sure been wrong before!

  6. It's amazing what a little fun and loving bondage can do for a man;) This relationship agrees with Marcus, as the Armani pullover can attest. Can I also mention that that man with a whip is INCREDIBLE but that man with a whip taking out actual aggression on a Waynehole stand in is so fucking hot. Seriously.

    I'm so dang curious to see how Dane will take the situation with Wayne the Wussy. I do so love that Aro will be keeping an eye on him. OH! And I know this was ages ago but I KNOW THAT LAUGH!!!! I HAVE THAT LAUGH ON MY PHONE!!!!!! Aro's laugh brings back fond memories of lots of laughing ladies all huddled around one phone.

    Favorite line... I’m exorcised and exhausted, but I will never purge it all—not until we actually do something to shut down the monster. ...While this entire situation is about Dane and how the asshat affected him it's also about saving any other men out there like Dane from becoming prey to Wayne's bullying. I love that Marcus is such an amazing Dom that he thinks about all of that.


    1. Seriously. LOL
      LOL on the laugh too. Yup.

      Yeah, Dane will always be at the top of Marcus's list but he's also responsible to the community at large.
      Let's see how that plays out, shall we? *wink*

  7. ooh such a opulent glimpse into Marcus the Magnificent!! I can't wait to see what Marcus will have in store for the Waynehole. By whipping the bag, was he just getting his frustrations out, practicing up on his technique, warming up for punishing Waynhole, or maybe all of the above?? I am picturing now this 55 y/o hunk of a dominant male. Just wow in his Armani shirt..... I love the way he immediately told Aro that whatever he, they, did to Waynehole that considering dane comes first.

    1. I'm going to say that whipping practice accomplished all that and more. It's a great workout, keeps Master on his whipping toes, and helped him with the emotional stuff he is having such a hard time restraining.

      Thanks, Judy Blue.

  8. oh good GOD! the images that are floating around in my head of Marcus in that pullover, his stomach more defined, physique just that much more delicious. the texts between he and aro made me grin - im so glad they're formulating a plan to rid themselves of da wayne. :D

    1. Da Wayne, huh? LOL Yeah I've got a delicious model at home so it's not hard to imagine. :) He wore his Marcus shirt yesterday and gave me a nice eye roll when I told him so.

  9. I am shaking w anger and excitement that they've found waynehole. I can't wait to see what Marcus comes up with.
    Lady liberty (aka km tok)

    1. Hey there, KM! Yeah, we'll have to see how this one plays out...

  10. Wow, so Wayne rears his ugly head, so admirable of Marcus to contain his most basic reaction to go after him and being able to take a step back. I love this chapter where we get to be inside Marcus's head, he is indeed a planner and he thinks of everything, but his thoughts have one central figure: Dane. He is so right to understand that being happier and more playful do not equate that he is ready to face Wayne, and also spot on on thinking that Wayne being the rat that he is might try to bring Dane down. I can just imagine him purging his anger, punching away his frustration and inability to strike back at the monster that has hurt Dane so much.
    As a Master that was the right thing to do, to place Dane's needs ahead of his own and wait for the right time so together they can face Dane's demons and lay his past to rest.
    On a more positive note I love that he is fitting in his older clothes, Dane has been such a good influence for him and such a light in his life, a joy to see him feeling lighter physically and figuratively.
    Now onto the next Chapter

    1. YES beautiful description- a light in his life. Absolutely. They are saving each other!

  11. Marcus taking off the pullover, one handed .... even better.

    So we have the weasel in our sites. It's great that Marcus is still all about what will be best for Dane, but seems to have some responsibility that no one else gets abused.

    Marcus is a strategist. Would you say most Doms are? To do it well would seem to take thoughtful planning.

    1. :) Yes, I think Marcus will always have the broader good of the community on his radar screen.

      I do believe doing it well involves a great deal of forethought and planning- yet another reason I shall never become one.

  12. Waynehole has been spotted. Thank goodness Aro is there to keep him in the cross hairs until Marcus and Dane are ready to deal with him.

    Gray Armani pullover - sounds very specific. Did Mr. BOH have one that you are missing??

    LOVED the visual of Marcus working his bullwhip on that punching bag / Wayne!!

    1. Oh Mr. BoH definitely has that one! He doesn't like to wear it because he thinks it makes him look like he's trying to be young and cool but it looks SO GOOD ON HIM!
      Yeah, you do not want to be in Aro's cross hairs!

  13. Ahhajkslkshhdokdnjd that punching bag scene. I could feel the adrenaline as it flared off his body and he channeled it into this fists and eventually the bag. A surefire way to release some of the roiling tension, yes?

    Ah yay! I'm so so so glad he's actually considering Dane's feelings on the whole Wayne situation. Excellent planner and great consideration. Let it never be said that Marcus is a careless, selfish or unthinking Master. Or I'll have to take a bitch over my knee. Hehe heeeeeeh.

    Back to what I said in my previous review. Everyone makes mistakes. Being a fantastic Master/Dom does not make one more or less human. Marcus still makes mistakes and he's acknowledged them. Now this chapter shows us by some insight into his mind that he has learnt from that experience. He's in a bit of a lingo bc all the emotions are so raw for him right now but but I have confidence in him that he won't let it get to his head. He has the situation in his palms and under control for now. I hope he keeps it that way.

    Oh the things in my head at Marcus and Riley doing shopping. Can Dane be there and help too? Can you imagine the ways Marc can have Dane squirming or vice versa?! Heh...

    1. NOOOOOOO let it NEVER be said any of those bad things! Why, yes, in fact I CAN imagine the squirming! Heeheeeheeee!