Hope Wallace left Atlanta after being betrayed by her family and friends in the worst way. Now, running a homeless shelter in downtown Miami, she was finally doing what she wanted with her life and working at putting the past behind her. The only thing marring her happiness was the constant desire to explore the BDSM lifestyle her new friends enjoyed so much. She had tried that once, and it led to disaster and losing everything, but the urges kept pulling at her until she finally succumbed and braved going to a club.
Miles Cavenaugh fell for Hope the minute he saw her bruised face and determination to protect a friend and resident at her shelter. His violent childhood kept him from forming relationships, his fear of losing his temper if he came across someone harming an innocent woman or child made him anti-social and preferring to stick with his close friends for companionship. But when he hears Hope is at a local BDSM club while there is a serial abuser of submissives making the rounds in Florida, he rushes to ensure she stays safe.
Unable to continue keeping each other at arm’s length, Miles and Hope agree to a short-term affair where he’ll introduce her to the lifestyle she craved until she got her interest out of her system. But an unknown person is determined that Hope not find the happiness that has eluded her for so long and both Miles and her may have waited too long to come clean with each other about their pasts.
Scene-Hope attends a self-defense class at Miles' gym and discovers just how serious he is about her learning to defend herself.
With a hand on her lower back, Miles urged her forward, saying, “Come with me.” They went through yet another door then into the first door on the right off the small hallway. Closing the door, he kept his eyes on her as he reached behind him and turned the lock, the click echoing in the otherwise silent room. After coming from the loud noise of the busy gym, the sudden quiet seemed almost as ominous as his next statement. “You weren’t paying attention in the class, either during the demo or while you were warming-up.”
“I went through them with Krista,” Hope quickly defended herself. A part of her liked the fact his attention had been so focused on her, likely the same perverse part responsible for the way her panties dampened from the stern look on his face that matched the cutting edge of his voice.
“Yes, but you were talking instead of keeping your attention on the instructor. I’d hoped you would take this, and your safety seriously.” Okay, that rebuke hurt, almost as much as disappointing him bothered her.
“I run a very busy homeless shelter, Miles. I can do two things at once.” He narrowed his eyes at her and it took every ounce of backbone she possessed to remain standing the few feet in front of him when he pushed away from the door and stalked toward her.
“Can you? I think I’d like to test that. Step on the mat.”
Hope backed up to the mat then caught the pugil stick he tossed her. Remembering the Sensei’s words, she held onto the handles and lifted the heavily padded, tube-shaped defense prop, surprised by the weight. About three and a half feet long and nine inches in diameter, it resembled a long body pillow she had as a teenager, only firmer. “Now what?” she asked with a touch of apprehension over what this exercise might involve given how unhappy he appeared to be with her.
“Now I’ll come at you and you protect yourself with that.” He nodded to the pugil. “Use it to deflect my blows.” He didn’t give her time to think before he moved into her with an arm raised to deliver a karate chop.
Hope automatically lifted her arms to defend herself and his hand hit the tube just as he swung a foot out and toppled her to the mat. She didn’t know what startled her more, the sudden, jarring impact of landing face up on top of him, the blur of movement when he swept a foot out and tripped her while shifting behind her, or the feel of his cock stiffening under her butt. “What…”
“So much for being able to do two things at once.” Sharp teeth sunk into her neck before he pushed her up. One little nip and her body temperature skyrocketed from pleasant warmth to combustible heat. Reaching up to rub the small sting, she kept a wary eye on him as he got to his feet. “That wasn’t fair. I haven’t learned any moves in class yet.”
“Number one, life isn’t fair, deal with it. Two, had you been paying better attention to the demonstration, you would have remembered the different way Sensei McCallum showed everyone that an attacker could take you down. Now, try again.”
He put her through her paces, never giving her time in between to assimilate one move before he showed her another. She lost count how many times he brought her down, always there to catch her or cushion her fall. She grew winded as they parried, but every contact with his body, every brush of a hand energized her, kept her going. The occasional, ‘good job’ or ‘good girl’ he tossed her way produced a warm glow, but she should’ve known this exercise had a dual purpose.
Holding his hand out, Miles helped her up yet again, taking the pugil stick from her and dropping it to the mat as he said, “You caught on quick, Hope, but that doesn’t mean I’ll slide on your punishment.”
Both her buttocks and her pussy clenched at the word ‘punishment’ and a frisson of excitement danced under her skin when her mind took her back to another place, another Dom and her first taste of erotic pain. “But…” she cast a quick look around the small gym then at the door. “Here?”
With a low laugh that set off a flutter of butterflies in Hope’s abdomen, Miles spun her around, swiped both feet out from under her with one leg and kept one arm braced around her middle as he lowered her on top of the large padded pole. “Here, and now,” he whispered in her ear as he adjusted her hips over the pugil, leaving her butt propped up. “Stay where I put you.” Swiping a hand over her buttocks, he squeezed one cheek. “We didn’t discuss a safe word last week because that was fun, I didn’t intend any punishment that time. For now, we’ll stick with the standard red for stopping everything; green, you’re good to continue and yellow for you’re unsure.”
Hope was familiar with the stoplight cues due to Sandie and Krista sharing a few of their scenes whenever they got together. With a hard tug, Miles yanked her gi pants down to her thighs followed by her panties. As her butt became exposed to the cool air-conditioning, and embarrassment over the ignominious position he placed her in gave way to excitement, she prayed she could remember even those simple instructions.
“Put your arms behind your back and grip your hands together,” Miles instructed as he caressed his palm over the smooth, soft skin of her lush ass. Propped up on his side next to her, he enjoyed the view of plump, lily-white buttocks elevated for his enjoyment. “Good girl,” he praised her when she obeyed without question. “You’ve got a world-class ass, Hope. I’m envisioning all kinds of things I’d like to do with it. Tell me about your one experience in a club.”
With one side of her face pressed against the mat, the one eye he could see widened in surprise. “Why?”
He swatted her ass, hard enough to jiggle the round globe. “Don’t question my demands.”
Small, white teeth sunk into her plump lower lip before she replied. “I went to a club with some friends, just out of curiosity. Accepting a dare, I landed over a Dom’s lap. That’s all, not much to it. We left right afterward.”
“Then why did you tell me last week it ended badly?” He caressed the warm, red handprint his smack left behind and watched pleasure dilate her eyes. That quick, unguarded response was every Dom’s wet dream. Too bad this was a punishment scene.
“Let’s just say some people found out about it and weren’t happy with my…promiscuous behavior.” A discomfited look crossed her face before she smoothed out her features. He sensed there was much more to it than that, but he wasn’t here to delve into her secrets. Lying on the floor, his face so close to hers and with his hand roaming over her smooth buttocks, he couldn’t miss every flitting expression, even with half her face pressed against the mat.
“You’ll run into those again. A lot of narrow minded, judgmental people out there.” Lifting his hand, he delivered a smack on her other cheek, raising an identical red mark. “I’m not happy about your inattentiveness earlier.” Another swat, this one covering the middle of her buttocks. “I’d hoped you would take it, and your safety more serious.” She tightened her clasped hands as he blistered her ass with a volley of spanks, his eyes staying on her flushed face as he raised a fiery hue and built up heat under his palm. “Next time you take your safety so lightly, you’ll get a taste of my belt, or maybe I’ll use the new single braided mini-whip I just picked up.”
The blow he landed on one sit spot wrenched a soft gasp from her compressed lips before she surprised him with a small, telltale lift of her hips as he aimed for the other side. “That’s it,” he murmured in approval. “Lift that pretty ass for me.”
Throbbing pain pulsed across her backside, but that didn’t stop Hope from doing as he instructed, and as she wanted. Lifting her butt, she winced at the sharp crack that struck with enough force to shove her hips back down onto the thick, oblong prop. One thing soon became clear; her response to that other spanking from another man had not been a fluke. With each slap, her pussy swelled along with her buttocks, adding to the heated moisture building between her legs. Her elevated hips left her breasts pressed against the mat, her nipples aching for attention she tried to give with subtle, back and forth maneuvers Miles put a stop to with a loud, hard swat.
“Stop that.” She did, but then he dug his fingers into her sore flesh and pressed his thumb between her cheeks, right up against the sensitive area surrounding her anus.
“Miles,” she groaned in frustration when he glided his thumb down and pressed between her labia. Hope shuddered from the tiny sparks of pleasure that light touch set off. Her copious juices eased his way inside her and he unerringly found her clit, the calloused pad of his thumb against the sensitive bundle of tissues turning the sparks into flames.
“Wet and swollen. You get off on a little pain.” He teased her bud with a few flicks of his nail, just enough to urge her toward a climax before dragging his now damp digit back up between her buttocks.
Hope’s automatic reflex was to shift away from the ‘too personal’ touch that surprised her with the pleasure to be had from that taboo part of her body, but his command, “Be still,” snapped out in his hard, implacable voice kept her in place. “Not a fan of anal play or new to it?” he questioned.
“New to it, so I don’t know…” She bit her lip as Miles returned his thumb to her pussy, dipped inside and teased her clit again. “Miles, please.” The desperate note behind her plea would have embarrassed Hope if he didn’t have her in such an acute state of need.
“I like hearing you beg, but have you forgotten this is a punishment?” She peered up into his black gaze and knew she’d be taking her frustration home with her. His eyes never left her face as he again trailed his wet thumb back up to her anus, this time pushing past the tight rim to barely penetrate her virgin orifice.
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