"Tell me what you see."
Marnie jumped. A bit of her martini sloshed over the side of her glass, spilling onto the polished hardwood floor.
"I didn't mean to startle you."
A shiver chased down her spine. Although she'd never met him, she recognised the sound of his commanding baritone. She'd dreamt of him telling her to strip, to drop to her knees, to suck his cock. Now, with him so close, the reality of his voice sent a delicious thrill arrowing through her insides, making her hot and wet. Well, hotter and wetter than she had been only a minute ago. Damn. This man was the stuff of fantasies.
She started to turn to face him, but he closed his strong, forceful hands around her shoulders, keeping her firmly in place. "No. Stay where you are."
Her response to his voice, to his touch, surprised her. She didn't normally have this kind of raw response to any man. Not only did he unnerve her, but she was a bit embarrassed to have been caught staring shamelessly at the erotic act occurring on the other side of the glass. "I was about to move on."
"Liar." His tone was warm, taking the sting out of the word. Impossibly, then, he moved in closer. She could all but feel the rub of his jeans against the bare skin of her legs. She should have worn leather pants, or, at the least, tights. Against her ear, he whispered, "You want to watch every moment. That's why you're here."
"Yes," she finally admitted. Master Theodore and his submissive wife Susanna were in the observation room. She was naked, on her knees, gazing up adoringly at him. Her breasts, with their hard, beautiful nipples were cupped in her palms, as if she were offering them, and herself, to her Dom.
About once a month, the couple opened their spectacular English country home to like-minded people. Attendance was by invitation only. Fortunately, one of the men who worked in her office, Darius, had been taken to the Waters' Estate by his Domme, Jennifer.
Tantalised, Marnie had spent half a year badgering him with questions and begging for an invitation. Last month he and his Domme had come through, and she'd been allowed in as their guest. She'd met several of their friends, and she'd seen Master Zachary interact with a submissive, but Marnie hadn't really gotten a chance to explore. This month, however, she was here on her own.
She'd love to be one of the people observed, instead of just the voyeur. But she knew that was impossible. She lacked the confidence, and, well, frankly, disliked her body. Despite eating more lettuce than a rabbit, consuming enough carrots to turn orange, forgoing enough chocolate to send Switzerland into bankruptcy, and sweating at the gym three times a week, she had bulges and ripples where they should never be.
"Marnie, isn't it?"
Her heart skipped a beat, then slammed the next dozen together. "How do you know my name?"
"I make it my business to know all of Susanna and Theodore's guests, particularly the unescorted submissives. Very unusual."
She smiled, but it felt fragile. Had he known she'd watched his scenes? "I'm more of a voyeur, as you've ascertained. I'm not much of a submissive." But if she were, it would be with this man. He didn't need a set of weights. He was just simply blessed by the gods with a body that wouldn't quit. No way in hell would he be seeing hers without clothes.
"You're not much of a submissive?" he repeated. Was that disbelief that dripped from his voice? "This entire night is dedicated to dominance and submission. And you haven't moved from this place for at least ten minutes."
"Ah ... I find it interesting. A curiosity."
"Are you wet, Marnie?"
She blushed scarlet. She was glad he couldn't see her, and that she couldn't see him.
"Marnie? I asked you a question. Is your pussy wet?"
"Yes," she admitted.
"Yes, I'm wet." But it had nothing to do with the forceful way he held her. Or at least that's what she told herself.
"So you can be honest," he said. "Why do you hedge, I wonder? What are you afraid of?"
"I run an accounting firm. I deal with government regulations all day long. Nothing scares me." She tried for an air of lightness she didn't really feel.
"The things I've seen would scare a stone statue."
She believed him. She knew of his reputation as a fearless leader in battle; she'd heard rumours of a woman he'd rescued from behind enemy lines.
He eased himself a bit closer, and she felt his warmth, his strength. Okay, so she was a liar. She was afraid of something. Him.
In front of them, Master Theodore took a bit gag down from the wall. The beautiful woman continued to stare at him, and without being told, opened her mouth. He placed the gag between her teeth, checked it for fit, then buckled the strap tightly behind her head.
At the sight of Susanna's compliance, a bizarre buzzing seemed to sound in Marnie's ears.
"Describe the scene to me."
It wasn't a suggestion or a request. Instead, his words were an order. Zachary Denning was a man accustomed to being obeyed. The problem was, until now, even though she had her private daydreams, she wasn't a woman accustomed to being told what to do.
Her fingers tightened on the stem of the glass she held.
Despite her embarrassment and the rush of nervousness, she began, "Master Theodore is helping Susanna to stand." She took a steadying breath. "She's moving to the centre of the room where there's a table. It appears to be a massage table." She could hardly believe she was doing this.
"Keep going," he encouraged.
"She's bending at the waist, and lying across a table. He's securing her wrists to straps that are fastened to the far end of the table."
"So she can't move?"
"No," she whispered.
"She's helpless? So he can do whatever he wants to her?"
"Yes." This time, her voice was even softer.
"And since she's gagged, she can't say anything. She can't ask for mercy. She can't protest. She can't beg him to stop."
Marnie couldn't answer.