Chapter One

 

“Oh, no, sir. I don’t get intimidated easily.”

-Ivi, first interview

 

I toss and turn in bed, plagued by vile jetlag and to a certain extent, the intimidation of this mansion where I’m shacked. Throwing the blanket aside, I get out of bed. I smooth my white, oversized tee over my thighs and pull my pink knitted socks up to my knees before navigating to where, as far as I can recall, the kitchen is located.

I hold one of the monstrous fridge doors open, taking inventory of the profusion of goods on display. I twitch my lips, moving them from side to side, musing what can best serve as a natural sedative. Bingo. My eyes land on a milk carton. Warm milk. Mom’s never-failing insomnia medicine. I slightly stoop forward for the carton and stop dead. More precisely, I find myself being stopped by an iron grip. Instinctively, I suck in a breath as a firm arm slides to wrap around my waist. A warm, hard body is pressed against me in tandem to someone’s lips nuzzling me right below my ear. A momentary stupor enfolds me as a few things register concurrently. The prickly feel of the scruff coated lips on my neck, the smell hovering near that is a mixture of part masculine, part alcohol. Heavy alcohol. The most tantalizing fact though would have to be that the body pressed against my back is very much naked, as I can distinctively feel every part of the firm torso through my thin, cotton tee.

Still utterly startled, I chance a hesitant glance at the strong arm embracing me. It’s suntanned, and large, and could be easily mistaken for a canvas crowded with colorful, detailed illustrations. The other hand, the one not holding me firmly, is another art creation in the form of a human limb extended toward the O.J. carton.

“Open that for me, babe,” a raspy, low voice demands. And I do. The carton is lifted above my shoulder and right after a pause, it is set in my stunned hand. Lightly moist, cold lips, bordered by a prickly beard, kiss my neck next. “Come back to bed, babe,” says the utterly seductive voice, my butt is lightly smacked and I’m left by myself. My heart is beating in my ears and my lips are parted in shock. I swallow hard and slowly turn to check who just groped-spanked me. There’s so much to take in. The lion’s head tattoo covering the right shin, the dark hair messily knotted, the toned arms, the musical notes tattoo on the left shoulder blade. But there’s one thing that calls for my full attention. A delectable, as in an award-winning, butt.

Gape-mouthed, I turn back to the fridge and open the freezer door, shoving my heated face inside. Fudge warm milk. I snatch one of the many Vodka bottles. Unscrewing the cap of the clear, frosted bottle I take one generous sip that scorches all the way down to the pit of my stomach. I wipe my lips with the back of my hand and murmur, “Kurat!” on a jarred exhale. An Estonian cognate to damn.

Welcome to your new home, Ivi. Cheers!

© 2014 by Sigal Ehrlich, Author.