Twisted love by ANA HUANG ,chapter 26,AVA

“IT’S NOT SAFE.” Bridget drew herself up to her full five feet, nine inches and leveled an icy glare at the dark-haired man glowering right back at her. Ballsy, considering she was the princess and he was the bodyguard, but Rhys Larsen wasn’t Booth. That much was clear in the week since he’d arrived in Hazelburg to take over Booth’s protection duties. We’d thrown a big going away celebration for Booth at The Crypt and sent quick prayers that Bridget’s new bodyguard would be as cool as Booth. Prayers not answered. Rhys was gruff, surly, and arrogant. He drove Bridget mad, which was quite something, since she never lost her temper. In the past seven days, however, I’d seen her on the verge of yelling. I’d been so shocked I almost dropped my camera. “Fall Fest is an annual tradition,” she said in a regal voice. “I’ve attended every year for the past three years, and I don’t intend to stop now.” Rhys’s gray eyes flickered. He was a little younger than Booth—maybe early thirties, with thick black hair, eyes the color of gunmetal, and a broad, muscled frame that towered over Bridget’s leggy grace, even when she wore heels. Dark stubble shadowed his chin, and a small, jagged scar slashed across his left eyebrow. Without the scar, he would’ve been disconcertingly gorgeous; with it, he was still disconcertingly gorgeous, but also dangerous. More menacing. Good quality to have in a bodyguard, I supposed. “It’s a crowd management issue.” His voice rumbled through the car, deep and authoritative, even though he was technically Bridget’s employee.
“Too many people, too close quarters.” Stella, Jules, and I wisely stayed quiet while Bridget matched him glare for glare. “It’s a college event. There’s bound to be a crowd, and I’ve never had issues before. Half the people there don’t even know who I am.” “It only takes one person one time,” Rhys countered, his tone even. “One look and I know the festival is over max capacity.” “This is ridiculous. I’m not entering a war zone, and there are fewer people than at a sports game. No one ever said I couldn’t attend one of those.” “The security measures and layout at sports games are—” “Enough.” Bridget held up a hand. “I refuse to stay in my house like a princess locked in a tower my senior year of college. I’m going, and you can either stay in the car or come with me.” She opened the car door and exited without a backward glance. Rhys’s nostrils flared, but he followed her a heartbeat later, those sharp eyes of his constantly roving, searching for danger. Jules, Stella, and I scrambled after them. Fall Fest was one of the most anticipated events of the school year. Local businesses set up booths hawking seasonal food and products discounted for students—decadent hot chocolate and apple cider donuts, pumpkin pies and pulled-pork sandwiches. There were classic games and activities like bobbing for apples, tarot readings, and—because this was college—a tailgate where local alumni and students gathered to drink to their heart’s content. Rhys was right—there were more people than expected at the festival, but it was nothing compared to the spring break parties we’d attended in the past. I understood why he was concerned, but I also agreed with Bridget he was overreacting a tiny bit. Bridget ignored him as we took advantage of all the food and activities on offer. Fall Fest was a necessary stress reliever between midterms and finals, and we had a blast—for the most part. “He’s driving me crazy,” Bridget said a while later in a low voice. She sipped her hot chocolate with a morose expression. “I miss Booth.” I glanced over my shoulder at Rhys, who followed us with an impassive expression. Either he didn’t hear what she said, or he had the world’s best poker face. I bet the latter. I had a feeling there wasn’t much, if anything, that Rhys Larsen didn’t see, hear, or notice.
“It’s his first week.” Stella snapped a picture of her drink before tasting it. “Booth has been with you for years. It’s only natural that Rhys would be more overprotective. Give him time.” “I suppose.” Bridget sighed. “I don’t know how Nik does it. He has double the security I do because he’s the crown prince, and there’s so much riding on his shoulders.” She shook her head. “I’m glad I’m second in line to the throne.” “You mean you don’t want to rule, Your Majesty?” I teased. “You could be a queen and see your face on a postage stamp.” Bridget laughed. “No, thank you. As tempting as a postage stamp with my face is, I’d rather have a modicum of freedom.” She shot a dark look in Rhys’s direction. “Unless my bodyguard has other ideas.” “He’s strict, but at least he’s delicious,” Jules said in a stage whisper. “No offense to Booth, but whew.” She fanned herself. “Is that all you think about?” Bridget asked, clearly torn between laughter and frustration. A shadow slid across Jules’s face before it disappeared. “Most of the time. I like to think about pleasant things. Speaking of which…” She turned to me. “Where’s Lover Boy?” I rolled my eyes, a blush spreading over my cheeks. “Don’t call him that, and he’s busy running a company. He doesn’t have time for college events.” “You sure about that?” Stella tilted her chin at something behind me. I whipped around, my heart jumping in my throat when I saw Alex standing behind me. In his navy cashmere sweater and jeans, he cut a sophisticated figure amongst the crowds of drunk college students and rumpled professors. I couldn’t help it—I ran and threw my arms around him. “I thought you had work!” “I took off early.” He pressed a kiss to my lips, and I sighed with pleasure. “I miss Fall Fest.” “Uh-huh. I’m sure that’s what you miss,” Jules teased. My friends stared at us with fascination, and I realized this was the first time they’d seen us together as a…couple? I wasn’t sure what to call our relationship. “Couple” sounded too mundane, but I guessed that was what we were. We went on dates, talked through the night, and had wild, explosive sex. Alex Volkov and I were a couple.
The butterflies in my stomach quivered with excitement. Alex stayed with us through the end of Fall Fest. He declined to play most of the festival games, but we convinced him to take pictures at the pumpkin-themed photo booth. “Do you realize these are the first photos we have of the two of us?” I waved the Polaroids in triumph. “If you don’t hang them in your living room, I’ll be offended.” “I don’t know. You don’t match my decor,” he said in a bland tone. I swatted him on the arm, earning myself a rare laugh. Stella nearly choked on her hot cocoa, she was so shocked. It was the perfect afternoon: great food, great weather, great company. The only hiccup occurred when Alex nicked himself on something sharp at one of the booths. The cut was deep enough that blood welled and streaked down his finger. “It’s fine,” he said. “It’s just a scratch.” “You’re bleeding.” I planted my hands on my hips. “We have to clean and bandage it. Let’s go.” My tone brooked no opposition. No way in hell was he walking around with blood dripping down his hand. What if it got infected? Alex’s mouth quirked up. “Yes, ma’am.” I huffed at his amusement—he was bleeding—and dragged him to the campus health center, where the bored-looking student assistant supplied us with a gauze pad and Band-Aid. I rinsed the cut under running tap water in the bathroom and dabbed at it with the gauze. “Hold still.” I tossed the gauze in the trash and peeled open the Band-Aid. “You should’ve been more careful,” I grumbled. “You’re lucky you weren’t seriously hurt. What the hell were you thinking?” I looked up and found Alex staring at me with a small smile. “What?” “You’re cute when you’re worried.” I pressed my lips together, struggling to contain my smile. “Don’t try to act all sweet so you can get out of trouble.” “Am I in trouble?” he drawled. He kicked the door shut with his foot and locked it with his free hand. My pulse ratcheted up a notch. “Yes.” “You think I’m acting sweet?” I gave a tiny nod.
Alex hefted me up onto the sink. “We better remedy both those things, shouldn’t we?” My teeth dug into my bottom lip as he shoved my dress up over my chest and grazed his teeth over my nipples through the thin lace of my bra. “Alex, we’re in the student health center,” I squeaked, wanting him to both stop and keep going. Everyone was at Fall Fest so the center wasn’t busy, but the receptionist sat a few feet away outside the door and the flimsy walls were anything but soundproof. “I’m aware.” He pulled my bra aside with his teeth and lavished attention on my breasts while his non-bandaged hand found the sweet spot between my legs. I was already soaked for him, my thighs slick with my juices as he drove me crazy with his mouth and fingers. His erection pressed against my leg, thick and hard as a steel pipe, but when I reached for it, he batted my hand away. “I hope you’re not attached to your underwear,” he said. My brows drew together. “Wha—” The sound of fabric tearing answered my incomplete question. Alex’s mouth curled into a sly grin at my shocked expression. “Since we’ve established that you’re a screamer,” he said. “Open your mouth.” My resistance collapsed. I opened my mouth, and he shoved my underwear in, muffling my moan. I shivered when I tasted the slickness of my arousal. I was throbbing now, so turned on I couldn’t see straight. There was something so freakin’ erotic about knowing someone could catch us any minute. Alex returned his attention to my breasts while he slid one finger, then two, into my slippery folds. I gripped his hair, tugging so hard it must’ve hurt as he worked me into a frenzy, but if it did, he didn’t show it. He lifted his head from my chest and watched me with smoldering eyes. “That’s it, Sunshine,” he murmured, his muscles taut as he finger fucked me harder. He was knuckles deep inside me now, the obscene sounds of him sliding in and out of my drenched core creating a dirty symphony that intensified my arousal. I rode his hand shamelessly, drool leaking from the corners of my mouth as I screamed around my makeshift gag. “Come for me like a little slut.” I did. Hard, fast, and endlessly, flying high in an explosion of starry bliss. When I finally came down, I saw that he had unbuttoned his pants and
was fisting his cock. It didn’t take long before he erupted, spurting thick, hot jets all over my thighs. “No,” he said when I reached to clean myself. He pulled my shredded panties out of my mouth and pocketed them, his movements crisp and precise. “I want you to walk around with my cum on you so you know exactly who you belong to.” Heat blistered my cheeks. “Alex,” I hissed. “I can’t walk out there with no underwear and…and—” “You can, and you will.” His fingers brushed my thighs, where the cum was already drying. “The faster you obey, the faster we can leave and go home, where you can shower. With help,” he added with a wicked smile. “You’re crazy.” But I did as he asked, pulling my sweater dress down and fixing my hair. I couldn’t look the receptionist in the eye as we walked out. She probably knew what we’d done, because it didn’t take that long to bandage a wound. The wind brushed against my bareness as we rejoined our friends and I jumped, earning myself a smirk from Alex and strange looks from everyone else. “Are you okay?” Stella asked. “You look flushed.” “Yes,” I squeaked. “Just, ah, a bit chilly.” While the others got distracted by the start of the pie-eating contest, I slapped Alex’s arm. “You’ll pay for this.” “Looking forward to it.” I rolled my eyes, but I couldn’t stay mad at him, especially since part of me loved how dirty I felt walking around like this. “I have a serious question,” I said as we watched two seniors destroy their pumpkin pies. “What are you doing for Thanksgiving?” “I imagine I’ll be eating turkey somewhere,” he said casually. “Do you…want to come to my place for the weekend? Since your uncle doesn’t celebrate and all. Not that you have to,” I added quickly. “Sunshine, I’ve spent every Thanksgiving with your family for the past eight years.” “I know, but Josh isn’t here this year, and I didn’t want to assume. I mean, meeting the dad…” Alex’s eyes gleamed with laughter. “I’ve already met your dad.” “Right. But…” I faltered. “I guess it doesn’t matter. We can’t tell him we’re dating until we tell Josh, but would it be suspicious if we show up
together? Parents have a weird lie-detecting radar. What if he—” “Ava.” He placed his hands on my shoulders. “Do you want me to spend Thanksgiving with you?” I nodded. “Then that’s what I’m doing. Don’t overthink it.” “Says the King of Overthinking,” I muttered, but I was smiling.

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