She waited for him, nude, sat comfortably with her back to the door, her face to the fire he’d laid for her to light before he left that morning. The sulfur smell from the match still stung the inside of her nostrils.
She waited until her legs fell asleep and her feet tingled. She rose, moved slowly around the small room. She stoked the fire and returned to her post.
Her cell rang. “How are you?” he asked.
“I’m okay.” Her heart sped up; a pine log in the fireplace popped and sparks sprayed and showered across the hearth.
“Just okay? Did you light the fire? Are you warm enough?”
“Yes, sir. I did, and I’m warm enough.”
“I’m running a little behind. Dress if you’re chilled. Did you eat?”
“Yes. The chicken was delicious.”
“Good girl. Are you wet?”
She paused, ran her fingers against her sex. “No.”
There was a spark of defiance in her voice. “No.”
“Okay. I have to go, but we’ll speak shortly. Stay warm, baby girl.”
I love you. She could never get the words out. The call ended, and she went and pulled the soft robe from the back of the door. She felt like crying. She’d let him down because she wasn’t wet. She climbed onto the bed and pulled her knees into her chest. She kept the phone close, but considered not answering it. She wasn’t sure she wanted to talk to him.
It wasn’t talk she needed. It was him, his arms wrapping her from behind, pinning and trapping her. Holding her tight and letting her feel and sink into his strength and presence. It was the only place she felt safe, the only time none of the bad stuff could reach her. He kept it away.
The cell phone rang, waking her. She reached for it, read the display. It wasn’t him, and she bit back anger. He had no right to be upset. She wasn’t a machine. It was his responsibility to keep her wet, and he hadn’t been here enough. Always working.
She drifted again as the clock ticked and the phone lay silent. She usually enjoyed their video chats when he had to be out of town. But tonight it wasn’t enough. She needed his embrace. To feel his ties holding her, to feel his tongue against her skin, against her…
She climbed from the depths of sleep and slowly realized she couldn’t move her arms. A flush of panic woke her the rest of the way.
“Shhh. It’s just me, Princess.”
She relaxed almost reflexively. It was his arms holding her in place, his thigh crossed over hers, the weight of him so very comforting. “You came.”
“Of course I did.”
“Nothing is more important than you, Adelaine.”
“I wasn’t wet.”
He squeezed harder. “What about now?”
She felt his whiskers on her neck, his strong hands holding her wrists crossed across her body. Then his tongue. “You’re not a machine, little one.”
“You didn’t come back to punish me?”
“No!” he sounded surprised. “I came back to hold you. You needed me to hold you, didn’t you?”
“You’re my job, you’re the only place I belong. You’re mine.”
Her heart quieted and her body melted into his. She hoped they would never find her, never find him, hoped he would keep her safe here forever. Safe and hidden and locked away.