Author:M.S. Force

“Okay.” What choice do I have? Natalie hasn’t left me with any alternative but to wait until she’s had time to wrap her head around what happened this morning. I end the call with Addie and hand the phone back to Marlowe.


“She found out about the BDSM, didn’t she?” Marlowe asks. I consider Marlowe my “fourth sister,” but she’s the only “sister” who knows about the BDSM.


“Yeah. Fucking Valerie told her. Can you believe it?” I want to find my vindictive bitch of an ex-wife and kill her every way I can think of.




“And then I made it worse by lying to her about it when Valerie had already told her where she could find the room in my house. So she knew I was lying.” I’m up again, pacing the deck. “I did it for all the right reasons, Mo. You’ll never convince me otherwise. There’s no way she could handle that side of me after what she’s been through in the past, so I tucked it away and chose her over the lifestyle.”


“What was your plan for when you couldn’t hide it from her anymore?”


I start to reply, but she holds up her hand to stop me. “It’s not a choice, Flynn. It’s who you are. It’s who you’ve always been, and you’ve already ruined one marriage by trying to be someone other than who you are.”


“This was different. Natalie isn’t Valerie.”


“No, she isn’t. She’s made of much better stuff. Valerie could only dream of being a fraction of the person Natalie is.”


“So what’re you saying?”


“If you can’t be yourself with her, Flynn, truly and completely yourself, she’s not the one for you. We’ve all tried to have relationships outside the lifestyle, and they’ve ended in disaster because none of us can deny who and what we are. You know this.”


“I love her, Mo. I love her like I’ve never loved anyone. I love her more than I love myself, which is why I left the lifestyle for her. I still believe it’s the right thing for her.”


“But is it the right thing for you? You matter in this relationship, too.”


“She matters more.”


“Flynn… Come on.”


“I gotta go.” Suddenly, I can’t stay here and pace anymore. I feel like a pent-up tiger who needs to bust loose and roar from the rage and fear that have overtaken him.


Marlowe follows me inside. “Don’t go. You shouldn’t be alone right now.”


“I can’t sit still. I gotta do something.”


“Please don’t do anything you’ll regret.”


“What could be worse than lying to my wife and driving her away?”


“A lot of things.” She gestures to the Ducati that’s parked in front of her house. “Like wrapping yourself around a telephone pole or driving off the Pacific Coast Highway.”


I kiss her forehead. “I won’t do either of those things. I promise. Thanks for listening.”


“Call me later and let me know how you are.”


“I will.” I drive off, determined to keep my promise to be careful, but I’m half-tempted to aim for one of the steep cliffs that line the PCH. If I’ve lost Natalie for good, I’d rather be dead than be forced to live without her.






After crying all the way to LAX, I get on the plane that was supposed to take Flynn and me to Mexico for our honeymoon. The security guys with me won’t hear of me flying commercially, which is just as well since my credit card is nearly maxed out anyway.


Two of Flynn’s security personnel, Josh and Seth, have insisted on accompanying me, even though I told them it’s not necessary. They tell me they’re under orders, and it’s not up to me.


Great. Since I’m apparently stuck with them, I decide to ignore their hulking presence as we prepare for takeoff. I try to stay focused on the fact that I’m going to see my sister Candace for the first time in eight years. If I think about Candace—and only Candace—I can breathe. If I allow myself to think about Flynn and the scene at his house this morning, my chest begins to ache, and all I want to do is cry.


I’ve been away from him only a few hours, and I already miss him like I haven’t seen him in a year. Still, I did the right thing. I refuse to be in a marriage that’s based on lies. He’s lied to me for weeks. He married me without telling me he’s a sexual dominant. The hard part is, I understand and even appreciate why he did it.


He was thinking of my painful past as a sexual assault survivor. He was deeply affected by the episode on our wedding night when he pinned down my hands while we were making love, triggering a flashback from the assault. I screamed and cried, and he was right there with me through it all. I love him. I love every minute I’ve gotten to spend with him, even the difficult ones.