It was one of the best sleeps Ms. Fox had in a long time. Mr. Curtis’ heartbeat echoed in her ear as she lingered between dreaming and awake. The rise and fall of his chest was calming and though there were many things still on her mind, a huge weight had been lifted and the wall she had kept up around Mr. Curtis was crumbling. It all started after they left Rawcliffe Castle . . .
She and Mr. Curtis fled to the mountains as fast as they could. Mr. Curtis was still bleeding. The bullet was still in, but going to a hospital was out of the question. Fortunately he knew of a small cabin they could hole up in for the night, and Ms. Fox knew how to stitch, that was as good as it was going to get.
It took less than an hour an the pair pushed through the cabin doors. Mr. Curtis seemed familiar with the layout and grabbed a whiskey bottle, taking a swig as he sat down on a stool in front of a fireplace Ms. Fox had lit. She found the supplies she needed and when she looked at him, Mr. Curtis had poured her a glass.
“So…. Give it to me straight.” he said. “Who the hell are you, really?”
Before answering, Ms. Fox downed the drink and soaked the cloth in alcohol. She was on her knees and shouldered her way between his legs, taking the whisky bottle from him an preparing to clean his wound. She took a another drink of liquid courage before the cloth made contact with his skin and she spoke.
“My Grandfather is the Marqué del Stry,” she stopped to see if that name registered and, from his reaction, it had.
Mr. Curtis growled out his response. “As in, the Stry’s that founded, and made money, off of the Spanish wars? The same Stry who’s the head of the Spanish cartel?” He inhaled and let out a “Fuck!” That suddenly explained the photos that Ms. Burke had passed him in an envelope almost a month ago. They were photos confirming Ms. Fox as a mark. Someone wanted her dead. It’s why he was packing anywhere Ms. Fox and him went lately.
“That means the man we stole from… The men I just killed back there…..” He just nodded. It all made sense. Thank God he trusted his instincts when he came around the corner in that castle and stepped back quickly. If not, he likely would not have been able to get the drop on those guards before they had gotten to Ms. Fox.
She had turned her eyes away, rinsing the cloth while he took another few swigs of whiskey, and continued. “My father died when I was 15, and my uncle, Eleuterio Mînguez, thought that he would be next in line to inherit the family fortune. But my grandfather has always liked me and, even though I am the only child of my fathers, and a female. My grandfather declared that I would have the inheritance. It made my uncle very upset that he was delegated to the end the line. If I was gone, with no more heirs in my fathers line, then the money would be his. Attempts were made on my life and my mothers that caused a war between the two. My father had trusted friends in the States and my mother sent me over there to keep me safe.”
Ms. Fox used tweezers to go after the bullet, causing Mr. Curtis to cry out in pain. It was lodged in pretty deep, and though he already had 8 shots of whiskey, he felt everything she did. Ms. Fox pulled out the bullet, and Mr. Curtis passed out.
Ms. Fox grabbed him quickly and laid him as gently as she could on the floor. She sighed and went to work stitching up the wound, glad for the reprieve in telling her story. His body temperature was dropping and she worked as fast as she could to finish.
Mr. Curtis wasn’t out long, because suddenly his hand was over hers. He looked up at her, his expression soft, and simply said, “Mason.”
“What?” She looked slightly confused after her obvious concern.
“My name…. My name is Mason.” He winced as she knotted the last stitch, closing the wound up completely.
“Noa .” She smiled quickly and began to unzip the back of her dress.
His manners kicked in like a reflex, and he turned his face away. “That’s pretty.” He stayed very still… He didn’t want to move. The pain was finally ebbing and he took in a deep breath, feeling cold. Noa, Ms. Fox, grabbed a sheet from off the nearby bed and laid on top of him, being careful of his shoulder, and covering both of them with the sheet. “What are you doing?” He asked.
“Shhh… You need warmth. This is the best way.”
He felt her smile, and his arm instinctively went around her back, stroking up and down. They stay there in silence for a time, and he was thinking. “How did you become a thief? With what’s going on in your family wouldn’t it had been wiser to stay away?”
“It just happened,” Noa answered. “The family I was with was attacked a few years after I got there and I ran.” She felt a tad uneasy as she recalled the old memories. She drew in a slightly shaky breath. Fear was etched into her voice. “And now I’ve got you into this mess. They’ll be coming after you too. I’m such a —”
Mason cupped her cheek in his hand, and carefully rolled them over, leaning on his good shoulder. He cut her off with the sudden move and looked down at her. “Don’t talk like that.”
Shh…” Mason said, his thumb caressing her cheek. He felt more for this woman than he imagined. His eyes traveled along her body and he shook his head slowly. “I’m not going to let anything happen to you.” Mason leaned into her and crushed his lips to hers. Noa’s arms wrapped around him; her fingers sliding up into his hair as he pressed his body down onto her, letting a low growl escape his lips and into their kiss. The hand that cupped her cheek was on the back of her neck now, holding her as he pulled back and looked down into her eyes.
They were both breathing harder, eyes searching each other’s before Noa pulled him back down to her lips and slid her tongue between his teeth. Mason bit down on her lip before he moved lower, kissing under her chin and down her neck towards her collar bone. The sheet began to slide down as he moved lower……….
………….. Noa stretched and woke to find Mason smiling at her. “Good morning ma’am.”
His smile was greeted with one of her own. “Good morning. How is your shoulder?”
“It’s there….,” he replied.
Noa squealed and caught the sheet, pulling it up as Mason sat them up and rolled over her, grinning. He leaned in behind her, kissing her shoulder and nipped at her ear, growling…. “I better….. Mmmm we need coffee. And we need to leave. If I stay here…..,” he trailed off and snatched his robe up, carefully pulling it around him and went to make coffee.
She watched him go and she got from the bed to check on the book. Leafing through it she sighed. All this trouble over the contents.
“Mason?” Noa called to him a she approached the door to the back deck where he was having his coffee. The sheet was still around her.
He turned to walk in, but stopped in the doorway, leaning gently against the doorframe, struck by the way the light was hitting her.
She was looking down at the book in her hand. “We have the book. What do you suppose we do now?” When Noa looked up at him, she blushed. Mason had a small smile on his lips, and the way he was looking at her…. “I just…. I want to be careful.” She watched him set his coffee mug down and moved to close the distance between them. She kept her eyes on his, and eventually grinned up at him, “I thought we needed to get ready to leave?”
Mason’s hands went around her waist as he walked her backwards until the back of her legs hit the bed and she fell backwards on it. “We’ll leave soon… ,” he said as he moved over her body again.
Noa couldn’t stop the mirth that escaped past her lips as she scrambled to keep a hold of the sheet that fell from her hand when she hit the bed. “They will come after us.” though she wasn’t being discouraging, as she pushed back on the bed.
Mason crawled over her again, yanking the sheet away from her grip and tossing it beside them. “Then maybe the moans and screaming you make will need to sound more like torture than……” He trailed off with a grin on his lips as he moved down on her neck again, reaching for her arms. He pushed them up above her head and held her down as he pushed his body against her, biting her neck. She’d need to work on sounding more convincing.
Poses: All poses found at the current round of Pose Lover and Friends event