Home > The Kiss Thief(15)

The Kiss Thief(15)
Author: L.J. Shen

Emily, of course, was a magnificent bore to fuck. Just a tad more responsive than a corpse and possessing around the same amount of charm. Although, in her defense, I was more invested in fucking the rage out of my system than making it bearable for either of us. She was pathetic enough to fake an orgasm, and I was screwed-up enough to pretend I didn’t notice.

It took me one second from the moment I laid eyes on Francesca and the blue-eyed Bandini at the wedding to realize that they were already halfway into their foreplay, whether they knew it or not. Her eyes, even in the darkened niche, zinged with such intensity, the thought of dragging her across the ballroom and fucking her on the royal couple’s table as punishment crossed my mind. But acting jealous and possessive was 1.) Not in my nature and, 2.) Unconstructive to my final goal. Besides, since when was I into teenagers? It was therefore counterproductive to let them have one last rodeo. If I tainted it, I couldn’t get attached to it.

So, I let Bandini stain it for me.


Now Nemesis surprised me by wanting exclusivity. I supposed she would figure out, after weeks of being fucked rough and ruthlessly, that the arrangement was not in her interest and send me on my way to the nearest available mistress. Kristen, of course, was no longer an option, since she tried to run the piece about my engagement to Rossi. Consequently, Kristen got demoted from senior reporter to researcher. I called her editor and informed him that the lovely blonde he’d hired fresh out of Yale a decade ago was getting in bed with the wrong type of people.

The people whose lives she was covering.


It was Friday night, and time for the big charade. Secretary of Energy Bryan Hatch was coming over with his wife to discuss his support in my future campaign. I had nearly six full years to serve as a senator, but the objective was clear: Presidency. It was, admittedly, part of the reason Miss Rossi was now the proud owner of one of the most expensive engagement rings in the state. Adjusting my image from someone who shoved his cock into enough mouths to silence the better half of the nation to the savior of a mob princess would earn me some much-needed points. Her noble upbringing was a nice touch as a first lady, too. Not to mention, I’d mercilessly kill her father’s business in the process, despite my so-called affection toward my wife.

They’d call me a martyr, and she’d never be able to call me on my bullshit.

I tied my newly bought black tie and scowled at the mirror in front of me. The walk-in closet had been thoroughly cleaned and the ruined items replaced. I patted the depth of my drawer for the framed picture I’d been looking at every time I needed to remember where I came from, and where I wanted to go.

It wasn’t there.

Slowly, I pulled the drawer all the way out until it was fully opened. The photo still wasn’t there. Francesca either destroyed it or took it with her. My money was on the former since she was positively certified after finding out I’d fucked her boyfriend’s latest toy. Was she expecting me to watch her publicly grind over another man’s cock and hand her a condom? Either way, she’d taken it too far.

I stormed out of my room, stalking my way to the east wing. Sterling jumped in my way down the hall just as she exited her own room. She flung her arms in the air, cackling like a happy hen.

“Your fiancée is looking ravishing, Senator Keaton! I cannot wait for you to see how beaut…” She did not complete the sentence. I bulldozed past her wordlessly, straight to Francesca’s room. Sterling stumbled after me before I barked, “Don’t you even dream about it, you old hag.”

I threw the door to Nemesis’s room open without knocking. This time, she really did it. The clothes and ties were just money, and meaningless in the grand scheme of things. The picture, however, was priceless.

I found my bride sitting in front of her vanity mirror, wearing a tight black velvet dress—it looked like we coordinated something other than trying to stab each other—a lit cigarette dangling from the corner of her luscious lips. She was shoving mud into a pot, gardening in the middle of her bedroom, in a Chanel evening dress.

She was crazy.

And she was my crazy.

What in the fresh hell did I get myself into?

I waltzed to her briskly, plucking the cigarette from her mouth and snapping it in half in one hand. She looked up, batting her eyelashes. She was a smoker. Another thing I loathed about her, and people, in general. At this rate, I was seriously contemplating getting to know this girl just so I could destroy her more thoroughly. Even though I decided upon requesting her hand that I didn’t want to be privy to anything about her—other than, maybe, how her warm, sleek cunt felt as I pummeled into it.

“Do not smoke inside my house,” I growled. My voice leaked fury, and that pissed me off even more. I was never angry, never affected, and above all—never one to give one single fuck about anything other than myself.

She rose to her feet, slanting her head slightly with an amused smile.

“You mean our house.”

“Don’t play games with me, Nemesis.”

“Then don’t act like a toy, Narcissus.”

She was in rare form today. That was what I got for sitting at the negotiation table. Served me right. I pushed her against the wall with one, swift movement, snarling in her face.

“Where is the picture?”

Her expression switched from glee to dread, the smirk falling from her puffy lips. I looked down at her curly black eyelashes. Her eyes were marbles. Too brutally blue to look real, and I wanted her skin to match them in color as I choked her for being so stubborn. If only I’d known how much of a headache she’d be, I’d have probably resisted the temptation to take her away from her old man. But she was my problem now, and I wasn’t one to admit defeat, let alone be dominated by a teenybopper.

I thought she was going to play dumb—any other weak woman would—but Francesca was in a mood to reinforce the fact she was not a pushover. Since our deal, I’d almost been lured to believe she was contained. She went horseback riding every day and toured Northwestern, accompanied by Smithy, my driver, her pain-in-the-ass housekeeper, Clara, and her cousin, Andrea. They all arrived at my mansion as though they were about to take a tour of the White House. Cousin Andrea looked like a lost member of the Kardashians with her hair extensions, fake tan, and tight clothes. She was in the habit of snapping her gum as a method of completing a sentence. I swore, she used it as a period.

“Nice vase.” Pop.

“Are you guys legit in a relationship? Because he’s a little old.” Pop.

“Do you think you should have a bachelorette party in Cabo? I’ve never been.” Pop.

Sterling told me Francesca practiced the piano in the mornings, ate three meals a day, and gardened in her spare time.

I thought she was coming around.

I thought wrong.

“I broke it,” she said, raising her chin defiantly. She was full of surprises, this one, and today, I was particularly in the mood for an eventless evening. “By accident,” she added. “I’m not one for mindless vandalism.”

“But I am?” I took the bait, grinning. I was more concerned about the fact that the cleaners had probably tossed away the picture in the broken frame than anything else. It was the last picture I’d had of us together. It was my entire world encased in cheap glass. My bride was lucky I wasn’t above the law just yet. I could mar her beautiful neck in that moment.

She offered me a polite, cold smile. “But, of course, you are.”

“Tell me, Nemesis, what did I break of yours?” I challenged her through gritted teeth, getting farther in her face and crushing her small body with my large one.

“Why, my dear fiancé, you broke my heart and then my spirit.”

I was about to say something when Sterling knocked on the wooden doorframe softly, shoving her cotton-haired head between the crack. It was only then that I realized I had my knee between Francesca’s thighs, and that both women were looking at my knee with eyes wide in shock. One from the doorway, the other with parted lips, her eyelids heavy. I took a step back.

Sterling swallowed. “Sir, Mr. Secretary and his wife are here to see you. Should I…should I tell them you’re busy?”

Snorting, I shook my head, scanning Francesca with disdain one last time.

“Never been more bored in my life.”

I supposed dinner went well, considering Francesca and I used our utensils strictly on our poached pears and herbed lamb as opposed to on each other.

Bryan and I sat across from one another, discussing my future plans before we even got to the main course, while my striking, entrancing fiancée—Bryan’s words, not mine—asked his bland wife all about her mind-numbing charity foundations, including her Adopt-a-Clown aid for hospitalized children, and Bros for Hose—hose being literal fire hose—organization. Bryan was never going to live down the last title his wife chose. Francesca, however, nodded and smiled even though I knew, without a shadow of a doubt, that she was bored to tears. All she needed was a customary wave to rival Kate Middleton in the etiquette department. I was strangely—and annoyingly—pleased with her. Especially considering the fact she just managed to ruin the only thing I truly cared about in this whole, expensive, and pointless mansion. The picture.

I was dismembering my main course now, a lobster, imagining it was my future wife’s limbs, when Galia Hatch perked up from her dish and shot another enthusiastic, borderline-deranged glance at Francesca. Her hair was bleached and sprayed to a point it clattered in dry chunks atop her head, and her face so plastic, she could pass as a Tupperware container. Not to mention, there was a medieval witch somewhere who wanted her dreadful dress back.

“Oh, my, now I know why you are so familiar! You were leading a charity, too, weren’t you, darling? Back in Europe. France, if I’m not mistaken?” She clicked her fork against her champagne glass, making a grand, idiotic announcement of some sort.

I was about to snort out a dismissal. Nemesis only cared about her horses, garden, and Angelo Bandini. Not necessarily in that order. My plus one’s ears pinked immediately, and she set her utensils on her half-full plate.

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