Damon kept a dopey smile plastered on his face as Miranda dressed and primped in his hotel room, twisting her hair back up into a bun and applying the lipstick and mascara that she kept in her purse. The lines around her eyes spoke of a hangover, but there was no hint of regret, and from the way she kissed him goodbye, she clearly expected more trysts in the future. Damon acted his part and told her that she had been amazing, that he wanted to see her again as soon as possible, and waved when she turned back to look at him before climbing into her car.
His facade dropped the moment the door to his motel room was shut. He pulled out his phone and opened up a secret app, then used it to turn off the camera that he had hidden in the floor lamp by the bathroom. As he reviewed the footage, a smirk grew across his lips, and he knew that he had struck gold. With this, he could blackmail Miranda into doing anything he desired. Anything.
It was almost better than when he had Alice seduce a clergyman, back when she had still been a teenager. Damon had been able to extort enough money out of the man to sustain them for a few months, but he had done it purely for the fun of it. The only thing missing this time was having someone to share the success with.
He browsed to another picture of Alice and sat musing over it, knowing that he’d never find anyone else like her. Damon wished that there was a way for him to get a picture of Alicia, but a thug like him could never let on about how he actually felt.
It occurred to him that he had become trapped by his own image, and it was an uncomfortable epiphany.
Agitated, he decided that he had been sober for long enough. Now that he had achieved his goal with Miranda, he was free to loosen up and indulge. And forget. Yet for some reason Damon hesitated. He checked the time, and wondered if he’d be able to find a dealer before he was due to be at work – if he screwed up, he’d never see Alicia again.
Enough was enough. He turned off his mind as he pulled on his leather jacket and darted out the door. The way the motorcycle reverberated through his body as it roared to life felt good, and he screeched the tires as he pulled out onto the road. It was time for a long overdue reprieve.
Damon’s foreman yelled at him for showing up late, but he felt too good to care and merely shrugged it off. He even took the time to goof around with his coworkers during their lunch break, and when someone commented on his good mood, he bragged about getting laid the night before. If anyone had suspected that he was high, they didn’t let on about it, especially because he still managed to perform just as well as he had before.
When his shift ended, he excused himself to the john to secretly rub more powder on his gums for a bump. His timing, it turned out, was perfect, because Miranda’s car pulled up as soon as he was finished, and the boost would get him through whatever conversation she wanted to have. The other guys hooted as he walked up to her car, and he leaned over to talk to her through her open window.
“Get in,” she said with a tight voice, her jawline tense. Damon raised an eyebrow, but walked around to climb into the passenger seat.
Her hands gripped the steering wheel, and after a moment of silence she asked right out, “How did you get your motorcycle out of the impound lot?”
“Excuse me?” he asked.
“There’s a fucking fee!” Miranda suddenly lashed out. “That morning you told me you couldn’t afford to buy a cup of coffee, so how did you get your motorcycle back?”
Damon’s eyes narrowed, and he said softly, “Start driving.” Now that she had gotten her pent up sexual frustration out, it seemed that her mind had finally started putting together the truth. The jig was up, and he was tired of pretending.
“What?” Miranda replied haughtily. “Now you think that you can start ordering me around?”
Damon pointed to the other construction workers, and answered, “They’re watching us, so start driving. Now.”
Her nostrils flared, but Miranda popped the car into gear and sped off, leaving the construction site behind. “So, what’s your answer? How did you pay the fee?”
“Take this turn up here.”
Miranda glanced over with defiance in her eyes, then faltered under his gaze. She followed his directions until they were parked on a small side road a few miles outside of town, where she waited in silence as Damon pulled out his phone and began fiddling with it. When she heard the sounds coming from the video he had recorded, her face went pale.
“You know what this is, right?” he asked. “Now, if I were to send a copy of this to the right people and tell them that you had used your position as my lawyer to coerce me, it wouldn’t be too good for you, right?” Damon held the screen up for Miranda to see. “Just look at how strong and powerful you were. There’s absolutely no question of who’s in control here.”
She lunged to grab his phone, but Damon grabbed her chin to stop her and push her back, pinning her against the seat as he returned his cellphone to his pocket. Then, for the fun of it, he kissed her lips and purred, “It’s about time you learned who’s really been in control all along.”
“How could you?!” Miranda screeched as she tried to pry his hand away from her face, so he switched his grip to her neck.
“If you don’t want this video getting out and destroying your career, you better do exactly what I say. Do you understand?”
Damon laughed as he pulled Miranda out of the driver’s seat over to his side, fighting her arms down and holding her prisoner against his chest. “That’s what got you in this position to start with.” He slid his hand under her shirt. “It’s too late to start acting like the virtuous victim now.”
He liked the way she was shutting down as he overpowered her, with each jerk against him weaker than the last. For all of her posturing, Miranda had never had to prove herself against someone who meant business, and she was wholly unprepared. It was almost too easy.
“I trusted you,” she whimpered as tears started pouring down her cheeks.
“I know. You told me your deepest secrets, and I listened so sympathetically.” He laughed again. “But don’t worry, now that you belong to me, I’ll keep you safe … as long as you’re obedient.”
Miranda pushed against him once more, but her heart was no longer in it. He gave her a minute to process everything, stroking her bare skin underneath her shirt as he waited. When she finally spoke, her voice was flat as she asked, “So what do you want?”
“For starters, you’re going to start taking my case with my daughter seriously,” he growled. “I don’t care what it takes, you will get me weekly visits with her, and you won’t ever laugh at me again.”
“That’s it?” she asked incredulously, her muscles beginning to relax.
“You’re going to help me fake any drug tests that come up, and take care of any legal troubles that arise.” His slid his hand down to nestle it between her legs, and added in a husky tone, “As a bonus, I’m going to teach you how to fuck. Last night I let you do what you wanted with me, so now it’s my turn.”
Miranda remained silent, but she was no longer fighting against him. Her lips had become an alluring shade of red, and Damon knew what he was going to find when he stripped her pants off of her. She was going to hate herself for enjoying it afterwards, but that was part of the fun for him. He liked the game of power and dominance to gain control over others, and she would provide him with a distraction for awhile.
He pushed Miranda into the backseat and climbed on top of her, then thought about how Alice had resisted and defiantly struck him rather than submit during their last interaction. Although it wasn’t her body, in his heart he was taking Alice back in hand, and showing her why she should never stray again. The drugs in his system made it easy to forget reality.