New Release: Rescued from the Dungeon
Throughout dinner, Marina remained quiet. She served the men first and made sure they had two full glasses – one of water and the other of wine – at all times. She herself drank only water and ate lightly. She never liked going into a session with an overly full tummy. Once they’d finished, the men chatted amicably while she cleared the table. When everything was neat and tidy, she returned to the dining room and knelt between the men.
“Marina, what is it you want to propose?” Jason asked. She wouldn’t speak until he had given her permission. She was in full submind, a level just below subspace. Submind could be maintained for hours, days even. It happened when she let go of the needs, desires, and stresses of the outside world, allowing her mind to focus only on the needs, desires, and wishes of Jason, her dominant. The source wasn’t necessarily sexually motivated, but rather service motivated, unlike subspace, which was often achieved while sexually stimulated. In truth, subspace was rather like that delicious glow that often happens to vanilla couples after sex, but that glow was more like a nuclear explosion.
“Sir, I know how upset you’ve been since David shared his history. I wish to propose something that might, in some small way, appease your sense of fairness,” she began.
“That’s not necessary…” David began.
“No, she’s right,” Jason interrupted. “I agree with you that we need to leave hate and guilt and blame in the past. There’s no way I can ever make up for what my family did to yours, David, so there’s no point it trying. But, I can’t let go of this. The image of what your ancestors suffered at the hands of mine keeps running through my mind. I need to find a way to still those ghosts. What were you thinking, Marina?”
“Let’s both return to England, Ashton.” She covered her mouth the second the words slipped past. Damning words, words that smacked at the very heart of who her husband was and would continue to be despite her fear. Her selfish request hung like a black cloud between them. “I’m sorry, Ashton, forgive me.”
He pulled her close to his body, to feel his strength and heat. “I love you, my Duchess. A day doesn’t pass where you aren’t in my thoughts. But, I must return. I know you understand this. I’m only sorry I can’t honor your request right now.”
Victoria smiled, tears slipped down her cheeks and she didn’t bother to hide them. What was the point? She hated this war, she hated this impending sense that something was going to go wrong.
“All will be well. I am to be moved back behind the lines. You know that. I’ll be away from the fighting this go around. I will have more leave in July, I’ll come back to England and everything will be as it should.”
They took a cab to the train station. Her train to Belgium wasn’t leaving for another hour or so, so she walked Ashton to his platform. The train was already in place and men in uniform swarmed the cars. Sweethearts embraced and whispered to each other. The cacophony of the station gave her a pounding headache.
“I love you.” Ashton rested his forehead against her own. “I promise I will be careful. I promise I’ll come back to you.”
“Shhh. Don’t make a promise you can’t keep.”
“No matter what happens to me, Tori, I’ll come back to you.”