Jessica Chapter 9a - What goes around, comes around by JadenL

Rating: 86%, Read 12020 times, Posted Nov 03, 2014

Fiction | Blowjob, Consensual Sex, Group Sex, Stockholm Syndrome

Terror gripped Jessica.

“Funky chicken no sauce.” Jessica said urgently into her phone. She repeated it a few times before shoving her phone back in her pocket and pulling her gun from her purse.

“Get in the car and run Jessica.” Mark ordered, “Go!”

“You too. Get in the car.” Jessica said, “We can both go … Mark!” she screamed not seeing the man with the stick until it was too late. He came up behind Mark and hit him across the back. Jessica shot the man with the stick. A head shot. She wasn’t planning on leaving any of these people alive. She killed two more before the world went dark.

“Where are they?” the growl was accompanied by a foul odor and a stinging slap.

Jessica opened her eyes to find the most terrifying face shoved into hers. She had no doubt that it was Earl. Blinking she realized that they were still in the driveway. Someone was holding her up. Panic grew as she realized that she couldn’t move. Her muscles couldn’t move.

She heard Mark growl, “Get away from her!” His voice didn’t sound right. From the corner of her eye she saw Mark, face bloodied, held between two men. A third man hit him with his gun.

“We looked everywhere! Where are the fuckers?” Earl demanded and when he waved is hand before her she realized why she couldn’t move. He’d stunned her. He had a Taser just like hers.

Jessica had to concentrate really hard to get her lips to work but she finally managed to say, “Gone. For good.”

“Really.” Earl said pressing his face closer, after sniffing her he slowly and deliberately ran his tongue up her cheek. “And why would they leave something as delicious as you behind?”

“He said she was married to five of them.” Another man said.

“He did …” Earl agreed, “So, why did your husbands leave you behind?”

Jessica’s heart raced, almost as fast as her brain. She had to get Earl and his men away from the house. Her men would be there any moment, who knew when the others would return from the pond. Nothing good would come from that. While Earl and his men were around, no one was safe. She had to convince them that she and Mark were alone. Suddenly a thought occurred to her. If this didn’t get Earl out of here, she didn’t know what would.

“Not married yet.” Jessica managed to mutter, “Called wedding off.”

“What are you doing Jess?” Mark demanded earning him another bash from the gun.

“Really?” Earl asked. “And why would five men call off a wedding with a sweet innocent thing like you?”

Jessica flinched. Try as she did she couldn’t help but be terrified of Earl. As the Taser wore off and she could see more clearly she became fully convinced that she was eye to eye with the devil. His skin was pasty colored, his lips were overly wet, like he was perpetually drooling, and blue. His tongue kept flicking out from between the slimy lips and yellow teeth. And his eyes were a dull grey. They made her shiver as they roamed her face, and lower. Returning to her face, his eyes suddenly showed signs of life.

“But of course. You can’t be more than eighteen ...” Earl muttered. Jessica’s skin crawled. “Never used before … were you too scared?” Earl asked grasping her tit.

“She’s no virgin.” Mark said through a jaw that was likely dislocated. “She’s married to five men, she’s twenty-one years old. She’s not what you’re looking for.”

Earl’s eyes intensified as he slid his hands behind the waistband of Jessica’s pants and stroked the fine hair left on her pussy lips from the bikini wax.

“Smooth.” Earl breathed.

Jessica forced herself to nod. “Not married. Men left, everyone left.”

“What’s he to you?” Earl asked tilting his head at Mark.

“Friend.” Jessica said.

“He said she can’t lie.” Another man said.

“Get the cars. We’ll get the truth one way or another.”

“What have you done?” Mark demanded when he and she were forced into a car.

“I’m sorry.” Jessica said.

“Don’t touch her!” Mark yelled and threw himself at Earl when Earl reached over the back seat and ripped her shirt open. Earl punched Mark until he was unconscious.

“A friend … really?” Earl said to Jessica. “We’ll see … oh.” He added after opening Jessica’s bra, “Nice tits.” Jessica shuddered when he laughed.

The car ride didn’t take long which surprised Jessica. She and Mark were dragged into a room with a mattress on the floor, a chair, and an assortment of items that Jessica’s mind tried not to consider. Knives, hooks, handcuffs, sticks, were spread out on a table. In the middle of the room, not on the mattress, but on the hard cement floor, was a person. Naked, bloodied, hogtied. On elbows and knees, butt in the air. And despite the metal bar lodged in the person’s mouth the person was emitting a low, continuous moan.

Earl moved over to the person and yanked their head up by the hair.

“Is that her?” he demanded.

“Stan?” Jessica gasped when the person opened their eyes and stared at her.

“Is that her?” Earl repeated and when Stan still didn’t reply Earl reached between Stan’s legs and started turning something. It took Jessica a moment to realize that Stan’s cock and scrotum were almost black. A rope was tied around them and whatever Earl was doing seemed to tighten the rope. Mark must have noticed it too because he suddenly groaned. Tears came to Jessica’s eyes when Stan started screaming. He screamed for a long time before nodding his head.

“She says she’s not married. And a virgin.” Earl said. Stan’s eyes flew open and stared at Jessica, shaking his head as fast as he could.

“I guess there’s only one way to find out.” Earl said standing, “But we’ll try a few other ways first, just for fun.” He nodded at someone behind Jessica. Several hands grabbed her and as hard as she fought she still ended up naked on a chair, legs spread and tied to the chair handles.

“No! No!” Mark yelled.

“Oh yes, you may want to watch this.” Earl said and nodded to someone else who brought Mark over to kneel right in front of Jessica, eye level to her crotch. Mark rolled his eyes, doing his best to look anywhere but directly at her pussy.

Earl knelt beside Mark, in front of Jessica. He shook a cigarette out of a package.

“I quit smoking a while ago.” Earl said, and he lit the cigarette. “So lucky you, these are all for you.” He said to Jessica.

“Don’t …” Mark begged.

“Are you married?” Earl asked.

“No.” Jessica said and watched in horror as Earl moved the cigarette to the inside of her leg, almost at her crotch. She tried to pull back but couldn’t and when the cigarette touched her flesh she tried not to scream but failed almost instantly. When Earl finally removed the cigarette Jessica heard Mark sobbing. Through a steady stream of tears she could see Mark watching her, tears soaking his face.

“Are you a virgin?” Earl asked. He repeated the question several times before Jessica nodded her head. This time Jessica couldn’t control her scream at all.

This went on for fifteen minutes. Jessica had a trail of cigarette burns on both inner thighs. There were a few minutes of peace when someone called Earl out.

“Bring it in here.” Earl said, and then he was back lighting another cigarette. “Get a good angle. Let’s try this again. Are you married?”

Jessica and Mark locked eyes for a second. Then Jessica closed her eyes and said, “No.” And despite the fact that her throat was already raw from screaming she let out a blood curdling scream as the lit cigarette pressed into her flesh.

“Maybe we should move to a more sensitive area.” Earl said shoving his fingers into Jessica’s pussy. Jessica bucked.

“You coward!” Mark yelled and tried to knock him over, “You fucking coward. Why don’t you pick on someone your own fucking size!”

“Interesting suggestion.” Earl said, nodded at someone and before Jessica had time to register what was happening Mark was stripped naked, held down on his stomach and Earl was busy ramming a large steel rod in Mark’s asshole. The only noise that came close to rivaling Mark’s screams were Jessica’s.

“No! No!” she screamed, “Take me, take me! I’m a virgin. I’m eighteen, honest … stop!” she screamed but when Earl pulled the rod out covered in blood and two men forced Mark onto his knees, holding him while Earl rammed the rod in again, Jessica threw up. And she didn’t stop. She couldn’t turn her head properly so she began choking on the vomit.

“Clear her mouth.” Earl yelled and one of the men who’d been holding Mark came and yanked her head to the side, tilting the chair so Jessica was able to expel the bile.

“Stop it!” Earl yelled when Jessica kept vomiting, “I said stop it!” he grabbed her by the chin and righting the chair he shook her face. But Jessica couldn’t stop. The vomit kept coming. Earl back handed her, knocking the chair over. Jessica dry heaved, cried and spat blood out of her mouth all at the same time. Earl’s henchmen righted her chair.

“Let’s stop the bullshit. That sack of shit,” Earl said pointing at Stan, “showed up here a few days ago with a story about a bitch that fucked him over and that bitch is you! I know you have five husbands who fuck you five ways to Sunday. I know you have a clan full of people who would bend ass over backwards to help you, and I know you have what belongs to me … Daryl’s boys. So let’s have their location and then get on with the real fun. You may be no virgin but you scream like one. That’ll do just fine!”

Earl lit another cigarette. “Where are they?”

It was the screaming. It dawned on her that Earl really liked that. Maybe if she didn’t scream he’d lose interest.

“Bring that over here.” He said to a third man, “That’s right, where the view’s real good.” The man moved closer to Earl and held a cell phone over Earl’s shoulder, pointed down at her. More videos. They were posting more videos.

“Where are they cunt?” he demanded.

Fear welled up inside her. Fear of the pain but mostly the fear that she’d break under it and endanger those she loved. The only way she could be sure she wouldn’t break was to not admit anything. The further she stayed from the truth, the safer her men, the others, and the boys were.

“Playing dumb are you?” Earl demanded and pressed the cigarette into her outer pussy lip. Jessica clamped her lips shut and tried not to scream but it only lasted a moment.

“Let’s try again, where are they?”

Despite the pain and the fear Jessica suddenly felt a jolt of anger. This sicko hurt so many people. He ruined people’s lives on a whim. If he wanted to hurt her, kill her, she’d make him do it on her terms. Jessica tried to look him in the eye with an air of defiance but she couldn’t maintain the contact. Instead she looked at the ceiling above his head and said, “Who?”.

Earl pressed the cigarette on an existing burn and Jessica bucked and screamed. For a moment Jessica saw stars. The room went black for a second, but then she was back. Screaming.

“What the fuck?” Earl said looking behind him. “Well, well.” He said turning back to Jessica, “Seems your friend can’t stand your screaming much. He’s trying to make his way over here to stop me. What do you say we give him a little motivation. I’ll have a real treat for him when he finally gets here.”

Earl pressed the cigarette into the outer pussy lip on the other side. Again Jessica tried not to scream but couldn’t hold out for more than a second or two.

“You still want to play smart with me?” Earl demanded. “Where is your clan? Your husbands, your family, Daryl’s kin? Where can we find them?”

“I’m alone.” Jessica said, “I have no one. No husbands, no family, no friends. There’s no one to find.”

Jessica screamed. Over and over as Earl pressed the cigarette into places all over her pussy, her legs.

“He’s made it, finally.” Earl said standing. “It seems you have one friend. He’s come to your rescue with the very rod he had shoved up his ass. Nothing turns me on more than a man with a rod in hand. Get him up.” He said to a man who had been walking beside Mark as he’d dragged himself toward Jessica and Earl. Another man came around and the two lifted Mark up, bent him over. Earl opened his pants pulled his cock out, went behind Mark, pried his butt cheeks open, and rammed into his asshole.

Mark screamed, Jessica screamed, Earl thrust. “Oh yeah.” Earl moaned, “Oh yeah. Now this is a nice virgin asshole. Even after that rod he’s nice and tight.” With a sigh Earl pulled out. The men dropped Mark.

Zipping his pants Earl said, “Now we can talk.”

Jessica thought he was talking to her but he walked past her. As far as she could tell he walked out of the room. Looking around Jessica found the room empty except for her, Mark and Stan.

“Mark, I’m so sorry. So, so sorry …” Jessica cried.

Mark moaned on the ground.

Suddenly the door opened. She heard footsteps and steeled herself for more pain. Instead there were a few sharp tugs on her restraints and her legs dropped off the arm rests. A tug on the handcuffs and her hands were free.

“Boss said to leave it up there.” One of the men said. Another man walked over to a shelf Jessica hadn’t noticed earlier, fidgeted with something and then left. As soon as Jessica heard the door close she inched herself forward on the chair until she slid off the chair and dropped hard on her butt on the floor.

Pain from the burns brought added tears to her eyes. Despite that she crawled over to Mark.

“Mark … Mark …” she repeated, stroking his head. Mark opened his eyes and looked at her. “I’m sorry.”

“Don’t …” Mark groaned as he tried to turn over.

“Are you okay?”

Mark tried again but it hurt so much he froze, crying.

She cradled his head and cried too. All she wanted to do was stop his pain. And suddenly she realized that she could.

“Hold on, just a minute…” Jessica said laying his head down onto the floor gently.

“Where are you going?” Mark asked, worry distracting him from his pain.

“I’ll be right back …” Jessica crawled over to where her clothing had been thrown. Rifling through her pant pockets the first thing she found was her cell phone. Opening the phone she found that the battery was almost dead, but she had service. It didn’t matter though … she had no one to call. No one she wanted coming to this horrible place. She closed it, put it back in her pocket and while her fingers dipped into the next pocket she wondered absent mindedly about why Earl and his men couldn’t have left her gun or Taser in her pants. Something useful. But then her fingers found what they were looking for. It wasn’t as satisfying as a gun or Taser but at least it was useful.

Grasping the pill she crawled to where Mark’s clothing had been thrown and rifled through it also, finding his pill.

She returned to find Mark holding his head up, watching her.

“Do … Do you want this?” Jessica asked holding the pill up for Mark to see. She started crying again while Mark looked at the pill. She didn’t want him to suffer but she didn’t want him to die. As he raised his eyes and locked them with hers she wondered if she could possibly be any more selfish.

“Are you going to take yours?” he asked.

Jessica looked down at her pill. She wondered if Mark would refuse his pill if he thought she wasn’t going to take hers. Would that be a good thing or a bad thing? Maybe he had some misguided belief that he had to protect her and would stay alive, suffering, just to fulfill it.

“And don’t try to lie.” He added. With a half laugh, half groan he rolled onto his back. “You’re so bad at lying that I can tell when you’re just thinking about it.”

Jessica reached out and wiped beads of sweat from his forehead.

“I can’t Mark. I’m just too chicken.”

“Good.” Mark said, “Then I’m not taking mine either. I don’t go, till you go because in case you can’t tell by the fantastic job I’ve done so far, I’m here to protect you.”

They laughed at the same time. The beginnings of hysteria made the laughter sound contrived.

“And for the record,” Mark said when Jessica nodded and closed the pills in her hand, “it’s harder to stay alive and suffer.” Mark said.

Stan sobbed reminding Mark and Jessica that they weren’t alone.

Jessica looked down at her hand.

Mark nodded when she looked back at him. Jessica crawled over to Stan who looked half dead.

“Stan. Do you want a cyanide pill?” Jessica asked. Stan’s eyes popped open and he nodded short, quick, desperate nods. Jessica placed the pill in Stan’s mouth. It took a lot of effort for him to swallow it but when he did his eyes rolled and he began to convulse. Moments later his mouth foamed and after several violent shakes, he stopped moving, his eyes frozen open wide. Jessica closed his eyes and crawled back to Mark.

“That didn’t look like a pleasant way to go.” Jessica said.

“I’m glad we didn’t take them.” Mark agreed prompting another round of laughter, this time far more hysterical than the last.

A sound in the hallway startled both of them. “Knives …” Jessica said, “There was a table with knives on it.” She crawled to the table and slowly, painfully, made herself stand. But they were gone. Everything on the table was gone. Being in the standing position made her nudity more apparent to her. She went back to her clothes and with a great deal of pain, pulled them on.

“They took the knives away.” Jessica said returning to Mark. She lifted his shirt. “Do you think you can get your clothes on?”

“Sure.” Mark said and after managing to sit he started pulling his shirt on. But the pants were a different story. Jessica had to help him by pulling, tugging and shimming his pants up his legs and up to his waist.

Suddenly the door opened and one of Earl’s men came in. Jessica reached for the rod that still lay on the floor nearby and clutching it positioned herself between Mark and the man.

“I’m supposed to be protecting you remember?” Mark hissed as the man drew nearer. When he saw Jessica holding the rod he chuckled pulled out a Taser and shot Jessica with it.

Jessica fell to the ground, shaking. She wondered vaguely whether it was possible to become immune to Tasers because she didn’t feel nearly as out of it this time. Mark scrambled to pick up the pipe that Jessica had dropped, and the man Tasered him too.

The man found the whole thing very funny until he noticed Stan.

“Son of a bitch …” he muttered as he went to look Stan over.

Jessica was getting sensation back much more quickly than before and was just sitting up when the man came back grabbed Mark by the hair, lifted his head and pointed a gun at it.

“Don’t need this one neither I guess.” He muttered.

“No!” Jessica yelled and shoved her way between the gun and Mark, shielding him with her body. “You have to kill me to kill him.”

“Get the fuck out of the way.” The man growled and pushed Jessica to the floor, lifting the gun to Mark’s head again.

“Wait!” Jessica said, “I’ll do anything you want if you don’t kill him.”

“Okay.” The man said, “Suck my dick.” Jessica crawled over to the man, got on her knees and started undoing his pants but by then Mark had gotten over the Tasering and pushed Jessica out of the way.

“I’ll do it.” He said and continued opening the man’s pants.

“Naw.” The man said shoving Mark away, “I want her to do it. Get over here cunt before I kill your little girlfriend …”

Jessica had just pulled the man’s cock out of his pants when the door opened.

“Clay you dumb shit.” Another one of Earl’s men said, “We need them both alive.”

“I’m just getting my dick sucked Jory, give me a minute.”

“That ain’t the deal Clay. Put your dick in your pants and get out here.”

Clay grasped Jessica’s chin in his hand and squeezed, “Don’t worry baby doll, you’ll get your chance later. Count on it.”

When Clay left the room Mark looked at Jessica and said “Thanks.” Before collapsing in relief.

Jessica crawled to Mark. He rolled toward her, onto his side. Jessica sat next to him, flopped against him and draped her arms around him protectively. Fatigue over took them both and they fell to sleep.

They were both jarred awake when they were pulled apart. Darkness enveloped Jessica and she realized a bag had been placed over her head.

When two pairs of hands lifted her she fought as hard as she could she. She could hear Mark yelling, scuffling and then flesh hitting flesh.

“Leave him alone!” she yelled, struggling until she was slammed into a chair, the wind knocked out of her.

“She’s a hell cat alright.” Earl muttered and then he was in her face. Jessica could tell by the horrid smell. Jessica slammed her head forward as hard as she could and was rewarded with the satisfying crunch of a nose breaking. A blow hit her on the right side of her face causing stars to pop and twinkle before her eyes.

“You fucking bitch!” Earl swore and hit her again.

Around her she heard shuffling and some grunting.

“Alright, alright, hold your horses pretty boy.” Earl said and suddenly the bag was gone and Jessica was blinking in the light. Something moved in front of her, close to her but it took a moment for her eyes to focus and when they did Jessica couldn’t fathom what she was seeing. Right in front of her, close enough to kiss, was Angus. His eyes bore into hers. At first desperate, then searching, then relieved. Resolve settled into his expression. It wasn’t until Jessica heard the sound of peeling tape that she realized that Angus’ mouth had been taped. Someone had ripped it off.

“I love you Jess, always remember that.” Angus said.

“I love you …” she replied as terror threatened to explode into a scream.

“Over the bench!” Earl ordered. To Jessica’s horror, when Angus stepped away from her he was naked. Completely naked. As if in some sort of living nightmare he walked over to a bench that had been brought into the room and lay over it, his butt pushed up into the air toward Earl.

“Your hands.” Earl said and Angus spread his arms in front of him planting his hands firmly on the floor. Jessica looked from Angus’ prone body to Earl, to Mark still lying on the ground. She was speechless, terrified, numb. When Earl went up to Angus and parted his butt cheeks Angus didn’t move. Jessica’s eyes finally made it back to Angus’ face and found him watching her. His eyes looked sad but he tried to smile. Jessica’s mouth kept opening and closing but nothing was coming out. Worry readjusted Angus’ expression, “Don’t worry Jess. What goes around comes around. I guess it’s about time for me.” Then over his shoulder to Earl he said, “You’re not supposed to hurt her anymore.”

“I’m not.” Earl replied.

“That includes not making her watch this.” Angus growled.

“Take her away.” Earl ordered.

As she was hoisted off the chair Jessica finally found her voice.

“No!” she screamed. “No! No! No! Not him, please, not him. Take me! Take me!” she shrieked even when she was lugged out of the room, down the hall, thrown into another room and Tasered.

It took a few minutes for Jessica to move again. And then it took her several more minutes to realize that Angus had been real, not a dream or hallucination. A bone chilling scream filled the room and looking around Jessica saw a TV on the wall and on the TV was Angus. Horrible things were happening to him, but he wasn’t fighting. Jessica couldn’t understand. Earl was ramming into Angus’ ass and Angus screamed in agony, his hands flailed around aimlessly, but he didn’t fight.

When the thrusting ended Earl pulled out of Angus. Circling him, Earl looked Angus over. “Do you know how I chose you as the one?” Earl asked. “How I picked you over the other four?” Angus didn’t answer, unable to. Sobs stealing his voice. Whoever was running the video camera was making sure to shoot from all angles. The camera zoomed in on Angus’ face. It was red, a vein standing out on his forehead, all veins in his neck straining as he fought to control his urge to run away. His urge to fight.

“I picked you …” Earl said moving back toward Angus’ butt. Suddenly there was more than one camera. One stayed focussed on Angus’ face, the other followed Earl to Angus’ butt. “Because you’re so obviously heterosexual. You, least of all, would want to get fucked up the ass by a man.” Earl continued while bringing his hands to Angus’ butt cheeks and caressing them. In the other camera Angus’ face went rigid. All the muscles in his body contracted, battling to not react. “Only one thing would make you submit to something like this.” Earl continued, sliding his finger between Angus’ butt cheeks, “Let’s see how much you love her.” Earl said and shoved his finger in Angus’ asshole.

“No …” Jessica whispered, crawling closer to the TV. The camera on Angus’ face zoomed in, he turned red, face strained and shaking as he fought to stay still. The other camera zoomed in on his asshole and Earl’s finger ramming into it hard.

“Time for fun of a different kind.” Earl said. He stepped back said, “Suck my dick.”

Angus slowly got up. He was bleeding from his rectum and it was clear that he was in severe pain, tears were streaming down his face. And then inexplicably he looked straight at the camera. Sniffling he asked the camera,

“How is she?”

There was a pause and then Riley’s equally broken voice choked out, “Okay. Jess is okay.”

“You heard him. The bitch is fine. Now get over here and suck my dick.”

“No!” Jessica yelled, getting to her feet too quickly. Stars flashed before her eyes. “I’m not okay!” Jessica shouted. When her vision cleared she looked around the room, “Stop!” she yelled in high pitched shriek as Angus crawled over to Earl, steadied himself and took Earl’s cock in his mouth.

“Son of a bitch!” Earl screamed when Angus gagged, pulled his mouth back quickly and vomited.

Jessica watched in mute horror, another scream building within her.

“That’ll cost you your front teeth.” Earl said. “And if you scrape my dick again you’ll lose the rest.”

Earl picked up a hammer and moved to Angus. Two of Earl’s men each took one of Angus’ arms.

“No, the deal was you don’t fight. No matter what I do over the course of the next twelve hours you don’t fight and the bitch goes.”

Angus nodded. Earl’s men let go of Angus. Angus inclined his face up to Earl, hands hanging at his sides. When Earl brought down the hammer Jessica shrieked. Angus made a sound Jessica had never heard before. It was so pain filled, so desperate. Angus’ hands came up automatically in self defense and Jessica could see him battle to keep the down, away from Earl.

“Again.” Earl said. Angus hesitated a moment but then he turned his face up to Earl again. This time when the hammer came down Jessica lost control. She pulled her hair, clawed her face, screamed, cried, threw herself at the wall, tried pulling the door open, tried kicking it down. And as much as she wanted to look away, she couldn’t. She watched Angus give Earl and all his friends blow jobs. Each time confirming with Riley first that she was okay. Then they all took turns mounting him. Then he had to give blow jobs while being mounted. Electrodes were used on his genitals, items were shoved into him. It seemed to go on forever. And the whole time he never fought.

Just when Jessica thought it couldn’t get any worse, it did. She had slid against the wall, lifeless, only able to manage moans rather than shrieks when Earl pulled Mark over to the bench. He ordered Angus to lay over the bench again. When he did, Earl ordered Mark to rape him. And then they switched, and then they had to suck each other off, give each other hand jobs, service Earl and his men together.

Through it all Jessica shrieked and pounded the floor with her fists. She tried the door over and over. Tried kicking it in. Everything to no avail.

Just as Jessica contemplated taking the cyanide pill, unable to watch Angus and Mark suffer any more, gunshots rang out. Jessica automatically looked at the TV terrified that Angus or Mark were dead. Or, terrified that they weren’t dead. Whatever they wanted, dead or alive, she wished it for them. But Angus and Mark were definitely alive. Still staring at the TV Jessica jumped when the door opened, Riley, Sean and Caleb walked in and Tasered Earl and his men. Jessica rubbed her eyes. Riley, Sean and Caleb went to Angus and Mark and Caleb started looking them over.

The door in her room suddenly swung open, pieces of wood flying around. Scott, Josh and Jim came in, gun nozzles scanning the room.

Jessica started crying, growing hysterical when the three of them converged on her, talking to her gently, petting her head, arms, back.

“Shhh Jess, shhh,” Jim kept saying, “It’s okay now … you’re safe.”

“Hurry Doc.” Josh said and Jessica saw Doc coming toward her, Leah at his side.

“Lass.” Doc said and crouched beside her.

“Oh my God.” Leah said and slowly lowered herself into a crouch beside the Doctor.

“Jess …” was all she could say.

“What is it Jess?” Scott asked when Jessica suddenly bolted up and grabbed his arm.

“Angus and Mark.” Jessica said, her voice nothing but a whisper, robbed of all volume by her screams, “Doc, you have to help Angus and Mark.”

“I will Lass, I will.” Doc reassured her.

“No, now Doc, you have to help them now!”

“Jess …” Scott tried to sooth her but she didn’t’ want to be soothed. She wanted Angus and Mark fixed. A prick like a mosquito bite distracted her and she saw Doc take a needle out of her arm.

“Just relax Lass, everything will be just fine.”

From the door Jessica saw Riley, Sean, Caleb and Chris come in.

“Motherfucker …” Riley swore and moved to Jessica. Sean, Caleb and Chris stared at her as they walked closer.

Sean lifted a cell phone to his ear, said a few things and then lowered it. “We’re secure.” He said to the room, never once taking his eyes off of Jessica. “They’re dead Jess.” Sean said, bending to get closer, “Most of Earl’s men, and after we spend some quality time with Earl and the three bastards who did this to you, none of those fuckers will be left. We took a vote in your absence and decided to pass on the bacon. I think you’ll approve.”

Jessica nodded as a warm tingly feeling started at her toes and ran up her body.

“I thought so.” Sean said.

Quinn ran in the room, sliding to a halt, Corey, Don, Rick and Abe joining him.

“Hey Jess.” Quinn said but his voice seemed far away. The room seemed to tilt and Jessica suddenly felt very tired.

“Christ Jessica,” Abe said.

“Call me when you’re ready.” Rick said and left the room.

“It’s too bad Jess can’t help. I think she’d appreciate the chance.” Don said his voice sounded distant as sleep started to creep up on Jessica.

“I think Jessica’s done enough, don’t you?” Corey asked.

“With all that’s happened, I don’t think it’d be something she could stomach.” Scott said.

“We’re ready.” Sean said.

“It’s okay.” Doc said, “I’ll take care of Jessica, Angus and Mark. You go make them suffer. And here, use this. It intensifies the pain. Give them each a syringe full every hour.”

“’K Doc.” Riley said.

“No wait. That might kill them too soon. Give them each half a syringe full every hour. And lad, I’ve given you a way to make every second count so make them.”

“Love you Jess. See you when you wake up.” Josh whispered.

“Wait …” Jessica said, barely able to keep her eyes open, “the boys …”

“We left them with Justine, Amanda, Sara and a couple of Paul’s men who Rick and Abe trust.” Leah said, “I just called to tell them you’re okay. They can’t wait to have you home Jess. Get some rest now, okay?”

Jessica nodded and felt Riley, Jim, Josh and Scott kiss her forehead before she drifted off to sleep.

“Please Angus.” Jessica said in a desperate voice.

The men, Sean and the others shuffled into the room and stopped, surprised to see Jessica awake. Not only was she awake but she was curled around Angus’ head as he lay on his side on the floor. Mark lay next to Angus and Jessica clutched his hand. She rocked back and forth, brushing her free hand through the hair on Angus’ head over and over again.

“You need some medication … for the pain. Please …” she said beginning to cry, “you don’t need to suffer like this.”

Doc stood watching them, syringe in hand. He threw a worried look at the men.

“Jess.” Angus said sliding his arm up to cup the back of her head, “Don’t cry. This isn’t unbearable, I’ll survive.” His voice was slurred. A lack of front teeth and a sore jaw made it difficult for him to speak.

“Why are you doing this?” Jessica demanded, crying harder.

Angus grimaced as he rolled onto his back.

“Jessica.” He said grasping her head between his hands. “Look at me … look,” he said in a gentle but firm voice. Jessica looked in his eyes, her eyes blurring as they filled with tears. “If you could live through this with no medication so can I.”

Jessica did a double take and then shook her head.

“It’s not the same thing.” Jessica protested.

“No, you’re right, it’s not. I raped you repeatedly Jessica. Over and over, for a long time. I didn’t give you any medication, not even an aspirin. What goes around comes around. I finally got what I deserved and now I have to live with the consequences without an easy way out.”

“This is insane.” Jessica cried.

“It’s justice. And you won’t change my mind so please stop trying.”

“You can’t do this!” Jessica wailed.

“Leave him alone Jess.” Mark said squeezing her hand. He had medication but the expression on his face made it hard to tell. “You set the bar pretty high, give him a chance to try and meet it.”

Jessica stared at Mark.

“You have no idea what I’m talking about, do you?” Mark asked, “Of course not.” He added when Jessica looked completely clueless.

“Doc …” Jessica said, looking up in desperation but when her eyes landed on the group of silent figures standing next to the doctor she almost screamed. She instinctively moved to shield Angus and Mark but when one of the figures crouched down, hands held out and said her name, she realized that the strangers where actually her men and the others which she now simply considered to be her family. The figure crouching next to her was Jim. Covered head to toe in blood.

“You’re bleeding!” Jessica gasped, reaching for Jim.

“No, we’re fine.” Jim said leaning slightly away from her, “We’ll clean up … you don’t want it on you Jess, trust me.”

“What happened?” she asked looking them over.

“We took care of a little business.” Riley said. There was something in his tone that made Jessica look more closely at him. Despite the blood covering it, there was an expression on his face that Jessica had seen before. Years ago, during the attack on her family. It was tempered because when he looked at her it was clear that he loved her and the violence that it promised was not directed at her.

Looking at the others Jessica realized that though she knew the fun loving, easy going side of her family, they were men of violence. Men and woman of violence, because Leah was there and looked just as dangerous as the men. Even the battle with Anthony hadn’t brought this out in them. She was beginning to understand why Doc looked so worried.

“This is all that’s left of Earl and his … assistants.” Sean said raising his hand and looking at the blood covering it, “And a shitload of tiny pieces. You want to talk about justice,” Sean said, “this is justice.”

“Shit yeah.” Corey said, “Those bastards paid for everything they’ve ever done and then some. There was a lot of pain. The slow, long lasting kind. We made sure of it.” Corey ended, looking at Jessica with meaning.

“But it won’t fix anything.” Scott said. “It won’t make anything better.”

Silence fell. In that silence Jessica had several realizations. The first was that her family had tortured to death Earl and his right hand men. She found her stomach surprising calm about it despite the fact that it must have been a gruesome thing to do. The amount of blood drenching them made it easy to imagine what was done and yet it did not bother her.

The second realization was that the events that happened here changed her family members forever. They’d be forever scarred by it. Angus and Mark, physically violated, the rest of them, morally violated.

The third realization was that she’d done this to them. All of it. They wouldn’t be where they were now had she listened to them and let them kill Stan. That’s what made her stomach heave.

“I’m so sorry.” She said wrapping her arms around herself, doubling over when her stomach spasmed, turning on itself when there was nothing available to expel. “I’m so sorry,” She repeated over and over again.

“Jess, stop.” Josh said kneeling in front of her and grabbing her by her arms, giving up on keeping her blood free. “Look at me Jess, look at me …” Josh said maneuvering himself into her line of sight. “We should have cleaned up before we came here. You shouldn’t have to see all this blood but we thought …we thought you’d be sedated.”

“Stan.” Jessica said looking up at Josh, new tears in her eyes. “Stan led Earl to us.” She glanced around at the others. “If we’d killed him like you said things might have been different.”

“Wait a minute.” Sean said. “Jessica, are you saying that you think all of this is your fault?”

Jessica nodded, unable to look at Sean, unable to look at anyone

“Unfuckingbelievable.” Sean said. “This is seriously fucked up shit.” He added. He sounded angry and exasperated. Jessica kept looking at the floor, nodding slightly. Sean looked at Riley, “How do you stand this? You said she’d fall on a sword Riley but you didn’t mention it would be bigger than the Empire fucking State building. You have to fix it. Now.”

“Jess, Earl would have found us no matter what.” Riley began. “That was expected, a given. What wasn’t a given, what should not have happened, was how badly we fucked up.”

Jessica looked at Riley in surprise. His voice was full of pain, his face the epitome of despair.

“We had a flat,” Jim said. “A motherfucking flat. If we’d insisted that you switch cars and come with us … If we’d changed the tire faster, or kept hitting redial and getting through to you or Mark so you would’ve waited … we should have been there Jess. None of this would have happened to you or Angus or Mark.”

“And do you know what I was doing when you called?” Leah asked, her voice cracking.

“What we were doing …” Corey said.

“We were fucking. That’s right. You’d just gone to meet a questionable stranger, called me, and I chose to finish getting off before checking my voicemail.” Leah said, “Jesus Christ Jess, I’m so sorry. Angus, Mark … I’m so sorry!” and she crumbled into a heap on the floor, sobbing.

“And when we finally heard the message … we couldn’t get back fast enough.” Corey added.

“Not even with the motorcycles. We got home and you were gone, and that bastard was torturing you.” Caleb said.

“You weren’t supposed to come back.” Jessica said. She looked around in a panic as everyone seemed to crumble. Everyone sank to their knees. They hung their heads, most were silently vibrating and to Jessica’s horror she realized they were crying. “I said no sauce.” She added trying to crawl forward but her legs wouldn’t work. She didn’t know where to crawl first. She reached out and took Jim and Josh’s hands. The sounds escaping the crumpled forms was unbearable, their expressions heartbreaking. She had to make it stop.

“If you’d come while Earl was there it would have been bad. There would have been a fight. You could have died. This was better. Much better. It only looks bad, really. It barely hurt. It was a walk in the park, comparatively speaking.”

At first Jessica thought her slant on things was working. People stopped crying. But then she realized that they stopped moving too. They were frozen, staring at her, Mark and Angus included. Even Doc.

“I know it was bad for Mark and Angus … and Stan.” She added suddenly realizing that she wasn’t the only one who suffered and kicking herself for undermining their pain. “It’s true, that was bad.” She nodded. But the silence continued and after a while Jessica noticed a shift in facial expressions. They looked angry.

“Jessica.” Riley said through clenched teeth, “we saw everything.”

“What?” Jessica gasped.

“We persuaded Paul to put us in touch with Earl. Before he negotiated with us he sent a video feed and we saw what he did to you. To Mark. He had to keep streaming video to us as part of the deal even after Angus got here.” Riley said.

“Especially after I got here.” Angus mumbled, “I had to know you were okay or I wouldn’t co-operate.”

“We know what you did for us.” Chris said.

“And it was no walk in the park.” Scott added.

“Why would you lie about that?” Josh demanded.

“She’s still protecting us.” Jim said quietly.

“Well, stop it Jessica. Please.” Rick said. “I want to know that you’re telling me the truth because I can count on it, not because you can’t lie worth shit. Okay?”

Jessica nodded.

“We’d better get cleaned up.” Riley said. “We still have some work to do before we go home.”

Jim squeezed Jessica’s hand, got up, kissed her on the top of the head and left. Everyone else followed Jim’s lead.

When they were gone Jessica turned back to Angus and Mark. Angus was as pale as a ghost, clearly suffering.

“Doc, please give him some medication.” Jessica begged.

“I can’t.” Doc said obviously not happy about it. “I promised him I wouldn’t. Angus has assured me that everything I saw done to him tonight, he did to you and worse. I guess we’re in agreement that this is a small step toward making amends.”

“So, everyone saw it? The video?” Jessica asked quietly. She didn’t know why but it embarrassed her. And when Angus and Mark groaned she realized that she wasn’t the only one featured in the video. Her heart broke for Angus. Not only had his worst nightmares come true, but they came true in front of everyone he knew.

Doc nodded, “Except the kids. They heard it I’m sure, leaving the room wouldn’t have prevented that, but they didn’t see it.”

“And if you saw it …” Jessica said to Doc, “then Paul …”

“Paul and many of his clan saw it. But it’s probably a good thing.” Doc said, “The video, probably more than any of the other tactics employed,” Doc continued while giving Angus an accusatory look, “got Paul’s co-operation.”

“Tactics?” Jessica asked.

“We did some things we’re not too proud of.” Angus said, “But desperate times call for desperate measures.”

“Yes, I’m sure that will comfort Stasia as she nurses her bruised neck.” Doc said.

“Stasia?” Jessica gasped, “Angus you didn’t …”

“No they didn’t, but it was pretty close.” Doc said. “Given what was at stake, I don’t think I can blame them.” He added and forced a smile at Jessica.

“Are you cold?” Angus asked when Jessica shivered against him.

“No.” Jessica said, “It’s this place. It’s gross.”

“Sorry Jess.” Riley said, returning. “You were supposed to be four sheets to the wind for this. Doc, why isn’t she sedated?” When Jessica turned to look at him and did a double take, Riley couldn’t help but smile. “We didn’t bring a change of clothes.”

“So you’re going home in your underwear?” Doc asked.

“I’m sure as hell not wearing those assholes’ clothes.” Riley said.

“Same here.” Don said coming in the room. Jessica couldn’t help but laugh when she looked at him and Riley standing together, freshly scrubbed and with nothing on but underwear.

The others started drifting into the room in the same attire as Riley and Don.

“We still have some clean-up to do Jess.” Riley said, “And then we’ve gotta burn this place to the ground. You don’t have to see anything if you let Doc put you to sleep.”

“I’m okay Riley, honest.” Jessica said.

“Same thing she told me earlier.” Doc said.

“Jess …” Riley said.

“I don’t really like being sedated.” Jessica added, “It makes me feel weird. I’ll just focus on something else that’s all. Really.” She said when Riley narrowed his eyes at her.

“Why don’t you keep Jess, Angus and Mark company Leah.” Corey suggested, “I think you’ve done your fair share tonight too.”

“Okay.” Leah said crouching down in front of Jessica. She was studying Jessica’s face while she spoke. “Jess, how’d you get those scratches on your face?” Leah raised her hand to gently touch her Jessica’s face. “I don’t remember seeing Earl or his men do that.”

“They must have.” Jessica said with a shrug, “But I don’t remember.”

“Those were self-inflicted.” Doc said, “She has skin under her nail.” He added when people looked at him with doubt. Jessica looked down at her nails and blanched.

“We must have missed it.” Angus mumbled, “They didn’t touch her after I got here. You saw that, right?” he asked Riley.

“Right.” Riley agreed tilting Jessica’s head up for a closer look.

“But Riley, didn’t you hear me yelling at you? I didn’t want Angus to let them do those things to him. I was yelling for you to tell him that.” Jessica said, sliding onto her knees so she could lean into Riley’s arms. She wanted so badly to bury her face in his chest, but Riley cradled her face, still studying the scratches. She wanted him to hold her, instead Riley’s face froze.

“No you weren’t. You were passed out on the floor. They’d Tasered you.”

“No …” Jessica said confused by the fury suddenly evident on Riley’s face.

“Those bastards looped the video.” Don growled.

“You mean …” Riley began.

“Did they hurt you?” Scott demanded having moved next to Riley and grasping Jessica’s arm.

“I never saw them again except on the TV.” Jessica said nodding her head at the television that still displayed the empty room where Angus and Mark had been tortured.

“You saw everything …” Angus said in horror.

Jessica nodded and started crying. She sank back down between Angus and Mark.

“When they streamed the video to us they must have streamed it to this TV too.” Quinn said.

“If you didn’t see them again, who did that to your face?” Jim asked.

Jessica was sobbing, rocking back and forth while running her fingers through both Angus and Mark’s hair, “You shouldn’t have done that Angus. I said no sauce, no sauce. You were supposed to run.” Jessica wailed and lowered her head against Angus’, who was now crying too.

“I told you, self-inflicted.” Doc said moving toward Jessica with a syringe. “It’s okay Jess.” He added when she saw him coming with the syringe, “This won’t put you to sleep, it’ll just calm you down.”

Jessica let him inject her and in a moment Jessica felt herself relax.

The injection relaxed her but it also gave her some clarity. As she looked around at Doc and the family she felt like she was watching them from a distance. Seeing them for the first time as an uninvolved observer. And what she saw brought the involved observer back in a flash. They were broken. They looked at her like they just wanted to curl up and die. She decided that she wouldn’t let them. That was her mission and to accomplish it she had to keep herself together.

Jessica closed her eyes and forced the tears from coming. Wiping her eyes and nose on her arm, finding it useless, she opted for her shirt. Satisfied that she was semi presentable she cleared her throat and looked up.

“Um. We should finish up here so we can go home. What can I help with?” Jessica asked trying to stand but grimacing when the burns on her legs and pussy protested the movement.

“Let me help you.” Josh said coming behind Jessica and taking her by her arms lifting her to her feet.

“Isn’t there something you can give her for that?” Scott asked Doc, “Pain killers?”

“Sure, but she won’t take them.”

“What?” Angus demanded.

“I tried to give her an injection just like I tried to give you one but she wouldn’t take it.”

“No Jessica!” her men said at practically the same time.

“You have no choice, you take the medication!” Angus growled.

“Doc …” Scott said motioning him toward Jessica who was now firmly in Josh’s embrace.

“Wait …” Jessica said limited to lifting her hands in a stop motion, unable to move anything or anywhere else. “I don’t need the medication. I’m fine, just sore that’s all. Honestly!” she said pressing back as far against Josh as she could get in an attempt to get away from Doc as he moved nearer with another syringe. “Besides it actually makes me feel worse. Doc, please, it makes me feel weird.”

Doc hesitated and looked to Josh who shrugged. “Can you give her something else?”

“Your standard pain killer, sure, but I doubt it’ll do anything for her.”

“You have to take that at least.” Jim said.


“And I have some cream I can put on her face and her burns, that might help a little.”

“Jess?” Scott asked.

Jessica nodded agreement.

“You’re sure Jess?” Riley asked, “It’s not going to make you feel weird or anything?”

Jessica looked at him, not sure if he was as angry as he sounded. But after a moment a slight smile slid on to his face. Jessica giggled, “Maybe a little.” She said, “But not as weird as the medication.”

Riley shook his head in disbelief but he didn’t argue.

“Thank you.” Jessica said when Josh loosened his grip and Doc lowered the syringe. And she suddenly realized that this was the first time those words had left her mouth since her family had saved her and Mark. Stunned by the realization she fell back against Josh.

“Jess!” Josh said, catching her.

“Doc the medication!” Scott ordered.

“No, no …” Jessica looking up at Doc , “I’m fine. I just realized … I can’t believe …” She looked around at everyone. “I haven’t thanked you yet. Thank you.” She said and made eye contact with each person one by one. “You sacrificed so much … too much.” She added when she looking at Angus, “But I’m so grateful that you came for Mark and me. This should have been the first thing I said to you and I didn’t. I’m sorry.”

The room was quiet. A few looks were exchanged. Finally Riley nodded at Sean. Sean seemed tense as he stalked toward Jessica stopping inches from her.

“You’re welcome Jessica, and we appreciate your thanks but it’s not necessary.” Sean was staring at her with an intensity that scared her. She tried to look behind him, to Riley, Scott or Jim but Sean moved into her line of vision. “Your men can no longer deal with you the way they should … the tough has gone out of their love and quite frankly Jessica that’s a problem. If anyone needs tough love it’s you. Fortunately for them and you, the rest of us aren’t quite that far gone on the tough part, so you’re going to listen to me, and hear me. Really hear me. There was never any option. Not coming after you was not an option. But for some reason you don’t know that. And Jess, ‘No sauce’? Really? ‘No sauce?’” Sean repeated. He seemed at a loss for what to say next.

Finally he shook his head, “We couldn’t understand how you could expect us to just leave you. Especially Riley, Scott, Jim, Josh and Angus, but I’ve figured it out. You think you’re expendable. You think that you mean so little to us that we’ll just accept that you’re gone and move on with life. I can see how you may think that of us,” he said indicating himself with his hand and cocked his head back to indicate the people behind him, “afterall we’ve been lame enough to not do a formal pledge with you. Do you know what a pledge is Jessica?” Sean asked .

His intensity hadn’t wavered so all Jessica could bring herself to do was shake her head. “It’s a promise clan members give one another when they join a clan. Quinn did it when he joined. We’d pledged with Riley, Scott, Josh, Angus and Jim when we came of age in the clan. It’s a lot like the oath you and your husbands took. And that’s where I get confused. You have an oath with your husbands and yet you still consider yourself unimportant to them. Did you not listen to the words they were saying to you? I did. And nothing in the oath made leaving you to be tortured and killed an option. Or did you hear something else? Jessica?”

Jessica shook her head.

“So this is what I propose.” Sean said, “If you’ll have us. All of us, as your family, we want … scratch that, we need to make the pledge with you. We discussed it and we’d like to add some of your marriage oath to the pledge. And we want to go through it with you word for word so that you understand that ‘no sauce’ is not a viable solution. Do you understand what I am saying?”

Jessica nodded.

“Christ Sean.” Corey muttered, “You have a funny way of telling someone you care about them.”

“She’ll be beating down the door to pledge with us alright.” Caleb added.

“Jess, what my oaf of a brother is saying is that we’d love to pledge with you if you’ll have us.” Leah said, “And … you’re welcome.”

“You should consider yourself lucky.” Quinn said, “Their proposal to me wasn’t nearly as passionate.”

“Maybe this is too much right now.” Jim said, “After all that’s happened. Besides which, you’re in your underwear Sean. That just weird.”

Everyone laughed, breaking the tension.

Sean nodded and took a step back, “Sorry, this might’ve been more dignified in clothing.”

“D’you think?” Abe asked.

“I’d love to take the pledge with you.” Jessica said and she reached out and caught Sean’s hand. “I um, I guess I’ve given the impression that I thought you didn’t care or that you’d just abandon me. That’s not at all what I thought. I just wanted you to be safe and that meant as far away from Earl as possible.”

“But Jessica,” Rick said, “What you’re not getting is that you’re not just some spare part to us. Some interchangeable piece that we can replace if you break or disappear. It’s not okay for you to just throw yourself away like that.”

Suddenly things made sense for Jessica. “I wasn’t throwing myself away.” Jessica said, “I guess my feelings for you weren’t very clear.” She added clearly surprised. “I thought you knew … you’re all very special to me, you’re my family and I love you. I would do anything for you because I want to protect you. Not because I think my life is insignificant.” She looked at each of them, even Mark who despite the medication was painfully lucid. “The oath said it, didn’t it?” Jessica asked Angus and then looked at everyone again. “I see what you mean about a pledge.” Jessica said to Sean, “Things weren’t as clear as they should have been between us. But you …” she said looking at Riley, Scott, Josh, Jim and Angus and shaking her head, “Didn’t our oath make it clear? There’s nothing I wouldn’t do to keep you safe. Nothing.”

“Jessica, I don’t think you understand how hard it was.” Riley said, “To watch … to hear you ....”

“Trying to be brave.” Scott finished for Riley. “You were so scared Jess, we could see it. But Jesus Christ Jessica, when you taunted Earl. Pretending to not know who he was asking about?”

“You … protecting Mark. Mark, protecting you …” Angus mumbled. “It was too much.”

Jessica blinked at Riley and Scott, and the others.

“And then we thought you were going to take the cyanide pill …” Jim said so quietly and with so much emotion.

“It was like a living nightmare. Watching you with those pills.” Sean said, “Terrified that you would take the pill, that Mark would. We were coming to get you …”

“I haven’t felt that much horror in a really long time.” Josh said. “First watching you get tortured … then we were afraid you’d die, right before our eyes.”

“And who could blame you?” Caleb said, “All of that suffering. At least you ended Stan’s …”

“You saw all of that?” Jessica gasped.

“Earl brought the video camera in the room. We saw him torture you and Mark. He left it there even when they untied you from the chair. We saw everything.” Corey said.

“Oh.” Jessica said.

“How you stopped them from killing Mark.” Chris said.

“Putting yourself between the gun and Mark.” Scott said.

“And what that asshole wanted in exchange for Mark’s life.” Riley said quietly. Angus groaned.

“I’m sorry, I wasn’t trying to be with another man, it seemed like the only option …” Jessica began.

“Don’t Jess.” Riley said, “We’d be complete assholes if we even considered being angry with you about that. You did what you had to in order to save Mark.”

“And he tried to spare you …” Angus mumbled, looking at Mark. “You kept your promise Mark … I’ll never forget that.”

“And what was with the cell phone?” Leah asked, “What was up with that? You could have called us.”

Jessica looked Leah and shook her head, “You were supposed to run. There was no point in calling.”

No one looked happy about that statement.

“The point is. You don’t have to explain what you’d do for us.” Caleb said, “We saw it.”

Silence hung in the air. Sean studied Jessica for a long time. And so did everyone else. Finally Sean glanced around at Riley, Angus, Scott, Jim and Josh, and nodded.

“There’s only one thing left to say.” Sean said looking back at Jessica. “Thank you. To you and Mark for protecting us.” He said looking at Mark and then back at Jessica, “You said all the right things to get Earl to give up on looking for us and concentrating on you …” Sean’s eyes darted to Riley and he cleared his throat. Jessica looked at Riley too and saw a mask of pain. Scott, Jim, Josh and Angus looked equally tortured, “that was really brave of you.”

Angus groaned.

“You were terrified, but you did it anyway.” Josh said pulling Jessica against him. “Thank you.”

“And Mark. Thanks for trying to protect Jessica.” Scott said.

“I didn’t do much.” Mark said quietly.

“Yes you did.” Angus mumbled, “You did everything you could and you paid for it. We’ll always be in your debt.”

Jessica crouched down and kissed Mark’s forehead. “They’re right Mark. Thank you.”

Josh crouched down behind Jessica and clutched her to him. Riley, Scott, Jim and Angus looked like they were going to grab her and never let her go. And she wanted that. More than anything.

“Can we go home?” Jessica asked.

“Doc and I will take care of these three.” Leah said, “You guys hurry up and do whatever you’re going to do and we can get out of here.”

It took a moment but everyone seemed to shake themselves off and one after the other planted a kiss on Jessica’s head before heading for the door.

“Take your pain meds.” Jim said coming over to kiss Jessica, “But don’t drink the water.” He added, “You’ll have to swallow the pills dry.”

“Take two.” Doc said handing her a couple of pills. She had to work at it but finally swallowed them.

“Off with your pants.” Leah said after Doc had finished putting cream on Jessica’s face.

Fifteen minutes later Jessica was sitting on the floor, back against the wall with Mark’s head resting on one leg, Angus’ on the other. Mark was in a medicinally induced sleep and Angus had finally succumbed to fatigue. Jessica stroked both of their heads. She was amazed at how much the cream Doc gave her helped. Her face, thighs, vagina, were only a minor discomfort. Doc insisted she take the tube and use it as needed.

“What happened with Stasia?” Jessica asked Leah. Doc had gone to the bathroom. “Is she okay?”

Leah nodded but she seemed uncertain.

“Is Paul going to be a problem?” Jessica asked.

“I don’t know. But I think he may think twice about crossing your husbands.”

“What do you mean?”

“When they got home and you weren’t there … and they heard your voicemail. Jess, your phone didn’t hang up for a long time. We heard everything that happened including part of the car ride.”


“They went ballistic. I’ve never seen them like that before. Angus even shot the car. It’s true.” Leah added when Jessica looked disbelieving, “the tires, headlights, windows. I think he would have shot the gas tank too if they hadn’t been in such a hurry to get to Paul’s. Anyway, they threatened to kill Stasia but I don’t think they had to. Paul was pretty freaked out by them. Jess, I think the boys were pretty traumatized too. Your men were pretty scary …”

“They weren’t the only ones.” Doc said returning. “The whole lot of you were out of control. You were snarling Leah. Sean, Corey, Chris, Caleb, Quinn, Don, Abe, Rick, and your men …” he added looking at Jessica, “looked like they’d rip us all apart. And they hadn’t even seen the video yet. Leah’s right about Stasia. Once they saw what was happening to you their anger went to a whole new level. No one was going to get in their way.”

“Jess, the men heard and saw almost everything that happened to you. They saw you getting hurt but there was nothing they could do about it. I don’t think they’ll be the same again. And,” Leah cleared her throat, “when Earl demanded that Angus come and let him rape him, Riley, Scott, Jim and Josh climbed over each other to go instead. And when Earl insisted on Angus the other men looked like they’d had their nuts cut off and handed to them. But Angus, he was happy. Really happy. And then he insisted we wait two hours before coming to help. He said that would lower Earl’s guard. I guess it worked but it was horrible to watch. But, um, I guess you know that.” Leah said.

Jessica felt tears coming but she blinked them away. She had to get them back again. Back to who they were before this because Jessica was afraid that if Leah was right, the expressions that her family wore after they killed Earl were going to be permanent.

“We’re ready to torch the place.” Scott said when everyone returned. “Come on Jess I’ll give you a lift.” He added after Sean and Riley helped Angus sit and Chris and Corey helped Mark up. Scott scooped Jessica up.

“We can carry you too.” Riley said to Angus. Mark was too out of it to walk so Chris was lifting him under his arms, Corey his legs.

“I can walk.” Angus said and began the slow and painful shuffle toward the exit.

“Riley, he has to take a rest or slow down.” Jessica said when Angus had ignored her direct pleas. Angus’ face was red and he was sweating but he kept a steady pace.

“We’re not in a hurry Angus. Take your time … or we can carry you.” Riley said.

“I never gave Jessica that option.” Angus snarled and when he looked up at Jessica his face was twisted by pain, but guilt was the prominent emotion. “I made you walk, I raped you even when you felt like this. I even hung you from the fucking ceiling while you felt like this. The least I can do is walk.”

“You weren’t the only one.” Riley said. “You didn’t do those things by yourself.”

“You weren’t in the bedroom with me Riley. None of you were. In fact, if I recall correctly you all tried to stop me.” Angus looked around at Riley, Jim, Josh and Scott.

“I gave the order Angus.” Riley said.

“And I went above and beyond in following it.” Angus mumbled back. “Just leave me alone okay. It’s about time justice was served and I’m more than willing to serve it.”

Jessica buried her face in Scott’s neck unable to watch Angus suffer. She considered telling him that she forgave him … all the men, for everything. But she suspected that he’d think she only said it because she wanted to stop his self-punishment.

“We’ll wait in the car.” Scott said.

It took close to fifteen minutes for Angus to make it to the car. By then Jessica had been reduced to tears. As hard as she tried, she couldn’t stop crying. Scott and Jim were in the backseat with her and she hid in them. Sliding down between them she pulled them as close to her as they could get.

Riley and Josh shuffled along with Angus. When they finally got to the car and the house was set ablaze Angus refused Scott and Jim’s offers to go in another car so he could lie down in the backseat with Jessica. So Angus sat the whole way back to the house, between Scott and Jim, Jessica on Jim’s lap, hugging Angus. Riley drove and Josh sat like a zombie next to him on the front seat. Luckily Jessica had been right and they weren’t far from their house because Angus’ labored breathing and Herculean attempts at not moaning had Jessica crying again.

At the house Jessica wiped her tears and tried to look as normal as possible for the boys. But shuffling along with Angus didn’t lend itself well to feeling fine and it reflected on her face. She could tell by the looks on Sara, Justine, and Amanda’s faces. The boys were half asleep but one look at Angus and Jessica and they were instantly awake.

“Shit.” Terry hissed. Jessica was glad to see that the physiotherapists, Terry, Jay and Craig were the ones who’d come to watch the boys.

“You’re back!” Nathan yelled before throwing himself on Jessica. Brett followed. The other boys crowded around.

“You did it!” Brett said turning to Angus and burying his face in Angus’ stomach, wrapping his arms around him. “You did like you promised, you brought Jessie home.”

Angus grimaced by pulled Brett closer and patted his head. While locking eyes with Jessica he said, “There was no other option.”

Justine wrapped herself around Mark, and Jessica was glad to see that Chris had an arm on Mark’s back steadying him.

The other boys hugged or shook hands with the other adults, clearly elated, clearly in awe. Jessica and Leah exchanged a look. Leah had misread the boys when she thought they were scared of the men. Jessica was pretty sure that what the boys were afraid of was being left alone again. She shuddered when she realized that things could have easily ended that way.

“Are you cold Jess?” Riley asked when she shuddered again.


“Are you shaking because they made you scream?” Nathan asked looking up at Jessica. “They hurt you a lot.” And he looked like he was going to cry.

“They hurt a lot of people Nathan,” Jessica said, hugging him, “but they can’t anymore. And tomorrow we’ll celebrate that. But right now it’s late and you should all be in bed.”

A general protest erupted.

“You heard her.” Caleb said, “It’s two in the morning guys, come on.”

“Say good night boys.” Sara said, “and come to the kitchen for your meds, chop. Chop.” Brett and Nathan gave Jessica another hug and turned to the kitchen. After a couple of steps Nathan turned and hugged Angus before running to the kitchen.

Angus looked surprised. Jessica leaned against him, “Now you’re someone else’s hero too.”

“I’ve gotta ask,” Jay said, “What’s with the underwear?”

“It’s a long and messy story.” Riley said, “You’re better off now knowing the details, trust me.”

“Do you want to get cleaned up?” Scott asked Jessica and Angus.

“In a minute.” Angus said, “Right now I need to sit.”

Soon Angus, Jessica and Mark were on the sofa. Jessica and Mark resting, Angus fidgeting and trying to find a comfortable position. Jessica wrapped herself around Angus and looked at him with ever growing concern.

“I can’t believe Earl and his band of psychos are dead.” Craig said.

“So that means Elsie can get some help now.” Jessica said turning to Mark.

Mark nodded, “The clan can take care of her now.”

“No Mark, I didn’t mean the clan. I meant real help. She needs to go to a hospital.”

“Jess.” Jim said, shaking his head when she looked at him. His eyes shifted to Craig, Jay and Terry.

“Ah, looks like you’re okay now. We’d better go.” Terry said when silence resonated in the living room, Jessica casting glances at the three of them.

“Thanks for your help.” Riley said.

“Not a problem. Take care Jessica, Angus, Mark.”

“I’ll walk you out.” Rick said. As soon as the door was closed Jessica turned back to Mark.

“She needs medical attention, rape crisis counselling, assisted living. She can’t go on the way she has and the clan isn’t equipped for that kind of help.”

Mark stared at Jessica.

“Listen.” Jessica said when it was clear that Mark was not going to say anything. “Hardly anyone from the clan knows Elsie is even alive … oops, did I just ruin that?” she asked looking at the door.

“Terry, Jay and Craig have no idea who Elsie is.” Rick said having returned, standing on the periphery of the living room. “I checked that out before they left. No clue.”

“Good!” Jessica said clapping her hands. “So no one knows she even exists. There are a million private clinics around. They cost a lot. But I bet that the upside of being expensive is discretion. I don’t think anyone would believe a word she said anyway, but even so, if we pay enough no one will say anything.”

Jessica looked around when Mark continued to stare at her and no one said anything.

“I’ll pay for it. I have money.” She added.

“Jess, you’re not going to pay for it.” Riley said quietly, “We’ll take care of it. I take it you’ll want to visit these places yourself and find the suitable one?”

Jessica nodded. Initially happy that Riley seemed to understand what she wanted, his demeanor and tone had her studying him more closely. “I just want to make sure she ends up in the right place. I don’t think there’s any danger to visiting the sites, is there?”

Riley shook his head and forced a smile, “Of course not.”

“Mark? Will you come with me?” Jessica asked.

Mark blinked and looked down at the hand Jessica had taken. Turning to Riley, and then looking at Scott, Jim, Josh and Angus he asked, “Do you ever get used to this?”

“Eventually.” Jim said with a smile and a wink at Jessica.

“But you may want to do that pledge as soon as possible.” Scott added, “So you can at least feel like you’re working within some kind of boundaries.”

“We’ll do it tomorrow.” Sean said.

Jessica looked around, “Are we still talking about Elsie?”

“No, but you don’t need to worry about it.” Mark said, “Yes I will go with you to find a place for Elsie. And I’ll pay for it.”

Jessica beamed at Mark before throwing her arms around him and squeezing.

“We’ll pay for it.” Chris said, “The three of us. You, me and Justine. It’s the right thing to do.” He added when Mark looked at him in surprise.

A huge smile swallowed Jessica’s face as she looked at Justine and Chris. It quickly disappeared when she turned back to Angus. He was pale and clammy, pain etched onto his face. She kissed his cheek and was about to beg him to take medication again when she remembered the names Elsie had given her and Mark.

“I also want to get this information to the police.” Jessica said opening her cell phone she went to her contacts. “These are the names that Elsie gave us. Hopefully they can find the people that Earl sold. What’s wrong?” Jessica asked when all men and Leah exchanged looks.

“Nothing Jess.” Riley said, “In fact I think you’ll like this. We managed to get some very detailed information from Earl about the people he sold. I can guarantee that the police will find them.”

“You did!” Jessica exclaimed.

“Holy shit, really?” Mark asked.

“We can be persuasive when we want to be.” Sean said. The men and other adults exchanged glances that made it clear that any doubt they may have had about that in the past was now forever obliterated. And it was clear to Jessica that they weren’t just thinking about Earl and the information they got out of him. Everything from Abe and Rick turning on Stasia to Angus sacrificing himself for Jessica and Mark’s safety were well relayed in the respect and loyalty held in the looks exchanged. Jessica’s heart melted when she recognized the same qualities in the way her men and family looked at her. “We’ll send the information to the police, first thing tomorrow.”

“Thank you!” Jessica exclaimed.

“We should get you to bed.” Leah said.

“In a few minutes.” Angus mumbled.

“Jess, there’s something you need to know.” Riley said. “It’s about Paul. During our attempt to get you back, when he thought Stasia was in danger …” Riley paused and glanced at Rick and Abe, “Paul offered us release from the clan. He asked us for help with one more job, something big he’s working on. He didn’t say when it would happen but he understood that we wouldn’t wait long. He swore it would be in the next few months. We would have demanded immediate release but he still hadn’t told us where Earl was keeping you and we were running out of time.”

“What?” Jessica gasped.

“And we agreed.” Riley said.

Jessica was speechless. She looked around the room.

“But, we have no intentions of honoring that.” Jim said. “The only reason we agreed is to keep Paul happy. But it gives us an advantage. We’ll know when he and pretty much everyone working for him will be busy. It would be a good time to run.”

Jessica sighed in relief.

“Okay.” She nodded, felt herself starting to gnaw on her lip and looked up, “So we should start looking for homes for the animals.”

“The animals …” Riley said.

Jessica nodded, “We can’t take them with us. We have to find good homes for them. Especially Max, I don’t want anyone to hurt him.”

“That makes sense.” Josh agreed.

“We have to go to bed.” Riley said as Angus started to tilt on the sofa and Jessica suddenly couldn’t keep her eyes open. “It seems we have a lot of work to do tomorrow.” He added with a smile.

“Come on Jess.” Jim said scooping her up, “Angus needs to be cleaned up before he comes to bed.”

“Good night.” She said to everyone. “Will Angus be okay?” she whispered in Jim’s ear, watching Riley and Scott helping Angus to his feet.

“You were Jess so he will be too.”

Jessica was asleep as soon as Jim lay down with her but when Riley, Scott and Josh came in, practically carrying Angus, she woke up.

Jessica pressed up again Angus. When he wrapped his arms around her and squeezed she relaxed into him. But she couldn’t sleep, partially because he couldn’t. Obviously in pain, his body was rigid against her.

“There’s only one thing I want to do right now Jess.” Angus grumbled when she started pleading with him to take medication. “But I don’t know if you’re up for it.”

“Anything. Anything you want Angus, I’m up for it.”

Angus nodded and bringing his hand to Jessica’s tit he gently rolled her against Jim. A low growl escaped Angus as his hand slid from her tit down her stomach and between her legs. “Oh!” Jessica said surprised, and she spread her legs with only a moment of hesitation.

“Should we put more of that cream for the burns on your legs and pussy first?” Angus asked in a low growl.

Jessica shook her head, “What Doc put on is still working, I’m okay.”

“Good.” Angus moaned. “Hold her legs.” Angus said to Jim and Riley. “Wide so I don’t rub against her burns.”

Jessica felt Riley and Jim take her behind her knees and pull her legs as far apart as they could go.

“What I really want to do is eat you out.” Angus said brushing his lips over hers, stroking her meat with his finger, intermittently dipping in into her hole. “but I’m not flexible enough for that right now.”

“I’ll sit on your face.” Jessica whispered bringing her hands up to push on his chest, “Just lie down.”

“You’ll do no such thing.” He said, “You’ll do nothing at all.” He added.

“Not even that.” Scott said catching Jessica’s hand as it moved toward Angus’ cock.

“Your only job.” Angus said brushing her lips again as he increased his strokes on her clitoris, “is to cum. Come on baby, cum.”

“Why won’t you kiss me?” Jessica asked when Angus always looked like he was about to devour her lips but then at the last minute grazed them and moved to her cheek, her neck.

“I have no front teeth Jess.”

“So?” Jessica asked lunging up to try and kiss him.

“Isn’t that … gross?”

“No. You can never be gross Angus. Please kiss me. I need your tongue in my mou …”

Angus devoured her. His tongue invaded her mouth, her throat. Jim pulled on her nipple and whispered, “Be a good girl and cum Jess.” In her ear, “Cause after you do, after Angus is done, I’m going to eat you out. And I can’t wait to taste your pussy … your wet, wet, pussy …”

Jessica came. Several times and then Angus was between her legs, in her, pounding her. Riley and Jim each grasped one of her shoulders and held her in place so that each thrust was deeper, fuller, harder. Scott slid his hand between her legs and rubbed her clit while Angus pumped and Jessica came again, several times.

When he finally came Angus collapsed on top of her kissing her cheek and neck.

“I love you Jess.” He muttered.

He pushed up, looked at her and rolled to the side.

“Angus …” Jessica said worried by how pale he looked, how clammy he felt. But she didn’t have time to do or say any more because Jim was between her legs, eating her, stroking her, prodding her. Angus grasped Jessica behind the knee and pulled her leg up and that was the last time Jessica had time to notice him. For the next hour the men took turns and despite Jessica’s requests to pleasure them, Jessica wasn’t allowed to move from her prone position.

When everyone was spent Jessica lay on Scott, melting against him. He fondled her ass, Jim and Josh stroking each of her legs, lying alongside each one. Riley lay next to her and Scott’s heads and caressed her back. Angus was near their heads also, on the side that Jessica’s face was turned and after a few minutes of just watching Jessica Angus brought his thumb to her cheek and gently caressed the scratch marks. His hand was shaking. Jessica looked up at him with concern.

“You weren’t supposed to get hurt anymore.” Angus said quietly, his eyes filled with emotion.

“It doesn’t hurt Angus, honest. That cream is amazing.”

“Your legs and your pussy …” Angus added.

“All fine Angus …” Jessica replied but Angus shook his head.

“None of it is fine baby.”

“Angus, please take some medication.” Jessica said in desperation. He was so pale, sweating profusely, she pushed up on Scott and looked around at the men for help when Angus shook his head. But none of the men said anything. “Please …” she tried again, sliding off of Scott and as close to Angus as she could get.

“It’s late baby. Time to sleep.” he said pulling her close. Jessica snuggled in to him fully intending to try and persuade him to take some medication. But with the warmth of his body, the feeling of safety that came with being wrapped in his strong arms, and orgasmic bliss, a sudden overwhelming fatigue overtook her. Jessica was asleep in moments, everyone else not long after.

Jessica awoke just before the scream escaped her. She had no idea how long she slept but she was thankful that she woke herself before disturbing anyone else’s sleep. She had nightmares again but these ones were so close to actual events that they were doubly terrifying. Angus being raped over and over, his teeth knocked out. Mark having the rod shoved into him, raped as well. The two of them forced to rape each other. It was too much.

After tossing and turning for a while Jessica decided that she had to get up. The men wouldn’t like it but even Angus was asleep. She couldn’t be the one to disturb them. Slipping some pajamas on she crept to the living room, turned on a light and settled onto the sofa with her calculus book. But her mind was on anything but math. Words kept coming to her. Words about love, commitment, sacrifice. She scratched them down on the same page that she’d put other words for the songs she wanted to write.

A noise from the hallway caught her attention.

Looking up she found Leah, Corey, Sean and Sara coming into the living room. She was surprised to see Caleb and Quinn standing behind the sofa looking over her shoulder.

“You’re just too dedicated to your education.” Caleb said.

Jessica shook her head, “I’m actually working on a song.”

“Really?” Quinn asked. He and Caleb swung their legs over the back of the sofa, slid down on either side of Jessica and looked over her shoulder at her notebook.

“Nice and light I see.” Caleb muttered.

Jessica shrugged and looked up as Leah, Corey, Sean and Sara pulled up chairs around the sofa. Corey took the notebook from Jessica and passed it to Sean.

“It’s the way I feel.” She said when he and Sara read the song, passed it to Corey and Leah, and then looked up at her.

“We feel the same way.” Leah said. “I think I’m going to like this song.”

Sean handed the book back to her, “Having trouble sleeping?”

“So are we.” Sara said when Jessica nodded.

“Oh.” Jessica said, having an idea. She turned to a fresh page and wrote their names down the side of it. “What have you always wanted to do?” she asked looking around at them.

They looked back at her.

“Come on, there has to be something. If you died tomorrow, what would you regret not doing?”

“Having killed Earl sooner.” Sean said, “Before so many people got hurt.”

Jessica nodded. “That’s a good one.” She said, “But I was looking for something more fun … nice fun.” She added when Sean looked at her like killing Earl had been a great hoot. “The kind of fun that makes you laugh and isn’t psychologically scarring.”

“Like eating twenty burgers in a row without puking?” Corey asked.

“Closer.” Jessica said, “But a bit harder to do. Something fun that you would love to do but think you can’t for whatever reason.”

“Like a bucket list?” Leah asked.

“What the hell is a bucket list?” Corey asked when Jessica nodded.

“Things you want to do before you die. Like, climbing Mount Everest, or going down the Nile.” Leah said.

“Why do you need to know that?” Quinn asked, “Do you know something we don’t?”

“Yes.” Jessica said, “I know that at any time now we’re going to run from the clan. From what I’ve heard, that’s not so easy to do. I want us to do all the things we’ve wanted to do before that … just in case.”

“Justine, Amanda and I have always dreamed of being fashion designers.” Sara said. “We have notebooks full of designs.”

“Excellent.” Jessica said suddenly excited and scribbling something next to Sara’s name. “Tomorrow you need to go get those notebooks. And whatever else you need to make your designs into clothing.”

“You’re kidding.” Sara said, “We’d need a ton of equipment, material. Hours of labor. For what?”

Jessica beat the pen against her lips. Thinking.

“Jessica …” Corey said.

“For a fashion show. It’s perfect!” Jessica said nearly jumping off the sofa with excitement. “You can have the show at the bar. I’m sure Stephen and Lilly will let you. You could sell your clothes and maybe some of the proceeds can go to help support their kids.”

“Yeah, right.” Sean said, laughing.

“You’re serious!” Sara said.

“Very. Can I be one of your models?”

“Duh, yeah.” Sara said and laughed. She bounced on her seat, clearly excited.

“What about you?” Jessica asked Leah.

“Mine is silly.” Leah said, “and nearly impossible to do.”

“What is it?” Jessica prompted.

“Yeah, what is it?” Corey said sliding his arm around Leah and rocking her.

“I’ve always wanted to go to Paris. I don’t know why. I can’t even speak French.”

“It’s romantic, that’s why.” Sara said in a dreamy voice.

Sean, Corey, Caleb and Quinn looked at Sara, Leah and Jessica, when all three sighed wistfully, like they were insane.

Jessica scribbled Paris next to Leah’s name.

“Sean?” Jessica asked.

“I don’t have anything.” He said.

“Everyone has something.” Jessica said, “Maybe you just don’t remember right now.”

Corey, Caleb and Quinn shook their heads.

Jessica closed her book. “Just think about it, okay?”

“Maybe you should try to sleep now.” Sean said when Jessica fell back against the sofa and looked really tired.

“I can’t, and I’ll wake up the men if I go back to bed.” Jessica looked at the door. “Do you want to go jam in the studio?”

“Sure.” Corey said. Everyone agreed.

“I’ll leave a note for the men.” Jessica said tearing a page out of her book. She wrote, ‘In studio’ in huge letters and left the paper on the coffee table.

Forty five minutes later Jessica, Corey, Sean, Leah, Sara, Caleb and Quinn finished the last word of a song and fell against each other laughing.

“What the hell are you doing?” Riley demanded making everyone jump. Jessica and the others had arranged themselves on the sofa and chairs and had been so involved with one another and the songs they hadn’t noticed the men come in.

“Angus, why are you here?” Jessica asked, handing her guitar to Leah and running over into Angus’ arms. He looked awful. Beyond awful. “Why aren’t you in bed?” She reached up to feel his forehead but he pulled his head back.

“I could ask you the same thing.” Angus grumbled, “What did we tell you about leaving in the middle of the night?”

“You need your sleep.” Jessica said, “I would have kept you awake.”

Angus looked around at Corey, Sean, Leah, Sara, Caleb and Quinn. He nodded but didn’t look at all happy.

“I left you a note, on the coffee table …” Jessica said but her voice trailed off when Angus glared at her.

“We should go back to bed.” Riley said.

Jessica nodded and leaned in to Angus, pecking him on his lips. “You have a fever!” Jessica gasped when Angus’ lips were hot and dry.

“I’m fine. Let’s go, come on.” Angus snapped and started toward the door dragging Jessica by her arm.

“Angus!” Jim said and moved to block their path.

“Out of the way Jim.”

“So you’re reliving Jessica’s early days are you?” Jim demanded, “And which one of you is supposed to be the one suffering, you or her?”

That brought Angus up short.

“You never would have let Jessica talk to you like you just did to her, much less drag you around like you are doing to her. Eye contact, verbal responses, and most of all obedience. Those were the rules remember? You’re breaking them Angus. If you’re going to relive Jessica’s hell at least do it properly.”

Angus looked at Jessica clearly aghast with himself. “I’m sorry Jess. I’m so …” he shook his head. “It scared me when I woke up and you weren’t there. For a minute I thought that bringing you home had been a dream. I never want to feel that scared again.”

Jessica hugged Angus. “It doesn’t help that you’re delirious.” Jessica said touching his forehead again. “Please let us give you some medicine.”

Angus shook his head.

“We gave Jessica medication when she had a fever.” Scott said, “Remember?”

Angus looked confused of a moment but then nodded.

Everyone went back to the house. They watched in silence as Jessica fussed over Angus.

“You go ahead.” He said when Jessica wanted to help him to the bedroom, “I’ll get there eventually. Go Jess, please.”

Jessica’s face crumpled as she turned and headed down the hallway.

“You do know that you’re hurting her don’t you?” Leah demanded. “You’re suffering on her behalf so she feels guilty, and on top of that, you’re rude to her. If this is your idea of making things up to her you really suck at it.”

“I didn’t mean to hurt her.” Angus said looking down the hallway. “I just need to do this and she keeps trying to make me feel better.”

“Think about what you just said.” Josh said, “And now think about who you’re talking about. She’s never going to let you suffer no matter how much you may deserve it!” Josh regretted the words as soon as he said them but Angus rebuffed any attempts at apology.

“You’re right. The only way this will work is if you distract her for me. Keep her busy.”

“There doesn’t seem to be a shortage of ways to keep her busy.” Sean said, “But I don’t think she’ll leave you.”

“She will if she thinks I’m sleeping.” Angus said, “We’ll tell her I’m taking the medicine Doc left. I’ll stay in the bedroom, she can think I’m recuperating.”

“You want us to lie to her?” Riley asked. “Really? After all the shit we give her about honesty and trust?”

“You have to Riley.” Angus said and sobbed. “You have no idea how much this hurts.” He rambled, “I can’t act like it doesn’t around her and she’ll be upset. Jesus Christ, I don’t know how she stood it. This pain, and more of it heaped on over and over. But she did it so I have to too. It’s justice …”

“Okay. But Angus, she’s going to be mad at us. Really mad.” Jim said.

“Let me tell her.” Caleb said. “She can be mad at me for a while, I don’t mind.”

“Thanks.” Angus said.

In the bedroom Jessica lay curled up on the mattress. The men arranged themselves around her.

Caleb had followed them in.

“Jess, Angus let me give him some medication. He’ll be sleeping a lot for the next few days okay?”

Jessica nodded and wrapped herself around Angus.

“Thanks Caleb.” She said.

It seemed like with that worry removed, Jessica fell into a deep sleep.

It was noon by the time Jessica woke up. Most everyone else was up.

No sooner had Jessica sat down at the dining table then Sean was placing a piece of paper in front of her.

“Read this, out loud.” He said.

Jessica looked at the paper and began to read, “We promise on our lives that we will be loyal, truthful, and devoted to one another for the rest of our lives. We will never leave one another, under any circumstance. We have nothing to fear from one another. Honesty is paramount and can be practiced without fear of violence or harm. We will be bound by blood and our unity can never, ever be broken. There is no one more important to us then this family. We will protect one another at all costs. To this we pledge.”

Jessica looked up when she was done.

“We decided to make a whole new pledge that we would all take.” Sean said. “So it’s clear to everyone that ‘no sauce’ is never an option.”

“That’s Sean’s subtle way of saying that he’s happier than he’s been in a long time.” Leah said.

“A fucking long time.” Corey added.

“A fucking long time.” Leah agreed, “And that he loves this family. And us taking the pledge says that we do too.”

“I do too.” Jessica said.

“We’re not scared anymore,” Tom added, “Because of this family. We love it too.”

“Yeah!” The boys chanted in agreement. Nathan and Brett wrapping their arms around Jessica and hugging her.

“Then let’s do this.” Sean said.

Everyone stood in the living room, in a large circle that extended around the sofa.

Looking around at her family, Jessica’s couldn’t help but get teary eyed.

Jim slid his arm around her shoulder, and Angus had his arm around her other shoulder, Scott, holding him up on his other side. Riley and Josh stood next to Scott. They all looked as moved by the upcoming oath as Jessica felt.

“It is nice to have a family again.” Riley said quietly.

“One that cares more about its members than annihilating the government.” Angus muttered.

Jessica snuggled into Angus’ embrace her heart aching when her other men grunted their agreement.

“Let’s begin.” Sean said and the pledge was read out loud by everyone in unison. They pricked their fingers, even the boys, and mixed their blood by holding their cut fingers together.

“Technically we don’t really need to do this.” Jessica said to Leah and Corey, “I already have all of your blood. You’re just getting yours back.”

“It’s the symbolism that matters.” Leah said and kissed Jessica on both cheeks.

Afterwards there seemed to be a different energy between people. Jessica was suddenly being petted by everyone. Everywhere she went someone had a hand on her. On her back, on her arm, on her head. She realized that she and the twins seemed to have become everyone’s pets. But she didn’t mind.

“Let’s go find that home for Elsie.” Mark said to Jessica after she finally finished her breakfast.

“Mind if I tag along?” Abe asked. “In case Mark needs some meds …” Abe said by way of explanation when Jessica and Mark looked surprised. They agreed because Abe’s explanation made sense, but Jessica sensed that the pledge somehow had a hand in it. She didn’t know how or why exactly but the pledge seemed to have reversed some of the damage that she thought the whole Earl experience had caused her family. Even Rick, who was the most stand-offish person in the family was smiling at everyone, slapping shoulders, wrapping an arm around the shoulders of Jessica and the girls and giving affectionate squeezes.

Jessica saw Angus to bed and then climbed into Mark’s car with Abe and Mark.

“We’ll start looking for homes for the animals.” Riley said through the driver side window where Jessica sat between Mark and Abe on the front seat. “And don’t worry.” Riley added when Jessica looked panicked, “you’ll get to approve all new owners.”

Jessica, Mark and Abe visited over twenty homes in the area. They eventually found one that stood out over all the others. During the course of the day Jessica had explained the bucket list concept and wrote down that Mark wanted to surf in Hawaii and Abe was interested in scuba diving and investigating sunken ships. His dream ship was the Titanic but there was no way anyone would snorkel down that deep.

Mark had seemed fine during the day. A little slower than normal, but otherwise fine. But as they left the second visit to the home they liked, he suddenly seemed in pain.

“Are you okay?” Jessica asked in the car.

“Fine,” he said but pulled a black bag, similar to Doc’s, from the back seat.

“Let me.” Abe said and opened the bag. In it was a syringe and some vials.

Jessica watched Abe inject Mark.

“Is there more of that at home?” Jessica asked.

“What?” Abe asked.

“For Angus, is there more at home?”

“Oh, yeah, yeah.” Abe said exchanging a look with Mark. “Doc gave us two bags. Don’t worry.”

Almost instantly Mark’s face relaxed and he seemed okay again.

“We’d better go.” Abe said “or the nursing staff will get to Elsie’s before we do.”

An hour filled with heart wrenching drama later, Elsie was safely deposited in the home. Jessica had insisted on female staff coming to take Elsie. And despite that, it had still been an ordeal.

“I see why you wanted her in a home.” Abe said as they drove home, “That place was a dive and she’s right out of her tree.”

“What the hell?” Mark asked when they walked in the front door of the house. Folding tables were set up everywhere, coat racks littered the living room, rolls of fabric everywhere. Sara and Justine were using a couple of big sewing machines on the new tables. Amanda was measuring cloth.

“Welcome to bucket list hell.” Rick said. “Kidding.” He added when Jessica pretended to be hurt. Unable to keep it up for long Jessica giggled and stuck her tongue out at him.

“Jessica, come here!” Amanda shouted when she noticed her.

“Just a sec … Angus, are you going to sleep?” Jessica asked catching up with him in the hallway. He’d been on the sofa when they’d come in but he’d looked surprised then worried when Jessica looked at him. He’d gotten up and headed right for the hallway without even saying hello.

Angus nodded his head but he didn’t stop, turn around or say anything.

“Wait,” Jessica said and moved past him and into his path. “Angus!” she gasped. He looked awful. Pale, in pain, and clammy. “Did you have your medicine?” she asked reaching for his forehead but he dodged her hand.

“Yeah. Caleb just gave it to me.”

“Just now?” Jessica asked confused, “I didn’t see Caleb in there.”

“Well, about ten minutes ago. I’m fine, really, I just have to go to the bathroom … if you don’t mind …”

“Oh, okay.” Jessica said, stepped aside and watched Angus shuffle into the bathroom and close the door. Something wasn’t right. Jessica stood staring at the door. Eventually she moved to it and paused. She heard crying. Jessica pressed her ear to the door. In the bathroom Angus was crying. Jessica reached for the door handle but it wouldn’t turn. The door was locked. She was about to call out to Angus when a thought came to her. She froze. The more she thought about it the more likely it seemed. Jessica moved to the bedroom and dialed Doc on her cellphone.

“Hey lass, how are you?” Doc greeted.

“Fine Doc, fine. Um, how many bags of medicine did you leave here?” she asked.

“Just the one. Why, do you need more …”

“Thanks Doc.” Jessica said and hung up.

Angus was lying to her. They all were. Jessica went to the kitchen. When Amanda asked if she needed anything Jessica said she was getting a drink. To make it not a lie, Jessica had a mouthful of juice. Mark had put the bag back in the kitchen. As quickly as she could Jessica filled a syringe with the vial marked as a sedative and wrapped her hand around it.

Jessica went back to the bathroom door and knocked.

A muffled “what” came from inside.

“Angus, I’m going to come sleep with you okay?”

“No.” he managed. It was muffled but Jessica could tell he was still crying. “I’ll come out to the living room. Just go back. I’ll be there soon.”

Jessica contemplated waiting here for him and sticking him with the needle when he came out but he was too heavy. He’d fall and she wouldn’t be able to hold him.

So Jessica went back out to the living room. She watched as Amanda, Justine and Sara’s worked and was getting ready to go back to check on Angus when she noticed him coming down the hallway.

She went to the sofa. By now most everyone was there. The boys were fooling around, Sara, Justine and Amanda were sewing, the other adults were seated around the sofa. Only Riley and Scott were still missing, probably still looking for new owners for the animals.

Jessica feigned interest in the game the twins were playing with some toy cars. She barely acknowledged Angus when he sat down next to her. And with no warning, and a lot of satisfaction Jessica turned and stuck the needle in Angus’ arm, shooting the substance into him.

“Jessica! What did you …” was all Angus got out before slumping against Corey who sat next to him. Silence fell over the room.

“Did you just …” Don asked.

“Yes I did.” Jessica said standing. She looked at Abe and Caleb, “He has a fever, can you bring it down? And for the next few days, until he’s better, Angus is staying sedated. Okay?” She looked around at everyone. Jim and Josh were still gaping at Angus’ motionless form. “Okay?” she prompted.

People started to nod.

“We didn’t want you to worry about him.” Jim said when Jessica couldn’t hide her feeling of betrayal.

“I know.” Jessica said not able to feel the anger that she somehow thought she should.

“He’s going to be pissed when he wakes up.” Josh said.

“Yes, but he’ll be healthy. That’s all I care about.” Jessica said.

“Let’s get him to bed.” Abe said.

Jim and Josh took an arm each, Abe and Rick a leg each and carried him to the bedroom.

When Riley and Scott got home an hour later Abe was making dinner. Jessica and Leah were ooing over the designs that Sara, Justine and Amanda were working on, and the other men were out doing chores with the boys.

Riley and Scott kissed Jessica hello, said they had some possible homes to take her to the next day, and moved to the kitchen for a drink.

“Jessica!” Riley said. Jessica turned to see Riley, Scott and Abe standing together in the kitchen. “Did you drug Angus?”

“Somebody had to.” Jessica said going into the kitchen and into Riley’s arms.

“You should have seen her. It was like watching animal kingdom. Angus was like some poor unsuspecting animal just sitting there, clueless, and the next second bitten by a cobra he never saw coming.” Abe said.

“You might want to be careful about making snake analogies with me …” Jessica said in a disgruntled tone.

“Really?” Abe said looking at her in surprise.

“Jess!” Riley said.

“I’m sorry Abe, I didn’t mean it.” Jessica said giving him a quick hug. “It’s just that it kind of sucks being lied to … by everybody.”

“Technically only one person lied to you Jess.” Caleb said closing the door behind him. “And that was me. Everybody else just kept quiet.”

“Hmph.” Jessica said crossing her arms and stepping away from Riley and Scott, “I see.” She said, “So when everyone else omits the truth it’s ‘keeping quiet’ but when I do it it’s a capital crime.”

Abe, Caleb, Leah, Justine, Sara and Amanda stood looking between Jessica, Riley and Scott.

After a moment Riley nodded. “It seems to be the case.” He said.

“Angus wants to make up for what he did to you.” Scott said, “And he did a lot. Doesn’t part of you want him to suffer a little? Just for a while?”

“Scott!” Jessica said her jaw dropping. She stared at him in complete disbelief. “How could you think such a thing?”

Scott lowered his head. “Maybe that’s how I feel.”

Now everyone was gaping at Scott. “I would never have wished this on him to begin with.” Scott said looking at Jessica again, “But since he finds himself in this situation … I guess this makes me a monster. I’m sorry. I’ll be with the horses.”

“No. Scott, wait.” Jessica said stepping into his arms before he could get out of the kitchen. “You’re not a monster. I’m sorry, I’m just taken by surprise. Are you still mad at Angus? I thought we were done with all of that.”

“I thought so too.” Scott said. “I guess everything that’s happened has kind of brought it back up again.”

“You’re going to talk to him about this right?” Jessica said.

Scott nodded, “When he wakes up.”

Jim and Josh had come in and caught the end of the conversation.

“Is that why you let him lie about the medicine?” Jessica asked looking at Riley, Scott, Josh and Jim. “To let him suffer?”

Jim shrugged when Jessica looked at him. “It was what he wanted, it was what seemed fair. A win-win really.”

“Okay.” Jessica said completely sideswiped by the realization that the men felt that way. “Well, he’s done his suffering. He’s paid his dues by my book. But if he hasn’t by yours then you’d better be talking to him about it when he wakes up. That’s a resentment.”

“What about you Jess?” Josh asked, “Do you resent us for feeling this way?”

Jessica exhaled, took Scott’s hand and dragged him with her over to Josh so she could hug both of them. “No, I don’t. But I do resent that you decided to ‘omit’ the truth from me. Don’t ever do that again. Okay?”

The men nodded. “Sorry Jess.” They each said. There was a solemn atmosphere in the room that Jessica desperately wanted to get rid of.

“I was wondering if we could have a bonfire tonight?” Jessica asked. “I’ve been telling the boys about them. They’re really excited.”

“Sure, sounds like a good idea.” Caleb said.

“What does?” Sean asked when he, Rick, Chris, Don, Quinn, Mark, Corey and the boys came in.

“A bonfire.” Jessica said. The boys cheered with excitement.

“Okay but for a bonfire we need a lot of wood. You boys get back outside and gather as much wood as you can find.” Jessica said. The boys ran out the door.

“Um, have you heard anything from Beth?” Jessica asked looking at her men.

“No.” Jim said. “I can’t get a hold of her.”

“I’m worried.” Jessica said pulling Scott and Josh to the sofa with her and curling up to them once they were all seated. “Quinn and I went back to the house where we last saw her. No one’s there. No one at the bar has heard from her in forever.”

“Do you want me to check with some of Paul’s folks. See if Paul’s done anything with her?” Rick asked.

“Could you? Please?”

“I’ll call them now.” Rick said and headed outside while punching numbers into his cell phone.

Suddenly Sean snapped his fingers and pointed at Jessica and said, “Fly a plane.”

“Excellent.” Jessica said going to find her calculus book.

“Huh?” Riley asked when Jessica came back with her book and pen and looked really excited as she flipped through the pages.

“That’s my bucket list item.” Sean said, “I want to learn to fly a plane.”

“I haven’t had a chance to ask you yet.” She said looking at Riley, Scott, Jim and Josh. “What do you want to do before you die … something fun.”

“Die?” Scott asked.

“Old age death, like when you’re a hundred or something.” Quinn said, “Not violent, unexpected and early death. We clarified that last night.”

“Something you’d regret not doing before you die.” Caleb added.

“Running with the bulls.” Corey suddenly said.

“What? Isn’t that in Spain?” Leah asked.

“Yeah, kind of like Paris is in France.” Corey said and laughed when Leah stuck her tongue out at him.

“Isn’t it also kind of dangerous?” Sara asked.

“And living in a clan isn’t?” Corey countered.

“So?” Jessica prompted looking at Riley, Scott , Josh and Jim expectantly.

“I don’t know.” Jim said. Riley, Scott and Josh shook their heads.

“Think about it, everyone has something.” Jessica said.

“Hey, did you show them your song?” Sean asked.

“Oh no, not yet. Here.” Jessica said passing her book to Jim. He leaned forward so Riley could read it with him.

“That’s … wow.” Riley said, handing the book to Scott so he and Josh could read it.

“Could you write the music to go with it?” Jessica asked Jim.

Jim nodded. “Do you see it as a slow song?”

“A mix.” Jessica said. “I think it should be different, sort of like we are. Oh. Yeah. Corey.” Jessica said eyeing Leah. Sure that she wasn’t paying attention Jessica motioned Corey to follow her to the laptop.

“I know this isn’t actually really Paris.” Jessica said sitting on the chair at the laptop. Corey leaned over her, an arm on either side of her, head down by hers, looking at the screen. “But it’s close enough for now.”

Riley walked over to look at what they were doing.

“What is that?” Riley asked.

“Shhh.” Jessica said looking over at Leah in a panic. But Leah was oblivious so she motioned Riley, and Scott, Jim and Josh closer. “It’s a theme resort. Inside it’s a mini replica of France. You should take Leah.” Jessica said to Corey, looking up at him as he looked down over top of her.

“We should all go.” Corey said, “I don’t think Leah would go to Paris without you.”

Jessica considered that. “The boys would love it too.”

“Then it’s a date. They’re not in their full season for a couple of months so I’ll make reservations for then.”

“Dinner’s ready.” Abe called. Don called the boys in and soon there was laughter and chatter all through the house as everyone ate.

“Jess, you’re not eating.” Josh said when Jessica sat for about ten minutes pushing the food around her plate with her fork.

“I’m not really hungry. Do you mind if I check on Angus?”

“Go ahead but come back for the rest of your food.” Josh said.

Fifteen minutes later Jessica hadn’t returned. Josh went to check on her.

“She fell to sleep with Angus.” Josh said returning.

“Let her sleep.” Jim said.

“But the bonfire!” Reese exclaimed.

“We’ll still have it.” Scott replied.

“But Jessie has to come.” Chad said.

“Not a problem guys.” Abe said, “ I have to give Angus his next injection in an hour. Let her sleep for an hour and then we’ll get her up for the bonfire.”

Crisis averted the boys finished their food and went outside to play.

Hours later, well after the bonfire and the singing and the hot chocolate and marshmallows, everyone was in bed. Angus lay snoring on one side of Jessica, the other men arranged themselves around her.

“Angus will be awake tomorrow.” Jim said his fingers caressing the top of Jessica’s head.

“Mhmm.” Jessica acknowledged after a pausing a moment.

“Are you nervous?” Josh asked. “You seem nervous.”

“A little.” Jessica said, “I think he’s going to be mad at me.”

“Abe said he may be cranky and moody after the anesthetic.” Josh said, “That’s Angus on a good day. But I think he’ll understand why you did it.”

“Look at it this way.” Scott said, “once he’s awake we can go to that drive-in and the fair like you wanted.”

“That’s true.” Jessica said, excitement in her voice. “I can’t believe that none of you have been to a drive in. And the fair … I mean, I knew you hadn’t, but Sean, the others, the boys … you’re all going to have a blast.”

“Yeah, well, I wish he was awake right now.” Riley said. “There are things I want to do to you right now Jess, but I don’t think it’d be fair for Angus … missing out on it.”

Jessica groaned. “It’s going to be a long night.”

“Fuck yes. But Jess, if you get up later take us with you okay?” Jim asked.

Jessica nodded.

“We better get to sleep before I decide to stop being fair to Angus.” Riley said.

“Good night.” Jessica said and soon they were asleep.

Jessica bolted up, clamping her hand over her mouth to stifle a piercing scream.

“It’s okay Jess, shhh, you’re okay.” Scott soothed, pulling her into his arms. She sobbed against his chest very aware of Riley, Jim and Josh sitting up around her.

“I’m sorry.” Jessica whispered when Riley squeezed her knee, Jim her ankle and Josh her hand. Thankfully the sedatives kept Angus completely oblivious to what was happening around him.

“Don’t be baby.” Scott whispered in her ear before standing and scooping her into his arms. He carried her into the living room followed by Riley, Jim and Josh. Settling on the sofa, Jessica on his lap, nestled into his chest, Scott wiped the tears from her eyes.

“I don’t think I’ll ever get their screaming out of my head.” Jessica said between sniffles, “Angus and Mark … It must have been even worse watching those videos Earl made. Seeing and hearing all those kids … I’m so sorry I asked you to.”

“I won’t pretend it was easy.” Jim said rubbing Jessica’s back, sitting next to her and Scott on the sofa, “But it was necessary and to help the boys I would do it again.”

“Sometimes I wake up at night, shaking.” Scott said, “But it’s not because of the videos or what happened to Angus and Mark. There was a time when you were the one screaming. When Angus would hurt you. Jess, I wanted Angus to suffer a little for what he did to you, I admit that. But the truth is we were no better. Standing by, letting it happen. Nothing haunts me more than that.”

Jessica pushed off of Scott’s chest and sat looking at him.

“And I’d given the orders.” Riley added, sitting next to Jessica and Scott on their other side. He took Jessica’s hand in hers and gave a gentle tug, “I masterminded the whole thing. Honestly it should have been me in Angus’ place. No, Jess, please don’t say anything.” He added when Jessica clutched his hand and seemed to be struggling for words. “We’re not telling you this to make you feel bad … just to say that you shouldn’t let Angus’ screams torture you. They really were justice coming around and someday the rest of us will find a way to atone for what we’ve done.”

“No, please …” Jessica said in a panic.

“Jess … don’t worry.” Josh interrupted. He’d pulled the armchair closer to the sofa and leaned forward in it now, grasping her knee, “It won’t be like Angus made up for it, we promise. We’re not going to do anything that will hurt you. Every moment of every day of our lives will be spent making things right with you and somehow we’ll find a way to make right what we did to you and your family. You’ll be proud of us baby, I promise you.”

“Please don’t.” Jessica finally managed fear gripping her. Something about their expressions, their demeanour, their tone, terrified her. “Any suffering that any one of you do will hurt me … it will. I don’t want you to …”

“We know Jess. Don’t worry we won’t suffer. We’ll never hurt you again.” Jim said and Jessica leaned back into him. “Like Josh said, you’ll be proud of us. Just think of this as our bucket list items.”

“Jess look at me.” Riley said when it was evident that Jessica was upset. Worried, scared and completely freaked out. He took her head in his hands and held her still, staring into her eyes. “It’s late and we’re all tired. Things seem a thousand times worse than they really are right now. We love you, we will never hurt you, even to try and make things up to you. I promise you that. The only point of this conversation was to try and make what happened to Angus seem less bad but I think we fucked that up didn’t we? Look, babe, why don’t we make you some warm milk and just cuddle for a while?”

Jessica nodded, “But I want real bucket list items.” She said looking over her shoulder at Jim and then around at the other men. She worked hard to smother the terror that still gripped her. She knew in her heart that Riley was downplaying things for her. They all were. The expressions of devotion that the men wore ever since Daryl had somehow intensified and it haunted her to know that each of them would likely sacrifice like Angus had. Right then, at that moment, Jessica vowed to help them find a way to make things right another way. “Bucket list things should be fun and enriching. Making me proud of you doesn’t count. And aside from the boys, who don’t quite seem to get the concept, you are the only ones left without items on the list. But, um, if you really want to atone for what you did to me in the early years, I know exactly what to do. When we get away from Paul and the clan we have to help the police get them. The entire clan. They can’t keep hurting people and I think if you help bring them in to the authorities it will be easier to get you a pardon.”

“We could do that now.” Josh said, more excited than Jessica had expected him or any of the other men to be. Looking around she was surprised to see that Riley, Scott and Jim were equally enthused.

“Do you think Angus, Sean, Corey and the others would be okay with that?” Jessica asked.

“Angus yes.” Scott said, “We’d have to talk to the others.”

“What are you thinking?” Riley asked, grasping her chin and gently pulling her bottom lip out of Jessica’s mouth with his thumb. He tried to smile but it didn’t quite work.

Jessica turned her face into the palm of his hand and kissed it. “I’m thinking that we have to be smart about this. If we spook Paul or anyone else in the clan they will disappear. Or they will come after us. We have to keep the boys safe … that’s most important.”

Riley nodded. The other men seemed deep in thought.

“The ideal thing,” Riley finally said, “would be to wait for the big job Paul is going to ask us to do. I’m certain he’ll have all of his people involved and most likely call in the other cells. That would be the perfect time for an FBI sweep.”

Jessica nodded, “That makes sense.”

“It could be a while, before he asks for our help.” Jim said.

Jessica nodded.

“He could be hurting people in the meantime.” Josh added.

“I know.” Jessica said quietly. “But I don’t see another way. Stopping just Paul isn’t enough. There will be someone to replace him, and there are all the other clans. I hope no one else gets hurt. I really do. But I think in the long run we will help the most people by being patient and waiting for the right time.”

“You’re right, as usual.” Scott said, squeezing her when she gave him a small smile.

“I wasn’t so right with Stan.” Jessica said.

“Stan didn’t know what was good for him and he paid for it.” Riley said. “Like we’ve always said, your instincts are different from ours Jess. And with the exception of your need to sacrifice yourself in the process, your instincts are good. Don’t doubt yourself. Ever.”

Jessica sat staring at Riley for a minute before she blinked back tears. Sliding off of Scott’s lap onto Riley’s she wrapped her arms around his neck, and buried her face in his chest. Surprised, Riley wrapped his arms around her and held her tight. “What’s wrong babe?”

Jessica shook her head and mumbled “Thank you,” into his chest.

“I’ll get the milk.” Scott said rubbing Jessica’s back before heaving himself off the sofa and heading to the kitchen.

Fifteen minutes later the five of them sat on the sofa, each with a mug of warm milk in hand. Jessica on Jim’s lap, leaning against him.

“I’ve never had warm milk before in my life.” Scott said sipping from his cup. The other men agreed.

“That’s because you prefer warm whiskey.” Jessica said with a giggle, “But warm milk is much much better.”

“We’ll see little girl.” Riley replied, “It sure as hell isn’t helping dull my urge to jump you. Damn Angus.”

Jessica giggled again, “It usually goes along with a bedtime story … I used to fall to sleep before my mom or dad was anywhere near finished telling it.”

“What was your favorite?” Jim asked.

“I loved them all.” Jessica said with a yawn.

“What about Jessica and the five bears?” Jim asked pulling her harder against him.

“Hmmm … sounds intriguing.” Jessica said with another yawn.

“Oh it is.” Jim said. Taking her empty coffee mug he passed it to Scott. “Close your eyes baby… once upon a time there was an incredibly sexy young woman named Jessica.”

“Mmm, and there were five incredibly sexy bears?” Jessica murmured as she began to drift off.

“Get me a pillow and blanket.” Jim said quietly, “I’ll sleep out here with her.”

“You think the others will go along with turning the clan in to the cops?” Jim asked the men as he settled onto the sofa with Jessica.

“I think so.” Riley said, “It sure as hell beats looking over our shoulders for the rest of our lives.”

“Did you ever in your life imagine that one day we’d be willing to turn the clan in?” Scott asked.

The men shook their heads.

“But I never in my life imagined anyone like Jessica.” Josh added.

The men agreed before heading to bed.

The next day was busy for Jessica. It started by taking the older boys to the store for new shoes, dropping them at home, taking Sara, Justine and Amanda to meet Stephen and Lilly and making plans for the upcoming fashion show. Then dropping them off at home, Jessica went with Scott, Riley, and a few of the boys to drop the dogs off at their new homes. They’d managed to get rid of all of them. Jessica couldn’t help crying when she said goodbye to Baby and Max. Max, the boy, kept reminding her that she still had him so eventually she had to smile. And she was happy with the families they’d found. They were all nice people with lots of space and patience for the dogs.

After dropping Riley, Scott and the boys off, she went to visit Elsie. Mark had decided that it wasn’t worth going with her. Elsie was permanently ruined on men. But she was clean, fed, and seemed happy to see Jessica. It was late afternoon when Jessica finally came home. She had to laugh as she walked to the house. The boys were outside running around pretending to shoot one another. Even after all the violence they’d had in their lives, they still found it entertaining to pretend to kill each other. Shaking her head she decided that they needed a more positive way to burn off energy. She decided to talk to Rick and Abe about helping her work with the boys on gymnastics and acrobatics.

Jessica walked in the house, still shaking her head about the boys when she looked up and stopped. All the adults were in the living room, and in the center of them all, on the sofa, Angus slouched. Scott and Jim sat on either side of him, Riley, Josh and everyone else on chairs around the sofa. The room was silent, everyone looked tense. Jessica’s heart thudded. What if Angus couldn’t forgive her?

Angus sat up and looked at her.

Jessica hesitated. She couldn’t tell if Angus was mad or not, but she wished she’d prepped herself before coming in. She had completely forgot that he’d be awake and likely upset with her.

“How’s Elsie?” Angus asked.

“She’s okay.” Jessica said and was relieved to see that Angus looked better. A lot better. “How are you?” she asked going to stand in front of him, running her hand through his hair before sliding onto his lap.

“Better now that you’re here.” Angus said burying his lips in her hair, as he pulled her against him. “It appears that you’re the only one here who didn’t want me to suffer.” He mumbled into her hair. Jessica tried to move back so she could see Angus’ face but he wouldn’t let her.

“I’m sorry Angus but I couldn’t let you do it. I couldn’t tell you this earlier because I don’t think you would have believed me. But I forgive you. You, and Riley, Scott, Josh and Jim. There’s nothing to feel guilty about anymore, no bad feelings, nothing. Angus?” she asked when he went stock still. He held her in place so she couldn’t look around either. In her direct line of sight she could see Justine and Mark and they were watching her, but no one said anything.

“You said you’d never be able to forgive us.” Angus said.

“I know, and I was wrong. I love you. More than anything. I love you and Riley, Scott, Jim and Josh of course, but I also love the family you’ve given me. I have a whole new life now Angus. A life I love.”

Angus loosened his grip and Jessica sat up. “How are you feeling?” she asked cupping his cheek with her hand.

“Like a million dollars.” Angus said kissing the inside of her hand.

Jessica shifted her gaze to Riley, Scott, Josh and Jim. “Did you guys have a conversation about what we talked about yesterday?”

They nodded. “About both things we spoke about yesterday. The resentments and Paul.”

Jessica’s heart thudded. That’s why everyone was so serious. What if turning the clan in was more than the others were willing to do?

“Don’t be mad at them Jess.” Angus said, “We’re on the same page about what I did to you.”

“But can you forgive yourselves now? Can you forgive Angus?” she asked looking at her men.

“We’ve worked things out Jess.” Scott said with a nod. “Everything’s fine.”

“And you’re not mad at me?” Jessica asked Angus.

Angus shook his head, pulling her tighter against him and kissing the top of her head.

“And … and the other thing?” Jessica asked looking around at Sean, Corey and the others. “I know it’s a lot to ask,” Jessica continued in a nervous tone, looking from the face of one family member to the other, “but the clan just keeps on hurting people. That can’t go on … this is the best, non-violent, way I can think of to stop them. And … and … it’ll help get you all a pardon with the government.” Finally she settled her eyes on Angus. It was hard to read his reaction. He had the same devoted expression on his face that the other men wore but there was an edge to it Jessica just couldn’t decipher. “I know it’s a lot to ask …” Jessica repeated, nervous that she may have gone too far in asking it.

“Baby, I’ll do whatever you want. Anything. Just say the word, I’ll do it.” Angus said and while his words were a relief, the severity in his expression intensified. Jessica raised her hand to his face, tracing it with her fingers.

“I promise that your issues with the government will be addressed. Through the courts, through law … I would never ask you to give up your beliefs …” Jessica said, searching Angus’ eyes, then glancing at the others in the room.

“We know Jessica.” Sean finally said and despite how serious he looked his tone was gentle. “We have no doubt that you’ll represent us effectively. I’d be lying if I said any one of us were crazy about turning the clan in. It’s not our first, second or third choice. But Riley has suggested that we don’t actually need to do anything. Your men will turn over the info, we’ll just let them. We’re okay with that, if you are.”

Jessica nodded. In truth that was more than she really thought she could ask of them. Jessica’s momentary elation at Sean’s words was overshadowed by the ever present tension in the room.

“What’s wrong then?” Jessica asked glancing around, at her family, at the men.

“Jess … if Paul and the clan are going to pay for the things they’ve done in prison, how are we going to pay for what we’ve done?” Angus asked. “Especially for what we did to your family.”

“We all had some part to play in that.” Corey added, “Except the girls and Rick and Abe.”

“The best way for us to pay for our crimes is to turn ourselves in too.” Scott added. Jessica gaped at him. Then at the other men, then the family. Her mind raced as every fibre of her being screamed, “No!”.

“Baby, if you didn’t love us like you do, you would want us to go to jail, just like you want Paul and the rest of the clan to.” Riley said, moving to the sofa and squatting in front of Jessica. Jessica shook her head but when she saw Riley’s resolve harden she realized that she had to be careful about how she responded.

“Thinking about it logically, if you didn’t have feelings for us, that’s exactly what you’d want.” Jim added.

Logic … she had to be logical in what she said or they wouldn’t take her seriously. She began to recognize the expressions around her as ones of indulgence. They were humoring her … panic welled up in her. They thought she was blinded by her feelings for them and not thinking straight. The thought of them going to prison, any one of them but especially her men made her want to vomit.

“You’re right.” Jessica finally managed to say. “My love for you is clouding my vision when it comes to the idea of you going to prison. I don’t want you to.” She looked to each of her men, and then around the room. “But when I suggested turning the clan in I based it on the future. I’ve forgotten the past, remember? We all have. But looking into the future the clan will continue hurting people and you won’t. You’ve all stopped, and there’s so much good you can do for society in the future, so much that can help make up for the past. But you can’t do that from behind bars.”

“Like what?” Caleb asked.

“To start with, we have twelve boys who we can raise to be strong, caring men, who contribute to society. Rather than be angry and violent they can be doctors, teachers, lawyers, humanitarians. We have to invest in their education. Teach them to read, do math. When we finally get away from the clan they need tutors. On top of that we can continue to invest money into organizations that help victims deal with violence. We’re already doing that with the comic book,” Jessica said nodding at Josh, “but your fashion sales can help,” she said to Sara, Justine and Amanda, “revenue from everything we do. When we settle down away from the clan we will get the dogs and horses back and we can breed dogs and race horses. That will help. Repairing cars,” Jessica looked to Angus, “Anything else, can all be used for good. Don can use his computer skills to help feed information to the authorities about any terrorist groups out there … not the clan, but other organizations … I haven’t thought of everything yet but can’t you see that you’re all more good to society outside of prison than in it?”

“But Jess, given your career plans, do you really think you’ll make it through school and through the law system without someone realizing who you are?” Abe asked. “How do you think people will react when they know that you’re protecting the killers of your family?”

“I don’t care what they think. The law is the law, it has nothing to do with perceptions about the people practicing it. I know I’m biased so it may be hard to believe me but as a … victim …” Jessica stumbled over the word hoping it wasn’t going to undo her efforts at convincing the men to move forward and not dwell on the past and what they’d done to her, “I appreciate future acts of kindness from all of you over having you sit in prison to pay for past crimes. And honestly,” she added, her voice breaking, “I can’t lose another family. I know it’s selfish, but I need you too much.” Jessica had lowered her eyes to stare at Angus’ chest where she absent mindedly ran her thumb back and forth over his shirt. When the silence in the room stretched for far too long Jessica looked up. Angus was watching her and somehow his look of devotion had intensified. It scared her. Finally he forced a smile.

“We need you too, more than you’ll ever know. Whatever you want, it’s yours. Prison, no prison, it’s all up to you.” Angus said.

“No prison.” Jessica replied. When Angus gave a slight nod Jessica turned to the other men. Jim and Scott beside her and Angus, Riley still squatting in front of her, Josh standing next to him.

“Like Angus said, anything you want.” Riley said. Scott, Jim and Josh nodded.

“I won’t volunteer to go to prison.” Quinn said when her eyes moved to him. “But I will help bring other terrorist organizations down in whatever way I can. And I sure as fuck will do whatever good deeds I can. And for the record Jess, you’re not the only one who needs this family. Being the outcast for most of my life I know what loneliness feels like and I don’t want that again anytime soon.”

There was a general murmur of agreement.

“So, to be sure we’re all on the same page,” Sean said, “when Paul asks us to do his big job, your men will call the authorities. We’ll all run. Settle down somewhere and you’ll finish your education, become a lawyer, and the rest of us will do so many good deeds we’ll make saints look like sinners. Correct?”

Jessica nodded not sure at first if Sean was being sarcastic or not. She felt relieved when Sean smiled and the expressions around her softened.

“Rick and Abe, are you on board with this. You haven’t said much.” Riley said, “And neither of you were involved in the attack on Jessica’s family. You have nothing to make up to her, no reason to turn in the clan.”

Jessica looked over at Abe and Rick and found them looking like deer in the headlight. They looked at one another, and then Abe shrugged.

“We have lots to make up for, believe me.” Abe said and looked at Jessica like she was a foreign creature he couldn’t quite understand. Rick looked equally thrown off. “We won’t rat on the clan but we won’t get in your way.” Abe continued while scanning the faces in the room. “Deciding to leave the clan was a huge betrayal. Turning in the clan takes things to a completely different level of betrayal. You’re really willing to do that? I know you love Jessica but … that’s beyond love.”

“You just said you’re willing to do the same.” Corey replied, “Does it really need explaining?”

“I guess not.” Abe agreed but both Rick and Abe looked bewildered.

“Are you going to be able to stay committed to this?” Jim asked, “You look undecided.”

“We’re committed.” Rick replied and his tone left no room for doubt. “I think you know we are. Anthony, Earl, plans to leave the clan … we’ve been with you every step of the way. But turning the clan in … we never believed you’d be willing to do that or to condone it.”

“You’re not alone on that.” Don said and then winked at Jessica before pulling Amanda into his embrace, smiling down at her and kissing her, “But sometimes unexpected people and circumstances come into your life and you end up in places you never thought you would.”

“So we’re all in agreement?” Sean asked. Everyone nodded.

“And about the boys.” Jessica added, “They’ll learn better if they get some help coping with what has happened to them. They need counselling. Badly. And the sooner, the better, but I think it’s too risky to have them seeing anyone outside the clan. Unlike Elsie, I think what they say will be believed and they can’t get the help they need if they have to hide some facts to protect us.”

“I know a psychologist who is clan friendly.” Abe said. “He’s real good. Want me to get a hold of him?”

“Yes, please.” Jessica said clearly excited.

“And maybe you should take advantage of his services too.” Abe added.

“What? Me?” Jessica asked in surprise. “No … no, I’m fine.” She added, even more surprised when it looked like everyone in the room found Abe’s suggestion reasonable.

“K if you say so.” Abe said, “After dinner I’ll give him a call.” Giving Jessica’s head a quick rub he moved into the kitchen.

“Now that that’s settled.” Angus said, holding his cell phone up and punching something into it. “I have a surprise for you. Kind of an apology for worrying and lying to you.” He kissed Jessica. A moment later there was a knock at the front door. “Come in!” he called.

“Beth!” Jessica squealed and ran to Beth when she walked in the door. “You’re okay!” she exclaimed, hugging her, kissing her, grasping her arms to make sure she was real and not part of her imagination. Satisfied that it was really Beth, she ran back to Angus, kissed him, kissed her men, hugged everyone else. She was euphoric.

Everyone was smiling, clearly happy with the effect of the surprise on Jessica. They moved away and found things to do when Jessica pulled Beth to the sofa with her.

“Are you okay?” Jessica demanded, “Where did you go? Quinn and I have been looking for you, Jim has been looking for you …”

“I moved.” Beth said, “When Quinn pointed out how many people I was putting in danger I decided it was better if I was on my own.”

“Did you see the plastic surgeon?”

Beth nodded. “He does good work, but Jess he’s so expensive. I can’t afford it.”

“I’ll pay for it.” Jessica said.

“No Jess.”

“Yes. You make an appointment, tell me when you need the money and I’ll get it to you.”

Beth nodded. Then she looked around.

“You’ve been busy Jess. I heard about Earl. I’m sorry I couldn’t have helped you …”

“No Beth, please don’t … I’m glad you avoided all of that.”

“Listen, I should go.” Beth said suddenly.

“What, no. Beth you have to stay. We have room. Stay with us. Please.”

Beth leaned forward and kissed Jessica, then hugged her. “I appreciate the thought Jess, but it’s too late for that. I’m happy where I am, really. I’ll let you know about the appointment with the surgeon okay?”

“Beth, wait.” Jessica said grabbing her hand. “This is your family too. It was your family first. Please don’t go.”

“That’s where you’re wrong Jess.” Beth said, but she didn’t sound angry or upset, just resigned. “This family never treated me like it’s treating you. Hell, the clan never treated me like it treated you. But that’s okay. We’re different people, with drastically different personalities. I’ll see you later okay?”

Standing Beth looked around and when she saw Abe and Rick she did a double take.

“They’re with us now.” Sean said, “It’s okay.”

Beth nodded and walked out the door.

“I’m sorry Jess.” Angus said going to her when she stood staring at the door. “I didn’t think she’d leave so fast.”

Jessica shook her head. “It’s okay. She’s okay, that’s all that matters.”

“Dinner’s ready.” Abe called from the kitchen.

“Jess, you have to eat more than that.” Riley said fifteen minutes later when everyone else had finished eating.

“I’ll have popcorn at the movies.” Jessica said resulting in hoots from the boys.

“With lots of butter!” Nathan exclaimed.

“Jessica, you didn’t eat anything.” Abe said coming to stand next to her, staring down at her plate.

“I’m sorry, I’m just not …”

“Hungry, we know.” Sean said, “But you need to eat something. You may think we didn’t notice but you had next to nothing for breakfast, Lord knows what for lunch. Sit back down and eat at least half of that.”

Jessica was tempted to tell them that she felt queasy but she was afraid they’d cancel the drive-in if she did.

“You’re not going to the movie if you don’t eat.” Leah said, “And besides, think of the example you’re setting for the boys. You expect them to eat, so you eat too.”

Jessica sighed. She started to shovel the food into her mouth, slowly yet steadily.

“Now that wasn’t too hard was it?” Abe asked when he took her half empty plate away. Jessica shook her head as she fought to keep the food down. For a moment she thought she’d vomit but then her stomach seemed to calm.

“Okay.” Jessica said trying to divert attention away from her, “The whole key to drive-ins are the pjs. Go put your pjs on boys and let’s go to the movies!”

Chaos reigned as everyone changed, brought blankets and pillows, and clamoured into multiple cars.

Brett, Nathan and Leo came in Jessica’s SUV with her, Jim, Leah and Corey. They insisted on Jessica and Jim singing all the way to the drive in rather than listening to the radio. The bonfire had been their first introduction to their singing and the boys had gone nuts over it.

“Aren’t couples supposed to make out at the drive in?” Corey asked, putting his arm around Leah as the movie began.

“Only if they don’t have little boys in the back of their cars.” Jim said but he pulled Jessica close. Riley, Angus, Scott and Josh had slid into the front seat with them. Jessica moved from lap to lap throughout the movie, the cuddles making the movie that much more enjoyable.

By midnight the younger boys were asleep. When they got home the boys were put to bed.

“First night without giving the boys meds …” Riley said when the men and Jessica were in bed.

“Hopefully they’ll be okay.” Jessica said.

“They’re going to hear you scream.” Scott said sliding his hand between her legs.

“Do you think it will scare them?” Jessica asked, panting.

“Probably.” Jim said.

“Maybe we should go to the studio.” Jessica suggested.

“Christ yes.” Josh said, grabbed Jessica’s hand and hauled her out of the bed. “Here.” He said holding a housecoat out for her. Jessica slid into the coat, laughing.

“Come on.” Josh took her one hand, Jim the other and they practically ran to the living room, Riley, Scott and Angus following.

“Can’t sleep?” Sara asked as they breezed through the living room.

“Give us an hour, then we’ll sleep.” Angus said. They barely made it to the studio. Jessica was naked by the time she started climbing the ladder, helped along by prodding and invading fingers in her pussy and asshole. In the loft Jessica dropped to her knees, and started unzipping Riley’s pants with one hand, Josh’s with the other.

“Undo your pants.” She ordered Scott.

“Jessica, Jessica …” Riley said finally grabbing her by her arms, lifting her and slamming her against Jim. “You’ll pleasure us when we say you can.” He said getting so close to her face his lips brushed hers.

“Please Master?” Jessica asked in a voice filled with need. Riley almost came on the spot.

“Okay, fine.” He said, pulled Jessica from Jim and lowered her onto her knees on the floor. No sooner was she down there than she had Riley, Scott and Josh’s cocks out and in her hands and mouth.

“Oh yeah.” Josh said with a guttural laugh, “You showed her, hard ass.”

“Shut up Josh,” Riley said escalating to climax quickly. “Just enjoy your fucking blow job.”

Josh smirked at Riley and came seconds later.

Jessica serviced Angus and Jim after and once they were satisfied Riley picked Jessica up from behind. Jessica wrapped her legs around him, leaning forward onto Josh and Scott who each grabbed a tit.

“Let’s see how many times you can cum in the next ten minutes.” Riley whispered in her ear. A shiver of anticipation ran down Jessica’s spine. To the men it was like a red cape to a bull, they went nuts. It was as if they’d been deprived of sex for years.

They let Jessica pleasure them a few more times and by the time they were done not only were they exhausted, but dirty. Jessica was covered head to toe in cum.

Luckily no one was awake when they went back in the house. After a shower that involved much more than just cleaning, they collapsed in bed and slept peacefully for the first time in weeks. And to everyone’s surprise, the boys did too. They didn’t stir once, unmedicated.

The next eight weeks were a blur of crazy activity and absolute bliss.

They sold the horses, to excellent homes. The men and the others had managed to surprise Jessica by having her race Ebony just before he was sold. It’d been a small fair race, there not being enough time to register for a real one, so it was no surprise when Jessica and Ebony won. Somehow, having finally raced with Ebony, saying goodbye to him seemed even harder when he went to his new home. Jessica tried so hard not to cry that it was painful to watch. Scott had to order her to cry and once she started she didn’t stop for a full half hour.

They got into the habit of going everywhere together. The men, Jessica, the other adults and the boys. They’d all been there at the race.

They’d gone to the fair and had a blast. So much fun in fact that they went three days in a row. Erik got sick each time but insisted on going again and again. Even the men acted like kids at the fair.

Once the animals were gone they had more time for other things. Jessica got into the habit of spending one on one time with every single person within the course of the day. Somehow she had perfected her fair share time with the men to include the entire family. She also had them all participating in each other’s bucket list activities. Everyone was learning to fly … except for Brett and Nathan who weren’t old enough yet. Everyone was learning to surf at a local indoor surfing pool. Scuba dive, dance, motorbike racing. The girls had their fashion show at the bar. The family was there to cheer, and the girls dressed Jessica up in so many different outfits that even the audience was beginning to wonder if she was their life sized doll.

Abe entered cooking competitions, Rick had everyone practicing mountain climbing, which the boys seemed to really enjoy.

And every free moment Jessica had she spent it with someone. Loving every second of it.

They bought boards on rollers to practice surfing at home. Everyone practiced but when they got tired it was Jessica who spent extra time with Mark.

She worked on the cars with Angus and the boys both at the house and at the track. Jessica continued her school studies with the girls, and they started with the boys too. Tutoring them in reading, writing and math. Everyone took turns working with the boys but it melted Jessica’s heart to realize that her men spent the most time with them. She’d never seen her men have so much patience. Whenever she and the girls settled down to do study her men took the boys in pairs, small groups, and often even one on one, and read them stories, helped them read and write, or taught them rudimentary math.

Don and Jessica wrote programs together. Games and utilities mostly.

Jessica and Jim worked on the music to Jessica’s song. Often involving the others.

Josh taught the boys to draw, Reese and Tim showing particular talent in it.

They even went to the pool hall. During the day the boys were allowed in so they’d go early and play pool for an hour or two.

Jessica, Abe and Rick spent time doing gymnastics and acrobatics with the boys, successfully tiring them out. Jessica began to realize that the boys weren’t the only ones who needed attention. Something seemed different about Abe and Rick. Jessica couldn’t put a finger on it but they seemed to really enjoy spending time with her and the boys. They seemed to be happy and more relaxed then she remembered seeing them in a while.

Despite being tired out by gymnastics and acrobatics, the boys still liked to play the shoot them ups. Often Jessica would play with the them, sometimes co-opting other adults to play too. Abe had been true to his word and found a psychologist, Simon, who came to the house three times a week to work with the boys and the results were almost instantaneous. The haunted expressions began to fade from the boys’ faces.

They spent time at the pond, often motor biking or playing soccer. Angus got dentures, which had him less self-conscious about smiling.

They scheduled in combat practice but in shorter, more fun ways. Making it into a game. They didn’t feel the need for the intense training they’d had before but with Paul as a wildcard coupled with their intention to leave the clan, they felt it necessary to maintain fitness and combat levels. And they still had one or two people out on patrol just in case.

Bonfires, singing.

Everyone was beyond happy. Even Elsie was doing well.

They bought a bus so they could all travel together and there were road trips planned. The first one was scheduled in a few days. It was at the replica France resort. Under the guise of working on Leah’s bucket list item, the family studied about France … even learning some French.

The only spot of difficulty in any of it was Jessica’s lack of appetite. It was becoming an issue that required constant monitoring. If they didn’t remind her, she didn’t eat. And when she did eat it wasn’t enough. Even her periods became oddly irregular. Over the course of the two months she had intermittent bleeding that only lasted for a few hours, usually after her and her men had rough sex. Her internet search on the subject pointed to stress and irregular eating as the culprit. Jessica had groaned when she read this. Yet another reason for Abe and Sean to monitor her eating. But there was a plus side to it. She no longer had cramps and severe tenderness when she had her period, and she noted that the men didn’t seem the least bit upset about the lack of blood, despite their insistence that they didn’t mind it during sex.

It was the end of the day when the boys came in the house dragging Jessica with them. Jessica laughed while they dragged her along.

“Hey Jess.” Abe said kissing her forehead a she got pulled by, “Looks like you’ve been captured.”

“I guess.” Jessica laughed. Everyone was there and Angus, Corey, Don, Quinn and Josh were standing in a line in the middle of the living room grinning.

“Sit down, sit down!” The boys ordered and maneuvered Jessica onto Jim’s lap on the sofa.

“Did you guys give them chocolate again?” Jessica asked Jim as she snuggled into his embrace.

“Seems like it, doesn’t it?” Jim asked and kissed the side of Jessica’s head.

“Look over there.” Nathan said from beside Jessica on the sofa. He took her face in his hands and turned her so she was looking at Angus, Corey, Don, Quinn and Josh.

“Tada …” the men said and stepped aside to reveal a new TV to replace the one that had been shot up by Tom and the boys.

“Wow.” Jessica said, “A new TV. That’s great. Is it bigger than the last one?”

“A bit.” Angus said.

“And tell her the best part.” Amanda said with a laugh.

“Tell her, tell her!” the boys chanted.

“Okay, okay …” Scott said raising his hands in surrender. “Everyone wants to have TV night tonight so we can watch the Twilight series with you.”

“Really?” Jessica asked excited by the news. “But isn’t it a chick flick?”

“That’s okay.” Rick said and he was working really hard to look like he meant it. “We want to see it, really.”

“You really don’t have to.” Jessica said looking around at the boys and the adult males. While the girls looked over the moon Jessica could see the forced smiles on the men.

“Oh yes we do.” Sean muttered earning him a slap on the arm from Sara.

“The boys wanted to do something nice for you Jess.” Amanda said unable to hide the fact that she was relishing the men’s suffering. “You’ve done so much to make life fun, full. They … and we, wanted to give a little something back. So we will sit through all three movies with you. Tonight. Right now.”

Jessica looked at the boys. “Thank you.” She said, “But why don’t you, the girls and me watch. I don’t think the men really want to …”

“No!” Nathan said, “We’re all going to watch with you.”

“It’s okay Jess.” Josh said, “We don’t mind.”

“You hate Twilight!” Jessica said.

“Minor detail.” Jim said pulling her close, “We’re just happy to be sitting here with everyone. We could be watching paint dry for all I care so long as we’re together.”

Everyone murmured agreement and positioned their chairs to face the TV.

“Okay.” Jessica said, “But don’t say I didn’t warn you.”

To Jessica’s surprise everyone watched all three movies until the end. There were mixed reviews while everyone moved to the bedrooms for the night.

“I think we need to go to the studio first.” Riley said grabbing Jessica’s hand as she began to move toward the hallway. Jessica smiled and let the men rush her to the barn.

In the studio the sex was so animalistic Jessica almost felt like howling.

In bed, they fell right to sleep.

Jessica woke up and stared into the dark. “Jim?” Jessica asked when she felt movement to her right.

“Yeah.” He reached out and grabbed Jessica’s arm.

“Can’t sleep?”


“Me neither.” Jessica said.

“Come here then.”

Jessica disentangled herself from Angus and Josh and started to move toward Jim when Angus suddenly sat up, yelled “Jessica” and grabbed her.

That and Jessica’s yelp of surprise woke Riley, Scott and Josh.

Angus pinned Jessica against him.

She could feel his heart pounding a mile a minute and he was panting like he’d been running.

“What’s wrong?” Scott asked in a groggy voice.

“I think you were having a nightmare Angus.” Jessica said over her shoulder. She rubbed the arms encircling her, “It’s okay, you’re okay.”

“No more sneaking out Jess, you promised.” Angus said.

“I wasn’t sneaking out, I was going over to see Jim.” Jessica said.

“Oh.” Angus said lowering his mouth onto the top of her head, “sorry. I guess that was my dream.”

“Well, now that we’re all awake …” Scott said snaking his arms around Jessica’s legs, “I can think of something fun to do.” With a swift motion he pulled Jessica toward him. On her back, Jessica’s giggles were muffled by Angus’ mouth. Scott was kissing his way up her legs. Hands kneaded her tits, other hands slid between her butt cheeks.

“What are we going to do about the screaming?” Josh asked, “She’ll wake up the boys.”

The men groaned, “Studio?” Riley asked.

“Fucking kids…” Angus grumbled.

“Wait, what about a pillow? If you cover my face with a pillow it might block out the noise.” Jessica said.

“It might block out your life too.” Jim said, “We’d probably smother you. Come on.” He said scooping her up in his arms. Josh draped a housecoat over her and they moved to the studio in a hurry, none of the men bothering to dress or cover their nakedness in any way. Jessica kissed Jim’s chest, his neck, his mouth, played with his nipple on the way so that by the time they got outside Jim said, “Fuck it.” Dropped to his knees, laid her on the ground and lowered his head between her legs.

“Whoever is walking the grounds is going to see us.” Josh mumbled as he chewed on Jessica’s tit, having followed Jim, Angus, Scott and Riley onto the ground.

“And hear us.” Angus added when Jessica began to scream.

“If they have any decency they’ll look away.” Riley said. Sliding behind Jessica’s head he lifted her against him, Jim entered her and thrusting, pinned her harder against Riley.

“Suck this.” Scott said to Jessica and slid his cock in her mouth.

“I fucking love you.” Josh said standing back and taking in the scene. Feeling a renewed sense of energy and horniness he took over for Jim.

Eventually they moved to the studio and had sex until they could barely move.

“Holy shit.” Riley mumbled when they lay in a naked heap his hand gently caressing Jessica’s leg. “I said it before and I’ll say it again, you are the best fucking wife in the world … and I mean that literally.”

“I’ll second that.” Scott said.

“Fuck yeah, and we thought we were addicted to sex back when we started fucking Jessica together,” Jim said with a snicker, “I’m pretty sure there’s a world record for sex addiction out there that we’ve fucking blown away. I mean, that’s all I ever want to do Jess, is fuck you.”

“I’m addicted too.” Jessica mumbled against Angus’ chest. “I’m always thinking about you men. Everywhere I go I want you.”

Angus’ chuckle was a deep rumble in his chest, Jessica pressed herself harder against him. She loved that. His laugh.

“Well I for one don’t ever want you or any of us to get over this addiction.” Angus said.

“Speaking of sex.” Jessica said, “I think someone has to have a talk with the boys.”

“About sex?” Riley asked surprised.

Jessica nodded, “I noticed at the fair that they were very aware of girls, and girls were very aware of them. I’m not sure that the boys understand what is acceptable in normal society when it comes to sex. I mean, where would they have ever learned that?”

“So by ‘someone’ you mean …” Josh said.

Jessica shrugged, “I guess I can do it.”

“No!” the men said at the same time making Jessica laugh.

“I didn’t think so. Make sure you do it before we go to the resort. I suspect that there will be a lot of girls there too.”

“Just to clarify, we’re telling them about the birds and the bees …” Scott started.

“Which they already know thanks to Earl.” Jim mumbled.

“And what is and is not done in polite society. We’re not actually instructing them on sex. Like the techniques. Right?” Scott added.

Jessica thought about that for a moment. “Definitely birds and bees and polite society. But have you noticed that although the boys are big physically, especially Tom, Leo, Tim and Reese … big enough that they fooled us into thinking they were men, mentally and emotionally they don’t seem any older than the ten and twelve year olds?”

The men nodded.

“They still act like little kids.” Riley said, “They sure are starved for attention and affection the same way the younger boys are. Earl really fucked them up.”

“That’s so sad.” Jessica said quietly. Angus hugged her harder against him. Riley had been caressing her left butt cheek, Josh her right. Both squeezed them. Scott rubbed her leg reassuringly, Jim, kissed the other one. “So I don’t think we want them having sex yet.” Jessica added, “I mean, they still play cops and robbers with the younger ones. And they’ve only just started being kids. ”

“Okay, well, I volunteer Scott.” Riley said, “He’s hands down the sex master.”

“Great, thanks.” Scott muttered.

“The boys look up to all you of the men in the family. I think it should be a joint effort.” Jessica said.

“Okay.” Scott said, sliding his hand up along the inside of Jessica’s leg, “If we’re going to be the sex gurus for the boys I think we need to practice a little more.”

Jessica rolled onto her back, giggling, “Oh I’d say that you need to practice a lot more.”

“Excellent.” Angus said, and they did. Until the sun came up.

“We are going to be so useless today.” Riley said standing and stretching. “Zero sleep, damn.”

“How are we going to get back in the house?” Jim said, “we have no clothes.”

“I’ll go get you some.” Jessica said sliding into the housecoat, “Be right back.” She said giving them each a kiss and then heading to the house.

“Good morning.” Jessica said as she moved through the living room. Everyone was up and eating breakfast.

“Indeed.” Rick said with a smile. Jessica couldn’t help but turn pink when she realized that all the adults were smiling at her. Thank god the boys looked oblivious.

“We ah, fell to sleep in the studio.” Jessica muttered as she went.

“We know.” Amanda said with a laugh.

“And fyi,” Don said as Jessica was about to go down the hallway, “Sound carries, even from the studio.”

“Sorry …” Jessica said.

“Don’t be.” Chris said, “It’s inspiring for the rest of us.”

Jessica could hear the adults chuckling in the living room from the bedroom. She gathered the men’s clothes, smiling the whole time. She couldn’t really be embarrassed. She realized that these people, her family, knew everything about her. Everything. It was an odd feeling to be so not alone anymore. Not physically alone because she hadn’t been that in years. But emotionally, mentally. She loved it.

“Hurry up and take your shower.” Abe said to Jessica when the men were dressed and back in the house. “I’m going to watch you eat.”

Jessica nodded. Food, the last thing she wanted.

She couldn’t very well hold up the bathroom with all the men needing to shower. So instead she took her time dressing. She hoped that everyone would be gone by the time she came out. It was easier to deal with Abe on his own, easier to convince him that she’d eaten enough without anyone backing him up and encouraging him.

“There she is.” Sean said when Jessica finally emerged. Her plan had worked to a point. Everyone was gone except for Abe and Sean. Jessica was disappointed, there was no way out of eating now.

“See now, that hurts my feelings.” Sean said when Jessica slid into her chair, “I didn’t think you’d be that unhappy to see me.”

Jessica blinked, surprised that Sean would interpret her displeasure at eating as a dislike for him.

“What? No, I’m very happy to see you. I just don’t really want to …” her voice trailed off when Abe set a plate piled with eggs, bacon, pancakes and toast in front of her.

“Eat, we know.” Sean finished for her and when she looked up he was smiling at her. “I was just kidding with you, I know you like me, no worries there. But Jessica, it’s not wise to try and outwait the master. I hold the record for lasting the longest in a siege. I’ve starved out many a foe. You don’t stand a chance when all I want to do is feed someone I love. So eat up.”

Jessica sat and looked at her plate. Abe and Sean sat and looked at her.

“You know, if you’re going to turn us into SexEd 101 teachers the least you could do is humor us by eating.” Abe said.

Jessica glanced at Abe and Sean, they were smiling. Relieved that they weren’t upset about talking to the boys, she nodded, took a bite and chewed … slowly. Something felt off. It was bacon and she usually loved bacon but to her it tasted like saw dust.

“Okay, time to pull out the big guns then.” Sean said and he put a piece of newspaper on the table. “I have a little something that might increase your appetite. Your men said it was okay for me to show you if they weren’t here. Go ahead, read it.”

Jessica took the newspaper clipping and read it. And re-read it. After the third time she finally understood what it meant. She looked up at Abe and Sean, excited.

“They found them?” she shrieked. “They found the women and children that Earl sold?” When Sean nodded Jessica squealed, jumped up and hugged him, and then Abe. Picking up the clipping she looked at it again, “How did they find them so fast?” Jessica asked.

“I guess with the right intelligence even the police can get things right.” Sean said with a laugh clearly happy with Jessica’s reaction.

“Yes, yes, yes!” Jessica said, clapping her hands, euphoric. “Do the boys know yet?” she asked suddenly, looking between Abe and Sean.

Smiles froze on Abe and Sean’s faces.

“No.” Sean said slowly, “Why would they?”

“Because, it’s their family …” Jessica said in a tone that left little doubt that she thought he was slow. “They need to go to them.”

“But Jessica, the women and children are with the police.” Abe said, “The boys can’t just show up out of the blue. They’ll lead the cops right back to us.”

“No they won’t.” Jessica said, “There’re a million plausible explanation for where the boys could have been this whole time.”

“Besides, do you want the boys to go? I don’t thinks so. They belong here with us.” Sean said.

“We should at least give them the choice.” Jessica said, “If we don’t, and they find out, they’ll never forgive us.”

“I don’t know …” Abe said.

“Please, please, can we at least discuss it? With the others? Look, I’ll eat okay.” She said when neither Abe or Sean looked receptive. Dropping into her chair she shovelled several mouthfuls of food into her mouth, “If you promise we’ll talk about it, I’ll eat.” She said while chewing. Then she sat with a forkful of food waiting for an answer.

Sean slid his eyes toward Abe and from the corner of his mouth he said, “This conversation is not going the way I thought it would.”

“We’re not promising that we’ll tell the boys, just that we’ll talk about it, right?” Abe said. Jessica nodded. “Fine then, eat.”

Jessica cleared off half her plate of food before she simply couldn’t take any more.

Sean’s phone rang.

“Show time.” Sean said getting up and nodding to Abe after answering the phone with a quick, “Be right there”. Shoving his chair in to the table Sean said, “Time to humiliate the hell out of ourselves. You realize the boys are going to be really embarrassed by this talk.”

“You’re doing it now?” Jessica asked, surprised.

Sean nodded while Abe took Jessica’s plate away, “In the studio. I’m not sure whose going to be more scarred by this, them or us.”

“The girls said to come out when you’re ready.” Abe said following Sean to the door, “They’ve made appointments at the spa.”

“That’s great.” Sean complained, “We get a morning of mortification and you get to go lie in a spa. There’s simply no justice in the world.”

“I agree.” Abe turning to look at Jessica, “I believe you owe us another impressive round of eating tonight.” When Jessica nodded he turned on his heel, followed Sean through the door and swung it shut behind him.

Jessica sat on the chair for a moment before barrelling to the bathroom. She barely made it to the toilet before everything she’d had for breakfast came back up. As she leaned on the toilet she realized that she should mention her lack of appetite and queasiness to the men. But she wondered if vomiting up her breakfast would make her agreement with Abe and Sean null and void. Also there was the trip to the resort coming up, part of her was afraid it would be cancelled if they thought she was sick. She struggled with the dilemma for a while before she realized that they owed her one omission. All of them. And that suited her just fine.

She cleaned herself up and went outside to find Amanda, Justine, Leah and Sara looking up at the barn where the studio was located.

“Oh, the men are cursing you Jess.” Sara said with a laugh.

“You should have seen them dragging their sorry asses to the studio.” Amanda said with a laugh, “You would’ve thought they were on their way to the gas chamber.”

“It’s not so bad is it?” Jessica asked looking at the studio suddenly worried. “I didn’t think they’d mind …”

“Jess, it’s okay.” Leah said grabbing her hand, “They’re just a bunch of babies that’s all. Come on, let’s go to the spa.”

As they walked toward Jessica’s SUV a car pulled in to the driveway.

Jessica and Leah pulled their guns from their purses.

The car stopped, the engine died, and no one moved.

“Should we get the men?” Sara asked.

“There’s only one person in the car.” Jessica said.

“Are they wearing a veil?” Justine asked. The girls looked more closely and realized that Justine was right. The person behind the wheel was wearing a black veil.

The person leaned toward the driver’s side window and Stasia’s voice said, “It’s me Jessica, Stasia.”

“Well that explains the veil.” Leah muttered. “That poor girl’s face …”

“It’s okay Stasia, come out.” Jessica said. “Why don’t you go ahead to the spa.” Jessica said to the girls as Stasia got out of the car and started walking toward them.

“Without you?” Amanda asked.

“Unless you want to reschedule it.” Jessica said, “I don’t mind if you go without me. I’m sorry, but I really need to see Stasia …”

“It’s fine Jess, we’ll just have to go twice. That’s all.” Leah said with a huge smile.

“We’ll miss you.” Sara said pecking Jessica’s cheek before following the other girls to Leah’s car.

“Maybe I should have called.” Stasia said watching the girls go.

“No. I’m glad you’re here.”

“Can we talk?”

“Of course. Do you want something to drink?”

“No, thanks.” Stasia said looking around, “Um, can we talk somewhere private?”

Jessica led Stasia to a couple of lawn chairs. They moved them as far from the barn and house as possible and sat facing one another.

Stasia took Jessica’s hands in hers. “I wanted to say thank you for everything you did for me. It got way out of hand, I know, but I’m safe now.”

“You’re welcome.” Jessica said and she couldn’t help but try to look around the veil.

“I can lift it if you want.” Stasia said, “If you have a strong stomach.”

Jessica hesitated, that was one thing she definitely did not have. But she wanted to talk face to face. Given that there was nothing left in Jessica’s stomach to throw up she decided to give it a try.

Stasia lifted her veil, and tears sprang to Jessica’s eyes. The beautiful face that Stasia used to have was nothing now but a collection of half hazard scars. Her right eye drooped. Instinctively Jessica’s hands went to her own face, subconsciously, seeking to reassure herself that her own self-inflicted scars were gone.

“I’m hideous aren’t I?” Stasia cried.

“Oh Stasia …” Jessica cried and threw her arms around her. “I’m so sorry.”

They cried for a long time, clutching one another.

“I can get us some tissues.” Jessica said when they finally ran out of tears.

“No, no, it’s okay.” Stasia said wiping her face with her sleeve. “I actually didn’t come here to cry on you, though it helped. I came here to warn you.”

“Paul?” Jessica asked in a panic.

Stasia nodded. “He’s up to something. I don’t know what exactly. And ever since you … Earl …” Stasia paused, “There are a lot of people in the clan who are thankful to you and your chapter of the clan. Earl was an awful, awful man, and no one seemed able to stop him. The fact that you did means a lot. So ever since then, I think Paul’s has had a healthy respect for your clan. But, he’s up to something. I’m not a viable bargaining chip for him any more so he’ll have to do something else.”

“The men have an agreement with him …” Jessica said. “Do you think he’d try to break it?” she asked.

“I don’t know. I really don’t. I just know that he’s been busy. Really busy, and he’s getting excited. Kind of like something big is going to happen for him. And Jess, when Paul plans something big I get worried.”

“Okay, I’ll tell Riley, Sean and the others. Maybe they have some ideas about what it can be. Stasia, about the men …” Jessica said. It hadn’t escaped her notice that Stasia had flinched at the mention of Riley and Sean. “I’m sorry if they hurt you … they shouldn’t have …”

“No, it’s understandable.” Stasia said looking down at Jessica’s hands as she grasped them again. “At least for your men. They love you Jess, they wanted you back. And with what Earl was doing to you … I was surprised about Rick and Abe though. I thought they loved me. But maybe the video … the screaming … maybe it made getting you back more important than my feelings.” she looked up at Jessica, “You were very brave. I wish I could say I had been too, with Anthony. But I just kept begging for him to let me go …”

Jessica shook her head, “I was trying to protect my family Stasia. I wasn’t brave, I just had no choice. You tried to broker a truce for Paul and Anthony’s clans, that’s brave.”

“It didn’t work so well …” Stasia said with a giggle strangely devoid of any laughter.

“You did what you could Stasia. But um, Stasia, I think you should talk to Rick and Abe. They do love you. I don’t think my family ever planned to actually hurt you, that has to be why Rick and Abe went along with it.”

Stasia shook her head. “What’s done is done Jess, there’s no going back. But Jess, you have to be careful with Rick and Abe. There’s something about them. Something not quite right.”

“Rick and Abe?” Jessica said, “What do you mean?”

“I don’t know. But back before you and I met, they really wanted to see you Jessica. After the motorcycle race. They insisted on going to that bar. And then after Daryl’s attack they were … I don’t know, desperate is the only way to describe it, to come here with Doc. And then with Earl. I thought they at least cared about me a little, but they were as bad if not worse than your men. They … they threatened to peel my face completely off if Paul didn’t tell them where Earl had taken you.”

“Oh my God.” Jessica said.

“And Jessica, they meant it. Paul doesn’t respond to threats often but he knew they weren’t kidding around.”

Jessica stared at Stasia, completely blindsided.

“Why would they do that?” Jessica asked, “I only met them once. That time that I negotiated with Paul to ride.”

Stasia shook her head. “I’ll admit I was jealous. Up until then they’d been all about me. But you are likeable. It didn’t take me long to like you too at the bar. Even Paul likes you and that’s unheard of. So maybe that’s all there is to it. I don’t know anymore. Just watch yourself. As for me, I’m where I am. I can’t go back to the way things were.”

“No, you’re right, you can’t go back …” Jessica said. Pushing the news about Rick and Abe out of her mind, unable to process it, she concentrated on Stasia. Suddenly she had an idea. “But maybe there’s a way to fix things …” The plastic surgeon. Of course. He could fix Stasia’s face. It was on the verge of Jessica’s tongue to mention it but then she realized that Beth needed him too. Beth needed him and she was on the outs with Paul. Not to mention that the last time someone in the clan heard about the plastic surgeon, Beth’s father was murdered. Jessica decided that it could wait until after Beth was safely away from the clan.

“Stasia?” Rick gasped from behind Jessica.

“No!” Stasia sobbed and pulled the veil over her face. Turning around Jessica found Abe and Rick standing behind her and they looked devastated. Stasia stood up and tried to leave.

“Please Stasia … let us explain.” Abe said moving to block her path.

“I don’t want to … I don’t want to talk to you. Jessica, please tell them to leave me alone!” Stasia cried and hid behind Jessica.

Jessica looked up at Rick and Abe. They looked destroyed. Jessica didn’t know what to do.

“Jess …” Riley said moving next to Rick and Abe. Looking past them she could see all of the men watching them. She had no idea what to do. Rick and Abe had betrayed Stasia for her. How could she not help them try to explain themselves.

“Um … um …” Jessica said, instinctively extending her arms behind her to hug Stasia as she pressed herself into Jessica’s back. The others were moving closer. She really wished the girls were here. They’d know what to do.

“What’s going on?” Angus asked. At the sound of his voice Stasia flinched and hugged Jessica harder against her.

“It’s Stasia, she came to say thank you, for Anthony.” Jessica said.

“Oh.” Angus said taken off guard. Jessica could tell from his expression that he’d never intended to set eyes on Stasia again.

“Shit.” Sean said.

“Jess, you have to understand, there was no time. We had to find you, it was the only way …” Scott said.

“I know.” Jessica said.

“You do?” Jim asked.

Jessica nodded. “Leah and Doc told me everything. And um, Rick, Abe …” Jessica said looking at them, “I’m sorry that you were put in that position. No one should ever have to do something like that. I know you want to explain to Stasia. But I’m sorry, she really doesn’t want to talk to you.”

“We never would have hurt you.” Abe said to Stasia. “It never would have come to that …”

“You know Paul.” Stasia said in a bitter voice, “Better than almost anyone. You know it could have come to that very easily.” She sniffed, “I don’t need any explanations or excuses from you. Please, just let me leave.”

“Jess …” Abe said looking at her like she could fix everything.

“Stasia, can you give them just a few minutes to explain? Please? There may be things you don’t know or realize. If you don’t give them a chance to tell you then you may go through life with the wrong information. And isn’t it painful? Feeling betrayed? It hurts. Here’s a chance for you to hurt less. Here’s your chance to know that they do love you and that there’s a better explanation for what happened. Just five minutes, that’s all. And then you can leave.”

Stasia didn’t say anything, which to Jessica was a good sign. Seconds ticked by and finally she nodded against Jessica’s back.

“Okay. Five minutes.” She said.

For a moment Jessica was afraid that Stasia was going to insist that she stay with her while they spoke. Dread filled her. She didn’t think she could handle that. How does someone explain why they picked one person over another? Because surely that’s how Stasia saw it. That they picked Jessica over her.

Or worse still, what if Jessica had been in Stasia’s place. Her life threatened and her men had not only stood by and watched, but threatened to hurt her themselves. In Stasia’s shoes Jessica couldn’t fathom an explanation good enough. The only thing that Jessica found worse than that fact, was the prospect of listening to Rick and Abe trying to come up with one.

The whole situation made Jessica want to cry and it was obvious to everyone.

“Talk to them or don’t.” Angus grumbled, “But don’t involve Jessica.” He held his hand out to Jessica, “Come here Jess.”

At the sound of his voice Stasia shuttered again, but a moment later she quietly moved to the lawn chair she’d previously sat on and lowered herself onto it. Rick and Abe followed her.

Jessica moved into Angus’ arms. Riley, Scott, Jim and Josh moved in close behind her.

“Come on.” Angus said and guided Jessica toward the house. But they didn’t make it far before Rick was calling Stasia’s name. Stasia didn’t say a word as she ran to her car, backed out of the driveway so quickly she almost did a three sixty, and then sped away.

“Why did she come here?” Abe asked Jessica. He looked so upset. Rick too.

“She’s worried about Paul.” Jessica said, “She’s worried that he’s up to something.”

“Then he probably is.” Abe said and looked back in the direction Stasia had gone.

“Should we be worried?” Corey asked.

“I don’t think so.” Riley said. “At least not until he calls us in for a job. I’m sure he plans to have us help him kill who he wants and conveniently die in the process.”

“No …” Jessica gasped.

“That I can see.” Rick said.

“Then it’s a good thing we never intend to uphold our end of deal.” Angus said pulling Jessica closer and hugging her.

“Rick, Abe, I’m so sorry. It must have been a horrible thing to have to do. I wish …” Jessica began.

“Stop Jess. We did what we had to and I don’t regret that.” Abe said. “Just, if she shows up here again make sure you’re not alone with her.”

“D’you think she’s dangerous?” Scott asked.

“She can be.” Rick said, “No sister of Paul’s is going to be girl next door material. Okay?” he directed at Jessica.

“So you think she’ll try to hurt Jessica?” Riley asked.

“I don’t know.” Abe said, “But Jessica would be an easy target for any anger and resentment Stasia may have. I’d rather not take the chance.”

“I didn’t get the feeling that she was mad at me.” Jessica said, “But I wouldn’t hold it against her if she was.” Jessica looked down at her feet. After what Stasia had told her about Abe and Rick she had a hard time looking at them.

“That’s not all she said, is it?” Abe asked. Jessica’s tried to look at him but he was staring at her so intently that she had to look away.

“Jessica, what else did Stasia say?” Rick jumped in.

“Jess?” Riley asked when it was clear to everyone that Jessica was incredibly uncomfortable. She tried to bury her face in Angus’ chest but he held her away from himself so he could look at her face.

“Jess. Whatever happened that night … I know you wouldn’t agree but it had to happen.” Angus said. Jessica was nodding. She didn’t wish harm to anyone but she had to admit that she was glad to have survived Earl, glad to be with her men and her family again.

“She said something about us, didn’t she?” Abe asked.

Jessica looked around. She didn’t know how to interpret the expressions around her. And she worried what her men would make of the fact that Rick and Abe had orchestrated their presence at the bar and at their house after Daryl’s attack. But neither Rick or Abe seemed worried about that.

“What would Stasia have to say about you?” Riley asked looking between Rick and Abe.

“That we were the ones that insisted on going to the bar after the race. That we insisted on coming here with Doc after Daryl’s attack.” Abe said, never taking his eyes off of Jessica.

“And why would you do that?” Angus demanded.

“Because.” Rick said. “Paul liked Jessica. Too much. He was planning on taking her, one way or another. I think he may still do that. We couldn’t let him.”

“You didn’t think that was something you should share with us?” Scott demanded.

“To what end?” Abe asked, “It would have provoked a war. Exactly what Paul wanted … exactly what Jessica didn’t.”

“So instead you decided to join us?” Sean demanded, “That’s a little extreme don’t you think? Changing your whole life just to prevent Paul from trying to take Jessica?”

“No, it’s not extreme. It’s exactly what you did.” Abe said, “It’s what you all did.”

“Can’t really argue that …” Don muttered.

“That makes no sense.” Angus growled, “You didn’t know Jessica from a hole in the ground. Why would you go out of your way to protect her.”

“Because we’d already fucked up once.” Abe said looking at Jessica, her men and then everyone else. “We’d promised Stasia that she’d never have to marry Anthony. That we’d find some better way for Paul to get his alliance. But we blinked one day and Stasia was married. Paul had even managed to convince her that she wanted to marry Anthony, if you can believe that. We saw a lot of Stasia in Jessica that day at the bar. When Jessica made the deal with Paul. And we just couldn’t let Paul get his claws into her.” Abe looked so broken when he finished speaking that there were a few minutes of silence before Riley cleared his throat.

“So is there anything else we should know?” Riley demanded.

“Paul wasn’t in a hurry to get Jessica before. He had Stasia to bargain with and that was good enough in the short term. But now he doesn’t even have that so he’ll be after her sooner rather than later. Luckily there are too many of us for an outright attack. Like you said, he’ll use the agreement to kill us off.” Rick said.

“The upside,” Abe said, “Is that we don’t have to worry about an attack from him. We’ll know when the axe is going to drop when he asks us to help him.”

Jessica looked around. “I don’t understand.” she said, “Why does he want me? I’m no good to him.”

“You’re plenty good to him.” Abe said, “Before Earl you were the daughter of the enemy. Being young and pretty didn’t hurt. He could’ve made alliances with just about anyone. And now after Earl, you’re the most known person in the clan. Whomever he gives you to will pay a lot. And I mean a lot.”

“What do you mean, whomever he gives Jessica to?” Angus demanded, “No one is giving Jessica to anybody. You got that? No one!”

“Agreed. But what if those other clans decide to just take Jessica?” Caleb asked.

“They won’t.” Rick said, “The night that we went after Jessica and Mark will guarantee that. Everyone knows what we did to get to Jessica back, and what we did to Earl. Plus there’s the perception that Paul is protecting us. Paul is the one we need to worry about.”

“Are you okay?” Angus asked when Jessica shuddered.

“It never ends.” Jessica said, “No matter what we do there’s someone new to run from, or fight and kill. Maybe we should just go now. Go somewhere Paul can never find us.”

“Maybe we should.” Jim said. “Just go.”

“I think it’d be safer if we waited for the job Paul asks us to do.” Abe said. “And it’ll go one of two ways … you call the cops and they get Paul and everyone else in the clan and we make our getaway. Or … if for some reason that doesn’t happen … Paul will have his hands full because we don’t show up to help, and we run for it. It’ll give us time to get further away. And in either scenario, if we’re really lucky, Paul will get killed and we’ll be completely free.”

Jessica considered that. Stasia had been willing to marry Paul’s enemy to garner a truce. How Paul imagined that he’d get Jessica to do the same she didn’t know, but it seemed to her that if Stasia was available for that again Paul could lose interest in her and maybe there would no longer be a job to do. No longer a reason to try to kill off her family. They’d have to come up with another plan to turn the clan over to the police, but at least Paul wouldn’t be gunning for them.

“Jessica,” Chris said, “there’s absolutely no plan to be made here.”

Jessica looked up at him in surprise.

“And that’s the other reason we didn’t say anything.” Abe said pointing at Jessica and looking around at the other men like what he was saying was obvious. Then he planted his eyes on her, “Christ Jessica stop gnawing your lip. We have a course of action already, there’s nothing for you to figure out.”

“I was just thinking …”

“Exactly what we don’t need.” Abe snapped. And regretted it right away. Jessica shrank against Angus clearly hurt.

Rick glared at Abe. “Real smooth.” He snapped. “What Abe is trying to say in his dumbass way is that we’ve got it covered. You can leave this one with us.”

“Yeah, that’s exactly it, leave this one to us.” Abe agreed.

“But …” Jessica said.

“You heard the man.” Angus said. “There’s nothing more to say.”

“I’m not planning anything. I was just thinking about Stasia.” Jessica said. “About how Paul may be less interested in me if she were to become useful to him again.”

“And how would that happen?” Josh asked.

“What if Stasia’s face was fixed?”

“The plastic surgeon …” Corey said.

“You didn’t tell her about him did you?” Quinn demanded in a panic.

“No. But he could help her right? She says she’s useless to Paul the way she looks now. And I get the feeling that Paul may not be treating her so well now too.” Jessica said.

“For her to use the plastic surgeon, she’d have to leave the clan.” Quinn said. “And that wouldn’t help anyone.”

“Except Stasia.” Jessica said, “And that’s good enough isn’t it? If we’re going to run anyway then we should at least help her.”

“She’s not going to trust any of us Jess.” Scott said. “And we take a huge risk telling her about him. Look what happened to Quinn, to Beth’s father. Let’s not put other people’s lives in danger over this, okay?”

Jessica nodded.

“Good.” Scott said relieved and glad he’d thought of that argument. Sacrificing the lives of many for the few was not something Jessica was going to agree to. Finally there seemed to be some logical way to deal with her.

“Stasia’s tougher than she looks.” Rick said. “Please trust us on this. She’s faced adversity before and got back on her feet in no time. It’s important that you don’t worry about this and put your energy into something more important.”

“Like the trip coming up.” Jim said, “And all of the activities we’re doing. I mean look at the boys, they’re natural born surfers.” Jim added pointing at Tom, Leo and Erik who were rolling away on the surfing simulators.

Jessica couldn’t help but smile. “They are pretty good, aren’t they?”

“Damn right.” Riley said and then turning to Sean he asked, “Did you tell her the news?”

“Oh yeah.” Sean said.

“And?” Riley asked but something about Sean’s demeanor made him wonder if he really wanted to know.

“She wants to discuss telling the boys about it.” Sean said eyeing Jessica as if she were crazy. “And giving them the option of going back to their families.”

“What?” Angus groaned.

Jessica felt a sudden wave of guilt. Trust was the cornerstone of her relationship with every person in her family. She’d promised honesty in her wedding vows, and in her pledge. She couldn’t break that trust now.

“Okay, wait.” Jessica said and she looked to Abe and Sean. “I didn’t keep my end of the deal. But not on purpose!” She added quickly when Abe and Sean looked scandalized. “After you left, it came up.”

“What deal?” Scott asked.

“We agreed that if Jessica ate well, we’d consider telling the boys about the women and children from their clan being found. And the whole possibility of letting them go home.” Sean said.

“So you threw up? Again?” Riley asked, clearly concerned.

Jessica nodded, “I think I ate too much.”

“She did eat a lot.” Abe agreed.

“Are you sick?” Josh asked brushing her hair off her forehead and then pressing his hand against it.

“I don’t think so.” Jessica said, “But I am queasy a lot.”

“Your temperature feels fine.” Josh said sliding his hand down her arm and taking her hand.

“About the boys …” Angus said.

“No, no, no.” Abe said, “If you want to have that conversation Jess you’ve gotta come back in the house and eat something else. Not as much as last time but something. And no eye rolling.” He added when Jessica did just that.

“I’m not going to starve Abe, honest.” Jessica said.

“You’re right, you’re not.” Angus said, “Because we’re going in the house now and you’re going to eat. Come on.”

Angus took her hand, Josh the other and led her into the house.

Jessica felt incredibly self-conscious with everyone sitting around watching her eat. It didn’t help when the girls came home from the spa and joined the audience. Jessica was perched on Riley’s lap at the head of the table. Jim and Angus sat on either side of her and Riley. Scott and Josh had pulled chairs away from the table and sat next to Jim. Sean, the other men and the girls had arranged themselves around the rest of the table.

“If I eat any more I’m going to vomit again.” Jessica said when she had eaten a quarter of the food on her plate.

“She promised to eat well at dinner too.” Sean said when the men looked worried, “I’m satisfied enough to have that conversation.”

“I know that you think it’s risky,” Jessica said into the ensuing silence while patting Riley’s chest. “Since the police are involved. But they really don’t have to know anything about us. The boys can say they were living on their own … which they were for the longest time, and when they saw the news they came to find their family.”

“What if the women that were saved are in the same condition as Elsie?” Mark asked. “They won’t be able to care for the boys. And the boys couldn’t come back to us. They’d end up in child services. Do you want to take that chance?”

“I hadn’t thought of that.” Jessica said quietly. “You’re right of course. It’s just that I can’t imagine keeping this from them. If you were them, wouldn’t you want to know? Even if it’s just so they don’t worry about their families anymore?”

Jessica looked around and no one looked convinced. When Jessica looked to Jim for assistance, his lips had just curved into a sexy smile and he looked like he was going to say something when he seemed to do a double take. His face went white and his eyes stared at her in horror.

“Jim?” Jessica gasped. Jim’s eyes shifted from her to Riley behind her. Following them Jessica turned to see Riley watching Jim and appearing as perplexed as she felt. Angus, Scott and Josh, while seemingly clueless as well, were sitting up in alarm. Everyone else was looking back and forth between Jim and the other men just like Jessica was.

“What the fuck Jim?” Scott demanded.

“Jim, you’re scaring her man …” Josh added when Jessica turned as pale as Jim.

“I’m sorry Jess.” Jim said, holding her gaze for a moment before looking at Riley again. In a strangled voice he added, “We have to tell her. She deserves to know just like the boys do.”

It took a moment before the other men reacted. It was clear they didn’t understand what Jim was talking about at first but then a series of expressions moved across their faces, each one more horrified than the next. Jessica looked around at them with growing hysteria. Her eyes landed back on Riley.

“What’s wrong?” Jessica asked Riley. His face contorted with so much pain that Jessica panicked. Clutching his shirt she beat her hands against his chest. “Riley what is it?” When he dropped his eyes, Jessica turned to Jim … “Jim?” but the look on his face scared her even more. He looked shattered and he couldn’t look her in the eye. “Josh? Scott? Angus?” Jessica asked looking from one to the other, her voice becoming more and more hysterical with each name. When none of them would look at her she resorted to looking around at the others. But they looked as clueless, perplexed and worried as she felt.

“Riley, please … did I do something wrong?” Jessica begged.

“It’s not you.” Riley said in earnest as the other men groaned, “God Jess it’s not you in any way at all, it’s us.” Jessica glanced around at her other men as Riley seemed to be stealing himself for something and their expressions made her blood run cold. Shivers ran down her spine as she looked back at Riley. She wanted to tell him to stop … to not say another word … whatever it was she didn’t want to know, but she couldn’t find her voice. Surprising everyone, including herself, she sprung off Riley’s lap. Scott and Josh looked up her. Directly in her path to the door, she’d have to go through them to get out. But she didn’t want to get out. She wanted to go to them. She wanted to bury her face in their chests, feel their arms around her, make them replace the looks of pain and torment on their faces with their sexy smiles. Scott and Josh stood up, slowly, almost reluctantly. And while their arms hung open to her it was more a gesture of surrender than a beckoning.

Two arms, hard as steel rods slid around her waist from behind. Turning, she looked up at Riley and noticed that Angus had moved next to him.

“Jessica,” Riley said in a strangled voice. He grasped her arms and tried to lock his eyes on hers but they kept slipping.

“Don’t …” Jessica said. “Please don’t.” She looked back and forth between Riley and Angus’ agonized expressions. “If it’s that bad, I don’t want to know.”

“Jess, baby …” Jim said from behind her and when she turned to look at him he brought his hands up to cradle her face. “Peter Hartnett survived the attack on your family.”

Jessica stared at Jim with a blank expression.

The name Peter Hartnett echoed in her mind. Peter Hartnett.

Senator Peter Hartnett.

Jessica’s legs buckled, as Riley had expected. He slid his right hand up her arm and caught her before she fell, pulling her against him. Angus grabbed her by her other arm and Jim still had her face cupped in his hands.

Riley sank to the floor with Jessica in his arms. Angus and Jim sinking with them. Like zombies Josh and Scott moved to Riley, Jim, Angus and Jessica and sank to their knees. Extending their hands they found an exposed part of Jessica’s body and clutched at it.

“He’s alive?” Jessica whispered.

Her Godfather was alive. She couldn’t believe it.

“He survived the attack?” she asked raising her head to look at Riley.

“Yes.” Riley answered.

“He’s alive!” Jessica shouted, excitement coursing through her. She kissed Riley, the other men, looked at the other adults, ecstatic with happiness, “My Godfather is alive! Isn’t that great?”

But Sean and the others merely stared back at her in stunned silence.

“He survived the attack but disappeared.” Jim said quietly. “No one has seen or heard from him since. There were reported sightings of him, but nothing concrete.”

Jessica contemplated that.

“So, you knew he was alive? All this time?” Jessica asked and could tell from the way their faces turned grey that this was what was upsetting the men so much.

“We’re sorry Jess.” Angus said. “When we made our oath … God Jess, we just forgot all about him. It never occurred to us to tell you.”

“Please don’t hate us.” Josh said when Jessica was silent for too long. She looked between them and they could tell she was thinking but not in her usual way. Rather than looking down and chewing her lip, she was staring at them with a blank expression.

“Please let us make it up to you … there has to be a way.” Jim begged.

“I … I don’t hate you.” Jessica said.

“Give it time.” Angus said, “When reality sinks in, you will. We lied to you Jess. We tortured you by telling you that you had no one left in the world. Me more than anyone. And then when we were supposed to be honest, put everything on the table with our oath, we fucked up. And you made choices based on that. You based your life on that. You’ll hate us.” Angus ended dropping his forehead against her left shoulder.

“Technically it was an omission.” Jessica said and she had to smile when the men snapped their eyes to hers and stared. “I fully comprehend what you’re telling me.” She said to Angus. “I do. But you didn’t have to tell me about my Godfather now. You could have kept that to yourselves. I could have gone the rest of my life not knowing.”

“Until you saw him on the news one day and realized that he was alive and we hadn’t told you.” Riley said.

“I still wouldn’t hate you.” Jessica said.

“You’re serious.” Scott said searching Jessica’s face. “How can you not hate us?”

Jessica shrugged, “I just don’t.”

“You’re not even mad at us?” Scott asked.

“How can I be? After everything that’s happened between us?” Jessica asked. She had her arm bent back over her right shoulder, her hand absentmindedly caressing Angus’ cheek, and she raised her other one to Scott’s. She scanned her men, and then the rest of the family, and none of them looked like they believed her. It occurred to her that she wasn’t accurately gauging the gravity with which her men and her family were treating this. And that both surprised and saddened her especially when she realized that the underlying emotion on all of their expressions was fear.

Switching arms, she caressed Riley with her right arm. Having slid down to rest her head on his chest the only part of him she could reach was his neck, and with her left arm she ran her fingers along Josh’s jawline. She studied Josh’s face. It was definitely fear under all that guilt and shame. Sitting up straighter she brought her right hand to Jim’s mouth and traced his lips with her fingers, silently willing the smile to come back and make his face double jointed again. Yes, fear on her men’s faces. And looking up she took the time to study the faces of the other adults. And it was clear that buried under the surprise, and confusion, there was apprehension.

“I thought I was ridiculously transparent.” Jessica finally said. “If that’s true then you should be able to see that I’m not angry and I don’t hate you.”

“Yet.” Jim said. “You aren’t angry and you don’t hate us, yet. When you have more time to think about it you probably will.”

“Like you hate Josh for what happened with Pam?” Jessica asked.

When Jim seemed at a loss for a response Jessica added, “Any anger, resentment, hate, that I could possibly feel about this was completely and permanently obliterated when Earl happened. If I have to explain beyond that than our realities are not the same.”

Jessica let that sink in. Not because she had the wherewithal to wait, but because she didn’t know what else to say or do. She looked around at her family and was relieved to see that their expressions were softening. And she was even more relieved to lean her head back and see pleasant surprise on Angus’ face and she felt exuberant relief when she looked up to find Jim watching her with serious eyes and a sexy, lopsided smile. Taking her hand in his, stopping her fingers mid-caress, he kissed it. “I can’t say that our perceptions are the same, but our realities are.” He murmured and then, somehow, his serious eyes developed a twinkle, “You’re in your own world baby and it seems that every day I find a reason to appreciate that more and more.”

Jessica stuck her tongue out at him but was relieved when there were general chuckles all around her. Even her men seemed to relax … genuinely smiling.

“Don’t worry Jess.” Leah said when Jessica narrowed her eyes at Sean and the others when their laughter seemed to go on a little too long. “I’m sure the color of the sky in your world is just beautiful.”

“Ha, ha.” Jessica replied.

“I for one am glad that world is here to stay.” Corey added, to a chorus of agreements around the room.

“That’s good,” Jessica said with a laugh, “cause you’re stuck with me.”

“Good.” Corey added but this time the laughter in his voice had considerably died. Jessica looked up at him in surprise and was even more surprised to see that he’d become very serious. “I had thought of a handful of ways to make you stay but I don’t think you would have appreciated any one of them.”

“Wait …” Jessica said scanning faces as everyone else became serious again too, “Did you think I was going to leave?”

“It seemed like a strong possibility.” Chris replied. “Finding out you do still have family in the world … original family … and having been lied to about it … I think it would have been understandable if you’d wanted to leave.”

“Understandable, but not acceptable.” Sean added. To another chorus of agreements.

Jessica shook her head. “I’m not going anywhere.”

“So you have no desire to find your Godfather?” Abe asked.

Jessica shook her head. “Not right now. I guess … maybe, he could help when we turn in the clan, but right now there’s no point.”

“You’re not curious about him? How he is? Where he is?” Riley asked. “I haven’t looked him up in years but no one really knew where he’d gone after the attack. But I’m sure you and Don could find him on the computer.” Riley said.

“It’s strange I guess, but I’m not curious.” Jessica said leaning her head back to look up at Riley. “I think it’s because I’m not ready to contact him. It makes sense for him to help bring in the clan. He would have the political strength to make sure we’re taken seriously when we call it in, and he could ensure the logistics of it are planned and executed well … but honestly, deep down, in my heart of hearts, I’d rather he not know I’m alive until after we get away and setup our lives. I want him to meet you in the best possible circumstances. I want him to like you … I want him to help pardon you. And to let him know I’m alive but not willing to leave you would just be hurting him. It doesn’t seem fair.”

“Jess, I know what you’re saying.” Josh said, “I know what you’re hoping. But I think you should be prepared for the fact that he may never like us.”

“Except for maybe Jim.” Angus muttered. He looked so earnest when Jessica looked back at him that Jessica now realized that while her family was afraid she’d leave, her men had multiple sources of fear. Judging by the reactions of the rest of her men, rejection by her Godfather seemed to be a surprisingly strong one.

Jessica nodded, “I know that. I’m prepared for the fact that he may never accept you. And Angus, I truly believe that he would either accept or reject all of you. Not one over the other. We’re in a much different place now than we were when I made those comments about Jim. But that uncertainty is part of the point. If I ever get in touch with him there is going to be a lot of emotional upheaval for everyone.”

“If?” Abe jumped in, “You said ‘if’ you contact him. So you may not?”

“I might not.” Jessica shrugged when Abe looked shocked. Surprised she glanced around and most everyone seemed taken aback by her response. “I’m not the person Uncle Pete remembers.”

“Wait, he’s your uncle?” Quinn interrupted.

“No, I just call him that … he was a close family friend.” Jessica replied and then added, “The person he remembers is dead … just as dead as he thinks I am. To suddenly tell him that I’m alive but I’m not anything like what he remembers and I don’t want to be anything like what he remembers … isn’t that just … mean?”

“Especially since you love us.” Scott said. “That may be salt in a wound that probably should have stayed closed.”

Jessica nodded.

“So you’re just going to ignore this … ignore the fact that your Godfather is alive and you can be with him again if you want?” Abe asked.

“Are you trying to make her feel like shit?” Angus demanded, an anger in his tone that Jessica hadn’t heard in a while and had hoped to never hear again, “Because you’re doing a fucking great job of it.”

“I think Abe is just trying to make sure she doesn’t end up with any regrets.” Rick said hastily and threw Abe a look that conveyed, ‘shut the fuck up’ quite clearly.

“I can see what Abe means though.” Sara said, “Jessica, when we first got here and Sean, Corey, Leah and I were having all those problems, you told us to appreciate the family we have left. You just found out that you have family left … you should embrace it … I would.”

The room was silent as Jessica digested that.

Mark cleared his throat a couple of times before saying, “I have family that Earl sold. It’s possible that some of them were rescued too. I really have no desire to know. And if I happened to find out that they were rescued, I would have no desire to have any contact with them. I’m happy now, where I am now, and all I’d feel is guilt knowing anything about them. I can completely understand where Jessica is coming from. The important thing has happened … you told her that Hartnett is alive … what she does with that information is Jessica’s business and no one else’s.”

“Oh Mark … I’m sorry.” Jessica said. “I didn’t think to ask what you thought about telling the boys.”

“It’s okay Jess. I think this entire conversation has answered the question about telling the boys. They deserve to know and they deserve to make their own individual choices about what to do with that information. And I guess you know what my choice is.” Mark replied with a small smile.

Jessica nodded.

“So we tell the boys.” Amanda agreed, “And I think that you all may want to get up off the floor.” She said to Jessica and the men. “That can’t be comfortable.”

“I’m sorry Jess. I wasn’t trying to make you feel guilty. I just thought … I don’t know what I thought. Sorry.” Abe said once she and the men were standing. Angus had pulled her into his arms and she was enjoying the safety she felt in them so she wasn’t prepared for how upset Abe looked.

“Abe, it’s okay, really.” Jessica said. Abe nodded, leaned in and kissed her forehead, before wandering off to the kitchen. Jessica exchanged glances with her men. It was unnerving that her personal issues were impacting others in the family that much.

“So hold up a sec … if we tell the boys, and they decide to go to their families, we just humiliated ourselves in there for nothing?” Corey asked pointing toward the studio.

“Oh, it wasn’t for nothing.” Jessica said, “It was an important discussion. The boys will always remember what you did for them.”

“They’ll always remember something …” Riley muttered. “You know what.” He said looking at Jessica more closely. “You need a nap. I think we all need a nap. Maybe that’s why you don’t feel well enough to eat properly or to keep the food down.” He looked around at Angus, Jim, Josh, and Scott. They did look pretty wiped out as well.

“Nap isn’t a code word for something else, right?” Sean asked, “Because that’s what got you tired to begin with.”

“Ha, ha.” Riley said, “No, this time we’ll really sleep. Come on.”

Sitting in the center of the bed Jessica watched the men arranged themselves around her. They seemed tense. Subtly tense.

“Come on babe.” Scott said rolling onto his back and holding his arms out to her.

“Just a sec …” she said running her hand along his hard, muscular leg.

“What’s up baby?” Jim asked when she wrapped her fingers around one of his … with the exception of Scott, who Jessica was going to cuddle with, the other men had fanned themselves out around them, their head close to where Jessica would lie, their legs radiation out toward the edge of the mattress. Jim had lined himself up to be near her legs so he was pretty surprised to find her hands touching him.

“We need to talk some more.” Jessica replied.

“Yeah, we do.” Riley agreed, “But after we sleep.”

Scott sat up, wrapped his arms around Jessica and pulled her down onto the bed with him. Nuzzled against Scott, Jessica felt her eyes closing

“Angus, if I wake up first, can I get up?” she asked.

“Okay. But only because this is a nap. At night, you stay with us okay?”

“Mhmm.” Jessica said and drifted off.

Jessica opened her eyes. She’d woken up, but not suddenly and in terror like she usually did from her nightmares. Instead she woke slowly, gently, and for no apparent reason. She’d been sleeping with her head turned to the right so she could see that Angus, Riley, Josh and Jim were still asleep. Suddenly she realized that Scott had been running his finger along the length of her arm. He’d paused when she woke up, but he continued now. His finger brushed against her lightly, soothingly, caressing her. Turning her head, she felt the air gush out of her. Scott was naked. Completely, breathtakingly naked. And like a Greek God his body was chiselled, gorgeously inviting. He was kneeling on his right leg, his left bent, his arm draped across his knee, his huge, deliciously hard and vibrating cock jutted out to her. She wanted it. She wanted it and him and it made her skin tingle even harder knowing that both his cock and Scott were hers for the taking. She was so wet, her nipples so hard, and as her eyes travelled along his rock hard, rippled abdomen, chest, arms, she became wetter. Moaning and panting with need she was on the verge of attacking him when her eyes made it to his face and she found Scott watching her. He had an expression on his face that she couldn’t decipher. A combination of horny, melancholy, and yearning. When his deep brown eyes locked on hers she was no longer able to move. They seemed to darken and intensify and almost physically probe her and there was an emotion behind them Jessica had never seen before.

She didn’t know what it was or where it had come from but she did know she never wanted it to disappear. Scott’s finger had slowly continued to move along her arm and when it came flush with her tit, brushing against it, it stopped and Scott’s eyes slowly and deliberately lowered to watch his finger brush the soft mound, that heaved with her heavy breathing. Moving as if in slow motion, Scott tilted his head slightly, as if curious, and he pushed the blanket off of her. His eyes took over caressing her and despite being fully clothed Jessica could feel his longing on her skin. Starting at her toes, running along her legs, her abdomen and stopping at her tits. He brushed a finger over where her nipples pressed against her bra, and then he very slowly unbuttoned her shirt. Unrushed and deliberate, he worked each button free and when he was done he pulled her shirt open. Using two hands now he teased each nipple through her bra making Jessica moan and arch. Moments later he slipped his fingers under her bra and slid the bra cups over her tits, freeing them. Unbuttoning her pants, unzipping them, he hooked his thumbs in her undies and in one slow, swift, motion, pulled Jessica undies and pants off. No sooner was she completely naked than he slid on top of her. Her legs fell apart for him and hooked around his waist as he pressed down on her. She felt his hard cock pressed firmly against her abdomen and before she had time to reach for it, Scott brought his mouth down on hers.

His firm, sensual mouth covered hers, but rather than ravage it as was his custom, Scott kissed her. It was a kiss Jessica felt to the depths of her soul. It wasn’t hard, claiming, or dominant … this time it was strong, quiet and powerful. Their tongues entwined and Jessica became lost in the kiss.

When Scott finally pulled away from her mouth and kissed down her neck, chest, and sucked her right nipple into his mouth Jessica physically missed his mouth on hers. But the disequilibrium of losing the kiss was soon forgotten as Scott worked on her nipple. Licking it, sucking it, teasing it. And then his big, strong fingers slid between her pussy lips and spread them open. His fingers slipped in her juices as they found her clit and caressed it. He didn’t rub, or pull it, just caressed it. And it felt so good. Jessica rocked gently against him, feeling him give her clit intermittent squeezes. She moaned softly … panting … and she wondered what they’d do about her screaming, but she didn’t care. At that moment she just didn’t care. This felt so quietly intense. She began to rock her body with Scott’s and after having spent a lot of time on her nipples Scott gave them each a final suck, leaving them long, hard and wet. And then he entered her. Pulling back a little he slid into her weeping pussy, and rocked into her. Rolling his ass and hips, his cock head ground against her cervix. He stifled her growing moans by kissing her again. She raised up to meet him, wrapping her arms around his neck, her fingers pressing into his back. Kneading into his hard muscles as they moved against her. Jessica was delirious with need. But just like the look on Scott’s face, his slow, deep, sensual kisses and touches were different than usual. And so was the need Jessica felt. It was different than anything she experienced before. It was slow burning, she felt it in every cell of her body, and rather than craving release Jessica craved Scott. She needed to be part of him. She moved with him, in unison, and she felt the strangest climax growing. It felt like every limb, hair follicle, eyelash on her body was going to be consumed in a slow, long, burn and she wanted Scott to burn with her. Their bodies rolled together in ever intensifying waves and just when Jessica thought she was never going to get close enough to Scott, he rocked back onto his heels, taking Jessica with him.

Wrapping her legs around his waist, arms around his neck, planting her heels on his sexy ass Jessica clung to him. They kissed, harder, deeper, wetter, as she pushed herself onto the head of his cock. She squeezed her pussy as she slowly slid down his shaft, feeling him pushing slowly and steadily into her. And they repeated the motion, making slower yet bigger motions. And Jessica needed more. Scott’s hard muscles, hot skin, pressed against her, his mouth on her, moaning his need, his shaft rubbing her clit, his head grinding her cervix. Scott clutched her to him harder when without warning Jessica came. It was a slow orgasm but it spread and grew and intensified. And rather than scream, Jessica clung to Scott, hard. And it was only moments later that Scott clutched her closer, groaning against her mouth. She felt his cock jerk inside her adding to the intensity of the strangest orgasm Jessica had ever had. They clung together for the longest time, panting. As their breathing slowed, Scott laid Jessica back onto the bed, lying on top of her, both of them still clinging to one another and he looked down at her, his eyes still dark orbs of emotion.

“So it really does exist.” He whispered, brushing his lips over hers.

Jessica was running her fingers along his back. Gently caressing the muscles that bulged as he held her tight. “What does?”

She felt him thread his fingers into her hair, clasping the fingers of both hands together at her hairline, and he pressed his palms against her head firmly but gently, holding her in place.

“Making love.” He answered.

“You didn’t know?” Jessica asked and Scott had to chuckle when Jessica looked astounded that there was something about sex that he was unaware of.

“I did. Kinda like I knew about Santa Claus.” His smile intensified when Jessica looked confused. “I used to laugh at the idea.” Scott said softly kissing her cheek, lips, other cheek before gazing in her eyes again. “I was certain it was a made up concept to make the prudes and virgins of the world feel good about themselves. Save it for the one you love … take the fun out of fucking and call it making love …” he paused, his chest rumbling with a deep and sensual chuckle. “Man was I wrong.” Scott’s eyes roamed Jessica’s face and as they did they grew serious. “The claim to fame for making love has always been that it’s a physical expression of the love between two people. That was what I was looking for baby, just now. To know that even with everything I’ve ever done to you, you really loved me. Not that you thought you loved me, but that you really loved me. And I needed you to know that I really love you.” He kissed her again, gently. “I got my answer Jess. Did you get my message?”

Jessica nodded. “That was so different than what we usually do. Intense but in such a completely different way. I …” Jessica paused bringing her hands to Scott’s face, tracing his lips … eyes, nose, unable to feel or see enough of him, “Until now I knew you loved me. I had no doubt about it, you’ve proven it over and over again. But just now I actually felt it. Physically. And I’m glad you got your answer Scott. Really glad, because I don’t think I can express it properly with words.”

Scott nodded, eyes pools of emotion again. “I know now, without a doubt.”

“I’d like to know too.” Riley said. Startled, Scott and Jessica looked in the direction of his voice and found the men sitting up, watching them. They’d all pulled their cocks out of their pants and though they were hard, all four of the men looked unsure about what to do with them.

“We’ve been watching.” Jim said his eyes settling on Jessica’s.

“Joining was completely out of the question. To interrupt that seemed … wrong.” Josh added.

“I’ve never seen anything like that before.” Angus said.

“You never told us about this before.” Riley said to Scott and his tone worried Jessica. He sounded lost.

“I’ve never done this before.” Scott said and he slid his eyes back to Jessica. “Never. I wasn’t even sure I’d do it right.”

“Do you think it’s something we can do as a group?” Jim asked. Jessica thought he was asking Scott but when she pulled her eyes away from Scott to look at Jim she found him waiting for her to answer.

“I do.” Jessica replied but her heart was melting as she looked from one of her men to the other. They wanted to make love to her too, that was clear, but it was also clear that they were not confident about their abilities to do so. “I think we can do it as a group, and we should do it as a group, but I’d like to have one on one love making first, with each of you. I want you to know, without a doubt, how much I love you.”

Josh nodded, “I want to do it now.”

Scott kissed Jessica and rolled off of her. Jessica sat up and observed the men.

“I want to do it now too.” Jessica said, “But I need you to choose the order that we go in.”

“Alphabetically.” Riley said. “I’m okay going last.”

Jessica nodded and crawled over to Angus. Riley, Jim and Josh moved away.

“What do I do?” he asked when Jessica knelt before him. “I’m sorry Jess but all my instincts tell me to jump you.”

Jessica smiled and reached up to caress Angus’ face. He was so nervous, Jessica just wanted to wrap herself around him and squeeze.

“Mine do too.” Jessica said.

“You and Scott didn’t jump each other.” Angus replied. At a loss for how to explain that Jessica looked to Scott. Angus did too.

“Think about how you feel about each other.” Scott said. “The whole goal is to translate how you feel into a physical entity. Show one another … make one anther feel it. And go slow … there are no gspot orgasms, finger fucking, hand jobs, blow jobs or any of that shit … you have to cum because of how you feel about one another.”

“Angus …” Jessica said when he looked unsure. But Angus silenced her by running his hands along her thighs stopping just short of her pussy. Jessica trembled with need, gasping when he stopped. They stared into one another’s eyes and Jessica felt breathless, unable to speak. Sliding her legs apart she rocked her hips using her wet, pussy … now fully exposed to Angus … to beg him to touch her. And he did, but rather than let his huge, hard fingers slip between her pussy lips he brought his hands to her hips and pulled her onto his lap. Jessica slid closer to him, her hard nipples just barely grazing his chest. He still had his shirt and pants on and Jessica had to refocus when she had the overwhelming urge to tear them off. She ran her fingers across his chest. Light, feathery touches. Down his stomach, abdomen, looking to undo his pants but Angus had already undone them. They hung open and his cock, huge and hard, strained toward her. Jessica let her fingers graze its head, and soon Angus’ fingers moved over her too. From her hips up along her sides, around to her tits. Jessica watched as they gently caressed her nipples and when they went still she looked up to find Angus watching her with so much emotion that she was left breathless. He leaned forward, slowly. His fingers moving up to her hair. When his mouth met hers, Jessica melted into him, pressing her abdomen into his cock. He slid his tongue deep into her throat and began to rim it. Circling her tonsils and going deeper, then lazily withdrawing, caressing her cheeks, teeth, tongue and then slipping into her throat again. His hands slid down her back and found her ass. His strong hands gripping each of her ass cheeks and giving them a deep, strong, massage. Jessica had begun to moan against his mouth feeling herself get wetter. She shifted so her pussy straddled his right, muscular thigh. Pressing her pussy against it until her lips parted and she felt his skin on her wet, pink meat, Jessica rode the whole length of his thigh. Pressing hard against him and taking a long time to slide down and then back up, leaving his thigh wet, glistening and smelling of her juices. Her fingers wrapped around the head of Angus’ cock … wet from his precum, and she began to give slow, full, twists from her wrist.

“Oh God …” Angus groaned against her mouth and he pulled away. When he looked down at her, his hazel eyes had turned grey. The same grey they used to turn when he was furious at her, but now instead of anger, frustration, possessiveness, Jessica recognized a love so deep it made her knees weak. If she didn’t already know how much he loved her, she would have right then. Even if their love making ended right at that moment, she would know. Angus must have seen the same thing in her eyes because he suddenly smiled. A big, huge, ear to ear smile, and he looked so happy. Jessica pushed up to kiss him again but he held her back.

“I want to finish this Jess … even though I think we both found what we were looking for … I want to make love to you.”

When Jessica nodded Angus turned her around and guided her to her knees. He gently pushed her head to the floor, pulled her ass up and urged her legs apart. He firmly but gently ran his thumb along her ass crack, rubbing on her asshole as it went by.

“This is how our first time together should have gone.” He added, kissing each of her ass cheeks before settling onto his stomach behind her. “Guys, there any lube around here?” he asked.

“Yeah, just a sec.” Jim said and Jessica could hear him moving around.

“Thanks.” Angus said moments later and squeeze a healthy glob of lube onto his hand. Planting his elbows on the bed he opened his hands, “Lower yourself baby … till you’re resting on my hands.”

Jessica let her legs slide wider apart on the bed until the v between each of her thighs and her pussy was resting in the cradle between the pointer finger and thumb on each of Angus’ hands.

“That’s it baby,” he murmured as his pointer fingers slid between her pussy lips and spread them. The middle fingers of each hand running along her pussy meat just on the inside of her lips. When they reached her clit they pinched it between them and gently pulled. He repeated that over and over, swimming in her juices as she got wetter and wetter. His thumbs, slick with lube, stroked up alone her ass crack, their tips dipping into her pink, puckered asshole. Sliding in and stretching her hole, getting deeper and stretching wider with each slow thrust. And soon she felt Angus’ tongue slide in her asshole and join his thumbs. Jessica moaned into the bed as Angus buried his face deep in her ass and French kissed her hole as deep and hard as he’d kissed her mouth. And then he added his teeth. Sucking on her hole he drew it out and gnawed it gently but firmly, his fingers increasing the pressure with each stroke of her pussy. Jessica moaned louder as her body shuddered with growing pleasure. And then Angus pulled his tongue from her and tilted her ass up enough for him to bury is chin and mouth into her wet pussy. He traced the inside of her lips with his tongue, slid his tongue slow and deep into her pussy, locking his lips over her meat with what seemed an airtight seal, and sucked. A loud wet slurping noise filled the air and Jessica moaned. Tilting her ass down again, Angus pressed his nose into her well lubed hole, and then tilted it up and sucked her pussy. He repeated that over and over, sometimes pausing to French kiss her pussy, sometimes her ass, and Jessica moaned louder, writhing on his face. She felt the strange orgasm growing but she wanted to feel him on her when she came. Skin to skin … holding one another … she needed that.

“Angus, I need you.” She pleaded. Angus’ fingers, thumbs and mouth withdrew and he kissed the inside of each of her thighs, the back of her thighs, up along one ass cheek, then the other, up the small of her back, her back, her neck, and soon his mouth, breath hot, found her ear.

“And I need you.” He growled into her ear. His hands pushed her legs together and then ran up her body, sliding around to her front and cupping her tits. She covered his arms with hers, squeezing his hands as they squeezed her tits. Moments later she felt his cock slip between her ass cheeks, its head finding her hole. He sucked on her earlobe, giving a gentle tug before saying, “Relax your asshole baby … just push it out a little and relax … that’s it baby …” he moaned as Jessica opened her hole to him. And then, with his strong arms holding her tight against him, Angus sat up onto his haunches letting Jessica slide onto his hard cock. Despite the size of his cock relative to her tight hole, her asshole slipped onto her cock like a glove and sank three quarters of the way before it got too tight. Angus let go of her tits and slid his arms up so his hands rested on her shoulders. He kissed her shoulder tracing her marriage tattoo with his lips.

“When we fuck you I don’t pay enough attention to your tattoo. To the symbol of our union you chose to wear. It should be honored, worshipped, cherished, just like you should be. I promise to do that better baby. For the rest of our lives.”

“Yours too … “ Jessica said bringing her hand to his bicep where he had his tattoo, “I promise to appreciate it more.”

“Jess, I want you to understand the depth of my love for you.”

Jessica tried to turn around and look at Angus, “I understand it. Everything with Earl left no doubt.”

“That’s good baby.” Angus murmured kissing the top of her head.

With a sigh she leaned back into him as he slowly began to push her lower on his cock. She felt Angus’ hard muscles moving beneath her, his hips thrusting progressively harder, his cock stretching her, his hands, holding her in place, working her lower on his cock. She moaned as he slid the rest of the way in.

“I should have prepared you for my cock baby … the first time … every time.” Angus whispered in her ear, his voice husky. Jessica wrapped her arms around his neck, arching back into him as Angus’ one arm slid down around her waist, his other one found her pussy and his finger began to tease her clit. A soft moan escaped her. Angus continued to caress her clit as he slowly pulled out of her, then slowly fucked back in. He kissed her neck and soon his hungry lips, worked their way up to and along her jawbone until they found her mouth. But rather than devour her, like they always did, they savoured her. His tongue caressing every crevice of her throat and mouth, and this combined with the soft caresses of his thick fingers on her pussy and the hard, steady invasion of her asshole by his cock brought on that strange, radiating build up to orgasm that Jessica had felt with Scott. His hot skin against her, muscled chest pressed into her back, had her moaning more and rocking her ass onto his cock. Jessica slid her fingers into his short hair and clutched, pressing his mouth down harder on hers and she concentrated on making her ass cheeks and hole clutch, stroke and milk his cock. It wasn’t long before she felt his cock starting to jerk inside her and it was perfect timing because that strange pulsing sensation in her pussy grew like a giant wave and hesitated at its peak before breaking down on her and spreading to every limb. She shuddered against Angus just as she felt him tense and groan against her mouth. His arm constricted pulling her harder against him as his cock spasmed inside her. She could feel his hot cum spilling into her and as an overwhelming sense of peace and relaxation descended on her, Jessica melted against Angus. Minutes later Angus’ mouth had moved from hers to press into her hair, near her ear.

“Jess … God I love you. You’re my everything. My reason for being … I love you more than life …” he murmured. All Jessica could do to respond in her incredibly calm state was nuzzle in closer to him and whisper, “I love you too Angus. More than life.”

Minutes later Angus lowered them onto the bed. They cuddled for a few more minutes and though Jessica felt as though she should be drifting off to sleep given how relaxed she was, she had no desire to. Instead she was driven by the need to express her love to Jim, Josh and Riley as she had with Scott and Angus.

Angus kissed the top of her head, “Remember this position baby … exactly this position, we’ll come back to it soon.” He muttered, “It’s Jim’s turn baby,” he explained when Jessica mewed and pressed harder against him, “But I’m not going far.” He promised and pulling out of her … a warm rush of his cum going with him, he rolled away from her. Moments later she felt Jim press up against her. Jessica rolled toward him. He ran a hand along her body.

“So I finally get to take my time with you without being jumped.” Jim murmured and there was a twinkle in his eye when she looked up at him.

She brought her fingers to his mouth and traced it, smiling as she said, “Enjoy it while you can.” She ran her finger along the shaft of his cock, circling his head with a gentle touch.

“You don’t plan to make this a regular thing?” Josh asked. Jessica looked around to find Josh and Riley kneeling on the bed, cocks in hand, watching her and Jim intently. Scott was lounging, spread eagle, on the bed, cock semi hard and laying across his abdomen. Head tilted back he watched Jessica waiting for her answer. And Angus was on his side, cock hardening again enough to hover over the bed. He too observed Jessica, waiting for a response.

“I think we should save this for special occasions … for when we want to make a special statement about our feelings for one another.” Jessica’s hand travelled from Jim’s mouth to his chest and traced his muscles, the thumb of her other hand pressing flat on his cockhead and circling more firmly, “I guess,” she began, when the men looked surprised, “I kinda like it when we’re rough.”

“You like to fuck.” Riley said in a tone that left little doubt that he liked that.

Jessica nodded and began to think that Riley would forego making love to oblige her.

Scott gave a deep and sexy chuckle, “Baby, I said it once but I’ll say it again, and again, and again. You’re the best fucking wife ever!”

“That’s a fucking understatement if I’ve ever heard one.” Angus muttered.

“Mhmm,” Josh agreed.

Jim nodded “But right now …” Jim said lowering his head to brush his lips over hers, “Before we degenerate into a fuckfest, I’m going to make love to my wife.”

Jessica sighed as he rolled onto her, “Please do.” She whispered, shuddering with anticipation.

“I’ll always be thankful that we were friends.” Jim said kissing her neck, sucking her earlobe, kissing lower until his tongue flicked the her right nipple. Looking up at her as he nipped, licked, sucked her nipple to erection. His eyes had butterflies erupting in her stomach, “But when I think of all the times I had your body next to mine and I didn’t take the time explore it … you … I could kick my ass to hell and back. We wasted so much time. But I’m going to make up for it.” He moved from her wet and erect nipple and kissed his way down her body but he paused at her belly button and looked up at her. “I don’t mean early on, when you needed a friend. I mean when you started looking at me different. When you very clearly wanted more than a friend. I really can’t fucking believe I was so dense.”

“Jim …” Jessica said, pressing her body up into his. She tugged on his arm, wanting to kiss him so badly. But trying to move him was like trying to move a mountain. “Jim please …” she begged. Lips curving into a dangerously sexy smile, Jim crawled back up along her body.

“Lost patience?” he asked grinning down at her. Jessica looked back him, unable to return his smile. She stared into his eyes. All of her emotions, her love for him, evident in hers. Jim searched her eyes for a moment before his smile melted away to be replaced with the same earnest and love filled expression Jessica had. Several long minutes passed in which Jim and Jessica caressed one another with their eyes, each feeling the one another’s love deep in the recesses of their souls. Finally Jessica pressed her lips to Jim’s and kissed him with every emotion she felt. Jim kissed back. Pressing her into the bed. One of his legs sliding between hers and his muscular thigh pressing hard against her pussy, Jim kissed her deeper. Their tongues danced, caressed and twirled with one another. Jessica slid her hands down to cup Jim’s ass, and after having massaged her tits thoroughly, Jim’s hands slid down to grip her ass. Moaning with need, Jessica spread her legs, wrapping them around Jim as his cock found and claimed her wet, hungry pussy. They began to move together. To the other men they looked like one organism. Bending, arching, thrusting into one another there was no obvious beginning of one body and ending of the other. When at last they came, they rode out their bliss clutching one another.

“I love you Jess.” Jim murmured in her ear as he relaxed and lay draped over her, his mouth leaving hers and nuzzling her neck and ear.

“I love you Jim.” Jess replied, shifting until she found a way for every surface area of her skin to be in contact with his.

When Jim finally went to roll away Jessica grasped his arm and when he paused she kissed the tattoo on his shoulder, “Always cherished.” She said with a smile. Jim smiled back at her as he pulled her up enough to kiss the tattoo on her shoulder, “Always honored and loved.” He said before rolling away.

Jessica looked to Josh. Josh crawled forward until he was between her feet. He wrapped his strong hands around her ankles and ran his hands up along her legs until they reached her pussy. He stroked his thumbs from top to bottom of her pussy lips … firmly. Jessica moaned, letting her head fall to the right, eyes closed, every fibre of her being needing to feel Josh on and in her. Eyes opening, moaning louder, she saw Jim pulling a condom off his cock. They had gotten so good at putting the condoms on she barely noticed when they did. Even so, it didn’t feel right that there was something between them and her.

“What’s wrong baby?” Josh asked.

Jessica looked back at him, and then scanned all the men. “The condoms, I don’t want to use condoms anymore. I want to feel every part of your cock and every drop of your cum. I should go back on the pill. .”

Scott gave her his toothy grin, “Fuck I love how much you love our cocks and cum. You’re so fucking fun to play with.”

Angus agreed with a throaty chuckle, “You’re our dirty little cock and cum slave aren’t you?”

Jessica nodded vigorously which led to chuckles from Jim, Josh and Riley too.

“Don’t worry babe, as soon as we get away from the clan we’ll get you to a doctor first thing.” Riley said, “Right now things are just too weird with Paul to go to Doc.”

“Besides,” Jim said, “we only use the condom in your pussy. Everywhere else … mouth, ass, tits, face, is the real thing. Cock, cum and all.”

Josh laughed when Jessica didn’t look consoled in any way, “Hey, I want to cream your pussy just as much as you want it creamed Jess.” He began, pulling her pussy lips apart as he did and letting his thumb slip between them, pinching her clit between his thumb and forefinger, “But if we decide to have kids we want to plan them. Have them when we want them. So until we get away and find you a good doctor, we can survive using a condom for your pussy … it’s actually not as inconvenient as I thought it would be.”

Jessica arched and moaned as Josh’s thumbs began to massage her meat and clit in firm, sensual caresses. Eventually she nodded, “I don’t even notice you putting them on. But as soon as we can, I want you in me without condoms.”

Deep chuckles rumbled around her as Josh brought his mouth to her ankle and kissed, “Mmmm, anything to please you my sexy wife.” He added with a grin as he kissed his way up her leg. Jessica arched, moaned, shivered with pleasure when Josh reached her pussy and slipped his tongue between her lips and licked.

Jessica looked down into Josh’s eyes in the relative silence of their panting. Josh’s thumbs spread her lips as wide as they could stretch and Josh pressed his mouth down hard on her quivering pink pussy. He had slight stubble on his chin and he used it. Rubbing his chin into her wet and hungry hole … on her meat, her clit. Nipping her clit, he sucked it in and pulled, relishing the feel of it, and the taste of her. Sliding his hands under her he slid the fingers of both hands into her ass crack and pulled her cheeks apart, kneading her crack and asshole with firm thrusts of his fingers.

Jessica arched and moaned, her fingers in Josh’s short hair, gripping, pressing him down harder on her pussy … she tried to arch up to his mouth but his hands had her firmly in their grip. She slid her foot under his stomach and slid it down until she found his hard, vibrating cock. With the ball of her foot she rubbed his head, his oozing precum soaking her foot. Josh moaned against her pussy and his eyes flashed with need. He buried his face deeper into her pussy and slid the middle finger of each hand deep into her asshole, bending and twisting them inside her. Jessica writhed against him, but couldn’t move. He had her held hard in place. All she could move were her feet and she used them. Gripping his shaft between them she stroked, loving how his hard cock vibrated in the grip of her feet. She felt pleasure growing, spreading from her pussy to her abdomen, beginning to radiate down her legs … but she didn’t want to cum like that. She needed to feel him against her. She tapped her fingers lightly on his head but he didn’t seem to notice.

“Josh … please, I need to feel you on me … I want to cum with your cock in me … please.” Jessica begged in a breathless tone.

Pulling his fingers out of her ass, Josh gave her pussy a final kiss and moved his mouth up to her abdomen. Resting his chin there he looked up at her. “Jess, I never had the patience Jim apparently did … but I’m doing my best. I’m not sure I can hold out much once I’m in you … or be gentle the way making love needs to be …”

Jessica was shaking her head as Josh spoke, “I don’t think there are supposed to be rules to making love. It’s a feeling, that’s all. And I want to have that feeling with you but I need your body on mine, your skin on mine, your mouth on mine … and when we cum I need you cock in me. It doesn’t matter which hole, but please Josh, I want that, I need that …”.

Josh pressed his face into her abdomen and struggled to gather some self-control.

“It’s not about sex.” Angus said when it was clear Josh was hesitant to continue. “It’s about showing Jess how you feel about her … and her showing you. If anyone here should’ve fucked this up it would’ve been me. If I could do it Josh, man, so can you.”

“Feel with your heart not your cock.” Scott added.

“Josh,” Jessica said urging Josh to look up at her. When he finally did her heart squeezed. He looked worried. “Let me show you.” She said patting her hands on his shoulders. “I’ll just start, you can take over. I promise you’ll be in control.”

“I don’t mind you being in control.” Josh muttered, “Not when we’re husband and wife and making love … I’m just worried about having self-control. I don’t imagine rapists make love often.”

“Please Josh.” Jessica said tapping his shoulders again, not knowing how else to respond to Josh’s statement other than to prove to him that he was capable of making love.

Josh nodded and rolled off of Jessica.

“On your back.” Jessica urged, pushing on his chest when he lay on his side, pressed against her.

Josh rolled onto his back, his hard, vibrating, oozing, cock standing hard at attention. Josh looked between the pre-cum running down his cock and Jessica with growing concern.

“Maybe I could take care of that first.” Jessica suggested eyeing his cock with growing self-interest. Her pussy was so wet and squeezing, her nipples hard and her mouth watered at the prospect of tasting his cock.

Josh shook his head. “The other guys did it without help, I want to try too.”

“Looks like you may not be the only one with self-control issues Josh.” Scott said with a laugh.

“I’m so fucked.” Riley interjected groaning as he doubled over, unable to take his eyes off Jessica’s face. Extreme horniness evident on it.

“It’s okay.” Jessica said, not sounding convinced. She forced her eyes from Josh’s cock to his face and laying alongside Josh she wiggled up along his body. She paused at his shoulder level and kissed his tattoo. “Loved.” She said before wiggling closer to his face and finding his lips with hers. She kissed them gently … deeply … caressing his tongue with hers. Josh seemed tense. Jessica lifted her head and looking around she found his hands hovering over her, an inch from touching her. The look on his face made it clear he was working hard at not touching her. Jessica reached up and took one of his hands and despite the panicked look on his face, Jessica pressed it palm down, firmly between her tits. She pressed her own hand over Josh’s heart and felt it pounding fast and furious. “Relax.” She whispered, her lips brushing his.

“Yours is beating fast too.” He muttered against her lips.

“I know. We have to calm down together.” She muttered back.

“I don’t know how.” Josh replied.

Jessica slid a leg across Josh’s waist, following it with her body. She slid down until her pussy lips spread around Josh’s hard shaft. “Breath with me.” She murmured and let herself melt against him. Relaxing every muscle in her body she draped his with hers and concentrated on breathing slowly, steadily. It took a few minutes but then Josh relaxed beneath her. Minutes later they were breathing in synchronized deep, calm, breaths. Jessica began to let her hands roam his body. Her fingers running from his armpits to his hips. Then up again, flattening, palms on his chest, she caressed his pecks, feeling his hardened nipples in the palms of his hands. Jessica moaned, Josh moaned, and he began rocking his hips so that his cock rubbed up and down between her wet, hungry, pussy lips. She could feel his cock getting wetter … slipperier … her pussy hungrier. She relished his cock stretching her lips and wanted him in her more than anything, but it was easy to see that Josh was struggling to leave her unmolested. She struggled to maintain her composure also but decided that she’d rather be the one to lose it first than to let Josh think that he’d failed somehow.

“I love you.” Jessica whispered in his ear, “Try, if you can, to feel how much … but, um, you may want a condom.” Josh nodded and moments later he was fumbling with the condom wrapper.

“I’m ready.” He said in a strangled voice. And she lifted her pussy onto his cock. She tried to slide down slowly but Josh thrust his cock up into her in one deep thrust. He held it there, deep in her, his head buried hard in her cervix, and he panted, “I can’t do this … I can’t not fuck you. I’m sorry Jess.” He sounded deeply disappointed in himself.

“It’s okay.” Jessica replied, willing him, with every fibre of her being, to go easy on himself. “There are no rules. We have to do what’s right for us, you and me.”

Josh’s hands found her hips and held her hard as he pulled his cock out of her and then fucked up into her again, hard. “We should stop, give Riley his turn. He’ll be able to make love to you the way you deserve.”

“No.” Jessica said, “This is your turn.”

“I’m just going to fuck the shit out of you Jess … please, let’s give Riley his turn.” Josh replied and tried to lift her off of him. But Jessica wrapped her arms around his neck and squeezed him with her legs so that the only way he could get her off was to rip her off. Physically he’d be capable. Mentally, emotionally, he didn’t seem to have it in him. “Babe, please …”

“Wait … wait …” Jessica begged clinging to him again until he let her melt back down on top of him. “I want you to take me.” Jessica said, panting, trying to catch her breath. “But … but …” she continued when Josh pulled out of her and then slammed in hard again, “I can’t scream in here … and it’s too early for the studio, the boys would hear us for sure. Could you skip the gspot orgasm and just rub my clit? Please Josh … I think I can keep from screaming then.”

Josh nodded, sliding his hand between them he found her clit with his thumb. He rubbed it as he thrust into her. Jessica found his mouth with hers and kissed him. Slow and deep … savoring the feel of him … the taste of him, and it wasn’t long before Josh’s thrusts slowed in speed and softened in force. Jessica let her body glide over his, her nipples hard, tracing over his chest, her pussy rocking on his cock. Josh soon added his moan to hers. It wasn’t long before Josh’s kisses were slow and deep and his thrusts deep, slow, rotations. Josh’s cock rubbed steadily on Jessica’s cervix, his shaft on her clit. Josh’s hands now running up and down her back, massaging her ass when they got there. They moved together, and they couldn’t seem to get enough of one another. Except for their moans their bodies moved in perfect silent compliment and Jessica began to feel the telltale signs of the strange orgasm. It was growing within her. She felt it tingling through her limbs up to the pit of her belly. Josh was moaning with her and just as the warm, odd, sensation rippled through her Josh pushed her away from him and stared at her. He looked beyond surprised when his cock suddenly jerked inside Jessica.

They shuddered together. “Holy fuck … that was amazing.” Josh muttered. “I’ve never felt anything like that.” He added wrapping his arms around Jessica and rolling onto his side with her.

“Mhmm …” Jessica muttered into his chest in a dreamy tone.

Cock still in her, Josh rolled them so he was on top. He planted his elbows on either side of her head and caressed the hair off of her face.

“I love you Jess … I’m in love with you …” he said gazing into her eyes. “I honestly never knew there was a difference but you made me feel it.”

“I’m in love with you too Josh.” Jessica said with a smile.

“I know.” Josh replied and he looked even more surprised, “I felt it. Despite everything, you’re in love with me and I swear Jess I’ll do anything, anything, to keep it this way.”

“Me too.” Jessica replied and sighed with pleasure when Josh kissed her, his tongue taking every opportunity to caress hers. Slow, sensual kisses and she thought they were going to make love again when Josh reluctantly pulled away.

“It’s Riley’s turn baby.” Josh said starting to roll off of her but then he paused. “I agree with you Jess, about saving love making for special occasions. I love to fuck you too much to want to make love more often. But I definitely want to do this again when we need to feel our love for one another.”

Jessica nodded her agreement and Josh rolled away. Looking to Riley Jessica was surprised to see how concerned he seemed. “Riley?”

“This making love … being in love, thing seems to be more real than I thought it would be.”

“That’s bad?” Jessica asked holding her hand out to Riley, confused about why he hadn’t moved and why he looked so serious.

“No … no it’s not bad.” Riley said reaching out and grasping her fingers in his hand. But he didn’t sound convinced and rather than move closer and make love to her he sat watching her.

“Then what’s wrong?” Jessica asked, sitting up.

“Jess … everything that’s happened to you … everything, is my fault.” Riley began. “I’ve told you some of this already but I’m not sure it sank in like it should have. And I should have told you all of this when we did our oath the first time. But back then I didn’t know there was a difference between wanting you, and loving you. And until now I didn’t realize there was a difference between loving you and being in love with you. That’s not a good excuse baby. There’s no good excuse for anything we did. But I want you to know … really know, the whole truth. Kidnapping you … that hadn’t been planned. We’d planned to kill all of you. Your family, you … at the last minute I gave the order to take you. I gave the order to break you … as part of some twisted sense of revenge. And when you wouldn’t break, I gave the order to rape you. Everything bad that’s happened to you is because of me. I’m sorrier than you’ll ever know. And I love you, I am in love with you, but I can’t let you think you’re in love with me without truly realizing the whole truth.”

Jessica stared at Riley. Minutes ticked by in dead silence. Finally Jessica rolled forward and crawled to him. Straddling him, she slid onto his lap and sat looking up into his guilt ridden expression. He slid his arms around her quickly as if he were afraid she’d change her mind.

“Jess … do you understand what I said?” Riley asked.

Jessica nodded. “The only real surprise is that you hadn’t planned on kidnapping me. I guess I always assumed that had been planned. But from the very first day that you brought me here it was very clear who was in charge. What you did was awful. I hated you for it. I hated all of you for it.” Jessica glanced around at the other men. They all looked like they hated themselves. “But so much has happened since then. Like I told Angus, you’ve done many things to make up for that over the past little while. But even if you hadn’t, Earl would have been enough. You could have left me there. Coming after Earl, in my mind, was worse than a suicide mission. The things he would have done to you had he won … they were worse than death.” Jessica said with a shudder. Riley held her tighter. “And now your honesty. About my Godfather, about your role in what happened to me. The very evident guilt and sorrow you feel for what you’ve done.” She added bringing her hands to Riley’s face, caressing the pain etched on it. “There’s only one way I can think of that will express to you how I feel about everything and prove to you that I love you … that I am in love with you.” Jessica brushed her lips over Riley’s but she couldn’t get past the pain on his face. “But I’m not sure that will be enough. What would I have to do to make your pain go away?”

“Nothing.” Riley replied and somehow his pain seemed to intensify. His deep brown eyes, now pools of emotion, held hers. “You’ve already done more than anyone could expect of you. The fact that you’re here … on my lap is more than I deserve. Jess … until I met you I never understood the concept of forgiveness. I never forgave anyone before. Not for acts of atrocity. My family never forgave, the clan never forgave. But you have.” Riley shook his head, “I don’t understand how or why, but you’ve done more than enough. All I ask now is that you let me show you how much I appreciate you. How much I love you.”

Jessica nodded. Minutes passed, Riley and Jessica just looking at one another. Riley seemed frozen. Finally he slid the fingers of his right hand into her hair and cupping her head he pulled her in for a kiss that was so tender Jessica thought she’d cry. She slid forward on Riley’s lap, feeling his hard cock straining between them. But Riley seemed oblivious. His one hand gently gripped her hair as his mouth worked on hers, his other hand caressed her body from her left ass cheek, up over her hip, up to her tit, and back. Jessica couldn’t believe how overwhelming Riley’s kiss was. It made the pit of her stomach tingle and her pussy squeeze. Goosebumps rippled across her skin, her nipples strained against his chest. Jessica wanted more, needed more, she pressed harder against him. Bringing her left hand to Riley’s head she gripped his short hair as much as she could and kissed his mouth as if she were dying of thirst and his mouth was a cool drink of water. Her right hand lay on his chest, fingers caressing and teasing his nipple, working it into a hard nub. They moaned as their bodies moved together and when it seemed like they couldn’t possibly kiss any more deeply, they found a way.

Riley leaned forward and lay Jessica onto her back. Leaving her mouth he kissed her neck, his fingers roaming over her. Caressing her flesh, teasing her nipples as they moved past them. Leaving her neck, he kissed along her collar bone, then down to her right tit. Pressing his face under it he kissed, looking up at her. She arched beneath him, fingers in his hair, caressing him. He moved to her other tit and then lower, his body grinding with hers as he did. He paused on her pubic bone and kissed, tilting his chin down so it spread her pussy lips and pressed into the very top of her wet pussy where her pubic bone began and flattening her already hard and pulsing clit against it. Jessica writhed. Wrapping her legs around Riley she planted her feet on his back and thrust her pussy onto his chin with slow, firm thrusts of her hips. Riley ground his chin against her harder. Moving it in circles. It slid in her juices and eventually he lowered his mouth to her pussy and flattened his tongue on her opening, running it from the bottom of her pussy to the top and savoring her wetness. Aside from their moaning the room was silent so it was easy to hear Riley’s gulps as he drank Jessica’s wetness. Jessica ground harder on Riley’s face and after a few minutes Riley groaned and moved up along Jessica’s body until his wet, glistening mouth took Jessica’s again. As his tongue slid into her throat his cock stretched her pussy filling it in one firm thrust. Riley went still, his tongue pressed firmly in Jessica’s throat, his cock against her cervix. They were firmly in place … and Jessica wanted more. She thrust her hips up, wrapping her legs around Riley and gripping him with her thighs. Closing her eyes she relaxed her mouth, jaw, throat and let him sink in deeper. And suddenly, without the usual warning tingles, Jessica’s entire body erupted with wave upon wave of the radiating orgasm. Riley moaned loud and long as his cock spasmed inside Jessica and he clutched her to him as they shuddered together. They hadn’t finished when Riley pushed up onto his elbows and looked down at Jessica. Surprise, relief, thankfulness and something else that Jessica couldn’t decipher in his expression. It looked similar to the devotion that had been ever present on the men’s faces ever since Jessica had killed Daryl and his men, but there was something different about it. Something more intense. Riley searched her eyes before his lips spread into a huge, sexy smile.

“I’m the happiest and luckiest man alive.” He grumbled, brushing his lips over hers.

“One of five happiest and luckiest men alive.” Jim corrected.

Riley nodded, “One of five.” Riley agreed. And then he gently lifted Jessica’s right shoulder and kissed the tattoo. “Cherished, honored, loved, always.” He murmured.

Jessica kissed the tattoo on his bicep, “I will always love you Riley.”

“I know.” Riley replied. “Before this there always seemed to be the possibility that you’d change your mind. But now I’ll never doubt your love.”

This elicited such a big and excited smile from Jessica that Riley had to laugh. He kissed her forehead, “Though now that I know it to be true I can see it on your face. I wish we’d clued in to this earlier. Much, much, earlier.” He added caressing her cheek. Jessica kissed the inside of his hand before Riley looked up and around the room … “Time to share.” He said, glancing back down at her and winking before rolling off onto his side next to her and pulling her closer so her head rested on his arm. Following Riley’s gaze Jessica saw Scott, Jim, Josh and Angus moving closer. They lay on their stomachs in a row, Scott at her chest, Jim, her stomach, Josh, her abdomen, Angus her legs.

“Best nap ever.” Scott said, kissing her right tit.

“By far.” Jessica replied with a giggle.

“Guess there’s no time for a fuck.” Angus said, running his hand along Jessica’s leg.

“Doubt it,” Jim replied, “I’m pretty sure I heard the boys pacing up and down the hall earlier.”

“Damn it.” Josh muttered, chuckling when Jessica looked down at him, “Guess we’ll have to make up for it tonight.” He added with a wink.

“Guess Sean was right … wasn’t just a nap.” Riley added.

“Didn’t take a genius to figure that out.” Scott said. But the smile slid off his face as he locked his eyes on Jessica. “On a more serious note … babe, have you considered how you’re going to feel if the boys decide to go home to their families? I know it’s the right thing to do but I don’t think it’ll feel as good as you think it will.”

“Honestly I haven’t thought too much about that part of it. I guess I should prepare myself … that’s a good point. How about you? Will you be okay if they go?” Jessica asked. She looked around at all the men and it was clear from the glum expressions they wore that they had thought about it and they wouldn’t be anywhere near okay with it.

“I don’t think it’s a secret that I wasn’t crazy about having them around.” Angus said. “Initially because they were the enemy and I was sure they’d kill us in our sleep. But secondly and more importantly the last thing I wanted was a bunch of punk ass kids disrupting our lives. But, they’re not punk ass. Not at all, and I don’t know what I’ll do if they go. I know they need the choice, but I don’t like it. And Jess, if it’s going to upset me, you’ll be a basket case.”

Jessica nodded. “But that’s not a good enough reason to not tell them. I’ll get over it. Besides I have you.” She said looking around at the men, “I can get over anything as long as I have you.”

“Let’s get you in a shower then.” Riley said, “Before the boys lose patience.”

Half an hour later Jessica and the men emerged into the living room. Jessica holding Jim and Josh’s hands. Scott, Riley and Angus trailing behind them.

“Shit.” Sean exclaimed, doing a double take from his place on the sofa, “That nap really worked.”

Jessica and the men looked at one another in surprise and then around the room. Jessica noticed everyone giving them the same approving looks that Sean was. And she was surprised to see Abe looking completely taken aback. He glanced over at Rick who looked equally surprised. He shrugged and Abe gave a small nod before they both turned away. Abe going back to the kitchen, Rick out the front door.

Jessica looked back at her men to see if they’d noticed the exchange too but Scott misinterpreted her expression for confusion about Sean’s comment. “Making love suits us I guess.” He whispered in her ear, allowing his hands to wander over her ass. “We do all look way more relaxed.”

Looking over her men Jessica could see what Sean and Scott meant. They looked unburdened of so much guilt. She pushed her ass back into Scott’s hands and leaned her head back. “Mmm, getting a good feel Master?” she whispered back and had to giggle when Scott responded with a frustrated growl. Scott grabbed her by her hips, pulling her back against the undeniably hard bulge in his pants but any possible next move he might have taken was quickly and decisively terminated when the front door opened and the boys came running in.

“Jessie!” Brett and Nathan yelled, “Come play with us!”

“Half an hour till dinner.” Abe called after them as the boys dragged Jessica out the front door.


“We understand if you’d like to go to your family.” Jessica said to the boys. It was after dinner. After playing shoot ‘em up for half an hour they’d all come in for dinner. Jessica, as usual, ate very little. This time Jessica knew exactly why and it seemed that her men and her family also knew. She worried about the conversation that would follow with the boys. Judging from the unsettled quiet from the adults, they were also worried. So no one pestered Jessica to eat more, which was a relief. But it wasn’t just the upcoming conversation with the boys that bothered Jessica. It was Rick and Abe. No one else seemed to notice that they weren’t talking. In fact they weren’t even looking at one another. And rather than sit next to one another they were at opposite ends of the table. Jessica had no idea what happened between them but she had the feeling it had to do with her and her Godfather.

So after dinner the boys were told about the rescue of their mothers, sisters, aunts, brothers and cousins too. They’d been jubilant about it but when they were given the option to go live with them they grew silent.

“You don’t have to worry about hurting our feelings.” Jessica added when the boys just looked at one another.

“Do you want us to go?” Tom finally asked.

“No. Of course not.” Jessica said looking around at all the adults who also confirmed that the boys leaving was not their first choice. “We love having you here. This is your home and you’re always welcome here. But you needed to know that your families are okay now, safe. And given the option to go to them. We can’t make that decision for you. And, you don’t have to decide now. Take some time. Talk it over. Okay? Tell us when you’re ready.”

The boys nodded but they looked bewildered. Jessica was beginning to wonder if it would have been better to have not said anything. She contemplated telling them about her Godfather and her decision not to go to him … and Mark and his decision, but she was afraid of influencing them in their decision.

“Hey, I have an idea.” Leah said when no one said anything after a few minutes, “Why don’t we go to the pond. It’s light enough for a few hours of swimming, maybe we can play some soccer …”

That got the boys out of their funk.

Twenty minutes into belly flopping into the pond Jessica was truly worried about Abe and Rick. While everyone else seemed relieved about Jessica knowing about her Godfather, Rick and Abe seemed disturbed by it.

“What’s wrong baby?” Riley asked swimming up to Jessica when she’d pulled herself up on the side of the pond. She opened her legs for him and he swam between them. Bobbing in the water he followed her gaze to where Abe and Rick sat on a picnic table each nursing a beer, each looking in the opposite direction of the other.

“Abe and Rick seem upset. And I think they may be fighting.” Jessica replied.

Riley swam under Jessica’s leg and pulled himself onto shore next to her. Wrapping an arm around her he pulled her close. “I thought something seemed off. They’ll work it out I’m sure.”

“What’s going on?” Angus asked swimming over to Jessica and Riley, followed by Scott, Jim and Josh. They bobbed in the water fanned out in front of Jessica and Riley.

“I think Abe and Rick are fighting.” Jessica said, “And I think it’s because of me.”

“You?” Scott demanded, “Why the fuck would they be fighting because of you?”

“I don’t know.” Jessica replied. “But I think Abe is upset that I don’t want to see my Godfather. And I think Rick is mad because of that.”

All the men looked over at Abe and Rick.

“What is it to Abe if you don’t want to see your Godfather?” Jim asked.

Jessica shrugged, “I don’t know.”

“Maybe you should go ask him.” Riley said in a tone that seemed to have a smile to it. Jessica glanced up at him and his lips were curved into a small, encouraging grin.

Glancing at the other men she found Jim nodding agreement, Scott and Josh looked between Rick and Abe as if trying to decipher a problem, and Angus looked uncertain.

“Maybe they’re just having relationship problems.” Angus said, “Do you really want to get stuck in the middle of that? Oh, right, never mind …” He added when Jessica looked even more concerned at the mention of relationship problems, “You sure you don’t want to get a degree in relationship counselling instead of law?” Angus added with a chuckle. Jessica made a face and stuck her tongue out at Angus as she got to her feet.

“Save that for later.” Scott said, wiggling his eyebrows at her, “I expect lots of tongue tonight.”

Jessica giggled and left the men and their chorus of suggestive comments behind. Grabbing her towel from the back of a chair Jessica moved toward Abe and Rick, apprehension slowing her a little when Abe saw her coming and seemed to steel himself.

“Hi,” Jessica said when she reached them.

“Hey.” Abe replied and he looked perplexed, “Not too eager to talk to me? You looked kinda unsure on your way over here.” He added when Jessica looked confused.

“That’s because you looked like you didn’t want to talk to me.” Jessica replied. That brought Abe up short.

“I did?” he asked very obviously surprised. His eyes slid over to where Rick who had taken on a smug expression. “Fucking gloat why don’t you.” He murmured before turning his eyes back on Jessica. “I’m always happy to see you Jess, don’t ever doubt that.”

“Sit?” Rick asked indicating the space on the picnic table top between him and Abe. Jessica slid between them. “Beer?” he added holding his bottle out to her. Jessica took a big chug from it and handed it back.


Rick nodded, took a long pull from the bottle and handed it back to Jessica.

“Are you fighting because of my Godfather?” Jessica asked.

“No.” Abe said after an initial look of surprise followed by a very pregnant pause. He was looking straight ahead but he’d slid his eyes over to observe Jessica.

“Because I don’t want to see my Godfather?”

“We’re not fighting.” Rick said, “We just have a difference of opinion that’s all. Nothing for you to worry about. It’ll blow over.”

Abe nodded, still looking straight ahead.

“But this difference of opinion is about me and the fact that I don’t want to see my Godfather?” Jessica asked and her tone very clearly reflected her bewilderment.

Abe sighed and turned to look at Jessica. “Yes, indirectly.” He paused, studying Jessica. And Jessica studied him back. Finally Abe shrugged. “Rick said I was letting my … concern … show. I told him he was full of shit. We were pretty much at an impasse on the topic but I guess you just proved him to be right.”

“As always.” Rick muttered under his breath.

“Fuck off.” Abe snapped back. Not having taken his eyes off Jessica, Abe shrugged. “I guess that’s all settled now. No need to worry.”

Jessica looked between Rick and Abe. “I guess. But … you’re concerned about my Godfather?”

“No … I’m concerned about you.” Abe replied and couldn’t help but smile when Jessica did a double take. “Stating the obvious Jess, you will sacrifice anything and everything for the ones you love. You don’t abide a moment of suffering by any one of us. All of us, even the boys, can see how tirelessly you work to keep us all happy and we appreciate it. We really do.”

Jessica blushed and lowered her eyes, inexplicably embarrassed by the earnestness with which Abe spoke and the way that he, and Rick, looked at her. Abe took her hand. “And you’re so self-effacing about everything … Jess …” and he waited for Jessica to glance back up at him. “I think it’s going to eat at you. Knowing that your Godfather is out there burdened with the foregone conclusion that you’re dead even though there is no body. I don’t think you’re going to be able to let him suffer much longer.”

“Do you think he’s suffering?” Jessica asked with worry. Looking between Abe and Rick, clearly upset, Jessica’s eyes watered.

“Abe, shut the fuck up!” Rick ordered glowering at Abe.

“Probably no more than he has been since the day of the attack.” Abe replied steadfastly ignoring Rick but clearly regretting having said anything. “What I meant was that he would want to know you’re alive. You know he would. And it’s going to eat at you … at your conscience.”

Suddenly Jessica felt a pair of arms slide around her from behind and tighten around her. “Everything okay?” Jim asked pulling her into his embrace. Jessica tilted her head back to look up at Jim and found his deep blue eyes gazing down at her with concern.

“What the fuck happened?” Angus demanded when Jessica sagged in Jim’s arms.

“Abe did.” Rick replied sounding equally angry.

Jessica looked up to see her men fan out in front of her, Abe, Rick and Jim.

“What the fuck does that mean?” Riley demanded, swinging his eyes between Abe and Jessica.

“I’m worried that Jessica will feel guilty for not telling her Godfather that she’s alive.” Abe replied.

That was met with surprised silence until Scott, said, “I can see that.”

It was clear that her other men agreed when their expressions morphed from angry and confused to concerned.

Jessica began to nod. “I can too.” She agreed. She glanced between her men and Rick and Abe. “After we get away from the clan and get settled in, I will contact my Godfather. I honestly think it’s going to be hard for him accept that I don’t want to leave you … but I agree that he needs to know I’m alive. And that it will bother me, keeping it from him.”

Jim pressed his lips into the hair on the top of her head, “Will you be okay until then?” he asked, “That could be a while.”

Jessica nodded, “Knowing that I’ll tell him is enough …” and she looked at Abe, “I feel relieved and I didn’t even know I was worried about it. How’d you know?”

Abe winked, smiled and said, “It’s in your nature Jess.” Just as Chad came running up to the group.

“Can we play soccer?” he demanded just as the herd of other boys joined him.

“Get the ball.” Jim replied and there was a chorus of happy cheers from the boys.

“Adults play too!” Erik exclaimed. “I get Jessie on my team!” he added grabbing Jessica’s free hand, “Can she come Jim, please?” Erik added.

“You feel like playing soccer?” Jim asked Jessica though he knew what her answer would be. He gave her his lopsided grin when she nodded and he let Erik drag her from his embrace. As she stumbled along behind the boys she heard Angus say, “Good call.” She glanced back and saw Angus hold his hand out to Abe and Abe shake it. Then Angus turned to Rick and they shook hands too. She heard her other men agree and was glad to see Rick clasp Abe on the shoulder in a conciliatory gesture. Jessica wished they would just kiss, but was happy just to see them make up.

As usual the game of soccer turned into a Jessica tackle fest. For some reason the boys loved to tickle her, wrap their arms around her and pull her onto the ground with them. They never hurt her, and Jessica was always laughing. That’s why none of the adults interfered but they found it pretty odd. Eventually the only ones left on the field were the boys and Jessica. The adults were sitting, drinking beer and watching.

“I don’t understand what they’re doing.” Angus said watching Brett, Nathan, Erik and Chad pile on top of Jessica.

“I think that’s how they get physical contact from her.” Leah said. “They do it with all of us when Jess isn’t playing. Not quite as much, but they do.”

“You mean that’s their version of a hug?” Riley asked.

“Their version of a cuddle.” Justine said. “Just watch them, their faces when they have their arms around her, or even better, when she has hers around them. They’re just soaking it up.”

“That’s kind of sad.” Rick said.

“Well, someone has to rescue Jessica. Any more cuddles like that and she’ll be bruised from head to foot.” Quinn said.

“Right.” Scott said getting up, “I’m going in.” He waded onto the field, amongst all the bodies littering the ground around Jessica, scooped her up and to the protest of all the boys, brought her back to sit on his lap with the adults. “Here.” Scott said handing her his open beer. Jessica sipped it.

“Thanks.” Jessica said handing the beer back.

“Are you okay?” Caleb asked.

“Of course. Why wouldn’t I be?” Jessica asked.

“Full contact soccer.” Caleb said nodding at the boys who now sat together on the ground talking.

“We’re just getting tangled up.” Jessica said, “There is no contact in soccer.”

“Exactly.” Riley said pointing a finger at her.

“Oh.” Jessica said thinking about it, “Well, I guess we can make up our own rules …”

“Leah and Justine think that’s how the boys get to cuddle you.” Jim said.

“Really?” Jessica asked looking at the boys. “Why don’t they just … cuddle me?”

“And when exactly would they get to do that?” Leah asked giving Scott a pointed look. Jessica looked at Scott too and then at herself.

“Oh.” Jessica said.

“Valid point.” Sean said.

“Seriously?” Angus demanded.

“I’ll make you a bet.” Leah said to Angus, “You guys leave Jessica alone for ten minutes. Let her sit on her own. I bet you fifty bucks that within a few minutes those boys will be all over her.”

“Fifty … that’s ridiculous. You have no idea what you’re talking about.” Angus grumbled.

“Okay, one hundred.” Leah said.

“You’re out of your fucking mind.” Angus said.

“We’ll see.” Leah said.

“No we won’t because I’m not betting. The fucking kids just need to learn how to play soccer properly that’s all.”

“Ahuh.” Leah said but gave up when Angus crossed his arms and refused to discuss it further.

“It’s time to head back anyway.” Riley said getting up. “Time to pack up.” He said when the boys came to stand in front of them.

Tom nodded and looked around at the adults in a nervous way. Finally he looked at Jessica.

“We discussed it and we want to stay here with you.” He said.

“Okay.” Jessica said, “If that’s what you want.”

Tom nodded but he looked sad. All the boys looked sad.

“I know it wasn’t an easy decision.” She said, “I’m sorry you had to make it. I wish I could think of a way for you to see your families again and stay with us.”

“We just want to know they’re okay.” Casey said.

“And help them if they aren’t.” Tim added. “Without them knowing.”

“Do you think it makes us bad people if we don’t want to be with our families?” Max asked in such a sad voice that Jessica thought she was going to cry.

“No … oh my God no.” Jessica gasped standing and she pulled Max in with one arm for a hug. She beckoned the other boys closer for a hug with her free hand. She was soon surrounded by the boys. “And if you’re a bad person then so am I.” she added and she had to laugh when the boys looked at her like there was no way she could be a bad person. “I’m in exactly the same boat as you boys. I found out today that my Godfather is still alive. And I really had no plan to contact him. I’ll let him know I’m alive one day, so he knows what happened to me, but beyond that I’m really not interested in more.”

“Me too.” Mark added. “You boys don’t remember, but I used to be in your clan. Earl sold my mother and sister too. I think they may have been rescued also, but I’m not going to see them.”

The boys blinked at Jessica and Mark for a few minutes but then they visibly relaxed.

“So you don’t feel bad?” Tom asked.

Mark and Jessica exchanged a look.

“There’s always a part of you that will feel a little guilty.” Jessica said. “Especially if you think your family could use your help. But boys your families are in good hands. They are safe and that’s what matters the most.”

“But if it would make you feel better.” Riley interjected and smiled at Jessica when she looked at him with surprised approval, “I’m sure there’s a way for you to find out how your families are doing.”

“There is?” Reese asked in an excited tone.

Riley looked between Don and Jessica. “You two are a computer gurus. Isn’t there some way to break in to the police files and find out how their families are doing?”

Jessica looked to Don, “You’re the guru, I’m the apprentice … can we do it?”

“We sure as fuck can.” Don replied suddenly excited, “We can hack into the police computer and find out all kinds of information about them.”

Jessica clapped her hands, a huge smile swallowing her face. “That’s a great idea!”

“Yay!” Brett and Nathan yelled, running over to hug Don.

Don looked down at the boys. “No problem guys.” Jessica gave him a hug too and then moved into Riley arms, followed by Brett and Nathan.

“You made their day.” Jessica said, while cuddling into Riley, “And mine.”

Riley rubbed the boys heads, clearly happy to have caused such a positive reaction, “All in a day’s work my sexy apprentice guru.” Riley said with a laugh. He tried to sound nonchalant but it was easy to see that he relished Jessica’s praise and it made her heart melt. She smiled up at Riley before pecking his lips.

“Can we do it now? Can we?” Brett demanded looking at Don.

“Guess we better get to it.” Don said looking at the other adults with a shrug.

Back at the house everyone gathered around Don and the laptop. Jessica had started off hanging back, leaning against Josh as Don worked. But as he wove his way in and out of the red tape and security blocks Jessica ended up leaning over Don’s shoulder.

“Motherfuckers think they’re so smart.” Don mumbled as his fingers flew over the keyboard.

The room was silent, the only sound was the tapping of Don’s fingers on the keys. The boys looked anxious as they waited. Jessica wondered again if the decision to tell the boys about the rescues was the right one. Looking around the room she realized that she wasn’t the only one to wonder that. Every adult in the room looked as encumbered by the possibility of having chosen incorrectly as Jessica felt. And it broke Jessica’s heart even more to see that her men seemed to be taking it worst of all. They kept scanning their eyes between the boys and her. She was touched. She wanted to wrap her arms around each and every one of them and never let go. The problem was she wanted to do the same with each of the boys too. She couldn’t decide who to go to first so she stayed where she was, planning to wrap herself around her men later that night. And she never wanted to let go.

“I’m running the code we worked on the other day …” Don said to Jessica, never taking his eyes off the screen.

Jessica nodded, “I’m glad you came up with it, I can’t imagine waiting for up to twenty-four hours for a result.”

“It’s hell, let me tell you …” Don agreed. “But it may take an hour … or not.” He added when the computer beeped, “Hot damn we’re good Jess … here we go … these are the people who were rescued.” Don said and began reading a list of names.

“Our mother and little sister aren’t mentioned.” Tom said, a hand resting on Brett and Nathan’s shoulders. Elliot moved closer to the trio.

“Neither is our mother.” Casey said, standing next to Chad.

“Three of our cousins aren’t on the list.” Leo added as Tim and Max moved closer to him.

“We have two aunts missing.” Reese added, Frank and Erik huddled near him.

Jessica’s heart broke as she looked at the little clusters of boys. So many families hurt by Earl … and that was just in her own newly formed family. Who knew how many more were out there.

“Jess …” Riley said. Jessica turned to find her men watching her.

“Maybe this is something Don can finish on his own.” Scott said in a tone so subdued it left little doubt that his heart was breaking too.

Jessica looked around at the boys. “I think they should stay, they’ll worry too much otherwise.”

“I agree.” Scott replied with his lopsided grin, “But I was talking about you. Maybe you should call it quits for tonight.”

Jessica shook her head, “I’m okay, really.”

Don looked over at her men too and when Riley finally nodded, he turned back to the screen, “Okay, give me a name … Tom, your mom’s name …”

“Mary.” Tom answered. Don punched it into the laptop.

“Deceased …” Don read from the screen. He quietly read a list of names. All of the boys’ missing relatives were on it. The boys stood huddled together, crying. Jessica sniffled, and Don squeezed her arm reassuringly.

“Jess, come here.” Jim said, motioning her past the crowd to where he and the other men stood but before she could move Brett and Nathan threw their arms around her waist, buried their faces in her stomach and cried. Tom and Elliot followed, wrapping themselves around Jessica. The other boys gravitated toward any adult they could find. Leah was closest to Leo, Tim and Max. Mark, enveloped Casey and Chad in a bear hug. Sara and Justine pulled Leo, Tim and Max in for a hug and Frank, Reese and Erik fell against Chris. Long minutes passed with sobs and sniffles the only sounds to be heard. Finally, as the sobs quieted Jessica felt a strong hand clasp her shoulder and squeeze. She looked up to see Josh’s worried eyes. He handed her a tissue. And then one to each of the boys. He handed the box on to Leah and pulled Jessica into his arms. The other men had moved in also and Jessica had to smile when she saw Angus and Riley comforting Tim and Max as Leah passed the tissue box on.

“What about you Mark? Did you hear your mother and sister’s names?” Jessica asked. Mark still bear hugged Chad and Casey and his eyes were red.

“Deceased.” Mark replied quietly.

“I’m so sorry for your losses.” Jessica said between wiping her eyes and blowing her nose. “We were too late to help them. But boys we can help you keep track of the ones who survived.”

“How?” Leo asked sniffling.

Jessica nodded at Don. “Can you find out where they are?”

“Sure can.” Don said turning back to the screen.

Jessica looked over her shoulder at Josh, kissed him, and then settled into his arms as Don worked.

“Due to the psychological trauma suffered, the victims have been placed in the Washington public psychiatric hospital until they can be fully evaluated.” Don read.

“Washington?” Tom asked, “That’s so far away.”

“Public psychiatric hospital?” Jessica added.

“That can’t be fun.” Abe muttered.

“Can you search for private clinics in that area?” Jessica asked Don.

Don typed for a few minutes. “This is the best one.” He said stabbing his finger at the screen.

Jessica moved to peer over his shoulder. “Okay, good. Boys, I know Washington is far away but I think it’ll cause suspicion if we try to move them closer. We can make things better for them there … keep tabs on them. And eventually, when it’s safe, we can travel out there to visit. Okay?” Jessica forced a reassuring smile when the boys nodded and then turned back to Don. “Can you make an anonymous donation with instructions to move everyone on the list to the private facility?”

“Sure can …” Don said.

“How much do we have left in the offshore account?” Jessica asked.

“Plenty. Way more than enough … I’ve set it up so that one percent of any new money the clan moves into the emergency fund automatically goes to our account. But even without that, we have enough.”

“They’re going to be taken care of boys.” Jessica said, “We’ll plan a road trip out there as soon as it’s safe.”

Still sad, the boys managed to smile.

“Okay … this is enough sadness for one night.” Leah said. “And it’s late. Time for pjs and maybe we can watch a show before bed.”

There were no arguments this time as the boys slowly moved off to their rooms.

“Well that was intense.” Riley said pulling Jessica into his arms as she moved from Josh to him. “Are you okay?”

“I am now that we have a way to help the boys’ families.” Jessica said burying her face in Riley’s chest.

Angus, Scott, Jim and Josh stood rubbing Jessica’s back.

“Now would be a good time to see who wins the bet.” Leah said, “The boys could use a good dose of Jessica.”

“You’re fucking kidding right?” Angus demanded.

“Please Angus?” Jessica asked, “If the boys need cuddles I’d like to give it to them.”

“Come on Angus, just leave her for a few minutes. What can it hurt?” Riley asked. “If you’re lucky you’ll even make a hundred bucks on it.”

“I don’t like this.” Angus grumbled but sat down at the kitchen table. Jessica gave him a kiss before moving to sit on the sofa, alone. The other adults had placed themselves everywhere but the sofa. As the boys came down the hallway in their pajamas the first thing they did was make a beeline for the sofa. In minutes Jessica was surrounded by the boys, Brett and Nathan on her lap insisting that she read them a book. Jessica did, five times and she would have done it a sixth if Riley hadn’t shooed the younger boys to bed.

“I never get tired of being right.” Leah said as Angus handed her one hundred dollars.

When the younger boys left, the older boys repositioned themselves around Jessica as they watched some TV.

Angus, Riley, Scott, Josh and Jim didn’t know what to do with themselves, unable to sit with Jessica and uncomfortable on their own. They circled the sofa for the most part either leaning on the back, sitting on the arm rest or leaning against the wall behind the sofa.

“That looks hilarious.” Mark said when a preview for a movie that was about to start came on.

“Let’s watch it.” Don said and there was a general round of agreement but when the content warning came on the TV froze.

“What the fuck?” Sean demanded, grumbled oaths of agreement mumbled around the room. Looking around they eventually noticed Jessica lowering the remote.

“Time for bed.” Jessica said to the older boys.

“No, we want to watch too.” Reese said, complaining more loudly than the others.

“You can’t. It’s rated R. It’s midnight anyway, time for bed.” Jessica insisted standing and motioning them to the hallway with her hands.

Another round of protests, pleas and commotion began but at least the boys were off the sofa. Riley, Angus and Josh took their spots, Scott and Jim sitting on the floor.

“Hey, she said bed time!” Angus finally exploded, “That doesn’t mean argue, it means get your fucking asses to bed. Go!”

That shut the boys up.

“Sorry.” They said one by one, pecking her cheek before going down the hall.

“Thanks.” Jessica said sliding onto Angus’ lap.

“So what’s with this rated R?” Riley asked.

“It means that no one under eighteen should watch it.” Jessica said.

“They’re controlling what people can watch now?” Sean asked.

“No, just kids.” Jessica said, “The movie has violence, nudity, sexuality and bad language in it.”

“So?” Quinn asked.

“So, that damages kids emotionally, even developmentally. Kids under eighteen are really susceptible to that.” Jessica paused when everyone stared at her. “I know because my parents never let me watch anything higher than NC 17 which technically at eighteen I should have been able to watch.” Jessica said, sounding as put out as the boys had been.

“How can they possibly know that it damages kids?” Scott demanded.

“Studies. Violent movies make kids violent. My mom used to say that it would make me feel insecure and scared. Anyway. I resented it back then but now I do actually believe they were right.”

“It’s called Bachelor Party, how bad can that be?” Mark asked.

Jessica shrugged, “Only one way to find out.” She said. “Are you okay?” she asked Angus and Riley when she snuggled down onto Angus, leaned on Riley and put her feet on Josh.

“Fine.” Riley said but he sounded and looked anything but fine.

“I’ll get the lights.” Sean said moving to the light switch. In the dark Jessica could no longer see Riley’s face. Snuggling down she turned her attention to the TV.

The movie started with the full content warning which Jessica noticed seemed to puzzle pretty much everyone. They’d seen movies before, why the content warning was such big news to them now was a mystery to Jessica.

Part way through the movie Jessica realized that while she and the other adults in the family were laughing hysterically at the movie, none of her men even cracked a smile. She was starting to think that maybe it wasn’t their brand of humor when Riley suddenly pushed Jessica to her feet, stood up, grabbed her arm and said, “Studio.”

“What’s going on?” Corey asked pausing the movie.

“Go ahead and watch it, don’t wait for us.” Riley said and dragged Jessica behind him to the studio. By the time they got to the ladder Riley realized that he was manhandling her. “After you.” He said letting go of her and pointing up the ladder.

Jessica climbed and in the studio she stood waiting for the men to join her.

“What’s wrong?” Jessica asked.

“So, violence, nudity, sexuality, bad language in movies damages children?” Riley asked. Jessica nodded.

“And so what does violence, nudity, sexuality and bad language in real life do?” Angus demanded.

Jessica gasped. Completely taken off guard.

“Guys, you’re being unfair.” Scott said, “None of this is her fault.”

“You hadn’t even been allowed to watch movies meant for eighteen year olds?” Josh asked, “You must have been completely unprepared for us. I don’t even know what to do with that.”

The men seemed to sag, and Jessica panicked.

“I thought we were forgetting about all of that. The past.” Jessica said, “Can we please just stick with today?”

“We’ve just found out that we damaged you in ways we hadn’t considered possible so you’ll have to excuse us if we’re a little thrown off.” Jim said.

“How am I damaged?” Jessica asked moving into Jim’s arms. “Do I look damaged to you?”

“Maybe the way you consider yourself so unimportant is a sign of damage.” Riley said.

“What?” Jessica asked.

“It makes sense.” Jim said, “Sean was right, you consider yourself expendable, unimportant, disposable. That’s not what a normal person would do.”

Jessica pushed away from Jim and stood gaping at him in disbelief. “Are we ever going to get past this? If I was in fact damaged by you, it was a long time ago. And I can tell you that I’ve gotten over it just fine. I’m beginning to wonder about you though. I wasn’t the only one hurt by all of this. You’ve made it pretty clear that you’re traumatized by what you’ve done to me and you can’t seem to ever make peace with it. I’ve forgiven you, I love you, I want to get on with life with you. But you have to find a way to live with your guilt … without getting anally raped to do it.” She added pointing at Angus. “And how’s this for considering myself important enough? I was enjoying that movie. So I’m going back to finish watching it. Come join us when you’ve gotten over yourselves.”

And with that Jessica stomped to the ladder, climbed down it and ran back to the house.

“Everything okay?” Rick asked, pausing the movie, when Jessica closed the door behind her.

“I guess I’ll find out soon enough. I either got through to them, or I’m in big trouble. Possibly both.” Jessica said.

“Come here and scoot in with us.” Leah said sliding onto Corey’s lap. Justine did the same with Chris. Corey patted the space on the sofa between him and Chris. Jessica folded her legs under herself as she settled on the sofa. Corey put an arm around her and so did Chris. Leah and Justine each took one of her hands.

“Do you want to talk about it or watch the movie?” Rick asked.

“Definitely watch the movie.” Jessica said and leaned against Corey when Rick started the movie again.

Jessica had never seen the members of her family laugh so much before. She hadn’t laughed that much in a while. But Jessica couldn’t really relax. She kept looking at the door wondering when the men would come in and getting worried when they didn’t. Corey kept telling her to not worry, and she’d snuggle closer to him and Leah, but then get worried again. Maybe the men were really mad at her. Or worse yet, really mad at themselves. What if they wigged out like Josh had done and Scott and Angus almost had. She couldn’t handle that and she wondered if she should have been more gentle with them.

“Holy shit.” Sean said as the credits rolled down the screen, “I want a bachelor party like that! Why don’t we ever do bachelor parties anyway? They look like a riot.”

“Things like that don’t happen in real life anyway.” Amanda said.

“Hell yes they do. They can happen to us!” Sean replied.

“You are not having a bachelor party like that!” Sara said.

“Why not?” Sean demanded.

“Because it’s not fair, what kind of fun do the girls get? ” Sara replied.

“They have parties for the women too.” Jessica said, “They’re called Bachelorette parties.”

“Excellent!” Amanda said.

“Oh no you don’t.” Caleb said, “You’re not running all over town like that!” he said to Amanda.

“Why is it okay for you guys but not for us?” Leah demanded.

“Because, it just is.” Don said.

“You didn’t just say that!’ Justine demanded, “Tell me you didn’t just say that!”

“Besides, to have a bachelor or bachelorette party you need to be getting married. Therefore, no bachelor party required.” Sara said.

Jessica had been glancing at the door again.

“I’m going to check on the men.” Jessica said to Corey.

“Jessica, say something.” Leah demanded. “Tell them how sexist they’re being!”

“Yes Jessica, what is your opinion on the matter?” Riley’s voice said from somewhere in the dark.

Jessica, Leah, Sara, Justine and Amanda shrieked.

Suddenly the light came on.

“Shit man, you scared us!” Abe said as everyone blinked and saw Jim standing at the light switch, Riley, Angus, Scott and Josh leaning, arms folded against the wall behind the sofa. They were staring at Jessica.

“How long have you been there?” Quinn asked, “And please don’t tell me you got in here without any of us knowing.”

“We’ve been here most of the movie.” Angus said, “And Rick saw us come in. So Jessica, what are your thoughts on the bachelor party?” There was a tone to Angus’ voice that made it clear he didn’t really want to talk about the bachelor party.

“I don’t have any.” Jessica said. She moved behind the sofa and stood looking at her men, Jim had moved back from the light switch. They looked tense, having pushed away from the wall they stood towering above her. Their muscles were strained as if they were leaning toward her but fighting the impulse.

“I’m really sorry.” Jessica said her eyes finding their muscular chests easier to look at then their strained faces. She wanted to touch those chests. Feel them against her, and she realized that she was straining toward them too.

“About what specifically?” Scott asked.

“Yelling at you.” Jessica said.

“Jess, what you did hardly qualifies as yelling.” Josh said.

“You’re ‘yelling’ was just fine.” Jim said and he couldn’t help but smile when she glanced up at him, “But running away, on the other hand …”

“Isn’t that what important people do? When something’s in the way of their importance?” Jessica asked.

“Okay.” Riley said and couldn’t help but laugh. The other men were working hard to suppress their smiles. “You are important Jessica, but your kind of important doesn’t get to run away.”

“I, um, might also have been a little annoyed.” Jessica said.

“We gathered that.” Angus said. “You may not have been yelling but you did get that point across. But Jess, can you really blame us?”

“I don’t understand what the big deal is.” Jessica said. “You yourselves said it wouldn’t be a good idea to have sex in the house where the boys could hear me scream. You said no bikinis around them at the pond. You were already deciding what was appropriate or inappropriate for the boys, how can some movie rating make you feel guilty?”

“This goes beyond hearing someone scream during sex, or seeing too much skin at the beach.” Riley said. “The things that have happened to you must have changed you. It’s impossible to believe that they haven’t.”

“Oh. Okay.” Jessica said.

“Guys. What is the point of all of this?” Leah demanded going over and wrapping her arms around Jessica. “You can’t change what’s happened and if you keep this up you’re going to give Jessica a complex.”

“Jess.” Jim said grasping Jessica’s chin and urging her to look at him. “Leah’s right this has nothing to do with you. We just have to learn how to …how did you put it, ‘get over ourselves’?”

Jessica nodded. Jim was doing the double jointed thing with his face again. She tried to concentrate on the smiling mouth rather than the sad eyes but it was hard. Especially when it was clear from the expressions on the other men’s faces that this was not just going to go away.

“If it helps at all,” Jessica said, “whatever is wrong with me must have been wrong with me before too. Because I don’t feel any different.” Jessica said.

“Oh no, Jessica there isn’t anything wrong with you!” Leah exclaimed pulling her closer and there was a general murmur of discontent.

“Are you happy?” Sara demanded, glaring at Riley, Scott, Angus, Jim and Josh, “You’re so worried about how you hurt her in the past you’re oblivious to what you’re doing to her now.”

“God Jessica.” Josh said and he dropped onto his knees, planting his forehead in her abdomen. “I’m sorry.”

Josh on his knees upset Jessica even more. She ran her hands through his hair, “It’s okay.” She said and bent over to kiss the top of his head, “I didn’t mean it the way it sounded. I meant, whatever you thought you changed was there before. Honestly, I don’t think you’ve changed me that much.”

Leah kissed Jessica on the cheek before moving to make room for Riley, Angus, Scott and Jim who were trying to get as close to and touch as much of Jessica as they could.

“What you guys need …” Abe said, “Is to compare Jessica now to what she was like before.”

“How would we do that?” Angus asked.

Abe seemed to be thinking, looking inward but he was nodding. “If Jessica was the same before as she is now then there must be things she did before coming here that were …” he finally looked up at everyone, “Jessica like.”

“Jess,” Riley said grasping her arm tighter, “although I wouldn’t be surprised, I doubt you had shoot outs or got tortured as a kid, was there anything that happened that was kind of like that?”

“No.” Jessica said shaking her head.

“You must have saved somebody.’ Abe said.

Jessica blinked at him. There was an undertone to his voice that Jessica didn’t know how to interpret.

“I couldn’t save my own family Abe, I certainly didn’t save anyone else.” Jessica said.

“Okay, maybe not that drastic. There doesn’t have to be gunfire involved. Just a sacrifice you may have made for someone.” Abe said and again his tone was off. Kind of angry.

Everyone noticed it now, Rick was looking at Abe like he’d lost it.

Jessica looked at her men. But they were ignoring Abe and looking at her expectantly.

“Um, I can’t think of anything.” Jessica said.

“Really Jessica!” Abe suddenly yelled making Jessica jump and lean into Riley’s arms. “There’s nothing, nothing at all that you can think of?”

“Abe, cool it.” Rick said.

But Abe ignored Rick and stalked toward Jessica. If it hadn’t been for the men around her Jessica had the feeling he would have grabbed her.

“Dial it down Abe.” Angus said stepping between Abe and Jessica.

“Do you want to know what she was like before she got here or not?” Abe asked. He looked to Riley, Scott, Jim and Josh. “I guarantee you that she’s done something for the good of someone at detriment to herself. I mean look who we’re talking about.” Abe said pointing past Angus.

“We do want to know.” Riley said, “But no more yelling at her. Don’t scare her anymore, okay.”

Abe nodded so Angus moved aside.

“Jessica,” Abe began moving closer, “What have you done for someone that has helped them but hurt you?”

Jessica looked around at everyone. They were watching her, clearly expecting her to have an answer.

She shook her head. “I’m sorry but there isn’t anything …”

“Jessica …” Abe said and it was obvious he was controlling his temper, “you know what expendable means, right? Available for sacrifice because someone or something isn’t as important? Jessica?”

Jessica nodded.

“So when have you ever given up something you loved and meant more than anything to you so that you could help someone else?”

“Oh.” Jessica said gaping at Abe.

“Yes, oh.” Abe said in exasperation. “Tell them about that.”

“Okay.” She said with a shrug. “It was nothing really.” She added.

“We’ll decide that Jess, just tell us what happened.” Scott said.

“Well, um, my oldest brother had a friend who was a couple of years older than him. He was a really nice guy, always really nice to me. All of my brothers’ friends were nice …”

“So, what happened?” Jim asked.

“He um, had a hard time. His mother and brother were killed in a car accident. His dad didn’t really know how to deal with it, and neither did he actually. So I guess he just got mad at the world. He’d been an excellent student before that. Football player, on the track team. He was going places. He had a scholarship to play football at Harvard.” Jessica paused. “I think he even had a scholarship for track there too. Before the accident, he kept joking around and saying he’d win the championship for me.”

“Jess …” Sean prompted when she seemed lost in the memory.

“So when his mother and brother were killed he lost his love of life. He started doing drugs, skipping school. He was a completely different person. And my brother kept telling him to smarten up. If he was ever caught with drugs he’d be kicked off the football and track teams … probably even out of school. His whole future would be ruined.”

“Keep going.” Josh prompted when Jessica paused again.

“My school was next to the high school. So, I used to go there after school and get a ride home with my brothers. One day Trex was outside and he was smoking a joint. My brothers hadn’t come out yet and suddenly the Principal showed up. Trex had the sense to drop the joint on the ground but the Principal insisted it was Trex’s. So I told the Principal that it was mine. That way Trex wouldn’t lose his scholarships …that’s pretty much it.”

Abe forced a laugh while shaking his head. “So nothing happened to you for having a joint?”

Jessica shrugged. “No one believed that it was my joint. Finally my parents said that if it was my joint I couldn’t continue with the sharp shooting team. They have a strict no drug policy.”

“Let me guess.” Corey said, “You didn’t tell the truth.”

Jessica shook her head.

“So you got kicked off the team?” Justine asked.

Jessica nodded.

“Was the team competitive?” Abe asked. “So how much work did you put into it? An hour or so a week, every other day …” When Jessica had nodded again.

Jessica shrugged. “No, more than that.”

“How much?” Abe insisted.


“An hour or two a day?”

“More like six on weekdays, twelve on weekends.” Jessica said.

Judging by the looks on the faces around her Jessica guessed that she’d said the right thing. Suddenly the men looked much more relaxed.

“What happened to Trex after that?” Amanda asked.

“He got his scholarship and as far as I know he’s doing really well.” Jessica said.

“So he let you take the fall for him?” Riley demanded.

“I think he knew he’d lost his way and had almost ruined his life. I told him that it was no big deal for me, but he had to get his act together. From what I could tell he did.”

“What do you mean, ‘from what you could tell’?” Jim asked, “Wasn’t he your brothers’ friend?”

Jessica looked down at her hands. “My brothers knew the joint had to have been his. They were furious that Trex didn’t confess. They stopped hanging around with him, and he kept avoiding me anyway.”

“Probably hating himself.” Abe said quietly.

“I hope not.” Jessica said, “That would’ve made the whole thing pretty futile. Anyway, I got back on the rifle team the next year, it was no big deal.”

“Of course not.” Rick said.

Jessica looked around and was surprised to see that everyone seemed less tense.

“So is everything okay now?” Jessica asked.

“Yeah. It looks like you really haven’t changed much.” Scott said. Smiling he pulling her into his arms. “You’re a nutbar, you know that right?”

“That’s better than being damaged?” Jessica asked.

“Yes.” Scott said.

“Believe it or not, it is.” Jim said and kissed her cheek.

“Jessica, I’m sorry that I yelled at you.” Abe said. He looked and sounded genuinely sorry, but he studied Jessica’s face intently and when his eyes locked on hers, Jessica inadvertently took a step back. Abe’s eye’s had an intensity Jessica hadn’t expected and they seemed to be trying to convey something to her. But then, Abe blinked, shook his head, and the intensity disappeared. Jessica gaped at him not sure what had just happened. And then she realized Abe and everyone else was waiting for her to respond. Abe’s usual good natured smile was back and he waited with his customary amused patience. Jessica began to wonder if she’d imagined Abe’s odd behaviour.

“Um,” Jessica said, looking around. No one else seemed to have noticed anything unusual. Looking back at Abe Jessica became convinced that she’d been imagining things. Abe was relaxed, smiling, his eyes twinkling at Jessica as if she were entertaining him to no end. “It’s okay.” She finally managed.

Abe nodded and turned to Angus. “Are we okay?” Abe asked.

“Yeah. She’s driven us all fucking crazy at one time or another.” Angus said and shook Abe’s hand.

“It’s kind of strange not knowing someone since they were a kid.” Chris said. “I’d never know if you were changed in any way if I hadn’t known you my whole life.” He said to Justine.

“Excuse me?” Justine said, “You know nothing about me as a kid.”

“What are you talking about? I’ve known you since you were born.”

“Ah, no. Just because we co-existed doesn’t mean anything.”

“That makes no sense.” Chris said.

“That makes perfect sense.” Leah said, “You guys didn’t want to have anything to do with us when we were kids.”

“What?” Corey demanded, “Maybe you’ve been having some of Trex’s weed. We knew you just fine.”

“Unbelievable.” Amanda said.

“You too?” Don demanded, “You have to be kidding me.”

“I’m sorry, I can’t say anything, I wasn’t there.” Jessica said when all of the girls looked at her for support.

“Neither was I,” Quinn said, “and I hate to bring it up but I knew Amanda liked inside pieces of cake and you two didn’t. I’d only known her a few months.”

“Shit. Cake, really?” Caleb demanded. He looked around at Jessica’s men, “Do you know what Jessica likes? Inside or outside pieces of the cake?”

“She likes cake. Inside, outside, she doesn’t care.” Josh said taking Jessica’s hand, “And if you’ll excuse us, we’re on our way to the studio. If you’re up for it.” He said to Jessica.

“I’m always up for it.” Jessica said.

“Good night then.” Riley said and the men led Jessica out of the house.

“Were they really that bad?” Jessica asked as they crossed the yard to the studio, “The men and how little attention they paid the girls when they were young?”

“Sorry Jess but can we reserve conversation for after we’re done?” Angus asked when they entered the barn and moved to the ladder. “We have other things on our mind right now.” He said bringing his hand to her tit.

“Okay.” Jessica said with a gasp. Her body’s reaction was instantaneous and direct. From her tit to between her legs, instant fire.

“Come on then.” Scott said and lifted her toward the ladder, one hand firmly on her butt cheek as she climbed.

Inside the studio the men circled her like animals studying their prey. Jessica stood in the centre of the circle, watching them, panting with anticipation.

After several minutes Jessica thought she was going to burst.

“Stop. Stop Jess.” Scott said when she took a step closer to the men. “Don’t do anything unless we tell you to.”

“But …” the desire was getting unbearable. The men stalking by her, muscles coiled and straining toward her. Their eyes probing her. When Angus brought his hand up to wipe his mouth, the way he always did when he was ready to eat her out, Jessica’s knees got weak.

“Can we start please? Now? I think I’m going to explode.”

“It’ll be rougher than usual.” Riley said, “I don’t know what’s wrong with me. Maybe it’s the relief of not having to feel as guilty as I thought I should, but I’m just so …so … we’ll probably hurt you so if you’re worried at all you should call it off right now.”

“I’m not. I like that too. Plea…” It happened so fast Jessica didn’t have time to register it until she had the wind knocked out of her. As she tried to catch her breath with Josh’s tongue down her throat she realized that he’d charged her. He’d charged her, lifted her and slammed her into what she thought was a brick wall but very quickly realized was Jim. She was mashed between them. As she got her bearings and regained her breath, she started feeling around for the other men. She could hear them panting around her.

“No.” Angus said grabbing her wrist and lifting it above her head.

“You want to pleasure us don’t you?” Scott breathed into her ear. All Jessica could manage as a response was a muffled mhmm. “Then, you have to earn it.” He growled, his hot breath in her ear. Grabbing her free hand he lifted it above her head too and Angus took it from him.

“Let’s see how well behaved you can be.” Angus hissed into her other ear. “When I let go of your hands you’ll keep them up here … here …” he said again with a shake of her hands to make the point. “You won’t touch us, at all. Nowhere with your hands. If you can do that for as long as it takes us all to have our turn with you, then you can pleasure us. Do you understand?”

Jessica groaned. She had to touch them and she couldn’t explain that because Josh still owned her mouth.

“That didn’t sound like a very appropriate response for a slave.” Riley said from below her. Suddenly Jim and Josh moved apart and Jessica felt hands pulling her pants off.

Angus chuckled. “The test starts now.” And he let go of her hands. Even though Jessica knew she wasn’t supposed to touch any of the men her hands had minds of their own. No sooner had Angus let go than Jessica placed her hands on Josh’s chest and rubbed. He still had a shirt on so they pulled the shirt up and rubbed in satisfaction when they finally found skin.

“Not a good start.” Jim grumbled from behind her and grabbed her arms, pulled them behind her.

“For that I think we can go for a g spot orgasm.” Scott said.

Just as Riley pulled her last pant leg off Scott grabbed one of her legs, Angus the other so she was leaning against Jim. Jim held her by the waist.

“What weren’t you supposed to do?” Josh asked as he drove his fingers into her pussy.

Jessica gasped and then shuddered with pleasure as Josh did it again. “Answer me!”

“I wasn’t supposed to touch you … Master.” Jessica gasped. Josh steady thrusts with his fingers along with the pleasant pain of Scott biting and pulling one of her nipples and Angus the other, had pleasure stealing her breath away.

“So …” Riley asked crouching underneath her and landing a stinging slap on her butt, “Why …” slap, “Did,” slap “you?”

“I’m sorry … Oh My God!” she screamed as orgasm after orgasm racked her and she ejaculated all over the floor.

“Look at the mess you made, naughty slave …” Josh said leaving his fingers in her and brushing his lips over hers before invading her mouth with his tongue.

“I guess we have to clean it up.” Jim said in her ear.

Angus and Scott lowered her legs and Jim set her in the middle of the puddle on her knees. Riley got on his knees next to her. “Lick it up.” He said in her ear.

“That’s right.” Scott said kneeling on her other side, “Taste yourself.”

Jessica lowered her face to the floor and licked.

“That’s it.” Josh said from behind her, “You taste good, don’t you?”

“Yes Master.” Jessica said. Josh started running his hands over her butt and they were wet.

“Maybe we’ll lick you off.” Jim said, and getting his hand wet in the puddle on the floor he rubbed Jessica’s cum over the tit nearest him. Riley did the same with her other tit. Angus rubbed some on her abdomen his hand sliding closer and closer to her pussy. His fingers slipped in her while Josh’s slipped in her asshole.

Scott wet his hand and slid his fingers in her mouth, partially down her throat. “Suck … that’s it, suck. At the rate you’re going that’s all you’ll suck tonight.”

A mew escaped her. Pleasure was mounting again, and she wanted more than anything to suck them off.

“Maybe if you can keep your hands to yourself this time, you can pleasure us.” Riley said. “Let’s lay her down.”

The men lifted her and lay her on her back.

“We’ll lick you off. You lie perfectly still. Don’t move, don’t touch us, you lay there and take it.” Riley said. “Do you understand?”

“Yes Master.”

And they started, licking slowly, licking quickly, licking everywhere and it was pure torture for Jessica. She tried as hard as she could to not touch any of them but her natural tendency was to cup their heads as they worked on her tits, to rub their backs, their butts, legs, chests, faces and ultimately their cocks.

“Not very obedient.” Scott said.

“Not at all.” Jim said.

“Not surprising.” Angus grumbled and he stood as Riley lifted Jessica against himself. Licking her lips Angus searched for her hole with his cock. Riley did the same with her asshole and then they both pushed in, hard. They thrust in perfect unison and Jessica felt full, so stimulated she screamed.

As Jessica’s screaming lessened, Scott took her hand.

“You haven’t really earned it but I need to feel your hand on me.” He pressed her hand around his cock.

“Me too.” Josh said.

Jim stepped forward and Riley lowered Jessica to her knees.

“Open your mouth.” Jim said while tracing her lips with his cock. Jessica did and he pushed into her, almost down her throat. And Jessica sighed. This was what made her happy. She sucked and pulled and they exploded.

“Now.” Scott said caressing Jessica’s cheek and then tilting her face so he could see her, “Let’s try this again. And this time, don’t touch us.”

“Yes Master.”

For the next hour they took Jessica every way possible. She failed miserably at keeping her hands to herself. Two times they were lenient and let her service them when it was clear she’d been trying her hardest to obey, but the third time they were simply being charitable. She seemed incapable of complying.

Now they lay entangled on the studio floor. Jessica laying across Riley her head on his chest. Jim with his head by her butt, Josh below him by her legs. Scott had her feet by his head, Angus lay on the other side of Riley holding her hand.

“Jess, are you asleep?” Riley mumbled, stroking her back with his hand.

“No.” She opened her eyes to see Angus, eyes open watching her.

“Not that I’m complaining, I love being serviced by you, but just now, you were blatantly ignoring the rule. You were touching everywhere. You know we gave up consequences a long time ago but why would you push us so far?” Riley asked.

“Because, I never want to not touch you. Never, ever. You sacrificed a lot for me. With Earl. Leah told me about how hard you all tried to volunteer to be sexually tortured by Earl.” Jessica pushed herself up on Riley, and looked around at the men. “To save me. I try to be a good slave and obey you … and earn the right to touch you.” She added with a smile that left little doubt just how much she enjoyed earning those rights. “But sometimes my body has a mind of its own. Tonight my hands did what they wanted … what they needed.” She squeezed Angus’ hand, and rubbed Riley’s chest with the other hand. “I hope you know that I always want to touch you. It takes a lot of will power for me to obey you.”

There was silence as the men looked at her.

“We feel the same Jess.” Angus said pushing up onto his elbow, “You know it’s just part of the sex play, the owner/slave thing. We want you to touch us, always. But we do love making you earn it.”

Jessica nodded and leaned forward to kiss him.

After pecking Angus on the lips she turned and lay down with Riley’s arm around her, Jim laying his head on her chest. She ran her fingers through his hair and rubbed her leg against Josh, her foot against Scott. Angus kissed her stomach.

“But, um,” she said, “if you have some consequences you want to throw at me, I’m willing to take them. So long as I can touch you.”

“Maybe.” Scott said, “I’m thinking of a few.”

Jessica giggled when he took her foot and stuck her big toe in his mouth and sucked it. “I can handle those consequence. You know what I was thinking?” she asked.

“No, not a clue.” Josh said, “And I mean that in all seriousness. I’ve given up on believing that I know what goes through your pretty head.”

“I was thinking …” she said, nudging Josh with her leg and sticking her tongue out at him, “Two things. First … for some reason, the love making today reminded me that before we started being intimate together at the same time, Scott and I used to do a lot of role playing. It was fun and I think it’s something you all might like too. We could do it as a group. It’s a fun game.”

“Role playing …” Jim said, “Sounds intriguing. What kind of role plays did you do?”

“Shitloads.” Scott replied when Jim looked between him and Jessica. “The best were ones that had a general story line to begin with but the details were made up as we went along. The added fun is the acting … being someone you’re not. But it does take a lot of restraint. It can take hours to play.”

“I don’t know how good I’d be at acting.” Angus said and he looked uncomfortable.

“Don’t worry.” Jessica said trying to reach Angus’ cheek where he rested his head on her stomach. Jim moved back and Angus slid has hand along her stomach to slip his fingers between hers. “It takes practice but you’d be surprised at how much fun it is. Scott and I started off kind of awkwardly but got good at it.”

“Well, I for one am looking forward to the practicing.” Josh said massaging her inner thigh.

“Hell yeah.” Jim agreed.

“I haven’t acted a day in my life.” Riley added and looked as uncomfortable as Angus did.

“It’s okay.” Jessica said turning her head into Riley’s chest and kissing it, “There is no right or wrong. It’s just playing. Like we do with the Master/Slave. It gives you a chance to let your creative sides out.”

“Are you okay Angus?” Jessica asked. Glancing back down at him. He still looked worried.

“I don’t know.” Angus replied, “I’ve never been much of an actor. I’m not really that creative.”

“I’m not either.” Riley said, “But I’ll give it a try. Sounds like it could be fun.”

“Don’t worry Angus.” Jessica said giving his hand a squeeze, “It was just an idea. We don’t have to do it right away, or often, or at all. I think we all like the rough sex far too much to sacrifice it to role playing. It’s just an option if we want to play around a little. But, for the record, I know you both have a creative side.” Jessica said looking between Riley and Angus, “The car …” Jessica said to Angus, smiling when he growled at the memory, “And we wouldn’t have Master/Slave without you, Master.” Jessica added looking up at Riley. The look of surprised realization on Riley’s face made Jessica’s heart melt. She pressed her face into his chest and kissed it.

“True.” Jim said. “Believe me, when it comes to sex you two are beyond creative compared to me.”

“Slave/Master didn’t take a lot of acting on my part. I just wanted you as my slave. I’d been worried about you liking it …” Riley said caressing Jessica’s head and tilting it back from his chest so he could look into her eyes. “I wasn’t sure you’d enjoy being a sexual slave.”

“With Masters like you, who wouldn’t love being a slave?” Jessica replied, “But other role playing was just an idea. There’s absolutely no need or reason to do it.”

“We’ll make it our group bucket list item.” Scott added with a chuckle, “We can do it when we’re all ready. No pressure.”

Angus cleared his throat. “What was the second thing you were thinking?” he added.

“The second thing,” Jessica replied as Jim kissed her tit, after she and Angus had let go of one another’s hands. “We need to start looking for a house that we can move into. Something big, really big. So all the boys can have their own rooms.”

“That’s a big fucking house.” Angus said.

“And what’s with the boys each getting a room? That’s part of being a kid, sharing a room with a brother or two.” Riley said, “Okay fine.” He added when Jessica looked at him with forlorn eyes, “but the twins share.”

“Deal.” Jessica said.

“Any other details?” Jim asked.

“Maybe in the country.” Jessica said, “so the boys have room to play. Our room has to be huge, and have its own bathroom, with a Jacuzzi bathtub … hmmm maybe we need to have a sex room. Even with the house being big, the boys will probably hear us. And we need space for the animals. We need to get them all back of course …”

“We’ll get them back.” Scott said kissing her feet.

“But right now we should get you cleaned up and to bed.” Riley said kissing the top of her head. “It’s late.”

“And I really have to pee.” Jessica said.

“We should’ve put a bathroom in here.” Josh said.

Jessica crossed her legs, “Really, really, really, have to pee.”

“Come on .” Jim said and took her to the ladder. She climbed down as fast as she could and the other men followed. Jim scooped her up and ran to the house.

“Damn, someone’s up.” Riley said.

“Here, shirt, underwear, pants.” Scott said helping Jessica struggle into the clothes.

Inside they were surprised to find everyone awake.

As Jessica ran to the bathroom she noticed that the girls looked put out and the men looked stunned.

Returning, she noticed a tension in the room. The girls looked even more put out, Sean, Corey, Chris, Mark, Don and Caleb looked even more stunned and her men, Rick, Abe and Quinn looked like they were watching someone slowly pull wings off a fly.

“What’s going on?” She asked Quinn while sliding under Scott’s arm.

“It’s a debate over how well the men paid attention to the girls until recently.”

“It doesn’t look like it’s going well.” Scott said.

“Not even close. So far the men haven’t been able to answer a single question right.”

“What’s with the paper and pen?” Jim asked.

“The girls write the answer down before the men answer so they can prove that they aren’t changing their answers.” Quinn said.

“If the men don’t declare defeat soon I think they may be sleeping in the doghouse for a while.” Rick added quietly, moving next to Scott.

“Okay fine.” Sean said crumpling up the paper he’d been looking at and throwing it on the coffee table. “I give up.” He said standing. “You’re right. We were dicks to you …”

“Gigantic sized dicks …” Leah muttered.

“Yes, gigantic sized dicks. I’m sorry. I’m really, really, sorry.”

The girls looked at one another in surprise.

“Really?” Sara asked.

“Yes, really.” Sean got on his knees and took Sara’s hand, kissing it. “I should never have behaved like that, please forgive me.”

“Well played.” Rick muttered.

“Us too.” Chris said inclining his head toward Corey, Caleb, Don and Mark. “We promise to make it up to you. Just tell us how?”

“A good start is to go to bed.” Amanda said, “I’m wiped. Come on.” She said taking Caleb and Don’s hands, signalling to Quinn with her head and moving toward the hallway.

“Me too.” Justine said standing quickly and grabbing Mark and Chris’ hands. When they went with her down the hallway everyone looked at one another in surprise.

“I guess Mark and Chris worked things out in the bedroom.” Riley said.

“Well, goodnight.” Sara said taking Sean’s hand, Leah followed suit with Corey and soon it was just Jessica, her men and Rick and Abe looking at one another.

“If no one needs the bathroom I’d like to take a shower.” Jessica said after a yawn that quickly became contagious.

“We’re good.” Abe said and he and Rick went to their room too.

“If we still had the animals it’d start to feel like Noah’s Ark around here.” Josh said.

Jessica giggled.

“You know, we all need to clean-up.” Riley said pulling Jessica closer.

“I do know. I was hoping you’d join me.”

“We will but it’ll be a quick shower, that’s it.” Jim said, “You look like you’re ready to fall down.”

In fact Jessica had a hard time keeping her eyes open. By the time they were clean and in bed Jessica was semi-conscious.

“Angus …” she mumbled.


“I know you don’t want me to get up without you guys. But I really don’t want to wake you up if you’re having a good sleep and I can’t stand lying here staring into the dark. Could I please get up? You’ll probably wake up on your own not long after anyway.”

“I don’t like it, but okay.” Angus grumbled, “If the other guys are okay with it.”

The other men agreed. “Now go to sleep Jess. You can’t last much longer with only a few hours of sleep a day.” Angus said.

Jessica bolted up, on the verge of screaming. She was sweating, shaking and trying to catch her breath. Angus and Mark’s screams still echoed in her head. Catching her breath she realized that no one else was awake. Disentangling herself from the men, she dressed and tip toed out of the room.

In debating what to do with herself she realized that the floor in the studio needed cleaning. She knew in the past one of her men did it. They were always discrete about it but she’d see them coming back from the studio, bucket and mop in hand. It was definitely time she took her turn.

Filling the bucket with hot water and bleach and grabbing the mop, she lugged it over to the studio. As she struggled to drag it up the ladder she agreed with Josh’s observation about a need for a bathroom in the studio.

Once safely inside the studio Jessica looked around and flashes of what they’d done there a few hours earlier threatened to make her horny again. She shook her head, turned on some music on the cd player in the studio and started mopping. She hadn’t realized that she was singing and dancing to the music until a pair of hands came around her from behind and twirled her around. Jim smiled at her, singing along, dancing along, and taking the mop from her hand and passing it to Angus.

“We’ll dance.” He said dancing her toward Riley, Josh and Scott, “And Angus will clean.”

“But …”

“You already did half the room, it’s our turn.” Riley said and Jessica was impressed with how much he was getting into the music. Angus too, with the mop. She’d never really seen them dance. Not, dance, dance. Pretty soon they were all singing too. The other men took turns with the mop, and Jessica twirled between them. They were all laughing by the time the floor was clean.

“Okay, time to go back to bed.” Scott said, “Before we mess the floor up again … before it’s even dried.”

Back in bed they fell to sleep instantly. But it wasn’t long before Jessica bolted upright again.

Once again she found herself in the living room but this time she wasn’t alone. Mark was sitting on the sofa.

“Can’t sleep either?” Mark asked as Jessica went to sit next to him.

“No.” she said falling against him. Sitting up he put his arm around her and pulled her closer to him.

“Let me guess, Earl?” Mark asked.

Jessica nodded. “Mark, I’m so sorry about what happened to you. I guess I decided no sauce for the both of us and I shouldn’t have.”

“You did the right thing Jess.” Mark said, “Don’t ever once for a second think you didn’t. I just wish I could have stopped him from hurting you.”

“I feel the same way about you.” Jessica remembered Mark’s screams and winced.

“I hadn’t anticipated my first time as an adult to be quite like that.” Mark said.

“Oh no.” Jessica said, “That’s awful Mark, I’m so sorry.”

“Don’t be. It’s not your fault and besides, I believe you went through exactly the same thing at Angus’ hands.”

Jessica nodded. “Maybe Abe was right and we could use some of that rape crisis counselling that Elsie getting. I guess there’s always Simon also but I think he has his hands full with the boys.”

Mark nodded, “Counselling sure as hell couldn’t hurt and I agree, the boys need Simon more than we do.”

“Hey.” Jessica said when they sat in subdued silence for far too long. “Do you want to look at houses with me?”


Jessica nodded, got up for the laptop and settled back next to Mark, under his arm again, with the laptop.

“When we leave the clan we should get a new house that’s really big, big enough to accommodate us all comfortably. Us and the animals that we’re going to get back.”

“That’ll be fucking expensive.” Mark said as they looked up real estate sites.

“For fun let’s put in the million dollar range.”

They had no idea how long they sat huddled over the laptop but suddenly the sun was up and people were coming into the living room.

“How long have you been up?” Angus demanded when Jessica and Mark looked up at him. “You look awful.”

“Thanks …” Jessica began.

“That’s not what I meant and you know it …” Angus grumbled.

“Sorry.” Jessica said and patted the space beside her on the sofa. “I’m not sure how long we’ve been up but neither of us could sleep. Look, what we’ve been doing …” she turned the laptop toward Angus, “We found at least six mansions each that we want to live in. All in different parts of the country. They’ll be perfect for all of us.”

“Houses, for us?” Chad asked leaning over the back of the sofa to look at the laptop.

“Really? Can I see my room?” Nathan asked wiggling onto Angus’ lap, the frown on his face making it clear that he was annoyed that Jessica’s lap was taken with the laptop.

“Sure. Each of these have facilities, natural, or manmade to accommodate almost all of our hobbies. They’re expensive but we have the money …” Jessica said glancing at Don for confirmation. “We found three in Washington," she continued when Don nodded. “Close to where your families are. There’re a couple in and near Daytona Florida … close to the Daytona 500 Speedway for Angus, one near Louisville Kentucky, close to the Kentucky Derby … horse racing … for Scott, four near Los Angeles, good for Jim for music and surfing for Mark. Two near New York, fashion central for Sara, Justine and Amanda, cooking for Abe … um that’s all that we got to so far. But we can look up places close to all of your specialties.” Jessica said looking up at the adults.

“Where’s my room?” Nathan asked again, far more impatiently.

“Oh .. yes … look at this one.” Jessica said punching something into the laptop. “See this room is twice the size of the other rooms. Perfect for twins to share.” As Nathan and Brett ooed over the room Jessica looked up at her men, who had fanned out around the sofa, and stuck her tongue out. But her playful mood subsided when she noticed how worried they looked. Not just about her, but Mark too.

“Why don’t we do this …” Riley said, “we …” he looked around at everyone, “will take the boys to town. I think we all have some errands to run to get ready for our trip. And Mark and Jessica are going to lie down on the sofa here, together, and get some sleep.”

“I’m supposed to visit Elsie …” Jessica started to protest.

“And you will, after you sleep. You’re no good to Elsie if you wrap yourself around a tree because you fell to sleep behind the wheel.”

“Works for me.” Mark said, “Come on Jess, you’ll have plenty of time to see Elsie after our nap.”

“Okay.” Jessica agreed, unable to stifle a yawn.

“Come on boys.” Leah said ushering the boys to the door. “There may even be ice cream in it for you if you’re super fast at saying goodbye to Jessie.” That was met with hoots and hollers and after a flurry of speedy kisses on Jessica’s cheek the boys were out of the house and moments later Mark and Jessica were alone.

“Come on.” Mark said lying back on the sofa and pulling Jessica on top of him. Jessica snuggled against him and was asleep in moments.

“You’re drooling.” Jessica said. She’d woken up and lifted her head to see Mark just awakening also.

“Thanks.” Mark said when she wiped his mouth with her hand. “I guess they’re not back yet.”

“I don’t think so.” Jessica said sitting up.

“Okay, well, I’ll make us some sandwiches.” Mark said sitting up. “Look I know you’re not hungry much lately.” He added when Jessica made a face. “I’ll cut you a break and make you half a sandwich. Okay? But you have to eat it, I have to be able to honestly tell the others that you ate something.”

“Why don’t we try something radical.” Jessica said getting off the sofa, “How about I make you a sandwich?”

“You can make a sandwich?” Mark asked in mock seriousness and burst into laughter when Jessica looked honestly taken aback.

“I’ll have you know that I can make a really good sandwich.” Jessica said, hands on her hips but when she realized that he’d been joking she turned to the kitchen. “Ha, ha, ha. Just for that you don’t get my special ingredient. And it’s a shame too because it makes all the difference between a boring old sandwich and a ‘set your taste buds afire’ sandwich.”

“Oh, come on Jess, I was kidding.” Mark said following her to the kitchen. “I don’t want boring, I want afire …”

“Okay, I’ll cave,” Jessica said, “But only if you don’t tell anyone what the secret ingredient is.”

“Keeping secrets Jess, do you really think that’s a good way for us to go?” Mark asked.

“You’re right. Not a good idea. Okay, don’t look then.” Jessica said and when Mark turned around she created a gigantic triple decker cold cut sandwich with a pickle on the side.

“Holy shit.” Mark said when he saw the size of it and then he laughed when he saw hers. “Seriously? You’re giving me this monstrosity and you’re eating what amounts to one piece of bread folded in half with a piece of lettuce in it?”

“This is my favorite kind of sandwich.” Jessica said and took a bite and forced a gigantic smile to prove it.

“Whatever.” Mark said and when he bit into his sandwich his eyes popped. “What the hell did you do to it?” he mumbled as he chewed, “I’ve never tasted anything like it.”

“I could tell you, but then I’d have to kill you. No secrets, remember?”

“But that’s a secret …” Mark said, “Okay, okay, forget I said anything.” He said when Jessica tried to grab the sandwich back from him.

They had just finished eating when the front door opened and Brett and Nathan ran in followed by the others.

“Jessie, Mark, we had ice cream, lots of ice cream.” Brett said jumping up and down.

“And we brought you some too but Casey and Frank ate it on you!” Nathan said pointing an accusing finger at the two boys who gaped in distress.

“But Leah told us to.” Casey said.

“It was melting …” Frank added.

“You know what?” Leah said to Brett and Nathan, “It’s not very nice to try and get your brothers into trouble.”

“But they ate it on them!” Nathan insisted.

“It’s okay.” Jessica said to Casey and Frank who looked like they wanted to curl up and disappear, “We prefer that you ate it, right Mark? I’m so full from lunch I simply couldn’t have eaten another bite anyway.” Jessica threw a meaningful look at Mark while going over and putting an arm around Casey and the other around Frank.

“Really, she ate?” Jim asked Mark, far more excited than Jessica anticipated he’d be. She began to wish she’d kept quiet when everyone else looked pleased too.

“What did she have?” Abe asked looking at the kitchen as if he regretted not being the one to have made her meal.

“A sandwich.” Mark said. Chris motioned Mark over just as Riley asked, “A whole sandwich?”

Mark threw a look at Jessica and then said, “Coming Chris…” and moved away quickly.

“And you two.” Jessica said turning to Brett and Nathan, hoping that Riley would let the answer to his question drop. “Leah is right, you shouldn’t have said anything about the ice cream. If Leah told them to eat it, then that’s it, end of story. Okay?”

The boys nodded looking very contrite.

“Did you sleep okay?” Scott asked kissing Jessica’s cheek and pulling her into his arms.

“Great. I feel a lot better.” Jessica said hugging him.

“Don’t think that I haven’t noticed that my question has been ignored.” Riley said pulling her into his arms.

“Can it be enough that I ate? This time?” Jessica asked, sliding her arms up around his neck.

Riley studied her for a moment before nodding. “This once.”

“Did you get everything you needed?” Jessica asked.

“Oh yeah.” Josh said, “We’re set for the trip.” There was a twinkle to his eye that made Jessica pause.

Scott jabbed an elbow into Josh’s ribs before saying, “Do you want to go to the pond?”

“Can we go after I visit Elsie?” Jessica asked. “I won’t be long.” She said when the men nodded. They followed her outside.

“Drive carefully.” Angus said closing the driver side door once she’d gotten behind the wheel. Jessica rolled down her window and Angus leaned in to kiss her goodbye when the passenger side door opened.

“Hey, can we come with you?” Corey asked sliding in next to her, Sean and Don next to him, and Caleb, Chris, Quinn and Mark clamoured into the back seat.

“Um, okay.” Jessica said, “But Elsie doesn’t see men.”

“We’ll wait, let’s go.” Caleb said tapping on the back of Jessica’s seat.

“What’s going on?” Riley asked leaning down to look in at Sean and Corey.

“Just going for a ride with Jessica.” Sean said. And then when he noticed Sara and the other girls follow Rick and Abe out onto the front lawn he added, “Come on Jess, go already.” With a clear sense of urgency.

“See you soon.” She said shrugging at her men and then backing out of the driveway.

“That was close!” Corey said as Jessica drove down the road.

Jessica cast unsure glances at Sean and Corey, and then over her shoulder at the others. “If I didn’t know better I’d say you were trying to get away from the girls.”

“We were.” Caleb said. “Relax, it was for a good cause.” He said when Jessica threw him a disapproving look in the rear view mirror.

“Jess,” Quinn said leaning forward, resting his arms on the back of the front seat. “We want to propose to the girls when we’re at the resort. As you know it has one of the highest ratings for romantic getaway places in America, so we thought it was the ideal place to propose.”

Jessica’s squeal pierced the air and the men’s eardrums. “Really? Really?” she repeated while banging her hands on the steering wheel and turning around to look at Quinn.

“Hey, keep your eyes on the road, hands on the wheel.” Corey said grabbing the wheel as they swerved a little on the road.

“You were right.” Quinn said to Corey, “We should have waited for the car to be parked before mentioning it.”

“I’m so excited!” Jessica exclaimed, “how are you going to do it? When will you get married?”

“Well, that’s something we wanted to ask you about.” Sean said. “Lately we’ve been really stepping in it with the girls. This thing about knowing them well when we were kids … is not something we want to repeat. So you need to tell us, there’s nothing about our plan that they’d get mad about, right?”

“Um, I don’t think so. I think they’ll be excited that you’re asking them. But maybe …” she said after a moment, “maybe you could ask them separately. You know, so each one feels special.”

“Sure, we can do that.” Chris said.

“Did you get the rings yet?” Jessica asked as they pulled into the parking lot of Elsie’s group home. Turning the car off she turned to look at all of the men, bouncing in the seat as she did.

“Rings?” Mark asked looking as clueless as the rest of the men.

“Oh you need rings.” Jessica staring at them like they’d just committed a cardinal sin.

“Maybe we should just forget this.” Don said, “We’re clearly in over our heads.”

“No, no you’re not. I’ll help you.” Jessica said, “Give me an hour with Elsie and then we’ll go to town. Get your rings, suits. Um,” She said looking around the SUV, “I wish I had some paper and pens. You could work on your proposals while I’m gone.”

“Oh my God, the proposals …” Sean moaned, “We have to come up with something mushy. I don’t think I can.”

“Not mushy.” Jessica said, “Just how you feel.”

“In other words, mushy.” Quinn said.

“Well, okay, it probably is better if it’s mushy. The girls will love that. I’ll be back soon … are you okay here? If you want to go somewhere else feel free.” she said handing Corey the keys.

“Maybe we’ll go get some paper and pens.” Corey said.

Jessica pecked Corey on the cheek, waved goodbye to the others and headed into the home.

An hour later Jessica emerged into the parking lot feeling both hopeful and sad. Elsie was getting better in so many ways, but she still was terrified of men. Even if they were on TV.

She found the men in the SUV. Balls of paper littered the vehicle and they were all scribbling madly in notebooks.

“How is she?” Mark asked when Jessica climbed in the driver’s seat and Corey handed her the keys.

“Better, and worse.” Jessica said. “I hope Earl burns in hell for a really long time for what he did to her.”

Mark nodded.

“Okay.” Jessica said, “Let me text the men to let them know we’ll be a while and we can go to town. I think we should start with the rings. Um, ah, how much money were you willing to spend? On the rings, and on the suits?”

“Whatever is needed.” Caleb said.

“There’s quite a range.” Jessica said.

“I’m guessing the more expensive the ring is, the better?” Don asked.

“Yup.” Jessica said starting to text the men.

“Then we’ll go expensive.” Chris said.

Jessica texted, “Going to town with men, will be home in a few hours.” To her men. Seconds later Riley texted back, “To do what?”

“Will tell you when I get home.” Jessica texted back and a second later her phone rang.

“What are you doing in town?” Riley asked.

“Oh Riley, you’re never going to believe it!” Jessica said so excited that the men in the car with her had to smile. She was like a kid at Christmas. “But you can’t tell the girls okay, it’s a surprise …”

“Okay.” Riley said with a laugh, surprised by her excitement.

“When we go to the resort the men are going to propose! We have to go get rings, suits, everything. We’ll be home soon, okay?” Jessica said.

“Okay. Have fun.” Riley said laughing, clearly amused. “Let me talk to one of the guys, k?”

Jessica handed the phone to Corey. “Riley wants to talk to you.”

“Hey.” Corey said and listened for a moment. “Thanks man. We’re all real excited, especially Jessica.” He added, rubbing Jessica on the head. “Okay.” He said sliding his eyes to Jessica, “Not a problem, we’ll take care of it. See you.”

“Everything okay?” Don asked when Corey handed the phone back to Jessica.

“Yeah, no problem. We just have to make a trip to the ice cream store before heading home. It seems that Casey and Frank are beside themselves with guilt about the ice cream they ate on you.” Corey said.

“Oh no.” Jessica said.

“Oh yes. You’ll have to eat a big bowl of ice cream and we need pictures to prove it.”

“Hey, it’s ice cream!” Sean said when Jessica made a face, “You’re going to complain about ice cream?”

“I guess not.” Jessica said and started the car. “Okay!” she said snapping out of her momentary funk, “Rings first. So you’ll have to get very expensive, and very different rings. You don’t want the same ring for any one of the girls.”

“Lead on enlightened one.” Don said. “Show us the way.”

And Jessica did. They bought rings, suits, ice cream, laughing the whole time. By the time they pulled into the driveway their faces and sides hurt from laughing.

“Thanks Jess, we had a good time.” Sean said.

“Me too.” Jessica said and realized that she had just as good a time shopping with the men as she did when she went with the girls.

“Okay so remember, let us explain everything.” Caleb said when the girls came out of the house and moved toward the SUV. Rick, Abe, and her men following them. “You just smile, don’t say a word or they’ll know something’s up right away.”

“Okay, okay.” Jessica said, “I get it, I won’t try to lie.”

“What was that all about?” Sara asked Sean when everyone piled out of the SUV.

“What?” Sean asked.

“Running away with Jessica.” Justine said.

“We didn’t ‘run away’.” Chris said. Jessica walked up to Riley and Angus, took one of each of their hands and kept moving to the house. “Come on …” she said only loud enough for Scott, Jim and Josh to hear, “I don’t want to give them a chance to ask me anything. Are we going to the pond?”

In the house she found that Rick and Abe had followed her and her men in. They were smiling at her in an amused way.

“Yeah, sure.” Jim said, “The boys are out killing each other again. I’ll tell them to change into their bathing suits.”

“So I take it you got everything?” Rick asked a laugh in his voice.

“Everything!” Jessica said clapping her hands and hopping up and down. “It’s going to be great!”

Jessica reigned it in when the boys came in, hugged her, and ran to change. The way everyone kept going on about how transparent she was, Jessica was afraid the boys would figure out the surprise and accidently give it away.

“Oh Frank, Casey.” Jessica said, “Mark and I got that ice cream. Corey has pictures … it was really good. You don’t have to feel bad any more, okay?”

The boys nodded. They seemed shy about it but relieved.

The rest of the day went by in a blur. The afternoon at the pond. Dinner. Before Simon arrived for the boys counselling session Jessica went to play shoot ‘em up with the boys. An hour later, she left Simon and the boys in the studio and walked into the house to find her men and the other adults sitting around the sofa and looking somewhat subdued.

“What’s wrong?” Jessica asked moving to Jim and sliding onto his lap before looking around at everyone.

“Nothing baby.” Jim said pulling her close and kissing the side of her head, “we’re just talking about the boys and the trip.”

“And what to tell them to tell everyone about us and our relationships.” Justine added when Jessica was clearly confused as to why that would cause them to look so glum.

“Oh. Good idea. What’s the plan?” Jessica asked.

“Nothing too far from the truth.” Angus said, “So the boys don’t get confused. We’ll say we’re extended family. The boys can be our nephews.”

Jessica nodded, confused about why the cover story for the trip would make everyone look so down. Before she could ask, everyone seemed to shake off the gloom and become excited about the trip again. Leah thought they were going to an amusement park resort so she was very excited too but Jessica and Corey exchanged knowing smiles, both imagining how excited she’d be when she found out they were going to “France”. An hour later, after Simon had left, the adults discussed the extended family story with the boys and then Jessica, the girls and boys studied for a while before looking at houses online. Having found four more suitable mansions they stopped to pack for the trip the following day. Packed and incredibly excited, everyone decided to play poker.

As they played Jessica’s phone vibrated.

“Oh.” Jessica said looking at the text she’d received.

“What’s wrong?” Josh asked.

Jessica looked up. “Beth is going ahead with the plastic surgery. The surgeon wants a down payment of a thousand dollars.”

“Okay.” Angus said and it was clear that he didn’t understand why Jessica cared, much less received a text about it.

“She doesn’t have any money Angus.” Jessica said, “I told her I’d pay for it. I have to get the money to her tonight.”

“Oh no you don’t.” Angus said.

“But I promised …”

“You can give her the money Jessica but it doesn’t have to be you who delivers it.” Angus said.

“I don’t know if she’ll trust anyone else.” Jessica said.

“She trusts me, kind of.” Quinn said. “I’ll take it to her, and I have the thousand to cover it.”

“You don’t have to …” Jessica began.

“I don’t mind.” Quinn said getting up.

“But that’s a lot of money.” Jessica said.

“I owe her more than that.” Quinn said, “Believe me, I have it covered.”

“Okay. I’ll let her know you’re coming.” Jessica exchanged a few texts with Beth. “She says she’ll meet you at the mall in town. In the food court by the donut place.”

“K, I’ll be back soon.”

“Thanks Quinn.” Jessica said going to give him a hug. He kissed the top of her head, kissed Amanda on the lips and left.

“She’ll be fine.” Jim said rubbing Jessica’s arm when she sat down and looked worried. “Now play your hand.” He said after she nodded, “I want to win your money.”

“A little sure of yourself aren’t you?” Jessica asked.

“No, Jess, you seriously shouldn’t play poker.” Leah said. “The game requires a poker face and Jess, you don’t have one.”

The boys laughed hysterically at that. Even they found it impossible to not see right through her.

“Fine.” Jessica said folding her cards and dropping them on the coffee table, “I’m going to go do some more homework.”

Jessica stomped off to the kitchen table but she wasn’t even convincing at acting mad.

Jessica got about fifteen minutes of homework in before the boys began drifting over. Eventually she ended up reading to them from the novel “Brave New World”, one of the books for her English course. Pretty soon everyone had stopped playing and listened to her read.

They were all surprised when Quinn returned and Jessica was still reading.

“That was fast.” Scott said.

“Not really.” Quinn said, “No faster than was expected.”

“Shit, it’s almost midnight.” Leah said, “Boys, it’s bed time. We’re going on the trip tomorrow, we need our sleep.”

Excitement over the upcoming trip beat out the disappointment of having to go to bed.

“That’s a weird story.” Nathan said when he kissed Jessica good night.

“It’s science fiction.” Jessica said, “It’s always weird.”

“Is Beth okay?” Jessica asked Quinn once the boys were gone.

“Perfect. Once he gets the down payment the doctor will let her know when he’ll do the surgery. It shouldn’t be long.”

“Thanks again.” Jessica said.

Quinn nodded.

“Good night.” He added as he, Amanda, Caleb and Don headed to bed.

“Are you up for the studio?” Scott asked Jessica.

“Let’s go.” She said taking his and Jim’s hand’s and dragging them, followed by Riley, Angus and Josh, to the studio.

“None of you can sleep?” Jessica asked when she went into the living room. She and the men had exhausted themselves at the studio, came back to the house, cleaned up and went to bed. But as usual Jessica woke up and was surprised to find Corey, Chris, Sean, Caleb, Mark, Don, and Quinn in the living room.

“We’ve been waiting for you.” Don said, “We need your help with our proposals.”

“Okay.” Jessica said sitting on the arm of the sofa, her feet on the cushion next to Caleb. She took the notebook Don handed her and read what he’d written.

“Wow. That’s great!” she said looking so impressed that Don felt embarrassed.

“I just did what you said … put down what I feel.” Don said.

‘It’s really not an easy thing to do. Putting your feelings down so eloquently is an art. Amanda’s going to love it.” Jessica said.

“Okay, mine isn’t ‘eloquent’,” Sean flicking two fingers on each hand for the word eloquent, “It’s just plain and simple. Just says how I feel without any flowery words.” Sean said handing her his notebook.

Jessica read all of the proposals and when she was done she was looking at the men in a completely different light. “The girls are really lucky to have you.” She said.

When it was obvious that the men were having a hard time with the praise Jessica decided to change the topic. “Do you want to go jam in the studio?”

“Yeah, sure.” Corey said and the others agreed.

But Jessica remembered what she and her men had done in there. “Oh, wait, maybe that’s not a good idea …”

“Don’t worry, Jim already came by with the mop.” Caleb said.

“He did?” Jessica asked.

“Yup. So, let’s go.” Caleb said. Jessica wondered if they knew what she and the men did to dirty the floor. If they did, as always they did nothing to embarrass her.

“Let’s bring the laptop.” Corey suggested, “So we can look up songs to play.”

The studio smelled of bleach. Jessica glanced at the men but they gave no indication that they even noticed.

“Fast or slow songs?” Sean asked Jessica.

“Fast. Unless you want something else.” Jessica said.

“Something to rock out to sounds good." Caleb replied.

They spent half an hour picking five songs that they wanted to learn well enough to do one after the other without glaring errors.

They watched the videos, played what they heard. Even found the music sheets online. Quinn didn’t play any instruments or know how to sing so he helped pick the songs and watched Jessica and the men practice.

Finally they felt they knew them well enough to play, sing and dance to all five of the songs, one after the other.

“The first person to fuck things up owes the others a bottle of rum.” Mark said.

“You’re kidding right, that’s seven bottles of rum.” Caleb said.

“What about Quinn? How does he get out of it?” Chris asked.

“He doesn’t.” Sean said, “He can sing and dance with us.”

“How’d I get sucked into this?” Quinn demanded.

“You helped pick the songs, you made a commitment.” Sean said.

“It’s not in front of a real audience.” Jessica said when Quinn looked really distressed, “It’s just us. It’ll be fun, I promise.”

“Fine.” Quinn said, “but you guys find some really weird ways of having fun.”

“So eight bottles of rum from the person or persons who mess us up.” Sean said, “and not the mickeys either. I’m talking the sixty ouncers.”

“So just copy what we do for the dancing.” Jessica told Quinn, “It’s easy, just a lot of jumping mostly.”

“Jess you going count us in between songs? Otherwise we’re going to mess up just switching songs.” Corey said.

Jessica nodded.

“Ready?” Jessica asked. Once everyone nodded, Jessica yelled, “One, two, three, go!” and they started.

By the second song they were drenched in sweat.

“Time out for a second.” Quinn said before the third song, “It’s fucking hot.”

“Two minute time out.” Corey said, “Just so we can get our shirts off. Jess, I don’t know what you’re going to do, unless you have underwear on under those pajamas.”

“No, but I know what I can do.” She said and while the men were rushing to pull their shirts off Jessica undid some buttons on her shirt and looped the bottom through the top buttons so it looked like a bikini top. Then she rolled her pant legs up to almost the top of her thighs. Picking her guitar up she looked around and when everyone nodded she yelled the count down again and they started their third song.

Jessica had just counted them into their last song when suddenly she felt someone pressed up against her back. She turned to see Angus jumping with her. He brought his hand up to brush her now drenched hair out of her eyes. Jessica smiled her thanks to him earning her a lopsided smile and shake of Angus’ head. Quinn had moved over, Amanda dancing with him, and Riley, Scott, Jim, Josh, Rick and Abe were dancing on either side of Angus and Jessica, Justine, Sara and Leah dancing their way up to the stage where Don, Mark, Corey, Sean, Chris, and Caleb were playing.

At the end of the song Jessica, Don, Mark, Corey, Sean, Chris, and Caleb played a long riff and then ended at exactly the same time, Jessica falling back against Angus, laughing.

“You people are crazy you know that?” Leah said caressing Corey’s sweaty forehead. “How long have you been out here?”

“A while.” Corey said.

“Jess, aren’t you exhausted?” Angus asked wrapping his arms around her.

“Hopefully I will be when the adrenaline goes away.” Jessica said taking her guitar off. Jim took it from her and put in in its stand on the stage.

“You need some water.” Scott said.

Jessica nodded.

“It’s four in the morning Jess, it’s time for bed.” Riley said.

“Christ Jess.” Josh added, “You don’t eat, and you barely sleep, you’re going to crash if you keep this up.”

“I didn’t realize it was that late, sorry.” Jessica said kissing each of them and Jim when he returned from putting her guitar away.

“You guys do put on a good show.” Jim said to all of them.

“And I can’t believe that none of us lost.” Sean said.

“Lost what?” Sara asked.

Sean explained the competition as they all walked back to the house.

After eight glasses of water and a shower Jessica crawled into bed with the men.

“I’m sorry about staying up so late.” Jessica said realizing that they were supposed to leave for the resort in four hours. “Wake me up on time tomorrow, I’ll be okay.”

“You can sleep on the bus anyway.” Jim said.

“By the way. Whenever we make a mess in the studio, you don’t need to worry about it Jess.” Riley said, “One of us will clean it up.”

“Okay.” Jessica said with a yawn and snuggling up closer to Riley, “Just wondering why we bother with the g spot orgasms? I mean, I love them, but the regular ones are just as good … I scream for both of them, and the regular are a lot less messy.”

“We like the mess Jess.” Angus said.

“Do we ever.” Scott said.

“I even like cleaning it up.” Josh said.

“You look different when you have a g spot orgasm.” Jim said pushing up on his elbow to see Jessica’s face. “More intense. I like that too.”

“Yeah, I guess you guys look a lot more intense when you’re giving them to me too. Just remember that I should take a turn at cleaning up also.” Jessica said, her eyes starting to close.

“Sure Jess, you’ll get a turn … sometime.” Riley said, but Jessica was fast asleep before he finished his sentence.

It was a four hour drive to the resort. Everyone was so excited that no one slept on the bus despite the late night.

When they got to the resort the bell boys took their bags and everyone walked around the resort together, getting an idea of what was where. Leah was beside herself with excitement and she kept repeating, “I can’t believe you found this place … I can’t believe we’re in France and we haven’t left the States … I can’t believe I didn’t know … thank you, thank you, thank you!”. And she’d pepper Corey with kisses. Everyone was already excited but Leah’s near hysteria was contagious.

They had bread, cheese and wine for lunch in a bistro. They went by the kids clubs which the boys originally said they did not want to attend, but when they saw all the other kids, and the older boys saw the older girls, they changed their minds. They agreed that they’d all have meals together, the kids would go to the kids clubs during the morning, they’d all get together for the afternoons and then the boys would attend the evening kids club activities before bed. Excited to meet other kids, the boys asked to attend the introductory afternoon session at the kids club. Leaving the boys for a few hours the adults continued looking around the resort.

“There’s a resort next door that is a replica of Vegas.” Scott said catching Jessica’s hand as they came out of the visitor information office, “Now that would be cool to visit too.”

“I thought so too.” Jessica said, “But Sean said that you guys avoid real casinos because of the cameras they have everywhere. He thought the replica may have cameras too.”

“I forgot about that.” Scott said sounding disappointed.

“Was that your bucket list item?” Jessica asked sliding her arm around Scott’s waist and leaning her head against him.

“Kind of, I guess. But that’s okay. Cameras are bad, especially ones that have people at the other end paying attention.” Scott said.

They met up with the other adults in the lobby of the hotel.

“Hey, we made a reservation at the Eiffel tower Ritz for dinner.” Riley said, “We should go change, it’s pretty fancy.”

“Really?” Jessica asked clapping her hands with excitement.

“I told you which dress to put out for her, right?” Justine asked Riley as they piled into the elevator. “Good.” She said when he nodded and she turned to Jessica, “Put it on and wait for us. Don’t even think about touching your hair or makeup … ‘k, see you soon!” she added pecking Jessica on the cheek and getting off the elevator with the Sara and Sean on their floor. It was the second highest floor in the hotel.

Alone in the elevator, Josh pulled Jessica into his arms. Jessica wrapped her arms around his neck, leaned in to him and kissed him.

Riley and Angus rubbed her back, Jim and Scott her butt.

“I love you.” Jessica said looking up at Josh. Then around at Riley, Angus, Scott and Jim.

“And we,” Josh said bending to slide his arm under Jessica’s legs and lifting her into a cradle, “love you.”

Josh carried Jessica down the hall, following the other men.

Angus opened the door to a hotel room and Riley flicked on the lights. When Josh carried Jessica in, she gasped.

“Oh … wow!” she said. The room was like nothing she’d ever seen before. It was so fancy. With a huge living room and a door off to the bathroom and one off to a bedroom.

“It’s the biggest suite they have.” Scott said.

“And wait till you see this.” Josh said carrying Jessica into the bathroom where Jim had preceded them and turned the light on.

“A Jacuzzi!” Jessica exclaimed. “It’s beautiful!”

“And big enough for all of us to go in it at the same time.” Riley said.

“How much time do we have until dinner?” Jessica asked Josh with extreme excitement.

“Long enough for you to have a nap before we go.” Josh said kissing her.

“No, I’m fine Josh, honest. Can we go in the Jacuzzi before dinner?” Jessica asked.

“Babe, you hardly slept last night and you didn’t even doze on the bus. You’re about to drop. Take a nap, we’ll have dinner and we can go in the Jacuzzi after.” Josh replied.

“You know …” Jessica said walking her fingers up Josh’s arm, “I’d probably sleep better after going in the Jacuzzi … just sayin’.”

“I guess it can’t hurt.” Josh said looking to the other men who shrugged.

“You don’t do a thing.” Scott said pulling Jessica’s hands down from where they had started unbuttoning her top after Josh set her on her feet. “We’ll undress you. We’ll bathe you, we’ll tuck you into bed. You just relax.”

“Okay … I could get pretty lazy if you keep doing things for me you know.” Jessica said giggling while Scott unbuttoned her shirt, Angus pulled it off, Scott unbuttoned her pants, Riley and Josh pulled them off after Scott guided Jessica to lean back against Angus. They took her underwear off too, and Jim took her socks.

Josh turned the jets on while Angus slid Jessica into the water. The men rushed to get their clothes off and then got in with Jessica.

Jim pulled Jessica into his arms. She sat on his lap, her back against his rock hard torso. Jessica leaned her head on his chest and closed her eyes, enjoying the feel of Jim’s hardening cock against her back.

“This is nice.” She said.

“Mhmm.” Jim murmured in her ear. He brought his hands up and began massaging her shoulders, Riley and Angus each had one of her hands that they massaged. Josh massaged her right leg, down to her foot, Scott her left.

After a few minutes Jessica lifted her head and kissed Jim. Their tongues intertwining.

“Jess, we can do this later, after you rest.” Jim said when Jessica moved from his mouth to his neck.

“I don’t want to do it later.” Jessica said looking at Jim, and then the others. “I want to do it now. Please. It’ll help me sleep …” she added in a sweet voice when the men didn’t look convinced.

“It never has before.” Riley said reaching for her tit, “But that’s never stopped us before either.”

“I’ve heard something interesting about the jets in these Jacuzzis.” Scott said reaching between her legs, “Apparently when horny little slaves press their pussies up against them, the pressure and rhythm of the jets makes their pussies explode.”

“Really?” Jessica, Angus, Jim, Josh and Riley said at the same time causing Scott to burst out laughing.

“Yes, really.” Scott said when he finally stopped laughing. “I’ve also heard that when a slave’s pussy is ultra-sensitive because she’s already gotten off from her Masters, her legs jerk like crazy. I think we should put that story to the test.” Scott said, stroking Jessica.

“I agree.” Josh said driving his fingers into her pussy, tapping her g spot, “And I guess we found the one place you can cum without making a mess.”

“There’s that face …” Angus said reaching for her free tit, “I love that face.” He added when it was obvious that Jessica’s pleasure was growing.

Jim grabbed Jessica’s butt cheeks and spread them apart, Riley slipped his fingers into Jessica’s asshole, and Jessica screamed.

When the screaming and ejaculating ended, and Jessica lay limp in Jim’s arms Scott stroked her clitoris with his finger and her legs jerked.

“I think it’s time to introduce your pussy to the water jet.” Scott growled into her ear.

Jessica nodded.

Jim lifted her by the back of her knees and took her to a jet. Pulling her legs far apart he pressed her pussy up to the jet and her legs went crazy. Not even two seconds into it the men ejaculated, making sure to get it on Jessica, on her face, in her mouth. Jessica swallowed as much as she could, and it didn’t take long before she began to feel pleasure growing. Moments later she screamed as orgasm after orgasm rocked her. Finally when her legs began to twitch again, Jim pulled her away from the jet.

Jim kissed her the top of her head as it lolled against his chest. “As much as I love to watch you twitch Jess, it’s really time for that nap.”

Jessica managed something that passed for a nod.

The men lifted her out of the Jacuzzi, dried her and Jim took her to bed.

“Where are Riley, Angus, Josh and Scott?” Jessica mumbled as Jim laid her on the bed.

“They have some things to do before dinner. I’ll sleep with you, okay?”

Jessica nodded and then forced herself onto her elbow and looked around.

“This is a bed?” she asked.

“It’s above average in size. We can all fit on it.” Jim said, “And it’s heart shaped. Cool right?”

“Cool.” Jessica agreed just before falling into a deep sleep.

Jessica woke up groggy and disoriented. Something felt wrong and when she woke up a little more she realized what it was … she was alone on the bed. Sitting up she soon remembered where she was. The reading lamp over the bed on the other side of the bed was on and Jessica noticed a beautiful red rose on the pillow. Crawling closer to it she realized there was a piece of paper on the bed next to the pillow. She picked up the rose, smelled it and then looked at the paper. Letters scrawled in Jim’s handwriting said, “Jess. There’s a dress on the chair at the foot of the bed. Put it on and then follow the rose petals. We’re waiting for you. Love your husbands.”

Looking at the foot of the bed Jessica noticed a standing lamp throwing light onto a chair where a beautiful green, glimmering, dress lay.

It almost felt like an illusion but when Jessica crawled off the bed and tip toed to the chair her fingers grazed over a real dress. One of the most beautiful dresses she’d ever seen. She wondered if it was one of Justine, Sara and Amanda’s masterpieces.

Jessica smiled when she noticed on the table next to the chair there was an assortment of lingerie. A black bra, strapless. Another inspection of the dress confirmed that it was strapless also. And then there was a contraption that it took Jessica a while to figure out. A garter belt. A garter belt, two three quarter panty hose, and a thong.

At first Jessica wondered what the point was. Her underwear hardly ever stayed on long enough to bother wearing anything special, but then she considered the idea of going out for dinner, in public, wearing this under her dress. And her men knowing it. Knowing it and unable to do anything about it until they were alone … or would they do something about it even if they were in public?

Shivers of anticipation coursed through her from head to foot … with large doses of it between her legs. Even her nipples tingled.

Jessica dressed, impressed that she figured out how to put the garter belt on by herself. And brushed her teeth, combed her hair and went looking for the rose petals. She found them in the living room. They made a trail going to the door where she found a pair of dark green high heels. Putting them on she opened the door and followed the trail of petals to a room at the far end of the hall. Before she could knock the door opened and Jessica’s breath caught.

“Riley … you look so … I just want to … wow.” Riley was dressed in a black tuxedo. He was shaved, his hair was gelled, shined shoes. He was gorgeous. She felt tingles all over again, and oddly her knees felt weak.

“I was just thinking that about you.” He said with his sexy lopsided grin and looking even sexier than ever. His eyes flashed with desire when he caught Jessica’s reaction. “Come in ….” He said, his desire more than obvious as he took Jessica’s arm, pulled her into the room and undressed her with his eyes.

Inside the room Jessica gasped again. In the centre of the room, looking just as sexy and dangerously tantalizing as Riley, were Angus, Scott, Jim and Josh.

“Jess, you’re beautiful.” Angus said moving to her.

“Are you okay?” Scott asked giving her a toothy grin and taking her arm just to be sure that she didn’t fall down. She looked like she was going to.

“Why did we bother getting dressed?” Jessica whispered.

“I don’t know.” Josh growled moving right up against Jessica as did the other men. The already sexually charged air seemed to explode in intensity.

“We’re supposed to go for dinner …” Jim said as he was assisting the other men in pulling Jessica’s dress off, and then when they saw the garter belt and thong underneath they lost control.

Jessica fumbled with the buttons on Jim and Angus’ shirts while Scott stuck his tongue down her throat. Riley undid her bra and grasped her tits in his hands from behind her, smashing them against her, smashing her against him, kneading them.

Josh slid his hand between her legs and rubbed over the thong.

“Take it off …” Jessica panted around Scott’s mouth and tongue.

“Not yet.” Josh said, “I want to see you in it, walking, sitting, bending, kneeling …” he continued, bending down, and suddenly, unexpectantly, he bit her butt cheek, and Jessica came, screaming.

No sooner was she done cumming than she fell to her knees, grabbed Josh’s cock in one hand, Angus’ in the other and swallowed Riley’s. Jim gathered her tits together, slid his cock between them and began to thrust. Scott slid her thong to one side and entered her pussy, kneeling behind her. In seconds they all came, Josh, Angus and Jim covering Jessica with their cum, Riley and Scott filling her mouth and pussy.

They’d barely stopped cumming when Josh pulled Jessica to her feet. “Walk for me. Over there and turn around.”

Jessica walked slowly, deliberately, swaying her hips from side to side, toward the sofa that Josh had pointed to. When she reached it she stopped, legs apart and bent over slowly.

“Dear mother of God.” Angus grumbled.

Swinging her hips, Jessica stood up, flinging her hair as she did. She turned slowly, deliberately, and when she was facing the men she brought her hands up to her nipples and pulled.

“Jess …” Riley hissed.

Jessica lowered herself onto the sofa, half sitting with her back against the back of the sofa, and bending her legs she spread them as far as she could. The men were on her before she had time to consider that she may have pushed them too far.

Jessica was flipped onto her hands and knees on the sofa. Jim lay under her, entering her pussy, Josh entered her asshole, Angus slid his cock in her mouth. Riley mauled her one tits, slamming his cock into her side, Scott did the same on her other side even though he had less space with the back of the sofa in his way. And in less than a minute they all came.

They collapse in a heap on the sofa panting.

“Holy shit.” Jim kept repeating in Jessica’s ear.

A knock at the door made Jessica jump, “My screaming!” she whispered in a panic, turning red, “I completely forgot there are other guests!”

“Calm down Jess, that’s just the girls.” Riley said. And then in a louder voice he said, “We’ll be right there. Just go in the room next to us.”

“’K.” Sara said.

“Don’t be embarrassed Jess.” Angus said running his thumb on her cheek, trying to rub the red out, “We should have told you sooner, we rented the whole floor. There’s no one else here.”

“Really?” Jessica asked.

“Yup. We have this floor, the others have the floor below us. You can scream all you want, no one will hear you.” Angus replied.

Jessica collapsed on Jim in relief.

“Jess, we kind of misrepresented this trip.” Riley said, “You think we’re only here for one night, but we’re here for five. This is our honeymoon.”

“Honeymoon?” Jessica repeated, “Really?” she added getting excited.

“Yes.” Josh said clearly happy to see Jessica so excited, “I know you only packed for one night, but the girls packed the rest of your clothes … though at the rate we’re going you’re never going to need them.”

“That’s not so bad.” Jessica said kissing Jim’s chest, and then turning to kiss Riley who had slid onto his knees next to the sofa.

“No it’s not.” Riley agreed, “Except that we’re not going to get away with keeping you to ourselves. Everyone else has laid dibs on you during the day. We only get you exclusively to ourselves at night. The boys have already called up here a few times.”

“Well, it’s a burden.” Jessica said sitting up when Jim did and hugging Josh. “But for the boys and the rest of the family I’ll make the ultimate sacrifice … um, if I can. I don’t think I can keep from jumping you. Especially if you’re wearing those tuxes.”

“Same problem here.” Angus said. “The dresses the girls brought are going to be hard enough to handle …” Angus ran his hand over her thigh, “But Jess you cannot wear that contraption under them. Not when we go out. I won’t be able to control myself.”

“Well, it is a bit soiled right now anyway.” Jessica said looking down at her bra strewn on the floor.

“We packed lots more of those. Different colors too. But please, just wear regular underwear until we get back here, okay?” Scott asked. “It’ll be hard enough remembering to not touch you in public.”

“Not touch me? Why won’t you touch me?” Jessica asked.

“We’ll be in public. Don’t worry Jessica we won’t embarrass you.” Riley said.

“Embarrass me?” Jessica demanded, “What are you talking about?”

“We won’t let people judge you. No one will know you’re married to all of us. Don’t worry.” Angus said. He hung his head a little as he said it. Jessica looked around at the other men, they all looked deflated.

“I think I’ve missed something big because I have no idea what you’re talking about.” Jessica said.

“We won’t give society a chance to judge you.” Jim said, “No one will know you’re married to five men.”

“Guys, I don’t care what society thinks about me. I love you, all five of you, and I want anyone and everyone to know that.” She caressed Angus’ face, and rubbed her hand on Josh’s chest.

“We don’t want you to be made into a pariah Jess.” Angus said. “Like we almost did to Rick and Abe …”

“Oh … Oh.” Jessica said when she finally remembered the whole Rick and Abe being gay conversation. “You’re sweet, really, really, sweet. But I don’t care what anyone thinks but us. We’re going to leave the clan and start a new life and there’s no way that I’m going to pretend that I’m not your wife, or madly, madly in love with all of you. But, um …” she said when the men didn’t look convinced, “If you’re uncomfortable with it then that’s different.”

“Jess.” Riley said sliding between her legs and kissing her, “The only thing we’re uncomfortable with is the possibility of you being hurt. Physically, or emotionally. We won’t let anyone treat you like the clan treats homosexuals.”

“Nothing can hurt me if I have you.” Jessica said bringing her hands to Riley’s face and kissing him again. And then kissing the other men as they leaned in to her. “But we could experiment. We’re never going to see these people again. We could just tell the truth and see what happens.”

“It’s our honeymoon Jess,” Josh said, “Why don’t we experiment another time? Let’s not take the risk of anything ruining this week.”

“Okay.” Jessica said and suddenly she remembered the previous night and how serious everyone had looked. “Is this what you were talking about last night? About keeping our relationships a secret?”

Josh nodded. “We did talk about the story for the boys too but we had to plan how we’d be in public. Not just us but Justine, Chris and Mark, and Amanda, Caleb, Don and Quinn. We don’t want to do anything to fuck things up, especially not on our honeymoon.”

Jessica nodded, “Okay. We can be one on one in public but only because it’s a special occasion.”

“Okay Jess.” Josh said smiling and bringing Jessica’s hand to his lips.

“So,” Scott added, also smiling, “We thought, that in honor of our honeymoon we’d each take a night and do something special with you after dinner. Are you okay with that?”

“More than okay.” Jessica said kissing him and smiling at the other men, “That sounds like fun!”

“We kind of planned some things to do but if you have anything you wanted to do we can change the plans.” Riley said pulling Jessica into his arms.

“Anything is great. As long as I’m with you.”

“And we drew names to see the order for the nights. Jim has tonight. But I think we kind of cut into his time.” Josh said. “If you want Jim, I can switch with you.”

“It’s okay. Jess and I will have plenty of time. Especially since she doesn’t sleep.” Jim said and then laughed when Jessica stuck her tongue out at him.

“So it’s Jim, Josh, Angus, me, and Scott.” Riley said.

“And Jess. We weren’t really sure what you’d want to do. We could be one on one for the whole night, or just until we get back to the hotel. Whatever you want we can do, we have enough rooms for it.” Angus said.

“I’d like to be all together at night if you don’t mind.” Jessica said, “It’s been so long since we haven’t been that I think I’d miss the rest of you.”

“Okay, if that’s what you want.” Angus said but he looked happy and relieved.

“It’s definitely what I want.” Jessica said bringing his hand to her lips. Angus traced them with his thumb.

“So it’s easy then.” Josh said, “Tonight you act like Jim is your husband and we’ll rotate through the week. People will probably find it odd anyway …”

“It’s okay.” Jessica said. “If that’s what you want to do then I’m good with that. But when it’s not our honeymoon, I don’t want to hide our relationship. Okay?”

“More than okay.” Josh said and kissed her.

Jim glanced at the hotel door, “I guess we’d better get ready for dinner.” But he looked like he wanted to do anything but that. He kept eyeing her tits. The other men were getting aroused again also.

“How much time do we have to clean up. Maybe there’s time for one more quicky?" Jessica asked.

“We changed or reservations so we still have an hour and a half, so we have time. But the girls are waiting so I suggest we combine cleaning and the quicky.” Scott said.

“Let’s get going with the shower sex before the girls come knocking again.” Riley said.

“Let’s go then.” Jessica said standing.

Angus threw Jessica over his shoulder and headed to the bathroom, “Dibs on her pussy.” He said, “And the last one in the shower gets his rocks off last!”

That resulted in a stampede for the bathroom with some good natured pushing and shoving.

In half an hour they’d cum three more times.

They were standing at the bed, Josh with his arms wrapped around Jessica, Scott going through Jessica’s suitcase looking for what he called ‘Granny panties’. But unable to find any he settled for some underwear that actually covered Jessica’s butt crack, and they all got dressed again.

“You really wanted me to wear grandmother underwear?” Jessica asked while fixing Scott’s bow tie.

“It would’ve made it easier to keep our hands off of you at dinner.” Scott said while enjoying a good fondling of her butt.

“Oh that’s nice.” Jessica said looking around at the men, “You guys in these tuxes … it should be illegal, and then you get me all excited with all your rubbing …” she added, placing her hands over Scott’s whose were still very actively fondling her bottom. “How am I supposed to keep my hands off of you?”

“Well Jess,” Jim said taking her hand, “It’s a little thing I like to call ‘will power’.”

“What?” Jessica demanded pulling her hand out of his while he and the other men laughed. “Maybe I should put the garter belt back on and we’ll see who has will power then …” Jessica said pretending to move to her suitcase but breaking into laughter when Josh grabbed her hand and pulled her into his arms.

“That goes beyond will power Jess.” Josh said, “But I agree that rubbing your ass isn’t exactly playing fair. Cut it out.” He said to Scott. “And I don’t know what we were thinking when we bought all that lingerie for you.”

“It’s not what we were thinking …” Jim said, “but what we were thinking with. Trust me, it wasn’t the head with the brain.”

“Well before we start thinking with the wrong head again,” Scott said to Jessica, “let’s go get your hair and make-up done so we can eat. I think we’re all past hungry and moving on to starving.” Scott said. “I hope the boys have lasted this long.” He added, “Earlier they were looking like they were going to eat the furniture.”

“I hope they had some snacks.” Jessica said looking worried as Angus guided her to the door.

“There’s room service, I’m sure someone got them something.” Riley said. Closing the door behind them once they were in the hallway.

“You’re beautiful!” Sara exclaimed running to Jessica when she walked in the door of the second room.

“So are you. And gentlemen, you are so …” Jessica said looking around at the other men in their tuxedos, pausing as she tried to find the best word to describe them.

“Hot?” Sean asked. “If we look nearly as good as you ladies, that would be the word to use.”

“Yeah, I’d say ‘hot’ covers it.” Jessica said with a giggle. “And these dresses are gorgeous.” Jessica said, “You ladies are talented.”

“Thank you. Let’s touch up your hair and make-up and then we can go make France drool.” Justine said.

“You want some wine Jess?” Jim asked. The men were beer but there was wine open for the girls.

“Red please.” Jessica said and sat in front of the mirror as directed by Amanda.

“These rooms are awesome.” Sean said as he poured a glass of red and took it over to Jessica, “Did you see the Jacuzzis? Yeah, look who I’m asking …” he added when Jessica and her men exchanged looks and Jessica became a light shade of pink.

The men chatted while the girls worked and fifteen minutes later Justine said, “Tada ….” Sweeping her hand toward Jessica when she stood up from the chair. The girls had pinned up her hair, leaving some ringlets to hang around her face. And they’d applied her make-up so subtly that her eyes and lips stood out but it wasn’t’ obvious she had make-up on. Jessica blushed when all of the men erupted with whistles.

“Wow Jess, you look so … grownup.” Riley said moving to her, looking at her like he’d never seen her before.

“We prefer the term, sophisticated.” Leah said. “Okay, we should go.” She added looking at Jessica, “the boys have been asking for you all evening.”

“Bring the wine with you.” Jim said when Jessica still had half the glass to drink, “you can finish it downstairs.”

They took two elevators down one floor and found the boys having a blast running up and down the hallway, in little miniature tuxedos.

“You’re so handsome!” Jessica squealed, clasping her face in surprise. The boys surrounded her. Each one had left their tie to be done by her. The other adults watched the boys natter at Jessica while she fixed their bow ties, reacting with pleasant surprise by some of the things they told her about the kids club and France.

“Leo likes a girl.” Nathan stated earning him an elbow jab from Leo.

“Well, that’s normal for a smart, handsome, healthy boy of his age.” Jessica said, smiling at Leo and taking his hand. Leo turned bright red. “And it won’t be long before you like a girl to.” Jessica added, touching the tip of Nathan’s nose with her finger.

“Ew!” Nathan and Brett said at the same time, “We’re never going to like girls. Except,” Nathan added after a pause, “For you, Leah, Justine, Sara and Amanda. But you don’t really count as girls.”

“Trust me, one day you will like a girl, probably many girls and they will like you. But Nathan did you tell me about Leo to help him?” Jessica asked.

“Help him?” Nathan asked screwing his face up in very evident confusion.

“Yes. Was Leo in trouble or likely to get hurt if you didn’t tell me about this?”

“No.” Nathan .

“Okay well, I always want you to feel free to come and tell me … us,” Jessica said indicating the other adults who were all listening, “anything. No matter what it is, we want to know about it so long as it’s about you. If Leo wanted us to know about the girl he likes, he would have told us. The only time that you should be telling us something about someone else is if someone could get hurt if you don’t. That’s the difference between tattling and telling. Do you understand what I’m saying?”

Nathan nodded. “I’m sorry.”

“Sweetie, you don’t have to apologize to me, but I bet your brother wouldn’t argue if he got an apology.”

“Sorry Leo.” Nathan said.

“It’s okay … this time. But don’t do it again.” Leo said.

“On another note.” Jessica said looking the boys over, “we would like to meet your friends when you make them. Maybe tomorrow when we drop you off at the club?” Jessica asked.

The boys nodded and to the surprise of everyone but Jessica it seemed, they were very excited about the prospect.

“Who’s ready to eat?” Leah asked.

If noise level alone was any indication the boys had the adults beat in the starvation department.

The restaurant was a block over so they walked.

When they got to the door Jessica looked up in surprise when Riley and Angus gently disentangled their hands from hers. Riley gave her a sad smile and tilted his head toward Jim who was holding his hand out to her.

“Oh, right.” Jessica said taking his hand. Not knowing what to do with her empty other hand she clasped his in both of hers as they went in to the restaurant.

“You think they ‘ll know what to do with all of us?” Jim whispered in her ear as the boys clamored into the restaurant ahead of them.

“You made a reservation, right?” Jessica asked.

Jim nodded, “Do you think it’s going to help?”

“Looks like we have a section to ourselves.” Jessica said as the waiter led them to a section of the restaurant where a group of tables sat empty. “They may survive us after all. But, um, maybe we should have talked to the boys about appropriate behavior for a fancy restaurant.”

“Leah did. They promised they’d be good.” Jim said. “Maybe they need a reminder.”

“Let’s give it a few minutes. This is all new for them so they’re probably excited.”

“Okay, you tell me when you think it’s time to step in.”

“Alright, and thanks.” Jessica said when Jim pulled the chair out for her. He sat in the chair to the right of her.

“It’s a good thing we made a kids table.” Leah said sitting across from Jessica, Corey beside her, Chris on the other side of her. “Or the boys would be all over you.”

“They’re so cute.” Jessica said, “We should take some pictures.”

“Got it.” Scott said getting up with his cell phone and turning the camera on. He walked around and took pictures of all of them.

Riley sat on Jessica’s other side and throughout the meal he’d gently remove his hand from hers, or slide her hand off his arm when Jessica forgot and inadvertently touched him. Jessica tolerated this even though she really didn’t like it or see the point in it, but when she kissed Riley without thinking, and he got up and went to sit with the boys, Jessica had had enough. As usual, she wasn’t very hungry. But the added stress of having to remember to not be affectionate with everyone but Jim made all desire to eat disappear.

As they waited for dessert to be served and Jim was busy talking to Caleb who sat next to him, Sara slipped into the empty chair where Riley had sat. Josh, Scott, and Angus had joined Riley at the kid table. Sean, Corey and Mark were standing and talking with Rick and Abe so Justine and Amanda shifted into their chairs.

Sara leaned close to Jessica. “Every woman in this place is drooling over the men.”

“Well, who can blame them?” Jessica asked.

“Isn’t there some etiquette about ogling other women’s men?” Justine demanded.

“Sure, when people know that the men belong to someone else.” Amanda said in a bitter voice, “But since we’re not allowed to show anyone that we’re with more than one man, it’s hard for other women to know they’re off limits.”

“Yeah. This sucks.” Jessica agreed.

“Well, at least your men have surrounded themselves with children.” Justine said, “That should repel at least some women.”

“I think they’re hiding from me.” Jessica said, unable to keep the sadness from her voice.

“Hiding from you?” Leah asked.

Jessica nodded, “I can’t get used to not being with them. I’m supposed to be with Jim tonight but I kissed Riley. I think he may be mad at me.”

“Sweetie, he’s not mad.” Leah said, “He’s doing his best to protect you. Your men are convinced that you’ll be black balled if it’s known that you’re married to five men.”

“But I told them that I don’t care. Society can black ball me all they want, I don’t want to pretend that we’re not together.”

“I know you think that Jess, but you’ve never been black balled before.” Justine said. “Look at Beth and what happened to her. She was a stranger in her own home. I don’t think she will ever get over that.”

“I hadn’t thought of that.” Jessica said.

“I think the men are right about this.” Justine said.

“Maybe when we leave the clan we shouldn’t get too close to society.” Jessica said. “I’m happy with the way things are now. If we could be ourselves that would be different but since we can’t I don’t want or need society.”

“We could have the best of both worlds. Exist in society to get what we need and then just live our lives the way we want. I think that’s a great idea.” Leah said.

“What’s a great idea?” Jim asked.

“Paying our bill so we can get out of here.” Leah said glaring at some women at a nearby table. “Before we have to get nasty.”

“They’re ogling you guys.” Jessica said to Jim when he stared at Leah in surprise.

“Now you know how we feel.” Jim said.

“What?” Jessica demanded.

“Every one of you ladies is most definitely here with a man. And yet every man here has been watching you … intently.”

“Ahuh.”Jessica said.

“You don’t believe me!” Jim said in disbelief.

Jessica cuddled up to him. “Can we go on our date now?” she asked, batting her eyelashes at him.

“But you didn’t eat.”

“She ate some. It’s really filling … French food is filling.” Leah said when Jessica looked at her plate as if she realized for the first time that she had food in front of her.

“Is that why the servings are non-existent?” Jim asked.

“Eat mine.” Jessica said pushing her plate toward him, “I really can’t eat another bite. Please Jim, I don’t want you to be hungry.” She added when he cocked an eyebrow at her.

“Fine.” Jim said taking her food, “But tomorrow I’m going to sick Abe and Sean on you.”

“We’re sicking ourselves on her.” Abe said. Jessica looked up to find Abe and Sean looking at her plate and looking less than impressed.

“From now on you eat with us.” Sean said pointing two of his fingers at his eyes and then at her over and over. Jessica laughed despite herself.

“Alright, I’ll go pay the bill.” Jim said shoveling the last bite into his mouth.

“All taken care of.” Quinn said.

“Thanks. Let’s go then.” Jim said taking Jessica’s hand.

Jessica couldn’t help but notice that Riley, Scott, Josh and Angus stayed with the boys and left ahead of her and Jim.

“What’s wrong Jess?” Jim asked when Jessica looked sad. Following her gaze he said, “You have no idea how badly they want to protect you. Distancing themselves from you is the only thing that will work.”

“So tomorrow you’ll ignore me too?”

“Jess, if it bothers you that much we’ll have to come up with some other plan. We want you to have a good time. The last thing we ever wanted to do was upset you.”

“No, it’s okay Jim, honest.” Jessica said feeling like a heel. Jim looked so upset and she saw her men watching her. They’d be upset too. She mentally kicked herself for being so selfish. “I’ll just say goodnight to the boys, before we go, okay?”

“We have to go upstairs to change.” Jim said, “We’re way too dressed up for what I have planned. But I think Rick and Abe are taking the boys out so you should say good bye to them here anyway.”

“I was so proud of you tonight boys.” Jessica said when the group stopped in front of the hotel, “You were so well behaved.”

“Uncle Abe and Rick are taking us to the arcade.” Brett said.

“We’re on babysitting duty.” Rick explained.

“That’s nice of you.” Jessica said kissing both on the cheek. “It’s greatly appreciated.”

“No prob. You have fun tonight.” Abe said.

Jessica kissed all the boys good night.

They watched Rick, Abe, and the boys go. Then Justine, Chris and Mark went in one direction, Amanda, Quinn, Don and Caleb, in another, Corey and Leah in yet another direction and Sara and Sean another. Soon they were the only ones left.

“Have fun Jess.” Angus said caressing her cheek, “We’ll be waiting for you, and we’ll make up for lost time. Promise.”

“Maybe we’ll eat in for the rest of the week.” Riley said in her ear, his lips lingering on her cheek, moving to her ear, her neck . He’d meant to peck her on the cheek but he couldn’t let her go.

“I think we should.” Jessica said.

“Then we will.” Riley forced himself to straighten, brushed her forehead with his lips and let Scott take his place.

“It kind of sucked tonight, not being together in the restaurant. Didn’t it?” Scott asked.

“Yeah, kind of.” Jessica agreed.

“Well, we’ll think of something to make up for that, okay?” Scott said. “Something really good.”

“I can hardly wait.” Jessica said and giggled when Scott wiggled his eyebrows at her.

“Have a good time.” Josh said. “I want to work on the next comic book. Do you think you’d pose for me later? In the ah, garter belt?”

“Of course. Am I still going to be digitally challenged?” Jessica asked.

“We’ll see.” Josh said kissing her fully on the lips. “Shit, sorry, I forgot.” He added looking around.

“That’s okay. Forget some more, I don’t mind.” Jessica said.

“We’re going up to change before we go.” Jim said, “Are you guys coming up?|

“Yeah.” Angus said, “But maybe we’ll go to a separate room from you. I’m not sure she’ll make it out again if we don’t.”

Jessica took Jim’s hand, and she took Riley’s hand as they headed into the hotel.

“Jess …” Riley said already trying to pry her hand free.

“Riley, are you doing this because you are uncomfortable with our relationship in public, or because you think you’re protecting me?” Jessica asked stopping and staring up at him, refusing to let him pry his hand free. Granted he didn’t try very hard.

“Jess …” he said again, shaking his head.

“Because I know it’s not nice being black balled. Justine was right, Beth had a hard time … sorry.” Jessica added when Angus blanched. She let go of Jim’s hand and slid into Angus’ arms, “But I don't care. I really don’t. I love you all and I don’t care who knows or what they think about it.”

“Okay, okay.” Scott said smiling like the happiest man in the world. “We won’t pretend. But given that this is our honeymoon why don’t we at least try to be subtle about it?”

“And after this, who the hell cares. If you really don’t care then neither do we.” Josh said.

“Perfect.” Jessica said incredibly relieved. Keeping her arm around Angus she took Jim’s hand. “Let’s go change.”

Upstairs Jim and Jessica changed in their main room while the men hung out in the next room.

“Wear something comfortable. Jeans and runners are about right.” Jim said.

Jessica changed into jeans, t-shirt and sweatshirt, and put her hair into a ponytail.

They went next door to say goodbye to the other men.

“We won’t stay out too late.” Jim said.

“Take your time.” Riley said, “She who never sleeps won’t be in a rush to go to bed later anyway.” He said, chuckling when Jessica pretended to glare at him. “Whenever you get back will be early enough to get everything out of our system. And I do mean everything.”

Jessica shivered with anticipation as she kissed each of them goodbye .

“This way.” Jim said out on the street again. “You’re really happy about not pretending anymore aren’t you?” Jim asked when she skipped along beside him.

“Yes, yes, yes!” Jessica said and threw herself against him as they walked. “You look pretty happy too.” Jessica observed.

“Better believe it.” Jim said pulling her in for a kiss. “I love things the way they are. I don’t want a thing to change … except the part about getting out of the clan.”

“I love you.” Jessica said kissing Jim and sighing with pleasure when Jim stopped and pulled her in for a real kiss. The kiss was long and deep and they were both breathless when they finally came up for air. Clinging to one another, their lips brushing, Jessica slid her hand under Jim’s shirt and laid it flat over his heart.

“I love you too.” Jim said, “So much. I know it was an awful day for you, but the day you came into my life was my best day ever. I wish we’d met under different conditions, and I wish more than anything I could give you your family back … but despite all of that you’re the best thing that could’ve happened to me.”

“I can’t imagine a life without you Jim. Like you said, there were a lot of bad things about that day … many things I wish could change, but meeting you isn’t one of them. I can’t wait to grow old with you.”

“Till death do us part Jess. We have some time before we get old but if we stand here much longer we may get too old for what I have planned.” Jim said unable to resist kissing her again.

“Did you plan a lot more of this?” Jessica asked trying to catch her breath when their lips finally parted. “I hope …”

Jim chuckled, “But of course. Tonight has three parts to it. We’re starting with the romantic part. Come on.”

He took Jessica’s hand and led her to a very tall building with a huge saucer like portion on top.

“This isn’t a structure that actually exists in France.” Jim said once a waiter had shown them to a private enclave with a love seat, an ornate little table filled with food, and a huge window through which they could see the Eiffle tower, the Seine, everything. “They built it especially for the resort. This whole floor turns, so we’ll get to see all of France in the next hour, from above.”

“It’s so beautiful!” Jessica said going to the window, towing Jim with her by her hand.

“And when we’re ready we just press that button …” Jim said pointing to a button on the wall, “and we’ll get a guided tour of France . They provide information about all the features we see. It takes over an hour since they have all of France crammed into the resort but don’t have to stay for the whole thing if you don’t want to.”

“I do.” Jessica said sliding into Jim’s arms, “We’re not in a hurry, right? Unless we have to be somewhere for a particular time for the next part of the night …”

“No, we can get to all following parts at whatever time we want.” Jim said and pulled Jessica in for a kiss. “Should we sit?” Jim added when the kiss ended, indicating the sofa with his head.

Jim guided Jessica to the sofa and pulled her onto his lap.

“And we have food and wine for the evening too. And before you make the face that you always make when food is involved, you don’t have to eat all of it. But enough to make up for the fact that you didn’t eat at dinner. I didn’t make a big deal about it then because I knew you’d have food later but you have to eat tonight. Okay?”

“Okay.” Jessica. “Can we push the button now?”

“Go for it.”

Jessica pressed the button, raced back to the sofa, slipped off her shoes, tucked her feet under her, and snuggled under Jim’s arm.

For the next hour they listened to the history of France and its historic icons.

Jim tried to keep feeding a slow but steady stream of food to Jessica as they listened but Jessica was mesmerized by the information and view. Jim wondered how much of that was the reason that she was chewing so slowly and how much was the fact that she clearly didn’t want to eat but he couldn’t bring himself to push her. Just watching her, the way she looked when she was so thoroughly involved with something, was mesmerizing for him. But despite the slow progress, Jim was surprised to find that he’d fed her quite a lot of food.

When the recorded tour ended Jessica turned to Jim and found him still watching her.

“That was great. So much information. It kind of makes you want to go to France for real, doesn’t it? Are you okay?” Jessica asked when Jim just stared at her.

“I love you.” Jim said playing with her hair. “And I’ve been holding this same grape for the past twenty minutes.”

“Oh, sorry.” Jessica said opening her mouth. Jim fed her the grape and watched her take small, slow tentative chews.

Jim shook his head. “I think they taste good.” He said popping a grape in his mouth. “But the most interesting thing …” he said holding a finger to Jessica’s lips when she was about to say something, “is that even though you ate slow, you ate a lot. I managed to get more into you tonight then we have all week. I bet if we distracted you somehow and just kept feeding you food, you’d eat what you’re supposed to. I wonder what Abe and Sean would do with that idea.”

By the expression on her face, Jessica knew exactly what they’d do. “And I guess you should tell them …” she said not looking at all happy about it.

Jim did his lopsided grin and stroked her cheek. “In your rules of telling or tattling,” he began his eyes sparkling with amusement, “this case would fall under the telling category.”

But when Jessica said, “I’m not in danger.” Jim’s face transformed from amused to concerned.

“That is arguable. You were skinny to begin with Jess, now you’re moving to skeletal. We can see the bones in your chest. You look like you’re going to disappear.”

“I won’t disappear.” Jessica said getting on her knees and pushing Jim back she leaned against him, looking down at his face, caressing it. “I’m still strong.”

“Oh, I know.” Jim said in a tone so guttural it left little doubt how he knew. A charge rippled through them both . Jessica pressed against him, lowering her lips to his. Hungry, urgent kisses escalated to demanding, X rated kisses involving tongues and tonsils. If it weren’t for the waiter walking in, muttering ‘Excuse me’ and stumbling out, they would have been naked in the next few seconds.

“Shit.” Jim hissed as they clung to one another, panting. “We’d better get out of here. Sex comes later, right?” he asked. Jessica wanted the sex now as it was clear Jim did, but through the haze of lust Jessica realized that they’d both regret not completing their evening first.

“Right.” She agreed but couldn’t bring herself to do what she knew would make it easier for both her and Jim to calm down. Rather than move away from him, give him space, Jessica pressed even harder against him. “Isn’t it weird that it took so long for us to have sex? We didn’t need it then but now I just can’t stop wanting it.”

Jim nodded, his eyes glued to hers. “When we have sex we’re as physically close as we could possibly be. I love that. We always had the emotional closeness but sex just makes it tangible. And, ah, we can go back to the hotel you know.”

“I know. And I really want to, but I also really want us to finish our night out. I think we may regret it if we don’t. Not immediately …” she said with a giggle when Jim looked at her like she was crazy, “but eventually. We don’t often come to places like this.”

“You’re right … you’re right.” Jim said obviously trying to convince himself.

“And it would probably help if I got off of you, but I can’t seem to.” Jessica said pressing even harder against him.

Jim nodded his head, took Jessica by the arms and gently but firmly pushed her off of him. Once Jessica was on her feet she seemed able to think more clearly and she took a couple of big steps back.

“I need to go to the bathroom … take the edge off.” Jim said standing and looking like he was torn between grabbing her or running out the door. “Do you want to go first?” he asked looking her up and down, his face twisted with discomfort. He looked like he was sucking on a lemon. Jessica wondered if she looked the same.

Jessica shook her head. “A public washroom won’t work for me. I’ll have to go with mind over matter.”

“Oh, right.” Jim said, and the realization made his face twist even more. He turned for the door.

“Do you want me to pay while you’re gone?” Jessica asked.

“No. That wouldn’t be very romantic, would it? Sticking you with the bill while I go jerk off?” Jim said but then he paused. “I guess having to jerk off kind of kills the romance.”

“Actually, I think it makes the romance.” Jessica said.

“I’ll be right back then.” Jim said, “And I’ll pay. You just use your mind and unhornify yourself, okay? Otherwise I’m going to spend the whole night in washrooms.”

Jessica giggled. “I’ll work on it.”

When Jim left Jessica went to the window and looked out. She focused on remembering the historical details they’d learned about the landmarks that she was looking at.

When he came back ten minutes later he looked as relieved as she managed to make herself. Unfortunately one look at one another and the desire was back.

“I’ve paid. We should go.” Jim said holding his hand out to her.

“Um, you know …” Jessica said eyeing the door and then his crotch, “I could give you a hand or blow job. That would make things easier for you for the rest of the night.”

Jim shook his head, “That’s not what I need, and what I do need requires us going back the hotel. I’ll be okay. Let’s go.”

Jessica took his hand and once they were out on the street Jim was under control.

“The next part of our night involves flirting with danger … I knew you’d like that!” he exclaimed when Jessica squealed and clapped her hands. “Given your love of amusement park rides and high speeds I thought we’d go bungee jumping …” Jim laughed when Jessica grabbed his arm, clearly excited.

“Really? You’re not kidding right?” she demanded.

“Not kidding.” He said towing her along with him. “And this is actually kind of romantic too. We can jump together and at the bottom of the drop they have diamonds. We can grab whatever we can. I guess most people are too freaked out to remember to grab anything … they call it the Honeymoon Drop.”

“That is so sweet.” Jessica said, “Let’s go do it!”

Fifteen minutes later they were signing the waivers. “I don’t think either one of us is likely to have a heart attack …” Jim said signing his form. Jessica agreed and signed hers. Pretty soon they were standing on the top of the tower, side by side, holding hands and attached to the bungee cords.

“Remember to grab a diamond at the bottom.” Jessica said. Jim nodded.

The attendant on the tower with them began to count them down to the jump. On three they fell forward together. So awed by the feeling they didn’t make a noise as they plummeted.

“Diamond!” Jessica yelled when they hit the end of the cord. They extended the hands they were holding one another with and grabbed just as they were jerked away from the ground.

“Oh wow!” Jessica kept repeating the whole time it took the ride attendees to get her and Jim undone from the cord and on their feet. “That was so … so … oh my God I’ve never felt anything like it!”

“I know … it was just … unreal.” Jim agreed.

“And we picked up the same diamond.” Jessica said raising the rock so they could look at it while they walked. They’d both reached blindly but ended up grabbing the same stone.

“What’s wrong?” Jim asked when Jessica stopped suddenly.

“It’s true love!” she said looking at him with enormous eyes, “Look, it’s shaped like a heart.”

Jim took the rock and looked at it. “Kind of I guess.” He said. It was oddly shaped but if someone tried hard enough they could make out a heart shape.

Jessica smiled at him. “Do you mind if I keep it with me?”

Jim shook his head. “I’d probably lose it.”

Jessica slid under Jim’s arm, wrapping her arm around his waist and studied the diamond as they walked.

“Should we buy the video?” Jim asked as they neared the admission desk.

“Of course.” Jessica said. As seemed to be the trend with most rides, the Honeymoon Drop recorded the ride so people could see themselves freak out.

“I can put it in my purse.” Jessica said taking the dvd from Jim. “And I’ll keep our diamond in my pocket.” She added sliding it in. “So what’s next?”

“Well now we go for flat out fun.” Jim said. “When we went out to Lilly and Stephen’s bar before we barely spent time together … not as husband and wife anyway. I’ve heard about this great underground dance club and the amount of dancing you’ve been doing lately I thought you’d enjoy that. Do you feel up to boogying your sexy butt off?”

“Oh my God Jim, yes!” Jessica looked so excited Jim had to laugh.

“Let’s do it then.”

Half an hour later they were mashing around on the dance floor with at least one hundred other people.

They danced for hours.

“This place is open until five in the morning.” Jim finally shouted into Jessica’s ear, the music so loud that even with him shouting Jessica barely heard him. “But the guys are waiting for us. We should at least call if we’re not going back until morning.”

Rather than attempt to yell Jessica pointed at her wrist.

Jim held up two fingers.

Jessica took his hand and pointed at the exit.

“I don’t think it would be right to stay out all night.” Jessica said once they were outside.

“I agree. I’ll call and let them know we’re on our way.” Jim said.

They meandered back finally reaching their hotel room door by two thirty.

“Oh.” Jessica gasped when they walked in the room. The lights were dimmed, candles lit everywhere and the men were spread throughout the room, still in their tuxes, standing stalk still. Desire shot through her so hard that she actually staggered, Jim holding her up by her arms.

“Alright babe?” He asked smiling at the desire so evident on her face.

Jessica nodded and then looked at the other men.

“Should … should I change back into my dress? I’m underdressed compared to you …”

“No point.” Angus grumbled and he strained toward her, working very hard to refrain from charging her.

“Overdressed … you are … overdressed.” Scott added.

“But not for long.” Riley added in a low growl.

“Not yet!” Josh said when Jessica began to undo her shirt. “Just sit on the sofa and wait for a minute … Jim.” He said motioning to the bedroom with his head.

Jim guided Jessica to the sofa, whispered, “Back in a minute.” In her ear, kissed her on the top of her head and followed Josh to the bedroom.

The room was silent except for the sound of panting. Jessica looked around at the men, barely able to catch her breath. Riley, Angus and Scott didn’t move, just stood staring at her, straining toward her. Unable to take the sexual tension any more Jessica stood up.

“Sit down Jessica.” Riley said and his voice sounded strained.

“I can’t.” Jessica said in a breathless voice, “I think I’m going to explode.”

“Oh God.” Scott muttered.

“Jess please …” Angus groaned.

“Yes … please … please let me come to you.” Jessica said and started toward Angus. Unfortunately they were too spread out to go to as a group and after a few steps toward Angus she turned and took a couple toward Riley, and then Scott.

“Stop Jess.” Josh said when he and Jim returned from the bedroom. Jim was back in his tux. Jessica wanted them. With a groan she doubled over, it was just too much anticipation growing between her legs.

“Just hang on.” Jim said and moved to the TV stand. “We’re going to come to you, okay, just wait.” He went to the stereo and flipped a switch and suddenly music filled the room. Erotic music. There was a low thumping background that seemed to match the pounding of the blood pulsing through her. And then the men began to dance. Slow, sexual moves. Undoing their bow ties, shirts, pants. They moved toward her and the expression on their faces left little doubt that when they got to her there’d be no restraint. Jessica’s knees felt weak. They wanted to buckle, but Jessica fought against it. The men were coming. At a painfully slow and arousing pace, but they were coming.

Jessica watched as they swayed, thrust their pelvises, butts at her. When they finally reached her Jessica reached for Riley’s chest, Scott’s stomach.

“Keep your hands to yourself.” Riley ordered.

“No, please, not this time. Please.” Jessica said her biggest desire to touch them, feel them, pleasure them.

“She’s been waiting for a long time.” Jim said, “A really long time. She needs a break.”

“Fuck it … this time.” Riley said tilting Jessica’s face up by the chin and pinning her with his eyes. “Just this once okay Jess? Do what you want.” He added when Jessica had nodded and that was the last coherent thought he had for the next half hour.

“Take my clothes off … now!” Jessica begged. Before she could blink she was naked.

Jessica launched herself at Riley, wrapping her legs around him, kissing him. She was so ready that the moment her pussy pressed against Riley’s waist, she came.

Then she put a hand on Angus and Scott’s chests, kissed each of them, kissed Josh and Jim, guided Josh and Jim onto their knees and slid onto them. Josh in her pussy, Jim, her asshole. She thrust up and down on them as she pulled Angus’ cock into her mouth and took Riley and Scott’s cocks in each hand.

And she repeated the same until each one had had a turn in her mouth, her pussy, her asshole and her hand. The frenzy ended with them lying in a tangled heap on the floor.

“Holy shit!” Josh exclaimed pulling her against him. “You are an animal.”

“That’s what happens when you wear those tuxedos … and when you look at me like you do. I can’t help myself …”

Angus chuckled. While Josh lay behind her, Angus lay in front of her, face to face but his legs extending above her head. Josh lay at her tits, Riley at her stomach, Scott at her crotch.

Angus kissed her forehead, her nose, her lips, upside down. “I love your sexual appetite Jess. You look so innocent but you’re actually so …”

“Depraved?” Scott asked with a laugh.

“I was going to say horny. But depraved will do … in a good way of course.” Angus said.

“You can call it whatever you want.” Jessica said sighing with satisfaction, “But I want to feel, hear, and taste you when you come forever.”

“Deal.” Riley said.

Suddenly there was a rapid knocking at the door.

“Jess! Jess!” Leah's voice shouted from the other side of the door, “Open up!”

“We know you’re up!” Sara said, “You have to be, you always are! Open up!”

“Shit …” Riley muttered.

“Let’s get cleaned up.” Jim said to Jessica and helped her to her feet after he got to his.

“What about you guys?” Jessica asked looking at the other men.

“They show up at three in the morning they deserve to see this.” Angus grumbled getting up and heading for the door.

“You can’t answer the door like that!” Jessica exclaimed, clearly horrified.

“Okay, okay.” Angus muttered to her and then raising his voice said, “Hold your fucking horses!” as he went to the closet and grabbed a housecoat.

Jim and Jessica disappeared into the bathroom.

Once the other men had housecoats on Angus opened the door.

“Where’s Jess?” Justine asked when she, Leah, Sara, Amanda, Sean, Corey, Chris, Caleb, Don, Quinn, Mark, Rick and Abe came in.

“Getting cleaned up.” Scott said, “She’ll be out in a minute.”

“Sorry about this.” Sean said and he looked embarrassed, “We couldn’t convince them to wait till morning.” He added nodding his head at the girls.

“They’re a bit excited…” Chris said and his comment was underscored when Jessica came out of the bedroom. A chorus of squeals broke out. They were so loud that Riley, Sean, Caleb and Rick had to cover their ears while the other men winced.

Jim laughed and shook his head as he followed Jessica out of the bedroom. The girls surrounded Jessica holding their hands up in front of them, rings glistening on their fingers.

“I was so surprised!” Leah said.

“We all were!” Justine said.

“Caleb said that you helped with the rings and proposals.” Amanda said, “Thank you.”

“The rings I had some involvement in,’ Jessica said, “but the proposals were completely them. They told you how they felt, one hundred percent from the heart.”

“How about some champagne.” Jim said holding a couple of bottles of champagne up from behind the room’s mini bar, “In honour of the great news.”

The girls clapped their hands in anticipation and began recounting their individual proposal experiences.

“You look half dead.” Riley said to Rick and Abe.

“We were asleep.” Rick said.

“Blissfully.” Abe added.

“When the hurricane of happiness came blowing through.” Rick continued, nodding at the girls. “We were too awake to not come along. And that champagne’ll go down nice.”

The girls moved to the sofa.

“I was surprised to begin with … just being here.” Leah said, “Which I hear was your idea too … this trip.” She said looking at Jessica, “And then there we were on the Eiffel tower and suddenly Corey was on his knees. I never expected it.”

“And you said ‘yes’ of course.” Jessica said.

“Of course!” Leah said smiling at Corey who stood with the men gulping champagne.

“And Sean took me on the Seine in one of the gondolas. Next thing I know he’s on his knee … it was so romantic!” Sara said.

“We had to be more careful because we were in public.” Amanda said, “So we had a private box at the theatre. Caleb, Quinn and Don got on their knees too. I couldn’t believe it … I thought I was dreaming!”

“And we were at the Fontainebleau Castle.” Justine said. “In a private room for dessert. When Chris and Mark proposed … I was speechless. I so didn’t expect it.”

“Well, here’s a toast.” Jim said raising his glass after all the glasses were distributed, “To the happy couples, triples and quartets. We wish you all the happiness in the world.”

The girls gushed, the men shook hands, Jessica hugged and kissed the girls and their men. She was so excited for them that her men had to chuckle to themselves.

“Was she drinking tonight?” Riley asked Jim.

“Some wine but not much. And it was early in the night. She seems a little delirious, doesn’t she?” Jim said, tilting his head while he watched her bounce up and down where she sat on the sofa.

“Lack of sleep maybe?” Scott asked.

“Throw in a lack of food and that could make a person delirious.” Sean said. “I’ve counted on it a few times.”

“Maybe we should go.” Chris said, “They’re all getting out of hand.”

“Oh sure, wind Jess up and disappear. You realize she’ll be bouncing around like a ping pong for hours now.” Riley said.

“I don’t think that’ll be much of a problem Riley.” Angus said, “If you can’t think of a way to keep her busy I sure as hell can.”

“Ditto.” Josh said.

“Unless you can answer all of her questions without Leah, Justine, Sara and Amanda here I think you’ll be greatly disappointed in your success at distracting her.” Jim said. “Listen to her … the girls are practically re-enacting every moment of the proposals.”

“You have a point.” Angus grumbled when Jessica asked Amanda who asked her first out of Caleb, Don and Quinn, and then asked the same question of Justine and then wanted detail from all of them about the step by step actions their men made when proposing.

“If I’d known Justine was going to memorize every movement, word or look I’d made I would have had stage fright.” Mark said.

“Fuck me.” Sean groaned when Sara went into great detail about how nervous he’d been. “I need something stronger to drink than champagne.”

“We have rum or whisky.” Angus said, “Take your pick.”

“Whiskey, lots of it.” Don grumbled.

“On the upside I’ve figured out how to feed Jessica more.” Jim said chugging his champagne and reaching for a shot glass to fill with whiskey.

“Really?” Abe asked.

“Can we go to another room to hear about it?” Sean asked, “I can’t take this noise.” He said nodding at the girls.

“Or the humiliation.” Caleb added.

“We have nine other rooms to choose from.” Riley said.

“Jess …” Scott said moving behind her and placing his hands on her shoulders. “We’re going next door.” He said when she looked up at him, “You have half an hour to get your questions answered and then it’s bed time, ‘k?”

Jessica nodded and pursed her lips for a kiss. Scott kissed her, her other men did too and soon the girls were alone in the room.

“It’s all so romantic!” Jessica exclaimed looking back at the girls. “Have you set dates?”

“Since this all kind of happened for us at the same time … the dating and the proposals, we thought that we’d do a joint ceremony.” Leah said.

“And Jess, we’d understand if you wanted the pond to be your special place …” Sara said.

“You had your birthday parties there, renewed your vows …” Justine added.

“But we’d really like to get married there, if you wouldn’t mind. It’s a special place for us too. We’ve had so many happy times there …” Amanda said.

“Are you kidding?” Jessica said, “That’s the perfect place, how could I possibly mind? Will you do it when we get back?”

Leah nodded, “We were thinking of the weekend after we get home. It’d give us a week to get ready.”

“That’s perfect!” Jessica exclaimed jumping up and down. “Oh my God, we’ll have to figure out the decorations, the food …”

“Abe said he’d cater for us.” Sara said, “And we have so many ideas for decorations and clothes. We’ll only have a week to make our wedding dresses!”

“I can help with the decorations and whatever else you need.” Jessica said.

“Thank you!” Justine said throwing her arms around Jessica.

“Oh, you know what I just thought of for the pond? At night? Floating candles.” Leah said.

“That will be so beautiful!” Jessica said.

“I’m sure it will.” Riley said coming in the hotel room door followed by the other men. “But right now …” he said sliding his arms around Jessica’s neck and nuzzling his nose into her hair, “It’s time for bed.”

“We’ll talk more tomorrow.” Leah said. Getting up and smiling when Corey came over and wrapped an arm around her.

“What time do the boys go to the kids’ club?” Jessica asked.

“Nine.” Sara said taking Sean’s hand.

“One of us will get them there.” Amanda said following Don as he took her hand and led her to the door, Caleb taking her other hand, Quinn following.

“I want to go too,” Jessica said, “to meet their friends.”

“You can do that at pickup time.” Angus said. “It’s almost four in the morning, you’re not going to be up for nine.”

“Neither will any of you.” Jessica said, turning on her knees on the sofa, to wrap her arms around Riley as he squatted behind the sofa, leaning his chin on his arms folded on the back of the sofa.

“Hey, we came to you, remember?” Quinn said from the door, winking at Jessica when she looked like she was blaming herself for keeping them up.

“One of us will be up.” Mark added, “Don’t worry. Just get some sleep and we’ll see you for breakfast.”

“Get some sleep.” Abe said planting a kiss on Jessica’s forehead, “And leave the boys to us.”

“Aim for more than a couple of hours okay?” Rick added also kissing her forehead.

Everyone left and Josh came up behind Jessica and scooped her into his arms.

“Go to sleep. We’ll clean up quick and be back before you know it.” Josh said, placing Jessica on the bed. She was asleep before he kissed her cheek.

Jessica bolted upright.

“Jess? What’s wrong?” Jim asked, rubbing his eyes with one hand, her leg with his other.

“What time is it?” Jessica asked.

“Time to go back to sleep.” Angus grumbled pulling the blanket over his head.

“Eight thirty.” Scott said closing his cell phone and dropping on the side table where he’d picked it up from.

“The boys …” Jessica said, “Can we go drop them off at the kids’ camp?”

“We’ve had four and half hours of sleep Jess, no we can’t.” Riley said.

“Could I go? I promised them I would … I’ll come right back after. It’ll only be half an hour at the most … please?” Jessica begged.

“I’ll go with you Jess.” Josh said in a groggy voice. “But we’re coming back after to sleep some more.”

“Okay, yes, of course. Thank you.” Jessica crawled over the other men as carefully as she could, kissed Josh and scrambled off the bed. She watched as Josh tried to haul himself out of bed, clearly too tired to. “You know what, never mind.” She said placing her hands on Josh’s chest. “Why don’t I just go by myself and I’ll meet you for breakfast around ten?”

“You’re not tired?” Riley asked cracking an eye open to look at her. “At all?” he added in disbelief when Jessica shook her head.

“No. I’m wide awake.”

“Okay. Go ahead we’ll meet you back here for breakfast.” Riley said.

“Thanks! See you at ten.” Jessica said, air blew him a kiss and rushed to the bathroom. In fifteen minutes she was dressed. She smiled as she headed downstairs. Not having the time or patience to try and find some more granny panties she decided to wear some lingerie. She had so much of it packed that it made no sense to not wear it and if the men didn’t know, what harm could it do? Just imagining their reactions when they found out had her looking forward to that night.

In Rick and Abe’s room the boys were finishing their breakfasts but as soon as Jessica arrived they were all over her.

“Hey, look who’s awake.” Rick said coming from the bedroom, still buttoning his jeans. He kissed Jessica on the head, “Not that I’m really surprised to see you.”

“It’s not really fair to expect you two to get up. While the rest of us sleep in.” Jessica said, “And I promised to come drop the boys off this morning.”

“We appreciate it.” Rick said. “We should get going.”

“Good morning,” Jennifer, one of the three girls who ran the club greeted. They’d met the instructors the previous day and Jessica had liked them right away. They were young, probably not much older than Jessica, and very friendly. But they seemed organized and in control of the kids. From the way the older boys mooned over them, Jessica was sure that it wasn’t hard to get co-operation from the teenagers either.

“Good morning.” Jessica said. “What are the plans for today?”

“We’ll play a few games, maybe go to the park for a while.” Sandra said, the second of the three instructors. “They’re having an olden day circus and carnival exhibit. Part of it involves teaching some acrobatics. The kids always love that.”

“Acrobatics? Really?” Jessica asked glancing at Rick and Abe who were looking at her with an expression of pleasant surprise.

“Are they teaching it right now?” Abe asked glancing toward the park.

“Yes.” Laura, the third instructor said with a laugh. “Anyone can participate … you should check it out.”

“Jessie, this is Leslie.” Leo said. He had been standing waiting for Jessica’s attention. He looked so shy and nervous when the girl next to him smiled at Jessica.

“Hi Leslie. It’s so nice to meet you.” Jessica said and she had to bite her tongue to keep herself from saying ‘Aw’ when Leslie, so young and adorable smiled at her with a mouth full of braces. “This is Abe and Rick.” Jessica said indicating the men that stood on either side of her. “They’re Leo’s uncles.”

Leslie nodded at Abe and Rick but seemed a little intimidated by them.

“Jessie this is Claire and her brother Ryan.” Erik said and pretty soon all of the boys were introducing everyone in the club except for a boy and a girl who Jessica noticed standing to the side. They seemed to be sneering at everyone including Jessica, Abe and Rick.

“What’s with those kids?” Jessica asked Elliot.

“They’re not very nice.” Elliot said. “They don’t talk to anyone … barely even the instructors.”

“Have they been mean to you?” Jessica asked.

“Not any meaner than they are to everyone else.” Elliot said.

“Avoid them if you can. You don’t need to put up with that especially not on vacation.” Jessica said.

“Okay.” Elliot said and smiled at her.

“Come here.” Jessica said and when he moved forward she kissed his cheek and hugged him. “Have fun and let me know if those kids cause you any problems today. We’re here for fun. No one has the right to ruin that for you. Tell the other boys that too.”

“Thanks Jessie.” Elliot said and his cheeks flushed pink. Jessica knew that Brett and Nathan were substituting Jessie for mommy but she suddenly realized that it may not have been limited to the ten year olds.

Jessica hugged and kissed the rest of the boys goodbye and pretty soon it was just her, Rick and Abe standing on the porch of the club.

Jessica looked in the direction of the park and soon realized that Rick and Abe were doing that too.

“It’s only nine fifteen.” Jessica said looking at her cell phone. “The men aren’t meeting us for breakfast till ten. We could go check out that acrobatic workshop for forty-five minutes.”

“I like the way you think.” Abe said.

“Let’s go.” Rick said.

They had so much fun learning new acrobatic moves that they completely forgot about the time so it was an hour later that they stumbled off the elevator on the top floor.

At ten after ten Rick, Abe and Jessica got off the elevator on the floor that Jessica shared with the men.

“We almost had it though.” Rick was saying when they stopped outside the hotel suite door. “It’s just practice, look try again.” He said grabbing Jessica’s hands. “Ready?” he moved his hands over her wrists, and when Jessica nodded he started to count. And on three the hotel room door opened just as Jessica jumped and swung up to stand on Rick’s shoulders.

“What the …?” Scott asked looking up at Jessica from the doorway.

“We took an acrobatics course.” Rick said. “Okay, ready?” he said tapping Jessica’s ankle.

“Yup.” Jessica said.

“Abe?” Rick said as Abe lined up to face him head on.

“Ready.” Abe said.

“One, two …” Rick counted, bending at the knees slightly as did Jessica. “Three …” at which point Rick extended his legs while Jessica jumped, somersaulted and landed Abe’s shoulders. For a second it looked like she’d fall off the other side but both Rick and Abe caught her.

“Holy shit, that’s amazing!” Scott said. “You just learned that this morning?”

“Just now.” Jessica said jumping off of Abe’s shoulders. “If we ever have to we can run away with the circus.” Jessica added, laughing and giving Rick and Abe high fives.

“What’s going on?” Angus asked coming to the door. “Are you coming in?” He added.

“You have to see this.” Scott said when Jessica, Abe and Rick entered the room to find all the other adults already there and a large cart filled with food in the middle of the room.

“Watch this …” Scott said to the others, “Do it again.” He prompted.

So they did, Jessica’s landing on Abe’s shoulders followed by applause and whistling.

“They have a carnival going on all day.” Jessica said, “We could go by later. They teach you how to tight rope walk, some tricks on the trapeze, and other neat things. The club is taking the boys for an hour or so this morning but I think they’d like to go for longer later.”

“Sounds like fun.” Riley said.

“Hey Jessica.” Sean said moving back to the sofa, “They have a show on about the royalty of France. You should come and see it.” He added patting the spot on the sofa next to him.

“It’s like a soap opera.” Leah said from her spot next to Sean.

Jessica went to sit next to Sean. Abe sat next to her.

“Coffee Jess?” Josh asked.

“Please … oh thanks.” Jessica said when Sean held a bagel smothered in cream cheese in front of her. She took a bite, while taking the cup of coffee Josh gave her and turned her attention to the television show.

Half an hour later the show was over, the bagel was gone and Sean and Abe were grinning at her.

“What?” Jessica asked looking from Sean to Abe, and then down at herself.

“Nothing Jess. All is good. Where do we want to go before we pick the boys up at one?” Sean asked handing an empty plate to Abe.

“Well, we’ll save the carnival for the boys later this afternoon right? Where does everyone else want to go? Jessica asked.

“They have an exhibit at the castle about weapons and demonstrations on how they’re used.” Corey said, “I wouldn’t mind seeing that.”

“Great.” Leah said in a tone that made it clear it was anything but great.

“They also have a fashion exhibit, displaying clothes worn by the aristocrats over the years in France.” Jessica said.

“A fashion show?” Sara asked with excitement. Justine, Amanda and even Leah seemed thrilled by that idea.

“I read on the website that they also have a cooking exhibit …” Jessica said looking at Abe, “and a medical exhibit.” She added looking at Rick and Caleb and then she added, looking back at Abe, “you may have to split your time between the two.”

“Well, in that case …” Leah said, “Let’s go.”

“So how’d the drop off go this morning?” Riley asked as they walked to the castle. The men and Jessica were walking behind the others and Jessica was holding Riley and Angus’ hands.

“It was great. Abe, Rick and I met all their friends. They’re so adorable.” Jessica said. “But there are a boy and a girl who I think are going to be trouble.”

“Trouble? How?” Angus asked.

“Elliot said they’ve been mean to everyone … not just the boys. And the way they were giving everyone dirty looks this morning.” Jessica said.

“How old are they?” Josh asked.

Jessica shrugged, “I’d say around ten and twelve.”

“Kind of young to be trouble don’t you think?” Scott asked.

“I don’t know. Bullies start pretty young.” Jessica said.

“You sound like you’ve had experience with bullies.” Jim said.

Jessica nodded. “I met a few at school. I told the boys to let us know if they have any trouble with them. We’re here to have fun.”

“Speaking of fun.” Scott said coming up behind Jessica and squeezing her shoulders, “What attractions at the castle did you think we’d enjoy?”

“That’s easy.” Jessica said leaning her head back against Scott’s chest and looking up at him. “For Riley there’s the use of dogs in hunting and the military,” she rolled her head so she could look at Riley, “Angus there’s maintenance and building of their vehicles of war. That includes things like catapults for some reason.” she rolled her head the other way to look at Angus, “Jim, there’s the history of their music and musical instruments.” She said looking at Jim who walked next to Angus, “Josh, history of entertainment including story telling in both oral and written form. And Scott. We may never see you again … but there’s the history of sexual practices.”

“You’re shitting me.” Angus said, completely dumbfounded.

“Nope. It’s not for kids, obviously. But apparently there are sex and torture devices that they have on display. Um, maybe we’ll never see any of you again.” Jessica said when all the men looked beyond interested.

“And will you be joining us at this exhibit?” Scott asked Jessica bringing his hands down to rest on her waist.

“Do you think that would be wise?” Jessica asked. “I don’t think anyone is expecting a live demonstration on how the devices are used which they’re likely to get if we go there together… but, um, I wouldn’t mind getting a demonstration of my own later tonight.”

“Oh you can count on it.” Riley said giving her a toothy grin.

“So what are you going to see?” Angus asked Jessica when they got to the castle.

“Everything I think. Do you think we can handle the sex exhibit together?” Jessica asked.

“Probably not.” Angus said with a laugh. “Well, I’m interested in the weapons and the vehicle exhibit … aside from the sex one, of course. I’ll tag along with you to one of those if you’re starting there.”

“We’re all interested in the weapons, right? Let’s start there together and then go our different ways after that?” Jessica asked.

So they spent the morning at the castle. Jessica wasn’t shy about showing affection openly to all five of the men in public and for the most part there was little to no reaction.

Jessica went to the sex exhibit last. She went with the girls and although she saw the wisdom of not going with the men, she wished she had. So many devices created to cause pleasure from pain. She moved from one to the other getting more and more turned on. She remembered the hook and what the men had done to her after she’d raced for Paul and it wasn’t a stretch to imagine the men using the devices on her. And that turned her on even more.

When she followed the girls out of the exhibit a hand clamped down on each of her arms. Jessica looked around to find Scott on one arm, Angus on the other. Riley, Jim on either side of Scott and Angus, and Josh pressed up behind her. Jessica could feel his cock pressing against her ass. She shuddered with pleasure … just barely registering that Sean had grabbed Sara’s hand, Corey, Leah’s. Quinn and Don stood on either side of Amanda, holding each of her arms, Caleb close by, Chris and Mark had each of Justine’s arms.

“We have to go back to the hotel room … now.” Scott said to the murmured agreement of the other men.

“But the boys …” Jessica began, her tone making it evident that she needed the men just as much as they needed her.

“We have half an hour before we have to pick them up.” Riley replied.

“Oh, then what are you waiting for?” Jessica said in sudden urgency.

No sooner did she say that then she was being carried along between Scott and Angus as they rushed back to the hotel. The others hurried to their rooms too.

The second they stepped off the elevator Jessica was relieved of her shirt and pants.

“Jesus Christ Jessica …” Angus growled staring at the lingerie for all of two seconds before tearing it off of her. Stripped naked, Jessica lifted Angus’ shirt with one hand and tried to undo Scott’s pants with the other. Once all the men were equally naked, they moved to the bedroom and a sex frenzy ensued, lasting for the next twenty minutes. They cleaned up and Josh for some reason insisted on redressing Jessica but stopped when he began wanting to take the clothes off rather than put them back on.

Jessica laughed and kissed the top of his head as he crouched in front of her where he’d been buttoning her pants.

“I can’t wait till tonight.” Josh said, kissed her belly and forced himself to stand and move away, dropping on to the bed where the other men, already dressed, lay.

“Me neither.” Jessica said putting her bra and shirt on.

“What did you think of that sexual practices exhibit?” Scott asked pulling Jessica onto the bed with them. She settled between Scott and Riley, both of whom propped their heads on bent arms and looked down at her, running their other hands over her tits, down her belly, between her legs, over and over.

“It was very stimulating.” Jessica said with a moan, rocking her hips up to meet their hands as they met her pussy. She gave a breathless laugh when Riley looked at her like she’d made the biggest understatement ever.

“What was your favorite device?” Jim asked. He lay across the top of the bed. His fingers swept down along her cheekbone, jawbone, and circled the lips of her mouth, before gliding back up to her forehead. Jessica moaned when his thumb reached her lips again, and she sucked it in, gave it a slow, sensual, suck as she considered Jim’s question.

“Fuck, I wish we had more time.” Angus growled from his place at the foot of the bed. He’d been massaging her feet, gently at first, but his grip had noticeably tightened.

“Babe, if you want to pick up the boys on time I suggest you stop working Jim’s thumb like that, or we’re going nowhere but down on you.” Josh warned. Scott had moved over to make room for Josh who know lay with his head near her belly.

Jessica let Jim’s thumb slip out of her mouth and nodded, “Sorry … I wish we had more time too. A lot more time.” She said in a breathless voice.

“Don’t worry little girl, there will be loads of time tonight.” Riley growled, “But answer Jim’s question, what was your favorite device?”

“Mmm,” Jessica said, thinking. “I liked them all.” Jessica said, running through each device in her mind. “They were all very scary …” she added, panting a little. “They reminded me of the hook and what you did to me after the race.” Jessica said. “With the machines …” Jessica glanced around at the men, “and how you tied my tits …” her pussy squeezed hard. Not just from the memories but from the looks on the men’s faces. It was clear they were remembering too.

Angus’ eyes flashed gray as he let out a low growl and the next thing Jessica knew, her pants were off and she was lying face down on Riley. Her holes … mouth, pussy, asshole, were suddenly and violently filled and her hands were guided to two hard cocks. Unprepared for the sudden invasion Jessica gagged as the huge cock lodged deep in her throat. Two huge, juicy balls pressed against her chin. Her nose and forehead pressed against a rock hard abdomen. And as her asshole and pussy burned from the abrupt stretching, Jessica came … hard. The men lost all control. Fast, deep, hard, thrusts into her holes, hands bruising her head and her hips as they held her in place, made it difficult for Jessica to focus on the hand jobs she was giving. Finally she resorted to gripping the cocks firmly and letting the men fuck her hands. Jessica moaned on the cock in her mouth as she felt her swollen clit begin to throb … the shafts of the cocks rubbing it hard. Loud growls erupted around her and she felt the cocks in her holes and her hands jerk hard. She gulped the cum that shot into her throat, and felt the hot cum from the cocks in her hands spray over her, and she came again. A sudden and blinding orgasm made her whole body spasm, hard.

“Holy shit!” She heard Jim repeating and she realized that it was his cock in her mouth.

“Fuck yeah!” Scott agreed.

“Shit baby, you’re a mess again … come on, I’ll clean you up quick.” Josh said from behind. She felt him withdraw from her ass and pull her into his arms. Scott and Angus had been her hand jobs and they looked wholly satisfied with the mess that covered Jessica’s hair, face and back. Cradling her against him, Josh kissed her. “Fuck I love when you’re covered in our cum. Christ!”

The other men followed them into the bathroom and any thoughts they may have had about adding to the cum already on Jessica were obliterated when there was a knock on the hotel door.

“Shit …Coming!” Scott yelled toward the door. “Just wait till tonight.” He said to Jessica as he lathered shampoo into her hair as fast as he could, “You’ll be covered head to toe and it won’t be coming off for a long time.”

“I can’t wait.” Jessica replied and shuddered with anticipation.

The rushed washing and dressing did nothing to dull the desire in Jessica or the men but they managed to muster a semblance of control as they met the others in the lobby of the hotel.

On their way back to the club to pick the boys up, the others walking ahead, Scott slid his arm around Jessica, pulling her to him. “You seem really happy.” He observed.

“What’s not to be happy about? Everything is perfect. And unlike last night at dinner, you guys aren’t trying to avoid me.” Jessica said.

“That had sucked.” Riley agreed. “And I wouldn’t want to do that again, but I noticed that we’re not staying as low key as we’d planned.”

“Really?.” Jessica asked. “We haven’t told anyone that we’re married.”

“So to you being low key meant not telling people we’re married?” Angus asked.

“Yes … that’s not what it meant to you?” Jessica asked.

“That was part of it.” Jim said when Angus didn’t answer but instead studied her like he was trying to figure something out. “But don’t worry about it Jess, everything is fine like this.” Jim added when Jessica looked worried.

“Hey does something seem off about the boys?” Leah asked when they all stopped outside the club. Kids were being picked up and the boys were standing quietly in a bunch and looked quite subdued.

“Really off.” Jessica said. “Hi boys, what’s going on?” she asked.

“We’re just waiting for you.” Tom said.

“Did it go okay this morning?” Jessica asked and placed an arm around Brett and an arm around Nathan when they came to hug her.

“Yeah, fine.” Reese replied but didn’t sound very convincing.

“Jessie, can we go now?” Tom asked suddenly. He grabbed her arm and tried to rush her along but he was looking past her. Jessica turned and saw an older woman with a sneer that matched the sneers of the boy and the girl Jessica had noticed earlier. The woman was marching toward her and the boys, an arm round the very boy and girl with whom she shared the distinctive facial expression.

Jessica noticed that Chad had wandered over to Riley. Riley had bent down so Chad could whisper in Riley’s ear and suddenly Riley snapped his eyes over to Jessica, stood up and began moving toward her.

“Come on Jessie, let’s go.” Tom said more insistently.

“Okay …” Jessica said letting Tom pull her a few steps but suddenly, from behind her, Jessica heard a woman’s voice say, “So you must be the mother of all of these boys.”

Jessica froze. Her tone had been undeniably disbelieving. And rude.

As Jessica turned to look at the woman she thought she heard Riley say ‘Jessica no.’ But she wasn’t sure and the expression of superiority on the woman’s face distracted her enough that she disregarded Riley entirely.

“I didn’t think so.” The woman said running her eyes up and down Jessica and then pinning them on Tom. “I didn’t think you’d adopt this many kids to begin with …” she snapped and Tom seemed to shrink and his cheeks flamed red, “But just look at you,” the woman said turning her eyes back to Jessica, “You’re not old enough to be anyone’s mother. You’re probably younger than this young man with a wild imagination …” she sneered looking back at Tom. “And five husbands, humph. You’re not old enough to have one original husband much less have had time to be married to five.”

Jessica felt her blood boil.

“I don’t think you’re setting a very good example for your grandchildren.” Jessica said in controlled fury and was far too angry to get any real sense of satisfaction when the pompous sneers slid off the woman’s face only to be replaced with a look of surprise followed by the beginnings of a pout. “I was taught not to disrespect my elders, especially not the really ancient ones, so I’ll skip what I’d really like to say to you. I did adopt these boys. I am their mother, these are the boys’ fathers and you will never speak to our son like you just did again. You and your great grandchildren will keep whatever thoughts, comments, opinions, and ugly facial expressions you have away from our children. There was a conduct of behaviour form we signed for this club and if I have any indication that you or your descendants have breached it in any way I will go to the management and demand your progenies removal from the club. Do I make myself clear?”

“Well I never …” the woman began to stutter.

“I said, do I make myself clear?” Jessica demanded.

“Yes.” The woman said.

“Good. And for the record, I don’t have a husband. I have husbands. Now, before you go I suggest that you apologize to Tom.”

The woman looked between Tom and Jessica, clearly at a loss for what to do.

“It begins with ‘I’m’ and ends with ‘sorry’. Give it a try.” Jessica said.

“I’m sorry.” The woman bit out and then marched away, dragging her kids with her.

Applause erupted around Jessica and the boys. Jessica hadn’t realized how many other parents were within hearing range.

“It’s about time someone put that old bitch in her place.” A man said shaking Jessica’s hand. “I’m Tony, Leslie’s dad. We’ve been coming here for years and had nothing but trouble with that woman. Somebody should have told her off years ago. Listen, Leslie has really enjoyed Leo’s company and she was wondering if he could join us for dinner tonight.”

“Oh, um, I can’t see why not …” Jessica said turning to look at her men for input.

“I’m sorry.” Tony said stepping forward and offering his hand to Riley, “I’m Tony. Leo said that you are his and Tom’s father. We’d really love it if Leo could join us for dinner.” Tony repeated looking from Jessica to Riley, “from say five thirty to seven? Leslie’s coming back to the club for the evening too, we could drop him off here for you.”

“Sure. If Leo wants to.” Riley said clearly surprised and out of his element.

Leo’s face split into an even bigger smile then it had when Jessica had finished chewing out the old woman. “Thanks mom, dad.” He said in a shy voice.

“Where would you like us to bring him for five thirty?” Jessica asked.

“We’ll meet you in the lobby of the Louvre Hotel. We’re staying there also.” Tony said.

Arrangements made Tony and Leslie left, and the instructors moved closer.

“That was amazing.” Jennifer said. “That witch and her ‘progeny’” she said with a laugh, “have been nothing but a drag at the club. Thanks for telling her off. I was going to tell you how hard both she and her kids had been on Tom today. Mostly because he refused to let his brothers be abused. I was impressed with how well he handled himself.”

“Thanks.” Jessica said in as light a tone as she could muster since she still felt angry at the woman.

“We’ll see you tonight?” Sandra asked the boys, who all agreed.

“What the hell just happened?” Angus asked when the instructors and the other parents and kids left, leaving the boys, and the adults standing alone in front of the club.

“You were so awesome Jessie.” Tom said wrapping his arms around Jessica, “We should have known you’d take care of that bit… witch …” he paused when Jessica looked at him clearly not going to tolerate bad language. “You always take care of everything.”

Jessica hugged him back and giggled, “No one talks to my kids like that and gets away with it …”

“Back the fuck up.” Angus said, “What’s this about Jessica being your mother and us your fathers? What happened to the whole nephew thing?”

“It’s my fault.” Nathan said. “I told some of the kids that Jessie was our mom and you were our dads. I was just pretending that we were your nephews and that you adopted us. But then, suddenly, everybody knew …”

“And we all liked the idea.” Casey said. “We split ourselves up between you.” He continued looking at Angus. “Max, Erik and Chad are Scott’s, Tim and Reese are Josh’s, Leo and Tom are Riley’s, Brett and Nathan are Jim’s and Elliot, Frank and I are your kids. Sorry, but that’s the way we wish it really was …”

“It’s okay.” Jessica said when all the men could do was stare at the boys in astonished silence, “Right?” Jessica prompted looking at her men.

“Sure.” Josh said nodding, “That’s fine. If that’s what you want to pretend, that’s okay.”

Riley, Scott, Jim and Angus nodded and then turned their attention to Jessica. At first she couldn’t decipher what the expressions on their faces meant but when the realization came to her she gasped, “Oh. I guess I told everyone about us being married … I’m sorry.” Jessica said and moved into Riley’s arms, taking Angus’ hand. “But I think it’s better this way. I really don’t want to hide our relationships. Are you mad?”

“We’re not mad.” Scott said.

“I think we’re in shock.” Jim said. “You really told that old bat off.” He added with a laugh.

“You seriously don’t care what anyone thinks.” Angus said in awe.

“That’s not true. I care what you think. What all of you think. I don’t want to make you uncomfortable.” Jessica said looking around at her men and then the rest of the family.

“Are you kidding me?” Caleb demanded, “That was fucking awesome. You’re really not afraid of anything.”

“More importantly,” Riley said, “You’re committed to this lifestyle, even outside of the clan.”

“Of course I am.” Jessica said looking at Riley in confusion, “Did you think I wasn’t?”

“Jess, it’s easy to be committed when you’re in an environment that accepts polygamy. But in society where it’s not accepted … it would be understandable if you were embarrassed or hesitant to put yourself in a position to alienate yourself.” Jim said.

“Kind of like the first time we were intimate.” Scott said cupping Jessica’s face, “Remember how right it felt in the bedroom but outside the bedroom, you were embarrassed.”

Jessica nodded. “I remember. I don’t feel that way now, about you …” she said looking at the men, “or anything about my family.” She said looking around at everyone.

“I guess we underestimated you.” Josh said.

“Again.” Angus added and pulled Jessica into his arms. “I love you Jess.”

“I love you too.” Jessica said. All of her men moved in giving Jessica a hug and kiss.

“Should we go to the park?” Rick asked when the hugging and kissing finished. “We can all learn some acrobatics.”

There was a loud chorus of agreement from the boys so they all moved to the park, Jessica holding Scott and Jim’s hands, Justine holding Mark and Chris’ hands , Amanda holding Caleb and Quinn’s hands, Sean and Sara, Corey and Leah holding their respective hands. While a few heads turned, and there were several second looks, no one seemed to react to these signs of affection.

As the afternoon progressed Jessica was disturbed to realize that her family must have truly expected her to abandon them as soon as they were in a public setting. Not just her men but the other adults too. Her declaration to the world caused bigger smiles and elicited a great deal of pats, hugs and kisses. Jessica realized that they hadn’t just wondered what she’d do, they’d known. In their minds it had been a forgone conclusion. It made her sad to think that she hadn’t properly expressed her feelings for them.

They had a great time at the park. Jessica learned several acrobatic stunts with each of her men, some with the boys and the other adults too. But by five o’clock they headed back to the hotel to clean up for dinner, and it seemed that the more often they were able to express their polygamous relationships in public the more jovial everyone became.

“What’s wrong Jess?” Angus asked when everyone had gone back to Jessica and the men’s room for dinner. Jessica had stopped in the middle of the room and watched her men, the boys and the others zip around the room preparing for dinner, everyone making an effort to come by her and pet her head, arm or back, hug her, kiss her. And they were so happy, like they’d won the lottery.

Her men had stopped to look at her and with Angus’ question the other adults did also.

“Nothing is wrong. I just wish that I could have been more convincing about my feelings for you.”

“More convincing?” Riley asked with a laugh, “Babe, I don’t think that’s possible.”

“But you were all so sure I’d want to hide our lifestyle. That must have hurt you.” Jessica said.

“But we told you Jess, it’s not the same thing when you’re in a different environment.” Jim said, “We wouldn’t blame you if you wanted to keep it quiet.”

“Trust me.” Mark added, “It was one thing to come out as a bisexual man with you all. But I would never …ever … show affection to another man in public. I just can’t do that.”

“And you know we don’t.” Abe said when everyone’s eyes moved to Rick and Abe. “We can’t either. It doesn’t mean we love each other any less, but it crosses a line that we just can’t live with. We weren’t sure if you could live in your old world with your new world relationships. It didn’t mean we thought you loved us less.”

Jessica nodded. Looking at it from Rick, Abe and Mark’s points of view it made more sense.

“So why do you look like you feel guilty now?” Angus asked.

“If you felt more comfortable keeping our marriage quiet, I just told the whole world. I’m sorry. But I don’t think I could hide it even if I wanted to. I just forget it’s supposed to be a secret.”

“We don’t want it to be a secret.” Scott said. “Not at all. We just wanted keeping it a secret to be an option for you.”

“I guess we forgot who we were dealing with.” Corey said. “You don’t do secrets.”

“So can you stop being so sad?” Quinn asked, “I feel like I kicked a fucking puppy.”

Jessica forced a smile that quickly turned into a real one.

“I love that smile.” Caleb said planting a kiss on Jessica’s forehead and pulling her in for a hug.

“Leo, you’ve got to go meet Leslie and her father in the lobby.” Riley added after checking the time on his cell phone. “I’ll walk you down.”

“Have fun.” Jessica said when Leo gave her a hug before leaving.

“Let’s order some dinner.” Abe suggested and went to the phone.

Twenty minutes later the food arrived.

“Hey Jess, look what’s playing on the TV.” Abe said sitting on the sofa with a plate full of food. “Pearl Harbor. Didn’t you say you wanted to see it?”

“Oh yeah!” Jessica and climbed onto the sofa between Abe and Sean, pulled her feet up and leaned against Sean as she watched.

Caleb and Chris moved a couple of the sofas from the other rooms next to the sofa that Jessica, Sean, Abe and Sara sat on, in front of the TV. By the time the movie was half over most of the food on Abe’s plate was gone, and he’d barely eaten anything himself. When it was clear Jessica wasn’t going to handle any more food, a silent high five went around the room. Abe finished the rest of the food and went for more.

Dropping the boys off at the club after dinner Jessica held Josh’s hand, kissed the men goodbye, said goodbye to the others and followed Josh down the street. Josh pulled Jessica under his arm, squeezing her to him as they walked.

“So I thought we’d go back to the castle.” Josh said. “They have an artisan night. There’s French poetry, some old style dancing and singing, and even an old fashioned carnival.”

“That sounds great.” Jessica said.

“And later, I want to draw you for the comic.”

“Sure.” Jessica agreed.

“But in one of the other rooms. I want you to wear the garter belt … and not much else. If the other guys are around we won’t get very far with the drawing.” Josh said.

Jessica giggled, “Yes, I think it may be better if they’re not involved. What’s wrong?” Jessica asked when Josh suddenly looked serious.

“Nothing.” He said, “I was just thinking about what I used to do to you, before we got married. The sleep rape …”

“Josh …”

“I’m not beating myself up about it, I just find it weird that ever since we’ve been married I haven’t sleep raped you once. That’s odd, isn’t it?” Josh asked.

“I don’t think so. It actually makes sense.” Jessica said.

“How?” Josh asked.

“Well, you have to admit that since we’ve been married we’ve had a lot of sex. Like, a lot, a lot.” Jessica said.

Josh nodded.

“So maybe all your extra sexual energy is used up now and it wasn’t then.” Jessica said, sliding her hand around his waist and squeezing one of his butt cheeks while smiling up at him.

“It’s not that used up …” Josh said suddenly looking very sexually hungry.

“I’m glad.” Jessica replied, feeling equally turned on.

“What should we do about this?” Josh asked pulling Jessica to a stop and looking around. “There’s definitely no privacy here and I need to … Christ, you’re still wearing that lingerie too, aren’t you?”

Jessica nodded, moving into Josh’s arms, running her hands over his chest, kissing him. Josh kissed back and for a few minutes they were oblivious to the world but then Josh came up for air.

“Let’s go back to the hotel.” Josh said.

“I want to.” Jessica said, panting with desire, “But what about our plans? We shouldn’t miss the castle. Who knows when we’ll be back again.”

“I know, but I don’t think I can wait.” Josh said.

“What about those bushes.” Jessica said, “I could get you off. Would that be good enough till we get back to the hotel later?”

“We could get each other off.” Josh said. “Come on.” He pulled Jessica into the trees. “You get off first.” He said between kisses. Josh slid his hand down Jessica’s pants and began to rub, slide his fingers into her. Pleasure rocketed through Jessica.

“What about my screaming?” Jessica asked.

“Shit.” Josh swore, panting.

“You better stop.” Jessica said grasping his arm and trying to pull his hand out of her pants, “Or else everyone will hear me. And love making isn’t going to cut it.”

“But you need release.” Josh said.

“I can live with it for now. I did last night with Jim.” Jessica said, smarting from the burning want between her legs when Josh reluctantly removed his hand. Jessica dropped her forehead against Josh’s chest, panting. Finally she said, “But I can help you out.” She slid her hands to his pant buckle and starting to lower herself to her knees.

“No, it’s okay.” Josh said grabbing her by her arms. “If you can wait, so can I.”

“Really, I don’t mind.” Jessica said, pulling his zipper down, “It serves me right for not finding a way to keep quiet.”

“I can wait Jess.” Josh said, “I can do it.” He said more to himself then Jessica.

“You can’t walk around all night with a hard on.” Jessica said placing her hand over the bulge in Josh’s pants, “It’s okay Josh …” she said taking direction from the growl he made when she caressed him over his pants, “If I suck you off I’ll clean you up too and no one will know the difference. It’s the best solution.”

“Wait.” Josh said when Jessica began to lower herself again. “Lie down.” He said with sudden urgency and pushed her to the ground.

“I’ll make too much noise.” Jessica said when he pulled her pants down. “Not with my cock in your mouth …” Josh panted, “At least not enough noise to really matter.”

Jessica was too far gone to care when Josh pushed her down, crawled over top of her, slid his cock in her mouth and brought his mouth to her pussy. Moans escaped both of them as Josh thrust in her mouth and she thrust in his. And when pleasure erupted Josh kept Jessica’s mouth too full for her to scream.

Despite that Jessica made enough noise. Rather than collapse on Jessica and enjoy the aftershocks of the orgasm, Josh looked around. Turning he crawled up Jessica until both of his arms were planted on either side of her head.

“We should move.” He said after kissing her, “Just in case.”

Jessica nodded. They dressed quickly, Josh pulled leaves out of Jessica’s hair and smoothed it down, and then they moved further into the forest to emerge at a different location.

“God I love you.” Josh said holding Jessica firmly against him.

“I love you.” Jessica said in a dreamy tone, still revelling in the afterglow of pleasure. She pressed herself hard against him. “I should go to a bathroom, clean up.”

“Okay. Let’s go.”

They went in the castle, found washrooms and fifteen minutes later wandered the halls of the castle.

“A portrait for the happy couple?” a man asked as they walked by his stand. He had a large easel set up with black pastels littering the small table beside it. “Let me draw you.” He urged.

Josh and Jessica stood in one another’s arms and posed.

“Oh Josh! That’s exactly how I feel about you!” Jessica gasped when the man turned the easel for them to see the picture. The picture was so real, so well done and it reflected their love of one another so clearly that Jessica and Josh were stunned. In the picture Jessica was turned in to Josh, looking up at him and he was looking down at her. Neither had realized how clearly they expressed their emotions until they saw it in the picture.

“That’s how I feel about you …” Josh murmured into her hair. “How much?” he asked the artist.

“On the house.” The man said while sliding the picture into an envelope.

“Thank you.” Jessica said when the artist handed her the envelope.

“Thanks a lot.” Josh said handing the man a hundred dollar bill. “It’s a tip.” Josh said when the man tried to wave it away. Finally he took it.

“You can leave the picture at the service desk if you’d like.” The man said, “If you don’t want to carry it around all night. You can pick it up any time … tonight or tomorrow.”

“Thanks.” Josh said and they went to the service desk.

“That man has talent.” Josh said as they moved past the artist again and along to the next stalls.

“Just like you.” Jessica said, “You’re just as good as he is.”

“Close maybe.” Josh said.

“Not close Josh. You’re incredibly talented. Why can’t you see that?” Jessica asked.

“I think you may be biased.” Josh said, “But I do believe I’m close. I just have to work on it more. But thanks for your vote of confidence.” He said sliding his arm around Jessica and kissing her. “Do you want to go to the artisans, the folk dance classes or the human circus next?”

“Let’s go exactly that order.” Jessica said. And so they did. It was midnight by the time they decided to go back to the hotel. As they waited at the service desk to pick up their picture Jessica noticed a machine off to the side that looked like an arcade game. Lights were flashing all over it.

She moved closer to find that it was one of those love games.

“Relationship Rater …” Josh read the sign on the machine. He held their picture in one hand but wrapped the other arm around Jessica.

“It tells you your future, rates your relationship and provides a token to represent your love.” Jessica said continuing to read. “All we have to do is put our hands on the red hand outlines at the same time.”

“You want to try it, don’t you?” Josh asked. Jessica smiled, batted her eyelashes and nodded.

“It’ll be a riot.” Jessica said.

Josh inserted change into the slot on the front of the machine. Jessica placed her hands on the inner outlined hands and Josh put his on the outer ones. Lights started flashing, a strange swirling sound erupted, and a paper started printing. When it finished there was a thunk sound.

“It’s like a gum machine.” Jessica said reaching under a flap and pulling out a box wrapped with a small bow.

Josh took the printed paper and held it where both he and Jessica could read it. He read aloud, “You are truly meant to be together. You will withstand insurmountable odds and live a long and happy life together. Your love is pure. Love rating: ten out of ten.”

Jessica leaned back into Josh and looked up at him. “I knew we had the perfect love.”

“So did I.” Josh replied, kissing her.

“Can you see the six of us in an old age home? No teeth, wearing adult diapers, in love and really old.” Jessica asked.

“I can see it.” Josh said, “We’ll swap dentures for kicks. Open the gift.” Josh said indicating the box she held.

Jessica undid the bow, lifted the lid, and lifted a necklace from the box. A heart hung on it. Josh reached into the box and took out a piece of folded paper. Opening it he read, “Pure love, pure gold. This heart symbolizes your commitment to one another.”

“That’s so romantic.” Jessica said.

“Upstaged by a machine,” Josh muttered, “I was going to do this at the hotel.” He continued, reaching into his jacket pocket and pulling out a small box. Sinking to one knee he opened the lid of the box. In it Jessica saw a necklace with a gold heart on it, diamonds glistening in the light. “Jess, you have my heart. All of it. It’s yours. I love you more than life. Please wear this as a symbol of our love.”

“Oh Josh.” Jessica exclaimed, her eyes watering. “You have my heart too. I love you so much. Thank you.” She took the box and kissed Josh when he rose to his feet again. “Help me put it on.”

Josh helped her put on the necklace and then they meandered back to the hotel. Cuddling as they walked, Jessica running her fingers over the heart around her neck the whole way.

“I don’t have to draw you tonight, if you’re too tired.” Josh said when they were in the elevator of their hotel.

“No, I’m fine. Let’s do it.” Jessica said when they reached their floor.

“Okay in this room.” Josh said leading Jessica to a hotel room at the other end of the hall. Inside, Josh went to a bag on the coffee table. He pulled out a black garter belt, stockings and bra. “Do you mind changing in the bathroom?” Josh asked, “Otherwise I may start something that doesn’t involve drawing.”

“You may start something?” Jessica asked taking the undergarments and going to the bathroom.

“Yeah, there’s that too. You’re an animal when you get horny.” Josh said with a laugh. “Do you want some wine?”

“Please.” Jessica said and minutes later came out naked except for a few strips of material that just barely covered her butt and pussy cracks and her nipples.

“Christ.” Josh said looking for a moment like he was going to chuck the sketch pad he was holding and devour Jessica.

“Exactly.” Jessica said looking at the bulge in his crotch with longing.

“I left your wine on the coffee table.” Josh said.

Jessica nodded, took a sip of her wine and then said, “So where do you want me?”

“Let’s start with the sofa.” They spent the next hour with Josh directing Jessica on where to stand, sit or lie, positioning her arms and legs and then madly sketching her. He’d turned some music on but it must have been more for Jessica than himself because to Jessica he seemed far too focused on his work to even hear it.

“Last pose for tonight.” Josh said after arranging her, crouching on the sofa, legs and arms spread as if chained. He had her looking to the side. That and the fact that his back was to the door meant that neither one of them saw her other come in the room.

“Holy shit.” Angus growled. Both Jessica and Josh jumped. “No, don’t move.” Angus said when Jessica started to get up.

“What the hell are you doing?” Riley demanded.

“Drawings for my next comic.” Josh said and held up the sketch pad.

“Oh shit.” Scott muttered when he looked through the sketches and came in his pants. “Shit.” He repeated looking down at his crotch.

“I can clean you up Scott.” Jessica said. She was watching the men like she was going to devour them.

Scott locked eyes with Jessica. “We didn’t mean to interrupt. We heard the music …”

“We can come back.” Jim said in a tone that made it clear that wasn’t the option he wanted to take.

“We’re done.” Josh said, “With the sketching.” He put the sketch pad down on a dresser and joined the other men in staring at Jessica.

“Are you up to being fucked Jess?” Angus asked.

“Yes, please. And can you hurry up?” Jessica moaned.

She moaned louder when the men were on her and it wasn’t long before her screams filled the floor.

Jessica wasn’t aware when the frenzy ended. She must have passed out from sheer exhaustion at the end. But the nightmare woke her up in the bed in their main hotel room. As usual she was entangled with the men. The images and tortured screams of Angus and Mark reverberated in her head as she crawled out of bed and went to the bathroom. She found her pajamas, put them on and looked at the clock. Three o’clock. She wondered if anyone else was up too and decided to go down to the other floor and see. Opening the door to her room she found Don, Caleb and Quinn sitting in the hall.

As soon as they saw her they stood up.

“We figured you’d be up soon.” Don said. “Want to hang out in one of the rooms?”

“Yes. Which one?” Jessica asked.

Caleb motioned to the door of a room two doors down from her hotel room.

“We brought these for you.” Caleb said holding up six bottles in a cardboard box. “The girls tried them … they’re coolers and they really liked them. We thought you’d want to try.”

“Thanks.” Jessica said when Quinn had taken a bottle out opened it and handed it to her. “This has alcohol in it?” Jessica asked after a couple of sips.

“A shitload of it” Don said opening the hotel room door and motioning Jessica in ahead of him, Caleb and Quinn.

“Cards?” Quinn asked, holding a deck of cards up. “You get the sofa.” He added when Jessica nodded agreement. Quinn, Caleb and Don sat on the floor around the coffee table.

“Euchre?” Caleb asked and began to deal.

“So, Amanda told us something interesting tonight.” Quinn said and lifted his eyes from his cards to look at Jessica.

“Oh? What did she tell you?” Jessica asked when Caleb and Don looked at her too.

“She threw up after dinner last night.” Caleb said, “And then I caught her throwing up again tonight.” He added and there was something to his tone that made Jessica realize that this wasn’t a casual conversation. She looked around at the men and they were studying her in a not so subtle way.

“Is she okay?” Jessica asked.

“Yes. She said she throws up on purpose to keep her weight down.” Don said, and as soon as he said it the intensity with which he, Caleb and Quinn studied Jessica skyrocketed.

Jessica’s jaw dropped and she looked from one to the other.

“That’s awful. She shouldn’t be doing that. Is she going to stop?” Jessica asked.

“She says it’s part of her diet regime. Sometimes she throws up, sometimes she doesn’t eat.” Caleb said with a shrug.

“But how could no one notice that?” Jessica demanded. “Everyone is all over me if I so much as miss a crumb, but no one noticed Amanda starving herself or vomiting up her food?”

Something she said hit a nerve because all three of the men leaned forward.

“Amanda can take care of herself.” Don said, “No one would have a reason to notice something like that. But Jessica, Amanda seems to think that you may be following the same diet plan.”

“What? Me?” Jessica said completely surprised. “No. I’m just not hungry and my stomachs been … off. Honestly …” she added when the men stared at her.

“We’ll have to tell Riley and the others about this.” Quinn said watching Jessica for a reaction. “Part of our honesty agreement.”

Jessica nodded. “They’ll suggest getting Doc in to see her. At least I suggest it and I’ll mention it to them too. Bulimia and anorexia are serious illnesses. What?” Jessica asked when the men looked at her like she was nuts.

“We’re not going to tell them about her …” Caleb said slowly, “but about you.”

“But I told you, I’m not bulimic or anorexic.” Jessica said.

Caleb reached forward and wrapped his hand around her forearm. His hand encircled bone with hardly any flesh on it. “I find that hard to believe.”

Jessica stared at Caleb’s hand around her arm and then she nodded. “I can see how you might think that. And of course, if you’re worried about that, you have to tell my men, but I wouldn’t lie to you about it.”

“We know you wouldn’t, not intentionally.” Quinn said, “but it is an illness. You may really think you don’t have a problem.”

Jessica nodded again.

“You can’t keep doing this Jess.” Don said, “You’re going to disappear into nothing.” There was so much emotion in his voice that Jessica did a double take, and after looking at Quinn and Caleb her heart warmed. They really did care about her. More than just a little.

“I promise you, I’m fine. But I’m not so sure about Amanda. What are you going to do about her?” Jessica asked.

Caleb shrugged. “She says she doesn’t do it all the time and she seems healthy enough … she’s not disappearing before our eyes.”

“It doesn’t matter how healthy she seems.” Jessica said, “she’s sick. She needs help.”

“Well then it’s perfect.” Quinn said, “the two of you can get help together.”

Jessica blinked at him. “I don’t understand why you’re so concerned about me but not Amanda. My eating habits are under constant scrutiny by all of you, and absolutely no one notices Amanda’s. What about Leah, Sara and Justine? If Amanda is starving and purging herself it’s likely they are too. Don’t you care?”

Caleb, Don and Quinn looked from one another back to Jessica.

“Of course we care Jess. But, they can take care of themselves.” Don said.

“And I can’t?” Jessica asked.

“Most definitely not.” Quinn said, “Hey, take that pout off your face.” He said pointing at her. “You have this unfortunate affliction in which you sacrifice for everyone but yourself. I don’t think there’s any kind of cure for that. All we can do is manage it and that requires us … the family, to make sure you don’t do anything stupid.”

“Exactly.” Caleb said nodding. “In fact, I wouldn’t be surprised if you’re not eating because there isn’t enough food in the world and you want to make sure there’s enough for the starving kids in Africa.”

Jessica looked at the men for a moment. Too surprised to know what to say.

“Don’t give her any ideas.” Don said but only looked like he was half joking.

“Well, okay.” Jessica said. “I’m really not sure how to feel about this. I think I’m pretty good at taking care of myself, and I don’t know how you can be so nonchalant about the girls. They need and deserve just as much of your protection as I do.”

“Trust me Jess, they’re fine.” Caleb said.

A knock at the door caused Jessica to jump.

“It’s just someone else who can’t sleep. We agreed we’d meet in this room.”

Don opened the door for her men.

“Good timing.” Don said as the men filed in. Jessica stood up to let Angus sit and then she settled on his lap. Riley, Scott and Jim sat on either side of them and Josh fell into one of the chairs.

“Good timing for what?” Riley asked.

“For the conversation we’re having.” Quinn said and proceeded to bring them up-to-date on the discussion. When Quinn mentioned bulimia and anorexia Jessica couldn’t help but slouch down on Angus’ lap. Angus tightened his hug, and Riley, Scott, Jim and Josh looked at Jessica like she’d personally reached in their chests and ripped out their hearts.

“I know you don’t believe me.” Jessica said when Quinn had finished talking and silence hung in the air, “But I’ve never been an eater. Ever. I don’t need much food. And if I’m stressed about something I can’t keep food down. Plus, lately, food just hasn’t been tasting the same. I’m really not trying to diet or anything else, I’m just not hungry.”

“I believe you Jess.” Riley said. “It doesn’t really matter what the reason is, Doc should be checking you over. He mentioned annual exams a while ago and we said that when you’d recovered from the shooting you’d have one. Even with things being weird with Paul, we’ll call Doc when we get home. Get you an annual checkup and maybe that will tell us why food doesn’t taste good to you. Okay?”

Jessica nodded, relieved. “I’d like the girls to get annual checkups too. I don’t think they’ve ever had any.”

“Talk to them about it.” Riley said, “Doc did say he’d do it for all of you.”

Jessica nodded and then patted Angus arm. “I need to go to the bathroom.” She said tilting her head against his chest and looking up at him. He nodded and let her go.

“What are we going to do about her?” Angus said when Jessica disappeared into the bathroom, “She has to eat.”

“You know, she said she’s never been an eater. Maybe we should see how much she’d eat if she were left to her own devices?” Jim said. “Just to get a baseline.”

“We could.” Scott agreed, “If we didn’t interfere, just let her eat when she wanted to we’d have an idea of what she’d be eating if we weren’t forcing her.”

“Let’s do it today.” Angus said.

“But Angus, tonight is your night with her. Do you want to take a chance on ruining it?” Josh asked, “It may not be a lot of fun. I suspect that she won’t eat a lot.”

“No, let’s do it. I need to know. If you consider what we did to her when we thought she was starving herself on purpose … before … at the beginning …” his voice trailed off.

“What did you guys do?” Quinn asked.

“Forced her to eat.” Josh said sounding and looking haunted by the memory.

“Physically.” Scott said.

“As in, I beat the shit out of her.” Angus said, slumping, looking destroyed.

“You guys were fucking assholes.” Don stated and looked disgusted with them.

“Yes, we were.” Riley agreed.

“You don’t know the half of it.” Angus said. “Except for Jim.” He looked up at Jim. “Thank God you’re a decent person or it would’ve been so much worse for her.”

“If I were a decent person I would have got her the hell out there.” Jim said, “So don’t look at me like I’m a saint. I’m not.”

“So we’re not going to make sure Jess eats today?” Caleb asked, “I don’t really like that idea.”

“I’m not crazy about it either.” Riley said. “But it’s one day. She’s not going to die if she doesn’t eat much in one day … right?”

“But that whole feed her while she’s distracted thing was working really well. Should we really stop that now?” Josh asked.

“I need to know what she would do without our interference.” Angus said. “I guess to get a real idea we’d need to leave her alone for a few days but I’m not willing to go that long. Just today.”

“Fine. But if that’s what you’re going to do you should tell Sean and Abe or they’re going to spend all day shovelling food down her throat.” Caleb said.

“We’ll tell everyone.” Riley said.

Jessica returned from the bathroom, clearly in deep thought. She barely noticed any of them, walked over and absentmindedly lowered herself onto Angus’ lap.

Riley cleared his throat. “Jess, you’re not alone anymore …” he added when she looked up at him.

“Oh, right.” She said when she realized she’d been chewing her lip, in thought. “I’m just worried about Amanda. There were a few girls in Cain’s class that had eating disorders and things didn’t go well.”

“Cain?” Quinn asked.

“My brother.” Jessica said.

“I thought your brother was Marcus.”

“I had three brothers. Jeffery, Cain and Marcus.” Jessica replied.

“Oh.” Quinn said, “Sorry, I didn’t know. You were saying?”

“Well, they were in and out of hospitals. I think one even died.” Jessica said.

“Died.” Jim said, “From an eating disorder.”

Jessica nodded. “I guess there are tons of complications. That’s why you guys need to be more worried about Amanda.” She added looking at Caleb, Don and Quinn, “It’s really not a benign illness.”

“We should be worried about Amanda?” Don said, “Sure. Look Doc will check all of you over, okay? If there’s anything wrong, we’ll know. Don’t worry.”

Jessica nodded. Angus pulled her against him. “Jess, I think we should go to bed, you look really tired.”

“Okay.” Jessica said.

“You still look worried.” Josh observed.

“I just wonder what the girls make of the fact that you all worry about me so much but are so casual about them. Eating disorders can be a way to get attention. They may be craving your attention and probably resenting me in the process.”

“Jess, I haven’t seen a single thing that would indicate that the girls resent you in any way. They love you to death, you know that.” Riley said.

“But to be safe, and if it’ll make you feel better, we’ll pay more attention to them.” Caleb said, “Okay?”

Jessica nodded, “Thanks.”

“Better get to bed then.” Quinn said getting up and kissing her on the forehead, “See you tomorrow.”

Caleb and Don did the same and they walked with her and the men back to the other suite before heading down to their own room.

“I don’t think I can finish this.” Jessica said holding up the cooler she’d been drinking. “Can one of you?”

Scott took the drink from her hand, Angus scooped her up and carried her to the bedroom, the others following.

“It’s good isn’t it?” Jessica asked when she saw Scott take a chug from the cooler and then look at the bottle in surprise.

“Yeah.” He handed the bottle to Jim so he could try it.

By the time all of the men had tasted the cooler Jessica was fast asleep.

“I’ll go down and talk to Sean and Abe about Jess and the plan.” Riley said.

None of the other men argued. They were so tired that they barely got organized on the bed before they were asleep and no one noticed Riley return.

“You’re sure this is a good idea?” Leah asked the next morning. The boys had already been dropped off at the club and the adults were gathered in Jessica and men’s room for breakfast. Jessica was in the bathroom showering.

“It’s just for today.” Corey said. “But you should eat. A lot.” And he wrapped his arms around her, squeezing her.

“What the hell has gotten into you?” Leah asked pushing away from him.

“What do you mean?” Corey asked.

“I mean, you’ve been all over me, all morning. Talking about food, hugging me, following me around. What’s going on?” Leah said.

“You too?” Justine asked and eyed Chris and Mark, both of whom were holding her hands.

“Seriously.” Amanda said when Don and Caleb stood caressing each of her hands in both of theirs.

“What’s going on?” Sara demanded from Sean.

“Well … Jessica was worried that you may resent her because we worry more about her then you.” Quinn said.

“Of course she did.” Leah said, “Unbelievable.”

“And she’s worried that you may be sick, if you don’t eat. Or eat and throw up.” Caleb added.

“I don’t do that.” Leah said.

“Me neither.” Justine and Sara said in unison.

“I’m not sick.” Amanda, “It’s a diet. Seriously! And you know Jessica. She worries about things that don’t need to be worried about. I don’t resent her. I feel about her just like you do.” She added looking around at the men. “And we,” she said indicating Leah, Sara and Justine, “worry about her just as much as you do.”

“But we’ll talk to her about it.” Justine said, “Or she’ll worry about it too much.”

“Jessica wants all of you girls to get a physical by Doc.” Riley said.

Sara sighed. “I know, Sean already mentioned that. That’s fine with me. Better safe than sorry, really.”

“Why do I need to see Doc?” Amanda said, “I already said I wasn’t sick.”

“If you’re not sick then there’s no problem getting checked out.” Quinn said.

“Besides, Doc said women are supposed to have annual exams.” Corey said.

“So are men.” Leah replied. “If we get an exam, so do you. All of you.”

“Fine.” Corey said.

“Amanda?” Jim asked.

“Fine.” Amanda snapped, her arms were crossed over her chest. “But I think we should get back to worrying about Jessica and leave us out of it.”

“Okay. If you’re sure you’re happy with the way things are.” Don said.

“Ecstatic.” Amanda said.

“So back to my original question.” Leah said, “Is letting Jessica starve herself all day a good idea?”

“None of us know what her normal eating habits are.” Angus said. “Let’s just see what she does when she’s left alone.”

“If we go along with this.” Abe said, “Sean and I get to feed her the way we want tomorrow, even if it means tying her to a chair all day. We get to do what we need to until we feel satisfied. Deal?”

“Okay.” Angus agreed, the other men nodding.

“Do beverages count?” Jim asked, “I always get her a coffee in the morning.”

“Let’s just worry about food.” Riley said just as Jessica came out of the bedroom.

“Coffee?” Jim asked after Jessica greeted everyone.

“Yes please.” Jessica said. “What are we going to do today?”

“You mean after breakfast?” Amanda asked having stacked a plate full of food and coming to sit on the sofa next to Jessica.

“Um, yes.” Jessica said watching Amanda shovel food into her mouth. “Thanks.” She said to Jim when he brought her a cup of coffee and sat down beside her. Jessica watched Amanda for a few minutes and rather than look relieved that she was eating, she looked concerned.

“I’m eating …” Amanda said to Jessica, “see? Not starving myself …”

“And you’re not going to puke it up after either, right?” Quinn said rolling his eyes toward Jessica when Amanda looked at him.

“No … right. Keeping it all

down. Honest.”

That seemed to satisfy Jessica and she leaned back against Jim and drank her coffee.

“I was thinking,” Jessica said, “that we should take the boys to that human circus this afternoon.”

“Good idea.” Josh said, “They’ll like that.”

“And this morning I thought we could go to the Louvre.” Leah said. “They have some special exhibits on.”

Everyone agreed. Jessica drained her coffee and stood up.

“More coffee?” she asked Jim.

“Thanks.” He handed her his cup and watched Jessica go to the coffee urn that was right next to the food trolley. Jessica poured the coffees and eyed the food. Picking up a piece of cheese she took a bite, looked at it with a wrinkled nose and surprised expression, and threw it away. She scanned the food again, picked up a grape, ate it, looked unimpressed, shrugged her shoulders and picked up the coffee cups.

“You said you wanted more, right?” Jessica asked Jim, misunderstanding the look of disappointment on his face.

“Right, thanks.” He said taking the cup, wrapping his arm around her when she settled against him again and exchanging unhappy glances with the other men.

“Shouldn’t we go?” Jessica asked when the adults lingered over breakfast for too long hoping Jessica would eat something. “We’re running out of time.”

“Right. Okay.” Riley said and they left for the Louvre.

The rest of the day went the same way. Jessica would try some food, make a face and push it away. By the time Angus had her to himself he was desperate to feed her something. He’d had other plans but decided to take her to a restaurant instead.

It was expensive and quiet. Angus managed to get a table in a corner and they ordered fondue.

“What’s wrong?” Jessica asked when Angus looked lost when Jessica repeatedly refused the food.

“Jess, we left you alone today. We didn’t try to feed you and didn’t mention eating, not once. All day. And you didn’t eat a thing all day.” Angus said.

“Yes I did …”

“A bit of cheese, one grape and a twelfth of a bagel does not count as eating.” Angus grumbled.

“I’m sorry.” Jessica said, “But everything tastes so … blah. Like sand. I just can’t find anything that I want to eat.” She reached across the table and took his hand. “I’m really not hungry.”

“Jess …” Angus said, overcome with desperation. He was prepared to beg, when he noticed a quartet of violinists going from table to table, playing.

He raised his hand and the violinists moved to them. Angus slid his chair to the other side of the table, next to Jessica’s and as soon as her attention was on the musicians he started shoveling food into her mouth.

By the time the musicians moved on, with a huge tip in hand, Jessica had eaten almost all of her share of the food.

“They were so good!” Jessica said but paused when she saw Angus’ expression. “Please don’t worry so much.”

“Last night you said you were never much of an eater.” Angus said, “And you’re not eating now, and clearly not out of defiance. So … when you refused to eat before, when we first brought you home, you weren’t being defiant either. Were you?”

“Actually I was. It was a convenient way to fight back. I mean, I really wasn’t hungry … but I definitely wouldn’t have eaten for you even if I had been.” Jessica said.

“We hurt you so much …” Angus said his voice breaking.

“But Angus, I just told you, I purposely didn’t eat back then.” Jessica said.

“I know. That doesn’t change or excuse what we did. What I did.”

“No it doesn’t. But I don’t care. I forgave you, remember?” Jessica asked leaning in to him, laying her head on his chest and looking up at him.

“You did.” Angus said nodding. “I think you’re being far too easy on us though … on me.”

“You know, I hurt you too back then. I broke your nose, at least once. Scratched you, bit you, I shot Scott. I think you’re forgetting that.”

“Not the same thing Jess.” Angus said.

“What can I do to make you feel better about all of that?” Jessica asked.

“Nothing. And you don’t need to worry about it.” Angus said.

“There has to be something.” Jessica said.

“I thought that letting Earl and his band of psychos rape me in order to save you would do it, but it didn’t.” Angus said, “Maybe if you hurt me yourself it’d work.”

“No …” Jessica began but then stopped. She studied Angus’ face. ¬ “So, if I hurt you, you think you’ll stop feeling guilty?”

“It’ll help.” Angus said. “To be honest I don’t know if I’ll ever stop feeling guilty but I’ll feel less guilty if there’s been some payback for you.”

“What would I have to do?” Jessica asked paling.

“Nothing physical Jess, don’t worry. Christ I’m an ass. I just keep finding new ways to torture you. There’s nothing for you to do, don’t worry. The most painful thing you could do to me is to cut me out of your life. And I’m far too greedy and cowardly to let you do that. Look, forget I said anything okay? This is supposed to be our honeymoon. We’re supposed to have fun. There’s an operetta starting in half an hour. Do you want to go?”

“An operetta? You want to go to an operetta?” Jessica asked, shocked.

“Okay, maybe there’s a hint of masochism in that. But you enjoy them and I really want to do something you enjoy.” Angus said.

“I enjoy a lot of things Angus. I’d rather do something that you enjoy too. You know what?” she said snapping her fingers and pointing at him, “I have just the thing.”

“What is it?” Angus asked.

Jessica smiled, “It’s a surprise. Come on.” She said taking Angus’ hand.

Twenty minutes later they were at a go carting track.

“Excellent idea.” Angus said clearly preferring the go carts to the operetta.

“And this is the best part … they have carts where one person steers and the other person works the gas and break. We can literally race together.” Jessica said.

“That’s … different.” Angus said.

“And I read on the website that they have two tracks. One for just fooling around, and another to race against times. If you get the fastest time you win a thousand dollars.”

“You don’t say.” Angus said pulling her to him. And kissing her lips.

“I do say, and I think that thousand dollars is our for the taking.” Jessica said hugging and kissing him back.

“And what will we do with it when we win it?” Angus asked.

“Save it … for something big. Like our own race track.” Jessica said.

“I like the way you think.” Angus said suddenly getting serious. He kissed her again. With his tongue, a long, long, kiss that left them breathless when they came up for air. “Let’s race before we start something we can’t finish in public.”

Jessica nodded and taking Angus’ hand, led him to the admission window.

“Do you want to steer or work the pedals?” Angus asked when they stood looking at the go cart.

“Let’s do it twice so we each get a turn to do one or the other.” Jessica said. “I’ll steer this time.”

They got in the car, and by the time they made it to the start line they’d figured out how to co-ordinate the steering and pedalling. They beat the fastest time, collected their thousand dollars and went again. They beat their previous fastest time and collected another thousand dollars.

“Too bad they limit the wins to two per pair per day.” Jessica said.

“Excuse me.” A man wearing an employee uniform said. “We usually give our winners a trophy. Unfortunately we only have one left, and you won twice. We do however have this car charm from the resort jeweler. We keep it here as advertisement for the jewellery story but I think you should have it in place of the trophy. It has a small diamond in it, a couple of rubies and an emerald.” He held it out to Jessica.

“It’s beautiful.” Jessica said taking it.

“Two grand!” Angus exclaimed as they made their way back to the hotel.

“And a trophy.” Jessica said holding the car charm up.

“And a trophy.” Angus agreed.

“I know we said we’d save a thousand for a race track.” Jessica said, “Why don’t we do that and use the other thousand tomorrow? We could take the boys out of the club for the day and all go parasailing.”

“Fuck yes! You’re a genius.” Angus said as they entered the hotel suite.

“A sexy genius.” Scott said coming up behind Jessica and bringing his hands to her tits.

Jessica moaned, leaned back against Scott and whispered, “Hurry up!” when Riley and Jim started to take her pants off.

“I think it’s time for the hot tub again.” Josh said.

“Maybe we’ll push your pussy up against the jets again.” Angus hissed in her ear, “Watch your legs twitch … I can hardly wait.”

They spent over an hour in the tub, just barely having the strength to get out of the hot tub and drop haphazardly onto the bed before falling to sleep.

Jessica woke up just as a scream threatened to escape her. Images of Earl bringing the hammer down on Angus’ teeth remained seared in her mind as she went to the bathroom, put on pajamas and headed to the hotel suite door. Opening it she found Mark and Chris sitting in the hallway.

They got to their feet as Jessica closed the door behind her.

“Hey.” They greeted.

“Hi. Are you okay?” Jessica asked. They looked out of sorts. Mark more than Chris but they were both definitely not their normal selves.

“No. Not really.” Mark said.

“Let me get a key for one of the rooms.” Jessica said reaching for the door handle. “And we can talk.”

“We have a key.” Chris said holding one up.

“Okay, let’s go.” Jessica said taking one of each of their hands.

“Want a cooler?” Mark asked. He’d gone straight to the bar and the coolers from the night before were sitting on top.

“Please.” Jessica said.

He took one for her and brought a bottle of whiskey and a couple of shot glass for himself and Chris.

Jessica sat between Mark and Chris and they clinked their drinks together. Jessica sipped hers, Mark and Chris tossed back theirs. Mark poured another shot for each of them and they tossed them back too. Mark slammed his shot glass onto the coffee table, planted his elbows on his knees and dropped his head into this hands.

“What’s going on?” Jessica asked looking from Mark, to Chris.

“I don’t even know where to begin.” Chris said. “I never saw this coming, never.”

“What? What happened?” Jessica asked, getting worried.

“I’m not doing so good.” Mark said. “I thought I’d get over Earl. I mean, shit happens right? But I’m not getting over it. I have nightmares, I feel … dirty. And now, I’m developing performance issues, if you get my drift.”

“I’m so sorry.” Jessica said.

“Don’t be. You have nothing to be sorry about and you’ve been through this too. Probably worse than me because it was so prolonged. I mean, I just need to know how you got over it so I can too.”

“It took a really long time to get to where I am now with the men. Over two years.” Jessica said.

“Don’t you hate them?” Mark asked suddenly crying, “The men? They beat you, raped you. I hate Earl … so goddamned much.”

Mark dropped his head into this hands again and sobbed. Jessica wrapped her arms around him.

“I did hate them. Back then. But a lot has happened between them and me since then. Our situations are the same yet different in so many ways and there’s no reason for you to wait over two years to deal with it. I think it’s crucial that you see that rape crisis counsellor, like we discussed. Right away.”

Mark nodded his head.

Jessica got the box of tissues from the bedroom and passed them to Mark as she sat down between him and Chris again and wrapped her arms around Mark.

“I’m sorry that there’s no magic solution to this.” Jessica said. “And Justine is just going to have to be patient.”

Mark’s sobs turned into laughs as he wiped his eyes. “That’s another problem.” He said and turned to look at Chris. Jessica did too and found him watching her and Mark with a lost expression on his face.

“Justine …” Chris began, looking completely bewildered, “wants Mark and I to fuck.”

“Oh.” Jessica said and for a few minutes she was at a complete loss for words.

“She says it turns her on. The idea of us kissing and shit …” Chris added, shaking his head in disbelief.

“But, um, she knows about the issues you’re having, right?” she asked Mark.

Mark nodded. “She thinks it may help.”

“She calls it therapeutic.” Chris said once again looking like he couldn’t comprehend what was happening.

“Therapeutic …” Jessica repeated feeling as lost as Chris apparently felt.

“She says that’s how you got over it. By having good sex with the men.” Mark said.

“Screaming good sex.” Chris added.

“Well, I guess that’s kind of true.” Jessica said, “But Chris isn’t even gay.” Jessica added looking at Chris, “How does Justine think that you’ll want to do this?”

“She says that if I love Mark, I’ll do it.” Chris said.

“That’s not fair.” Jessica said.

“She says if we don’t want to that’s okay. It’s just a fantasy of hers … but it would help Mark. Good sex with another man would help him get off.” Chris added.

“That’s … that’s, tough.” Jessica said and took several long drinks from her cooler, shaking it when liquid stopped coming out.

“Another?” Chris asked.

Jessica nodded so he got her another bottle.

She was half way through the second bottle when she finally asked, “So what are you going to do?”

“Try to get over it.” Mark said.

“No, we know what we’re doing about the rape. You’re getting counselling. I mean, what are you going to do about Justine’s fantasy?” Jessica asked.

“I’m fucked if I know.” Chris said. “I mean I do care about Mark. Obviously. I don’t want him to suffer. But sex with a man … I don’t know.”

“Do you want me to talk to Justine?” Jessica asked. “I can tell her that she needs to give you time to get over it in your own way, and that forcing you to sleep together is just going to cause more problems. I mean, Chris would never get over being forced to do that.”

“Maybe you talking to her would help.” Chris said, “She seems set on the idea that you were saved by sex and that Mark can be too.”

Jessica took a long drink of her cooler. “The problem,” Jessica said, “is that it’s true. Scott got me to enjoy sex, that made a huge difference. But that was man and woman sex. I can’t see how same gender sex with a partner who is not gay or bisexual can be helpful to anyone. But, maybe Scott is the best person to ask about that. Sex is his area of expertise.”

Mark and Chris nodded.

“God help me,” Chris said, “but I never expected to be in this kind of a situation.”

Mark leaned against Jessica, Chris did too, and they sat huddled together, thinking. The room door opened and Jessica’s men came in, stopping when they saw the three of them slumped together.

“What’s going on?” Angus demanded.

“We’re stumped.” Jessica said.

“About?” Jim asked pulling a chair in front of the sofa. Sitting in it he leaned forward to look at Jessica, Mark and Chris.

“Grab some shot glasses.” Mark said lifting the whiskey bottle.

The men got shot glasses, pulled up chairs and after they were seated with a couple of shots of whiskey in their bellies, they looked from Jessica, to Mark, Chris and back to Jessica expectantly.

“Ah, um, okay.” Jessica said, “Mark, maybe you should start.”

Mark nodded. “I’m not dealing well with what Earl did to me. I’m going to see if I can get rape counselling, like Elsie’s getting. But, Justine seems to think that it would help me get better if …” he slid his eyes over to Chris.

“She wants Mark and I to fuck.” Chris said.

“She what?” Riley demanded.

“It’s her fantasy, but she also thinks it’ll be therapeutic for me.” Mark said and seemed to sag even more against Jessica.

“Shit.” Josh said.

“I guess it could work.” Scott said.

“But Chris isn’t gay.” Jessica said.

“He doesn’t have to be.” Scott said. “I mean sex is sex.” He added when everyone looked at him in surprise. “If you don’t consider the gender of the person, kissing someone is the same no matter who does it and who receives it”

“Fine, you fuck Mark.” Chris grumbled.

“I’m just saying that it’s doable.” Scott said, “Not that I want to do it … no offense Mark.”

“It’s fine. I’m happy having nothing to do with sex right now.” Mark said.

“Did you have any suggestions?” Angus asked Jessica.

“No.” Jessica said, “Except that I could talk to Justine and suggest that she give Mark time to get better. We were hoping Scott would have a suggestion.”

“Maybe I will tomorrow.” Scott said, “But tonight I just want Jessica to come back to bed. It’s fucking late.”

“Yeah.” Mark said when Jessica yawned. He kissed her cheek and so did Chris. “If you don’t mind we’re going to stay and drink for a while.” Mark said.

“No problem. Night.” Riley said when Jessica got up and moved into his arms.

“Justine got the idea of Mark and Chris having sex as therapeutic from what we did, didn’t she?” Scott asked as the men arranged themselves around Jessica on the bed.

“Yes.” Jessica said with a yawn.

“I’m glad I’m not Chris right now.” Angus said. “But if you’re not too tired …” Angus added, sliding his hand up Jessica’s leg, slipping his finger between her pussy lips and stroking, “I wouldn’t mind making you scream some more.”

Jessica parted her legs.

“Please …” Jessica pleaded. Angus lowered his mouth to her pussy, Riley slid his fingers between her bum cheeks and circled her asshole with them before he started sliding them in and out. Scott and Josh each took a tit teasing and pulling her nipples, making her gasp. Jessica took Scott and Josh’s cock each in one hand and stroked.

Jim traced her lips with his fingers, faster, harder, until he finally slid them in her mouth, almost down her throat, and she sucked them and just before he came he slid his cock in her mouth, she screamed and swallowed his load at the same time, working hard to not choke.

As the other men exploded Jessica sat up, pushed Riley on his chest until he lay back and proceed to lick him clean, which made him hard again. Jessica sucked him off, swallowed his load and licked him clean and then moved on to Angus doing the same for him. Then Josh, Jim and Scott. The men let her, the whole time stroking, poking, licking, eating, her to orgasm. By the time everyone had cum several times they were too tired to rearrange themselves on the bed. Angus fell to sleep with his face on her pussy. Scott and Jim with their hands on her tits. Jessica had her head next to Riley’s butt where she’d been licking his asshole and Josh had his toe still between her butt cheeks, his big toe in her asshole.

The next morning Jessica was awaken by Angus nipping her clitoris.

“Good morning.” Scott said when she opened her eyes and moaned. Scott clutched her tit, hard, and pulled it. “Ready for some more?”

“Yes master.” Jessica replied and kissed Scott.

“We have half an hour.” Angus growled replacing his teeth with his finger on her clit, “I went down already to tell everyone about the parasailing. They’ll be here for breakfast soon.”

“Okay.” Jessica panted.

“But I want you on all fours.” Angus ordered, getting up and taking her by the waist, flipping her. He slid between her legs, face up and Jessica lowered her pussy to his face and moaned as his tongue and teeth worked their magic.

Jim parted her butt cheeks and licked her asshole, sliding his tongue into it making Jessica moan more. Josh and Riley rubbed their cocks against her tits, Scott slid his cock into her mouth. Just when Jessica was nearly ready to cum Angus slid up on the bed until his cock slid into her pussy. Jim slid into her asshole, and they all exploded, Josh and Riley all over her. Jessica swallowed Scott’s load, mewing with satisfaction as she licked him clean.

“To the bathroom.” Riley said, running his hands over Jessica’s tits, rubbing his and Josh’s cum into her skin. “I want you over the side of the tub …”

“Yes master …” and they took her in every possible way in the bathroom. Jessica swallowed all of their loads.

“I wish you ate food as well as you eat our cum.” Scott said, rubbing Jessica’s chin as she licked his shaft and testicles clean. She was half in the shower stall, half out and began panting as Jim, who was in the shower stall ate her out, Riley, also in the stall slid his cock in her asshole, and Josh and Angus, outside the tub, poked, prodded, squished and pulled her tits. A scream escaped her just as a knock sounded on the hotel suite door.

“I guess we’re late.” Angus grumbled looking at the bathroom door.

“Damn it.” Scott growled still rubbing Jessica’s jaw, slipping his thumb into her mouth intermittently, “I’d love to just spend all day in here, fucking you.”

“Mhmmm.” Jessica agreed while sucking his thumb.

“Better get cleaned up.” Riley said lifting Jessica to her feet by her armpits. “I can’t wait till tonight.” He whispered in her ear as he soaped her tits.

Riley and Jim washed her, and then themselves. Scott replaced them in the shower stall and Josh and Angus helped Riley and Jim towel Jessica off, a low growl escaping Angus when Jessica’s legs twitched as he dried her pussy.

“Come on.” Jim said guiding Jessica out of the bathroom by her arm, “Or we’ll be fucking again.”

Riley was dressed first and went to let the others in.

When Jessica and Jim followed a moment later, they found Rick, Abe, Sean, Corey, Leah and Sara.

“The others will be up in a minute …” Corey was saying, “morning Jess.” He added and gave Jessica an amused smile.

“All clean?” Rick asked, smiling too.

“Yes, thank you.” Jessica said and was really impressed that her face didn’t explode into a bright red. Not even a blush appeared. That didn’t go unnoticed and everyone seemed pretty impressed too.

“I’ll order breakfast.” Sean said and picked up the phone.

“Leah and I are going to try go-carting tonight.” Corey said dropping onto the sofa, “Thanks for springing for the parasailing.” He added looking at Jessica and Angus, who appeared behind Jessica, wrapping his arms around her.

“You’re welcome.” Jessica said as Angus planted a kiss on the side of her head and moved to allow Scott to take over hugging her.

“The boys are going nuts about it.” Abe said to Jessica, “When they get up here they’ll be all over you.”

And he wasn’t wrong. Five minutes later the door opened and the boys and the remainder of the adults came in.

For several minutes Scott and Jessica fielded questions from the boys about parasailing but then the food arrived and the boys attacked it like they hadn’t eaten in days. And that gave Jessica time to notice how tense Justine, Mark and Chris were. And at the food cart Amanda, Caleb, Don and Quinn seemed to be arguing.

“You can’t solve all of their problems you know.” Scott said into Jessica’s ear as he followed her gaze as she looked between the two sets of people.

“I know.” Jessica said, “But I can help, right?”

“Okay, why don’t you go talk to them.” Scott said, “But ultimately they have to work it out on their own.”

Jessica nodded, kissed Scott’s cheek and moved to Justine, Chris and Mark since they were closest to her.

“Jess.” Sean called as she neared the group, “Come see this special on the Louvre.” Sean was seated on the sofa, a plate of food on his lap, pointing at the TV.

“In a sec.” Jessica replied holding a finger up.

Sean looked put out but said, “Make it a quick sec. You got off the hook with eating yesterday … You won’t be so lucky today.” He added. Jessica paused. Both his expression and tone made it pretty clear that he believed Jessica to be purposely not eating. She fought the urge to convince him otherwise, fairly sure he’d be hard to convince. Instead she decided to try and clear things up with Justine and Amanda as quickly as she could. Something about Sean’s demeanor gave her the impression that he wouldn’t wait for long.

“Morning.” Jessica greeted. The three turned to look at her in surprise.

“Morning Jess.” Justine said, a fake smile plastered on her face. “This parasailing thing is so cool. Thanks for inviting us.”

“You’re welcome. Um, can I talk to you?” Jessica asked Justine just as Sean called, “Jess, come on.”

“You’d better go eat Jess, before Sean has an aneurysm … we can talk later.” Justine said beaming at her. Jessica got the sense that Justine didn’t want to talk about Chris and Mark with her. “But Justine I know about …”

“Jess, now!” Sean called and it was evident that he’d lost his patience.

“Tell me later Jess.” Justine said, “The last thing you want is Sean on the war path.”


A whistle cut the murmur of conversation. Jessica looked up to find Abe bringing his fingers down from his mouth. “What part of now do you not get?” Abe demanded, “We’ve gotta leave for the beach in twenty minutes. If you want to go you need to eat now.” He ended, pointing at Sean and the sofa.

Jessica glanced back at Justine, who had a suspiciously large smile plastered to her face and nodded encouragingly. Scanning to Amanda, she found her watching Jessica with curiosity. When Jessica met her eyes she motioned to Sean with her head.

A glance around made it clear that her men were losing their patience too. Riley looked on the verge of going to get her.

Jessica sighed and went to sit next to Sean. Abe sat himself on her other side.

Sean turned the volume up on the TV with one hand and fed Jessica a croissant with the other.

Jessica didn’t pay as much attention to the TV as she normally would have, but observing Justine, Chris, Mark, Amanda, Caleb, Quinn and Don’s unhappiness worked to distract her equally well. By the time Jessica finished eating Sean and Abe were happier than pigs in poo but Jessica felt guilty. She knew things about both Justine and Amanda that they may not have wanted her to know. And she had no idea when she’d be alone with either one of them long enough to tell them she knew.

But Jessica had little time to brood. Excitement about the parasailing skyrocketed as final packing was done. The men had the remaining breakfast food bagged up for them to take for the day. Food was part of the parasailing package but they thought extra food was a good idea given how much the boys were eating. Bathing suits, which for the girls continued to consist of shorts and t-shirts, towels and sunscreen were packed and within half an hour they were on their way to the beach.

Four people could go in a boat at a time in addition the driver, an instructor, and a spotter – the person who notified the driver if the parasailers needed to come down - so they had rented eight boats and appropriate levels of staff.

They spent an hour on the beach learning the techniques of parasailing on the ground. The plan was to go up a few times hooked to an instructor and then later go alone.

As they practiced, it became obvious that the eight female spotters were completely in lust with all of the men. They looked like they were in their early twenties and they couldn’t seem to stop staring. Jessica couldn’t blame them. The men were in their bathing suits after all and even being married to her men she couldn’t stop staring at them in awe herself.

As usual, her men didn’t seem to notice the attention they were getting from the girls and Jessica didn’t think any of the other men noticed either, but Amanda got angrier and angrier as time went on.

Jim, Angus, and Josh were in the same boat as Jessica and therefore practiced with her and their instructor. Riley and Scott were in a boat with Max and Reese and practiced right next to Jessica. So they helped each other a lot, repeating the instructions, terminology etc. together so when Amanda finally lost her temper Jessica had her men standing around her.

“Just so you know …” Amanda stated in a terse tone, “all of these men are spoken for.” She directed the statement to the spotter from her boat named Julia but when everyone stopped to look at her she expanded her gaze to the other spotters. “I’m engaged to these three.” She said indicating Don, Caleb and Quinn who stood next to her and looked completely stunned. “Justine is engaged to those two.” Amanda nodded at Mark and Chris, “Sara to Sean, Leah to Corey, and Jessica is married to those five. So none of these men are available to you or anyone else. Understood?”

Julia stuttered for a moment so Amanda glared at the other women, “Understood?” she repeated and the other women nodded but eyed Jessica, Justine and Amanda with curiosity and what looked like disbelief.

Jessica looked to her men to see their reaction and was surprised to see them looking pretty happy. They were eyeing the boat drivers and instructors and nodding whenever a driver or instructor made eye contact with them. Jessica shrugged to herself. There was no understanding them. First they wanted to hide their relationship and now they seemed overwhelmingly happy to make it clear that they were married, even going so far as to each take a turn kissing Jessica.

Within the hour they were out on the water, taking turns parasailing with their instructors.

They quickly graduated to parasailing alone and had great fun.

Three quarters of the day went by quickly and by mid-afternoon they were taking meal breaks on the beach.

Jessica held off going for lunch as long as she could but it wasn’t long before Abe took her hand and dragged her to the blanket on the beach.

...continued in chapter 9b

Rating: 86%, Read 12020 times, Posted Nov 03, 2014

Fiction | Blowjob, Consensual Sex, Group Sex, Stockholm Syndrome


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