a house for my heart

"I didn't want to tell you about Maggie over the phone," he said.

I sneered, pouring myself a glass of moscato from the counter. "What's that supposed to be, your apology?" He grimaced as he stood up from the tiny table with a disgruntled sigh. I would've been kinder if I had the stomach for things, but I couldn't just yet. Not when I knew the magnitude of my newfound knowledge. It wasn't until he had let himself into my cramped Brooklyn apartment that he realized what I had discovered. He had picked my crumpled body up from the kitchen floor with sympathetic ease, lay me on my unmade bed, and wrapped me in his burly embrace until my sobs subsided into light snores. Now that the hours had faded on and I could articulate more than one sentence at a time without falling into myself, he was subject to more than just my thanks.

"Nobody ever tells me shit. They always made me the last to know down there, and here I am hearing Maggie's been chopped to pieces days after the fact."

Finishing his can of beer he set it on the table and crumpled it with brow-raising ease before tossing it into the trashcan by the fridge. "Fuck that. Listen here, sugar. You ain't got no one but yourself to blame for being kept outta the loop these last four years. You're the one who left town and changed everything your name was ever attached to, not us."

At his honesty I glared. "Not now," was all I grunted, turning back to my wine.

He came to stand behind me, bringing those strapping arms about my shoulders. The moscato I downed in a single swallow, to which he grumbled. The man was a follower of Bud Light and a champion of the Jager variety.

"You know good and well what would've happened if I tried to explain things to you like that. And I didn't expect this to be something that you'd have to hear at work of all places. Alright? So quit pouring that goddamn drink and try to understand what the hell I'm telling you. Babe..."

In protest I filled my glass a little more. Next thing I knew he had pressed hard against my backside, that pelvis of his forcing my stomach against the counter ledge with discomfort. He tightened his grip around me a degree or two.

I growled. "House."

"Are you going to listen to me?"

"If you let me drink my glass, I'll give you ten seconds to explain yourself."

At that he afforded a smirk and a kiss on the cheek, releasing me with a complimentary pat on the ass. I jerked, the moscato nearly sloshing over my hand. My boyfriend left to sit on the edge of the bed several feet away, leaning his naked form back on his elbows as he began to speak. He sighed again, this time in something of concern. "The Horde needs to know what we do. While I'm at it I should fix things up so that we can find out how soon before the ATF is at our doorstep. I've heard this Fitzeroy chump's name before. Daves said the other day he was the one agent who did that drug bust at the sugar mill, the one just out of Houston. Told me the guy had a real mouth on him. I'm just glad we had a couple of the prospects there other than his ass. You know Daves' memory can be a hopeless shit sometimes."

Again I nodded. While I knew Fitzeroy had a sleeper of one of the prospects I didn't share it with House just yet. Part of me wanted to see for myself just who the newbloods were. The other half didn't think I could gather any more about what Bruns knew on my cousin with the the Horde making another example of snitches. And I knew that as soon as I shared that information House would be the first to slit a throat.

"Sounds like the bastard," I muttered, taking a languid swig. "He was so... pompous. Like he took some kind of pleasure getting that far in my head. I made the mistake of letting him, and he ran with that shit."

"You didn't know, baby. You couldn't have. And now that you don't have a job keeping you here I think it's time we get things together and head back down t-"

"Not right now."

He looked at me, blonde brows furrowed in confusion. "Well, no. Preferably in the morning after I've had a smoke and pussy for breakfast. We've gotta go back."

I shook my head, forgetting the wineglass as I left it on the counter. "You know I can't, House. And even if I did, they wouldn't take me back." My shaky voice lowered to a whisper as I looked into my cooling palms. "Maya won't let them take me back."

Just then his hands slipped into mine, clasping them as he pulled me over to him. It was difficult to ignore the state of his bare, profanely inked body when the midnight lamplight illuminated him so well; every slate of his rippled abdomen, the fitted curve of his triceps, that breathtaking V of his pelvis that descended into an envying set of reproductive organs. Hell, it wasn't difficult to figure why he had been chased by so many women back home for as long as I could remember, and I knew they didn't call him "House" for no reason. I knew I wasn't the most beautiful woman out there; certainly not the most attractive of my sisters. The only real thing I had going for me were my D-cups and my petite height, maybe even the fact that my father was one of the two men that ran all of Galveston County. Even standing toe-to-toe I barely came up to the man's shoulders. But while I knew I wasn't the finest when I slid my glasses on in the morning, I somehow managed to be reassured that the demigod of a man asleep at my side wanted no other woman than me. I was his old lady, finally, and with no small amount of hard work put in for the position.

He had always been my brother's homeboy, the two of them brothers before they knew how to spell the word. And while the rest of my sisters had looked up to him the way they looked up to Thaddeus I never managed to do quite the same. As a little girl I challenged him, pestered him with my irksome young presence. We were both raised under the hand of the Horde - his father served on the Council as the Sergeant At Arms, the very position he later took on when Weston had time laid on him, and my mother just then going from old lady to wife with Bruns - and likely saw each other more places than we cared. For years he loathed me nearly as much as I was irritated by his very presence, until I grew into my boobs and watched him and Thad go places and do things that I wasn't old enough for. I watched as women came and went, old ladies and crow-eaters alike. I even found myself caught in a whirl of jealousy when he knocked up that crazy broad Lamesha and fathered that adorable little girl of his. But we never gave or curiosity a try until after I graduated high school, conveniently enough.

While it could easily be stated as water under the bridge, the fact of the matter was that I could never take a look at him without bursting into a flame of lascivious need. And there was nothing better than feeling like the first time every time.

House brought my hands to his bow-shaped lips, the trim hairs of his goatee brushing my fingertips. I tried a smile, wanting to focus on his words other than the length of his dick. It was a difficult feat, to say the least. "Your mom loves you, Lia. She'll be ecstatic to have you back."

"She's the reason I left in the first place. I just couldn't deal w-"

"And she knows she's why you left!" My lover hushed me, kissing my palms, my inked wrists, the willow's peak upon my forehead. I looked up at him as he went on. "I keep telling you, Lia. Why do you think she didn't send anyone else like Rainer or Daves up after you the moment you left? Why else hasn't Hank been up your ass since you've been gone?" He shook his head, viridescent gaze holding me better than me own two feet. At the mention of my father I bit my lip, that all-too familiar guilt flushing my heart. I knew he would take my leaving just as bad as Momma, and though it had been four years I still never managed to make peace about it.

His kiss came to the tip of my nose. "The only reason she sent me after nearly a year was because she knew I wouldn't go running to your father or Bruns about you being a cop. And now that you're done with that I can bring you back. You can talk to everyone else about why you left if you want, but just sit down with your mother if no one else." At last his mouth fell upon mine, a softened blessing of his support despite the rigid severity of his very being. He was my viking prince, my knight in tatted armor, and I loved him fiercely. While I could huff and puff all I wanted at his propositions there wasn't any doubting I would ultimately do as he said. No one brought me to such terms with so little effort. Much as I hated it, I often fought him just to pretend as though I wouldn't go along with him so easily.

But I wouldn't stay with him gone anymore. From here on out, I went where his Harley rode.

"We can pack tonight if you want, but I want us on the road tomorrow first thing." House embraced me once more as I sighed against his chest, my arms about his back. He set another kiss upon the top of my unruly coils. Tersely he said, "I'll call Maya."

I tensed.

"She's keeping track of your mom, so she'll be up. Don't be a dick to her when we get there, either. She's been putting Dawson through the ringer this week."

"I wonder why. She puts everything on her husband's plate that she's not big enough to bitch at them about. Mmn, House, honey, hold on." But he already pulled me into bed, flipping off the blaring TV as he lifted the comforter. I slunk in after him, gigging down at his mischievous grin. "You're not getting any," I lied, coming to my knees.

He scoffed. "As if I asked."

"For real. I'm going to sleep." I hastily tied up my hair, trying to keep the laughter under way as his great, greedy hands shifted the panties from my hips. His grinning lips pursed at the slight curvature of my hip. I squealed at the nipping bite he attacked me with, but despite my glare he was laughing quite plainly. We both knew better than to believe the words coming out of my mouth. And this man would put me in place until I screamed exactly what he wanted to hear.

Both hands slunk around to the smoothened mahogany of my ass. He clenched with a familiar possessiveness, continuing to trail kisses around the damask tattoo that wrapped around my pelvic bone. I shifted within his hold, quietly telling him to let go of my butt for a moment so that I might turn the lights off. But I doubled over at the swift, sharp smack he planted on me.

Without a trace of jest he questioned callously, "Who's ass is that?"

I bit my lip, trying to ignore to delicious sting he'd landed on that ass. His ass.

"Your ass," I corrected apologetically.

"Say it like you should now."

"It's your ass, Daddy."

He growled pleasantly, caressing the same spot he had spanked as though he were content with the answer. "Good girl," he praised gently. "My good slut. Forget the lights for now. Daddy wants to see every little expression on baby's face while he makes her ride. C'mere."

Without a moment's thought I was grabbed by the hips and slung over his own. I was hesitant; he knew how difficult riding could be for me at times. But the way he would let me take control of just how deep or shallow I wanted him was the same way he would push me to take on more than I could handle. At my apprehension he gave that wicked smirk. To ease me he generously massaged my budding clit with the pad of his thumb, making me lean forward as I gave little moans. My breasts swayed in the slight arch of my back, leaving House with yet another distraction other than the teeming warmth I kept rolling up and along his granite length.

"Mmn, it's wet, isn't it, baby?"

I nodded avidly.

"I know it is. That pussy of mine gets so juicy so quick... it's mine, isn't it? The pussy belongs to Daddy?"

"The pussy belongs to Daddy!" I mewled, hands slamming against the headboard. If I didn't find myself filled with him in the next minute I knew I'd explode into a flame of need. I had to keep myself grounded, keep my body from flying away at his teasing touch.

Well, his body. This body of mine was his.

But my lover was cruel. He laughed at me, white teeth glimmering in the shape of roguish intent. He offered me the same thumb he had taunted my clit with, mouthing, "Taste yourself," as he urged it to my hungry lips. Graciously I suckled, my tongue roving over the sweetly slickened finger. I didn't dare turn away from his enamored green gaze, as it was all it took for him to cup my face and lean it down, down, down to his. For what felt like hours we lay there in a stitched embrace, ravenous lips locked in a dance of tongues, my honeyed essence drizzled across our taste buds. We drank from one another in seeming desperation, and so I couldn't hardly gasp in too much surprise when he grabbed me yet again to flip me fast on my back.

"May you touch it more, please? Daddy, m-"

But he clamped his great hand about my neck, silencing me. That instinctual thrill set my tingling flesh alight, and House knew it too well. That beautiful bastard put a finger to his lips as he shushed. "Don't be so demanding, my little whore," came his breathless warning. "Daddy does what he wants to this body of his, so shut your fuckin' mouth, hmm? Lemme fuck you... ahmm, yeah!"

In my chokehold I gave a muffled cry, straining against his heavy weight pressed so forcefully inside. He filled me just like I'd wanted, stretching me beyond my rightful means. My head spun in a whimsical twirl with every calculated thrust he laid on me, eyes rolling into the back of my head as I finally gave into the asphyxiating ecstasy that was his love. House had lost himself in the darkness of my eyes as his grip on my throat loosened slightly, but my hands clasped about his wrist. His laughter enlivened me. The daring in my grin spurred him on.

"So fuckin' tight. Beautiful girl..."

Before long our mouths clashed, rasping breath hot and heady as my lover lowered his golden aura to kiss my caramel form. From my hips to my thigh his free hand roved to encourage my legs newly folded at the small of his rolling back. In the briefest moment our lips were broken so that he could consume an impertinent nipple of mine, teeth tugging on the little silver barbell just hard enough to get my persistent moans into impassioned yelps. My nails dug crescents into his sweat-speckled flesh. God, but I was close. And when he leaned his mouth back into me, blonde hair shrouding our faces, he panted the only command I needed:

"Lia, baby, cum for me." Very suddenly his hips became short and severe, our wet, molten flesh slapping noisily with each brutal connection. "Cum for Daddy, baby!"

So I lost it.

Against my arching spine his hips gave two more solid thrusts. By then he had leapt off the edge right along with me; I let the precious pressure inside me erupt, my core bursting right where the head of him threatened to bruise the hilt of my belly. With his mouth pressed upon my cheek he slipped out a cry as he spilled himself into my contracting heat. I held onto him for dear life as the desperate shouts of his name melted me into a useless, whimpering pile of post-esctatic convulsions in his arms.

For a little while we were still. My burning legs fell, slippery against his sweat-slickened back, just as his hand released completely about my neck. I took my first full inhale since we started, gasping a little in the relief when he slipped out from inside. I was honestly sad to be empty of him, but the feel of being so sticky with his efforts was just another naughty pleasure that carried me into the afterglow. House brought his arm around my back then as his head lay comfortably just above the heave of my silver-pierced breasts.

"I was too hard this time?"

I tried shaking my head. "Yes," I told him. We chuckled, his noise reverberating against my chest. He pulled the comforter up over us. When I asked why the pink sheets weren't underneath he simply motioned over to the carpet, and I sighed. "We've got to stop fuckin' the sheets up. Cuz then I always have to wash them in the morning."

"When we stop fucking, we'll quit fucking up the sheets." He reached to the nightstand and started dallying with his phone, brows suddenly deepened. "Shit," was all he said, sitting upward. I mimicked him, asking what the deal was.

House ran his ringed hand through his now stringy hair, muttering to himself. I leaned over the edge of the bed to see what text message he was scrolling through.

"What, dammit?"

He stood and started for the bathroom. "We've gotta run," he told me, putting the phone to his ear with haste. "Grab my gun from the counter and get dressed, Lia. Your sister's gone missing."

I froze in my wake, staring at the ornately crass ink of his rippled back as he disappeared into the bathroom. The sink came on and his voice was lowered as he went talking. Despite his instructions I couldn't bring myself to move just yet. I didn't really have to think about which one (other than my ass) could have taken off and set my mother in a right fucking frenzy that would have the Horde in code red.

Considering she was the light of Bruns' life, I figured Mackenzie was the one to take off. And if I was right, there was a chance she wouldn't be back without a fight.