Title: Destiny, a Riders on the Storm Outtake.
Warning: Language and sexual content.
Beta: The Amazing HollettLA
Summary: It's three years after the epilogue, and Maggie and Sonny have hit a few bumps in the road. She hatches a plan to prove to him she's his destiny
Dedication: To all my Storm Freaks! Thanks for donating. And, most of all, thanks for supporting me and all my endeavors! HUGE thanks to HollettLA and CaraNo…just because.
Riders on the Storm
Three years after epilogue
Smiling into the mirror as I stepped off the scale, I turned to suck in my stomach.
It's taken me more than a year to get back down to my old size—well, the size I was after I had Sonny, our first child. After each birth, it's taken longer for me to drop the pounds, but I felt great today.
I felt sexy and confident as I stared at the lingerie I was wearing.
It's a black one-piece with a corset and matching panties, which accentuates my curves, making me look even more slender. My thigh-highs were also black, along with my garters and stiletto heels.
My hair was down and curled. I was nervous about wearing makeup since I never wear much. But it was flawless, my ruby red lips looking full while my eyes were darkly lined, and more pronounced.
And I couldn't wait until my husband saw me in this get-up. He's used to seeing me in my mom uniform—PJs or yoga pants and an unflattering T-shirt. Nevertheless, he still manages to ogle me as if I'm wearing the most glamorous of gowns.
But I wanted to be sexy for him...for a change.
"Maggie?" Bella knocked.
I jumped, startled by the sound, and I grabbed my bathrobe to quickly place it on.
"Yeah?" I opened the door for my mother in-law.
She had Bethany, our youngest child, in her arms. Beth was asleep, her cheek resting on Na-Na's shoulder. It was a sweet sight, but it's a little late for her to be taking a nap. She won't go down later without a fight.
Great, I thought.
"Oh, I like your makeup," Bella giggled. "You never wear any. Well, you've never needed any, but wow. You look fantastic. Like some li'l sex kitten." She meowed at me.
"Thanks," I sighed, holding my stomach in as best I could.
Bethany stirred and Bella began to rock her. "Just wanted to let you know that Kylie was stopping by with Little Peto." She spoke of my sister-in-law and my nephew, who's a few months younger than Beth. "Oh—" Bella turned back to me "—she has Izzy with her, too." Izzy is also my niece, Damion and Jordan's daughter.
Kylie babysits Izzy for extra cash since she's not working at the moment. Gio is able to provide for them well, managing Midnight Sun, but I know sometimes it's tough for them to make ends meet. Actually, to conventional standards, they're doing just fine. Kylie's just had a hard time adjusting—not accustomed to limited funds, paying bills and the whole nine.
With Damion having received all that money from his parents when he married Jordan, he and Jordan are able to live comfortably in the apartment while they're doing their residencies. I've heard that residents don't make all that much money, although I'd never outright ask either one of them such a thing. That'd be rude.
Getting married and having a child didn't hold Jordan back from a thing, and I admire her so much for it.
Nothing is missing from my life—I love it the way it is. I just find Jordan's strength, determination, and…just how smart she is admirable. To top that off, she's a great mom—a fantastic juggler, which also makes me a bit envious, jealous, since I'm a stay-at-home mom, and I sometimes swear I'm going nuts. Even if Jordan can't be around every second of the day, she still manages everything just fine.
I have no idea how she does it, but—overall—I'm proud of her.
It doesn't matter, though. Kylie is great with the kids, takes amazing care of Izzy while Jordan works, and we're always getting together.
Besides running Midnight Sun, Gio has yet to make his business management degree work for him outside of our small world.
Maybe Gio doesn't know—and I know Santino, my husband, doesn't know—but I've given Kylie money plenty of times. I don't even ask what it's for because I don't care. It's not like I'm giving money away, very far from it. I just hate to think of them struggling.
They're set with the house they live in, the house that was bought for them, yet they have other expenses and shit, of course.
And Gio's too proud to ask for help while Kylie wants to respect her husband's wishes . . .
"What time are you leaving?" Bella shifted Beth, widening her eyes. "She's getting heavy. I should put her down." She left the room.
"I can do that." I followed after them, widening my arms, ready to take Beth.
While I love Bella, she tends to take over when she visits. She oversteps and I'd never complain since she's always giving me breaks and such. I just can't seem to…lift a finger whenever she's around. It's truly a double-edged sword—appreciating the help immensely while it can also be annoying?
"I got it." It's also hard for Bella to give up a grand-baby once they're in her arms.
"Of course." I watched them go and then turned for our bed.
I shoved a few things in my overnight bag, although we're not sleeping away tonight. It's early enough that I hope to have a nice family dinner with Santino, and then leave…spend a couple of hours naked with my husband, all to have us home before the boys go to bed.
Santino has been crazy busy lately. He hasn't been home since yesterday morning, and he was to be home early tonight.
After supper, I plan to whisk my husband away for most of the evening, a very short get-away.
And maybe we'll have an encore when we get home, after the kids are asleep.
A night chock full of passion . . .
I couldn't wait, my stomach knotting up with excitement—the possibilities and kinky fuckery seeming endless.
Bella never minds babysitting at the last minute. If Kylie wasn't coming over, our son—Sonny Jr., or Little Sonny as everyone calls him—is a great help. He steps up, keeps his little brother in line by entertaining him. They'll be five and six this year, and they're best friends—yet they're as different as night and day.
"Mommy!" Little Sonny ran into our bedroom.
"Yeah, baby?" I smiled at my big boy.
He lost his first baby tooth the other night. He was very excited when the tooth fairy left him five bucks. I'd told Santino that was too much money just for a tooth, but my husband didn't care. However, Sonny Jr.—even at his young age—knows how important money is. He asked his father how many trips the tooth fairy makes to New York each year. Then, our eldest sat in front of the mirror, lightly pushing each tooth to see which were loose.
"When's Daddy coming home?"
"Soon." I palmed his cheek.
His face lit up, his uneven smile adorable. "I drew him a picture."
"You did?" I asked, but that wasn't surprising. Our fridge is covered with his masterpieces. "Can I see it?"
He nodded as he ran out.
I grinned, watching him go, but then Eddie appeared in the doorway. He wore a long face and lingered while he stared.
"Come here, you." I held out my hand. "What's wrong?"
He walked over to hug my middle. "You leaving."
I sighed, rubbing his back. "Just for a little while after dinner. Daddy will be home soon…I'll only be out for a bit, and then—"
He tightened his hold. "I don't want you'ta go. You stay."
I smiled, planting a loud smooch in his neck. "Na-Na's gonna let you guys stay up late and watch movies…Then, when Daddy and me get home, we'll have ice cream and hang out."
He sniffled, twirling my hair around his tiny fingers. "I'mma miss you, Momma. Don't lee-me."
My heart broke just a little bit.
"No, you don't," Bella said; she was in the doorway now. "You're going. You deserve a night off."
"No!" Eddie shouted.
I chuckled as I pulled back. "You're gonna have so much fun with Na-Na and your cousins…"
"They're babies." He grumbled, his belly protruding out; meanwhile, they're only two and a half years younger than he is.
Bella hummed, coming over to take him from me. "Listen, you…" She tickled his sides until he giggled madly, but then he ran out of the room—still laughing.
"Can't get me, Na-Na!" Eddie hollered from the hall, wanting Bella to chase him.
I shook my head, looking back to my mother-in-law.
"Don't feel guilty," she laughed.
"No…" I felt horrible, actually, not necessarily guilty. "Maybe…when Santino gets home…I can put the boys to bed on time, and then we can…" I glanced over my shoulder to our bed.
Bella pushed my hair away from my shoulder. "They'll be fine. Okay? Li'l Ed'll forget he misses you as soon as Aunt Kylie comes over with Peto and Izzy."
I nodded and grabbed my phone from the nightstand, and I saw that it was only a few minutes after five p.m.
But I also noticed I'd received a text from Santino.
Sorry, baby. I won't be home until late. Don't wait up. Love you—S
Slack jawed; my heart started hammering away in anger as I glared at my cell.
"What's wrong?" Bella asked.
I just showed her my phone as I reached to take my earrings off. "He hasn't been home in two fucking days, and…Screw me, forget about me. I can understand. I know he's busy, but the boys think he'll be home—"
Bella nodded, solemnly, while she stared at the floor.
"Daddy's not coming home?" Sonny Jr. heard me, and he threw a sheet of paper onto the floor before stomping away.
"Sonny!" I called after him, leaving my bedroom.
"It's okay," he said, his top lip stiff, but then he entered his room to close the door.
Li'l Ed ran to knock. "Lemme in!"
Sonny opened up, ushered his brother inside, only to close up shop again.
I held my forehead, taking a deep breath, willing my heart to slow.
"It happens," Bella supplied. "My son has some big shoes to fill. You know? It's no excuse, but things do come up."
I stiffened, swallowing all that anger down before taking a deep breath. "You're right. Yeah…" I blew out another gust of air. "I should make sure they're okay."
Bella held me back, and she wore a smirk. "What if you went to Eclipse? Surprised him?"
I opened my mouth to respond.
"I'd never put you in harm's way. You'll be safe. And you show up, you look like that…" she giggled, gesturing to my bodice. "Maggie, he'll rearrange things—reschedule and come home. I promise you."
"He should be here because he wants to be," I whispered. "If not for me, for them." My head tilted toward the hall. "I know he has obligations, and things come up…"
"He'll come home…if you go get him. I promise, and things have been quiet. There's nothing wrong with you going to Eclipse."
It was actually a great idea. With how pissed I was deep down, I'd drag Santino out of the club if I had to. I just hoped to hold onto this rage. My husband fights dirty. After all these years, he can still turn me into a puddle of goo—woo me and my pants off with one look.
I can't seem to ever stay angry at him…as much as I wish I could.
He's the same way; I have the same effect on him.
The big bad boss kneels before me, which is a trip.
I nodded, folding my arms across my chest. "Lemme get dressed—"
Bella stopped me, a wicked glint in her eyes. "Go like that. You're wearing the black lingerie, right?" When I raised a brow, wondering if she'd been spying or something, she explained, "I saw it on your bed before." She waved a hand. "Just put on a long coat. You've never surprised him before…?"
I laughed, shaking my head. "No, I haven't...but I have a cocktail dress, a little black number I was gonna put over the—"
"No one will notice. Wear a long coat, take him into the office…It'll be a nice surprise. They'll be fine," she spoke of the kids. "And you guys'll be back in two hours—tops. Once he knows what's underneath, he'll rush to get youse outta there. Trust." Bella looked proud of herself, proud of her genius plan.
Her expression made me grin, no matter what I truly felt on the inside. "Right…"
I was still torn; I usually don't like to bother my husband while he's working. We may exchange dirty texts and talk over the phone, but I haven't been to Eclipse since we were first married. He's since told me not to go there without his prior knowledge.
"That's a good idea," I agreed with her, for the most part. "I told the boys he'd be here, and he's going to be here." Then I made for Sonny's bedroom. "I'll go talk to the boys—"
"I will!" She rushed out. "You just go. The faster you go, the faster both of youse'll be back. My husband's there, too, and I bet he hitches a ride with you guys."
I shook my head, disagreeing while another knot formed in my gut. Leaving without talking to my children didn't feel right at all.
At the very least, I had to say goodbye. My children are literally a part of me, and we're never apart.
"It'll be less dramatic if you don't say goodbye." She gave me a nudge. "I know these things." She pointed to herself. "Have I steered you wrong yet?"
I smiled, albeit sadly, but I knew she was correct. "No."
Regardless of Bella's reassuring words, I still felt like crap for leaving abruptly. I knew the boys would be just fine. It was me. I had the problem—this separation anxiety, I guess—as I always want to soothe them, be the one to dry their tears.
My driver wasn't happy about me going to Eclipse, but he got over it. He also respected my wishes and didn't call to warn my husband. Before we left, Bella had a few words for him, too. Santino was going to be none-the-wiser about my arrival.
The ride into Midtown wasn't too bad. Traffic was light, and we'd made it in a half-hour.
There was no line to get into Eclipse, and I wore my sunglasses, taking tentative steps toward the entrance.
The bouncer had no idea who I was, nor did I know him. He asked for my ID, which made me giggle. Sure, I just turned twenty-four, but…I'm married to the boss. We have three children. Having someone ask to see my ID is just baffling.
Especially since I feel a lot older than I am.
If marrying young didn't mature me, having a child definitely did, although I know I do in fact look younger than I actually am.
Nevertheless, I didn't show the bouncer my real ID. I showed him my alias—a Maryland driver's license with the name Agatha Grimsdale on it. Don't ask where Santino got that name. Lord knows, I have no idea.
The dance music was loud, the lights were dim, and there truly weren't a lot of people here. The naked women littered the club, and two were on the stage dancing.
Since the bar was nearly empty, I sat there, gazing around and trying to find my husband.
I spotted my father-in-law first. He sat toward the back—in a booth with Aro, Carlisle, Santino, and two other men I didn't know. But I knew they were in the middle of a sit-down; it was obvious.
"Can I get you something to drink?" the bartender asked. She was a very busty brunette who looked about my age, and she was gorgeous. "Are you here to audition?"
I was flattered she'd think I could work here. "I'll have a pinot grigio, please." I noticed her nametag read Shelly.
She grinned, placing a wine glass onto the bar, but then she paused. "Can I see your ID?"
I laughed. "It was checked at the door."
Shelly seemed hesitant.
I rolled my eyes behind my shades and tossed her the fake driver's license.
She studied it and then her eyes met mine. "Welcome to Eclipse . . . Are you here to audition?"
"Uh…" I glanced at the back table again, wondering how I could get Santino's attention, not wanting to go over and disturb their powwow. My husband was wrapped up in a meeting, and he hadn't noticed me. "Yeah, sure." I tried not to giggle like a jackass as she passed me the wine. "Thank you." I placed a bill on the bar.
She put her hand out to stop me. "That's on me. It takes a brass pair to dance here." Shelly whistled, placing the bottle back into the cooler.
Curious, I sipped my wine, hoping she'd elaborate.
She leaned in close. "I hear the money is amazing. Eclipse caters to . . . a certain clientele." Shelly winked.
"Oh." My eyes traveled back to Santino, and he looked bored. He'd occasionally sip his scotch and then take a peek at his phone.
I bet he's waiting on some long text from me, bitching about him not coming home.
"That's the owner—" Shelly continued "—the younger, handsome one in the middle," she spoke of my husband.
"Is he a nice guy?" I wondered how nice he was, actually.
While it's always been a deep-rooted fear—my husband sleeping around since sometimes he's not sleeping with me, doesn't come home, regardless of our very active sex life—he's never given me any reasons not to trust him.
I know he's busy.
I know he'd rather be home than be here—working.
Well, that's what he says . . . and I do believe him.
At the end of the day, I'm just…me, and I can't compete with the outside world. The whole concept is daunting, and it takes a lot of faith.
We may not spend as much time together, but we're happy. We're still in love. My children and I always come first. Santino still showers me with love—so much love—and we're just happy. All of which reassures me.
Shelly wore a smirk. "He runs a tight ship, that's for sure, but he's quiet for the most part."
I didn't have a reply. The quiet shit didn't sound like my Santino at all; however, I know he has different sides.
"But, yeah." She nodded. "Compared to the fucking sleaze-balls that come in and out of here . . . he's nice, respectful. The Skip...I mean, his father's nasty, mean as hell."
Hearing her say that about the Skip—who's a total fucking sweetheart, at least while he's around his family—made me laugh.
"Here comes trouble," she grumbled, quickly changing her expression to a placating smile.
Feeling someone next to me, my stomach knotted up, and I wondered who it was—I wondered if they'd spot me. I already felt like an idiot, still wearing my sunglasses in a darkened club. But everyone who's at that table should be able to recognize me.
Lo and behold, trouble came in the form of Santino's uncle, Carlisle. "Hey gorgeous, lemme get another round." He barely looked to her or me, too busy ogling the stage.
While Shelly got their drinks ready, I guzzled the rest of my wine.
"Hello, there." Carlisle was next to me now.
My eyes were downcast, glued to my empty glass.
"You shy or somethin'?" he asked.
I nodded, turning away to bite my lips together to keep from laughing.
"She's here to audition," Shelly supplied.
"Really?" Carlisle sounded surprised.
"Yeah," I whispered.
"And you're…shy?" he asked, his tone disbelieving. "How's that going to work?" Now he found it comical. "Yo, get her another drink, too." Carlisle faced me again. "I'm the talent manager, Carlisle Cullen." He put his hand out to shake mine, and what he said was a lie.
A giggle escaped me, getting a total kick out of this, as I shook his hand.
"I'll tell you what…" His shoulder touched mine. "You're shy…you can audition for me only, and I'll get feedback to my partners."
Shelly had wide eyes, like a warning, passing the wine to me.
"Yo, C!" Skip shouted from across the floor. "Where's my fuckin' drink?" My father-in-law saved me.
"I'll be at that table. You let me know." Carlisle touched his knuckle to my chin, but then his brow furrowed. "Do I know you?"
I shook my head.
"Huh…" He studied me. "You sure?" His finger waved, more than likely trying to place me in his memory. "We've met before." It wasn't a question.
I denied it again.
"C!" Skip boomed.
Carlisle sighed before he grabbed the tray of drinks. "What's your name?" he asked.
I paused for a beat too long and then answered, "Destiny."
"Your real name?" He raised a brow. "I need to know which one you are."
I pursed my lips. "I haven't applied yet…I saw an advertisement."
He narrowed his eyes at me, leaning the tray back onto the bar. "We don't advertise."
"She's with me," Shelly said, coming toward us both. "She's a dancer…I told her to come in when she got off her other gig." She winced, getting closer to Carlisle like she was about to tell him a secret. "I didn't want anyone to know who she was. I referred her. I figured Mr. Cullen—"
"'The fuck, man." Skip interrupted us. "Waitin' forever and a fuckin' day for my drink." He snatched his and stomped away.
"Excuse him," Carlisle told me. "You're Shelly's friend? Her friend or her friend-friend?" He was insinuating something.
"Just back off," Shelly said.
"Oh!" Carlisle smiled wide, excited. "I fucking love it! Love. It!" And then he disappeared with the rest of the drinks.
Once he was back at the booth, Shelly topped off my glass. "He's harmless but annoying." She rolled her eyes. "Just likes to watch and says stupid things, innocently flirts, but the guy's an asshole…I'll let the correct Mr. Cullen know you're here."
When I looked back again, Carlisle was whispering something into Santino's ear, but my husband never glanced my way. He just nodded, absorbing whatever information, while Carlisle winked at me.
I suppressed a shudder and smiled at Shelly. "Thanks for the save."
"Don't mention it." She went to leave the bar, but she stopped short. "How did you hear about this place?"
"Um, a friend, someone who frequents—"
"Gotcha." She chuckled before going over to my husband.
That was when he finally lifted his head, but I was quick to turn mine away to polish off my second glass of pinot.
My face felt flushed for a few reasons: chugging the wine too fast, meeting Santino's gaze—if only for a brief moment—seeing his eyes that always wrench me forward, they call me to him—and then being here under this ruse, as I was a potential dancer.
Notwithstanding the nervousness in the pit of my gut, which might not even stem from anxiety, but from excitement.
And excluding all of the "mommy-fun" I have that could seem mundane to most, and yet it's actually something I treasure . . .
This, being here, was a total fucking rush.
I felt ballsy, sexy, and I was turned on by the concept of being the mysterious chick at the bar. These excited, anticipatory feelings were flowing through me—along with thoughts that are suddenly, and now continually, flooding my mind.
Fantasies, aspirations, of being alone with my husband in his office—the images of him taking me right there on his desk were nearly searing my brain—they were kind of branded there, playing on a constant loop.
At the moment, I wasn't Maggie: the once teen mom who now has three children, the keeper of our home, the confidant to her husband, the ying to Santino's yang . . .
I was Destiny, a hopeful exotic dancer.
Hindsight, I didn't like the idea of Santino holding private auditions . . . that was a harsh reality to swallow, if he in fact does such a thing.
"You okay?" Shelly asked as she rubbed my back. It was almost a sympathetic gesture, like she felt sorry for me, and I couldn't understand why. "It's quiet right now. If you're that shy, I mean…this place is teeming with fuckers after dark."
"I'm fine." And, in truth, I was more than okay.
She nodded. "Good. Well, Mr. Cullen—Santino, but everyone calls him Sonny—told me to bring you back in fifteen minutes. For your sake, because you don't know him, call him Mr. Cullen."
"Sure…sounds cool." I smiled. "I'll remember that. Thank you."
As I nursed my third glass of wine, I gently moved my shoulders to the music. Time was ticking by all too quickly. More dancers had come out and a few more customers had arrived. There was a different feel to the place now.
The atmosphere had changed within the short span of time, going from an empty bar to a nightclub filled with patrons.
Eclipse had transformed into what I'd remembered it being like years prior—the night Santino proposed.
Such a fine memory, although it wasn't ideal...for a proposal.
All of which made that night extra special.
My Santino always tends to go against the grain, do things in his own way.
When my husband slid out of the booth, he bid farewell to the dudes I didn't know. He then rushed from the table to go straight back to his office. That was when my phone vibrated in my purse. It was Santino, asking me if I was mad at him, telling me he'd try to be home early.
I scoffed at my fucking cell phone.
He just had to remind me . . .
And I'd known that anger from earlier would ebb.
Honest to God, now I just couldn't wait to make my presence known to him.
"You ready?" Carlisle asked. Since I'd been lost in thought, he'd startled me. "Whoa…don't be jumpy. It's just me."
I wanted to laugh again. "Satan in a Sunday hat…" I'd never seen this side of Carlisle before.
"Me?" He touched his chest.
I just averted my gaze again, moving an inch or two away.
"Take off the shades," he said.
"Yo, my sandwich get hea yet?" Skip asked Shelly, and she had taken food from a delivery dude minutes prior.
"Here you go." She placed it on the bar.
"Nice…" Skip nudged his elbow to Carlisle's. "This the new one?" he asked, and I knew he'd make me—he'd realize exactly who I was within seconds. I'd been reminded time and time again that there's no such thing as pulling the wool over his eyes, and I do see him frequently. The boys love spending time with Pop-Pop.
"This is Destiny." Carlisle wrapped his arm around my shoulders. "Destiny, that's E, my brother."
Skip didn't even look at me. "'Sup?" He'd started to unwrap his sandwich.
I didn't say a word.
"Hmmm, what kind of shampoo do you use?" Carlisle sniffed me.
I wanted to tell him that I use his nephew's, the same brand, but I didn't.
Instead, I chose to giggle and cover my mouth with my hand, certain that my face was beet red.
"You're adorable." He wasn't exactly crossing a line just yet.
"Who's your friend?" Aro asked.
"Destiny." Carlisle sounded proud. "She's gonna audition for us."
My eyes widened.
Us . . .
Mr. Andino smiled at me. "Do I know you?" That caught the Skip's attention, too. He turned to face me.
I shook my head.
"Yo…" Aro leaned on my father-in-law. "She looks like Mags, man."
My heart leapt into my throat.
"Maggie?" Carlisle grimaced. "She does not."
Skip smirked at me before he pulled Carlisle away. "You ready…Destiny?" He knew exactly who I was.
"She does, too, look like Maggie," Aro said. "Take off the sunglasses, boo."
Skip sucked his teeth. "Can we get this shit over with? Let's go." He ushered them toward the back. "You comin'?" he asked me, taking a bite out of his sandwich.
I nodded and looked back to Shelly.
"Wow…the Skip likes you. You're good as gold—got the job." She smiled. "He spoke to you, not at you. Good luck." She grabbed my empty glass.
I saluted her, actually gave her a salute, a testament to my semi-drunken state. My legs felt a bit wobbly once they touched the floor.
Funny, I didn't feel that tipsy while seated.
Surprisingly, my father-in-law wasn't too far away. He waited for me. "What are you doin' hea? Bella sent me a text, saying you was stoppin' by…but why keep it a secret from Sonny?"
I laughed. "She told me to come get my husband."
"Right." He chuckled. "Well, do me a favor…No matter what I say or do, just play along. And, yo—" Skip nudged my arm "—try not to talk."
"What?" I asked, wondering what he was up to. He might be a sweetheart around his family, but my father-in-law is a trickster.
Skip shrugged. "I used to be Sonny…" His face fell a bit. "His mind's in ten different places right now, which means…prime time to punk him." He thought that was hilarious. "Just play along."
"He's gonna know it's me right away."
Skip thought that was even more hilarious. "Bullshit auditions take ten minutes, and Sonny barely looks—doesn't give a fuck. He goes by what Carlisle says. I'll introduce you. Just…trust me."
I sucked in a shaky breath. "Yeah, whatever. Okay."
"Awesome." He placed his arm around me and then we entered Santino's office.
My husband was behind the desk. His brow was furrowed, eyes on his MacBook, and he hadn't even bothered to look up, look my way.
Aro and Carlisle sat in chairs toward the side, and their eyes followed me as I walked to stand in the middle of the room.
"This is Destiny," Skip announced.
Santino paid me no attention…again. "Real name?" he asked.
"Cynthia," Skip said.
"I thought Cynthia was a blonde?" Carlisle asked.
"She used to be a blonde. Right, baby?" Skip winked, palming my cheek.
"Lose the shades," my husband ordered.
"No," Skip disagreed. "It's part of her act."
"Act?" Santino stared at his father. "The fuck you smilin' at? She got three tits or somethin'?"
I tried not to laugh again.
"Oh…she's very talented." Skip lifted my hand to kiss my knuckles.
"Yo…" Carlisle stood up. "What's up with that?" He jerked his chin. "I saw her first, and since when you…" He trailed off in a whisper when Skip turned to him.
Aro barked out a loud laugh. "Let the girl do her thing. It's getting late."
Carlisle sat back, but Skip pulled up a chair to be closer. "I'll be your guinea—I mean, guinea pig, whatever the fuck." My father-in-law slapped his thighs. "Whenever you're ready, baby. Groove me."
"Oh, shit." Aro clapped once.
"This is unbelievable. I usually get the lap dance," Carlisle complained, like some horrible injustice had befallen upon him.
"Don't be a drag, you fuckin' queen," Aro replied, but he looked back to me, curiously.
I had a feeling that Mr. Andino learned the punch, too—by the way his eyes began to travel to his counterparts, a mischievous expression on his face.
Santino's gaze was still settled on his father. "What's up with you?"
My father-in-law shrugged, smiling and staring up to me. "Lose the coat, sweetheart." Then he let out something that sounded like a giggle, a snicker that wasn't very manly.
And there was no fucking way I'd be taking my coat off.
No fucking way.
What was once fun was now slightly mortifying.
Santino . . . How could he not recognize me?
Tensions were high in the room, and my husband was too busy grilling his father. "Lemme talk to you a minute."
Skip lifted a finger. "Come on, baby…let's see the goods."
"Yo!" Santino shouted. "Since when you excited because of some broad, a chick who ain't my mother—" He finally looked to me, most likely to see what all the fuss was about.
Swallowing down my nerves, I stared back, my stomach in knots—not knowing what it meant, that he didn't know who I was.
When the side of his mouth pulled up, he slouched back. "Sunglasses."
Nervous, I removed them, my eyes meeting his.
Then he smiled wide, leaning his elbow on the chair's armrest, pressing his thumb and forefinger to his brows.
"Maggie?" Carlisle was on my left. "When'd you lose the baby weight because—" He looked to his nephew.
"You knew?" Santino asked his father.
"Of course." Skip was quick to eat his sandwich again.
"You didn't." My husband pointed to his uncle. "That's obvious, mackin' it to her and—"
"This is some bullshit." Carlisle whipped back to me. "Did Alex send you here?"
Santino narrowed his eyes. "Shorty at the bar with the great rack, my ass," he spat.
There was a blur of activity when Carlisle ran out of the office, and my husband hopped over his fucking desk to chase him.
"Chill!" Aro jumped onto his back, not letting him leave.
And I thought my father-in-law was going to piss himself, he was laughing so hard.
"Get the fuck out—both'a youse!" Santino jerked his thumb.
Hearing that tone, and with his voice raised, I backed up a few paces—wondering what the fuck he was going to say to me.
"You sadistic, old fuck," he told his father, his tone humorous.
Skip only laughed louder before he took off with Aro.
Santino slammed his door closed after them. "What the fuck? I-I don't even know what to say." He turned back to me.
"Neither do I." I was honest. "You really had no idea—"
"I wasn't looking…looking," he explained. "Christ. For that…I should get points."
I giggled, studying my shoes.
"Mom at the house?" he asked, taking my hand into his, only to land a smooch on my cheek. And I had this weird feeling.
Maybe Santino knew who I was now. The jig was up, but could he really see me? Sadness filled my heart, and yet I wanted to be optimistic—listen to the Skip, try and comprehend how stocked his mind must be, how overwhelmed he might be.
"Yeah." I pulled him toward me. "Any way I can steal you?"
He puffed his cheeks, blowing out a breath. "I—" He paused, not meeting my gaze.
"I understand." I've said that so many times it doesn't even sound like a word anymore. "Carlo's still waiting outside."
"That motherfucker didn't tell me?" he guffawed. "What tipped me off was Dad." He took his seat again. "He don't notice nobody either."
I nodded. "I'm getting that impression."
"What's that supposed to mean?" he asked. "You say that like it has another meaning."
I didn't say anything.
Santino groaned. "Look—" he scrubbed his face with his hand.
"We just…we miss you, but it's okay. I just thought if I came to get you…" I couldn't finish, feeling as though I might cry; I put the sunglasses back on. "I'll see you later? At home?"
He just stared at me while I waited for his reply.
Knowing my voice would be filled with emotion, I just waited. It'd only taken seconds for him to nod and agree with my words, but it'd felt like forever—this moment in time feeling too crucial, feeling as though he was making a clear choice.
Meanwhile, I thought he'd leave with me, that whatever it was couldn't be more important than me—actually coming here.
My stomach was a knotted mess again when I asked, "You're really going to let me leave?" The concept was unimaginable, as the children and I come first…At least, we're supposed to.
Santino closed his eyes, a lopsided smirk on his lips. "No…"
I quirked a brow, wanting him to elaborate.
"Get over here." He turned in the swivel chair, quick to grab me when I walked around the desk. "I'll move shit around," he sighed, pulling me onto his lap. He hugged me too tight, and I reveled in his embrace—taking in his scent. The shades nearly fell off, squashed by his massive shoulder. "Don't cry." He wiped what little tears I had from my face. "Smile for me." He placed his nose to mine, giving me a soft, lingering kiss.
And that always works.
I knew that short kiss made my face light up. "We miss you. We just…want you home." I rested my head in the crook of his neck.
"I know," he said. "The past two weeks have been crazy. I'm fucking exhausted." He hugged me tight again. "I'd love nothing more than to go home, do baths with you, put the kids to bed, read a book to them…and then tuck Mommy in." He kissed up my neck while I hummed. His hand roamed up my leg and under my coat, yet it came to a halt on my garter. "What are you wearing?"
I giggled, leaning away to stare into those eyes. "You know that black lingerie you got me last Valentine's Day…? Well, it fits now."
A grunt escaped him as he lifted me so I was sitting on his desk. But he didn't touch me. Santino ran to lock the door and then he turned. "You still want an audition?"
My face was going to hurt with how much I was smiling now.
I gazed around the ceiling. "No one can see me?"
"Well…there's no cameras in here, if that's what you mean." Santino dragged a chair closer to where I was standing before he took a seat. "I see you…I'll be seeing you." He toyed with the bow that kept my coat closed. "May I?" He reached for the button up top.
I shook my head, pushing him back. "You're only supposed to look."
"Fuck that. You're mine—"
"I'm Destiny…your destiny." I untied my sash, and I made quick work of the buttons.
Santino shot up and out of the chair to push the fabric away from my shoulders. It fell to the floor as his eyes raked down my body. "Christ, baby…" His tone was awestruck, and my stomach filled with butterflies. "You look fantastic," he whispered, his eyes snapping up to meet mine. "Wow."
I tried not to smile. Even though we've been married for years, and we've had three children, Santino still made me blush. My cheeks were hot, and if I wasn't biting my lips together, I'd be beaming.
"Hey…" His nose touched mine.
I unleashed my cheesy grin on him; I couldn't help it. "I look good, huh?"
Santino's hands roamed down my back to grasp my ass. "You know it." He let out a groan. "I just wanna look at you." He squeezed me, fast to let go and sit back in the chair. "Gorgeous." He continued to hold my hand.
Feeling flirty and giggly, I swayed a bit. "Did you want a dance?"
He chuckled with a quick shake of his head. "I wanna bend you over that desk…" Santino blew out a breath, swallowing loudly, and I loved it—that he was just a little bit nervous, too, and tongue-tied; I'd made him that way.
I hummed, letting go of his hand to turn around. "Like this?" Leaning over the desk, I stared at him from over my shoulder.
He sucked his bottom lip into his mouth, his hands reaching for my ass. "Stay like that."
This time I had to suppress a squeal.
Santino was behind me within a second. His hands went right for my breasts, going under the fabric to lift them out. I felt his hard cock on my ass, and then I nearly melted back when he started tweaking my nipples. "Shit."
"You like that?" he asked, his breaths hitting my neck.
Palming his hands, which worked my breasts, I moaned, relaxing within his embrace.
With a slight sway of my hips, I teased his dick. "Fuck me."
"I plan to." He kissed down my neck, his teeth scraping my shoulder. "You wanna get a room?" he asked, his one hand going lower. "Just you and me—just us—champagne, the works, just us." He sounded frantic now.
My breaths were labored; he was driving me crazy, but there were three reasons why we couldn't. "We-we can't."
"Right…" His fingers snuck under the fabric, and they glided with ease, running down my slick slit, going deeper with each stroke. When he touched my clit, I jumped and let out a loud groan. "You're ready for me." His voice was a seductive whisper. I was soaked.
"Always." I gripped his pant legs, holding him tightly to my back. "I want you."
Abruptly, he pushed me forward, making me bend lower while his hands popped the few snaps near my crotch. In no time, I was exposed, and then I heard him fumbling with his pants.
Excitement and anticipation flowed through me as I waited.
With no more words to exchange, he leaned into me, holding onto my shoulder—entering me swiftly and forcefully. He filled me to the hilt, feeling him in my stomach, while I swallowed my cry of pleasure.
Santino started to fuck me without abandon, muttered curses falling from his lips.
And I took it.
My nails clawed at his desk or anything to hold onto, as I enjoyed the ride. He was rough, fast—going almost too deep—and I was close in no time. He knew I was, too—slowing just a little bit to hit me back even harder.
When he pulled my hair, making my back touch his chest, I let go—coming around his cock, stiffening and screaming out his name.
Christ. I so needed that, to be had, to be lusted after.
Before I could come down or catch my breath, Santino turned me to face him, crashing his mouth to mine for an intense lip-lock. Our tongues tangled and explored, and we were still connected—his thrusts slower now.
"Maggie, baby, I love you." He panted, his breaths washing over my face—we shared the same breaths, my body still trembling.
My hands palmed his cheeks as I gazed into those eyes. "With…everything that I am." He knows how much I love and cherish him.
My words must have driven him wild. Santino started to pump in and out of me faster, and deeper, and then even faster—my legs as wide as they could go, ankles in the air on either side of him. His hands spanned my waist as he continued to slam into me over and over and over, enjoying me, pleasing me to no end.
Close once more, I gripped his shirt tightly, needing something to hold on to as I stiffened, stifling a scream or pleasure. A loud moan managed to escape, and he silenced me with his lips, going as deep as he could to let his own cry spill into my mouth.
"I love you." He gritted out, coming inside me, his hips moving slower now before they stilled.
Then he let a chuckle out through a pant. "Baby…" He seemed to be at a loss for words.
My chest was still heaving from our activities, and I practically beamed. "I know and you know…we have to talk."
He sighed, bending low to close the crotch of my outfit, getting those teeny buttons. "Things will slow down, and you've been so good—understanding."
I placed a finger over his lips. "We'll talk tomorrow…Tonight, we should do baths, have ice cream, spend time with the boys."
Santino huffed, getting to his feet to right his pants and tuck his shirt. "Li'l Sonny's mad, ain't he?"
I smiled. "He'll get over it."
Santino stared at the ground. "It took a long time…for me to understand. Hell, it screwed Dame up for however long." He pushed his hair back. "And I swore I'd be different—"
I picked my coat up, staring at him wide-eyed. "Baby, you're a wonderful father."
"When I'm around…" He kicked his chair. "You know how much I love you—how much I love them, right?"
I ran to his side to grasp his hand. "Of course. Coming here was…it was sorta a sexy surprise, too?" I glanced at the desk. "That was one of the best quickies…ever." I forced a giggle, my heart breaking because…he knows what's up, and he's so hard on himself. All of which sealed the deal in my mind, promising I'd no longer get upset when he's torn away from us. He doesn't like it either. "Get your coat. We'll go home."
"Home," he repeated. "It's still early. I can color with Li'l Sonny and read a bed time story for Ed, kiss Beth goodnight." He grinned.
"We're early enough to have hot fudge sundaes with them, too?" I grasped his hand.
He nodded, hurrying to his closet to grab his pea coat. "That was a wicked trick." He slowly turned to face me. "You'll pay for that."
"Promise?" I buttoned my coat.
"Fuck, yeah, baby. I'm so not done with you yet." He yanked me into his arms. "When the kiddos go to bed…you're all mine." Santino bent low.
And, as always, I rose to my toes to meet him halfway.
Just like I plan to do for the rest of my life.
Thank you for reading.
There's a few more outtakes/future-takes coming soon! Dame, Kylie, and Santino...