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After all the things she had done with him, all the things he had done to her, the sight of Magnus in a tux was making Lanie more shy than she had been since the first night when she saw him standing in the doorway of the pub. He was so gorgeous, so poised and refined in his elegant evening wear. The pooling heat in her center reminded her shockingly of her lack of underwear. She was suddenly struck with the fear that her wetness would seep through and stain her dress shoud she try to do anything as foolish as sit right now.

”God, that dress was made for you,” he groaned, adding to her worry with what his words never failed to do to her. “I can’t wait till the party is over so I can fuck you in it... and now that I think about it, maybe I won’t.”

Lanie was unable to hold back a gasp that started as shock but ended as longing. Magnus chuckled and kissed the top of her head.

”Like that idea, do you?” He asked, smiling wickedly. “Me fucking you over one of these tables? Or maybe up against a tree just outside the tent, while all these old stuffed shirts watch, pretending  to be horrified, but all the while storing away the sounds of your moans, the look of your flushed, wanton face, the way your back arches as I slam into you, over and over, and that final, shamless scream of my name as you come apart around my cock, memorizing it all so that they can replay it later as they wank off in their beds tonight?”

“No,” she whimpered, sounding unconvincing even to her own ears.

”Oh, I think you do,” he grinned, and leaned down to purr directly into her ear “I can smell it on you.”

 “Magnus, my boy! I thought that was you! What are you doing here?” Magnus straightened as an elderly gentleman approached them.

”Cyrus,” he greeted the man, reaching out to shake his hand. “Good to see you!”

”Am I to hope from your presence here tonight that your family has finally convinced you to stop playing cops and robbers and get a respectable job then?” Cyrus asked.

”Afraid not,” Lanie, watching closely, saw the muscle twitching in Magnus’ jaw. “I’m simply here as a guest of this lovely lady.  Cyrus Widser, Lanie Greyson.”

”Ah, you’re Haas’ secretary, aren’t you?” Cyrus’ eyes flicked over her dismissively, though they did linger on her curves in a way that made Lanie’s skin crawl and Magnus tighten his grip on her arm.

”Executive Assistant,” Lanie corrected him, though he didn’t seem to hear.

”Sonja’s here, Magnus,” the man said, winking at him. “I’m sure she’d love to see you again. You’ll have to save her a dance. It’ll be just like old times, eh?”

”I’ll do that,” Magnus smiled. 

“Let me bring you over now,” Cyrus suggested, looking over to where a tall, long legged brunette with dark eyes was staring at them. A small, expectant smile played about the woman’s lips.

”Oh, I’m afraid I can’t,” Magnus began to demure, but Lanie smiled up at him determinedly and withdrew her hand from his.

”It’s alright Mags,” she said with an overly bright smile. “I need to check in with the caterers anyway.”

”If you’re sure,” he looked over to where the woman was managing to make sipping champagne an erotic event.

”Of course,” Lanie felt as though she was signing her own death warrent. “Have fun.”

”Yes, Magnus, let the girl go tend to her tasks. Come talk to your friends.”

”Find me when you’re done,” Magnus ordered, then let the man lead him over to the glamorous female clearly making eyes at him.

Lanie was completely demoralized. Anne had told her Magnus came from a posh home, but she hadn’t realized exactly how posh. It made sense, of course. He fit in perfectly with these people. Looking at him now with Sonja draped on him, kissing either cheek and lingeringly running her hand down his lapel he looked far more appropriate than he did in his junker car, tiny appartment, or dive bar with Lanie on his arm. What was she thinking? She had fallen for him hard and fast, but there was no way the relationship would last. He would find the killer and the danger would be gone. How then would she ever manage to keep his interest? It was doomed.


Magnus thought his face was going to crack from the fake smile plastered on to it. He had seen Cyrus’ name on the guest list, of course, and knew he would inevitably have to talk to the friend of his Father’s, but Sonja had not been listed. Last he had heard (from his parents, of course), she had been summering in Greece. He heartily wished she were there now.

They had had a brief liaison over one holiday in college, which had ended as quickly as it began when he realized her disdain for anyone not born to wealth was not just a childhood phase but a corner stone of her personality. His declaration that he intended to join the police force rather than follow his father and grandfather’s examples by parlaying a successful career as a barrister into a government position had been the final nail in coffin of her ardor, or so he had thought. The way she was eyeing him now, though, led him to believe that perhaps her interest wasn’t as dead as his after all. Damn.

”Magnus,” her husky voice was all too obvious, better suited to the bedroom than a party. “It’s been far to long.”

She kissed him on either cheek, leaning into him. He couldn’t help contrasting how gaunt she felt pressed up to him, all skin and bones after Lanie’s enticing curves in just the right spots. 

“Sonja,” he greeted her, “how was Greece?”

”Hot and poor,” she shrugged. “Not worth talking about. I am much more interested in you. What managed to bring you back to good society?”

”My girlfriend,” he told her pointedly, attempting to disentangle her hand from the lapel of his jacket.

”Girlfriend?” Sonja pouted, sticking out her lower lip in what he knew was supposed to be a sultry manner. “How could you be so cruel to me? Where is she so I can scratch her eyes out?”

”Don’t worry, sweetheart,” Cyrus told his daughter, “it’s just Haas’ hired girl. Nothing for you to worry about.”

”I beg your pardon?” Magnus felt his face go cold.

”Oh come now, my boy,” Cyrus laughed. “We all know how it is. These working class girls are all well and good for a fling, but you’re getting to be of an age to settle down, and when that happens... well, breeding will out in the end.”

”Is that so,” his hands were itching, and for a moment he gave serious consideration to planting the man a facer. If Cyrus had been ten years younger he probably would have.

”Of course!” Cyrus grinned. “And on that note, I see a perfect little piece over there by the bar. I am at the other end, you know. Wife gone and so able to dally with the help all I like. Oh, don’t look like that Sonja! I might be your father, but I’m still a man. And that little filly is in need of being reigned in. If you will excuse me, I will leave you two to get reacquainted.”

With another wink he left them, and Magnus’ stomach turned as he realized he was walking over to where Holly stood at the bar. His instinct was to follow and run interference, but Sonja had taken hold of his arm and he couldn’t free it without causing a scene. He would just have to trust that the girl could take care of herself. He’d be sure to keep a watchful eye on her from afar though.

”You must remember, Magnus,” Sonja was cooing. “How good we were together?” 

“If that was the case, why did you end things?” he asked. 

He had allowed her to call things off in order help her save face. She had responded to his chivalry by telling all of their mutual friends that she had ended it because he was a sexual deviant and gone into lurid, highly embellished detail about his bedroom habits. It hqf not been a pleasant year for him following that, as rumors grew and festered. It had been some time after that before he had trusted a woman enough to share his preferences with her.

”Becaus you were just a silly, gangly boy then,” she told him, spreading her hands out on his chest, fingers dipping inside his jacked. “You hadn’t filled out so nicely yet. Although some parts of you were always nice and large.”

Before he knew what was happening her hand dipped down and cupped his crotch and her lips were pressed to his.  His head flew back and his own hand shot down instantly and snatched her wrist, pulling it away.

”Stop it this instant, Sonja,” he snapped at her. “I told you I had a girlfriend, I told you I was here with her. You will respect that.”

”I wish you would respect yourself,” she told him bitterly. “Everyone is laughing at you, Magnus. A cop with a secretary girlfriend? Who do you think you are? Does she let you tie her up and beat her, is that it? Maybe use the handcuffs? I suppose you’d need to find her sort of girl for that, no self respecting woman would go for your perverted games.”

”I seem to recall you liked them well enough, right up until the end,” he growled, not wanting to think about it.

The idea of coupling with this selfish bitch the way he did with Lanie, who gave herself so freely willingly to him did seem perverted. He needed to get away from her. He needed to find Lanie and be reminded of the good things his life held now, not the sordid, twisted regrets of his past. Looking around he just saw the back of her blue dress as she was running away from the party. He heard Sonja laugh cruely and turned to see a triumphant smile on her face.

”Oh dear,” her voice thrummed with false concern, “I hope we didn’t upset her.”

He caught Holly’s eye from the bar and realized she was glaring at him. The pieces fit together. Lanie had seen Sonja kiss him, seen her groping hands, and from the direction she had been looking she would not have been able to see Magnus’ response.

Damn! She couldn’t possibly think he wanted Sonja to accost him, could she? But from the way she had fled he knew he already had his answer. Damn, damn, damn.