Enjoy an extract from Lux Zakari's hot new novel “Coercion”.
Valerie reached into her embroidered tote bag, fumbling for the keys to the vehicle, when she heard a car door slam from somewhere behind her. She glanced up and, in the murky reflection in the Volvo’s window, saw someone climb out of a truck. She turned around in time to see Michael, wearing his ever-present aviators along with a tan suede coat, cup his hands around a cigarette, shielding it from the wind as he lit it. He breathed out a cloud of smoke as he shook his fist, extinguishing the match. A lump formed in Valerie’s throat as she realized he was heading in her direction.
She faced the car again and groped for the keys, not knowing what else to do. He couldn’t possibly be here for her. She tried to ignore how her heart thudded in time to the roar of the blood rushing to her head as she heard his slow, relaxed footsteps on the pavement come to a stop behind her. Unable to avoid it, she looked behind her where Michael stood, one hand buried in the pocket of his coat and the other rolling the filter of the cigarette between his fingertips. His mirrored glasses masked the look in his eyes, but a smirk danced on his lips.
“Hi,” was all she could squeak.
“How’s it going?” His mouth pulled on the cigarette as a chilly October breeze tousled his thick, shaggy hair even further.
She gave an exaggerated shrug. “All right.”
He tilted his head. “We’ve got History together, right?”
“Right.” She bobbed her head in the affirmative and hoped it wasn’t obvious her body temperature had just rocketed about ten degrees.
“Thought so.” He regarded her in silence for a moment. “You heading home?”
“Yeah. I’m just looking for my keys.”
“If you can’t find them,” he said between drags, “I’ll give you a ride.”
“Thanks.” She forced her attention back on her bag, her hands shaking from his offer, which she wasn’t sure was intentionally sexual or not. She mentally chided herself for her dirty mind.
Valerie’s embarrassment increased when she lost her already tenuous grip on her tote, its contents skittering across the pavement. “Oh no!”
Michael watched her wordlessly as she gathered up the dropped items: a few pens and pencils, a plastic blue compact mirror, a mini notebook serving as her day planner and a pot of clear lip gloss. Another puff of smoke escaped his mouth as he finally bent with the speed of a tree sloth and scooped up a handful of keys attached to several decorative rings. “Found ’em.” They dangled from his index finger.
She was sure her face couldn’t get any redder as she quickly snatched the keys from him, making sure to avoid body contact. “Thanks.”
“Why do girls always have so much shit on their keys?” he asked. “The ratio of key rings to actual keys is probably eight to one.”
“I guess.” Her voice trailed off and she turned back to the car door in an effort to avoid the silence.
She spun around again, her brow furrowed in bewilderment. “What?”
He took another pull on his cigarette and nodded at her legs. “I like them.”
“Oh.” It was the only sound that would escape her mouth.
“Oh? Someone pays you a compliment and that’s all you can say?” He shook his head. “That’s not very polite.”
“I’m sorry. I just... I was just surprised, I guess. That’s all.” Her face burned. “Thank you for saying so.”
He flicked his cigarette across the parking lot, where it bumped and sparked on the pavement. “You leaving now?”
She hesitated. “I should. We’re already having dinner late tonight. I don’t want to keep anyone waiting.”
“I think you can put off dinner a little while longer.” He moved closer and Valerie’s body grew warmer. She automatically took a step back, the backs of her knees hitting the car door. He stood with his face a mere foot away from hers and leaned against the car, propping himself up with one hand on its roof. “First, you and I need to have a little talk about your manners.”
Valerie had never been more aware of the sensitivity of her skin. If she turned her face just slightly to the left, her cheek would brush against his hand. If she took a step forward, her body would be pressed against his. “My manners?” she echoed, hoping her voice wasn’t as suddenly shrill as she feared.
“That’s right.” He leaned in closer, his hot breath against her cheek. “We’re in the same class, and you’ve never once said hi. In fact, you do your best to completely ignore me. Don’t you think that’s rude?”
“I’m sorry.” She tried not to stare at his pillowy lips and ignored the fact Michael Vartanian had no recollection of her prior to the start of the semester.
“Prove it.” Then his mouth was on hers before she knew it. The tote slipped from her fingers to the ground, and a surprised moan sounded from the back of her throat at the feeling of his lips on hers, hot and unyielding. When he drew away from her, he smiled, as if reveling in her shock. “What’s the problem?”
“What?” She touched her fingers to her lips, still burning from the kiss. Her mind was a fog as the rest of the world suddenly slipped away. All that remained was Michael Vartanian’s mouth. “What problem?”
“You look troubled.” He bowed his head again for another kiss, one that led away from her mouth and down her throat. “So what’s the problem?”
“There is none,” she said through chattering teeth, the ghostly print of Michael’s lips lingering on hers. Her memory allowed her to still feel the metal edge of his aviators scratching her cheek. “It’s just…”
“It’s just what?”
“This is all just so weird.”
He moved away from her sharply. Gone was the smile gracing his face just moments before. She could sense him glaring at her behind his sunglasses. “What’s weird about it? Something specific, or is it just the general idea of you making out with a lowlife?”
“That’s not it at all. I just never thought something like this would happen.”
“Because you’re you, and I’m me.” The words stammered out of her like a faulty typewriter.
He threw a glance heavenward and raked a hand through his hair. “What does that even mean?”
“You’re just not the type to notice someone like me.”
As quickly as his smile vanished, it reappeared, leaving her to assume she had only imagined his unhappiness. “Someone like you, huh? So you somehow think I’m better than you?”
Valerie motioned with her hands helplessly. She wasn’t sure what to think anymore.
“Well, I have noticed you, so there goes your theory.” He moved closer to her, closing the rest of the small space that had been between them. She gasped at the feeling of his body pushed against hers, pinning her to the car. “And I was just testing you.” His hands drifted to her hips. “I already know you want me.”
She swallowed and squeezed her eyes shut, concentrating only on his words and the fact he was finally, amazingly, touching her.
He lowered his head and briefly covered her mouth with his before saying, “I’ve noticed how nervous you get around me in class. It’s sort of flattering.” He punctuated his words with more kisses. “But now I want to know what you think about that always makes you blush and look away from me.”
“I don’t know.” She tried to keep her breathing under control.
“I think you do.” He pulled her hips so close to him she couldn’t help but part her legs slightly. She felt the fabric of his jeans rub against her inner thigh as her skirt inadvertently bunched up her legs. “And I want you to tell me.”
Before she could respond, he crushed himself against her body as his mouth slanted over hers, his tongue slipping inside. He nipped and sucked at her lips, leaving them tingling. Then he pulled away slowly, smirking. “Did you think about kissing me?”
“I don’t know,” she said shyly, then paused before nodding. “Yes.”
He kissed her again, and this time she was more responsive, tentatively brushing her tongue against his. He raised his hands from her hips to her breasts, invoking a surprised peep from her as he caressed them over her sweater. “Mmm,” he murmured. “These are nice too.”
“What’re you doing?” She was half afraid he would continue, half afraid he would stop.
His thumbs grazed her hardening nipples. “What do you think?”
She looked over her shoulder, suddenly aware of where they were and that there were other people on the planet besides them. “But someone will see us.”
“They won’t.” His hands slid under her sweater to touch the bare skin of her waist. “It’s almost dark, and there’s no one around.”
“Still...” Valerie was at a loss for words. It made sense to not want other people to see Michael Vartanian touching her so intimately in public, but she couldn’t think of a reason why. “We just can’t.”
He pushed her sweater above her breasts, revealing her white bra. Her nipples peeked through the thin fabric. “If people want to watch us, let them.”
“No.” She attempted to wriggle out of his grasp, and Michael took the opportunity to slide his knee in between her legs. His thigh pressed against the crotch of her panties as he kept her in place.
“Yes.” He effortlessly reached behind her and unsnapped her bra. The lace jumped upward on her chest, revealing the underside of her breasts. Valerie let out a shriek, but was immediately silenced when Michael pushed the bra out of the way and bent his head to capture her left nipple in his mouth.
A startled moan escaped her lips, and she tilted her head back as his tongue flicked one nipple and his hand caressed the other. She was sure he could feel her heart pounding and sense her inexperience. She closed her eyes, and the possibility of being caught by someone—anyone—dissipated as she focused on the pleasure he was giving her.
He drew away from her slowly and smiled. “Let’s find out if you still want to stop.” His hands traveled to her thighs and started to sneak up her skirt.
“I can’t do this.” Her voice took on a desperate quality as she glanced over her shoulder at the students filtering out of the school and heading to their cars.
He took her chin in his hand and forced her to look at him. “Forget about them.”
“Fine.” His tone hardened. “I’m not going to force you to do something you really don’t want to do. Just say the word, and I’ll walk away and never bother you again. We’ll forget this ever happened. Just tell me now.”
Valerie could feel his hand creeping up her outer thigh, and the thought of never being so close to him again made her heart ache. She didn’t want him to walk away. He was making her feel things she’d never experienced before. She felt like she was blossoming beneath his touch.
“Do you really want me to stop?”
She took another glance over her shoulder then pressed her lips together as she shook her head no.
“I like the way you think.” The hand that was on her chin joined his other wandering hand, and they both slipped beneath the legs of her thin cotton panties, cupping the underside of her ass. “Your skin is so soft.”
Valerie’s mouth was so dry she could hardly swallow. She whimpered as he withdrew his hands from her panties and moved them higher to the waistband. “These need to go.” He inched the fabric down.
She grabbed his hands. “I can’t do that right here,” she said at a barely audible volume.
“It feels like you want to.” His hand maneuvered around to touch her clit through her panties before she could find the words to object. One of his fingers slipped inside her panties and circled her clit with the wetness seeping from her pussy.
“Oh my God.” Valerie drew in a breath, simultaneously excited and terrified.
Michael dipped his finger slowly inside her body. “I want you to be honest with me about something.”
She couldn’t even choke out a response as he moved his finger against the damp walls of her pussy, his thumb brushing against her clit. She was sure words hadn’t even been invented yet for what she was experiencing.
“I want to know—” He pushed another finger inside her and smiled as she let out a soft moan. “—if you ever fuck yourself.”
“Hmm?” Her breath was choppy and her mind blurred with a mixture of incomprehension and desire.
He removed his fingers from her, and she whimpered with disappointment. “Do you ever fuck yourself?” He grabbed one of her hands and moved it to her crotch. “Like this?”
Valerie’s face reddened. “Why does it matter?”
“Do you?” he repeated.
She paused for a moment before nodding slightly. “Sometimes.”
Michael loosened his grip on her and slid his hand under her skirt, where he tugged at her panties once again. “Who else have you let touch you?”
“No one,” she mumbled, embarrassed.
“Really?” Michael peeled her panties down, dropping them to the tarmac, and she gasped as she felt the nip of the car’s cold metal against her ass. Then he lifted her knee so her leg wrapped around his waist and pushed two fingers inside her once again, and her back immediately curved upward.
“Yes,” she half-moaned. “No one.”
“So you’re a virgin then.” His thumb thrummed a light, torturous beat on her clit while he waited for her answer.
“Yes,” she gasped as her hips moved to meet his fingers thrust for thrust. “Yes, I’m a virgin.”
The sloppy grin on Michael’s face remained in place. He rewarded her by easing his fingers in and out of her. “I’ll be gentle then.”
Valerie sighed. “Oh God.”
“So tell me what you like,” he murmured. “Do you like me finger fucking you against Mommy’s car in the parking lot?”
“Yes,” she whimpered, letting out a moan upon seeing Michael’s hand sliding inside her body.
He brushed her lips with his. “Do you wish my fingers were my cock?” He rotated his thumb over her clit, eliciting another moan from her.
“Oh my God.” The words tumbled out of Valerie in a winded rush as she squeezed her eyes shut.
His fingers moved faster inside her and he maintained a steady grip on her thigh, keeping her leg around his waist. “Do you like this?”
“Yes.” The sensations started to pulse through her. She reached up and dug her nails into Michael’s broad shoulders. “Yes. I like it.”
“I know. I can feel it.” He lowered his head so his breath breezed across her ear. “But I won’t let you come until you tell me you wish I was fucking you, right here, right now.”
Coming apart in Michael Vartanian’s arms and around his expert fingers suddenly felt like the most important thing in Valerie’s world. “I wish,” she said, the words foreign and wanton to her, “you were fucking me.”
Michael let out a groan from somewhere in the back of his throat at her confession, and Valerie’s legs trembled. She released one last strangled cry, and her muscles tightened rapidly around his fingers as she reached her climax.
After giving her a moment to recapture her breath, he withdrew his hand and smoothed her skirt back into place. She opened her eyes slowly to see him once again smirking at her. Her lips parted, but she couldn’t find a way to speak.
Michael bent to scoop her panties off the ground. “Don’t forget these.” He tossed them to her, and she barely caught them with her trembling fingers. Speechless, she stared at him, unable to wrap her mind around what had just happened. He stood there so casual and unaffected she wondered if she had dreamed it. She was tempted to reach between her legs to feel the dampness, as if it would confirm the whole moment.
“Let me know if you ever need a ride,” he said casually, and sauntered back to his truck.
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