Sex stories

Short sex stories




A Shepherd Afield Pt. 01

Author's Notes:

'A Shepherd Afield' is a continuation of 'A Shepherd in France' which continued the story of 'The Shepherd of Ashburn Court'. Minimal effort is made in this tale to explain the backstory so please read the other stories first.

All characters engaging in sexual relationships or activities are 18 years old or older.

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Chapter 1

There was something about working with your hands, taking raw materials and building something new, seeing a need go from conceptual design to physical reality that satisfied the soul like nothing else. Well, it was certainly the second most spiritually satisfying activity Ben could think of at the moment.

He sat in Trish's kitchen taking in his handy work. He'd spent the better part of September installing a beautiful new bay window over the kitchen sink, new cabinetry with granite countertops, and French doors leading out of the kitchen to a brand new deck complete with a built in barbeque grill and a large built in hot tub. The deck hadn't been part of his original plan but he'd discovered the old one had some rotted decking.

If he was completely honest with himself, and he was compelled to be, he could have left the existing deck but he wouldn't have been able to add the hot tub and cooking center... and he needed the distraction of the renovation work.

The press hadn't left him alone since they'd tracked him down to his neighborhood. His daring rescue of the five young women from the slavers in Cannes, France followed by the televised unveiling of the four foot tall brass sculpture of him, in all its anatomically correct, naked glory caused such a firestorm in the media that the public hadn't lost interest yet.

Worst yet were the constant references to him as a hero.

Ben ground his teeth and surged up to his feet once more. He glanced around to see what was left to do but the job was done. His agitation was making his nerves buzz. He had to keep his mind from going down that path. Something he'd learned in his sessions with Dr. Granger.

He'd cancelled his appointments with the good doctor when he'd had... a difference of opinion over her method of treatment. She claimed she was making progress with the hypnotherapy but all he knew was he was becoming miserable to live with at home. After the sessions he'd have terrible mood swings and his temper was almost violent. He couldn't put his family through that. He'd had... words with the woman and hadn't returned to see her since that blowout. Hanna was terribly disappointed in him and refused to talk to him until he came to his senses. That hurt more than he thought possible. He realized his mood was beginning to swing down. Gotta keep busy! He considered going downstairs to at least spec out the next reno the house needed.

He heard the front door open and a voice called out.

"Ben? Are you still here?"

"In the kitchen Trish," he replied, a feeling of relief washing over him as he was no longer alone with his thoughts.

The red head bounced into the room loaded down with grocery bags. Her strong, hard muscles stood out on her arms and he let his eyes roam over her fit body. Trish was a serious exercise junkie with energy to spare.

He caught the glitter of diamonds and the flash of the large ruby on the ring he'd presented her with when he returned from Paris. It was her constant companion and a reminder of how much she meant to him.

She set the bags down on the new island and grinned as she took in the new work surfaces once more.

"Holy fuck this is one gorgeous kitchen Ben!" she gushed.

He returned the smile. "Glad you like it!"

She looked around and suddenly realized his tools were all packed away. "You're done?" she said with an odd tone in her voice.

"Yes, all done," he returned as he watched her expression.

She bit her lower lip as she nodded taking in the sparkling new fixtures and appliances. She racked her brain to think of something else he could fix but it all looked so good! She just wasn't ready for him to not be around every day. Then she recalled something Ben said earlier and she smiled. "You mentioned you had ideas for the basement?"

Ben smiled as he realized what Trish was up to. "Yes, I did but that's going to have to wait. The contractors are finally going to be available to help me with Barry Walker's house next week."

Trish pouted looking up at the big man. She'd managed to distract him from the renovations a number of times over the past few weeks and the sex was so damn good! She started to get that tingly feeling once more. She began to put away the groceries distractedly.

Ben washed his hands in the sink then moved to help her. Unable to resist Trish occasionally brushed up against him with her hip, ass, or breasts. He caught her grinning as she turned away after a very blatant grope. He saw the perishable foods were stored away so he decided the rest of the groceries could wait and he knew what she was after. As she walked past the island he stepped up behind her and pinned her to the cabinet, his hard bulge pressed tight against her ass. She gasped as he ground against her and squeezed her tits in his hands.

"OH FUCK!" she gasped.

He gave her no time to prepare as he reached down to yank her running tights and panties down. He pushed her over onto her stomach on the granite work surface and her feet left the ground. He gave the taught muscles of her ass a quick slap to ignite her pleasure then squeezed the muscular orbs in his hands as she moaned. As that sensation poured through her he dipped down to stroke her pussy roughly with his tongue again and again.

"GEEZUS! FUCK! FUCK!" Trish jolted and her legs shot outwards but she had no purchase. When Ben drove two fingers deep into her pussy her mouth shot open in a silent scream and her body shook.

Ben undid his pants with his free hand and stood up quickly. He pulled his fingers out and rubbed her juices over the thick head of his cock. She tried to look back but he was already pressing forward forcing her wide open with his hot flesh.

"OH GOD YES!!!" she groaned as she tried to push back. He had her pinned to the island and she shivered at the feeling of complete submission.

He'd slid in a third of his length when he reversed direction. She whimpered with need and once more tried to pull him inside with her legs as she wrapped them around him. This also had the benefit of opening her wider. Ben pulled out to the tip, feeling her hot wetness trying to suck him back inside. Her pussy was dripping wet from her excitement and her legs trembled. He dipped the head in and out of her opening and she squealed.

"FUCKING TEASE! GIVE ME THAT- AAAAAAAAA FFFFFUUUUUUCCCKKK!!" she screamed as he slammed forward, driving his cock deep inside and slapping her ass with his pelvis. He drew back and began to drive himself into her pussy, hard. He knew Trish liked it rough and fast. And with her, he did too.

"Mother-fucker-so-good-Uhhh!-FUCK!-Ooo!-Fuck!-Fuck!-Fuck!" she chanted with each stroke of his cock. Her ass was beginning to turn pink from the repeated slaps as she pinched and tugged her nipples roughly.

Ben slid his hands up her back under her tight spandex top, forcing her down on the granite surface. He felt her tremble at his touch and she reached back to pull at his arms to direct his hands to her big fake tits. With her constant exercise she'd burned off most of the body fat so her late husband gifted her with some rather large implants. She enjoyed teasing Ben with her abundant cleavage but she really enjoyed his hands on them. He knew what she liked so he gave it to her. He roughly rolled and tugged on her thick nipples and her gasps told him she was almost there. That was good because so was he.

Trish shoved a hand down under herself and rubbed her clit in circles as she moaned. Ben had bounced her mound against the hard surface of the island but she needed this extra stimulation to really set off the nuke this orgasm was becoming.

"UHHH!-OHHH-GONNA-CUMMM... BENNNNNnnnnnnn!!"

He sped up his thrusts and pounded Trish's pussy with his thick cock which swelled in preparation of his release.

"FUCK! OH FUCK! YES! THAT'S IT! YES! AAAAAIIIIIEEEEEE!!!!" her screams got louder and higher in pitch as the blast wave rolled over her body.

Ben slammed himself deep one more time and felt himself jetting stream after stream of hot cum deep inside her. He held her tight against his body and basked in the glow. He wasn't worried about her getting pregnant. His sperm count was extremely low, for all intents and purposes zero, and Trish was on the pill. She had been ever since Tina's return from France with the news of her miracle pregnancy.

He released her nipples and massaged her back muscles and she shuddered and shook through her orgasm. He was surprised how long this one was lasting for her. It brought a smile to his lips. She was so in touch with her body and it responded for her like a finely tuned sports car. The flip side to that was its frequent need to be... fueled with aggressive sex. When her husband died in the plane crash she'd found relief from her long drought with Ben and had turned to him ever since. He grinned as he thought of how often recently she'd managed to distract him from his work. He was a little concerned that she might try to maintain that frequency. With the other demands on his time that really wasn't going to be possible. He would always make time for her when he could as she had his heart but his time wasn't infinite.

Ben mischievously rubbed his thumb over her puckered asshole and Trish's body clenched as it spiked through a second series of releases.

"Ben! No more... I'm done... Shit! That was... fucking awesome!" she gasped out.

He grinned at her coarse language. She was an intense woman and her language was often peppered with curses, shouts and growls. He pulled his semi-hard cock from her and gave her ass a playful spank causing her to shudder through one more aftershock.

"AH! You dirty fucker," she whimpered as she sagged against the stone countertop. She turned her head to look at him over her shoulder and he saw the love in her eyes which took his breath away. He suddenly scooped her off the counter into his arms and kissed her deeply. She squealed then purred as the kiss went on.

Finally he pulled back and Trish's eyes had a dreamy look in them.

"You aren't really mad at me, are you?" he teased.

She quirked a crooked smile at him. "Livid. Your only chance at redemption is to do it again."

He grinned, kicked his pants off and hoisted her over his shoulder as she screamed. He grabbed his pants from the floor and headed for the stairs up to the bedrooms as she squealed and giggled in protest.

As Ben walked down the hall to the base of the stairs Lily entered the front door and froze at the sight of Ben's and Trish's naked... parts. Ben moved his pants in front of himself and blushed at the young woman's shocked expression. He turned to hustle up the stairs and Trish squeaked when she saw Lily standing there staring at them.

"What are you doing home so early!" Trish called out.

"The prof called in sick so the lecture was cancelled," Lily called out as they disappeared down the hall.

Ben headed directly for Trish's bedroom and pulled the door closed behind them. He walked into the bathroom and set Trish down on her feet. She gently pummeled his chest as she playfully scowled at his deeply blushing face.

"Lily got a good look did she?" she quipped as she kicked off her pants and panties.

He nodded with a frown. Trish pulled his shirt up and off and dropped it on the counter on top of his pants. Ben helped her off with her own top and followed her into the shower. She got the spray going on the surround heads.

"Ben, I haven't told you enough how much I love this shower!" she purred as the hot water massaged her skin.

He grinned and worked the soapy lather over her body.

"God! I love your hands on my body more," Trish sighed.

"That's good because I love touching you," he said, voice rumbling with his need.

Trish's eyes flashed up to his as she heard his desire. Her smile got just a little wider as she turned to face him and tilted her face up to accept his kiss.

Ben brushed her soft lips with his and felt her tremble in reaction. He sucked her lush lower lip between his and caressed it with the tip of his tongue. Trish gasped and thrust her tongue into his mouth as her arms went around his neck. He grabbed her ass with his hands and lifted her up against his chest causing her to squeak into his mouth. His cock was already hard as iron and rested against his stomach squeezed between their bodies. She moaned feeling the heat from him pressing against her clit. Trish pulled back from the kiss to look into his eyes, her own need consuming her.

"Ben! Fuck me!"

He lifted her slowly, dragging her clit up his cock, feeling her twitch and shake until he was positioned with the fat head being kissed by the puffy lips of her dripping pussy. She struggled to force herself down on him but he held her ass in his iron grip and gently bobbed her on the tip.

"You're such a fucking TEASE! FUCK ME!" she growled.

Ben slowly lowered Trish over his cock, loving how her inner walls caressed his flesh and how they trembled as they squeezed him tight. He took his time while she desperately tried to rush the process. Finally his cock was fully inside her and he pulled her tight against him, rocking against her clit.

Trish's legs jolted as her pleasure spiked and she cried out.

"Motherfucker! Oh geezus that feels so good!" she moaned and gasped.

He began a slow withdrawal but this time he kept her tight against his body to maintain the pressure on her clit as she rose up.

"OH SHIT! OH SHIT! MOTHERF- OH GOD!" Bolts of pleasure were stabbing through her and she couldn't think straight. She felt like she was approaching her release but it just wouldn't tip over the edge.

When the tip of his cock was once again being kissed by her pussy lips he surprised her by slamming her down on his cock. Her release was immediate and intense. She gurgled incoherently as wave after wave of almost violent bliss screamed through her nerves.

Then he began to lift and drop her on his cock which still had the rigidity of an iron rod.

Trish was unable to speak. Nor could she participate in the movements as her muscle tone was lost in her body's explosive release.

Ten more strokes and Ben's orgasm crested. He held the panting woman against his chest and rode the waves of his pleasure until they ebbed and calmed.

Trish rested her cheek against his shoulder and shivered gently as his softening cock slipped free of her.

"Oh fuck... that...was almost... too much," she sighed as she tried to catch her breath.

"I've managed to satisfy the insatiable?" Ben chuckled.

"Mmmm... don't get cocky. HAHaha- Ohhhhh!" Trish's laughter turned into a moan as her body protested her jolting by sending sharp spikes of sensation through her sensitive bits.

Ben rinsed them both off under the spray then turned the water off. He set Trish on her feet and held her until her legs would support her. Then they dried off.

"I have to apologize to Lily," Ben said with a frown.

"I'm sure she wasn't too upset to see your big cock swinging free," Trish grinned.

"I shouldn't have been walking around in your house without my pants on," he grumbled. "What if your son had come home early? It was damn irresponsible of me!"

Trish reached up and took his face between her hands.

"Ben! Stop being so hard on yourself! We were just having a little fun. No one got hurt! Relax," she finished with a smile.

He nodded then kissed her palms.

"No! No more... tonight! You are too damn sexy and you'll get me all fired up again!" Trish protested as she pulled her hands away from Ben.

He grinned and put his clothes back on. Trish walked out into her bedroom and slipped her robe on. She looked back at Ben with a pout. "So, I'm not going to have you all to myself during the day anymore."

"Not for a little while at least. There is a lot of work that needs to be done on the Walker place. That doesn't mean I can't stop by occasionally to enjoy that awesome new hot tub I installed," Ben responded with a smile. That got a grin from the red head.

They went downstairs and back into the kitchen where Lily was sitting doing her homework. The remaining groceries had been put away as well.

"Lily, I am so sorry you had to see that. I wasn't thinking and I got a little carried away..." Ben said contritely.

"It's OK, Mr. Shepherd." Lily was the only neighbor who continued to call him that no matter how much he protested.

"No, I promise to be more careful in the future."

"We have company again in the court. Thought you should know," Lily said, changing to a more comfortable subject.

Ben rolled his eyes. "Someone we know or someone new."

"I haven't seen this car before. Sporty little red coupe. I think there's a woman inside based on what I could see of her rather large hair. She's parked outside of your place."

Ben sighed and nodded to the young woman. Likely another reporter. He'd refused each and every request for an interview and he'd been called by guest coordinators from all of the major night talk shows and morning news shows. Unfortunately his silence didn't have the effect he'd hoped for. As there was a definite lull in titillating gossip and rumor at the moment the media was keeping the story alive of the 'mysterious hero'. He'd been photographed and videoed while going about his business and almost came to blows with a news camera crew who blocked his car in a parking lot of a renovation supply store. Luckily the customer parked in front of him left allowing Ben to drive forward and away from the reporters.

He needed to talk to someone about it as he was quickly losing his patience with their invasive behavior.

Ben picked up his tool box and with a final kiss for Trish at her front door he pulled on his jacket and headed out to walk home. Sure enough there was the red sports car. As he got closer the driver's side door opened and a long shapely leg stepped out followed by its twin. The woman getting out of the car was tall and curvy and wore a stylish red jacket over a crisp white blouse showing a daring amount of cleavage, and a tight black pencil skirt. Lily was spot on with her observation of the woman's hair. It was a rather large hairdo but not unattractive. It certainly drew the eyes up to her face. She walked up to him on the sidewalk. Dark chocolate color skin, lovely brown eyes, deep red lipstick on full lips which were smiling now, revealing her brilliant white teeth with just a slight part between her front teeth.

"Mr. Shepherd? I'm Naomi Klassen, Culture Couture Critic."

Ben set his tool box down and shook her offered hand. He noticed the softness of her skin, the firmness of her grip, the expensive manicure, and the sizeable wedding rings on her left hand. Her outfit was designer and her car was a classic so there was some serious money invested here.

"How can I help you?" he said hesitantly, glancing at his home which was only steps away.

"I think the question is how we might help each other. You've been the center of attention for quite a few weeks. Based on your continued reluctance to speak to the media I can only assume you'd prefer to be left alone. I apologize for seeming to be one more intrusion in your life," she said calmly and smoothly. She had a very soothing voice but Ben's nerves kept him on high alert. It was no surprise to him that he was reluctant to just blow past her as just another nosy reporter. Here facing him was his Achilles heel and maybe the media had finally caught on to that fact.

"Seeming to be. How will your pitch be different?" he asked.
"Our voice is very much self-aware. We comprehend the nature of our audience and the impact our dialogue has on the lives of those we speak for. You would be fully involved in the process of telling your story, ensuring the truth is front and center and preserving as much of your privacy as can be done now that you've reached this level of... notoriety. Celebrity is a cruel mistress. We can work with you to limit your exposure," she smiled. "In your case perhaps a more accurate target would be to redirect attention away from your over exposure," Naomi suggested.

Ben squirmed under her gaze of frank appreciation.

"I'd prefer to be completely ignored," he muttered.

"Yet the public has seen much and hungers for more after hearing of your heroism." Ben scowled and Naomi's keen eye caught that reaction and filed it away. "The phrase about nature abhorring a vacuum applies to the public's desire for information about people they have hoisted up onto a pillar."

Ben's expression was bleak as he contemplated the no win situation he was being cornered in.

A car swung around the circular court and stopped next to the curb beside them.

"Ben, is everything alright?" Rochelle asked as she shut her car off.

He looked over and saw his neighbor looking at him from her car's open window.

"Hi Rochelle. Yes, this is Naomi Klassen. She was suggesting she might be able to help me limit the public's attention."

"Naomi? Naomi Grant?" Rochelle gasped as she recognized the woman with Ben. She stepped from the car.

Naomi turned her face completely towards Rochelle and her expression froze. "Rochelle Jameson?"

Ben's eyes moved back and forth between the two women. "You two know each other?"

Naomi quickly turned to face Ben and her smile was back in place but there was a nervous quality to it.

"Yes, we went through College together. We had some mutual friends-" she began when Rochelle's barking laugh cut her off. The shorter woman moved next to Ben and looked up at Naomi.

"You slept with my boyfriends."

Ben's eyebrows went up.

"Yes, that wasn't a very bright moment in my life. I was suffering through some pretty bad self-esteem issues. I'm terribly sorry for my past behavior and for any pain I caused you at the time," she said with a sincere tone.

Rochelle was still looking at her with a scowl but she accepted the apology as gracefully as she could. "Klassen?"

Naomi smiled and seemed to relax a little. "I finally got married about a year ago. How about you?"

Rochelle looked at Ben then back to the woman. "I'm Rochelle King now. Widowed. I have a 21 year old daughter and an 18 year old son."

Naomi gave Rochelle a sympathetic look and saw Ben was beginning to fidget. She had to bring the conversation back to him. She needed his story. It would be a huge feather in her cap if she could get the exclusive.

"I was telling Ben that the media house I work for, Culture Couture Critic, could help defuse the media frenzy with a controlled and discrete delivery of his story," she said with a smile.

Ben's head twitched back at the idea of sharing his story with strangers.

"I just want to be left alone. Can you make them do that?" he grumbled.

The tension was back. "I don't think anyone would be able to put the genie back in the bottle and as long as the mystery remains people are going to want to know. Your best avenue back to some sense of normality would be to deliver enough information to quench their hunger sufficiently. We could do this for you and protect you from being hounded by the other media outlets... if we had the exclusive," she said carefully.

Rochelle smiled. "There she is."

Ben looked to her as she turned her eyes to him.

"Naomi needs the exclusive. That would give her career a significant boost if she landed an exclusive with you considering your refusal to speak with anyone in the media."

"So you think I should maintain my silence?" he asked his friend.

She looked at him in surprise. Rochelle hadn't expected him to put such faith in her. She felt incredibly flattered and that pleasure showed in her smile. She placed her hand on his arm as her face warmed up. Naomi looked a little peeved.

"I think that's a decision you need to consider a little more carefully. Maybe speak with Gabriella as well. She's always had a level head for important decisions like this. Naomi may have a point about controlling the information being delivered. How much editorial control you would have over the 'story' is still a question she needs to answer."

Ben nodded to Rochelle. He looked back to Naomi. "I'm going to follow Rochelle's advice on this and take a little more time to consider the options. If you have a business card I'll let you know if I choose to give an interview. That's the best I can do for now."

Naomi pulled a white card from her jacket pocket and handed it over to Ben. "Thank you Ben. Please feel free to call me any time with your decision. I hope we can work with you on this."

Ben shook her hand once more and she held it out to Rochelle who only hesitated for a second before she gripped the woman's hand. With a final smile at the two of them Naomi walked back to her car and drove away.

"Thanks for stopping Rochelle. This whole situation is a mess," he gave her a hug and she grinned up at him. "How are you doing? You're home early today!"

Rochelle's smile faded. "I had to come home as the police are bringing Jayden back to the house. He's under house arrest and will be wearing an ankle monitor."

"What? What happened?" Ben exclaimed.

"I didn't want to bring it up as you were going through so much when you got back from your trip, what with the adoption and your sessions with Doctor Evil."

Ben rolled his eyes. "It's Dr. Granger. She's- she's not evil. Now about Jayden, talk to me."

Rochelle glanced down to the end of the block where a police cruiser was turning onto their street. "Sorry Ben, I'll have to take a rain check. He's home." She patted his arm and rushed back to her car.

Ben watched her drive around the loop to her driveway and park. The cruiser followed her in and two officers got out. They helped Jayden out of the backseat and walked the sullen young man into the house behind his mother. Ben picked up his tool box and headed up his own driveway. He went into the garage and put away his tools.

Entering his home from the garage he took a deep breath and his mouth immediately began to water. Tina had worked her magic again.

He walked into the kitchen and saw Tina moving around the kitchen with her usual efficiency. She glanced up as he entered and a smile flashed onto her lovely face. Pregnancy was really agreeing with her. She positively glowed with health which was a sharp contrast to the first month.

The diamond ring he'd given her when he proposed to her on the Eiffel Tower glittered and gleamed on her finger. He'd had it resized when he got home and she wore it constantly. They hadn't set a date for the wedding yet as she'd wanted him to finish his sessions with Dr. Granger. They had to readdress the date now that he'd stopped going. That was an outstanding issue.

Tina was supposed to be attending University this fall after taking some summer courses but with Ben's injuries and her pregnancy she decided to reschedule for the following year. That would give her enough time to spend time with their new baby.

Her son Christopher was enjoying himself in Daphne's daycare though Tina didn't take him there every day. Speaking of which, Ben glanced at the clock. It was just about time to pick him up. As Tina looked busy he would do it. He walked over and gathered Tina in his arms. The petite woman tilted her head back and he kissed her tenderly. She trembled a little in his arms and once he pulled back her expression was dreamy.

"I'm going to go pick up Christopher," Ben said with a smile.

"Thank you Ben."

"Dinner smells amazing!"

"I made lasagna, Penny and Karen's favorite."

"You're such a good mom!" he grinned and she swatted his arm with a smile of her own.

He gave her another quick kiss and let her go. She quickly went to check on the garlic bread in the oven.

Ben left the house and walked over to Daphne's place where he could see three cars parked on the street. Parents coming to pick up their children from the daycare. He normally tried to avoid the other parents but he wanted to help Tina.

He walked into the foyer and sure enough three women were standing there waiting for their kids to get their coats and shoes on. He racked his memory to recall their names. Ellen, Heather, and... Dawn!

"Hi Ben!" Dawn greeted him with a wide grin. Instantly the other two turned to beam wide, knowing grins of their own at him. Eyes roamed his body.

He sighed quietly. They were all aware of the damned bronze statue.

"Good afternoon Dawn, Heather, Ellen," he smiled graciously and their smiles got even wider.

"Picking up Christopher? He such a sweet boy! He gets along so well with my Sammy," Heather exclaimed.

"Daddy!"

Ben smiled as the boy in question came barrelling into the foyer. Not quite running but faster than a walk, at sixteen months old Christopher was now able to get himself around with surprising speed. More of a controlled fall, he tended to stop himself by crashing against walls, chairs, and in this case Ben's legs. Ben scooped the little man up and gave him a hug and a kiss causing Christopher to giggle wildly.

"Where's your sweater?" Ben asked and Christopher pointed back into the daycare.

He set the boy back on his feet. "Well, go get it." Christopher tottered away.

Sammy was tugging on his mom's sleeve but she was staring at Ben, her mind lost in her fantasies. Finally she realized her son was there. She blushed, said her goodbyes and left with her son.

Ellen was next and then Dawn who was practically devouring him with her eyes. Then he was alone in the foyer and all of the other kids were gone. Daphne walked out from the back room and grinned at Ben. She came forward and gave him a warm hug.

"How goes the daycare business?" he asked.

"It's a dream come true! The kids are wonderful! We haven't had any real problem cases and they all seem to get along. Christopher is amazing at defusing tantrums. He has such a positive effect on the others. Working with my daughters is wonderful! I don't know what you did and I don't really want to know but they are changed women. Calm, responsible, and really great with the children. I couldn't ask for more."

Christopher arrived and Ben's eyebrows went up when he saw the glue on his sweater and his hands.

"How did you get glue on yourself?" he said to the boy. He got a shrug as an answer.

Daphne took the sweater and Christopher's hand. "We'll be right back Ben." She led the boy back into the daycare to clean up and find the source of the glue.

Ben looked up to see Lisa and Lori approaching. The gorgeous red head twins were dressed up for going out dancing. They were masters of the quick change, able to switch from one look to another. Obviously they had plans tonight. Artfully applied makeup, hair teased up to hang down in ringlets, skin tight dresses that barely covered their asses, and strappy pumps on their feet, they looked good enough to eat.

An image flashed through Ben's mind. Lisa, flame red hair spilling over his mattress, clawing at the sheets and arching her back in ecstasy as his tongue explored the depths of her gushing pussy. Lori, gasping to catch her breath, her spent body glistening with sweat as she watched him bring her sister to a state of bliss. His pants began to feel a little tight.

As promised he'd rewarded the twins for their improved behavior the week of his return from France. The night had been... intense and he'd left them exhausted and satisfied. His intention was to wean them off so he'd insisted they go out and mix with their friends and find someone younger than him. They took his instructions as an order so for the past few weeks they'd happily spent a few evenings each week out at the clubs. He hadn't heard them ask for another 'reward' so maybe they'd found more suitable partners.

"Good evening Ben!" the two ladies said in unison. It was a trademark move of theirs as was dressing identically to confuse their family and friends. Ben could detect the subtle differences and hadn't mistaken one for the other yet.

"Good evening Lori, Lisa," he said nodding to each. They loved that he never missed.

"You both look breathtaking tonight! Are you going out with someone special?" he said, fishing for clues.

"Girls night out! The gang from University. We'll have dinner then hit the clubs and tease the poor little players," Lisa said with a grin.

"Oh! I thought you might have... met someone at one of the clubs... who you might be interested in dating," Ben said.

"Ben, you don't meet anyone worth dating at a club. Casual affairs only... if they're lucky," Lori said with a chuckle. "The men you find in dance clubs are usually desperate little boys."

He stared at the twins. He liked clubs. Did that make him desperate? "But... I like dancing."

"Will you come dancing with us tonight? It would be so nice to have a real man at the club for once," Lisa purred.

"Please Ben? I would love to dance with you." Lori moved closer until she was gently pressing against his chest. Blue eyes looked up longingly into his.

Ben felt her soft warmth against his body and felt his pants become just a little tighter. Then Lisa was leaning against him as well and he throbbed in response. She felt that against her thigh and her eye lashes fluttered as she gasped gently.

"Not tonight," he said, his voice deep and rumbling with his need. Lori trembled as she bit her lip and nodded.

"But you will come dancing with us soon?" she asked.

Ben gently pushed the two ladies back and looked into their eyes. "Yes, I'd like to go dancing with you. Just not tonight. Enjoy yourselves."

With hungry looks back at him they pulled their jackets from the closet and headed outside. He sighed. As Ben was alone he adjusted himself to make room in his pants and began to relax. Obviously his plans for the twins wasn't working out as he hoped. Maybe he'd get Tina's advice on this.

Christopher came thumping back into the hall and Ben saw the glue on the sweater was mostly gone. The child's hands were clean at least.

"Sorry about the mess Ben. One of the kids must have pulled a glue bottle out and spilled some. Christopher dropped his sweater in it. It should wash out," Daphne explained. He gave her another hug then scooped up the boy and headed out. They both waved to Daphne who waved back with a smile.

Ben was ravenous when he smelled Tina's cooking once more from his front door. Tina poked her head out the kitchen door.

"Dinner's in twenty five minutes Ben. Karen texted that they were five minutes away," she said.

Karen and Penny had fallen in love with having their own cell phones and texting had already become an obsession for both. The bastard that kept them as pets would never have allowed them access to a phone and Ben wanted to be able to reach them at all times. The memory of the squealing they'd done when they looked into his little gift bags and saw the cell phones still brought a smile to Ben's face.

He set Christopher on his feet and tugged the little sweater off. The child made a bee line for his mother who scooped him up with a huge grin. The sweater went into the laundry bin and Ben went to get changed for dinner. He took a quick shower and slipped on some comfy pants and a clean shirt. He heard the happy noise of the ladies returning home so he headed down the hall to greet them.

"Ben!" Penny chirped and leapt into his arms. He caught her and gave her a hug. Karen was right behind her waiting for her hug so he set Penny back on her feet and gathered the blonde in his arms for a squeeze. Both were grinning widely.

"Dinner's almost ready so go get cleaned up," he said and they rushed past to their rooms.

Lucy was standing at the door smiling at Ben demurely. His breath caught as she looked so lovely in her new cream colored sweater and light grey jeans. When he'd sent her home from France with Tina all she had was a suitcase of threadbare clothes. Tina and the McKellan twins took her on a shopping trip downtown and outfitted her with clothes she could wear when she went to college.

"How was your day?" he asked.

She stepped forward, wrapped her arms around him, and tilted her head back for a kiss. This was their daily ritual. When Ben told her he would take care of her it was with the condition that she would keep her heart open to finding love from someone closer to her own age. Tina helped Lucy enroll in an Audio Engineering course at the local college when they returned from France. If Lucy met someone there she was considering a relationship with she would simply tell him how her day was. If not she would take her welcome home kiss.

Ben's heart did a little flip as a guilty relief flooded through him. He'd grown quite attached to Lucy and would miss her terribly if she were to succeed in finding the love he'd insisted she seek. He took her face between his big hands and kissed her deeply, his emotions running a little too close to the surface today. The young woman moaned and clung tighter to his body as she sucked at his tongue.

He pulled back when he got control over himself. "Sorry about that," he mumbled, embarrassed by his neediness.

Lucy's gaze moved from his mouth to see his unease. "Ben, don't ever apologize for expressing your heart's desire. That was... wonderful! I look forward to repaying that kiss later." She patted his chest gently and stepped back to move around him to head down to the master bedroom to get ready for dinner.

He had some time before dinner so Ben made his way into the living room and sat in his favorite chair. He grabbed his tablet and reviewed the latest requests on the engineering boards. He answered a few questions, pointing people in the direction they needed to go and came upon a request from a mining company in Melbourne, Australia. They didn't mentioned their name but the nature of the request required some background hence the minimal disclosure of industry. The geographical location must have been a slip as it wasn't pertinent to the puzzle. He read some more and felt his curiosity spark. He could see the edges of a solution for this one. Just a hint but enough to tell him he'd have to work on it.

"Dinner's ready," Tina called out from the doorway.

Ben looked up and nodded with a smile. He quickly added a message to the board letting them know he'd taken on the request and would get back to them. Then he shut down the tablet and joined his family at the table in the dining room.

Penny and Karen were sneaking in a few more texts before dinner. With a raised eyebrow Ben signalled it was time to put them away so into a pocket they went. He looked over at Lucy who was wearing one of her old shirts. It was perhaps a little too tight for her large tits and he could see by the obvious impressions of her nipple rings she wasn't wearing a bra. He felt a surge in his pants and shifted on his chair to ease the pressure. A small satisfied smile appeared on Lucy's lips indicating she'd noticed. Ben looked away and into the happy eyes of Tina who placed the large baking dish of lasagna onto the large trivets on the table. She went back into the kitchen and returned with fresh, hot garlic bread and everyone's mouth watered. Penny and Karen lifted their plates with glee and Tina served them some lasagna before she put a large portion on Ben's plate. Lucy was served and Tina took her portion and a small one for Christopher which she cut up fine and blew on to cool down.

Everyone dug in and happy sounds ensued. Ben complimented Tina on her amazing cooking skills and the ladies joined in. Ben looked to his daughters. "How was school today?" He'd enrolled them in adult high school to help them get their secondary school diploma. What they did from there? They'd figure that out later.
Penny grinned but Karen looked less enthused. Penny was absorbing knowledge as quickly as she could but Karen was resisting. She'd accepted her place in the world at the bottom of the social structure and either didn't want to try or was afraid to. Penny was the only reason Karen went to school at all. Ben was trying hard not to push but he was worried about her. She'd willingly fall right back into the role of subservient sex toy as long as someone else took responsibility for her wellbeing. Penny wanted more.

Between the two of them Penny was the one who indicated she wanted to downsize her breast implants from the oversized 1000cc ones she had now. Neither would be getting lip injections so their swollen lips would gradually return to normal.

Penny regaled them with tales of what she learned that day and Ben listened with a smile. Karen occasionally added a comment or correction which gave Ben hope as it indicated she was at least paying attention in class.

Lucy was next and described the classes she had. Penny listened with fascination but Karen's eyes returned to her plate and she ate quietly. Ben shared a look with Tina.

"Oh, Ben! Ashley said that her car is indicating it needs servicing," Lucy said. Ashley was attending the university in town as well and drove everyone to and from in the BMW SUV Ben got when he purchased Tina's home and all its contents.

"Again? OK, it's time to trade that monster in for a less temperamental vehicle," Ben complained.

"What!?! But it's so pretty!" Karen gasped in surprise.

"There are plenty of other pretty vehicles out there and they won't be such high maintenance burdens. Best to be rid of this one," Ben said. Karen burst into tears, leapt to her feet, and rushed out of the dining room to run down the hall to her room. They heard the door slam.

Ben sat with a stunned look on his face. "What did I say? It's just a car."

"I'd better go see what's bothering her," Penny said quietly. "Thank you for a delicious dinner Tina." Then she left as well.

Ben was racking his brain, trying to think of a reason for Karen to react so badly to his response about the car. If it meant that much to Karen he'd put up with the maintenance and keep the vehicle.

Lucy watched him struggling with the pain of hurting the young woman. "Ben, I think Karen identifies with the car."

"WHAT?" he gasped, confused.

"Pretty, but high maintenance. I think she sees herself that way," Lucy said gently.

"Oh my god! That's- that's not what I meant at all!" he exclaimed. He pushed back from the table and walked down the hall. He knocked gently on the door of Karen's room. He heard crying.

"Come in." It was Penny's voice.

Ben entered and walked over to stand next to the bed. He tried to ignore the clothes scattered all over the floor. Karen was a slob.

Penny was sitting on the edge of the bed holding Karen's hand. She had a sad look on her face too.

"I wanted you both to be perfectly clear about one thing. I was just talking about the car. I don't consider either of you to be a burden at all and I love having you in my family!" Penny blinked as she suddenly caught on to why Karen was crying. Her mouth dropped in surprise.

"I told you in France that I would help guide you to a place where you can take control of your own lives. I never set a timeline on that. It will take as long as it needs to. I don't want either of you to feel pressured or that I don't want to support you. Your future was stolen from you and I'd like to help you get it back. What your future will be is up to you. I'll support you-"

"I DON'T KNOW WHAT I WANT!" Karen blurted out tearfully, her lips trembling.

"That's ok, Karen. That's why I just signed you up for completing your secondary school diploma. It gives you options. The decision of what to do after that can wait."

Ben knelt beside the bed and took their hands in his. "Do you understand?"

Penny nodded and after a moment so did Karen. Ben smiled and kissed their knuckles. This brought smiles to their faces.

"Are we ok?" Ben asked and received nods and smiles.

He stood and let himself out. As the door closed he heard Karen blurt quietly to Penny "Is it wrong to be hot for 'Daddy'?"

Ben put his face in his hands and walked back towards the kitchen.

"Is everything ok Ben?" Tina asked as he entered the room.

He looked at her distractedly and nodded with a frown. "Yes, I got that one issue cleared up but there may be another one. Let's just wait and see." He wished he could find Karen a boyfriend but that young man was going to have to pass his approval for dealing with the damaged young woman. He was far less worried about Penny.

Ben finished up his dinner and helped Tina and Lucy tidy up the kitchen. He spent an hour in his workshop reviewing the specs for that issue he spotted on the engineering board. He had the beginnings of an idea.

He came back upstairs and plunked himself in his chair in the living room. He called his contractor buddy Dominic Selleni and confirmed the equipment would be in place on Monday to excavate a large section of the back yard behind the Walker's place for extending the foundation. All the trucks for removing the soil were scheduled as well. The following day the forms would go into place and the day after that the cement would be poured into the forms. He would have the extended basement floor and foundation walls in place by the following weekend. They would remove the roof and the interior walls on the first floor of the existing structure. The bungalow was getting a full redesign and would end up a lovely two story home which would fit in with the remaining homes on the circle. His would be the only bungalow left. Once the demo was done the new framing could begin in earnest. As it was almost October, he didn't have much time to rebuild the main floor, add a second story, get a roof in place, and close it all in before the weather turned bad. Ben had hired his friend Dominic's company to put all hands on deck to push through this project.

He wasn't sparing any expense on the finish and fixtures. It was going to be a lovely home. He'd shown everyone the plans and Penny and Karen were completely blown away that this was going to be their new home. With five bedrooms upstairs and potentially two in the basement there was plenty of room for renting out to college students. Ben was keeping an option open for Lucy in case she wanted to rent out one of the rooms there if she were to find a boyfriend.

Ben yawned hugely and rubbed at his face. He felt a small hand on his wrist and opened his eyes to see Tina standing next to the chair.

"Come to bed Ben," she said softly. He nodded and let her tug him to his feet. He followed her down the hall. Penny's door opened and Ben stopped so she could get a hug and give his cheek a good night kiss. They said their goodnights.

Ben stopped in the next bedroom to give Christopher's forehead a kiss as the boy slept. Tina's eyes twinkled as she watched him. Karen's door, which was next to his, opened and she looked up at Ben as he stopped. He gave her a hug and she kissed his cheek. They said their good nights and her words from earlier resurfaced in his mind. He would ask Tina for her advice on this one. There was NO way he was taking either Penny or Karen into his bed. He was their legal parent now. That avenue was closed.

Inside his room he headed into the bathroom and Lucy was there with three toothbrushes ready for use. She was also completely naked. He took his toothbrush and turned to see Tina was now naked as well. They brushed their teeth together and Ben enjoyed the view.

Once they were done the ladies undressed Ben and put his clothes in the hamper as he climbed into bed under the sheets. Tina got into the bed while Lucy walked around to the far side and slipped in. They both snuggled up to Ben's side and he tenderly kissed each of them. They sighed with happiness.

"I need advice," Ben began and they waited for him to gather his thoughts.

"Lisa and Lori. They haven't shown any signs of moving on. I asked them to go out and have fun with their friends so they could meet and mingle with men but they're just hanging out with their girlfriends and teasing the men in the dance clubs. They aren't actively trying to find someone else. They want me to go out dancing with them."

Lucy subconsciously rubbed herself against Ben as she thought about the last time she'd gone dancing with him in France.

"Are you listening?" he asked her and she jolted to a stop.

"Yes, sorry Ben," she said contritely and did her best to ignore the maddening tingling between her legs.

Tina grinned knowing how excited Ben made Lucy. She was a little wet herself but she had better self-control.

"Do they ask for your time frequently? Has it become troublesome?" Tina asked sweetly.

"No... no it's been a while. Three, almost four weeks since the last time I was... with them."

"When you are with them, are they fulfilled?" Tina asked.

He looked at her askance. He never talked about what he did with anyone to anyone else.

"I am not prying. I simply ask if they are ever dissatisfied with the time they spend with you," Tina explained.

"Oh, uh... no, they are usually very happy... afterwards. You understand they now require a very firm hand... I mean, I have to be rough- no, aggressive so sometimes they are exhausted by our time together but I believe they're happy... geez how do I talk about this discreetly?"

Lucy was biting her lip and squirming next to Ben. She wanted what he was talking about so badly. Ben was her dream come true; strong, masculine, sexy as hell and a fierce dom when he wanted to be. When she needed him to be. She needed him very badly now but he wasn't finished talking.

"You give them exactly what they need and between the times you spend with them you give their lives structure. They sound like they have a working solution. They have discovered in themselves what Lucy and I discovered some time ago. A need to release control and allow another to lend a guiding hand. Yours is a wonderful hand as it can be trusted to protect and discipline fairly," Tina explained and Lucy let a moan slip out when she heard Tina mention discipline.

"I believe Lucy needs to be disciplined for interrupting our conversation with her lusty sounds," Tina said firmly but when Ben looked over at her he caught the twinkle in her eyes. Ben felt Lucy trembling on the mattress and her breathing was a little erratic. He smiled at Tina.

Ben growled and pulled Lucy to the centre of the bed but flipped her over onto her stomach. He dropped his body over hers and pinned her to the mattress under himself. Lucy gasped as she felt the heat and thickness of his cock growing between her ass cheeks. Tina was smiling broadly seeing how excited Lucy had become. She was caught by surprise and squeaked when Ben slid his fingers into her thick black hair and pulled her mouth to his to take a kiss.

It was a little awkward kissing Tina over Lucy's head but the auburn beauty was gasping with need and was trying to force her ass back against his cock when he pulled back from Tina's lips. The Korean woman gasped and stared at Ben's lips hungrily.

Raising his ass Ben spread Lucy's legs wide apart and it was her turn to squeal in surprise. He reached down and slid a finger deep into Lucy's wet pussy and felt her readiness. He rubbed his wet fingers over the head of his cock then pushed it against her opening. There was only a small resistance then Ben felt the tip slip inside and he was driving himself deeply into her. She cried out his name when his pelvis slammed into her ass. He felt her pussy walls trembling against him all the way down to his tip.

Ben kissed Tina deeply again and she moaned into his mouth. He pulled back and she looked into his eyes.

"Lie back. Slide your hand under and touch her," Ben said to her.

Tina's eyes widened but she did as he told her. Lucy threw back her head and looked over at Tina. She wanted to reciprocate but Ben stopped her.

"Brace yourself against the headboard. Both hands," he said to Lucy. She looked back with a nervous expression but he ground himself against her ass as Tina rubbed her clit in circles and Lucy's eyes went glassy with lust. A shudder went through her body and her hands went up to the headboard.

Ben braced his body with his left arm and reached over with his right to cup Tina's wet pussy. He forced a finger into her and she cried out in bliss. Then a second and her mouth dropped silently. He began to pat her pussy gently, fingers driving into her wetness and heat. He timed these motions with a rocking of his hips until he was hammering Lucy's ass and pussy with short rapid strokes.

Both women were moaning and the wet slapping noises were getting quite loud. Ben could feel Tina begin to tremble so he slipped one of his wet fingers down and into her ass. That was all it took to push her over the top. She grabbed Lucy's pussy and her fingers slipped inside as she squeezed the woman's clit. Ben drove himself harder into Lucy as she screamed her release into the pillow.

Ben came hard as Lucy's pussy walls rippled against his buried cock and he rocked against the cushion of her ass.

He leaned forward and lightly kissed Tina's lips then kissed the side of Lucy's cheek as the young woman lay panting under his body. Ben pulled his cock from Lucy and she gasped and shook. He carefully slipped off the bed so he didn't lean on either woman and made his way into the washroom. He quickly rinsed his body in the shower. His cock was still at half-mast so he was reaching to turn off the hot water when he felt the exquisite sensation of lips on his cock. He looked down and there was Lucy pressing her lips against his stiffening flesh. She lifted the head and sucked it into her mouth. Then down her throat.

"Oh fuck! Lucy!" Ben gasped.

She pumped him seven more times from tip to base and his cock erupted into her mouth.

Ben shook with reaction as Lucy milked him dry. Afterwards he lifted her to her feet and kissed her. She trembled in his arms and smiled when he pulled back. He shut off the water and they dried themselves.

When they slipped back into bed Ben heard Tina gently snoring. He smiled and tucked her against him. She sighed contentedly. He'd have to finish his discussion with her in the morning.

Lucy snuggled in on the other side and they were out in minutes.

Chapter 2

Ben climbed upstairs from his workout feeling better than he had in a long time. The residual tightness from his injuries finally seemed to be gone. His muscles moved smoothly and he'd set a new lifting record for himself this morning. Not bad for an old fart he mused with a grin.

It was still very early but he heard activity in the kitchen and smiled. Tina making breakfast no doubt. He made his way to his shower and stopped when he saw Tina snuggled under the blankets. Lucy was gently snoring on the other side of the bed. So Penny was making breakfast?

Ben took his shower, shaved, and got dressed. Tina was just beginning to stir so he leaned over and gave her gentle kisses all over her face until she grinned, kissed his lips and pushed his face away.

"What time is it?" she asked.

Ben glanced at the clock. "It's not quite eight am."

"It's Saturday! Can't you people sleep in on the weekend?" Lucy grumbled from the other side of the bed.

Ben chuckled and left the bedroom. Tina followed wrapping herself in her dressing gown.

Stepping into the kitchen he saw the counters were a mess. Karen was looking a little flustered as she struggled with something in the frying pan. Something that didn't smell very nice.

Tina reached the doorway and made a squeak noise as she saw what Karen had done to her pristine kitchen.

Karen squeaked as she suddenly realized she had company. She moved the frying pan off the burner and stood facing them as she wrung her hands together.

"What- what are you doing?" Tina asked in a shaky voice.

"I'm trying to make breakfast for everyone," Karen said, her voice beginning to wobble as tears appeared in her eyes.

"That's wonderful!" Ben said and both women looked at him.

"It's not wonderful! I don't know what I'm doing and I've made a mess of things!" Karen gestured wildly. Tina's eyes were taking in the mess and Ben saw her twitch.

"It's wonderful that you want to try. You wanted to surprise us?" he asked and she nodded, her bottom lip trembling. "So it didn't work out this time. That's ok. I'm sure Tina could teach you if you asked nicely... and helped her clean up."

Karen looked at Tina who was still staring at the spilled pancake mix and the broken eggs on the counter... and floor. She nodded absently. Ben held his arms open for Karen but Tina held up her hand.

"Don't step in the egg!" she squeaked out.

Karen carefully stepped around the egg and crushed herself against Ben's chest as she cried.

"Shhhh, it's ok. Learning to cook takes time. Tina is an excellent cook as you know. Learn from her." He pulled back and wiped the tears from her cheeks with his thumbs. She looked up and gave him a small smile.

"Can I get a hug too?" Penny said sleepily from the doorway. Then she saw the chaos on the countertop and Tina wiping up the dropped egg. Sleepy eyes popped open wide.

Ben gave Karen's temple a little kiss and gently pushed her to help Tina.

Penny walked over and got a hug.

"I'm going to go speak with Ashley about her car," Ben said and Tina just shooed him away without looking.

He slipped on his boots and tugged his jacket on. He believed that the Beaumont's were early risers too so he walked over and gently knocked on the door. He looked up at the camera he'd installed and smiled. A moment later he heard the door open.

"Good morning Ben! This is an early visit for a Saturday!" Ashley said beaming a wide smile at him.

"Good morning Ashley. I came to speak to you about your car," Ben explained.

"Your car, you mean," she corrected with a raised eyebrow. "Please come inside. We were just sitting down to breakfast."

"Oh! I'm sorry, I can come back later," he said stepping back.

"Nonsense! March yourself in here and join us!" Ashley ordered with a grin.

Ben stepped inside and kicked his boots off. He followed Ashley into the kitchen and sat where she pointed. Her girls, Madison and Savannah, were all smiles at seeing Ben and he said his good mornings to them. Joshua giggled from his high chair.

"Have you eaten?" Ashley asked. Ben shook his head. "How do you like your eggs?"

"Please, you don't have to-" he began and stopped when Ashley fixed her eyes on him. "Fried, over easy, thanks," he finished and received a smile.

"You were saying something about the car?" she said as she turned back to the stove.

"Uh yeah. I want to trade in the SUV for something else. Do you have a preference?" he asked.

She spun around and looked at him. She hadn't thought she'd get to choose. Her face lit up with glee.

"A minivan! The Japanese one!" she blurted. Her late husband hated Japanese cars. Hated Japanese anything. Basically he just hated.

The girls cheered and Ben's face froze. He recalled a certain fish tank on wheels he toured France in and wondered what it was about minivans that women adored.

"No?" Ashley asked looking at Ben's expression.

"Hey, if you want a minivan you get a minivan. What color?"

"GOLD!" Madison squealed.

"BLUE!" Savannah yelled.

"Red," Ashley said with a smile for Ben who was looking a little overwhelmed. "Madison, get the tablet and look up the minivan I was talking about the other day."

The young girl popped up and dashed into the living room and returned with the tablet PC. A few taps later she showed it to Ashley who nodded then turned it to Ben.
"Ah! Yes, that's a very nice one. If you don't mind I'll swap cars with you until I can pick up one of these."

Ashley set a plate in front of Ben and he smiled at her, seeing the eggs, bacon and toast she'd made for him. "Thank you!"

She swatted his arm playfully. "Oh please Ben, breakfast is the least I can do to repay your kindness!" She put plates in front of the girls and one for herself and sat. They took each other's hand and Madison looked at Ben. He held out his hand to her and Savannah reached for the other one. Ashley's cheeks were going to burst from the smile she wore. They bowed their heads and said their prayer.

Everyone tucked into their breakfast and the chatter was happy and light. Once they finished the girls scooped up the dishes, rinsed them and put them in the dishwasher. Ashley got her purse and they exchanged registration forms for the cars. Ben headed home, drove his truck back and put it in their driveway. They swapped keys and Ben drove the BMW back to his place. He'd head down to the dealership this morning.

He went back inside the house and heard the bustle of activity in the kitchen. He poked his head in and saw Tina standing next to Karen at the counter. The mess was gone and in its place were neatly organized ingredients for something they were making.

"Hi, how is it going?" he asked.

The ladies turned to look at him with smiles. "We're making cookies!!!" Karen cheered.

"We are learning how to bake properly. Then Karen will help prepare dinner for tonight," Tina explained. Karen looked thrilled.

"Wonderful! I'm going to head down to trade in Ashley's SUV for a minivan she wants," he said looking at Karen to make sure she wasn't upset. She smiled at his look of concern and nodded. He gave them both a kiss on the cheek then headed out.

The BMW drove very well but he found the driver's cockpit to be a little too snug. He pulled into the car dealership and parked up by the front door. The business had just opened so there were no other customers and most of the staff seemed to be getting their coffees and starting up their terminals. As Ben walked inside he saw the minivan Ashley was talking about in the showroom and headed over to take a look at it. It wasn't quite as odd looking as the fish tank had been so it had that going for it. This one was white and wasn't the model with all the nice features. He'd have to ask what was available.

"Looking for a more practical family vehicle?" said a woman's voice from behind him.

Ben turned and spotted two sales people having a quiet... discussion. Ben got the impression that the two were arguing over who got to serve him. The woman had spoken first. It was a cut throat business. She flashed a grin at her coworker then stepped forward with a smile as he turned to leave.

Her face froze as she got a look at Ben's face. "I know you!" she said as her grin widened.

Ben groaned inwardly as he expected her next words would be about that blasted bronze statue!

"You're the boyfriend of Daniel's mother... Burt, no wait... Ben!"

He took a closer look at the woman and she did look familiar. Then it came to him. "Gwen?" The last time he'd seen her he'd been picking up Daniel from his friends place and Gwen had lit into him about his lifestyle. She'd been wearing tight spandex workout clothes at the time and had a super buff body. The business attire she was wearing now hid those impressive muscles.

Her smile went up a thousand watts as he remembered. "Yes!" She moved forward and they hugged. God! He was bigger and stronger than she remembered.

"How are you doing? You look amazing!" Ben smiled. Her body felt just as hard and tight as it had been the last time they met.

"Thanks! I'm in a much better place than I was then." She rolled her eyes and smiled. "I have a new boyfriend," she pointed her thumb over her shoulder at the man she'd beat earlier. "He's a great guy! How have you be-" she began then she got a closer look at the scar across his face and her eyes went wide. "What happened?"

"Had a disagreement with a knife wielding drunk," Ben shrugged.

She was taking in the scar on his chin and the nicks visible on his forearms. "Geezus, he was pretty good with that knife."

"Actually he wasn't, thankfully. So, this is a nice van!" Ben said deliberately changing the subject. She caught that blunt hint and moved with him.

"It's our best seller! Would you like to take a test drive?"

"Sure!" Ben said. He might as well make sure that it drove well. Ashley told him she'd drive anything but he'd make sure it was safe and comfortable at least.

"I'll get the tester and meet you out front," she said with a smile. Ben nodded and walked towards the front door.

Gwen walked towards the back and saw the secretaries looking past her at Ben and pointing at a monitor. Her boyfriend Troy was standing behind them with a grim look on his face. He glared at her and her eyebrows went up.

"How do you know this guy?" he blurted.

"What the Hell? Where is that coming from?" she barked back at him. He pointed at the monitor so she looked.

There was Ben in all his naked glory... in bronze. He was... big! Her eyes went wide. "Oh my god! That's HIM?!? Ben is the bronze god?" she gasped.

"Again I ask, how do you know him?" Troy said belligerently.

"He's the boyfriend of the mother of one of my son's friends! We met once for like... ten minutes last spring," she exclaimed.

"You met him for ten minutes months ago and you greet him like that?" he blurted.

Gwen was getting seriously pissed with the attitude. "Yes, he was a really nice guy and made me think it might be possible to meet a nice guy of my own one day. Maybe I was wrong!" She stormed off and grabbed the key to the van. She pulled it around the front of the building and got out. Forcing a smile on her face she held the keys out to Ben.

He could see something was wrong. She was smiling but her jaw muscles were clenched. He took the key and got in the driver's side as she climbed in the passenger side while looking back inside the dealership.

He started the car and pulled it out of the lot. It had good power and accelerated smoothly. He changed lanes and took some corners a little faster than he normally would to see how it handled and it was ticking all the boxes. It felt like a safe vehicle. Normally a sales person would be peppering him with details about the car but Gwen just stared out the window with a frown. Ben saw a nice little coffee shop that sold wonderful homemade cookies. He pulled into the lot and shut off the engine. Gwen came out of her daze.

"Come on. I'll buy you a coffee and a cookie and you can tell me about it," Ben said as he slid out of the van. Gwen's mouth opened to apologize but Ben was already walking across the parking lot. She got out and heard the doors lock behind her. She walked inside and saw Ben sitting in a booth. She slid onto the seat opposite him and a young waitress stepped up to the table. They ordered coffee and cookies as Ben promised and he waited for her to speak.

"It's stupid," she finally blurted.

Ben smiled and waited.

"The ladies in the office recognized you from that bronze statue that was in the news. Troy, my boyfriend, maybe my ex-boyfriend, saw it and started barking at me for knowing you," Gwen finally admitted.

Ben grimaced and the scar across his face lightened drawing Gwen's eyes. "That damn statue," he growled.

She looked at him in shock. She was no art critic but she thought the statue was gorgeous. "I don't mean to pry but what don't you like about that statue?"

"It's destroyed my privacy. Everyone thinks they now have a right to my personal space," Ben grumbled then shook his head. "Forget that. I'll deal with it. Does your boyfriend think you're cheating on him?"

"This is the first time I've seen him act like this. It's good I found out now that he can be a jealous prick before we got more serious."

Ben looked out the window and saw Troy sitting in his car looking in the window. Ben gestured for Troy to come inside and join them. Troy spun the wheel and screeched his car into a spot.

The waitress was going by so Ben ordered another cookie and turned to Gwen. "How does Troy take his coffee?"

She was shaking with rage and blinked at him. "What? Oh. Black."

"And a black coffee please," he said and the waitress left to get his order.

Troy yanked the door open and strode across the room like an avalanche. Ben calmly slid further into the booth and gestured for the man to sit. Troy's eyes flashed with contempt.

Ben locked eyes with Troy and scowled. His scar flared and Troy froze.

"There are moments in a man's life when he discovers himself standing at the precipice of a colossally stupid decision. Most don't recognize it until it's too late. You are having one of those moments right now. You could open your mouth and lose everything or you can open your ears and heart, sit and listen and learn how you almost lost it all. Be the man she needs you to be. Sit," Ben's voice was deep and calm.

Troy was still really pissed but the big man was seriously intense. Shit, he could be equally cool. Troy slid into the booth facing Gwen. He froze again when he saw how pissed she was and she wasn't showing any guilt for having been caught having a liaison with him.

A waitress appeared and put a mug of black coffee in front of him and a plate with a cookie on it. He stared at the cookie, confused. What was going on here?

"The coffee is really good and the cookies are made fresh in the back," Ben said and took a sip from his mug.

Troy was feeling totally off balance. He began to speak but Ben locked eyes with him again.

"You don't know me. You saw that damn statue and you made some assumptions about me. You're wrong." Ben wasn't smiling and Troy was beginning to sweat.

"I've spent approximately half an hour with Gwen including the ten minutes back in May. We're barely acquaintances. The idea that we're having an affair is insulting to both of us. She's in a relationship with you and I have my own. Again, you don't know me. When I met Gwen today the first thing she told me was that she was in a much better place than when we first met and that she had a boyfriend who was a 'great guy'. This isn't the behavior of a great guy."

Troy wasn't sure why but he believed Ben. Completely. His rage evaporated like mist and in its place was a sick desperation to repair the damage he'd done.

Ben turned his head to look at the glaring woman. "Gwen, men are fuck ups. Especially when we're beginning a relationship. We read the clues all wrong. It's a woman's burden to see a man's worth behind all his bumbling. If you truly believe Troy can be a good man please consider this as just strike one." Troy blinked at Ben as did Gwen.

"I would hate to think I had anything to do with the break-up of a lovely couple just because of a stupid misunderstanding," Ben stressed the 'stupid' while looking at Troy. He had the good grace to nod. "If she accepts your apology remember you're already at strike one. You have to do better. She's worth it." Troy nodded again. Ben raised his eyebrow and tipped his head at Gwen. The man's eyes widened as he caught on.

"Gwen, I'm sorry I made such a colossal ass of myself. Please forgive me," Troy said humbly.

The woman's eyes got a little shiny with tears as she smiled and nodded. Eyes turned back to Ben.

"Eat your cookie while it's still warm," Ben mumbled as he munched on his own cookie. The couple had big smiles and ate their cookies. He did his best to ignore their admiring glances.

When they finished their snacks Ben paid, then drove the van back to the dealership with a very happy Gwen sitting in the passenger seat. Troy held the door open for them when they arrived and the staff who had placed bets on Troy blowing the relationship looked on with disappointment.

Ben sat down across from Gwen at her desk. She was trying to get her equilibrium back.

"So, what do you think of the van?" she finally managed to say.

"It's really nice. Does it come in red?" he asked and her eyes twinkled as she realized she had a sale.

"Yes, yes it does. Which features are you interested in?"

Ben and Gwen spent the next thirty minutes tweaking the options until they had met all of Ben's requirements.

"Do you have a trade-in?" she asked.

"Yes," he said and pointed to the BMW SUV parked by the front window. "How much will I get for that?"

Gwen's eyes went wide. "You're trading that in for a minivan?"

"Yup."

"You'd get a much better price selling it privately. The dealership can't give you anything close to what it's worth," Gwen explained.

"I have no time to spend on selling it," he grumbled.

"It's fully loaded? Top package? All the toys?"

Ben nodded.

"Mileage?"

"22,000 miles. What will you give me for it?"

"Personally I'd give you $30,000," she said with a grin.

"Sold," he replied returning her smile.

Gwen froze and her eyes went wide. "You're kidding, right?"

Ben looked curiously at her. "Were you serious?"

Gwen glanced over her shoulder. "It's against policy for us to personally purchase trade-ins. That said, I'd kill to get my hands on such a sweet ride for that price. Seriously though you could easily get $50,000 for it if you listed it yourself."

Ben scowled. "I don't have the time or the inclination to sell it myself. I'm going to be crazy busy for the next month or so renovating a house in my neighborhood. If you want it for $30,000 it's yours. It needs a tune up."

Gwen snorted with a grin. "Sold. We'll put no trade-in here." She finished the invoice. Gwen handed Ben a business card with her home number written on the back. "We'll arrange the sale of your car next week if that's alright with you. I have to sell my beater and arrange the financing. That won't be a problem." Ben nodded and pocketed the card.

She went through the invoice with Ben and he signed on the dotted line.

"When can I expect to get the new van?" Ben asked.

"I'll submit the order and they'll give me an ETA. I'll give you a call then we will arrange the handoff. They've been really responsive lately so I should get an answer later today." Gwen stood up and Ben got to his feet too. They shook hands then she gave him a hug.

"Thanks Ben! For straightening out that earlier issue," she said quietly.

Ben just shook his head. He walked over to Troy and shook the man's hand. "Good meeting you."

He got back into the SUV and drove home. He walked over to Ashley's place and pressed the doorbell. He held up the van brochure and invoice. The door opened with laughter and Ashley's grinning face was smiling down at him as the door opened. She pulled him inside and the girls all jumped up and down as they looked at the pretty red van on the brochure. Savannah finally pushed past Ben to look out in the driveway.

"Where is it?" she asked.

"They are looking to see if they already have one built with all the options I selected. If not they will build it," Ben explained. "It might take some time to get it."

"Oh," she said with disappointment in her voice.

Ashley just grinned and kissed the top of her head.

"I'll let you know when it's ready. Just thought you'd like to know it's been ordered," Ben said.

Ashley stepped close and pulled Ben into a hug. He wrapped his arms around her to return it. He felt good for helping them and the hug felt really good too.

The hug went on longer than Ben expected and he felt Ashley swaying slightly. He looked over at Madison who was grinning madly. Savannah's eyes were growing wider and wider as she watched the endless hug.

Madison couldn't contain her giggles any longer and Ashley jumped as she realized what she was doing. She pulled back quickly and her face was crimson with her embarrassment.

"It was a really nice hug," Ben said gently.

A smile burst across her face and her eyes flashed with happiness. Ben was a little dazzled as he hadn't seen her inner beauty shining out like that before.

"Ok, I- I guess I'll be going. I'll call when the car calls- I mean when I hear about the van's delivery date." It was his turn to blush. Madison's giggles just got louder and Ben headed out.

He went home and went inside looking for his family. He found a note. Tina went grocery shopping with Trish and took Lucy and the girls. He did see a plate with three cookies on it with a note from Karen saying they were for him.

Ben ate the cookies and was pouring himself a glass of milk when he heard the doorbell ring. He went to the door and saw Rochelle standing on his porch with Jayden who wasn't looking too happy. Ben sighed. The young man never looked happy.

He opened the door. "Rochelle, Jayden, this is a nice surprise. Please come in."

They left their shoes in the foyer and followed Ben into the living room.

"What's up?" Ben asked as Rochelle looked uneasy.

"As you know Jayden is under house arrest. There is GPS monitoring on him and he has to stay within range of a cell phone which connects to the monitoring center. I've arranged for the range on the device to allow him to be within our neighborhood. That's as much concession as the court would allow," she began.

Jayden's look was sour.

"I'm going to need to go back to work and Trish told me you were going to begin renovating the Walker's place this week. Do you think you could use another set of hands on the project? I know it's a lot to ask."

Ben looked at Jayden who was avoiding his eyes. "Do you have any skills?"

Jayden's eyes snapped to Ben. "DO I HAVE SKILLS?"

"Do you know how to use a hammer, a drill, a saw, power tools?" Ben clarified.

"Yeah, I've done a little of that." Jayden's feathers settled and Ben looked at his mother.

"Not every question is an attack, Jayden," Ben said quietly and the boy nodded stiffly. "Have you ever done any renovations?"

"No."

"The first couple of days will be fun for you. We'll be removing all of the fixtures from inside the house to donate then we get to break things. Demo days are highly cathartic," Ben said with a smile and Jayden's eyes lit up a little. "You get to hit stuff with a crow bar." A smile cracked on his face for a moment.

"So Jayden can work with you?" Rochelle said, sounding immensely relieved.

"Yes. On the condition that he follows instructions not only from myself but especially from the job foreman and his boss, Dominic Selleni. Construction sights are dangerous places. He'll need proper work boots and a helmet. Dominic's company is doing this job with me as a favor. They don't typically work on projects this small. They do neighborhoods not individual houses. They also don't typically let the home owners work with them. We need to respect their authority on the worksite. Can you do that Jayden?"

Jayden looked at him seriously and nodded.

"I'll pick up the boots and helmet," Rochelle said.

"Get gloves too. This work can be rough on the hands. And eye protection," Ben suggested. He looked back at Jayden. "What kind of work were you interested in getting into."

"Music. I'm gonna be a producer," Jayden said just a touch defensively.

Ben just nodded. "Ok, well this is nothing like that. We start 9AM Monday morning. There may be a lot of standing around for a bit but that's part of this job as well. Some of the guys smoke so if you need to smoke take your break when and where they do. Coffee breaks and lunch are covered. Any food allergies?"

Jayden looked at him in surprise but shook his head.

"Good, I think you're going to like the lunches. It was so popular with the guys when we renovated the daycare I've booked some gourmet trucks to serve us lunch. The team works really hard so they deserve the perk. I'll expect you to pull your weight as well. Hard work is fulfilling on its own but it also earns rewards." Ben looked at Rochelle. "Shall we discuss compensation?"
Jayden stiffened angrily and began to rise out of his chair.

Ben pinned him in place with a glare. "I'm talking about your pay."

Jayden blushed furiously and sat back down.

Rochelle was glaring at her son as well. "He should work for free for pulling crap like that!"

"That's your decision but I believe a man gives honest effort when he knows he's being fairly paid for it. I'm expecting Jayden to put in full days of work. He should be paid for that work. He's a beginner but this is a real job." Rochelle nodded to Ben who looked back at Jayden.

"Everyone on the worksite earned their right to be there. You're the newbie. You'll be expected to do a lot of grunt work. Can I rely on you to be professional and mature or am I going to be dealing with this chest thumping bullshit?" Ben said frankly.

Jayden nodded slightly.

"What does that mean?" Ben mimicking Jayden's minimal movement.

"I'll be professional and mature," he said.

Ben nodded. "I'll pay you $15 per hour to start and if you make it to the end of the project I'll prorate that up to $20 per hour. I'm expecting this project to last between four and six weeks, at five days a week and eight hours a day. We get the job done early AND done right, there's a bonus which covers the reduced time and then some." He stopped to see Jayden's reaction. Mental calculations were happening and struggling. "You could make close to $5000 in a relatively short time if you do a good job," Ben suggested. Jayden smiled at the sound of that.

Ben held out his hand to shake. "Deal?"

Jayden hesitated then gripped Ben's hand and shook.

Rochelle looked very pleased. Something else she needed to tell Ben popped into her head. "One more thing Ben. There's a group of young men Jayden is not to associate with by court order. If he does and the police catch him he goes to jail, no second chances. The police will be passing through the neighborhood at random intervals and will be watching."

Ben nodded and looked at Jayden. "How much do you want to avoid jail?"

Jayden looked at Ben seriously. "Very much."

Ben nodded. "If you see them coming, just let me, the site foreman or Dominic know."

The young man nodded.

Rochelle stood up and the men stood as well. "Thank you Ben! I really appreciate this!"

He opened his arms with a smile and Rochelle crushed herself against him with a happy smile. Jayden looked on with a conflicted expression.

Ben caught the look and frowned. Jayden still thought he was going to hurt his mother. Ben had no clue how to change his mind.

"I'll pick up the safety wear tomorrow and Jayden will see you at nine on Monday!" Rochelle said and Ben nodded. They headed home and Ben made his way down to his workshop. He spent the better part of two hours working on the puzzle for the Australian company and felt a solution percolating in the back of his brain. He pushed back from the table and looked at the clock. It was almost dinner hour. He listened and the house was quiet. He walked upstairs and no one was there. They'd been shopping for groceries for over four hours? Something was wrong. He called Trish's house and Lily picked up.

"Hello?"

"Hi, Lily? This is Ben. I'm looking for Tina and the rest of the girls."

"OH! They didn't call you? They're on their way home now. They... maybe I better let them tell you," she said hesitantly.

"What happened? Are they alright? Lily, talk to me!" Ben exclaimed.

"They ran into a little trouble with a few reporters who were... persistent about getting information about you. I'd really feel more comfortable if you got the story from them- AH! They just drove by going to your place! Talk to you later!" Lily hung up.

Ben hung up the phone then dashed outside to see Trish pulling up his driveway.

Lucy was sitting in the passenger seat and was looking at Ben with a nervous expression. Ben began to feel a little ill. Karen got out of the back seat and reached back inside and pulled out crutches. She glanced at Ben and her lip was trembling. Ben pushed forward and looked in the back seat.

Tina was sitting on the seat with her right leg up on Penny's lap. The lower half of her leg was in a cast. She looked over at Ben and he saw the black eye and the split and swollen lower lip.

The next thing he was aware of was carrying her cradled against his chest, carefully supporting her leg. Trish made it up his stairs before him and held the front door open. He set her down easy on the couch and Trish had the ottoman ready for her to rest her cast on. He knelt next to the couch taking in the bruises.

Ben's hands began to shake. "Tina? Are you ok?"

She nodded. "Our baby is fine too."

"What- what happened? Why didn't you call me?" Ben asked in an anguished voice. Tina just shook her head and rested back against the cushions. Ben could see the pain on her brow.

Trish was standing behind him. She sighed and rubbed her hands together. He noted the bruised knuckles and a few cuts. His eyebrows went up. Karen and Penny entered the house loaded down with grocery bags and Lucy followed with the rest. They went straight into the kitchen.

"Trish?" Ben said staring at the woman.

"Tina and the girls came over at around 2pm and we spent some time talking then we piled into my car and went to get the groceries. We spotted three reporters following us around, taking pictures, basically being fuckheads. Lucy contacted store security and had them thrown out." The woman in question came in and sat carefully next to Tina and held her hand.

"When we were on the way out of the grocery store they showed up again and the assholes blocked our way. They were talking shit to us about you. Then Tina got up in the face of the fat one and verbally tore a strip from him. It was amazing to see. His face just kept getting redder. We were all stunned until he shoved her away from him. He hit her pretty hard and she went over a display of washer fluid and hit the sidewalk badly. Lucy leapt after her and caught her before she rolled out onto the road. That's when I hit the fat fuck! I put him down quick. The other reporters tried to get some but got a crushed nose and a punch in the balls for their efforts. Store security showed up, dragged them away and called for an ambulance for Tina. We followed the ambulance to the hospital. Her leg is broken but it's not a bad break and should heal well."

Ben's face was showing his rage. Jaw clenched, muscles trembling, facial scar flaring, he looked like someone's imminent death.

"This is why we did not call," Tina's weakened voice wobbled as she touched Ben's tight jaw. "You might have killed him or at least injured him badly. Our baby needs a father, not prison visits."

Ben blinked at her and felt his rage slowly fade. She was right. He would have killed the man. Quickly and without a shred of remorse. He'd done it before. It was easy. That thought gave Ben pause. It was actually a little frightening. He closed his eyes and shuddered. When he reopened his eyes he gently lifted Tina's hand and kissed it.

"I'm so sorry Tina! This should never have happened. It has to stop. The harassment has to end."

"What are you going to do?" she whispered nervously.

"There's a reporter. I met her the other day outside the house. Rochelle knows her or knew her from college. Anyway, she offered to 'tell my story', defuse the mystery about me so the public will lose interest," he explained.

Trish snorted. "Ben, the more I know about you the more I want to know! I'm not sure that's such a good idea."

"Alternately we all run away. Hide in a yurt in Mongolia. I don't think they have the Internet there." It was Lucy's turn to snort but she raised a hand to cover her smile. Ben gave her a smile.

"I think we better put Tina to bed. The doctor gave her some pain killers but not the really strong stuff as Tina won't risk the baby's health," Lucy explained.

Ben nodded and Lucy went down the hall to prepare the bed. Trish helped Ben carefully lift Tina. Once they reached the bedroom Ben set Tina down on the bed and her brow eased a little.

"Can I get you something?" Ben asked. "Hungry? Thirsty?"

"Water?"

Ben immediately brought her some cool water from the bathroom and helped her drink some. Tina nodded and he laid her back on the pillow.

"I think I will sleep now."

"Of course! I'll just keep an eye on you," Ben said but she gestured for them to leave.

Trish and Lucy gently pulled him from the room.

When the door closed Lucy touched Ben's chin and turned his face to hers. "Tina knows you love her. It hurts her to be unable to take care of you as she wants. Please let her rest and get better."

Ben blinked at her and looked back at the door. He finally nodded and pulled Lucy into a fierce hug. The woman melted in his arms with a happy sigh.

Trish was watching them both with interest. She'd never seen a dom/sub relationship at work before. She was surprised how much control subs had over their dom.

Ben suddenly reached out and pulled Trish against him. He kissed her and the intensity took her breath away. It was demanding and emotionally raw. Trish felt herself being drawn into the hurricane force of his passion. He pulled back suddenly and kissed Lucy who whimpered at his need. He ended the kiss and Trish felt his whole body shaking in reaction. He didn't know how to deal with this situation.

"I want to kill him so badly."

Trish heard the desperation in his voice. She shared a look with Lucy whose eyes were wide with worry.

"Ben, come with me," Trish said tugging on his hand. They pulled on their jackets and Lucy watched them get into her truck. She drove them back to her place and led him inside. She paused to speak with Lily and handed her the keys to the truck. The young woman's eyes flashed to Ben then away.

Then Trish led Ben downstairs and into her workout room. The floor was covered in padding as were two of the walls. There was a rack of polished wood staffs of varying lengths. Near one corner was a heavy bag hanging from the ceiling. She closed the door.

"Take off your clothes except your underwear. You're going to get sweaty," she said and Ben made to protest. "We're not having sex. Trust me, you're in no state at the moment to have sex without hurting your partner."

Ben nodded and began removing his clothes. Trish moved to the corner and pulled a small stool over to the heavy bag. She stepped up and pulled a pin from the rail above the bag. This allowed her to push the bag along the rail until she reached the center of the room where the rail ended. She used the stool once more and put the pin into the rail to keep the bag in place. She picked up a roll of fabric tape and walked over to Ben.

"Hands out."

Ben held his hands out and Trish quickly taped his knuckles and wrapped his wrists.

"OK, you work out lifting weights. I do kick boxing and a number of other martial arts. This bag is your opponent. We'll start out with some simple punches. I understand you might know how to throw a punch. Hit the bag."

Ben understood what Trish was doing now and he was grateful for this outlet. He stood facing the bag and bent his knees. He jabbed the bag a few times and got the feel of its weight and response. He threw a few more punches at it and began to feel a little better. Trish watched his telegraphed punches and grinned at the mighty fighter. She wondered what Rochelle had been talking about. She stood behind the bag and braced it.

"OK, stop giving it love taps. This is the fat prick that hurt Tina. He wanted to hurt her. He enjoyed it. He laughed-" Trish thumped onto her face on the matt and rolled over onto her back as she wheezed for breath. The bag had hit her, lifting her off her feet to land three feet back with the wind knocked out of her. She struggled to drag a breath back into her lungs as Ben's concerned face looked down at her.

"I'm ok!" she squeaked. "Go- hit the bag!"

Air finally began to flow back into her lungs as she lay panting on the matt watching Ben release his inner rage. The bag became his focal point and his sloppy punches began to tighten up.

Then Ben's eyes lost their softness and his hands struck the bag faster and harder causing it to swing closer to the ceiling. When the mount began to creak ominously Trish called out for Ben to stop and his concentration was broken. He caught the bag and panted for breath as he blinked at her.

Trish pushed herself up to her knees. Her stomach ached from the hit and she felt a little queasy. Luckily her task was done here. She pushed herself to her feet and walked over to the door. She scooped up his clothes as she opened it and stepped out. "You can come in now."

Lisa and Lori McKellan stepped into the workout room, wearing only their bras and panties. They took in Ben's heavy breathing, the torn tape on his knuckles, and his sweaty muscles. A thrill shot through them as he looked so raw and dangerous! They both knelt on the matt and looked up at him.

Ben scowled and looked at Trish. She smiled. "You need to burn off some other energy and these ladies have generously offered to assist you. When they tell me you're ready you can come out for a shower and get your clothes back." She closed the door.

He looked back at the two gorgeous redheads and his cock surged against his underwear. Lori saw this and moaned. She quickly reached back and undid the catch on her bra, slipping the straps down her arms to expose her tits. The small gold rings she was wearing through her stiff nipples gleamed in the light of the room. Lisa followed suit and soon Ben could see how excited both of them were. This triggered further throbbing in his underwear and Lisa bit her lip as she watched him grow. It had been some time since the last time he was with them.

Ben took a step towards them, then another, his expression conflicted. He was still dealing with the rage he had for those damn reporters but he... he wanted these two women. He growled at his mixed up thoughts.

Lisa and Lori trembled as Ben stalked towards them. His growl shot a thrill through them and they squirmed as the wetness from their pussies began to tickle their inner thighs.

He stood before them admiring their lustrous red hair and their full sensual lips. Their beautiful blue eyes looked up at him. He thought they were truly lovely.

"Pull down my underwear," he said.

Both reached up and gripped the waistband. They tugged down rather hastily and his hard cock bounced up and slapped his stomach.

Lisa moaned at the sight of his cock. She wanted to take it into her mouth so badly! She glanced towards Lori as she heard her sister moan as well.

When Ben's fingers slid into the hair on the back of her head and took a grip Lisa gasped then squealed as his thick cock began sliding into her mouth.

He was so slow and deliberate about how he fucked her mouth, she felt lightheaded.

Ben gestured for Lori to stand. When she did he pulled her against him and kissed her hard, his tongue exploring her mouth, sliding across hers. She felt her tits rubbing across the sweaty, hot skin of his chest and her pussy tingled madly. His scars were rough against the tender flesh of her nipples and the delicious contrast of his bold but soft tongue in her mouth and the scraping of her nipples sent shockwaves through her body.

Lisa was close to coming from how roughly Ben was fucking her mouth. His desire was almost out of control and she desperately wanted to touch herself but Ben hadn't given her permission to.

When he pulled his cock from her mouth she moaned loudly and tried to get it back but he pulled her head back by her hair. Her eyelids fluttered as she was on the brink of a major orgasm.

Ben bent down and kissed her. Blissful sensations flooded her body and her clit screamed for some attention. He suddenly pushed her down on her back.

"Hold her legs back, all the way," Ben growled at Lori and she sank to her knees to grab her sister's ankles. She pulled them back to her shoulders as she sat back on her feet.

Ben could see Lisa's pussy was puffy and wet. She was ready so he pressed the fat head of his cock against her pussy lips and forced his way inside. Lisa's mouth dropped open and she began to quake from how he was opening her so wide. He drove himself all the way to the bottom and slammed his pelvis against Lisa's, slapping her clit hard.

"AH! AH! AH! GOD! OH BEN! CU- CU- IMA- CUUUUUMMMMMMIIIIINNNNGGGGGEEEEEEEE!!!!!!" Lisa screamed as her orgasm struck. Ben gave her no respite as he hammered her body with his in long fast strokes ending with the hard slap of their bodies colliding. Her mind was leaving her body. The impacts were driving her higher and higher, blending in little sharp jolts of delicious pain. She couldn't focus on anything except the bliss going on between her legs and how the waves spread outwards through her body.

When Ben felt her relax completely he pulled out. He was still hard as iron. He looked to Lori and she whimpered seeing the heat in his eyes. She released her sister's ankles and Ben lowered Lisa's legs down to allow her to rest.

Ben stood and walked behind Lori. She trembled in anticipation and her nipples felt hard as diamonds. Then Ben's hands were on her tits, squeezing them, tugging on the nipples and she cried out with the sharp pleasure. He gripped under her arms and pulled her up onto her knees once more. Then she felt his hard body settle down behind her, his hard cock pressing between the globes of her ass cheeks. Ben's left arm went around her body under her tits and he pulled her back against the solidity of his chest. He tilted back on his knees and suddenly Lori was being lifted up. She felt Ben gripping his cock under her body and positioning himself.

When the hot tip of his cock pressed hard against her tight little asshole, Lori began to hyperventilate. She imagined him impaling her ass with his huge cock and she almost screamed. Then he lifted her a little further on his chest and pushed his cock forward to slip between the hot soft lips of her pussy. She gasped and leaned her head back. He kissed her cheek then dropped her down on his cock.

"FFFFFAAAAAAAAAAAAAA- FFFUUUUUCCCCCKKKK!!!!" Lori wailed as he filled her completely. The shock was almost too much and she clung to him until she felt her surroundings return to her.

Ben moved his grip to her hips to keep Lori on her knees and flexed his hips to drive his cock up into her pussy. This also had the benefit of slapping Lori's ass with his pelvis. He kept up the pounding until Lori was wobbling on her knees. He rested back and pulled her down on top of him. He rested her there for a moment as she recovered. He moved his hands to her tits once more and gently tugged on the gold rings.

"Oh shit Ben! Yes! So good!" she whispered as she squirmed. Tiny sparks were racing between her nipples and her clit. When Ben's right hand moved down to rub her clit as he squeezed her stiff nipple that spark became a bolt.

"OH GOD YES! BEN PLEASE! YES!" Lori cried out as his fingers swept across her clit. It felt incredible and she was right there. Then he began to stroke his cock in and out of her by rocking his hips and it was too much for her.

"BEN! I- IT'S TOO- FUCK I'M CUMMING!" Lori cried as her body began to clench and shake.

Ben needed release but he wasn't there yet. Something was blocking him. He was close but not close enough. Lori wasn't going to be able to handle much more.

Lori's gasps told him she was becoming too sensitive. He pulled his hands off her clit and tit and moved them to her hips but she was still squirming. He lifted her off his cock and set her down on the matt next to her sister. He rolled to his feet and stood up. The twins looked at him from the floor and saw his hard cock bobbing with need. Neither had the strength to help him. Lisa grabbed Lori's hand tight as they watched Ben prowl back and forth. He was acting like a caged tiger. Finally he turned for the door.
"I'm going to take a cold shower," he grumbled. He stepped outside and heard a squeak as he collided with a very red faced Lily. She'd obviously been listening at the door and her hand was inside her yoga pants. She yanked her hand out, looked wide eyed at his naked body then down at his hard and almost angry looking cock. She shrieked and ran upstairs. Trish burst out of the washroom to see Ben standing there naked and red faced as Lily scampered up the stairs.

"You're still hard?!?" Trish gasped.

"Excuse me," Ben said pushing past her into the wash room to take a quick shower. His clothes were on the counter. He locked the door on his way in so he was left alone. Once he was clean and he had relaxed down below he dried himself off and put his clothes back on. His underwear were still in the gym.

He opened the door and saw three very contrite looking redheads standing in the hall. The twins were dressed but still looked a little disheveled and wild eyed.

"Lisa, Lori, come here," he said and they moved to stand before him. He could see they were moving a little tenderly so he had caused them some pain. Again, as much as he wanted to he couldn't apologize for that as that's what they seemed to want.

"You did nothing wrong. You were both exquisite."

He saw them almost sag with relief. Smiles exploded across their faces and he was once again dazzled by their beauty. He reached out and touched their cheeks. They leaned into his touch and he was once more concerned with their attachment to him. He sighed. Truthfully, he was becoming overly attached to them as well. He dipped forward and gave each a tender kiss. They looked up at him with an almost feverish devotion and he had to look away. He focused on Trish.

"Thank you for suggesting the heavy bag. I think I'm going to pick up one for home."

"I'm so sorry-" she began but he held up his hand.

"No, it's fine. You tried to help me and... mostly succeeded." He looked towards the stairs with a worried look on his face.

"Lily wasn't here while I was standing by the door. But I had to use the wash room. I was in there for a while."

"Maybe I should speak with her," Ben said.

"No, I think I'd better do that," Trish replied.

He finally nodded. He went upstairs and the women followed. He walked Lisa and Lori home then made his way home. The lights were off at Gabriella's. He wanted her opinion about the idea of speaking with the reporter. He went in his front door and Lucy rushed to meet him in the foyer.

"Are you ok?" she asked.

He looked at her in surprise. "Yes, I'm fine. How is Tina?"

Lucy smiled. "Tina is sleeping."

"How are you doing?" Ben asked her.

"I'm better now that I know you are ok. You looked pretty upset when you left. I thought you and Trish were going to go find those jerks and beat them up."

"No, Trish took me to her place to punch a heavy bag in her gym," he said.

Lucy nodded and looked at him with a smile. For some reason he felt compelled to continue.

"Then she invited Lisa and Lori over to help me work off some tension."

Another nod.

"It didn't work."

Lucy's smile dropped. "You couldn't get erect?"

"No, I couldn't... finish."

"Oh! That must have been frustrating."

"Yes."

"Did you want to..."

Ben smiled. "No. It's fine. I had a cold shower. I'm good. Thanks though."

Lucy's smile was sweet and alluring at the same time. Ben pulled her against him for a hug and kissed the top of her head.

"Are we going to have dinner?"

Ben looked behind himself and saw Karen and Penny, Christopher on Penny's hip, standing in the door of the kitchen. "Did someone make dinner?"

"We bought the ingredients but we got home too late to make it and I'll need Tina to show me how," Karen said with a sad look.

"So we order in tonight. What would you like-"

"CHINESE!" Karen and Penny squealed. Lucy grinned and nodded.

"I swear they've become obsessed!" Ben grinned. "Go ahead and place the order. You know what I like."

Karen and Penny skipped back into the kitchen to phone in the order.

Ben looked down the hall but Lucy tugged him towards the living room. "Let her sleep. You'll see her soon enough."

He nodded thoughtfully and let Lucy lead him into the next room.

Chapter 3

Dominic Selleni was a big man. Physically big, big hearted, and he had a big voice which was currently deafening Ben's left ear. Dominic had Ben in a bear hug and was cheering loudly after hearing the news that Ben was going to be a father for the first time.

"BEN! THAT'S WONDERFUL NEWS!!!" he boomed. He release Ben and stepped back. "So that's why you're in a rush to do this renovation! You need a bigger home as your family is growing!"

Ben grinned at the man. Dominic was a doting grandfather for three kids and children meant the world to him. He had another surprise for the man. "Yes, but not exactly how you think. I'm not moving. My home has plenty of space for my needs except the spare rooms I used to have are currently being used by the girls I adopted when I was in France. They are going to live in the new build."

Dominic's face showed his confusion. "You're rebuilding the house for some kids? They can't live in it alone!"

Ben smiled. He knew this is where the story was going to go off the rails for his friend. "The girls are 24 years old. They were abducted by a white slaver when they were young. He kept them as pets. Playthings. He did horrible things to them. I'm helping them get their lives back. I signed them up for school and I'm getting them a place to live." Ben pointed to the house they were about to work on. "We'll see what they want to do once they get their secondary school diploma."

"Geezus Ben! People give a little money to charities to make themselves feel better. You go all out."

Ben saw Jayden approaching. "Speaking of going all out. Here comes the young man I spoke to you about. I'm hoping working on this project will turn him around too."

It wasn't even 8:30 yet but Jayden walked up with his white hardhat in his hands. Inside were gloves and safety glasses as Ben had suggested. His boots were brand new too. It looked like Rochelle got some advice on the rest of his outfit. It looked like he came right off the page of a catalog.

"Jayden, good morning! This is Dominic Selleni. Dominic this is Jayden King," Ben made the introductions.

The men shook hands and eyed one another. "Who's the site foreman?" Ben asked.

"Hector."

"He still have that badass mustache?" Ben asked with a grin.

"See! Ben thinks its badass!" said a voice behind them.

Ben turned with a grin then quickly acted frightened. "Holy crap! It's actually gotten bigger!" he exclaimed.

"Nah! It's still a sweet 'stache!" the man said stroking the minimal facial hair with pride.

Jayden stifled a snort.

"Who's this and what makes him think he can outdo such a proud achievement as this. Look at him! He's practically a baby! Peach fuzz!" Hector barked. Jayden glanced at Ben.

"Hector Ramirez, this is Jayden King. Jayden, that sounded like a challenge to me. If you think you can grow a better mustache you'll just have to try," Ben said with a raised eyebrow.

Jayden looked at Ben then a slow smile slipped onto his lips. He nodded. Then his face froze and his eyes went wide as he looked over Ben's shoulder.

Ben turned and he saw Karen approaching with Penny. They were carrying something in plastic containers.

"Good morning!" Karen said shyly. Her eyes kept slipping past Ben to focus on the young man.

"What have you brought us?" Ben asked.

"Cookies! We made them!" Penny blurted with a grin.

"Karen, Penny, this is Dominic Selleni, Hector Ramirez, and Jayden King. Guys, these are my daughters."

"Daughters?" Jayden gasped and Ben looked back at his incredulous look.

"Didn't your Mom tell you about Karen and Penny?" Ben asked looking the young man right in the eye.

"She- she said you had... more women living in your house." Jayden's voice tapered off as Karen looked at him with her light blue eyes. She smiled and he felt himself smiling in return automatically.

"Right, that's what you heard. Karen Shepherd and Penny Shepherd are my daughters and as any good father would," Ben nodded to Dominic who grinned widely, "I'll be watching out for their best interests."

Jayden's head snapped back to look at Ben who leaned in a little closer. "We'll talk about this later," Ben said quietly.

Karen handed the containers to Dominic and Penny handed hers to Ben then the ladies hurried over to Ashley's place to get a lift to school. Karen glanced over her shoulder a few times to look back at Jayden who was still frozen like a deer caught in the headlights.

"You did it all wrong! You adopted girls and moved past all the fun stuff of watching them grow to begin at the hard part of protecting them from boyfriends!" Dominic's laugh boomed out. Ben grimaced and his scar flared. Dominic's eyes went wide. "Crap! You can scare them away with that scar!"

"Ha. You are a million laughs Dominic," Ben said sourly as the man chuckled. He turned to Jayden who was still a little starry eyed. "Earth to Jayden! If you see any sign of those young men you are not to associate with you find one of us and let us know immediately."

Jayden nodded.

"The services are all shut off to the house. No power, water, or gas. We're going in to salvage the existing fixtures. Let us know when the excavation crew arrives.

Ben popped open the container and grabbed a few cookies. He offered the container to Jayden who grabbed three cookies as well. Ben left the container on the table Dominic set up beside his truck then they headed inside. He popped one of the cookies in his mouth and chewed the sweet treat with a smile on his face. He looked over at Jayden who was eating with a thoughtful expression. Ben had his tool box inside the front door. He picked it up and they walked through the house to the kitchen.

"We'll take the kitchen sink, the taps, and the ceiling light fixture from this room. Be careful removing the items so they are in good enough condition to donate. You start with the light. There is a step ladder by the front door. Tools in the box."

Ben got to work on the sink and made quick work of disconnecting the taps and the sink mount from under the cabinet. He crawled out and saw Jayden was almost done with the light. He helped him bring it down safely then got him to help lift the sink out. They carried the stuff outside to put them in the back of Dominic's truck. Then they stopped to grab a few more cookies.

"Karen, she makes good cookies," Jayden said casually.

Ben looked over at Jayden and saw the curiosity burning in the young man.

"Did your Mom give you the back story for the girls?" Ben asked. Jayden shook his head. Ben imagined he stopped listening once he heard there were more women in his house. He walked back towards the house and Jayden followed. Ben stopped when they were in the foyer and looked Jayden in the eye.

"Karen and Penny were likely runaways when they were really young. We couldn't find any information about their abduction or the abduction of children who looked like them in the date ranges we worked out. The bastard who grabbed them abused them, kept them as playthings, forced them to undergo painful operations to change how they looked for his amusement. They didn't have a childhood and next year they were going to be murdered because he'd grown tired of them. They'd become 'too old' at 25."

Jayden's eyes were wide as he absorbed the story.

"I'm not telling you this because I want you to pity them. They don't need pity. What they need is patience, compassion, respect, and understanding. Penny is having an easier time picking up a new life. Karen is still trying to find her place. I'm hopeful," Ben sighed. "It's obvious you're attracted to Karen."

Jayden scowled as he expected Ben's harsh words.

"Do you think you're the man she needs in her life right now? Do you know how to be?" Ben asked gently instead.

The questions caught him off guard and he stared at Ben's back as the big man walked away. After a moment he followed and saw Ben had moved into the only bathroom in the house.

"We're going to take the taps, the sink, the toilet, the medicine cabinet, the light fixture, the door knobs, and I'm keeping this old cast iron soaker tub. I'm going to fix it up and put it back in the refurbished home. We'll need help carrying this out and from the look of that narrow doorway we may need to do a little demo to get it out."

They spent the better part of an hour removing the items and carrying them out to the truck before one of Dominic's workers informed them that the excavation team had arrived. Ben had just finished disconnecting the tub. He walked out side with Jayden who was looking a little tired.

The heavy equipment had arrived so it was time to take a break as the excavator made its way to the backyard.

Jayden was fidgeting and glancing at Ben. Finally Ben couldn't take it any longer.

"What?"

He paused. "What- what kind of man would I have to be?" he finally said.

Ben looked at Jayden with a serious expression. "Before you can answer that you have to ask yourself what kind of man have you been. Be brutally honest with yourself. If you can't be honest with yourself how can you be honest with others? Spend some time on that. When you have that answer come to speak with me. Tomorrow." He walked off to speak with Dominic.

"How goes it with the boy?" the contractor asked.

"Early days. He's been a good worker so far though," Ben admitted.

"Hey Ben! The guys want to know if you got the same caterers you had on the daycare job?" Hector called out.

"Never you mind the caterers. I don't need a team of fat sluggish workers!" Dominic called back. When Hector walked away to deliver the bad news Dominic turned to Ben. "Who did you get to make lunches?" he asked quietly.

"You'll just have to wait another hour to see," Ben grinned. "Is it safe for us to go back in yet?"

"Just as soon as the dump truck gets into the backyard, sure."

"I'll need some guys to help carry out the tub," Ben said.

"I'll ask Hector."

Ben walked back to Jayden who wasn't looking too happy. The truck was in so Ben gestured for him to follow.

He picked up a cordless reciprocating saw and a sledgehammer. Jayden's eyes lit up.

They made it back to the washroom and Ben handed Jayden the hammer. "I'm going to cut a notch out of the door frame and I'll need you to break it out into the hallway." That got a smile from the young man.

Ben use a power driver to remove the hinge screws and Jayden carried the door outside and returned to see Ben making short work of the door frame. He made four deep cuts, two to a side, then stood back.

He stepped out into the hall and gestured for Jayden to begin. "Knock out the sections between the cuts. Put your safety glasses on first."

Jayden's first swing was anticlimactic as the hammer bounced off. He looked at Ben with embarrassment.

"Not as easy as it looks, right? Take a secure grip on the hammer and swing as hard as you can. Don't aim for the surface. Aim through the wall, about four inches beyond. Keep your grip firm but not a death grip," Ben suggested.

Jayden nodded and took a deep breath. This time his swing went through the wall, across the hall, and embedded itself in the drywall there.

Ben grinned and Jayden's scowl wobbled as he struggled not to laugh.

"It's slightly euphoric to hit stuff with a big hammer isn't it," Ben remarked and Jayden nodded as his smile finally won. "Try again and this time just a little more death grip."

Jayden retrieved the hammer and managed to knock out the section of the doorjamb in one swing. Four workers showed up behind Ben and Jayden had it down now so he blew through the remaining section in just two swings. The guys cheered as they knew that demo was the best part of renovations! Jayden smiled at them then helped clear the debris from the hall.

It took all of them to carefully manoeuver the tub outside and carry it over to Ben's to put it in the garage. As they walked back they saw the gourmet food truck parking in front of the day care. A cheer went up from the crew who hustled over to the truck. A police cruiser followed the truck into the neighborhood. Ben waved them down and walked to the curb. Jayden hung back with a frown on his face.

"Good day officers. There's been no sign yet of the men Jayden is to avoid. We're all keeping an eye out." He received a nod for that. "If it's lunch time you can place an order at the food truck. It's covered." That earned him smiles and the driver shut off the engine as his partner called in. Ben nodded and continued on his way to the truck.

"You invited them to lunch?" Jayden hissed.

Ben frowned at him. "I think you're mistaking them for the enemy. I've dealt with more police than you have both here and overseas and I can say that while they're subject to the same human failings as anyone, I'd far rather have the law on my side. Showing respect and courtesy costs nothing and yields good will. We can all use a little more of that."

Jayden looked troubled as they reached the back of the line.

"Are you the crime you committed or are you Jayden King?" Ben asked him quietly.

Eyebrows went up as he looked at Ben. "I- I'm Jayden King."

"I think you're still discovering who that is," Ben said.

Jayden gave Ben an evaluating look. "Are you trying to be some kind of Zen Master?"

"Depends. Is it working? Are you thinking deep thoughts?" Ben smiled faintly.

Jayden turned away so Ben wouldn't see his smile but Ben recognized the motion for what it was and felt a little burst of satisfaction.

Lunch was incredible! Mexican burritos, enchiladas, quesadillas, tacos all with a gourmet flair. Delicious and filling! Ben got huge grins from the crew and Dominic lamented they were being spoiled rotten. This made the team cheer for Ben.

The excavation crew alternated through the lunch hour taking turns to keep the steady flow of trucks coming and going. Each driver gave his order so when they returned for the next load their food was waiting for them.

There was an embarrassing moment for Ben during lunch when Lisa and Lori came out of the daycare to speak with him. They were still worried about the state they'd left him in the previous day. Conversation amongst the crew quieted significantly as attention swung to the two beauties who walked up to Ben and gently pulled him aside to whisper their questions. He gave them assurances once more that they'd been wonderful and he was fine. Then he told them they could order lunch from the truck for themselves and the other staff if they liked. They squealed and jumped up to kiss him then looked very contrite as they saw his embarrassed scowl. They rushed back into the daycare and came out minutes later to place the orders. They apologized to Ben but were so nervous they'd fucked up they wouldn't leave until he gave them a kiss.

Ben dropped himself on a chair next to Dominic's truck and suffered the man's wide eyed smile. The crew was looking at him in a new light as well.

"These are NOT your daughters," Dominic said quietly.

"No," Ben growled and received a chuckle. Jayden watched his discomfort.

The dump truck driver called out to Dominic and indicated that was the last load. Now his crew could begin in earnest. He, Hector, Ben and Jayden walked into the backyard once the excavator made its way out. They looked at the plans once more and Ben explained how the new foundation would be integrated with the old and how it would support the two stories. An oversized deck with a six seater hot tub on it would extend beyond the new addition.

Once they confirmed the plan Ben and Jayden returned to their salvage job inside the house. They spent most of the afternoon removing bits of the house that would be donated to the community housing agency.
"Ben, may I ask you a question?"

They'd worked in silence for so long the question caught Ben by surprise. "Uh, sure."

"I get what you're doing with Karen and Penny. That's actually pretty cool of you. But I don't understand what's going on with the McKellan twins. Are you... with them? You didn't seem happy about it."

Ben squirmed under his curious look. "Contrary to what you see in the tabloids, I'm a very private person. I don't like to talk about my personal relationships. That said, I understand it's a very personal issue for you so I'll give you an answer. Yes, I have a relationship with the twins but I'm still working on the boundaries of that with them. That's why I was uncomfortable with such a public display of affection." Ben stopped to gather his jumbled thoughts. "One thing the women can be assured of is my discretion. It's no one's business what we do. I do this out of love and respect for them." He fixed his eyes on Jayden's. "I would NEVER do anything to hurt them."

Jayden's back went up. "Except fuck other women."

Ben scowled at Jayden. "How many women have you been with Jayden? Did you love any of them? I'm not asking if you told them you loved them. I'm asking if you actually had an emotional bond with any of them. If not, were you at least honest about your feelings with them before you fucked them?"

It was Jayden's turn to scowl at Ben who continued.

"When I was your age I was looking for a woman who would share my life and instead all I found were a series of one night stands. They left me feeling empty and ill. When I finally met my wife I fell for her hard and sex finally felt... right. Maybe it's not the same for everyone but for me there needs to be an emotional bond. When my wife left me it... destroyed me. I never expected to have another relationship with a woman again. It hurt so much I couldn't bear the thought of going through it again. I... accepted I would be alone. Then I discovered I was loved and by more than one woman. I wasn't ready to accept that. These women proved to me that I could love again and I didn't need to fear the pain. There isn't a day that goes by that I don't feel unworthy of their love so I do everything in my power to justify their trust in me," Ben sighed and leaned back against the wall.

"Opening your heart to love is one of the most vulnerable and terrifying acts one person can do for another. If it's done for someone unable or unwilling to love in return, it can leave deep scars. Your mother is dealing with those scars now. I'm giving her time and I've let her know I will be there for her if she needs me. I have strong feelings for your mother. I won't hurt her by lying and hiding my love for the other women in my life. She knows my feelings for her are honest and for her alone. We may never be together again but she will hold a place in my heart."

Ben glanced at the time and saw it was almost the end of the business day. Looking back at Jayden he saw the scowl was still in place but his eyes weren't so angry and he wouldn't look at Ben.

"Listen, the work day is done. We talked about a lot of deep stuff today. Lots to think about. You did good work. Go home and relax. Tomorrow morning we will swing the sledge hammers and crow bars to have a little fun then the heavy machinery will take the top story off and the real work will begin. Tomorrow is going to be a much more strenuous day. Get rested up and thanks," Ben said.

Jayden nodded and they left the house. He watched the young man walk back to his house and inside.

The crew was preparing to call it a day. They had prepared the excavated pit for putting in the foundation the following day. The boundaries were marked and looked good to Ben. He said his goodnights to the crew and Dominic and headed home.

As he entered the front door he smelled the delicious scents of cooking and he immediately worried that Tina wasn't resting as she should be.

"Tina?" he called out.

"In the kitchen!" she called back.

Ben's brows went down in a scowl. He quickly kicked off his boots and hung up his jacket to march into the kitchen to ask what she was doing. As he entered the doorway he saw Tina in a wheelchair with her leg extended and Karen on the counter side of the island. His steam left him as confusion passed over his face.

"See! I told you he would think it was my cooking!" Tina cheered. Karen's smile was wide and delighted.

"It- it smells so good!" was all Ben could say in his defence. He walked over and kissed Tina. Karen came around the island and Ben gave her a hug. "I'm so hungry!" he said with a grin.

"You'll just have to wait until everyone else gets home," Karen said as she pranced back to the oven.

Ben looked at Tina who grinned excitedly.

"Karen is a natural! She picked up everything I was teaching her and shows patience when cooking. I think this is an excellent skill for her. She has expressed an interest in attending classes to do this professionally," Tina said.

Ben grinned and kissed Tina once more, letting it go on a little longer than usual and she swooned.

"Mmm! Stop! Please!" she pushed him away finally and grinned up at him with heat in her eyes. "Go get cleaned up for dinner." Her cheeks glowed.

He walked down to the master bedroom and took a shower and got changed into his casual clothes. When he came out Lucy was walking down the hall towards him with a smile on her face. "How was your day?"

Arms wrapped around him and soft lips pressed against his as he felt her soft breasts press against his chest. She felt wonderful!

She pulled back and looked into his eyes. "My day was fun! Thank you!" She stepped around him to get cleaned up for dinner.

Penny skipped down the hall towards him with a huge grin on her face. "Isn't it amazing how Karen made dinner for us tonight?"

"Yes! Did you bring her homework home for her?" Ben asked. Karen would still need her secondary school diploma if she intended to go to school to become a chef.

Penny nodded quickly. "Yes and I'll sit with her when she does it."

Ben gave Penny a warm hug for being so good to her sister.

When they were all seated at the table Tina thanked Karen for all her help taking care of her and for making the wonderful meal.

The dishes were handed around and soon everyone was digging into the delicious steamed veggies and the thick slices of tender roast beef. The mashed potatoes were creamy and smooth.

"Ben, I need to build up my strength as my arms are very tired from mashing and whipping the potatoes. Could you show me how to use the machines downstairs to get stronger?" Karen asked shyly.

"Ooo! Me too!" Penny said.

Ben smiled. "Sure. I can show you a routine you both could follow to help strengthen and tone your muscles. You'll have to get up a little earlier in the morning to do the exercise though. Are you ok with that?"

Their smiles dimmed a little but he got nods from both of them.

"Tomorrow morning then," he said with an evil grin and rubbed his hands together.

"Ben! Don't tease!" Tina scolded him with a smile.

"How went the renovations?" Lucy asked.

"It's going really well so far. The backyard is excavated and the foundations will go in tomorrow. The basement floor and walls the day after that. The main floor is being pulled off tomorrow as well."

"So quick!" Tina said.

"Yeah, trying to outrun the really cold weather," Ben explained.

"Did... did Jayden like my cookies?" Karen asked casually, not looking Ben in the eye.

"I thought Penny helped with them," Ben remarked with a curious tone, pretending he didn't hear Karen's real question. Tina frowned at him but he ignored her look.

Karen's brows furrowed in annoyance. "Yes, sorry, did he like our cookies?"

"The crew thought the cookies were very good and asked me to pass along their thanks!" Ben answered.

Karen nodded cautiously as she wasn't sure if that answered her question.

Tina and Lucy traded looks. There would be a discussion later.

Ben turned his attention to his meal and was really impressed. "You outdid yourself with this meal Karen. It's delicious!"

Her smile came back. "Thank you Ben!"

The discussion turned to the homework Penny had brought home for Karen and Lucy's classes.

"Did you hear back from the car dealer yet regarding Ashley's new van?" Lucy asked.

"Not yet. Why? Is Ashley having trouble with my truck?"

"No but her girls mentioned they missed arriving at school in style," she grinned.

"Hey! My truck has plenty of style!" he protested.

That received a raised eyebrow from the four ladies. Ben harrumphed causing giggles.

The doorbell rang as they were finishing up. Ben got up to answer it. He saw Gabriella standing on the porch looking stressed. He opened the door and welcomed her in. She clung to his chest and he gave her a tight hug. She seemed to settle down in his arms.

"What's wrong?" he asked, concerned.

She took off her shoes and they walked into the living room. Lucy had just pushed Tina's chair into the room.

"Should we leave you two alone?" Tina asked.

"No, please stay. This isn't private just... potentially life altering," Gabriella said in a daze.

The doorbell rang again. Lucy answered it and soon she returned with Catherine who was wide eyed with curiosity. Gabriella held out her hand and pulled her friend to sit next to her on the couch with Ben.

"Please start at the beginning," Ben said.

"Sorry, yes. Well, do you recall that company in Milan you arranged for me to fly to on the private jet back in May? I've been doing a lot of consulting work recently with Vincent Leone, their CEO, as they've been in talks with one of the major fashion houses in Milan who I also deal with closely. They are going to merge the two companies into one and they want to expand their market." She looked at Ben and Catherine to see if they were following so far and they smiled in return.

"I just got off the phone with Vincent. He told me that the consulting work I've been doing was a test to see if I met their requirements to be the CEO of the new corporate entity! He's retiring and the executives of both companies voted unanimously for me to take over!"

"Oh my god! That's amazing Gabriella! Congratulations!" Ben gasped and Catherine squealed and hugged her best friend. Tina, Lucy, Karen and Penny all cheered.

"My head is spinning! I don't know what to do!" she said with her face in her hands.

Ben took her hands in his. He looked her in the eyes. "Is this something you saw yourself doing one day? Is it what you want?"

"Yes, but I thought it would be my small little company growing slowly and gradually becoming the size of Vincent's company but not this big!" she exclaimed.

"Do you want this?" he said calmly and her eyes glowed with excitement.

"Yes! So much!"

"Then what's stopping you-" Ben's voice stuck as he realized what it might be.

Gabriella's eyes welled with tears. "Yes, I'll have to move to Milan."

Catherine's eyes showed her surprise then worry. She looked at Ben but he was just nodding. His smile returned though it looked a little sad. He tenderly wiped the tears from Gabriella's eyes.

"The world isn't so big anymore now that you've introduced me to the joys of traveling. Milan is just across the pond. You need to do this! It's your dream! Are your kids going too?" he asked.

"I- I haven't spoken to them yet. They're both out at their friend's places. I just got the call so I called Catherine to have her meet me here. I needed to speak with you first. Miriam and Daniel may want to join me or they may want to stay here with their friends."

"I think they should be with you but if they decide to stay know I will be here for them," Ben said.

Gabriella burst into tears and threw herself against Ben's chest. Catherine leaned her cheek against her friend's back and the three of them rocked gently on the couch. Karen and Penny slipped away with tears in their eyes too. Tina looked to Lucy and the young woman wheeled Tina away. Before they left Tina touched Ben's arm and motioned that he should take Gabriella home. He nodded.

The lovely brunette finally seemed to be near the end of her tears. Ben tilted her chin up and gently kissed her lips. She melted against him. Catherine pulled back and went to leave but Gabriella reached out and caught her hand.

"Don't go, please," Gabriella said with a conflicted look.

Catherine smiled with love for her friend.

"Let's get you home," Ben said.

They put on their jackets and shoes and made the short walk over to Gabriella's. Inside the brunette hugged them both tight.

"I- I need... to be with you," Gabriella said as she pressed her face against Ben's chest. She still had her arm around Catherine so Ben traded a look with Catherine over the brunette's head. Catherine nodded and the three made their way upstairs to the master bedroom.

Ben closed the door and they slowly made their way to the bed tugging off articles of clothing on the way. They reached the edge and there was nothing left to take off. Gabriella dropped to her knees and tugged Catherine's hand to get her to join her at Ben's feet.

Catherine grinned and Gabriella returned the smile shyly.

For Ben the sight of the two beautiful women he was so deeply in love with looking up at him with adoration warmed his heart and sent a thrill through his body at the same time.

Gabriella took Ben's waking cock in her hand and pressed it against her soft cheek. Ben moaned and his cock surged. She opened her mouth and took one of Ben's balls into her mouth causing him to gasp.

Catherine leaned forward and kissed the head of his cock and he gasped again. She winked and gently sucked the thickening head between her lips drawing another moan from him.

Gabriella moved to his other testicle and Ben trembled with the incredible sensations exploding through his nerves. Catherine sucked half of his length deep into her mouth and began to bob up and down on it.

"Oh fuck!" Ben exclaimed.

Catherine pulled his cock from her mouth with a pop and forced it out horizontally with her finger and thumb gripping the very base. She pressed her lips against the side of his cock. Gabriella pulled away from his balls and looked at her friend who was grinning around the thick meat in her lips. Gabriella pressed her lips to the other side of his cock and the two moved back and forth in unison.

"Oh geezus, Oh my god!" he hissed out between his clenched teeth.

He was hard as iron and Gabriella needed to feel him between her legs. She pressed her tongue against the head and Cat sucked on her tongue as she took Ben's cock back into her mouth as well. Gabriella almost came right then. It was so sexy!

Ben was being driven wild by the sensations and he knew Gabriella was beginning to lose control as well. He bent down and lifted her onto the bed and Catherine quickly climbed up beside her and gave him a wild grin. She was in heaven!

He pushed Gabriella's legs back and kissed his way up the inside of both of her thighs as she thrashed on the mattress. Cat was sucking on her nipples as she squeezed her heavy tits. Gabriella was clutching at the blonde's head and crying out. When Ben's tongue finally stroked deeply into her pussy she cried out.

"OH FUCK! BEN FUCK ME! NO MORE TEASING!" she wailed.

Ben looked around for a condom as she was always paranoid about that. The chances of him getting her pregnant was extremely remote but Tina proved it could happen.

"It's ok, I'm safe. I need you inside me! Please!" she cried when she saw him hesitating.

His cock was still wet from their mouths but he rubbed himself along her dripping pussy and she moaned loudly. He lined up the head and drove it deep in one stroke.

"FFFFUUUUCCCKKK!!!!" Gabriella screamed.

He grinned as she rarely swore and caught Catherine's matching expression. They shared that look of love over their friend.

Ben didn't give Gabriella time to recover. He drew back to the head and drove it home once more.

"AAHHHH!"

He set up a steady and fast pumping, slapping his pelvis against hers, overstimulating her clit. Her release was quickly upon her, out of control and her motions became erratic. Ben held her hips tightly and rapidly hammered himself against her as she began to scream out her orgasm. It was an unintelligible string of sounds but his name was in there a few times. Cat released her nipple from between her teeth and looked up at Ben with a smile until Gabriella pulled her face down and kissed her deeply.

"MMMMM!!!! Mmmmm!" Cat began with a squeal and ended with a purr as she sucked on the brunette's tongue.

Ben pulled himself from Gabriella as she was beginning to push at his hips weakly indicating it was too much for her. He was still a ways off from his orgasm though watching these two kiss was doing wonders for his excitement.

Cat pulled back from Gabriella's lips when she felt her friend fading. She looked back at Ben and saw his cock was huge and wet. He'd obviously not come yet. She knew what she wanted, what she hadn't had since the last time the three of them had been together.

"Ben?"

He turned his eyes to the blonde and saw her biting her lower lip as she looked at his throbbing cock. He flashed back to that night in France and understood.

"Lube."

Cat looked down at the blissful face of Gabriella. It took a few attempts to speak but she finally just pointed to the washroom. She might have said sink, so Cat leapt from the bed, raced into the washroom and checked under the sink. She found a large tube of the slippery stuff and rushed back to Ben with a grin on her face. She was trembling with anticipation. Ben grabbed a pillow and dropped it down by his knees.

"On your back this time. I need to see your face. Gabriella's out," Ben explained.

She looked at the brunette and saw she was asleep. She smiled at Ben and lied down next to Gabriella. Ben shoved the pillow under her hips which lifted her ass up. He pushed her legs back and kissed the orbs of her ass cheeks.

Cat threw her head back as tremors shook through her body. He was being so rough in his need! It was so incredibly sexy! When his tongue stroked across her pussy lips she jumped and his tongue went deep.

"Oh FUCK! Yes!" she moaned.

He thrashed her with his tongue until she thought she'd go mad then his tongue was rimming her tight asshole and she squealed.

"Remember, you need to relax!" he pulled back to say. She could only nod as she gasped.

He forced his tongue deep into her ass and her eyes rolled back in her head. It was already feeling better than she remembered.

Ben applied a generous amount of lube to his cock and to a finger. He teased her rosebud with the finger then smoothly slid it in and she gasped. He felt her bearing down on the finger so he pulled out then forced a second one in beside it. He pumped the two fingers in and out until he felt Catherine finally begin to accept the digits without fighting back. She was ready.

He slowly slipped his fingers out and pressed the thick head of his cock to her dilated orifice. The head popped in easier this time but she began to clamp down immediately forcing him out.

"Relax Catherine."

She nodded and he felt the pressure gradually diminish. He pushed forward and slipped in a good three inches.

"Ahhh! Oh fuck that's goooood, Ben!"

He slid out two and pushed in for four.

"OOoooo! Wait! Ohhhh god! So big!"

The pressure was incredible and Ben was in heaven. He gazed down at her, her white blonde hair spread out behind her head, her beautiful blue eyes looking up at him with love.

"Ok. I'm good," she whispered.

He slid himself out to almost the head and watched her eyelids flutter. Then he reversed direction and slowly drove his cock deep into her ass as Cat's blue eyes went wider and her mouth dropped open.
"OH!OH!OH!FUCK!BEN!FUCK!FUCK!GOD!OH FUCK!!!" she cried and a tremor shook through her legs signalling the beginning of her release. Her eyes rolled back and her fingers flew in tight circles over her clit. Her whole body began to shake and tremble. The sounds she was making now were more squeals than words.

Ben's cock was tingling like mad! He was so fucking close to his orgasm but... it... just... wouldn't. He couldn't understand. This was the second time this had happened and he was so frustrated. Catherine's twitching was becoming more violent so he pulled his cock free and she arched her back one last time then dropped to the bed, completely spent.

Ben stepped off the bed and took a quick shower. He got dressed and knelt next to the bed.

"The kids, I have to get them..." Gabriella whispered.

"Shhh, I'll go pick them up. You rest. I'll be back shortly," Ben said and kissed her forehead. She smiled.

Catherine snuggled in next to her friend and Ben pulled the sheet up over them.

Once Ben got downstairs he texted Miriam and Daniel asking where they were and that he would be picking them up.

Seconds later Daniel replied with a text saying that he was at Rick's and the address came through next. Ben recognized it as Gwen's place. He replied that he was on his way.

Ben drove across town to Gwen's address and parked in front of her house. He went up and knocked on the front door. She answered the door with a wide smile and let him into the foyer.

"Hi Ben! What's up? I'm waiting on a call back for your new car. You may get a call tomorrow," she said.

"That's fine. I'm just here to pick up Daniel," he replied.

"Oh! I'll call him for you." She turned and yelled for the boy.

"Coming!" a voice replied from upstairs.

"Is that my baby you're driving?" Gwen said, looking around him.

"Yes and it's yours the moment I get the new one," he said with a smile.

"What's yours Mom?" Rick said as he and Daniel arrived.

Gwen pointed out to the curb and Rick cheered excitedly. Gwen's smile at Ben told him that this was part of the reason she wanted it. Rick's Mom was cool once more.

She gave him a hug and waved as Ben and Daniel pulled away from the curb.

"Do you know where your sister is tonight?" Ben asked. He'd checked but Miriam hadn't answered the text.

"She and Karlene were going to the mall," Daniel said, sending his own text to his sister.

Ben headed for the mall. It was almost closing time. He saw a tall dark skinned woman on the sidewalk arguing with a very angry, very big man with long greasy hair and an unkempt beard.

"That's Karlene's Mom!" Daniel said as they drove slowly past. Ben pulled into a spot that just opened across the road from the confrontation. They got out and walked over to see what was going on. People were standing around watching but no one was doing anything to help her. Two people had their phones out filming the confrontation.

"YOU'RE PAYING FOR THE DAMAGE TO MY CAR BITCH!" the man yelled.

"You backed into me! I'm not paying for your mistake!" she yelled back.

"I was going into the spot when you stole it, YOU BLACK CUNT! How the FUCK WAS I SUPPOSED TO SEE YOU!"

"What's going on here?" Ben yelled, pushing his way past the onlookers.

The woman turned to face him with a desperate look and sagged with relief when she saw it was Ben.

"You mind your FUCKING BUSINESS!" the big man growled.

"She's my friend so this is my business," Ben scowled at him stepping close. He smelled... smelled... whisky?

Ben was breathing hard standing over a man lying on the ground. Ben's left hand had a death grip on the front of the man's denim jacket and his right... hurt and dripped something. He looked down at the man's face... the blood...

"BEN!"

He let go of the jacket, straightened up and stepped back from the unconscious man. There was a big knife on the ground next to him. Ben turned and blinked at Miriam who was being held back by... Michelle. Karlene was standing behind her mother looking at Ben with wide frightened eyes.

"Miriam... where were you? You didn't answer my texts. Your mom asked me to pick you and Daniel up," Ben said.

The girl pulled free from Michelle and walked over to Ben.

"Sorry, Ben. We went to a movie so our phones were off. We told Karlene's mom who came to pick us up."

She pulled a tissue from her pocket and covered Ben's knuckles and he hissed as they stung.

Flashing lights pulled up and police officers pushed through the ring of people to see a young woman holding a napkin over the hand of a large man and a second large man lying on the ground.

"What happened here?" one asked. The other one went to check on the man on the ground.

Michelle stepped forward and spoke with the officer to give her statement. Two more officers arrived and went to help the officer who was trying to cuff the man on the ground. He'd woken up and was seriously pissed. It took all three of them to hold him down as they tried to get the cuffs on him.

"KNIFE!"

Ben took three steps to get to the struggling group. He grabbed the man's hair and bounced his bloody face off the sidewalk once, hard. The man went limp so Ben stepped back.

The officers got the cuffs on and searched him. They found three more knives aside from the one they'd collected from the sidewalk.

"What happened to your hand, sir?" one of the officers asked Ben who just looked at his bloody knuckles.

"I caught it on video, officer," Daniel said holding up his phone.

Two of the police watched the video and afterwards looked at Ben with new respect. "He drew the knife before you hit him so it was clearly self defense. Thank you for the assist. You should get that hand looked at."

"Thank you officers," Ben said as they left with their prisoner.

Miriam came forward and took Ben's arm. "We should go home."

Michelle stepped up with Karlene still behind her. "Mr. Shepherd, thank you for coming to my rescue." She seemed like she wanted to say something else but the words wouldn't come.

"Please, call me Ben. I'm sorry it got out of hand like that." He looked over at the bloody spot on the sidewalk and his brow furrowed as he tried to remember.

"Have- have a good night," the woman forced out and hustled her daughter away to her car which was still blocked in by the car which hit hers. The police were arranging to have it towed.

Miriam and Daniel walked Ben back to his car and they got in. Ben winced as his knuckles stung when he used his hand but he had no choice. The kids shared a look.

They got back to the house and Ben sent the kids off to bed. He slipped into the master bedroom quietly and saw the two women were still sleeping peacefully so he let himself out and went home. He didn't want to have to answer questions about his hand. Questions he didn't know the answers to.

As he entered the front door Lucy was leaving the kitchen. She saw his bloody knuckles and gasped. She rushed to his side and led him down to the bathroom in the master. Tina cried out from the bed as they passed.

"Ben! What happened to your hand? Weren't you at Gabriella's?"

"Yeah but I had to pick up her kids from their friends places. I got Daniel but we couldn't find Miriam. We went to the mall and spotted Miriam's friend's mom being accosted by some goon. I- I think I beat him unconscious. The police cleared me though."

Lucy was being as careful as she could as she cleaned his knuckles but he'd cut the skin pretty badly. Once she was sure she'd cleaned the wounds she sprayed on some disinfectant and wrapped his hand in gauze. A little tape and he was done.

She undressed him and pulled him into bed between her and Tina who was giving him a worried look.

"I'm fine! It's just some cuts and bruises!" he assured her.

"No Ben, I am not worried about your hand. Do you remember the fight?" she asked quietly.

Ben frowned in annoyance. He closed his eyes but his mind took him back to the sidewalk, facing the large, angry... drunk.

He felt the softest caress on his lips and realized Tina had rolled onto her stomach and was leaning across his shoulder kissing him tenderly. His left hand went up into her luxurious hair and he took a firm grip. He kissed her deeply as a sudden need rushed through him. His tongue slid into her mouth and he stroked it against hers. She moaned in his mouth and squirmed her body against him. He released the grip on her hair and slid his hand down her back and squeezed her perfect round ass cheeks.

Ben jolted when he felt lips on his cock and a tongue running up the side. God, yes! He slipped his fingers down between Tina's legs and felt the soft wet lips of her hot pussy. Her moaning got louder and when he pushed two fingers deep inside her she pulled back from his kiss to cry out.

"Oh Ben, yes!"

He pumped his fingers in and out and felt her getting wetter and hotter. When Lucy took his cock into her throat his left hand spasmed, gripping Tina tightly and she cried out.

"YES! OH BEN! OH BEN!"

Lucy pulled her mouth off of Ben's cock. She couldn't get over how hard he'd become so quickly. She swung a leg over his torso and carefully knelt over him, trying hard not to bump Tina's leg. The moment Ben's cock rested against her opening he pulled her down on him, sinking his cock into her depths. She gasped as he forced her internal walls open wide with his thickness. She felt him throbbing with need so she began to lift and drop herself over him. He felt so incredibly good inside her.

Ben couldn't use his right hand without pain so he used his forearm to push against Lucy's hip to drive her down against him more and more demandingly.

Tina was getting closer and closer to her orgasm and slid her hand under herself to rub her clit. She needed Ben to touch her ass. She moved her lips to his ear and whispered to him and he moved his slick fingers up to rub them against her twitching rosebud. She whimpered and pressed back against them until they slipped inside. Tina's mouth opened and her eyes rolled back and he forced them deeper and deeper. Her release swept over her and she kissed him as she whimpered and shook.

Lucy was losing her mind. She'd never felt him this hard and deep before. The heat was intense and she felt him shaking with need. His passion was overwhelming her as she slammed down again and again on his cock.

Tina slumped down onto the bed next to Ben and felt the ebbing waves of her orgasm flare as he slowly drew his fingers out of her.

Lucy was there, she was there! She saw Tina had moved to the side so she dropped down over Ben and rubbed her large tits against his scars, feeling them rub and tug her stiff sensitive nipples. She moved her lips to his. Suddenly his injured hand was tangled in her long auburn hair. His kiss was hard and demanding, and he was driving his cock up into her from below, slapping his body against her clit rapidly. It was all too much and she was lost to her orgasm.

Ben's release was enormous. He drove himself deeply into the beautiful young woman's body one more time and surge after surge rushed through his body. He couldn't get enough of Lucy's mouth, her tits on his chest, and the walls of her trembling pussy milking his cum from his tight balls. It went on and on as endless jets of cum filled her warm insides and leaked out along his slowly softening shaft.

Whatever had been blocking Ben was gone and the dam had burst. His thoughts swirled around his head, then blanked out as he fell into a deep sleep with Lucy resting upon his chest.

Chapter 4

Ben was restricted to a supervisory role the next day at the job site. His hand had swollen up overnight and was stiff and sore this morning.

They'd woken in the morning in the same positions they'd fallen asleep the night before; Tina pressed up against his left side and Lucy stretched out across his body. It was only the throbbing in his hand that kept his cock from reawakening with the sexy woman on his chest.

Getting everyone up and ready for the day had been a difficult task with Tina's cast and Ben's hand out of commission. He'd been five minutes late and Jayden had ribbed him a little about his tardiness. Considering the young man's mood the night before Ben saw this teasing as an improvement.

Later in the morning he saw Jayden speaking with Hector and two of the crew. Jayden was smiling and acting out some fight scene in a movie or something. Ben smiled and went back to see how the foundation work was doing. He was very impressed with how quickly the team was working.

A bit later he was inside with Jayden and the two crew members from before watching them vent some frustration on the interior walls to prepare for the demolition of the top floor. Weakening certain places would allow the removal of the upper structures without damaging the basement. There wasn't a lot to be done but hey, it was fun.

When they'd finished one of the team looked over at Ben with a grin. "Hey Ben! I guess you got all your frustrations out on that guy's face last night!"

Ben's face showed his surprise and Jayden looked curiously back at him. "Didn't you see the amateur footage online?"

Once more Ben looked blankly at them and Jayden's grin went super wide. "Ah you have to see it!"

They left the house and Ben signalled to Dominic that they were all out. The excavator came back up to the front of the house and began to tear its way carefully through the roof to get to the interior walls. The operator was being cautious so as to not damage the floor and press into the basement.

Jayden asked Dominic if he could use the man's tablet to pull up the clip of the fight.

Ben looked on with a troubled expression. The young man found it and gestured excitedly for Dominic and Ben to see. The person who shot it had added some titles and sound effects. It began with the big guy yelling at Michelle and grabbing her arm. That must have been before Ben arrived. Then there was Ben pushing through the crowd and getting between Michelle and the man. She took some steps back and Ben saw Karlene and Miriam arrive. The camera went back to tightly focusing on Ben and the thug who continued to yell in Ben's face. Ben hadn't moved.

Then there was the knife. The thug had slipped his right arm back to slip the big knife from somewhere on his back. It was coming out quickly and aimed at Ben's side. But he'd barely got it moving when Ben's right fist was hammering into his nose. Blood and spit sprayed outwards. The impact wave rippled out from the thug's face and every muscle locked, stopping his stab. He rocked back slightly on his heels then Ben grabbed the denim jacket in his left and cocked his right. Slam! The second punch was harder than the first and the knife dropped from the thugs senseless fingers. The right arm pulled back one more time. The third punch broke bones and more blood sprayed out. The thug dropped like a puppet with cut strings but Ben eased his way down with his grip on the jacket. It looked almost like he was being gentle with the unconscious man... after beating him senseless.

The clip ended with Ben releasing the jacket and stepping back. The police were arriving and the cameraman wanted to make a getaway with his footage.

Dominic was looking at Ben with a happy smile. "You take the shining knight stuff seriously, don't you? Where did you learn to fight like that? Geezus!"

Jayden was also grinning like crazy and Ben felt really uncomfortable since he had no memory of the fight.

"I just don't like bullies," he said avoiding the second question.

Jayden wouldn't be put off though. "Man, you have to teach me that jackhammer punch! You stunned him with just one punch! Disarmed him with the second and took him out with the third! Incredible!"

Ben squirmed. "Yeah... fighting really isn't my thing."

Laughter erupted around him from the crew listening in. They'd all seen the video.

"Isn't there a house to renovate or dirt to sweep or something?" Ben said, scowling. He looked up to see Gabriella waving at him from her front step. Rescued!

Ben set off for Gabriella's leaving behind some laughing men and some who were just puzzled by his behavior.

As he got closer he saw the look of concern on her face and his step faltered a little but he pressed on. She guided him into the house and he saw Catherine, Trish, Rochelle, and Tina with her crutches.

He cast his gaze over the group and sighed. It was another intervention.

Gabriella was the group speaker. "Jayden brought Rochelle's attention to a story on the news this morning. We all watched it. It was about a man who stepped in to protect a woman and beat up her assailant. The assailant was recently released from prison and was on probation. Because he was carrying knives, had guns and drugs in his car's trunk, and had been drinking he's going back to serve the rest of his time and then some. So you won't be having any trouble from the police about the beating you gave him. I spoke with Miriam and Daniel and saw his video which clearly showed how you were reacting after the fight. You don't remember it do you?"

Ben's scowl deepened but he shook his head.

"You're still having the blackouts."

"Last night's was the first in a long time," he muttered.

"But they haven't stopped. They just need the right trigger to surface," Gabriella said gently.

He nodded.

"I spoke with Michelle this morning after I spoke with Miriam. She was badly frightened last night first by the man who crashed his car into hers then by your display of violence. I was able to calm her down and she asked me to pass along her thanks once more."

Ben nodded and saw Gabriella steeling herself for what she had to say next.

"We want you to go back to Dr. Granger- OR find someone else to help you!" Gabriella pressed on when he opened his mouth to argue. "We understand you were having a difficult time with Dr. Granger's sessions and we saw the effect they were having on you. When we last spoke with Dr. Granger she said that she was reaching a critical point in your treatment and believed you would begin to see an improvement once you got past that."

Gabriella reached over and touched Ben's hand. "You know we love you. You know we're only looking out for your health. Blackouts aren't healthy. The wedding was postponed while you were having sessions with Dr. Granger. Tina told us she doesn't want to get married until you're on the road to getting better. It's not getting better on its own. What are you willing to do?"

Ben couldn't argue against Gabriella's words. She was just telling the truth. He was trying desperately to avoid looking too deeply at his resistance as there was an awful truth there he just couldn't deal with. He didn't know how to get past this. He realized he was in a catch 22 scenario. To deny the women he loved hurt them which he couldn't take. To accept the sessions was to face that truth. His mind shied away once more.

Delay was his only avenue for maintaining his sanity.

"Time," he croaked through a throat gone tight with stress. "I- I just need some time." Beads of sweat ran down his forehead. Gabriella saw the panic in his eyes and patted his knee.

"Ok, Ben. We'll give you some time," she said and raised her hand to stop the others as they began to protest.

Ben immediately changed the subject. "Did you speak with your kids about moving to Milan?"

Gabriella was caught off guard by the question. "Uh, yes but I don't think I'll be going."

"What? Why?" he exclaimed.

Gabriella couldn't tell him that she couldn't leave him in this state but Ben read the answer from her hesitation. He leapt to his feet.

'NO! DON'T DO THIS! DON'T KILL YOUR DREAMS BECAUSE OF ME!" Suddenly breakfast was returning and Ben raced for the bathroom. He heaved over the bowl and lost the contents of his stomach.
He flushed then sagged against the bowl, sitting on the bathroom floor. A gentle hand rested on his head and fingers ran through his hair. He took comfort from the touch and knew it was Gabriella's without looking.

"Promise me."

"What, Ben?"

"Promise me you won't abandon your dream just because of me. I don't think I'd survive that. Everything else can be fixed but not that," he said quietly.

Tears were running down her cheeks as she stroked his head. "How can I be away from you when you need me?" she whispered.

"I'll always need you. Your moving to Milan doesn't mean I'm giving you up. I'm never going to do that. You know that, right? I'll get help. I have a support group here and I will visit you as often as I can when your busy schedule allows. Please Gabriella. Please!"

She was silent for a short time but he knew he had won. Then she spoke again. "It's kind of moot anyway. They needed me to be there tomorrow to sign the papers but there's no way I can get a flight now," she said with a shrug.

"Silly woman. Have you forgotten how you arrived last time? Is it just for the day again?" Ben asked.

"Four days."

He pulled out his cell and dialed his friend with the jet service. He explained the emergency and was assured they had a plane available that could get her there by the morning hours tomorrow in Milan. It would be waiting for Gabriella at the airport and would bring her back in four days.

Ben looked up at Gabriella whose beautiful green eyes were welling with tears. "No more tears. There is no more unhappiness. Uh, can you give me a minute in here?"

Gabriella smiled and moved back to close the door. She heard the water running and Ben spitting into the sink. Then a little mouthwash and he was done.

"Sorry about that," he said opening the door. She hooked her arm in his and walked him back out to the living room.

Trish and Rochelle had shed some tears and jumped to their feet to hug Gabriella and congratulate her. Catherine had filled them in on the news. Gabriella still looked a little shaky. He wanted her to be as comfortable with this as possible. Catherine sat beside her and held her hand and an idea popped into his head.

"Gabriella, why don't you take Catherine with you? Catherine can you take four days to visit Milan and keep Gabriella company?"

Both women looked at Ben in surprise then Gabriella looked beseechingly at her best friend. Catherine just grinned and nodded.

"When do we leave?" Catherine asked.

Ben looked at the clock. "In about three hours."

"WHAT?!?" Catherine screeched and jumped to her feet. Gabriella laughed and stood up to show her what to pack.

"Do you have any large designer sunglasses that make you look mysterious and alluring?" she asked the blonde who nodded with a puzzled expression. "It's all about the first impression." She dragged Catherine upstairs.

"What about you Ben?" Tina asked quietly, her dark eyes looking up at him through her bangs. She would not allow herself to be distracted from her mission by the diversion.

He looked at her and nodded somberly. "I promised Gabriella I would get help. I will."

Tina gave him a small nod and a smile.

Gabriella and Catherine came back downstairs and the blonde jumped up against Ben's chest and gave him a deep kiss. She dropped to her feet and dashed out to get packed while Ben wobbled on his feet. Gabriella put her hand on his arm to stabilize him.

When he got his wits back Ben called his friend with the Jet and let him know there would be a second passenger. That done he turned to Gabriella and the others.

"While I have you all here could I ask you something?"

Gabriella nodded and everyone sat.

"Rochelle is aware of this situation and suggested I speak with you as well. The other day a reporter stopped by in front of my place and suggested that she and her company may be able to diffuse some of the media's attention on me if I did an interview with them to 'eliminate some of the mystery'. Rochelle knows the reporter from her college days."

"Know only too well. She slept with every boyfriend I had during college!"

"Fuck! How many boyfriends can you have in four years?" Trish laughed.

Rochelle gave her a sour look. "I had five and each one ended up in her bed. She claims now she had poor self-esteem issues and apologized for it but she's a reporter now for one of those pop culture magazines."

"So you wouldn't recommend her or her magazine," Gabriella asked.

"...No. I guess I wouldn't," Rochelle said looking at Ben.

"Well, I won't sleep with her either," Ben said and Trish howled with laughter. Even Rochelle thought that was funny though she gave Ben's arm a slap anyway.

"What about the idea of giving a single interview? I'd rather not tell anyone anything but she may have a point about giving an exclusive and defusing the public interest," Ben asked.

"If you don't want to give any information then don't give any. Eventually someone else will catch the public's fancy and you will slip back into obscurity. It may mean you have to deal with the harassment in the short term but persevere. Interest in your story may surface again in the future but I think you're making the best decision for yourself right now," Gabriella said.

Ben nodded and stood up to give each of the women a hug and kiss. He looked at Tina who was still seated due to her cast. "You walked over here on your own with those didn't you," he said pointing to the crutches.

She looked up at him under her bangs again and nodded.

"I'll carry you home."

Ben moved to scoop her in his arms and hissed as he bumped his hand on the couch.

"Hang on Ben. Let me look at that," Gabriella said.

She undid the wrappings and saw his middle knuckle was badly swollen. "Ben! This could be broken! Did you go to the hospital to have them look at it?"

He shook his head.

"I'll take him over now," Rochelle offered.

"Let me get Tina home first!" Ben complained.

"I can-" Tina began but a look from Ben and she waited to be picked up.

Ben was more careful this time and managed to scoop her up without hurting himself. He gave Gabriella an awkward kiss over Tina and carried his injured fiancé home. Rochelle was waiting for him when he came back out and walked with him back to her place. They stopped to speak with Dominic on the way and he took one look at the knuckle and shooed Ben away. Jayden looked a little ill seeing the swollen joint.

"THIS is why I'm not much into fighting," Ben said and Jayden nodded.

Ben and Rochelle got into her car and she drove him to the hospital. Just as they were finishing up with the registration process he heard a familiar voice behind him.

"I thought you might come by today."

He turned and saw Hannah standing behind him with her arms crossed. Her expression was stern and she looked professional as always. He lifted his hand.

"Have you come to kiss my booboo?"

Hannah couldn't stop the snort from escaping and her intake worker gaped at her. She quickly got control her herself again.

"I ought to smack that with a ruler considering how you got it and how you still won't listen to me," Hannah fumed.

"Ben had to face an intervention once today," Rochelle admitted. Hannah gave her an appraising look and gestured to the hall when Ben looked the other way.

"If you change your mind you know where I am," Hannah said and Ben nodded.

Rochelle leaned over to Ben. "Going to the ladies room. Don't leave without me." He nodded and she stepped out of the waiting room. She spotted Hannah standing at the end of the hall speaking to a nurse. She headed in their direction. The nurse moved on and Hannah opened the door to her office and Rochelle entered.

"Did the fight last night include another blackout?" Hannah asked, getting right to the point as she did.

"Yes, Ben can't remember the fight. We tried to get him to agree to see Dr. Granger again or someone else and I thought he was going to pass out. He asked for more time and Gabriella told him he could have it." Hannah made a frustrated sound. "You should have heard him when Gabriella asked him what he was willing to do. He was almost panicking. I don't understand."

Hannah got a thoughtful look on her face. "Dr. Granger can't tell me what is said in his sessions but I can let her know Ben is having this reaction to the idea of returning to her sessions. I'd like to know if she's aware of that. Thanks for filling me in Rochelle. Since our little blowout I don't get to talk with Ben very often," she said with a sad expression.

"Soon you might not get to see him much either. Gabriella is taking a job a CEO of a new company in Milan. She's going to have to move there. It hit Ben pretty hard but he insisted she follow her dream. I'm sure he will visit her as often as he can," Rochelle explained.

"Oh my god! That must have rocked Ben's stability quite a bit. When is she leaving?" Hannah asked.

"She and Catherine are leaving tonight for four days. When she returns we'll find out how long she'll have here. It's going to be tough for Ben AND Gabriella. Cat too! I better get back to Ben. It was good talking with you!"

Hannah walked Rochelle out and headed upstairs to see if Dr. Granger was available. She caught the doctor as she was leaving her office with her jacket over her arm.

"Dr. Granger, could I speak with you for just a minute before you go," she asked.

The doctor hesitated then sighed and opened her office door once more. They took seats and Hannah got right to the point.

"A patient of yours is in the emergency department."

"Ben?" she guessed. "Is he alright?"

"He was in a fight last night. Ben came to the rescue of a woman and beat a man unconscious. He hurt his hand this time. The face he punched repeatedly must have been very hard."

"Does he remember the fight?" the doctor asked.

"No. He was in a fugue state like before. Some of the ladies confronted him earlier today and asked him to return to your sessions."

"They did? I thought they hated me!" the doctor said with just a little venom.

Hannah just raised her eyebrows and stared at her until the doctor's expression showed embarrassment at her reaction. Hannah continued. "It was his reaction that concerns me. When they asked him he apparently had a bit of a panic attack. Is that new?"

Dr. Granger frowned. "Yes, he wasn't fearful of his sessions before. We were making such good progress!" She was silent for a moment. "You say he's in the emergency room? Perhaps I could just drop in and say hello." She stood up and Hannah followed her downstairs but left her outside of her office. Ben wasn't in the waiting room but one of the ladies was. She recalled her name just before the woman spotted her.

"Hello Mrs. King," Granger said in greeting.

There was a momentary flare of hostility in the woman's eyes but that was quickly suppressed.

"Hello Dr. Granger. Ben is behind the second curtain," Rochelle said.

She nodded her thanks and moved away as quickly as her dignity would allow. She listened then knocked on the wall before opening the curtain and stepping inside.

"Hello Ben."

He looked up in surprise. "Oh! Dr. Granger, are you doing rounds in the ER?" he said a little nervously.

She smiled to try to set him at ease. "No, I just got word that one of my patients was visiting so I thought I'd drop by to say hello."

"Hannah."

The doctor nodded and watched Ben's expression. He wasn't angry at Hannah's interference. If anything he looked a little sad.

"You don't need me to tell you that she's concerned as are the others," she said both gently and quietly as they weren't in the privacy of her office.

Ben nodded. "Yes, they want me to continue my sessions with you."

"Are you ready?" she asked.

Something flashed across his face and he looked away then shook his head, unable to meet her eyes. Dr. Granger was sure there had been panic in that look.

"I want you to know that I'll be here when you are. I hope you-"

A young doctor knocked on the wall and stepped inside the curtain looking at a chart. She came to an abrupt halt when she almost ran into the psychiatrist.

"Dr. Granger! Sorry, I wasn't aware you were doing rounds with us today!" the woman said with a musical accent.

"Dr. Bhandari, I was on my way home and I heard that my friend was here so I just stopped to say hello," she said with a smile.

"Ah, ok, I can come back later..."

"No, I was just leaving," Granger said to the young woman. "See you soon Ben!"

He forced a smile on his face and nodded, not trusting his voice.

When Dr. Granger left the remaining doctor turned to him and glanced at the chart. "So I'm Dr. Bhandari and you have a swollen knuckle."

Ben lifted his aching hand and she got a look at the damage.

"Ah. Did they take you to get an x-ray yet?" she asked.

Ben nodded so the doctor flipped on the screen in the room and tapped some of the controls to bring up the image. She made thoughtful sounds and looked back at Ben with a smile.

"I don't see any breaks or cracks so I believe it's just a dislocated knuckle. I'm going to reset it and then we'll splint the finger. I'm sorry but this will hurt," she explained and he just nodded with a sigh.

She took his hand between hers and before he was ready she tugged the finger and directed the knuckle back into position. Ben yelped but he managed to not yank his hand back from the doctor. She was right, it did hurt and Ben closed his eyes and gritted his teeth against the wave of pain that shot up his arm.

"Geezus!" he growled once the pain subsided. He opened his eyes to see the doctor staring at him wide eyed and her jaw hanging open.

"What's wrong?" he asked.

"You- you're him!" she squeaked.

Ben raised an eyebrow. "Him who?"

Dr. Bhandari moved her hands from his injured hand to touch a scar on his arm and his chin. "The Bronze Man!"

He scowled and his facial scar flared. She dropped her eyes and pulled her hands back quickly. She moved to the cabinets and pulled out a large metal and foam splint and medical tape. She reshaped the splint for his large hand and proceeded to bind the injured finger.

She glanced at his face and saw he was no longer scowling. She opened the curtain and leaned out. Rochelle looked in her direction and Dr. Bhandari gestured for her to come into the room. When Rochelle arrived the doctor cleared her throat. "I'm going to tell you something you won't like so I've asked your friend in so she can see you follow my instructions. The dislocation was bad and you should have had it treated last night. The inflammation was severe so I'm concerned about nerve damage in the finger. You need to wear this splint for the next two to three weeks and no using the hand if you can avoid it. Light duties only! That means brush your teeth with your other hand."

"I'm renovating a house! I can't do that with one hand!" Ben growled.

The doctor took his right hand in hers and jabbed her pen repeatedly into the last section of his finger. Ben stared at his finger.

"You couldn't feel any of that could you," she said.

"No," he replied quietly.

"That numbness may go away if you follow my instructions. You need to reduce the inflammation but mostly you have to let that finger heal. Think RICE; Rest, Ice, Compression, and Elevation. I want you to use a cold compression wrap to reduce the swelling. Then put the splint back on and keep it elevated. I'm giving you the roll of tape so you can keep the splint in place. You need to do this."

"Message received doctor. Thank you," Rochelle said looking at Ben, daring him to argue.

The doctor left with a final look at Ben's body and Rochelle led him from the Emergency room back to her car.

"Do you have one of those cold compression wraps?" Rochelle asked.

"Yeah, I have one at home."

"Then that's where you are going," she finished.

Ben leaned back in the chair and stared out the side window as she drove. His phone buzzed in his pocket and he struggled to get it out with the splint on.

"Hello?"

"Ben? It's Gwen. I have some happy news for you! Your new van will be in on Thursday! You can pick it up Friday morning."

"Excellent! I'll go to the bank and get the certified cheque. See you then!"

"I'll have a certified cheque for you as well. See you Friday!" Gwen said and hung up.

Ben looked over at Rochelle. "Could we stop at the bank on the way home? It won't take long."

The stop didn't take long as the bank manager dealt with Ben himself directly and fast tracked his request. As they made their way back out to the car Rochelle smirked at him.

"I wish the bank manager jumped through hoops for me like that!" she snorted. Ben just smiled in return.

As they got back on their way she gave him a serious look. "Ben, am I going to have to worry about you ignoring the doctor's instructions?"

He looked out the window and grimaced. He knew himself only too well. Once he began a renovation project he was fully committed to getting it done. He couldn't just stand by and watch from the sidelines. "I'm going to have to find something else to occupy me while I heal and it can't be here," he sighed.

"Why don't you take a trip down south to someplace sunny and hot! Lie back on a lounge chair on a beach, listen to the waves, and relax! Go dancing at night and dine on fresh seafood!" Rochelle moaned, obviously describing her ideal holiday.

"I don't think I could handle more than a week of that," Ben admitted.

"So take a week! See how you are after that! Ben, you have to do it!"

Ben thought about it then frowned. "Would you come with me if I did? I don't want to go alone."

Rochelle blinked. She hadn't thought of that. It had been years since she'd taken a vacation. "I... guess I could take some time. It would have to be someplace inexpensive. I'm on a budget."

"Rochelle, if you join me on a vacation I'm paying. You just bring your sexiest bathing suit and an outfit to dance in," he said with a grin. Her face lit up with a sexy smile. "I'll do some research to see what's available on short notice and I'll let you know. Can you arrange to be away from Saturday to the following Saturday? Oh! What about Jayden?" he suddenly recalled that she might need to be home during his house arrest.

"Sara can keep an eye on Jayden so that covers him. I can take next week." Rochelle suddenly realized she'd have Ben all to herself for a whole week. Lots of time to get to know each other much better. Maybe learn to connect with the man on an emotional level. She'd never done that before and the idea made her nervous. She chickened out. "What about Trish?" she blurted.

It was Ben's turn to blink in surprise. "Yeah, I'll ask her to join us!"

Rochelle opened her mouth to tell him she meant taking Trish instead of her but the idea of having Trish along to act as a buffer appealed to her so she just smiled. "I'll take care of asking her and you can look into availability."

Ben smiled and nodded.

They drove home in silence, each wrapped up in their own thoughts.

Rochelle was working out her strategy for ensuring Trish said yes.

Ben was trying to think of any decisions he'd have to be involved in for the renovation of the house. He had the plans all worked out and had gone through them with Dominic. Truly, other than for his own personal satisfaction he didn't need to be there.

She parked in her driveway and Ben walked with her over to Trish's place and kept going to meet up with Dominic and Hector. Jayden was pushing a broom to tidy up the sidewalk and the driveway from all the mud and rocks the heavy equipment had left behind.

The team was finishing up on the new basement floor and the walls were in place as well though the forms were still on them. The forms would be removed tomorrow when a crane was brought in to pull them out. It would then be used to move four massive I-beams in place which spanned the width of the new basement. Eight uprights would be welded to these to support four more I-beams for supporting the second floor. Ben wanted ten foot ceilings on the first and second floors. As he was keeping the existing basement on the front of the house the ceiling height across the new basement would also remain at eight and half feet.
Before they'd begun working Dominic reviewed the design with Ben and thought it was a little over engineered. He teased Ben about that but he agreed it would be plenty strong.

The extra rigidity was required as off the two large bedrooms on the south facing, second floor would be cantilevered balconies with privacy screening on their sides. They would be wonderful for catching some rays and relaxing with a good book. The view of the woods would be awesome. They would also provide a little shade and rain protection for the huge deck he planned on building off the main floor at the back of the house. That was a project for next spring. Dominic's team was just here to build the house. Ben would do the finishing work. Now it looked like he'd be doing that work... later.

"How did it go?" Dominic asked him as he approached. Ben held up his hand and showed them the splint. Jayden finished up so he walked over to see Ben. His eyebrows went up as he took in the shiny metal wrapped over Ben's finger. Then his face froze as he saw a long black muscle car turn into their street.

Ben caught the change in his expression and glanced over his shoulder. He looked back at Jayden. "Are these the guys you need to avoid?"

Jayden nodded nervously. Ben looked at Dominic who nodded at Hector. Hector whistled loudly and the four men turned to face the street as the black convertible GTO cruised around the circle to pull up to the sidewalk. Four young men stared back at them from the car. The driver grinned at Jayden and Ben caught the gleam of gold caps over most of his teeth. There was a lot of gold jewellery on display.

"JD, cum yah," the driver called out.

Jayden glanced at Ben who stepped forward instead. He stopped next to the car and looked down on the smirking man.

"Jayden no longer has any business with you. Is that understood?" Ben said calmly.

"Mi enant talking to yuh. Guh wey," he sneered, looking at Ben from the corner of his eye.

Ben struggled to understand what he was saying. The accent was strong and the junk he had on his teeth seemed to be garbling his speech as well.

"Jayden is no longer part of your crew. He's upgraded. Leave now and don't come back. Last chance," Ben scowled, his facial scar very apparent.

Jayden's nerves were screaming at him to warn Ben these guys were violent and carrying weapons. The one Ben was talking to, Ki, was the most violently dangerous of all. Ki was insane! Jayden couldn't move or speak as he was frozen in fear.

The gold encased sneer slipped away and Ki suddenly saw Ben as a threat. He began to pull his gun but Ben's left fist hit him over his left eye and his head snapped back. He sagged in his seat.

The car was suddenly surrounded by big, dangerous looking men holding a variety of deadly looking weapons. Everything from pistols, to shotguns and machine guns. Hector's crew had arrived. The three remaining men in the car immediately froze, seeing their imminent death.

Ben leaned over the door and picked up the gun the unconscious driver dropped in his lap. Ben collected the weapons from the other men as well and handed them back to Dominic who was standing at his elbow.

"Ben, why don't you take a walk and talk with Jayden while I have a talk with our guests here," he said with a smile. Ben nodded and walked back to Jayden who was looking like a strong wind might blow him away. Ben put his arm over the young man's shoulder and walked him back to his house. They went inside and Jayden looked up at Ben.

"He would have killed you. You know that, right?" He was looking at Ben with wide eyes and he was trembling in reaction. Ben had put his life on the line to protect him. He couldn't get past that.

"Yeah, I think he tried but I don't think we're going to have any more trouble with him. Listen, you can't say anything to anyone about how Dominic's guys stepped up out there. Is that understood?" Ben said calmly and Jayden heard the same serious tone Ben used on Ki. He looked into the big man's eyes and there was no anger, fear, or worry. Just calm. He nodded.

"I need to hear you say it."

"Yes, I won't tell anyone what happened."

Ben smiled and nodded. "It's almost five so we'll call it a day, ok? Relax and unwind a little." He turned to go.

Jayden suddenly reached out and touched his arm. Ben looked back.

"I- I just wanted to say thanks!"

"See you tomorrow," Ben said with a smile and left.

When he got back to the build site there was no sign of the car or the thugs in it. Hector was hosing something off the road.

Dominic walked up to him. "How did it go?" he asked Ben.

"Jayden's pretty shook up but he's appreciative so he won't say anything. Construction can be a dangerous business it seems," Ben said with a smile for his friend.

"Usually it isn't quite this bad but it doesn't hurt to take precautions," Dominic said.

Ben nodded in the direction of Hector's activity and Dominic snorted. "The guy you hit lost his lunch when he came to. Puked all down the side of his ride. Probably a concussion. Let's see your left hand."

Dominic looked at Ben's left hand and the knuckles were a little red but otherwise showed no damage. He chuckled, shaking his head.

"Hey! Look what I found!" Hector called out as he picked up two shiny objects from the road. They glittered in the afternoon sun.

"Is that-" Ben began.

"Yup. The punk's grill. Your punch must have knocked them loose. They fell out when he tossed his cookies. They're heavy!" Hector said. "You want them?"

Ben scowled and shook his head.

"Suit yourself. I'll melt them down and make them into some nice rings for my lady. These small stones may actually be diamonds," he exclaimed with a grin.

"What if he comes back for them?"

"Don't worry about that. We talked. His 'crew' isn't happy about his leadership and will make sure that doesn't happen," Dominic said quietly and Ben dropped it. He didn't need to know.

"Listen, I've been ordered to stay away from the worksite until my finger heals a little. I'm going to see about getting out of town for about a week. I'll have my phone so if you have any questions you can call or send me an email," Ben explained.

"That's a good idea," Dominic said.

"I'll talk to you tomorrow. Thanks for everything."

The contractor just smiled and nodded to Ben who headed for home. He had some travel arrangements to make.

When Ben left Rochelle at Trish's place she walked up the drive and rang the doorbell. Trish answered the door shortly and grinned at her friend.

"Rochelle! What's up?" Trish stood back and gestured for her to enter.

"I have a question for you."

Trish nodded.

"Would you be able to take some time off next week?" Rochelle asked.

Trish pulled her phone from her pocket and opened her calendar app. "Which days?"

"Sorry, I should have been clearer. I meant would you be able to take the entire week off next week? From this Saturday to the following Saturday?"

Trish looked at Rochelle with wide eyes. "What's going on?"

Rochelle squirmed and looked at her neighbor. "Ben has been ordered to not use his right hand until the dislocated finger heals. He has to avoid the renovation work so I've managed to convince him to take a vacation somewhere hot and sunny but he wants me to come along. I said yes."

"So... you want me to keep an eye on Jayden?" Trish asked.

"No! I want you to come with us!" Rochelle blurted.

Trish looked at Rochelle in shock. "Ben asked you to join him at a tropical paradise for a week and you want me to come along? Are you feverish? Have you lost your mind? A week alone with the sexiest man I know and you want a chaperone?"

"I know it sounds crazy but I'm not sure how I'll be with Ben all to myself. I'm not ready to be alone with him for that long," Rochelle said.

Trish scowled at Rochelle. She shook her head and looked at her calendar again. She had a print piece due for a customer on the following Tuesday but she could finish it up by Friday and queue it for delivery the following week. She also had two website promotion pieces she could probably complete this week. She'd have to take her laptop along to finish up the work on the marketing campaign for Hanna's hospital but that was fine as it wouldn't take much time since she had the preliminary work completed.

Trish could ask Hanna to take care of Mason so that wouldn't be a problem.

"Well my calendar looks fine but there's also the issue of cost. I haven't had many high paying jobs recently," Trish complained.

"Ben is paying for the trip," Rochelle said with a pleading expression.

"Oh! Well... I guess I'm in," Trish smiled.

Rochelle pulled her into a hug. When they parted Trish looked her friend in the eye.

"You know, Ben isn't difficult to get along with. He's such a tender heart."

Rochelle looked away. "I know. It's his tender heart that I'm afraid of. I still don't know how to relate to men... emotionally."

"Then use this time to learn. Ben deserves it," Trish growled protectively.

"This from the woman who admitted to using him for sex," Rochelle shot back.

Trish had the good grace to blush and nod. "It's true. I did but I finally let him into my heart. I haven't regretted that decision one bit."

Rochelle nodded.

"Hey! You haven't seen the renovations Ben did in my kitchen!" Trish gushed and tugged on her friend's arm.

Rochelle had a relieved smile on her face as she followed.

Chapter 5

Ben disconnected from his video call with Margaux and smiled as he shut the tablet down. They tried to keep in touch by calling once a week at least. The Spanish beauty was every bit as gorgeous as she'd been when they'd been together in Cannes. Maybe even more so. She seemed calmer, happier.

She'd seen the video clip of him beating the man unconscious and he showed her the splint he had to wear because of that encounter. She frowned at him and asked him to be careful as she wanted him in one piece when she visited in a couple of weeks. He was really looking forward to her visit.

Margaux let him know that her head office was proceeding with the plan to have her open the new branch in Australia. He'd asked her to keep him informed of the date she'd be there.

Ben was in his basement office as he'd just finished his morning workout when he heard her incoming call. He took the call in his office to give her some privacy. Margaux was delighted to see him bare chested and glistening with sweat. Fuel for her fantasies she'd said and they'd both grinned at the memory of their night in Cannes.

He went upstairs to get cleaned up and have breakfast. Once he'd showered and dressed he met Tina and Karen in the kitchen, Christopher was in his highchair at the table munching and playing with some dry cereal. Ben gave the ladies a kiss and hug and pretended to eat Christopher's ear sending him into peals of laughter. Ben settled himself into a chair at the table as Karen said she was making breakfast for everyone.

Tina watched and offered instructions when it was required and Karen buzzed around the kitchen happily.

Lucy entered and got her kiss from Ben. "You came to bed late last night. Did you get your research done?" she asked.

"Yeah, I have a couple of options for next week. One's an all-inclusive resort and the other is a condo rental. Both have merits but I think I'll leave the decision up to Rochelle as the tropical holiday is more her thing. I'll have my tablet with me so you should be able to reach me on it or my phone." He scowled at his finger which had begun to throb again. His morning workout had probably been a bad idea though he'd done his best to avoid straining his right hand.

"Is it hurting?" Lucy asked.

He nodded and she looked to Tina.

"In the freezer on the lowest shelf at the back," the Korean beauty said. How she knew where everything was in the house never ceased to amaze Ben.

Lucy scurried away and returned with the cold compress. He removed the splint and she wrapped his hand with the cold.

Ben immediately began to feel better. He thanked Tina and Lucy.

Penny shuffled into the kitchen and kissed Ben on the cheek. Everyone sat down for breakfast and once they were done the usual morning scramble began as the three women got ready to go to school. Ben did the dishes and loaded the dishwasher as Tina watched with a frown.

Once he was done and he'd seen the ladies out the door Ben sat beside Tina. She put his splint back on his finger and taped it in place but she still had a frown on her pretty face. Ben took her hands in his. Christopher chattered happily.

"What's wrong?" Ben asked.

"It is nothing," Tina said with her eyes downcast.

"No. Tina. Tell me what's wrong," he said firmly.

Her eyes snapped up to his and she saw he was completely focused on her.

"I- I feel useless! You do not need me."

Ben looked at Tina in surprise. "I'm sorry if I've made you feel that way. I need you very much! Have I made you feel unloved?" He suppressed outward signs of the shiver that ran down his spine.

"NO! No, I know you love me and I love you. I just don't seem to be able to do anything for you."

"Tina! You run my household! You maintain the order and serenity of my home and make sure the people who live here are happy, comfortable, and relaxed. Even with a broken leg you've managed to help Karen find a direction for her life when she was beginning to despair. I'm going to be away next week and I couldn't do that without knowing you were here to make sure the girls were ok. When I get back I'm going to... I'm restarting my sessions with... Dr. Granger." Ben sagged after he made that promise. "I'm going to need you even more during that."

He carefully lifted Tina onto his lap and rested his hands on her belly as she leaned back against his chest and snuggled in his arms. "You have to take care of yourself as well."

"DayDay!" Christopher squealed. "Daddy DayDay!"

Ben grinned and hugged Tina. "I think our boy is trying to tell us he'd like to go see his friends."

Tina loved it when Ben spoke possessively about Christopher. It gave her such a sense of comfort and security. She tilted her face up to him and he tenderly kissed her lips.

"DayDay!"

They both broke the kiss to chuckle. Ben gently lifted Tina back to her chair and kissed her forehead.

"I'll be right back."

He scooped up Christopher and pulled his sweater on. He walked to the front door where he found his jacket and shoes as well as Christopher's shoes. Once prepared, he carried the boy over to Daphne's and once more there were several cars out front. More parents. He sighed.

Ben walked in the front door carrying the wiggling child who was so excited to be with his friends.

A woman was exiting and he stood aside with a smile as she passed. There was also a slightly heavyset man in a dark suit dropping off his daughter. Ben didn't recognize him but he tried to avoid the parents so he assumed he'd never met the man before. The man signed in and Daphne took the happy little girl's hand to lead her into the playroom. "I'll be right with you Ben," she called out as she walked into the next room.

The man suddenly spun to face Ben with a snarl on his lips.

"BEN!?! Are you Ben?" the man barked at him.

This was no place to have a confrontation, not while he was carrying Christopher, but just in case he switched the young boy to his right hip to free up his uninjured hand. This also put him between the child and the hostility.

"Yes, I'm Ben Shepherd. Who are you?" he asked calmly.

"Mike Liston. Dawn Liston is my wife," the man said like that should mean something to him but Ben just looked blankly back at him.

Mike was getting angrier. Ben had to defuse this before it got out of hand.

"Stay away from my wife!" Mike yelled in his face.

Ben scowled at him. "First, keep your voice down. This is a daycare and there are children present. Second, Dawn? I haven't said more than two words to her! I think I've only met her twice and that was here when I picked up Christopher."

"BULLSHIT!" Mike yelled loudly. Daphne appeared and her expression was swinging between worried and angry.

"Mr. Liston! Take that foul mouth of yours outside or find another daycare!" she hissed.

Mike stormed out the front door with an angry glare back at Ben.

"What was that all about?" Daphne asked Ben.

"I have no idea! He seemed to be accusing me of being with his wife Dawn," Ben replied.

Daphne scowled as she looked out the door. "The man's nuts! I'll speak with Dawn when she picks up Lindsey."

Ben kissed Christopher's cheek and again pretended to chew on his ear which sent the child into a fit of giggles. He handed the happy boy over to Daphne who had a big grin of her own now.

He said his goodbyes and stepped outside. Mike was waiting for him on the sidewalk with a tire iron in his hand. He shook the metal rod at Ben.

"You are going to stay away from my wife! If I catch you with her I'll crack that melon of yours wide op- URK!"

Ben lunged forward, yanked the tire iron from his hand to fling it aside and grabbed the man's tie. He lifted Mike up to his tip toes. The struggling man had to grab Ben's arm to keep from choking.

"Don't EVER threaten me again! I don't know what your problem is. I haven't been with Dawn. I have no idea how you got that stupid idea in your head."

"She- she told me!" Mike gasped.

"She told you we're having an affair?" Ben asked, incredulous.

Mike's eyes were evasive and Ben pulled him closer even though his left arm was getting really tired.

"OK, she was- she talked in her sleep!" Ben let Mike's feet touch down as he glared at the man. "But she was really specific! She was calling your name and she talked about your scars and- and your... thing!"

"Oh for FUCK'S SAKE! She probably saw a picture of the damn statue and had a stupid dream." Ben pushed Mike back, releasing his tie.

"Statue? What are you talking about?" Mike said loosening his tie.

"Look it up. The Bronze Man. It wasn't my idea and I wish I'd never posed for the bloody thing. It's brought me nothing but grief and embarrassment. I'm not having an affair with anyone. Talk to your wife!" Ben caught Mike's eyes one last time. "Don't ever do that again."

Mike nodded nervously, hustled back to his car, and drove away.

Ben spotted the tire iron on the lawn where he'd dropped it and sighed. He picked it up and carried it into the daycare. Daphne returned to see who it was and looked at him in surprise when she saw what he was carrying.

"Can you give this to Dawn tonight? It belongs to her husband. I had to disarm him when he started making threats."

"Oh my god! Did he hit you?" Daphne gasped.

"No, he wasn't really serious but he wanted me to think he was."

"What got into him?" she exclaimed.

Ben grimaced then answered. "Apparently, Dawn talks in her sleep and may have had a fantasy dream... about me."

Daphne covered her mouth to contain a sudden burst of laughter. Her eyes began to water as she struggled to suppress it.

Ben handed her the tire iron and left, followed by the sound of her snorts and giggles.

He stood on the sidewalk soaking in the morning sun and thinking about the mess his life was becoming due to that stupid statue. His loss of privacy was especially painful for him. Now he was being confronted by angry husbands because their wives were saying his name in their sleep? Geezus. Maybe it was a good thing he was getting away for a week.

He saw the team was beginning their day on his house so he wandered over to see how things were going. Maybe there was something light he could do to help.

Jayden stepped forward and held up his hands to block Ben who stopped with a surprised look.

"Mom gave me explicit instructions to tell you to go home if you tried to do any renovations," the young man said with a grin.
Ben's face dropped and Dominic barked out a laugh. "Ben, go get better. You gave us excellent directions so we know what to do. If we have questions we will call."

With a final scowl at his mutinous team, he turned around and headed home.

Tina was in the living room texting someone on her tablet. She looked up with a smile as Ben returned.

Ben sat down next to her and she quickly minimized her application. His eyebrows went up.

"What was that?"

Tina tried for an innocent look but the tiny smile in the corners of her mouth gave her away. She began to giggle. "Fantasy man!"

Ben groaned and slumped back on the sofa cushions. "Daphne told you."

"No, Lisa and Lori did after she told them," Tina said with a grin.

Ben groaned again and put his hands over his face.

"If it makes you feel better both Lisa and Lori have had the same dream as this woman," Tina said with a grin.

Ben pulled his hands away from his eyes to stare at Tina and saw she was really enjoying herself. "You little imp!" he growled and pulled her on top of him, careful not to bump her leg. When she was up on his chest with her face above his he took her face between his hands and sensually kissed her lips until she was panting with need. He slid his fingers further into her silky hair loving the feeling of it in his hands.

"Should I give you a spanking for being such a tease?" he said with a slight smile.

Tina was torn. She was really horny and the idea of Ben's hands on her ass sounded wonderful. Part of her craved a little disciplining from him. She had been teasing him after all.

The other side of that was the fact that she wasn't sure what effect that would have on their baby. She bit her lip and looked at Ben, unable to decide.

"Or maybe I should just tease you since you like teasing so much." Ben ran his fingers down her back and slid them over her ass. Tina sucked in a breath and whined when he pulled his hands away. Then he was grabbing her ass but he released her cheeks before she could begin to enjoy it. Tina was wearing a short casual dress as her cast made wearing her favorite yoga pants impossible. Ben tugged up the hem of the dress and ran his fingers along the top of her ass just under the elastic of her panties.

"Oh god yes, Ben!" Tina moaned as she finally felt the delicious skin on skin touch. Then he pulled his fingers away and she squeaked in frustration. She was being driven mad by these tantalizing hints of bliss. She ground herself hard against his body, craving more.

Ben suddenly pushed her panties down to expose her ass cheeks and Tina yelped in surprise. Before she could recover he gave each perfect orb a quick slap. Not too hard but enough to sting. Tina's eyes rolled back as the sharp sparks went straight to her pussy. She felt like she was balancing on the edge of... something enormous. Then his hand roughly slid between her cheeks, his fingers dipping into and rubbing across her wet pussy lips and stiff clit. Tina's muscles locked up as a sudden and intense orgasm gripped her body.

He felt her crest again and again as she clung to his chest. He ran his slick fingers in teasing circles around her twitching rosebud and she cried out as another peak crashed through her nerves.

Finally she was spent and she slumped over his body, panting.

Ben moved his lips closer to her ear. "Tina, you are MINE. I need you. Never doubt that." A shiver went through her frame and twinkling eyes shone with love as she turned her head to nod at him. Her face was flushed from the intensity of her release. Ben thought she looked absolutely beautiful and kissed her lips tenderly. Then he straightened out her clothes and gently rolled her off of his body to rest on the cushions. She snuggled into the pillows.

After another quick kiss Ben stood and made a brief stop at the washroom before going downstairs to his office. He called Rochelle's number.

"Hi Ben."

"Hi Rochelle. I know you are probably on your way to work so I will ask you two quick questions. One, all-inclusive at a spa or private condo rental?"

"The spa!" Rochelle exclaimed.

Ben chuckled. "OK, and did Trish say she was available?"

"Yes, she's going to be able to join us," she replied.

"Perfect. Give me your passport number and I will book the tickets."

A moment of shuffling ensued and Rochelle read off the information to him.

"OK, I'll get that done this morning. Looking forward to our trip!" Ben said.

"Where are we going?" Rochelle asked.

"Ahhh that's a secret you will find the answer to on Saturday morning. Early. The flight leaves at 8AM so we'll need to be at the airport at 6AM. Not to worry though. When we get there you can relax on a lounge chair on the beach with one of those fruity drinks with a tiny umbrella in it."

"That sounds wonderful!" Rochelle gushed with excitement.

"I'll call Trish. I'll pick you both up at 5:30AM on Saturday. See you then," Ben said and hung up.

Trish answered on the first ring. "Hi Ben!"

"Hi! I understand you'll be joining Rochelle and me for a tropical holiday," he said with a grin.

"Yes! Where are we going?" she asked.

"The location is a surprise but Rochelle chose an all-inclusive spa so I know you'll like it. I just need your passport number."

Trish got and read out her passport details. "Ben, we'll only need two rooms," she suggested.

Ben heard the smile in her voice as he jotted down the information. He smiled in return. "I'll pick you and Rochelle up at 5:30AM on Saturday. See you then."

Once he was off the phone Ben went online and booked the seats on the flights. It was a charter flight so no first class this time. Then he booked two rooms in the resort, grinning to himself. Trish really was a cheeky one.

That done he decided he would put his mind back to work on that engineering project for the Australian company. That consumed the rest of the day with a brief break for lunch with Tina. The gourmet food truck he'd ordered for the job site that day specialized in Thai noodles so he picked up a super spicy order for Tina and a mild one for himself. They ate together in the kitchen though his eyes smarted from the scent of Tina's dish. She was in heaven so he suffered in silence. Once they cleaned up he headed back downstairs to his office. He felt he was close to a solution when dinner time rolled around so Lucy had to drag him away from his drafting table to join them for the meal.

The next morning Ben watched the crane lifting in the I-beams for the second floor and saw them bolted and welded in place. When he began to get fidgety he was shooed away once again.

He went back to his engineering puzzle and set up a test program to run simulations.

Once more Lucy had to find him at dinner time and drag him upstairs to join them. Ben smiled when he saw Ashley and her kids had joined them. Her girls burst into giggles when they saw him.

"What?" Ben asked looking at them.

"Your hair!" Savannah and Madison snorted.

"My hair? What's wrong with my hair?"

Lucy went to the bathroom and returned with a hand mirror which she handed to him. "Ben, it may be time you got a haircut."

He looked and saw his hair at his temples was curling up like two devil horns. He snorted. "Oh, that's because I was unconsciously playing with my hair while I watched the simulations run." He tried to flatten the hair down but it refused to lie flat. "OK, maybe a haircut is in order," he admitted with a grin.

"Momma can cut your hair! She cuts ours!" Madison insisted.

Ashley looked at Madison in surprise then turned to Ben with a big smile. "May I cut your hair for you? I'd love the opportunity to repay you a little for all the wonderful things you've done for us!"

Ben looked at the smiling faces across the table and nodded. "Sure, that would be nice. You have a bowl large enough for my head?" he said with a grin.

"Hey! I'm an expert! I have bowls of all sizes," Ashley fired back making Ben chuckle and tip his head to acknowledge her win.

It was spaghetti with rich meat sauce for dinner and dinner rolls with garlic butter. Ashley said grace while everyone held hands. Karen and Penny were wide eyed as they'd never done that before. The food was delicious and Karen was the recipient of thanks for making the meal. She gave thanks to Tina for watching her so diligently and ensuring she got it right. Ben gave Tina a round of applause as well. She smiled at him, her eyes shining with love.

Talk during dinner revolved around the courses they were taking in college and the progress on Ben's renovation. He grumbled a little at not being allowed to participate in his own project. That led to talking about the fact that he was going on a short vacation to avoid the temptation to join the renovation team.

Once dinner was over Ben was excused from dishwashing duty so he could follow Ashley and the kids over to her place. Ashley sent the kids upstairs to get ready for bed, Madison taking Joshua with her. She then directed Ben to the kitchen while she went to get her haircutting kit.

She returned with a frown on her face. "I seriously doubt the cape is going to fit you as it's a kid size one for the girls," Ashley said as she held up the small fabric shawl.

"Yeah, you're right."

"You should take off the sweater so it doesn't get full of hair," she suggested.

"Sure," he said and pulled it up and over his head. His white undershirt stuck to the sweater so he was topless in the kitchen.

"Oh!" Ashley squeaked quietly as she took in Ben's wide, muscular chest.

And the scars. The ones her deceased husband had inflicted. Ashley hadn't seen the final result of the attack so she stood frozen, unable to move except her eyes which moved from scar to scar, unable to understand how Ben had survived. Tears began to well up in her eyes. "Oh Ben..." she whispered.

Ben suddenly realized his shirt had come off. He tried to pull the clinging garments apart and cover himself at the same time but Ashley blocked him as her hand went out to touch the largest scar near his heart.

"Oh Ben, I'm so sorry..." she continued softly.

"It wasn't your fault," he responded gruffly. "You aren't to blame for any of these. Please don't cry."

Ashley's bottom lip was trembling and her hands were shaking. A tear dripped from her eyelash and ran down her cheek. Ben dropped his twisted up sweater on the kitchen table and pulled her into a hug as he didn't know what else to do. She gasped as she was pressed against the broad, warm expanse of his chest. Her arms naturally wrapped around his back and she breathed in deeply, enjoying his clean, masculine scent. Eli had always smelled a little sour which might have been due to his drinking.

They stood like that for some time. Just holding each other, enjoying the comfort of each other's touch. When Ben eventually pulled back Ashley made an involuntary noise of protest and blushed when she realized it had come from her. They glanced over to the doorway and saw Savannah and Madison watching them with wide eyes. It was Ben's turn to blush as he turned to reach for his sweater again.

"Oh my gosh! What happened to your chest!" Madison gasped.

"Madison!" Ashley scolded the girl.

"No, it's alright. It's just scarring from my injuries. They're all healed and I'm fine now," Ben said with a gentle smile.

"Are- are these from when daddy attacked you?" Savannah said quietly.

Ben looked at the young girl and nodded. "Well, most of them. Some are from another man who attacked me with a knife and the ones on my back are from the man who shot at me with a shotgun."

The girl's eyes went huge and they rushed into the kitchen to see Ben's back. Ashley looked as well.

"Why are there five scars? He shot at you more than once?" Madison asked.

"No, he was using a shotgun which sends out a whole lot of small pellets at once in a spray. I was lucky to be far enough away and moving so only five of the pellets hit my back. The smaller scars are from when I fell off my bicycle and got all scratched up," he explained.

"How did you survive all these injuries?" Ashley breathed.

Ben thought about that for a second. "I have a lot to live for," he finally said with a smile.

Ashley's smile was dazzling and Ben's eyes widened in delight. She blushed and looked to her daughters. "Shouldn't you two be in your beds now?"

Madison looked at Ben and threw her arms wide. He smiled at her, scooped her up in his arms making her squeal, and gave her a firm hug and a kiss on the cheek. As he set the giggling girl back on her feet Savannah was watching with wide eyes. She would not be left out and threw her arms wide as well. Ben scooped her up and gave her a hug and kiss too. As she returned to her feet Madison grabbed her hand and they said their goodnights. Both girls were all giggles and smiles as they ran back upstairs to go to bed.

Ashley had a wide smile on her face as she put the shampoo by the sink. She gestured for Ben to lean over for her to wash his hair. Ben did but he was so large he took up most of the space. Ashley had a difficult time reaching over him.

Ben noticed her caution and sighed. "I'm not brittle. You can lean on me and I won't break," he said with a grin.

Sighing she did as she was told and it was Ben's turn to feel awkward as her soft breasts were pressing against his back and side. She ran her fingers through his hair to get every strand wet. Ben noticed her hands lingering and he shifted his feet. She immediately poured some shampoo in her palm and worked the suds into his hair and it felt wonderful. Once more he noticed her lingering but he'd zoned out for a while too. Her hands moved with purpose again as she got the water going and rinsed his hair.

She was leaning heavily against him at this point, pressing and rubbing her breasts against his body and he was... reacting. She finished up and put a towel over his head as she lightly dried his hair. She guided him over to the chair in the middle of the kitchen floor and sat him down. She placed the apron over his legs to keep the hair off his pants and he nodded gratefully to her. Then he saw her blush. Damn, she'd noticed!

He let her guide his head position as she began the cut. She moved with quick efficient motions and Ben was reminded of Tina as she worked in the kitchen.

Ben saw the hair coming off and he wasn't alarmed by the length. It would be a short cut but he'd still have hair.

Finally her hands stopped and she made a satisfied sound. She used the little barber whisk broom to brush him off and carefully moved the apron from his legs. The hair went onto the floor and she got her broom. She swept the hair into a pile, scooped it up and dumped it into the trash. She pulled Ben up from the chair and whisked the remaining hair from his body. She hesitated for only a second before brushing off the front of his pants. She swept up and disposed of the hair. She led him back to the sink and they went through the washing process again. Once more she pressed her body against his and he thought he overheard a gasp or two this time.

He was tenting his pants badly once she was done. She rubbed the towel over his head and sat him back down on the chair as she brushed his hair. She stood in front of him and looked critically at the cut. She was satisfied.

Ben was surprised when she suddenly straddled his thighs and sat on his lap. She looked surprised too. Then she was kissing him. Her mouth was hesitant and her inexperience came through. He gently took her face between his and slowed her kiss. He caressed her lips with his and she gasped softly. He assumed she hadn't been shown much gentleness before. He felt her hips moving, grinding herself against the ridge in his pants. He ran the tip of his tongue over her lower lip and she sucked in her breath and tried to push her mouth harder against his but again he slowed the kiss. She was making needful whimpers so he moved his hands to her body.

"Yessss!" she breathed as she pulled back from the kiss to appreciate his touch. She'd missed the touch of a man so much! Not Eli's touch. She used to try to pretend his hands belonged to someone else when he touched her but when that touch turned cruel they became Eli's again.

Ben's hands... so big and strong. Confident and gentle. He was such a good man! Nothing like Eli! She wrapped her arms around his back as his hands slid down hers. She broke from the kiss to press her cheek to his as she gasped in his ear. His hands! She trembled fiercely.

He couldn't get over how excited she was getting from his touch. She'd pulled her dress up when she straddled him so her legs were exposed. He ran his hands down her back to her sides then onto the smooth bare skin of her legs.

"Oh Ben, yes!" she sighed when she felt his hands on her skin. Tingles ran up and down her spine.

He wasn't sure how far he should take this. She was a beautiful young woman who was obviously lonely. He didn't want to take advantage of the situation.

Ashley pulled back and looked into his eyes. She saw his hesitation. "What's wrong?"

"I- I don't want-"

Ashley heard a roaring in her ears. Oh god! He didn't want her and she was throwing herself at him like some kind of street whore!

"I'm sorry!" she gasped, embarrassed tears instantly forming in her eyes. She tried to jump from his legs but he held her in place firmly.

"Let me finish!" he growled and she froze.

Ben winced and calmed himself. He stroked the outside of her legs and felt her calm down.

"I want you very much but you're so young and beautiful. You're going to find someone to love and share your life with. I don't want you to think you owe me anything!

Ashley trembled and reached out to cup his cheek with her palm. "Ben, I'm not with you because I feel I owe you. I want you. I- I don't have... experience. I've only had relations with one man and he was... mean. I'd like to know what it feels like with someone who cared. I don't expect you to fall in love with me. I can't compete with women like Gabriella and Catherine!" She snorted self-deprecatingly as she looked down at herself.

Ben tilted her face up to look him in the eye. "You don't need to compete with anyone. You are beautiful. Completely! Don't you ever forget that!" he said firmly and her eyes widened and she knew he believed the words.

She leaned forward slowly, hesitantly and kissed him. His lips parted and her tongue slid inside. They both moaned then chuckled at their mutual need.

"Your girls have a habit of showing up at unfortunate times. Perhaps the kitchen isn't such a good location for this," he said quietly when they pulled back from the kiss.

She grinned and nodded. She wanted to get up but she was loving the feel of his hands on her skin so much. Finally she pushed back and rose to her feet. She tugged on his hand and he got up as well. She glanced down then looked at the bulge more closely.

Ben winced. "It may not be a good idea to do too much tonight."

Ashley looked him in the eye and nodded. "Let's see how it goes." She led him by the hand upstairs to the landing. They paused and listened but it was quiet. The master bedroom was down the hall from the girl's rooms. The baby's room was next then the guest bath. Finally the large master. Should be sufficient distance for soundproofing.

She pulled him into the room and closed the door behind him setting the lock in the process. Turning to Ben she pulled his head down to kiss him again. It was sweet and slow and both were tingling once they parted.

"You're a great kisser, Ben," she said dreamily.

"You have incredibly kissable lips!" Ben breathed. She gave him one of her dazzling smiles for the compliment. She took his hand once more and drew him to the bed. They stood facing each other, smiling.

"I'm half naked. Doesn't seem fair," Ben said with a grin.
Ashley raised an eyebrow and gave him a grin of her own. "If I take off my dress I'll be more naked than you."

Ben stepped out of his socks. "I could remove my pants as you remove your dress but I'll still be more naked than you."

Ashley's grin was wide and her eyes were twinkling with humor. "Let's get that far at least. We can renegotiate then."

Ben nodded. He reached behind her and pulled the zipper down for her.

"Such a gentleman," she teased and he bowed slightly.

He undid his belt and pants and let them fall to his feet. He stepped out and kicked them back. He was standing before her in just his boxers which were seriously tenting.

She pulled the shoulders of her dress forward and let it fall to her feet. She kicked it back and stood before him in her bra and panties. She resisted the urge to move her arms up to cover herself. To hide her imperfections. The little stretch marks on her tummy from her son. The freckles across her chest that Eli called 'dirt marks'. She watched Ben's eyes as he looked at her and she saw no disgust, no revulsion. Just open admiration and maybe a little awe. He made her feel... beautiful. She reached back and undid her bra and allowed the straps to fall forward. Her natural breasts sagged just a little but they looked full and round.

"I should warn you. I'm still breastfeeding Joshua so my breasts are still producing milk," she informed him.

"Thanks for letting me know. They are lovely!"

"Thank you," she said, giggling. She looked down at his boxers and her expression became nervous. "Eli wasn't your size. I've only ever seen his, once, by accident. I've only ever had... relations... with him."

"Relations," Ben said, realizing the gap between their experiences.

She suddenly looked very self-conscious. She looked away from Ben and her face went red.

"Hey, it's ok. No expectations. Let's take it slow and learn as we go. It's more fun that way and there is no pressure."

Ashley's smile came back. He was really setting her at ease, aside from the threatening shape in his boxers that is. She looked at it again.

Ben noticed her glancing at his boxers. "Time for full disclosure. It's not an attack dog. It won't bite. It's very tame."

She giggled nervously at Ben's description but gasped when he dropped his underwear.

"Oh my stars!" she said quietly, unable to look away.

"It's just a penis," Ben said. Ashley twitched and blushed at the word. He wondered if this was going to be a problem. On the one hand he knew she'd had sex before, obviously. Eli probably hadn't treated her well when they'd had sex but she'd conceived a child so she must understand the basics of it. When they were in the kitchen she seemed to know what to do but when faced with the actual activity she was locking up... like a complete virgin. It couldn't just be his size, could it?

"How about for tonight we just hug and kiss," he suggested. She looked up into his eyes and he saw... desperation? "What's wrong?"

"I don't know. I want to make love to you but my mind goes blank when I look at..." Her voice just trailed off as she looked down again.

"Has this happened before?" he asked.

"No," she said quietly.

"You saw Eli when you made love-"

"We never made love. He had relations with me. We never made love," she corrected him.

"I'm sorry. Sex should be a mutual expression of intimacy," Ben said and Ashley twitched again.

"Are my words bothering you?" Ben asked carefully.

"I- I've just never... felt comfortable using them. Ever. They're not words I have experience with so they're... shocking to me. It's my problem. Not yours." She looked at Ben in apology.

Ben smiled at her. "Let's lie down side by side and just relax. I'll caress safe areas of you and when you are comfortable you can touch me anywhere you please. Baby steps." She nodded quickly and grinned up at him. They climbed onto the bed and settled down on their sides facing each other, Ben on his right side to keep his good hand free. They shared a smile.

Ben stroked her cheek and ran his finger along the edge of her jawline. She sighed and he felt her relaxing. He stroked her lower lip with his thumb and she caught her breath. She opened her eyes and looked at his lips hungrily. He smiled and leaned forward and kissed her tenderly.

When they parted she leaned her forehead against his. "Ben, Ben, Ben. The things that go through my head when you kiss me!" she sighed.

He caressed her shoulder and ran his hand down her side to her hip. She gasped and kissed him again, harder this time. Still not very smooth about it but her passion made up for that.

Ben felt a hesitant touch on his cock. Then the fingers shook and took a grip.

"Mmmmph!" Ashley squealed into his mouth as she yanked back her hands.

She pulled back from the kiss and looked at him a little wild eyed. "It's so hot and it moves! I can feel your pulse!"

Ben grinned at her. "Yes. That felt good too."

"It did?"

"A beautiful woman holds a man's cock, it's going to feel good!" Ben teased and saw her eyelids flutter as he said the word 'cock'. He grinned and shook his head. "You're delightful!"

She pouted at him. "You're teasing me!"

His grin got wider. "Not at all! You're just so interesting in your reactions! Ah!" he yelped as hands took a grip on his cock again.

"Look who's having a reaction now!" she said.

He saw the challenge in her eyes but also a genuine rattling of her nerves. It was taking a lot for her to maintain her grip as her hands wanted to pull away.

"You seem to like holding my cock," Ben said deliberately and felt her grip tighten momentarily as her muscles spasmed. Her eyelids were definitely doing the fluttering thing again though she was trying to maintain eye contact. "If I didn't know better I'd think you were going to stroke my cock with your lovely fingers."

Ben saw Ashley's nostrils flare and her jaw muscled flex as her teeth clenched. She was fighting the programming of her upbringing and he was seriously impressed with her willpower. Her hands moved up and down jerkily and her mouth dropped open in surprise. His cock surged and twitched in her hands and he felt a shudder rock through her muscles but she continued.

At the bottom of one long stroke her fingers encountered a new sensation. She looked down and saw her hands were holding his balls.

"You need to be gentle with those. Sensitive to too much pressure," he said cautioning her.

She looked up at him suddenly, her mouth working but nothing coming out. He saw her eyes begin to roll back. He pulled her hands away and lifted them to his lips. Her eyes refocused and locked onto his.

"You did amazingly well!" he said.

"I- I did?"

"Very much. You have an amazing amount of willpower!" he told her.

She frowned. "Now I know you're just trying to charm me!"

"You should have picked up by now that's not how I am. I don't lie. I won't even use 'charming words' unless I genuinely believe in what I'm saying. Then it isn't charm but truth."

She looked in his eyes and saw the honesty in them. She was shocked by how good that made her feel. He believed in her! Tears welled up in her eyes and she surged forward to pull him into a hug. He put his arms around her while she struggled to control her emotions.

They lay there like that with Ashley partially lying on his body, her face pressed against his chest as her head was tucked under his chin.

Ben held still except for his hands which rubbed up and down her back. He kept his splinted finger from touching her. The cool metal would be a distraction. He also did his best to ignore the fact that his cock was now pressing against her pussy through her panties.

Ashley's mind was spinning. His hands felt so incredibly good on her back and she could feel his heat pressing against her from below. Eli had always taken her from behind. He never let her see his... thing and never let her touch it. From behind was the only position he allowed.

She reached down and pulled her panties to the side and pushed down. Ben's cock found its course and began sinking into her depths. Ben's hands stopped in surprise then they moved downwards until they were squeezing her ass. It was Ashley's turn to stop in surprise. Oh my, she liked his hands there! She pushed harder and Ben's cock sank another inch inside.

Her eye lids were doing that fluttering thing again as she struggled to deal with what she was doing. Having... relations with Ben. She wasn't even his girlfriend much less his wife! Her mind filled with the sensations of how good he felt against her- inside her! Wicked thoughts! How could it be so wrong? He was such a good man. Maybe sometimes he was violent but never against a woman or child like Eli had been. Always in their defense- OOOOHHH!

Ben pulled out to the head then pushed back in feeling himself go deeper than before. Ashley was squeezing the hell out of his cock but she was taking it. He stroked out and in once more sinking deeper still.

"Ben, oh my Ben!"

"Are you ok? Do you want me to stop?" he asked gently.

She rubbed her face against his chest, breathing in his warm comforting scent. She wanted to bottle that scent so she could smell it each time she was feeling anxious... which was most nights. Not tonight though. "No, please don't stop! It's wonderful..."

His right hand was beginning to throb so he moved it up from her ass to gently stroke her back. His left remained on her ass, helping to control his movements.

Ashley cooed at the feeling of his hands on her. This was what it was supposed to feel like. This was right. Not what had been done to her by Eli. Ben was being with her. It was so right! He was so big! She felt so full! Wicked thoughts! She trembled.

Ben felt Ashley trembling against him and got concerned. This had to be a huge hurdle for her to get over. Sex outside a marriage? The concept of sex itself seemed to be problematic for the woman. Of course the way she was clinging to him wasn't telling him she wanted him to stop. Maybe if he gave her more control?

Ashley felt herself being rolled up on top of Ben's large body and he sank another inch inside. She'd thought he was already all the way in. She squeaked from her perch on top of his chest. She lifted her head to look down at him in question.

"Now you control the pace and movements," he said.

Her eyes widened. She was in control? She quickly pushed against his chest to protest and Ben's cock drove inwards. She made a croaking noise and closed her eyes tight. He was in so deep!

Ben's right hand cupped her breast and caressed gently, squeezing the nipple. A drop of milk seeped out and her breath whooshed out of her as she suddenly leaned forward against Ben's hand.

He yanked his hand back as a spike of pain shot through his finger. Dammit!

Her forward motion drew Ben's cock almost all the way out. She felt empty without it so she immediately pushed back and slammed her pelvis down on his. He was fully inside her now and her eyes rolled back. It was too much! It was too good! Her hips began to move of their own accord. Wicked hips!

Ben gasped as she took all of him down to the base. She rocked her hips then began to do short strokes. He grabbed her ass and assisted her motions making the strokes longer and more forceful.

"YES! OH BEN, YES!" she cried, her hips picking up the pattern. Long fast strokes felt best. Felt like nothing she'd ever felt before. Being on top was nothing like she'd ever experienced. Controlling the pleasure was too much. The feeling of power! She looked down at Ben's face and she could see the pleasure there. The need. Impulsively she drove herself down harder and saw his eyes widen in surprise. She smiled down at him feeling an elation beyond her ability to contain. This was what two people were supposed to feel! She felt robbed by her earlier experiences. NO! She would never think of those times again. They were a sick and twisted shadow of what it was supposed to be like. Eli was nothing. She drove herself faster and harder and it just kept feeling better. How? How could it feel this good? How could it keep getting better? Something was happening.

Ben could see Ashley was close. Her face was so easy to read. She was driving him into her so hard now, slapping her pelvis against his, he was rapidly approaching his own release.

"BEN! SOMETHING- SOMETHING IS HAPPENING! SOMETHING- OH! OH! OH! OH! OH! OH! AAAAAHHHHHH!" she wailed, grinding herself against him almost painfully.

The almost violent pumping of Ben's cock was too much and he came hard.

They lay there panting. She had collapsed on his chest and the heat rising from him was... delicious. Her mind was floating above her body completely aware of every tingle and splash of sparks running up and down her body but seeing it from a slight distance.

"Mama? Are you alright?"

Ashley and Ben froze as the tiny nervous voice spoke through the door. A brave voice.

Ben smiled at the door and Ashley burst into laughter. The elation was back and it was rocking through her body.

"Mama?"

"Yes! Yes baby! Mama is good! Mama is very good! Go back to bed sweetie, I'll talk to you in the morning. I love you baby!"

"We love you too Mama!" There were giggles. "Goodnight Ben!"

"Goodnight girls," Ben called out. The giggles moved away from the door.

They blushed at each other.

"Oh my stars Ben! I've never felt like that before. It's never felt that good!"

"You've never had an orgasm before?" he asked incredulously.

She twitched at the word and looked at him with wide eyes. He began to chuckle.

She swatted his chest. "Don't be laughing at a lady after having relations."

"Sex. Say it. Sex," Ben said with a grin watching her twitch. "They're just words and there's no such thing as a bad word. Just bad intentions behind the words."

She scowled at him but he could see her upset wasn't real. She shook her head and smiled down at him. "Sex."

"There you go."

"No, I've never had... one of those before. I liked it. A lot," she said as she stretched languorously over his body. Ben felt her bearing down on his softening cock and a little bit of cum was squeezed out. A new worry surfaced.

"Are you on the pill by any chance? I was told at a fertility clinic that the odds of me making a woman pregnant are negligible but Tina proved miracles happen."

"No, I'm not but it's not my time. Between that and your report from the clinic I should be good," Ashley said resting her cheek against his chest. She breathed in and there it was again. Calm. Peace. Happiness. And afterglow! Wicked thoughts! She grinned.

Ben's right hand was steadily throbbing. She noticed him holding his hand out awkwardly.

"Is it hurting?"

"Yeah, I think I'd better go take care of it. I got a little too excited and used my hand a little too much," Ben said with a sigh.

"I like your hands on me," she said quietly.

"And I like touching you," Ben smiled.

Ashley rolled off his body and sighed with contentment as Ben got up and padded over to the washroom. He cleaned up a little and came back out to put on his clothes.

She looked at him from the bed and she had a small frown on her face. "Was- was this a booty call?"

Ben snorted and looked at her in surprise. "Booty call? Where do you kids pick up such language?" he said with a grin.

She smiled but the worry came back.

Ben walked over to the bed and sat next to her. He placed his left hand on her bare tummy and her eyes closed in bliss. "No. I don't do 'Booty Calls'. I won't ever disrespect you like that. You are an amazing woman! Besides I think you'll have an easier time having a discussion with the girls tomorrow morning without my presence to cause more giggling."

Ashley smiled and Ben could see the love in her eyes. "Those girls saved my life. Through my entire marriage to that man, they were there for me and kept me sane. I couldn't love them more if I'd given birth to them myself."

"They are pretty wonderful girls!" Ben agreed. He leaned over and gave her a kiss. "Come on, you have to lock up behind me."

She put on her dressing gown and followed Ben down to the kitchen. He pulled his shirt out of his sweater and handed Ashley the sweater as he pulled the shirt on. He saw her holding the sweater to her face.

"May I keep this tonight?" she asked him with big eyes.

"What is it with ladies and my sweaters?" he grumped but nodded.

Her smile was dazzling. He put on his jacket by the door. Giving her another kiss he headed home.

As he let himself in he sighed with contentment. His home smelled of baking, warm, sweet and spicy. It smelled like love. He hung up his jacket and made his way to the master bedroom. Tina and Lucy were both sitting up, leaning back against pillows working on their tablets. Lucy had earphones in which she plucked out when he entered.

"Nice haircut! A little messy brushwork though," she said with a knowing smile.

Ben just smiled at her and walked into the bathroom to get undressed. The clothes went into the laundry bin and he took some painkillers for his hand after he'd removed the splint. He'd ice it after his shower. He stepped into the shower and got the water good and hot. It felt good so he let the heat sink in for a minute then awkwardly tried to wash his hair. Then he felt hands rubbing soap on his back. He looked around himself and Lucy smiled back at him as she washed him. She had on a shower cap to keep her hair dry but she looked lovely.

"Could you wash my hair? My hand's hurting."

"Sure but you'll have to bend down a little."

He turned and knelt on the tiles at her feet. "That works too," she grinned.

She rubbed the shampoo into his hair and Ben had a perfect view of her shaven pussy. Once she'd rinsed the shampoo away he dipped forward and pressed his lips to her skin. She hissed through her teeth and her fingers clenched in his hair. She involuntarily tugged his face tighter against herself. Ben's tongue pressed firmly against her wet lips and slipped deep inside. Lucy cried out.

Keeping his right hand carefully out of play he sunk two fingers from his left into her pussy and began pumping them in and out as he thrashed her pussy lips with his tongue, gently sucking on her clit. Lucy threw her head back as the sudden orgasm almost took her legs out from under her. Ben stood and gently sat Lucy on the small bench while he rinsed himself off. He could see she was wiped so he rubbed a fluffy towel over her body to dry her and sent her on her way back to bed. He brushed his teeth and walked out into the bedroom.

Tina's face was looking a little flushed and Lucy was snoring softly. Ben caught the gleam of juices on Tina's fingers. She'd been listening to the noises from the bathroom.

He reached down, pulled her hand up and slipped her fingers into his mouth. She watched his mouth with wide eyes and moaned at the feel of his tongue licking her nectar from her fingers. He saw her hips squirm. She wanted him.

He stood next to the bed and Tina's eyes locked on his heavy cock. He slid his fingers into her hair, ignoring the pain from his finger and pulled her face toward him. She automatically opened her mouth as he guided the head between her lips. She moaned and trembled as he slowly fucked her mouth.

Once his cock was slick with her spit he pulled her away from it with his grip on her hair. Her eyes flashed up to his, her desperate need plain to see in them. He'd have to be careful of her cast and his finger. He still had to ice it.

He carefully pulled her down the bed and flipped her onto her stomach. Tina was enjoying his manhandling of her body so she gave herself over to his control completely. Her breathing was heavy and she watched him with feverish attention. He pulled her hips up and left her legs together. Bending over he parted her cheeks and stroked her pussy with his tongue.
"Oh Ben! So good!" she moaned. When he forced his tongue into her puckered asshole she cried out and pushed her hips back, impaling herself on his tongue. It was time. She was ready.

Ben knelt behind her and pushed his slick cock between her cheeks feeling it part her wet pussy lips. With her knees together she was extra tight but Ben continued to push and felt himself being accepted into her body. He didn't force himself too deep and her pregnancy was adding too much pressure down there to begin with.

"Touch yourself Tina," he commanded and heard her gasp in relief. She'd been waiting for his permission. Immediately her fingers were busy rubbing at her swollen clit. He pumped slowly just enjoying the sensations. He realized he was tired and was going to take a long time to reach his orgasm so he rubbed the pad of his thumb over Tina's rosebud and he felt her body begin to quake through a powerful release. When she was done he pulled himself free and kissed her ass cheeks. She purred with happiness. He tucked her under the covers and went back into the bathroom to clean himself up. He came back out and slipped on pajama bottoms. Ensuring his erection had subsided he left the bedroom to walk down to the kitchen. Reaching into the freezer he pulled the icepack out for his hand.

"Are you ok?"

Ben turned and saw it was Penny and Karen looking at him from the kitchen doorway.

"Yeah, just icing my finger. What are you two doing up?"

"Would you like some banana bread to go with that ice?" Penny asked. "We made it together."

Ben smiled and nodded. Karen poured him a small glass of milk as Penny cut a generous slice of the bread for him.

She handed him the plate with an excited expression and he took a bite. It was moist and delicious. "You keep making these delicious desserts we're going to have to step up our workout routines," he moaned.

They smiled happily at him.

"Now, seriously, what's up?"

Karen looked nervously at Penny then looked Ben straight in the eye. He was already impressed.

"We'd like to go clubbing with Lisa and Lori McKellan this Friday night," she said.

"Clubbing?"

"They've invited us to go dancing with them at some clubs. We'd like to go," Penny spoke up.

"You've been to clubs before?"

"Yes, but we were never allowed to dance. We had to stay next to Mr. Shakir at all times," Penny said.

"I'm going to say yes tentatively. I want to speak to Lisa and Lori first so they know my concerns and won't put you too into any situations that might get out of control."

Karen and Penny grinned and took turns hugging him. He sent them off to bed as it was a school night.

He sat in the kitchen icing his finger until it was time to stop the treatment. The pack went back into the freezer and he walked back down the hall to the bedroom. The splint went back on his finger and he crawled into bed between the two gently snoring women. The sound was actually rather soothing so sleep was quick to take him.

Chapter 6

Karen and Penny ran through the workout routine he'd created for them without complaint. He assured them that if they stuck to it the exercising itself would begin to feel like a reward. Not like the mean, cruel punishment it currently felt like to them.

The morning routine of breakfast with the family then the chaos of everyone getting ready and out the door was something Ben actually looked forward to. He wondered how he was going to be when Karen and Penny were living in their own house. At least he felt comfortable that the girls would be able to cook for themselves.

Ben drove over to the car dealership and met a very happy and excited Gwen. They exchanged checks and keys and Ben drove away in a bright and shiny red... minivan. It handled really well but... it was a minivan. With his child on the way he wondered if Tina would prefer they drove one of these. He shuddered.

After a brief stop at the bank to deposit the check he drove home and left the new van parked in Ashley's driveway. He walked over to see how the renovations were coming along.

"Ben! Was that you I saw in the lovely family car?" the big man teased.

"Ashley's minivan! I get my truck back tonight!" Ben insisted.

"I don't know you looked pretty natural in it. With the kid coming soon," Dominic grinned, ignoring Ben's annoyed look.

Ben turned his attention from the tease to his new project. They were retrofitting the existing foundation on the front half of the house to incorporate the new steel beams for supporting the new second floor above it. These new beams would be connected to the beams integrated in the extension and the entire structure would be so much stronger. Over engineered? Maybe but Ben was thrilled to see his creation coming together. He itched to get in there and help but his hand was feeling better this morning and he knew he had to give it time. He sighed.

Dominic knew his friend was disappointed about not being able to participate but playing the white knight sometimes had a cost. Speaking about another of Ben's projects. "Jayden is a good worker. He even managed to keep his cool when some of the guys 'hazed the newbie'. He takes instructions without a lot of attitude and gets the job done. I wouldn't hesitate in hiring him on permanently. Do you know what his career aspirations are?"

Ben smiled at Dominic. It was good to hear his faith in the boy hadn't been misplaced. "He was talking about being a music producer I think. If you wanted to talk to him about a position be my guest. He'd be crazy to turn it down especially with his new criminal record."

Dominic nodded and patted Ben's shoulder as he walked off to find Hector. Truth be told he was enjoying this project more than many of the neighborhood jobs they did. The food was certainly better!

With a sigh, Ben turned away from the renovation project and walked over to the daycare. He went inside and waited. Lisa came out to see who it was and smiled brilliantly at him.

"Hi Ben! You're early today."

"Actually I came to speak with you and Lori."

Her eyes lit up and she raised a finger to get him to wait. She slipped into the back and moments later the two were standing before him looking at him with happy expectant smiles.

He couldn't help but take a moment to admire just how lovely they had become. From the awkward young teens they had blossomed into such exceptionally beautiful women. They were dressed in comfortable sweaters and slacks, perfect for dealing with a flock of precocious children but their beauty shone through. He gave himself a little shake and their smiles just got wider.

"I understand you've asked Karen and Penny to go clubbing with you," he began.

Their expressions became concerned. "Should we have asked you first?" Lori asked nervously.

"What? No, that's fine. I just wanted to speak with you to be sure you understood the need for taking extra care with them. While they may seem like fully grown young women their experiences growing up haven't really prepared them for the same kind of socialization you two are comfortable with. As you've mentioned there are players and predators at these clubs. I won't have them fall victim to another monster."

They smiled at his protectiveness.

"Why don't you come dancing with us tonight? We were going to go out for dinner then hit a single dance club, the Embassy. Ease them into it. If you came with us you could see how they do," Lisa suggested and Lori smiled encouragingly.

"Uh, I doubt they'd want me along. They were pretty excited about having fun with you two," Ben suggested.

"Of course they'd love you to join us. I'll ask them," Lori said pulling out her phone. She tapped the keys to send a text and moments later the phone pinged with the incoming responses. Lori's face lit up with a grin. She turned her phone to Ben. He saw messages from both Karen and Penny. They'd both typed 'Squee!!!' though Karen's had some happy emoticons as well.

Ben frowned in confusion. "Is that a word? What does 'Squee' mean?"

Lisa and Lori giggled. "It means they're both squealing with excitement, Ben!" Lisa said with a grin.

"Oh! Well I guess it's ok then. What time should we come by?"

It was Lisa and Lori's turn to squeal and both jumped up to hug him excitedly. He endured their hugs, trying to keep the smile from his lips.

"Eight thirty," Lori finally said. She and her sister were practically vibrating with excitement.

"Ok, we'll see you then," Ben said with a nod and left. He heard them giggling with glee as they went back into the daycare. He had to shake his head with a smile.

The crew next door were making their way to the food truck which was setting up for lunch. Today it was Mexican once more. A cheer went up as the team saw Ben approaching. He smiled and waved. He got in line next to Jayden who gave him a smile.

"How's it going?" he asked the young man.

"It's going really well! Mr. Selleni offered me a full time job!" Jayden said with a grin.

"What about your goal to be a music producer?" Ben asked.

Jayden's expression turned serious and he nodded. "I haven't given up on that dream but I'll need a steady and solid income for a while to establish a reserve of savings. Mr. Selleni explained that many of his workers have side jobs in the off season and if that works out they move on to do that. If not they still have a dependable income. He told me how much I could be making working for him."

Ben smiled at Jayden's enthusiasm. He was pleased to see Jayden thinking long term and realistic long term at that. He had hope for the boy. They got to the truck and Ben placed his order. He got an order of spicy fish tacos for Tina as well.

He waved at the guys and headed home with his food.

"Tina?" Ben called out when he got in the door.

"I'm in the living room," she answered.

"I picked you up some fish tacos!" Ben said as he put the food on the kitchen table and walked into the living room to scoop Tina up in his arms. He carried her back into the kitchen kissing her neck and nibbling at her ears. She was squealing and squirming the entire way.

"Stop!" she finally gasped as he set her down. She was panting to catch her breath as she looked at him with hunger in her eyes.

"I got the tacos extra spicy. I hope they're ok," he said with a smile.

She smelled the food and smiled at him. They ate in silence, enjoying the delicious meals.

"Sorry for the short notice but I'll be joining Karen and Penny tonight when they go out for dinner and dancing with Lisa and Lori. I spoke to the twins about taking extra care with the girls and they reminded me I promised I'd go dancing with them."

Tina nodded at him and he could see she was feeling sad again. She liked dancing too. He tossed the garbage out and scooped Tina back in his arms. He carried her down the hall to the master bedroom and shut the door behind them.

"What are you up to Ben?" Tina said with a twinkle in her eye.

"I might be out late tonight and I have to get up early tomorrow for the flight so I thought I'd take a nap. You don't expect me to nap alone do you?" Ben said with an exaggerated look of shock on his face.

He carried her into the washroom and they brushed their teeth while she watched him expectantly. She wasn't buying his nap story and she was beginning to fidget.

Ben took off his clothes and undressed Tina. She didn't help him. She just kept looking at him with an impish smile on her lips. He pretended not to notice and once they were both naked he carried her to the bed and laid her out on the mattress. She looked up at him with that same tiny smile and he couldn't stop himself from laughing. She looked so sweet and treating her like a living doll was ridiculous. She giggled at his laughter.

He dropped down on the bed next to her and she rolled onto her side to cuddle in against his chest.

"I am going to miss you next week," Tina said in a quiet voice.

"I'll miss you too," he said and kissed the top of her head. "I wasn't kidding when I said I need you to take care of yourself and keep an eye on the others. It's the only thing making this trip possible for me. Knowing you will be here keeping order and maintaining the serenity of the household. That gives me peace of mind. Knowing I'll be coming home to you, Christopher, and our baby gives my life focus like I've never had before. I love you so much!"

Tina pulled herself up on Ben's chest to look into his eyes. She saw the love and need in them. She kissed him fiercely and he responded with equal passion. He tenderly held her face as he caressed her lips with his, stroking her lower one with the tip of his tongue, drawing gasps from the petite woman.

Her tongue joined his and he sucked on it. Tina trembled and ground herself against his body. She squealed when Ben suddenly rolled over to put her under him. He kept his full weight from her body but his kiss became more demanding and she shook with need.

Ben's mouth moved to her neck and her pleasure spiked as a charge shot through her nerves. His lips and his hands traveled down her body nibbling and stroking as they went. Tina cried out and gasped as her body responded to him. Her nipples were too sensitive now so he only lightly kissed and stroked them with his tongue before moving on.

Tina's pussy was glistening with her juices when he reached there and he spent some time nibbling at the tender flesh of her inner thighs causing her to wail and squirm with need. He could tell that if he were to lick her even once she would likely come so he reached over to the end table next to the bed and pulled out two packets of lube. He slathered the slick gel over his cock and carefully stroked the remaining amount over her pussy, avoiding her clit for now.

"Ben! Oh Ben! Please! Put it inside!" Tina begged.

He rubbed the thick, hot head of his cock against her pussy lips and Tina cried out. "YES! Oh Ben yes!"

He rocked his hips forward gently and the head forced its way inside.

"Oh! Oh! Oh!" Tina's voice went soft and her eyes opened to watch him. Ben could see she was on the precipice of a huge release. He thought he would try to keep her on that edge for just a little longer.

He made short slow strokes, gradually easing himself deeper inside. "Ben! Ben! Ben! Oh yes! More! Ahhhh!" she breathed.

He knew not to force too much of himself inside as that was too uncomfortable for her and he was sufficiently deep at this point to set up a steady driving stroke.

"YES! YES! OH BEN! SO GOOD!" Tina gasped as her eyes closed tightly. He saw an adorable little wrinkle form between her eyebrows as she concentrated on the explosive release beginning to emerge.

Ben was right there as well. It was time to take it home. He sped up his strokes and Tina clawed the sheet as her eyes flew open. He simultaneously rubbed his thumb over her clit and that was it.

He felt her pussy begin to pulse and squeeze his cock and he sighed as his own release took him.

Tina's small hand eventually grabbed his arm and pulled his hand away from her pussy as she was becoming too sensitive. She lay panting on the bed, her eyes rolling, her skin coated in a fine sheen of sweat.

"Ben, that... was... wonderful!" she said dreamily when her breathing slowed enough for her to talk.

He grinned and leaned over her body to give her a quick but tender kiss. He slipped off the bed to duck into the washroom. He cleaned up quickly and returned with a warm, damp facecloth and towel. He proceeded to wipe down Tina's body and rubbed a fluffy towel over her afterwards. They shared a smile as they remembered the first time he toweled her dry.

Dropping the towels in the laundry bin he made his way back to the bed, set an alarm and crawled under the covers with Tina to take that nap he needed. Now, she was only too happy to join him.

Ben upgraded the twin's selection of the restaurant they were going to when he discovered their choice served food that didn't agree with his digestion. They were delighted with his alternative and were all smiles as he led them inside the upscale Thai-Asian fusion restaurant he'd been wanting to try. It was situated on the top floor of a rather expensive boutique shopping center downtown. The view from the fifth floor windows was of the lovely street below, lit up by the shop signs filled with last minute shoppers and theater goers. The manager was conferring with the host and took one look at the large imposing man with four beautiful young women and immediately stepped forward. He smelled money.

"Welcome to Golden Sun! I'm the manager Filip Tang. Is this your first visit with us?"

Ben smiled and nodded. Tang returned the smile and led Ben and the ladies to the best table right by the window. He plucked a reserved sign from the surface and saw them seated. He handed out menus and bowed to them again.

"If you have any questions or concerns please ask the server to contact me. Enjoy your evening!" With that and a twirl the man moved back to the host station.

"We should eat out more often with you Ben! You get amazing service!" Lisa said with a grin.

"I'm sure he was just trying to impress the lovely women I'm with," Ben said, with a grin of his own.

"Ooo! This place is much more expensive than what we had planned!" Lori said with a frown.

"Not to worry, dinner is on me as this place was my choice. Order whatever you like," Ben said as he looked at the options. He missed the delighted smile shared between the four women. Soon they were all pouring over the menu and Lisa was tapping out their order on a tablet attached to the table. Ben stuck with tried and true. He ordered the Pad Thai with chicken and shrimp with mild spices.

A server arrived and checked the order on the tablet and confirmed it was complete. She submitted the order to the kitchen and asked for their drink order. Lisa and Lori ordered Lychee Martinis. Karen and Penny ordered Piña Coladas as the coconut would complement their food orders. Ben ordered a pineapple juice.

"Thank you so much for coming out with us tonight Ben!" Lori said. Lisa nodded and Penny and Karen joined in.

"I love dancing! I have to admit I haven't been to this club we're going to tonight. What was it called again? The Empire?" he asked.

Lisa giggled. "No, the Embassy." She looked at her sister. "We haven't been to the Empire in years. That place was gorgeous if pricy."

"It closed down a year or so ago and reopened under a new name I think. Hang on." Lori did a quick search on her phone. "Here it is. It's called 'Asylum' now. Ohmigod! Look at this place! It looks amazing!" She handed her phone to Lisa who gasped excitedly. She turned to Ben.

"Could we go here tonight instead of the Embassy? It's much hotter than the Embassy!" Lisa begged.

Ben looked at the picture and admitted the club looked interesting. He knew nothing about either of these clubs so one was as good as the other to him. "Sure. I don't see why not." He handed the phone to Karen who was desperate to see the club. Her eyes lit up and Penny got excited when she saw the pictures as well.

Ben just smiled at their excitement.

The drinks arrived and they all drank a toast to the fun they were going to have tonight.

Ben parked his truck in the lot across from the large converted factory. There was a large line waiting to get in. He looked up at the five story brick clad edifice and took in the bursts of color light flashing out of the large windows. Asylum looked like a good choice of names for this place. He could feel the music from across the street.

Lisa and Lori took his arms and Karen and Penny took their other arms. The five walked across the street heading directly for the doorman. The twins told Ben victory went to the bold so a frontal assault was their best approach to getting into this ultra-popular dance club. Ben felt a little odd about pretending he deserved preferential treatment but he was with the ladies and he believed they did so he went along with it.
The doorman wasn't a large man but he had two large assistants standing on either side of the front door. He was talking on his earpiece when he glanced over at the approaching group. His eyes passed over the women and Ben could see him dismiss them immediately. Ben didn't like that and his smile slipped from his face as they got close. The doorman's eyes looked up at Ben and a series of expressions flashed across his face. Interest, recognition, shock, and finally excitement burst across his pale features. Ben thought he needed to get outside in the daylight a little more.

"Mr. Shepherd! It is such an honor to have you at our club!" the man gushed as he took Ben's hand and pumped it rapidly. The doorman couldn't stop looking at the scar across his face which made Ben a little uncomfortable. He'd play along if it meant he could get the girls inside without standing in the line.

"Thank you. It's our first visit," Ben replied.

"Then we will pull out the stops to ensure you visit again! My name is Damien, Damien Delacroix! If you need anything please ask for me and I will make it happen!"

"Thank you Damien. That's very kind." Ben was starting to feel a little uncomfortable about how the man wasn't releasing his hand, since they'd stopped shaking. He looked at his hand and Damien caught on and released it. A flush bloomed over the man's face. Damien gestured for him to enter. Ben allowed the ladies to enter before him.

Damien had been so polite curiosity got the better of Ben and he leaned closer to the doorman. "May I ask how you recognized me?"

The man's face lit up with a broad smile. "I've been following you in the press ever since my parents in Paris sent me the article about your rescuing the women from the slavers..." Damien's eyes went wide as he leaned back to see Karen and Penny stepping inside. He looked back at Ben with a shocked look.

"I adopted them as my daughters," Ben said to lead off any questions of impropriety. Unfortunately this just increased Damien's awe.

"And, of course, the bronze statue..." the doorman murmured.

Ben winced and turned to head inside.

"HEY! Why does the fossil and his skanky bitches get preferred treatment?"

Ben looked with a scowl to the front of the line where a young man stood with his date. Both looked... baked. Bloodshot eyes, sleepy expressions. The girl was worse off. He looked closer. She didn't look good at all. Before Damien could act Ben walked over to the young man who tried to appear unintimidated by Ben's size and fierce gaze.

"I don't give a shit what you think of me but you should think twice about being rude to the ladies," he said then looked closer at the young woman. Ben realized that's exactly what she was, young. She was made up to look older but he was sure she was underage. Ben snapped his fingers in front of the girl's eyes and she didn't blink.

"Damien, could you call an ambulance for this young lady?"

"Hand's off my bitch grandpa!" the rude man barked and made the mistake of grabbing Ben's jacket.

Moments later Ben lifted the velvet rope and gently guided the drugged girl over her wheezing 'date' who was curled up on the sidewalk clutching his stomach.

"And call the police for this man. His date is underage and drugged."

Damien was busy dialing and took charge of the young woman as his assistants collected the man from the ground.

Ben walked inside and found the four women at the coat check. He checked his as well and followed them to the entrance of the main room where they were met by another slim man in a tailored suit wearing an earpiece.

"Hello Mr. Shepherd! I am Stephane Guillotte, manager of Asylum. Damien let me know you were on your way in. It would be my pleasure to show you to an area we reserve for special guests. House bottle service is complementary, of course!"

Ben was going to protest the extra attention but his 'dates' were smiling from ear to ear. "That's most gracious of you. Thank you," he said instead.

Stephane smiled and bowed slightly. He guided them around the dancefloor on a raised seating area and Ben's group looked everywhere at once trying to absorb the incredible lightshow on the dancefloor below them. Enormous walls of LED's rippled with colored light and the floor itself pulsed with color. The twins were grinning like mad. Karen and Penny were in awe. They'd been in a lot of clubs in their time but they were never allowed to enjoy any of them and none of them had been this grand.

Once they reached the roped off section the bouncers positioned there quickly memorized their faces so they could come and go freely. Stephane introduced them to Yvonne who would be their personal server for their stay. Stephane mentioned a few of the different rooms in the club which apparently had unique themes. He gave Ben an admiring look and recommended the Steam Room. Then he left them.

Yvonne served them some champagne and explained how the House bottle service worked. They would get two bottles of house champagne which normally cost $140 but for them was free. If they wanted mixed drinks or shooters they could select from a group of different bottle service packages. Ben looked over the menu with the ladies and the twins pointed to one they wanted. He was a little surprised at the cost but he nodded and paid Yvonne $500. The woman was all smiles and left to bring them their first round of shooters. Ben had made sure she understood he wasn't participating.

There was a bottle of spring water included so Ben had some of that while the ladies raised a toast with the champagne. They weren't that impressed with the taste of the bubbly stuff so when the shooters arrived they sucked them back and stood up to drag Ben out onto the dancefloor.

Ben was seriously impressed with the acoustics of the dance club. The real volume of the music didn't peak until you were on the dancefloor. This meant conversations were actually possible at the tables in the seating area yet the music saturated your body once you were dancing. His engineering radar was going off like crazy as he looked for the sound dampeners and baffles.

Lisa noticed his distraction and danced right up against his body. That got his attention. He apologized and kept his eyes on them when they weren't mesmerized by the lightshow around them and at their feet. At times it gave Ben the feeling of flying as the lights raced from one side of the dancefloor to the other. The floor was busy but they weren't jammed together. The occasional bump wasn't too bad as everyone was in good spirits.

Ben kept an eye on his daughters as they were attracting a lot of male attention. Lisa and Lori were demonstrating how to dance without inviting unwanted attention and Penny picked it up very quickly. Karen was more submissive and her sister had to steer some Lotharios away as she danced with her sister.

The DJ was excellent and kept them moving so they didn't realize they'd been on their feet for almost an hour. Lori pointed back to the tables and mimed drinking so they made their way back to their table. Yvonne was immediately at their sides taking the next order of shooters and arranging for one of the premium bottles in their service plan. Lisa chose a top end vodka for mixing with a fruit flavored energy drink. Ben just shook his head with a smile. Yvonne asked him with a smile if he was reconsidering and he just shook his head and picked up a bottle of chilled water from the ice bucket by their table. She gave him a little pout and left to get their order.

"Are you flirting with our server Ben?" Lori asked with a wicked grin.

"What? No, of course not!" he looked back at her and saw she was teasing. He glowered playfully at the young woman.

"Should we try out that Steam Room? It sounds so amazing!" Penny gushed. She passed the pamphlet from the table over to Ben's outstretched hand and he took a look. The room was actually filled with steam!

"It's a steam room! With a DJ?!?" he exclaimed. Lisa and Lori giggled at his surprise.

"You're expected to change into bathing suits which they supply. It says fifteen minute maximum dancing in that room due to the heat. Then it's off to the co-ed showers which has its own DJ. You get another fifteen minutes then you go to the locker rooms, non-co-ed this time, and you get your clothes back. Is this a dance club or a spa?"

"Ben, today it's all about mixing experiences! There is a premium charge to dance there," Lisa explained.

He looked at the brochure again and sure enough there was a fee. $25 a person. "How popular could this be?"

"The DJ's that work those rooms are cutting edge! Why don't we stick with the regular dance floor for a few more sets and see how we feel. I think it might be fun!" Lori suggested.

"I'd love to try it," Karen smiled. Penny just grinned at her sister and shook her head. "What? Lori wants to try it too!" Karen said with a pout. Ben grinned at Karen because she looked so sweet! She caught Ben and smiled back at him. "See! Ben wants to try it too!" She poked her sister in the shoulder.

"He does not!" Penny said poking back.

"Ladies! Are we here to argue or are we here to dance?" Ben said with a raised eyebrow.

"DANCE!" they all cheered. Yvonne arrived with the shots and the ladies slammed them back on the count of three. Karen and Penny gasped and coughed but Lisa and Lori just closed their eyes and savored the burn.

"So you're off on a trip tomorrow?" Lisa asked.

"Yeah, I was told to stay away from my own renovation project to give my finger time to heal. Rochelle recommended a holiday so I asked her to come with me. Trish is coming too."

"If you are looking for travelling companions we'd travel anywhere with you Ben!" Lori said with a sultry look in her eyes.

Ben felt that look right down to his groin and he shifted on his chair to give himself more room in his pants. The twins both saw this and they smiled at each other.

The vodka arrived and Yvonne mixed this with the energy drink. Once more the women raised a toast and drank to the night. While the twins drank a third of theirs Karen and Penny loved the flavor and finished theirs quickly. Lisa and Lori tried to stop them but it was too late. They burst into giggles at the happy looks from the newbies.

"We'd better get them moving to burn some of that off!" Lisa giggled. Lori said she'd meet them on the dancefloor.

Ben shook his head. This was what he was worried about. Still, he could keep an eye on them.

They found a spot on the dancefloor which was starting to fill up and gave themselves over to the beat.

Lisa made sure she danced close to Ben and soon he was reacting to the occasional bump and stroke of their bodies against each other. When Lori returned Ben found himself in a redhead sandwich. Karen found someone to dance with that wasn't trying to paw at her and Penny was in a world of her own. Ben did his best to keep an eye on them and noticed that the twins weren't ignoring them either though their dance moves were getting him harder and harder.

Lori ground herself against him chest to chest during this one slower sets and her eyes were locked on his. Lisa was dancing with Penny and Karen still had her partner who was still behaving. Ben's body felt like a live wire was touching it each time Lori's body stroked against him. Lori bit her lip and gasped quietly as Ben's heat pressed against her in delicious ways.

The set changed and Lisa slipped in next to Ben as Lori danced away to take over the chaperone role. She gave Ben a sultry look full of promise before she left though and he returned the heat. He saw her eyes widen as did her smile.

Lisa picked up where her sister left off and by the beginning of the next set Ben was seriously charged up and either had to go cool off or he was going to have sex right there on the dancefloor. From Lisa's flushed and dreamy expression she would have been his willing partner.

Karen threw her arms around the neck of the man she was dancing with and kissed him sloppily. Lori was right there to pull her back. She apologized to the dazed but happy man and led the now very drunk blond back to Ben, snagging Penny's arm on the way. Ben gathered his daughters under his arms and led them back to the table. He felt the hands of the twins on his back as he made his way through the crowd and hands slid down to cup and squeeze his ass. He shook his head and they finally made it to the stairs leading up to the tables.

Ben was surprised to see Trish waiting for them.

"Hi Ben! Having a good time?"

"Yes, what are you doing here?" he asked.

"I called her as I knew our friends here would soon need a lift home," Lori said. They looked over and saw Karen and Penny downing another vodka energy drink mix.

"Woo!" Karen hooted. Lori was right. She was blitzed.

Trish stood close to Ben and smiled up into his concerned face. "It's fine Ben. I'll get them home safe and sound. You have fun with the twins." She hugged him and ground herself against his stiff cock.

"Oh fuck, I can't wait to get you down to that spa in..." she said hoping he'd slip and let her know the destination.

He just grinned and kissed her, hard.

She purred in his arms as their tongues stroked each other.

When he pulled back she was looking a little steamed up herself. "Fuck! You're a great kisser!"

Yvonne was standing there with a flush showing on her cheeks. Ben turned and approached his daughters. "Time for you two to call it a night."

"Awww!" they whined in unison and pouted.

"Did you have fun?" he asked firmly.

"Yes," they admitted and Karen grinned wickedly at him. He wondered at that but moved on.

"Trish is here to take you home. You did well tonight so we'll look into going out clubbing when we get back. Ok?"

Penny was wobbling on her feet and she gave him a happy smile and nod. Ben bent down and got a kiss on the cheek from her.

Karen crushed herself against him and her kiss was a little sloppy.

Trish grinned at him as she collected her charges and led them off to the coat check.

Ben looked at Lori. "That was really good thinking of you! Thank you both for keeping them out of trouble tonight!"

The twins pressed themselves against his chest and looked up into his eyes. "Did we earn a reward?"

Ben shivered with desire as their soft bodies rubbed against him. His voice was a little rough. "Yes, yes you did. What would you like?"

They bit their lips as they rubbed against him and glanced at each other with a smile.

"The Steam Room" they said in unison.

Warning bells were going off in Ben's head but the thought of dancing with these two beautiful women in a hot steamy room then in a shower short circuited his attention. He nodded and they squealed their glee.

They immediately began pulling him around the club towards the far side where a neon sign showed the entrance to the steam room. Stephan was there and greeted them with a wide grin. He waived their entrance fee and held open the door for them.

Inside they approached a counter where a woman handed the ladies each a clear plastic bag. There was a white bikini in each and a wrist band that activated the lock on one of the lockers inside the next room. They rushed off to go into the women's locker room with an excited look back at Ben. The woman smiled at Ben and handed him a bag as well. He looked nervously at the minimal amount of white fabric of his swim suit. He made his way into the men's locker room and found his locker.

The room was dim, warm, and a little hazy from the steam which must have been leakage from the next room. He quickly got changed and discovered he barely fit inside the swim suit. Knowing the ladies were waiting and he'd promised he put his clothes into the plastic bag, stuffed it in the locker and locked it.

Stepping into the actual steam room he felt the heat and humidity hit him in the face as well. A vibration on his wrist band made him look down at it. A timer on it had begun to count down. He admired the simple and effective mechanism.

The twins found him in the mist looking for the transponder that activated his timer. He barely heard their squeals over the incredibly powerful beat of the music the DJ was pouring into the room. Lisa and Lori tugged him closer to the main area where the steam, music, and lightshow was coming from. The steam was being lit up by red lights, giving the room a very decadent mood. The music switched to a slower beat and became sensual and the twin's dancing quickly got Ben's complete attention. Much to their delight.

He swayed and moved with them and admired how fit and sleek their bodies were. He assumed they kept in shape with all the dancing they did as he wasn't aware of any exercise routines they might have. They danced really well and his body was reacting! He glanced down but so far the steam and the swim suit were hiding everything that needed hiding. The steam also made the twin's bodies shine in the gleam of the colored spots set up around the room and the lasers flashing out from the DJ booth.

They found themselves dancing closer to the lightshow from the booth and Ben was heating up from more than the steaming climate in the room. While there was less crowding in this room which reduced the excuse to bump and touch, the happy, satisfied, knowing smiles on the twin's faces showed they were having a good time as well and knew Ben wanted them.

"This is your DJ Sebastien Rain keeping your feet moving in the Steam Room of Asylum. I have a shout out for a special guest, Ben Shepherd and his lovely ladies! Welcome to Asylum!"

Lisa and Lori's faces lit up with huge smiles and they squeezed Ben between them and waved at the DJ as all three faced the glass of the booth. They saw Stephan in the booth as well. There was a flash of white light and the music changed to a faster beat.

Ben's eyes were dazzled and he didn't see the other dancers getting closer to see the man they'd heard about, and saw so much of, in the media. That flash of white made him think of a camera's flash and that thought made him a little uncomfortable.

Lisa and Lori were both enjoying the feeling of Ben's hard muscles and didn't notice how crowded it was becoming in front of the booth until Ben began to move them away.

Once he saw he was becoming the center of attention Ben gradually moved them deeper into the room where the steam obscured their visibility. He felt a long vibration on his wrist and looked down to see the timer flashing zeroes. He looked around and saw the blue glow of the shower room exit. They danced their way over to the exit and when they passed through Ben felt is wrist band give two hard vibrations and he saw the clock had reset and was counting down again.

This room was cooler and they could see torrents of water falling from hundreds of shower heads lining the ceiling in pulses, driven by the 'wind' of the music and the location of the dancers. Lisa and Lori snagged some optional shower caps on their way in and covered their hair. They saw that the large room had a nature theme. The floor was covered with a spongy green material that felt like grass. Columns were disguised as trees and tall grasses were 'planted' in random locations. Soft yellow dots of light flickered on and off like fireflies. The ceiling was obscured by a mist and lights flickered above like lightning jumping through the clouds. All of this visual beauty was accompanied by a DJ driven soundtrack which made them want to move!

Lisa grinned and pulled Ben out onto the 'green' and immediately they felt the soft droplets of 'rain' start above them. As they danced Lori joined them and the water really began to fall. They danced and moved around until they'd found themselves a dark alcove. The lighting was still subdued which made it feel like they were out at dusk on a summer night playing in the rain. Ben was stunned by how real it all felt. The bonus was it was dark enough that they felt like they were alone. He was grinning like a big kid and the twins were loving it as well.
Adrenalin pumping Ben scooped them both up in his arms against his chest and they squealed as he spun them around. God they felt good against his skin! When he set them back down on their feet Lori immediately pulled his head down to hers and she kissed him, pressing her tits against his chest. He slid his tongue into her mouth and pulled her in tight. When they parted he had to keep hold of her as she was wobbling. She pressed her lips to his shoulder as she ground herself against his leg.

Ben pulled Lisa against him and kissed her boldly as well. She moaned into his mouth as his hand squeezed her ass, holding her tight against his other leg.

Lori began to shake as her body crested through a delicious orgasm. She cried out and bit down gently on Ben's shoulder.

Lisa was right there with her sister. Ben's forceful moves in this public spot ripped away their inhibitions and she came hard. She clung to him as she trembled.

Ben slowly became aware of his surroundings once more and realized they had an audience. About a dozen young dancers were frozen, watching their display of passion. Some couples were holding each other tight, bodies moving in sympathy with the twin's movements. Others were unable to move or look away. Ben stared down his audience and the moment was broken. The people quickly made their way to the exit, bursting with the need to tell their friends about what they'd just witnessed.

Lisa and Lori rolled their foreheads against Ben's shoulders until they could see each other across his chest. They shared a look of love and contentment which became grins of excitement. They'd just made love to Ben in public! Well, almost. They were still dressed, mostly.

Ben got them moving again and they rinsed themselves off in the rain. They parted at the entrance to the locker rooms and Ben heard a burst of giggles as the twins went inside. He wasn't sure if it was them or not. He walked into the men's change room and grabbed a towel. In the brighter light of this room he saw the white swim suits became translucent when wet. That seemed like a bad idea.

He dried off and got dressed. When he stepped out of the locker room back into the foyer he spotted Stephane speaking excitedly to a young man which looked like one of the voyeurs. He frowned and the young man spotted him, nodded to Stephane and quickly walked out into the main area of the club.

The club manager spun and smiled at Ben. He came rushing over. "Mr. Shepherd! What did you think of the Steam Room?"

Ben was a little taken aback by the man's excitement. Still, he deserved an answer.

"As a mechanical engineer by trade I was really impressed by the engineering involved but once I was able to put that aside I let myself just absorb the ambiance. The Steam Room is unique and wonderful! Dancing there was amazing! But it was the Shower Room that really affected me. The gestalt of the experience was... transcendent. I wasn't in the club anymore. It was more than a little liberating. Thank you for that."

Stephane looked like he might cry but they were tears of joy. Ben shook his hand and the man bowed slightly and rushed out into the club. Ben watched him leave then turned as he heard the happy voices of the twins. He smiled as they skipped over to him and he hugged them to his chest. He gave them both a sweet kiss on the lips and guided them out into the club.

The lights moving across the floor and ceiling display were in deep tones of blues with streaks of white and red. As Ben walked back to their tables he watched the patterns in the lights and became a little mesmerized. Lisa was also watching it with a smile and stopped so abruptly Ben bumped into her.

"What's wrong?" he asked as he saw her eyes were wide as she followed the moving lights.

"It's us!" she gasped.

Lori walked back and watched the moving lights as well. "Ohmygod! It is us!" She began to laugh and Lisa joined in.

Ben looked up and allowed his eyes to take in the shapes as they moved. He froze. It was them! In the dark corner of the shower room. Someone had filmed them with a cell camera but luckily the low light quality made the image more abstract. He felt relief for that at least. It was actually beautiful in an impressionist painting kind of way. He smiled and hugged the ladies. They'd made art and this time he didn't really have to worry about being identified.

They continued on to their table and the twins had another drink while Ben drank some spring water. He caught Lori yawning and raised an eyebrow at her. She smiled sheepishly.

"Yes, I'm a little pooped," she admitted.

Lisa was hiding her yawn behind her hand but Lori yanked it away as she didn't want to be the only one.

"OK, it's time to take you lovely ladies home."

"Awww!" they said in unison and Ben flashed back to earlier in the evening with Karen and Penny. He grinned and stood up. He helped them to their feet and Yvonne arrived with their last premium bottle and a tray of shots.

Ben looked a few tables over and saw a group of women who seemed to be celebrating a birthday or a stagette. One of the women had stick on bows in her hair. There were at least six women at the table.

"Yvonne, please take these drinks to those ladies with my compliments," Ben said and slipped her a fifty as a tip. She smiled and carried the tray over to the table and pointed over her shoulder as she spoke to them. The group craned their necks to look at their benefactor as he walked by with the twins.

"OHMYGOD! OHMYGOD! KELLY! IT'S HIM! THE BRONZE MAN!" one of the ladies screeched and jumped to her feet. She was tall and very thin. Ben saw she had an oversized button pinned to her dress that said 'Maid of Horror'. The woman with the bows was next to her feet and her button said 'Bridezilla'. She was much shorter and a little plump. The rest of the group scrambled to join them.

"I'm Ceecee and this is Kelly, who's getting married tomorrow! Please! You have to join us for a drink!" Ceecee gasped.

"Sorry, we're just heading home," Ben said with a smile.

"Could- could I get a picture with you?" Kelly asked.

Thinking of his run at the daycare in with Mike, Dawn's jealous husband he was hesitant. "How good of a sport is your fiancé?"

"Jerry has a great sense of humor!" Ceecee said but some of the other ladies didn't look so convinced.

"How about one picture with just Kelly and one with the group then we go. OK?" Ben said.

The group nodded and Yvonne, Lisa, and Lori got roped into being the photographers as everyone handed their phones over.

Ben stood next to the table and the ladies crowded around him. Some of their hands were wandering a little but Ben held his pose until all the pictures were taken.

"Ok, now just Kelly," Ben said, trying to ignore the last few bold touches. He was getting a little annoyed at their expectation that he would be ok with being pawed.

The woman was so much shorter than Ben so he picked her up in his arms. She squeaked then grinned madly for the cameras. He hoped this wouldn't come back to haunt him.

Ben set her down on her feet, disengaged himself from her grip, said his good lucks and good nights, and made a beeline for the coat check with the twins in tow.

"You made her night Ben. Maybe her life. I doubt anyone has ever lifted her like that," Lisa said as she put her jacket on. He just smiled at them as he ushered them out. He thanked Damien and assured the man that they'd return. There was still a large line waiting to get inside. Ben got the ladies into his truck and headed home. Lori had called shotgun so she got to sit up front with Ben.

When they pulled into Daphne's driveway he shut the engine and turned to face the twins.

"Thank you for an amazing night of dinner and dancing. Thank you especially for keeping an eye on the girls. You showed amazing responsibility and I no longer have reservations about you two taking them out dancing with you. Karen is still a bit of a concern for me so I'll ask you to remain extra vigilant with her. I'll walk you to your door."

"Can we get a goodnight kiss here in your truck where it's warm?" Lori asked.

Ben smiled. "Sure."

Lori was pressed up against his body and her amazing mouth was against his before he was ready but he caught up pretty quickly. Ben felt himself swelling in his pants and realized this was not a good idea before he went to bed. He'd need a cold shower. He gently pulled Lori off of his chest and set her back on the seat.

Lisa leaned over the seat and her kiss was slower and more sensual which just made Ben's cock harder.

When she pulled back Ben sighed. Cold shower it is. He glanced at the clock on the dash. It was almost 2AM and he had to be up in a few hours to drive to the airport. So no cold shower.

"Stay in the truck Ben. We're just steps away. Have a wonderful time on your trip and think of us being there in our real bikinis!" Lisa said with a wicked smile.

"Out you go before you give me a permanent erection!" Ben snarled playfully, causing them to giggle as they slipped from the truck. He watched them go inside then drove home and parked in his garage. He went inside quietly and made his way into the master bedroom. He saw Tina and Lucy under the covers and he smiled. He tugged off his clothes, slipped into the bathroom and closed the door. He was still stiff as iron but he'd just ignore it.

He was brushing his teeth when the bathroom door opened and a face peered in at him. Lucy smiled at him and slipped inside.

"What are you doing up?" he asked. "Was I making too much noise?"

"No, Tina asked me to keep an eye out for you as you were going to come home with one of those," Lucy said with a smile pointing to his bobbing erection.

"How did she- never mind," he mumbled. Of course Tina knew he'd return horny. He was on a date with the twins.

Lucy knelt before him.

"You don't need to do that. It will go away."

She looked up at him with a pleading expression. "Please Ben, I promised Tina and I really, really want to."

Ben was caught by how beautiful she looked and how incredibly sexy it was to have a woman ask to do this for him. He was rendered speechless so he just nodded and leaned back against the counter.

Showing her desire, Lucy wasted no time in stroking his length with her tongue.

"Oh shit, yes!" Ben gasped.

She ran her tongue roughly over the head of his cock and Ben shook with need.

Then his cock was plunging down into her throat.

"Fuck!" Ben struggled to keep his voice down.

Lucy drove her head down over Ben's cock and pumped him deep into her throat again and again until he felt his mind beginning to leave his body.

Then he was cumming hard in her mouth as she stroked his length with her hands. Her throat was working and she was concentrating hard but finally he relaxed so she did as well. He handed her a glass of water which she took with a smile. She rinsed and swallowed a few times and looked up at him with a surprised look.

"That was a lot of cum! Did they have you hard all night?" she asked quietly.

Ben chuckled. "Not all night."

He helped her to her feet and kissed her tenderly. He felt her tremble in his arms and his kiss became more passionate. She moaned gently as his tongue stroked across hers and she clung tighter to him. When his hardening cock rose up to press against her mound she gasped at its heat. Ben felt the heat coming from her and he ground his body against hers.

"Oh fuck Ben!" she gasped quietly against his chest.

He lifted her up in his arms and she wrapped her arms and legs around his body. He kissed her hard and rubbed his cock along her wet pussy as she squirmed. He repositioned her and guided the thick head of his cock to press against her pussy. He took it slow and felt her gradually welcoming him inside. Lucy pulled back from his mouth to grit her teeth and shake as the slowness was such a tease. She wanted him inside her but he was controlling the pace. Slowly he went deeper and deeper until her body was screaming for release. She felt so full!

"Fuck Ben, you're so wonderfully big!" she sighed.

Hands on her ass, Ben lifted and dropped Lucy on his cock and her mind was gone. Each drop ended with Ben lifting his hips up to slap their bodies together.

Lucy was racing to her release and was biting her lip to keep from screaming out her ecstasy.

Ben squeezed her ass cheeks and increased his speed and she was gone. He felt her pussy clamping down on his cock in pulses and she pressed her face to his shoulder to stifle her cries. He held her tight against him as she returned to earth.

She slumped against him panting after he lifted her off his still hard cock. "I- was supposed- to- take care- of that," she panted.

"And you did very well," he said as he gently returned her to her feet. He grabbed a facecloth, quickly cleaned himself off then applied lubricant to his cock. "I just want to say goodnight to Tina."

She grinned wickedly at him as he slipped out into the bedroom.

Sure enough he saw the light glint off of Tina's open eyes. She was on her side facing the bathroom door and her fingers had been busy. Obviously they weren't as quiet as they should have been. Tina's tummy was resting on the mattress and she was panting quietly. When she saw Ben's thick cock bobbing between his legs as he approached the bed she squeaked.

Ben grinned as he heard her react. He quickly got on the bed behind her and swooped down to kiss her neck and nibble his way to her mouth. She turned her head and her delicious lips were against his. He kissed her, dipping his tongue just inside to touch the tip of her tongue and she moaned with need. She was close which was good because so was he.

He rolled onto his back, lifting her up onto his body and she gasped. He couldn't see where he was positioned and was wondering how to fix that when he felt a hand grip his cock at the base and position it against Tina's hot pussy lips. He realized it had to be Lucy as Tina was still clinging to his arm wrapped around her chest under her tits. He slid her body down his chest and his cock plunged inside. Tina cried out as she couldn't keep her bliss contained.

Ben moaned as well as Tina felt so good and he was so close!

Then he felt it.

Lucy's tongue slowly sliding up his cock from his balls as the head was being caressed by the inner walls of Tina's hot pussy.

"OH FUCK!" Ben gasped and he felt Lucy's breath gust out over his skin as she chuckled at his reaction.

Higher her tongue climbed and Ben realized she wasn't stopping. Ben began thrusting more rapidly as the thought of what she was about to do lit a fire in him.

Tina clamped her hands over her mouth as Lucy reached her target. Lucy kissed, licked and sucked on Tina's sensitive clit as Ben thrust up into her roughly with his need. It was too much for her and she began to convulse with the strength of the orgasm that exploded through her.

Lucy's darting tongue worked its magic for Ben too as he clung to Tina's body while his cock sprayed his cum into her trembling channel.

Tina reached down and pulled at Lucy to make her stop and move up the bed. When Ben and Tina could see the auburn beauty's smiling yet nervous expression the small Korean woman pulled her down until their lips touched. Her small tongue slipped into Lucy's mouth and she slid her fingers through her silky brown locks. Lucy was whimpering with happiness as Tina kissed her.

When Tina lifted Lucy's face once more there were tears in her eyes but they were happy tears.

"I love you Tina!" Lucy cried.

"I love you too, my flower," Tina said, running her fingers over Lucy's cherry blossom tattoos on her shoulders.

Ben was deeply moved and wasn't sure what to do. He didn't want to break the moment. He'd seen signs of Lucy's affection for Tina but hadn't grasped the depths of Tina's love for her in return. He felt awestruck for being a witness to this moment.

"Ben is very happy about this too but maybe he should get some sleep," Tina said with a smile in her voice. As they were both still connected very intimately she'd felt his response to watching them kiss.

He blushed and hugged her as he pulled himself free. Lucy disappeared then he felt her mouth on him once more as she 'cleaned' him. She was quick then darted away into the bathroom to return with damp facecloths to truly clean her lovers with.

Ben gently rolled Tina back onto the bed and she sighed with contentment. She flipped onto her other side to face Ben and gave him a tender kiss.

When Lucy slipped back into bed Ben gave her a kiss as well and tucked the two women against him. His alarm was set for... ugh, two hours from now. Luckily sleep came quickly.

Chapter 7

Ben sat in the airport waiting area with Rochelle and Trish waiting to board their flight. He'd got them to the airport but he was aching for more sleep. He tried not to let his grumpiness leak out.

When Rochelle and Trish learned at the check-in desk they were heading off to an all-inclusive spa in Costa Rica they squealed a little and there were hugs and kisses. The clerk behind the desk enjoyed the show and Ben's embarrassment.

Now they waited. Boarding would begin in thirty minutes and with luck Ben would be able to get some sleep on the flight, the ladies had graciously given him the window seat. He tried to ignore the incessant babbling coming from the talking heads on the TV's positioned over the seating area.

He had just about dozed off when Rochelle grabbed his arm.

"What?" Ben gasped as he jerked awake.

"Ben! You're on TV again!" the woman hissed quietly.

He turned his blurry eyes to the set across from them and sure enough there he was in all his almost naked glory, the exception being the white bathing suit. That burst of white light he'd been dazzled by in the Steam Room had been from a camera's flash! Worse, his swim suit was well on its way to being translucent by that point so while he was covered you could certainly fill in the missing parts by the hints shown. He was instantly worried the twins would also have been exposed. He strained to hear what the vacuous blond on the set was saying.

"...slice of that, right? Well, mystery man Ben Shepherd was once more flaunting that gorgeous body of his at a local dance club last night in the company of two lovely companions." The image of Ben was replaced with a wider shot which included the twins but the room's steam combined with the flash of light obscured their faces. Ben sighed with relief. "Some guests reported that Ben was seen having his way with these young women in the dark corners of the dance club after dancing for hours."

Ben moaned as the dark image of him holding the twins against him appeared but once more he was relieved to see the image was no clearer on this screen. Based on the proportions of the figures in the image you could tell it was likely the same people from the previous image. He was the only one facing the camera and you still couldn't really make out his features. He still thought it was a lovely image and it might make a nice painting.

The scene cut to some stock scenes of the interior of the club. "The Asylum was recently renovated and has become a hotspot for the young and, obviously, young at heart. Club manager Stephane Guillotte spoke with us last night shortly after Mr. Shepherd left with the two women."

Stephane was smiling at the camera as the dancers moved behind him. "I spoke with Ben after he emerged from the Steam Room and he called the experience 'transcendent'! He's a lovely man and seemed to have a very good time tonight! We hope to see him again, soon!"

The scene cut to a group of women celebrating and Ben saw Ceecee and Kelly standing before their friends. "We understand you had a visit from Ben Shepherd."
Ceecee leaned in, obviously drunk out of her mind. "He bought us drinks and we took some pictures with him. God, his body felt good!"

Ben moaned in dismay once more and Rochelle shared an anxious look with Trish who took Ben's hand to calm him.

The camera swung to Kelly who was also hammered. "He picked me up-" she froze then began to giggle uncontrollably as she heard the double meaning of her words and Ceecee began to laugh as well. "No! No... I mean he lifted me in his arms!" Kelly slapped ineffectively at her friend who was laughing hysterically but silently as she was so far gone. Kelly looked right at the camera. "He was so strong! It felt like he could do anything to me... wait! No! I love you Jerry!"

When the TV cut back to show the two TV anchors grinning foolishly at each other Ben leaned forward to put his face in his hands and groaned.

Curious eyes turned in their direction and recognition flared on more than a few faces. Rochelle shared a glance with Trish. Maybe it was a good idea to get out of town for a while.

They finally boarded the plane and took their seats. Ben had booked the bulkhead row as it gave him more leg room. It was also the emergency exit row so they had a visit from the flight attendant to go over the evacuation procedure. When she arrived she froze as she saw who was sitting next to the emergency door.

"Oh my gosh! This is the first time I've met a celebrity on one of my flights!" the young woman said. Ben looked up at her shocked and delighted expression and tried not to glower. She had to be in her early twenties, fresh out of school in her first real job. Her accent placed her from somewhere in the Midwest. Sandy blond hair pulled back in a tight bun, big blue eyes under fair brows, button nose and an oversized smile that was all white teeth. Her grey and white uniform maybe a touch too tight for her curvy physique. She probably just slipped in under the radar for the unofficial flight attendant weight restrictions. Her coworkers seemed to have the gaunt, underfed look that was the standard for this airline. Her nametag said 'Tracy'. Ben sighed. It was time to let 'Tracy' know she hadn't met one yet, gently.

"I'm not a celebrity, sorry."

"But... you're in the news and on TV and in the magazines and all over the Internet. What else does it take to be a celebrity?" she gushed back at him.

"What about the desire to be one? The willingness to give up your privacy-"

"BEN!" Rochelle barked to defuse the building explosion.

He looked into her worried eyes and shuddered from the surge of unused adrenaline. "Sorry." He looked up at the flight attendant who had a puzzled look in her big blue eyes. "My apologies."

"Ben had a late night after a rough week," Trish explained gesturing to her own finger where Ben's was in a splint.

"Would ya like a blanket and pillow?" the girl asked quietly.

"Please," Ben said with a strained smile and she moved off to find one.

He settled back in his chair and got as comfortable as he could in the small seat. He needed the pillow as the seat back wasn't high enough to rest his head back but he could lean his head against the window... if he had a pillow.

Passengers continued to stream by making their way to their seats. Ben did his best to ignore the few who took a second look at him and the ones who said his name or made comments, both good and bad.

Trish and Rochelle picked up on Ben's agitation and they shared a worried look. Trish was sitting by the aisle and kept her eye out for Attendant Tracy and the promised pillow and blanket.

"Dude! It's him!"

"Who?"

"The Bronze Dude! The one who banged those hot bitches in the club last night!"

"OH SHIT! YOU'RE NOT KIDDING!"

The smell of weed poured from the two young men and their eyes were badly bloodshot from over indulgence.

Ben turned a scowl at the intruding voices and felt Rochelle's hand on his arm.

"Teach us your ways, oh master!"

"Whoa! Are these MILF's with you? You are so our hero!"

Ben surged up out of his seat and Rochelle grabbed him around the waist while Trish got between Ben and the two young men who lurched back in surprise.

"I'M... NOBODY'S... GOD... DAMN... HERO!" Ben thundered out between clenched teeth as Trish slowly used her superior leverage to push him back down.

Rochelle finally managed to pull him past the tipping point and he fell back into his seat. She rested on his chest trying to catch her breath and heard his heart beat racing... and his breath catching in his chest.

Trish felt the sting of a slap on her ass which was quickly followed by a squeal of pain as her elbow snapped into the eye of the slapper.

"Oh! I'm so sorry, there is so little space in the aisle here!" Trish gushed as she discretely stomped her foot down on the bare toes of his grinning companion. There was a definite snap sound as a tiny bone broke under the pressure of her narrow boot heel. More screams.

Tracy finally returned with the pillow and blanket and Trish plucked them from the shocked woman's fingers. She passed them back to Rochelle who got Ben situated.

"Wh-what happened here?" Tracy squeaked.

"These two were making a nuisance of themselves and I stood up to speak to them. There is just so little space in this aisle and with the overhead bin I guess I lost my balance. They really should go take their seats so we can get underway though," Trish explained.

The 'dude' with the black eye opened his mouth to argue and Trish looked him straight in his good eye. His mouth snapped shut in a rare moment of wisdom. He dragged his hobbling buddy along as they made their way to the back.

"Thank you for the blanket and pillow," Trish said and sat. Tracy gave her a confused look and moved off.

Trish looked over at Ben but he was leaning up against the window with his pillow and the blanket pulled up over his head. She hoped he would get some sleep.

Rochelle had her hand on Ben's leg. She turned a troubled look towards her friend and mouthed the word 'trembling'. Trish shared her concern.

Under the blanket Ben struggled to get his breathing to steady while his chest felt tight and his eyes watered constantly. His nerves were screaming at him to run but he was in a plane. He had to calm down. The temptation to order a drink was almost overpowering as he knew it would help.

He felt Rochelle's hand resting on his leg and he drew strength from it. He reached down and placed his hand over hers and felt himself tilt back towards the side of coping. He could do this. With their help.

Rochelle felt Ben's hand clasp hers and she felt his trembling begin to slow. She did that. It was her. She brought this big man comfort and strength.

She bit her lip to keep herself from crying. She'd never done that for a man before. She felt empowered. For once she was the strong one, someone others could lean on. She looked over at Trish who saw her happiness and took her other hand.

Their vacation might be having a rocky start but it was looking like it was going to have some rather profound moments. That thought brought a smile to Rochelle's lips.

Costa Rica here we come!

afield   shepherd  

May 20, 2018 in romance

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