Book 1: Melt in My Mouth
Curiosity killed the cat, or so they say.
They should have never come.
They don’t belong here.
Then again, neither do we.
Temperature Regulation Disorder
I stared at the goddamn medical certificate in my hands, trying not to react as I sat at the foot of my bed.
I wasn’t sure if I wanted to cry or burst out laughing. For the second year in a row, Dr. Faye Coffman had given me the same diagnosis.
The description below was a crock load of bullshit if I had ever read one: The patient’s body is unable to regulate internal temperature and is constantly in a hyperactive state of discomfort.
“This is a joke, right?” I mumbled to no one in particular, tears gathering at the corners of my eyes.
Heat exploded in my belly, and I fought to keep from crying out as pain shocked my system. It wasn’t always like this, but the surges had been awfully intense today and really close together.
I gave the paper one last glance before balling it up and chucking it across the room. It wasa joke, a cover to keep the real issue under wraps.
As the second heir to the Eldamar empire, my image reflected on the family name that my sister, Calanthe, would one day assume control over.
My father, who was basically royalty to the city for his business dealings with tech gurus around the world, couldn’t have a “princess” who was “constantly in heat”running around the premises, mucking things up.
Yes, while the official diagnosis was a regulation disorder, the truth of the matter was simple.
I was in heat.
All the damn time.
Like a fucking animal.
Every day I hovered between a constant state of arousal and pain—the desperate need to be fucked, always at the edge of my mind.
Many have tried to sate me, but few have succeeded. Even with those who did, the success lasted mere minutes before my body started yearning for more.
It was a painful existence, and with no drugs to soothe the ache between my legs, I was supposed to just deal with it. Quietly.
That wasn’t even the worst part.
It was the fact that I had been labeled the sickly sister, the one who couldn’t attend public functions, the one who had a problem sitting still, the promiscuous one.
Then again, the freedom that I was granted to roam our lavish accommodations was in stark contrast to the rules that Calanthe had to follow. The prim and proper life she was forced to live, I’d wish on no one.
To be honest, I didn’t even understand what my father did nor how he had amassed such wealth.
Maybe I should have asked questions, but since I wasn’t going to be required to do anything other than exist, I didn’t really care.
I dropped a hand to my stomach and rubbed furiously as I hoped it would dispel the soreness poking at my insides.
“Same bullshit reasoning?”
My head whipped around to see my best friend and personal maid, Vivienne—Enne—entering the room with a pile of towels for my bathroom.
I hated that she worked for my father but I was glad to have someone I could share my deepest, darkest secrets with.
I managed a small nod. My voice was just a little too high-pitched for my liking. “Enne! Where have you been? Yes, same thing.”
She smirked at my overeager response, knowing full well I was trying to mask the unrest thrumming through my body. Setting down the towels, she sat beside me and placed a gentle hand on my leg.
The coolness of her hand was a relief to my high body temperature, but it wasn’t enough.
“I’ve got you two presents.” Enne began, meeting my eyes with a sincerity I wished I could see reflected in my parents’ expressions, even just once. “Which one would you like first?”
I suppose I should have remembered that tomorrow was my twenty-fifth birthday, a milestone of epic proportions in the Eldamar family.
Unfortunately, I wasn’t much of an exhibit compared to Calanthe, and the festivities that had been scheduled were only half as grand as hers had been.
I wasn’t complaining; it was just hard to digest that I would always be second-best.
Enne nudged my shoulder, dragging me out of my head. “Noli, don’t worry about tomorrow. Just stay in the present. Now, which one?” Her deep-brown eyes flashed with amusement at my uncertainty.
“Um,” My thighs pressed together as I fought the urge to let the moan bubbling up in my throat slip out. “The smaller one.”
It didn’t matter though, the slight rasp to my words gave me away. Used to my unusual tics, Enne didn’t mind.
Her smile widened as she unearthed a sliver of a newspaper and laid it in my awaiting hands, my eyes bulging at the bold title across the top.
I scoured the article for details, drinking in every last bit of chaos.
Two months ago, the world discovered that the earth’s core wasn’t just this molten, hot, ball of lava. It was hollow. Barren and deathly cold.
I don’t understand most of the specifics but apparently, there are hollow pockets in random spots just beneath the earth’s surface as well. One such pocket was fifteen miles from our estate.
The phenomenon had thrown the world into overdrive, every available resource focused on this discovery.
Unfortunately, it seemed to have released some kind of evil , with victims turning up frozen in areas where the air couldn’t have possibly become cold enough to do so.
Something was out there, but everyone was too intrigued with the science to realize that maybe we should have left well enough alone.
Even as my mind raced trying to decipher the mystery in these words, I shifted on the bed, the pain turning into desire, that moan I’d been fighting so hard slipping from my lips.
Enne just giggled. “Would you like the next present now?”
The paper crinkled in my hands as my body trembled, telling me I had moments until my core started yelling for relief. I fucking hated this. I gave her a feeble nod, shifting again.
“You can come in now.”
My door swung open, and the pool boy stepped inside with a deviant grin plastered on his face. His gaze was stuck on me, wandering scantily clad in my pajamas.
It felt like I was in some terrible porno as my entire body reacted, my nipples pebbling beneath my camisole in response to the six-foot monstrosity that had just entered my private space.
He looked like a douche, with his blond hair and hazel eyes. Muscles lined his arms and thighs. My tongue darted out to lick my lips. The longer I stared, the more I realized this was a terrible idea.
Enne’s “presents” were always welcome, but this little shit worked for my father. They were always the ones who thought I could be a stepping stone to something more.
I always had to break it to them that I was the discarded Eldamar. Nothing more than a blemish on an otherwise perfect lineage.
Still, I wasn’t going to give up the opportunity to test drive that bulge between his legs.
“He’ll do,” I whispered.
Enne barked out a laugh.
Then again, I had never turned someone away before. Even if the relief was momentary, it was still relief.
“Well then, all yours, baby.” She leaned over to place a kiss on my cheek. Before vacating the room, she patted the pool boy’s chest twice. “Make sure she can’t walk when you’re done.”
My face reddened at the implication but I knew this dickhead wouldn’t be able to accomplish such a feat. No one had before and I had dropped my standards real low.
The door swung shut, leaving the two of us, the air tense with what was about to unfold. I leaned back, propping myself up on my hands as I stared at him, trying to figure out what his name was.
In the end, it wouldn’t matter. We have never crossed paths before; we wouldn’t after this meeting, either.
He clasped his hands in front of him, his shoulders relaxing only slightly. “Permission to—”
Yeah, we weren’t going to do that. I hated all the posturing around royalty because we weren’t royalty.
My father was just insanely rich and liked to play as if that gave him some kind of superior status. The fact that I had heard my name connected with “princess” irritated the fuck out of me.
“Fuck all that shit. Just come over here and fuck me, would you?” Heat wrapped around my thighs, my pussy contracting around nothing, screaming to be filled.
One of the worst things about my “disorder” was the crabbiness and frustration that followed when I remained unfulfilled.
As it stood, it had been nearly three days since I was last fucked into my mattress and I was horny as shit.
I trusted Enne to find me someone who wasn’t a goddamn disaster. But there have been a few who, neither one of us could have imagined, would be so fucking bad it was hilarious.
He hesitated for another moment before stalking toward me like a predator, wrapping his arms around my back and hoisting me up.
His lips were dangerously close to mine, his eyelids sliding closed. I didn’t know what he was getting at but whatever it was, wasn’t going to happen here.
His grip released slightly, shocked at my declaration. I knew my conquests spread rumors about spending time in my bedroom, but surely everyone knew this wasn’t about romance.
He set me back on the mattress as I scooted up the bed, pressing myself against the headboard. He climbed on after me, crawling forward like he was going to devour me.
The game he was trying to play was already pissing me off.
“Fair. Any hard limits, love?” He tried to purr. Oh God, he tried, but it just didn’t measure up.
My nose wrinkled, gaze dropping down to his package, wishing he’d just whip it out and use it. “Yes. Love? No fucking pet names. Hard limit. Just fuck me.”
“Of course, Princess—”
“And please, for the love of God, stop talking.”
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