This Dom

By: Alaska Angelini

Devlin Black book 3


Chapter 1

Devlin



Loss had the power to destroy even the strongest of men and women. I’d had my fair share throughout life. My infant brother when I was eight. My mother a few years later. Then, my father. The grief I’d endured throughout my years was vast. With each piece of myself I lost, the emptiness left behind pulled me even deeper into a place I wasn’t sure I would ever be able to crawl out of. Yet, I’d somehow done it.

But even throughout all that had happened in my thirty-five years, nothing hurt as much as knowing I was going to lose my own child. With each torturous second that ticked by, time was stealing what I had created with the person I loved. Agony shredded my heart, tearing it into a million pieces. And it was all because of me. Because of what I’d done.

So clearly, I could still see the expression on Victoria’s face as Justine held the phone out to her. I knew what was on the screen. Knew…because I’d put all those welts and bruises on Justine’s body. Been sent those graphic pictures almost every day since I’d strapped her to the St. Andrew’s cross and marked her up with every BDSM tool imaginable.

Victoria and I hadn’t been together then. But it was the timing and lying by omission that had been my damnation. I should have told her.

Not two hours after I had Dommed Justine, my guilt had driven me to Victoria. I’d gone to her bed practically begging her to use me. Then, I had only hoped she loved me. I didn’t know that her lack of trust in believing that I had actually changed was the only thing keeping her from committing and allowing us to have a wonderful life together. But when I’d learned I had a child with her and she’d been willing to try to become a family, I hid my actions concerning Justine, weaving a secret so full of consequences; our second baby wasn’t going to make it.

Her reaction from trying to get away from what she’d seen on that small screen was still fresh in my mind. The nausea I felt when she fell and landed on the driveway still lingered even hours later.

There was nothing I could do. Nothing anyone could do, but wait. Time. It had more power than anything in the world. More so than money. Or life. Because time never ran out. Never stopped. The damn thing kept going, killing everything its path. I hated it. Hated that there was nothing I could do but let the death of my child drag out for who knew how long.

Maybe I deserved this torment. Should have suffered because of the slip I had made back into my old ways, but not her. Never her. She had already experienced the consequences of her deliberate withholding from me; it wasn’t fair for her to endure any more pain. For two years, she’d witnessed me drunk and grossly inappropriate with countless women. Doing things in public that no one should have seen. Especially her. It was no wonder she’d hidden Ava’s identity from me. I wasn’t excusing her behavior. We both knew what she’d stolen from me. But after all that, here we were again. Her hurting, because of something I did. This time, though, I was feeling the effects just as much.

“I want you to leave.”

The sob that followed sliced into my skin. I looked up from the chair that rested next to the bed to see her back through the hospital gown. She wouldn’t look at me; couldn’t bear that I was anywhere near her.

One week. That’s all I’d been given of her professed love. One measly fucking week. It was all I had wanted since I’d met her and it took me that long to bring it crashing to the Goddamn ground. Fuck, I should have just confessed from the beginning.

“I already told you, I’m not going anywhere. You’re carrying my child. I want to be here.” My voice was just as weak as I felt. I was nothing more than a crumbling mess on the inside and all I wanted to do was hold her. To break down for the first time in my life with her in my arms. I was sorry. So fucking sorry for what I caused. But there was no point in telling her that. I already had; a million times since I’d seen the blood denoting her miscarriage. At first, I was in shock, not sure what it meant. But then I remembered her fall and almost died in that same moment. Shit, maybe I had. Maybe this was hell for me. To live a life without the only ones I loved. To spend the rest of my years alone.

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