Thursday 20 May
~ Charlie ~
I could have kicked myself for not telling Daisy about the record deal. I mean, I’d mentioned it, yeah. Just maybe not in such definite terms. And when I signed up for it, well that was ages ago. I didn’t have any idea if Daisy and I would even be seeing each other, let alone getting married. The whole getting-married thing still seemed a bit unreal, but hey. It would be good. I was sure.
AJ wasn’t convinced it was such a great idea. “I love you, bro, but let’s be real here. You’re not known for keeping your pants zipped. Please don’t hurt Daisy.”
His suggestion stung. “You’ve shagged every model and movie star this side of the Atlantic, if you believe the tabloids. When you hooked up with Sylvie, you changed. Why can’t I?”
“The stories were just that. Fiction. And besides, I had relationships before Sylvie. More than you.”
“I’ve had relationships. They’ve just been short ones.”
AJ snorted, his amusement clear. “One nighters don’t count.”
“You don’t think I can do this, do you?”
He held up his hands. “Hey. If you think you can, that’s what matters.”
“Takes one to know one.” He sighed, and rubbed his face with both hands. “Look. I know you better than anyone. And I know how quickly you get bored. I’m just saying, don’t rush into this. ‘Kay? Have fun being engaged, but take your time. Be sure about this.”
“Like you rushed into marrying Sylvie?”
One eyebrow lifted at my heated words. “Syl and I were friends for months before we got together. We just had a very short engagement.”
“Same with me and Daisy.” I’d no desire to argue with AJ, and figured walking away now was best, before I said something I might regret. Out of everyone, I thought he would understand. Maybe not.
Daisy seemed unsettled, so I offered to help her in the kitchen. My cooking skills bordered on zero it had to be said, but I mixed some wicked cocktails and looked diligent chopping up some mango and chillies for a salsa.
I’d already figured out with Daisy that I just had to make her laugh to distract her. So I did. I juggled a pair of mangos, showed her some neat—but messy—conjuring tricks with ice cubes and turned up the music player for dancing to. By this time her tantrum was gone, smiles prevailed and she was soon getting tipsy and giggly with me. Especially when I told her I’d buy her a proper engagement ring from Tiffany, New York. Yep, I was forgiven.
I coaxed Daisy into sharing a bath while dinner cooked. She got in first and slid down in the water until the foam bubbles came up to her neck. She’d no idea, but I’d bought a new toy and I looked forward to seeing her reaction to it.
I stepped out of my boxers, my hard-on rearing forward at the sight of Daisy, so enticing. I slipped into the water, shifting her to make room for me, and settled behind her so that she sprawled between my legs.
“We don’t often bathe together. This is fun.” I heard the smile in her voice.
“It can be even more fun.” I stretched out one hand to the bright pink silicone duck that sat on the edge of the bath. “Hey, what’s this?” I knocked it into the water and it bobbed on the surface, just like a regular bath toy.
“A pink duck? I’ve never seen that before.”
“Pick it up. Take a closer look.”
She lifted it out of the water with care, as though it was going to bite her. “It’s a pink duck. Since when have you had toys in the bath, Charlie?”
“Aha.” I closed my hand over hers. “This is a very special duck. It’s a fucky-duck.”
“A what?” She laughed, and I wrapped my arm around her to hold her in place.
“You heard me the first time. Now open your legs.”
Daisy dropped her head back to lean against me. “You’re going to fuck me with a rubber duck?” Her giggle made my chest warm. I loved that I could make her laugh so easily.
Slowly, she spread her thighs, and I held the duck over her pussy. “Like I said, babe. A special duck.” I pressed the discreet switch set into its back, and it vibrated. Quiet and yet vigorous, I’d had Daisy in mind from the moment I saw it. She only had one aging vibrator in her pantie-drawer, and I figured it was time to expand her horizons. Before she could say anything, I swept it across her clit in a gentle movement. She gasped, tension running down her spine.
“Is it?” My dick bumped against her ass and I bit back a groan. I wouldn’t last long at this rate. I pressed the switch again and the vibrations ramped up a notch. “This is vibrating.” This was a perfect angle to hold her. With one hand I could play with her tits, rolling and tugging on her delicious nipples, while I teased her with the ducky. Gliding strokes gave way to a firm continuous pressure on her clit, and within seconds she was moaning, her breath coming in short pants.
“God. That’s, oh.” Her voice rose and I upped the vibrations again, nudging the duck’s tail at her pussy lips. “Charlie.” She lifted her ass, hips flexing, and her hands clawing at the edges of the bath. Water sloshed onto the floor. “Charlie. Please.” It was so fucking sexy when she begged me.
She let out a groan. “Oh my God.”
“Please, what?” I skimmed the vibrator over her clit, deliberately not giving her what I knew she wanted. “You need to tell me, Daisy.”
Her fingers flexed, and she moaned, the vibration humming through me. Christ. My balls were tight and aching. “I want to come. Please. Please.”
She’d asked so nicely. I drew it out a few moments longer and then ground the duck onto her swollen clit, not letting her move. She gave a muffled shriek and thrashed with her legs. More water spilled onto the floor as Daisy shuddered her way through her orgasm. Damn, she was responsive. When she whimpered, I lifted the duck away and sent it floating on what was left of the bubbles, still vibrating away.
Daisy sucked in a deep breath and then slumped back onto my chest. “I like your ducky,” she whispered. Little tremors continued to wrack her body, and I took pleasure nibbling on the back of her neck, sweet and fragrant.
“Charlie?” Her voice was soft. “What happens now?”
“Now?” I’d forgotten the argument with AJ, but with the reminder it nagged at me again. Was Daisy having doubts too?
“Now. With us. New York and all that.”
“Ah, New York.” “Well. I thought…” I paused to smooth her hair back and kiss her neck. She whimpered. In truth, I hadn’t thought about it at all. I was flying by the seat of my pants. “Let’s go down to London on Monday to pack up, fly out on Tuesday, sort out your ring and then get married in New York. What do you reckon?”
I ran my hands along the sides of her fantastic breasts. They felt amazing.
“Where are we getting married? Can I invite my family?”
“Wherever you like. Invite everyone you want to. My only stipulation is that we do it in the next couple of weeks. I don’t want to wait any longer. Okay?”
She giggled. “Are you serious?”
“Well actually, I’ve another stipulation.” Dropping my hands to her waist, I gently turned her to face me, to straddle me in the deep water, my erection nudging at her.
“Yeah?” One hand dropped to caress me, trailing up the length, heating my blood. “What would that be?”
“That we have lots of engaged sex. Coz we’re going to be having lots of married sex soon, and I want to have something to compare it with.”
Dimples lit up her face. “I think I can manage that.” She smiled, that amazing combination of innocence and seduction that turned me on like no other. “Don’t suppose you have a condom handy?”
“Always.” I’d stashed a couple in easy grabbing distance and it took seconds to fit one. While I kissed her, slanting my lips to capture her, pushing my tongue into her mouth, I eased into her smooth and deep, enjoying the moan of pleasure she gave.
She gazed at me through half-lidded eyes. “Are you sure about all this, Charlie?”
For fuck’s sake. First AJ, and now Daisy. Did nobody have any faith in me? “Babe, I’ve never been more sure of anything.” I caught her hands, tangled them around my neck and continued my rhythm, rocking my way into heaven.
“We’re practicing for married sex,” I whispered, my last coherent words before I exploded into her.
Tuesday 24 May
~ Daisy ~
The insistent jangle of my phone finally prompted me to open my eyes. It had trilled at least four times in the past couple of minutes, suggesting someone really wanted to get hold of me. What was so urgent? I snuggled back against the warm, hard body sharing this obscenely huge bed, and tried to ignore the noise.
Charlie’s arm wrapped tighter around my waist. “Gonna get that?”
Judging by the bright sunlight that poured through the blinds, it was at least late morning, but a combination of jet lag and alcohol meant it could be even later.
Where was I? And what day was it?
It was Tuesday. Charlie proposed to me a week ago, and now we were in New York, in a crazy-expensive hotel that overlooked Central Park.
My phone blared again and I untangled one of my hands from the bedclothes. The brilliant solitaire diamond on my finger caught the light and I paused to admire it some more. Charlie didn’t let me see the price, but the gem was a massive one and a half carats set in a platinum band. I was almost afraid to wear it. What if I lost it? This was a Tiffany ring, and we were in New York. What if I was mugged? My imagination ran riot.
“Daisy,” mumbled Charlie, his mouth against my hair. “Answer your fucking phone before I throw it out of the window.”
It was a string of texts and I scrolled through them, bemused.
We’re so excited for you, but I do wish you’d told us in person. Ring soon. Mum & Dad xxx
Then one from each of my sisters.
Congratulations! Ring me – I want all the details!!! Steph & Paul xx
We’re so pleased for you! Can’t wait to catch up! C & J xx
Several from friends I barely spoke to any more, and one from Sylvie and AJ. When I married Charlie, they would become my brother and sister in law.
Have you seen the papers? If it’s true, huge congratulations. If not, and you need someone to vent at, call me. Sylvie xx
To say I was baffled would be an understatement. Everyone knew that Charlie had proposed to me. Why all the new congratulations? I stared at the message from Sylvie. She’d only recently married into rock star royalty, so she knew first hand what living with a rock legend was like. She also played bass guitar in the band, but that was relatively new too.
With my phone quiet for the moment, and judging by the rumbly snoring from behind me Charlie had gone back to sleep. I flicked to the browser window and called up my usual online newspaper.
The Daily Mail online took ages to load, and I contemplated searching for another news channel, but then the headline popped up. We’d made the front page.
All Night Charlie starts a new adventure
I giggled to myself. His press nickname summed him up so well. His stamina for partying was secondary only to his legendary performance between the sheets, skills I enjoyed all the time now. The pleasant ache between my legs was proof of that.
The page loaded some more with a stock photograph of Charlie. His spiky, bleached hair made him stand out from any crowd.
Charlie Jones, guitarist from sell out rock band Event Horizon, will soon be spending his nights in a new way. He’s following his half-brother’s footsteps and starting his own family. Welcome to all night nappies, Charlie.
Whaaaaaat? The breath jammed in my lungs. What the hell did that mean?
The page flickered, and then refreshed, a swathe of images all loading at once. Charlie and me in Tiffany, yesterday. Charlie holding my hand up to the press, and showing off my ring. An exceptionally unflattering shot of me at the airport, on our way out of Heathrow, Charlie standing behind me, hands resting on my stomach.
“Charlie claims to be thrilled at settling down. He’s not the kind of guy that would abandon his pregnant girlfriend.”
Pregnant? I wasn’t pregnant. I glanced down at my belly. Yes, I carried a few extra pounds, but Charlie claimed to love my curves. Christ. No wonder everyone was texting me.
I wriggled free from his embrace and sat up in bed, phone clutched tight, the story continuing to spill onto the page in front of me. According to one of his ex’s, a pointy-faced model called Gallina, I’d dug my claws into Charlie on the recent world tour, while I was nannying for AJ and Sylvie. He’d only broken off with Gallina when it became apparent that he’d knocked me up.
“He refused to consider an abortion,” announced Gallina. “He’s determined to do the right thing and stick with her, even if it’s a mistake. He’s so honourable.”
I couldn’t breathe. What on earth would my family be thinking? I had to tell them it was all a pack of lies. I’d met Gallina once, at a night club, and I don’t think we’d even spoken. She’d taken this nonsense and spun it into a news story.
At that point, I should have stopped reading, but like a train wreck, my eyes were drawn to the words on the page. I followed the links to the related stories. Why did I do it? Somebody had started a poll for how long Charlie would stay with me. Another writer speculated how far along I was. A bitchy columnist sneered at my lack of fashion sense, while another wondered how soon Charlie would be seeking a distraction from his new responsibilities.
He loved me because I wasn’t a stick-thin model with no interest in anything beyond the media. The fact that he’d never stayed with any girl for longer than a night, should have made me happy. It was proof I was different. That I meant something.
My excited bubble had been pricked though, and the more I stared at the ridiculous news page, the more anxious I became.
Leopards don’t change their spots. He’ll get bored soon, and then watch out, New York. All Night Charlie will be back.
It was rubbish. Every last word of it. Wasn’t it?
I sent a flurry of texts to my family, laughing off the story, and then one to Sylvie. My fingers tapped out the words without me even thinking.
I feel so humiliated. I’m fat, so they think I’m pregnant.
Her reply was swift.
I hate the gutter press. * BIG HUGS * What did Charlie say about it?
I glanced at my lover. My fiancé.
He doesn’t know yet. Still asleep.
He loves you, Daisy. Try to ignore it.
Tears pricked at the backs of my eyes. I loved him more than anything and I knew he loved me too. He loved my curves, but this was New York. How many others would assume I was carrying his baby?
Should I get a makeover?
I gnawed on my lip as I waited for her to reply.
Only if it makes you happy. Don’t do it for the journos. Got to go, talk later. S xx
I sank back against the pillows. Sylvie understood about the paparazzi flashing their cameras in her face at every turn, but she was skinny and willowy in a way I could never aspire to. They’d never call her fat. Charlie snored beside me, and I called up another news service. And then another. They all carried the same story.
There was a hairdressing service in the hotel, and they could probably do my make up too. I needed new clothes though. My usual wardrobe of denim skirts and T-shirts did nothing to flatter me. Maybe I needed to start wearing heels? Charlie was going to be photographed everywhere, at least for the next few weeks as he settled into our new life. I couldn’t avoid the press. Somehow, I had to cope with it.
Yet another online feature was taking bets on how long Charlie and I stayed together. They were vultures, every last one of them. I put down my phone and snuggled back under the covers, but it was no use. Sleep was a million miles away and my brain wouldn’t switch off.
I had two choices. Either stay in the hotel and hide, or face up to the attention. Somehow, I had to make myself look good. If I only knew how.
Charlie slept on as I made a list.
I’d never been a member of a gym. I’d no idea what to expect, but I knew I needed some kind of sports gear to wear. There would be a gym in the hotel, maybe I should just go and sign up with a personal trainer? I wrote Charlie a note, placed it on my pillow, and snuck out of the room.
Now I was fully awake, I was starving. Dinner was a long time ago, and there’d been several champagne cocktails since then. What I’d give for a bacon sandwich right now. I pushed back my shoulders, lifted my chin, and tried to think about something else. Yoghurt. With some fresh fruit on the side. Maybe a little muesli. And black coffee.
I hated black coffee. I preferred a frothy giant latte, but they held too many calories. Oh God. Had I morphed into one of the girls Charlie usually dated? Girls who claimed they were full after eating a single lettuce leaf?
There had to be a happy medium, one that didn’t include the press gazing at my wobbly belly and enormous tits.
The high tech gymnasium depressed me even further. I peered through the glass walls at the athletes working out. They were all slim, toned, and super fit, clad in skin tight Lycra. There wasn’t an ounce of spare fat anywhere. Jesus. You had to be fit to even walk through the doors. I’d cross that off my list.
I made my way back to our suite, my mood slumping further with each step. I was supposed to be meeting the wedding planner today, while Charlie went to visit the studio he’d be working in for the next six months. Great, just what I wanted.
The door closed behind me with an expensive thunk. I pasted a cheery smile on my face and went to find Charlie.
Part 6 coming next month…