(Kelly is written by Kelly Blanchard while Deacon is written by Lynn-Alexandria McKendrick.)
The entrance hall to Savage Decadence was historic and beautiful. Dark mahogany panels lined the bottom of the walls, and above them they were painted a luxurious dark red color. Paintings were dotted around the walls, old style paintings of erotic scenes, tasteful and elegant. A length of carpet ran up the centre, the sides of the flooring a dark wood.
A woman donned in a long black gown stood several feet from the main doors, her hands elegantly clasped in front of her. She wore a dark choker donning a large purple crystal in the middle. Her red hair pulled back into a braid that fell down her back. “Miss Blanchard. I am Violet Townsend. Mr. McClain’s assistant. He has instructed me to escort you to his office.”
Kelly nodded as she glimpsed around. It was a bit more luxurious than she expected, and she felt a bit underdressed in her blue jeans and white top, but at least she was wearing heels. That always added some kind of elegance to her appearance.
She smiled at Violet. “By all means, lead the way.” With that, she followed her escort through the building and glimpsed around, taking in her surroundings.
Walking through the halls of Savage Decadence it became clear that the club had a very gothic feel to it. Dark colored furnishings, large oak doors. Mr. McClain’s office had two huge mahogany doors, both have celtic designs etched onto them. Violet took hold of both silver door handles and pulled the doors open. She waved Miss Blanchard inside and followed her in.
Deacon lifted his head from the folder on his desk, several strands of his slightly overgrown jet black hair hanging over his eyes. He stood up, clad in a black tailored suit, black shirt, and no tie. He had a strong jaw which had the faintest hint of stubble on it. His sapphire eyes stayed on Miss Blanchard as he walked around his large black desk. His office had a black carpet, dark cherry lines the walls with black tribal designs painted onto it. A black leather sofa was situated on the left hand wall, two leather seats on the opposite side of his desk.
He smiled warmly and offered his hand to Miss Blanchard. “Miss Blanchard. It’s a pleasure to meet you. My authoress told me to expect you. Would you care for a drink? Coffee, Tea? Or if you would like something stronger that’s not a problem.”
Kelly shook her head at his coffee. “I am well. Thank you. No need to trouble yourself.” She smiled at him before glancing around at their surroundings. “Quite a lovely place you have it.” It certainly wasn’t what she had expected, but she must have gotten this person mixed up with someone else she had yet to interview, but it was a pleasant surprise. Smiling to herself, she turned back to him. “Did you create all this on your own? The business, I mean.”
Deacon smiled and motioned to Violet that she could go. Violet left the office. He motioned to Kelly to take a seat and walked back round his desk and sat down. “Yes. I have a third stake in a security business with two very close friends. It’s been pretty successful and gave me the opportunity to open this place. It’s one of those situations where I have always wanted to do it but never had the chance. Until now. Thank you for the compliment. I’m very proud of this old pile of bricks.” He chuckled softly.
With a gracious smile and a nod, Kelly took the seat he had gestured to but sat with her ankles crossed and tucked off to the side as she rested one elbow on the armrest of the chair. “So, what do you do?” She raised her brows . His authoress had told her some, but she wanted to hear it from him personally.
Leaning back in his chair, he looked at her. His right hand lifted into the desk, and he considered her question.
“The security agency is like a private detective agency. However, we also handle diplomats, bodyguard services and security for high class events. Savage Decadence is purely a BDSM club. I’m very picky about my members. It comes from my military past. Thanks to the security company and savings I had, I can live here in a reasonable amount of luxury.”
Kelly tilted her head to a side considering him. She was trying to connect the dots between him being a soldier and him being a businessman. Yes, she knew many soldiers could leave the battlefield and become successful businessman, but she wasn’t sure how that happened. She also wasn’t sure how to ask the question, so the timing for it might not be right yet.
Instead, she opted for another question as she nodded to herself. “You seem to have done quite well for yourself.” She glimpsed around the room once more before finally locking eyes with him. “Who would you say you are….as an individual?”
Clearing his throat, he glanced down to a picture frame on his desk. It was facing away from Kelly. After several seconds, he looked up at her. “I am a soldier, Miss Blanchard. My life is very structured, I ensure that my schedule is set so that I can plan ahead. This place is an entirely different side to me. I am sure my authoress explained that I am a dominant. I enjoy control, in all things. I am a soldier who was very fortunate to serve my country and then start a successful business. But until the day I die, I will always consider myself a soldier.” His voice was low, polite. He gave a quick glance to the picture again before looking at Kelly
She noticed him looking at the picture, and she wondered what it was a picture of but kept that curiosity to herself. Instead, Kelly sat back in her chair and regarded him as she asked her next question, “And do you have any family?”
His demeanor tightened for a split second before he forced himself to relax. “I was given up by my Mother as a baby. I was then placed in several foster homes before I ended up with Mrs Latimer. I arrived with her when I was eight and remained there until I joined the military at eighteen. She raised me and for that I am thankful, however difficult it may have been. My comrades, William and Alexander, are like family to me. Brothers-in-arms so to speak. I have no blood family to speak of. Mrs Latimer and her husband are dead. Samantha who I grew up with in the foster home, well, I haven’t seen her in several years.”
Kelly nodded. This she understood and expected from a soldier. The camaraderie was important, especially when putting their lives on the line. “I respect your service to the country.” She bowed her head but then lifted her chin once more and smiled. “Two of my brothers-in-law served as well, so I’ve seen the brothers-in-arms, as you put it.” But then she wanted to get back on topic but wanted to be careful with her words. “Now, aside from having any blood family, is there someone you truly love…or loved?”
Deacon swallowed slowly, for the third time he looked at the picture. “As a young boy I never understood the notion of love. Mrs Latimer would read stories, fairy tales of finding that one true love. I never believed it until…” He paused for several moments, “Until Samantha. She was three years younger than me. Came to live with Mrs Latimer when I was ten. We would play together and she would read to me. She loves reading, her Mother was italian and died suddenly. She had no other family so went into the system. Even though I never understood the words, I would sit and listen as she read to me in Italian. When I left for the military we stayed in touch. She joined the air force when she was old enough and we sadly lost contact. I haven’t heard from her in several years. Our lives seeming to be so hectic that finding one another has taken a back seat. I’ve never forgotten her. I never will.”
His eyes have changed to having a great sadness in them. He cleared his throat and smiled to Kelly.
She returned his smile warmly, guessing the picture was of Samantha since he looked at it when he mentioned her. “She sounds lovely, and you never know what’ll happen in life. Maybe you’ll meet her again.” Kelly shrugged but then sat back in her chair and hugged an arm across her. “So on more lighter note,” her smile brightened but then hesitated, “At least, I hope it’s a brighter note. But anyway, ten years from now, where do you see yourself?”
Deacon smiled at her question. “You know that’s a very common question. But people normally say five years. Honestly, I’d like to imagine myself here. Still running the club, hopefully with Sam by my side. But the truth is you never know what’s around the corner. I may have to go into battle and fight again, perhaps not coming home. If I were to dream? I’d be married to Sam. Perhaps with children if that’s what we both wanted. If I get another chance with her, I will worship her. Protect her with every fiber of my being. Who knows? Perhaps the gods will grant me a second chance with my love for her.”
“You really do admire her, don’t you?” Kelly couldn’t help but smile. It was beautiful. So she decided to linger on this topic and leaned forward, setting her elbows on her knees and resting her chin in her palm. She smiled at him. “Okay, so you mentioned listening to her read in Italian, but what is your favorite memory of her?”
He smiled warmly. He adored his memories of Sam. “She symbolizes to me everything that is pure and good in this world. My favorite memory? We would sneak out together at night, onto the roof of our house. Take some blankets and lie together looking at the stars. Rather than seeing the astrological symbols. Sam made up her own. There was a dog playing a flute. The cat dancing with a fish and my personal favorite a sheep playing Nintendo.” He grinned at the memory. “She had such a wild imagination. She wouldn’t only read in Italian but she’d tell me stories she made up in Italian. Then explain them in English so I’d understand.” He sighed heavily. “I miss her…”
Kelly could see how much he missed her. Just merely talking about her changed him completely. “And when did you realize you were in love with her?”
Deacon looked at her. “Fourteen. She was only eleven but mature beyond her years. We were walking home from school and she was telling me about the history class she’d had that day. Her teacher asked her about the civil war and she asked why they couldn’t study something different. She suggested the English Tudors. Her teacher was so impressed with her knowledge that he let her tell the class what she knew. I could see her passion, the way she spoke about learning different things. I knew then that I was in love with her and that I would die to protect her.”
“Then why did you join the military and leave her?” Kelly furrowed her brows.
His expression grows somewhat darker. “Mrs Latimer was a charming, thoughtful and loving woman. Unfortunately her husband was quite the opposite. Not until I was fourteen did I realize how he looked at Sam. There was an atmosphere when he was around. He also detested that Mrs Latimer allowed Sam and I to share a room. When I was 18, Sam was 15. Mr Latimer came into the room and took Sam from her bed. He thought I was asleep. I wasn’t. I followed them and saw him trying to touch her and her fighting him back. I saw red and don’t remember much else. I came round with Sam in my arms crying, Mr Latimer on the floor covered in blood. The judge gave me ands choice. Go to prison. Or join the military. Sam begged me to join the military, she couldn’t stand the thought of me in prison because I was protecting her.” Only Sam and his Brothers knew that about him. He looked at Kelly to try and gauge her reaction.
Kelly nodded as she took all this in. Unfortunately, it didn’t surprise her, so she locked eyes with him. “You did what you had to do in that moment, and you were protecting her, and I hope you get to see her again sometime, so all of this may be resolved for you.” Kelly then leaned forward and clasped her hands together as she held his gaze. “However, here’s a question for you, if you could do that night all over again, would you change anything?”
He took a long deep breath. “The only way it would be different would be if Mr Latimer wasn’t so vile. I’d do it all over again to protect Sam. She’s always been with me in a way. Making sure I come back fighting.”
“So, your friends from the military—how did the three of you come to band together?”
Deacon grinned. “I was recruited for an assignment in Iraq. One of those ones you don’t talk about. William was our commanding officer and Xander the explosives expert. We worked together well and they kept us together and sent us all over the place to sort out any problems they needed fixing.” He turns serious for a moment. “They’re good men. Although it does get a little chaotic when we get together.” He smiled.
Kelly returned the smile. “So tell me about them. Who’s the crazy one? Who’s the one who gets everyone else in trouble? And who’s the one who has to pull everyone else out of that trouble?” Her eyes lit with humor as she tilted her head. “Or do you all just take turns with that?”
He chuckled. “William is the logical one. He’s the one who pulls Xander and myself out of trouble. Did you ever watch The Addams family? Xander is like Uncle Fester. Loves dynamite and explosives. I’ve had to ban him from keeping any here for fear that he’d blow the place up. Xander is Russian. A difficult man to get to know but he’s great when you get past the quite arrogance. William is a natural born leader. A good commanding officer and fierce. Not someone you want to cross. He takes care of the security agency in Atlanta, he’s a well known bachelor there. Attends all the society gatherings and has women falling at his feet. But he doesn’t play on it.”
“I had a feeling Xander would be like that. I don’t know why!” Kelly snickered as she shook her head. “William sounds respectable, and at least he’s not a player. That’s refreshing. You though…” She paused to consider him for a moment. “As you said, you like control, and that can mean a lot of things, but we’re not here to talk about that.” She glanced at her watch and noticed the time and frowned. “Our time is nearly up, but we have time for another question—maybe two.” She nodded to herself and folded her hands on her lap and looked back at Deacon. “What is your greatest fear?”
Deacon smiled at her words about Xander and Will. When she asked her question he didn’t have to think about it. “Someone knocking on my door to tell me that Sam is lost to me forever.”
“Have you looked for her?” She tiled her head.
He nodded. “Yes. I’m lucky to have contacts in all branches of the military. Sam is in deep cover, contact from the outside world could get her killed. It kills me not to be able to help her, but I know how dangerous these things are.”
Understanding the risks, Kelly gave a slow nod. “And if you two do meet again, how do you imagine that happening? Ideally?”
He thought for a moment. “Ideally I’d love to go in and sweep her off her feet. But Sam isn’t that kind of girl. She’d love nothing more than a pizza under the night sky than a five star restaurant. I’d go to her and kiss her. Letting her know just how much I’ve missed her and that she saved my life so ma y times. Forgive me. I forgot to say thank you to your brothers for their service to our country.”
Kelly pulled back, brows furrowed at his last words. “I’m sorry, that last part—were you saying that to me or as if what you would say to her?” That he completely thrown her for a loop.
He smiled. “I was talking to you. You mentioned your brothers in law had served for our country.”
“Ah, yes.” Kelly nodded then gave him an apologetic smile. “Here I was wrapped up your imaginary scenario of reuniting with Samantha when you suddenly started speaking to me directly.” She chuckled but then looked at him. “Thank you. I’m quite proud of them. Now though, I believe I’ve taken enough of your time.” She gracefully rose to her feet. “Thank you so much for speaking with me, and I do hope you the best regarding Sam. You’ll see her again, I’m sure. Don’t give up on her—ever.”
Deacon stood and walked around the desk. “My apologies for the confusion. It was my pleasure to answer your questions. You can rest assured that I will never give up on Sam. I will be her protector until the day I die. It has been enjoyable meeting you, Miss Blanchard.” Deacon reached out, taking hold of Kelly’s hand, he brought it to his lips and placed a soft kiss on the back of her hand. He released her hand. “You have helped me a great deal more than you realize. It has been a long time since I talked about the past and Sam. I thank you.”
“It was my honor.” Kelly smiled, bowing her head briefly. “I suppose I shall see myself out. Thank you again! And take care.” With that, she headed for the door.
He shook his head. “Not at all, Miss Blanchard. Allow me to escort you out.” Deacon opened the doors, waiting until she had gone through. He closed them and walked her through the same route Violet had taken. “You are more than welcome to stay and have a drink at the bar.” He smiled softly.
Kelly paused, considered his words, but then looked him in the eye. She tried to smile but there was something else there—sad. “Thank you, but…my brother died because he was an alcoholic. I prefer to stay away from that environment, but I appreciate the offer.” She smiled at him—once more her warm and friendly self.
Deacon nodded, understanding completely. “Addiction can take hold of even the strongest of men, Miss Blanchard. I am sure you will always remember your good times together. If you like there’s a library upstairs? I can have a non alcoholic beverage brought there for you.”
“I’m fine. Thank you.” She smiled up at him but then paused as she realized something. “Is there something further you wish to tell me? Something perhaps you haven’t told or discussed with anyone for a long time?” Sometimes just offering a listening ear helped.
He smiled. “You know my deepest fear and where my heart belongs. There are some who maintain that I have no heart. You have listened and have been a great source of comfort, Miss Blanchard. I can’t think of anything else I can tell you. However if I do, I will pass it to my authoress. I understand she spoke to you of her muse. Fascinating story. I tease her about it often.”
Kelly smiled. “Very well then. Perhaps we can talk again, but for now, I have elsewhere to be, someone else to meet. Once again, thank you for your time and your trust and all the things you have told me, but I must get going.”
Deacon nodded and opened the main door. “I’d like to speak to you again Miss Blanchard. Thank you for making the journey here. Take care and I look forward to speaking with you again.”
“You as well.” She nodded with a smile as she passed through the door then walked a few steps before she vanished from that world.
Lynn-Alexandria McKendrick’s first book of her ‘The Thornton Series’ is titled‘Literally Stalked’, and she is aiming to have it released at the end of this year. Follow her on Facebook and on Twitter to stay updated!
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