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Emma couldn’t stop smiling. She’d worried that, when morning came, she would feel ashamed or upset about what had happened. Instead, she found herself dancing through the kitchen, humming happily to herself all the while. She hadn’t changed out of Daddy’s shirt, even though she knew she should shower.
Emma had music playing through her phone; she swayed her hips and moved her body without any restraint. Daddy was upstairs, still sleeping. It was Sunday, and he usually didn’t work on Sundays. If he tried to go to the office, Emma was already plotting ways to convince him to stay.
Today, she wanted him all to herself.
Emma hadn’t cleaned herself off or brushed her teeth. It was her small way of savouring the rich pleasure they’d found in the early morning. It was like she was proving to herself that what had happened had really happened, that it hadn’t been some wonderful dream. Besides, having the taste of him lingering in her mouth made her feel dirty, which was a thrill in and of itself.
Flour sprayed up and shot out as she turned on the electric blender. Emma turned her face away, scrunching up her nose. She tried again. Batter spat out of the bowl, splattering on the wall and Daddy’s shirt. Normally, she would’ve gotten frustrated, but today was different.
Today she felt light and giddy.
Today she felt happy.
‘Why’ wasn’t a mystery to her, but it still felt miraculous all the same. There was someone who loved her, who truly, truly loved her. Someone who cared about her. Emma had never felt like this before. She’d thought, once upon a time, that maybe, just maybe, she loved Jeremy. He was the only person she’d been with, the only relationship she’d ever had. To be fair, she’d had nothing to compare the experience to.
When she’d been dating Jeremy, he’d been happy. At first, she had been too. Eventually, though, that happiness trickled away and was left with a rotting sense of contentment.
Now, Emma knew she’d never loved Jeremy. Not even for a second.
She loved him – her daddy. She loved him so much it felt like she was overflowing with the emotion. Emma felt a sense of completeness. It wasn’t like she’d found her other, missing half and now suddenly she was whole. It was more like she’d found a part of herself that had been neglected for too long. A part of herself that she’d never even known she’d abandoned. Emma felt… good.
Good didn’t seem an elaborate enough word for how she felt, but, overall, it summed it up fairly accurately.
Whenever Emma’s thoughts tripped and fell into a pothole, gripped by the ankle by the memory of Jeremy’s fury and her terror, Emma stubbornly forced her wavering mind to focus on the events of last night instead. She relived her time with Daddy, from the moment he’d gotten home to the moment she’d first told him she loved him. Emma wanted to remember it all just the way it had happened.
Emma placed the last batch of pancakes on the large plate and turned off the element. She opened up the fridge, grabbing the OJ, whipped cream, and maple syrup.
“Need a hand?”
Emma jumped, the syrup slipping out of her grip.
He caught it before the glass container could smash against the floor. “You scared me!” she scolded. Whatever else she was going to say died on her lips as she looked at him. His dark hair was tousled from bed, but his brilliant blue eyes were bright and alert. He was wearing a pair of jeans, low enough that she could see the band of his boxers, but not so low that his ass was hanging half out. But the best part? The best part was that he wasn’t wearing a shirt. Emma got a full view of all his gorgeous, mouth-watering muscles.
Emma turned around before she could slip off completely to dreamland. She kicked the fridge closed and brought the stuff over to the kitchen table. “I made pancakes,” she said. As she set the whipped cream on the table, Emma realized that, with the way she was leaning over, she was probably giving him a pretty damn good view of her (bare) ass.
She didn’t know whether to be embarrassed or turned on.
Maybe a little bit of both.
“I see that.”
She tensed as he came closer, but he only slid an arm around her to put down the syrup. His hand touched her back but didn’t drift any lower.
“I got your shirt dirty.” She showed him the batter droplets. “I’m sorry.”
He smiled, glancing her up and down appreciatively. Emma blushed, wondering if she should’ve actually gotten dressed this morning. “That’s what washing machines are for, right? Don’t worry about it.” He reached for her, his thumb dragging across her chin. “Looks like you managed to get yourself dirty, too.” He showed her the smeared batter on the pad of his thumb.
Emma shrugged, stepping away to get the plates and utensils. “What can I say? I’m a mess. Amy says if I didn’t have bad luck, I wouldn’t have any at all.”
He laughed. “That’s probably true. It seems like trouble’s drawn to you like a magnet. Maybe I should canlı bahis get you a personal bodyguard, hmm?”
Emma turned, leaning back against the counter. “Aren’t you my bodyguard, Daddy?” The edge of his mouth curled up in a grin. Emma bit her lip as he prowled over to her. She sucked in a breath as he came right in front of her, placing his hands on the counter on either side of her waist. He leaned into her space, sending shivers up her spine.
She was just getting excited when he closed his eyes. His shoulders slumped slightly, and his grin faded. Daddy sighed. “How are you doing with all this?” he asked her quietly.
“What do you mean?”
“I mean… With us. I know our relationship is… unconventional, to say the least. If you’re not alright, or if you’re uncomfortable in anyway, I want you to tell me, okay? I don’t want you to be scared to tell me if something’s wrong.”
Emma shifted. She didn’t know what to say. “I want to be with you, Daddy,” she said, staring at his chest. He shifted closer to her. She took a deep breath, letting it out slowly. “This is kind of confusing, though. I’ve always heard that – that this,” she gestured between them, “is wrong. That’s it’s some horrible thing that only horrible people do. I guess I never really thought about it before.” Emma licked her lips and swallowed. She glanced up at him, a bit nervous. “Daddy, I’ve never been so happy,” she whispered. He smiled softly at her confession. “I don’t understand how this can be wrong. How can love be wrong?”
“I sense there’s a ‘but’ coming,” he said wryly.
Emma shook her head. “I want to be with you,” she insisted. “It might take be some time to get over what society has ingrained in me. It’s like a nasty little goblin in the back of my head, ruining all our fun.” She smiled at the picture that formed. Emma twined her arms around his neck, standing up on her tippy-toes. “I’m going to make it shut up though. And you’re going to help me.”
She kissed him gently, pulling back before she could lose her train of thought. “I love you, okay? Maybe you’ll have to be a bit patient with me, but… Don’t think I’m going to run away on you, alright?” Her fingers wandered lazily through the soft hair at the back of his neck.
“Say that again,” he murmured, his hands capturing her waist.
“Say what? You want me to repeat my whole speech?”
She shuddered as he moved to kiss her throat. “You know what,” his words rasped against her skin, leaving her with a heat that sank below the surface and ran through her veins.
Emma tilted her head back, exhaling heavily. “I love you, Daddy.”
Emma sat at the table, absently pushing around a chunk of pancake in a puddle of syrup and melted whipped cream. She looked up when she felt his hand on her shoulder. He handed Emma her cellphone, kissing her forehead as he did so. “I want you to keep this on you for now on, okay? Always. Just in case trouble finds you again.”
She took it, smoothing her thumb over the front. The cracks were pretty shallow. They didn’t make much of a difference in viewing the screen. “Okay.” She flipped it around, finding a torn sticky note stuck to the back of her case. “What’s this?”
“That’s Eddie’s phone number. I want you to add it to your contacts. If you ever can’t reach me, for whatever reason, call him.”
“Okay… but who’s Eddie?”
“He’s the one who drove you to my work, and who drove you home.”
“Is he your friend?”
He smiled, carrying her plate to the sink and washing it. “Something like that. There’s only one person I trust more than him.”
“You, baby girl.”
Emma blushed, surprised. Was he being serious? He trusted her, more than anyone? She felt weirdly honoured by the revelation. They hadn’t even known each other very long. Although, they did have a unique connection.
She did as he’d asked, adding the driver’s information into her phone. When Daddy wasn’t looking, she sneakily snapped a photo of him. It wasn’t the best, but, for now, it would do. She set it as his contact photo, replacing the grey default avatar.
“What are you doing today?” she asked, trying to be subtle.
He walked over to her, drying his hands off with a kitchen towel. “I’m going to hit the gym soon. We can go get something to eat after if you want.”
She scrunched up her nose. “Won’t you be all sweaty?” Not that she’d mind. In fact, she’d probably enjoy watching him at the gym. Yeah, she was sure she’d thoroughly enjoy the show. It’d be nice to see all those muscles in action. Very nice…
He grinned, as if reading her thoughts, “I’ll shower first. Speaking of which,” he looked at her pointedly.
Emma scowled, pretending to be offending. She stood from the table, putting on her bitchiest expression. “Excuse me? Are you trying to imply that I smell?”
“Hey, I’m not complaining.” Warmth buzzed to life inside of her as he looked her over. “Baby, if I had my way, I’d have you walking bahis siteleri around like this all the time.”
Emma could think of a dozen different ways to respond to that, each thought naughtier than the last. Thinking of her mini speech to him about processing and patience, she made herself be good. Emma sashayed past him, trying to hold back her smile. She laughed at his whistle.
Emma went to his bathroom without thinking. She stripped off his shirt, laughing at nothing but her own happiness as she stepped into the shower. Emma took her time washing, humming to herself all the while.
Emma swam laps in the pool out back. She’d never imagined she would ever, ever live in a house with a pool. She’d thought she’d live with her mother in their adequate apartment until she had enough money to move out. Emma figured she’d move in with Amy, into another, smaller, apartment, and struggle though maintaining a part-time job and keeping up her grades in college. That was the dream, right?
Her dream had been put to shame by this new, fantastical reality.
Here she was, living in a fucking mansion with a pool and more rooms than she knew what to do with. Here she was, happy and in love.
It was everything she’d ever wanted and so, so much more.
Maybe it was strange. Emma was in love with her own father. It was unconventional, like he’d said, but that didn’t make what they were doing wrong. Emma didn’t even fully understand why incest was so frowned upon. The only concrete downside she’d ever heard of was the negative consequences that could fall upon their hypothetical child. As long as it was consensual, what was the problem?
It was love shared between two people. Love wasn’t monstrous. Love was beautiful and sacred.
Besides, Emma had never really wanted kids anyway.
It wasn’t a problem. Maybe they would have to hide their relationship, or at least the truth behind it, but they would figure it out.
She understood that he was worried about how she was handling it, but she hated the idea of him thinking she might get scared and run off. Emma wouldn’t abandon him. She wouldn’t do that. Emma loved him, there wasn’t so much as a shard of doubt in her heart about that.
The intensity of her feelings, though, was a bit concerning. Everything had happened so quickly. One thing had led to another, and now her thoughts were so tangled up in him that she wasn’t sure how to sort things out. When had she fallen for him? She didn’t know. She didn’t know when it had transformed from lust to love. Or maybe it had been love all along, and lust was just easier to admit.
Daddy hadn’t gone to the gym. She’d heard him go into his office as she was getting out of the shower. It sounded like he was talking to someone over the phone. The bits she’d heard hadn’t made it sound like a pleasant conversation. Emma had moved about slowly, not sure what she was waiting for but knowing she was waiting for something. She put on her makeup, music playing in the background. She dried her hair and straightened it. Still, she waited.
Emma read for about an hour. He still hadn’t come out of the office. He raised his voice a couple times, but not loud enough for her to make out the words. Emma made the bed, tidied the bathroom, and then started cleaning the kitchen. She was a stress-cleaner. She was restless and anxious, and she couldn’t sit still. So she cleaned. It was a small thing to keep her mind off whatever was going on.
It was probably nothing. Probably.
Eventually, she’d changed into a basic black bikini and gotten into the pool. Doing laps turned out to be an excellent way to calm her nerves. She’d never been that great of a swimmer, but she was decent enough.
One summer, Amy and Emma had gone hiking together. They’d walked the trails and eventually come to the beach. Amy, who loved swimming, wanted to swim out to the island. Emma had been perfectly content to stay behind in the shallow water as the schools of tiny fish swam around her, but she hadn’t wanted Amy to go out by herself.
The island hadn’t looked that far. And yet, by the time they were halfway there, Emma was struggling. Amy had found it easy to find her rhythm, but Emma kept feeling like she couldn’t get enough air.
She’d made it to the island. It was lovely and beautiful, but Emma had dreaded the swim back before they’d even climbed ashore.
Amy had helped her a lot. It was a good thing Amy was a strong swimmer, or else Emma might have unintentionally dragged her down and they both would’ve drowned.
Needless to say, Emma wouldn’t be doing anything like that again.
Emma treaded the water, looking towards the house. To her surprise, she saw Daddy through the open doors. He was still talking on the phone, pacing in frustration. For a moment, her vision of him was blocked by the wall, but he soon appeared again through the large windows.
It was obvious, even from a distance, that he was angry.
His expression bahis şirketleri was twisted into a threatening snarl. Every step was more like a stomp. Maybe it was the muscles, but Emma thought he looked incredibly powerful. Like anyone would be a damned fool to piss him off. He was the alpha, in any given situation. Emma swam to the edge of the pool, folding her arms over the edge to rest as she watched him.
He stopped, tilting his head back and closing his eyes. His jaw clenched. He shook his head, snapping at the person on the other end. He stiffened, clenching his fist. Emma imagined the strain on the phone. She waited for it to crumble under the pressure. It held up. He shouted into the phone, then he seemed to laugh.
What was going on? Emma had never seen him like this before. She’d never seen him angry, not to this degree. Whatever it was, it had to be serious.
He ran his hand over his face, shaking his head again. He turned around, his back to her. It wasn’t long after that he hung up and shoved the phone in the pocket of his jeans.
Emma did another lap. As if she could swim away from whatever was coming.
He came outside, walking towards her. He crouched at one end of the pool, waiting. Reluctantly, Emma surfaced. He gestured for her to come to him. The anger lingered in his expression, though she could tell he was trying to hide it.
She swam to him, pushing her hair from her face as she came up. “What’s going on?” she asked warily.
“Something’s happened. Someone… screwed up.” He looked towards the house, jaw set. “I have to go take care of this. I probably won’t be home until late tonight.” He dragged his hand back through his hair. She reached up to him and he wordlessly helped her up and out of the pool, lifting her like she weighed next to nothing.
“Is everything okay?”
“It will be. I’m sorry. I’ll make it up to you tomorrow.”
“If something happens, call Eddie. I don’t know if I’ll be able to come home right away. I am sorry, Emma.”
She took his hand, stepping forward to kiss him or hug him, but he turned away before she could do either. His fingers slipped from hers, lingering until the space between them grew too great. Emma watched him walk away from her, dread knotting her stomach.
Her phone was snatched out of her hands.
Amy flipped it around, her fingers flying across the screen as she scrutinized Emma’s Instagram feed.
They were seated at one of the tables outside Starbucks. The umbrella provided decent enough shade, and it wasn’t too busy, so that was nice. Emma sipped at her Strawberries it’d been years and years since she’d last had one, but she’d been feeling nostalgic. The level of sweetness was almost too much, and she wasn’t overly eager to drink more of it. Amy, on the other hand, was almost finished her iced coffee.
“I don’t even understand how he found out where I live,” Emma said, having just recounted her nightmarish tale of Jeremy’s unexpected visit. She propped her chin on the heel of her palm, her eyes wandering over the people meandering about town. “I never told him, did I?”
“Your dad’s pretty high up on the food chain, isn’t he?”
“I guess. Why?”
Amy shrugged, pushing up her giant sunglasses. She set Emma’s phone down on the table. “I dunno. Maybe he just asked the right people? Your dad’s loaded. Maybe he just Googled it.”
“I don’t think his home address is posted online, Amy.”
Again, she shrugged. “I hope not. Did you search him? I did. He’s pretty low profile, you know? Keeps his personal life to himself.”
Emma had never Googled him, but she wasn’t all that surprised that Amy had. Emma ran her hands over her face, muffling her groan. Today wasn’t going at all like she’d hoped. Daddy was gone, who knows where, and she wouldn’t see him until the end of the night. Something was going on – something bad. It was probably just a problem at work, but Emma couldn’t shake the nagging feeling in her gut.
“So who’s the guy?”
Emma jerked, her heart skipping a beat. Guilt flushed through her. Emma sat up straight, her hands pressing into her thighs. “Wh-what?”
“The guy? You said you told Jeremy you were with someone else. Is there a guy, or did you just make it up to get him to leave you alone?”
Emma relaxed slightly. She tugged at her ponytail, her hair still damp from the pool. Emma sighed. Amy scooted her chair closer, her attention focusing solely on Emma. “Ooh! There is a guy! Spill! I want to hear all the juicy details.” Emma doubted it. The truth might scar Amy for life.
“I’m not telling you who he is,” Emma said sternly, wanting to make that clear right off the bat.
“Why not? Is it a secret?”
“Yeah, I guess it is. Don’t tell anyone about this either, okay? Amy?”
Amy waved her hand dismissively. “Yeah, yeah. Cross my heart and swear to die. Now tell me! The suspense is killing me.”
Emma hid her face in her hands, her elbows propped up on the table. What was she doing? She shouldn’t tell Amy any of this. “He’s… he’s an older guy,” she said hesitantly.
Amy practically squealed. “How much older? Like old, old?”
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