He pulls her in and closes the door.
Sasha sobs into Ruslan’s chest and he runs his fingers through her hair. “Shhh, it’s okay. I’m right here.”
“I-I-I keep seeing him. It was as if Vince was in the house. I saw a shadow and heard footsteps and I got scared.”
Ruslan continues to hold Sasha close to him. It’s a moment, he’s only dreamed of for so long. He’s loved her from afar for many years, but never thought this moment would happen.
Minutes pass and she’s still clinging to him when she realizes that she’s been sobbing into his bare chest this whole time. Sasha can feel just how firm Ruslan’s pecs are and she begins to blush. It’s a good thing her face is hiding in his chest or else her rosy red cheeks would be quite noticeable. With her arms still wrapped around him, she could feel his muscular frame.
“Thank you.” Sasha looks up at Ruslan.
He rubs her back and looks into her eyes. “You know the first time I saw you was at Dimitri and Carina’s wedding?”
“Really? That was ten years ago.”
“Yes, I know. We didn’t get to talk because you were busy running around and waiting on Carina’s needs. But I remembered you since that day. You were breathtaking, but you were also only nineteen years old. I wasn’t sure if you’d think it was weird if a twenty-five year old man was interested in you. So I kept my distance, but there wasn’t anything or anyone who could make me forget you. Perhaps it was meant to be a missed connection.”
Sasha smacks Ruslan’s chest. “You should’ve said something. Maybe if you said something back then, Vince would have never happened.”
“I tried. I wanted to. Two years after the wedding, you came to visit Dimitri and Carina in Moscow and I saw you again. You were vibrant and lively. It was your twenty first birthday and you were celebrating and got rather drunk at a bar near Dimitri’s estate. I was there that night and um…”
“What? Ruslan, what happened?”
“Um…you threw yourself at me. You sat on my lap and decided to grind your hips into my crotch. I wanted to take you then, but you’re my best friend’s sister-in-law and I couldn’t take advantage of you like that. That’s not how I wanted you. I’d want you to remember every second and every touch.”
Sasha turns bright red out of embarrassment but quickly shifts gears. “After I came to live with Dimitri, I’d see you often. I never knew your name. You were mysterious and I thought you didn’t like me because it seemed like you were avoiding me. It’s why I was surprised that you came to rescue me from Vince. Did you not want me anymore? Am I dirty and disgusting because of what he did to me?”
Ruslan tilts her chin up so she is looking at him and begins stroking her cheek with his thumb. “Not at all. You were hurting and I didn’t want to do anything to hurt you even more. I didn’t want to confuse you. It was best to let you be. Listen to me Sasha. You are the most beautiful woman I’ve laid eyes on. And you didn’t deserve what Vince did to you; no one does. So many times I wished I could have rescued you when he held you captive. But he seemed to be untouchable until I dug into his finances.”
“Wait, was it you who sent the police evidence of him embezzling money?”
Ruslan smiles and Sasha knows what he did for her.
“Well, it’s late so I better get you back to your room.” Ruslan turns to walk toward the door.
Sasha unbuttons the shirt she’s wearing and it drops to the floor. “No, I want to stay with you tonight.”
Ruslan turns around to see Sasha naked before his eyes. This time neither one of them is embarrassed. Ruslan stalks toward her, turns off the lights, and tosses her tiny body onto his bed.
To be continued…
Image by Jeremy Bishop from Unsplash