A Dead Generations Bonus Scene
Lessons in Restraint
By Anne Russo
Author’s Note: This story takes place during book one, The Dead Don’t Lie, around the time of Adam’s training. It has been edited to the best of the author’s abilities and may contain typos/errors. Please email the author at firstname.lastname@example.org with any questions or feedback. Thank you for your support, and happy reading!
Those first few weeks, locked within the confines of the mansion, were the worst of Adam’s life.As a doctor, Adam thought he understood pain. Still, his cushy life had never prepared him for suffering on this level. Stretched and torn muscles and a punch Ian had thrown just so correct as not to shatter his jaw but to leave a nasty, swelling bruise.
The pain shifted daily from simply there to all-encompassing and all-consuming—fire and ice. Waves of red-hot agony left Adam twisting and writhing in his sheets at night. All but begging some higher power to put him out of his misery.
Along with the man, who dealt out punishment as if it were all an expected and necessary part of life. Suffering. Like some Buddhist devotee from Hell. And by the grim and severe expression Ian wore by default. The man seemed to find little cause to celebrate. And he made no secret of his displeasure over Adam’s presence known.
Ian, fucking Ian. God, how Adam hated him as he’d never quite hated anyone. No one had ever filled him with such a deep-seated, vengeful rage. He never even imagined himself capable of the feeling. Yet, Adam spent many of their brutal training sessions dreaming of the myriad of ways he could kill him. His many scenarios, while inventive, remained a reality, foolish.
Ian appeared indestructible. Nothing phased him, and he never quite tired, not like Adam, a mere mortal. Adam would have thought him inhuman if not for the faint sparks of humor he spied from time to time. There for a fleeting second and then gone.
Each day brought more torments and more training. Adam grinned and bore it if only to cling to some show of defiance. And as such, Ian, in turn, did little else but crawled under his skin at every opportunity, as he seemed to take delight in pushing Adam’s patience and body to the breaking point.
Today’s lesson. Restraints. First thing in the morning. Six am. Bright and early. Open-mouthed and dumbfounded, Adam searched Ian’s face for answers. There, set up before them a wooden chair and various nearby implements of restraint: rope, zip ties. Even a pair of shiny metal handcuffs.
Calmly, as if this were all par for the course, Ian waited for his reaction, his arms crossed over his broad chest.
Adam failed to keep his expression neutral, even once the initial shock had fled. “Bit forward?”
Ian’s lips twitched in a smirk. “Get in the chair.”
“I’d like it if you told me why first.”
“Of course, you would. Now get in the chair.”
“Are you going to tie me up?”
Ian rolled his eyes. “Obviously.”
Adam sat, though reluctantly. The room was ice-cold, but sweat had already dampened Adam’s temples. He waited as Ian chose his tools. Rope.
“Now, if you ever find yourself tied up,” Ian explained. “You’ll know how to get out.”
Ian jerked his hands backward, a bit too rough. Adam winced but said nothing, determined to play this as cool as possible.
But Adam’s heart went ballistic, jackhammering away at a million miles an hour. Sweat stained his brow and trickled down the back of his neck.
Ian’s rough but deft fingers tied the rope around his wrist, securing the knots with swift precision. His efficiency surprised Adam, though it shouldn’t have. Time and time again, Ian managed to impress him, though he hated himself for the thought.
Ian stepped back, and a sense of relief washed over Adam as Ian gave them some distance. Unaware until that moment how tense he’d been from Ian, so close and in his space, breathing down his neck. Adam inhaled sharply in anticipation. Of what, though, he couldn’t say or didn’t want to say.
Ian circled, coming to stand in front of him. From Adam’s seat, he appeared taller than his height of over six feet. At this angle, mythic, bigger than life. Broad-shouldered, his arms more muscular and imposing. Adam lifted his gaze to meet Ian’s eyes. Not black-black, as one would assume at first glance, but a lighter and almost pretty shade of amber. When he stopped scowling long enough, Ian was a strikingly handsome man. Strong, stubbled jaw, thick dark brows, sensual lips, masculine and imposing features. And yet, under his air of annoyance, his displeasure with life and everything in it. An odd sensitivity seemed to lurk under the surface—one that appeared at complete odds with the rest of him.
But now, tied to a chair and nervous, Adam squashed those feelings. As well as his appreciation for Ian’s good looks down into the deepest, darkest part of himself. The man had kidnapped him and forced him into this life by threatening his family. He could be as attractive as any man before or since, but Adam refused to pay him the scantiest bit of attention. Yet, he wondered from time to time if his appreciation for Ian’s looks wasn’t one-sided. There were times Adam caught Ian checking him out from the corner of his eye. Times when he moved away from him quickly if they touched too intimately.
Emboldened by the thought, Adam caught the strange look in Ian’s eyes as he surveyed him.
“What? Not the pretty picture you were expecting,” Adam asked. His smile faded as he caught the flirtatious trace in his tone.
And one not lost on Ian.
He frowned, arms folded across his chest. “You talk too much. Has anyone told you that?”
“Ah, so no talking. Do I just scream for help instead?”
“You could. Would it make you feel better?”
“Then I would advise against it.”
Adam wriggled against the restraints, testing them out, but they refused to budge. So much as an inch.
“That won’t help you, not against someone who knows how to keep you in that seat.”
“You know, I doubt people are going to be going around tying me up.” Adam stopped his struggles.
“You’d be surprised,” Ian offered. “Now, first, you need to understand that strength, brute force, will never be your biggest asset. But you have something that will serve you just as well if you know how to use it.”
This statement had Adam’s curiosity. “What’s that?”
“Your face,” Ian coughed, glancing away as if the pronouncement had embarrassed him. “You don’t look like a threat, so you can’t act like one. Understand? If your enemy doesn’t see you as an enemy, they can’t fear you. And if they don’t fear you, they’ll let their guard down, eventually. And, that is the advantage you need to work with, surprise and patience.”
“I’d prefer brute strength.”
Ian shook his head. “Trust me, what you have is better.”
“Fine, do I just sit here, batting my eyelashes until someone takes pity and unties me? Is that your master plan?”
Ian rolled his eyes. “Hardly.”
“Okay then, show me how in the hell I get out of this.”
“Carefully,” Ian instructed. “And with a lot less noise.”
The session carried on into the afternoon—various configurations with the rope. First, Ian tied Adam’s hands behind his back, then in front. Then on to zip ties, which weren’t any more enjoyable. Each time Ian orbited back into his space, leaning in close, Adam caught the traces of cologne under his sweat. The room’s air supply grew thicker, heavier, each man’s breathing more labored. Ian’s gaze seemed to land anywhere but on him, as if Ian couldn’t bear to meet his eye.
Adam didn’t want to poke or examine the discovery too closely, uneasy. Yet, it seemed to light a fire somewhere inside him. Pushing Ian’s buttons had become more than another way to pass the time between beatings. For all his bluster and protests, a sick part of him enjoyed having Ian close. His heart racing, his palms sweating—reactions that had nothing to do with the lessons themselves. But with the man who taught them.
Finally, the day’s lesson had come to a close, and Ian dismissed Adam for the evening. Once he had left, relief flooded over him in waves. Like a weight lifted, a gulp of air when drowning. Ian grabbed a shower, changed his clothes, and headed into the city, grateful for a free night. Once at the club, it didn’t take him long to find a good-looking and willing guy to follow him out to his car. But the hurried blow job left him unsatisfied, tense, and on edge.
“You can come home with me?” His date shyly suggested as he wiped his lips and gazed up at Ian from under his long eyelashes.
“Not tonight. Move your seat back,” Ian ordered. “And keep your hands to yourself.”
His date couldn’t comply fast enough. Ian unzipped him and bent his head. The young man moaned at the first press of Ian’s tongue. In less than a minute, Ian had him groaning and squirming. He looked lost, trying to figure out what to do with his hands. It took another minute, two, no more, and—“I’m close, god, fuck, I’m coming—”
Ian swallowed every drop before sitting up, tucking him back into his pants. The young man’s taste lingered on the back of his tongue, sour and slightly nauseating. Ian wished he had a beer or five to wash away his taste.
“Holy shit,” the guy said, all glassy-eyed and breathing heavy. “That was amazing.”
“Good, I’m glad, but I’d like you to go now.”
The young man blinked once, twice. His face fell for a moment before he shrugged, playing the dismissal off as cool as possible. “Yeah, well, see you around, I guess.”
“Sure,” Ian said, his thoughts already a million miles away.
The kid jumped from the car and slammed the door hard. Ian wasted no time speeding from the club, wholly unsatisfied and desperate for sleep. Desperate to get a certain someone’s face out of his mind, his voice, his eyes, that fucking mouth of his.
Back at the mansion, unsettled, Ian headed for the kitchen without taking off his jacket. On autopilot, he gathered cold cuts from the fridge. Then, without turning on the lights, Ian dug in, groaning out loud at the first bite. Blissful silence followed as he rolled slices of deli turkey and provolone and ate in the quiet while ruminating on the night’s events.
Tonight’s pickup. Nothing quite exciting or memorable about the experience. Except, of course, the type of guy he’d gone for – slender, pretty, insolent as hell.
Behind him, a rustling noise, the creaking of cautious footsteps. “I know you’re there,” Ian said with a huff. “So you can stop lurking in the shadows now.”
Adam released a drawn-out sigh in the dark. “I wasn’t lurking.” Adam stepped into the kitchen to join Ian. “I was hungry.” Arms folded, dressed for bed in loose grey sweats and a too-big cotton t-shirt. His eyes tired and hair tousled, sullen pout firmly in place.
Ian slid the packages of deli meats in his direction. Adam made a face but reached for the turkey, popping a slice into his mouth.
“Where are you coming from tonight?” He asked casually as if they were actual roommates or something. Maybe even friends.
Ian swallowed hard and stepped around him for a beer. “Nowhere in particular,” he said, draining it in a couple of hard swallows.
Adam took his time, choosing his words with care. “Do you have someone on the outside?” He ducked his head a little, the tips of his ears pinking.
Ian wondered if Adam had ever had another man fuck him—good and thoroughly fucked him, and Ian decided he hadn’t. He’d be far more confident if he had. The thought sent a rush of blood straight to Ian’s cock, and he turned to the counter, hoping Adam wouldn’t notice.
“No one, in particular,” Ian answered, unsure of why he hadn’t told him to go back to bed already. Or why he hadn’t put an end to this conversation.
“Oh,” Adam said as he reached for a piece of cheese, chewing it absently, almost as an afterthought. “I don’t even know why I asked that. I guess it’s lonely here at night, isn’t it? And when I can’t sleep, I think of home—never mind,” he straightened and looked away. “All you wanted was a snack. I know you don’t give a rat’s ass about my feelings.”
A smart-alecky comment waited for Ian on the tip of his tongue, but he bit it back. Something in the melancholy and lost look in Adam’s eyes stopped him, a sharp pang of remorse, for a second, and gone.
He busied wrapping up the cold cuts, not even bothering to ask Adam if he’d finished. Then, without looking at him, he shoved them back into the fridge.
“No wonder you can’t find someone permanent. You’re a lousy conversationalist,” Adam quipped. But Ian caught traces of nervousness in his tone as if he sensed the growing tension.
“You know, that smart mouth of yours is going to get you in trouble one day.” Ian slammed the door shut.
Adam opened his mouth to say something but, thinking it over, snapped it closed. Finally, satisfied he’d gotten the last word, Ian turned and headed off to bed, but Adam called after him.
“Is that a threat or a promise?”
Ian stiffened, unnerved by the thrill the question had offered. He said nothing and kept going, feeling rather than seeing Adam’s smug grin as he fled for the safety of his room.