How to Tame a Dragon Ch. 07bytotallyatease©
She only agreed to do it as a favour to her sister -- but He more than made up for the inconvenience...
Izzy lay on the bed feeling shell shocked.
She had never had a man react to her in that way! Her hand went to her mouth, as she remembered his kiss; it had been savage and had frightened her. He'd lost it for a moment on this bed, but he'd managed to regain control -- when he realised it was not what she wanted...
She blushed softly, had he been even a little more gentle ... then the story may have been very different...
"Oh Daniel!" she whispered shakily, "what on earth am I going to do now?"
She stood up and straightened her clothing, and then after walking dreamily around her first home, she left the little house -- to go and pack her things.
She was just lugging her suitcase down the stairs, when Daniel walked through the front door. "What the hell do you think you're doing?" he growled at her.
She smiled softly, "I'm moving into my new home."
He looked at her through narrowed eyes for a moment, before striding forward to take her suitcase off her.
"After you," he said opening the front door for her.
At her little cottage he let her open the front door and then pulled her back.
"You wait here," he told her abruptly. "I'll be right back."
He took her suitcase up to the main bedroom and then came striding back down. He walked past her, and only when he was back on to the little path; did he turn to look down at her. "You can have an hour to unpack, and then I want you back at the main house for lunch," his tone was firm and decisive, and without even waiting for her reply, he turned and marched away.
Izzy stood watching him, her eyes bright with anger. "Yes oh lord and master!" she murmured resentfully, but then a secretive little grin crept onto her face, just before she entered her home and closed the front door.
She took her time putting her clothes away, but even so she still had half an hour to kill. She made up the bed with the clean soft bedding, which she had found in a huge airing cupboard; she fluffed up the pillows, and pulled everything just so.
It was still a little too early, and so she wandered around her little home, dusting and polishing and twitching and straightening.
Finally she looked at her watch to see that she was fifteen minutes late now; so she locked her front door and strolled leisurely down to the main house. Daniel flung open the front door and met her on the drive way.
"You're late," he growled softly. "I said an hour."
She smiled up at him. "I know."
She walked straight past him and into his house leaving him muttering to himself. She was sorely tempted to kick the door shut with her foot as she walked past ... but she managed to restrain herself.
Daniel sat opposite her, his eyes glittering like two chunks of coal, and Izzy kept her gaze on her plate, except for when she smiled her thanks at Mrs Coats or Rosie. She knew that what she was doing was infuriating Daniel, but she just couldn't seem to stop herself.
After lunch she stood up to leave, just as Mrs Coats came bustling in with a hamper, she was only little and the hamper was quite sizeable so the scene would have been comic -- if Izzy hadn't been so moved.
"You've had no time to buy anything in yet Miss Izzy, so I just thought that these bits would keep you going for a few days..."
"Izzy will still be having her meals over here -- for the most part Mrs Coats," Daniel interrupted.
"That's maybe sir, but she'll still want to make herself a sandwich or a cup of coffee or something," Mrs Coats protested.
"Thank you Mrs Coats ... that was really thoughtful of you and I really appreciate it..." she turned to look at Daniel. "And no I won't be having all my meals over here," she told him as she rose and went to pick up the hamper.
She would have loved to have lifted it from the table, and swept from the room, but alas that was just not going to happen...
Daniel watched her in silence for a moment as she struggled to even pick the thing up, and then with a sigh, he nudged her out of the way; and picked it up with an ease that made her sick with envy.
"Big strong macho men think they know everything!" she muttered as she marched ahead of him to her little home.
Daniel went straight into the kitchen and left the hamper on the table in there; whilst Izzy remained just inside, near the open front door.
Daniel walked back down the hall and gently pushed the front door closed. "Since you now have the facilities to make coffee; then I would be delighted to join you for one," he told her dangerously.
Izzy peeped up at him to see those glittering eyes. "Yes Daniel, of course..." she murmured before fleeing to the kitchen.
She pottered around nervously making the coffee, all the time aware that Daniel was standing in the door way watching her.
She finally turned to him with two steaming mugs in her hands.
"In here or on the sofa?" she asked not quite meeting his eye.
"Hmm now let me think..." Daniel murmured in a deep and seductive tone that sent a little tremor through her, and a drop of hot coffee splashed onto the back of her hand. "In the kitchen could be quite fun ... but on the sofa would be little more comfortable for you -- I think." He looked down at her red face with twinkling eyes. "Do you still want to play little girl?" he asked.
Her face flamed, and she could not meet his eye, not for nothing. "Now Izzy, say sorry for winding me up."
Her eyes flew to his face and she swallowed. "I'm sorry Daniel ... I won't do it again," she whispered timidly.
He leaned over and kissed the tip of her nose before taking the mugs off her.
"The living room I think," he said as he turned and moved into that room. He sat down and put the mugs on the coffee table, and then he held his hand out to her. "Come and sit down Izzy," he ordered.
Izzy looked at him for a moment, with wide wary eyes and then with a little sigh of resignation, she curled up next to him. He put his arm around her and pulled her tight against him as he sat sipping his coffee.
All the time his hand was brushing restlessly against her, down her arm to the back of her hand and then lightly back up again. Mostly it was over her clothing but any time it was skin on skin it sent a static charge right through her.
By the time he'd finished his drink, and put the mug back down; Izzy felt like a mass of jelly, all boneless and liquefied.
"I have to go now," Daniel sighed regretfully.
"Oh but why?" she couldn't hide her disappointment, and he felt a surge of satisfaction.
"I've things I need to do," he told her rising from the sofa. Izzy followed him to the door. "Dinner is at six," he said looking down at her. "Don't make me come after you."
"No Daniel," she said meekly.
"It's a dangerous game that you are playing Izzy..." Daniel warned softly.
She looked up at him with wide innocent eyes and he swore softly. His hand was shaking slightly as he cupped it around her face. "You'll get burned if you're not careful..." he said hoarsely as his lips came down on hers.
This was one of those dangerous kisses, all soft and manipulating. Izzy groaned deep in her throat as she reached up for more; and Daniel pulled her hard against him to show her again how she affected him.
"Don't say it," he growled at her. "Don't you dare say it!"
She swallowed it down and moved away her cheeks red from the passion he had stirred in her.
Daniel opened the front door and stepped onto the path. "I'll see you for dinner at six Izzy. Don't be late." He spun on his heel and marched away, without looking back.
"No Daniel" she whispered softly.
She showered and dressed in Jessie's blue dress, and she did her hair and her face with a little more emphasis on the eyes than she usually wore. She sprayed herself lightly with a body mist, and she hooked in the pretty earrings and fiddled with the necklace. She was ready for ten to six and she swept up her long woollen coat and locked up the little cottage.
As she neared the house, the front door was pulled open and Daniel stood waiting for her.
"Good evening Daniel..." she smiled hesitantly.
He bent and kissed her lightly on the cheek. "Good evening Izzy," his fingers touched the drop on her earring. "These really are very pretty..." he murmured as his knuckles brushed her throat. Izzy closed her eyes as a shudder ran through her; she opened them to see Daniel looking down at her with dark glittering eyes.
"Shall we?" he asked putting his arm lightly around her waist to lead her inside.
That evening they ate their meal ... and talked. Izzy had never been confident enough to sit and really talk to a man -- who wasn't family before; and she loved it. Daniel was an intelligent man, but Izzy was an intelligent woman. The conversation was stimulating to Daniel and exciting for Izzy, her eyes were alive with interest and she had an opinion on most things. When Daniel mentioned the factory it was as if he'd opened a flood gate. She suddenly felt able to ask all those questions she'd bitten down on before ... and Daniel answered her questions, sometimes with humour for her naivety; but mostly with respect for her logical assumptions.
Some of the problems he and Richard had been facing, she offered solutions to in a clear confident manner. Her ideas were mostly unworkable, but she looked at things in such a different way to him, that it led him to other ideas, and very soon he was leaning forward in his chair telling her his thoughts, before he'd even had a chance to clarify them in his own mind.
She fired questions and opinions and it helped him to iron out some of the wrinkles in it. By the time they left the table the whole thing was burning in his mind. He needed to write some of this down before he lost it again.
"I'll walk you back..." he told her absently.
Izzy looked up at him with amusement. "I won't get lost Daniel," she told him quietly. "You go and do what you need to do, and I'll see you tomorrow ... maybe?"
He smiled a bit sheepishly and kissed her lightly on the cheek. "Tomorrow," he agreed with her huskily.
She let herself into her little home and went straight for the kettle; and shortly afterwards she carried her mug into the living room, where she curled up on the sofa. She sighed as she remembered how they had sat here together earlier, Daniel with his arm around her. He'd stroked her skin until it had felt like it was on fire. 'You'll get burned if you're not careful' he warned her and when Daniel touched her that was exactly how she felt ... well, at the very least singed a little bit!
When Richard got back the next day it was to find Daniel sitting in Izzy's living room drinking coffee.
"There you two are!" Richard exclaimed.
"Richard!" Izzy reached up to kiss his cheek and Daniel moved over to make room for him on the sofa. "I've just boiled the kettle can I get you a coffee?"
"Yes please ... and while you're doing that, Daniel can help me with your stuff."
The two men went out to Richard's car and Daniel raised his eyebrows in surprise at the amount of things loaded inside. Richard laughed when he saw Daniels face. "You have absolutely no idea, brother!"
"So try telling me."
"Jessie went home and told her mum about Izzy yesterday morning. Her mum made a few phone calls and we spent all afternoon with people visiting. 'Oh Izzy's got a new house, she'll need a few bits so I bought this for her.' 'Izzy's got a new job; I thought she might like that.' 'I've just heard that Izzy's starting her own business, so I bought her this for luck!'" he grinned at Daniel his eyes twinkling mischievously. "That girl is so well loved brother dear -- that I pity you, if you hurt her."
Daniel frowned. "I have no intention of hurting Izzy! Like everyone else I think that she is wonderful."
Richard laughed with delight and a little bit of sympathy. "Oh but Izzy doesn't want you to be like everyone else. I've seen the way she looks at you, and it's nothing like the way she looks at anyone else ... and the way she talks to you, well..."
"Speaking of Izzy Richard, I've had some thoughts about the factory and I want to talk to you about it."
"And how did we get to the factory -- from Izzy exactly?" Richard puzzled.
"I was talking to Izzy about it at dinner last night; and she had some ideas..." Daniel ignored Richard's surprise. "She has a very strange way of looking at things sometimes, but she gave me some great ideas about how to move forward."
"Well, whatever gets you there -- I suppose," Richard murmured.
They started carting in Izzy's belongings.
"Oh my!" Izzy said as the things just kept coming. Several of the bags and boxes Richard put in the living room, most other things they took upstairs and dumped in the box room until Izzy had a chance to sort through it.
"Now then Izzy..." Richard told her. "You need to come into the living room and go through your house warming presents."
Her eyes were shining brightly, as she sat down on the floor; while the two men sat sipping coffee and watched her with amusement.
"Now isn't that nice!" she murmured holding up a little vase, and, "oh now I do like that!" she smiled looking at a plate.
There were lots of cards and notes all wishing her well on her new venture, and Richard kept looking at him as if to say; 'see I told you!'
Izzy seemed pleased and genuinely moved by all the good wishes; but he realised not shocked by the quantity. He began to realise just how extended her family was -- and how close knit they all were.
Finally Izzy seemed to reach the bottom of the final gift bag and all good wishes and gifts had been properly read, studied and admired.
She looked up at the two men, Richard grinning widely; and Daniel with a closed expression -- which she could not make out at all. "More coffee?" she offered hesitantly.
Daniel stood, "thank you Izzy, but no ... There are things that Richard and I need to discuss, before he heads back to London tomorrow." He smiled a little smile at her. "So if you would excuse us ... we'll leave you in peace to sort out your things."
Richard rose and left the cottage to move his car closer to Daniel's house, but Daniel's departure seemed to be a little more leisurely, as he continued to look at her thoughtfully.
"We'll see you for dinner at six?" It wasn't exactly a request or even an invitation, more like a very polite order.
She nodded with her own little smile. "Yes, of course."
He leaned down to kiss her lightly on her cheek. "Don't wear those earrings," he murmured just as he turned and exited the house.
Just thinking of the way Daniel always played with those earrings sent a shudder right through Izzy, and she couldn't help the; "oh Daniel" which slipped out. Fortunately Daniel had already left so she was quite safe, but she would really have to get control of herself, otherwise he might begin to think that she was doing it deliberately.
Dinner that night was fun as Richard was in high spirits, and it seemed to rub off on Daniel. There was lots of light conversation, and even more laughter. By the time they moved to the living room, Izzy was flushed and her eyes were sparkling; and she looked almost beautiful sitting on the sofa. Richard sat next to her and monopolised her attention for the next hour or more; as he filled her in on events back home, all the little bits of gossip which Jessie had made him memorise so that he could pass it on to Izzy.
It meant nothing to Daniel and very little to Richard since neither of them knew the people Richard was referring to; but to Izzy it was a delight; and some of it she found absolutely hysterical.
Daniel found himself smiling at her and sharing her amusement over something which should have been boring him to tears.
People who he'd never met, and their lives had no meaning for him, but the meaning they had for Izzy brought these strangers a little closer to him too.
Finally it was Richard who brought the evening to an end. "I'm for bed," he yawned, he looked across at Izzy. "I'll pop over for a coffee in the morning before I leave," he promised.
She smiled fondly at him. "Goodnight Richard, sleep well."
"I'll just walk Izzy back," Daniel said quietly, "See you in the morning Richard."
Richard didn't seem to find it strange that Daniel felt the need to walk her two minutes down a driveway which was locked up for the night with two heavy iron gates, and so Izzy didn't think anything of it either.
She unlocked her front door and turned to him. "Goodnight Daniel," she whispered softly.
Daniel cupped her face the way he had done before, and his lips brushed softly against hers. She reached up to put her hands on his shoulders, which brought her flat against his chest. She groaned a little as she arched up for more; and Daniel obliged by pulling her even tighter against him, his tongue dipping lightly into her mouth. He started to move against her and she could feel him.
"Izzy..." he grumbled softly, just before he pushed her gently away. "Go inside and lock your door Izzy," he ordered, his chest heaving slightly and his fist clenching and unclenching.
Izzy climbed out of bed early the following morning, full of purpose. She dressed smartly and left her little house to walk into the nearby village. It was a pleasant morning, bright and clear and just a little bit chilly.
There was a printer's just outside the village and that was her first stop, where she met with the owner, and over coffee told him a little bit about herself.
"Ah yes, Daniel Harker told me about you. You're the one who's going to be taking over from old Mr. Reynolds..." he looked at her over his spectacles. "You look a bit young to be doing such a dull job ... how old are you?"
Izzy smiled her sweet little smile. "I'm twenty four Mr. Potter. I'm fully trained and I've six years of experience behind me ... I can produce certificates and references on request, and I also have the support and backing of Mr Harker..." She leaned forward. "I came to see you first for two reasons; one to offer my services ... and secondly to place an order with you..."
Mr Potter's eyes brightened at this last bit. "Yes? What is it I can do for you?" he asked enthusiastically.
"I'd like to order some business cards off you; if you would be willing to take on such a small commission?" she asked a little bit uncertainly.
He grinned at her. "Corse I would my dear. How about say two hundred to start you off? And I think I could set up a nice little leaflet for you with a bit more detail on the kind of services you'll be offering..."
"Oh that would be wonderful!" Her voice warmed considerably, and her eyes sparkled.
"Excellent!" Mr Potter cleared his throat. "Now then ... I'll just get a paper and pen and we can sort it out..."
They spent the next hour working out a design and layout for the card and leaflet, and Mr Potter made a note of what services she would be offering out.
"Yes, I can see that people will really take to you," he murmured thoughtfully, "you're much more flexible than old Mr. Reynolds ever was." He looked across at her, 'such a nice little thing, ' he thought to himself, his Mary would be mothering her within the week given half a chance.
Izzy stood and shook hands with him. "So they'll be ready for next Wednesday?"
"Yes I can guarantee you, that they'll be all finished by then."
"Thank you for your time Mr Potter;" she smiled at him as he led her outside.
She walked back to her cottage feeling very pleased with herself; and so was more than a little dismayed, when Daniel came storming down the driveway towards her.
"Why weren't you at breakfast?"
Her smile faded, and the light left her eyes. "Stop bullying me Daniel!" she told him quietly, she walked past him, and unlocked her front door. She would have entered and closed her door on him, had he not held his hand up to stop her. "Go away Daniel..." she looked him in the eye. "Come back when you can be civil to me."