Lion's Den Ch. 06byElektrical©
Leo could not wait for the flight attendant to let him know he could turn on his cell phone. He knew Max was up by now and had seen the ring he left on her finger. He was anxious to hear her response, although he wasn't too confident she would say yes. He had bought the ring in Italy, but the time never seemed right to propose until their conversation before he left. In fact it was Max who mentioned marriage first, saying she would rather be a widow than a divorcee. He had spoken to Antonio and had received his blessing with pretty much the same warning. His parents were also pleased at the prospect of Max joining the family in a more permanent way. Leo's stomach did a flip as he was allowed to turn on his phone. He indeed had a message from Max.
"Hey hun, lil' man apparently knows you're not here. He has been fussing more than usual so when you get this message call so he could hear your voice."
"Fuck," Leo cursed under his breath. She did not mention the ring or give a response. Did she not see it? Of course she did, that sapphire was no joke. What are you up to Max? Leo knew Max's crazy streak, and she could do anything when she felt cornered. Like take their kid and run to Colombia. He wanted to call and tell her never mind about the proposal, but decided against it. If Max was not going to mention the ring then he wasn't going to either.
"Hello, Luca, it's daddy." Leo never tired of addressing himself as daddy. "Remember I told you I was going away for some days. Don't give your mother a hard time. I'll see you in two weeks."
"Hey Leo, I want you to take note that your son not only ruined my girlish figure, he is sucking the life out of my breasts. He's going on soy soon if he keeps this up."
Leo shifted uncomfortably in his seat as his cock jumped at the vision of his naked Max breast feeding their son. "Luca, those breasts are just on loan to you. They belong to me, so handle with care. And Max there was nothing girlish about your figure, you are all woman babe. By the way did you use that cream for your breasts when you woke up? I had a good go at them and now Luca, so you must be extra sore." Leo had learned some new stuff since the birth of his son. Weird shit, but he was glad to learn. It made him feel proud and a part of them. After not being there the first few months of Max's pregnancy he was not going to be left out of any more experiences. He realized that to his core he was a family man, and although Max was not asking him to, he was seriously considering a new occupation.
Max wanted to laugh at hearing the concern in Leo's voice, but it was no laughing matter. To her he sounded so domesticated. She wondered if family life would make him lose his edge. It would be her worst fear brought to life.
"Max? You still there babe?" Leo hated it when Max went silent on him. That meant she was thinking about something that most likely he did not want to hear.
"Yeah I'm here. I just want you to know that as soon as the plane hits that tarmac you better have your game face on."
"I got ya. It'll be fine. I was doing this long before I met you."
Max cut him off, "Yeah yeah yeah, and you will be doing it long after me."
"Oh hell no Max you're never leaving me!" Leo laughed realizing he might have said that a little too loudly, as the neighboring passengers gave him queer looks. His voice got very serious and low, "Max, I'm coming back to you."
"I got ya." Max replied with his favorite response. "I love you. We'll chat when you get home." Max felt very strange as the words slipped past her lips but she meant them.
With Luca tucked in and down for the night Max had time to think about the ring on her finger. A ring she was not sure she wanted yet, but still had not taken off. As tumultuous as their relationship had been so far, she knew Leo was her match. If they got married it would be a forever deal, nothing short of death could end it.
She tucked the marriage thoughts away to offer a silent prayer for Leo. Max had every right to be worried about Leo. She had been overhearing snips and bits when Leo was talking to Pauley, and gathered that trouble was brewing. Last night during their nightly talk Leo told her what was going down in New York.
A couple of bosses were arrested the day Luca was born and chaos had broken out in a massive power grab. Voids needed to be filled and Carmine, being the peacekeeper, was pulled in to keep the bloodshed to a minimum. Leo was going back to maintain the peace in his districts and help Pauley with his. He was upfront with Max about how dangerous some of this undertaking would be. It was not his intention to worry her, but prepare her just in case it all went to shit. He also informed her that in the event of his death she and Luca would inherit everything. It was a difficult conversation to have but necessary.
Pauley was waiting patiently for Leo's flight to land in Newark, NJ. In order to keep a low profile for awhile they decided it would be best for Leo to fly into EWR. When they saw each other they double kissed and hugged.
"Cuz it is good to have you back. Your pop's been holding on for as long as he could without you, but the pressure is mounting."
"What about your situation?"
"It is stable for the time being, no more encroaching, but we need to push back. Hard."
"Ok, anything else I need to know?"
"Nah. How's you know who and you know who?" Pauley asked cautiously. No one outside their family knew Leo had a kid and it was agreed to keep it that way until the dust settled.
"Well. All is well on that front. And it might get better if I get a yes."
"You seriously want to do that? You know there is no taming one like her?"
Leo laughed at Pauley. "You have no idea. But she is mine."
As they approached the car Leo handed Pauley a little electronic device for sweeping for bugs.
"This is new? A gift from your friend?"
"You know it." It was one of the many gadgets that Max kept in her "playroom" as she called it. After their conversation about what was going down in New York Max gave him full access to her toys, and taught him how to read and write coded messages just incase. Leo smiled as he remembered the first night Max took him into her inner sanctum.
"Max what is in the room with the coded lock?" Leo was terribly curious about what was behind that door. He had seen Max and her father go in and out of it. He knew it used to be the third bedroom, but what Max had beyond those doors was a mystery.
"Your what? Is that some kind of S&M thing?"
"Wanna see it?" Max led Leo into her gun room. Leo looked around amazed. He had never seen a private collection of that size. He had his own assortment of weapons, but Max's impressed and concerned him at the same time. Aside from all the guns he appreciated the room as quintessentially Max; tough, feminine, private. Her armory was mounted against pink French toile wallpaper. All the woodwork was black. In the center of the room there was a square display case that contained her antique firearms.
Max looked at Leo's awe struck face and giggled. "You do remember me telling you, I like guns and weapons?"
"Yeah, but I really thought maybe it boiled down to a few hand guns and a subscription to Guns & Ammo."
"That is so lightweight."
He looked at her beaming face and playfully admonished. "Max, you might need therapy."
Leo and Pauley's first stop was at Leo's parents' house. Isabella, Carmine and Salvatore, Pauley father, were waiting for the boys to arrive. Isabella cooked a big meal, more out of nervousness than really expecting Leo to be hungry.
"How's your lot?" Isabelle inquired.
"Good. I'm waiting for it to get better." Leo winked at his mother.
"It will. Now eat up before it goes cold. Pauley you too." Isabelle retired to her bedroom to give the men a chance to talk.
Leo took out another one of Max's devices from his bag, and placed in on the table. It jammed all electronic signals, coming in and out of the house including cell phones. The men proceeded to discuss business, and strategize how to get things under control.
Max took a picture of her hand with the ring on it and sent it to Laney. She needed a sounding board.
"Is that what I think it is? I am coming over." Laney was in shock. She had had the opportunity to observe Leo over the past few weeks and was quite impressed with his fathering skills. He was even less intense with Max, except now with this ring thing. Leo sure was one determined fella.
"Hey girl come join me let us reason this thing out," Max said patting the bed. She was glad her friend was home and came over immediately.
Laney snuggled down next to her friend. "Two questions before we begin. One, are these clean sheets, I know you and Leo must have had some good good-bye sex this evening," she said scrunching up her face. "Two, am I going to be replacing Leo by sleeping with you until he comes back."
Max laughed and wacked her friend with a pillow. "These sheets are fresh, take a whiff. And oh please don't act like you have not missed sleeping with me."
"You have the best bed!" Laney exclaimed. "Well anyway, I am spending the night."
"Have you had dinner yet? I am hungry."
"Pizza and beer?"
"Yeah so I could get Luca drunk on my breast milk."
Laney laughed. "I forget that you are still eating for two. Pizza and beer for me and I'll get some other liquid for you."
"Sounds like a plan."
As the girls snuggled down under the down comforter they both realized how much they missed alone time with each other. Laney grabbed Max's hand and took a closer look at the sapphire. It was a gorgeous emerald cut. "Girl are you ready to do this?"
"I don't think so. I am kinda okay with how things are going now. I love Leo, but is that enough? Maybe I could say yes and be his fiancée forever."
"Girl you know that is not going to work. The moment you say yes Leo will set a date."
"Yes he will." Max laughed at the image of Leo picking out bridesmaids dresses.
"Yo Leo, what is popping Papi?"
"Hey Romeo. How are things?"
"Easy breezy brother. You?"
"You know, just trying to stay alive. Tell me something though bro, why is your fam pressing in on Pauley's turf? I thought we settled all that shit ages ago."
"It was all copacetic until, your boy Peretti decided to sing like a canary."
"Carlo Peretti got picked up before the sweep. It was because of him all that shit went down. You don't know?"
"Nah, I was out of town. How did you find out?"
"I have a link in the Feds. And I passed that info onto Ty who apparently was just waiting for an opening to make his move. I figured if I knew then you lot knew. Sorry man."
As Romeo filled Leo in on all he knew Leo could feel his veins throbbing in his head and neck. He had not anticipated there being a rat. But it did make matters kind of simple, he just had one person to focus on now. Peretti.
"Well what done is done, but I need you to send a message to Ty for me. Tell him I said to step off or I am coming for him." Leo's cordial tone disappeared. He and Romeo went way back, and had a good business relationship. Something he knew Romeo would never threaten, not even for family. In his world money trumps family.
Peretti was mid level but he knew enough to bring everyone down like dominoes. Leo figured it would only be a matter of time before the Feds came looking for him. Somebody had to shut Peretti up.
As Leo was pulling out his parking spot cell phone rang. Just the person he did not want to talk to, Max. He considered letting it go to voicemail. But thought better of it since they had not spoken since he landed.
"Hey Hon. How's it going?"
"Difficult and getting more and more so. I just got a piece of news that makes matters worse for all involved."
"Anything you care to share? The line is secure."
"I found out the catalyst for the busts. Some coward ass bastard named Peretti. He got hauled in on some Russian prostitution racket and is giving us all up."
"All as in you too?"
"How much time we have left?"
"I don't know. But don't worry all my affairs are in order in case of an arrest."
"I am not worried." Max jokingly lied. "I just don't want to have to mail you soap-on-a-rope."
"Oh that is not funny." Leo chuckled despite the serious nature of their conversation.
"Where is Peretti being held?"
"I don't know. I was about to make some calls to put some feelers out before you called."
"Okay. We'll chat later. Love you. Stay safe."
"Love you too."
Max paced the floor thinking about what Leo just told her. Luca was too young to have a father locked up. Carmine was too old to go to jail. Pauley was too pretty to go to jail. And if Peretti knew of all their dealings they could be facing some serious time. Max racked her brain looking for a way to protect her family. She wrestled with the options in front of her and picked a solution. Weighing the possible outcome she made a call.
"What's wrong?" the voice on the other end answered with concern.
"I need a favour."
"There's a guy in federal custody I need you to get to."
"I'll let you know when it's done."
"No need. I'll know." And just like that both lines went dead. Max looked in the mirror. She felt fully justified in protecting her family, but knew this good deed would not go unpunished. She just hoped she would be strong enough to handle the fallout.
Leo put the word out on Peretti. Everyone was tasked with hitting up their connections for info. No one seemed to know where he was being held. Two days had passed when the news hit that street that Peretti was dead. One shot to the head and another to the heart. Leo called a meeting but no one took ownership of the hit. Some suggested that perhaps it was the Russians. Leo was not completely convinced. They would have made it known it was them.
He called Max to tell her the news of Peretti's mysterious demise. Also, since there would be no corroboration the arrested bosses would be released. For the time being trouble was at bay.
"So how long until you coming back to Wilmington?"
"You miss your man?" Leo teased
"Yeah I miss you. Luca misses you. I think even Laney misses you."
"Give me two weeks. I think everything will be relatively back to normal."
"I'm holding you to that Leo."
"I got ya. Tell Luca hello for me."
"Tell him yourself. He's up."
Luca spoke to his son. Just hearing him coo made him want to get on a plane to see them. These two weeks needed to go by quickly.
Carmine patted Leo on his back as he looked out on the gathering of friends, family and business associates. They were throwing a "Welcome Back, We All Ducked Jail" party at Absinthe. The speedy end to their problems had everyone feeling celebratory. Leo however was not feeling it and Carmine saw that.
"Son, what is the problem?"
"I don't know. I just have a feeling something is wrong."
"What could be wrong? Peretti is dead. The capos are out. Order is restored. Don't buy problems. Perhaps you should go home. I know Max would love to see you."
Leo considered what his father was saying, "You know what dad you maybe right. I'm out. Make some excuse for me."
Max thought she heard a noise on the baby monitor. She looked towards Luca's room and saw a glow coming for under the door. She reached for the gun under Leo's pillow and carefully got off the bed. She nudged the door open with her foot with the gun pointed straight ahead at the intruder. Leo spun around when he heard the door open and got the shock of his life.
"WHAT THE FUCK!!"
"You what the fuck! I almost killed you." Max said lowering her weapon.
"You walk around the house armed?"
"Of course! Don't you?"
"Yeah but that is different."
"Different because I am a girl? You sexist pig." Max laughed.
"Come give this sexist pig a kiss." Leo grabbed Max around his waist and pulled her in close. Gosh she smelled good.
Max felt her whole body relax as her lips connected Leo's. She missed him and by the rise in his crotch it seemed he missed her too.
"Let's go make this a real homecoming," Leo suggested pushing Max backward towards their room never breaking contact with her mouth. She shimmied out of her robe revealing her naked body below. Seeing her nipples made Leo smile. He'd been longing to have her body pressed against his. It pleased him to know that she felt the same way.
"Damn girl you've sprung a leak," Leo commented as his hand slipped between her thighs.
"Are you gonna plug it?" Max invited opening her legs.
"No I'm gonna break your pipes." Leo pushed her down onto the bed.
Max looked up at Leo as he undressed. The fire in her eyes told him he needed to hurry up before she ripped his clothing off. She licked her fingers and began rubbing her nipples and inhaling deeply.
"Max stop." Leo's command was deep and sharp. Watching Max getting herself worked up was bringing him to a climax. He grabbed the base of his cock to slow it down. But lost it when she began dipping her fingers into her cunt and licking off her nectar. He leaned over her and came on her breasts and stomach.
Max grinned as she rubbed his ointment into her skin. "Now that's done let's get ready to wake the neighbourhood."
Leo grabbed Max by the knees and pulled her to the edge of the bed. "I see princess you are still testing me."
"You kept me waiting." She replied putting her legs around his hips.
"And now?" As he said those words her plunged into her hot channel. She was speechless. Her mouth formed an O, but no sound came out. This was worth waiting for. Leo was merciless as he rode her. Max just panted and gripped the sheet above her head. The sound of their bodies colliding and the deep penetration of Leo's cock had Max nearing an orgasm that threatened to snap her back. She could feel it growing in her belly. As it shot through to her toes she tightened her legs around Leo. This caused him to introduce shallow strokes which just added to the intensity of her orgasm.
Then the words he waited for bolted from her lips. His name being screamed over and over again and being begged to stop.
"No sugar. I'm not stopping." Leo increased his pace feeling his own orgasm rising within him. He threw his head back and increased his grip on Max's backside. With a grunt he filled Max with his jism. When he was done he lowered her legs and collapsed besides her holding her hand. It was then he noticed the ring. She has not taken it off. I better leave that discussion for the morning.
The sun had barely begun its ascent when the cries from Luca woke them both up.
"You go back to sleep. I've got him."
"Thanks, but unless you've started lactating you are of no use to him."
"True." Leo laughed. "I'll go change him and bring him to you."
"Wonderful that will give me an extra five minutes."
Leo had missed his son. It was nice to be back and falling into their family routine. Max figured that she could squeeze a shower in before Leo brought Luca. The hot water did her limbs good. It also gave her time to process Leo's early arrival. Okay he's back and he wants an answer. Are you ready for all that would entail? It's great making the decision and keeping it private, but once it's out there. It's out there. Max's thoughts were broken by a tap on the shower door.
She opened it giving Leo an eyeful.
Leo's lustful gaze swept over Max as she dried her skin. He could not help but reach out and touch her. Bringing his hand to her neck to draw her in for a kiss. She moaned in his mouth and took the baby from him.