The Twelve Tables Ch. 20


"You should tell him. He would love knowing that," Josh chuckled. "He's obsessed with your breast milk. I think he'd have it in his morning coffee if you let him."

"Josh!" she looked at him hardly believing the words had come from him. "How are you so okay with this when you didn't even want to talk about my trial because you couldn't picture me with anyone else?" The question that had been bothering her the most bubbled its way to the top of her thoughts.

"It's taken me some time to wrap my head around it. I knew he loved you but would never cross that line before Lio died. It became more obvious after though," he took his hand from her leg and scratched his cheek in thought. "I trusted you both implicitly and knew nothing would come of it but then with Papa's decision and the expectations on three of us; I had to change my thinking."

"Dante's in love with me? I mean I knew he loved me but, in love?" Peri asked confused. She had assumed that like her, Dante was making the best of the situation.

"The way he tells it he fell in love with you at that first lunch when you told that story about how we met and started dating," Josh said easily.

"I had no idea," she shook her head.

"Being able to share you is something he has wanted for a long time, that's why he moved into our room the night that we got back from the wedding. Speaking of which we really should look into a custom made bed just for some extra room," he mused.

"I am having trouble understanding how you are so okay with all of this and what happens now. Now that we can resume," she paused again and murmured the word "fucking" making him chuckle. Now that she had started talking all the difficult questions she had been worrying overcame spilling out.

"It's taken time for me to be okay with it and if it were anyone but him, even if Papa had told me it was one of the others I mightn't be as okay with it as I am. Dante and I bonded, really bonded over the last six months with everything that's happened. We know each other better than anyone else except possibly you. We lost our other halves and found each other I guess," his voice trailed off, and they sat in a few minutes of silence as they each thought about what he had said for different reasons.

"Would it help to know that I have enjoyed watching you with him," Josh admitted. "I never been much of a voyeur before, even porn didn't hold a great deal of fascination for me because there were always Kept to play with. With you though it's different and the fact that I know he loves you almost as much as I do helps. That first morning, in the suite I could see the reflection in the mirror from the bed. I could see your face and your reactions in a way I can't when I am in the moment with you."

"We didn't do anything," Peri said quickly.

"No, but that was the beginning when the awkwardness seemed to slip away from the two of you, and I saw it. I not only saw it but I liked it in a way I can't explain. D. understands. It's how he's been feeling for a while," Josh admitted.

"You've talked to Dante about it?" Peri frowned.

"He talked to me, he doesn't want to push too hard before I am ready," he gave a soft laugh. "He would have left our bed and gone back to his guest suite if I'd asked him to."

"The difference for me is that I'm in love with you, you're my husband and the one I wanted to spend the rest of my life with," Peri said with feeling.

"I know this is more than you expected or wanted when you married me. Even knowing my family, it was not in my vision for the future either but I want you to love him too. I am your husband and always will be, but there is room in our lives to include him. In a way, I am enjoying this three-sided relationship with someone I know will love you and look after you the way I would when I am not there. More than that he will treat our children as his own and any future children will become ours," he said surprising her.

"What do you mean?" Peri looked at him.

"The birth certificate of all your children will carry my name and ensure their place at the next table, but if our lives continue as they are, then the true paternity could go either way," Josh said sounding far more comfortable with the situation than he was. He knew it had to be and that both Dante and Peri held back from acting on their growing feelings because of him.

"You're okay with that?" Peri was incredulous and not sure that she was okay with the idea of it.

"I have had a different upbringing to the one you and most people we know had," he said seriously. "I've accepted that Dante and I are now inextricably joined both professionally and privately. It is me though who remains in control. I will be the Chair of our family not only in the wider sense but our home as well. You may think of him as a second husband, but it is me that you vowed to love, honour and above all else obey." His voice had taken on that demanding tone she knew so well, and she realised that this sense of control over his world and the people in it was how he was so accepting of her relationship with Dante.

"I understand," she said softly. "I did promise all those things when I chose to marry you and accept everything that came along with you because I love you, and you are mine, forever and always."

"Forever and always," he smiled and placed his hand on her leg again, squeezing her thigh. "I'm glad you talked to me about it. I have been waiting for you to start questioning the new situation."

"You were?" she looked at him.

"Yeah, you need to question everything. It's what makes you such a good researcher. It's also how you deal with the things that worry you and keep you awake at night." He considered whether this was the right time to bring up a question of his own. "You haven't had any nightmares to keep you awake for a long time, are you coming to terms with what happened?"

"It's in the past, and I barely think about what happened now. With the babies and the house and you and Dante filling my world. It's the quiet times when I have too much time to think that I get scared. It terrifies me that one day she will be released and have twenty or however many years of built up hatred toward me. Worse than that even is what if she goes after one of the children and not me? They won't know who she is or that she would mean them harm," her voice rose with her rising fear.

"She's not coming back Peri, not ever," Josh reassured her. "I promise she will never be anywhere near our children." At that moment, he made the decision he had been putting off. He had solved the enigma and was considering his options but hearing the genuine fear escalate in Peri's voice had made him think about the safety of his children. He knew what he had to do now.

Peri heard the tone of his voice and saw the darkness of his expression and let the conversation drop as silence descended on them once again.

"Josh, will we have to move to the farm when your father hands the table over to you?" she asked.

"No, we will create our table our way," he said bringing his thoughts back from the dark place they had lingered. "We will probably stay where we are and wait for some of the surrounding lands to become available. There is no rush Papa won't retire for years yet; this is just the beginning. All of the new table members will need training. No one else has even been told that the time has come to start the changing of seats."

"I guess you will get that airstrip you wanted," she said. "And I will get a bigger and better library if you build an Athenaeum." She considered a few of the other things she had spoken with Antonia about recently. "Then I could turn the library into my workspace at home. I imagine as time goes on we'll be seeing a lot more of Tarsia and her team."

"There's an airstrip not too far away that Papa has been using. I am thinking a helipad," he looked at her and smiled widely. "Let's leave any future planning until after the holidays when everyone has been told that the next table is being formed. Ben still believes he is heir apparent. The twins also have been working toward the Chair and Oracle positions. Romey more so than Jules I expect but I don't want to do anything until they've been informed of their future roles."

"I hadn't even thought of that, I'm sorry, Josh. It will be hard for them, won't it," she said thoughtfully.

"I don't think so, all of the roles are valuable, and honestly I think Ben will be relieved that Emily will stop killing herself trying to have more children. He's a good man, and he will support me wholeheartedly. Jules will too I imagine. Romey may have a bruised ego, but I imagine whoever he works with will manage that," Josh voiced his thoughts about how he believed his brothers would take the news of his leadership.

"What about Carlo?" she asked.

"If Carlo can ride horses or drive big cars and bikes he will be happy," Josh said. "They aren't cruel Peri. My brothers will all work to their strengths and interests. It just seems that the biggest control freak won the chair this time," he chuckled knowing that was what she used to call him before they fell in love.

"Then they are definitely playing to your strengths," she grinned.

"Speaking of which now that you are recovering, and the babies are thriving, we will need to look at your feeding schedule again. With two husbands to please and a sassy attitude to correct I don't want you getting to the brink of physical exhaustion again," he said. "We have nannies and housekeepers for a reason and next year you will need to be checking in more regularly with your team at work."

"But I," she began to argue and stopped herself as he took his eyes off the road to give her a look.

"You will be even busier next year, and you know it. You are still feeding every three hours during the day you can't sustain that, not with three of them. Expressing takes a fraction of the time and will ensure your supply remains as abundant as it is now," he reassured her, having asked the questions of the doctors. "I think we should reduce it to three times a day where you take the time to feed them. That doesn't mean you can't have all the cuddles and playtimes you enjoy now just that you have time for the other things we talked about like keeping your husbands happy."

"Husbands," she repeated the word. "I'm only married to one of you. I think you want to marry Dante more than I want a second husband to please."

"That sassy attitude being corrected is another one of the reasons you will need more time away from the nursery," he said seriously. "I think I would enjoy watching D. punish you as much as I enjoy doing it myself," he said in a strange voice that made her look at him. "Just to dispel any further doubts you may have about me enjoying watching you and D. being intimate with each other," he picked up her hand and placed it on his crotch. Peri's eyes widened feeling the semi-erect cock beneath her fingers.

"Maybe," she said softly, her fingers beginning to massage his cock through the material of his pants "We should have a small ceremony, like a handfasting ceremony to make it official then. That way we could show that this is something we want rather than something we just accept. I've felt awkward as if I am betraying you, especially when he sucks on my nipple and makes me want to orgasm," she felt his cock jump under her hand at the mention of being with Dante.

"You don't feel that way now that we have talked do you?" Josh asked.

"No, but if you want me to submit to him the same way I do you and accept punishment from him for being cheeky, I think maybe something like that. Remember when we went to the chalet for the weekend, and you gave me the necklace to help me understand what is was that you were asking me?" She asked knowing that without it, she may not have been as open to everything that happened that weekend.

"I wanted to put you at ease and have you be open to the lifestyle I wanted with you," he explained answering his question at the same time. "Ah I see," he murmured as they crunched up the gravel drive behind the van which turned to stop in front of the house to unload its precious cargo while they continued to the garage.

Aroused and not wanting to extend his need to possess her any further he stepped out of the car and walked purposefully around to her side as she stood up and closed her door. His hands curled around her upper arms, and he pushed her back against the closing car door kissing her roughly and pushing his hard cock against her belly.

"You're mine forever and always, first and foremost," he growled as he pushed her down to her knees before him. He fumbled with his belt, and she lifted her hand to undo his fly and take out his cock, as he pants slide down his thighs. She licked out at his cock as he continued to talk in a growl filled with arousal that thrilled her more than scared her.

"Do not mistake my enjoyment in sharing you with D. for more than what it is," he groaned as she sucked the head of his cock into her mouth. "He may act like a husband and treat you as a husband would, but I am your lawful husband. You are mine to keep and mine to share, and I get to dictate who, where and when. There will be no marriage or handfasting or ceremony to make him equal to me in this." He began to thrust his hips making her take more of his cock as she sucked him and listened to his tirade. He suddenly pulled her up by the hair and made her face him. "Do you understand?" he kissed her then deeply and passionately as she nodded. All the intense desire and passion that had been missing between them suddenly rushed back.

His hands found the tie to her wrap around blouse and he spread it open looking in disgust at the maternity bra. He unclipped the small triangles that dropped to expose her nipples and was far more satisfied. His fingers pinched her nipples and his kissed her deeply again and swallowed her whimpers.

"He can't be equal to me, but if it will help you to overcome the hurdle of letting us enjoy you together we can fashion a new decorative collar. A necklace that can signify your availability to both of us," his voice was a murmuring growl in her ear as he kissed down her neck and over her chest to lick at her nipple that dripped readily with unexpressed milk. He wasn't as enamoured with the taste as his brother was preferring to play with the large mounds of soft flesh when they were empty. "You may have two men who act like your husband, but I am Master of this home and family, and you belong to me."

"Yes, mine," she said breathlessly revelling in his commanding voice. His hands slid under her skirt and practically tore her panties from her lowering them down her legs before lifting one leg to his hip.

"So hot and wet as always," he groaned as he entered her slowly being careful even though the doctors had given them the go-ahead to resume their sex life. He could see the worry in her face and kissed her again as he fucked her harder buffeting her against the side of the car. "Fuck," he growled into her ear. "I've waited too long for this," he bit her neck to make her cry out even more and give him the thrill of her pain and pleasure.

Peri became overwhelmed with his need to possess her, hurt her, use her and need to know that she was his in every way possible. Her legs shook so hard with her impending orgasm that the one leg supporting her began to buckle, and his hold on her tightened. She loved his intense passion for her and at any other time his aggressive words would concern her but like this, she knew what they meant to both of them.

"Cum with me," he growled breathlessly, and she cried out as his teeth sank into her neck again. The garage filled with the noise of unadulterated pleasure, and together they collapsed to the garage floor Josh pulling Peri into his arms, looking up at him she placed a hand on his cheek and accepted the kiss he gave her.

"I get it," she whispered, "I understand now."


The week before Christmas, the Donati triplets had turned three months old. Peri had had to face some hard truths about herself in the last month. Mostly that she wasn't superwoman, and she couldn't do it all by herself, and she didn't need to. Josh had not negotiated his decision to begin dropping the amount of feeding time she spent in the nursery every day. He employed more staff as visits from his parents and uncles were now commonplace, often with them staying overnight in one or both of the guest suites as well as the rooms upstairs.

Peri spent a small amount of time rearranging the library and converting it into her personal workspace, which pleased both Josh and Dante. Dante more so because it meant she was preparing to return to work at least in some capacity next year, and he had missed having her so close during the day.

Both he and Josh had been handing over the day to day running of their business to the managers they had installed over the last six months or so. Consistent and often impromptu meetings with their father and uncles were becoming draining but using each other for support and as sounding boards, they were determined to do whatever it took to take their places as the leaders of the new table.

Over the last two weeks, Dante had given Josh and Peri the space to renew their intimacy without him being too much of a third wheel. This was not to say that he wasn't still affectionate and engaging in some form of foreplay and teasing with Peri, but he hadn't entered the playroom with them or interrupted a moment of intimacy. In short, he hadn't fucked her yet, and his frustration levels were rising as even the Kept he had seen on occasion to vent that frustration, no longer satisfied his need.

After they had been for the babies twelve-week visit to the paediatrician Dante had led Josh and Peri up to Lio's apartment to see what he had done with it while the nannies took the babies to visit Andie and Lucia.

"I didn't realise you had decided to do anything with it yet," Josh said frowning not liking surprises from those he was closest to.

"Of course, you can redecorate as the children get older, but there is enough room here now for a dozen little Donati's to sleep, eat and play with their nannies when their parents have to be in the city," Dante said spreading his arms wide as they walked into the huge apartment. Noting the child-friendly décor and furnishings, Josh and Peri were surprised by his announcement. It remained a fully functioning apartment with kitchen, living room, and bathroom facilities as well as many rooms to be shared by children and nannies.

"Twelve babies?" Peri asked in surprise.

"There were twelve in my family why not ours?" he asked.

"More children most definitely but twelve?" she looked at the two men with wide eyes.

"You don't have to have all nine at once," Josh chuckled. "I do believe Lio would have liked this. Thank you," he embraced his brother patting him on the back knowing it would have been hard for him to let go of Lio's presence in this space.

"Your home has become mine, and now mine becomes yours, are you ready for the second part?" he asked excitedly.

"Lead on," Josh chuckled taking Peri's hand and following Dante up the internal stairs to his apartment. The internal layout had changed only slightly at first glance with the enormous living area now in an in an L shape curling around the dining room where an office area had once been. Both apartments were vast taking up the entire floor of the building and both had far more rooms than anyone would need unless from a large family. The décor seemed to have changed slightly as well with some new furnishings and detail to the walls and ceiling,

"It has a very nineteen twenties Art Deco style to it now," Peri said looking around. "Great Gatsby almost in its splendour. It's amazing," she smiled. Dante grinned like a kid showing off new toys and led then down past several guest bedrooms on one side of the hallway. A large bright window stood at the far end of the new hallway.

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