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Je Suis a Toi (Monsters in the Dark Book 4)

Pepper Winters

  Je Suis à Toi

  Monsters in the Dark #4


  New York Times Bestseller

  Pepper Winters

  Je Suis à Toi (Monsters in the Dark #4)

  Copyright © 2016 Pepper Winters

  Published by Pepper Winters

  All rights reserved. No part of this book may be reproduced or transmitted in any form, including electronic or mechanical, without written permission from the publisher, except in the case of brief quotations embodied in critical articles or reviews.

  This is a work of fiction. Names, characters, businesses, places, events, and incidents are either the products of the author’s imagination or used in a fictitious manner. Any resemblance to actual persons, living or dead, or actual events is purely coincidental.

  This book is licensed for your personal enjoyment only. This book may not be re-sold or given away to other people. If you would like to share this book with another person, please purchase an additional copy for each person you share it with. If you are reading this book and did not purchase it, or it was not purchased for your use only, then you should return it to the seller and purchase your own copy. Thank you for respecting the author’s work.

  Published: Pepper Winters 2016: [email protected]

  Cover Design: by Kellie at Book Cover by Design

  Editing by: Jenny Sims

  French Translation: Eva LeNoir & Words without Borders




  Chapter One

  Chapter Two

  Chapter Three

  Chapter Four

  Chapter Five

  Chapter Six

  Chapter Seven

  Chapter Eight

  Chapter Nine

  Chapter Ten

  Chapter Eleven

  Chapter Twelve

  Chapter Thirteen

  Chapter Fourteen

  Chapter Fifteen

  Chapter Sixteen

  Chapter Seventeen

  Chapter Eighteen

  Chapter Nineteen

  Chapter Twenty

  Chapter Twenty-One


  Teaser Blurb


  Chapter One





  Pepper Winters is a New York Times, Wall Street Journal, and USA Today International Bestseller.

  Her Dark Romance books include:

  Monsters in the Dark Trilogy

  Tears of Tess (Monsters in the Dark #1)

  Quintessentially Q (Monsters in the Dark #2)

  Twisted Together (Monsters in the Dark #3)

  Je Suis à Toi (Monsters in the Dark #3.5)

  * * * * *

  Indebted Series

  Debt Inheritance (Indebted #1)

  First Debt (Indebted Series #2)

  Second Debt (Indebted Series #3)

  Third Debt (Indebted Series #4)

  Fourth Debt (Indebted Series #5)

  Final Debt (Indebted Series #6)

  Indebted Epilogue (Indebted Series #7)

  * * * * *

  Her Grey Romance books include:


  Ruin & Rule (Pure Corruption MC #1)

  Sin & Suffer (Pure Corruption MC #2)

  * * * * *

  Her standalone contemporary books include:

  Unseen Messages

  * * * * *

  Her Upcoming Releases include:

  2016: Super Secret Series

  2016: The Argument (July 2016)

  2016: Indebted Beginnings (Indebted Series Prequel)

  2016-17 Dark Romance Trilogy

  * * * * *

  Her Audio Books include:

  Monsters in the Dark Series (releasing June 2016)

  Indebted Series (One and Two Out Now)

  Ruin & Rule / Sin & Suffer (Out now)

  Destroyed / Unseen Messages (releasing 2016)

  To be the first to know about upcoming releases, please join Pepper’s Newsletter (she promises never to spam or annoy you.)

  Pepper's Newsletter

  Or follow her on her website

  Pepper Winters

  THERE IS SUCH a thing as perfection.

  Perfection didn’t mean I lived in a world where I never got sick, argued with the man I loved, endured unhappiness, or generally still acted like a brat when certain things didn’t go my way.

  But it did mean that all of that...

  The nonsense.

  The noise.

  The nastiness of life.

  …didn’t matter.

  Some people went their entire existence without finding the destination they were owed. And by destination, I didn’t mean death. I meant their life partner, soul mate, and best friend.

  Q was my destination.

  He was also my journey.

  My test.

  He was me.

  After everything that I’d lived through, after everything that I’d done, life was exactly how it should be.

  Free to be who I was with no judgement, no comments, no one trying to change me.


  With him.

  My master.

  Until he changed the rules and I lost.

  “I WANT TOMORROW to go perfectly, Suzette.”

  Q’s rescued slave girl/housekeeper (and my best friend) spun in the oversized kitchen and planted hands on her hips. “Are you doubting my powers of organisation?”

  I fought my smile. “Did I say that?”

  “You implied that.”

  Holding a hand to my heart, I said dramatically, “I would never say that. I know better than to antagonise your wrath.”

  Suzette burst into laughter, wielding a spatula from the bench. “Damn right. Never forget it.”

  We shared a look full of togetherness and contentment.

  When I’d first arrived—shackled and tagged like a dog—Suzette had confused and scared me. Now, my life wouldn’t be complete without her.

  When Q accepted me as an unwanted gift, he’d not only given me himself but his livelihood and friends, too. He’d given me a family after my own wanted nothing to do with me.

  Suzette placed the spatula back onto the flour-dusted bench. “If you doubt me again, I’ll have to raid Q’s closet and spank you with something unmentionable.”

  I chuckled. “Good luck with that.”

  She swatted her own behind with a flourish. “Who knows? Maybe I’ll be better than he is with technique.”

  I rolled my eyes. “No one could out-do Q.”

  “Yeah, yeah.” She snorted. “You’re just besotted. He could do whatever he wanted to you, and you’d just smile and nod like a damn bobble head.”

  Our laughter turned into noisy giggles.

  She knew me so well.

  Suzette tried to come across fierce and capable, but I knew the truth. I saw past her courageous façade. She was still damaged from her past, but thanks to Q, she was healed enough to find smiles in sadness once again. Besides, she had Franco to warm her at night and chase away whatever nightmares she still suffered.

  In that respect, we were similar.

  We were both rescued by Q.

  Both brought back to life by the man who carved inked sparrows into his chest and loved so fiercely, hungrily, angrily that to some, he was overbearingly rude and far too intense.

  To me, he was utterly perfect.

  “Don’t piss her off, Tess. You know what will happen
.” Franco laughed, propped up at the breakfast bar while cleaning his pistol that he carried to protect myself and his master.

  Suzette and Franco might be in our employ, but they were family. And family couldn’t be trusted with something as delicate as this.

  Ignoring both of them, I padded bare-foot to the walk-in pantry where Mrs. Sucre bustled about gathering ingredients for the picnic for our journey tomorrow. “Tell Franco and Suzette, Mrs. S, that if they have any more daft ideas like what they pulled at our wedding, I’ll murder them myself.”

  Memories of having my wedding dress torn off to reveal the kinky lingerie I wore beneath made my cheeks burn. It was a day I’d never forget.

  For multiple reasons.

  “They know better than to do that.” Mrs. Sucre smiled as she waddled past me and dumped an armful of oats and sugar on the quartz bench. “Just like you know better than to try and micromanage everything.” Patting my hand, she added, “Besides, we’re all in on this secret. If maître knew—”

  “He’d better not know.” I crossed my arms, dislodging her hold. “I want this long weekend to be for him. I don’t want him overthinking it.”

  “And you’ve done great so far.” Franco hopped off the stool, placing his cleaned firearm back into its holster. “He doesn’t have a clue. Tomorrow, you’ll claim a need for a picnic, and I’ll program the GPS with coordinates that he has to follow. I’m still averse to leaving you without security but I know his driving and no one will be able to keep up. The rest of us will travel in the helicopter and meet you there.”

  Suzette drifted to his side, an adoring smile on her face. “Perhaps, we can take advantage of this semi-vacation, too.”

  I glanced away, giving them a small second of privacy. They didn’t display affection often, but I liked when they forgot they were in company. I loved seeing the way Franco softened and Suzette shone—almost as if the protectiveness of Franco bolstered her hesitant courage while they stood eye-locked and in love.

  Deciding now would be the perfect time to leave, I waved. “Fine, I’m trusting you. I’ll see you in a little bit.” Breaking into a trot, I deliberately left the lovebirds and my favourite cook as I dashed up the turret staircase to Q’s bedroom.

  My bedroom.

  Our bedroom.

  Even after three years, I still had trouble saying that.

  This chateau was mine.

  Q’s fortune was mine.

  The day he’d allowed himself to take me fully was the day he’d given me not only his heart but his empire and hearth, too.

  Pulling out my hair tie as I strolled across the rug, I ruffled my blonde curls as I stared at the photo of us side by side still dressed in wedding finery. We weren’t aware of the camera, only each other.

  If anyone tried to convince me that Q wasn’t capable of love, that he was a monster with deep dark urges, that one day he might hurt me far beyond my tolerance of pain, I’d laugh in their disbelieving face.

  The way Q stared at me in that picture negated any naysayers or sceptics.

  Our love was unique.

  And I would never, ever take it for granted.

  “You’ve given me so much, maître.” Stroking his cheek in the picture, I murmured, “This weekend, I want to give you everything that I can. Starting with eradicating the sadness that I’ve glimpsed once or twice in your gaze.”

  I didn’t know what caused it.

  I didn’t know if I was the cause of it.

  But I did know I would do everything in my power to dispel it.

  Unzipping my navy dress, I left it pooled on the carpet where Q had first strung me up. The night he’d come to me drunk, (after the police had interrogated him) he’d shown me exactly what I needed. It was one of my most favourite memories.

  My skin tingled from that night as I made my way to the large arched window in my black underwear.

  The long driveway spiralled into the manicured trees and the gatehouse hidden just beyond. Snow twinkled on bare branches, but the light dusting on the fountain and grass had thawed with the afternoon sun.


  Q’s favourite season when everything died, only to be reborn fresh and bright and new. If he were here now, I’d show him just how he’d transformed me as well as any season. However, he wasn’t due home for another few hours. He was working too hard—on both his property business and our charities.

  My eyes drifted to the left where a new residence had been erected early last year.

  We still rescued women. Still funnelled vast quantities of wealth into our organisations—both law-abiding and mercenary driven—and shared our home with wraiths of sexual abuse.

  Only now, the women we fought to repair no longer had to exist here on their own. Those who couldn’t stomach to see their family so soon were permitted to remain in our chateau in a wing especially for them as long as they liked. However, those who didn’t hold such deep emotional trauma were relocated to the mansion beside ours where multiple families could live and recover together.

  The moment Q found another survivor, I was in charge of tracking down her parents or loved ones and encouraging them to come and be there for their daughter, wife, or sister.

  Many people tried to compensate us financially. However, we refused every euro.

  Our repayment was watching a terrified abused woman learn to laugh and smile again. Our reward was when they eventually left our sanctuary and returned to a world that’d almost ruined them.

  Q had saved so many people.

  I’d saved him in return.

  But he was hiding something from me.

  And by the end of the long weekend, I would know exactly what it was and how to cure him.

  After all…what were birthday celebrations for if not to interrogate and infiltrate the thoughts of the birthday boy?

  Picking up the photo and placing a quick kiss on his handsome face, I whispered, “Happy birthday, maître. Get ready to let me into that gorgeous mind of yours because I won’t stop until you confide in me.”

  I WAS USED to sneaking around.

  I’d done it as a kid. I did it as an adult. Partly because I liked to be invisible—to approach and eavesdrop when others weren’t expecting and stalk the bastards who hurt women for pleasure—but mainly because it was who I was.

  I couldn’t change habits that had become a part of me.

  I moved in silence.

  I didn’t know any other way.

  However, tonight I wasn’t infiltrating an enemy’s den; I was returning to the woman I loved, tiptoeing across our bedroom like a fucking fugitive.

  Every day, it became harder to avoid her.

  She knew something bothered me but hadn’t gathered the courage to ask yet. But she would. It was only a matter of time.

  But that time was not tonight. Not after the long day I’d had.

  My eyes adjusted to the dark; only a sliver of moonlight cracked through the haphazardly drawn curtains.

  My wife—I’d never get tired of that word—lay balled up beneath the covers of our enormous bed.

  I sighed heavily at the blonde curls (that I’d fisted and caressed so many times) spread over my pillow. Every part of her claimed every part of me.

  Her skin glowed almost luminescent in the darkness, and I read her pinched brow with concern. Even asleep, her body language let me know she was pissed at me.

  And she had every right to be.

  When I’d headed into the office this morning, I’d promised her I’d be back in time for dinner. Normally, I was able to keep my promises.

  But not today.

  Frederick had been particularly annoying, going over reports and end of year asset consolidation as if I wouldn’t be there to do it.

  I’d made him CEO so I could spend more time with Tess and our charities, so why had he been so adamant about me working so hard today?

  Untying my dress shoes, I slipped them silently from my feet.

  I wasn’t clumsy.

I didn’t make a noise as I shed my clothing and padded toward the bed. Tess would never know what time I arrived home or how long I’d lain beside her.

  All she needed to know was I would be with her in the morning.

  Maybe then, we’d talk.

  Swallowing my groan, I slipped into the cool cotton sheets and lay still, gauging how unconscious she was.

  My heartbeat thundered in my ears, waiting…

  When her breathing didn’t change or a rustle indicate she’d woken, I slid closer, wrapping my arm around her hips and dragging her back to my front.

  Some days, I woke her up like this. I bit her neck, touched her wetness, and gave her no choice but to accept me.

  But not tonight.

  Tonight, I was tired and in no mood to play.

  All I wanted to do was fall asleep with my esclave in my arms and dream happy dreams.

  I didn’t want to be sad anymore.

  I didn’t want to run from my thoughts.

  I should be happy.

  I was happy.

  I had everything I could ever want.

  Not everything.

  Gritting my teeth, I cast aside such undermining frustration and forced myself to sleep.

  “SUZETTE, STOP. I can manage.”

  Suzette scoffed, repositioning the hamper on her hip as if it were a child and not a bulging feast with delicacies only Mrs. Sucre knew how to make. “Stop being so pushy. I want to help. So let me help.”

  I rolled my eyes as we made our way through the back quarters of the house, past the swimming pool I didn’t know existed until I’d returned to Q, and into the humongous parking garage housing prized possessions.

  Q hated these cars as they’d once belonged to his father. I understood why he felt that way, but once upon a time, the chateau was his father's, too. However, ever since the day Q took power, he’d turned something grotesque in its usage into something so pure and wonderful.

  Just like these vehicles. They weren’t alive. They had no soul. Their lot in fate was to belong to either nice or naughty, and Q was a little bit of both.