He brings me close to the edge, but doesn’t let me go over. Every time I feel my orgasm approaching, he stops or changes the rhythm, driving me crazy with frustration. I find myself pleading, begging, my body arching mindlessly toward him. When he finally lets me reach the peak, it’s such a relief that my entire body spasms, shuddering and twisting from the intensity of the release.

For some reason, I start crying when it’s over. Tears leak from the outer corners of my eyes and run down my temples, soaking into my hair and then the pillow. He appears to like it because he crawls up my body and kisses the wet trails on my face, then licks them.

His large hands stroke my body, rubbing my skin, caressing me all over. It would be soothing if it weren’t for the hardness of his cock prodding at my entrance.

I’m not fully healed inside, so it hurts again when he starts to push in. Even though I’m wet from the orgasm, he can’t slip into me easily, not without tearing me open. Instead, he has to go slowly, working himself in gradually until I have a chance to adjust to the intrusion.

I bite my lower lip, trying to cope with the burning, too-full feeling. Would I ever be able to accept him easily? Would I ever experience pleasure without pain in his arms?

“Open your eyes,” he orders in a harsh whisper.

I obey him, even though I can barely see through the veil of tears.

He’s staring at me as he slowly begins to move inside me, and there’s something triumphant in his gaze. The heat of his body surrounds me, his weight presses me down on the bed. He’s inside me, on top of me, all around me. I can’t even escape into the privacy of my mind.

And in that moment, I feel possessed by him, like he’s taking more than just my body. Like he’s laying claim to something deep within me, bringing out a side of me that I never knew existed.

Because in his arms, I experience something I have never felt before.

He takes me twice more during the night. By morning I’m so sore I feel raw inside—and yet I’ve had so many orgasms I lost count.

He leaves me at some point in the morning. I’m so exhausted I’m not even aware of his departure. I sleep deeply and dreamlessly, and when I wake up, it’s already past noon.

I get up, brush my teeth, and take a shower. On my thighs, I can see dried bits of semen. He didn’t use a condom this night either.

I wonder again about STDs. Does Julian care about this at all? He probably isn’t worried about catching anything from me, given my lack of experience, but I’m certainly worried about getting it from him. Lifting my left arm, I peer at the tiny mark where my birth control implant was inserted. Thank God for my mom’s pregnancy paranoia. If I didn’t have it . . . I shudder at the thought.

Right after I exit the bathroom, Beth comes into my room carrying another food tray and more clothes. This time, it’s more traditional breakfast food: an omelet with vegetables and cheese, a piece of toast, and fresh tropical fruit.

She’s again smiling at me, apparently determined to ignore the fork incident. “Good morning,” she says cheerfully.

My eyebrows rise. “And good morning to you too,” I say, my voice thick with sarcasm.

At my obvious attempt to needle her, Beth’s smile widens further. “Oh, don’t be such a grump. Julian said you get to leave the room today. Isn’t that nice?”

It actually is nice. It would give me a chance to explore my prison a bit, to see if this place is really an island. Maybe there are other people here besides Beth—people who would be more sympathetic to my plight.

Alternatively, maybe I’ll find a phone or a computer. If I could just send a text or an email to my parents, they could pass it along to the police and then I might be rescued.

At the thought of my family, my chest feels tight and my eyes burn. They must be so worried about me, wondering what happened, whether I am still alive. I’m an only child, and my mom always said she’d die if anything happened to me. I hope she didn’t mean it.

And I hate this woman, who’s smiling at me right now.

“Sure, Beth,” I say, wanting to claw at her face until that smile turns into a grimace. “It’s always nice to leave a small cage for a bigger one.”

She rolls her eyes and sits down on a chair. “So dramatic. Just eat your food and then I’ll show you around.”

I think about not eating just to spite her, but I am hungry. So I eat, polishing off all the food on the tray.

“Where is Julian?” I ask between bites. I’m curious how he spends his days. So far, I’ve only seen him in the evenings.

“He’s working,” Beth explains. “He has a lot of business interests that require his attention.”

She laughs. “Why would you assume that?”

“Um, maybe because he kidnapped me?”

She laughs again, shaking her head as though I said something funny.

I want to hit her, but I restrain myself. I need to learn more about my surroundings before I try anything like that. I don’t want to end up locked up in the room if I can avoid it. My chances of escape are much better if I have more freedom.

So I just get up and give her a cold look. “I’m ready to go.”

“Then put on a swimming suit,” she says, gesturing toward the clothes she had brought, “and we can go.”