Simon watched as his wife carefully laid their son down into the bassinet within the nursery, her face softening as she brushed her fingertips over the babe’s cheek. He often did the same, so mesmerized by his son, by the perfect child born from the union of the two of them. To think, so long ago, that he had thought to deny himself this joy, this happiness…
To think, that he had once thought he would rather be alone.
Daphne lifted her gaze up from the baby, as though she knew his thoughts, and she smiled towards him, then settled a blanket over the boy. The baby did not move, as he was well and truly asleep, and he watched as his wife touched the baby’s chest one last time before walking towards the door that separated the nursery from the Duchess’s bedchambers.
Simon had already closed the door that led into the Duke’s bedchambers, knowing that would be the first place anyone looked for them. It was where he and Daphne still shared a bed every night, even when she was round with child. It was where he took her as often as she allowed, enjoying wave after wave of passion between them. It was where he held her after she gave birth, encouraging her and whispering to her how proud he was.
The Duchess’ bedchamber was now more of a lounging room. The bed was the one that she gave birth in, but there were long chaises to enjoy the fresh air coming from outside, and it was where Simon often enjoyed having his wife in the morning, after the baby was laid down for his nap.
Daphne reached the doorway where he stood, and Simon stepped back, smiling at his pretty little wife as she came into the bedchamber, closing the door behind her. They both waited a breath, to make certain that the noise of the door closing would not awaken their son, although it never did.
When she finally turned to look up at him, Simon quickly caged his wife in against the door, his hands going to either side of her head, and his lower body pressing her hips into place.
“The midwife said last week that you are well, but I did not want to ask until you agreed that you are ready for my attentions once more,” Simon groaned, his body already hardening for her.
Daphne’s head had fallen to the side, exposing her throat to him, and he began peppering kisses there.
“My body… it is struggling to return,” she gasped. “I had not thought… that you would… Simon-”
Was that what it was? He had been without his wife for nearly three months, and he was hard for her at every moment. She was still the most beautiful of women, and now that she had birthed his son and heir, he wanted her even more.
He did not even care that it was a boy, of course. All that mattered to him was that his wife was alive and well, that their son was in perfect health, and that they were both happy. That all of them were happy.
“I desire you,” he insisted, his mouth finding that spot beneath her ear. “Always, Daphne. I always need you. My body aches for you. Say the word, my love, and I shall fall to my knees here and give you such pleasure.”
His teeth dragged against the little spot that always made Daphne’s knees go out, and it seemed to work, her hands going to his chest, tugging at his shirt, his vest, and then his cravat, still worn loose after all this time.
“You will do no such thing,” she growled between clenched teeth. “In me, you total arse! I need you in me, Simon!”
He was a good man, a good husband. He always did as his Duchess commanded. Always .
“As you desire,” he growled, kissing her hard, using his mouth to keep her pressed into the door as his body shifted back, his hands going to his clothes.
It was much as it had been in her bedroom so long ago, his hands going to the front of his trousers, and he released the buttons, his cock bouncing free from its imprisonment. His shirt and suspenders remained on, as he knew time was limited, and he reached down to Daphne’s knees, grasping her long gown there and pulling it upwards, gathering more and more fabric until it was all around her waist.
Her own hands joined his, pulling her shift up and to the side, until he could see the inside of her pale thighs, the soft hair there, and his favorite place in the world. He had been without it for so long, and he nearly bent at the knee to taste her again, but his wife stopped him, her hand back on his neckerchief, yanking him back to her lips.
Simon went willingly, his free hand stroking his cock, much as it had just that very morning while he was alone, and then he was lifting his wife up, her legs wrapping around his waist as she sank onto him.
They had not done this position in so long, not since they had discovered her to be with child, but it was one of his favorites. Simon groaned as her heat sunk onto him, neither of them able to escape. All Daphne could do in this position was feel and enjoy, with no worries about keeping with his rhythm, no concerns for her own pleasure as he controlled it, only giving her the ability to fist into his shirt, to grasp at the door frame above, and to kiss him as much as she liked.
Like this, Simon had only to lift his wife enough that he could slide out and back in, and even then, she was so deep onto him, her weight entirely reliant upon his body, his waist, his legs, his cock.
The kiss he pressed to her lips was hard, so hard he thought it might bruise, but Daphne gave no complaints as her hands fisted in his shirt and vest. He was glad he had already lost his coat, wanting to feel her fingers through the fabric, to feel her clinging to him with every thrust.
He grunted, rocking her harder, using the door to anchor himself, and he could already feel a bead of sweat at his brow.
Christ, this was harder than it had once been, keeping her up like this, lifting and fucking her with any sort of rhythm. But, he would be damned before he gave up. He wanted to feel her juices running down onto him, down into his trousers, to have her struggling to take a few steps after.
Simon could feel his arms growing tired, and he knew he had to shift his arms and his hips if he wanted to find her nub, but it felt impossible. When had this become so difficult, to fuck his own wife? What had happened to them?
“Simon, stop teasing me,” Daphne begged, her back arching off the door in an attempt to get closer to him. “Please, let me have my release.”
She was begging for him so beautifully, as he had taught her, as they both enjoyed, but he was growing tired. Dammit. He was better than this. What was the point of being a former Rake if he was now unable to drive his wife to madness with his skills?
Simon knew he had to give in, and he withdrew, letting Daphne’s feet fall to the floor. Her eyes opened, lips parted, as though to question him, when he spun her around, pressing her chest to the door. Her head turned to look back at him, and he lifted up her skirts, stepping up between her legs and sliding back home into her.
This… this he could do. His fingers found her slit and he rubbed at the nub, pushing his wife quickly over the edge. She sang for him, cumming hard over his cock, and he kept fucking her through it, biting at the inside of his cheek as he did so. He would not finish until his wife was done.
When the last little shriek came from Daphne, Simon moved his body again, one hand curling around her hip, the other pressing into the door above her head. He yanked her hips back against his, happy to be back in this favorite position of theirs as well.
He had fucked her like this nearly every night while she was with child… pressed against the door, bent over his desk, hanging onto the bed post. He loved having her this way, able to relax and enjoy, not worrying about her belly, nor having it crushing the rest of her body.
He knew how to push her to another orgasm with just his cock like this, and he was determined for one more, knowing what would greet him.
His thrusts were hard and purposeful, and were it not for his hand on the door, keeping it pressed shut, it would surely jostle so hard that it would wake the occupant within. Daphne was clawing at the wood, unable to find purchase, and her face turned to press into his forearm, her mouth going around the skin, biting into it as though to keep herself silent.
“Come on, Daph- One more. You can do it.”
The little shriek that came from her told him that she was close, and he grunted into her neck as he leaned forward, not willing to give up.
A few more thrusts, nearly taking her off her feet as he did so, and he was rewarded, feeling her fluids release around his cock, spreading down the front of his trousers, and down within. He knew it had even reached his boots, and he grinned, finally allowing himself his own release.
A few more grunts with his last few pushes, and Simon was pressing his whole body against Daphne’s, the strength of the door being the only thing to keep them both up.
It was a few seconds later that he heard the sound of feet running down the hallway. Three sets of feet, in fact.
Daphne gasped, easily pushing Simon back, who was left to look at the front of his pants, knowing he must change before they were interrupted. Daphne was reaching for one of the many cloths that she used after labor, sitting in a neat stack on the bedside table, and she cleaned off her inner thighs, then tossed it to him.
“You have to go and change!” Daphne insisted, but Simon already knew that they had been caught.
He could hear the door to the Duke’s bedchamber opening, and then the door connecting it to the Duchess’s flew open as well.
Three little girls in matching dresses stood there, although the last looked to be exhausted after such a run through the hallways.
“Mama! You said you would join us for tea once the baby was down!” their eldest daughter said cheerfully.
Daphne was the picture of a perfect Duchess, saying nothing in regards to the fact that Simon was awkwardly holding up the front flap of his trousers and reaching for his coat, trying to cover up the fact that he was not fully dressed from his children.
Daphne, however, was now delicately touching her lips, brushing out her dress, and even rearranging her hair. She looked as though she were completely untouched, unaffected… except, when she took a few steps, she looked a bit unsteady.
Simon could not help but to smirk.
“My apologies, darlings, but your father and I were enjoying a moment alone. I shall meet all three of you in my sitting room in a few moments. I believe Mrs Coulson is finishing up the arrangement right now. Go go, little loves, and I shall be there momentarily.”
The first two did as told, giving their father a smile, but the last toddled instead towards Simon.
He wanted to go to her, to scoop her up and smother her in kisses, but he knew better - if he did so, he would lose his covering over himself.
“You as well, my lady,” Simon said with mock seriousness.
The little girl fell hard on her bottom but grinned up at him before pushing herself up and running full force after her sisters.
Simon watched as all three disappeared back from where they had come, leaving the couple in peace.
“We shall never have more than five minutes alone again,” Daphne said with a grin, walking into the Duke’s bedchambers. From there, she entered the wardrobe, and found a pair of trousers for him. Simon kicked the door shut, and began undressing himself, changing into a clean set.
His wife had thoroughly marked him, but propriety did demand that he change.
“Yes, well, I adore each of our daughters, even though they often interrupt us,” he said, kicking off his boots as he went to finish changing.
Daphne handed him the trousers, then stopped at the door before exiting. She had a soft look on her face as she watched him, soft and tender. It was not a look that said she was eyeing him for another round. No, it was the look of a woman that loved a man more than they loved their next breath.
“I adore our family as well,” she said softly.
Simon stopped in his changing and went straight to Daphne, pulling her into his arms, his chin resting on the top of her head. He held her tight, not willing to let go, wanting to hold her for all eternity.
“We shall never be alone again, my love, but I would not change that for the world. I would take a lifetime of being interrupted with you, over never again holding you within my arms.”
Daphne’s arms wrapped around his middle, holding him tight with a squeeze, and he smiled softly, knowing that after five years of marriage, his love for her would never wane. She was his light in every darkness, and their children were precious gifts that he could never, would never, abandon.
In truth, Simon would never understand what was wrong with his father. Becoming one himself… Simon had once thought that there was something truly wrong with him. He had thought that he deserved to be thrown away. He thought he had failed in some truly grand manner. He thought he, in turn, would be unable to love his children, as his father had never loved him.
Instead, what Simon had learned was that children, and a family, were his greatest joy. He longed to see such happiness, to give children such happiness. He loved all children, not just his own, but their nieces and nephews, the children of the village, even all the children of the ton .
He would rather spend an evening with children, over spending it at any ball or event.
Daphne had given him such light, such hope. He knew himself now. He was no longer a Rake, no longer just a Duke, no longer a boy that stammered. He was no longer the boy that felt no love.
Now, he was a man. He was a loving husband. He was a doting father. He was a playful uncle. He was a pivotal and upstanding member of society. He was well thought of, he was well spoken, well read, and a good benefactor.
Daphne had saved him from a life of loneliness. Daphne had saved him.
“I love you,” he whispered into her forehead. He already said it every day, every morning and every night, every time they were forced to be apart, but he had to repeat himself now, so that she knew it, without a doubt. He never wanted her to think he did not love her. He never wanted her to doubt his affection for even a moment. “I love you, Daphne Basset.”
Daphne pulled back just enough that she could look up at him with a smile. She was so beautiful, so radiant, and he knew that she would lament that her hair was starting to fall out as her body returned to normal after their son, and she would note the dark circles under her eyes, or perhaps even insist that there were wrinkles he could not see. All he knew was that she was beautiful, the light of his world, and he could do nothing but soak in her presence.
“And I love you, your Grace. Every single part of you.”
She went onto tiptoes, kissing him softly, when he heard a sound come from within the Duchess’s rooms. No, further than that. A sound from within the nursery.
They shared a smile as Daphne went back onto flat feet and stepped towards the nursery, when Simon stopped her.
“You promised our girls that you would enjoy tea with them. I would be a poor substitute for their mother. Go, enjoy time with your daughters. I’ll take care of our son.”
Daphne smiled up at him brightly, and he knew she did not doubt him. He had been there every moment, rocking their children, walking with them, even changing a few nappies when a nurse was not nearby. He knew how to take care of their child, but Daphne was always never more than a step away.
This would be the first time Simon was alone with his son, without the mother nearby.
“Thank you,” she said softly, and she pressed another cheek to his kiss. “Perhaps this evening we shall enjoy some time together uninterrupted?”
They both knew their son struggled to rest at night, and Simon laughed, giving a nod.
“If not this evening, my dear, then first thing when we wake up?”
Daphne gave him a wink as she went to the door, opening it to step out, then looked back over her shoulder.
“I’ll pencil in five minutes,” she offered, then looked him up and down.
Simon glanced down with her, remembering that he had still not pulled on the clean trousers, and blushed, reaching for where he had dropped them onto the bed.
Daphne was laughing as she walked away, Simon pulling on his suspenders and buttoning himself up, even as he crossed the way to the nursery, opening the door to his son.
When he entered the room, he saw beautiful eyes open and looking for him. Simon felt his heart leap within his chest as their son smiled at him, and Simon scooped the boy up, holding him tight to his chest.
“There, there, my son. I am here. Do not worry, your Papa is here…”