Past Midnight (Lessons After Hours, Book 1)

Cover of Past Midnight by Jasmine Haynes

A marriage teetering on the edge after a senseless tragedy. Can two broken people ever find their way back to each other?

Some things can only take place…Past Midnight

Erin and Dominic DeKnight had the perfect life, a solid marriage, and DeKnight Gauges, the successful manufacturing company they ran together. Until tragedy struck. In shock and pain, the DeKnights are now fractured, going through the motions. The only time they reach for each other is after midnight. When the lights are out and neither of them can sleep, wordlessly they assuage the pain of their terrible loss in physical release, while emotionally, they’re further apart than ever.

Yet Dominic isn’t willing to let go. In order to save their marriage, he plans to exploit the only connection they have, raising the sexual stakes, forcing Erin to interact with him again…and not only past the midnight hour.

Will his plan breach the gulf between them? Or will they lose each other forever?

“A highly erotic journey for two lost souls desperately seeking solace…captivates from the opening sentence.” ~ Romantic Times

“The opening DeKnight saga is a super erotic tale starring two loving people whose world shattered” ~ Genre Go Round Reviews

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This excerpt contains explicit sexual content

Past Midnight


Just past midnight, she reached for him in the dark. A sliver of moonlight illuminated the bare wood bureau and blue carpet, its fingers creeping up the bedspread, ending at their feet, leaving the rest in darkness.

It was always past midnight when she turned to him, as if touching him in the daylight or at bedtime, when he wasn’t sleep-drowsed, was a sacrilege. He lived for the nights she reached out, as if his flesh were touch-starved. After a year and a month, he was starving, body, mind, and soul. He slept naked, terrified of missing a single moment. They never spoke. She wouldn’t cry out even when she came, her silence as essential to her as the dark. He used to beg for a word, a sound. Talk to me. He would have accepted anything—her anger, her pain, her guilt, her tears. But he’d always lost her as soon as his voice broke the quiet. He’d stopped asking and took what she allowed him; this, her hands on him, her mouth, her body. Without words, sex was anti-intimacy, yet this was all he had left of their marriage, these dark moments after midnight, and he would not let them go. He would not let her go.

Her hand skimmed over his nipple, pinching, turning the nub pebble hard. She’d always known the things that drove him crazy. Then she followed the arrow of hair down his abdomen to wrap her fingers around him. She stroked him softly, gently, to hardness. It didn’t take much, he was so on edge for her. He held his breath, afraid to disturb the silence, afraid he might cry out with the heat of her touch. Pushing the covers back, she laid her lips on his crown as the November night air rolled like a cold wave over his hot skin, the silk of her long red hair a curtain over his lap.

She engulfed him to the root. Her mouth on him was heaven and hell. God have mercy. He fisted his hands in the sheets, his body wanting to rock, thrust, drive deep into the recesses of her mouth. Yet he held still, so still but for the throbbing of his blood and the pounding of his heart. The sounds of her mouth, her tongue, her lips taking him was like a gentle melody on the wind, caressing him, stealing through his mind. She reached between his legs and squeezed the heart of his manhood, bringing him to an aching, crushing need, his body arching involuntarily. But still not a sound, not even a groan.

God, how he’d loved her, wanted her, still loved her even after all the pain, the guilt, the blame. Once upon a time he would have told her so, hauled her up along his chest to take her mouth, to taste his essence on her tongue. But those days were long gone; a year, four weeks, and a lifetime gone. Now all he could do was grit his teeth and try not to spend himself now, in her mouth. Because there was more. She would give him more, at least physically, but only in darkness and silence, only past midnight.

She shifted, then slid back with a suctioned pop as her mouth left him. A moment later, her firm thighs gripped his hips, the heat of her core close, so close he could feel her all the way up to his throat.

He didn’t enter her; she simply took him. As if he were nothing more than a solid piece of flesh to fill her emptiness and assuage her guilt and pain for this short space of time. She didn’t kiss him, didn’t brace herself on his chest to smile down at him. Their lovemaking used to be rich with talk and laughter, dirty talk, nasty talk, sexy talk, spinning ever kinkier fantasies for each other. It had been hot, exciting, priming him with the hope that someday they would act on those fantasies. Now she merely leaned back and rode him silently, hands splayed against her ass for support. For her, it was pure physicality, a way to stop the whirling thoughts and memories, the rawness of the act exhausting her into sleep.

For him, it was touch, connection, life. For a little while, he could pretend that she had forgiven him. His body rose to meet her, overcome by a blinding, aching need he dulled with physical pleasure and the remembered taste of her, the sweetness of her juice, the softness of her skin, the flowery scent of her body lotion, pungent now with her arousal.

She began to tremble with impending orgasm, her inner muscles working him. The barely there grunt of exertion remained her only sound, yet it was so erotic and beguiling in the deep after-midnight quiet.

She spasmed around him, her body curling over his, but not touching, never touching beyond the fusion of their hips. He shoved his head back into the pillow, thrusting hard and deep as her climax rippled over him, around him, inside him. He filled her, forcing her to feel him, bucking hard against her, limbs trembling, sweat beading his forehead with the effort it took not to scream out his orgasm. Explosive and mind-altering in the dark, the silence, her body, her heat. They ended with quivering bodies and harsh breathing, until finally she slipped away, tipping to her side of the bed.

Even as aftershocks jolted through him, she fell into the regular cadence of sleep, what she’d been striving toward when she reached for him. Sleep. Oblivion. The place where she could dream the dead alive again. She couldn’t talk about Jay, but she could dream of him.

He was glad for her, yet he envied the ability. He’d never dreamed his son alive. For him, there were only dreams of Jay’s face the last time he saw him, in the hospital.

Long past midnight, he lay in the dark, wide awake, his body sated, his heart bleeding and in shreds.

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More in the Lessons After Hours Series

  • Past Midnight (Lessons After Hours, Book 1)
  • What Happens After Dark (Lessons After Hours, Book 2)
  • The Principal’s Office (Lessons After Hours, Book 3)
  • The Naughty Corner (Lessons After Hours, Book 4)
  • The Lesson Plan (Lessons After Hours, Book 5)