All in all, life as Mrs. Michael Corinthos, Jr. was good. She was growing more and more accustomed to her place in Sonny's life and world. The guards were polite, yet friendly. And Jason… well, Jason acknowledged her presence in Sonny's home with the same stoic acceptance he did anything.

Others outside the penthouse were not so pleasant. The press still continued to shadow Dara's every move. It was a disconcerting thing for her to experience; for everyone around her it was just par for the course. Each guard-laden step she took outside the penthouse made Dara think of Faith and the seamless way in which the other woman had adapted to life in the Cassadine ‘fishbowl'.

In many ways, the young attorney reflected, her situation and Faith's weren't all that different. From the powerful husband all the way down to the presence of a woman – who because of the child she'd borne – would always be a part of that man's world. For Stefan that woman was Laura Spencer. For Michael, there was Carly.

Carly. Until Sonny put his foot down several weeks earlier, Carly had taken every opportunity to loudly proclaim the ‘wrongness' of Sonny's marriage to Dara. It did not matter, she'd hissed, that she was currently married to Jasper Jacks. Sonny was the father of her son and would always be a concern in her life. Both Dara – and Carly – were caught by surprise when Sonny firmly escorted Carly to the door and cautioned her not to return to the penthouse until she could respect Sonny's marriage to Dara the way he had learned to respect hers to Jax. Not surprisingly, Carly had not been back. And that was just fine with Dara. Carly's absence brought peace to the penthouse. An unexpected visit from Keesha Ward brought purpose.

Dara agreed to handle one pro bono case as a favor to the young administrator of Ward House. News of Dara's victory against a local insurance agent in small claims court spread like wildfire throughout the community and a day or so later Keesha phoned with a long list of prospective clients and a half-joking proposal that Dara become the Ward Street community's official pro-bono lawyer. Dara smiled. She could still hear the stunned silence on Keesha's end of the line when Dara accepted the invitation. Now, she had a growing list of pro bono clients from the Ward Street community desperate for her help. That list meant her days were nicely filled. Michael took care of her nights.

A hot flush crept up Dara's neck. Michael was an insatiable lover. Dara did not think there was a single inch of the penthouse that they had not christened in some way. Just reflecting on some of them made her breath catch. It was as though the act of making their relationship legally binding had released something very primal in Michael. His need to mark and possess Dara was almost driven.

Fresh from the shower

“I thought you said you were gonna join me for a shower?” A slightly damp Michael Corinthos walked into the bedroom toweling his back dry.

“No,” Dara drawled. “ You said I was going to join you in the shower.”

Sonny flashed his patented dimpled grin. “Me, you… what difference does that make?” He wrapped the plush terry about his waist. “It was still a good suggestion.”

“Says you. We both know that anytime I share a shower with you, Michael, we do very little showering. What we usually do,” Dara lectured, “is-”

“Fuck?” Sonny grinned full force. His white teeth gleamed beautifully against his dusky skin. “Well, looka here,” he teased. “My Ivy League educated wife is blushing over a little four letter word.” Sonny began to back Dara toward the bed. “You and I fuck, Counselor. Do you need me to explain how that works?”

Dara knew how much Michael enjoyed her discomfort at his deliberate crudeness. Most of the time she simply ignored it, which only amused her husband further. Dara decided to turn the tables on him this one time. “I would rather,” she slipped her hand into the bath towel about his waist and began to stroke him sensuously, “that you shut up and show me.”