Part Nine

For the past forty-eight hours Alexandra Brooks DiMera Cassadine had seen no other living being except her husband Stavros. They did not depart their room at all, not even for meals, but instead had food delivered by Cassadine family servants who ventured no further than the threshold of the Prince's suite of rooms.

Alexandra longed for even the simple contact that interacting with the servants would bring. Her entire universe was currently topsy-turvy and she desperately needed to find some sense of normalcy in her life once again.

She knew without a doubt that normalcy would not be forthcoming from her husband Stavros. Even if she discounted the fact that he was an actual Prince and was reared to behave as though only his wishes mattered, Alexandra could not discount Stavros' natural tendencies toward domination and cruelty. From the moment they had begun their ‘royal honeymoon', he had indulged his sexual appetites with absolutely no regard for his bride's health, or her wishes.

The sudden sounds of his bedtime ablutions filled her with dread. Stavros was singing, which meant that his nightly routine was nearly complete. Prince Cassadine was neat to the point of fastidiousness. And though Alexandra would never tell him so, she found Stavros to be more vain than the most shallow woman.

Alexandra steeled herself for what was to come. Like clockwork the bathroom door opened and Stavros made his entrance into the bedroom. Erect and aroused as always, he paused momentarily to allow his young bride a moment's admiration of his toned physique.

Carefully the Princess removed all traces of emotion from her face and lay back upon the bed. The slightly cool air chilled her naked flesh, but she did not react. Stavros slid onto the bed behind Alexandra and enfolded her in his arms. She lay rigid against him and awaited her husband's next move. She had discovered that with Stavros it could be anything at all.

Alexandra had already lost count of the number of ways that the Prince had made love to her during their ‘nonstop honeymoon'. Made love... Ha! What had gone on between she and Stavros was nothing more than pure, physical, uninvolved fuc-

“Goodnight, my Princess,” Stavros' warm, sleepy voice interrupted her thoughts.

Against her back Alexandra felt the vibrations his deep baritone voice generated. Goodnight? What was Stavros up to now, she wondered. In the scant hours during which they had been wed, she had learned one fundamental truth about her husband. With Stavros, nothing was ever as it seemed.

Long after her husband's deep, even breathing finally convinced her that he slept, Alexandra came to a realization. Though his routine seemed unchanged, Stavros had deviated in one way. He had not said the four words Alexandra had learned to hate above all others . . . ‘Prepare yourself for me.'