Surprising her, he waited for her to continue. Aware that her words might someday be used against her, she proceeded with care. “I’m into kink, but not on a full-time basis.”

She paused while the bartender delivered Jax’s drink. Her body language must have changed since the man wasn’t watching them as intently as he had before. After ensuring they didn’t need anything else, he walked off.

Jax ignored his glass in favor of studying her. “Go on.”

“I don’t want to be in a submissive partnership, but I like…” How the hell was she supposed to admit this to one of her dad’s friends? “I like going out, and I crave impact play.” She took a drink that she didn’t want while she finished her thought. “It sets me free.”

“Impact by itself? Or sensation, such as clamps? Or a Wartenberg wheel?”

Willow shivered. Not because she was scared, but because the idea of the pinwheel of tiny metal spikes pricking into her skin intrigued her.

“Ice? Heat?”

With other tops, she’d negotiated implements, discussed her pain tolerance, agreed on safe words. No one else had asked about torturing her in other ways. “I don’t know.” She stared into her drink.

“Tell me what things you have explored.”

“I’ve told you everything I’m going to.” She brought her chin up. If she didn’t shut up this moment, she might confess she was fantasizing about him rubbing a piece of ice over her clit. “Why are you here?”

“I have a couple of clubs that I enjoy. The Retreat in Houston. Another in Boston, but this is my favorite. I had a meeting…nearby.”

Breath rushed from her lungs. His slight hesitation omitted a ton of information, specifics that her mind filled in. She glanced at his right hand. As she expected he wore a gold ring. Though he wasn’t close enough to make out all the details, emeralds winked in the overhead light, and she knew those were meant to be the eyes of an owl. Her heart plummeted.

Like her father, Jax was a member of the Titans, one of the oldest secret societies in the United States. The organization had thousands of members, a who’s-who list of people from all over the world. The annual dues were astronomical, and the wait list to join was years long. The Titans, officially known as the Zeta Society, owned an estate on the banks of the Mississippi River. As a child, she’d visited a couple of times with her mom and dad, but never during the yearly meeting as nonmembers were banned from attending.

The Zetas did a fair amount of charity work, and they’d saved a magnificent historical home from demolition. Still, she chafed at the extreme waste of money that could be funneled into better purposes.

“So, you know.” It wasn’t a guess. It was a statement.