The Dominant Ingredient was written for the Spice It Up Line for vanilla. Ajay and Cameron, who appear in Mist Gray: Falling Apart Falling Together return for the story of how they met.
No home, no more job - such as it was, anyway - and his only possession is the pair of leather pants he ran away in. Things can only get better from here. Right? But what Ajay doesn't realize is that better isn't necessarily good enough. He meets Cameron, a Dom without a sub, who gives him a place to stay. Cameron can get sex anywhere, and is astoundingly impervious to Ajay's charms. Just when nothing seems to be working, Ajay discovers an interesting fact about vanilla and is willing to defile the Mackenzie dining table and risk the Mackenzie crystal to prove that he is worthy. And hopefully change Cameron's mind.
Thunder crashed and Ajay felt vibrations. He huddled under the comforter, closing his eyes tightly against the lightning flashes that lit the filmy blue curtain at the window. The next crash of thunder came hot on the heels of the bright as day lightning, rattling the window, and Ajay peeked out cautiously. The rain pelting against the glass cast eerie shadows against the pale yellow walls, the leafless trees in the garden spreading their spiky branches, moving in the howling wind, long fingers coming after him.
Lightning lit his room, brighter than any electric light, and the thunder sounded like two tin trays bashed together before it rolled across the sky. As if sleeping alone wasn't bad enough, Ajay hated storms. He seriously wondered how Cameron would take to being woken by him... if he could pluck up the courage to leave the safety of his bed. A clap of thunder, without even the warning of lightning, solved that problem for Ajay. In just six steps, he was out of bed, across the floor and out the room, finding himself at Cameron's door.
He knocked quietly. "Sir?"
When there was only silence, he knocked again, louder, only to have his knock drowned out by another rumble of thunder. Eyes wide -- he couldn't believe he was standing naked in a strange hallway during a thunder storm -- Ajay pushed open Cameron's bedroom door and slipped into the dark room. He'd risk anything to be with someone, even if it was only until the storm passed. Just hearing Cameron's even breathing began to settle him.
Cameron snuffled and rolled over as a lightning flash ignited the room with white light. "Ajay?"
"Yes." Ajay shivered, jumping when the thunder crashed once more.
Cameron sat up, a shadow on the bed. "What's the matter, caraid?"
"Sorry, Sir. I, um... scared, Sir." Ajay heard the tremor in his voice and hoped that Cameron didn't think him pathetic.
"It’s only a storm, Ajay. Nothing to be scared of."
More neon lightning, another deafening crack of thunder. Tears rolled down Ajay's cheeks and he sniffed. “Sir? Please?" He didn't even care if Cameron let him into the bed. He'd curl up happily at Cameron's feet or on the floor. He just needed to be with someone.
Cameron shifted and flipped the corner of the comforter back. "Don't tell anyone about this. You'll ruin my reputation."
Ajay sniffed again and wiped his eyes with the back of his hand. "Thank you, Sir."
He padded across the room and slipped into Cameron's warm bed, instantly curling into a ball and snuggling into the big man.
"No." Cameron moved backwards and pushed Ajay away from him. "This is a one time thing only. You'll have to learn that storms won't hurt you."
"Yes, Sir." Ajay pulled the comforter around him and snuggled down under it. If sleeping in Cameron's bed, in his warmth, was all he was going to get, so be it. He was going to be there in the morning and he'd never received a complaint or refusal for his early morning head jobs.
"Sleep now, caraid." Cameron's voice was unexpectedly gentle. "Nothing will hurt you."
"Thank you, Sir," Ajay whispered, but lay awake for some time, listening to the thunder rumble its way across the night. Eventually it was just the rain, falling steadily against the backdrop of Cameron's breathing, and Ajay found himself lulled to sleep