Cain tried not to glare at the man, but damnit, Gulch had interrupted. And he wanted to blame the man for what had happened to his Princess. Who didn't need another reason to actually enforce the punishment for what Cain was guilty of. The blond man inhaled deeply. "Are you going to get in trouble for helping us?"
"Nah. The bullet passed through you and the gun was melted all over that guy's hand." Gulch's hazel eyes didn't miss Cain's surprise. "DG did that, but damned if I know how."
"DG's full of surprises."
"Ain't that the truth." Gulch smirked and Cain hated how it implied Gulch knew more about her. "I told the hospital and the station that DG was showing you her old house and somebody must have been practicing target shooting out there."
"I guess that'll work," Cain said. His lips twitched. "You ever not lied about her?"
"She told you." Gulch shook his head. "I hope you didn't scowl like that."
"You took advantage of her!"
"You don't know her as well as you think you do."
Cain clenched his jaw, but he couldn't deny it. DG had hidden her experience from everyone. He should have been able to see through her act.
Gulch continued. "The girl can't catch a break. If I hadn't taught her the safest way to get what she craved, she would have ended up with an abusive asshole. You better be watching her."
"It's my job to watch her."
"As a friend," Gulch glared. "Or is she only a job?"
"DG said I had to be nice, not personal."
The brown-haired man snorted. "You put yourself in a madman with a grudge's clutches to rescue her, and you think your feelings are hidden?" Cain didn't answer. "Fine, be pissed at me, but don't treat DG differently."
Cain's heart lurched, remembering her lips on his skin. She only touched to keep Zero from torturing him. And he hadn't fought harder because the woman had felt so good. "How could you hurt her?" Cain startled himself with the question he hadn't meant to ask aloud.
"She never can catch a break. Look, what that Zero did to you both isn't kink, it was rape."
"What DG and I did was based on trust. DG trusted me not to push past her limits, and I trusted her not to tell the town what I keep in my basement." Gulch rubbed his face. "See the difference?"
All Cain could remember was the pain. "Pain doesn't entice people."
"If it's done right for certain people it can." Cain didn't look at Gulch. Before he blinked, Gulch was at his bedside examining Cain's bruised wrist. "What did they do to you?"
Cain pulled his arm free. "That doesn't concern DG."
"Shit. She said they made you two fuck while they watched."
"That's all they did to her." Cain stared at the wall. "They left her alone while they took turns with me."
"Damn asshole." Gulch breathed through clenched teeth. "That was rape. I have never, would never!"
"Good for you." Cain clenched his fists.
Gulch sat down again. "Kink isn't rape, it isn't proving how macho you are by how much you can take, and it doesn't have to be about love."
"DG deserves love," Cain scowled.
"I never said she didn't. It's harder to have love and kink." Cain didn't respond. Gulch sighed, "Would you be willing to experience kink?"
"Just an idea. That Zero was a sadist and maybe you'd understand better if you experienced the real thing."
Cain glared at the wall, but he couldn't forget DG's trembling body against his. It had been against her will, but her need had matched his. How he felt about it would never matter. "DG stopped doing it."
"The problem with giving it up is it's not a habit. Can you stop getting a hard-on for a beautiful woman?" Gulch picked up his hat. "DG deserves to have someone to take care of her, every side, even the ones she hides."
Cain growled after the man shut the door. Gulch was right. But there wasn't anything he could do about it. The Princess had to make her own decisions and no one would take her choices away, not even him.