I’m a red-blooded heterosexual male and just because I don’t have my tongue hanging out of my mouth around every female like my dog Cooper, doesn’t mean I don’t appreciate the female form.
Now with Teegan Lowery in my life I’m suddenly panting right next to Cooper, hoping for a taste.
I hired her for her stellar PR skills, but she’s slowly weaseling her way into a spot I’ve kept a NO VACANCY sign on for years. Everything about Teegan screams unavailable. The last thing I need is another dramatic, high maintenance woman in my life. Believe me, been there and done that.
But the sexual tension between us is like a game of tug-of-war and neither of us wants to lose.
I love dogs.
She hates them.
Turns out, we both love doggie style.
At one o’clock that afternoon, I drag my ass into Jagger’s office.
“Hey, Victoria.” I wave, bypassing her sparse desk. “Props on not getting too comfortable.”
She rolls her eyes and nods. As soon as Jagger finds another assistant she’ll go back to her usual job of running the office. Victoria is the only person Jagger trusts to fill in when he’s between assistants—which is often—but she refuses to work for him directly, knowing how demanding he can be. I can only assume he keeps her around because she’s good at what she does.
“Afternoon, Vance. Go on in. He’s probably just in there jerking off.”
I stop at the edge of her desk and cock an eyebrow, then laugh. “You should really think of staying put in that chair. I think he may have just met his match with you.”
She turns in her chair and stands, grabbing a stack of papers. “Not sure I’m ready to admit my fate just yet.” She touches my shoulder in a friendly way as she passes me by walking down the hall.
I push open the doors to Jagger’s office, thankful that Victoria’s assumption that his dick would be in his fisted hand isn’t true. He waves me in with one hand, his feet propped up on his desk as he leans back in his chair.
Grabbing a water from his cooler by the couch, I take a seat, twisting open the bottle. He continues to work a deal on the phone for some actress while I read through the latest edition of Hollywood Reporter that he has on the table.
Once he hangs up, he rounds his desk and sits in the chair across from me. “Actresses are so temperamental,” he laments.
“Tell me about it,” I say, still thumbing through the magazine. “One bonus of being unemployed.”
The corner of Jagger’s mouth tips down and he rests his ankle on his knee. “You might not be unemployed for long.”
I toss the magazine on the table and grab my bottle of water. “You got me down here. Let’s hear what you’ve got.”
The entire ride here I’ve tried to keep my expectations low. I’m not a nobody in this town, but since I’ll be releasing my script under my real name, Vance Rose, and not under the name I used when I was a producer, there’s a chance Jagger couldn’t get my script into the right hands.
“I know you didn’t want people to know that you’re Ryder Stone, that you were the executive producer of a TV show that won six Emmys its first year…”
My face shows no emotion. I’ve dealt firsthand with political bullshit in this industry. No one is immune to it. Somehow getting fired took the gleam off the coveted awards that used to line the bookshelf in my condo. They’re currently shoved in a cardboard box at the bottom of my closet.
All he does is nod. Slowly. No words.
“I had to use your background to get your foot in the door. Besides, they promised to keep it under wraps.”
“Heard that before,” I sneer, downing another gulp of my water.
“Are you going to listen to me or sit there pissed off and wallowing? I mean, getting a script made into a movie is as difficult as finding the next wholesome actress from the Midwest with raw talent.”
“You seem to find them just fine,” I deadpan.
Jagger’s not at all into my humor and I should probably drop the attitude, but the bitterness of being fired for such a bullshit reason still eats away at my insides.
“Because I’m Jagger fucking Kale.” He stands. “Get your ass up. I’m not telling you shit until you eat something. You’re always an asshole on an empty stomach.” Snatching his phone from his desk, he tucks it into his suit jacket and holds his office door open for me.
“Just tell me.”
“Fuck you. Let’s go.”
I pass by him to find Victoria’s gaze on us.
“I’ll be back in a few hours. Call me with anything important.” He doesn’t wait for her to answer and beelines it toward the elevators.
“See you, Victoria. Keep rocking the pant suits.” I wink and a smile tips the edges of her lips.
“I know better than to show any of the goods around here.” She winks back and then focuses her attention to her computer. “Keep him out as long as you can, please.”
“Let’s go, drama queen.” Jagger’s hand is on the doors of the elevator.
“I’ll do my best,” I say as I backstep to the elevator.
The doors shut, cutting off my view of Victoria silently laughing to herself while shaking her head.
“Don’t flirt with my assistant. If I can’t touch her, neither can you.” He presses the lobby button with his knuckle.
“Why can’t I touch her?”
“Please. The last thing I fucking need is her asking me shit like, ‘Did he say anything about me?’ ‘Do you know why he’s not texting me back?’ ‘Why doesn’t he want to see me anymore?’” he says in his best impression of a woman’s voice. Which is pretty bad, for the record. “Besides. We’re friends. That means you don’t take what’s mine.”
I scoff. “She’s not yours.”
“She might be if she ever decides to quit.” He raises a brow.
I stifle a laugh. “What’s to say she’ll quit?”
“They all quit.”
The elevator dings and the doors open. We push our way through the crowd waiting to file in, eventually reaching the rotating doors and making our way outside. The sun heats my face and our steps echo on the concrete as we head to the parking garage.
“I think she’s a keeper, man. She’s put up with your shit for this long.” I place my hand on his shoulder.
He side-glances me. “None of them are keepers because I’m too enticing. They know I won’t lay a hand on them until they don’t work for me.”
“You should really hire dudes.”
“Yeah, no, thanks.” He spots his Ferrari and pulls out his keys, unlocking the car and turning off the alarm. Did you think as arrogant as Jagger is, he wouldn’t have a car like a Ferrari? He’s got a whole arsenal of expensive cars.
We climb into his car and he roars out of the garage, easing off the brakes before he hits the street.
Traveling at Mach speed the entire way, we arrive at an ocean-side restaurant a little off the tourists’ radar.
“Should’ve known you’d want to discuss my future over fish tacos.” I shake my head as we head into the shack Jagger likes to claim he made famous.
“Who doesn’t love fish tacos?” He tucks his keys into his suit pants and makes a display of putting his phone on vibrate before he pushes it down into the inside pocket of his jacket.
“Holy shit, do I really get Jagger Kale all to myself?”
He rolls his eyes and waves to the waitress, who he’s screwed—out on the deck after closing time. But that’s his story. If only I could get the visual out of my head every time we come here.
She points to a free table by the open window and we head there and take a seat.
“Okay, you’ve got me here. Tell me what the hell is going on.” I rest my forearms on the table, taking a deep breath, waiting to hear if what he has to say makes me want to drown myself in the ocean.
He chuckles. “Well, I got a deal for you and it’s good. The investor is from the East Coast and likes the feel of the story. Says it reminds her of her own summer love story. She only has one stipulation. Even so, if you ask me, you should be kissing my Italian loafers right about now.”
I stare at him, waiting for him to get on with it, when the waitress saunters over and rests her hip on the table, facing Jagger with crossed arms.
“You didn’t call,” she says, irritation ringing out in her tone.
He leans forward and brushes her long red hair back, exposing her bare, freckled shoulder. The stiffness of her posture falters a bit.
“Maybe you gave me the wrong phone number,” he says, all innocence.
She shakes her head. “I didn’t.”
“Well, I don’t know, honey, I called.”
She pulls her order pad from her pocket, scribbles her digits down on a piece of paper and slides it across the table. “This is the right one. Use it. Two Heinekens?” She shoots me a fleeting glance.
Oh, good, she realizes I’m here.
Jagger tucks the piece of paper into the front pocket of his shirt and pats his chest. “Safekeeping.” He winks and I let out an exasperated sigh, earning both their glares.
She leaves and Jagger’s gaze follows her to the bar. “I’m an ass man. What about you?”
“Jagger,” I say, but his attention is still focused on the waitress.
He turns back to me and smiles that ‘okay, okay, give me a break’ smile. “The investor wants the leading lady to be Layla Andrews.”
I swear everything around me disappears and I look upon my friend with tunnel vision. It took me until right now to realize why he’s stranded me at the fish taco place outside of the city—I can’t go anywhere. He’s my ride back, although if I could surf, I might just paddle out into the ocean.
“She won’t do it.”
The waitress, whose name is Heidi based on the name tag pinned on her stretched t-shirt, drops the Heinekens on the table and I down half of mine before placing it back on the table. I draw in a deep breath and stare out to the abyss of the ocean.
“She will,” Jagger says with more confidence than he should given the situation.
I look back and Heidi is gone and to my surprise Jagger isn’t wearing a smug look on his face. Instead he’s serious.
“Fuck, Jagger. Why on earth would she do me a favor? I fucked her over on that job, or have you forgotten?”
He leans forward, his hands clasped over his beer. “She only knows Ryder Stone and she has no idea what you look like.”
He points out the one good thing about being behind the scenes in this industry. If I fuck you over, there’s a good chance you wouldn’t know me if you just walked past me in a coffee shop.
“So you want me to lie to her?”
He shrugs. “Just don’t volunteer the information. It’s more like… creative information engineering. Your script is written under your real name. Plus, once it’s a million-dollar box office success she won’t care that you screwed her out of that other role.”
I bring my beer to my lips, contemplating his words.
“Not to mention, she’s on some big set working right now. She probably doesn’t even care anymore.”
“What set?” I ask. She should have had a recurring role on Abandoned, the TV show I was fired from, but I convinced the casting director that she was just a glorified child actress and that audiences would never buy her in the serious role the script dictated.
“She’s with Chris Pratt on that new movie of his.”
“Fuck!” I down the rest of my beer.
“It’s not opposite him. It’s a small role. There’s a good chance she’ll end up on the cutting-room floor.” Jagger takes a sip of his own beer. “I tried to get a hold of her this morning, but her agent’s assistant, told me she’s filming this entire week. Her agent is at the Sundance Film Festival and isn’t returning my calls. I spoke with Layla briefly. You need to go to set to pitch the idea to her.”
“Can’t it wait until after she’s done filming or her agent gets back?”
Heidi comes over and places two plates of fish tacos in front of us. Yeah, we’re probably here too much. She eyes Jagger, licks her lips and then lets her finger run up his arm as she walks away.
“No. The investor wants it done this week. She wants to film scenes in Chicago while the weather is nice. Which means we’re on the clock to have a crew out there this summer.”
“Who is this investor, by the way?”
“All you need to know is that her name is Hannah and she has money.”
I blow out a stream of air, resting my fork on my plate. “This is all going so fast.”
Jagger laughs. “Isn’t this what you wanted? If all goes well, you’ll be a celebrity script writer inside of two years.” He chomps down on his taco, his tie tossed over his shoulder, his jacket resting on the chair next to him. Totally out of place among the beach bums and surfers who really made this place famous.
“I don’t much care for the deception factor.”
Jagger swallows his mouthful. “Grow up, Vance. This is Hollywood. The whole industry was built on selling lies to the public. You want your movie or not?”
I nod, biting the inside of my cheek. My sister Charlie would kick my ass for what I’m about to do. But in all truthfulness, maybe it all worked out for the better. I mean, Layla’s in a film with Chris Pratt. She might not have gotten that gig if she’d gotten the role in Abandoned. She should be thanking me. Plus, if my movie is a success, that totally trumps a small role in a television series. Right? Definitely.
“All right. Tell me where to find her.”
He smiles over another mouthful of taco. “That’s my boy.” He winks.[button link=”http://amzn.to/2zlo6LH” color=”pink” newwindow=”yes”] Amazon US[/button] [button link=”http://amzn.to/2xQWgLa” newwindow=”yes”] Amazon UK[/button] [button link=”http://amzn.to/2xOGf3u” color=”purple” newwindow=”yes”] Amazon CA[/button] [button link=”http://amzn.to/2yws1pD” color=”teal” newwindow=”yes”] Amazon AU[/button] [button link=”http://bit.ly/2itYZ5Q” color=”orange” newwindow=”yes”] Goodreads[/button]
Secrets and lies are a killer way to start any partnership—especially a horizontal one.
Now, I’m a glass half full kinda of guy, so, after the ‘you’re fired’ speech was directed at me, I figure now’s the time to be the screenwriter I came to sunny California to be. Unfortunately, there are about as many people trying to sell a script in L.A. as there are vegans in the pacific northwest.
But lucky for me, a few weeks ago my agent found an investor for my script. Hooray, all my problems are solved! NOT.
Because the investor will only agree to fund my film if I use one specific actress. And that one specific actress? Well of course, it just has to be the same actress I screwed over only months before. But she doesn’t need to know about that one tiny detail, does she? All that matters is getting her to agree to do the film and I’ll do whatever it takes. We can leave the past, in the past, right?
I thought my charm would win her over. Never would I have been prepared for the terms she laid out on the table.
She needed a nanny.
I needed a lead actress.
Somehow I became The Manny.
Piper Rayne, or Piper and Rayne, whichever you prefer because we’re not one author, we’re two. Yep, you get two USA Today bestselling authors for the price of one. You might be wondering if you know us? Maybe you’ll read our books and figure it out. Maybe you won’t. Does it really matter?
We aren’t trying to stamp ourselves with a top-secret label. We wanted to write without apology. We wanted to not be pigeon holed into a specific outline. We wanted to give readers a story without them assuming how the story will flow. Everyone has their favorite authors, right? And when you pick up their books, you expect something from them. Whether it’s an alpha male, heavy angst, a happily ever after, there’s something you are absolutely certain the book will contain. Heck, we’re readers, too, we get it.
What can we tell you about ourselves? We both have kindle’s full of one-clickable books. We're both married to husbands who drive us to drink. We're both chauffeurs to our kids. Most of all, we love hot heroes and quirky heroines that make us laugh, and we hope you do, too.
Same great stories but with new titles and new covers!
Charmed by the Bartender
Hooked by the Boxer
Mad about the Banker
Charmed by the Bartender is now available on AUDIBLE!
Help us spread the word and be entered to win your own paperback set of The Modern Love Series! Simply #like, #comment and #share this post http://bit.ly/2wnXXuE to qualify. Giveaway will be open until Wednesday October 4th at 11:59pm EST.
Charmed by the Bartender:
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Complete the task and then add your particulars into the Google docs:
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Good Luck Everyone! 😊
PLEASE NOTE: Sharing or posting into our own group does NOT count as an entry. 😉 The idea is to spread the word so that wouldn't really work. 😉
Haven’t had the pleasure of meeting Cole yet? Not to worry, THE BARTENDER (Modern Love Series #1) by Piper Rayne is #FREE for a limited time!!! Don’t miss out, this opportunity is only valid between August 17th-21st. Share the love and be entered to win 1 of 3 paperback copies of The Bartender! (scroll down for #giveaway) #modernlove1 #piperrayne #freebie
Who knew sleeping with the enemy could be this fun?
Was the one night stand a good idea?
Well, no. Probably not in retrospect.
In my defense I had just moved back into my grandparent’s house, I’d lost my dream job, and a guy on Tinder had stood me up. It was like life had suddenly stamped ‘LOSER’ on my forehead.
So when the guy behind the bar started giving me THE look…you know, the one that promised I’d be screaming his name into the wee hours of the morning? When that guy also has the perfect amount of scruff on his chiseled chin, biceps bulging out of his t-shirt, and a cocky grin you knew he’d earned in the sack…when he gives you that look, you don’t bother to figure out what your six degrees of separation are. You jump on that horse and ride it!
Pun fully and completely intended. And accurate by the way.
I fully admit to feeling sorry for myself and acting impulsively, but by the time I’d figured out WHO the bartender was, I was already falling for him.
An hour and a half later and hot stuff has come around the bar to take the seat beside me and join me on my mission to get shit-faced. I have to admit, I’m enjoying his company, but it doesn’t exactly make him Employee of the Year given the fact that he’s supposed to be working.
“Won’t your boss be mad that you’re drinking on the job?” I ask.
That damn dimple makes another appearance again before he answers. “Nah, he’s cool. It’s dead in here tonight. If anyone comes in, I’ll be sure they get what they need.” His gaze rakes up and down my small frame, and I get the distinct impression that he’s picturing me naked.
Jeez, I hope my nakedness looks amazing in his brain. Given the half-crooked smile on his face, I think it must. I wonder if his imagination is good enough to picture that dimple in my ass that doesn’t ever seem to want to disappear, regardless of how much I weigh.
As if he’s tempted fate with his words, the bell over the door dings and an older gentleman walks in and seats himself at one of the bar tables across the room.
“Be right back.” Cole pats my hand before he rises from his seat.
It was an innocent gesture, but it makes me think dirty things. The heat from his hand seeps up my arm like a bee sting and settles somewhere in my chest.
I watch him walk away and can’t help but notice the way his ass perfectly fills out his jeans. It bunches and flexes as his long strides take him across the bar. Maybe Lennon is right and it has been too long since I’ve been with a man.
It’s then that I realize that Tinder dude still hasn’t shown up. The bar isn’t busy, probably since it’s the middle of the week, and I’ve been chatting—okay, flirting—with Cole and hadn’t realized how much time had passed. I grab my phone from my purse and open the app to see that I have a new message.
Pussylickr69: Not coming. Sorry found someone else who wasn’t so much werk
Fury causes my face to heat as I type out a quick reply that might be, and by that I mean most definitely is, alcohol-fueled.
Whiteebanter: Yeah, I can see how thirty minutes of conversation is too much foreplay for you. Fuck you and your lack of knowledge of the English language. You spell work with an ‘o,’ dipshit.
There. That’ll show him. With a frown, I drop my phone back into my purse.
“Everything okay?” Cole asks as he takes the seat beside me again.
I sigh. “Yeah, I just found out that Pussylicker isn’t coming anymore.”
Cole nearly spits out the sip of drink he’s just taken and has a coughing fit before he fully recovers. “Excuse me?”
“I was waiting for a guy from Tinder to show up, but he just ditched me because apparently it was too much work to have a drink with me before taking me back to his place to bang me.” I spin my glass in place on the bar top.
“You’re trolling for guys on Tinder?” Cole howls with laughter so hard he has to hold his stomach. I love the way the laugh looks on his face—the way it crinkles his eyes at the corners and how it showcases his perfect teeth. But all that aside, it’s irritating.
“It’s not that funny.” This guy might be hot, but right now he’s working my nerves.
“Actually, it is. Why the hell would a woman like you resort to finding someone to fuck on a dating site?”
The way the word ‘fuck’ rolls off his tongue has all my womanly parts contracting and wishing that it was an invitation to do just that. But never mind that, because I’m annoyed at him, I just barely remember through my drunken haze.
“What do you mean a woman like me?” I try to do air quotes around the last part, but my balance isn’t what it was three hours ago, and I almost topple off my stool, so I quickly grab on to the bar in front of me.
“Beautiful. Intelligent. Likable. Smartass.” He ticks each word off on one hand while he speaks and he says it like he means it. I hold his stare for a minute before realization dawns.
“Hey! I’m a B.I.L.F. You know, like a M.I.L.F. Only different.” I’m so impressed that I thought of that given my current state.
Cole chuckles with an amused gleam in his eyes. “Only better,” he says.
Our gazes lock for a beat and it’s at that moment I know that if I offer myself up to this guy, he’ll be more than willing to send me on the walk of shame tomorrow morning. Heat rushes into my cheeks and I look away. As much bravado as I had earlier about my Tinder escapade, I’m not sure I can do this. Be this girl so full of confidence that she bangs a stranger with no qualms about it.
My elation has crash-landed on the ground as I realize I’m not able to pull the trigger and make an advance toward him. I also know I’ll probably regret it forever because this man is so far beyond good-looking that it’s a speck in the rear-view mirror. Not to mention the fact that he’s sexy as hell and seems to be a decent human being. Which is more impossible to find in the Bay area than someone who doesn’t think they’re allergic to gluten.
I take a deep breath and finish the last couple of gulps of my drink and push the glass in Cole’s direction.
Cole tosses back the rest of his drink and I watch as his Adam’s apple bobs in his throat while the liquid slides down.
Damn. That is sexy.
Why is that sexy?
“I’m going to join you for another as well.” He gets up off his bar stool and before walking away he comes to stand directly behind me. “Assuming you want me to stick around?”
His breath washes across my neck and my ear and I close my eyes for a brief moment to enjoy the sensation. “I’d like that,” I say with all honesty.
“Good. I know the first guy let you down, but don’t worry… I’ve been told I lick pussy like a boss.”
And with that, he walks away while I struggle to keep my heart from pounding out of my chest.
I’m out of my league with this guy. I know it and there’s a good chance that he knows it, too.
But ask yourself this, ladies… if you were called up to the big leagues from the minors, would you say no?
For a chance to win 1 of 3 paperback copies of THE BARTENDER, #like, #comment and #share this post, then enter here: https://www.rafflecopter.com/rafl/display/0dd3e01810/
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Time to get a life.
Time to start over.
Time to move beyond the past.
The guys in the Single Dads Club would tell you it was time years ago, but until recently, the risk of hurting my little girl outweighed the benefit of getting a piece of ass.
Now that I have a tween daughter on my hands? It’s becoming more apparent with every poster hung on the wall, every fight over wearing make-up and every uncomfortable conversation about puberty, that at least one of us needs a female touch in our lives.
Jesus. I can’t even think the words ‘female touch’ without thinking of her.
Charlotte Rose. Charlie.
She’s everything I shouldn’t want, but someone needs to tell that to my damn libido because every time she’s around I have a constant case of blue balls.
There’s a list of reasons why I shouldn’t give into what I feel—she’s my best friend’s little sister, she’s seen me at my most vulnerable, and the biggest one—she’s the first person in eleven years who has the potential to break me.
Snap a picture and caption it ‘Teenage boy in front of his first Playboy’ because that’s exactly how I feel right now and I’d bet that’s how I look.
Charlie stands in the doorway wearing a white bikini, her nipples hard and erect, begging to be touched. The first thing I notice is the way she doesn't cover up, but opens the door wider, ushering me in with her free hand.
“I expected the pool guy.” Her voice changes pitch and I gather she's as affected by this situation as I am. The only difference is, my arousal can't be hidden.
“He's out of town, so you got me.”
“And you can fix it?”
I stop and tilt my head her way. “Is that even a question?”
“Well,” she walks faster to catch up to me as I use a key to open up the one door that's locked from guests. “Oh, I always wonder what's behind these doors when I rent other people's vacation homes.” She peeks her head over my shoulder and the scent of her perfume makes a beeline for my dick, making it twitch.
As he's begging for an introduction, I squat to get away, but she doesn't relent. Her tits are practically resting on my shoulder.
“Ever heard of personal space?” I remark, grabbing my tool set.
“This isn't half as exciting as I thought it would be.” She finally moves back and I stand with the toolbox in my hands.
“Did you think there would be a dead body?”
She shrugs. “Porn maybe?”
“Why would there be porn?”
She purses her lips and looks up at the ceiling. It's innocent and cute and I'm not sure I ever remember seeing her doing it before. “You know, the owner can't keep it in their own house because they have a preteen daughter, so they keep their stash in the closet and watch it when there are no guests here.”
“Let me guess? I'm the guy with the preteen daughter.”
“You're so smart. I see where Sydney gets it from.” She smiles, a mouthful of straight white teeth.
I nod and walk away. She follows.
“Do you need help?”
“Since I really have no idea what I'm fixing, I don't know yet.” I open the screen door to the hot tub.
“It wouldn't turn on.”
“That's not a good sign.”
I open up the back and start working on it. The little I know about hot tubs might not be enough.
Charlie sits on the edge of the hot tub and puts her feet in, her purple polished toenails dipping in and out of the water.
“I think I deserve a discount if I can't use the hot tub.”
I look up at her and she's smirking.
She’s quiet for a few minutes while I fiddle around trying to figure out the source of the problem.
“I'm curious, Garrett…” she pauses and I glance up at her. “How do my tits look in this bikini?”
“Garrett is the perfect man – hard and virile on the outside and soft and squishy on the inside.” – Heather from White Hot Reads
“I am absolutely and positively in love with our bearded sexy beast, Garrett!” – Kristy France, Goodreads Reviewer