Just for One Night – Free

Onenight2-siteFor what I’m expecting might be the last time, I’m giving away Just for One Night free on Amazon starting today. The promo will run until Saturday 15th June, so if you haven’t read this short story yet, you’ve still got a few days to get a free copy.

Available for FREE on Amazon; US, UK, DE, FR (and others)

If you’re not sure if Just for One Night is for you, let the excerpt below sway you…

 

 

He turns towards me as soon as I reach and I’m frozen in place. Concentrating on continuing to breathe, I tuck my black wavy hair behind my ear and glance in his direction.

I take in his strong Nordic features, his full lips and steely blue eyes that stand in stark contrast against the dark brown of his hair and short beard. All I can manage is a shy smile before hurriedly looking away.

My instincts served me well, if I had stayed in my seat, I would’ve regretted it. I feel tiny standing next to him, which causes me to feel an even stronger attraction. And his eyes on me, I can almost feel them stabbing and probing.

His hands are huge as well, manly. I wonder how he’d touch me, if those hands could be gentle or if they only know how to be rough. There’s no sign of a wedding ring; what a relief.

It has been decided, I want him at any cost.

“What can I get you, darling?” The bartender interrupts my thoughts.

“Oh I’ll have a Bailey’s, thanks.” Taking a deep breath I turn towards my mark. “Would you like anything, while I’m buying already?”

Surprised, it takes him a few seconds to respond. Or perhaps he’s as distracted by our eye contact as I am.

“Ice?” the bartender asks. I nod in response before resuming to look at the giant’s face again.

The short interruption appears to have helped him get his thoughts in line too.

“Another Guinness.” He tells the bartender.

His deep voice matches his impressive stature and makes my heart jump a few beats. I put a Tenner down on the bar, hoping that the goose bumps on my arms aren’t too obvious.

“Mind if I take this seat?” I say, “You’re not holding it for anyone, are you?”

“Sure, go ahead.”

While I get onto the stool, our drinks appear in front of us.

“Cheers,” I’m trying my best to sound a lot more confident than I feel.

“Cheers,” his voice elicits another wave of chills to wash over me.

 

Just for One Night; Preview

Onenight2-siteI’m currently finishing a little story I’ve been working on for ages now. It’s always been pushed back by other projects (Just Another Day at the Office, mainly) taking precedence. Hopefully this little preview and the cover, which I have slightly tweaked since sharing on Facebook earlier will get you excited to read the end product!

As soon as I’ve found my seat of choice in the dimly lit establishment, I notice him. Sitting on a bar stool nursing a full pint while his two friends stand around waiting for their refills. They clearly arrived as a group, but while I observe them it quickly becomes clear that they are not planning to just sit at the bar together.

He’s sporting a typical metal-head ponytail,  longer than my own hair and it really suits him. Too many guys can’t get past their old faithful long hair style, even when their mane starts to thin. His hair is thick and full though and the first thing I noticed. I have always had a thing for men with long hair.

Chance brought me here tonight to the aptly named “Old Oak”. Only a short walk from my hotel, its traditional wood panelled décor looks like the perfect environment to escape to.

It’s the sort of place which you can imagine to have been here forever. Probably has done for hundreds of years, largely looking the same but seeing its growing ever brighter and shinier. I had planned to just sit here, have a couple of drinks and watch the normal goings-on unfold around me. But my initial plan of staying largely out of sight is starting to look like a bad idea.

From my corner by the window, in between sips of Baileys on ice, I keep eyeing him. Black jeans paired with sturdy biker boots and an untucked black shirt covering his broad frame on top. He looks like an imposing figure even hunched over as he is at the bar. Like a giant.

I wish he’d turn around. I wish I had bought my drink from this bar counter rather than the other one, at least I could have had a better look at him before finding this seat.

Like a reluctant predator, I’m just sitting here and staring at him from behind. If I hadn’t chosen to sit in such a discrete location, it might have been the other way around.

My phone distracts, a message from Akhil, asking about the meeting and if we can talk. It can wait. I came here to forget about the irritating client with the project I couldn’t refuse, not to talk about it. Stuffing the phone back into my handbag, I resume my earlier observations.

His friends are long gone by now, leaving an empty stool beside him and my glass is getting empty quickly. Shall I? It feels so reassuring being unnoticed that I’m very reluctant to get up. I guess I’m just a coward when it comes down to making the first move and my dark corner feels so safe.

He takes a big last sip from his glass and I panic. What if he’s going to call it a night? If he leaves now I’ll forever wonder what could’ve been!

Before I know it my feet carry me towards the bar, while I half mindedly smooth down my businesslike grey skirt and vest combo. Despite the buzz of the drunken conversations that fills the space, the clicking of my heels on the wooden floorboards is almost as deafening as my heart pounding in my chest.

He turns towards me as soon as I reach and I’m frozen in place. Concentrating on continuing to breathe, I tuck my black wavy hair behind my ear and glance in his direction.

I take in his strong Nordic features, his full lips and steely blue eyes that stand in stark contrast against the dark brown of his hair and short beard. All I can manage is a shy smile before hurriedly looking away.

My instincts served me well, if I had stayed in my seat, I would’ve regretted it. I feel tiny standing next to him, which causes me to feel an even stronger attraction. And his eyes on me, I can almost feel them stabbing and probing.

His hands are huge as well, manly. I wonder how he’d touch me, if those hands could be gentle or if they only know how to be rough. There’s no sign of a wedding ring; what a relief.

It has been decided, I want him at any cost.

“What can I get you, darling?” The bartender interrupts my thoughts.

Ladies’ Day – a little taster.

My first little ebook, Ladies’ Day, has been out for a little while now. It’s an erotic short story (roughly 34 pages according to Amazon); two strangers and their chance meeting at the side of the road after Ladies’ Day at Royal Ascot. 

Available on Amazon.com

Or Amazon.co.uk

Why not get a little taste of it from the short except below:

“Excuse me, where’s your bathroom?” His call is coming from the back door.

“Oh please come in, it’s just over there…” I point at the door leading off the hallway.

Still the contrast between us is startling to me, he looks like everything I am not in his formals which probably cost more than my car is worth. At the same time I – at 25 – still dress like I did as a teenager, faded jeans and inappropriately tight t-shirts. The only “fancy” clothes I own are worn exclusively to job interviews and then too they’re Primark or at a stretch Next. You could mistake me for a simple idealist, not moved by worldly possessions, when in fact I am just a bit stingy and lazy.

But strangely, he looks at home, walking over the terracotta tiles and towards the door I’ve just shown him. Taking in the decor, glancing at the eclectic mix of paintings and photographs on my walls on his way. Like he is meant to be here, in my house. I try and shake off that thought. He’s just some stranger and I’m an idiot for doing this.

The ping of the oven timer brings me back to reality and I pile all the food, plates and cutlery high onto a tray, and head back out. After I’ve arranged everything on the wooden table and make another trip for the cushions, a water jug and the aforementioned cheap wine, he comes back out as well.

“Oh you didn’t need to…” He says, smiling at me. Looking at him now, more relaxed and at ease, I feel like I’m getting a hint of his usual demeanor. Charismatic is probably the best word for it. Like he should be a politician, but still strangely genuine and trustworthy.

“I sort of did, I’m starving,” I respond, “and Dominos doesn’t deliver here.”

He lets out a laugh while sitting down on the bench beside me. Thankfully it’s large and sturdy, quite over spec for my usual needs as a single woman.

“I wasn’t sure what you’d like,” I point at the food, wine and water, “unless you want coffee or tea, I can do that too.”

“Yeah, I don’t tend to drink much, is it that obvious?” He smiles again. My heart is pounding in my chest; I can’t get over how handsome he is, by body language perhaps even more so than simply looks.

“Well, whatever you need, just ask.” My eyes are drawn towards his, in this light they seem more turquoise than blue. He holds my gaze just a little longer than strictly necessary before picking up the wine and corkscrew.

“I suppose one glass won’t hurt. I promise I don’t feel ill anymore.” He doesn’t look it either, must be the fresh air.

“Don’t be so sure, you haven’t tried it yet. It’s probably nowhere near the quality you’re used to.” I say, still mesmerised by his eyes.

He grins at me. “Everything is only as good as the company it’s enjoyed in.”

I feel the corners of my mouth curl up practically by themselves, this is a game I know how to play.

 “Well, and what do you know about current company other than that I was overly keen to get my hands on your car keys?”

“Firstly, you took a huge risk trying to help out a complete stranger,” winking at me, he adds, “car keys or no car keys.”

I take the glass of wine he has poured for me.

“Furthermore, I don’t recall the last time anyone has made an effort putting together a meal for me…” His gaze wanders out over the field again.

“Fine, if you say so,” I say, “but for all you know I could be a psychopath, only pretending to be friendly.”

He looks back at me again, the amused glint in his eyes reappearing. “So could I.”

“Cheers,” I say, raising my glass towards him, “to us, pretending to be friendly.”

We both take a sip, stealing little looks at each other in turn. 

I would be really grateful for some feedback. Also, I’m working on a few more things, at least one of which I intend to publish within this year. Do check back here or on Facebook/Twitter for updates if you’re interested in reading more of my work.

First Day at Work

This is part two in a longer story, please read The Job Interview first. 

For these past two weeks it seemed as though time was moving at a crawl. The job promises to be the usual 9-to-5 drudgery but I can hardly contain my excitement. The reason is of course the prospect of working with Jonathan, I wonder if my memory could be deceiving me. I suppose I’ll find out soon enough if he’s really as gorgeous as I recall.

My buzzing phone brings me back to reality. A text message from my best friend, Jase. “Best of luck, girl. Go kick some ass!”

It makes me smile. Of course he remembered, I haven’t been able to shut up about this job ever since the interview. Well, not about the job, but about the guy. Same thing really.

Now, what to wear… After pulling out nearly half the contents of my wardrobe and dumping it on the bed I settle on a slightly too tight plum pencil skirt and a cowl neck black pullover. A tad more conservative than my usual style, but I wouldn’t want to fall foul of any yet to be discovered dress code. Plus there is still that sleazy idiot, Dick Porter to contend with. A pair of back seam tights and heels should do nicely to keep things interesting.

I’m 15 minutes early coming out of the elevator at my new office. Most of the desks are still empty, as is the office in the corner.  I’m guessing Dick doesn’t take punctuality to extremes himself. Good.

I hesitate a bit on the office floor, looking around for any familiar faces. Sharon –  Dick’s assistant – is just now walking into the office as well. She is quite imposing, a bit taller than me and slightly heavier build as well as impeccably dressed. There appears to be an air of self importance surrounding her, but I don’t want to judge too quickly and give her a friendly smile.

“Hello, I’m Cath. We met two weeks ago when I came in for my interview. Today is my first day..”

“Oh yes, Catherine. Richard isn’t in yet, he’ll be here at nine. Why don’t you take a seat over there -“ Her tone sounds authoritative but polite. “- and make yourself comfortable.” She gestures towards the right side of the office where I already expected to be sitting.

“Thanks,” I mutter while looking around anxiously for Jonathan. There is a backpack lying on what I remember to be his desk but he’s not around. So I put my stuff on the desk right next to him and sit down to wait. If there was any way I could be more nervous than I already had been since last night, now would be the time.

“Hi.” His baritone voice behind me makes me jump up instantly.  It sounds pleasantly warm but slightly raspy as though he’s fighting a cold.

“Err, Hi. I’m Cath Davies. I mean my full name is Catherine but nobody actually calls me that. They tell me I’m going to be working with you…” I babble, my nerves already getting the better of me.  I look at his face while offering my hand to greet him formally. Gorgeous as I remembered. But in spite of the rose tinted specs which are currently clouding my vision, I can’t ignore that he looks tired. His formerly flawless face is showing the signs of stress or sadness, I’m not sure which. Grey circles under his eyes are the most obvious indicator, paired with slightly puffy eyelids. Even his skin tone has changed from the healthy subtle tan I remember to ashen and dull. I fight the urge to stare, my fingers itching to reach up and touch his face.

“Yes indeed. I’m John Hall,” he says as we shake hands.  His hand slightly colder than mine but strong, it takes a lot of willpower to let go..

I hold my breath to fight my nerves and look into his eyes momentarily. They’re a warm shade of amber, but at the same time betray more than the rest of his appearance has already done. Tired and empty. Looking into them feels like a stab right through the heart, forcing me to look away again.

I dare not look make eye contact again all morning while he is giving me the introduction on all the systems I’m supposed to be using. There is no hint of small talk, only work and even then he is a man of few words.

Whenever I glance at his face, I notice he’s consistently avoiding the sight of me. If he’s not looking at the computer screen, he’s leafing through the mountain of papers on his desk. Now I’m not expecting every man to act like Dick – pervert – Porter and shamelessly ogle my boobs all day (I can only imagine how he’s looking at me while I’ve got my back turned). But to avoid looking in my direction completely is another unusual extreme. And it’s especially frustrating because I really want him to notice me.

While John busies himself with some papers in the filing cabinet behind his desk, I allow my eyes to wander. Ever since I could remember I’ve liked men with a bit of meat on them. I don’t quite understand it, I don’t have any identifiable reason for this preference. But I’ve long given up trying to analyse myself. All I know is, I want to feel his soft skin under my fingertips. I want his belly brushing against me as he leans down for a kiss. I want…

“So,” says a familiar voice behind me, shattering the devious fantasy I had started to play out in my head, “how are you enjoying your first day?” Dick. His presence makes the hairs on the back of my neck stand up, and not in a good way.

“Great,” I say, “there’s so much to learn.”

“Good, good. Carry on!” I can hardly suppress a sigh of relief as he stalks off towards another cluster of desks.

“What time is lunch?” I turn to ask John.

“10 minutes.”

The lunchroom is spacious and bright. There is a buffet of sandwiches on offer and a suspicious looking “Soup of the day”. I buy myself a ham and cheese sandwich and join a group of women who are already sitting and chatting at one of the two large tables. There is no sign of John.

“Hi, I’m Cath. I’ve just started today,” I introduce myself as the 7 or so women give me the visual once over. The only one I’ve already met is Sharon, who gestures at me to sit down next to her.

“Catherine, join us. I’ll introduce everyone.” She’s smiling at me but her eyes look guarded. Maybe my first impression was correct after all, looks like she is the big gun of office politics. Sharon quickly rattles through the names of everyone at the table.

“This is Linda, Shelley, Jessica, Miranda, Heidi and Jackie.”
I nod at them before taking a seat.

“So, Cath. How do you like Aspect so far?” The woman further along the table asks, I think her name is Miranda but I’m not entirely sure. Her smile seems a tad more genuine than Sharon’s, but perhaps she’s just a better actress.

“Oh, it seems nice. Of course I’m just overwhelmed at all the new things I’m supposed to learn.”

“Right. So you’ve been paired with John,” she says.  I can detect a hint of contempt as she speaks his name.  “How’s that going?”

“Fine… He seems knowledgeable,” I say.

“He should be, he spends more time here than at home. Sometimes I wonder if he has a bed hidden in the office supply room,” one of the others buts in. The group laugh in response.

I smile politely and eat my food. The group moves on to other topics such as TV talent shows and Big Brother. Exactly the type of things I have nothing to say about.

***

Fucking great. Not only have the past two weeks been hell, now that moron Richard has me train his insufferable new recruit.

I had caught a glimpse of her from behind as she arrived for her interview. Exactly Richard’s type. Long legs leading up to probably the greatest ass ever to have set foot in this building. I’m sure she’ll fit right in with Sharon and her gang, so why couldn’t one of them train her?

This whole thing must be his idea of a joke, parading her in front of me for a few days before swooping in for the kill. She will most definitely go for it too, they always do.

I hadn’t even seen her up close until this morning. She’s his ultimate check list personified; gorgeous figure, curves in just the right places, obvious underneath the slightly clingy outfit she’s wearing. And her face…  I am not the type of guy who tends to objectify women, far from it. But this one- I can’t even look at her without having to fight one physical reaction or other. So I’ve been trying my best to ignore her. I just want to get this training over with, preferably without making a total ass of myself.

I look at my watch, lunchtime is almost over. Back to the grind… Quickly I hide the bottle of vodka behind the stack of unused copier paper.

When I get to my desk she is already sitting at her computer, peering at the screen with intense focus. I sit down and retrieve the sheet with today’s training topics from the mess on my desk. The letters are blurring a little, but I can just about manage. At least I’ve managed to numb myself a bit. Here goes nothing…

“Let’s continue, shall we?” I say, wishing for the day to just end.

 I’ve just added a new part to this story – At Last They Meet, admittedly skipping some bits to get there. If you want the full thing, you’ll just have to wait until the book is ready 😉