Authors: Leah Braemel
We will open the book. Its pages are blank. We are going to put words on them ourselves. The book is called "Opportunity" and its first chapter is New Year's Day.
~Edith Lovejoy Pierce
Copyright 2008, Leah Braemel
Cover Art: Scott Carpenter
This is a work of fiction. The names, characters, places and incidents are products of the writer’s imagination or have been used fictitiously and are no construed to be real. Any resemblance to persons, living or dead, actual events, locale or organizations is entirely incidental.
All rights are reserved. No part of this book may be used or reproduced in any manner whatsoever without written permission except in the case of brief excerpts or quotations embodied in critical articles and reviews.
It might have been the two glasses of champagne that drove Jodi Tyler to consider Terri’s dare. Or maybe, she told herself for the fifth time, she really was concerned her boss was working himself too hard. Or maybe it was just because she was horny.
Though her mouth was moving, Jodi could barely hear a word Terri said over Hector’s attempts at singing and the amps blasting full-power. The music itself wasn’t bad—Juan and Tyrell both played a mean guitar but Hector really needed to be muzzled.
Champagne sloshing over the side of her wine glass, Terri gestured toward their boss who stood in the farthest corner, his cell phone over one ear, and a hand over the other. Terri put her mouth to Jodi’s ear and repeated, “Come on, Jodi. Mark brought his laptop to the party, and when he’s not working on it, he’s been on that damned phone.
Someone needs to get him to loosen up.”
Jodi rolled her eyes. “And just how do you propose I do that?” Terri flattened her free hand over her stomach and waggled her hips. “Take him up to the hospitality suite and do a little mattress rumba with him. There’s no better way to start a New Year than with some hot monkey sex.”
“Jodi,” Terri mimicked Jodi’s exasperation. “He’s not seeing anyone, and neither are you since you finally saw the light about Slimeball Dan. Sex is the perfect way to relax, and honey, you both need to relax. Besides, I’ve seen the way you eye Mark when you think no one’s looking. You’re horny for the man; don’t deny it.”
“I am not!” Yes, I am.
“Coward. It’s time you get back up on the horse and Mark’s the perfect stallion to ride.” Terri shoved the champagne glass into Jodi’s hand. “Here. Give him this. Tell him there’s a private party and he’s invited. I bet he’ll have you seeing fireworks before the ball drops in Times Square.”
Before Jodi could point out that left her less than twenty minutes to saddle up the boss and ride him into the sunset, Terri shoved her in Mark’s direction.
What the heck am I doing
? Jodi asked herself as she slowly maneuvered across the dance floor. Wouldn’t it be great to have a partner lead in the mattress rumba for once?
What harm can a quickie do
? Making up her mind, she pushed through the dancers toward her target. When Mark edged out of the room, she switched directions and followed him into the hall.
“Damn it, where’d he go? He was here a minute ago.” She called to a nearby Celada Security employee chatting up one of the tuxedo-clad waitresses. “Hey, Jake?
You see where Mark went?”
Without taking his eyes off the waitress, Jake used his chin to point down the hall. “Try the Hospitality Suite.”
Mark had left the door partially open so she slipped in without knocking and closed the door. She hesitated for a second then threw the deadbolt.
“Yeah, I know, Sam, but Martin’s got me by the short hairs. He’s underbid me on the Huffman Oil contract, and from the sounds of it, he’s going after the Gottfried account as well.” His back to her, Mark Rodriguez sat at the desk, his cell phone still pressed to his ear, two-finger typing something into his laptop.
“I appreciate that but I’ll need some time to think about your offer, okay?” He paused while Sam, whoever that was, replied. The dragon tattoo on his biceps rippled as he stabbed his fingers through his Marine haircut. His shirt pulled tight displaying his shoulder muscles to perfection.
Jodi closed her mouth to stop the drool and glanced around the room. Damn, it wasn’t a bedroom suite, more of a sitting room with only the desk, a couch and a couple of chairs. No mattress rumba. Oh, well, the couch would work just as well.
He barked a short laugh, a deep rumble that had Jodi clenching her thighs together at the sudden ache that developed. Why did the one guy who got her hot have to be her boss? Why couldn’t he just be some guy she’d met at the party and would never have to face again?
“Yeah, Sam, I know there’s a party going on.” Another pause. “Yes. I know sex is a great stress reliever.”
Sheesh, did Terri get to this Sam guy as well? What is with everyone lately?
“Yeah, I’ll think about it. Oh, and Happy New Year, Sam.” He closed his phone then began typing again. He cursed softly in Spanish. “Hey, Terri, what’s the password to the Gottfried account again? I’ve forgotten it.”
“It’s not Terri.” When Mark looked around in surprise, she noticed the dark circles ringing his eyes. Shoot, even if she had a horrible propensity for animal metaphors, Terri was right; Mark was running himself into the ground. She held out the wine glass. “I brought you some champagne. After all, it’s New Year’s Eve, everyone deserves the evening off. Even the boss.”
Mark sighed and gestured to his laptop. “Thanks for the thought, Jodi, but I can’t afford to slack off. I’ve got to get the Gottfried bid in line.”
“I’m not saying,” she said softly, “that you stop work entirely. I’m just suggesting you take a short break. A couple of hours, that’s all.” He shook his head. “As tempting as that sounds, I can’t.”
“Going to be stubborn, huh?” Jodi set the glass down on the desk. Before he could stop her, she snapped down the lid of his laptop. “Office is closed. You’re done for the day.”
“Hey! What do you think you’re doing?”
“Helping you relax.” After nudging his chair with her knee until he faced away from his laptop, she started massaging his shoulders. Holy cow, the man had muscles to rival an Olympic swimmer and they were tied up in knots. “I’ll make you a bet. If I can get into the Gottfried file, you have to put the work away and celebrate with me.” Mark groaned as Jodi’s thumbs worked one particularly stubborn knot. “What do I get if you can’t crack the password?”
She leaned down and whispered in his ear, her breath hot on his neck. “Then I’ll be at your command for the night.”
He stilled beneath her fingers.
¡Ay Dios mío!
Did she mean that as the come on it implied? Or was she just offering to help him work on the figures for the bid?
“Let me get this straight. If you crack the password, you and I celebrate.” Was that a metaphor for sex or did she just mean he’d go out and mingle with everyone?
Please God, let it be a metaphor. “But if you don’t crack the password, you will willingly do whatever I tell you. Even if it’s not work related?”
“You’re assuming I’ll lose the bet. I may not.” Damn. She had him there. While he should be more concerned about the security of his files, her self-confidence had his cock punching against his zipper.
She moved closer, until her breasts cushioned his head, the massage changing to a caress.
“What do you say, Mark? Do we have a deal? You ready for a little R&R?” The breathy hitch in her voice told him there was no misunderstanding her intention.
Damn, she’s your employee, Rodriguez, this could come back and bite you on
I’d rather bite her on the ass
Where the hell had that thought come from?
Probably inspired by the breasts currently supporting his head. Not to mention how that sparkly clingy number she wore accentuated her curves. He’d noticed her before—hell, there wasn’t a man in Celada who had failed to admire that firm, biteable ass of hers—but since she was his employee, he figured she was strictly forbidden
goods. But tonight …
, she was one hot package, especially with the way her hair draped over her shoulder and into her cleavage. What he’d give to feel it swinging over his chest as she rode him.
Shit! He shifted in his chair in an attempt to ease the fabric constricting his hard-on. R&R indeed. He’d rest comfortably as long her breasts continued to be his pillow, and he had a feeling Ms. Tyler could help him relax by giving his cock a good workout.
Nothing like a little exercise to get the endorphins flowing.
He reached up and caught her hand, then wheeled his chair around until he faced her. “Are you aware of what I might ask of you?” Her gaze dropped to the tent in his pants, then slowly raised to meet his. The heat in her eyes seared a path all the way up his chest. Goddamn, the woman had him as hard as stone and she’d barely touched him.
Her voice had a Lauren Bacall huskiness that had his balls aching. “Oh, yeah. I don’t have to be your top security officer to identify the evidence.”
Ay ay ay mamacita
. He could think of some celebrating he’d like to do with her.
He forced his mind from the image of tying her up and having his way with her when he realized she was still talking.
“… just for tonight. No strings attached.”
Aw, hell. What man with a hard-on ready to erupt like Mount Vesuvius could turn down an offer like that?
She ran a finger along his jaw, tracing her thumb over his lips. “Either way, I think we should have our own private celebration. Right here. Just the two of us.” He pulled her toward him so she tumbled onto his lap, then cupped her head with one hand until her mouth hovered a hairsbreadth from his. “Sounds like a win-win situation to me.”
The second their lips touched, he forgot all about the bet. She tasted of champagne and smelled of heaven. There was no hesitation when he slid his tongue past the part in her lips, no regrets, no second thoughts. If anything there was a tenderness he’d rarely experienced. A need to protect her, to treat her gently while at the same time the need to master her roared over him.
Jodi tugged his shirt from his pants, slipping her hands under the fabric, splaying her fingers over his abdomen.
Parts of him that had never before reacted to a woman’s touch throbbed. When he broke off their kiss and trailed kisses down her throat, she arched up. The silky fabric slithered off her breasts in an erotic invitation. Not one to miss such a golden opportunity, he licked and suckled, kissed and nipped her flesh.
Her breath caught deep in her throat when he slipped his hand beneath the slit in her skirt. Damn, she was so responsive. Still suckling her breasts, he caressed the silk-smooth skin of her thighs. He slid one finger inside her, then another, curling them as he quickened his strokes. Her whole body quivered, tightening around him. He caught her cries with a kiss, stopping them from going farther.
Her body trembling, she raised passion-filled eyes to his as her fingers fumbled at his fly. Once his erection sprang free, she palmed it, stroking it gently. He gasped when she flicked her thumb over the head, spreading the bead of come welling at the tip.
She slid from his lap, nestling between his thighs and lowered her head.
A deep groan filled the room when she ran her tongue up his length, swirled her tongue over the straining head, tasting him, sampling him.
Me vuelves loco
The growled Spanish sent shivers down her back in sharp waves. From the way his face scrunched up, and his fingers tightened in her hair, she drove him as crazy as he’d driven her. Allowing herself a private grin, Jodi vowed to make him lose his mind completely. She bent to her self-assigned task, swallowing him deep, alternately sucking and tormenting him.
His already hard shaft grew harder, silky fluid leaked from the tip onto her tongue. She moaned her own need. The grip on her hair tightened and his hips arched up, pressing him deeper into her mouth in frantic thrusts. More warmth spilled into her mouth until he pulled her away, his voice hoarse, “
God, it made her so hot to hear him revert to Spanish. “What?” His eyes had darkened with passion and she shivered as a strange feeling clamped around her heart. She didn’t want to get into a relationship; he’d only hurt her.