Authors: Aubrey Irons
bad boy in pro football…
I was born into the high life: private schools, finishing classes – groomed to look pretty hanging on a rich man’s arm.
That is, until I walk in on my fiancé f*cking his secretary across his desk.
Now I’m a princess on the run, and escape from the life I never wanted steers me right into the last man I’d ever call a prince charming.
Austin Taylor is the crude, arrogant pro quarterback with cocky cowboy smile and the notorious tabloid record longer than his-
A princess like me should have nothing to do with a
of a man like that, except Austin Taylor has an offer I may not be able to refuse.
Half a million dollars to be his trophy wife.
It’s fake, of course – all a show for the cameras and the press to rehab his bad boy reputation.
Fake, that is, until we wake up
to the most notorious, most possessive, most gorgeous man in pro football. The man with the glint in his eyes that gets me hot in places it shouldn’t. The man whose dirty, filthy words have me melting for him.
Oh, right, and the man whose baby I’m carrying.
Copyright © 2016 Aubrey Irons
Cover & Interior Design: Aubrey Irons
Cover Photos: Nelka7812
Editor: Ellie McLove, Love N Books
This is a work of fiction. Names, characters, places and incidents are solely the product of the author’s imagination and/or are used fictitiously. Any resemblance to actual persons, living or dead, organizations, actual events or locales is entirely coincidental. The author acknowledges the trademark status of products referred to in this book and acknowledges that trademarks have been used without permission.
All Rights Reserved. No part of this book may be used or reproduced in any manner whatsoever without written permission from the author, except in the case of brief quotations used for review purposes.
This book is intended for mature, adult audiences only. It contains sexually explicit and graphic scenes and language which may be considered offensive by some readers. Please do not continue reading this book of you are under the age of 18 or are offended by content of this nature.
All sexually active characters in this work are 18 years of age or older and are in no way blood relations. All acts of a sexual nature are completely consensual.
or my husband
; a thousand times yes.
*New Release Bonus Content Included!*
ou never forget your first
To celebrate the release of Player and as a thank you for your support, I’ve decided to include my first books - The Soldiers Of Fortune series - here in this special new-release edition of the book.
As a heads-up, no, Player is
the single longest romance book in the world, despite the
page count number Amazon may display!
Player itself is around 75k words, which means it takes up roughly the first 30% of this book. That means a full 70% of this book file is taken up by the bonus content. Heat
book 1 in the bonus series, begins at the 29% mark, followed by Burn at 39%, Scorch at 68%, and Roar at 85%.
Thanks so much for reading, and I do hope you enjoy the very crude, very possessive, and very irresistible Austin Taylor as much as I have.
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what it looks like.”
The Chanel clutch drops from my hands as I stare at my fiancé, standing in front of his office desk with the blonde woman’s legs wrapped around his waist.
‘It’s not what it looks like’
? Because, what it
looks a whole lot like is my fiancé with his pants around his ankles and his dick in his secretary, about ten minutes before the firm’s annual gala.
, Vince?!” My jaw drops as I stare at them, slowly shaking my head as neither of them even makes an effort to cover up.
Jesus Christ, he’s still inside of her.
The thought is nauseating, and my stomach feels like it drops as far as my clutch lying there on the floor.
- sheepishly but in this ‘sorry, not sorry’ way that somehow makes the entire situation even more condescending.
“Really wish you’d knocked, Natalie.”
I bark out a laugh, feeling the floor sink under my feet. His secretary slaps at his arm, almost playfully as if he’s just said some sort of faux pas at a cocktail party.
Jesus, she hasn’t even bothered to cover up at all. Her shirt is still unbuttoned, one breast hanging out of her bra, and her legs still wrapped around Vince’s waist. I frown as my eyes land on the tattoo on her bare thigh and the bile rises in my throat as I read the words, “Daddy’s Girl” inked inside the heart.
I quickly yank my eyes away, feeling ill.
“You wish I’d
” I hurl at Vince, still shaking my head and trying to process what I’m actually looking at. “Well I wish you weren’t fucking your trashy
, honey?” The blonde bimbo hanging off his waist and pulling at his neck-tie - one I bought him, actually - wrinkles her nose at me. She shakes her head and makes a face as if
the one out of line here.
“Yeah, Natalie, let’s be civil here. There’s no need for that.”
My blood pressure spikes as the rage lances through me. “Are you fucking
He wants me to be fucking
to the woman with my fiancé’s cock
inside of her, right in front of me.
“Babe,” Vince shrugs condescendingly again. “You know how things are.”
I feel faint. I feel like the world is spinning under my feet as I bring my fingers up to pinch the bridge of my nose.
, Vince, I don’t. Why don’t you enlighten me.”
A weasley little rat grin sneers across his face. “I’m a man of power, babe.”
Right, because getting a company handed to you by your crook of a father counts as power.
“I have needs.”
, honey,” the girl parrots.
My eyes flare as I drag them back to her, perched on the edge of his desk. “
It’s part of the game, Nat,” Vince says casually, with this obnoxiously bored tone to his voice. He casually waves his hand. “You know that.”
I didn’t know that being a spoiled little trust-fund kid who loves bragging about his family’s thin mob connections gave you a license to step out on your fiancé with your fucking
like a damn movie cliché.
“I mean, you had to know this was a part of the deal,” Vince says casually, shrugging again. “You know, being how you are and all.”
I can feel the rage billowing up inside of me. “
“You’re frigid, honey,” His secretary finishes for him, still sprawled across his desk smiling evilly at me. She pouts as she turns back and gives his tie a little tug. “And Vincey has
I’m going to be sick. I’m literally going to be sick right here on the carpet.
The room starts to spin around me as I reach out and steady myself on the doorframe, sucking in lungs full of air.
“Nat, you’re just-” Vince fucking
a little bit of an ice-queen sometimes.”
I need to get out of here.
“Fuck you, Vince,” I spit out, whirling around to leave. My eyes land on the group picture of us from the company picnic last year, and I suddenly feel my teeth grinding together as I realize the blonde currently on his cock is actually
the picture, smiling with her hand on his damn shoulder.
I pluck it from the shelf and smash it to the ground.
“Natalie, we’ve got the gala in twenty-”
“Fuck the gala, Vince,” I turn and spit venomously at him. “And I’ll be gone when you get home, by the way.”
. “Oh, what, you’re going to
“Yes Vince, I’m going to leave.” I say it mechanically, reaching down to get my clutch from where it dropped to the ground when I walked in.
“Oh, like you’ve got
capacity to be on your own, sweetheart,” Vince hurls at me. But I’m already walking out of the office.
“I hope you realize you’re making a big mistake!” he hollers after me.
“And I hope you
something from your little office slut that makes your dick fall off,” I hurl over my shoulder.
“Least I’m letting him
, bitch!” I barely catch as I slam the door to his office shut and run for the elevators.
as I peel out of the office parking lot, away from the life that up until this very moment was
. ‘Ours’ until I leave it shattered like that picture on the floor of Vince’s office.
And despite living it for the last two years, it’s never actually been ‘my’ life, anyways. It’s always been
life, with me as a permanent guest. One more piece of art or famous guitar bought at a charity auction to decorate the walls and corners of his life.
That feeling has always been a lingering, nagging thought in the back of my mind - one that’s always dug at me in a subtle way like a seed caught in the back of your teeth.
I’m furious as I roar down the LA freeway - at my fiancé of course, but mostly at myself. The betrayal hurts, but I have to wonder how I even got to this place, where I’m engaged to man like
in the first place. I’m pissed because I know I should be pissed, but that’s the extent of the emotional response to walking in on him fucking his secretary. I’m
, and I feel slighted, and cheated.
But I’m not heartbroken.
I know I should be - I know any woman in my situation should feel that wrenching pain in her chest after seeing that. But instead, I just feel like I
something somehow. I feel like I lost my pride somewhere along the way. It’s like the final nail in the coffin of what my life
growing up into what it is now.
Because the truth is, I know
how I got to a place where I’m engaged to marry a man like Vince. I can literally hear my mother’s voice from all those years ago, when it all came crashing down. That
, masked and dimmed by gin martinis and valium in the stuffy lawyer’s offices in the aftermath of my father’s sentencing.
“I told you you’d thank me for all of it someday, Natalie.”
Her pupils are out of focus as she fingers the row of white pearls around her neck like some sort of Tiffany’s rosary. They’re new, of course. The identical ones she wore before have long since been seized by the FBI as collateral evidence, along with the Malibu house, the Manhattan penthouse, both yachts, and the bank accounts, of course. Luckily for her and her predilection towards strands of expensive pearls and the lifestyle she’s become accustomed to, my mother has already been shacking up with Dad’s VP since week two of the trial.
Money does NOT buy class, by the way.
By “all of it”, she of course means all the grooming - all the “finishing classes”, all the private tutoring in everything from polite conversation to classical piano. The diet I’ve been on since I was twelve; the nose-job I had when I was sixteen.
And by “thanking” her for it, she means that I’m “prepared” now. I’m groomed, primped, and ready to marry off to some other reckless man with money, like her to my father, or his vice president after the arrest.
how I get to a place where I’m of course saying yes to a slick, moneyed, philandering, and lying prick like Vince Capra when he asked me to marry him. Because my life has been determined for me before I was old enough to know any better. Because my place as arm candy - as an accessory - has been predestined from three or four generations back of prim, shrewd, demure women of high birth.
My hands tighten to white knuckles on the steering wheel of the Bentley -
Bentley, that I’m
to drive - as the thought of my pre-determined fate gets my blood boiling. My mother would push this aside if she were in my shoes, I know that. She’d pour an extra finger of gin, maybe go on a shopping spree, and then compartmentalize the whole thing away. In fact, she did
that - many times, actually - when my father’s indiscretions with a secretary, or the nanny, or whoever else came to light.
“It’s different for men, honey,” she’d say, straightening her shoulders and holding her neck high. “It’s just different.”
And it’s there in that car, roaring into downtown LA with the anger billowing up inside of me, that I know unequivocally that I am
my mother. I am
going to just push this aside, or tuck it away, or shrug and let it slide. I’m not going to “let it go” because “men will be men” and somehow fucking his secretary is Vince’s Goddamn birthright or something for being born rich and a guy.
That’s where my mother and I are different.
* * *
don’t even know
where I’m going until I pull up in front of the entrance to the Chateau Marmont on Sunset Boulevard.
I smile at the valet as I breeze luggage-less into the lobby of the thousand-dollar a night hotel. I mean, I’ve got Vince’s credit card in my clutch, and I’m sure as hell not going back to our place tonight, not after-
I feel ill as I suddenly wonder if he’s ever fucked her there. The idea of them screwing in
bed has my skin crawling as I smile thinly at the concierge and sign for the penthouse suite Vince will be paying for tonight.
All I want to do is shut myself away - forever if need be - and drown whoever this version of me is that I never wanted to be in booze.
I crack a thin, cold smile - there’s
way my mother and I are the same, at least.
The door shuts behind the bellhop, leaving me alone with the screaming in my head, the fury still pounding through my veins, and the minibar, of course. I grab two nips of gin from it, dumping them sans-ice into one of the crystal tumblers from the table and stalking across the room to drape myself across the bed with a groan.
“I told you you’d thank me for all of it someday, Natalie.”
Yeah, remind me to send a damn card.
The alcohol burns like sweet relief down my throat as I polish off the glass, feeling the warming glow of it spread through my body. I sit up in the bed, running my fingers through my long sable hair and swaying slightly as the double hit of gin rushes through me.
“You’re frigid, honey.”
The blonde’s words send fire blazing through me as they come trickling back into my thoughts.
I picture Vince’s stupid little shrug, as if agreeing with her little remark. Frigid, huh? Well fuck him.
Because I can be downright steamy.
I slug back the rest of the gin before stepping in front of the mirror against the wall of the bedroom.
It’s not like gala dinners with Vince’s stuffy office pals and his scummy wannabe-mafia buddies are exactly my thing, but crap like that has been the epitome of my social life these days. Dress up, look pretty, smile, and state no opinions. Hang off Vince’s arm, agree with what he says, and laugh at his terrible jokes even when no one else does.
I might be bored to death at things like that, but that doesn’t mean I can’t look great for them. Hell, at least I’ve got that going for me after years of ballroom lessons and etiquette classes.
I bite my lip as I look at myself in the mirror, smoothing down the sleek little black cocktail dress. It’s demure and elegant - sexy without being slutty. “Flirty, not trampy,” my mother would say. The need to
something - to feel a rush of some kind, or to feel
or sexy for the first time in forever grips at me. And I’m not stupid or petty or vindictive enough to go out and try to “find someone” just to “get back” at Vince or anything like that.
But that doesn’t mean I’m not about to head down to the hotel bar and get rip-roaring