Read Throb Online

Authors: Olivia R. Burton

Tags: #romance, #erotic, #urban fantasy, #contemporary, #interracial, #free reads







Published by Evernight Publishing ® at Smashwords




Copyright© 2016 Olivia R. Burton



ISBN: 978-1-77233-807-2


Cover Artist: Jay Aheer


Editor: Kerry Genova






WARNING: The unauthorized reproduction or
distribution of this copyrighted work is illegal. No part of this
book may be used or reproduced electronically or in print without
written permission, except in the case of brief quotations embodied
in reviews.


This is a work of fiction. All names, characters,
and places are fictitious. Any resemblance to actual events,
locales, organizations, or persons, living or dead, is entirely






This short is for fellow author Naomi Clark as
thanks for teaching me the term ‘boy bags’ to refer to




A Preternatural PNW novel,


Olivia R. Burton


Copyright © 2016




“But it’s Valentine’s Day!”

“It’s also a work day,” Veruca explained,
gently sweeping Finn’s hand away from the clasp on her pants, and
going back to tying her tie. “Just because you want to have a lot
of sex doesn’t mean the government’s declared today a national

“It’s not just about sex,” Finn insisted,
trying for her pants once again. He didn’t have any on; the least
she could do was match his level of nudity. “I’m hoping we’ll eat
chocolates and cuddle, too.”

“Even so, the government doesn’t believe
that’s enough of a reason to close the banks and give executives
the day off.”

“Clearly the government’s never had sex with
Finn Doyle.”

“I’m sure you’ve slept with someone in one
branch or another. You don’t exactly get names and job titles when
you’re really on a roll.”

Finn screwed up his face, making it clear he
was thinking hard about his past partners. Veruca used the
distraction as an excuse to step around him and move to the corner
of her closet that held her many shoes. She’d chosen a deep
burgundy pantsuit and bright scarlet tie in honor the holiday, both
of which highlighted her dark hair and lovely Latin features. Finn
knew her well enough to get that just because she had to stand
around a boardroom full of lecturing, besuited managers and heads
of sales didn’t mean she couldn’t look snazzy doing it.

Finally fully dressed and ready, she turned
to Finn, angling her foot so he could admire the shoes she’d


“You’ve never looked
hotter,” Finn said in his enticing Irish accent, grinning and
raking his eyes over her as if his gaze alone could strip her and
transport her back out into the bedroom. “Well, maybe when you’re
fresh from a shower. Or stretched out
me in bed. Or in the morning
in just a shirt, cooking … I can’t actually choose when you’re not
hot, really. I may need to investigate your hotness on a tactical
level to really make a decision.”

“Later, darling. I will be home before
dinner. Don’t try to cook,” she warned, poking him in the chest
just hard enough that he took it as a chance to stumble back and
act mortally wounded by the insult.

“It’s Valentine’s and you won’t even let me
play housewife and cook you a gourmet meal?”

“Don’t blame your
inability to cook a gourmet meal
me, Mr.

“I’m getting better!”

She left him in the closet, sputtering
through a list of things he hadn’t burned in the last few months.
He had to keep cutting off mid-dish when he realized he had indeed
ruined some part of every meal. Finally, he caught up with her
slipping on her coat by the door.

I at least
order you
something? A delicious pasta dish? Some chocolate ice cream and
expensive champagne to wash it all down? Maybe see if they’ll throw
in some fuzzy handcuffs just for fun.”

“If you can find a restaurant that has fuzzy
handcuffs, be my guest. I doubt they give them away with packs of
crayons and kids’ menus, though.” Veruca leaned up, kissed him, and
then darted out the door before he could get his hand under her
shirt to unclasp her bra. It wouldn’t have been the first time he’d
sent her out to the car to realize his sticky fingers had been


Finn had no idea how to
pass the time with Veruca

Sure, she had no shortage of toys on her
private island, in her beautiful home. There was a fully loaded
gym, a heated indoor swimming pool that looked out on the chilly
winter scenery, an ornate, luxurious theater that would easily seat
forty, and boats docked in floating garages that he was allowed to
take out on the water whenever he wished.

He’d only ruined one or
two things in each place, so he hadn’t yet been banned from
though he
certainly wasn’t going to risk another boat crash, so fun runs out
on the water were out.

Veruca had thoughtfully stocked her digital
library with as many old movies as she could find, and Finn had
gone through most of them. There were a few that he enjoyed enough
to watch over and over, but it seemed against the spirit of the day
to sit alone watching movies when he had a loved one coming home in
just a few hours.

Deciding he’d fancy the
place up, Finn settled into the office, pulling up as many lists of
“DIY Valentine’s decorations” as he possibly could. He lost three
hours, fell down a Pinterest hole of kids’ Hanukkah projects (he
wasn’t sure how), and ended up with
a half-dozen ideas
that he figured he
was reasonably capable of pulling off in the six hours he had left
before Veruca got home.

His stomach grumbled angrily when he pulled
the craft paper box out of its closet, though, and he abandoned his
first project to go make something to eat.


Veruca laughed politely at Tim’s budget
joke, hoping discreetly checking her smart watch to see what alert
had popped up wouldn’t be read as boredom by anyone who might have
noticed. Instead of a stock alert or business email, she found a
text from Finn: a picture of a heart fashioned out of crudely
chopped red pepper. His naked penis was visible along the edge of
the frame and Veruca found herself snorting quietly, knowing he’d
aimed the camera that way quite deliberately.

Then, hoping he would put
some pants on before trying to cook—or, rather, that he wouldn’t
try to cook
at all
—she lifted her gaze back to Tim’s presentation about the
Savannah property. It was one of the smaller boutique hotels that
charged an arm and
but got mostly honeymooning couples and those
aiming for a romantic getaway. His talk of how much they were
spending on package items such as roses, bubbly, and chocolates
made Veruca think of Finn again. She wanted to believe he was
keeping himself busy in a way that wasn’t threat to the structural
stability of the house or any of her
and briefly considered contacting
him asking that he stick to raw foods while she was

As soon as a break was called, she grabbed
her phone from her bag, asked her assistant to set up her computer
for her presentation, and slipped out to send him a message.


Finn was full of leftovers, happily humming
along to Dean Martin, and wiggling as he finished the
thirty-seventh link in his chain of pink, red, white, and blue
paper. He’d been unable to find purple paper, and the blue made the
chain look a little more Independence than Valentine’s, but he
figured Veruca would be fine with it. The gesture was personal and
he planned to distract her enough with sex that a few shades off
indigo wouldn’t matter anyway.

His talent as a Sexual
Dynamo Heartthrob—the title he’d begged to get on a business card
but hadn’t been to allowed to order—wouldn’t go to waste just
because he was a little to the left
the color scale.

There were only a few hours left until she’d
get home, and he’d done most of what he wanted to. Paper hearts
were plastered all over the walls, he’d covered the bedroom floor
in petals of the prettiest flowers he’d found growing around the
island, and ordered food. He was willing to chance another boat
crash to drive over to the small town across the water and pick it
up, getting home with just enough time to put on a nice suit and
set the table.

He’d managed to give his testicles a paper
cut playing horseshoe with his penis and the loops of his paper
chain and didn’t want to endanger himself further by trying to

Once the chain was taped up across the
kitchen doorway, he’d throw on some warm clothes and head out to
the garage.

It only took him fifteen
minutes to find the tape, and most of that time
spent getting distracted
by the decorative mirror in the office and dancing seductively with
his own reflection. The song that popped up on the playlist was a
delightful instrumental that lent itself perfectly to Finn making
up his own lyrics and singing them to his spectacular face between
kissy sounds.

Deciding Veruca needed to be witness to his
naked, musical genius, he abandoned the search for the tape just as
he found the drawer in which it was stashed, and rushed out to find
his phone.


The meeting was almost over, Veruca thought
happily as she glanced at the time in the corner of the projected
display. She had her computer up, charts and graphs stacked atop
each other in a pile of seemingly disparate windows that she knew
only she could navigate through. She’d had her assistant open
everything in a certain order, planning her speech down to the last
pixel, ending with the announcement of a new location opening at
the end of the summer.

And now, unless there are
any questions, I’ve got some exciting news!”

Less than a second before she clicked the
final graph, an alert bell rang out through her speakers, the focus
wobbled, and she looked up to find that her timing had saved a room
full of exhausted sales managers and executives from seeing Finn’s
wiggling manhood.

The graph was a small one,
however, and Finn had sent his video in the largest resolution
possible, so they saw the rest of him. He appeared to be frozen
mid-dance, his attractive mouth open wide in what she hoped
and not some sort of announcement of ecstasy.

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