Authors: S. Ann Cole
Tags: #Amazon Copy, #February 4
Wait a minute, is that a
? What the…why is some Jackie Chan lookalike throwing knives at this perfection of a man?
Sexy Demon jolts into action; bolts around the cab, wrenches open the passenger door and dives into the backseat. “Drive! Drive!
I don’t have time to even question what the ever-loving heck is going on before the Jackie Chan Lookalike frog-leaps onto the hood of my cab. He squats, brandishing three throw-knives between four fingers, like some kind of knife-throwing pro who has a trophy on his whatnot at home to show for his knife-throwing skills.
Railing something in Japanese, he squints his already inherently squinty eyes and tries to peer through the windshield, before he switches to semi-English. “You stupid American coward! Think you can foooque on my wife and get way with it?! Come out here fight! Come out here fight! Wife never lets me fooque her in butthole. And she give to you weak American she butthole. Come out here butthole fooquer! Come here let me carve you to pieces!”
, what are you waiting on?” barks Sexy Demon from the backseat. “I said
Picking up my coffee, I take a sip, eying him in the rear-view mirror. “Hey, watch your tone, Abercrombie. Or I just might kick you out and watch Jackie Chan here carve you up for fun.”
His eyes flick to mine in the mirror and his lips part, but I’m not interested in a response, so I hit the gas pedal, simultaneously setting my cup back in the cup holder. Not to brag, but I’m a damn good driver. I learned from the best, my dad, who was known for being reckless.
Jackie Chan Lookalike lurches forward, grappling for something to hold onto. Grinning, I hit the brakes, the impact tossing him backward, so he skids off the hood and lands on the asphalt. Cars on the opposite side cruise by as if nothing unusual is happening here. Welcome to New York.
“Get the hell outta my way, ninja turtle!” I stick my head out and yell. “Or I swear to God, I’ll run you over like a cat with one life left!”
I have no idea if he’s broken a limb, or is just bruised, but I release the brakes and just as quickly hit them again, release and hit, release and hit, so the car jerks a little closer to him with each release.
From the asphalt, Jackie Chan shrieks a string of incomprehensible Japanese babble at me, and I don’t have to speak his tongue to know he’s cursing me to the pits of hell.
Like an undefeated ninja, he leaps up, and I’m relieved to see he’s suffering no grave injury, though he’s sage enough to jump out of the way.
My foot is on the gas in the next second.
I groan, because I just know that’s the sound of Jackie Chan’s throw-knives lodging in the car.
Andrew’s going to kill me.
Once back in traffic, a safe distance away, I flick my gaze up to the rear-view mirror. Sexy Demon’s upper body is twisted as he looks out the back windshield, chest rising and falling, as though paranoid Jackie Chan Lookalike is following us.
“Are you worried Jackie Chan is gonna jump on a ninja bike and ride us down?”
Distracted, he mumbles, “With his ninja friends.”
I stifle a laugh. “Relax, Abercrombie. He was hobbling. I’m pretty sure he broke a limb,” I lie to assuage his anxiety. “Now, where to?”
Hesitantly, probably unsold on my lie, he twists around from the windshield and meets my gaze in the mirror. “Wells Height Complex.”
My eyebrows shoot up. “Whoa. You’re way out of your safe zone, Upper East Sider.”
Sighing, he combs his fingers through his unkempt hair. “I know.”
“Seriously, though. Of all places, you came to
to drill a ninja’s wife in the ass?” I’m not checking him in the rear-view mirror as I say this, but I can almost feel him drilling holes in the back of my head. I suppress the urge to laugh.
“Do you make it a habit of yours to nose around in people’s lives?”
At that line, I’m left momentarily dumb, as the memory of an old crush, an older guy, comes to mind. He’d asked me that exact question in that exact tone once when I was trying to scheme him into spending time with me. Years ago. Exact words. Exact inflect.
For a brief second, I wonder how that old crush of mine is doing. He was no eye-candy. Not even remotely close to attractive. But before Andrew, when I was me—rich, weird, and bratty—hot guys, especially guys my age, never appealed to me.
At age sixteen, I had three crushes going at once.
my math teacher. At fifteen, I made strong advances until he caved; gave him my V-card on his desk in his office late one afternoon, under the pretext of private tutoring. It wasn’t an affair. Another go in his office the following week, and then I promptly forgot about him.
Dad’s accountant. I was home alone one evening when Dad sent him over to fetch some docs he forgot. On his way out of Dad’s office, I cornered him, stripped-teased him, and demanded he have sex with me against the wall or I’d tell Dad he molested me. He was weak, so he caved. After conquering him, I promptly forgot about him.
a chubby billionaire who lived in the same building as me. Our families ran in the same circles, I was close with his Mom, and sometimes we ate Sunday dinner at the same table. This crush, however, was harder to nail down than one and two, mainly because he was married, and our families were too close, and he was richer than mine for me to blackmail him.
But then he wasn’t married anymore, wide open for me to slide right in and ensnare him. Yet just when I was getting him where I wanted him, running with me in the mornings, spending time with me, looking at me with restrained lust…life happened.
Crush number three
Most teenage girls crushed on guys who were all kinds hot and ab-sy. I, however, the odd one, crushed on men who were…
sexy. Disparate. Ignored and skimmed over.
My math teacher was a nerd; he wore suspenders, thick-rimmed glasses, and nineties-style plaid pants that cropped above his ankles.
Dad’s accountant had a stammer, which seemed to go on forever when he tried to deliver a message.
And the billionaire, he was overweight but had underestimated features, like his rich green eyes, full, kissable lips, and a high jaw hidden under chubby cheeks. Also blatantly unapologetic about his physical appearance.
My friends thought I was a nut, being hotly attracted to those men. Heck, even I did, too.
It wasn’t until we downgraded and relocated to Brooklyn where I met sex-on-legs Andrew Jameson that my taste transmuted. Wasn’t until I smoothed my palm over his six pack for the first time and almost orgasmed on the spot that I learned to appreciate perfectly sculpted men, in all their rippled abs and taut muscled goodness.
One such perfectly sculpted man is sitting in the back of my cab at the moment.
“Well,” I finally say in answer to Sexy Demon’s question, “you
sprawled in the back of
cab, in nothing but a pair of tighty-whities, after being chased down by whizzing knives and a Kung Fu ninja. Even the most indifferent person would be curious. Wouldn’t
In exasperation, he huffs out, “Just take me to my goddamn destination, would you?”
Easing up on him, I turn up the volume on the radio. What do you know, my favorite song is on:
Don’t You Worry Child
by Swedish House Mafia. I swear, this song is my life.
We exchange no further words as I taxi Sexy Demon to his location. Occasionally, though, I steal glances at him in the rear-view mirror.
Eyes closed, his head is tossed back on the seat, Adam’s apple prominent, throat strong and begging me to lick it.
This man is truly a piece of art.
I pull up outside Wells Height Complex, an ostentatious, sky-kissing apartment building, jerk up the hand-brake, and sit there for a full two minutes, watching him.
He doesn’t seem to realize the car has stopped, and I begin to wonder if he’s fallen asleep. A mischievous grin twisting my lips, I rest my elbow on the car horn, apply pressure, and hold.
The strident blare has Sexy Demon jerking up, eyes wide and alert, head swiveling from side to side. A laugh threatens, but I sink my teeth into my lower lip to prevent it from manifesting.
“That’ll be thirty-eight bucks, Abercrombie,” I tell him once his gaze meets mine in the mirror.
He pats his…
for his wallet, then glances down at himself and curses under his breath. “I left my damn wallet. Listen, I’ll have to run upstairs for your fare…and some pants. Wait here.”
, I scoff to myself. Like I’m just going to drive off without my money.
Why is it only now that I’m considering the fact that the passenger is
, thus having no place for a wallet, aka my fare? I don’t know this man, and I’ve taxied him for damn near thirty minutes before paying attention to the obvious:
he has no pockets
. And then he tells me, “wait here.” For all I know, he could be lying about being a resident here, planning to give me the slip while I sit here and wait like a clown. After all, he was just caught boning another man’s wife. In the ass. Unscrupulous. Immoral. No way in hell I’m going to “wait here.”
As he opens his door, I shut off the engine and open mine, too, hopping out. “No need. I’ll come for it.”
With an amused smirk, he asks over the top of the car. “You don’t trust me?”
Rounding the car, I meet him up on the sidewalk. “Considering
I don’t know you
, yeah, pretty much.”
Sexy Demon blinks slowly at me, his eyes stretching a fraction. His lips part, another slow blink, and then just
rendering me a tad self-conscious.
I’m not the polished, sybarite girl I used to be, who wore fine clothes and jewelry, hair and nails always on point. Nope. That girl no longer exists.
Right now, I’m wearing gray sweatpants—knock-off Adidas with white stripes down the side. With that, I’ve paired a tight wife-beater and Puma sports slippers. I’m wearing gold-filled hoop earrings, my hair in a ponytail, and around my long, slim neck dangles Andrew’s cross-pendant gold chain—a chain he
I wear at all times, as some kind of branding that I’m his.
To Mr. Sexy Demon here, I’m certain I appear as a dyke. And being a cab driver only
“How old are you?” he blurts out. “Is it even legal for you to be working a cab?”
Tipping my head to one side, I reiterate, “Thirty-eight bucks, Abercrombie.”
“Why do you keep calling me that?”
“Are you serious?” I’m not even being facetious with this question. “When was the last time you looked at yourself in a full-length mirror?”
A smile flirts with corners of his lips. “You’re saying you think I’m hot?”
“You’re standing on the street side in your boxers
, and yet you appear as comfortable and confident as if you were encased in a three-piece suit. Trust me, Abercrombie
He shakes his head at me as if I’m incorrigible and turns for the building.
A uniformed doorman holds the door open for us, frowning askance at Sexy Demon as he bids him, “Good evening, Mr—”
“Good evening, Lawson,” Sexy Demon quickly cuts him off.
I trail behind him through the lobby.
He goes up to the concierge, they have a whispered exchange, and then he’s handed a platinum keycard. He then proceeds to the elevator. I follow. Unable to stop myself from ogling his damn fine posterior.
As we stand before the elevator, I’m no longer stealing surreptitious eyefuls of his body, but leering straight out, in awe of how he holds the posture of superiority, while wearing
. Chin jutted out and shoulders squared, as if to proclaim “
I am somebody. Google me, bitch.
is miles different from the man who was being chased by a knife-throwing ninja. From the freaked-out adulterer hiding in the back of my cab.
doesn’t seem the least bit concerned about his lack of clothing or the whispering passersby side-eying his firm backside. Here is a man who’s comfortable in his own skin. Literally.
To estimate his age, I’d say he’s no younger than twenty-nine, no older than thirty-five.
The elevator pings open, and we stroll in without words. He inserts the keycard, the PH1 button illuminates, and doors begin to close. Of course. He lives in a freaking penthouse. I must be a joke to him, going on about thirty-eight bucks.
I used to live in a penthouse, too, once upon a time. I grew up in opulence, always had the latest fashion or gadgets. Even had a privileged mean girls’ posse. So, I know all about the life.
“Do you trust me now?”
I rock back on my heels. “Living in a penthouse does not make you trustworthy. If anything, it makes your character even more questionable.”
From the corner of my eye, I espy him staring down at me. I keep my gaze straight head.
“What’s your name?” he asks in a soft voice.
. Too soft.
Once again, I feel irritatingly self-conscious, and the elevator suddenly feels too small. I don’t like that soft, feathery tone. It makes me feel naked. Stripped. I much prefer it when he’s exasperated and snapping at me.
“Why do you need my name?”
“Well,” he drags out, “I’m letting a complete stranger into my home. I need to
have your name.”
“What, you think I’ll steal all your expensive silverware or something?”
He barks out a laugh. “You’ll never make it out of the building if you try.”
This gets me turning to him, looking up, brow arched. “
, so you’ve fooled yourself into thinking you’re untouchable?”
“Just tell me your name, girl,” he mutters, still smiling. “Even if it’s a fake one.”