Page 26 of Black Lies

“Yep.” I stepped closer, my heels crunching on the gravel, and his dominant stare finally left my eyes, dropping to my feet and dragging up the length of my legs, a smirk coming over his mouth. “Still want to f**k the rich dick’s bitch?”

His smile stopped and he jerked a hand forward, hooked his large palm around my waist and pulled me forward, my feet stumbling, but then I was flush against him, his back against the truck, his mouth hard as he kissed me deeply enough for me to taste beer on his tongue. My hands tangled in his shirt, prodding, feeling, his mouth hissing against my tongue when I ran my hands down and gripped the crotch of his jeans. “God, you are one f**ked up woman.” He pushed a hand over mine, let me feel his erection, the push against his jeans, my fingers outlining it, and I squeezed, savoring the feel of him.

“Step back,” he muttered, pulling his mouth off mine, his head dropping back as he pulled my hand away, dropped it, and suddenly, the connection was broken. “Fuck,” he swore, rubbing a hand over his mouth, looking up at me over his hand, those eyes tugging at my soul with one wary glance. I stepped back, feeling his desire for separation, unsure of what was causing the change. “Fuck,” he repeated. “You are crazy.”

I met his gaze. Said nothing. My body was still crying out for more. More. More. It wasn’t like this with Brant. I didn’t know why it is so different, didn’t understand it, but regardless of the reason, my sexual connection with this man was so much stronger. He had to feel it. His eyes said he did. His eyes were steady as he chewed on his thumb. Thought.

“I have a girlfriend,” he said the words as if they were dirty, and dropped his hand, rose to his full height and lifted his chin. “Is that a problem?”

Yeah. A big f**king one. I tried not to let my face show the war of emotions that were throwing a panic party in the front living room of my head. “No,” I whispered the words. Any louder and he’d hear the lie in them.

He yanked open the door to his truck. Stood there for a minute, his body blocking the entrance to the cab, my mind playing catch-up, desperately wanting to know what was about to occur. “It’s a problem for me. See ya Lucky.” He sneered the last word, as if I was anything but, the tone a slap in my face. I was still standing there, heels askew on gravel, my face red, panties damp, when he floored the gas and left me there, in the hardware store parking lot. Alone. His head didn’t turn, didn’t look at me when he drove past. He just left. Probably to go to her. My hands curled into fists.

Brant didn’t come home that night. I used my key to let myself in his house, telling myself I was staying there to surprise him with breakfast, not because I wanted him to hold me all night and reassure me that I was loved. Instead, I spent the night alone in his bed, hugging a body pillow and trying not to let my mind wander. Lee dominated my thoughts. He had a girlfriend. One he had left me in the parking lot for. One that he probably f**ked half the night. I closed my eyes, pulled the blanket tighter, and wished it was Brant’s arm. I fell asleep in his empty bed and didn’t wake until noon.

Chapter 26


When you really love someone, you cannot walk away. No matter what they do. No matter the lies from their mouth, or the actions from their bodies, you tie yourself tightly to their sail and vow to be there through thick and thin. Let the wind blow you where it may. Even if that place is a crash. Even if that place tears you apart and kills anything good.

Chapter 27

“The girl’s name is Molly Jenkins. She’s a med student at UCLA. Dean’s List there, was a scholarship athlete until she damaged her ACL.”

“What sport?” I flipped through the folder, image after image of buoyant blonde making me grit my teeth. The girl was prettier than me. Younger. Perkier. With what appeared to be D cups. Was this what Lee liked?


I closed the folder, not needing to see any more perfection. Tennis. Ugh. “What’s wrong with her?”

“I beg your pardon?” The wiry man before me shifted in his seat. Adjusted his glasses.

“I don’t want her strengths. I want her weaknesses. Does she do drugs? Have a kid? Bang trailer trash on the weekends?”

Big dumb blinks behind wire-rimmed glass. I hired the best company in town and this is what I got. “Umm… my report was very comprehensive…”

“And left anything negative out.” I tossed the folder onto his desk. “Where’s the dirt?”

“I didn’t find anything like that…” He wet his lips. Nervously tapped his hands in some odd drumming pantomime on his legs. I stared at his hands until they stopped.

“Where does she work?”

His face relaxed slightly. “Olive Garden. The one in Stonestown.”

“Get me a copy of her schedule. What days this week she’s working.”

He nodded, short and nervously, the downward tilt of his head revealing the plugs that dot the landscape of his forehead. “Anything else?”

“No.” I tapped my fingers against my lips. “Not yet.”

I pulled out my desk drawer. Grabbed a checkbook and printed his name on the front. Completed it with a generous enough amount to properly incentivize the man. Then I ripped off the check and stood, holding it out.

“Call me when you know more.”

He grinned, revealing a row of stained teeth, their tips pointing in more directions than a pencil holder. “Yes, Ms. Fairmont.”

I gave him a polite smile and picked up my cell. Waited until I heard the door close behind him, then completed my call.

I’d never taken down a girl before. Didn’t have prep school archenemies, the bitchy girls of television who killed hopes and dreams while modeling couture. My high school friends were civilized, structured. Women at Stanford were more focused on grades and futures over petty rivalries, no spare effort available to be wasted.

So I was entering this game a virgin. But, in my own estimations, a well-equipped one. Financed. Intelligent. And… as a small point to my side… I had f**ked her boyfriend… twice in three hours. I had some inkling of what he liked, wanted. Had enough confidence in his attraction to me, despite the fact that she was absolutely gorgeous and looked nothing like me. It was as if he had flipped open an encyclopedia, scrolled to the section of ‘Opposite of Layana’ and selected her photo. Go figure.

Also on my side: the element of surprise. I was a party of one. Alone in this battle, with no one aware of my scheming, no defenses raised. I would be attacking a sleeping kitten. An innocent, fragile kitten. Ripping her away from Lee and severing any chance of their reconnection.