My shoulders slump a little because these jabs cut. Compared to these women, I’m not sure why Jerico is with me. Wendy’s tall and buxom with boobs that are in the DD range. Her hair is the perfect color of blond, her facial features superb, and I’ve seen her give a blow job to a guy in the club. She’s good. Calista has gorgeous red hair that falls almost to her ass in fiery curls, emerald green eyes that would give Jerico’s a run for his money, and I’ve seen her in action a time or two. These girls are dirty, kinky, and adventurous. Leigh is also stunning, a blond as well but her hair is so pale it’s white. She looks almost elfin, the kind of beauty that looks almost fantastical, made more so by the fact she actual has violet-colored eyes. I’ve never seen that before, and I’m kind of fascinated and equally jealous.

I don’t have a response to their last barb, so I hitch my bag and purse over my shoulder and start to push past them. Thankfully, they step aside and when I look up, I come to a screeching halt.

Jerico is standing there, his eyes blazing with fury and I’m not sure how it’s possible, but he looks even bigger. Even though he glares over my shoulder at the women I’d just walked past, I’m still intimidated as shit by the fury that radiates from him.

“Wendy, Calista, Leigh.” He says each of their names, and I’m stunned at how calm he sounds despite the expression on his face. “You’re all fired. Effectively immediately.”

“What?” Leigh gasps in shock. “You can’t do that.”

“I can and I did,” Jerico says brusquely. “Now get dressed and vacate the premises. Your final paycheck will be mailed to you.”

Wendy and Calista’s heads drop, their faces crestfallen as they walk past Jerico. But Leigh is a little spitfire. She growls at Jerico as she struts past him, “You’re a dick.”

Jerico laughs at her, and it sounds cruel and amused. To add insult to the injury he just handed out as the ladies go to their lockers, he says, “And for the record… I think rather than finding out what Trista has to keep me coming back, you should be asking yourselves what you didn’t have that made you just a one-time fuck.”

I wince, because that was crude. Calista and Wendy’s shoulders sag, and they don’t waste time getting their things. Leigh mumbles under her breath but loud enough to be heard. “Such a fucking dick.”

Jerico turns his gaze to mine, his eyes now soft and possibly empathetic. I don’t want any part of it, especially not in front of these women. I jet past him and run out of the locker room, intent on getting the hell out of there before any more attacks come my way.

“Oh, no you don’t,” Jerico says as he grabs me by the elbow just as I enter the hallway. He turns me around and starts to march me toward his office. I feel like a kid being taken to the principal’s office again, and I wonder if I’ll get paddled.

Now why the fuck did I just think that?

Once we’re inside, he releases his hold on me and asks, “Are you okay?”

My eyes narrow as I hiss at him. “I’m completely humiliated. Otherwise, I’m okay. I can’t believe you fired them for that.”

“Why not?’ he asks as he pushes his hands casually into the pockets of pants. “I’m the boss. They were being bitches to you. I kind of thought you might be happy about it.”

“You do realize I’m going to be the club’s pariah now?” I snap at him. “It’s clear people don’t like me because I have your attention, but now they’re really going to hate me when they find out you fired those girls because they were a little catty with your current flavor of the month.”

“That’s not what you are.” He looks pained and troubled, but I’m not sure why. He’s the one with relationship boundaries.

“That’s exactly what I am,” I say softly, but the force of my reminder hits him hard. This deal is only for a month.

He looks at me warily, but he inclines his head in acknowledgment. “What would you have me do?”

Without thought, I jerk my head toward the door. “Go back and rescind their termination.”

Jerico’s eyes go wide with surprise, and I can see instant denial in them. I bet he’s a man who never goes back on a decision once it’s made. We enter a stare-off, and I cross my arms for stubborn effect.

Finally, he blows out a huff of resignation and drawls, “Fine. I’ll go tell them now.”

“Good,” I say with a snippy attitude. I’m not sure why since he just gave me what I asked for, but that’s how it comes out.

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