I hang up the phone. It hits me that I’m in way deeper with Scarlett than I realized. The Pleasure Chest is the biggest client I’ve had the opportunity to sign this year, and I’m this close to doing it. But I can’t even think about that, I don’t even care, because she’s not here with me. What the hell have I gotten myself into? And do I ever really want to get back out?

We pull up to the Delta departures exactly forty minutes later. I give the driver a bonus anyway, because riding with me quietly cursing in the backseat, anxiously tapping my foot and making phone calls couldn’t have been the fare he wanted tonight. As soon as the cash is out of my hand, I’m sprinting into the airport. If I’m lucky, if I’m really lucky, my cab driver was faster than the one that she took, and made up some time. If someone up in the unknowable universe is looking out for me, she isn’t through security yet. Looking at the security line, I might have a chance.

I scan the check-in counters at Delta, and I don’t see her, so I sprint for the security line instead, looking for anyone blonde and her height. The line stretches almost the length of the terminal, disappearing into the maze of metal detectors in a mess of serpentine twists. I jog down the length of the line, and she’s not there. I reach the main funnel into the terminal, and there are so many people. I feel my hopes fall as I scan the crowd, because there’s absolutely no way I’m going to find her in this mess.

And then my entire body goes electric, because I see her. She’s inside security, sorting her things to go through the metal detector. “Scarlett!” I call out to her at the top of my lungs. I throw myself towards her without thought, ducking under the rope of the lines, leaping over a suitcase, and shoving my way through the line. More than one curse is thrown my way I as push through the crowd. “Scarlett Brown!” I yell to make sure she hears me. I break free of the crowd in front of the first checkpoint, and she’s right there. “Scarlett!” I call, and I move to go to her. The security agent is on his feet in a second, blocking my way and telling me that I can’t go any further. I barely hear him because Scarlett has looked up and she’s seen me. Relief floods my system like cool rain, and I can tell that she’s confused. “Scarlett, please!” I say. She grabs her things and comes over to me. The security guard has a look on his face like he doesn’t want to deal with this shit, and the travelers behind me are even worse.

Scarlett steps back over the threshold to my side of security, and then I’m drawing her to me and kissing her. I feel her body jump in surprise and then relax, molding to me like it’s something familiar and comforting. It only lasts a second though, because Scarlett is pulling away, looking around. “Chris, what are you doing here?”

“You can’t leave,” I tell her. “There’s no way in hell I’m letting you go.”

Her face hardens. “Oh? I heard the message. The company got your request and they’re sending somebody better. So your wish is granted.”

“Scarlett,” I say, putting my hands on her shoulders, “I didn’t request that. I don’t want to send you away, because there is no one better. You are everything I need. Everything I didn’t know I needed.”

Confusion clouds her face as my words sink in. “Really?”

“Really.” I lean in to kiss her again, and this time she’s smiling as my lips meet hers. Cheers go up around us from the people in line, whether or not they’re happy for our reunion or they’re happy because the security obstruction is about to be cleared, I’ll never know. Scarlett blushes when I pull away, laughing. I take the handle of her suitcase and guide her out of the line so the security guards stop glaring at us.

“I still don’t understand,” she tells me. “Maureen said she got the message.”

“She must have meant that idiotic phone call I made that first day about you. I didn’t call her again after that. About that, by the way, I don’t think I’ve ever been more of an ass in my life.”

She smiles. “I forgive you. Though it is quite an experience having someone tell your boss you should be fired.”

“I’m a dick.”

She’s laughing again, and she leans into me. “Yeah, you are a little bit. But thankfully I know a lot of really great ways you can make it up to me.”

“Oh?” My cock twitches in my pants, and I know that whatever she wants me to do, I’ll do. I will grovel by worshipping her body in every way I know how.

She slips her coat on. “I think those things are better left for somewhere a little less public.”

“I couldn’t agree more.” I say. “But there’s one last thing I need to take care of.” I pull out my phone and dial Maureen’s office.

She answers almost immediately. “This is Maureen.”

“It’s Chris,” I say. “To answer your question, no I don’t need anyone to take a late flight here, and Scarlett will be staying with me for the rest of the trip.”

“All right,” she says hesitantly. “I guess I should have asked first before booking her on a flight. But you were quite adamant when I spoke to you a couple of days ago. Can I ask what changed?”

“Everything,” I say, and I hang up the phone.

12

Scarlett

I wake up feeling like I’ve slept for days. Chris and I went straight from the airport to drinks with Jason, and we both drank way more than we should have. Followed by Chris attempting to make up for his mistake and the whole misunderstanding by attempting to make me come on his tongue as many times as possible. I stretch slowly, my muscles feeling their overuse last night, but also remarkably relaxed.

I can here that Chris is still asleep beside me, and I turn slowly so I can see him. He’s just as gorgeous in his sleep as he is when he’s staring at me with those blue eyes. In fact, he’s a different kind of beautiful when he’s sleeping. He’s peaceful, his mouth almost smiling. I have a hard time thinking he’d ever be this relaxed while awake. I glance at the clock, and move closer to him. I run my hand across his chest, tracing the line of his pecs and abs, circling his nipple and running my fingers up to his collarbone. He stirs under my fingers, and with a deep inhale he opens his eyes.

“Good morning,” I say, smiling at his disorientation.

“Morning,” he mumbles. “What time is it?”

“Seven forty-five. Unfortunately not enough time for me to take care of that problem you’ve got going on down there if we both want a shower.”

He chuckles, voice still deep and rough with sleep. “I think I’ll survive my morning wood.”

I lean over to him and give him a kiss on the lips. “You never know. I’ve heard that wood can be fatal.” Choosing to let him linger in the bed, I jump up so I can shower first, and I can feel his eyes on my ass. I swing my hips just a little bit more as I slip into the bathroom, and I hear him laugh from the bed.

Almost an hour later we’re both showered and dressed, I’m nursing coffee just wasting time until we have to leave. Chris is down in the executive business center, printing out the paperwork that we need for today. Jason got an email late last night while we were at drinks. Corporate approved of our proposal, and we’re heading to their offices here in the city one more time to have them sign an engagement letter. The more detailed contract will come later. When Chris pops his

head back into the room to grab his coat, we both head out on what feels like some kind of symbolic final voyage. The streets on the way to their office are half familiar now that I’ve driven them three times in three days, and I can’t look anywhere in the elevator without making myself blush. Sex in an elevator is not anything I ever thought that I would do.

The three are waiting for us. I finally managed to figure out that they were named James and Elsie. Though I suppose that’s a little too late to be of any use to me. I still file that away for later. If I get the chance to actually work on this account, knowing the names of the regional marketing directors could come in handy.

Jason looks like he suffered a worse hangover than we did. He’s still practically wincing at the sunlight, and I’m glad that Chris and I didn’t go that far.

Everyone shakes everyone’s hands, and Chris gives them the letter to sign—a couple of copies. They have to get their boss’s signature at corporate as well, but these signatures on the engagement letter are enough to get the ball rolling back at the Ellison Media offices. Everything else in the contract still has to be negotiated, but that doesn’t have to be done in person. And just like that, we’re done.

“Pleasure doing business with you,” Jason says to us.

“More like pleasure staring business with you,” Chris says, as he shakes his hand again.

Jason laughs. “I suppose that’s true. Though next time, let’s drink a little less.”

“Agreed,” I say.

And that’s that.

Back at the hotel, we have nothing but time to kill. Our flight isn’t until the morning, and our dinner reservation—yes, Chris is actually taking me to dinner—isn’t for hours. I pull some comfortable clothes out of my suitcase, pulling on the sweats under my skirt and then taking my skirt off. I’m sure as hell not going to stay business casual for a day in a hotel. I’ll get dressed up again later.


Tags: Penny Wylder Pleasure Chest Erotic
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