Love with an Alpha Billionaire
© Shani Greene-Dowdell 2015.
All Rights Reserved
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This is a
work of fiction. Names, characters, places, and incidents either are
the product of the author’s imagination or are used
fictitiously, and any resemblance to actual persons, living or dead,
business establishments, events, or locales is entirely coincidental.
in the Hell?
What is it about Jacob Turner? I
wondered, as I sat naked in the center of his circular, king-sized
bed in his presidential suite at the Marriott Marquis. I'd left my
office to go get a cup of coffee around noon. Coffee. Then, explain
to me why hours later a stranger had literally charmed my panties
off. If anyone told me I would bump into the heir
of Turner Enterprises and be in the billionaire's bed by nightfall, I
would have cursed them out for suggesting something like that about a
respectable woman such as myself.
Turner Enterprises was the nation's
number one commercial construction conglomerate passed down for
generations through the Turner family. It had offices all over the
United States. Turner Enterprises constructed every substantial piece
of business property in the U.S.
I could see how Jacob was such a
persuasive man in business and in life. His family groomed him since
he was old enough to walk to take the helm of the business. He was
powerful and damned sure influential. He had manipulated me into
forgetting all my values and coming back to his suite after only a
few hours of mentally stimulating conversation.
When I looked
around the lavish room with gold trimmings, high back chairs and
other regal furnishings, I suddenly felt out of place.
"Jacob, I don't think I should be
here," I said, while scooting to the edge of the bed. I scanned
the room searching for my clothes.
Jacob pulled me back flush to him, hard.
My cool skin collided with his burning hot flesh instantly warming me
to my core.
"Stay," he breathed onto my
neck. "We don't have to do anything you don't want to do, but
please stay the night with me. I could use the company."
I looked into his hazel green eyes of
privilege. He was used to getting what he wanted, and he wanted me…to
stay with him. Jacob could have any woman he desired. Why me?
Questions floated through my mind but
dared to leave my lips. I crossed my arms over my bare chest to cover
"Okay, I’ll stay a little
while longer, but only under one condition.”
“I need to put on my clothes.”
It was my ex-husband, Montie's, weekend
to have visitation with our children, so I really had nowhere to go.
I just didn’t want to sit naked with a man I hardly knew.
Jacob slid over to the edge of the bed so
that he was sitting closer to me. Turning my face to his, he placed a
soft, lingering kiss on my lips. His breath absorbing into mine and
becoming a part of me made me forget that I wanted to put on my
clothes. Instead, I had the urge to straddle his lap and swallow him
completely inside my being.
While running my rogue fingers over his
smooth, tanned back, I struggled to maintain control of my actions. A
deep sigh escaped my lips as I pulled away from him and looked away,
breaking our intense stare. I was uncomfortable with how fast we were
moving, and he sensed it.
Jacob stood up, went to the closet, and
returned with a robe. "Put this on."
His protruding erection spoke his
salacious desires loud and clear. But he respected my wishes enough
not to press the issue, at least not at the moment. He sat on the
sofa on the other side of the room and turned on the television.
“What do you like to watch on TV?”
he asked, while scrolling through the many channels available.
“I don’t really watch much
TV,” I admitted, my eyes never leaving his ruggedly handsome
face, covered with a curly dark brown beard.
"What is it about you, Destiny?"
he asked as he watched me watch him.
"What do you mean, what is it about
He bit down on his bottom lip. "I
mean, what is it about you that has me so thrown off. I've never had
a woman in my hotel room, unless it was for… you know. But
with you, I'm satisfied with just watching you sit there."
"You will have to tell me
what it is. You're the one who invited me to your room, Jacob."
"I invited you here, because I know
what I want when I see it. And, I didn’t want our conversation
to end at the coffee shop. I wanted to see more of you…needed
to see more of you." His eyes raked over my body showing a
strong need that I wasn’t sure he would be able to contain much
I needed to get the hell out of there
before I did something I would regret. Let’s face it; I didn’t
have what it took to screw a stranger. How I made it this far into
this encounter was mind boggling to me. I stood up, put on the robe,
and stood beside the bed.
"Well, you’ve seen all of me.
Are you happy?" I joked, as I tightened the robe around my
"I’m the happiest man alive.”
“Yeah, right,” I mumbled. He
really thought he was fooling me with the whole ‘act like she’s
the shit’ game he was playing. “I’m sure you say
that to all your ladies,” I added.
“Come sit beside me," he said,
patting the spot beside him. It wasn’t a request, but an order.
“No, I’m fine right here,
thanks.” I finally found my voice and started to use it for the
first time since I got to this damn hotel. He was fine and all, but
if I wanted any chance at not coming off as another thirsty female,
giving it up within twenty-four hours of meeting him wasn’t the
way to go.
“Don’t make me get up and
bring you over here.”
“You’re making me
uncomfortable talking to me like that,” I said.
“Destiny, I just want to talk to
you. It’s completely innocent.” He threw his hands in the
air and the most harmless expression covered his face.
“Uh, huh…” I said and
walked slowly over to where he sat. He pulled me down onto the couch
and pulled the string to the robe to release my bare flesh for his
eyes to partake of, again. “Completely innocent, Jacob, this is
My words drifted away as he ran his
fingers over my neck, admiring it as if it were a perfect sculpture.
He then ran his fingers through my hair and pulled my face to his.
Looking into my eyes, he crushed his lips against mine.
Erotic moans escaped my throat alerting
Jacob to my satisfaction. Too much time had passed since I’d
been touched this way. The war of sexual frustration within was being
won by the flesh that wanted what it wanted from the first moment I
saw him at the café.
I gave in to the sexual tension that grew
between us. My arms flew around his neck as our tongues danced.
Tension mounted to epic proportions. Both of our desolate hearts
awaited a long, overdue release.
I hadn’t had sex in months, and the
way he owned my lips said he hadn't felt real
passion in just as long. I wanted Jacob in a bad way, and that
insatiable craving of this man unnerved me. Being
helpless to the overwhelming
sensitivity emerging between my thighs pissed me off and drove me
crazy, at the same time. My hands ran freely over his body, leaving
no place that I could reach untouched. Once I reached his bulging
erection, he pulled my hands together and placed them on my legs. He
moved my hands to my own lap.
"Touch your sweet pussy."
Caressing each slowly, I moved my hands
over each of my breasts. My right hand cascaded over my stomach, then
to my thighs. Then, I propped one leg up on the sofa and inched my
hand down to stroke my hottest spot, but he stopped me.
“Stop right there,” he
growled out and replaced my hand with his much larger one. Two of his
thick fingers eased inside of me, going deep enough to bring my full
attention back to his intense stare.
The greediest eyes I'd ever seen searched
my soul, even as a part of me struggled to come to grips with what in
the hell I was doing. What kind of mind control did this eccentric,
hairy, green-eyed Caucasian man had over me?
I fell back on the sofa and began to
wriggle my booty, thrusting my pelvis toward his ravishing fingers.
When he intensified his strokes, I screamed out, "Jacob…
oh… that feels good!"
"I want it to feel better than
good," he said as he removed his fingers, dropped down onto the
carpeted floor, and slid my ass to the edge of the sofa. His face
disappeared between my thighs, and he tongue kissed my lower lips,
pressing his tongue hard against my clit and moving it back and forth
in measured strokes.
Jacob held my legs firmly in place, so I
could not move, as a violent orgasm poured into his mouth. I jerked
uncontrollably, experiencing some type of outer-body state that had
never happened to me.
"You are sweet, Destiny. Give me all
of that sweet cum." He moaned his pleasure as he lapped up my
nectar, not leaving one drop behind.
He sprang to his feet and removed his
boxers, as the last ripples of orgasm went through my body. He was
bigger than Montie, which made me think hard about whether I wanted
him to thrust his unyielding sword inside of my damn near virginal
Before I could say anything to the
affirmative or negative, Jacob pulled me into his embrace and seized
my lips. "I want to fuck this sweet pussy so bad," he said,
rubbing his finger against my clit.
"I want you, too," I said,
taking in his magnificent physique. Strong jawline,
broad shoulders, toned abs and thighs. He looked kingly
as he stood up and walked to his drawer to get a condom out of his
As I watched this perfectly sculptured,
almond milk colored man walk away, I looked at my darker thighs that
had lines of cellulite from when I was heavier, dimples and other
imperfections. I sat up on the sofa and pulled the robe tight around
"What are you doing?" he asked
as he walked back to me.
"It’s cold in here. I just
need to stay covered up," I lied while avoiding his gaze.
As he applied his condom, he continued to
"Cold?" he said as he walked
over to the temperature gauge and turned on the heat. He came back to
me, took me by the hand and walked me to the bed. Standing in front
of the bed, he kissed me so sweetly that I moaned recklessly into his
This. Us. He was confusing to me. I
could’ve easily gotten it twisted and thought he actually gave
a damn about me, if he kissed me like that one more time. I couldn’t
resist my blazing attraction to him, and that was dangerous.
I didn’t even notice him removing
my robe again, until he threw it across the room, as if he never
wanted to see it again.
"I want to look at you while I make
love to you," he said as he laid me down on the bed.
I scooted to the center of the massive
bed and opened my legs wide enough to accept him. He crawled on top
of me and pushed my legs back further with his arms.
"Oh!" I screamed when he
entered me with precision, ripping my canal open without warning.
"Shit, you're tight," he said,
as my body gave way to the pressure of his size. Within seconds, he
possessed me with every slow and deliberate stroke. I quivered with
every thrust, with what seemed to be a constant orgasm.
"What the hell are you doing to me?”
I managed to ask between the jerking and quivering that once again,
had, taken over my body.
He sucked a pebbled nipple into his
I trembled and released the hardest
orgasm known to women. My release covered his condom clad dick and
spilled over onto the bed. He bucked relentlessly inside of me, as my
vaginal muscles contracted and released him uncontrollably.
"Oh, shit you’re taking this
cum from me. I'm coming right with you, baby! Ugh!" he said and
collapsed down on top of me, holding me in place, as he jerked out
“Oh, Jacob,” I moaned my
pleasures as I watched this amazing creature’s body move in
"Stay with me tonight, Destiny.”
that day, before I “fell in bed with Jacob,” I walked out
of Tazi's Cafe in downtown Atlanta, with a piping hot cup of coffee
in my hand. Jacob approached the store walking with
a measured stride. My surprised brown eyes zoned in on his soft,
hazel green gaze. But that wasn’t all that had my attention. It
was the gush of fresh air flowing alongside him, captivating me.
let me get that for you," he said, handing me my briefcase that
had, unbeknownst to me, fallen from my hand. His gesture of kindness
snapped me out of the stupor I had fallen in to.
looked like a bumbling idiot in front of a guy who had surely just
stepped out of a sexy male catalogue.
you. I can be so clumsy at times," I told him, scrambling to
retrieve my belongings from his outstretched hand.
handsome smile spread across his broad face, as my hand touched his.
“It’s not a problem. It’s always my pleasure to
help a pretty lady.”
smiled. "I’m on my lunch break and was rushing to get
back. I’m so sorry," I added, embarrassed.
need to apologize. The pleasure truly is all mine," he said as
his tongue slid noticeably across his lips. His gaze was piercing as
he ran his eyes over my body, inch by inch. Tazi’s was a small
joint with a house full of regulars, so to see an unfamiliar face,
unfamiliar face, was refreshing.
haven’t seen you here before. Do you work downtown?” I
from Atlanta, but I live in Florida. I’m only in town for a few
days visiting my grandmother at her retirement home. And, she told me
that I had to check out Tazi before I left Atlanta, so…"
He humped his shoulders. "Here I am. What do you suggest off the
menu?” He ran a hand through his silky, dark brown hair, as his
eyes fixated on me, awaiting a response.
What if I
suggested the sexy creature have
me for lunch? I could’ve lain across the counter and let him
feast upon me until he was full. My thoughts ran rampant with lust,
until I remembered my mantra. Yeah, I was saved and single. Ever
since I divorced Montie Brown, I walked the straight and narrow line
of avoiding relationships that would lead nowhere but to the bedroom.
So far, I did an impeccable job of avoiding fake love.
took a deep
breath of his fresh air, because yes, all of the air surrounding me
belonged to the man standing before me. I silently meditated for
strength to breathe on my own.
what do you recommend?" he asked again, to which a throaty voice
I didn’t recognize belted from my lips.
I guess, the three-layer chocolate mousse cake is a winner," I
replied with a firm clearing of my throat to rid myself of the
imposter in my vocals.
definitely try the chocolate,” he said with a wink.
awkward moment passed between us, and I felt the need to fill the
dead space. "Are you originally from Atlanta?" I asked.
my family has roots here, but I was born and raised in Miami."
well enjoy your first visit at Tazi's. You're going to love it."
I took one last look at the sexy man and stepped around him.
didn’t get your name,” he yelled out as I reached for my
car door handle.
to meet you, Jacob.”
have you tried the three-layer chocolate mousse cake before?" he
asked, as he strolled over to me.
pulled my treat out of the small box inside my briefcase and said,
"Yes, this is a smaller ‘to go’ version of the cake.
I order mine this way, because I can't afford the calories of an
eyes lit up, and I became self-conscious under his glare. I was about
to open the door and jump in my car, when he said, "Every
calorie looks good on you.”
it be too much for me to ask you to share a chocolate mousse cake
looked around at all of the skyscrapers downtown. Somewhere in the
distance, my empty home office was waiting for me to get back to a
pile of work.
wish I could, but I really have to get back to work.”
look like you could use a break, and I could use the company."
studied his chiseled, tan face and considered his offer. Something
hid behind every word he spoke; something intriguing enough to make
me drop my keys back inside my purse and say what the heck. It was a
public place. It was just dessert. Just conversation.
I’ll have dessert with you."
entered Tazi's with Jacob and soon found out the reason he had me at
hello. Our personalities meshed like yin
to yin and yang to yang; we had so much in common. We just clicked as
we laughed, talked, and ate dessert before ever sharing a meal
the end of the night, I was
in his covers listening to Chris Brown and Jordin Sparks sing their
Air," on Pandora. I
shook my head at the thought of being unable to breathe without a
man. It was laughable. Something as essential as air
was nonnegotiable for me, until Jacob Turner took my breath away.
our night together, I had soul searching to do. I had vowed to spend
time enjoying the single life with the return of my maiden name,
Destiny Baker. I planned to take some much needed time off from the
thing so many people called love.
I was good without love. I had a fulfilling job, beautiful home,
dependable car and two charming kids. I was newly divorced, and my
ex-husband was an awesome co-parent. With all things considered, I
had it all.
as each day and night passed by, since the day I met Jacob, it was so
hard for me to breathe when I wasn’t with him.
in the Gap
will be all, Henry. I'm going to stay here tonight," I said to
my driver as he pulled up in front of Justine's condo. It had been a
month since I invited Destiny back to my hotel and made the sweetest
love of my life. I missed her. I yearned to see her again, but, as a
man in charge of a massive enterprise, many working nights and days
flew by at the speed of light.
sir. I will see you in the morning, unless you call before then,"
Henry said with a tilt of his hat.
exited the Bentley and Henry drove off. I walked up to my dear
friend’s doorstep. Justine called me earlier sounding like she
had been in a train wreck. I was in the middle of a meeting and
couldn’t talk, but, when she said she felt like she wanted to
commit suicide, I immediately dropped everything and came to her
could’ve called her parents or an ambulance, but I knew she
would freak out if I didn’t show up in person. Therefore, I cut
my meeting short and rushed over to check on her.
was no fool, though. She probably just wanted me to spend the night.
She wanted me to make love to her. She wanted our relationship to be
the way it was before I broke things off, when I realized that I
loved her, but only as a friend.
the last month, I attended hundreds of meetings about offices opening
in Wyoming and Delaware, which were the only two states Turner
Enterprises didn’t have a local office. It had been busy time
for me with lots of activities going on at Turner, so I didn’t
have time to talk to Justine. That was probably why she was in
preferred to finish my business for the day, but I had to be sure
Justine was safe before I dismissed her suicide claim as just another
one of her tricks to spend time with me. I didn’t know what to
expect when she opened the door.
are you, Justine?" I asked as I stepped upon the doorstep.
now that you are here," she said, showing a glimpse of her
flawless smile. "Come in."
turned and walked away. I followed her into the living room that the
best fashion designer in Miami crafted for the two of us, when we
were a couple. A blend of white and beige colors matched Justine's
regal personality. A splash of red and orange in a floral portrait
over the fireplace fit her sometimes eccentric behavior perfectly.
you called me like you had an emergency. What's going on?" I
sat down on the sofa and stared off into space.
to me, Justine!"
you want something to drink?" she gestured toward two wine
glasses and a bottle of Henri Jayer sitting on chill in the middle of
the coffee table.
mouth watered for my favorite wine, but I shook my head. "No,
thanks. I don’t want anything to drink."
lit a candle in the middle of the coffee table.
you tell me what the matter with you is? You were in tears and saying
you wanted to kill yourself when you called me, and that's why I’m
here," I got straight to the point.
left me alone, Jacob. I can’t survive like this," she
cried, tears welling up in her sky-blue eyes. "How could you
just up and leave after all we shared? If nothing else, we were
friends...and you…you," she wept as her words caught in
ran my fingers through my hair and sighed.
sat down beside her on the sofa.
didn't just up and leave you, Justine. We started out as friends and
we will always be friends."
sprang from her seat and wagged her finger in my face. "I don’t
want to be just your friend! How can we just be friends, after what
we shared? I gave you all of me and you left me alone!"
stood up and looked at her anguished face. I loved her dearly and
respected our friendship, but I didn’t have time to spare on
this type of stress. If she had been anyone else, I would have had
Henry double back so fast that her head would be spinning.
meant something to me, though. She had been my best friend since
kindergarten. She defended me when other kids picked on me, and she
added acceptance to my life before I understood dividends and assets.
stop crying." I hugged her close. "I’ll always be
here for you. I love you, girl."
sparkle of hope gleamed in her eyes. "If you love me, why are
you treating me like this?”
tilted her neck, and I knew she wanted a kiss. I gave it to her—a
more than friendly
kiss on her lips, then pulled away and kissed her forehead. I thought
of the best way to tell her I was falling for another woman.
don't want to see you hurt like this. It's just that…"
Jacob?" she asked as her light eyes darkened.
know what, it’s not important. Go get yourself all dressed up
and we’re going to go do something fun. Like back in our
college days," I said, unable to bring myself to crush her when
she was already so fragile.
old times?" she asked, as she grinded her thin body against
go get dressed." I sighed. I hated the feeling that I was giving
her false hope. I had to find a way to let her know it was over
romantically, and to get my friend back.
won't take me that long to get dressed." She shrank away from me
and pranced toward her bedroom. “Thanks for spending time with
me, Jacob,” she turned around and said humbly.
problem, Justine. Now, go get dressed.”
she ran off to her room, leaving me to figure out how we got to this
spent twelve years at St. Mary's Catholic School. We attended
sleepovers, family dinners, and parties through elementary and high
school. I consoled her, after a creep that was supposed to be her
soul mate left her at the altar. I stood in the gap that her fiancé,
Rick, left wide open. One thing led to another after I gave her a
ride home from the chapel that day. By nightfall, Justine and I
melded into one, releasing deep tensions our past lovers left behind.
things were hot and heavy between us. Our parents were happy, and
even though our romantic relationship had been a rebound affair, she
was safe for me. She had been by my side since kindergarten. She
wasn’t just another chick trying to get the Turner name, and
that was good enough for me, until Destiny walked into my life, stole
my attention, and demanded my affection.
beautiful smile lit a fire inside of me. Her sensual moans awakened
every part of me. I had been a one woman's man, but something about
Destiny made me want more than a safety net. She made me want to walk
on the dark side of love, where only my heart guided me. I didn't
want a best friend; I wanted burning passion. It would crush me if
Justine ended her life because I followed my heart. I didn’t
want to let a part of me die on the inside, either.
stared at Justine’s closed bedroom door and thought about how I
would tell her that it was over for us. I planned to take her to hang
out and then come back and sleep on her sofa. It would be a night out
amongst friends, something she would have to get used to. Then, I
would tell her everything in the morning.
vibrating cell brought me out of my thoughts.
heart leapt in my chest as I answered.
walked with a high stride, when I stepped off flight 1087 in Miami,
Florida. I claimed my bags from baggage claim, retrieved my rental
car from Avis, and was on the highway headed to my hotel within
thirty minutes. Just knowing I was in the same city as Jacob made me
all giddy. I dialed his number.
he answered on the third ring.
babe. Are you busy?"
too busy for you. What's up?" he asked.
bet you can’t guess where I am. I just bet you can’t,"
I beamed, as the big ole country grin on my face caused a driver
passing by to smile, as well.
Miami?" he asked with not quite as much enthusiasm as I would
have expected. Given our heated phone call the night before, I
thought he would be turning corners already, since we had a chance to
see each other in the flesh.
I answered slowly, gauging his response, "I'm meeting a Miami
client tomorrow, so I thought I would surprise you."
thought you would surprise me?" he said as more of a question.
but if you’re busy this weekend, I definitely understand.”
are just full of surprises, aren’t you, Ms. Destiny?"
try to keep things popping," I said with a laugh.
definitely do that. Who do you have a meeting with?" he asked.
Alexander from Museum of Contemporary Art? I’m hoping to start
doing some marketing for them."
yeah. Susie is a good person. Do you want me to call and put in a
thanks, sweetheart. You’ve done enough by introducing us. I can
handle her on my own from here," I said, thankful for his
willingness to help. "But… I do want you to come and put
in a good night's work with me," I teased, smiling from ear to
he began to speak, but I was so excited I continued to talk.
can meet me at the Embassy Suites at the Airport. It's not a
presidential suite or anything like that, but I really want to see
was a long pause on the line, as if he was thinking about whether he
wanted to spend the night with me.
okay, if tonight is not a good time for you."
it's bad timing. I have a lot going on," he finally admitted in
a dry tone.
need to get rested up tonight, anyway,” I said, and it took
everything in me to not sound disappointed.
about I take you to lunch after you meet with Susie tomorrow?"
will be fine," I said as the wind deflated from my chest. A
long, drawn out pause loomed over the line.
apology wasn’t enough to ease the unexplainable feeling of
rejection that came over me. He had nicked my ego, but I would be
fine. I steered into the hotel's parking lot and found a parking
space. "No, it's okay, Jacob. Tomorrow is fine. I'll see you
late night texting, X-rated phone calls, and fantasizing about what
we would do if we were in each other’s arms again, we were only
a few miles away and he had something more important to do. I tried
to understand that he was the brains and brawn for his family's
beloved company. But, he had hundreds of employees at his disposal.
He should be able to get any of his qualified workers to free him up
for one night. I couldn’t think of one logical reason why he
couldn’t make time for me.
be there as soon as you get out of your meeting tomorrow, Destiny,"
I said, ready to hang up the phone, take a hot shower, and sink into
the comfort of my hotel bed. At least, the bed would be there to hold
me tight, all night.
make this up to you," he said with his voice low, as if he were
whispering his words directly to my heart. "I hope you
understand," I told him, and part of me did understand. He
couldn’t stop his life just because I popped into town –
never mind that I arranged a business meeting almost eight hundred
miles away from home two weeks before Christmas, just to see him. I
was used to men putting work ahead of me. My ex-husband Montie did it
being in Miami was obviously nothing extraordinary. Jacob was a
powerful executive, with many willing women at his disposal. Hell,
we'd had sex on our first night.
taking a deep gulp to swallow the growing lump in my throat, I
disconnected the call, threw my cell phone into my purse, and
attempted to remove the huge dagger that hung from my chest.
of sitting around sulking, I called my cousin, Tasha, who lived on
side of Miami. She had been asking me to come to Miami so we could
hang out. Maybe she could show me a little bit of the city where the
magic happens, since my plans to be with Jacob were a bust.
Tasha," I feigned excitement when she answered on the first
ring. It wasn’t that I wasn’t happy to talk to her; I was
just let down by Jacob.
girlie!" Tasha beamed through the phone. I could hear the love
and surprise in her voice, at once. "To what do I owe the
pleasure of speaking to my favorite cousin this evening?"
earlier when I was breezing through the streets of Miami, headed
toward the Embassy Suites, I thought I'd give my bestie cousin a call
and see what we could get into."
got to be kidding me right now! Who, what, when, where, and how did
you end up in Miami?"
laughed at her silly butt. "You’re still a mess. I’m
sorry I didn’t tell you I was coming to town, but I’m
most definitely here. I have a meeting tomorrow, but I'm
free to have a good time tonight."
things had gone my way, I had no intentions of coming up for air the
entire weekend, much less hanging out with Tasha. Yet as I talked to
her, I couldn’t imagine coming to her city and not hanging out
with my cousin.
the way to Florida, and conveniently forgot to tell me you were
coming? What’s really going on?" she asked with a
have some business to handle with MOCA, and that’s why I’m
here. In the meantime, we can get together and have a few drinks.”
you say drinks? I can definitely use a drink, after the week I’ve
had,” she said.
you meet me at the Embassy Suites by the airport at six?"
Suites at six. Yes, ma’am. You already know I'm there. They
have that free happy hour, too... I am so there. Where are my shoes?"
I heard her snap her fingers for emphasis.
imagined Tasha frantically searching for her shoes and shook my head.
My kinfolks were something else.
See you then, girl. Love you," I said.
you too, sis," she replied before disconnecting the call.
entered the hotel and checked into my room. The first thing I did was
go to the bathroom, freshen up, and put on something comfortable.
soon as Tasha arrived at six, we headed down to the bar area. I was
so happy to see her, but I had to force a smile when I thought about
the fact that it should have been Jacob with me. Once Tasha and I had
our first round of drinks in hand, we found a table to sit and relax
for a while. It was then that she gave me a suspicious once-over.
are you going to tell me about this guy, or what?" She shot me a
“and don’t lie” look.
are you talking about?" I almost choked on my drink.
talking about this guy that has my cousin a thousand miles from home
on a Friday night, acting uptight and, if I could call it, a bit sad
at the moment."
do you mean, Tasha?"
I know that you love me. I also know you didn’t travel into
town a day early for a Saturday meeting, just to surprise me with
free drinks at your hotel. You're a planner and you’re cheap.
You would have called me to stay at my house, unless you had other
think you know me, huh?"
a book. You plan your business so that every minute is accounted. If
you wanted to hang with me tonight, we would have had a game plan.
You might as well go ahead and spill your guts. You sounded a bit
pathetic when you called me, too." Tasha tilted her wine glass
toward me and continued. "Go ahead and give it up. Give up the
who, what, when, where, and how about this gentleman. If my gut
feelings are correct, you may need a coochie intervention."
coochie intervention? You know what; I'm not even going to chase that
one." I ran my fingers around the rim of my glass, while
deciding what I wanted to share with Tasha. I could have lied and
said there was no man involved, but what was the use? We grew up in
the same house, like sisters. Tasha knew when my emotions were all
over the place, even though I was trying to hold it together.
remembered when I was a little girl and I took my first five-finger
discount. It was a bag of chips from Red and White’s grocery
store. She looked at me with crumbs all over my face and said, "You
didn’t have no money for that."
finished off the chips and threw the bag in the trash.
I did! Grandma gave it to me,"
I answered, before swiping my tiny hand across my lips to wipe away
what, when, where, and how did Grandma give you money and not give me
any? I'm gonna go ask her. And you better not be stealing."
stomped back to Grandma's house, just as aware then, as she was
sitting across from me at the bar, of what was going on with me.
Whenever I was messing up, she would say who, what, when, where and
how. I hated that her second-grade
teacher taught her the five "Ws."
I looked around the serene dining area. I had to give her answers,
but how could I admit my situation? My heart swelled, and a tear
threatened to roll down my cheek. "I think I'm in love."
telling Tasha how Jacob made me feel alive, I told her about his
family business, the fact that he was a very affluent white man, how
we met and continued to communicate for the past month. In Tasha, I
had an outlet. She didn’t judge me. Eventually, she would give
me her honest thoughts and keep it real, but she simply listened.
he at least fine?" she asked, and my eyes glazed over thinking
about how sexy Jacob was.
felt remnants of his touch all over my body as I remembered every
inch of him. I was never the type to fall so hard, so fast. It was
unusual for me to be in love with a man I had only known a month.
Lawd, he is so fine. He makes this sister speak in tongues."
shook her head. She knew I was gone. "Girl, I think you're going
to need more than that coochie intervention. We may have to do an
exorcism to get Jacob out of your system."
I waved at her. “It’s not like that.”
you should have told me about him as soon as you met him. I could
have been checking him out to make sure he's on the up and up. Now,
you’re all in your feelings and it may be too late."
didn’t want to start a new relationship playing games. I want
to be able to trust my man."
all fine and well, but the truth shall set you free from all binds.
Just like tonight, you have no clue as to what he is doing or who he
is doing it with, while you are sitting here with your cousin that
you’ve been neglecting for years."
right," I admitted. “On both issues.”
know you’ll always love me,” Tasha gushed. “I just
don’t want you to get caught up with this rich guy," she
added in a serious tone.
don't want to get caught up either. I have so much going for myself
right now. Being drawn back into a relationship where I’m doing
the most is the last thing I need. And, being head over heels for a
man that puts work, and whatever else, before me and my kids is like
going back to Montie."
and you know how that story ends. You need to stay grounded. The last
time we talked, you said you rededicated yourself to church. Use your
faith to keep you on the right track."
I sat frozen.
wished I could say my infatuation with Jacob hadn’t altered my
newfound spiritual walk. I wanted to say my faith kept me pure. Aside
from the one sin of reliving my fantasy of falling into Jacob’s
bed at the drop of a hat, I had been walking the straight and narrow.
wanted to say many things that I couldn’t, because they simply
were not true. I spent the past four Sunday mornings lying in bed,
seduced by Jacob’s voice. He'd offered to fly me to Florida on
his private jet, but I managed to keep the distance between us,
afraid of falling deeper in love with him.
tapped her fingers on the table. With a half-smile, she said, "Okay
Destiny, you need to get all of this off your mind for a while. Let’s
go dancing. Then tomorrow, when we’re not sipping on the
devil’s water, we’ll have a heart to heart about if Jacob
is healthy for you."
sounds good, except I'll pass on dancing." I shook my head. I
loved to dance around in private, but I could not dance a lick.
on, Destiny. Let your hair down and let’s have some fun.”
are you trying to prove by getting me on the dance floor, anyway?
Don’t you think my pride has been damaged enough for one day?"
I laughed and she joined in with my laughter.
hotel's deejay, who had been playing what sounded like elevator music
all night, put on Beyoncé’s “Single Ladies”,
and Tasha began gyrating in her chair, grooving to the beat.
honey, it’s true you have no rhythm, but that’s not what
dancing is about. It’s about your body becoming a piece of
fluid artwork and losing yourself in the music. It doesn’t
matter how you look doing it, as long as you feel good doing it."
don't know about that," I said and took another swig of my
promise, if you go out with me, you will feel better in the morning."
Tasha flipped her long, straight hair over her slim shoulders. “You
can even praise dance, if that will make you feel better about it.”
giggled and tossed back the rest of my drink. "You are too much,
Tasha. That would be blasphemy."
but honey, if we can't have fun in this life, what's the use in
living it?" she asked.
at her gyrate and groove in her chair made me remember why I loved
Tasha so much. She was the most carefree person one could ever meet.
She had a way of making people feel like their problems could be
talked, drank, danced, or bible-quoted away.
do know you are committable to a mental hospital, right?" I told
her with a wave of my hand.
my hand waved in the air, I examined my empty ring finger with mixed
emotions. I was no longer Montie's wife. The budding relationship I
thought Jacob and I had now was questionable, at best. I felt single
after a good dance partner puts his moves on you, you may be
committable to a mental hospital, too. It may help you forget all
about what’s his name?"
I said, imagining the way his handsome face contorted as he eased
inside of me the first time. Forever imprinted in my mind was the
image of the pleasure in his hazel green eyes. I couldn't shake him
if I wanted to. The thought of him had me buzzed in all the right
places. "It is Jacob, and honey the way that man flows through
my veins, I doubt I will forget
hopeless," she said, grabbing her purse. "Come on, let’s
I relented. I dropped a tip on the table and we walked to the car.
When we got to the car, Tasha stopped by the driver's door without
is it?" I wondered what made her stop and stare at me.
hope you are keeping in mind that Jacob could be some privileged man
that's only looking for a little exotic fling. Those types of men
a different girl every day of the week. They get their fantasies
fulfilled by us, and then go and marry a white girl."
thought about that. I don't think Jacob is like that."
just putting it out there for you to think about." She popped
the lock to the car and got in.
didn’t appreciate her insinuating I was some exotic fling for
Jacob, but what if she was right? I flung the passenger door open and
plopped down on the seat. I didn’t speak a word as we took the
drive to Lapidus Lounge. I didn’t know if Tasha took the scenic
route, so I could think, or so we could clear our minds and sober up,
but it was definitely a long ride.
here," Tasha said, as she pulled up to the lounge. She touched
up her makeup in the mirror.
took out my makeup bag and freshened up my face, as well. I was a
little uncomfortable with the scenery once we walked in. The mixed
crowd was thick and kind of bourgeois; a little different from the
parties I was used to, where down to earth people greeted you with a
acting chicks looked me up and down, as if I didn’t belong in
their atmosphere. Preoccupied men looked right through me as they
laughed and talked amongst themselves. I’d just as soon be in
my suite going over paperwork for my meeting the next day than
standing around with this bunch of assholes.
on the other hand, didn’t seem fazed by the reckless eyeballing
by the women. The first tall, dark and handsome guy to come along and
offer her a drink had swept her away. I watched as she did everything
from the salsa to Mediterranean dances, for the next thirty minutes.
I was just about to go get her to tell her I was ready to go, when I
felt a familiar breeze blow right past me. I turned in the direction
of the draft and sure enough found the source.
mouth flew open with surprise.
didn’t know whether to be excited or pissed the hell off that
he was in
the lounge, and not busy working on some highly important project.
pulled me toward him. Gliding in his direction, I paid close
attention to the company he kept. I didn’t want to barge in on
his group and have them think I was some mad, black woman, but who
could work against gravity?
continued toward him with a feeling of mixed emotions. On one hand, I
couldn’t wait to wrap my arms around him and kiss his greedy
lips. On the other, I wanted to tell him a piece of my mind. How
could he think hanging out at a club was better than hiding out in my
hotel room for the weekend?
eyes popped open when an impeccably gorgeous woman, with flowing
blond hair, slid forward and sat on his lap. She didn’t just
sit on his lap; she straddled him and draped her thin arms around his
neck. If I didn't know any better, I would have thought the woman,
who looked like she just stepped out a model catalog,
owned him. He held the mini-skirt clad, long-legged beauty in a
loving embrace, as she clung to him. Their admiration for
each other equally matched. Her milky skin glistened under the dim
chandelier hanging over their table. Her long hair flung to one side
as she wrapped her arms around his neck and kissed his lips.
didn’t notice I was there, as the woman drank, uninhibited,
from his lips. I stood in shock as the reason he wasn’t with me
was blatantly obvious. I suddenly felt naked standing there in a
plain black dress and heels with a natural coat of makeup.
and I became opposing magnets, as then I felt pushed in the opposite
direction. I carefully shrank away, remaining unseen. I rushed to
find Tasha. When I found her, I opened my mouth but sound failed me.
Words failed me. I could not speak. I just held my mouth open
the fuck is wrong with you?" she asked, concern etched on her
face. "You look like you’ve seen a ghost."
struggled to breathe. I grabbed her hand and pulled her toward the
door, her feet dragging behind her. When we reached outside, I
coughed the crisp night's air into my lungs. She was right. I had
indeed seen an evil ghost.
going on? You’re scaring the shit out of me," Tasha
asked, placing her hand on my back. "Do I need to call an
ambulance for you?"
just need some air."
he in there?” she asked, but I couldn’t reply. “Come
on, Destiny. I’m going to take you back to your hotel."
She directed me to her car, and we rode in silence.
watched as the cars passed by, with no one in Miami caring that my
love life was spiraling away. That woman clutched Jacob as if he was
her next breath. And, I knew what was going on.
pulled into the parking lot, put the car in park, and rushed around
to help me out of the car. I walked around in a daze. I truly felt
lost. I casually directed her to my hotel room, barely acknowledging
where we were going. She dug in my purse to remove the hotel key and
let us in.
sunk down in the chair the minute I touched the floor in my room. I
could tell that she was scared to say a word.
eventually lifted my gaze to meet hers. “Yeah.”
it wasn’t the best idea to go out, but what happened upset
saw him in
the lounge." I closed my eyes as the words tumbled out into
reality. "He was with another woman. She was all over him."
stared at me until she had to turn away from my miserable, teary
face. "First of all, you’re going to put your chin up and
realize that what you saw is for the best," she fussed. “And,
I know that’s not what you want to hear, but it’s what
you need to hear.”
don’t get it. I don’t know why I thought you would. No
one will understand how I feel," I argued.
have known him, what…all of five minutes?" I rolled my
eyes, but allowed her to continue. "He leads another life, and
you were blessed enough to find out early. You should rejoice in
that. If you thought you were the only person in his life, then you
naïve. And now you know the truth."
mind wasn’t ready to accept that. I wondered if there was a
logical excuse for him to be hanging out with a woman comfortably in
his lap, kissing
cursed myself for even going there for him, when there was no excuse.
I didn’t care if we had been together only five minutes, I
didn’t deserve the lies.
I have strong feelings for Jacob. I told you that."
nodded. "Oh, I know you did
have strong feelings for him, but now that you know the real him,
things change. Isn’t it better to see this now?"
was right. I was relieved to know I hadn’t spent years wrapped
up in his lies. But, I was far from feeling better. "I don’t
want to be alone tonight," I confessed, getting up to go sit on
the bed. I kicked off my shoes and lay on
the bed on top of the covers. “Stay here tonight, Tasha.”
smiled. "I wasn’t going anywhere, anyway."
bestie," was the last thing I said before remembering the look
on Jacob and his lover's faces as they passionately embraced one
another. The pain in my heart caused my lids to close and flutter
until I slowly drifted off into a sorrowful slumber.
woke up at eight in the morning. I opened my eyes to see Tasha
sleeping across from me on the couch. I went into the bathroom to
freshen up. I needed to make my ten o'clock appointment and there
wasn’t much time left.
stepping out of the shower and getting dressed, I walked into the
room. Tasha was up stirring around.
morning," I spoke, brushing out my hair. "Thank you for
staying last night."
smiled, shrugging, "Hush chile. It’s no biggie. Do you
hesitated for a moment, and then went back to brushing my hair. "I’m
not completely over it, but in time I’ll be fine." I spoke
the words, hoping I would soon believe them.
sure will be fine. Granny didn’t make us out of straw. She
built some strong, brick house women and we will not let her down.”
right about that, Tasha.” She had our grandmother’s
smile, and seeing it made me smile. I stepped into my stockings, and
said, "I hate to jet off, but I have this meeting."
was still going to stop by and see me after the meeting. I didn’t
know how I felt about that, but I would figure it out once I saw him.
stretched and popped her muscles in her arms and back, after
scrunching on the sofa all night. She walked over to me and pulled me
into a hug. "I have a few errands to run today, anyway. I’ll
call you later," she said.
I pulled from the hug and slid on my black pencil skirt. "Talk
to you soon."
left the hotel, and I finished dressing in a ruffled shirt, pulled my
hair back into a long ponytail, and put on my glasses. I glanced in
the mirror. Minus my weary eyes, I looked professional; I just hoped
my best foot would move forward for the meeting.
hurried out of my room and down the elevator, heading out to my car.
Driving to MOCA, my heart beat fast as I thought about what I was
going to say to seal the deal. I wasn’t usually nervous when it
came to meeting potential clients, but this was a big deal. I had to
make a good impression. A victory in business would counterbalance
what was going on in my personal life.
at address 125th
Street on the right,"
the GPS voice said.
saw the huge building and smiled. I parked and walked inside MOCA
with confidence in my stride. Susie was at the door waiting for
me, when I arrived on her floor.
Baker, I’m glad to finally meet you.”
really appreciate you taking the time to meet with me on a Saturday.
You must be very busy, Ms. Alexander."
problem. I’ve heard good things about your firm. So tell me
about all of this good press you plan to use to take MOCA to the next
level," she stated, once we were past the pleasantries.
took a seat in an oversized black leather chair that was in front of
her oversized desk. She sat pensively in her boss’ chair with a
Scarface-intense stare, expecting my response.
the time I’m finished recreating your image, you will not
recognize your own company on paper, and that’s a good thing.
I’m going to portray your art museum’s already great
image as a source of
art and literature on an international platform. People who have been
here will want to come again just to see what they missed the last
time. New visitors will flock to your museum whenever they travel to
how exactly do you propose to do…"
cut her off expectantly. "First, I have studied your target
audience to see what kinds of things they like to read, eat, and
watch on TV, all the way down to the types of underwear they
she said, sounding impressed.
intimately know your customers so well that I can tell you who they
are by name. Knowing who they are, what they like, and when they like
it, I am able to pitch a message to them that says MOCA
missing piece to your life’s puzzle.
I will show them how consistently supporting MOCA’s functions
will enhance their lives."
opened up my laptop, turned on my sales presentation and went over
all of the key products I would put into place for her company,
including text messaging for museum lovers, calendar mailings, and
trade shows. Once the final slide was up, Susie was ready to sign on
the dotted line.