Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Excerpt from Auctioned by Kimberly Kaye Terry





Excerpt from Auctioned: An Invitation Erotic Odyssey by Kimberly Kaye Terry

ZANE COMMENT


Auctioned is part of the Invitation Erotic Odyssey Series along with Disciplined by Allison Hobbs and Obsessed by Delilah Devlin. They are part of the Strebor Quickies line, economically priced at $9.95 per copy but with enough action, romance, and sex for books that cost twice as much. I hope that you will check it out.


Blessings, Zane


Book Description


A rejected, overachieving workaholic attempts to overcome her rage and humiliation during a whirlwind, hedonistic weekend in which her true worth is put to the test -- when she gives up control, she feels an exhilarating freedom she's never felt before.


Chase Davidson has always been driven to succeed. Growing up poor, Chase vowed she would rise above the squalor of her childhood and become successful. When her Fortune 500 Company doesn't promote her, Chase is beyond distraught. Disgraced and furious, she wants her power back. Needing a quick fix to soothe her damaged ego, she impulsively accepts an invitation to an island adventure that promises to fulfill her every desire -- including her desire to be "number one." Forced out of her comfort zone, both emotional and sexual, what she experiences is more than what she bargained for, but exactly what she needed.


Chapter One

“Look, I want that report on my desk now. Not in the next couple of hours, not tomorrow, or the next day. Now.” Chase ended the connection in the middle of the new advertising assistant’s blabbering and apologizing, not interested in anything the inept man had to say.


Her short, manicured nails flew over her keyboard as she drafted the first marketing plan for the lucrative new account she knew was hers. All of her careful courting would pay off, and the position of president of marketing would be hers once she landed the multimillion-dollar deal.
One corner of her full, mauve-tinted lips hitched up in a smile. Euphoria enveloped her at the thought of occupying the large corner office with the breathtaking view of the downtown Dallas skyline that would come with the promotion.


A near orgasmic shudder of delight coursed through her body.


Her eyes were half-closed behind the small square-framed, designer glasses perched on the bridge of her nose, and a sigh of pleasure escaped from between her pursed lips.


She removed one hand from the keyboard and lightly stroked a hand over the head of the man between her thighs as his head bobbed up and down and his gifted tongue softly lapped the inner lips of her vagina. Although her attention was fully on the screen of her computer, she continued to pet him, encouraging him silently to continue.


She released a very low moan when he captured her plump, blood-engorged clit and suckled it deep into his mouth. When he inserted a finger inside her moist core and pumped in and out, she closed her eyes, bit her fuller bottom lip, but didn’t utter a word.


She’d become quite proficient at maintaining silence when needed since her discovery of Javier and his spectacular tongue.


Under her desk, where no one could see—if anyone were to enter her office unannounced, he licked and prodded her, stroked and suckled her cunt with hot delicious strokes, while his fingers delved deep into her core and withdrew her moisture.


He used her juices to rim the puckered hole of her anus, lightly stroking, but not daring to imbed his slender finger all the way inside, plying her pussy and ass until her body began to quake. Her limbs tensed, and the muscles in her vagina clamped in a painful constriction with her orgasm hovering, ready to break free.


But he was careful not to bring her to completion.


He knew better than to do that.


He’d learned over the course of the last months of their association that her release was not his to give.


She no longer had to forcibly move his greedy mouth as he devoured her creaming pussy, desperate to take her to the ultimate little death and to prove something she didn’t require from him when she felt the beginnings of her orgasm unfurl.


He’d learned to read the signs her body made when she was dangerously close to orgasm.
She felt the tingling sensation begin to strum through her body, heralding that her release was near.


The walls of her pussy contracted and pulsed in a steady relentless beat, and her limbs began the fine trembling that signaled her body was ready to submit to orgasm.


She moaned, placing her hands in the thick, silky strands of his hair and ground against his face. As he licked her and suckled her clit so hard, her back arched sharply away from her chair with every slick press of his tongue.


“Enough!” She barked the words softly, yet his marauding tongue refused to obey. With an expertise that made her bite the inside of her cheek to prevent a scream from releasing, he hollowed out his tongue and shoved it deep into her creaming core.


Chase’s eyes flew open as realization dawned on how close she was, how close he had been, to making her come.


“Enough, goddamn it.” She forcibly stopped her orgasm. Her jaw clenched and tightened as she fought for control. Her fingers dug into his head, and she grasped handfuls of his hair, pulling his head from between her thighs.


She stared down at him angrily as he sat crouched between her thighs with the evidence of his oral activities smeared over his face.


His breathing was uneven, and his eyes glittered almost maniacally with a look she’d never seen before. It vanished as quickly as it appeared, too quick for her to catalogue and process its meaning.


“Bring the bag,” she bit out the words, licking dry lips. Her breathing was labored and harsh, mimicking his as she fought to bring her body back under control.


She pushed away from her desk, and her chair nearly toppled with the force. But she ignored it as she strode around the desk. Her eyes quickly moved to the closed door, making sure the lock was in place before she turned back to Javier.


With her eyes narrowed, she waited for him to bring the small, pink bag to her and withdraw the contents.


“I’m sorry,” he said, his voice low and husky. His eyes averted from hers in submission as he handed her the dainty beribboned bag.


“Look at me, Javier,” she said in a tight, controlled voice.


When he turned around, she placed a long, slender finger beneath his chin, forcing him to look at her as she ran assessing eyes over his flushed, darkly handsome face, searching for a hint of what she thought she’d seen when she pushed him away.


“Look at me,” she demanded again, gentling her voice.


For long moments, their gazes locked, his with a slight fear. She knew her gaze was unflinching and cold.


Slowly she moved her finger down his throat, circled the base of his throat with her long fingers, and applied a slight pressure, until he began to cough.


She smiled, knowing he enjoyed the power play as much as she. Once she asserted her dominance, Chase slowly released her hold.


She feathered her fingers down his throat, past his hard, chiseled chest and stopped at the waistband of his slacks. She kept her eyes glued to his as she unfastened his pants, peeling the edges along the zipper aside and yanked them, along with his briefs, down the length of his legs.
After she removed the bag from his tightly clenched hands, she murmured, “Turn around.”


His eyes were bright and shining, an anticipatory gleam in their dark depths as he licked his lips and did as she requested.


He placed both hands on the edge of the large, mahogany desk and lowered his head, braced himself, and waited.


Lifting her skirt, Chase deftly eased her panties down and attached the long, thick dildo to the harness she wore, nestling the base against her clit, snugly, and grasped him by his lean hips.
Separating the hard, muscled cheeks of his ass, she began to feed him her dick. A low growl of satisfaction came from her lips, accompanied by his moaning cries of welcome.


“Hold on, tight. This won’t be easy,” Chase promised darkly, her breath fanning the fine hairs at the nape of his neck.


She felt a fine tremor run over his body at her hot words of intent.


Without waiting for a response, her fingers tightened on his hips and drove into him in one deep stroke. Her lips pulled back in a feral grin when he gasped, his body arching sharply against the strength of her invasion.


Once the inner muscles of his walls relaxed, allowing her to press into him as far as she could, Chase allowed him no time to become accustomed to her length. Instead she began to move.
Flexing, surging, and plunging, she rolled her hips, plunging deep into his ass. The feel of the artificial dick spanking against her clit stimulated her and aroused her. As she glanced down at their joined bodies, the sight of her dick easing in and out of him as her hips moved against him aroused her even more.


With her legs braced far apart, she removed one hand from his hip and trailed it around to the front of his body, shoving the ends of his shirt aside to grasp his hard, thick rod in her hand.
She feathered her fingers over the turgid length of his shaft and back to his balls, lightly grasping the twin plum-like spheres in her hands. He moaned when she applied a slight pressure, rolling and massaging them in the palm of her hand before her hand dropped away.


She again grasped his cock in hand, circling the base with her thumb and middle finger, and lightly stroked up the length before using the pad of her thumb to swipe across the tiny eye in the center of the bulbous knob, wiping away his sticky pre-cum.


“Taste it,” she encouraged.


After placing her thumb in his mouth, he did as she requested, suckling her thumb and making moaning sounds of delight as he licked her finger clean.


She laughed and removed her thumb from his greedy mouth and grasped his lean hips with both hands, fucking him in long strokes to his accompanying mewling cries of pleasure and pain, so interwoven they blended as one melodious cry of rapture.


Chase delivered a sharp, warning slap on the cheeks of his ass.


Immediately his guttural moans were quieted, becoming small whimpering sighs of pleasure even as he pushed back against her invasion.


Her hips moved with precision, surging in and out of him smoothly, the fire inside of her building, growing, with each drag and pull inside his clenching heat. Chase fucked him in sure, easy glides. He cried out, slamming his hips back against her mound, begging her to do him harder, deeper.
Yet she kept her strokes, slow, methodical.


She marinated in him in deliberate, slick strokes, ignoring his fervent moans as he accepted—welcomed—her thrusts, the muscled cheeks of his ass flexing and tensing as she rocked into him.
Chase felt so strong, so alive…so in control as she plunged in and out of Javier. The feeling of being buried deep inside of him was an addictive feeling, downright exhilarating.


She bit the lower rim of her lips to the point of pain, her breathing becoming harsher with each roll of her hips against him.


Her head snapped back, and the corded veins in her neck pulsed and throbbed as she felt her hovering orgasm threatening to break. Instead of pushing it away, as she had when he laved between her thighs, she reached for it.


When her orgasm was seconds from spilling over, she reached around his body with her hand. Gently, yet firmly, she cupped his balls, rolling the spheres in her hand until he released a harsh, keening moan.


She grasped his shaft, ran her hands down the length of the steely pipe, in quick, deadly succession, and he broke. His body jerked and spasmed as his cum—thick, white and hot—spewed like a geyser over her hand.


Chase grit her teeth, clenched her eyes tightly shut, and desperately held on to her control even as her orgasm slammed into her. Unable to hold back, the dam broke, and her cum overflowed, weakening her for that brief moment, so that she had to hang on to his hips as she delivered the last of her thrusts into his quaking body.


When it was over, she laid her chest over his heaving back, blanketing his body for that one moment at peace.


“Thank you,” he whispered.


His body fully collapsed on the desk, and Chase’s fingers loosened their death grip on his hips as she drew her body away from his.


“Why…why do you…?” he panted, unable to finish the question as he lay spent and useless, his upper body sprawled on top of her desk.


She ignored his question. She knew he loved having her fat dick working his ass as much as she loved giving it to him.


“Ms. Davidson.” Chase’s eyes narrowed as she listened to her assistant’s voice come over the small discreet intercom on her desk. “I’m sorry to interrupt your…lunch.”


“What is it, Christine?”


“Your presence has been requested in the boardroom as soon as you’re able.”


“I’ll be right there,” she replied, smoothly easing out of Javier.


She reached inside the dainty, pink bag to lift out a pre-moistened tissue. Carefully she wiped the length of the dildo and tossed the used wipe in the trash bin under her desk before placing the dildo back inside the bag.


She moved away from the prostrate man, deftly removed the harness from her hips, and placed it in one of the drawers of her desk before skimming her hands down the length of her body and tugging her skirt into place.


Turning to look at her reflection in the small, wall-mounted mirror, she quickly pulled out another desk drawer, withdrew her lipstick, and ran the tinted, bulbous end over her lips before placing it back in the drawer.


She rubbed her lips together, then raised her hands to her hair, smoothing away errant strands that had escaped the tight chignon secured at the nape of her neck.


Once satisfied with her appearance, she lifted her leather carryall, hooked the strap over her shoulder, and walked toward the door.


With her hand on the knob, she turned back around. Javier had gotten up from his prone position and was fumbling with his slacks.


“Don’t ever forget who’s in control. If you do that again, I won’t go so easy on you the next time,” she said, letting him know that she was aware of his transgression. Had she not stopped him, he would have brought her to orgasm.


Even from the distance she was from him, she could see his olive-tinted face blanch and a fine tremor course over his body in response to her threat.


With a smile of satisfaction, she turned and left.



Chapter Two


“Have a seat, Chastity.” William Buford stood when Chastity entered the boardroom. A wide smile creased his fleshy, rosy face as he motioned for Chase to take a seat.


William Buford was one of three senior managers in the marketing firm of Manhattan Buford, and his being in attendance at the meeting definitely alerted Chastity that indeed, she would be joining the ranks of senior managers.


“Thank you, sir,” she replied, her confidence soaring. Not only was William Buford in the room, but the other two senior managers were in attendance as well, reconfirming that she was minutes away from being offered the president of marketing position.


After she sat down and accepted the glass of ice water from a waiting attendant, Chastity glanced around the room. She returned the smiles of Lance Buford and Emily Manhattan, both of whom held key positions at Manhattan Buford.


“I’d like to begin by congratulating you on landing the Stratham deal. It was truly a coup for you and the firm. Well done,” William Buford continued.


“Thank you, sir. I’m very pleased with the results as well,” she replied, feeling proud of not only what she had accomplished but that she’d done so after several others in her department had failed to acquire the account.


“Yes, well, you should be!” Lance chimed in. “In fact, you’ve been watched carefully, these last few weeks, by not only the partners but also Mr. Baptiste.”


Daemon Baptiste was the man who owned controlling shares in Manhattan Buford. Chase, as well as all of the upper management to most of the secretarial pool, knew of him.


Although he’d never been seen in the Dallas, New York, and California offices of Manhattan Buford, he was the driving force behind Manhattan Buford.


He owned controlling stock and held the position of CEO of the firm, yet no one besides the partners knew much about him. Gossip floated around the office—that he was a hardnosed businessman, one of the richest men in the country, and also one of the most reclusive.


Few images of him were seen publicly, and the available ones were profiles or from a distance. Upon learning about him, Chase had been mildly curious and had sought to find out more about him. No personal information could be found. She found only the bare facts, reports in financial documents, and legal transactions.


What she did know was that Baptiste was a billionaire tycoon who acquired failing businesses, invested money and new management, spearheading the turnaround until the business was not only solvent but also immensely profitable. He then turned around and sold it off to the highest bidder in multimillion, even billion-dollar, deals.


Several years ago, when Manhattan Buford had been in jeopardy of going bankrupt, Baptiste bought the company and within a year, had revitalized it, even taking it beyond its previous levels of success.


However, instead of selling, he’d held on for reasons no one knew. He left the daily operations with the original partners; however, his unseen presence was felt.


“Wow, now I’m impressed.” Chase brought the crystal goblet to her lips and took a sip of water, hiding the satisfied smile that hovered around her lips.


As the cold liquid eased down her throat, she fought back the giddy feeling of triumph that threatened to make her lose control. But it was all she could do not to jump up from her chair and turn a series of undignified, joyful cartwheels straight down the middle of the expensive and rich mahogany table.


Yes, the position was hers. She knew it.


And the fact that Baptiste knew of her was simply icing on the cake.


“However, before we go into all of that, we have to wait for Mr. Serrano,” William finished, catching Chase completely off guard and making her smile slip.


“Mr. Serrano? I’m afraid I don’t understand.” She carefully placed the goblet on the table, turning questioning eyes to the managers.


“Well—”


The door opened at that moment, interrupting whatever William had been planning to say.
Chastity’s eyes narrowed slightly, and a sense of foreboding swamped over her when the assistant brought Javier into the room and quietly exited.


“I’m sorry I was late, gentlemen…Ms. Davidson.” First, he gave his shit-eating, groveling smile to the partners before turning his smile to Chase and slyly giving her a wink, one that no one saw but her.


The sense of foreboding increased, and she watched his narrow ass sit down in the offered seat after fastidiously brushing away imaginary wrinkles from the 800-dollar, charcoal-gray Armani suit she’d gifted him last week. For work well done.


Chase continued to watch him as he straightened the cuffs of his shirt. The overhead light hit the shining, fourteen-carat gold-and-diamond encrusted links—the same ones she gave him for Valentine’s Day—so that they seemed to wink at her much as he had, mocking her.


“Well, let’s get this started, shall we, gentlemen…Chastity?” William Buford glanced around the table and once he was assured all eyes were on him, began to speak.


“Chastity, again, we want to congratulate you on the deal. Amazing job, well done. Absolutely amazing! We’ve been trying to get the Stratham business for over two years. You step in and seal the deal in less than two months. Brilliant!” He rubbed his large, beefy hands together. A smile of pure greed spread across his fleshy lips, splitting his lips so wide his canine teeth were exposed, giving his features an uncomplimentary, wolfish appearance.


“Yes, well, I did work hard for it. In fact—” Her words were cut off when Javier broke in.


“Yes, she did. To see her in action, see how she worked it, how she so cunningly manipulated them, worked on their emotions, found their weakness, exploited them…in a good way of course, was truly amazing,” he said with a laugh. The board members laughed along with him.


Chastity grit her teeth as her heartbeat slammed against her chest. The son-of-a-bitch was making her seem like some damn piranha as though she were nothing more than a cutthroat shark.


“Well, I wouldn’t quite put it like that,” she said, cutting in.


“I’m sorry! I didn’t mean it in a bad way! Not at all! I’ve learned so much…being under your tutelage, Ms. Davidson,” he replied, turning his attention toward her, the expression on his face guileless as though butter wouldn’t melt in his conniving mouth.


She nodded her head shortly and gave him a tight smile, while clamping down on the impeding feeling of disaster looming.


“Yes, it definitely shows how well you’ve learned under Ms. Davidson’s mentorship, Javier,” Maurice’s booming, jovial voice cut in. The feeling of doom amplified when he called Javier by his first name.


“Which is why, in great part, Javier owes you a great deal of gratitude.”


Chase cocked her head to the side, raising a brow in question, although she already knew, deep inside, exactly what William Buford meant.


She damn well already knew.


“As you know, Maurice Hines recently left Manhattan Buford, and with his departure, the position of president of marketing opened.”


Chastity glanced around the room of smiling executives; a scream of denial lodged tightly in her throat.


She listened with distant awareness as they ran down Javier’s qualifications—an MBA from Harvard with an emphasis in management, graduating at the top of his class along with his brief tenure working at Manhattan Buford where he’d been promoted due to long hours and his talent.


The same qualifications that she possessed and more.


“Although he’s been with us a short time, we believe that Javier has what it takes to take over the position; his leadership and education are above reproach. He—”


“That position is mine.” Chase broke into William Buford’s spiel not wanting to hear another word of his detailed outline of Javier’s qualifications.


William stopped, and all eyes turned to Chastity. She saw a mocking glint spark in Javier’s dark gaze as he too looked at her.


“Excuse me, Ms. Davidson?”


“With no disrespect intended, sir…That position should be mine.”


“Yes, well…” He stopped, and, for a moment, Chase felt a sharp sense of triumph as he floundered, trying to find the right words to say. “Yes, Ms. Davidson, you are very qualified for the position as well. You’ve proven how—”


“Then why? And why wasn’t I told that Javier was in the running for this?” Her question was sharp, to the point, the muscles in her face sore from the tight control she was keeping on herself.


“It wasn’t an easy decision, Chastity. But we feel it’s the best one,” William replied, almost gently. She gazed angrily at him, hating the look of pity she saw in his watery blue eyes.


“Then why?” She could not look at Javier. To do so would make her falter and lose what little control she desperately held on her emotions.


“To be honest, Javier has what we’re particularly looking for, for this position.”


“Chase, look, you know how much we’ve wanted to get a foot in the Latin market. Javier recently has met Roberto Chavez,” he said, mentioning the name of a key player in a successful Hispanic-owned and operated advertising agency whose projects included national commercial print and media ads. “With his courting, they are now considering working with us—”


“Considering?”


“Yes. Nothing is confirmed. As I said, we feel confident that Javier will be able to bring us the account.” A deep red flushed the man’s cheeks, and when he couldn’t look directly at Chastity, she turned to stare at Javier before turning back to face Buford.


“What the hell is this about? And don’t give me that bullshit line that Javier ‘has what it takes’ to run the position,” she said his name with disdain, jerking a thumb in his direction. “That’s a line of crap and we all know that. I worked all day, every day, never took one damn day of vacation time, working long nights, then took work home on weekends...making sure the work was done, and done correctly. No matter who the hell took off, I was there, working my ass off! I’ve just landed…not ‘considering’…landed…a multi-million dollar account and you have the audacity to tell me this shit?”


The room was silent after her outburst. The proverbial pen could have dropped and all would have heard it. No one said a word, the tension in the room so palpable and thick it felt like a noose around her neck.


“We have another position for you, Chastity. One which we feel you will see the merits of, given time—” William Buford was the first to speak.


“And what would that be?”


There was an ominous moment of silence, and Chase watched them exchange nervous-looking glances. There was a wealth of communication in their silent conversation, one that confused her as much as angered her.


“Mr. Baptiste wants you to work with him.”


“What?”


“As his assistant.”


“His assistant?” Chase narrowed her eyes, spearing them with her glance. She carefully took note of the nervous way William played with the tip of his gold-covered fountain pen, and the way Emily Manhattan avoided her eyes. “So, you’re telling me, I’m being demoted?”


“No! Not at all, please, Ms. Davidson, listen—”


“This is utter and complete bullshit.”


“I’m sorry that you feel that way, Chastity. You are a valuable member of this team.”


“If I’m so valuable, why am I being demoted to assistant, William? Tell me that!”


“I’m not at liberty to discuss that with you, at this time. Mr. Baptiste himself will be in contact with you—”


“I don’t think so. You can tell Mr. Baptiste he can damn well find himself another lackey. I quit.”


There was silence in the room, for long minutes. Chastity turned her head away, and fought back the burn of tears she felt threatening to fall, until she heard the scrape of chairs easing against the plush carpeting, indicating the men were leaving the table.


And that was it. No asking her to reconsider, no negotiating, nothing.


One by one, they left the room. Chastity kept her face averted until she heard the sound of the door opening and closing. When she thought they were all gone, she turned back around, and came face to face with Javier.


He smiled and leaned down, whispering in her ear, “Who got screwed now, bitch?”


She clenched her jaw and said nothing. She simply watched him turn around and saunter toward the door before he left the room.


One lone tear escaped, unnoticed, and trailed down Chastity’s cheek.



Chapter Three


“Hey lady, what’s going on? I ain’t seen you in a while.”


Chase walked into the dark, deserted bar and offered a smile to the man who stood behind the bar wiping down the counter with another towel.


“Not a whole lot, Mickey. What about you?” she asked as she walked inside, stopping when she reached the bar.


She pulled out one of the high bar stools and climbed onto the seat, placing her bag and laptop on the empty stool beside her.


“Can’t complain. Wife is out visiting her mama, got the place to myself for a change,” he answered, grinning widely and exposing a shining set of pearly-white dentures that glistened starkly against his charcoal-colored skin.


“Yeah, and what are you going to do with all that freedom?” she asked and nodded her head when he put a glass of whiskey in front of her.


“Hmmm. Don’t know. Maybe I’ll have that orgy I been thinkin’ about,” he replied and winked.
Chase offered a small smile in return and swirled the shot glass around, the amber-colored liquid swirling around the small chunks of tinkling ice.


“You gonna play with that or actually drink it?” the old man asked in a hoarse voice, thanks to years of smoking and hard drinking.


She lifted the glass to her lips, drank it in one swallow, and shut her eyes as the alcohol burned and slid down her throat.


After she placed the empty glass down, she raised her eyes and caught Mickey staring at her. A thoughtful expression lined his face.


“Fucked-up day at the office?” he asked, nodding his head toward the empty glass, silently asking if she wanted another.


She shook her head “no” to the refill.


“That’s putting it mildly.” Her laugh rang hollow even to her own ears.


“Wanna talk about it? I’ve been told I’m a good listener.”


Chase sighed and shook her head, still stunned at the turn of events over the last few hours.


“Have you ever had your dreams snatched from you, Mickey? Have you ever been this close?” she asked, putting up two fingers indicating the length span of an inch. “This close to being number one? And just when the prize is within range, after years of building to that moment, it vanishes. Poof. And you’re left freefalling, adrift, and no idea how the fuck it happened?” Chase laughed a harsh-sounding laugh, shaking her head. “Well, that’s about how I feel right now. All I wanted to be is number one…is that asking too much?” Although she voiced the question to Mickey, she knew he didn’t know the answer to the question, and was speaking to herself more than him.


“Sorry. Yeah…it’s been one of those kind of days,” she finished. “Look, I’d better go.” She glanced up at him as she spoke. . The forced smile that she had put on began to slide off her face when she noticed the intent way he was looking at her.


“Hey, why don’t you stick around a bit more? Like I said, I’m a good listener,” he offered, again, a look of worry creasing his wide forehead.


“No.” She wrinkled her nose. “I’m sure you are. I think I’ve opened up more than enough for one day. But thanks for the offer.” She smiled.


He opened his mouth to speak, but promptly closed it. “Why don’t you let me make you another drink, one of my specialties? Cures the blues…I even heard it can cure the common cold.” He laughed hoarsely.


“Does all that, huh?” She raised a brow. “No, but do you have anything good in the back? Something I can take home with me?”


The surprised look on his face almost made her laugh.


She rarely drank besides an occasional social glass and in the two years she’d known Mickey, he’d never seen her drink more than a shot or two at the most.


“Like I said…It’s been a real bitch of a day.”


He cocked his head to the side, as though considering something.


“I got just the thing for you. I ordered a few boxes of some real fancy shit last week for some rich guy giving a party: 2001 Cabernet Sauvignon—it just came in. He won’t know the difference if I take out a bottle or two.”


“For a price, right?”


“You know it, Boo.” He laughed, winking at her. His rotund, stout body ambled away toward the back and moments later he returned with a bottle of the wine, offering it for her inspection.
“Hmmm. Nice,” she murmured, taking the bottle from his hand and cradling it in her hand, the bottle neck nestled in her palm; the base, cool…soothing… against her inner arm.


“What do I owe you?” she asked, jumping from the barstool and grabbing her things from the stool beside her.


“It’s on the house.”


“Come on, what do I owe you, Mickey?” She raised incredulous eyes toward him.


“Take it and go before I change my mind.” He winked, and with a grin, she thanked him and turned to leave.


She was on her way out of the door when Mickey’s voice stopped her.


“You know, being number one can come with a high price. Some would say a harsh price. Are you ready to pay that price, Chase?”


She stared at the door, considering his question. “I’ve been ready for a long time, Mickey,” she answered without turning around.

If you enjoyed this excerpt and would like to purchase the book, please get it from your local bookstore or purchase it online at: http://www.amazon.com/Auctioned-Invitation-Odyssey-Strebor-Quickiez/dp/1593092326/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&s=books&qid=1248196905&sr=1-1

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