Authors: Candy Caine
Because of You
Defying her parents by marrying Adam, a white man, Jill Stone believed love could conquer all. And throughout Adam’s rise as an executive in a large New York advertising agency, Jill bottled up her unhappiness about his long hours and many trips out of town. But when their sizzling love life fizzled, she couldn’t keep quiet anymore. She wanted him home. More. And in her bed.
Adam recognized his marriage was going down the tubes, but couldn’t exorcise the demons of Jill’s parents thinking he wasn’t good enough for her, and the fear that he might somehow end up a failure like his father. He had to succeed. At all costs. To compound his problems, his latest boss was a gorgeous blonde who took one look at Adam’s buff, six foot-two body and didn’t make any bones about wanting him. Anyway she could get him.
ALSO BY CANDY CAINE
Christmas With A Stranger
Never is Not Forever
Love With A Younger Man
The Reconstruction of Carla Millhouse
It’s Love That Really Counts
PRAISE FOR CANDY CAINE
The Reconstruction of Carla Millhouse
“What would you do and how far would you go for love? With great wit, twists and turns, a cast of well- crafted characters you’ll want to cheer for, (and some you won’t), Candy Caine’s delightful story asks and answers this age-old question.”
—Niambi Brown Davis, Author of
The Reconstruction of Carla Millhouse
A sexy, fabulous read. I couldn’t put it down. I was disappointed that the book ended when it did. I could have read on.”
—Bertrice Small, Best-selling author of
Arrow Publications, LLC
Copyright © 2013 Candy Caine. All rights reserved. Except for use in any review, no portion of this book may be reproduced or transmitted in any form or by any means, without the express written permission of Arrow Publications.
Arrow Publications, LLC
20411 Sawgrass Drive
Montgomery Village, MD 20886
All names, characters and incidents featured in this publication are imaginary. Any resemblance to actual persons (living or dead) is coincidental. They are not inspired even distantly by any individual or incident known or unknown to the author.
Author recognizes that all trademarked items mentioned in the book belong to the trademark holders of said items.
The shifting of her husband’s body on the mattress woke Jill Stone in time to catch him getting out of bed. It was her first Saturday off from work in months and she’d hoped they’d be spending it together.
“Come back to bed soon,” she whispered, focusing on his delectable tight ass as he walked with nonchalant grace toward the bathroom. Jill was definitely ready for some good morning loving.
Adam stopped and turned to face her. She felt the heat in her body rise as she took in his enticing morning erection. “Can’t. I’m heading into the office today.”
Jill groaned disappointedly. “Not today of all days.”
“Why not? Somebody’s got to make a decent living.”
That remark wounded Jill on so many levels. The very fact that Adam chose to work rather than spend some quality time with her was bad enough. But his insinuation that she didn’t help pull her own weight made her feel insignificant.
All remnants of sleep had been swept away and Jill was now wide awake—and steaming. Her amber-colored eyes narrowed. “That’s an unfair remark.”
“Really? Do you honestly think we could survive on your salary alone?”
“I don’t want to get into an argument. All I want is for us to do something
for a change.”
“Didn’t we sleep together last night?”
“If you meant in the same bed, yeah,” she said with cold sarcasm.
Adam ignored what she’d said. “Why wouldn’t I go into work today?”
“Because it’s Saturday and the first one that I have off in such a long time. Most people don’t work on Saturday unless they really have to. And I doubt you really have to—”
Adam thrust out his hand to stop her. “Please don’t start that tired old argument with me today, Jill. I’m not in the mood to hear how unfulfilled you feel.”
“It wasn’t my intention to argue.” Jill’s voice was hoarse with frustration. “All I want is for us to have a modicum of a life together. With me here and you always at the office, we have hardly a marriage, let alone a life.”
“You know I’m doing this for us—”
“Do I? That argument’s just as old and worn-out. Maybe it sufficed early in our marriage when you had just started your job and you felt you had to prove yourself, but now that you’ve accomplished so much…I don’t think so.”
Jill watched the expression on Adam’s handsome face quickly change from annoyance to anger. That he didn’t know she’d feel this way was simply mind-boggling. And how long did he actually think the
line would make everything all right? Perhaps if she were a naïve child. However, she was a grown woman with real needs and desires.
“I don’t believe you just said that, Jill,” Adam replied, a critical tone to his voice.
“Why not? You’re not married to me anymore. I’ve been replaced by your precious advertising accounts.”
Adam stiffened as if Jill had struck him and shot her one last penetrating icy-blue look before finally entering the bathroom.
Jill watched him disappear behind the door and lay back down. As tears welled in her eyes, she felt irritated and unhappy with herself for allowing Adam to draw her into another argument. She didn’t want to cry and certainly didn’t want Adam to see her tears. She was done crying over him and the loneliness he left her to suffice as a companion during all the long, empty evenings. He just didn’t comprehend how she felt, and she saw no way to reach him. They just went round and round on a merry-go-round of miscommunication.
At least she knew that it was his work and not another woman that kept him from her. Perhaps if it were another woman, she could fight her…
Adam walked out of the bathroom and picked up the argument where they’d left off. “You’re acting ridiculous,” he said in a tone one would use when speaking to a child.
“I’m ridiculous?” His remark grated on her, causing her anger to bubble once more to the surface.
“Can’t you, for just one moment, look at things through my eyes? Put yourself in my shoes and take a real good look around you. How do you think we’ve managed to buy all this? It’s because of my dedication to my work and the solid hours I give to it,” Adam said, as he swept his hand around him for emphasis before thumping his thumb against his chest. “
worked my ass off to give you all this.”
However, it was the expression on his face that said it all. The tightening of his jaw and the faint pulse to the nerve on the side of his forehead silently shouted out his anger with her selfish attitude. His narrowed blue eyes glared at her like bits of stone. She knew that the conversation was over. Nothing was ever discussed beyond this point. Whenever Adam felt threatened, he shut down, ending any further discussion. By doing so, they never resolved anything and merely left another gaping wound in their marriage. One day they’d run out of Band-Aids to cover those open sores.
“What is it
?” he said through perfect, white, clenched teeth.
Realizing it would be futile to try to reach him at this point, Jill murmured, “Never mind.”
She slipped back down into the bed and turned over to face the wall. Tears of frustration and anger began to refill her eyes. She refused to let him see how upset she truly was.
Jill listened as he put on his shoes and left the room. Then several minutes later, she heard the front door open and close, followed by the sound of his car engine starting. Adam was gone. Perhaps he’d be home around dinnertime—perhaps not. At that moment, Jill hardly cared. She was too miserable.
As she lay there sobbing in the silence of her bedroom, Jill thought back to how things used to be in the early years of their marriage. It seemed like so long ago, but it had only been eight years.
She and Adam, like any other newly married couple, had been terribly in love and practically inseparable. It was as if they could never get enough of each other. She would be at her teller’s job at the bank watching the clock with one eye and counting the minutes until she could rush home to be enfolded in his loving arms. She’d always find him there waiting to make love to her. Half the time, they hardly made it to the bedroom. Where had all that love and passion gone?
Jill hugged herself as the memory of years past gently drifted through her mind…
They were celebrating their one-month anniversary of being together
Adam had gotten home first and had been waiting for her. He opened the door to their apartment and just seeing him standing there caused a surge of excitement to rush through her. As he swept her into his arms, his nearness made her senses spin. And when his lips hungrily covered hers, she felt a delicious shudder heat her body. Her purse fell to the floor, quickly followed by her coat.
His lips seared a path down her neck and shoulders, eliciting a low moan from her. She eagerly responded with her own feverish kisses. Her restless hands, needing to touch him, threaded their fingers through his thick, blond hair and slipped under his shirt, feeling the smooth texture of his hard back.
Adam had opened her blouse and kissed the swells of her breasts. Hungrily, he reclaimed her mouth. They began to slowly make their way to the bedroom. Clothing dropped as they kissed and bumped their way there. By the time they fell onto the bed with Adam straddling her, they were naked. Jill loved that feeling of skin on skin and had insufficient words to describe what it did to her.
Jill was halfway to heaven by the time Adam entered her. With their hearts hammering in their chests almost beating as one, a sense of urgency dictated their movement. Within moments, Jill's world exploded into a myriad of vibrant colors as noises of pleasure filled the room.
The memory faded and tears of disappointment filled Jill's eyes as she wondered once more, where had all that passion gone?
Jill traced her unhappiness back to that one day following their honeymoon when Adam had gotten out of bed and decided to become God’s gift to advertising. He set his sights on becoming his agency’s director of client services, which was the person in charge of the entire account service team. From that day on, he was transformed into a workaholic.
The effort paid off for him, which she couldn't deny. He worked hard and in short time became an account director, responsible for two important accounts. Six months later, two more accounts were added. Within three years, he held the title of group account director and was responsible for a group of accounts and had other account directors working under him.
The bonuses and commissions he made were intoxicating, but like any drug, they only served to whet his appetite. He desired to sell more. And like any drug, the more money he made, the more he wanted.
At first Jill thought it was all so very wonderful. She couldn’t be any more proud of, and happy for, Adam. They were able to move to the suburbs and buy a beautiful home, one that she’d hoped to fill with children. She also thought that once Adam had established himself, he’d have more time to spend at home and enjoy the fruits of his labor. However, none of this had ever happened.
The reason was simple. Adam was determined to become the director of client services, and because of this, he worked even harder, putting in longer hours at the office. He stopped taking vacations and virtually any time off. Jill couldn’t remember the last time they’d spent two consecutive days together.
Having been replaced by his new mistress, work, Jill tried to tell him how lonely she felt. Either her complaint fell on deaf ears or Adam was too consumed by his job to listen. Perhaps he was too selfish to place her needs above his. Whatever the reason, this discussion would nearly always lead to an argument.
Jill assumed this drive to succeed, which propelled Adam to work incessantly, had to do with his dad being an alcoholic who wasn’t able to hold a job very long. That would explain Adam’s need to achieve. He feared becoming like his father. And he certainly proved her parents wrong.
Her parents, middle-class African Americans, looked down on Adam and his family. To them, he was white trash who’d most likely end up no better than his father. They wanted her to marry a black man and had had several picked out for her. But a handsome, blond, blue-eyed Teutonic god of a man named Adam had come into her life and simply swept her off her feet. And the rest, as they say, was history.
Adam’s solution for her loneliness was far from what Jill had envisioned or desired. He suggested she find a hobby to fill her time. However, she didn’t want or need a hobby. What she needed was a full-time husband who cared about her and her happiness. One who was at home more than doing God-knows-what at work.
Along with everything else, their once wonderful sexual relationship had gone missing. When Adam came home from work he was usually way too tired to even think about being intimate. It would seem that his career was far more important to him than Jill. It hadn’t been long before she grew to hate his job and its intrusion on their lives.