Holiday Treasure (Billionaire Bachelors - Book 10)

BOOK: Holiday Treasure (Billionaire Bachelors - Book 10)
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Table of Contents

Holiday Treasure

Billionaire Bachelors: Book Ten

By Melody Anne

Copyright

© 2014 Melody Anne

All rights reserved. Except for use in any review, the reproduction or utilization of this work in whole or in part in any form by any electronic, mechanical or other means, now known or hereafter invented, including xerography, photocopying and recording, or in any information storage or retrieval system, is forbidden without the written permission of the author.

This is a work of fiction. Names, characters, places and incidents are either 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.

Printed and published in the United States of America.

Published by Gossamer Publishing Company

Editing by Nicole and Alison

Dedication

This is dedicated to the Eugene Mission, which takes in those who are homeless and provides warm beds and nourishing food. There are many places like this all over the country, and many people have gotten a second chance because of them.

Note from the Author

I
love the
holiday season, love all the decorations, and especially love the happiness that’s in abundance as families come together. I wanted to write a short, sweet romance about the way a single event can change the way you think and feel about others and yourself, and that’s how
Holiday Treasure
began.

This holiday season, remember that many people are so much less fortunate than you, and that the holidays are a difficult time of year for them. You can make a child smile by picking up a gift from one of the giving trees at stores like Walmart, Shopko and Target. It costs only a few dollars, yet it can bring joy for years to come.

I lived a couple of years in the foster-care system, and I know well that receiving a special gift stays with you forever. My fondest gift was a Cabbage Patch Doll that Santa brought me on Christmas Eve when I was about seven years old. I have it to this day.

Merry Christmas to you all. May your holidays be filled with love, laughter and family!

Melody Anne

Books by Melody Anne

BILLIONAIRE BACHELORS

*The Billionaire Wins the Game - 
Amazon

*The Billionaire’s Dance
 - 
Amazon

*The Billionaire Falls
 - 
Amazon

*The Billionaire’s Marriage Proposal -
 
Amazon

*Blackmailing the Billionaire -
 
Amazon

*Runaway Heiress
 
-
 
Amazon

*The Billionaire’s Final Stand
 
-
 
Amazon

*Unexpected Treasure
 
-
 
Amazon

*Hidden Treasure
 
-
 
Amazon

*Holiday Treasure
 
-
 
Amazon

BABY FOR THE BILLIONAIRE

+The Tycoon’s Revenge
 
-
 
Amazon

+The Tycoon’s Vacation
 
-
 
Amazon

+The Tycoon’s Proposal
 
-
 
Amazon

+The Tycoon’s Secret
 
-
 
Amazon

+The Lost Tycoon
 
-
 
Amazon

RISE OF THE DARK ANGEL

-Midnight Fire – Rise of the Dark Angel – Book One
 
-
 
Amazon

-Midnight Moon – Rise of the Dark Angel – Book Two
 
-
 
Amazon

-Midnight Storm – Rise of the Dark Angel – Book Three
 
-
 
Amazon

-Midnight Eclipse – Rise of the Dark Angel – Book Four –
 
Coming Soon

SURRENDER

=Surrender – Book One
 
-
 
Amazon

=Submit – Book Two
 
-
 
Amazon

=Seduced – Book Three
 
-
 
Amazon

=Scorched – Book Four
 
-
 
Amazon

FORBIDDEN SERIES

+Bound – Book One
 
-
 
Amazon

+Broken – Book Two
 
-
 
Amazon
 
Coming December 15
th

HEROES SERIES

-Safe in his arms – Novella – Baby it’s Cold Outside Anthology- 
Amazon
 

October, 2014

-Her Unexpected Hero – Book One – 
Amazon
 -
 
Releases Feb 28
th
 
2015

-Who I am with you – Novella –
 
Amazon
 
Coming soon
-Her Hometown Hero – Book Two –
 
Releases June 2015

Prologue

T
anner storm leaned
back comfortably in his chair as his sister, Brielle, vented her wrath and her frustration.

“How are you so damn calm, Tanner?” she shouted as she paced back and forth in the front room of his plush penthouse. “The old man has ripped everything from us! Everything!”

“He can’t take what he doesn’t know about,” Tanner said, not fazed the least.

“What are you talking about? He froze all of my assets, my cards, everything. He stopped my payments on bills. I will be homeless soon and he doesn’t even care. If I don’t play his stupid little game, then I am screwed.”

What neither his father nor his siblings knew was that Tanner had his own wealth. He hadn’t been close to his family in a very long time, and he hadn’t wasted all his time away. He’d taken a different path than any of them, and he’d managed to make some incredibly good investments. But he didn’t want any of them to know.

Yes, he could help his sister out, but for some odd reason, he wasn’t sure he wanted to. Sure, their dad’s little lesson — to teach them all how to be responsible — was pretty laughable, and Tanner knew it, but unless he wanted his family to find out everything, what could he do but play along when the old man decided to put on his puppet show?

When he’d received the offer for the building from his father as a test to see whether he was worthy to be reinstated as an heir to the old guy’s empire, he’d thought it nothing but a joke — a very annoying joke — but a joke nonetheless, with no laughs anywhere in sight. But no, it was right there in black and white on his father’s letterhead.

One part of Tanner wanted to play the game, wanted to take one of his father’s projects and make it succeed. It would prove to the old man that Tanner was not someone to write off so easily. Another part of him wanted to tell his father to stick it where the sun didn’t shine.

Ah, he still hadn’t made up his mind. How was he to follow his dad’s terms and make a go of the stupid place? But when he’d checked out the property, he couldn’t help but grow excited. Even now, brick and mortar could make a rational man see dollar signs.

Looking at his sister, a woman of beauty and intelligence, and someone he’d once thought the sun rose and fell upon, made him even more determined to prove their father wrong. Somewhere along the way, his family had fallen apart.

Was what his father doing a good thing? No. Tanner wouldn’t take it that far. But still…

He tuned back in, and his sister’s ranting helped Tanner make his decision. He would accept his father’s project, dammit. He would take the failing apartment complex his father had bought and he would rip it down and put in its place something so beautiful, so amazing, so profitable, that his father would have to admit he’d been wrong about his son.

He suddenly wanted to get started. This project was stirring his blood, exciting him. It would be a lot of fun, and fun wasn’t something he’d had in a long time.

“Brielle,” he said with sudden determination, “you can pace and cry all you want, but the bottom line is that you either accept this or not. We might not always like what is thrown our way, but our character is defined by the decisions we make.” He stood up and moved toward the door with a gesture whose meaning was clear — follow me and get out.

He was fed up with his sister’s tantrum, and he really didn’t want to deal with her any longer.

“You’re a jerk, Tanner. You always have been and always will be,” she said, grabbing her purse and following him.

“Sorry, sweetheart, but I just don’t…care.”

His smile, if you could call it that, made his sister glare at him before she walked out his door.

As he shut it, the smile fell away. Yes, he
was
a jerk, someone who pushed anyone and everyone away from him. But wasn’t that the way he wanted to be? It sure as hell made his life more comfortable and efficient. Yes, he was managing quite well, he told himself as he went toward his study.

He had a project to head, and he wasn’t going to waste any more time. Once Tanner Storm set his mind to something, he didn’t stop until it was finished.

Chapter One

M
r. Storm, you
may think that you’re above the law, but I guarantee you that you are not! This is the fourth time I’ve seen you in my courtroom in the last three months. It’s become a bad habit, one that I don’t appreciate. I don’t care how much you’re paying your group of attorneys. It’s not getting you out of trouble this time.”

“Your Honor—”

The judge did not take kindly to Tanner Storm’s interruption. “Do not make me add contempt of court to your list of crimes,” Judge Kragle said. “The conditions of your building are deplorable. I’m absolutely appalled that you’d leave women and children with no working elevators, with corroding pipes, and
with no heat
. I’ve thought long and hard about your punishment—”

“Your Honor,” Tanner’s attorney broke in, “Mr. Storm has been trying to get the building condemned since he took ownership six months ago. If the tenants would take his incredibly generous offer to vacate, they could relocate to a much safer environment for their families, and he could tear the building down and start the project he has made plans for already.”

“Mr. Henry, sit down,” the judge said. “I’ve read through the files — I’m not blind. Mr. Storm has made it more than clear that he looks down his nose at this building, which he seemed to receive as a consolation prize in some family game of inheritances and trust funds. Don’t insult my intelligence by telling me that Mr. Storm has these people’s best interests at heart. The complex that he plans to build wouldn’t be even
marginally
affordable to the current tenants, who are struggling to make ends meet
without
having the added pressure of moving.” Judge Kragle’s voice was quiet but stern, especially when he wanted to emphasize any of his remarks.

Tanner’s first attorney obediently sat down, but another one rose in his place.

“You may not like our client, Your Honor, but he’s well within his legal rights,” said this attorney, a well-known shark, his demeanor confident, his suit costing more than most people paid for a car.

“No, Mr. Silt, he most certainly is
not
obeying the law. If you’ve managed to forget, the jury has already rendered its verdict, and not in your client’s favor. We are now in the
sentencing
phase — remember that? —
and
I’ve made my decision. Tanner Storm, please rise,” the judge said, a smile of pure satisfaction on his face that made Tanner more than a bit nervous, and nerves weren’t usually part of his psychic makeup. “It seems that you haven’t learned from your previous experiences standing before me, so I’ve decided to try a different penalty. You’ll spend three days in jail, beginning immediately after I’ve finished here.”

There was a murmur in the courtroom, everyone shocked that Judge Kragle would dare send Tanner Storm, the son of a billionaire, to jail. Tanner just smiled. He’d be out in six hours, max. He had nothing to worry about.

“After your jail sentence, you’ll be under house arrest in the same building your tenants are living in. You will live there for twenty-four days, starting the first day of December, and ending on Christmas Day, December Twenty-Fifth.”

The judge paused, and Tanner’s eyes widened in shock. He felt his first stirrings of real unease. There was no way that he could stay in that building for such an extended time. It didn’t even have Internet access. How was he supposed to get anything done?

“Furthermore, you aren’t allowed to do any updates, additions, construction, repairs, or alterations on your own apartment that you don’t provide for the rest of the building first,” the judge continued. “If you want to bring the comforts of home to the complex, be my guest, but
your
unit will be the last to be worked on. The conditions of the building are appalling, and it would do you some good to learn a bit of humility. Your father is a good man, a man who is obviously trying to teach you much needed respect for those around you. He has served this community well since moving here, and he has given you this opportunity in the hopes that you will do the right thing.”

“But—” Tanner was getting desperate.

“I’m not finished! You will also be required to serve one hundred and twenty hours of community service during your time.”

“I can’t serve all those hours and still do my job,” Tanner burst out, fury overcoming his usual discretion.

“I guess you’ll have to take time off from work, Mr. Storm. You will serve every single hour or I’ll impose the full sentence allowed by law — five years in a state prison.”

Judge Kragle sat back and looked Tanner in the eye. Tanner attempted to exude confidence, but the set of his incredibly high-priced attorneys’ shoulders told him more than anything that he just wasn’t getting out of this.

“Do I need to scrub some graffiti off ghetto walls?” Tanner made no attempt to hide his sarcasm. He had donated astronomical amounts of money to charity in his life; his time, however, was priceless, and he wasn’t happy about having to share it — to waste it, probably.

“No, Mr. Storm. You’ll be volunteering as Santa Claus this season.”

Tanner stared back in horror as the judge banged his gavel and the courtroom erupted. Reporters tried in vain to get a statement from him as — the grossest indignity of all — he was handcuffed and led away through a back door.

Merry freaking Christmas to him!

BOOK: Holiday Treasure (Billionaire Bachelors - Book 10)
4.91Mb size Format: txt, pdf, ePub
ads

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