INEVITABLE: An Alpha Bad Boy Contemporary Romance Book

BOOK: INEVITABLE: An Alpha Bad Boy Contemporary Romance Book
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Inevitable

Copyright © 2016 by E. Domino. All rights reserved
.

 

This is a work of fiction. Names, characters, businesses, places, events and incidents are either the products of the author’s imagination or used in a fictitious manner. Any resemblance to actual persons, living or dead, or actual events is purely coincidental.

 





 

JACKIE

 

I stared out the window as the plane made its descent into New Orleans. I sighed and leaned into the window
.
Home at las
t
. The low wet land braided together with the swamps, looking like giant green snakes from this altitude. The brown knots in between looked like the rough bumps on the back of a gator, but I know that they’re the small towns that lay nestled between the swamps. Those were the towns that I grew up knowing like the back of my hand. I never remember just how much I miss it all until I see it again.

I tapped a nearby screen to check for any missed messages. I’d missed two calls from my publicist, one from my agent and one from my assistant. With a heavy sigh I called Wayne back when we landed. He’s been my publicist for two years and we usually get along fine. But today I really wasn’t in the mood to deal with him. If I didn’t call him however, he’d just call me back until I did. He’s persistent like that and he’s not happy with me right now. He thought I should stay in L.A. and face the fire storm…but I just didn’t have the energy for it. I also knew from history that the more I tried to tell the truth about what happened, the more they would twist it, misquote me and have me looking like the bad guy in the end.

“Hi Wayne it’s me. I’m sorry I missed your call. I was in the air.”

He didn’t waste time with pleasantries. He launched right into his tirade. “I was approached by E today. They wanted a statement about whether or not you’ll be back for season two. The vast majority of fans are calling for them to dump Matt now. But mostly they’re curious whether or not there will eve
n
b
e
a second season.”

“And what did you tell them?”

“I don’t know what to tell them because you high-tailed it out of here. Maybe if you would have stuck around…”

“And then what, Wayne? If I would have stuck around those microphones and cameras would be in my face every minute. I can’t go to the damn coffee shop in the lobby of my own apartment building in peace!”

“Then answer the question for me, Jackie…what is your plan? There are a lot of people concerned about whether or not they’ll still have a job come June when they’re ready to start shooting season two and it all hinges on you. The studio won’t say yes with someone else.”

“I’m sorry about that, Wayne. I really am. I don’t want anyone to be out of work because of me…but how am I supposed to work with him, and all of them…all of the women he’s been fucking behind my back? I’m supposed to be able to walk on that set and act like things are okay?” I let out a breath I didn’t know I was holding.

“Yes Jackie, that’s why they call it acting, you’re an amazing actress. You could pull it off without a hitch.”

“And die a little more inside every day as I do,” I told him. “How is the scum bag holding up under fire anyway?”

Wayne chuckled. “He’s practically barricaded himself in the Hills. He’s not doing interviews nor is he responding to his own publicist’s calls.” Wayne knew first-hand what was going on with Matt’s publicist because she happened to be his business partner. I feel sorry for her. Matt has caused a huge mess for her to try and smooth over. “And Jackie.... the show’s ratings were at an all-time low for the season finale and social media is tearing him up. Also…” he hesitated.

“And what, Wayne?”

“They’re not saying nice things about you either.”

“Like what?”

“Jackie…”

“What are they saying?”

He sighed. “They’re mostly saying that you should have known. Matt supposedly said you were cheating on him also and they’re not being nice about your history.”

I groaned. I hated to admit it, but they were right about my history. Since I came to Hollywood right after college, I haven’t had one sincere relationship. I’m beginning to believe that along with fake boobs and butts and calves, they all have fake hearts as well. I’m not perfect, but I never once cheated. I’m loyal to a fault and normally, I’m the one that ends up raked across the hot coals. Bloody hell.

“I’ll call you soon, Wayne. I promise. I had to get out of the city for at least a few days to clear my head. When I make a decision, you’ll be the first to know.”

“Okay Jackie…but please don’t take too long. The crocs are banging at my door.”

“See, that’s exactly why I came home to Louisiana…there aren’t an
y
croc
s
in the bayou.”

Wayne chuckled. “Yeah honey, then watch out for those gators. I love you.”

“I love you too.” I hung up as the pilot began his welcome speech. My body was here but my mind was there. Images of the past skated across my mind.

Matt Bentley and I are the “stars” of a show called Straight Forward. This first season had gained a lot of momentum and had become an overnight sensation. It’s about a girl and guy who work on opposite sides of a campaign…I play the Republican Aide and Matt plays the Aide for the Democratic Party. There’s a lot of sexual tension and energy between us on the show and we were both feeling it outside of production as well.

We started dating a month after we started shooting. We quickly became Hollywood’s “Hottest New Couple” according to every tabloid and major magazine and news publication. After six months of being together, I thought I was falling in love. He really presented himself as the perfect guy…but I’d forgotten to take into account just what a damn good actor he really was.

I’d been completely faithful to Matt and I was under the assumption he was being faithful to me as well. When the onset makeup artist came to me one day and told me she’d been having a fling with him…I called her a liar - to her face. I completely stuck up for him. That was what I thought a faithful girlfriend was supposed to do.  All I really did was piss her off enough to go to the tabloids…and that brought the
m
al
l
crawling out of the woodwork.

One popular internet tabloid that was armed with pictures estimated that the women Matt had fucked in the six months he and I were together stood at six. Those were only the ones willing to come forward. At least five of those women work on the show. One of them is an Executive Producer whose romp with Matt was exposed by her husband. From her he worked all the way down to the girl who brings me my tea on set…Matt had fucked them all, behind my back.

The morning the news broke to the public was our last day of production. Getting through taping that day was the hardest thing I’d ever had to do. Not only was my heart broken, but I looked like a complete and utter fool. Wayne’s exact words to me were,
“You have to stay and weather the storm or it will get out of hand.”

My words to him were, “It’s not my storm to weather. Matt’s the hurricane that blew in and caused all of the damage. Let him be in charge of clean-up.”

I grabbed my carry-on out of the overhead, slipped on my gray fedora and Jackie O sunglasses and followed the first class attendant off the plane. Once I exited the tarmac I entered through the sliding double doors of Louis Armstrong Airport.

As I headed towards the baggage claim I was relieved to see there were no reporters out. I hoped the hat and glasses would help me remain incognito to any potential fans. I wasn’t up for even signing a simple autograph today. I was just so tired of it all.

I hauled my two heavy bags off the turn style and was about to shove them through the double doors when I heard my name, “Miss Jacqueline,” I froze. Damn, they found me! I braced myself for the onslaught of flashing lights and plastered a smile as I turned. Richard, my parent’s driver. I guess I should count myself lucky that they remembered to send him. I suppose Daddy was too busy at his desk and Mama planning some charity event to come and get me themselves. Honestly, I was just relieved to see a familiar warm face.

“Hi Richard, you recognized me!”

His weathered face pulled up into a dazzling grin. “Hello Miss Jacqueline. Yes, you’ve been wearing that same hat with your…disguise, for years now.”

I grinned. It was my favorite hat. It was out of style now and frayed around the edges. I wouldn’t dare wear it out in public in Hollywood, but it worked great for hiding my identity…at least from everyone but Richard. “Let me get those bags for you.”

“Thank you, Richard.”

He pulled up the handle on each bag and rolled them out the doors as I followed. As soon as the big, sliding glass doors closed behind me I was encased in the thick, humid air. It was another part of home that I had missed, strangely enough. Los Angeles is warm, but too dry for my liking most of the time.

Richard loaded the bags in the trunk and then held the door open for me. I slid into the front passenger seat of Daddy’s BMW. Daddy loved his cars. If someone drew a graph of his greatest loves of all time…I daresay I’d come in a few points behind them.

Richard made small talk occasionally on the way home, but for the most part he left me alone with my thoughts. He’d known me since I was a little girl. I appreciate that he knew me well enough to sense the melancholy mood.

I watched out the window as rows of homes and shopping centers disappeared behind us and we took the long bridge out towards the estate. The water level was low and the new bridge towered above it. I shuddered at the memory of being a little girl during Katrina and watching on television as the old bridge was swallowed whole with a large population of New Orleans’ citizens on top of it in their vehicles. Our house was built up on top of a four foot concrete slab. It had been standing for generations and not even Katrina had taken it down.

As we turned off of the main road and onto the long driveway I listened to the familiar crunch of the oyster shell gravel underneath the tires and when I stepped out of the car and breathed in the scent of the magnolia blossoms I felt my stress already beginning to ebb away slightly, but there was still my father to contend with.    

***

Richard got my bags out of the trunk and followed me up to the broad porch. I’d always found it a bit too extravagant, but that’s the way it’s been for hundreds of years. My friends used to call my house “Tara” when we were growing up. They thought it was reminiscent of the plantation on Gone with the Wind. I was actually embarrassed sometimes that we had so much while others around us seemed to have so little.

After the hurricane my mother organized one drive after the other…food, clothes, shelter. I always wondered why we had this giant house with an entire empty wing and we didn’t offer to take anyone in. I’d been way too intimidated by my father in those days to ask, however…as I still am today. At least my mother always tried to do her part to give back...even if some of it was for show.

In spite of everything though it was still my home and like Scarlett O’Hara, I still carried it in my blood when I was away. I stood there now noticing what had changed since I’d been home last, and reveling in what had stayed the same. The paint on the shutters that bordered the dozen or so windows on the front of the house was new. For years it had been a light teal color. My mother always hated it but my father loved it because that was the color that his mother had chosen for them. My mother must have finally won that argument. The shutters were now a forest green color as was the trim around the windows. It actually looked really nice and offset the starch white of the rest of the house and the giant pillars in front nicely.

The massive wooden doors that led inside the house had been painted to match the shutters and Richard was standing there with them open now, waiting for me. I sucked in one last lungful of the rich fragrance wafting in out of the cane fields and followed him inside. As soon as I stepped onto the shiny hard wood floor of the formal entryway and pulled off my hat, my mother flitted in the room like an agitated butterfly.

She smiled when she saw me and put her hand over the mouthpiece of the phone in her hand. “There she is! There’s my giiiiirlllll!” She kissed me on the cheek as if it had just been yesterday since she saw me.

“I’m sorry dear but I have to get this straightened out. The florist wants to send eight hundred rhododendrons for my benefit on Friday night. What am I supposed to do with eigh
t
hundre
d
rhododendrons?” I had no idea and I said so.

She laughed and kissed my other cheek. “Welcome home sweetheart. Make yourself comfortable and I’ll be with you soon.”  

I watched her make her way towards the sun room. It was her unofficial “office.” I shook my head and turned back towards Richard.

“Would you like me to take the bags up to your room Miss Jacqueline?”

“Uhmm...” I watched him start up the winding staircase with the heavy bags. I thought about offering to help, but I knew he wouldn’t accept it from me. Richard was old school and I was one of the ladies of the house. He’d drag them up on his knees before he’d let me do it.  Instead of following after him I headed for the sitting room.

I was hoping to find my father or my sister there. I found it devoid of humans, but also redecorated to a tee since my last visit. The cushions on the new white couch were so overstuffed it looked like a person might just sink down into them and drown in silk. The artwork on the walls was new and I thought I recognized a few of them as my mother’s pieces. That surprised me because she used to always say she was “only dabbling” when people would tell her how good her landscapes were. Daddy was the bread winner and what mother did was always termed, “dabbling.”

BOOK: INEVITABLE: An Alpha Bad Boy Contemporary Romance Book
9.35Mb size Format: txt, pdf, ePub
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