Authors: Audrey Carlan
July: Calendar Girl
Text copyright © 2015 Audrey Carlan
All Rights Reserved
No part of this book may be reproduced, scanned or distributed in any printed or electronic format without expressed permission by the author.
Red Quill Editing, LLC
Senior Editor - Ekaterina Sayanova
Graphics Designer - Valerie Tibbs
July is dedicated to you,
my Puerto Rican Princess.
Thank you for making sure that the language
and mannerisms of the Puerto Rican culture
were authentic and true to the character.
Thank you for being an amazing member of my team,
support system, but most of all, for being a friend.
Blonde. Blue-eyed. Tall. Goddess. Jesus H. Christ. The universe is laughing at me as I stand stock-still and look the modelesque woman up and down. She looked like she could be Rachel’s ungodly perfect sister, and I thought Rachel was stunning. Nope. Totally wrong.
The woman stood next to a shiny, black Porsche Boxster jittering around as if incredibly anxious. Her fingers tapped a solid beat against the sign she held up with my name on it. A not-so-subtle shift from one sky-high stiletto to the other only added to the fierceness rolling off her in waves. Then again, that could’ve been the Miami heat. Good Lord, it was sweltering, yet this woman was perfectly put together, as if she’d walked right out of a rock video. Skinny jeans so tight I could see the nice curve of her booty. Her tank top had me drooling, complete with a monogram across a set of well-endowed tits that said
Hug Me and Die
. There were at least ten necklaces of varying beads, lengths, and sizes wrapped around the smooth column of her neck. She had kick-ass, rock-star hair, pulled back into a complex system of twists and loose pieces that looked rocker-chic.
After what felt like minutes of my inspection, she fixed her steel-blue gaze on me. A puff of air left her lungs as she tossed the cardboard in the car window and sauntered over. She scanned me from my flowing black locks, over my sundress and to the simple flats I wore on two big feet. “This will never do.” She shook her head with exasperation. “Come on, time is money,” came the flippant retort over her shoulder. The trunk popped open, and I tossed my suitcase in.
“I’m Mia by the way,” I held out my hand as she slid on a pair of ultra-cool aviators, turned her head and looked at me over the top of them.
“I know who you are. I’m the one that chose you.” Her tone held a twinge of distaste as she started the car and hit the gas, not even waiting for me to get the seatbelt fastened. My body jolted forward, and I braced on the smooth leather dash.
“Did I do something to piss you off?” I readjusted the belt and watched her profile.
Her breath came out in a long, slow exhale before she shook her head. “No,” she groaned. “I’m sorry. Anton pissed me off. I was in the middle of something big when he told me to come get you because
needed our driver so
could fuck a couple groupies in the back of the Escalade.”
I cringed. Great, sounds like my new boss for the month was a slimy douche.
Not another one.
She took a quick right turn onto the freeway. “Can we start over?” Her voice now held sincerity and apology. “I’m Heather Renée, by the way, personal assistant to Anton Santiago. Hottest hip-hop artist in the nation.”
“Is that right?” Wow. I hadn’t realized he was that big-time. I don’t usually listen to much hip-hop. More of an alternative and rock chick.
Heather nodded. “Yep, every album he’s done has gone platinum. He’s the “It” boy in Hip Hop and good grief does he know it.” She grinned. “Anton wants to meet you right away, but you can’t wear that.” Her gaze moved down to the plain green sundress I’d worn. It highlighted my eyes and made my hair look phenomenal. Plus, it was comfortable to travel in.
“Why not?” I tugged at the hem of the dress suddenly feeling self-conscious.
“Anton is expecting a bombshell model with curves that don’t quit.” Once more her eyes ran over my outfit. “You’ve got the curves going for you, but that dress is too Sandra Bullock girl next door. You’ll need to wear one of the outfits I bought for you. At the house, you’ve got a closet full of clothes waiting. Wear them. He’ll expect you to look like eye candy at all times.”
Scowling, I focused my attention outside as the Porsche cruised Ocean Drive. The art deco buildings overlooking the Atlantic slid by over an enormous stretch of land.
“So, there’s water on both sides?” I noticed when we had passed over one of the main bridges.
Heather made a hand gesture. “Biscayne Bay Lagoon, and the Atlantic sit on both sides of the strip. As you can see,”—she pointed up and over to sets of tall buildings—“most of these are hotels, like the Colony Hotel and other iconic landmarks. Then you have the folks”—her eyebrows waggled—“that can afford to live here, like Anton.”
Scanning each building as the Porsche jetted down the road, the wind blowing through the windows ruffling my hair, I noted the myriad of rich colors in palettes I didn’t often see. In Vegas, everything seems brown or terracotta-colored. In LA, you’ve got everything from brilliant white to a variety of muted tones that fit with the California vibe. Here though, colors seemed to burst out in pale sunny oranges, blues, and pinks mixed with white.
“See all these places...” She pointed out the businesses such as the Colony Hotel and Boulevard Hotel with a whisk of her hand into the flowing wind. I nodded and stretched over her form to see better. “...they all light up in neon colors at night. Kind of like in Vegas.”
Vegas. I’m sure my eyes widened as a steady thud picked up in my chest. A pang of need suddenly coiled around my heart. I needed to call Maddy and Ginelle. Man, Gin would be so pissed when I tell her what happened in Washington, DC. Maybe I could get away with never bringing it up? That idea certainly had some serious merit. “That’s so cool. I’m originally from Vegas so it will be nice to see the buildings lit up.” I sat back in my seat and enjoyed the breeze, allowing the tension I’d picked up from DC and Boston when I had to leave Rachel and Mason behind, to dissipate.
Fumbling, I pulled out my phone and turned it on. Several pings rang out. I scanned them, a message from Rachel telling me to text when I’d arrived. A message from Tai asking if the new client was a gentleman or if he needed to get on a plane again. And a text from Ginelle.
This was not good.
My stomach felt like a pit the size of the Grand Canyon, a never-ending cavern of dread filling the wide open space.
To: Mia Saunders
You were attacked? In the hospital? Why the fuck did I have to hear about it in a text from Tai’s brother! If you aren’t already dead I’m so going to kill you!
Sucking in a breath between my teeth I typed out a reply.
From: Mia Saunders
Just a little mishap. No big deal. Totally fine. Don’t worry about me. I’ll call you later when I get settled with the Latin Lov-ah.
To: Mia Saunders
Latin Lov-ah? No shit? He’s like the biggest thing in hip hop and habanero hot!
From: Mia Saunders
I heard he’s douchey.
To: Mia Saunders
That man can douche me any time…preferably with his tongue!
From: Mia Saunders
To: Mia Saunders
I’d like to be the rice and beans on the side of his entre. The churro to end his meal. The flaming flan he blows on and licks clean.
From: Mia Saunders
Stop! Crazy whore. Jeez. You make me look like a fucking saint.
To: Mia Saunders
At least I know if I’m going to hell you’ll be right there giving me a lift!
I laughed out loud as Heather said, “Work?” while gesturing toward my phone. I hit a button and put it on silent before sliding it into my purse.
“Sorry. Best friend. Checking in.” I sighed and flicked my hair over one shoulder. The heat was getting to me. Leaning over I adjusted the air vent to blast me with icy cold goodness. Ah, better. Obviously Heather wasn’t worried about wasting the cool air by also having the windows down.
“You close?” Her lips pursed together as she turned into an underground parking garage.
My brows furrowed. What part of ‘best friend’ did she not hear? “Yep. Close as you can get. Known one another forever.”
She huffed, and slammed the car into park. “You’re lucky. I don’t have any friends.” Her words jolted through me like an electric shock.
“What do you mean? Everyone has friends.”
Heather shook her head. “Not me. Too much work to do to cultivate relationships. Anton has to be the best. Even if I’m just his PA, I need to rock the house. Besides, my education is in business management. One day maybe I’ll be making the decisions for an artist. If I want my dreams to come true, I have to work hard.”
“Guess so.” I shrugged and followed her as she walked briskly towards an elevator, passing a line of seriously impressive luxury cars.
“Damn,” I whispered under my breath, taking in the Mercedes, Range Rover, Escalade, BMW, Bentley, Ferrari and several other European cars I didn’t get to check out. What I did see, the items that stopped me in my tracks, had me glued to the concrete, were the six hottest, sex on wheels I’d ever seen.
BMW HP2 Sport - white with blue rims and an 1170 engine. I might have wet myself at that point. Then there was an MV Agusta F4 1000 the only bike in the world to have a radial valved engine. I twisted around, let go of the handle on my suitcase and traced the third bike’s sexy as fuck seat. The Icon Sheene all black with shiny chrome. I caressed it the way a lover would, with one finger tip, tracing its rounded curves and bold edge design. This bike cost over a hundred and fifty thousand dollars!
Fuck me. No really, I need to fuck on this bike.
Air, I needed air! I gasped and crouched down, still not capable of taking my eyes off the pretty.
Sweet baby, come to Mama
. I could happily live in this garage, just staring at the bikes of my dreams.
“Um, hello? Earth to Mia? What the hell are you doing?”
Her voice came through, but I didn’t answer. It was like a pesky mosquito that no matter how many times you swatted it away it kept coming back.
I slowly stood, sucked in a replenishing breath, and scanned down the line once more. An orange and black sick, tricked out KTM Super Duke was hanging out at the back of the line. Probably the most affordable of the lot, definitely on my list of amazing bikes I might one day be able to afford. “Whose bikes are these?” I asked, my voice having dropped an octave, in awe at the pure hot sex on two wheels.
“Anton’s. This is his building. His music studio is here, dance club, gym, and of course, the Penthouse is his home. The rest of his team each have an apartment in the building as well. You’ve even got your own loft apartment we use for visiting celebrities, or folks who are working on one of his albums.
“Does he ride the bikes?”
She grinned. “Bike enthusiast, huh?”
“You could say that.” I had to force the words out, even though I hadn’t yet ripped my gaze from the line of man-made beauty.
“Maybe he’ll take you for a ride.”
That got my attention. “A ride.” She nodded, her smile so pretty it could be on advertisements selling products across the globe. “Fuck that. I don’t ride bitch, honey; I drive.”
Heather gave me all of fifteen minutes to freshen up before she was going to take me down to meet Anton. I jumped in the shower, washed off the day’s travel grime, and spotted the outfit she’d laid out. Outfit was too strong a description. What was sitting on the bed for me was a scrap of fabric, a pair of booty shorts and stilettos that crisscrossed up the entire length of my calf to the knee. I slid on the shorts and checked the hemline in the mirror. A swath of ass cheek was clearly visible to any discerning eye. Fuck me. Turning to the front, the shorts were cut so high the lining of the pocket stuck out the bottom. The tank was cute. It was blousy, tied together by two thin ribbons at each shoulder. Closing my eyes I counted to ten and gave myself a pep talk.