Lick & Devour (Monster Novelette)

BOOK: Lick & Devour (Monster Novelette)
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Lick & Devour

(A Monster Novelette)

 

 

Copyright © 2015 Francette.Phal

EBOOK EDITION

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.

 

 

 

 

Dedicated to:

 

You.

 

Books by Francette Phal

 

Standalones:

Monster

Lick & Devour (Monster Novelette)

The Concubine; Letters to my king

 

The Butcher Series:

Flawed (The Butcher series, Book 1)

 

The Bet Series:

Beautiful Disaster (The Bet, Book 1)

Redemption (The Bet, Book 2)

Undone (The Bet Book 3)

 

 

 

R
eaching onto the dashboard of her car, Eden Mercer reset the navigation system for what was the umpteenth time since embarking on her journey. The system gave a half a second beep before the screen faded to black.

 

"Useless piece of shit," she cursed under her breath. "Hurry the hell up!" Keeping her heeled foot on the gas pedal she continued at a steady pace down the heavily wooded road which would've been pretty ominous had it been later in the evening as some of her appointments tended to be. She couldn't believe she was running this late, but then again, considering how her day started, it wasn't surprising that it would continue on this downtrend. While waiting for the GPS system to load up again, her mind drifted to this morning and the events that led up to her being forty five minutes late to this home showing.

 

She actually woke up in a really good mood this morning, with the full expectation of seeing her lover again, after the excruciatingly long two weeks he'd been away. He was scheduled to arrive later in the afternoon and Eden had specifically rearranged her schedule just so she could come home and see him. She'd barely gotten any sleep the night before because of her excitement. But that early morning joy she'd woken up with had taken a nose dive when Dominic had called.

 

He was "sorry" he'd said. His trip was unfortunately going to be longer than expected.

 

"How long?" She'd asked, on the verge of tears. Knees weak from devastation she fell bonelessly on their shared bed. 

 

"Two weeks, my pet." Not even the softly murmured two last words that were now a cherished endearment could allay her disappointment. "Just two more weeks and I'll be home with you and Liam." He'd tried to reassure but it only made it that much worse. Made Eden ache that much harder.  "How is our son?" It was a distraction that she grabbed on to, even while her mind struggled with the fact that he wouldn't be coming home today. He wasn't sitting on his private jet right this minute flying back to her and Liam. He was instead still in Hong Kong.

 

Two weeks he'd been away and now he wouldn’t return for another two weeks. Nearly a month without him, without his touch, without his kiss. Without the warmth of the body she's come to crave next hers, or on top of hers, the heavy weight of it, the hard, masculine ridges of sinew moving with seamless virility inside her soft, feminine core. How could she sustain another two weeks without being held in his arms, as he whispered sweet nothings in her ear while they laid in bed? All those thoughts and so many more ricocheted around Eden's mind while she told him about their son.

 

After that, it seemed her day had chosen to go in the direction of Eden's mood. It'd been hard to leave Liam because he'd been extremely clingy, crying the same tears Eden had silently shed herself in the shower just before coming down stairs. Her heart broke for him because she knew he missed his father. They'd gotten so close over the last year, Dominic doing nearly everything with him that Eden wasn't absolutely needed for. Putting Liam to bed was probably Eden's favorite part of watching Dominic bond with his son. The rocking chair in Liam's nursery was where they typically sat, after Liam was showered and freshly dressed in his pajamas. While rocking his son, Dominic would tell him stories in that soothing baritone of his until Liam drifted to sleep. It was a routine they've all come know, to cherish, to love, and Eden's motherly instinct suspected that Liam sorely missed it. It didn't help that his mother had to go away and leave him too. Thankfully, Jacqueline, the housekeeper who'd been with Dominic since even before Eden married him five years ago, was able to distract him long enough for Eden to run out of the house.

 

She stopped by her favorite coffee shop just minutes away from her job to grab a large cup of coffee to cheer herself up, but ended up spilling it all over herself the minute she stepped outside and bumped into a pedestrian. With a scalded chest, throbbing burn marks on her hands and decorated in coffee stains, Eden walked into Archer Realty with a dark cloud over her head. Ignoring the looks she received from nearly everyone in the large, open office space, she walked to her cubicle with as much grace as she could muster to grab the extra set of clothes from the bottom draw of her filling cabinet that she kept for emergencies like this. When she returned, it was to the frenzy of the entire staff panicking because some computer system error had screwed up clients deadlines. A call to IT told them all it would take a day or two to fix the error; until then they had to track down all their paperwork the old fashion way and make the necessary calls.

 

It was one thing after another after that. Eden was asked to take a set of appointments from another agent who'd called in sick last minute. The upside to that was she could now fill the blocked three hours that she'd reserved for Dominic's homecoming with these last minute showings. She'd skipped out on lunch because she was completely swamped. Running from one side of the city to the other just to meet her clients on time, didn't afford her a second to stop and grab something on the go. She did however have a granola bar in her glove compartment that would hold her over for a bit. It was while reaching for that granola bar that she got pulled over.

 

Twenty minutes she sat on the side of the road while the officer checked her license and registration. Two hundred and thirty dollars he fined her for supposedly rolling through a stop sign. Pissed couldn't even begin to describe Eden's sour mood and to top it all off, she was now late in meeting her next client. Apoplectic was how she felt when the GPS system began spazzing out on her. For some godforsaken reason it took her off the interstate once she'd paid the toll and had brought her to street roads. Every time she tried to navigate it would lead her to streets that weren't even there. Which was how she found herself in this current predicament. She ordinarily mapped out her routes and the properties in advance before she set out to meet her clients for a showing, but because this was one of Allison's clients, Eden hadn't had time to do much research.

 

The three beeps from the dashboard signaled that that the GPS system was back on. She pressed the microphone button on the console and slowly said the address of her destination when prompted by the automated voice.

 

"In eight hundred feet turn left."

 

"You better work this time, bitch or I swear to God I'm going to short circuit you with my bottle of water," Eden threatened, knowing fully that she sounded like a basket case at this point. She was however beyond the point of caring.

***

 

“I’m so sorry for being late..." Eden's words trailed into silence, her mouth falling shut at the gesture of the tall, sandy haired man standing by the open French doors. He held a phone to his ear with one hand while the other was used to indicate silence by holding his index finger up in the air in Eden’s direction.

 

It wasn't English he was speaking. German…maybe? The conversation appeared one sided, mostly from his end. And he wasn't so much as speaking to the other person on the line, but rather barking every other word. Deciding it prudent to give him the privacy he sorely needed, Eden turned to leave but was instantly stopped by the order of, "Stay where you are."

For a brief moment she was lost on how to respond, taken aback by the arrogance of that directive. But the shock quickly wore off, giving way to annoyance that was slightly tinged with anger. She stopped and turned back around not because he'd ordered it, but to better assess him. This was her first time meeting him. But she immediately knew the sort of man he was. It wasn't too hard to pick out the identifiers. He wore the cloak of conceit and entitlement as well as he wore the
Tom Ford
suit. He couldn't have been much older than her, twenty eight, maybe twenty nine. But the way he looked at her now, with one brow slightly upraised as though he were superior to her in every way and expected Eden to kowtow at his feet slammed home the fact that he was a grade A asshole. He was the last on the list of Allison’s clients, so it was only natural that he be a complete douchebag, because honestly, what better way to cap off her crappy day?

 

The upside to this-- Eden was choosing to see this as an upside, was that she’d dealt with this sort of imperious behavior before. Her husband had written the book on being a world class dick. In the five years that she’d been married to him, he’d subjected her to his dogmatic, male superiority. He’d been a controlling, manipulative and ruthless husband who’d used his immeasurable wealth to Lord over her entire life.

 

But that was behind them now.

 

Dominic was no longer the man he’d been. He’d taken steps,
was,
still in fact taking steps to rectify his mistakes and mend their relationship. He was a reformed asshole. A monster, thankfully tamed.

 

It never would’ve crossed Eden’s mind a year ago that she would come to appreciate the harrowing experiences Dominic put her through. But in a roundabout way, Eden was glad for it, especially now. Dominic had unconsciously equipped her with the ability to deal with the self-entitled bullshit from men like the
spectacular
Mr. Blake. In the same amount of time it took Eden to drag the all too perfect and cheerful smile of professionalism from the remnants of her annoyance, he hung up the phone, pocketed it and proceeded towards her. Eden met him halfway, her clicking heels falling silent as she stopped in front of him with her hand extended.

 

"I'd like to apologize for being so late. I..."

 

"Don't apologize, Ms. Mercer," he interjected, "do better." Taking her hand for a brief handshake, he took his time releasing it as his eyes shifted around the bare foundation of the mansion. “This will all have to go,” he declared, returning his gaze to her face. “Show me the rest.” Finally he released her hand and Eden had the strong urge to wipe it down her skirt, but refrained. When he ambled out of the room, it was with the expectation that Eden was to follow. She did, but it took a great amount of strength and skill not to flip him off and tell him to go fuck himself. She was a professional after all, she had to keep it classy.

The seven bedroom, five bath multi-million dollar mansion was near completion when the Russian oligarch who’d initially purchased the land and had the mansion built fell into some financial troubles and had to resell quickly. Thankfully this was all in Allison’s notes, including Mr. Blake’s interest in now acquiring the property. “All the rooms, with the exception of the master bedroom are done. The Italian marble flooring in the two kitchens was imported and installed in just before he decided to sell.” Eden finished as she walked down the last step of the grand staircase.

 

“He had horrendous taste. As I’ve said before, all of this will have to go.”

 

“Of course, Mr. Blake. The property will be yours to do with once you make an offer,” she said with a small smile.

 

He chuckled as he took a step closer to her. “I've heard great things about your brokerage, Ms. Mercer. Although seeing you now, I have to say those stellar reviews may be because of the stunning real estate agents they have representing the company."

 

Eden’s smile nearly fell, keeping it plastered on her face was not without struggle. “Kind of you to say, Mr. Blake, but I assure you,
looks
has absolutely nothing to do with how well the agents of Archer Realty do their job. We’re all very good and competent at our jobs, as I’m sure you’ve seen with Allison.”

 

He smirked, his blue eyes deliberately trailing the length of her body, the undisguised perusal seemed to go beyond the black knee length pencil skirt and pale peach blouse she had on. "Yes, actually. Allison has been…quite accommodating." It was hard to miss the innuendo laced in that comment, but it was one Eden wisely choose not to pursue. It wasn’t her concern how other agents chose to conduct
their
business. What mattered was how she handled her own business.

BOOK: Lick & Devour (Monster Novelette)
10.38Mb size Format: txt, pdf, ePub
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