LOVE QUAKES: BOXED SET (BOOKS 1-4)

BOOK: LOVE QUAKES: BOXED SET (BOOKS 1-4)
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BOXED SET

 

LOVE QUAKES

 

BOOKS  1 – 4

 

Young Adult Seduction Series

 

By J.S. Luxor

 

Copyright © 2013  J.S. Luxor

 

All rights reserved.

 

Luxor Press. Kindle Edition.

 

Legal Notices
: This eBook is offered for your personal use. This eBook may not be re-sold or given away to other people. No portion of these materials may be reproduced in any manner without the expressed written consent of the author.

 

Cover Design by M.S. Luxor.

 

Cover photo
:  Copyright © istockphoto

 

Except for the original material written by the author, all songs, song titles and lyrics contained in this book are the property of the respective songwriters and copyright holders.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

LOVE  QUAKES

 

ENCOUNTER

 

Young Adult Seduction Series

 

Book 1 of 4

 

By J.S. Luxor

 

 

 

 

 

Copyright © 2013  J.S. Luxor

 

All rights reserved.

 

Luxor Press. Kindle Edition.

 

Legal Notices
: This eBook is offered for your personal use. This eBook may not be re-sold or given away to other people. No portion of these materials may be reproduced in any manner without the expressed written consent of the author.

 

Cover Design by M.S. Luxor.

 

Cover photo
:  Copyright © istockphoto

 

Except for the original material written by the author, all songs, song titles and lyrics contained in this book are the property of the respective songwriters and copyright holders.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 
Chapter One – First Touch
 

Mother Nature had plans for Joanna Prime – that’s me. She flipped me into an elevator with Tristan Grant, moments after I’d run from a disastrous job interview. The boss followed on my heels like an eager puppy dog, though. The job as a data entry specialist at PCC paid well. My upcoming graduation as a psychology major from San Diego State motivated it. I needed the cash to pay the rent on a condo in trendy Mission Beach. Call it a hormone rush or lust; embarrassing and  humiliating doesn’t even begin to cover a description of my performance. I drooled over Tristan and stuttered through most of his questions

 

“We have an excellent mentoring program here at PCC, Miss Prime, you should certainly consider that,” he urges me with a seductive look. He’s totally flirting with me and it’s no surprise. I could hardly think straight, once I set eyes on Tristan. That’s a first for me. I’m a bookworm and don’t usually put much weight on looks.

 

“I really don’t think I’d fit in well with the group here at PCC,” I counter as I turn my head toward the metal doors. I find Mr. Grant incredibly attractive but also arrogant and controlling for someone who is all of 28 years old. He’s making me uncomfortable with his presence. What does Tristan want with me?

 

“Why would you think that?” he asks with a stunned look on his face.

 

“Oh just a gut instinct,” I answer vaguely. Is he kidding? I am such a far cry from the army of designer suits and perfectly coifed assistants that appear around every corner at PCC. Why in the world is he chasing after me, once the interview’s over? I won’t get the job after that botched performance. That’s probably why he’s mentioning their mentoring program. Maybe he’s feeling sorry for me.

 

“Listen, why don’t you at least think about our program before you reject the idea outright?” he advises while standing nearest my chute. His mesmerizing aqua eyes smolder with some unnamed emotion. He massages his chin thoughtfully while he continues to look at me with interest. Oh, how I need to get out of this building!

 

My gut quivers at the intensity of his gaze. What is it about Tristan Grant that has me so rattled? I’ll admit Tristan’s presence stokes my hormones in an unfamiliar way. The truth is I’ve never felt so attracted to such a fine specimen of a man before. I could swear I felt sparks of electricity a few minutes ago, when he helped me put my jacket on. There’s just something unsettling about the way he interacts with me though.

 

I sigh with relief when the elevator pings and opens. I quickly make my way to its entrance and begin to move inside. However, when I turn to say goodbye, Mr. Grant puts his hand on the safety panel and starts to say something more with those sexy lips and enticing dreamy eyes.

 

Suddenly, the elevator jolts and shifts backwards. Tristan gets tossed inside with me. We’re having a powerful earthquake. The building and everything within it starts to gyrate. I grab the metal bar at the back of the box, as does Tristan. However, the thrusting of the quake throws us both to the floor in an instant. My head hits the lower portion of the enclosure before I can anchor myself.

 

Tristan manages to grab the stabilizing bar at the back of the elevator and away from my flailing body. He pulls himself free from where I’m thrashing about. I have no control as the powerful quake reduces me to the status of a helpless ragdoll. My body continues to be flung around until Tristan pulls me into his arms for safety. By the time the quake’s thrusting has stopped, I’m bleeding from the mouth with a golf ball sized lump on my head.

 

“Are you alright, Joanna?” he asks with concern while arranging me in a seated upright position against the back of the elevator. I feel nauseous and chilled.

 

“I…I’m feeling…strange,” I say before slipping into unconsciousness. When I regain consciousness a moment later, my head is resting in Tristan Grant’s lap. He’s looking at me with shock and concern as well as intense interest. This must be a dream, I think.

 

“Miss Prime,” he utters in a gentle voice, “don’t move. You’ve knocked your head against two surfaces and passed out for a minute.” He rubs my arms and pats me softly as I stare up at his sculpted face from below. I feel entranced.

 

“Where am I?” I say while looking into the face of a supermodel. If I’ve died and this person is an angel, I’m happy that I’ve gone to heaven.

 

“You’re at Performance Control Corporation,” he tells me. “Do you remember interviewing with me earlier today?” Oh, yes. Now I remember the job as a data entry specialist. It involved analyzing therapist’s reports on children with autism spectrum disorders but I was so mesmerized by this Adonis that I stumbled my way through it.

 

I blink twice. “Oh yes, Mr. Grant. But, what’re we doing sitting on the floor of this elevator, together?”

 

“San Diego’s been shaken by a very powerful earthquake, Joanna. Just as you were leaving the interview, the quake threw us into the elevator. Don’t worry, Miss Prime, the shaking seems to have settled down for now,” he explains carefully, as if to a small child. He offers me one of his monogrammed white cotton handkerchiefs to clean the drips of blood now coming from my mouth.

 

“OK,” I say but feel incredibly dizzy. I put my arms on his biceps in order to pull myself up and look into Tristan’s aqua eyes for reassurance. I feel so safe here. If this is a dream, I don’t want to awaken. Is the jolt I feel a quake or something like a chemical reaction to Mr. Grant?

 

He looks with longing into my face but then reluctantly releases his hold on my arms as the elevator begins to gyrate again. “Just stay where you are, Joanna. We don’t want you hitting your head again,” he advises while lowering my head into his lap. His fingers linger in my hair. I like his touch. 

 

My head rests comfortably in Tristan’s lap while the still powerful aftershocks wiggle us back and forth in our temporary prison. He smells divine. His lips curve into a slight smile. Is he enjoying himself? I wonder how many women have had their heads in his lap before, and not because they’ve just passed out.

 

“Thanks, Mr. Grant. How strong was the earthquake?” I ask as I look up into his gorgeous face for more time than seems necessary. He doesn’t mind my gaze.

 

“From the jolt we just experienced, I’d estimate at least a 6.5 or more,” he whispers and pets my head to reassure me then says, “Don’t worry, Joanna.” Is the control freak actually a knight in shining armor?

 

After another few seconds, the aftershocks lessen in their intensity but the elevator dances in its shaft for a while more. I bravely pull myself up and toward Tristan’s chest for protection. I feel frightened and want to hold him for security. He stiffens when my head rests against his shoulder. Oops!

 

He must think I’m very brazen but what I feel is dizzy, disoriented and frightened. “I’m so sorry, Mr. Grant. I didn’t mean to be so familiar,” I mumble. “I’m just a bit discombobulated, at the moment.”

 

“That’s fine, Miss Prime. It’s not your fault. You’ve been injured. I’m just a bit uncomfortable trapped this way,” he adds while pulling me into a sitting position and adjusting me against the back of the elevator itself, away from his body. He must not like being close to me. Do I smell?

 

“Sorry, I’m a bit anxious about the earthquake. Thanks again for all your help, Mr. Grant,” I mutter while dabbing my bloody mouth again. Then, I try to stand up.

 

“Wait to stand up, Joanna, until the shaking ceases,” he commands. I nod in compliance and sit down next to him. Our shoulders touch at that very instant. The electricity sparking between us shocks me. We both look at one another in stunned silence. He clears his throat to break the tension.

 

“I’ll call my security team and find out about the extent of the damage to the building and, more importantly, when they can rescue us from our elevator. You may want to call your friends and family members to warn them about your situation,” he orders in his best CEO mode.

 

Mr. Grant seems to be back in full boss mode I note. Yeah, I guess you can’t spend too much time with the little people. His phone call gets answered at once.

 

“Bailey, what’s the status of the PCC building? Any word about damages, yet? Yeah, I’m still here. Actually, I’m trapped in the elevator, leading from my office to the lobby, with a young woman from San Diego State University. Her name is Joanna Prime. Have any idea how long it might be until we’re taken out of this…contraption?” The answer must be brief because he frowns and then clicks off without any salutation, only to begin another call.

 

His rapid-fire questions on the phone speak volumes about the sort of service he expects from others, as well as his anxiety about being trapped, with me.

 

I call my best friend, Ashley. It goes to voice mail. “Hi Ashley, just wanted you to know that my job interviews over. The owner of PCC and I are actually stuck in the elevator for who knows how long. You’ve probably felt San Diego’s major quake by now.” I giggle about my sarcastic remark. “Cheers, Joanna.”

 

Then I text a similar message to my friend, Juan, as well as my mom and dad.    

 

Tristan finishes his calls and looks over at me for a bit. “This quake came in at 7.0 on the Richter Scale. There’s massive damage in downtown San Diego. It might be hours before the rescue teams can free us from this shaft, Joanna,” he announces gravely and with obvious frustration.

 

“Well, let’s think of something to pass the time,” I suggest with an upbeat attitude and innocent smile.

 

“Tell me about your finals, then,” he suggests and then a look of consternation crosses his brow, “since you were in such a rush, to leave my office and go study.”

 

I tell him about the paper I’m writing on a dissociative identity disorder. He’s familiar with the psychological problem so we discuss that and other issues I’m going to be tested on during finals week. He actually seems interested in the topics.

 

“I want to apologize for my ridiculous behavior during the interview,” I pipe up, finally. I’m still mortified that I was so distracted by his appearance. Some kind of primal attraction to him caused it. Nothing like this has ever happened to me before and I’m stunned at my reactions to him.

 

“Yeah, some of your responses seemed a bit awkward, I’ll admit,” he states with a stern look on his brow. I shake my head with embarrassment. His sour mood passes quickly though. Then a crooked smile suddenly appears on his perfect face. “Tell me, though, what’d you enjoy learning about PCC, in the interview?”

 

“I’m impressed with the therapeutic outcomes at PCC,” I admit and then add as an afterthought, “also with the funding your firm provides to grad students in psychology at San Diego State.”

 

He puffs up with pride. “It’s important to give back, Joanna. If it weren’t for my family, I’d probably be living on the streets or hooked on drugs.” A sad and haunted look appears on his lovely face before he turns back to me again.

 

“I’m sorry. What happened to make your situation so desperate, Mr. Grant?” I suddenly feel so much sympathy for this millionaire executive and I’m a psychology major. I want to know what motivates people.

 

“It’s not something I can discuss right now, Miss Prime,” he asserts and then quickly changes the subject. “Tell me about your family,” he commands while his game face reappears.

 

Just like that, I’m on the spot. “There’s not much to tell, Mr. Grant. I’m an only child. My scatterbrained mother raised me until I was about fifteen and then I lived with my stepfather Rob, until college started. I had a relatively happy childhood.”

 

“Scatterbrained mother, eh? You didn’t get along with her?” he’s suddenly interested in my relationship with Carmen.

 

“We’re two very different people, I think. She loves and wants the best for me but I’m more her parent than the reverse. That’s why I chose to live with my stepdad, Rob, when she married for the third time,” I trail off. “Now she’s on her fourth husband.”

BOOK: LOVE QUAKES: BOXED SET (BOOKS 1-4)
6.9Mb size Format: txt, pdf, ePub
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