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Looking slightly thrown off by his question and tone, she nodded.

“Well, Jessica,” Gavin continued, “one: My life, and who used to be in it, is none of your business. Don’t ask me about it again. Two: You may think you can remedy my problem, but I’m pretty fucking sure you can’t. However, I’m more than sure I can fuck you into oblivion, remedying the recent tough times you’ve had right out of your mind. I might be younger than you, but you’re not my first walk in the park. Get where I’m going with this?”

Eyes wide, Jessica parted her lips but didn’t speak. She nodded again.

“Good. I’m glad we’re on the same page.” Gavin handed his credit card to Miguel, who’d approached with their drinks. “Three: I’ve been around many intriguing women, so don’t take my statement as a compliment. I know how to flatter a woman better than telling her I find her under-sexed, crazed approach intriguing. Four: If you want to fuck, we can fuck. My house is a two-minute walk from here. But I’ll warn you now, that’s all it’ll be. Don’t expect a sleep over. I’ll fuck you, and fuck you very well, but I’ll send you on your way once our escapade is over. I won’t give you my number, and you’ll never enter my thoughts again. So now, Jessica…” Gavin cupped his chin, the crease of his brows showing he was trying to remember her last name.

“Layton,” Jessica answered, her voice cracking. “My last name’s Layton.”

“Ahh, that’s right. So now, Miss Jessica Layton, the ball’s in your court.” Gavin ran a hand through his hair and shot her a wink. Once again, Miguel approached the table with Gavin’s credit card. After shoving it back into his wallet, Gavin looked across the table at Jessica sitting speechless, her fingers rubbing up and down her neck. “Make the call, Jessica, because honestly, if we don’t do this,” he said with a light shrug, “I’ll just go back to my joint and milk my own dick.”

With shock twisting her face, Jessica stood, slipped her sandal back on, and reached for her clutch.

Assuming his curt response had scared her off, Gavin gave another shrug as his eyes landed on the family he was admiring earlier. He watched them make their way, hand in hand, over to a small, two-door clunk of shit. He knew his riches couldn’t compare to their happiness. He wanted that happiness. He wanted that clunk of shit.

“Well, are you ready?” Jessica asked, her voice laced with sexual urgency.

Gavin tore his attention from the fading dream and watched Jessica pluck his bourbon from his hands. She finished it in one long gulp. After placing the empty glass on the table, she brushed her fingertips across Gavin’s temple, down the side of his cheek, and over the curve of his jaw. Gavin momentarily stiffened, trying not to flinch at her touch. He rose and grabbed Jessica’s hand. His feet, as if they had a mind of their own, led them toward his place.

“So, aren’t you a little curious as to why I’m in Mexico alone?” Jessica questioned as they made their way down a small wooden walkway.

Looking out onto the tumbling waves, the last of the sun falling asleep below the horizon, Gavin shook his head. “Not really.”

“You know, you’re really not a nice guy.” She pulled her hand away. Its absence didn’t affect Gavin either way. Still, she followed closely by his side.

“No. I’m too much of a nice guy,” Gavin mumbled, idly wondering where Emily was in that moment. Loneliness flooded his chest, but he welcomed its suffocating presence. This was something he knew. It was all too familiar to him. He almost considered it an old buddy.

“Right,” Jessica huffed, her tone tight with skepticism. “Well, considering what we’re about to do, maybe you can try to be a little… pleasant?”

Stopping just shy of his place, Gavin looked at her, his brow drawn up. “Look, I laid it all out. I can do sex, but I won’t do pleasantries. Take it or leave it.” For the barest second, Gavin felt ill to his stomach. He’d been raised to always treat women with respect, and he pictured his father’s disgust with the way he was acting. Still, the thought was fleeting. His old habit screamed, waving its self-medication in his face.

Shut down. Shut off. Disconnect.

Jessica pursed her lips. “Fine. Only because I need this more than you know.”

Once on his porch, Jessica whipped her crimson hair to the side, and Gavin was suddenly engulfed by the scent of her body. Her jasmine perfume aroused memories he was trying to forget. It shook him, nearly staggering his balance. He took a deep breath and steadied himself. Looking down at her wanting green eyes, he brought his hand around the back of her neck and pulled her hard into his mouth. She pressed her chest against his and let out a soft moan, her hands coming up to grasp his hair. Her moan, although filled with seductive, feminine yearning, wasn’t the moan he wanted to hear. Her lips, sweet in their own way, didn’t feel right locked on his. They didn’t mold to his like a piece to a puzzle.

Anger swelled, and Gavin started kissing her with ravenous intensity. He pinned her against the wall, reached for her thigh, and drew her leg up around his waist. She breathed out heavily as he roughed his hand under her sundress, skimming below her panties. In one swift motion, he had three fingers buried inside her. Her hips bucked against each hard thrust, and she clung to his neck, fisting the collar of his white linen shirt. Her pussy, though wet and as ready as any man could ever want, felt foreign, and at this, Gavin fingered her deeper, harder.

“Wait,” she purred, trying to catch her breath. She towed her head back and stared into his eyes. “What are you doing? Are you going to fuck me right out here?”

With a smug grin, Gavin backed away, leaving her panting body lax against the wall. “Not as fun as you originally appeared, I see,” he muttered, fishing his keys from his pocket. He slid them into the door, unlocked it, and held it open as he waited for Jessica to adjust her clothing.

Sighing, she picked up her clutch from the ground. As she walked past him, she rolled her eyes. Dropping the clutch onto an antique, claw-footed table in the foyer, Jessica’s gaze swept across his expansive beachfront home. “Nice place.” She faced him, her smile showing she was impressed. “So now, where were we?”

“You were about to strip for me.” Gavin tossed his keys onto the table and started unbuttoning his shirt. After slipping it off, he leaned against the doorjamb of the kitchen and crossed his arms as he watched her undress.

Jessica peeled the last piece of clothing from her body and moved toward Gavin. She took his face in both of her hands and pulled him into her mouth. It was then Gavin shoved Emily back into his aching heart’s closet, locked the door, and threw away the key. As he unbuckled his belt, one clear thought attacked his mind.

Emily would be proud he was taking a “void filler” to bed tonight.

CHAPTER FOUR

With fear eating away at her stomach and a desperate ache for Gavin consuming her, Emily handed her bags to the flight attendant as she stepped into Blake Industries’ private jet.

Olivia raised a playful brow. “Hmm, maybe I need to break a few hearts in order to get special treatment like you… Yes. It’s been decided. While you’re gone, I’m gonna find me some rich dude, fuck around with his head a little, and get his brother to send me to where he is in absolute fucking luxury so I can reclaim his love.”


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