Play Me to Infinity (The Broken Men Chronicles Book 3)

BOOK: Play Me to Infinity (The Broken Men Chronicles Book 3)
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Play Me to Infinity

The Broken Men Chronicles

Book Three

 

 

CAREY DECEVITO

 

 

Copyright © 2013 by Carey Decevito.

All rights reserved.  No part of this book may be used, or reproduced in any manner whatsoever without written permission, except in the case of brief quotations embodied in critical articles

 

Decevito, Carey

Play Me to Infinity / Carey Decevito – Kindle edition

ISBN: 978-0-9950096-0-8

 

Cover photography by Eric David Battershell

Cover design by Clarisse Tan, CT Cover Creations

 

This book is a work of fiction.  The names, characters, places and incidents are products of the writer’s imagination or have been used fictitiously and are not to be construed as real.  Any resemblance to persons, living or dead, actual events, locale or organizations is entirely coincidental.

 

This book is available in print at most online retailers.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Acknowledgements

 

This book couldn’t have come to fruition without the help of some amazing people.

To my entire production team: you truly are amazing gems and I feel blessed to have been able to work with you all.

Eric, Johnny, and Clarise, without you three, Mike’s journey would be without an amazing cover. Thank you for your expertise, your professionalism, your talent, but most of all, thank you for your support and friendship. You are truly extraordinary people.

Laurie and Marissa at Pub-Craft, you lovely ladies rock! Words cannot convey my appreciation for what you ladies do.

And last but certainly not least, too you, my wonderful readers, thank you for your kind words, your reviews, your support, and for your love of literature. Without you, I would be writing strictly for myself (and that’s okay), but you sure warm this lady’s heart by enjoying the journeys put forth before you. In this case, Mike’s.

 

Chapter 1

I sat at
Fairfax
, checking out the flavors of the evening while unwinding from a grueling day at the office.  It was slim pickings in the crowd, but the night was still young.

Sitting in the back corner at a table by herself, I spotted her.
Nicole.  I might have turned her unsavory attitude around where my brother-in-law, Jake, was concerned, but the woman now had a gun out for me.

Okay, so you’ve surmised that I’m single, perhaps even a player, and I’ll admit that you’re somewhat right.

I enjoy my bachelorhood… well, sort of.  I wouldn’t say that it’s the lifestyle I’d have chosen for myself, more like one chosen for me, thanks to my ex-fiancée.

Loving Tracey with everything I had hadn’t been good enough.  Despite the numerous warnings from friends, I had been living by the ‘denial is bliss’ adage until one day, the flip of her hair, the wiggle of her tight ass, and the batting of her lashes no longer clouded my perception.

After six months of dealing with her deceit, I shredded my devoted fiancé card and moved on.  I’ve been playing the field for a year and a half since.

Truth be told, I don’t have time for a relationship, as much as I’d prefer one.  I’m the CEO of
Withers International
, a multi-million-dollar company that specializes in public and government relations.  Need I say more?

Ben knocked me back into the present as he dropped himself in the seat across from me.  “Rough day?”

“Rough few months is more like it.”  I huffed out a breath.  “I need a new assistant.”

The man’s brows furrowed.  “You still haven’t gotten rid of Karen?”

A dry laugh escaped.  “You mean Tania.” I didn’t have the gall to look at my friend, knowing I’d be met with his disapproving look, and rightly so.  As of late, there was quite the revolving door where my PA’s were concerned.

“Why do you do this to yourself?”

Okay, so I may have overstepped the boundaries on employer-employee relations.  In my defense, they were the ones who approached me, not the other way around.

Ben shook his head at me.  “Tracey really did fuck you up.  This is ridiculous.”

I took a swig from my beer and let out a loud tension-filled sigh while leaning my bottle in my best friend’s direction.  “You don’t know the half of it.”

 

It was late, and despite the fact that I’d made it out tonight, my interest in entertaining a possible suitor to cap off my day was lost once Ben returned to his bartending duties.

What about Nikki?
  As soon as the thought occurred, I almost choked on my last sip of beer.  I would have to be desperate – no, insane – to even approach that man-eater.

Despite my intent on ignoring the woman who had eyed daggers at me all night, I turned my gaze toward the table she had been occupying to find that she was no longer there.

Nicole was a beautiful woman, and I’d be lying if I said I didn’t remember much about her from our childhood.  Hell, she’d practically been a sister; and harassing her and my sister had been one of mine and Ben’s favorite pastimes.  In our later years however, she became skittish, always quick to leave the room as soon as I entered it.  The teenager I’d been had always wondered about the possibility of her having a school-girl crush. I have to say that I enjoyed cornering her to see that blush, especially that last summer before Mom and Dad picked up and moved us all to Austin.

Shaking the memories from my mind, I left my empty bottle on the table.  As I turned to leave, I plowed into a tiny body.  Bracing my hands on the soft skin of slim shoulders to prevent the person from toppling over, I found myself staring down into bright green pools laced with flames that were Nicole’s eyes.

What color do they turn when…?
  I groaned at the imagery that flashed through my mind. 
Forget it, bud, there’s no way in hell that you want to go there.

“Watch where you’re going.”

“Sorry,” I mumbled, my voice a few octaves lower than normal.

“D-do you mind moving?”

Her unsettled demeanor had me smirking.  “Do I make you nervous, Little Nikki?”

As I let go of her shoulders, she stepped back.

“No.”  She gave me a saccharine smile, but her eyes showed mischievousness.  “You make me nauseous.  Now, get out of my way.”

As she made to pass me, I grasped her elbow.  “You know,” I leaned toward her ear, the subtlety of her scent clouding my thoughts momentarily, “if you’re ever looking for someone to help you get that stick out of your ass, I’d be more than-”

The claws came out.  “Bite me!”

“I’d love to, sugar.” I grinned, pulling away just in time to see her face turn a delightful shade of pink.  Yes, that blush was still as much fun to bring about now as it was back in the day.

As quick as our interaction occurred, it ended when she turned and trotted off.

My gaze turned to follow her exiting the bar.  I let out a low whistle as I watched those hips sway in that skirt of hers.  Her rounded ass filled the material to perfection and images of that luscious derrière, bent over as I took her from behind began playing in my head.

Damn!  It’s too bad she’s as cold as ice.

And that was my cue to head home.

 

I came to a stop in front of my large four-bedroom house and sighed.  Purchased to avoid the cramped lofts and high-rise condos, it was a constant reminder of the dream I once had of a home filled with children and a woman to worship.  Nowadays, all I had to look forward to was the cold beer in my fridge, my comfortable furniture, and a house filled with silence.

Silence.  It was always there when you didn’t want it, and never there when you needed it.

Over the last eighteen months, I kept my new façade intact, my machismo held close to the vest in an effort to mask that I was a family man to the core.  Being honest, I was miserable.  Lonely.

Maybe it’s time to take a chance? 
It had been two years since I’d left Tracey, a year and a half since I chose to have absolutely nothing to do with my ex.

Danica, Jake, and so many others disagree with the casualness with which I treated my suitors, but they understood why I did it.  Well, most of them, with the exception of my sister’s judgmental best friend, Nicole that is.

So why wasn’t I going for it after two years?

The answer was simple: I was scared.

As I settled into bed, I came to realize that maybe it was time I let go of my pessimism where relationships were concerned.

 

Chapter 2

At six the following morning, I was in my office.  It was my favorite time of the workday.  It gave me time to think.  It gave me time to analyze where I was taking this company that my father built from the ground up and then, before he could run it into the ground, left it to me and Danica.

After bumping into Nicole last night, I had a replay of her ass swaying from side to side, her bare shoulders, and those legs of hers capped in four-inch heels, playing on a continuous loop in my mind.

And this morning, the thought of those…

Snap out of it, man!

The sudden twitch below the belt had me groaning.  These reactions of mine had come way out of left field, and I’d be damned if I paid them any heed simply because Nicole now appealed to a certain member of my anatomy.

With that said, I could only deal with craziness one person at a time.

And that brings me to another woman that plagued my thoughts as of late: my personal assistant.

I needed to do something about my current work predicament – and fast.  Burning the candle at both ends, I was putting in longer hours lately while my sister, and
Withers International
’s CFO, was at home by dinnertime, enjoying life with her husband, their son, and her very pregnant belly.

Ben was right.  And I quote, the measure of a great personal assistant is how well she tends to your schedule, files, paperwork and the like, and not how she blows you from beneath your desk.  Crass, I know, but true all the same.  It was time I got rid of Tania.  She was incompetent and she gave me more grief than help on the best of days.

Thinking of my sister, I picked up the phone, figuring she could be of help with my current predicament, but thought better and set the receiver back on its cradle.  She’d be in the office within the hour anyway.

Danica and I have gotten closer since my move back to Jacksonville became permanent.  We had weekly dinners at her place and she always stopped by my office for a chat first thing every morning.

Like me, she found her way into work a tad earlier than most, unless my brother-in-law found a way to hold her back.

Jake and I have bonded more, and I love the man as if he were my own brother.  He got me, for the lack of a better description, and with the way I’ve been living my life lately, that’s something Ben and I haven’t been able to relate to.  Jake was worse than me a short time ago, but when it came down to his relationship with my sister, I never once doubted his intentions.  I knew the man loved her.  Everyone knew it.  Though years had kept them separated, their love had never faded; no matter how stubborn they had been when Danica moved back, or how my father had conspired to keep them apart.

I released a tension-filled sigh, regaining my focus on the present.

A look at my day’s itinerary left me with a burning sensation in my gut.  After a nearly a month and repetitive requests, the damn thing was still predominantly blank with the exception of those appointments I had entered myself in recent weeks.

I grunted my annoyance and looked toward the pile of files on the edge of my desk that had only grown instead of finding their way into one of the mahogany cabinets in the far corner.

I was more organized doing everything solo before she came along.

Yes, it was official.  I was fed up.

Despite the warnings and reminders, Tania had had her opportunity to prove her worth.  Her probationary period wasn’t over yet, but I’d be dammed if I allowed her to wreak more chaos over my office for another day.  Knowing what I had to do next, and probably should have done yesterday if not last week, I picked up the phone and dialed.

I waited for the woman in question to pick up.

“Hello.”
 
She sounded half-asleep.

“Tania.”

“Mike?” Her voice came out squeaky.

“Yes.”  I took a deep breath.

“What’s wrong?”

“Tania,” I cleared my throat, “I’m sorry to do this, but I won’t be needing your services any longer.”

“But…”

“I need someone who’s organized and knows what she’s doing; someone with more experience and who does what I need them to do. I’m saying things need to be seamless and they’re not.  I think you know what I mean by this.”  I began to guide the mouse over my computer screen. “I’m looking at my calendar right now and the four meetings I asked you to confirm and add to my agenda before you left yesterday aren’t in there.  Simple things like that, I shouldn’t have to clarify at this point in your employment.  I’m sorry but I can’t keep you any longer.” 

“But, Mike!”  Her voice grated on my nerves.

“Your belongings and relevant paperwork will be waiting for you with HR by this afternoon.  I trust that a week’s severance is ample enough seeing as you’ve only been with us for under a month.  When you come in, please ask for Emma in Human Resources.  She’ll handle everything.  Again, I’m very sorry and I wish you luck.  Take care of yourself.”

I hung up before she could say anything else and took a deep breath.

Putting in a call to Emma in HR and leaving a voice-mail with what I needed from her later, I hung up the phone.

Getting up, I grabbed a banker’s box from the small supply cabinet in my office and walked to Tania’s former quarters and cringed.  There were photo frames on the desk; I counted five pairs of shoes, three jackets, a couple of pashminas, and that was excluding whatever personal items would most likely be stored in the desk drawers.  I didn’t envy Emma at all for what she’d have to do when she got in this morning.

 

On a groan, I leaned forward with my elbows on my desk and massaged my temples. My mood had taken a downward spiral, and I hoped that the rest of my day didn’t follow in the same fashion.

“What’s got you down, big brother?”  I startled, not having heard Danica come in.  My sister waddled toward me with a cup of coffee in both hands.

“That better be decaf.” I gestured to the drink she kept for herself after she handed me mine.

“Every morning you ask me that question and every morning I give you the same answer.”  She smirked, then stuck her tongue out at me.  “You know it is.”

“Just making sure.”  I smiled, but the gesture wasn’t reciprocal.  Instead, she assessed me from top to bottom.

“You look tired.”  She took a seat in front of my desk.

“Because I am.”

“You’re working too hard.  You need to get out and live a little.”

I shrugged my shoulders.  “I get out.”

“Finding a woman to warm your bed on occasion isn’t considered ‘getting out’.”  She was right, but would I tell her that?  Hell, no!  Just like I wouldn’t tell her that the only bed-warming there’d been in the last month, aside from the one time with Tania a few weeks ago, had been done by me alone.

“I know you don’t agree with it sis, and I don’t need this right now.”  I ran a hand through my dark brown hair.  “I had to fire Tania and, to be honest, I have no clue what’s on my agenda for today, plus I have to coordinate with HR to get a new posting out there, and deal with interviews, and…”  I sighed.

“Calm down, I know someone who’d be great for you.”

Well that got my attention.  “Who?”

“Just someone.”  She gave me a wry grin.  “I can say that fucking her won’t be a problem for you, which means that her attention will be on her work the entire time.  She’s the best I know, and if she’d been free when I was looking for my PA, I would have snapped her up myself.”

She knows?

She snorted.  “Yes, I know about your latest tastes in personal assistants, big brother.”

“So who is it?”

“I’ll have to speak with her first, see if she’s interested.”  She tapped her index finger on her chin.  “As for who it is, I’ll leave that surprise to her.”  She winked.  “I’m sorry, but I’ve got to run. You remember not to expect me in the office after this morning, right?”

I laughed, but my excitement of acquiring a new PA without much effort dimmed as worry for my sister kicked in.  “I always said you worked too hard.  You need to take it easy, you’re due any day now.  Your husband’s right to worry, you know.  We all do.”

She laughed, but the humor in her eyes faded and her expression softened as she reached out a hand to me.  “Come help me out of this chair and give me a hug.”  I rounded my desk and helped her up.  “I need to get some work done before Jake comes back to pick me up in a few hours.  I hate that I can’t drive thanks to this belly of mine.”  Her hands clasped her stomach that held two of the most precious of cargos.

“Hey, that’s my niece and nephew you’re talking about in there.”  I gave her belly a rub.

I kissed the top of her head and she moved into my arms to hug me.  “So, you’ll think about the PA I have in mind for you?”

“Go ahead and send her in.”  I released her.   “I need all the help I can get.” 
The sooner, the better
was left unsaid.

“Okay!”

 

BOOK: Play Me to Infinity (The Broken Men Chronicles Book 3)
5.03Mb size Format: txt, pdf, ePub
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