Friday, 28 March 2014

Chapter 2 Loving the Billionaire Ever After - Book 7 Billionaire Brothers Series

Chapter Two

Standing at the top of the stairs I could still see Aaron’s expression the moment I called out to him. There was clearly something wrong but that was apparent in the fact that he was escorting a young kid into his study. David stepped in through the front door and my heart slowed in my chest.
If David was with him then whatever was going on couldn’t be too terrible… Or at least I hoped it couldn’t be.
“David, what are you doing outside? Who’s the boy?”
I started down the stairs, drawing my dressing gown in around my body a little tighter. The cool night air was still flooding in through the gaping front door and the moment I reached the ground floor I started towards it, my hand reaching out to shut it.
“Heather, you should go back to bed, it’s nothing, really.”
The tone in Aaron’s voice let me know immediately that he was lying. The realisation that he was keeping things from me cut me to the core and I struggled to keep my expression calm.
“I’m not going back to bed when clearly there’s something going on? Who’s the boy?”
Aaron stared at me, his mouth opening and closing as he struggled to find an answer he could give me.
“We heard him prowling around outside…”
David cut in, spreading his hands wide as he stepped in front of Aaron and the boy.
“And what? You both went to investigate instead of the security team doing it?”
David was harder to read but I had a feeling that he was covering for Aaron. There was something they didn’t want me to know and I couldn’t put my finger on it but whatever it was, it was clearly serious.
“Something like that.”
David grinned at me but I wasn’t falling for it. I sidestepped him, and paused as I came face to face with Aaron. He wore a guilty expression and for the life of me I couldn’t figure out why he’d be looking at me like that.
My gaze darted from Aaron and came to rest on the box that sat on the hall table just inside the door. The moment I saw it I felt my stomach lurch as I remembered the last one.
Aaron had tried to keep all of Hank’s correspondence from me but there was only so much he could hide. I’d seen the lock of Kirsty’s hair, the blood smeared note and it was enough to know that Hank was truly psycho sick.
Of course Aaron had kept all of the video confessions from me but he couldn’t stop me from listening at the doors when he called the police around and put the tape on for them. The screaming wasn’t something I could get out of my head and I was certain I never would.
“He wasn’t just a prowler was he? Hank sent him?”
I couldn’t tear my gaze away from the parcel on the table, my eyes raking over its perfectly wrapped exterior. How he managed to seal up each box without ever leaving trace evidence was beyond me. How could he be so good at hiding from the police, from Aaron and all while he taunted them.
“Yeah, I heard him leaving the parcel. I’m going to call the cops and get them out here but not before I ask him some questions of my own.”
“What sort of questions?”
My voice sounded a little hollow as I turned my gaze back to Aaron. The boy stood in the doorway to the study, the expression he wore one of complete terror. The moment I focused in on the boy I felt all of my emotions flooding back to me. They crowded into my head almost as though they could crowd out all of my logical thoughts.
“He’s just a kid, what’s he going to know?”
“I don’t know, Heather but the least little thing could be important and we need to know everything.”
“I want to sit in on it, I want to know what he has to say.”
Aaron instantly shook his head and moved to stand between me and the door.
“No, Heather, you know you can’t. We don’t know what he’s going to say and I don’t…”
I cut him off my voice going hard.
“You don’t want what? You don’t want me to know how dangerous Hank is? How completely insane he is? I think it’s a little late for all of that. I already know he’s mad, I already know that the things he’s doing to Kirsty would very probably scar me for life and yet I have to know…”
“Heather, I really can’t let you… I don’t want you knowing this, I don’t want you knowing what I know, carrying what I have to carry. I don’t want to have to watch it rip you apart too.”
“So what? I’m supposed to sit idly by, twiddling my thumbs as I watch the guilt eat you alive? Aaron Ashcroft, I love you but I won’t be wrapped in cotton wool while you suffer through all the difficult times.”
“Heather, he’s not alone, he has me. I’m here no matter what and I’ll always stick by him, especially for something like this. I’ll make sure he doesn’t get in to deep.”
I shook my head as I turned towards David, I knew he meant well and that every word he spoke was sincere but none of it mattered. He couldn’t protect Aaron from it, not in the way he needed to be protected. I wasn’t even sure I could but I sure as hell knew that I could stand by his side and be there every step of the way. And when the nightmares stole him from my bed at night then I would be there to hold him and listen when he was good and ready to talk about it. But I couldn’t do any of that if he spent his time trying to protect me.
“David, I know you love your brother but you and I both know that you can’t be there during the darkest hours but I can… You just need to trust me.”
“Heather, I do trust you.”
Aaron’s voice was choked as he stepped forward and wrapped me in his arms. I let him hold me, his grip tightening to almost painful proportions as he clung to me.
“Then don’t shut me out. Let me sit in on your questioning.”
Aaron didn’t answer me, instead he pulled back and stared down into my face. He seemed to study me for a moment before finally nodding his head.
“Fine, but you can’t interfere.”
I nodded suddenly unsure of the man standing in front of me. Why did he need my assurance that I wouldn’t interfere? Why was that so important? What did he have planned?
I glanced over Aaron’s shoulder and stared at the teen who stood awkwardly in the door to the study. The look he gave me made me want to reach out to him and tell him that everything would be alright. I wanted to reassure him, tell him that if he just answered all of Aaron’s questions that everything would be fine and yet I knew I couldn’t do that.

He might have been a child but he had agreed to work with Hank. He had gotten the package from somewhere and he agreed to come to our house in the middle of the night. If Hank had asked him to do anything else part of me couldn’t help but wonder if he would have carried out his orders?

Wednesday, 26 March 2014

Loving the Billionaire Ever After - Chapter One - Billionaire Brothers Book 7

Chapter One

Sweat ran down between Aaron’s shoulder blades as he crept forward. His field of vision was practically nil, the darkness surrounding them was strangely complete and unlike normal darkness. It was the first clue Aaron had that told him he was dreaming and he clung to it like a drowning man.
The last place Aaron ever wanted to find himself again was back in the field surrounded by the other men of his group. Men that he would have trusted with his life…
Hank darted out ahead, the tactical rifle he held in his hands armed and ready for use. Aaron glanced down at his own assault rifle willing his body to lift it and fire off the rounds into Hank’s back but his body refused to comply. He was dreaming and although he knew what was going on he wasn’t in charge of what happened. Hank disappeared around the side of one of the dilapidated warehouses and was gone from sight.
Aaron shuffled forward, his body moving automatically as they were given the all clear to advance. He wanted to shut his eyes, to hide from what was coming next but it was impossible. Aaron remembered this night, every little detail painfully etched into the inside of his head like a tattoo.
Why was it always this dream? Why was it always the memory of this night that plagued him?
He knew the answers to the questions but it didn’t make it any easier. It was this night that had made his choice to leave easy. His doubts had suddenly become very solid reasons and he had handed in his resignation.
Gunfire ripped through the too black night and inside Aaron found himself cringing. He ran across the uneven ground his feet barely making noise as he positioned himself behind the door.
Screaming from inside the stone building gave Aaron all the encouragement he needed and without thinking he breached the door. The moment he was inside his training kicked in and carried him through the building.
There was a man sitting behind a table, his head slumped over onto his chest, dark liquid dripping slowly down onto the floor from the hole in the back of his head. Aaron swore silently under his breath and continued forward.
They had been given very strict instructions, the people inside were to be taken alive, whoever had beaten him into the building hadn’t paid any heed to their orders.
There was blood smeared along the walls in the hall as though someone had been pressed up against the wall and dragged along its length. Aaron found the second body, the dead man’s face still a mask of surprise as he lay in a dark puddle.
A gurgling sound caught Aaron’s ear and he stepped over the body, his gun held ready. More sounds were carried to his ears and Aaron found himself unable to make out what the sounds were or what they meant. Or at least the Aaron who held the gun felt that way. Dream Aaron knew exactly what he was hearing. It had taken him a long time to figure it out.
Each time he had the dream it always cut off but the memories were still there. Perhaps it was his brain’s way of trying to protect him, an attempt to seal him off from the responsibility he felt. A responsibility he should have felt more.
So many regrets…
Aaron froze with his hand on the door. There was no more noise, it had all dropped away into silence and he couldn’t decide if that was good or bad.
He paused waiting for Paul to come in behind him, waiting for Paul to call to him and ask him what the hell had happened. Aaron would turn and shrug and then the door Aaron had just walked away from would swing open, Hank framed in the doorway, his dark clothes covered in black wet patches.
Paul didn’t come and Aaron suddenly realised that he was back in control of the dream. It was no longer simply a recollection of a memory.
His body was suddenly overwhelmed with the smells in the room and Aaron fought the urge to gag. Gripping the door knob he twisted it hard, letting the door swing inwards.

The yellow swinging over head light cast an odd glow on the gruesome scene unfolding before him. Vomit fought its way up Aaron’s throat as he saw Hank in the centre of the room, the blade held high in his hand.


Aaron sprang upright in the bed, sweat causing the sheets to stick to him as he fought for air. The smells from the dream followed him and Aaron stumbled from the bed in an attempt to reach the bathroom.
He reached the toilet seconds before he spilled his guts into the bowl. His entire body was covered in a fine sheen of sweat and the cool air from the bathroom made him shiver. 
Dropping back onto the floor, Aaron pressed his back against the wide bath. He closed his eyes and fought to calm his breathing, to bring it back down to a more manageable pace, or at least one where he didn’t feel as though he might pass out.
The dream was different and new and Aaron knew exactly why he was having it now. He was responsible. He knew what Hank was, he knew he was a monster and yet he had invited him back into his life. It was Aaron’s fault that Hank had chosen Kirsty, his fault that he had even met her. 
Aaron pressed his hands hard against his face almost as though he could force the feelings of guilt and regret back inside. Push them so far down in his body that he wouldn’t be forced to suffer with them every moment of the day.
Part of him wanted to argue that he didn’t have a choice. That he had known what Hank was and had allowed him access to Kirsty. If it was a choice between his secretary or the woman he adored then there really couldn’t be a choice.
Of course Aaron knew Heather wouldn’t see it that way and that was one of the reasons she could never know the truth. If she found out that he knew what Hank was… 
It just wasn’t a risk he could take. Curling his hands into fists, Aaron beat them against the front of his head but it didn’t do anything to help him shift the images from his dream. They had joined the other images he had seared in there and it was becoming harder and harder to decide which were memories and which he had created himself.
He shuddered violently and then paused.
He’d almost missed it, the sound of his own thoughts too loud as they stole his concentration. Aaron pushed his body upright, pressing his body up onto the balls of his feet as he crept from the bathroom and out into the bedroom.
The sound caught his attention again and this time there really was no mistaking it.
Aaron picked up speed, moving from the bedroom and out into the hall.
The sound of a door clicking open almost silently had him on guard but David appeared in the hall, his hair standing on end and Aaron knew he had come straight from bed. 
David caught his eye, the look on his face told Aaron that he had heard the noise too. Admiration for his brother rose in Aaron’s chest. David didn’t have the training he did, for all intents and purposes David was a civilian and yet he was creeping down the hall.
They met at the top of the stairs and Aaron took the lead, his body moving soundlessly as he took the steps two at a time. He reached the entry hall and moved straight for the door, David moved behind him and Aaron trusted his brother enough to know that no matter what happened, David would defend the girls.
Keeping his body low, Aaron peered out through the bottom of the window near the front door. As far as he could tell there was no one on the porch but as he dropped his gaze he spotted the package sitting on the doorstep and his heart dropped.
Movement across the other end of the porch had Aaron springing into action. Dragging the door open soundlessly he was out and across the porch before David even had the opportunity to react.
The figure was dressed head to toe in black and the moment he saw Aaron coming he started to run.
Leveraging his body against the railing on the wrap around porch Aaron boosted himself over the top, dropping down into the grass easily before he started to run.
The other man wasn’t disciplined and Aaron didn’t have to even push himself to catch up to him. He tackled him to the ground, their bodies colliding as he pushed the other man beneath him.
The masked figure grunted as he thrust his elbow upwards sharply in an attempt to catch Aaron in the face but it was pointless. Aaron moved swiftly, wrapping his hands around the other man’s arms as he pressed them high up his back.
The man on the ground whimpered his body going rigid as Aaron pushed hard enough on the other man’s joints to feel them teeter on the verge of snapping.
“What are you doing here?”
Aaron demanded, his voice hoarse with emotion.
“I was just dropping something off, man, I swear that was it! Please!”
His voice sounded young to Aaron’s ears, immature and he released his arms suddenly and ripped the mask from his head. The boy couldn’t have been more than eighteen or nineteen and Aaron felt his heart sink in his chest.
If Hank was using teens as his messengers then it meant the kid on the ground wouldn’t know anything.
Aaron rolled up onto his feet and reached down, grabbing the boy by the back of his neck as he tugged him to his feet.
There were tears in the teens eyes and Aaron could see the tracks of them down his face as he fought to keep his balance.
“Why were you dropping something off in the middle of the night?”
Aaron shook the boy a little more gently as he turned him back towards the house.
There were other lights on now and two of the security guards were making their way across the lawn towards Aaron and the boy.
Anger rose in Aaron chest and he had the sudden urge to fire the guards on the spot. He hired them to protect his family and they’d let him down.
The bolder of the guards stepped forward as though he planned on taking the boy into his custody. Aaron shook his head sharply, his eyes narrowed.
“Get the hell out of my house and take all of your crap with you.”
The guards stared at him, their faces stunned as they struggled to take in his words.”
“Mr Ashcroft, I…”
“Where the hell were you? Where were you while he was creeping around on the porch leaving boxes from Hank?”
“Something knocked out the security cameras at the back of the house and we went to check on it…”
Aaron shook his head.
“Not good enough. You have one job and that’s to guard the house and the occupants. You screwed up and I want you gone and don’t think you’ll be getting any references from me either…”
The silent guard didn’t say anything, biting his tongue as he turned and headed back in the direction of the house once more. The other guard who had spoken to begin with opened his mouth to pipe up once more.
Aaron glared at him, his stare withering and yet the other man held his ground. The boy in Aaron’s grip struggled suddenly forcing Aaron’s attention back to him as he whined.
“You’re hurting me, you don’t need to hurt me, I won’t do nothin’.”
Aaron started forward when the guard grabbed his arm forcing him to come to a halt.
“You’re making a huge mistake, I think you need a minute to reconsider.”
Aaron sucked in a deep breath drawing the air in through his nose before releasing it. He levelled his gaze on the other man, giving him the full weight of his hard eyes.
“I don’t need any time to think about it. I can’t trust you to protect the people I love, if I can’t trust you to do that, then you’re pointless and I want you gone. Now if I were you, I’d get your hand off my arm and I’d follow your buddy back to the house to get your stuff.”
The guard’s face shifted suddenly, his already angry eyes snapping with rage as he lashed out. But his body gave him away and Aaron saw the blow coming. He released the boy long enough to dodge the punch.
Aaron’s hand came back up automatically, his punch sharp and forceful as it landed squarely on the other man’s face. There was a distinct crunch and Aaron couldn’t help but feel a small modicum of satisfaction as he watched the other man crumple to the ground.
Blood gushed from his nose as he pressed his hands to his face, or at least Aaron assumed it was blood but it was too dark to be fully sure. The boy stood and watched, his mouth hanging open. The moment he saw Aaron turning back to him he lifted his hands as though in surrender.
“I swear I won’t run, you don’t need to do that to me!”
If it had been over anything else Aaron might have found the panicked look the boy was giving him funny. But this was related to Hank and Aaron couldn’t see the humour in any part of it. Hank was attempting to rip his life apart and whether the boy liked it or not he was now apart of it.
“Move, to the house, now.”
Aaron kept his commands short and concise as he raised his arm and pointed in the direction of the house. The teen didn’t need to be told twice and he scuttled in the direction of the house as fast as his legs would carry him.
Aaron strode after him, leaving the guard on the ground to moan into his hands. 
Aaron reached the edge of the porch, the boy stood waiting on the steps for him, his hands twisting nervously in the black jumper he wore. David stood out on the porch, his arms folded across his chest and the expression he wore was anything but friendly.
“You fired the guards?”
They were the first words out of David’s mouth as Aaron stepped onto the porch. It made him pause and he stared up at the defiant look on his brother’s face. Aaron simply nodded, he didn’t need to explain himself to David, not in his own house.
David stared at him for a moment before he nodded, his expression lightening.
“Good, because I wasn’t sure how you’d take to me firing your guards in your own home.”
“If they deserved to be fired then I wouldn’t have a problem.”
“And the beating?”
David jerked his head in the direction of the man still hunched over in the lawn.
Aaron shrugged as he moved up the steps pushing the boy ahead of him.
“He started it and I finished it, what was I supposed to do?”
David laughed and Aaron fought to keep his own smile under wraps. The last thing he needed was to find pleasure in beating down on someone else. 
The sight of the package quickly killed all joy Aaron might have felt. It sank down inside him, crushed beneath the weight of whatever he would find in the parcel. The last two had been bad enough and each one seemed to only get worse. Whatever this one contained, Aaron knew it would be brutal and he dreaded the moment when he would have to open it.
He swallowed hard in an attempt to push his emotions down inside. He would need to be as cold as possible if he was going to look at whatever perverse gift Hank had sent him.
“Aaron, what’s going on?”
The sound of Heather’s voice from the top of the stairs froze the blood in Aaron’s veins. She couldn’t see the package. Whatever else she learned, the contents of Hank’s gift was not on the list.

Friday, 28 February 2014

Chapter Two At the Billionaire's Passion

At the Billionaire's Passion

Coming March 8th

Chapter Two

The water was hot enough to turn my skin a bright pink. I stood beneath the scalding spray simply letting my body soak in the heat, relaxing with my eyes closed. Cold air suddenly snaked in around my body, curling around my legs and waist.
With a gasp my eyes flipped open as David reached for me, his hands wrapping around my body as he moved under the spray alongside me.
“I thought you were on the phone?”
“Mmmhmmm, I was.”
David’s mouth found the sensitive spot beneath my ear and he pushed me completely beneath the cascade of water. I gasped, water racing up my nose and down my throat. My body struggled for air as David moved down over my body, his mouth sucking and biting against my skin.
My fingernails bit into his skin and he tugged me from beneath the water. His fingers pushed against the entrance to my body forcing me to open to him. He moved against my body, his fingers pressing inside making me tremble. Pleasure built inside me, spinning through my body faster and faster as he pushed me higher.
He had already worked me into a frenzy in the bedroom and it didn’t take much to push me over the edge now. As though sensing I was on the verge of release, David pulled back. He wrapped his arms around me, lifting me into his arms as though I weighed nothing at all. He pressed my back to the cold tile as he guided his hard length into my eager body.
I dug my fingers into his slick skin as I wrapped my legs around his body, holding myself against him. He pushed up into me and it was a moment of such exquisite pain and pleasure that I squirmed against him.
David’s lips brushed against my throat, pulling my body closer and closer to his until I had no idea where he ended and I began.
The moment he bottomed out inside me he paused, his body trembling with the effort it took to hold back. I could feel him inside me, my body stretching around him, welcoming him inside.
This was where I belonged, where he belonged.
The thought zipped through my mind and then was gone as David began to move. His hips pushed against mine, his body lifting me until his hard length was barely brushing against my entrance.
I fought him, my body desperate to reclaim the feeling of completion that he brought me. I wanted it, craved it and nothing less than that would satisfy me.
David’s thrust sent my head tumbling back, my breath leaving my body in a whoosh. Our bodies found a rhythm, deep and fast thrusts that sent the pleasure that built inside me fizzing through my veins.
One minute my body was wrapped around his, the feel of him sliding in and out of me making my breath catch. The next instant my orgasm washed over me. The moment seemed to freeze, holding me suspended in a constant rippling and pulsing ecstasy.
David’s shout of release came from very far away. The feeling of his warmth spread through me intensifying the pulses that ripped through me. We clung to each other, holding him was the only thing that told me I still had a body. As far as I was concerned I could have exploded into thousands of shimmering pulses of light.
It was the feel of the water splashing down across my breasts that finally brought me back from the floating bliss I had given myself over to. I shifted in David’s arms but he simply tightened his grip on me.
“I thought Aaron was going to keep you on the phone all night?”
“Not the phone. He wants me to go down to his offices and meet him.”
Placing my hands on David’s chest I pushed away from him so I could stare down into his face.
“Why does he want you down at the offices?”
“You remember what I told you about Hank?”
I nodded and chewed my lip. I knew David didn’t like Hank, he’d said he was dangerous, that whenever he turned up trouble followed. But from what I had seen of Hank he really didn’t seem that bad. The fact that he had helped Aaron save Heather gave him another check in my book but I trusted David and I’d stayed away.
“Yeah, but you didn’t really go into details, you just said he wasn’t to be trusted and to stay away from him.”
“Hank has Kirsty.”
I shook my head as I pulled out of David’s grip and struggled to stand on legs made of jelly. We were in a tangle of limbs on the floor of the shower stall and as I stood I flicked off the water. David hopped easily to his feet catching me in his arms as I swayed unsteadily.
“Are you alright?”
The concern on his face made my heart catch in my chest. I swallowed back the sudden nausea that washed over me and nodded.
“I’m fine, who’s Kirsty?”
“Aaron’s secretary, you met her at one of the parties Aaron threw over Christmas.”
I had a vague recollection of a pretty bubbly girl with a bright smile.
“When you say Hank has her you don’t mean in the same way Jude had Heather do you?”
Fear crawled up my throat at the thought of someone as cruel as Jude targeting the people we cared about again.
David shrugged and it didn’t do anything to quell the fear I felt.
“Aaron hasn’t heard anything from either of them since the initial contact. The police haven’t found anything and at the moment it’s all at a standstill.”
“And what does he think you can do?”
I stepped out of the shower and grabbed the fluffy bathrobe from the hook it hung from inside the door. I didn’t mean to sound callous, and yet I honestly couldn’t see how Aaron holding a meeting over at his offices was going to help. Surely his time would have been better spent with Heather and the baby? She was probably panicked…
I shut my eyes and sucked in a deep breath the nausea rolling over me once more. It was something that was happening more and more and part of me couldn’t help but wonder if…
“Carrie, what’s wrong? Are you ill?”
David’s strong arms wrapped around my shoulders and he moved me into the bedroom. I smiled weakly and perched on the edge of the bed. How could I tell him that it was just my stupid body playing tricks one me? How did you explain something like that?
“I’m fine really. I just need to eat, it’s been a long day.”
David studied me, his eyes filled with concern as he lifted his hands and traced his fingers down over the side of my face.
“You would tell me if there was something wrong?”
The tone in his voice made me look up at him a little harder than I intended. He couldn’t possibly know that I had been to the doctor… Couldn’t possibly know what he had told me.
“Of course I would, David, you don’t have to worry.”
I swallowed hard. I hated lying but what else could I say? How could I tell him? In one fell swoop I would destroy all of his hopes and dreams for our future and I wasn’t willing to do that… Not until I was sure that what the doctor was saying was true.
He nodded and I caught a glimpse of the uncertain boy that lurked inside him. It was one of the reasons I had fallen in love with him. He was always so in control and his dominant attitude was breathtaking. But there was another side to David, a side that only I was privy to. And it was a side he had willingly shared with me.
“I’m going to head over to the office and see what sort of damage control Aaron has been doing on this situation. In the mean time get something to eat and don’t wait up for me, I can’t guarantee how late I’ll be.”
He leaned down and pressed his lips to mine. The kiss was soft and gentle and I wrapped my arms around his neck. I didn’t want him to go, I wanted him to stay with me. I wanted to climb into bed with him and continue what we had started in the shower.
The kiss deepened and David groaned as he crawled over me on the bed. He pulled away from me and stared down into my face. I could see the desire in his eyes and it made me shiver. It didn’t matter how often he took me, I was always craving more. He had said I was insatiable.
He sighed and dropped his head onto my chest.
“You make it almost impossible for me to get anything done you know?”
I giggled and David climbed off the bed. I sat up and watched him dress, the way he shrugged into his shirt, his muscles bunching and flexing as he moved. He was still the most handsome man I had ever laid eyes on.
David turned and caught me watching him, the smile that curved his lips was one that told me he knew exactly what I was thinking.
“I’ll leave two of the guys outside the apartment so you’re safe.”
“Why? I’m not in any danger, why do we have to keep up with so much security?”
He sighed and brushed his still damp hair back from his face.
“We’ve had this conversation at least a million times, Carrie, you’re not in any danger because we have security. Without it we don’t know what might happen and I’m not willing to take that chance.”
He was right of course but no matter how long I had the guards follow me I was positive I would never get used to it. I’d spent too many years without the fear and paranoia that came with the level of wealth and fame David had.
He stepped in against my body pulling me from my position on the bed. His hand cupped my cheek and I closed my eyes.
“You’re too precious to me to risk.” He leaned in a little closer and pressed his lips against my ear. “Deal with it.”
My eyes popped open and I stared up at him. I opened my mouth to fire back a smart answer of my own when I noticed the shadow of a smile that trembled on his lips.
His laugh was warm and it slipped down over my skin like warm chocolate.
“Please don’t be too late.”
The smile slid off his face and his expression turned serious and seductive.
“I won’t.”
His kiss was warm and feather light. One moment he held me in his arms and the next he was gone. I watched him stride through the apartment and disappear out into the hall. I waited for the sound of the door to slam before I moved to the closet and started to drag clothes out.
I had no idea how long he would be and I wanted to get to the pharmacy before he got back. I knew it was stupid but I had to know. Deep down I knew what the answer would be but a small part of me was hopeful that this test would give me a different result. The doctor had only said it would be unlikely and until he told me definitively then I would remain positive… I could only hope I wasn’t clinging to a dream that wasn’t meant for me.

Monday, 24 February 2014

Chapter One of At the Billionaire's Passion, Book 6 in the Billionaire Brothers Series

At the Billionaire's Passion

Coming March 8th

Chapter One

The drive back to the apartment was uneventful and the parking lot below the building was quiet, for that much I was grateful. As much as I’d enjoyed the trip away I was exhausted. I glanced over at David as he took the bags from the driver and headed for the elevator. I followed him without saying a word, moving on autopilot.
The moment the elevator doors slid shut David dropped the bags and swung around to face me. His strong hands caught my arm and drew my body in towards his chest.
“I’ve been waiting for an age to get you alone.”
His voice dropped to a conspiratorial whisper as he dipped his face to my neck, his lips brushing against my skin. My body reacted instantly to his touch, lips parting as a small gasp slid past, my arms automatically wrapping around his shoulders pulling him closer.
There was something about David that always had me longing to draw him closer to me. I had no explanation for it, it was just something that I felt. Perhaps it was a part of the connection we shared, the bond that had formed between us always bringing us closer. I couldn’t help but wonder if as the years passed would we continue to grow closer still?
“You taste like cherries and the crisp cold air of winter.”
He pressed his mouth to the sensitive spot just below my ear and I felt my legs buckle beneath me. David caught me easily, his strong arms holding me upright as his warm masculine chuckle rippled down over my skin.
“I love the way you react to me, Carrie, I love knowing you’re mine.”
“I was always yours, it just took us both a while to realise it.”
My voice was low and husky with desire, it was the voice of a woman who was loved, desired. A woman that had experienced pleasure at the hands and lips of the man who adored her.
For a second it surprised me, there would have been a time when I didn’t recognise who I had become. I was still Carrie, I held all the same insecurities and fears I had always had but now they were muted. It allowed me to simply give myself over to David, to enjoy and revel in the things he could make me feel.
He lifted his face from where he had been nuzzling my neck and stared down into my eyes. My heart hammered in my chest and for a moment it felt as though it might simply explode out of me. He was still the most handsome man I had ever laid eyes on and part of me would always wonder how I had gotten so lucky.
“Now that I have you, I won’t ever let you go.”
“I don’t want you to.”
I smiled up at him and the elevator doors dinged open making me jump. Reluctantly David released me and scooped the bags up from the floor. I rummaged through my purse as David dropped behind. Pulling the keys from their dark hiding spot I turned and caught him watching me intently.
“Do you want me to help with the bags?”
I asked, confusion at why he was paused in the hall making me furrow my brow.
“Nope, I was simply admiring the view of what’s mine.”
Colour flooded up from my neck and spilled into my face. I could feel the heat spread all the way up to my dark roots and I had the sudden urge to walk sideways down the hall.
Instead I swallowed back my embarrassment and turned, making my way to the front door on legs that had suddenly turned to jelly. The effect he had on me was intense, it was like no other feeling in the world and I loved it.
I could hear him picking up pace behind me as I pushed the key into the lock. David’s body was suddenly behind me, his hard chest pressed against my back as he forced me against the door. He jerked his hips gently, grinding his hardness against my ass making my breath come in small gasping gulps.
My hands shook as I struggled to even turn the key in the lock, my entire body beginning to tremble with need. I could feel his warm breath fanning across my skin as he dropped small kisses down the length of my neck.
“I can’t get the key to work.”
My voice shook with frustration as I struggled to open the door.
David’s hand crept around my waist, sliding up the side of my ribcage brushing against my breast. I gasped and pushed back against him, my body going into surrender mode. I wanted to be in his arms, I wanted to feel his body against mine… His fingers moved up to my arm, sliding down until his fingers covered mine. He pushed hard and sharp, forcing the key home and stealing the air from my lungs as he ground his body against mine. The key turned easily in the lock and as the door swung inwards I collapsed inside as the structure that had been holding me upright disappeared.
David’s arm wrapped around my body, jerking me back against him, stopping me from dropping to my knees in front of him.
A shiver of desire raced through me as I thought about being on my knees in front of David. The position had never appealed to me in the past but now… There was something about it, something in the way his hands slid down over my spine, the way his fingers dug into the flesh of my hips.
When I was on my knees there was no hiding from him. I was open, exposed and vulnerable and yet David had shown me over and over how utterly beautiful and intimate a position it could be.
“What are you thinking?”
He whispered against my ear as he dumped the bags on the floor and kicked the door shut with his foot. He spun me in his arms making me dizzy and it was his arms that kept me upright. The way he made me feel, it did things to my head, things I didn’t understand and yet craved all the same. I knew I would never get used to the fact that he had so much control over me. And yet I knew if I could give him even more control then I would do it in a heartbeat.
“I was thinking about…”
I hesitated over my words, how could I explain it without it sounding ridiculous.
“You were thinking?”
He prompted me, walking me slowly backwards towards the bedroom.
“I was thinking of what it’s like to be on my knees for you.”
Colour flooded my face again but it was worth it for the look on David’s face. His eyes darkened, an appreciative growl rumbling through his chest.
“You’re a wicked, wicked woman, Mrs Carrie Ashcroft.”
I laughed and pushed at his chest playfully but I couldn’t stop the shiver of desire that trembled down through my body when he said my name. My new name, his name. I was his, utterly and completely.
“No more wicked then you are, Mr Ashcroft.”
I grinned up at him as he manoeuvred me through the bedroom door.
Reaching the edge of the bed he paused before he dropped to his knees in front of me. He reached down and lifted one leg, slipping my foot from my shoe before he placed it back on the floor. He repeated the same action with my other leg before sliding his hands up my calves. His hands slipped beneath the skirt I was wearing and I gasped as he reached the tops of my stockings, his fingers brushing against my skin.
My breath caught in my throat as his fingers slid a little higher, brushing against the edge of my panties. He stared up at me, his eyes dark and possessive. The look he gave me burned through me to my very core. I knew what was coming, I knew what he would do to me, the things he would make me feel and it was enough to sway me on my feet.
David’s hands tightened around the tops of my thighs, digging into the soft flesh just enough to pull me back from the edge.
“I want you on your feet, don’t make me restrain you.”
His voice was low and it sent ripples of pleasure through my core. I couldn’t speak, my mouth was dry, my tongue a useless lump in my mouth. All I could do was nod and curl my hands into fists at my sides.
His hands moved quickly, his fingers deftly unclipping the suspenders that kept my stockings in place. He rolled them down my legs, lifting each foot once more to help me step out of them. Need and desire were building within me. I wanted him, wanted to feel him, touch him, taste him but David was the one in control and he would move at his pace. Where I was impatient, he was slow, savouring everything. Teasing me.
He pushed his hands back up my legs once more, this time bunching my skirt until it sat up around my waist and I was left exposed to him. He pressed his face in against my body and I gasped, my head dropping back as he gripped my hips and dragged my body closer to him.
The shrill sound of the phone tore through the ragged sound of our breathing. It rang and rang for what seemed like an eternity before finally falling silent. David looked up at me, a wicked smile curling his lips. I could see the promise of pleasure in his eyes and I wanted everything he was offering.
The phone rang again and David let out a frustrated sigh. This time it didn’t fall silent, the answer machine clicked in and David’s voice rumbled through the apartment, asking the caller to leave a message.
There was a pause and then Aaron’s voice filled the hall. There was no mistaking the tone in his voice and it left me with shivers. 
“David, I know you’re there, I rang the desk and they told me you returned home, answer the damn phone. This isn’t something that can wait.”
David sighed and pressed his face in against my leg, his teeth biting down gently on the soft skin of my thigh. I cried out, jerking in his grip.
David caught me as he stood, and stared down at me with regret in his eyes.
“I’ll find out what he wants and then I’ll be right back.”
David pressed his lips against mine, a gentle kiss, nothing like the passion he had displayed mere moments before.
I dropped down onto the edge of the bed and watched him head for the door. I didn’t want to feel disappointed but I couldn’t help it. He had gotten me so worked up and for it to then just fizzle out… I shook my head as though that action alone could clear the thoughts from my head.
I had no reason to be disappointed, not when Aaron had sounded the way he did. I knew it couldn’t be Heather or the baby, Aaron sounded far too in control for that. No, he was angry, there was a white hot rage in his voice, I recognised it because David shared his temper with his brother.
David had the capacity for a depth of passion and intensity I had never experienced before but if he was crossed he was… Terrifying was the only word that came to mind that even remotely covered what David was like.
I loved him and I knew he would never do anything to ever harm me but it didn’t change the fact that I never wanted his anger directed at me. The thought of his fury crashing down around me was enough to give me nightmares.
I could hear his voice growing more heated and I knew he had obviously gotten through to Aaron. With a sigh I stood and headed for the bathroom, the way they were arguing probably meant they would be on the phone for quite some time. It left me with time on my hands and a shower sounded like heaven.

Thursday, 23 January 2014

Chapter Two: Loving the Billionaire Picture Perfect

Chapter Two

The cursor flickered on the screen in front of Aaron’s face. Why was the simple task of writing an email always such a hardship? It wasn’t that it was particularly difficult, it was more that he disliked conducting business in this manner.
The phone on the table beside him shrilled, filled the airy office with its determined ring. Aaron watched the light flicker for a moment before it became steady and the ringing ceased. Kirsty was at least getting faster at answering the phone, he thought wryly before returning his attention to the job at hand.
His concentration was once more interrupted as the phone buzzed and Kirsty’s voice crackled out.
“Mr Ashcroft, it’s the police on line one, they want to speak to you.”
Kirsty’s voice was filled with nervous anticipation. She was probably hoping to listen in and then spread the gossip throughout the typing pool downstairs.
“Thanks, Kirsty, you can take lunch now.”
“That’s alright, Mr Ashcroft, I have a lot of filing to catch up on, I’ll go later.”
Her voice bubbled back to him and Aaron smothered a frustrated groan. Why did everyone have to make life so difficult?
“That wasn’t a suggestion, Kirsty.”
He let his slight irritation creep into his voice. If the police were calling him then the matter had to be serious. A sudden thought hit him. What if it was about Heather? What if something had happened to her and the baby.
Without waiting for an answer from Kirsty, Aaron snatched up the receiver and placed it against his ear.
“Mr Ashcroft speaking.”
He tried to keep the panic welling in his chest, out of his voice but he wasn’t altogether certain that he was succeeding.
“Hello, Mr Ashcroft, I’m detective Graham Martin, I’m sorry to be calling you at your place of work but we rang your residence and were told neither you nor Mrs Ashcroft was at home.”
Aaron felt his heart slow considerably in his chest. The phone call couldn’t possibly be connected to Heather, not if they had asked for her at the house. Although if she wasn’t at home then where the hell was she?
Aaron’s attention momentarily drifted away from the words Graham Martin was speaking into his ear. His mind focused completely on Heather. It wasn’t until the name Jude sank in that his attention snapped back into the present.
“Can you repeat that?”
“We felt it was important to tell you that we’ve been informed by the hospital caring for Mr Fossen that there has been a change in his condition.”
“What sort of a change?”
Aaron’s voice was strained even to his own ears.
“We’d prefer if you would come down to the station, you and Mrs Ashcroft.”
“Mrs Ashcroft will not be going down to the station.”
“Sir, I’d prefer if you would both attend, there are some things we need to go over with you both. Aspects of the case that might become important particularly if the situation changes.”
Aaron shook his head before realising that the officer couldn’t see him.
“She’s pregnant, doctor’s orders are that she stay away from all forms of stress.”
There was silence on the other end of the line as though the officer was honestly thinking of something he could say that might change Aaron’s mind. But of course there was nothing. Aaron was adamant. 
“Congratulations to you and your lovely wife.”
Aaron could tell from the officer’s voice that he was merely being polite. The fact that Heather would not be going down to the station was obviously an inconvienience.
“If she can’t attend that can I request that you come down to the station as soon as possible?”
“I can come now if that’s any good to you?”
“I look forward to speaking with you in person.”
Graham answered and the line went dead, leaving Aaron to set the receiver back down on the phone cradle. 
He stood and stretched. This wasn’t something he wanted to do. Why hadn’t Jude simply died in the accident? Life would have been much easier that way and everyone would have been happier. But fate had other plans for them all it seemed. The only problem was, that Aaron rarely enjoyed fate’s plans. He had his own and they revolved around keeping Heather and the baby safe.
The buzzer crackled to life once more.
“Sir, I’ve ordered a car be brought around for you.”
Kirsty’s voice filled the room and Aaron let out a sigh. She was a good receptionist, or at least she had the potential to be a good secretary but she had the terrible tendency to ignore what the boss said.
“I thought I told you to go for lunch.”
Aaron sighed into the machine before scrubbing his hands across his eyes.
The machine went dead and there was a small almost soundless knock on the door.
“Come in.”
Kirsty popped her head around the door, a sheepish smile on her lips. Her blonde curly hair was piled up on her head and her baby blue eyes were filled with nervous energy.
Aaron didn’t say anything to her as she cast several furtive glances around the office before finally moving into the centre of the room.
“I know you said to go on lunch but I was worried.”
Aaron did his best to hide a smile, he was after all supposed to be firm and strict and she had disobeyed his command.
“The moment I heard it was the police I was worried, in case it had something to do with Heather, I mean, Mrs Ashcroft.”
“And why would it have had something to do with Mrs Ashcroft?”
Aaron kept his voice blank and devoid of all emotion.
Kirsty hopped from one foot to the other and twisted her hands in front of her. Aaron watched as she dropped her gaze to the floor, suddenly fascinated in the pattern across the carpet.
“She rang this morning and asked me to transfer your calls to her cell phone if you rang… She didn’t want you to know that she was going out… She said you’d worry too much.”
Aaron let out a frustrated groan and ran his hand back through his hair. He let his eyes drift shut for a moment before once more pinning Kirsty in place with his gaze.
“And you thought maybe the police call had something to do with her call?”
Kirsty nodded and Aaron watched in horror as her bottom lip began to wobble.
“I really like Heather, I mean Mrs Ashcroft. She gave me a beautiful silk scarf at Christmas and during the office party she kept me company when the other women refused to speak to me… I don’t want anything to happen to her.”
Aaron stood and reached across the table, a box of tissues in his hand. Kirsty grabbed a handful of them and rammed them to her face, smudging her mascara beneath her eyes as she struggled to fight her tears.
“Kirsty, don’t cry, really, there’s no need for that.”
“But I know you’re angry at me and I try so hard to do a good job here but I keep messing up and…”
Aaron waved his hand as though by doing so he could wave her tears away. It was useless and Kirsty continued to sob into her now soggy mess of tissues.
“Kirsty, perhaps you should take the rest of the evening off. I have to go out and you’ve already called the car for me so there’s really nothing else I need you to do here today.”
She nodded and lifted her large watery blue eyes up to stare at him.
“You won’t fire me will you?”
Aaron smiled and shook his head. No he wouldn’t fire her, after all it wasn’t Kirsty’s fault. But as soon as he was at home he would be sure to wring Heather’s neck.
It was far too easy for something to happen. An empty feeling opened up in the pit of his stomach as he remembered the day before their wedding, when she had been so certain that someone had broken into her warehouse. Aaron had spent many a sleepless night, the image of Heather throwing herself into his arms a look of terror in her eyes before she blacked out.
He had been so certain that he had lost her that day. It had certainly felt like he had lost her. It didn’t seem to matter how often the doctor reassured him that she was fine, he couldn’t shake the terror that he would miss something and she would end up hurt or worse…
“No, Kirsty, you go home I won’t fire you.”
Aaron led her from the room and left her standing behind her own desk as he headed for the bank of elevators.
“Sir, before you go, a man named Hank Erickson left you a message. He said he would drop by tomorrow to discuss something you owe him.”
Aaron felt his stomach drop. Although Hank was a friend he was also a very dangerous man to have around. The last thing Aaron wanted right now was to have someone like him hanging around, not when Heather was so near her date.
“Thank you, Kirsty, now you go home.”
She nodded and Aaron pressed the button and waited for the elevator to arrive.

The ride over to the police station was uneventful. Aaron stared down at his cell phone, he had already called Heather twice only to receive no answer. Wherever she was, she didn’t seem to be in the mood for answering the phone.
The car pulled up in front of the station and Aaron stepped out, his hand automatically reaching for his tie to straighten it. He moved up the steps and into the station, his nose wrinkling at the smell of disinfectant and vomit.
He stood at the counter and waited for one of the officers to reappear. It wasn’t until a scuffle broke out between two women in the waiting area that two police officers finally poked their heads out from the back room.
“Break it up, if we have to come out there, you’ll both finds yourselves in the cells.”
The older of the two uniformed officers barked at the women involved. He had an air of authority about him and the moment he spoke the women dropped back into their seats as though his words alone had a physical effect on them.
“What do you want?” 
He turned his attention on Aaron, his eyes narrowing as he took in Aaron’s impeccable suit and appearance.
“I’m here to see Detective Graham Martin.”
“And you are?”
The officer barked. He was obviously used to people finding him intimidating but while Aaron found it easy to respect him, he wasn’t intimidated by him.
“Aaron Ashcroft.”
The officer eyed him up and down before he jerked his arm out towards the seats at the other end of the waiting area.
“Have a seat while I see if he’s expecting you.”
Aaron didn’t answer him, choosing instead to simply move over to where he had been directed. He took a seat and from beneath half lowered lids he watched the room carefully.
There were two men sitting in one corner, both covered in tattoos and other signs that singled them out as gang members. They sat with their arms folded across their chests and watched Aaron as though he was prey.
Aaron observed them quietly, careful to ensure that they had no idea he was actually watching them. One of them stood and stretched nonchalantly before he strolled towards Aaron and took a seat beside him in one of the empty seats.
Within moments the other man had joined him and Aaron found himself hemmed in on both sides. He felt a prickling of energy along the back of his neck but still he didn’t move and he didn’t open his eyes.
He didn’t want to start an argument but Aaron was in absolutely no doubt as to who would lose if there was a fight. Of course the last place he wanted to find himself beating up two thugs twice his size was in a police station.
“You smell of money.”
The first man that had approached Aaron leaned in and attempted to press his nose in against Aaron’s ear. He didn’t make it that far.
Without warning, Aaron’s arm jerked upwards, his elbow driving itself up into the man’s face. There was a satisfying crunch and Aaron stood before the man had a chance to bleed down on top of him.
His friend growled in anger and attempted to follow Aaron but it was that moment that Detective Graham decided to make an appearance. He caught sight of the other man as he attempted to tackle Aaron to the floor.
There was no time to react. Aaron was only vaguely aware of a shout going up but it was too late for the tattooed thug.
He dropped to the floor, clutching his stomach as he moaned. Aaron stepped out of reach and moved over towards Graham.
The detective watched Aaron with interest as several uniformed officers poured out of the back room and picked up the two sobbing men. Aaron did his best to conceal a smile as he watched them get dragged from the room.
“You’re quite handy it seems.”
Graham said, leaning in towards Aaron as he directed him through to the back area.
“I can hold my own.”
Aaron answered. He didn’t want to give too much away. The less people knew about him the better. Or at least that had always been his motto. If people didn’t know what you were truly capable of then they couldn’t use it against you, it was one of the first things he had learned during his training.
“I think you can do more than hold your own. Military training I take it?”
“Something like that.”
Aaron shrugged in an attempt to give the detective the most non-commital answer he could. The other man shot him a thin lipped smile as they took a seat at a small desk piled high with papers and folders.
“Thank you for coming down.”
Graham Martin said as he scooped a file off the top of his stack of papers.
“Well the moment you mentioned Fossen, I knew it was something I couldn’t let lie. What’s happened.”
Graham nodded as he let his eyes scan down over the file in front of him.
“You didn’t know Fossen prior to the incident with him and your wife?”
Graham asked. Aaron could tell he was fishing for information, no doubt hoping that Aaron would say something he hadn’t mentioned in his statement. 
“I knew him from around the clubs and things we frequent but if you’re asking if we were friends then the answer is a resounding no. I don’t believe Jude had friends, not real ones anyway.”
“And why is that?”
Aaron laughed, the sound surprising the detective.
“What’s so funny?”
The detective visibly bristled and Aaron did his best to stifle down his laughter.
“You can’t really be serious. Asking me questions like the ones you are. You’ve read the file, you’re familiar with the case. If you’ve called me down here for a fishing expedition then I’m sorry to disappoint you. What you’ve read in my statement is all you’re going to get out of me.”
Graham Martin watched Aaron closely, his expression as completely unreadable. It wasn’t until he nodded and smiled broadly that Aaron felt himself relax back against the wooden chair he was sitting in.
“Fine. I can respect that. As it stands I do have new information for you. The doctors believe he is in the verge of waking up. And if he does well we want to prosecute.”
“So why do you need Heather down here? Did you really want to tell her something like that?”
Aaron couldn’t believe what he was hearing. How could a monster like Jude be getting a second chance? If Aaron had his time back he would have ensured that Jude never woke up. He would have killed him with his bare hands if he had, had to.
“Well yes. As much as you might not want it to be true, Mr Ashcroft, your wife is very much involved in this whole investigation. If Mr Fossen wakes up I need to know that Heather will be willing to press charges. That she will testify against him.”
Aaron shook his head and dropped his head into his hands. Deep down he had always known there was a possibility that this day would come. He could hope and pray that it wouldn’t but it wouldn’t change the truth, the possibility that it could. And of course now that the possibility was starting to become a reality Aaron could feel himself growing helpless.
He wanted so desperately to protect her from Jude, to keep her safe. She was strong, she had more than proven that. Aaron had known people to crumble under less than what Jude had put her through. But Heather had wanted to survive, at all costs she had wanted to survive.
He was so unbelievably proud of her but he was also scared for her. The stability and peace they had found together seemed so fragile. If Jude woke up would Heather be able to cope with it?
“I can’t speak for my wife but knowing her she will want to do everything she can to ensure he goes down for his crimes. She hates him and everything he did.”
Graham nodded.
“I read her statement, it was pretty harrowing.”
Aaron shook his head and closed his eyes.
“The things in that statement are nothing in comparison to really living it. She survived Jude, but it was just barely. I dread to think what might have happened if she hadn’t been pregnant… That crash was bad enough to put Fossen in a coma… Part of me believes that Heather survived because she knew she was pregnant, she had to survive for the baby.”
Aaron cut himself off and stared off into the distance. He had said far more than he had intended. He swallowed back the other words that sat on the tip of tongue desperate to pour themselves out. These were Heather’s secrets, her thoughts to share, not his.
“If there is anything else she wants or needs to add to her statements… Anything that might have come to her in the time she has had to recover?”
Aaron shook his head and shot Graham a thin lipped smile.
“I’m afraid that is her choice. I will ask that you not tell her what you’ve told me. I’ll inform Heather when I think the time is right. The last thing I want is her getting upset and going into labour early or some sort of complications with the baby.”
Graham nodded.
“I can’t promise anything but I will take your concerns on board and I’ll do my best to sit on this for as long as I can. But I advise you tell her sooner rather than later.”
“What do you mean sit on it?”
“There are those in Mr Fossen’s inner circle that want his miraculous recovery spread to the media.”
“But he’s not awake yet?”
Aaron felt confusion wash over him. What were they playing at? Did they not care about all the innocent women Jude was guilty of murdering? All the lives he had destroyed?
“They don’t seem to think that matters. They want to share their good news with the media, they believe that there are others out there who support him and they want to give them the chance to share in their happiness.”
“I don’t understand how can they be allowed to do this?”
Graham shrugged.
“Technically they can tell the media anything they want. Of course the second they do the hospital will be crawling with press. From a security stand point the last thing we want is for this to get out.”
“Are you concerned that they are trying to arrange some sort of jailbreak?”
Aaron couldn’t honestly believe that he was saying it. It sounded utterly ridiculous and he had the sudden urge to start laughing. But nothing about Jude was a laughing matter.
“No, I don’t believe it will come to that but I don’t want anything to go wrong. So as I said, the sooner you tell her the sooner there can’t be any surprises.”
Aaron stood, the chair scraping against the linolium. He had a sudden urge to go to Heather, to wrap her in his arms and kiss her. He needed to feel that she was real, that she was safe.
Why was it that the moment life seemed to be falling into place it started to fall apart?
Graham stood and held his hand out towards Aaron.
“It was a pleasure talking to you, Mr Ashcroft. Please give my regards to Mrs Ashcroft and I hope I won’t be seeing you any time soon.”
Aaron did laugh then and Graham tilted his head to one side. He watched Aaron laugh with a bemused expression on his face before finally asking.
“What have I said now that’s is so funny?”
Aaron wiped the tears away from his eyes before he answered.
“It’s just the ridiculousness of the situation and the fact that you have to hope not to see me any time soon.”
“If I don’t see you it means Jude is exactly where he should be.”
Aaron nodded, his expression turning thoughtful.
“Not really where he should be.”
“Well I’d prefer him properly behind bars too.”
Aaron shook his head, his voice dropping so only Graham could hear him.
“I don’t want him in prison, I want him dead.”
Graham didn’t answer but Aaron could see the look of wariness fill his eyes. Aaron knew from the expression he wore that he was obviously filing away everything Aaron was saying. If something unfortunate were to happen to Jude, Aaron knew without a shadow of a doubt that Graham would be looking for him. And of course if something did happen to Aaron, Graham would be right to be looking for him.
Aaron shot the other man a winning smile and shook his hand enthusiastically.
“Don’t worry, Detective, I’m quite happy with my life as it is, I have no intention on doing something stupid and putting myself behind bars.
Graham nodded and returned the smile, but the look in his eyes was still wary as he walked Aaron back to the main doors.
“I’m glad to hear it, Mr Ashcroft, I don’t think your wife would appreciate the night feeds on her own.”
Aaron grinned, a look of genuine happiness crossing his face.
“And I have no intention of letting her do them on her own. I relish the thought of getting up in the middle of the night.”
Graham laughed as he pushed the door open.
“Tell me that when you’re sleep deprived and you don’t know which way is up anymore.”
“You have children?”
Graham nodded and lifted two of his fingers.
“Two girls, luckily they’re both past the night feed stage.”
Aaron smiled, he could see the love reflected in Graham’s eyes and it was clear how he felt about his children.
“Nice to meet you Detective.”
Aaron shook his hand before turning and disappearing out through the door. He smiled to himself as he imagined holding the baby in his arms. He had meant it when he had said he relished the thought of the night feeds. Everything had been so difficult and now that things were finally beginning to fall into place he was nervous. But hidden beneath it was a feeling of excitement, one that was threatening to well up and overwhelm every other emotion he had.

Loving the Billionaire Picture Perfect, book 5 of the Billionaire Brothers Series out this weekend! Sign up to my mailing list to be notified of its release!