Passion, desire, greed, deceit, and family drama come together in Felice Stevens’ sexy new romance—featuring a billionaire real estate mogul and the high-priced escort he finds waiting for him in his bedroom on his thirtieth birthday—and I have the first chapter for you.
Canali suit that fit like a second skin.
Hermés silk tie. I smoothed the luxurious material through my fingers.
Thomas Pink bespoke shirt without a single crease. I had a closet full.
Brunello Cucinelli shoes so bright and shiny, my smile gleamed in their reflection.
Now that I was ready, I slid a fold of condoms—just in case he forgot—into the inside pocket of my trench coat, and with one last look in the mirror, I called for my car early. I couldn’t afford to be late. There was bound to be traffic uptown to The Pierre, and one thing I always promised my clients was perfection—in the bedroom and out. When they called for Archer Strong, they knew they were getting the best.
In the limo, I spent the time studying Carl Dixon, tonight’s client, a thirtysomething software company executive with a few hundred million in the bank.
My favorite kind of man.
He’d booked me for an overnight stay in his suite. At five grand for a regular appointment, Dixon hadn’t blinked when I’d told him I charged double to stay until morning. He was accepting an award at a dinner, but I wasn’t there to share in the prime rib and tiramisu. I was there to suck his cock and fuck him into oblivion.
One might think not being listed anywhere would be to my detriment—the only way to hire me was through personal referral—but my calendar was full.
My Patek Philippe vibrated with the fifteen-minute warning I always set for myself. A glance out the window showed us to be only a block away.
“Good. Better early than late,” I muttered to myself and slipped my phone into my pocket. The car glided to a stop, and I stepped out to the warmth of the early October evening. I stood on the sidewalk for a moment, watching the elite of the computer world walk through the golden front doors. Tall, short, Black, white…none of it mattered to me.
If they had enough cash, they were welcome.
Strolling into the lobby of The Pierre, I scanned the faces of the men and immediately spotted Carl Dixon, who was checking his phone. Pale as early morning sunlight, five foot four, and weighing about one hundred thirty pounds, he stood with a defeated slump to his shoulders that held the weight of past promises broken. Being that I wasn’t paid to psychoanalyze the man, I placed a half smile on my face and crossed the space.
His brows shot up, and his face reddened. “Oh, uh, hi.”
“How are you this evening?”
Carl’s eyes ate me up. “Better now.”
“Aren’t you sweet.” I brushed the back of my hand against his cheek. “Should we go upstairs?”
“Y-yeah.” He nodded so fast, I wondered if he’d ever gotten laid. It had been a while since I’d popped someone’s cherry, and usually they were nervous eighteen or twenty-year-olds, not successful businessmen running billion-dollar companies. I took his sweaty palm in mine.
“Good. The elevators are this way.”
Once inside the suite, I waited for him to tell me what he wanted, but he remained silent, so I took the initiative. Sometimes clients were shy and needed me to talk them through what I had in mind. But for ten thousand a night, Carl could do almost anything he wanted.
I shrugged off my trench coat and suit jacket and folded them neatly, setting them over the dining-room chair. Carl’s breathing sped up slightly, and I slowed.
“Do you want me to get naked?” I murmured, my fingers resting on the knot of my tie.
“Um, yes, please.” Carl set his coat on the chair and kicked off his loafers. His eyes never left mine.
I grinned. “I’m no Magic Mike, but I can do a passable striptease.” I undid the tie and flicked open the buttons of my shirt. When I was naked from the waist up, I beckoned him with a curl of my finger. “Touch me. Come on.” I ran my hands over my chest and pinched my nipples while keeping my hips gyrating. “I know you want to.” My brows rose at the obvious bulge in Carl’s trousers. “Is this your first time?” I undid my belt buckle and unzipped my pants.
He blushed and moved closer. “N-no, but I haven’t been with anyone in a while.” His gaze locked on my groin as my slacks fell to my ankles, and his breath hitched. “I-I didn’t want to be alone the night I received the biggest award of my life, but everyone I knew was busy.”
“And I’m the lucky guy who gets to have you for the night.” I hooked my fingers into the elastic of my briefs and drew them down over my hips. Freed from its restraint, my cock swung out. Carl let his breath out in a long whoosh. He wet his lips as I grasped myself.
“I, um, brought some things earlier and put them in the bedroom.”
I arched a brow. “Did you? Naughty boy.”
His eyes popped wide. “No, uh, I just meant like condoms and ooh…” Carl’s eyes rolled to the back of his head when I palmed his crotch.
“It’s okay. I wouldn’t mind. You could handcuff me to the bed if you wanted,” I whispered, and his dick jerked under my dancing fingers. “Ahh. You like that thought. Do you want me to tie you up?” I always brought a few things I thought might enhance my client’s pleasure, and hearing his moans, I guessed he did. “Tell me what you want. I’m here to give you your ultimate fantasy.”
“Being here with you is like a fantasy,” he breathed.
I led Carl into the bedroom and started to undress him. “Let the games begin.”
* * *
At eight the next morning I dressed while Carl slept. As expected, he’d proved to be passive in bed, requiring me to continuously ask, “Does this feel good? How about this?”
Agreeable and pliant, Carl had groaned and writhed beneath me, but it was still fucking exhausting. He’d been so caught up in his own orgasmic bliss, he didn’t even notice I failed to get off before withdrawing.
They never did.
At least he was pleasant and clean and didn’t want to talk about feelings, old boyfriends, or worse yet, his mommy issues. Not that he could have—I’d fucked him until he passed out, facedown in the bed, twitching from the last release I’d squeezed out of him. I’d finished myself off in the shower, eyes closed, thinking about…nothing. Some faceless, nameless man who gave me pleasure. Someone who didn’t exist.
In the middle of the night, I gave Carl a taste of his fantasy, and tied him to the bed with lengths of silk and licked him from head to toe, leaving no patch of skin untouched. It was only because the suite was so big that no one complained about Carl’s screams of pleasure.
I made sure I earned every dollar I charged.
I took a fifty percent deposit up front, and the other fifty percent was to be transferred to my account after we’d concluded our business. It was the only reason I woke Carl up with a shake to his shoulder.
He blinked and squinted at me, his cheeks turning red. “Oh. Hi.”
It was a look I’d become familiar with. Carl was as finished with me as I was with him, but he still had something I needed.
“You slept well.”
I managed a lazy grin. “You’re welcome. Before I leave, I just need to settle the balance.”
Carl flushed a brighter crimson and reached for his phone. “All taken care of.”
A check of my account showed the second five-thousand-dollar amount had been deposited. “Thank you. I hope you enjoyed yourself, and have a great rest of the day.”
The door to the suite closed behind me, and I strode to the elevator, eager to get home and out of my dress clothes. When I wasn’t on the job, I preferred to be casual—no one would guess the man in the three-thousand-dollar suits enjoyed his plain T-shirts and Levi’s.
Once in my apartment, I shed my clothes, and though I’d already showered, I headed straight for my luxurious bathroom, eager to get the scent of hotel body wash off my skin. Now that I’d finished with the job, I wanted no reminders of where I’d been.
Except the money, of course. That was nice as hell.
Relaxing in my tub, the scent of bergamot and black currant rising in the humid air, I checked my schedule on the iPad I kept nearby. This evening I had an unusual request, one I still was uncertain I should’ve accepted. My phone rang, and I grinned as I opened the video call and Christine’s face appeared on the screen.
“I swear you have ESP.”
“Thinking of me, darling?” she purred, a wicked smile curving her red lips. “I see I’ve caught you naked. Do you need to call me back?” She arched a perfectly groomed ebony brow.
“Nothing you haven’t seen before, sweetheart.” Yet I was still thankful for the froth of bubbles. In college, Christine and I had been best friends—I was her confidant and wingman in her attempt to lose her virginity, and she was my beard, as I hadn’t yet come out. She was the only one who knew what I’d been through and why I did what I did. Christine’s family owned one of the hottest makeup brands in the country, and she was married to the überwealthy and incredibly sexy Anthony Gigante. There were rumors he was connected to the underworld, which Christine insisted was gossip spread to undermine his successful restaurants and other business ventures. Tony and I were close as well, and he had helped me get started in my business by recommending clients.
“Mmm, true. How was it last night? The guy okay?”
“Same as usual. Nervous and quick. I think he was out in less than five minutes. But I put a smile on his face.”
“You always do, darling. Now, about Tricia’s brother.” Her voice turned brisk and businesslike. “I sense you’re not fully on board. Let’s discuss.”
What I loved about Christine—and one of the reasons we’d remained friends for so many years—was that she never judged me for my life decisions. When she’d discovered I’d been escorting to make money for all my expenses, she’d insisted I do it right.
“If you’re going to earn your living fucking men, my love, make sure they’re rich. And not the fly-first-class-on-points, buy their wives’ Chanel second-hand on The RealReal kind of money. I want private jets, houses in Europe, black-card, superyacht status. There needs to be enough zeros in their bank account that I lose track.”
And, she never lectured me about why I wasn’t getting a law degree, which had been my plan when we’d met. She’d seen my struggles and understood my desire, my need, to make money and lots of it. With her intuitive business sense and Anthony’s connections, they’d elevated me to the premier spot in what was a surprisingly crowded field in New York City. Who knew so many men paid for sex?
“It sounds complicated.” I wiggled my toes, smooth and silky from the bath oil. “Explain it to me again.”
Christine sipped her cappuccino, then blotted her lips before answering me. “It’s simple. I’ve become good friends with Tricia Pitano. We’ve served on some committees together, and she was talking to me about her brother—Madden is his name—and how he’s withdrawn from his social life and she’s sad for him.”
“I could see she was intrigued by the thought of hiring someone to entertain him for the night, so I mentioned you and explained how it works. She wants to give you to him tonight as a birthday present.”
I grimaced. A surprise birthday gift. Never my favorite assignment, and Christine read my facial expression.
“Does this guy—you said his name is Madden? Does he know what Tricia has planned? I hate going to a client and they’re blindsided and get pissed off.”
“Sweetie, if someone like you showed up and offered to fuck me, I’d drop my panties and bend over without a word. If I were single, of course. And a man. Who could resist you?”
My laughter echoed off the marble walls. “How the hell does Tony keep up with you?”
Eyes sparkling, she tapped her pale-tipped nail over her full lower lip. “He does very well. No complaints.”
I could only imagine. Tony Gigante was insanely in love with Christine and had been from the moment they’d met. They’d bumped into each other shopping at Bergdorf’s. Along with helping him pick a present for his mother’s birthday, she’d allowed Tony to pick her up, and after spending the night in his penthouse, never went home.
“Seriously now, I’m not sure. I’ve been thinking of taking a little break. Lately I’ve either had men in loveless marriages who for whatever reasons—money or family pressure—won’t leave their wives but haven’t slept with them for years, or nervous virgins or men who are done in two seconds flat and then are ready for more in five minutes. Rinse and repeat.” I stared at the water. “I’m ready for a change.”
“Maybe Madden is what you need to get the juices flowing again. At least he’s young and not a virgin.”
I rolled my eyes. “It’ll take more than a workaholic thirty-year-old to do that, sweetheart. Anyway, tell me something about him. I haven’t ruled it out.” Ten thousand dollars for a night with someone who most likely hadn’t had sex in a few years was my bread and butter.
“I’ve only met him a couple of times. Gorgeous, grumpy, and rich as hell—sound familiar?”
“I am not grumpy,” I growled.
“And according to Tricia, he’s not the type to go out and party.” She gave me her cat-that-ate-the-cream smile. “Like I said. Remind you of anyone?”
“No,” I answered shortly. “What does he do?”
“What does anyone who’s obscenely rich in New York City do? It’s either real estate or finance. The story is, Madden’s great-great-grandfather left the city in the early 1900s and made a killing in the early days of movies with one of the first talkies. He bought tons of land out in California, then moved back to New York City after one of the big earthquakes and bought half of downtown. Now the Steele family builds all over the city.”
I whistled. “I’ve heard of them.” Frowning, I rubbed my jaw. “Any reason he’d be receptive to having me show up to fuck his brains out? He obviously can have the pick of whomever he wants.”
“That’s the point. He doesn’t want anyone. Tricia says he’s practically married to the job and has zero social life. He had a boyfriend for years, but one day it was over and the guy married someone else, after suing Madden for palimony or whatever they call it now. According to her, he’s not exactly someone who confides in people.” I gave a brief smile at her pointed stare, and she continued. “I know if anyone could give him a night he’d never forget, it’s you.”
“I can’t promise anything if the man isn’t receptive. And if I show up and he throws me out, they still owe me my fee.”
“Sweetheart, ten thousand to the Steeles is like ten dollars to most people. They make that in interest in an hour. But in any case, she said she’ll pay the full amount up front, so there’s nothing to worry about.”
“He might not even let me into the building. How does she propose to handle this?”
“She’ll alert the doorman to let you into the apartment. Madden goes to the gym every evening straight from work. When he returns, you’ll be there waiting in all your glory. Surprise!” She cackled.
It was a plan that could go very wrong, but who was I to turn away a guaranteed ten thousand dollars?
“Why the hell not? What’s the worst that could happen? He’ll turn me away? Not a big deal.”
“Fabulous. Have to run, darling. I’ll let Tricia know, and we’ll talk afterward. You can give me all the juicy details.” She paused. “He really is rather gorgeous. I can see the two of you together. All those hot alpha hormones.” She fanned herself. “Now I need to go find Tony.”
“You’re a bad girl. And Tony’s about to be a very happy man.”
I ended the video call, and intrigued, did an investigation of Steele Properties and Madden Steele’s bio. Oh, yeah. Madden Steele was very good-looking—piercing gray eyes, a strong nose, and a sharp angular jaw. Tense as hell. No pretty smile for the camera. Steele portrayed the epitome of uptight corporate executive, and there was little online about his personal life, the scarcity of information indicating he’d had it wiped clean.
The perks of being a billionaire.
All of which made me—like Alice in Wonderland—curiouser and curiouser about the man. For the first time in years, I relished a new assignment.