Authors: Jaymie Holland
Tags: #erotic romance
Tattoos and Leather
By Jaymie Holland
Copyright © 2014 by Jaymie Holland
All rights reserved. No part of this eBook may be reproduced in whole or in part, scanned, photocopied, recorded, distributed in any printed or electronic form, or reproduced in any manner whatsoever, or by any information storage and retrieval system now known or hereafter invented, without express written permission of the publisher, except in the case of brief quotations embodied in critical articles and reviews.
This eBook is licensed for your personal enjoyment. This eBook may not be re-sold or given away to anyone. If you would like to share this eBook with another person, please purchase an additional copy or copies. If you are reading this eBook and did not purchase it, or it was not purchased for your use only, then you should purchase your own copy. Thank you for honoring the author’s work.
This is a work of fiction. Names, characters, places, and incidents are products of the author’s imagination or are used fictitiously. Any resemblance to actual events, locales, or persons living or dead is entirely coincidental.
Published by Pink Zebra Publishing.
They were here again.
Double Trouble. Two-riffic. Twice Blessed.
Megan Faircloth had a lot of nicknames for the twins, never mind the wicked fantasies they triggered every time they strolled past the room of typists at Dorian International Imports.
She sat in her tiny cubby to the left of the door and forced herself to keep her head turned toward her computer screen. It was no good, though. Her eyes kept darting to the dark-haired gods as they sat on the visitor’s couch near the entrance to the executive suites. She carefully dislodged one of her ear buds so she could hear the men if they said anything.
They never did.
Tall, dark, and handsome—check. Hard, muscular bodies beneath those suits—she’d bet her grandmother’s photograph on it.
And silent as two chiseled stones, they never said a word.
They had to be identical, not just fraternal. They were the same height. They wore the same expensive-looking charcoal suits, and both of them carried dark brown leather briefcases. Their black hair was the same length, cut close, but not too close. They even had the same eyes, blue as sapphires, hard and wary as they scanned the halls before taking iPads out of their briefcases and getting to work.
Megan imagined their Facebook pages. Handsome and Just as Handsome. No, wait. Sexiest Twins on Earth.
They probably had names like Dirk and Rock.
And their Facebook pages would be private anyway. No droolers allowed.
She had no idea why the men had been coming to DII every Friday for the last two months, but she wasn’t complaining. It was the only excitement she’d had in weeks.
Dead-end job. Dead-end life. She sighed and tried again to focus on the letter she was supposed to be typing.
Men like those two would never give her a second look. They were the types to drink champagne with supermodels on private planes jetting to Madagascar, not hang out with administrative assistants who had nothing to offer but curves, freckles, and a big smile.
Megan put her fingers back on the keyboard and corrected a couple of obvious typos. It wasn’t like she planned to spend her life doing office work, but she didn’t have the money to finish college and there was no rich relative to foot the bill. Hell, she barely had the money to make rent. Her roommate, Drew Holloway, kept trying to get her to sign up as a consultant to throw Sweet Sensations parties, but just thinking about doing something like that—heat rose to Megan’s cheeks.
Her eyes drifted from her computer monitor, back to the gorgeous suits and muscles outside her door, and—
One of them was staring at her.
Her entire body went rigid as Twin One’s blue eyes fixed on hers and held her gaze. Megan’s breathing nearly stopped, and her pulse pounded fast in her throat. Her cheeks had been warm before, but they flamed now, and she felt the hot blush kiss her neck, even her ears. She had never had such a total full-on view of one of the twins, and she noticed something on the left side of this one’s neck. A dark swirl, or some sort of mark. Maybe a thorn?
Was that a tattoo?
Megan’s thoughts instantly rushed to what he would look like with that jacket off and his pressed shirt unbuttoned to show her the full cut of his abs—and the pattern of his ink.
What would a man like that tattoo on his chest?
I’m losing it.
Twin Two slowly raised his eyes from his iPad. Megan’s gaze shifted wildly between the men as they both examined her from foot to knee to hip, and higher. She wished she had worn something sexier than her comfortable khaki skirt and her old short-sleeved pink sweater, but their expressions left little doubt that her clothes hid nothing from them.
And her screaming blush didn’t do much to deny her interest, did it?
Then she realized they had focused on her dislodged ear bud, as if they both knew she had been hoping to eavesdrop on their conversation.
Twin One lifted one finger and made a tsk-tsk movement.
Twin Two’s lips twitched into the barest hint of a smile.
Megan thought she might die right where she sat, of embarrassment, of pathetic desire, she didn’t even know which would be fatal faster.
The executive suite door opened, shattering the moment.
Megan jumped. She crammed her ear bud back in place and positioned her fingers on the keyboard, tapping mindlessly and hoping she didn’t look too guilty.
A man in a blue suit greeted the twins with handshakes. They stood and tucked their iPads back into their leather briefcases. Without giving her a second glance, they strolled after the man in the blue suit, letting the door swing shut behind them.
Just like that.
Why did that make her want to scream?
Something is seriously wrong with me,
she thought. Then, unable to help herself, she typed,
She deleted the words and put her face in her hands.
Breathe. That’s it. Nice and slow…
It took a while to get back on track, but Megan finally managed. She had trouble not glancing at the doors to the executive suite, though. Five minutes went by between checks, then ten. Half an hour. An hour.
Sooner or later, the twins would come back through, and when they did, maybe they would notice her again, and—
“Megan,” Stewart Jackson, her supervisor, called from behind her, shooting Megan’s heart rate into orbit. “I need to see you in my office now.”
“And thank you for your time at Dorian International Imports.”
Megan didn’t think she heard the man right. She shifted in the stiff office chair and stared at the pencil pusher in the black suit, the one who had just told her that her
services were no longer needed
and handed her a check for the fourteen hours she had worked that week.
Jackson had always been too friendly and fake-nice. Megan thought he was a sniveling rat of a man, always patting women on the shoulders, and the knees or thighs when he thought he could get away with it. He sat at his miserable gray desk, folded his slimy hands in his lap, and pretended to look sorry as she pocketed the check.
She kept right on glaring at him, not believing his act. “It’s because I told you no about dinner, isn’t it?”
“Dinner?” Jackson switched his expression from so-sorry to completely confused. “I don’t know what you mean.”
Megan opened her mouth, but closed it again. What good would it do? She was one of a zillion women who dealt with sleazy male supervisors. If she had wanted to do something about it, she should have filed a complaint when he asked her out a month ago. She hadn’t, of course. She needed the job too much.
The weasel-bastard actually smiled at her. Behind him, in the window offering a perfect view of Central Park, snow fell in fits and spurts. A dull ringing started in Megan’s ears. Stark white walls and green carpet squeezed in on her. The room felt so small she didn’t think she could breathe. Her hands clenched into fists in her lap. “I’m the fastest typist you have. I’ve only worked here six months, but I revised all of your entry forms to make them faster.” Then, as if it made any difference, “It’s a week before Christmas. How can you fire me a week before Christmas?”
“Holidays are just another number on the calendar to big business people.” Jackson’s condescending smile never faded. “And you’re not fired. It’s a layoff. Most of the typing pool will be let go by week’s end. DII is shifting to digital dictation and voice recognition. Don’t worry, though. You’ll get unemployment.”
In two weeks. Maybe.
There was no way she’d make rent, never mind the bills. Megan bit her lip to keep from screaming at Jackson about how unfair this was, or slapping him, or worse—crying. She wouldn’t cry, damn it.
Jackson reached to the far side of his desk and picked up an empty box. He handed it to Megan. “I’ll take your entry card now. Pack your desk, and when you’re finished, call security to walk you out.”
Megan stuffed her hand in her slacks pocket and snatched the DII entry card. She tossed it on the desk, grabbed the box, and got to her feet almost as fast as Jackson did. “Security? Seriously? You don’t have anything I’d want to steal.”
Jackson’s weasel-bastard smile turned smug. “Standard procedure, Ms. Faircloth. Nothing personal.”
Ms. Faircloth. Yeah. It was
when you thought you had a chance to get in my pants.
Jackson stepped around her and opened the door, standing between her and the typists’ room where he thought she’d have to brush past him to get to her desk.
Angry heat flared across the back of Megan’s neck. It wasn’t easy, but she used the box as a shield and managed to get out of Jackson’s office without touching him.
It wasn’t much of a win, but at this point, she would take what she could get.
* * * * *
A comb, a photo of the grandmother who raised her, a tube of lipstick, three copies of her skimpy résumé she’d printed while nobody was looking, four pens, two pencils, and a box of wheat crackers. That’s all she had to show for her time at DII.
Megan fumed as she rode the elevator less than half an hour later—
security. Screw standard procedure. She didn’t work at this stupid place anymore, did she?
The elevator wasn’t moving fast enough. She wanted out of DII and as far away from Jackson as she could get. There wasn’t enough time left in the workday to start looking for a job. When she got home she’d embellish her resume and first thing tomorrow would snag some coffee, then hit the pavement. First the Unemployment Office, then out looking for a job. Temp agencies, fast food, anything with a
sign. She wasn’t picky.
The elevator dinged as it made it to the first floor, and Megan hurried out so fast she tripped when her heel hung on the threshold. Her box tumbled out of her grip, and everything inside it went flying to the right, away from the main entrance.
Pencils skittered. The box of crackers tumbled out and résumé pages scattered in every direction. Her grandmother’s picture lurched out of the cardboard and struck the tile floor with a shattering crunch.
Megan swore and jerked her heel free. She glanced toward the entrance, but the main hall was empty, and the security guard at the desk didn’t so much as look up. Well, at least she wouldn’t be humiliated by being seen on her knees gathering her things.
She got down on her knees and righted the box, then grabbed papers and her lipstick, and stuffed them back inside. When she picked up her grandmother’s picture, she saw that the glass was shattered.
Megan pulled the picture closer, squinting at it to be sure it wasn’t damaged.
Scratches across two of the corners. Her chest seized, and tears pricked at the backs of her eyes.
“No big deal,” she told herself out loud. “I can take it to a photo center and get reprints.”
But the original—after the fire, it was all she had.