Warning: All five books in the Mr. Blackstone series are erotic romance, and they are for individuals 18 and over.
December in New York is a great time of the year for the young and the rich, but a bad time for the old even if you are rich. The weather is in transition and so are bodies and minds. The cold rainy weather makes the young feel alive, but I happen to be young and rich, yet I feel the opposite because of the twists and turns my life has taken.
Today I’m shopping for a dress, and Brandon, my driver, has dropped what he was doing to accommodate my frivolous pointless needs.
A text comes in from Jonas on my way to a Fifth Avenue boutique. They have loads of little black dresses for the black tie affair tonight. I give out a long sigh and reach for my phone, and read Jonas’s few words. Every word is like a scream. My head hurts whenever I hear from him. The muscles in my neck tighten and my left eye twitches.
I need you. Please come immediately. I don’t reply. I haven’t made up my mind. I have a few more minutes and I sensibly take them.
Reaching inside my bag, I drop the phone after hitting the mute button, and pull out a book I had planned on reading. Maybe the drive uptown to find out about Jonas’s urgency can give me time to get in some needed reading.
Books are my saving grace and way to get some peace. I can disappear into a world of fiction. Newspapers have become so depressing lately. Too real. Too much drama.
Elderly man shoots elderly wife and her lover. What happened to the time when men welcomed their wives’ lovers because they were too busy fucking the next door neighbor, or their secretaries. What happened to those days? I wondered.
I decide to notify Brandon of the change of venue. “Brandon, I need to see my brother-in-law…at his club.” I suck my teeth, shake my head, and take in a small breath. I really don’t want to do this.
Unlike me, Brandon takes the change in stride. I like his even disposition. Nothing seems to rattle him. He’s young and this is December. The holiday season is here and decorations and lights are already in the store widows. People are wandering around window shopping, and dreaming. Dreaming of what once was. Once they were young. Once they were loved.
The traffic is horrific. Someone important is in town again. I close my eyes momentarily and think about the real Christmas tree Max brought for the children. He even took time with us to help decorate it. That makes me smile. Our little dog wanted in on the festivities. He rushed to get the ornaments, and Maxim and Jack had to chase him to pry the ornaments from his teeth.
“How long is this going to take, Brandon?” I’m impatient and I cross my legs shaking them. Restless Leg Syndrome, or Jonas Blackstone Syndrome. I never know what to expect when Jonas asks to see me. It has been months since I’ve heard from him.
Thanks for small mercies. Frankly, I could go a lifetime without hearing from Jonas because when he calls, there’s always an emergency.
“I’m thinking fifteen minutes to a half hour Mrs. B. We should be there give or take a few.” Brandon’s voice is calm. The traffic doesn’t rattle him. It’s a season where people are in a hurry to get home to family, and a season where the spending of money will likely cause divorce, and worse yet, loneliness and suicide.
My eyes fall to the book in my hands, and I open it to the back. I didn’t realize it’s a book of poems when I grabbed it, and dropped it in my oversized bag.
I’m reading. The words are stark and shocking. I don’t want to read further because I don’t want to know why Oscar Wilde wrote those words. The words affect me and I can’t get the thought out of my head.
“…each man kills the thing he loves.” I hear Brandon’s voice crowding out my thoughts.
“Mrs. Blackstone…I mean, Alex. The ride didn’t take as long as I expected.” Brandon pulls the car into the circular driveway, steps out and opens the door. I begged him to stop doing that. Too much attention on me, but he insisted that it’s expected, and he didn’t want a reason for Max to dismiss him.
Brandon stands watching and waiting until I’m safely inside the mansion, before he enters the car, and parks it to the side, and away from the entrance.
I had instructed Brandon to park near hedges so my car can’t be seen from the street. Just a precaution because I don’t want Max to discover that I’ve been associating with Jonas, and not telling him, especially since he warned me about getting involved with Jonas’s schemes.
It was too late then and now. It was like locking the barn after the livestock escaped.
A large black man in a black suit and white shirt is manning the door. He appears to be screening all visitors, but he remembers me and opens the door. Knowing Jonas, and his weakness to brag, he probably informed him that I’m his sister-in-law. This is perhaps the second time I’ve been here. I find my way to his office without any problems.
There’s no one in the building from what I can tell. Maybe it’s too early. The place is lit and more lights have been installed. The mansion doesn’t look like a mausoleum anymore. Jonas had his workmen change the sconces on the wall and the interior paint to bright soft colors. That beats the red wall paper and antique lights.
“Jonas, I’m here. What is the problem this time? I can’t keep meeting you at this club,” I mumble chastising him, walking down the foyer, then opening his office door, after knocking. I toss my purse on the nearest chair, and stand behind a white antique chair with a green velvet seat waiting for Jonas to turn around to face me.
“If Max even discovers that I have anything to do with you and this club he will… Well I don’t want to think what he’ll do.”
Leaning forward my hands are on his desk. His office is darker than usual. My first thought is to turn on one of the lamps. My second thought is to turn around and walk out of Jonas’s Blackstone infamous bondage club. It’s located on the upper east side of Manhattan, and home away from home, to some very rich unsavory characters. My brother-in-law being one of them. I’m upset and I’m here to plead or threatened him to leave me alone, and stop getting me mixed up in his craziness.
I have to make this quick. I don’t want to stay here any longer than necessary because meeting him here gives me an uneasy feeling.
Jonas still has his back to me. He’s turned around with his face gazing out of one of the few windows in his office, or just staring at the wall. I wouldn’t be surprised. That’s just like Jonas; always in his own world. Never takes anything serious.
He has me involved and I’ve been frightened ever since. I never know what to expect from him. It’s a matter of time when Max will discover all our secrets. That’s why I continue to see Jonas when he calls.
The last time I was here, I had to fight off Robert, and my desire to succumb to Robert’s charms and his obvious skills with satisfying women.
Jonas turns around in a slow swivel of his brown leather chair, but it’s not Jonas, it’s Robert. My heart speeds up. Why is this man affecting me in this way? I can’t seem to get him out of my life, and get away from him. He appears to be everywhere I am. I don’t trust myself near him. Better than that, I can’t trust myself near him. Next time I might give in to him and that could be the end of my marriage, and Max will undoubtedly take my children and the dog.
I narrow my eyes. My forehead furrows. I don’t want to give him any hint of weakness on my part. He knows women and he senses when a woman desires him.
My desire for him is deep.
“Why did you text me from Jonas’s phone, and why are you here?” I say to Robert. My voice is harsh, I’m concealing my true feelings. “What are you doing in Jonas’s office anyway?” I look around trying not to meet his gaze.
“It’s my office now.” He corrects me. I raise an eyebrow. He shoots me a wide grin and my legs weaken. My resolve disappears. I steady myself and focus on Max, my children, and my dog. But not even the thought of my family can help me now.
There’s no way Jonas would sell this business to Robert especially since he can’t succeed at anything else. But I could be wrong. I take a breath and lock eyes with Robert. My heart is racing when I look into his soft blue eyes and focus on his devilish grin.
“I bought him out. I made him an offer he couldn’t refuse.” A light chuckle falls from his luscious lips. I couldn’t remember until now why I’m undeniably attracted to this man. The glow from his blue eyes is causing me to become restless. I shift from side to side. I want to sit but I don’t. That would be another signal that I am too comfortable with him.
But could it be my obvious lack of self-control that’s making me feel this way? I throw that in the back of my mind like so many other things these days.
Max and I are moving and I have too many things to think about. One is how will I feel once I’m away from Robert. Or how will I adjust to Max once he has sold his profitable companies in Asia to be with me and the boys? Will Max hate me for what he had to give up?
Looking at Robert sitting behind Jonas’s desk with a pen in his hand, fiddling with papers, he’s relaxed in his off white V-neck sweater and jeans. He’s mesmerizing and I shouldn’t be here entertaining him with light conversation.
I have children and a dog to take care of not to mention a fabulous handsome husband who will get home soon and discover I’m not ready for the black tie affair. I have to buy a black dress, but instead, I’m fucking around with Robert once more.
He stands never taking his eyes off me, and moving in my direction. I move back behind the chair. I need room between us. “Come on. I know you aren’t afraid of me.” He’s in front of me and raises his head and smiles again. He doesn’t say a word. His body says it all. I’m afraid of myself and he’s testing me to see what kind of effect he has on me.
“Of course I’m not.” My voice cracks. “I just want to keep away from you. I don’t want anyone to connect me with you. As a matter of fact, I want to forget that you and I ever met,” I say looking up at him.
“I can’t forget that night,” he says his eyes smoldering and raking over me from head to toe. “I’ve been thinking of you from the day I set eyes on you. From the day we met here… and how you made me feel…” He touches my chin and I flinch. He tilts my chin. Our eyes meet. “I bet you’ve been thinking of me, too.” I don’t move. He pushes my hair to the side and sniff my neck. “The same wonderful smell. It makes me hard, and that perfume.”
His face is close to mine. I lower my eyes. His lips are close to mine. I can smell him and almost taste him. He’s wearing an expensive after shave. It has a fresh outdoor scent. He smells like Max. My eyes blink and I focus. It’s not Max, Alex. Get a grip.
I push his hand away. I raise my eyes. “The only thing I’m thinking about is when are you going to leave me and my family alone?”
Robert takes a step back in surprise. He stares at me.
“Just as soon as Jonas pays me what he owes me. Then I’ll consider leaving him alone. You, I’m not sure about.” Another wicked laugh comes out of his inviting mouth. Robert turns and steps away from me and moves back to Jonas’s desk and sits.
“When I take you from Maximillian, then that will be the end of that relationship.” My eyes blink because of his brazen comment.
“You really are ambitious.” I laugh at him. He frowns and I see the true nature of the man. Before, all I saw was his smiles and arrogance and loose talk. And that may have been his charm. Now I see a serious determine dangerous man.
“You’re in an unhappy marriage. I see it on your face and I’ve seen it before on other women’s faces. All the faces look the same at some point because they travel down the road of neglect. They are neglected by their husbands in one form or the other.”
I wasn’t going to spend another minute listening to Robert’s theories. Or try to prove the falsity of his statements. He just wanted reassurance, and if I protested, then he could conclude that he was correct in his assessment of my marriage.
“You haven’t said why you texted me.” I tighten my hands around the back of the chair. “Doesn’t Max give you enough work to do?” Robert is focused on one thing and that’s me.
“I have a need for a beautiful young woman like yourself. And to answer another one of your questions, I will spend my extra time trying to convince you that you are mine and will be mine one day.” He gives me a closed smile and asks, “Is Max in town today?” His eyes sparkle when he glances up quickly and locks eyes with me. He answers my question. I wish I hadn’t asked.
“Why do you want to know about Max’s whereabouts?” My tone is abrasive.
Robert’s face and voice changes. He’s the alluring attractive charming seductive man I know. “Tonight is the dinner at the Museum of Natural History and if he isn’t in, I would like to escort you.” His voice breaks into a husky whisper full of appeal.
“You can’t be serious.” I narrow my eyes, and then let out an overconfident laugh as I reach for my purse laying in a chair, near a window covered in soft hunter green velvet curtains.
“Oh, but on the contrary, Mrs. Blackstone. I’m very serious,” he says in a deep throaty voice. His eyes blink, and another devilish smile crosses his lips for a second, as if he’s visualizing me in the nude.
“When your husband isn’t around, I know how passionate and sexy you are, and you’re a woman with a certain hunger and need for sex. Do you think I’m stupid like Blackstone? How can he leave a woman like you to a man like me?”
My body is reacting to his words and my cheeks blush red. I start to twirl my hair and he’s watching at me. He knows what he’s doing to me, and I can’t stop my body from reacting to him. I can’t control myself near him, and I hate me for that.
He watches at me and then says, “When Blackstone isn’t available, I want you to be available to serve my needs.” I tilt my head to the side. I laugh and shoot him an arrogant closed smile. I couldn’t have heard him correctly.
“You have completely lost your mind. Since when do you and I have more than what went on that one night? And I guarantee you, it will never happen again.”
“The only thing that you can guarantee that it will never happen again, is if I’m dead, and I don’t think I’m going anywhere soon. I want you, and I’m sure you want me too, so why do you continue with this façade? If you agree to let me make love to you, your husband will never find out. We can satisfy our need for each other until one of us gets tired of the other.”
“Do you hear yourself?” I say to him. I’m ready to go I’ve spent enough time with him. I don’t want to hear any more of his ridiculous talk. Why am I standing listening to this? I’m wondering.
Could it be I’m ready to surrender to him? I have to hold it together. Everything is at stake.
“What you’re proposing sounds like blackmail to me. I don’t care how you fashion it and wrap it into different meanings, you are saying that if I don’t give in to you, then you will let Max know about me and you. But there is no me and you,” I say in an awkward voice.
“I’m certain that there is a you and me, and there will be as long as I want it. And I wouldn’t be so tactless as to label it as blackmail if I were you.” Robert’s voice is uneven, but he’s smiling, and he shoots me a wink.
“Then what would you call it, Robert.” My tone is cold.
“I like the way you say my name,” he whispers. “Your voice sends shivers down my spine. I’m ready if you are?” I’d like to send something with heat down his spine. Maybe a strong whip. But then he likes that kind of thing.
“You can’t blackmail me. I’ll tell my husband,” I say with resolve.
“You will have to tell him everything including how I performed oral sex on you and you just laid there enjoying it.”
“That wasn’t my idea,” I plea.
“Yes, I know, but you can’t tell Maximillian that without implicating his loving brother.” I turn my back on him. I can’t stand Robert, yet, I’m drawn to him, and I can’t explain to myself why. I turn around to face him. The light from the lamp on the desk is in his face, and he’s indeed a sexy man, and I can’t pull myself away from him.
We gaze into each other’s eyes and there’s nothing but silence and arousal moving between us. I break the tension.
“Max is taking me to the dinner tonight. So that ends your objectives.”
“Good. Then I don’t have to worry about you. He will be there to keep the gigolos and admirers away. He will do my job for me, but he can’t be trusted to…” Robert glances upward and to his right.
“Who can’t be trusted?” Jonas says standing in the doorway then moving inside his office as he strides closer to me. Robert stands and his body jerks around when Jonas touches me and kiss my cheek. They are eye to eye. Two very handsome, tall, gorgeous, and fucked up men.
“Damn if you and Maximillian don’t look just alike,” Robert says smiling. He turns to me. “How can you tell these two apart?” He shakes his head at the uncanny likeness. “Have you ever tried to impersonate Max?” he questions Jonas. Jonas understands what he means, and so do I.
“We are mirror twins, and never what you are thinking.” Jonas adds harshly. “Now can I have my office back? I need to talk to Alex alone.” He stares at Robert. There is tension between the two. “We have no more business to conduct, Robert.” Jonas is tapping his finger on his desk waiting for Robert to move out of the way.
Robert puts his hand to his mouth, gazes at me, and steps aside. He looks at me one more time and winks then steps around Jonas and out of the office.
“What was that about?” Jonas asks in a brooding voice.
“You tell me,” I said sitting in the chair in front of Jonas’s desk. “You got me into this shit, and I can’t get rid of him. Max even gave him an apartment in the building without me knowing.”
“I guess that’s hard on you, Alex. But I’ll take care of everything.” It wasn’t that hard on me. It was my thoughts and desires for him that made it hard.
“Like you did last time, and like you do with everything you touch.” Jonas slides into his chair.
“I apologize for everything. I will make it better,” Jonas says his voice soft and remorseful.
“The only thing that will make it better is for Max and I and our children to leave Manhattan.”
“You can’t do that.” Jonas raises his voice in desperation. I was thinking of bringing Crystal and my baby boy up and…”
“And you want me to run interference for you. Keep her occupied and entertained. You have all your women and mentees hanging around. She wouldn’t understand you staying away night and day. She doesn’t know anyone here but me. You can’t trust people in this town with keeping secrets about you and this business. Crystal will eventually find out and leave you.”
“Maybe I should tell her to stay where she is until the baby is old enough. Maybe send her to live with her mother until I can liquidate everything.”
“That sounds like a good idea. But since when have you payed attention to a good idea and acted on it?” It’s no holds barred with him. “Why not give everything to Robert and get rid of him?”
“It’s not that easy. I’m getting too old for this, Alex and I don’t have the money I need for my family. I’m thinking of buying a ranch near you and Max.” I didn’t want to say, oh god no, because all Jonas had was Max’s family and Crystal and the baby.
“That sounds like a great idea if you mean it. After living in Manhattan, can you live in a rural setting is the question.” I should have posed the same question to myself.
“I’ve had my share of war, and unpleasant characters to last a lifetime. My life has been threatened, and you know me, I don’t care about me. I don’t want anything to happen to you, Max and the boys.” His voice trails off and he’s staring out of a window overlooking a courtyard with a park and trees. I wished I could believe him.
One of his female employees is sitting outside smoking. He appears to be interested in her. I follow his gaze. She looks young. Long dark hair, tall with a slim figure. Probably his submissive. He likes to break the new ones in. He’s their Dominant. But he doesn’t have the disposition for it. They soon take over and is ordering him around controlling him. Then he has to let them go.
I focus on his words about not wanting anything to happen to Max, me, and the boys.
“What are you talking about Jonas? I hope you haven’t done something else stupid.” He turns away from the window with a jolt.
“No. Of course not. I’m just thinking about what would happen if I didn’t have Max and you in my life.” He pushes the chair from his desk and walks around to put his arms on my shoulders.
“I’ll walk you to the door.” He takes my hand. “Do you have your driver with you or do you need a cab? I can have my doorman call you a cab.”
“Brandon is outside waiting.” I can’t help but glance in Jonas’s eyes. Robert is right. You can’t really tell Jonas and Max apart. But I know he’s Jonas. Max is sure of himself and his surroundings. He walks erect with his head up, as if he owns the world. Not like Jonas, hunched over, his head bowed when he’s in trouble.
Jonas guides me through the hall, and to the entrance of the building. I get an uneasy feeling from Jonas. He’s nervous but then he has always been nervous. Fighting in Afghanistan, coming back and living on the streets of Seattle, doesn’t make for a calm solid citizen.
No matter how many expensive bespoke suits he dresses in, or how much money he has, or family connections to keep him anchored, he’s still a fragile young man sitting on the edge of a high rise building ready to jump.
I turn to him. “What is it Jonas? What’s bothering you?” He doesn’t answer me. His mind is far away. “Did you take you meds?”
“Of course. Now go home and don’t think about me. I’ll be okay.”
Jonas was right about one thing. Whatever happens to him, he’s okay, as long as he has Max to take care of him. But Max pulled away from him. He didn’t want Jonas to follow him to New York which he did anyway.
Standing at the door, I kissed Jonas on the cheek and he held me tight. The kind of embrace a child might give a mother when he’s in trouble.
But then, when is Jonas Blackstone not in trouble?