Victoria Hastings is poised at the edge of the promotion that will change her life and put her at the top at Precision Media Services. All she needs is to snag one more premier advertising client, and her successful future is in the bag. The only person who stands in her way is Georgiana Masterson, the top agent at an opposing firm.
Kipling “My Last Name Is the Only Thing Not for Sale” loves his job as a gigolo, but he also understands that this good run on fortune can’t last forever. He’s raising serious cash to start his own business—he’s not sure exactly what that will be, but it won’t conform with the Madison Avenue-style track his parents would appreciate.
When a business deal between them turns to more pleasure than either could have imagined, Victoria and Kip find themselves caught between living for now and positioning for the future—a future one of them will have to sacrifice to give love a chance.
by Micah Persell
Sensuality Level: Spicy
Micah Persell holds a bachelor’s degree in English and a double master’s degree in literature and English pedagogy. She is an avid reader of all types of literature, but has a soft spot for romance. She currently teaches high school language arts classes.
An excerpt from Hard Work:
That’s right, baby.
The woman beneath him arched her back and dug her nails into his abdomen before raking them down to where they joined. She pressed her manicured fingers over her clit and bit into her lip. Kip picked up the pace of his thrusts, the telltale fluttering of her orgasm against his cock signaling that he could finally—finally—come.
He grinned down at her—his payday was just minutes away—and allowed the knot of restraint at the base of his spine to loosen as he tipped over the edge with her.
He swallowed down the small moan that rose in his throat as he spilled into the condom, maintaining control even as he allowed himself to slip it a bit.
Her dazed eyes opened, and her gaze scoured his torso as his stomach clenched and unclenched—something he did intentionally, because they always liked to see it—before the last of his own orgasm faded.
Job well done.
She sighed. “Fuck, Kip.”
He chuckled as he leaned down and brushed a kiss against her damp neck. “Good?”
Job very well done. He glanced over at the clock beside the bed, and even he raised an eyebrow. Two hours. Two hours of delayed gratification for a woman who had claimed she had trouble orgasming at the start of it. Two hours of taking her right to the edge and backing her off over and over and over again.
Damn, I’m good. This was going to mean a tip. A big one.
She sighed again, and Kip frowned slightly as he tried to remember her name. As he grasped the condom and pulled out of her, he mentally shrugged. It didn’t matter anyway. Her eyelids were already drooping, and in moments she would be asleep. “I’m going to take a shower, doll.”
She murmured something and nodded. Hopefully, she wouldn’t fall too deeply asleep. If he had to wake her up to get payment, it could get awkward. Then again, there wasn’t much in his line of work that wasn’t awkward, so c’est la vie.
In the bathroom, he tossed the condom and turned the shower on all the way to hot. As he waited for it to warm up, he caught a glimpse of himself in the mirror, his gaze automatically falling to the red, angry stripes she’d given him on his stomach.
He sighed. Those needed to be gone by the next client. Despite obviously knowing he was a gigolo, none of the ladies liked the reminder that he slept with other women, and it usually affected his payout when they caught sight of a love bite or scratch someone else put there. He relied half on networking at casinos and bars, half on word of mouth to maintain and add to his client list. No traceable agencies for him. So, he had to keep the ladies—he didn’t believe in types and serviced all kinds—happy. His livelihood depended on it.
He stepped under the water and started lathering up with the hotel’s provided soap, ready to get out of here and on with his night, which was now free, having thoroughly pleasured his last client of the day. Once he’d washed the woman’s scent from his body, he toweled off and walked back to where his clothes lay in a pile beside the bedside table where—hallelujah—Sated Beauty had left his money before slipping into a slumber deep enough that her tiny snores filled the hotel room.
He took a moment to thumb through the crisp, green bills, and . . . holy shit. Who cared if the scratches were gone by the next client? She’d tipped him more than he could have ever expected.
Kip did some quick math in his head. Nineteen thousand dollars. Nearly there. Thanks to this woman’s generosity, he now had half the amount he needed to start his own business and get out of one in which he had to shower several times a day and hide hickeys on the reg.
This calls for a celebration. But somewhere off the Strip, where he wouldn’t feel like he had to be on and could enjoy a cocktail in peace.
He pulled on his clothes and slipped his payment into his wallet before shoving it in his back pocket. His favorite place was open for several more hours yet, and if he remembered correctly, Steve was behind the bar tonight. He mixed the best Blue Hawaiians.
Kip cast one last grateful grin at the woman sleeping spread-eagled in the middle of the bed, then slipped out of the hotel room and into the night.