When a Lioness Pounces(4)

By: Eve Langlais

“I know.” Divine. “My place isn’t far from here. You are more than welcome to the shower.”

“My place is closer.”

“Mine is bigger.” Yes, he might have purred those words.

And she…laughed. “You need to work on your pickup lines, sugar. That accent of yours might make lots of things sexy, but it can’t mask cheesy.”

Perhaps he’d gotten a little carried away. He didn’t usually have to work very hard with women. He usually said hello. Sometimes, he just looked at a woman and they dropped their panties. Except for this woman. This woman just didn’t seem that interested.

Perhaps he wasted his time. “Are you into guys?” he asked.

“Just because I didn’t ask to ride your pogo stick doesn’t mean I’m into girls. I like guys. I just don’t like you.”

He wanted to ask why not, but the soft cone of silence he’d woven around them to mask their conversation waned. And besides, he wouldn’t beg.

At least he didn’t mean to, but she presented a challenge. She intrigued him. He had to see her again.

If only she’d agree.

She ignored the flowers he sent telling her to call him. She ignored the text he sent asking her to dinner.

Unacceptable. She was an enigma that required unraveling. A challenge he had to conquer. So when Arik contacted him and said, “We’ve got more weird shit happening. We’d like you to take a look,” he said sure, but he had one condition.

Chapter Two

“Where you going?” One of her best friends, Stacey, asked as Reba sauntered past the lobby on the main floor of the condo.

“The boss is making me go to the club.”

“The horror.” Her BFF clutched at her chest.

“Yes, the horror. It’s on the other side of town, and it’s not my style.” Her style involved getting wasted in tottering distance of her apartment.

“Are you going to shake down the owner?” asked another of her besties, Joan’s face now peering over the top of the divan.

“More like he wants to shake her down,” snickered Melly, sprawled on one of the chairs. “Wasn’t he the one sending you all that crap?”

“If he thinks he can buy me, he’s going to learn differently.” Really, flowers and chocolates. If he was truly serious about wooing, he’d have sent diamonds and designer shoes. A girl had to have standards.

“Later, biatches.” She waved before she exited the building and got into the cab she’d called, still fuming.

I can’t believe I have to go visit that pompous ass. But Arik roared, and Reba obeyed. That didn’t mean she’d behave.

The stiletto tips of Reba’s swanky heels clacked—a pair of Jimmy Choo’s worth every penny spent. My precious shoes. Touch them and I’ll rip your face off.

The heels were made for her feet and gave her short stature a few extra inches. Not that she ever let her diminutive height dictate attitude. She owned plenty of attitude, along with confidence, her own car, and a healthy love of herself. That swagger meant Reba’s ample hips swung, the loose fabric of her short skirt swishing as she strutted past the line waiting to get through the door for the club.

Lines were for sheep, and those who actually owned something called patience. Reba was pretty sure she’d traded her allotment of forbearance for a cookie when still a cub. As a result, patience was not one of her virtues, so screw waiting for her turn.

Ignoring the protests of those not graced with awesomeness, she placed herself ahead of them, only to find her entrance blocked by a wide dude wearing a black-collared golf shirt embroidered with the Club RainForest Menagerie logo; under it was stitched the word Staff.


Hello. Does he seriously think he can stand in my way?

Lacking a certain height advantage didn’t mean shit to Reba. She peered upward and graced the bouncer with a look. The look. The kind that said, “Move your ass, bubba.” In this case, bubba was a big ol’ human, and he was silly enough to hold up a hand, blocking her path.

Oh hell no. He did not just do that.

He exacerbated his error. “You can’t go in there.”

The word can’t was not one she recognized. Mama had tried to teach her to know and respect limits. But her daddy always said can’t was just a state of mind. Guess who she listened to? It wasn’t for nothing Reba had a drawer at home dedicated to her Daddy’s Girl T-shirts.

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