May had been in a horrible mood ever since her lunch-date with Tara. After being inside the busy halls of Uptown Publishing though, her bad mood had practically vanished. The interview was a complete success. In fact, she’d never felt so comfortable talking about herself or her past. The writer, Marisha Franklin, had done a fine job of coaxing choice pieces of information from May in a way that didn’t make her feel like she was being analyzed-Even if she was. Afterwards, she and Marisha drove from the cozy cafe where the interview was held and back to Uptown Publishing where the photo session was done. The satisfied smile that played across her mouth vanished when the elevator doors slid open.
“Afternoon Mabel.” T.J. grinned as May’s eyes narrowed angrily.
“Hello Tee.” She replied with a phony smile.
“I hope the interview went well?” At her brief nod, he continued. “Good. You know I enjoyed meeting your agent yesterday. She seems like a great woman.”
“She is. I figured you and she would get along.”
“You know, both of you coming from money and all. People with money tend to be more comfortable around other people with money.”
“Cool it Mabel.” Teegan said in a warning tone, pushing the stop button on the elevator.
“Then again,” May continued, not seeming to notice the elevator’s sudden halt, “I don’t know. Tara’s got a spunk I just don’t see in you.”
“Really?” T.J. asked, a muscle in his jaw twitching fiercely.
“Mmmm. I mean, no offense, but you just don’t have any spontaneity, no spark, no… fire.” May spoke lightly, pushing her hair away from her face. “Maybe I’ll fix you up with somebody tonight.” She finished and found herself against the wall seconds later. She looked up at T.J. to see his eyes take on a harsh glint.
“Let go of me,” She thumped a fist against his the broad plane of his chest.
T.J. simply wound one hand into her hair and held her head still as his mouth came crashing down on hers. May kept her lips pressed together as she offered the hint of struggle. T.J. tightened his hold on her hair and May gave a sharp gasp.
Struggles ceased when his tongue slid slowly into her mouth. She moaned as he thrust deeply, rubbing his tongue roughly over and under her own. He released his hold on her hair and slid both arms around her waist. His hands massaged her back through the peach silk of her blouse. May’s hands weren’t still either. As she wound her arms around his neck and ran her hands through his thick hair, T.J. pushed her higher against the wall. He grasped her buttocks tightly through the jeans she wore, while May wrapped her long legs around his waist. She moaned when he rocked her against the extent of his sex and she sighed when his mouth left hers to ravish her neck. Then, as suddenly as he pulled her to him, he let her go and pressed the button to restart the elevator.
May pressed her fingers against her lips and was running a hand through her hair as the doors opened and Teegan stepped out.
“Be ready by eight.” Was all he said before the doors closed behind him.
“Dammit!” May cursed as she fought to twist a curly lock of hair into the elaborate ponytail she was creating. It was almost eight o’clock and she hadn’t even gotten dressed yet. In fact, she hadn’t gotten much done since she left Uptown Publishing. She couldn’t seem to get her mind off the way T.J. had behaved in the elevator. The way his hands roamed her, the way he felt pressed against her next to that wall or the mastery of his mouth as he kissed her.
“Stop it!” May hissed at herself, giving up on the curly lock of hair. She decided to leave it dangling along her neck outside the ponytail. Glancing at the small grandfather clock on one wall, she hurried into the jumpsuit that was lying on the bed. The clinging material of the black piece, showed every flattering curve to the fullest extent. The sleeves flared widely at the wrists in the same manner as the bell-bottomed pant legs. A pair of diamond studded earrings and a black lace choker were her only accessories. Satisfied with the final results, May gave a slight nod at her reflection in the mirror, and then headed downstairs.
When the doorbell rang at eight, May ordered herself to push away all thoughts that had been raging inside her head since Teegan had kissed her. Unfortunately, all her good intentions flew out the window the moment she opened the door. T.J. looked impossibly sexy in the dark green trousers, with matching coat and wine-colored shirt underneath.
“Hello Tee.” She managed.
“Mabel.” Was his reply, as he strode past her into the living room.
“Shouldn’t we be leaving?” She asked, uneasy then about being alone with him.
“We have time.”
“You said I needed to be ready at eight.”
“Yeah I said be ready at eight, but I didn’t say we were leaving at eight did I?” He took a seat on the sofa.
May sighed as she slowly shook her head and tried to figure out what he was up to. “Okay, uh…can I get you anything?”
At her innocent comment, T.J.’s brilliant gaze lit up expectantly.
“Would you like something to drink?” She added hastily.
“Ah… Ginger ale if you have it.” His eyes gleamed.
As she walked to the bar to pour the drink, May could feel T.J.’s eyes on her. When she turned away from the bar, the look he gave shook her so much she almost dropped the glass.
“Thank you.” He said, accepting the glass. “You look nice.” He added, sliding his stare along the length of her body and loving the way the material of the jumpsuit clung to her.
“Thanks, so do you.” May turned to take a seat on one of the opposite chairs. She tried to concentrate on her own drink, but he was impossible to ignore. He was gorgeous with his glasses and without them, he was devastating. The long striking stare he sent her was unwavering and intense and May could do nothing more than sit and wait.
T.J. on the other hand, couldn’t have been happier as he lowered his gaze from her beautiful face. He studied the long graceful length of her neck to her chest where her full breasts pressed enticingly against the material of her suit. Then he moved on to the unbelievably long length of her legs which she re-crossed nervously.
“Why don’t we leave now?” He suggested, bringing his eyes back to her face.
“Great! Just let me put these things in the kitchen.” She almost leapt from the chair. Glad to be rid of his unnerving stare.
After placing the two glasses in the sink, May braced herself against the sink as she tried to calm down. Suddenly, she felt large strong hands at her waist. T.J. had pulled her back against his chest and lowered his mouth to the side of her neck.
Of course, he ignored her. Instead, he brought his hands up and around to cup and caressed her breasts, tugging at her earlobe with his perfect teeth.
“Can we go now please?” May tried again.
“You don’t want me to stop.” He taunted, lowering his hands to her waist and pulling her back more snuggly into him. He smiled when he heard her gasp. “But I will,” he finished, letting his hands fall away to leave her standing on weak legs.
“Come on we don’t want to miss the party.” T.J. called from the living room.
Feeling depleted, May turned away from the sink and slowly headed from the kitchen.
Lights and music blared from Tara’s gracious Long Island home. The house was as beautiful as the people who filled it. The party was in full gear when they arrived, but May wasn’t in the mood for it. She could’ve kicked herself for stopping T.J. earlier. Now, all she wanted was to be back in her kitchen feeling his hands on her body…
“Mabel? You okay?” A worried frown clouded Teegan’s handsome face as he placed a hand at the small of her back.
May turned when she heard her name, smiling when she recognized two models from the agency. “Hey ya’ll what’s up?” She said to Jasmine Maxwell and Angie Greene.
“What’s up is your date. Who is he?” Angie said, pulling May aside as her eyes feasted on T.J.
“He’s not my date. We just came together.” May’s voice sounded dry.
“Well then, I guess you won’t mind introducing us?” Jasmine said.
Shaking her head, May called to T.J., who was talking to two older men she recognized from the agency. “Tee? Would you come here for a minute?”
“Tee?” Angie and Jasmine said in unison.
“Jasmine Maxwell and Angie Greene, this is Teegan James. He’s the owner of Uptown Publishing. Tee, Jasmine and Angie work for Hendrix Modeling Firm too.”
May was practically ignored after the introductions as T.J., Jasmine and Angie launched an enthusiastic conversation. Deciding that she’d had enough, May walked away from the happy trio.
After chatting with the lively models, T.J found Tara and spent a while talking with she and her husband Max. Then, he went in search of May. He located her about forty-five minutes later on the dance floor. The man with her was holding her so tight, T.J. was surprised she could breathe. He felt his blood heat as he watched May throw back her head and laugh. Before he could head over to her, one of the many models he’d met that evening pulled him on to the dance floor.
May hadn’t been able to keep her eyes off T.J. since they had separated after she’d introduced him to Angie and Jasmine. Dammit! If she hadn’t done that, she would’ve been with him right now. Watching him dance with someone she didn’t know, her eyes lingered on his hair and the way the clothes molded to his powerful, toned body. After the song ended, May left her disappointed partner and headed in the direction of the bar.
“Dante, give me a strawberry daiquiri.”
“Virgin?” The bartender asked deviously.
“Of course not.” May replied just as deviously as she watched him prepare the drink. “I’m in trouble Dante.”
“What’s the problem?”
“I think I’m getting caught up over somebody that’s not right for me.”
“Why do you think he’s not right for you?”
“Because I’ve been with his type before and I got screwed.”
“Well…he might be different Bell.”
“I know, I think that’s why I’m in trouble.”
Dante laughed as he turned to tend to another customer, leaving May to concentrate on her drink.
“Will you dance with me?” T.J.’s deep voice behind her almost caused May to choke on her drink.
Turning, May watched him for a moment, and then placed her hand in his. On the dance floor, she thought she’d faint at the feel of T.J.’s arms around her. Instead, she melted against his muscular body.
T.J. was thinking about how good May felt in his arms and how good she smelled. He turned his face to the side of her neck and pulled her closer. May allowed the smooth sounds of the music to carry her away to a place where there was nothing but her and T.J. The feeling was indescribable. She was so caught up in the dance that she didn’t notice that they had danced out onto the terrace until she’d opened her eyes.
“Tee, what are you doing?” She asked, feeling his lips travel along the side of her neck.
“You know what I’m doing.” He kissed her then.
May gave in as his mouth coaxed her lips apart. Her slender hands gripped the lapels of his jacket when his tongue delved smoothly and deeply into her mouth. May responded by curving her hands over his wide, solid shoulders before running them through his lush, wavy hair. T.J. gripped her buttocks and settled her against him. He gave a low growl of male satisfaction in response. The sound, however, brought May back to reality and she managed to tear her mouth away from his.
“Because I asked you to.” May sighed, breaking away from him.
Closing his eyes, T.J. massaged the back of his neck. “I’m sorry.” He almost whispered.
“You couldn’t help yourself I guess.” May replied with an easiness she didn’t feel.
“I guess.” He lightly agreed. “Mabel?”
“Hmm?” She dropped into one of the patio chairs.
“How would you feel about another party?”
“Tomorrow at three.”
“Whose party is it?”
“Oh.” May slowly replied, her heart pounding. “Tee umm…I don’t know.”
“I…You want me to meet your family?”
“Yes. Is that so unbelievable?”
May’s vocal skills had left her and she could do nothing more than stare at him in disbelief from where she sat.
Teegan pushed his hands into his deep pockets and pinned her with a serious stare. “You know, aside from wanting you to meet my folks, I need to take someone to this party.”
May frowned. “You need to? Why?”
T.J. shrugged. “Well, I have one of those families that won’t rest until they see me dating someone regular or better yet married.”
May laughed lightly. “Yeah, I have one of those families too.”
“Mmmm…Alright I’ll go.”
Teegan appeared relieved. “I appreciate it and you’ll like my family.” He assured her.
May wasn’t so sure about that, but gave a bright smile anyway.
T.J. however, sensed that she was still somewhat withdrawn and came to kneel in front of her. “You look tired. Are you ready to go?” He asked concern in his eyes.
“Yeah I am. We better go find Tara and Max and say goodbye.” May sighed, gripping the arm T.J. offered.
The ride to the loft was a quiet one. The only sound filling T.J.’s car was the soothing sounds of a Luther Vandross classic. It seemed that they were pulling in front of May’s home in no time at all.
They spoke simultaneously.
“I was just going to thank you for coming to Tara’s party with me.”
T.J. bent his head.
May watched him gripping the steering wheel with a powerful hand.
“I was going to ask if I could bother you for a cup of coffee.”
May ran one had down the side of her flaming face. “Okay…come on in.”
No sooner than they entered the front door and closed it, did a thought pop into May’s head. “Jeez…Tee I’m sorry, I forgot I don’t have any coffee.”
T.J. walked closer and slid an iron arm around her waist. “Don’t worry about it.”
May closed her eyes and pressed her hands against his chest. “I said no to this.”
“Say yes.” His mouth slanted over hers.
May tried to resist at first, but soon gave in as T.J.’s persuasive mouth coaxed her lips apart and his tongue slid around her own. She moaned as one hand came up to cup her breast. His arms tightened around her waist and pulled her even closer against the very noticeable bulge against the front of his trousers.
T.J. could hardly think with May so close to him. Suddenly, he bent to scoop her into his arms and carried her to the sofa. His mouth left hers to travel across the base of her throat. Strong fingers pulled at the neckline of her bodysuit, until he’d tugged it past her full breasts. May slid her hands into T.J.’s soft hair as his head bent to kiss the satiny swells of her breasts. He lowered his touch to her thighs and pulled them apart as he settled himself between and began to thrust softly through the clothes they still wore. May thought she would die from the pleasure of his tongue swirling around the peak of one breast, while he continued to thrust softly.
“You know what I want-what you want.”
“I…can’t” May could feel herself falling deeper beneath the spell he was weaving. Then, with strength she didn’t know she had, she pulled away from T.J. and left the couch.
Teegan ran both hands through his hair and squeezed his eyes shut. “What the hell is it May? Why won’t you let me get close to you?” He asked, not able to keep the anger out of his deep voice.
She fixed the front of her suit, her back turned to him. “Nothing’s wrong, except I have more sense than to sleep with a man I hardly know.”
“And you just thought about this?” T.J. left the sofa and came to stand behind her.
“I’ve always thought about this.” May cried, whirling around to face him. “What? Did you think that because I come from a background where most women my age have at least five kids, are unmarried and on welfare that I’d be an easy piece?”
“What?!” T.J. thundered, giving her a murderous look.
“You know what.” May countered. “That’s all you’ve wanted from the moment you saw me. To get me into bed. I guess I surprised you. I may not be of high society Tee, but I don’t sleep around. No matter how rich he is.” May turned her back on him, her eyes filling with tears. “Would you just leave…please?”
T.J. swore viciously under his breath. “You know May I don’t know where all this is coming from,” he ran the tip of his thumb along one sleek dark brow, and then cursed. “And I’m not even in the mood to find out.”
May heard the front door slam seconds later. Then, she let her tears flow freely. “Damn.” She said quietly, pounding her fist against the back of a chair.