King:Las Vegas Bad Boys(3)

By: Frankie Love


Ace’s friends are not my type ... I need regular. I want a guy who spends his weekends fly fishing or working in the garage on a car. Not these bad boys.

I’ve had enough bad boys in my life. Well, I’ve had enough of one particular bad boy, and I will never fall for another one as long as I live.

“I can’t believe you’re not dancing, Claire,” Emmy says. “You’ve been so wound up lately.”

“What do you mean?” I ask. “I’m chill. I’m smiling.” I flash her a tight grin that’s not at all sincere. “Sorry, things have been stressful. You know that. And my mom is trying to refinance her condo, and she keeps asking me how to make the Internet work. Like, those are the actual words she used.”

Emmy smiles, and I do, too. My mom’s last text was actually a relief. Sophia’s fever was gone, and after fighting it all day she was asleep for the night.

“Excuse me,” Landon says, standing next to me. I didn’t even notice him get up from the table. “Would you care to dance?”

Okay, I know I’ve said Ace’s friends aren’t my type—and they aren’t. But Landon’s English accent is actually pretty hot. As in very hot. Like, the hottest.

“Oh,” I say, caught off guard. “Yeah, sure.” I raise my eyebrows, setting down the champagne.

He takes my hand, leading me to the dance floor, and I tell my shoulders to relax. Yes, that is something I actually have to command. Because Emmy is absolutely right.

I have been wound up lately.

Or, more like, I’ve been wound up for five years straight.

I’m a twenty-four year old single mom in Las Vegas—a cocktail waitress trying to make life as stable as possible for my five-year-old daughter. Which isn’t easy when I’m doing it all on my own.

And there isn’t a man in sight who’s up for the task of helping me balance it all.





Chapter Two





Landon



Claire may be no-nonsense—but she’s also rather hot. Her platinum-blonde hair and always-on bright red lipstick make her an absolute bombshell.

So why have I never attempted to shag her before? Mostly because Ace told me if I so much as tried, he would murder me. And considering he grew up in the mob, I tend to believe him.

And, secondly, Claire isn’t my typical conquest. She’s ... well, how do I put it? She’s quite adult. I’ve been out with her and the crew numerous times, but she’s never gotten drunk, never let any bloke get too close—certainly never gone home with anyone. She always pays her own tab and doesn’t chat about trivial things, like the celebrity sightings in the casino that get Tess and Emmy all bubbly.

She is, like I’ve said, much more mature for her age than I’ve ever been—than I am. Fuck. I’m twenty-seven, and a completely worthless asshole compared to her. And yet, as I lead Claire to the dance floor, I can’t help but wonder what it would be like to sleep with her.

She isn’t a stick-up-her-ass adult, mind you. She’s clever. And funny. And gorgeous. She’s just not frivolous. Which is actually quite an appealing combination.

She just seems a bit out of the league I usually play in.

Which isn’t to say I can’t have her. Ace is going to be off with Emmy, headed to a honeymoon in the South Pacific. He doesn’t bloody well need to know about Claire and me having a little post-wedding rendezvous.

“So, Claire, how are you this evening?” I ask, wrapping an arm around her waist. I’ve never been this close to her before, and as she places one hand on my shoulder and takes my hand in other, I can’t help but think that I like the way she fits against me.

I’m rather tall and lean, whereas Claire is average height and her body is quite slight—narrow shoulders, not curvy or voluptuous.

Rather, Claire is a classic beauty, save for her bright blonde hair. Still, even with her loud hair, she isn’t gaudy and excessive. And besides her signature red lips, there’s little make up on her face. Her skin is naturally bronzed from plenty of time in the Vegas heat, and her eyes are bright, alive. A gorgeous green.

And, being this close to her, I’m actually quite taken by the way she hums along with this old jazzy tune. The way her body seems to rest into mine as we glide over the dance floor. And she actually appears to know how to waltz. I haven’t waltzed in years—not since they forced us to learn at the boarding school mum and dad sent Geoffrey and me to—yet we’ve unconsciously found a rhythm.

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