By: K. Webster

“You’ll learn, as you get older, that rules are made to be broken. Be bold enough to live life on your terms, and never, ever apologize for it. Go against the grain, refuse to conform, take the road less traveled instead of the well-beaten path. Laugh in the face of adversity, and leap before you look. Dance as though everybody is watching. March to the beat of your own drummer. And stubbornly refuse to fit in.”

~ Mandy Hale, The Single Woman: Life, Love, and a Dash of Sass

First day of college…

You were a mistake. That was a constant reminder in my home when I was growing up. Momma took every chance she could to remind me of just that. A mistake for getting pregnant from a loser? A mistake for not getting an abortion or putting me up for adoption?

My entire life has been one big mistake. Every decision I make always ends up being the wrong one.

In high school, when I joined a drama class just because I thought the teacher was hot, that was a mistake. Turns out, I couldn’t act and the teacher hated that I was the worst one in the group. Both he and the class took their digs at me daily about how horrible I was. It was a fucking nightmare.

When I decided to get a job at a restaurant waiting tables so I could save to go see Olive in New York, that too was a mistake. After spilling coffee all over three customers in a single day, I was fired. Apparently, I wasn’t cut out for that sort of work.

At eighteen, when a fine-ass black man showed up on my doorstep offering to whisk me away to New York City so I could model, well… That was a mistake as well. Turns out, my naïve ass moved in with a psychopathic, sadistic shithead who was obsessed with my sister and just using me to get to her. Big mistake. Huge.

I’m tired of making mistakes. Once I set my eyes on the handsome investment banker, Trent Sutton, I knew things were going to turn around for me. In an effort to quit making mistakes and make something of myself, I chose to enroll at CUNY and get my bachelor’s degree in investment banking. That would get Trent to notice me.

For once, I was going to learn from my mistakes and start making better decisions. Things are going to change. I can feel it.

Nearly four years later…

I’ve been fucking friend-zoned. Sitting up in my desk chair, I quickly unbutton my top two buttons of my blouse and poke my chest out. The board meeting is about to start, which means Trent should be here any moment. How that man can resist my constant advances is beyond me. I can see the lustful way he appreciates my body, but he never makes a move. It is fucking annoying. Maybe he is waiting for me to get out of college? The worst thought is that maybe he just doesn’t find me attractive.

The latter makes me sick to my stomach. I spend several days a week in the gym building my muscle tone, and everything I eat is extremely healthy. I know that he notices my tight curves, but he never even tries to touch me. It drives me crazy.

“You look pretty today,” Andi compliments as she comes in with Jackson, who makes a beeline straight for the conference room while she stops at my desk.

Andi is absolutely gorgeous. Her long, platinum-blond hair is forever smoothed to perfection. She always wears sexy, form-fitting suits that accentuate her curves. Jackson, her husband, has a hard time keeping his eyes off of her even to this day. It makes me happy for her but sad that I can’t get Trent to lose his measured control for even a second.

“Thanks, doll. Board meeting,” I remind her, winking.

She giggles and throws a glance over at the front doors, where a group of men are entering. “If that asshole doesn’t notice you today, you need to fucking move on. Seriously, Opal. You’re gorgeous, smart, and spicy as hell. You need a man who will fall to his knees and worship you, not one who treats you like a little sister,” she sighs.

I frown at her words. Being treated like a little sister is worse than being fucking friend-zoned.

“Gross, Andi! Now go away. He’s coming this way,” I hiss and wave her away.

She chuckles all the way to her office, earning a glare from me.

“Good morning, Opal. How is your day?” a sexy, familiar, deep voice asks from behind me.

I suppress a shiver and swivel around in my chair to face him. He looks sexy as hell, like usual, in his navy, pinstriped, three-piece suit. His blond hair is perfectly styled, and like always, I have the urge to run my fingers through it and mess it all up. David Beckham has nothing on this man. Blue eyes twinkle at me as his lips curve into a smile. Those lips. God, what I could do to those lips.