The Only One(9)

By: Melissa Ellen

His? Oh hell, no. I stepped back, glaring at him. My anger boiling to all new levels. “Let me be perfectly clear,” I paused for effect, “Whatever you think you’re going to accomplish here, you won’t. You may have forced me into having to work on this project with you, but that is all this,” I pointed between us, “will be. Strictly professional.”

His body stiffened at my words. He stopped his approach, studying me instead. We stood silently, examining each other. Both trying to predict what the other was thinking. It was minutes before he finally let out a resigned sigh, “Okay.”

I looked at his eyes, trying to figure out if he was really going to accept defeat or if he was just letting me win for the moment. I was afraid it was the latter.

“Okay?” I asked, questioning his intentions.

“Yes, beautiful. Okay. We’ll do this your way. For now,” he added. “I’ll pick you up at eleven tomorrow morning.”

The “for now” confirmed I had only temporarily won this battle. But it didn’t matter, because I would keep on fighting until the war was over.

“No. This is not a date. I’ll drive separately.”

“We’ll see about that,” he smirked his threat, while starting to approach me again. With each deliberate step he made towards me, I took one back, making my way to the door.

“I need to go. You will email me the address.” The inflection in my voice was weaker than I intended. He was getting dangerously close to me, and I was running out of space to retreat. He didn’t respond. He just smiled his roguish smile as my back landed against the closed door.

“I’ve missed you, Ava,” he whispered huskily as his intense, beautiful blues stared into mine. I reached behind me, grabbing the door handle for stability as I tried to maintain my self-control. I could feel the chemistry between us ricocheting through my body, causing a heat to pool between my legs as I watched his masculine body prowl towards me.

“Mr. Blackwood,” I cleared my throat, trying to sound professional, “It was good to see you.” My words came out squeaky and shaky, exposing my vulnerability. He grinned pleased with himself, stopping only inches from me as he stared down into my eyes all the way to my soul.

“Ms. Conner,” he crooned as he leaned in closer, bringing one arm above me, resting it on the adjacent wall as his other hand skimmed my cheek lightly. “It’s always a pleasure running into you.” His voice was gravelly as he started to dip his head to kiss me.

I bit my bottom lip, fighting the urge to press my lips to his. I turned the door knob, flinging the door open. I forced my body to retreat quickly, leaving him alone in his office. I could hear him chuckling to himself as I ran away. Bastard. He was not going to make these next few months easy on me.

I sifted through the closet of my one bedroom Santa Monica apartment, looking for something to wear. I was feeling rebellious and determined. I was intent on putting Rhett’s wicked smile out of my mind. I was going to have my first one-night stand tonight, even if it killed me. And I was going to look sexy as hell doing it.

I chalked up my moments of weakness to one thing. The one thing Rhett had been right about in the elevator. It had been too long. I hadn’t had sex with anyone, since Rhett, and I concluded that was the only reason my body responded to him the way it did.

I pushed the dresses I wore for work aside on the clothes rod, revealing a dress I had hidden in my closet and never worn. I bought it on a whim after Lizzie had come to visit for a weekend. We had went on a shopping spree, and after much internal debate, she had convinced me to buy it.

It was a stunning, soft, gray dress with spaghetti straps connected to two pieces of material that loosely folded at the top, forming a V-neck cut. The skirt of the dress was form fitting, stopping at my knees with a revealing split over the left thigh. The pale gray dress complimented my Californian sun-kissed skin. It made me feel elegant and womanly, putting it on.

I decided to wear my long, thick, brown hair down in big, loose curls. I wore my makeup natural, using bronzers and light shades of pink on my lips and eyes to help my blue eyes pop. I put on my black, ankle-strap stilettos and then stood to give myself the once over in my full length mirror. I looked hot and I felt a sense of payback, even if Rhett wouldn’t see me dressed like this. I grabbed my black clutch and headed out the door to the car where my Uber driver was waiting.