“You’re going out with Sebastien again?!” Gianni asks with wide eyes. “That man has been taking you out every day since Saturday!”
I can’t help the smile that comes to my face when she points it out. Sebastien completely baffles me. Just a few hours after we parted ways following brunch, he texted me about plans for Sunday and we went out on another walking tour of Atlanta. And every day since, we have had coffee or lunch together.
“I wouldn’t call it him ‘taking me out’.” I shake my head as I respond to Gianni. “It’s just that I’ve been helping him get familiar with Atlanta and connecting him with all the startups and founders in the area. It’s networking.”
“Mhmmm,” she hums unconvinced. “Then what do you call him taking you to dinner tonight? What type of ‘networking’ is that, hm? He tryna connect with your pus—”
“Hush!” I interrupt. “I told you I’m not about that bootycall life.”
“If you say ‘bootycall’ one more fucking time—“ Gianni puts her fist against her mouth and takes a deep breath before speaking again. “The man can want to have sex with you and be interested in you at the same time, you know? And it’s pretty obvious that’s what’s going on here!”
“I know… I’m just afraid to get my hopes up, you know? I don’t want what happened with Eli to—“ I’m stopped when I choke up just thinking about it. Four years later and it still bothers me. Though, my emotions are admittedly in a weird place right now because of these scary ass things I’m feeling about Sebastien, which are even more terrifying considering I’ve only known the man for about a week.
“Fuck Eli,” Gianni snarls. “Just focus on what’s going on now… I don’t know, I have a good feeling about this Sebastien guy. Plus, he’s almost 40. I doubt he’s still out here playing games. And if he is playing games, we can just jump him and then rob him or some shit.”
I burst out laughing. “You are a damn fool! I think—“ I’m interrupted when my phone chimes and I look down to see a text from Sebastien.
“Hm, it must be him since I see that shit-eating grin on your face,” Gianni says with a smirk.
“Oh shit…” My heart jumps into my throat when I see the text message and I keep re-reading it, wondering if my eyes are deceiving me. “Gi, look at this. Am I reading this right?”
“Oh my god!” Gianni squeals directly in my ear, causing me to jump. “He’s taking you to SkyDine?! That place is even harder to book than The Bistro and it has the best view of the Atlanta skyline, even better than the Ferris wheel… And he’s picking you up! Wow… This man really likes you.”
I gulp at her words. “You’re going to have to help me get ready tonight…”
As if I wasn’t already nervous enough about meeting him for dinner, the man invites me to one of the swankiest spots in Atlanta and I know it costs a pretty penny to eat there. I’ve never experienced someone showing this much interest in me, and so unabashedly at that. Could it be that this man actually wants me?
|||| Sebastien Laurent ||||
I want her.
I have spent this entire week with Naomi and even when I regrettably had to tear my attention away from her at times to focus on engaging with the startups and founders in Atlanta that she kindly introduced me to, the woman never left my thoughts.
Her beauty aside, Naomi is kind, energetic, honest, passionate, and she’s even given me the privilege of a slight view of her playful side. I’ve been trying my best not to get ahead of myself, given that I’ve known her for only a week, but the woman is the entire package and more.
“Oh shit,” I mutter under my breath when she exits her building. Naomi wears a low-cut black dress with a high split that leaves most of her left leg visible. My self-control has been dwindling all week and each time that we have kissed, I have reluctantly stopped things from advancing and returned to my hotel alone with strained pants. Looking at her right now, I’m not sure I’ll be able to practice that same control tonight.
I get out of the car to open the door for her. “You look stunning, dear,” I greet her as my eyes scan over her form before I kiss her cheek. The only thing keeping me from taking her lips with mine is the dark burgundy lipstick she’s wearing. It is absolutely sexy and I am not ready to ruin it… yet.
“I had to dress for the occasion. You don’t look so bad yourself, Sebastien,” she teases with a wink as she steps into the car and I don’t think this woman knows what such a small gesture like that from her does to me.
Naomi has an amused smile on her face when I get into the driver’s seat and begin our trip to the restaurant. “Did you really rent a car?” she asks. “You leave on Sunday.”
“Yes,” I nod. “But I figured it’d be better for our plans tomorrow. We’re distributing meals around the city, right?”
“Yeah, but the organization has a system, so we would’ve just been put on a team with one car.”
“If I haven’t made it clear enough this week, Naomi…” I take her hand and bring it to my lips. “I enjoy spending time with you one-on-one.”
“Oh? Is that what we’ve been doing this week?” she asks with a smirk.
“No need to play coy, Naomi.” I place my free hand on her exposed thigh. As soon as I make contact, I hear her take a sharp breath and I realize it’s the most risqué part of her bare skin that I’ve touched. I feel a smirk of my own growing to my face when I notice the effect I’ve had on her. “I know you enjoy my company as well.”
“Quite the observation, Mr. Laurent.”
With the exception of when she’s making introductions, Naomi hasn’t called me that since our brunch on Sunday and it irks me when she says it — it sounds too distant. “I’ve told you about that,” I warn. “It’s Sebastien.”
“What are you going to do?” she scoffs. “Punish me?”
“Is that a challenge, dear?” I counter. I keep my eyes on the road, but from the corner of my eye, I notice a change in her expression and with my hand still on her thigh, I feel it move slightly as her muscles tense when she squeezes her legs together.
I manage to keep my hand in the same spot for the rest of our way to the restaurant. The only thing keeping it from moving up her dress being that I’m still trying to approach this delicately and that we’d surely end up in an accident or pulled to the side of the road if I were to make contact with the spot that I have been craving since the end of last week’s interview.
When we arrive to the building where the rooftop restaurant is located, we go directly to the elevator and I am sure to stand on the opposite side of it from Naomi.
“Is everything okay?” she asks, looking at me with worry in her eyes. From our time together this week, I’ve learned that this woman doesn’t realize that I find her virtually irresistible and when I distance myself like this, it’s for the good of us both.
“It is,” I reply with a warm smile. “I’m simply ensuring that we make it to dinner.”
Naomi returns my smile with her own before she nervously bites her plump bottom lip. Just before I can lose my grip, the elevator dings and we arrive to the restaurant.
When the doors open, we walk into the restaurant and we’re greeted by the hostess at the entrance.
“Hello! Are you Mr. Laurent?” she asks cheerfully and I nod. “And you must be Ms. Monroe,” she beams, looking at Naomi.
“Y-yeah,” Naomi replies with a hint of confusion in her voice.
“Great! Let me show you to your table.”
I take Naomi by the hand as we follow the waitress to our table. I can’t help but peek over at her — it is absolutely adorable the way she seems to be in awe at the restaurant.
When we finally get outside, she is visibly taken aback at the sight of the empty terrace.
“What the hell? Is something wrong? This place is normally booked.”
“Nope,” I respond casually, leading her to our table and pulling her chair our for her to take a seat.
“Then why isn’t anyone here?” Pure bewilderment in her eyes, Naomi looks around the rooftop as if people will suddenly appear.
“You seem to get stiff around crowds, so I thought you might appreciate a private dining experience.”
“Wait,” she gasps. “So you mean you— You—“ she appears to choke up and gulps.
“Rented out the rooftop?” I finish. “Yes, yes I did. It turns out that this restaurant is part of a conglomerate in which I’m a major investor, so it didn’t take much to pull a few strings.”
“Jesus-fucking-Christ,” she mutters and I can’t help but chuckle. This woman seems to be in pure disbelief that she’s getting the treatment that she absolutely deserves.
|||| Naomi Monroe ||||
I want him.
Okay, there. Admitting it is the first step of acceptance. I want this man. Sebastien is charming, attentive, honorable, and generous. And my god is he fine as hell with his salt-and-pepper hair, those dark blue eyes, and that unreasonably bright smile. Also, given a few of the the things he has said to me this week, the way he kisses, and the energy he gives off, I just know he is skilled.
Never in my life have I experienced, or even thought I could experience, being around someone and it all feeling so effortless? He’s easy to talk to, we never run out of topics of conversation, and despite my nerves at times, I find myself very comfortable with him.
So damn comfortable, in fact, that I am currently feeding this man. After we finished dinner, he pulled me next to him so we could admire the skyline together with his arm around me. It’s similar to that first night when we were atop the Ferris wheel except this time, we’ve gotten comfortable with kissing each other and his hands have wandered to places they definitely would not have a week ago.
When Sebastien eats the bite-sized tart out of my hand, a bit of custard is left on my finger, which he proceeds to take into his mouth and now I have officially melted. Keeping his eyes on mine, he holds my wrist while he brings my thumb into his mouth. I feel his tongue twirl over the tip of my finger as he gently sucks the last of the dessert off of it and the deeply sinful thoughts pouring into my mind along with the heat rushing to my core should be illegal.
Usually, he is the one to initiate, but before I know it, my lips are against his and his hands are tangled in my hair and I am not giving a single fuck about the PDA we’re showing. At least the rooftop is clear.
Confusion hits me when he abruptly breaks the kiss until he speaks with a low rasp and I realize it is possible for his voice to get even sexier.
“Come to my hotel with me.”
A/N: Thank you for reading!