THE muffled noise of cars honking as we waited for the traffic light to turn green seemed to keep me sane, saving me from Brian’s constant yapping about the significance of insects in our lives.
We were on our way back from the annual conference held at my father’s company, driving home because I claimed I was ‘too sick to sit until the end.’ I had to keep up appearances as the eldest son in the family, and so I did. Until Heather felt causing drama over the ‘real family heir’ was a good idea, giving reporters something to feed off on for a while.
I am the bastard in the family, something I am not too proud to discuss. Had my mother lived, I would not even be with these nasty people. Everyone in that house is a constant pain in my ass, the reason I fought to live on my own in my apartment.
That way, I don’t have to see them unless necessary, but I can’t say my father is too fond of that fact.
“The eldest son should be with the family,” Father would argue. “We must show a united front. The Lincoln Corporation is nothing without the family standing together.”
“Did you know, one dung beetle can drag about 1141 times its body weight? That’s like a human being pulling six double-decker buses!” My driver said.
It is hard to resist an eye roll when you’re with Brian, so on some days, I avoid him like the plague. “Even a 6-year-old knows that fact, Brian.”
“Oh, come on! That was a good one.” Brian chuckles.
He talks too much.
“Did you know, Gerridae-” Brian starts, and I zone him out and stare at the passing lights out the window. My breath hitches when I spot a raven-haired girl with a frown marring her sweet forehead, and I find myself sitting up slowly. She was drawing me in.
She stands on the pavement, looking back and forth between her phone and her surroundings frantically, almost like she is searching for someone. I find myself hoping it is not some stupid punk that she is waiting on. No girl has caught my attention like this in a while.
She glistens in the green light at the intersection and wears a black tank top, her thighs covered in tight dark-wash jeans. Her abs are on full display even with the unzipped fur teddy jacket that she wears on top, and she tucks her shiny raven hair behind her ear to reveal three stud earrings. She looks delicate but, from what she is wearing, I can tell she is fierce, especially under all that light that looks like it was made just for her.
The revving sound of a motorcycle forces me to tear my gaze from Sparkles as Brian prepares to move along the traffic, trying to see who is causing such ruckus. It is a disturbance when others do it, but not when I do it. Typical.
The rider approaches at full speed, ignoring the roads signs and almost running into my girl on the pavement, causing her to fall on her butt on the hard paved cement. “What the-”
The girl takes the rider by surprise and he loses control of his bike, which ends up sending him flying across the street as the big chunk of muscle skidded to the other side. Screams fill the air as the girl’s mouth widens in shock, and I see the anger flashing through her eyes.
“Brian, stop the car, call an ambulance.” I bark as I step out of the slow-moving vehicle, forcing Brian to stop in the middle of the road so that I could get out. None of that matters as I take sure steps towards my dream woman, hoping that idiot didn’t bring harm to her in any way.
Before I can walk further, my girl has already lifted herself from the floor, dusted her pants, and crossed the street towards the bastard who almost killed her. She was so fast that I almost didn’t see her crossing the street.
She must be okay if she can react that fast.
Following her across the street, I keep my distance as I listen in on her conversation with the paramedics.
Is she helping him?
The rider has managed to sit up and lean against the wall closest to him, taking his helmet off. “I’m so sorry.”
“Wait until an ambulance gets here. You’re going to get it, young man!” My girl warns lowly, pacing in front of the injured rider. Her five-foot-five self looks adorable when she’s angry. I can’t help the grin that spreads on my face as I lean against the corner of the building.
The sound of sirens fills the air two minutes later, and the ambulance parks right next to my position on the corner of the street. I tap one paramedic on the shoulder as he gets out, “See that girl over there?”
The guy nods. “She’s mine. I want you to make sure you treat her before you attend to the punk that ran her over, alright?”
“Let us do our job, sir. She’ll be fine.” He walks away to treat the girl while another paramedic attends to the guy on the floor.
“I’m fine. Tend to this guy first,” The girl protests, and I cannot stop the smirk from rising to my lips. Stubborn, I can work with that.
“Your husband gave me strict instructions to check you up-” The girl put up her hand to stop him from talking.
“Do I look married to you?” She raised her left hand to show the absence of a ring, and the fact has me smiling like an idiot in the corner.
The paramedic frowned. “The man over there-” He turned to point, but I had already ducked behind the corner.
When I know I’m in the clear, I return to my spot and stand like a creep, inspecting the whole situation.
After the paramedics check him up and make sure he didn’t sustain any serious injures, they load him onto the ambulance with the girl spitting profanities after him. “Just so you know, I am not fucking settling, you moron. You almost killed me! If you don’t know how to ride the damn bike, come to me, and I’ll give you some useful tips. FREE OF CHARGE!” She yells as they close the doors in front of her.
Does she ride? That is the sexiest thing I have heard in a while. She keeps impressing me.
“Are you sure you don’t need a checkup?” The paramedic I spoke to earlier asks her again before getting into the driver’s seat, and Sparkles nods, “No.”
She stands with her arms folded over her chest and stares after the ambulance. That deep frown is back on her face. Where else would you see a woman who looks this damn fine with a pout on her face? She is not even trying.
Rubbing her hands up and down her arms, finally feeling the chilling breeze of the night, she tucks her hair behind her ear and hails a cab.
Oh, hell no.
Looking around frantically for where Brian might have parked the car, I run towards it and slide in the backseat. “Follow that car,” I order, biting on my nails.
“Which one?” Brian asks sheepishly. He wasn’t paying attention.
“That one!” I point, but the car has disappeared into the traffic. Shit! “I could strangle you right now.” I clench my fists in irritation.
Where on earth will I find her among so many other cars that look the same?
Dammit! Fuck, Brian!
Sliding open the door to my penthouse, I hang my coat on the wooden rack behind the door and hurry to find my laptop. I grabbed the dashcam memory card before bidding a pouty goodbye to Brian down in the parking lot, hoping to God that Sparkles got caught in the footage.
Dialing my private investigator and having him answer on the third ring, I bark my orders into the phone. “Zack, my penthouse now.”
Four months later.
Three knocks coming from my office door pulled me from my depressing thoughts. “Inside.”
My private investigator strolls inside, a sure grin plastered on his face.
Zack Simms was a small man, too small to be working for me. He is a smart man who is quick on his feet though, so I keep him around.
“Mr. Lincoln? I found her.” Zack said, waiting to read the reaction on my face.
“Don’t hold your breath, Zack. Where is she?” I unbutton my suit and strip down as I walk into the built-in closet in my office to change into my riding gear. Dark washed jeans, a black shirt, and a leather jacket. It’s about damn time.
“Her name is Olive Greene. She works at Livv’s Coffee House on the main street in Oregon. Her parents own the cafe, but most of the time, she’s the one calling the shots.”
A smirk rises to my lips as we stride out of my office and down the emergency staircase. I always take the stairs to avoid the nosy people here, especially when I’m in my riding gear. My father doesn’t take kindly to my ‘extracurricular’ activities. “That sounds like my mystery girl.”
“She is a senior student at the Pearson Institute right outside of the town,” Zack follows me out of the emergency stairs and into the parking lot. “She tutors freshmen and sophomore students in between classes and sometimes take over lectures for her professors.”
Impressive. Sexy, and smart.
“Sir, are you sure you want to know where she lives?” Zack hesitates as I prepare to get on my bike, and I give him a look he knows all too well. “Yes, s-sir!” He stutters. “She lives with her parents on Oakland Avenue, house 748, just a couple of blocks away from where she works.”
I rev my engine, enjoying the heavy vibration of the monster beneath me. “Anything else?”
“That’ll be all, sir.” Zack smiles, proud of his work.
I consider leaving without a word, but Zack has worked too hard the past four months trying to keep up with my demands. I may be cold, but I’m not an ass.
Sparing him a glance from inside my helmet, I offer a smile which he cowers on. “Great work, Zack.”
“Th-Thank you, Sir.”
My stomach turns in anticipation of finally being able to meet my mystery woman. I’ve had Zack turn this town upside down for four months straight while looking for her, but he went months without a single lead.
Turning on the GPS, I speed out of the parking lot and lean forward once I get to the main road, urging my bike to go faster as adrenaline pumps through my veins.
It’s been a long time coming, Sparkles. I’m going to see you real soon.
It is one thing to be impressed by a woman in the heat of the moment. But I knew when she plagued my daily thoughts that no matter the cost, I had to find her, I was going to find her.