Today, Tomorrow, Forever...

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Excerpt: ...I snap back to reality when he brushes a fallen tendril behind my ear. Hot damn girl, no wonder he’s single – he’s a tease; he will wind you up like a music box, bend you over the hood of his Ferrari somewhere in Central Park tonight and fuck you so hard, you will sing out his name. He will have you begging for more, but the truth is that man will never be seen again. “Damn you! No cars are allowed there.” I hiss under my breath. Isabella St. Claire was a typical daddy's girl, but at a very young age her father broke her heart when he chose another woman over her and her mother. Even though she still had ties to her paternal side, she was mostly raised by her mother and maternal grandparents who instilled many values in her; mainly to be independent and hardworking and live a humble life where wealth and status didn't define her. Taking a chance at love meant that for a second time, her heart would be shattered by a man...this time her fiancé. Will third time be the charm? Does one of New York City's most eligible and richest bachelors stand a chance at breaking the cycle? *** WARNING!! *** ***This book may contain a few depictions of sexual assault but I have taken great lengths to ensure that the subject matter is limited and dealt with in a compassionate and respectful manner. Discretion is advised.***

Romance / Erotica
Ayden West
4.8 15 reviews
Age Rating:

Chapter 1

I’ve been here before. This place looks all too familiar, but I am having trouble wrapping my head around it. My feet are planted, as if they are cemented to the ground; and I am unable to move.

Suddenly I have the urge to run; to get away. I no longer want to be here. I’m running as fast as I possibly can, but my feet are so weighted and tired it feels as though I am going nowhere, fast – like a hamster on its wheel in a cage constantly running in circles.

Someone is chasing me, but whenever I turn around there is no one there. The tiny hairs at the back of my neck stand on end. I can sense their presence. My heart is racing, each beat, pounding through my chest and ears like the beat of a drum.

So many changing scenes awaken a whirlwind in my head. Time stands still for what seems like eternity and a split second all at once before I’m running again, as fast as I can.

The air is cool and crisp, and I can feel my lungs burning – praying that they can be rescued. I am so afraid of what might happen to me.

Why are there no lights in these buildings or on the street?

The only thing lighting the way is the moonlight and the stars...oh so beautiful.

For as long as I can remember, New York City has never had a blackout like this! One would think that right now, that would be the last of my worries.

Who is chasing me and why are they chasing me and how did I get in this part of the neighborhood? My mind is racing a million miles per hour trying to grasp the situation.

In the distance, I can hear someone calling my name; with each call it gets louder and more familiar.

I realize that it is my mother. An unexpected sense of calm washes over me and I am no longer trapped.

I awake, catching my breath; aware that it was only a dream – the same dream that I have been having for the last three months. A dream that leaves me exhausted and drained. This time it seemed to have manifested to a higher level of intensity.

“Sweetie, are you okay? It’s that dream again, isn’t it?” Mom asks with a sense of worry.

Still reeling from the nightmare, I shake my head in approval. “I’m sorry for waking you up.” I apologize.

“I really think that you should speak to someone about it,” she says.

“Mom, I told you before, I am fine – I don’t need to ask a shrink about a dream; perhaps I ate a bit too much chocolate tonight. Don’t worry too much, I’ll be okay…now, can you please just go back to bed.”


To my family and friends, I’m Izzy – but let me introduce myself to you. I'm Isabella Elizabeth St. Claire, twenty-three years old, five feet six inches with brown eyes and black hair and I live in Astoria, New York City.

Moving along…I am a recent graduate of the New York School of Interior Design; a strong, independent young woman who basically has all her shit together even when there are times that it may not seem so.

During the day I run an independent interior design company from my home office and at night, I work at a trending pub style restaurant called Duncan’s.

One may think that I would have wanted to work in the largest design firm that I could find in the city, but I have always been humble and prefer to have a more intimate relationship with those around me.

My paternal grandmother believes that I am wasting my talent. More like disappointed that I haven’t given her bragging rights among New York’s elite. I’m still thankful for her putting in a good word to her friends who have been quite satisfied with my work. Their recommendations keep me busy and employed.

“Mom! I’m leaving!” I call out. I can hear her footsteps as she approaches.

“Oh, honey, do you have to work at the restaurant? I don’t like the idea of you working there at night, and you really don’t have a need to do so.” Her eyebrows knit together with concern as she walks towards me.

“Mom, I’ll be fine, I promise. Besides, you know that Duncan wouldn’t let anything happen to me.” I can’t help but smirk. “When are you two going to give it a try? I see the way that you both look at each other.” I roll my eyes at her mischievously and she smacks me over the shoulder playfully as her face turns beet red.

“Behave yourself young lady!” she tries her best to respond to me with a straight face until we both burst into a fit of giggles.

“I love you mom, but I have to relieve Tina. I think Paul is going to pop the question tonight.” I squeal.

“Oh, that’s wonderful, I hope that you can find yourself a nice guy someday soon.” she smiles, and I hug her tightly.

“Well, like ya-ya always said, when the time is right, I will know. Love you mom, see you later tonight. Don’t wait up!” I chime as I walk out the door.

“As if that will ever happen!” she shouts after me and I can’t help but smile. After all these years she still treats me as if I am a child.

The place is packed and it’s barely eight o’clock when I arrive.

Duncan is busy serving drinks and I wave at him as I head to the back to grab my apron and secure my belongings. On the way in I passed a table with a bunch of corporate guys in their fancy suits, and they were more than enjoying themselves. It’s the first time that I am seeing them in here. The word about this place must be getting around.

“Hi Duncan.” I say as I grab a notepad and pen from behind the counter.

“Hey sweet pea. It’s packed tonight, huh?” he smiles, and I smile back at him.

“Yes, it is!” I am still smiling knowing exactly what his next question is going to be.

“How’s your mom?” he asks blushing.

“She is fine. You ask me that question every time I walk in for my shift. When are you two going to stop playing this game of cat and mouse? Ask her out already! You guys aren’t old, but definitely not getting any younger.” Duncan blushes and shakes his head as I turn around and walk towards Tina.

Duncan is a silver fox, in his mid to late forties with a few tattoos and he is in great shape. He and mom are around the same age and have a thing for each other. He is like a father figure to me, and I still don’t see why mom hasn’t taken the bait with him as yet. Besides, she doesn’t have to worry about me giving Duncan the cold shoulder like some children do when their single parent starts dating. I like him and think that they would be a perfect fit. They both deserve to be happy. I couldn’t think of two better people who deserve each other.

I am already dreading this night as I watch Tina walk towards me rolling her eyes. “Hey babe, scoping out your table?”

“Hey girl, this is the first time that I have seen them in here. They look…” I roll my eyes and Tina cuts me off.

“If you were going to say ‘like big tippers’, then yea. They have only been here about an hour and have tipped me a little over a hundred bucks - and by the way that they are celebrating, I don’t think that they are going anywhere, anytime soon. They were bragging about landing this huge deal and something about waiting for some guy to join them.”

“Wow, that is a good tip. The older guy looked as if he wanted to get his hands all over your backside though.” I say scrunching my nose.

“Yea, just be careful around him, he seems like a real douche, but the others are really nice. The longer that they end up staying means the more that they will drink, and they really show off the asshole in themselves then.”

“Thanks for the heads up. Don’t you have somewhere to be?”

“Yes, I do!” Tina exclaims. “I think tonight is thee night. You know Paul cannot surprise anyone.”

“I think so too, have fun. I am so happy for you.”

"Thanks. Gotta settle these tabs, then I'm outta here. Later babe!"


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