Playboy's Virgin, страница 1
It’s all fun and games until you fall in love
Passionate Billionaire Romance
Tia Wylder’s Facebook Fan Page
Playboy’s Virgin by Tia Wylder
When I first lay eyes upon Claire Barkley, I never could have imagined we would become friends. That day I heard her complaining about her bad luck in the bar, I certainly didn’t expect to go out of my way to help her out. Helping women isn’t really the name of my game; more so helping myself to their bodies. However, in spite of my disdain for the fairer sex, there’s something about playing pretend that sets a fire alight inside of me. Love? Nah. But we’ll have fun.
When my mother insisted I bring a date to my sister’s wedding, I thought I was out of luck. However, when a remarkably friendly face offered a bit of assistance, who was I to say no? Especially when the guy offering to help has such a hot bod… I may be a virgin, and this may all be a charade, but I’ll show this playboy that he’s not the only alpha in town. Game on, rich boy.
This is a guaranteed a Happily Ever After, standalone story.
This is a work of fiction. Names, characters, organizations, places, events, and incidents are either products of the author’s imagination or are used fictitiously.
Text copyright © Tia Wylder (C-C K.W.) 2017 with US copyright office.
Some of the graphics used in this book are from the OpenClipart library for unlimited commercial use public domain with all rights released by artists.
Published by hotspicyromance.com
Cover Designed by hotspicyromance.com
All rights reserved.
No part of this book may be reproduced, or stored in a retrieval system, or transmitted in any form or by any means, electronic, mechanical, photocopying, recording, or otherwise, without express written permission of the publisher.
The Half Pint Bar and Grill hosted its usual regulars on a warm Saturday evening, and one Matthew Reynolds considered fortunate that bartenders come much cheaper than a good therapist. At least, he muses that it’s fortunate for the strikingly familiar woman who sits at the bar, loudly complaining to the bartender. He recognizes her vaguely, remembering her name as Clarice of the like. She’s usually a rather snappy customer, shutting down advances from the various saps who make run of the bar. As far as he’s gathered, however, she’s been put out of sorts by her sister’s upcoming wedding. More specifically, she’s put out by her mother’s insistence that she brings a boyfriend.
Matthew usually wouldn’t pay much attention to bar chatters, as he would usually have a date with him. However, he was currently trying to distract himself from text messages sent from yesterday’s needy woman. Anything was preferable to seeing her emoticon-riddled text messages, desperately wondering why he had not returned her calls. Just like any ordinary woman. Desperate for someone to come home to at night, someone she could tie down with a marriage and some ugly kids. Adding to that is the fact that he must deal with his fair share of golddigger as well, wealth was both a blessing and a curse. He was more than willing to fool around with a nice girl with an even nicer rack, but he cut ties as soon as it was feasible.
The woman at the bar, whose name he finally remembered as being Claire Barkley, has never approached him for more than the occasional chatter. She usually gave him some shit about the skanks he brought into the bar, seeming to think as little of them as he did. She didn’t strike him as the one to be easily tied down by a man, which judging from her dilemma, seemed to be the case.
“I swear, Barb, men just can’t handle all this. I think I’ve found a good guy, ya know, the whole package. Then, he mutated into some sentimental creep that wants me to meet his mother,” Claire lamented, and Matthew had to stifle a laugh as he pictured the last man she had entered the bar with. He had been a handsome man, from a strictly objective point of view, and certainly didn’t seem the type to run home to his mommy. Claire, however, insisted that the share of men she’d met wilted beneath her big personality.
Matthew mused that she was simply seeking the wrong men. Though he had no intentions to pursue her, he could see that she was beautiful enough. She needed a real man, not some mummy’s boys.
Deciding to give her a taste of her own medicine, he slipped towards the bar to give her a bit of shit about her dilemma. She spotted him coming almost immediately, grinning as he approached.
“Matt, how’s it going?” She asked amicably, rolling her eyes at his cheeky grin.
“Much better than you, I’m fortunate not having an overly inquisitive family,” he hummed, sinking into the bar stool besides her. She sighed somewhat melodramatically, glancing towards the bartender and giving her drink order before turning her attention back to Matthew.
“We can’t all be blessed like you, rich kid,” she quirked lips. He chuckled at the little dig, resting his elbow on the bartop, looking at her straight in the eyes.
“Maybe not, but you don’t seem particularly bad off either. Many women would kill to have a chance with the men I’ve seen you bring here. Shouldn’t be hard for you to pick some sap up off the streets,” his mouth fell open, and she barked out a laugh. He had to swallow his laughter, enjoying her boisterous personality. Sure, a woman guffawing at a bar wasn’t the most attractive picture, but she certainly was interesting.
“Please. My mom knows me too well. She’d know immediately that I was faking if I just brought in some wimpy pretty boy,” Claire chuckled. She tapped her fingers on the bartop, seeming to consider her next words. “It’s not like I need anything permanent. I just need someone who can play a role,” she hummed, and Matthew quirked a brow, laughing under his breath.
“Ah…so you’re looking for a realistic fake boyfriend? Seriously, Claire? That’s just sad,” he gasped. If she was put off by his words, she gave little indication, simply watching him with a small smile.
“You’re asking as if I’d ask you, rich boy. I do have some taste,” she riposted, and Matthew narrowed his eyes slightly.
He crossed his arms over his chest. “What are you implying? That I’m just one of those mommy’s boys you always bring home? You should know better than that, Barkley.” He seemed irritated by her growing smile, tossing back his shot of bourbon as soon as the bartender placed it in front of him. She swished her glass, observing the contents for a moment before knocking her glass back as well.
“Well, it’s not as if you’d have the balls to prove otherwise, so what difference does it make? I feel like you’re getting a little worked up, Matthew,” she purred, offering him a coy wink. He sputtered angrily, slapping the bar to indicate that he wanted another shot. The bartender, for her part, simply observed the two with an amused smile.
“You’d be so lucky to know my balls,” he huffed, eyes widening indignantly as she snagged his next shot out from under him. “I have brass balls,” he grumbled, watching as she sipped the drink.
“Prove it then,” she said with a daring smile. Matthew hesitated, considering her for a long moment before tossing his head back in a laugh. Realizing that he had been caught in her scheme, she smiled sheepishly.
“You’re something else, Claire,” he smirked. “What the hell, what could it hurt? I can play your arm candy for the wedding,” he announced, tapping his fingers on the bartop again. “Next round is on me, Barb. We’re celebrating the start of a beautiful new relationship,” he crowed. He and Claire erupted into laughter as cheers echoed through the bar. Barbara handed out shots, placing the charges on Matthew’s tab. It was well known that he was good for paying off his tab. The perks of being filthy rich.
Bidding her goodnight, Matthew watched as Claire slipped drunkenly out of the bar. In spite of himself, he felt the vaguest sense of relief that she hadn’t carried home one of the losers who had tried hitting on her. He assured himself that the feeling was only due to the role he was expected to play.
He would never pursue a woman, not even Claire. They all boiled down to the same needy vultures…
The next morning Claire stepping into Astro’s Gym around her usual time, if a bit earlier. Though their date was nothing more than platonic, she was rather eager to impress the man she had been friendly with. Matthew had always been something of an enigma, remaining single in the entire period she had known him. There were rumors at the bar that he’d been in a relationship that ended badly with some golddigger. She paid rumors little mind in most situations, but it seemed to fit the way he approached women. He seemed to think of the women he dated as little more than clingy sex toys, though she supposed she wasn’t awfully different when it came to men. It just more socially acceptable for a man to have an alpha personality, as opposed to a woman. Though it was altogether unfair, she couldn’t change the way society viewed things.
Shaking herself from distracting thoughts, she disappeared into the locker room to change into her gym clothes. When she emerged, she spotted a familiar figure on the opposite side of the gym. Though the dress code at the gym prohibited it, she supposed once you were a billionaire, you were entitled to go shirtless wherever you felt so inclined. Her eyes widened as they took in the expansive tattoo on his shoulder, curling down and around his pectoral muscle which seemed to dance as he flexed his body. He was doing curls with a rather hefty weight, and she tried to keep herself from salivating as she crossed the gym to meet him. He glanced up as she approached, looking at her appreciatively.
“Claire, dear. Fancy seeing you, here,” he hummed, winking. She rolled her eyes in exasperation, though she couldn’t deny that his attention sent a small jolt of pleasure through her. Though she had no plans to get swept up like most women who met Matthew, it was hard to ignore how attractive the man was as he worked the weights. It seemed he had already been at it for some time, with the sheen of sweat that shone on his skin. She couldn’t help the curious tilt of her head, scratching her cheek nervously.
“I thought you usually came a bit later. Seems you’ve been at it for a while, now,” she cleared her throat, and he faced her with a sly quirk of his lips.
“Oh, I thought I’d get here a little early, today. I’d hate to disappoint my fake girlfriend. Plus, it was a good opportunity to show off the goods,” he teased, flexing his arms as if to make a point. Claire felt her cheeks grow flush, but tried to ignore her body’s primal response to the man’s efforts.
“Well, I give you an A for effort. You didn’t strike me as the type to have a tattoo. I feel like I should know these things, at the very least. We’ve been friends for how long now?” She inquired, sitting at the weight bench beside him and beginning her routine with a set of weights much lighter than the ones Matthew was using.
“I’m not exactly the friendliest guy, even when I like someone,” he crossed his arms, glancing at her from the corner of his eye. His eyes widened slightly as he watched her work the weights as well, musing that she certainly was no slacker.
“We’re gonna have to work on that, y’know, considering we’re fake dating,” she smirked, a bead of sweat rolling down her neck. He followed the small droplet with his eyes, looking away once he realized she noticed his observations. She looked a mix of vaguely confused and vaguely amused, offering him a coy wink before focusing on her workout routine. Her insides were fluttering at a pace previously unmatched, and it was a struggle to feign indifference to his stares. It was undeniable that there was at least an attraction between them, though it only ran skin deep. As much as she could see the man in her bedroom, she had a careful distance to maintain. The most important thing for the time being, was having a date for her sister’s wedding, and she couldn’t afford to ruin the plot for the sake of a likely satisfying lay.
For his part, he seemed to be making little effort in keeping his gaze averted off her, and she found herself growing increasingly self-conscious beneath his stare.
“So, I suppose we ought to work out some sort of story. Something we can agree upon, makes us both look good and respectable,” he hummed, finally drawing his eyes away from her. Claire considered his words, setting her weights aside and sitting upright on the weight bench. “What, you can’t work and plot at the same time?” He inquired teasingly, and she snorted.
“I can, but I’d much rather watch you work out while we scheme,” she quirked her lips coyly and fluttered her eyelashes. Unexpectedly he simply renewed his efforts, grunting and groaning softly with each flex of his muscles. Claire forcibly ignored the tingling in her gut, as well as the tingling between her thighs. He seemed to sense her unease, and for his part looked altogether too pleased with himself.
“Like what you see? Let’s start plotting, then. Let’s say… we met at the gym. My rock-hard abs made you think unmentionable things, so you flirted a bit, a bit low key. I was receptive, took you home, and from there-” he grinned as she cleared her throat, cutting him off abruptly.
“Unmentionables aside, as well as you take me home— which, you wish, honey, I guess we can play the gym angle. I’d like to seem like I have some dignity, however, not like I’m the easiest woman on the planet,” she tilted her head. He smirked, setting his weights down and turning to face her fully.
“So you’d like to seem like you have dignity, thereby admitting that you have none?” He snickered.
“Aren’t you the clever one?” She bit back, crossing her arms under her chest. His eyes widened visibly as her breasts were accentuated by the slight arc of her back, and she mentally counted it as a victory. The two scrutinized each other for a moment before dissolving into amicable laughter. “Seriously, though. I can’t very well tell my family that I brought you to the wedding just because you were a good lay,” she groaned, leaning back on the weight bench.
“But my abilities aren’t coming into question, with this line of thinking, correct?” He hummed.
“Of course not, you’re an absolute Adonis. A God among men, and so forth. I have to pretend to be infatuated with you, at the very least. It’s a given in this scenario that we’ve had sex, but maybe after a few dates,” she mused aloud.
“Three dates,” he suggested, and she snorted in amusement.
“I doubt they’ll ask for that much detail,” she smiled. He shrugged his shoulders, rising from the weight bench and toweling off his torso. She watched with her lip drawn between her teeth, cursing her love for big and buff men.
“Granted, but we should be prepared at the very least. Come on Claire, commit to your nefarious plan,” he teased, offering her his hand. “Let’s get a smoothie. It’s on me,” he smiled, gripping her hand in his own, and helping her pull herself to her feet. She rested a hand on his shoulder to steady herself, drawing away with a jolt as she realized just how temptingly warm he was. He seemed not to notice, turning to lead her to the smoothie bar. She trailed behind him, watching the way his bubble butt filled out his gym shorts. She knew she needed to get a hold of herself, but at the very least she could appreciate his physique. He was built much like the Greek god she had referred to in jest, and she found herself wishing for the briefest moments that this was more than some charade. Not something as intense as a relationship, not by any means, but she could o
She had to remind herself that she wasn’t that sort of girl. Sure, she’d had her share of good lays, but she had been trying not to fool around with so many men. She wanted an actual relationship at heart, it was just that… no one wanted her in that capacity. Those who had wanted more than a one night stand ended up being overwhelmed by her big personality. Though she had scorned the thought of some overly sensitive man taking her home to his mother, it had very scarcely gotten that far. She’d never been one to doubt herself, but her ego had taken something of a hit. Now, here she stood on her own territory with a gorgeous man who expressed interest in her, but she had to keep reminding herself it was only skin deep. Their personalities would likely clash if they were together for more than an hour or two at a time, at least, if they were sober together for that long. He seemed to enjoy her company well enough, but Matthew was untouchable in the relationship department. Entertaining being in a relationship with him would only lead to hurt, he was a bachelor through and through.
She also had to remind herself that she had never started this whole charade with the intention of getting attached to the man. He was simply a means to an end, a way to get her nagging mother off her back for… a few months at least. Until the next get-together, which her family seemed all too fond of. They were playing roles, and she was here to figure out how they could accurately play the part.
“What smoothie do you want?” Matthew called out, dragging her from her thoughts. He gestured to the smoothie bar, something she rarely treated herself to. She barely even knew what they served, it had been so long since she had been to this facility in the gym.