A Convenient Arrangement

By: Maggie Marr

Chapter 1

“Do you think Leo will ever get married?” Gwen twirled toward Nina, her best friend’s sister, who stood at the kitchen island.

“Leo?” Nina lifted her knife from the pile of chopped chives on the cutting board and pointed it toward Gwen and Aubrey. “He’s the only Travati brother I don’t think will ever get married.”

Aubrey sighed and rubbed her rounded baby belly. “I have to agree. Even Devon, once they get that entire legal mess sorted out, will settle down someday. But Leo’s a confirmed bachelor.” She walked toward the kitchen cabinets and reached up to pull out more serving trays they expected at least forty people at the party tonight. Gwen rushed over to help. Aubrey still had three months until she was due, but she didn’t need to be lifting and reaching, not with so many people here to help with party preparation.

“Leo asked me to plan the launch party for the new app.” Gwen set three silver trays on the counter.

“Ha! The new app?” Nina rolled her eyes toward the ceiling. “You mean his Convenient Arrangement app? Might as well be called the booty-call app, or the one-night-stand app.”

“I don’t know.” Gwen placed the trays side by side on the kitchen island for Nina. “Maybe a one-night stand could be…beneficial? I’ve never had one, but—”

“Well, I did, and I ended up with Max,” Aubrey said.

“I’ve had plenty,” Nina added.

Aubrey tilted her head and shot her sister a questioning look.

“What? I was in Paris in culinary school, I was super young and single. What else was there to do but cook, eat, smoke, and have sex?”

Gwen smiled. She loved how direct Nina was about her life and her feelings.

“I get how a one-night stand can be fun.” Nina scraped the chives into a ramekin. “I just don’t believe women go into one-night stands with the same expectations. Sex means something different to women.”

“Not all women.”

Air blasted from Gwen’s lungs. Leo stood in the doorway with his arms crossed over his chest and a silky smile on his face. He might be a lothario, but he was a gorgeous lothario. Black hair, walnut-brown eyes with flecks of amber, and those lips… Damn, those plush, thick lips would feel so… She tore her eyes away from Leo. No use thinking of him in that way. They could only be friends. Leo’s sister-in-law, Aubrey, was Gwen’s best friend, and Gwen knew from spending time with the Travati family that she and Leo had very different ideas about what an ideal future looked like.

“I know a lot of women, especially businesswomen and executives, who don’t want the complications of a relationship.” Leo walked to the counter, grabbed one of Nina’s ahi tuna crisps, and popped the appetizer into his mouth.

He was sexy even when he chewed.

“That explains the models, heiresses, and actresses we see you on TMZ with,” Nina said, setting the crisps onto a silver tray.

Leo smiled and little shocks danced over Gwen’s skin. She licked her lip and studied the appetizers. Leo was not a man to date, or become involved with, or to—her gaze slid toward his. He lifted one eyebrow and smiled.

Heat shot through every cell of Gwen’s body. But she could flirt, couldn’t she? They always flirted. In that friendly sort of you’re-a-friend-of-the-family-I-would-never-take-this-anywhere way.

“What about you, Gwen? You’re a business owner, very busy with your event planning, no time for a relationship. Wouldn’t you like an app where you could meet someone who wants a similar type of arrangement? A person that you could go to events with and have dinner with and maybe even”—Leo shrugged, raised his eyebrows, and shot her a wicked smile that made her toes curl and her girl parts tingle—“who knows? Take care of some of those,” his voice lowered, “more personal needs.”

“My God!” Nina said, an incredulous smile launching over her face. “Are you kidding? Is that working for you? That pitch? I mean granted, Leo, you’ve got the smooth looks thing going for you and the billionaire bit, but that, that’s your pitch to the ladies?” She shook her head and again rolled her gaze upward.

“I don’t know,” Gwen said, “I can see how it might work for him.” She shot Leo a smile. He nodded his thanks, an answering smile spreading over his face.

“I’m telling you,” he continued. “We’re billionaires now, but after this app launches, you might as well drop the ‘b’ and put a ‘t’ and an ‘r’ in front of that word.” Leo winked at Gwen. He turned and exited the kitchen.

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