Winning the Billionaire

By: JM Stewart

Chapter One



Christina McKenzie tried to close her mouth, to force herself to blink. Common courtesy said she ought to at least turn around. She needed to do something other than stare. Staring was rude. So was drooling. She was pretty sure she was doing both. Her limbs, however, refused to obey. The sight before her had her Jimmy Choo’s glued to the hardwood floor beneath her feet. The heat in the private vestibule she stood in ramped up a thousand degrees and perspiration prickled along her skin.

God almighty. Since she was fifteen she’d fantasized about this. On the other side of the threshold, Sebastian Blake stood with his arms folded, wearing a pair of stark-white snug-fitting boxers.

And nothing else.

It didn’t help that his dark brown hair stuck up at odd angles. He looked like he’d just rolled out of bed, completing the fantasy running a loop in her head. The one starring him, having just rolled out of her bed.

She’d known Sebastian for over twenty years, since that fateful day on the playground in first grade when he’d bumped her out of the way to get to the monkey bars. He and her twin brother, Caden, had been joined at the hip since. Oh, she’d seen him with his shirt off plenty of times over the years. She’d never seen him quite like this, however, one tiny little scrap of fabric from being stark naked, and her imagination filled in the gaps fine, thank you very much.

She bit her bottom lip. God bless America. “Baz,” as she’d been calling him since somewhere around second grade, had to be the finest specimen of the masculine form she’d ever seen. Six foot four inches of lean, sculpted muscle. A broad chest and wide shoulders tapered to lean hips and long legs. Every inch of him toned to perfection. She knew from experience he worked out religiously, because she went running with him on occasion. Sebastian lived by his routines. Standing there, soaking in every luscious inch of him, she was suddenly grateful for it. The man had well-defined pecs and a washboard stomach she ached to smooth her hands over.

“For the love of all that’s holy, Tina, do you have to come over so damn early?” Sebastian leaned on the door frame.

The deep scowl etched into his forehead snapped the fantasy shut with the recoil of a rubber band, yanking her back to reality. One where hell would freeze over before he ever looked at her with anything more than feigned tolerance. Never mind she and Caden were fraternal twins or that, technically, she was older than both of them. Caden by thirteen minutes and Sebastian by four months. Sebastian tended to treat her like an annoying kid sister or at most a friend. Today, apparently, it was annoying sister.

One would think she’d be used to that look by now, but it grated her nerves every time. She was a woman. Damn it. Just once she wanted to see him acknowledge it.

Not that the desire was logical or that she had any intention of following it. Sebastian was a well-practiced playboy. He loved women. And often.

Soft fur brushed her ankle, announcing the presence of Spike, Sebastian’s three-year-old tabby. Using Spike as an excuse to distract herself, she bent and scooped him off the floor. “Well, at least someone’s happy to see me.”

Purring loudly, Spike rubbed his face against her chin, and she stroked his head, pretending nonchalance as she turned her back to the door. If she didn’t at least feign decorum, she’d lean over and lick Sebastian. God, how she longed to follow the trail of soft, dark hair straight into those boxers.

Desperate to save face, she shot a scowl over her shoulder. “It’s eight a.m., Baz. You’re usually up by now, and you could at least put pants on before answering the door. Where’s Lupe?”

Lupe was Sebastian’s housekeeper. She was a round little woman with a sharp mind and a soft heart. She was also the only person who could tolerate Sebastian’s surly mood in the morning. Baz had had four housekeepers quit in the last two years alone. His crankiness, though, didn’t seem to faze Lupe.

“I gave her the day off, and you’re lucky I put anything on at all. It’s been a long damn night. I’ve only been asleep for about an hour, and I hadn’t intended to leave my bed until I have to get up for work tomorrow.” He released a heavy breath. “Look, I’m exhausted. Is there something I can do for you?”

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