Authors: Sandra Bunino
Tags: #Erotica, #Fiction
Marooned in Miami
By Sandra Bunino
Copyright © 2012 by Sandra Bunino
ISBN : 978-1-938076-00-8
All Rights Reserved
All characters and events in this book are fictitious. Any resemblance to persons living or dead is strictly coincidental. The scanning, uploading and distribution of this book via the Internet or any other means without the permission of the publisher is illegal, and is punishable by law. Please purchase only authorized electronic editions, and do not participate in or encourage the electronic piracy of copyrighted materials. Your support of the author’s rights is appreciated.
A crack of thunder startled Jason Royce from deep thought as he stared into his short glass of bourbon at the hotel’s bar.
“Senor Royce, you are quiet tonight, is everything okay?” asked Carlos, the hotel’s bartender.
Jason looked up from his glass and gave Carlos a small smile. “Yeah, Carlos, everything is fine, although I wish this storm would move out to sea. The grand opening of the Pearl Del Mar is in a couple of weeks, and I’m worried about the schedule. I have a new project breaking ground in Salt Lake City a month from now, and I’ll need to move my operations over there soon.”
“I’m sure it will blow over, just like all the other storms we get this time of year. I haven’t seen Miss Jessica yet during your stay. Is she here with you?”
“No, I’m afraid you won’t see Jessica here again. At least not with me.”
“I’m sorry to hear that, senor.”
Jessica. Young and beautiful was always a dangerous combination as far as Jason was concerned. Jess had him convinced she was not with him for his money, and he actually believed her. Maybe it was wishful thinking, or he simply let his guard down. That was until a few weeks ago when he came home early from a business trip and caught her in bed with their personal trainer, Rex. Personal trainer my ass. He cursed the decision to hire Rex, not to mention the thousands of dollars of state of the art gym equipment he bought. He had just wanted to make her happy and comfortable after she moved into his Seattle mansion two months ago. Jessica burned him, big time. If walking into his bedroom and catching them in the act wasn’t bad enough, what hurt him most was she didn’t even try to explain or ask for forgiveness. Jessica simply packed all of the clothes, jewelry, designer shoes and handbags he’d bought her and left. She even withdrew all of the cash from their joint checking account without a word. Cold. That was the only word to describe her actions.
Jason decided to swear off women for a while, but he was always a sucker for heels. So he was easily distracted from his conversation with Carlos when he heard the low clicking of heels walking through the lobby. From his barstool, he first spotted those sexy black stilettos. His eyes wandered up her toned calves to her tight linen skirt. Since she was facing the elevator he leisurely admired the way her skirt hugged her tight ass. Did he just imagine the outline of thong panties through her skirt? He needed to know more.
“Excuse me, Carlos.”
Walking toward the mysterious woman, his eyes continued to travel up to glossy, thick, dark hair that flowed down her back as she animatedly talked on the phone. She was sexy from behind, and he wasn’t disappointed when he approached her at the elevator. She was taller than he expected, probably just about six feet in those heels. Her linen suit showed off her curvy body. She was preoccupied with her conversation, so he used the opportunity to admire the way her silk blouse tugged around her full breasts as she moved. He curiously wondered about her story. She was definitely a high maintenance woman. Rich housewife? No, she carried a laptop bag and was in the middle of a business conversation. He became even more intrigued.
* * * * *
Stephanie Thomas talked on her cell phone with her boss, “Rick, I’ve told you why I like staying here, I just need a break from the pharma crowd. You know I’m not into the after hours drinking and partying scene at the Convention Center hotel.”
Her job as a pharmaceutical rep involved extensive travel and as she panned the lobby, she smiled in appreciation of her find. “My hard work paid off. You should see this place. It’s beautiful, quiet and relaxing, just what I need right now.”
Rick called her a “Google Goddess” because she always Googled the hotels near her business meeting locations to find obscure accommodations with understated elegance.
“Just be forewarned, Rick. If the next three deals go like this one, I’m staying another night on you!” Stephanie laughed. “Yeah, I didn’t think you would mind too much.”
Downtime was important to Stephanie. These trips provided her an outlet to wind down from the everyday stress of her job and personal life. Not that she had much of a life outside of her job recently. Her divorce finalized only the month before, and she was still reeling from the experience. This was a much-needed retreat to decompress if only for a few days. Her chosen oasis for this particular stop in Miami was The Hotel Del Santos off Ocean Drive. The Del Santos, only steps away from the white sandy beaches of Miami’s South Beach, had her attention from the second she laid eyes on the website. Its inviting old world charm welcomed visitors to the front patio with potted ferns and tropical flowers. The lobby’s high ceilings and expansive windows showcased the beautiful wood moldings and ornate chandeliers that glistened on the marble floor.
“I’m about to get into the elevator now. I’ll send you the specifics when I get up to my room.” The account was a big win for her, and she was excited about what the new business would do for her sales numbers. She pressed the up button of the hotel’s elevator with a manicured finger.
Startled by an angry crack of thunder, she saw a flash of lightning through the lobby’s floor to ceiling glass window. The chandeliers all flickered in unison as the elevator doors opened. She swore under her breath, looked down at her three-inch heels and considered walking up the six flights of stairs to her room.
“Hey, is it okay to take the elevator in this storm?” she called to the front desk clerk who nodded and gave her a small wave.
A night stuck in the elevator was not in her plan. She debated for a moment about walking up barefoot when she heard a low voice to her right.
“How about we chance it together?”
She spun around to see the source of those words that washed over her like a slow moving current. Stephanie’s breath caught when she turned toward the source of the silky voice. His eyebrows raised and waited for an answer to his question. His lips curled to showcase his straight white teeth. He appeared out of nowhere; surely she would have noticed him in the lobby. A day’s growth of dark stubble covered his chiseled cheekbones below dangerous blue eyes. Stephanie’s heart raced, while she imagined her fingers combing through his dark wavy hair. Stop it, she thought as she shook her head slightly and hoped the action would rid her mind of these visions. One side of her said kick off those heels and walk up all of those damn flights of stairs, but the other told her to take him up on the offer. It was as if an angel and a devil sat on her shoulders. The devil was winning. The front desk didn’t foresee an issue with the elevator so why should she?
Stephanie’s eyes narrowed, careful not to give him any indication of the attraction she felt, even though his dark hair and tanned complexion made her insides turn to mush. There was something about his presence that made her feel sexy. She couldn’t make sense of the feeling. Heat coursed through her veins and straight down to her core. How could a stranger have that effect on her? I’ve got to start dating. I’m turning into a horny mess. She stepped inside the elevator and pushed the button for the sixth floor. The man followed closely behind, slid his key into the PH slot at the top and pushed the button.
Waiting for the elevator to arrive at her floor, she wondered if he was checking her out. She looked down to brush her hand over an imaginary piece of thread on her skirt and stole a glance to her left. Mr. Tall, Dark and Handsome looked straight ahead with a smug look on his face. Ah, one of those - good looking, rich and arrogant as hell. Doubts of her decision to board the elevator entered her head as the car painstakingly climbed the floors. The elevator’s floor display slowly changed from 2 to 3 when the lights flickered. Stephanie screamed in terror when the floor lurched from her footing and all went dark. The elevator car only dropped about an inch or so, but it alarmed her enough for her purse and laptop to slip from her hands as she attempted to stabilize herself against the wall.
“Oh my God, we’re going to die,” she choked, on the verge of tears.
“Sweetheart, we’re not going to die. We’re stopped between the second and third floor. The front desk knows we’re in here, just calm down and for God’s sake, please don’t scream again.”
His voice poured out slow and deep, like honey. How could he be so calm and smug at a time like this? “Let’s just get one thing clear here, you stay where you are. I swear, if you take one step toward me, I’ll kick your ass. I know self defense.” Stephanie tried to muster as much authority as possible and cursed her shaky voice.
“I’m sure you can kick my ass. Those heels you have on are lethal. Not to worry, I don’t need to hold a woman captive. They come to me quite freely, if you know what I mean.”
“Oh wonderful, I’m stuck in here with an asshole.”
He simply laughed as the elevator shimmied.
Tears streamed down her face and Stephanie screamed again.
“Oh, God, you really are upset. Shit.” His voiced softened. “Listen, here’s what you need to do. Sit down.”
Stephanie slid down the wall into a back corner.
“Okay, now with your knees up, lean forward and take deep breaths.” She tried to stifle a whimper, which came out like a sob.
“Shit,” he said under his breath. “I’m going to come and sit next to you, okay? No sudden movements, I don’t want to be impaled by a heel.”
“Don’t do me any favors, I’m fine,” she said in barely a whisper.
“You’re not fine,” he said as he slid down next to her on her left. Warm hands encircled hers, and she immediately felt just a little safer.
“That’s it, deep breaths in and out. Now, what’s your name?”
“Stephanie,” she said between deep breaths.
“Nice to meet you, Stephanie. I’m Jason.”
He placed one arm around her shoulders and held her hand with the other. His hulking warm presence was indeed comforting, she admitted. As she continued to take deep breaths, she became increasingly aware of the warmth that emanated from his body. His musky scent, a mixture of cologne and fresh ocean air, calmed her nerves.
“Better?” he asked softly. His mouth was just inches from her ear.
“Yes, thanks,” she answered breathlessly, turning toward his voice.
“Is your husband here at the hotel with you?”
“Yeah, you’re wearing a ring.”
He rubbed the wedding band on her left hand that she still wore while traveling. In her line of business, clients and vendors constantly hit on her. The ring dissuaded advances, at least to a degree.
“Oh - um, no, he’s not.”
“Really? He let a pretty thing like you alone in South Beach?”
Stephanie stiffened and pulled her hand away. “I’m okay now. You can go back to your corner.”
Jason removed his arm from her shoulder, but didn’t move from his spot next to her. “All right sweetheart, did I say something wrong?”
“Do you treat all women like objects? I’m here on business, actually. In fact, I travel all over the country for my job. Alone. I don’t need a husband or any other man for that matter to accompany me. I’m fine on my own.” The heat rose in her face, and she was thankful he couldn’t see her flushed complexion.
Silence took over the dark elevator car for a few moments until she heard Jason inhale and exhale slowly. “You’re right, what I said was uncalled for, please forgive me.”