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Wilder: The Wild Duet Book 2 by Colet Abedi (1)

 

 

Chapter One

 

 

 

Jamie Fucking Donovan

 

WYLD: It’s over. Stop contacting me. If you reach out again, I’ll start talking… 

The text I read from Wylder before walking out on stage to sit down with Craig Williamson, my good friend and popular late-night talk show host, is still burned in my mind like a flashing neon sign. 

The emotions I feel range from fury to desire, to the need to  fuck her senseless until she’s screaming she wants me back, to apathy, then right back to fury again. 

Goddamn it.

Why do I have to be on stage before a live studio audience right now? More importantly, why did I text Wyld again? I mean, what the hell was I thinking? After two weeks of unanswered phone calls and messages, I don’t have to be a fucking brain surgeon to take a hint. 

I blame the whiskey.    

“I have one last question for you tonight, Jamie, and it’s really one for the ladies.” Craig interrupts my mental battle, bringing me back to the situation at hand. 

As expected, low whistles and catcalls ensue. 

I shrug my shoulders in dismay and narrow my eyes at him in warning. He knows how much I hate this shit. Craig holds his hands up in defense and shakes his head like he’s an innocent bystander. 

“This is why I have to ask!” he says as he points at the rowdy and mostly female audience, his Brooklyn accent pronounced. “They love you. They can’t get enough.”

“Hardly.” I shake my head in embarrassment and laugh nervously. 

I know he’s just trying to rile me up, but I wonder how much longer I have to endure this torture. Press tours and junkets are my least favorite part of the movie-making process. I hate the questions, the intrusive nature of the paparazzi and their cameras, and the unbelievable lack of privacy we’re forced to endure. I usually like to lie low and out of all the drama, but because I’m contractually obligated to promote a Thanksgiving Day limited-edition release of Mantis—with extra scenes cut from the movie—here I am. 

Shit out of luck.

“Come on, man.” Craig continues to pester me. I can tell he’s enjoying himself. I’m going to kick his ass right before we have our next drink after the show’s done taping. 

Yeah, another drink.

It was absolutely crucial for me to be lit up like a Christmas tree before he interviewed me. Craig and I pretty much took down the entire bottle of Macallan I brought him as a gift. I’ll have to ask my assistant, Kathleen, to send him another in the morning.

What can I say? This shit makes me nervous. I didn’t sign up to be in front of the camera. I wish we could leave this part of the business to the actors, the ones who for the most part like it and are good at it. Unfortunately, that’s not the way it works. 

“Look at that pretty face.” Craig leans over his desk to pat my cheek, continuing to egg me on. “No wonder you’re so popular with the women.”

The female audience members are enjoying every minute of this. 

“All right.” I give up, shaking my head with an amused smile, just wanting my segment on the show to be over. “What’s the question?” 

He takes a long, dramatic pause for effect. 

“Jamie…” His voice sounds sickeningly tender and fake as shit. It makes me want to punch him in the face.

“Craig?” I say with as much artifice.

He takes another long pause, waiting for the audience to calm down.  

“Is there anyone special in your life?” he asks mockingly, fluttering his eyelashes. As hoots and hollers of pleasure echo throughout the set, Wylder’s beautiful face flashes in my mind.

When they calm again, Craig leans in and asks, “Dating anyone?”

I clench my jaw. 

As usual, the thought of her makes my blood pump to regions I’d really like no pumping to at this moment. Blue fucking balls are the last thing I need right now, front and center in front of a live studio audience, but—

Wylder’s a hot piece of ass. 

Clever and witty. Gorgeous. 

Classy, with the perfect amount of street to keep you engaged. 

She’s also a cold-hearted bitch who ghosted me and made me look like a complete douche in front of my sister. I had invited Fiona to dinner and wanted them to meet before I surprised Wyld and snuck her off to Cabo for a few nights to stay at Las Ventanas. When Wylder was a no show, Fiona was not impressed. Her exact words were “I’m gonna cut that bitch.” The thought of my dainty, sweet, little sister hurting anyone made me laugh my ass off. But I did appreciate the humor in my moment of levity. That night sure as shit didn’t turn out the way I thought it would. 

Apparently it was just her first fuck-you to me.

This new text from her was more egregious and one I take a lot more issue with. 

I guess it’s the other side to Wylder. 

She’s Mrs. Fucking Hyde. 

Why the hell does she have to be so hot? My blood boils at the thought of her naked. Why does she have to be the best lay of my life? I can hear my friend, Gabriel, in my mind, imparting one of his usual stoic anecdotes about life. He likes to offer them when I’m not asking. The ones who are unbelievable in bed are always crazy, J. They’re always crazy.

Wylder isn’t crazy. She’s not. I know crazy. I can smell it a mile away… 

It’s been two weeks. Am I crazy? 

I can’t believe I still care. I must be losing my mind. 

I quickly make myself refocus and think about how she’s completely written me off and treated me like a giant pile of turd. And listen, if I deserved it, I’d reluctantly admit—okay, very reluctantly—admit to it, but I swear on U.F.P.—Unidentified Flying Phenomenon, the first movie I made—I sure as shit did not deserve how she treated and threatened me. The worst part is I have no clue how to begin understanding why she even crossed over to the dark side. 

“So what’s the story?” Craig asks, pushing me as everyone waits for my answer.

Wylder just threatened me

I let the reality of the situation sink in. 

Not only did she threaten me, she attacked one of the most important things in my life: my privacy. In the world I live in, besides my family and friends, it’s the one thing I value above all. 

I stare out into the bright lights and flash an innocent smile, hoping it’ll distract everyone from the fact I haven’t said a word in an uncomfortably long amount of time. I guess it works because the audience starts egging me on to give an answer. 

Icy fury washes over me as my mind chases down this rabbit hole. I try to control myself. I’m on a stage talking to one of the most popular—if not the most popular—late-night talk show hosts in the country. He’s pretty much known throughout the world. I have to be cool. Aloof. The same as I always am, but—

Fuck it.

I want to be an asshole. I need to hit back at her. If anything, it might make me feel like less of a pussy-whipped D-bag. 

I smile broadly at the audience for effect, the way I’ve seen some of my actors do when they’re looking for attention. I wink at the only woman seated in the crowd I’m able to see through the stage lights blinding my face.  

“Sadly, no.” I uncharacteristically answer the private question.

“Just playing the field?” 

“I’ve definitely played the field, but you know how it is, Craig… No one wants to be alone forever. It gets lonely.” I smile and shake my head in a way that implies I’m looking for sympathy or something more from the ladies. They love every second of my performance. I should have gone into acting. 

“Poor little Jamie.” Craig’s voice sounds sickeningly tender. He gives me a wicked smile, and the women go crazy. My gaze pins his, the message clear: I’m so kicking his ass after the show. 

“So what changed?” he asks, clearly unafraid of the consequences. 

“I don’t know, man,” I say with a shrug, wanting this torture to be over. “I’m just ready now.”

“Sounds like someone sprinkled something in your breakfast cereal,” he retorts in amusement.

“Something like that.” I keep my response intentionally cryptic. 

“Very good.” Craig thinks he’s going in for the kill, but I’m pretty much expecting the next question. “So what are you looking for?”

I lean back in my chair and fold my arms. “What does any man want?” 

He cocks his head to the side. “Well, that’s a loaded question,” he replies with a greater deal of amusement. “Do you want an X-Rated or R-rated answer?“

“How about PG-13?” I cock a brow.

“Never happening.” 

I laugh. Craig is funny as shit. I don’t have to think too long about what my answer will be. 

“I want to meet a woman who rocks my world,” I tell him easily. 

Screams and hollers of pleasure. 

All around me. 

As Gabriel would say, wet panties everywhere. 

“And what rocks Jamie Donovan’s world?” Craig persists. 

“I’ll know her when I see her.” 

I hear a woman call out, “Can you see me?” Another promises she’ll rock my world if I give her a chance. 

“Well, I wish you luck on your quest to find one,” Craig says with a conspiratorial smile. “Feels like you’re going to need it.” 

“My quest?” I smirk. “Sounds like I’m going on a crusade for the Holy Grail.” 

“I’m pretty sure what you’re looking for is as mysterious and possibly just as dangerous.” 

The studio erupts in laughter, enjoying our banter. And then for some idiotic reason, I think about Wylder again. I hope she watches this tonight, and I hope I piss her off—or at least get under her skin the way she’s managed to crawl under mine. 

I swear to… She must be an alien or witch… or something.

––––––––––

“You know you put a goddamn bull’s-eye on your back tonight?” Gabriel asks as he leans back into the black velvet couch and drinks his vodka on the rocks. 

“I didn’t,” I reply, even though I know full well I asked for trouble on national television—all because I let my anger get the best of me. I was pissed off and wanted to say something that might hurt the witch with the crazy, hot name. 

And body. And mind. 

I can’t even get a goddamn grip.

I don’t even know who the hell I am anymore.

“Bro.” I hear Gabriel’s disappointment, and he shakes his head. “The ladies are gonna look at you like a juicy piece of prime rib with legs and arms, and your bank account is like a side of truffle mashed potatoes to be enjoyed with the meat.” 

I take a long swig of my drink. 

Gabriel’s fucking right. 

I decide right then and there I hate her. Except I don’t. Not really. I should, but I don’t. I’m disgusted with myself. A kid hitting puberty has more control over his emotions than I do.

“What’s up with you anyway?” My friend casts a thoughtful look in my direction. “You never talk about your private shit in the press. It’s not like you. You can’t stand anyone knowing your business.”

I look over at him and shrug in revulsion. 

“I’ve either had too much to drink or I’m losing my mind,” I admit truthfully as I stretch back into the couch and stare out at the club.

The place is packed tonight. 

Women and men on the prowl for forbidden, kinky sex everywhere I look. Gabriel cajoled me into coming to the club with him after the show was done taping. At the time, I thought it was a good idea. At the time, I thought it would be the perfect way to get over Wylder. Sitting here now, I don’t know what the fuck I was thinking.

This is where it all began—my unhealthy obsession with a woman I’ve only known a few weeks. My mood quickly goes from bad to worse. 

“It’s that chick, isn’t it?” Gabriel asks knowingly. “That Wyld chick you told me about.” 

I ignore Gabriel, finish off my drink, and motion toward the sexy VIP hostess who’s standing by waiting to see to our every need. She walks over and leans down in an exaggerated manner to pick up my empty glass, intentionally exposing a healthy amount of her pretty spectacular cleavage. The old me would take the bait. Unfortunately, the new me is pissing off the old me, and the ample display doesn’t even intrigue me. This chick’s tits look fake, whereas Wylder’s are pretty fucking spectacular and real, which is a rarity in this town. 

What the hell? 

I can’t believe I thought about Wylder’s tits while staring at a set of very expensive—and I’d bet anything on paid-for-by-a-rich-benefactor—black-card-grade breasts. 

I can tell the hostess wishes it would be different. You and me both, honey

“Keep it coming.” I keep my voice polite and neutral, not wanting to give her any hope I might want something more. 

She doesn’t take the hint. Instead, she gives me a sexy, let’s-go-fuck-anywhere-you-want smile.

“I’m here to serve you in every way,” she says, in case I have any doubts. “All you have to do is ask.” 

“Thanks, beautiful,” I reply before settling back into the couch. 

I know Gabriel watched the entire interaction, but he’s remained uncharacteristically quiet. He must think I’ve had a lobotomy. 

I glance over at him and take in his knowing look.

“No shit?” he says with wide, shocked eyes, shaking his head. “It is the chick.”

Fuck.

“It’s not the chick.” My voice is cold. 

“Right.” Gabriel laughs and swallows the rest of his drink. “If that’s what you have to tell yourself to help you sleep at night.”

No, Gabriel, no amount of talking to myself helps me sleep at night. The sexy witch has kept me up and hard every night. I spare my friend the details.

“You want to talk about it?” he asks curiously. 

“Does this look like an episode of Dr. Phil?” 

Gabriel gives me a knowing smile and shakes his head. “I didn’t think so.” He looks over at the curvaceous hostess.

“Mind if I try to entice the lovely lady to take a spin with me?” 

“By all means, take as many spins as you’d like,” I tell him graciously. “She’s all yours.” 

Gabrielle throws his head back and laughs in pleasure. “The night is young, Jamie,” he says. “And we’re in the perfect place to forget about her.” 

I nod at him before blindly looking around the club. “That’s why I’m here,” I mutter under my breath. 

“It’s just P, man.” Gabriel continues talking, not hearing me through the noise of the club. “And you are in a unique and lucky position. You can have the best in the world: whatever you want, whenever you want, and let’s be honest, whomever you want.”

Not really whomever, but I keep my mouth shut. Gabriel doesn’t need to know his friend has turned into a whiny, sappy douchebag from a Hallmark movie. 

“Take a look around, Jamie,” he says, motioning to the women surrounding us. “There are beautiful women everywhere you look, and they all want to have fun. Just fun, nothing else. I promise you won’t remember her name by tomorrow. It always works.” 

My gaze focuses on a group of scantily clad women, and for a second I think he could be right. 

Then it all goes to shit in a hand basket. 

Because right in front of me…

Maybe only ten feet away…

Stands Wylder Alma Buchanan. And she looks as good as she does in my fantasies.

She’s dressed in a short gold dress barely covering the bottom of her ass. Her perfectly shaped legs are toned and accentuated by the fuck-me heels she has on. Her hair is wild like her name, almost windblown, tumbling in waves around her face and down her back in a way that looks like she just got fucked. 

Like she just got fucked. 

And not by me. 

Rage, like I’ve never known… Rage and goddamn jealousy practically choke the breath out of me. I try to calm down, but what the fuck? She’s here, isn’t she? 

She’s not yours, I tell myself.

She. Is. Not. Yours. 

Logic works for half a second, then I notice how she’s talking to some guy who’s staring at her like he can’t wait to hit that tight, perfect ass of hers. Like he knows she’ll be as good in bed as she looks. And why wouldn’t he be thinking that? Look at her. She’s some delicious-looking lamb in the middle of hungry wolves—horny men—looking to fuck her in every which way. 

The thought makes my blood turn to ice.

I’m fucking furious. 

I have no right to be.

I stand abruptly, drawing attention to myself, not knowing if I’m going to grab the fucker by the collar and throw him the hell out of the club or if I’m going to throw Wylder over my shoulder and take her to a private room and fuck her senseless. 

But then I remember the goddamn text.

She hates me. 

Right when sanity takes over again, and I’m prepared to get out of the club and as far away from her as possible, Wylder looks my way.

Makes eye contact. 

And low and behold— 

She doesn’t look at me like she hates me.

She looks at me like she wants to suck my cock. 

Ho. Fucking. Ho. It’s beginning to look a lot like Christmas.

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