Chapter 1

Finn lay awake, back pressed against the headboard, his eyes flicking between the red numbers on the radio alarm and the company in his bed. The clock flipped to six a.m. He chastised himself for wondering if it was too early to coax this latest girl out the door and drive her home. He struggled to remember her name. Miley…no Riley.

Not long ago, he’d have debated whether it was too early to wake her by sucking on a nipple or sliding his fingers between her legs. The thought made him wish the clock would move faster. Another half an hour and he’d be able to claim an early hockey game. She could shower at her place—wherever the fuck that was. Yeah, thirty minutes and he’d use his charms to manipulate her out the door.

“Hey,” she rolled to her side, propping her head on her hand.

Thank you, God. Maybe he could do this sooner.

“Morning, beautiful, you sleep okay?” 

He reached out to her shoulder, slid his hand back and forth in a practiced, intimate gesture. She smiled back at him, shook out her short blonde curls, and stretched. She sucked in her flat stomach, making her breasts swell. There was no doubt she was his type. Tall, perfect figure, breasts that filled his hands. Gorgeous yes, save for a personality that was bland and self-centered. But…Finn couldn’t account for his sudden disinterest.

Her hand slipped to his abdomen. She swept it low, brushing his cock. Damn, she wanted more fun. Shit, he needed to put a stop to this. Twice last night was enough. He caught her hand, leaned forward and kissed her forehead. He let out a convincing groan, “Sorry babe. Hate to do this, but there’s a game. I need to get you home.”

Her intense blue eyes stared at him. An incredulous expression appeared on her perfect face. Hell, she didn’t buy his excuse. 

She traced her fingers over his stomach, her milky white hand looking stark against his mocha skin. Smoothing her palm against his firm pecs, she leaned forward and kissed his nipple. “Are you serious, it’s only—?” She rose higher and reached across him for her phone to check the time. Her breast brushed his cheek, but the urge he felt in his belly was far from sexual.

“Christ, it’s not even fucking six. Now I know you’re teasing me, Finn.”

She dropped the phone back on the cabinet and slid her body over his. Steadying her hips, he caressed her bottom but desire still didn’t rear its ugly head. 

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What the fuck is wrong with you Finn? Last night you couldn’t wait to be inside her.

She bent her head; her lips pursed ready to kiss him. There was no avoiding this. He threw her a disarming grin and watched her melt. She squirmed against him, reading more into the look than he’d intended. 

Resigned, Finn rolled her to her back. Shit. He might as well get on with it. Sliding his hand to his cock, he hoped it didn’t let him down. 

Finn tried to summon enough interest to get an erection. Riley nibbled up his neck, blowing hot breath into his ear. “I can help with that.” She pulled on his earlobe with her teeth, running her tongue along his neck. As she slid across his body, her breasts brushed his cock, and it twitched to life. By the time she took him in her mouth, he was hard. 

He inhaled sharply, and the loud moan that slipped out when he exhaled was a genuine enough response to the girl’s mouth around his shaft. But honestly, it was as much of a turn on as his own hand.

He glanced at her kneeling between his legs, curls bobbing, eyes locked on his. He hoped his face was cooperating—show a-goddamn-fucking interest will you! 

The clock flipped to six-fifteen. He’d had enough. Time to break a fucking world record, Finny boy. 

Sliding her up his body, he deposited her across his groin. She weighed nothing, a hundred pounds, if that. She didn’t have an ounce of fat on her smooth white skin. The girl looked like she modeled underwear for a living but, for whatever reason, this perfect flesh was not doing a thing for him.

The blonde turned on the seduction, running her tongue across her lips as she raised her hips. He reached over to the drawer, pulled out a condom, and handed it to her. Watching her fumbling with the packet, he hoped she’d hurry. Extracting the rubber, she slipped it over his cock. From the moment he entered her, his body went on auto-pilot. As she ground into him, his cock swelled. Thank God he was nothing if not predictable.

By the time the red numbers clicked to six-twenty, he knew she was close. Got to love a girl who gets down to business quick. Her slow grind became frantic, and he matched her tempo. Filling her, he thrust himself deep into her hot core. She folded forward, her breathing ragged now. 

Finn reached between her legs, his thumb seeking her clit. Time to finish this.

Moments after she’d cried his name in ecstasy, he came. Relieved that he’d kept his side of the bargain, he felt more disinterested. What the fuck was he doing?

“God, that was incredible Finn.”

He made a noncommittal grunt.

“Sharon was right,” she giggled.

“Right about what?”

“Once you go black you never—”

Oh, for fucks sake! Did she go there? He rolled her over, easing out of her as he did. Before her back hit the bed, he was pulling on clothes.

She frowned at him, but his own patience had packed its bags and left the room. Unfortunately it had taken the ounce of respect he’d had for her with it.

“What? I told you, there’s a match. Get your clothes on, I need to take you home.” Any pretense that he gave a shit had also vanished.

Her eyes darkened as she climbed out. Scooping up a scandalous pair of panties, she shimmied into them. Finn ignored the daggers she stared at him and rolled on a clean athletic tee. She tugged on her shirt, sweeping her bra into her purse. Her nipples pulled against the flimsy material. Not long ago Finn would have abandoned his match and pulled the shirt back off of her. Now he was willing to keep up the pretense. 

While he brushed his teeth, she pulled on her jeans. She must have run a comb through her hair because it showed no signs that they just fucked. She continued to stare at him. He watched her through the mirror; she knows what’s happening. The tiny shred of decency left in him triggered a rush of guilt. But the feeling didn’t last long enough to change his mind. 

He threw his toothbrush in the sink and grabbed his keys. “You ready?”

She fiddled around with her purse, delaying the inevitable. Tired of waiting, Finn yanked open the door and ushered her through the living room and into the kitchen. 

As they reached the back door, they saw it swing open. Lisa struggled in, towing her battered roll-on bag behind her. 

Riley took one look at the woman and rolled her eyes in disgust. “You bastard, Finn. I wondered why you were in such a rush to get me out of your bed.” Finn frowned at her as she rounded on him. “What? Didn’t expect your girlfriend home so soon?” She sneered at Lisa. “You might wanna walk back out that door. In case you haven’t worked it out yet, your boyfriend’s been playing away.”

Lisa looked at the blonde, a puzzled expression on her tired face. She parked her bag and raised an eyebrow at Finn. He tried to hide his smirk. Riley narrowed her eyes at him. 

Lisa pulled her lifeless hair from her face, the long-haul flight always sapped her energy and played havoc with her hair. She wasn’t in the mood for drama. “You’ve got it wrong. I live here. Finn and I aren’t a couple.” 

Riley giggled. “Sorry, my bad. He couldn’t get me out of his room fast enough this morning. When you walked in, I jumped to conclusions.”

Finn rattled his keys at her. “I’m still in a hurry. Can we get going?” 

He stopped at the back door to pull on his boots. Riley leaned against the outside wall, watching Lisa as she disappeared out of the kitchen. She laughed. “I should’ve known you weren’t with that.”

Where is this conversation heading? Finn wondered.

She sneered at him, “Well look at her. She’s a bit—”

Finn stood up, his paper-thin patience disintegrating by the second. “A bit what?”

The girl fanned out her fingers, her manicure suddenly interesting.

“No please, tell me. Lisa is?”

“She’s not your type is she? I mean she’s old. And fat! She has to be at least a size eight, did you see her clothes? She looked as if she’d slept in them.”

Finn spluttered. “What?” Lisa wasn’t even thirty yet, and she was curvy, not a stick insect like the woman in front of him.

“I dunno, if she made an effort—makeup, got her hair done—maybe she’d be a seven?”

That did it for Finn. “Well, that makes her better than the four I slummed with last night.”

Riley looked confused.

“But you were with me last night.”

“Well done, darling. You passed your high school diploma then?”

Riley flew at him, her French manicure reaching for his face. Finn grabbed her hands before she caused any damage. 

“You’re a pig, Finley Martin.”

“Yeah? Well, you’re quite the bitch, so I guess we’re even. But here’s a news alert for you, sweetheart. I’m tired of bitches. Here…” Finn pulled out a twenty and thrust it in her hand. “You walk to the end of the road and turn left, there’s a taxi stand. Turn right, there’s a bus stop. The choice is yours.” Without waiting for a reply, he stormed back into the house and slammed the door shut.

Ignoring the thumping on the back door, he locked it and organized the coffee pot. 

Lisa came out of her room. “What’s going on?”

“Just putting the garbage out.”

She sniggered at him, “I don’t know why you bother with girls like that.”

Finn switched the coffee maker on. “No, neither do I. You want coffee?”

There was another bang on the door, followed by some unladylike cursing.

“Shouldn’t you sort that out?” Lisa hooked her thumb towards the disturbance in the yard.

“She’ll get the message in a minute.” Finn poured them both coffee.

Lisa took hers through to her room, and Finn followed. He leaned against the door, sipping his drink as he watched her unpack. “How was the flight?”

“Long. It was direct from Taiwan. Delayed three hours, then twenty-three hours in the air. I’m bushed.” She pulled off her shoes and slumped back on the bed. Finn wandered in and placed his cup on her dresser. “Foot rub?”

Lisa brightened, shuffling backward, she leaned against the wall and lifted her legs. Fin placed her shapely calves on his lap. She moaned as he squeezed her feet. “Wish I could smuggle you in my bag to do that when I travel.”

He massaged the ball of her foot. The banging on the back door stopped, and he heard heels click along the driveway. “There, I told you she’d get the message.”

Lisa frowned at him, “You’re not usually mean, Finn. What’d she do?”

“She was a bitch.” He sighed. “You know Lisa, I’m tired of girls that look so freaking perfect, but when you wake next to them in the morning—” His sigh was long and heavy as he considered his words. “They’ve got nothing. No personality. No manners. Not one redeeming quality other than looking gorgeous.”

Lisa knelt beside him. “Someone got out of the wrong side of the bed. Maybe it’s you who needs a massage.” She scooted around, indicating he should turn. Running strong fingers over his shoulders, she rubbed the base of his neck. Finn groaned. This feels fantastic. Lisa always knew how to hit his sweet spots.

Finn’s knots disappeared. “You’re awesome at this. You thought of a career change?”

“I learned it while flying. There’s a lot of dead time on those long hauls. One of my colleagues was a masseuse before becoming a flight attendant. She taught us some techniques. It’s relaxing, helps with circulation and the time differences.” She stopped pummeling him. Putting her feet back into his lap, she grinned at him. “You can finish me now.”

“Does Craig know what he’s missing?” Finn said, referring to her fiancé.

She draped her arms over his shoulders and pulled him to her for a hug. “If I give you his number will you tell him?”

Finn widened his eyes, “Nothing wrong, is there?” 

Lisa’s relationship was notoriously rocky. Four months ago, she and Craig ended things. Her ridiculous travel itinerary and his obsessive work schedule meant they spent very little time together. Craig lived in Paris, and Lisa spent around ten days a month there. 

Craig decided it wasn’t worth it. 

The split only lasted a few weeks. They were miserable apart. He’d boarded a plane and met her in Milan, where they agreed to try and make it work. Now, Lisa planned to finish flying at the end of the year and, as soon as Craig got his diplomatic posting in New York, she was moving in with him.

“No, the usual. Our schedules are never in sync. Last week, I got a four-day layover in Paris, and he flew here the next day for a powwow. Bloody typical. I’d swapped shifts to get the extra days as a surprise.”

Finn moved next to her. He slid his arm around her shoulders. “That sucks.”

She nestled into him. “Doesn’t it always?” Resting her head on his chest, a yawn slipped out. She struggled to control it.

“You’re tired. I should let you sleep.”

“Nah, it’s okay. It’s nice to have someone to cuddle with. It’s a shame you aren’t Craig.”

 He stroked her hair. “Well, Finley Martin is at your service. Cuddles are a specialty, and they’re free for you. Close your eyes, I need some extra shuteye myself.” 

After a few minutes, Lisa’s breathing changed. Sensing she was asleep, Finn closed his own. 

Their relationship had always been platonic. Lisa was in her late twenties, and far too sensible and sophisticated to get involved with him. It was only because she’d answered the ad about the room in his condo that they met. But Finn was glad they did. 

From the beginning, Lisa proved to be a good friend and an avid listener. Over the last couple of years, she’d kept Ash—his other roomy—and Finn in line. She was one part mother hen and one part referee. 

Despite being a few years older than the rest of them, she got along well with all of them. Lisa was one of those genuine people who got on with everyone. She was great at finding solutions to people’s problems, was always interested in them, and took the time to get to know them. When Ash started dating London, Lisa became Finn’s new confidant. It was a pity she spent so few nights in town.

He stroked her hair as he relaxed into the pillows. Of the women who’d flitted in and out of his life, four were constants—Lisa, London, Maya, and Roxy. Others drifted in and out at an alarming rate, but these four he loved dearly. Disappointingly, none of them were available girlfriend material. It was a pity there weren’t any nice girls like them lurking around the corner waiting to find him.

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