By: Ashley Blake

“I can go with you if you’d like.”

I was going to say no, that I could do it later, but I did need groceries and I had a busy week ahead of me at work since I had been gone for a week. I also had a brief that I needed to work on so this was the best time for me to get it out of the way.

“Well, if you don’t mind. I do need groceries and this is the best time for me to go.”

“I would love to go with you.”

I smiled and waved at my doorman John on the way out to let him know that it was okay to have sent Jake upstairs. I smiled to myself as I saw the look of relief on his face. John could be over protective at times, but it was so sweet.

Jake’s security was waiting outside and I had forgotten that he had and his brother had to always have security around. Most of the time I didn’t even know they were there because they stayed far enough away to give them privacy, but they were close enough to jump in if necessary.

It felt so natural to be with Jake as we strolled through the grocery store. We chatted about work, what we were going to do the rest of the day and the weather. We talked about everything but the huge question that was burning a hole through my heart. What was he going to do about Vivienne? I decided that the grocery store was not the best place to talk about it. He helped me carry my groceries home and luckily, the grocery store was only two blocks from my condo. We put the groceries away and then we decided to go out to lunch.

It was a gorgeous afternoon as we strolled to Tavern on Rush, and I was on cloud nine. I knew that we had a lot to talk about later, but in that moment I wanted to enjoy my time with Jake. We sat outside and watched people go by as we waited for our food. I glanced over at Jake and my eyes met his as he smiled at me.

“You look beautiful Lauren.”

I felt my belly flutter in a way that only he could do to me. “Thank you.” My eyes searched his and I felt like a teenager again.

We had light chatter while we ate lunch and people watched, and then we took a stroll over to Washington Square Park. We were sitting on a bench in comfortable silence enjoying each other’s company.

“Chicago is such a beautiful city, I like your neighborhood. What is it called?”

“The Gold Coast. I love it here, it feels like home to me.”

Jake cast a curious glance at me but decided not to pursue his thought and started asking me about the buildings around us.

“What is that beautiful old building across the park?”

“That’s the Newberry Library. It’s not what you think of as a regular public library. It’s an independent research library. There are real gems housed inside those walls.”

“Is it open to the public?”

“It is.”

“Hmmm. Is it open now?”

“No, they close at 1:00 on Saturdays.”

“That’s too bad; I would love to go inside. I’d like to go there and the Willis Tower one day.”

“It’s the Sears Tower. Any true Chicagoan calls it by its real name, the Sears Tower.”

He raised an eyebrow at me and a slight smirk danced at the corner of his lips. “My apologies, the Sears Tower. True Chicagoans, huh? Is that what you are now, a true Chicagoan?”

“I think so. I have adopted this as my home.”

“Well, I like your adopted home. I’ll have to explore it more during my next trip here.”

His next trip to Chicago? I tried to hide my excitement about his decision to come see me again. My eyes sparkled as I gave him my best flirtatious and demure smile.

“Oh? Did I extend an invitation to you for a second trip?”

Jake looked at me with a blank face. “Oh, I’m sorry Lauren. I hope you didn’t think I meant that I was going to come visit you. I have business here in a couple of weeks.”

My cheeks immediately felt flushed and I wanted to die of embarrassment. “Oh, how silly of me to assume…”. Great Lauren.

A smile quickly spread across his face as he grabbed my shoulders. “Lauren! I’m just teasing you! Of course I will be coming to visit you. I just assumed my invitation to see you would be open ended.” His finger tipped my chin up so that my eyes met his. “You do want to see me again, don’t you?” That sexy smirk was almost too much to bear.

“Of course I do.”

“Good.” He gave me a gentle kiss, his eyes sensually searching mine. “Because I know I want to see you again.”

His words made my belly tighten and I wanted him to ravage me right there in the park, but we would get arrested if we did that.

“Let’s go back to my place.” I could barely get the words out as thoughts of Jake running his fingers over my breasts and up my thighs left my knees weak.

Top Books