Her Russian Billionaires #1 VIKTORBy: Susan Westwood
Viktor put a hand on her arm. This was the first time he was touching her and he felt electricity go up his arm. He couldn’t tell if she felt it also. “He isn’t going to charge you.”
Detective Lewis came out and led Alia and Sacha back to a room. Viktor waited in the lobby. He hadn’t ever been in a police station in America. Nor in Russia. He’d avoided the cops in Moscow.
A whole other slice of life paraded through this building and that included the cops. He hoped he didn’t ever have to come back here. All of them provided entertainment while he waited.
Scantily clad women walked past him. Prostitutes? When he first opened his club, they’d tried to enter his club, but he’d barred them. That’s when he got the idea to make it private.
A half of an hour went by before Alia and Sacha emerged. Alia looked a little stunned by it all. Guess she wasn’t used to being in a police station either. Viktor stood.
“It was routine,” Sacha said.
“Can I drop you somewhere?” Viktor offered.
He shook his head. “No, I have my car here.”
“You don’t have to drive me home,” Alia said.
He motioned for her to go ahead of him out the door. She did. His driver pulled up a moment later. They climbed in and Alia gave the driver her address.
Viktor wasn’t familiar with the Bronx. This would be his first visit. He wondered if it would live up to its scary reputation.
Viktor’s car was comfortable with plush leather seats. Alia was rarely in a car that wasn’t a cab. This vehicle was beyond belief. She wanted to run her hands over the leather. Or rub her face in it, but that didn’t seem like the thing to do.
Viktor stared out the window, glancing at her every once in a while. She didn’t know what to say. No one had ever been this kind. A large part of her expected him to demand something in return. Where she grew up, no one did anything for nothing. Payment was expected in kind.
That’s why she never relied on anyone. She didn’t want to owe them. She certainly didn’t want to owe this man. He came across as powerful and clearly rich beyond her wildest dreams. She had to admit, she found him sexy. She wasn’t into white boys, but this one was different.
He didn’t seem to want anything, but she didn’t trust that completely. If he truly didn’t want anything, then he was one of the nicest men she’d ever met.
Didn’t really matter since he would drop her off and he’d be on his way. She couldn’t imagine he’d linger in her neighborhood with his fancy car and driver. She’d probably barely have time to get out of the car.
She lived in a dingy place. Scary, even, but it was the only place she could afford. To her it was home. Also, to her brother, who was away at college. Staying here gave him some stability in a world where he’d had so little. She couldn’t move them now.
She tried to see the places through Viktor’s eyes, but she knew so little about him. Suddenly she didn’t want him to see where she lived. She didn’t know why. She wasn’t going to see him again.
It didn’t matter what he thought, but suddenly it did. He’d come from nothing and she hadn’t been able to get herself out of the ghetto.
“Just drop me off here,” she said. “You don’t want to hang around in your fancy car.”
Before the car stopped, two people ran across in front of it. One chased the other brandishing a knife. Alia wanted to die. Great representation of her neighborhood.
“I’m not letting you get out now,” Viktor said.
He watched the two men disappear down an alley.
“It’s not usually this bad.”
“But it is sometimes. That’s enough reason for you to stay in the car. Let me think about this.”
“What is there to think about, Viktor? I live here. It’s my reality. You can go back to your nice apartment. I’ll be fine.”
She’d crossed her arms even though she didn’t want to be defensive. She was. She’d never felt so much like a failure until now. If she could have jumped out of the moving vehicle to get away, she would.
She didn’t have a death wish.
“Alia, it’s not your fault, but I can’t leave you here. I want you to come live with me.”
“Live with you? Be your mistress? No way. I get by on my own. Not by using my body.”
He blinked. “I’m no asking for that arrangement. I can get my own booty without paying for it. I just want to help you.”
“Why? You don’t know me. I could be thief and clean out your house.”
“I’m willing to take that chance. Someone gave me a chance when I first came here. This is me, paying it forward,” Viktor said.
▶ Also By Susan Westwood
- · Her Russian Billionaires #3 NIKO
- · Her Russian Billionaires #2 SACHA
- · Her Russian Billionaires #1 VIKTOR
- · Amedeo, Her Italian Billionaire
- · Her Russian Billionaire: Niko
- · Her Russian Billionaire: Sacha
- · Her Russian Billionaire: Viktor
- · Dante, Her Italian Billionaire
- · Sacha, Her Russian Billionaire
- · Viktor, Her Russian Billionaire