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Discovering Mr. X: Chapter 5

RACHEL

“I can’t believe it! Fucking wanker!” I spit as I pace up and down the living room. Nigel watches me with undisguised boredom as he chews his carrot.

“I know! And the way he smiled at you afterward,” Megan says. “Smiling at you with his insanely perfect teeth. Do you think his hair always looks that good?” she trails off, staring into the distance.

“Megan!”

“Sorry. You’re right, Rach. Total and utter asshole. Who does he think he is? He bought three other houses as well. Why so many?”

I freeze and spin to face her. “He did what?”

“I saw him. While you were busy focusing on the lot coming up, I was enjoying watching the room. The woman next to me even brought packed sandwiches with her,” Megan says incredulously.

“So, Mr. Wanker had already bought three other houses? He didn’t even need mine!” I shriek, my heart racing in my chest. “He’s probably got a ton of money, and they’re going to get swallowed up into his property empire or something.” I seethe as I think of the smug asshole’s face. I wish I had gone and given him a piece of my mind, but he’d disappeared by the time we made it out towards the exit.

He was lucky.

“There’ll be other houses, Rach. This one was obviously not meant to be.” Megan comes over and pulls me into a hug. “I know how much it meant to you, and you’ll get there, you will.”

My shoulders slump as I give in to her hug. “There won’t be others like that, Meg. Not for ages. I can’t afford anything on the open market, and the next local auction isn’t for at least another six months.”

“Something will turn up. If it’s meant to be, it will be.” Megan’s eyes shine into mine.

“How can you be so optimistic?” I narrow my eyes back at her.

“I just have a good feeling. I think Mr. Wavy Hair did you a favor. That house probably has rats or something living under the floorboards.”

I raise an eyebrow. “Mr. Wanker,” I correct her, “better hope he doesn’t cross paths with me again soon. I need a good anger release.”

“That’ll have to wait until your next kickboxing class. Right now, we are going out.” Megan grins at me.

“Out?” I try to sound anything other than pissed-off, which has been my single setting since leaving the auction house.

“Yes. After today, you need a drink.”

Actually, that sounds like a great idea.

Even Mr. Wanker can’t spoil that.


The club is packed when we arrive, the atmosphere electric. It only opened this weekend and has a retro dance feel about it—neon lights and booths packed with people.

I went for my go-to ‘don’t fuck with me’ outfit of a bright red body-con dress and black patent stilettos, which can probably pierce through bullet-proof glass. Megan smiles over at me, her auburn ringlets tumbling over her shoulders.

“Your hair looks so beautiful like that, Meg,” I call over the loud music.

“Thanks.” She smiles self-consciously, smoothing her hands down over her short, black dress. “Let’s get a drink.”

I look at the round bar as the barman fixes our drinks. It’s lit up in blue and pink neon lights, one giant tube shelf of different liquors running up its center.

“Ladies,” the barman says as he places our drinks down on the bar. We thank him as I tap my card against the payment reader.

I flash him a smile as I read his name tag. “Keep them coming, won’t you, Greg?”

“Sure thing, gorgeous.” He winks at me as he throws a bar towel over his shoulder.

“Rach, not chatting up the barman, are you?” Megan giggles as he moves away to serve someone else.

“Just making friends. Look how busy it is here tonight. We will wait hours to order another drink otherwise.”

“Smart thinking, I like it.” She smiles.

“Thanks!” I raise my glass of whisky and clink it against Megan’s cocktail.

She winces as I knock back the shot in one smooth movement before holding my empty glass up towards Greg.

“Make it a double this time, please,” I say as he re-fills my glass.

We find an empty table near the bar and slide up onto the stools.

“You’re on a mission tonight.” Megan eyes my freshly filled glass.

“Hell yes. I want to forget all about houses, auctions, and smug wankers for tonight and just drink and dance with my friend,” I say as I grin at her.

“I’ll drink to that!” Megan says, raising her glass to her lips and taking a sip of her cocktail before eyeing my drink. “Seriously, Rach, I don’t know how you drink that stuff.”

“Practice and habit.” I smirk. “When I was growing up in foster care, one of the older kids used to steal whisky and make us younger ones drink it as a dare or punishment if we stepped out of line.”

“That’s horrible; what a bully!” Megan looks over at me, listening intently. I rarely talk about where I grew up. I don’t see the point. It’s all in the past.

“Yeah, he thought he was big, but I had a growth spurt that summer and soon put him in his place. He never bothered the younger ones or me again.”

“What did you do?” Megan’s eyes go wide as she leans towards me.

“Gave him a corker of a black eye the next time he pushed one of the younger ones about. He gave me a wide berth after that.”

“Oh my God.” Megan clasps her hand over her mouth as she giggles. “You’re a total badass.”

“I hate bullies,” I say as I down the rest of my drink. “Come on, finish that cocktail. We’re going to dance!”

Megan throws her head back and downs the cocktail in one go, her eyes glassy as she looks at me. “I might regret that later; I’ve got a head rush already.” She laughs as she takes my hand, and I lead her out onto the packed dance floor.

We get carried away with the music, dancing to song after song of sexy beats. The base is turned up so loud I can feel the vibrations of the music flowing up into my body through the floor.

I don’t know how long we’ve been dancing before I become aware of eyes on me. I can feel their heat burning my skin. I spin as I dance next to Megan, searching for where they’re coming from.

That’s when I see him.

Dark eyes burning into my skin, his hand running through his dark, wavy hair.

Mr. Wanker from the auction.

Oh hell, you picked the wrong club tonight, asshole.

Megan’s eyes follow mine to see what I’m looking at. When she does, they widen and come back to my face.

“Rachel… don’t.”

But I’m already striding off the dancefloor towards him. His smug face is still watching me, his eyes never leaving mine.

He’s asking for it.

Game on, Wanker.

He stands up as I reach the booth he’s in with his friends. A look of amusement plays across his face—an exceptionally smooth, masculine face complete with dark, chocolate-colored eyes. I watch him run a hand through his dark, wavy hair again. I scowl as I give him a quick glance over. Designer shoes and jeans, smart shirt rolled up at the sleeves, expensive watch. Yep, he’s definitely some kind of smarmy property tycoon with more money than morals.

Now I’m right in front of him. He towers over me in height, despite my heels. I can feel my anger rising in my chest. This guy, this stupid, selfish moron, stole my house from me! I’m literally shaking with rage as I glare at him, and he’s not even flustered.

“You!” I hiss through gritted teeth as I glare up at him. “You stole sixty-nine from me.”

He eyes me coolly. “Excuse me?” he says in a smooth, deep voice.

“Rachel, come on, let’s go get another drink.” Megan pulls at my arm. I shake off her hand, my eyes never leaving his.

“No,” Mr. Wanker and I both reply in unison.

I glare at him even harder. I swear, if looks could kill.

He turns toward Megan. “You’re obviously a good friend to Rachel here,” he says my name slowly, as though seeing how it feels on his tongue, “but it seems she has something she wants to get off her chest?” He looks back at me and raises an eyebrow, his dark chocolate eyes challenging me to continue.

“You bet I do!” I take a step closer to him. I expect him to move back, but he stays perfectly still and watches me intently. “That was my house. You do not know how long I’ve been waiting to find it,” I say slowly, trying to keep my breathing even.

“Oh, I can imagine—” he says, but I cut him off.

“That was my house, and you and your fancy watch and shoes think you can just swoop in and steal it. You already bought three others. What could you possibly need them all for? Except to make more money to buy your stupid, worthless designer labels with.” I snarl and give him a filthy look.

“Feisty one, isn’t she?” One of his friends from the booth behind pipes up and laughs. Mr. Wanker glares at him, and his friend shakes his head and goes back to his conversation with the other two men there. They are dressed the same: designer labels and fancy accessories, a bottle of expensive top-shelf whisky on their table.

“You’re very presumptuous about my needs, aren’t you, Rachel?” He takes his time saying my name again as his dark eyes study my face.

“So, I’m wrong then, am I? You actually need all four houses to live in yourself? Or you’ve got four sweet old grandmas who all need a new house? No, wait…” I look him up and down, my finger tapping against my lips, “you’ve got four girlfriends who don’t know about each other.”

The briefest flash of anger passes over his face before he smirks at me. “Now you’re just acting childish, Rachel,” he says calmly, making my blood boil even more.

Who the hell does he think he is?

“Sixty-nine should have been mine.” I point my finger at his face.

Before I even see it coming, he grabs my wrist in his large, muscular hand. He strokes it gently with the pad of his thumb as he leans down, closing the small distance between us until his lips are almost touching my ear. Goosebumps run up my arms as his warm breath flows over my skin. “I will happily give you a different sixty-nine, Rachel,” he says smoothly.

“Ugh, please.” I yank my wrist free of him and take a step back. “That’s just the sort of thing I would expect you to say. Don’t you have any imagination?”

I watch his lip curl up into a small smile at my words as he pushes his hands into his trouser pockets. I can see what Megan means; he could be quite sexy if it weren’t for the slight issue of his personality.

“Oh, I can imagine, Rachel. I can imagine lots of things.” His eyes drop to my lips and back up again.

“You do that. I’m done wasting my breath on you,” I fire back as I turn my back on him and grin at Megan. “Shall we get another drink, Meg?”

She breathes out in relief. “Thought you’d never ask.”

We walk off back to the bar without looking back, and Greg greets us with a drink when we get there.

“To having a great night and not even glancing in that asshole’s direction again,” I say as I clink glasses with Megan.

“To avoiding the insanely hot man’s eyes for the rest of the night.” She nods.

“Megan! You really think he’s hot?”

“Well, obviously, I’m just talking about his physical attributes.” She smirks. “Did you see the size of his biceps?”

“No, just the size of his over-inflated ego.”

“Well, they were huge.” Her eyes widen. “You know he hasn’t stopped looking over at you since we walked away?” She glances over my shoulder toward his booth.

“Let him look then,” I say as I lean over the bar, so my cleavage is accentuated. I grin at Greg, who almost misses my glass with the whisky, as his eyes drop to my chest.

“He looks really pissed now,” Megan whispers.

“Even better.” I grin.

We spend the rest of the night drinking and dancing and having a great time. I feel the heat of his eyes burning into my body all night, but I don’t even glance in his direction again.

If he thought he won, then he’s mistaken.

Mr. Wanker is no match for me.


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