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Drawn to Mr. King: Chapter 14


    morning?” Lydia eyes me suspiciously from her usual perch on my desk.

I smile, not even bothered that she’s sitting on top of some old sketches I’m clearing out of my desk.

I’m energetic this morning and feel inspired to tidy.

“Am I?” I hum to myself as I organise my pencils, separating all those needing sharpening into one pile.

“Is this to do with your sudden departure Friday night?” She dips her head as I bend down and pick up a pencil that’s rolled onto the floor. “Megan!” Her eyes go round. “No way! You went home and fucked the Fox again, didn’t you?”

I look around the office. At least she’s keeping her voice down this time.

“Maybe.” I bite my lip.

“What! I need to know everything! Every filthy detail,” she whispers. “I thought you weren’t interested anymore?”

“I know, but—” My mind casts back to his comment about not having more kids. It’s not that I’ve changed my mind about it. But what’s the point in worrying about something that isn’t an issue now?

“But what?” Lydia probes.

“It’s not like we’re getting married or anything. We’re just enjoying each other’s company.” I shrug.

“Enjoying fucking like bunnies, you mean? What’s it like with an older man? Is he, like, really experienced? He must have had loads of practice.”

I catch her eye and blush.

“That fucking good, huh? God, I need to get myself a daddy,” she sighs.

“Lyds!” I laugh.

She holds one palm up in the air. “Stop. If you’re going to ruin my daddy fantasies, then I don’t want to hear it. I don’t want the happily ever after sex stories. I want the, grab you by the throat, call me daddy as I bang you balls deep, ones.”

I wipe my eyes as I laugh and shake my head.

“Lyds, that’s—”

“Filthy? Horny? Fucking perfect? I know.” She grins, swinging her legs as she talks.

I smirk. I wonder how Jaxon would feel about me calling him Daddy.

“Fourteen years isn’t much of a gap, Lyds. I think the daddy thing might work if it was, say, twenty years or more?”

“You’re really giving this some serious thought, aren’t you?” She grins, hopping down off the desk as Phil’s office door opens. “That’s my cue to hide. Unless I want to spend three days of my life I will never get back sorting through his filing cabinets again. See you at lunch?”

“I’m meeting Abigail. You know, from Barre class?” I add as Lydia looks puzzled. “Join us?”

“Okay, see you later.” She glances over at Phil’s door and disappears just before he pokes his head out.

He looks like he’s on a mission to rope someone into doing something he thinks is beneath him.

I turn my back to him and slide open my top drawer, looking for my pencil sharpener. The pregnancy test box stares back at me as Jaxon’s words ring in my ears; she started feeling funny, sick mainly, tired. I’ve been feeling all those things these last few weeks, but the sickness is wearing off now. Besides, I had a period. There’s no way. I’m due again tomorrow, and I’m bloated and heavy, just like normal. It’s on its way. I should throw this thing out before anyone sees it and gets the wrong idea.

I look at the bin by my desk—too visible.

I’ll take it home and put it in the bin there. I leave the test where it is and slam the drawer shut.

“Then I kissed him,” Lydia tells us, as Rachel and Abigail laugh.

“He sounds like a character.” Abigail takes a bite of her panini, her eyes rolling back in her head. “I know it’ll take me like ten classes to work this off, Megan. But seriously, it’s so good!” She takes another bite and melted cheese oozes out the sides.

“Girl, I hear ya.” Lydia holds up a hand, and Abigail high fives it.

“I can see you two are going to get along just fine, what with your common love of food.” I giggle.

I look around the table. It’s so nice for the four of us to be together.

Rachel and Lydia know each other pretty well already, but neither has met Abigail before. Although you would never suspect it. We’ve been talking so much since we all met that we’ve barely come up for air.

“Mmm, try it, Meg.” Lydia thrusts her panini towards me.

I lean away. “No, thanks. It’s the melted cheese—it smells funny.”

“It does not.” Lydia sniffs it as if to make sure. “Smells delicious to me.”

“What happened with this Tim guy, Lydia? After you both kissed?” Abigail asks.

“Please tell me it’s juicy. I haven’t had sex in so long I’m worried it’s sealed back up,” Rachel says, jabbing her straw around in her drink can.

I look at her glum face. I’ve never seen her like this over a man before.

Like, ever.

Rachel Jones does not mope over men. She’s the one that leaves a string behind her, all wanting more. Until her ex-boyfriend, that is. The one we all loved and thought was the one. Until he screwed up big time. Now she’s stepped up her usual snarkiness to include a side of pure sadness.

It makes my heart ache to see her like this.

“Well…” Lydia starts looking around the table to make sure we’re all listening.

She’s been regaling us with her antics from Friday night. Heading off early to have my own fun meant I missed out on witnessing hers.

“It got a bit, you know,” Lydia trails off and takes another bite.

“Lydia, we don’t know. That’s why we’re asking. You can’t get out of it that easily,” I say.

“We, you know, groped a bit. I may or may not have accidentally fallen on his dick when we got back to his place.”

Abigail looks at Rachel, then me and grins as we all lean forward to interrogate Lydia further.

“What was it like?” I whisper, catching the eye of a man reading a newspaper at the table next to us. I hope he can’t hear us. I’m not sure this conversation is appropriate for a small cafe on a Monday lunchtime.

“It was nice, tidy. Just him.”

“What? Sex with Tim was tidy?” My nose screws up before I can stop it, just like Jaxon told me it does.

“No! His place was tidy. He doesn’t live with his mum like I thought. The sex was—” Lydia blushes.

“I’ve never seen her blush before,” I whisper to Abigail behind my hand.

“Must have been good.” She nods.

“It was better than good, girls.” Lydia sighs. “I’m surprised I can even walk today. He’s that hung.”

I almost spit out my juice across the table.

“Okay, that’s it. I’m officially fucking jealous.” Rachel pushes her drink away from her and sits back in her chair, crossing her arms.

Lydia gives her a sympathetic look and then rounds her eyes on me.

“Don’t act all coy, talking about big cocks, Miss Curtis. I’m pretty sure the Fox has a giant one. A man like him must do. It’s like the law or something.”

Abigail looks between the three of us with a smile on her face. “Why do you call him the Fox?”

“I don’t,” I point to Lydia, “it’s all this one over here.”

“It suits him.” Lydia shrugs. “He’s older, distinguished, silver flecks, like a silver fox. Plus, Fox King sounds so much cooler than Jaxon.”

Abigail’s mouth drops open. “Do you mean Jaxon King?”

“The one and only.” Lydia nods.

“Do you know him?”

My stomach knots, but I’m not sure why. I’ve had such an amazing weekend. I slept over Friday night, and Jaxon made me the most incredible brunch of fruit and homemade granola on Saturday morning. He lingered on the doorstep when he dropped me home, kissing me again each time he was about to leave. He said he had some plans he couldn’t get out of and seemed genuinely disappointed that we couldn’t spend longer together. He wouldn’t leave until I agreed to go for dinner with him tonight after work.

Everything has been wonderful, and I hate to be a negative Nancy, but it all seems too perfect. He’s apologised profusely about not calling after our night in the penthouse. But he’s never explained why he didn’t, except for the comments about him not being any good for me.

I have an uneasy feeling there’s something he’s not telling me.

“Oh, my goodness, yes! He’s one of Martin’s closest friends.” Abigail’s whole face lights up. “I can’t believe you’re dating Jaxon. He’s such a lovely guy, Megan. Honestly, he has a heart of gold.” She grabs my hand and squeezes it, her face beaming.

Abigail’s reaction makes the knot in my stomach disappear, and I relax back into my seat. I didn’t realise I was sitting on the edge.

“He’s Martin’s friend?” I ask as Abigail picks up her phone from the table.

“Yes. They’re really good friends. I’ve got to text him and tell him!” She taps out a message and then puts her phone down. “They met at a book signing years ago when Martin was a kid. Kept seeing each other at different ones over the years. Martin is such a bookworm.” She rolls her eyes with a smile. “Probably why he’s decided to write his cancer story and publish it.”

“What kind of cancer?” Rachel asks.

Abigail smiles as she answers—the same way she did when I had this discussion with her after Barre class over coffee—but it doesn’t reach her eyes.

“Prostate. He caught it early, so…” she tips her head side to side, not finishing her sentence. “Jaxon’s helping him publish.”

“Really?” My eyes go wide.

“Yeah. He’s been amazing. He’s mentoring Martin with it and everything. I’m telling you, he’s a lovely guy. Martin’s known him for years. He always thinks of others before himself. He sent a huge hamper of coffees from around the world when Martin could stomach it again.”

The word coffee has me swallowing in unease. I haven’t been sick for a while now, but I still don’t want to drink the stuff. Maybe it’s my taste buds changing with age. I remember how I couldn’t stand olives as a kid; I thought they were disgusting. Now I love them.

“His love language is gift-giving,” Lydia says casually. “He gave Megan his homemade ginger ale and then sent her this giant bouquet of tulips which took over her desk.”

I give Abigail a small nod of confirmation as she smiles at me.

“Love language? Did you just make that up?” I ask Lydia.

She lets out an exaggerated groan. “Don’t you read any online magazines when you’re supposed to be working at your desk?”

“Er, no, Lyds. I actually work.” I laugh, raising a brow at her.

She shakes her head. “You’re missing out. So, there are five love languages.” She holds up her fingers as she counts them off. “Words of affirmation, acts of service, quality time, physical touch and receiving gifts. Jaxon shows his love by giving gifts. It doesn’t mean that that’s the way he receives it best, though. But it’s how he expresses it. Take Tim, for example. He is definitely a words-of-affirmation expressor with all his colour compliments.”

“I’ve heard of this!” Abigail nods enthusiastically. “Jaxon definitely does the gift thing.”

“But then he’s coaching Martin with his writing. Would that be acts of service?” I ask, getting into the conversation.

“It could be quality time?” Rachel joins in, looking at me questioningly, and we all turn to stare at Lydia.

“Hey, I didn’t create the thing. I don’t have all the answers, although… Megan? Would you say Friday night blew your socks off enough to put him in the physical touch category too?”

I smile and bite my lip as I look at the man at the next table. I swear he hasn’t turned the page of his newspaper since we arrived.

“Oh, no. Looks like we’re out of time. We need to get back, Lyds,” I say, looking at my watch and pushing my chair back to stand.

“You can’t get away with it that easily.” She turns to Abigail and Rachel as we clear our table and put our rubbish in the bin on our way to the door. “We’ll have a girl’s night out; give her a few drinks. Then she’ll give us all the steamy details.”

“Drinking got me here in the first place, remember?”

“You’re right. We’ll need champagne. That works wonders for Megan,” Lydia adds as we wave Abigail and Rachel goodbye outside and head back to the office.

When I get back to my desk, there’s a small package waiting for me with the most mouth-watering looking truffles in. Lydia arches a brow at me in a told-you-so way as I read the card.

Saw these little rule-breakers and thought of you. Looking forward to tonight, Megan. J

And there it is—words of affirmation also ticked off the list.

Jaxon King has a full house.

“Are you going to tell me where we’re going?”

Jaxon lets out a deep, throaty laugh. “Feeling impatient, Princess?”

My entire body seems to buzz in response to his words. No one’s ever called me something like princess before. I wouldn’t have expected to like it. It should sound cheesy and insincere. But those two words don’t exist alongside Jaxon. When he says something, it’s genuine. So, him calling me princess not only sounds sexy as hell with his voice, but it has my mind whirling at the significance of the word.

He thinks I’m his princess. He’s not going anywhere this time.

“You’re a tease.” I look out of the window of his jag so he doesn’t see the grin on my face.

“I’m not a tease, Megan. I fully intend on giving you what you want.”

“How do you know what I want?” I turn to face him and take in his profile as he drives, one hand on the steering wheel, the other resting on the gearstick.

“You told me.” He smiles, keeping his eyes on the road.

He’s wearing a navy-blue suit today with a white shirt open at the neck. I lick my lips as I recall tasting his skin by his Adam’s apple Friday night and the way the scent of his aftershave lingered subtly on the skin there. His eyes crinkle around the corners as he grins.

“Memory problems already? And here I thought I was the older one.”

“Jaxon King made a joke!” I giggle, moving my legs to the side, so my thigh rests close to the gearstick and grazes Jaxon’s little finger.

He glances at me, his eyes dark with desire as he does what I was hoping and slides his hand onto my leg.

“You don’t think I can be fun?” His bottom lip sticks out a bit. I know he’s only pretending to be offended. The funny faces with the kids come to mind, along with all the other ‘fun’ things I know he can do. There’s a fun interior to hiding underneath his serious outer layer.

“I happen to think you’re very fun. I can call you Party King if you like?” I bite my lip as my shoulders shake with my suppressed giggle.

His eyes are back on the road, and he doesn’t look at me as he raises his hand and pulls my lip from between my teeth.

“I won’t dignify my thoughts on that suggestion with a response,” he says, but there’s a smile tugging at the corner of his mouth.

I turn to look out of the window again as his hand returns to my thigh.

When I first met him, he was charming and polite and obviously well-educated and well-spoken. But the more time I spend with him, the more I see this other side of him. The cheeky, fun side that I enjoy coaxing out.

“You still haven’t answered my question properly,” I say, leaning towards the glass to make out where we are.

He chuckles again. “You told me you’d come to dinner with me if there was dessert that was sugar-filled and calorie-laden.” I turn and narrow my eyes at him as he repeats my words from Saturday. “So, I booked us dinner at the place that’s got everyone talking about an amazing champagne candyfloss cheesecake. It’s a real dessert, apparently.”

“You booked Calvin’s? No one can get in there for weeks!” I turn and stare at him. “When did you call them?”

He shrugs. “Saturday.”

My mouth is still hanging open as he pulls up into a small parking area for patrons. Never mind the food, the fact that Calvin’s sits overlooking the Thames and has its own parking area is unbelievable enough. Jaxon chuckles as he looks at my expression.

“I know the owner. We published his recipe book last year.”

“Of course you did.” I roll my eyes with a smirk.

I knew there had to be a reason Jaxon got reservations so easily. I don’t miss the fact that he says ‘we’. King Publishing is his company, but he always credits the entire team with their achievements. He’s always thinking of others before himself.

Jaxon comes around to open my door and escorts me into the restaurant with one hand on my lower back. He smells incredible, and I’m tempted to take his hand and slide it lower over the green velvet of my dress. My body is vibrating in arousal just being close to him. Sitting next to him through an entire dinner is going to be interesting.

He opens the large glass door for me, and I step inside and look around. He watches my reaction closely and smiles.

“Does it have your approval?”

“This is amazing!” I squeal, grabbing onto his bicep and snaking my arm around his, my eyes darting all over the place, taking it all in.

The restaurant itself has low-level, romantic lighting, with intimate, white linen-covered tables with candles on each. But it’s the walls that have my attention. They are covered in various artwork of differing sizes. Some are large abstract landscapes or florals. Some are more renaissance in style. Others are modern with an industrial feel. It’s a real showcase of different styles and expressions.

I know Calvin’s is supposed to be a great place to come for food, and I have heard the decor included artwork, but I was not prepared for this.

“Jaxon,” I breathe, gazing around as a waiter comes over to welcome us.

I smile a hello but am too transfixed to listen to what he and Jaxon are talking about. It’s only when we are seated that I realise we have a table in the corner by the window.

“I’m sorry, I know we have an amazing view,” I gesture to the river outside, its surface reflecting the moonlight, “but I can’t take my eyes off what’s in here.”

I gaze up at the wall behind Jaxon, and my eyes rest on the piece there. It’s simple compared to some of the others, but it’s beautiful, nonetheless. It’s a hand-drawn sketch of a woman. She’s smiling straight out of the picture as though looking right into my eyes, her hair blowing in the breeze, strands strewed across her face. Her hand is extended, and in it, she’s holding another hand, larger, like a man’s. When I look at it, I’m drawn in, as though I am the person whose hand she is holding. I’m the person she’s smiling at, her eyes full of pure joy.

“That’s a beautiful piece,” I say, my eyes stinging, the way they sometimes do when I feel a piece of art right in my core.

It’s funny how it can draw emotions from you like that.

Jaxon turns in his seat and follows my gaze, taking in the drawing before speaking.

“She looks like you, Megan.”

I tear my eyes away from her and back to Jaxon as he turns back around.

“I’m sorry, I’m rude. I’ve barely said two words since we came in.”

He leans across the table and takes my hand.

“Please don’t apologise, Megan. Witnessing you enjoying something you’re passionate about is a gift for me. Your entire body changes when you’re immersed. It’s wonderful to see.” He raises my hand to his lips and kisses the inside of my wrist.

A shiver runs up my spine.

“I nearly didn’t even pursue my love of art,” I say, glancing back at the picture. “I had a boyfriend of a few years, Ryan. He was nice, but he was happy staying put. He wasn’t too happy when I applied to art college miles away.”

“But you did it anyway?” Jaxon smiles.

“Yes, I did. I didn’t want to be held back. I had all these dreams in my head and was led by them. I got rejected, though. I never heard back within the time window, so it was a no. Ryan was happy about it. He thought I would be too once I got used to staying near home. But it drove a wedge between us in the end. I wanted to dream and go on adventures. That’s why I joined Atlantic Airways. It wasn’t art, but it gave me freedom and incredible experiences.”

“What made you leave flying?” Jaxon asks, and I drop my gaze back to him, realising I’ve been staring at the woman in the picture again.

“My housemate, Rachel. She told me I shouldn’t give up on it if it’s something I have my heart set on. She always wanted to buy her own house. Worked so hard at saving for it, and she did it. That’s her house that we live in. She never gave up, and it inspired me not to, either.”

“I think you’re both very inspiring. It takes a lot of courage to follow your heart,” Jaxon says.

I look back at him again and catch a trace of a frown passing over his face before he smiles at me.

“Would you like me to read the menu to you? You can keep looking at her then?”

“Oh, God, I’m sorry.”

I cover my mouth with my free hand. This whole time he’s been talking to me, I’ve been looking at the wall behind him.

I’m a terrible date.

He’s waiting patiently, with a smile that reaches his eyes spread across his face. He means it. He’s happy to read the entire menu out to me, so I don’t have to take my eyes away.

I shake my head with a smile.

“No. Thank you for the very thoughtful offer, though.”

He nods at me, his eyes bright as he squeezes my other hand in his, and I open my menu.

An hour and a half later, we are digging into a giant shared dessert of the infamous champagne candyfloss cheesecake with one fork.

“Oh, God. That is…” my eyes close as I lick my lips.

It’s the most incredible thing I’ve ever tasted, is what I would say if I could talk beyond the orgasm my tastebuds are having right now.

Jaxon lowers the fork he’s just fed me with.

“Megan, you’re killing me here, Princess.”

I open my eyes. He’s watching me intently, his eyes fixed on my lips.

“Sorry.” I giggle. “It’s just really great.”

“Tell me something that will take my mind off the sounds you were just making,” he says, shifting in his seat.

“What do you want to know?”

“Tell me about your family. I’ve told you about Christopher and my upbringing.”

His brow furrows, and I’m pretty sure he’s thinking of his dad. Judging by how he speaks about him, it’s obvious that time doesn’t make it much easier.

“Okay. It’s pretty boring, though.” He lifts his lips in a small smile as he waits for me to continue. “I’ve got a brother, Zack. He’s four years older than me, fiercely protective, and would scare any boy off that even so much as looked at me once I turned thirteen and grew breasts.”

Jaxon smirks. “I like him already.”

“Then there’s my mum and dad. They’re still together. They married quite young, but I think that was common then. Dad has a great job at the local council in planning, and Mum… well, she didn’t work when we were kids. She was always at home for us. She had a few part-time jobs afterwards.” I shrug.

“You say that like it’s a bad thing?” Jaxon studies my face, running his hand over his jaw.

“No, of course not. I love she was there. She never missed a single school pick up, or play, or sports day. But I always felt bad for her. She told me she always fancied working in interior design. Their house is like something out of a magazine; she really has an eye for it.”

“That must be where you get your artistic flair from.” Jaxon’s eyes light up, crinkling at the corners as he studies me.

“Maybe.” I shrug. “I just wonder if she would have achieved her dream if she hadn’t had my brother and me when she did. You know, established her career first.”

“Speaking as a parent, I’m pretty sure that you and your brother are a much bigger accomplishment in her life than any certificate or qualification she could have got,” Jaxon says smoothly, raising his glass of sparkling water to his lips.

I smile as I lift the fork and pick at the cheesecake.

“I would just hate to be the reason she didn’t follow her dream, that’s all.”

“I’m pretty sure you were her new dream, Megan,” Jaxon says as I raise the fork to my mouth and fill it with cream.

“Mmm,” I moan, “this is just so…” I take another forkful and wrap my lips around it.

“Megan,” Jaxon hisses.

I giggle inwardly, knowing what I’m doing to him. But it’s fun and empowering knowing that I am having such an effect on him. He’s so serious and calm most of the time.

My weakness seems to be champagne mixed with Jaxon King.

His weakness seems to be watching me eat cheesecake without inhibitions.

“Do you want to go? We could have coffee at my house when you drop me off?” I ask, my eyes meeting his.

His gaze is dark and penetrating as he glances down to my mouth and back again, clearing his throat.

“Yes. I most certainly do.”


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