REDEEMING THE Billionaire
THE SHERBROOKES OF NEWPORT
Billionaire Trent Sherbrooke works hard and plays harder. He’s never once cared what the media or society says about him, until now. Intent on making his way into the United States Senate, Trent hires campaign advisor Marty Phillips. A ruthless force in politics he’ll stop at nothing to get his candidate elected.
After a chance encounter throws local small business owner Addison Raimono in Trent’s path, Marty believes he’s found Trent’s ticket into Washington.
Ignoring his conscience that insists he leave Addison alone, Trent sets out to win her over. Soon what he assumed would be a relationship to salvage his reputation turns into so much more. But can a relationship started on a lie ever survive?
Marty folded up the sleeves of his shirt. “It’s all a matter of importance. The who doesn’t matter. The wonderful opportunity it presents does. Now, I need to know everything. How did you meet her? How long have you known her? Have you slept with her yet?”
Trent pinched the bridge of his nose. Christ, couldn’t he have a cup of coffee with a woman without someone assuming he’d slept with her? “I met her just before we met last week. I bumped into her on the sidewalk and spilled coffee on her. When this picture was taken I had stopped in the bakery and when I saw her again I said hello. We talked for a few minutes before she left.”
As Marty chewed he jotted notes down on a legal pad. “That’s it? You didn’t ask her out to dinner? Get her phone number?”
Did the man think he asked out every attractive female he met? “More or less.”
Marty looked up at him. “More or less, I need to know everything. And when I say everything, I mean it.”
“I told her I wanted this office redecorated and asked if she might be interested. Shirley called and set up an appointment with her.” After giving Shirley the instructions, he hadn’t thought anymore about it.
“I’ll have to check my calendar.”
Marty tapped his pen against his pad several times before he spoke. “We might have to change our time table a little, but I’d like to keep to it if possible. A wedding at the end of next summer is ideal. That would give you a solid year of marriage before the actual election.”
Caution flags jumped up as he listened to Marty. The advisor’s original plan had been acceptable. A marriage to a wealthy socialite who viewed their relationship as a way to achieve her own goals was one thing. What Marty proposed now was entirely something else.
“Perhaps we should stick with what we originally discussed. Why don’t I go through these and pick a candidate.” Trent reached for the binders Marty had put together. “Then they’ll be no need to adjust our timeline.”
“You hired me because you want to win.” Marty pointed his pen at the picture of Addison. “She’s your ticket to the Senate.”
Trent’s eyes focused on the picture. What had she just said to him when the picture was taken? It must have been funny because he had a huge smile on his face. Come to think of it, he’d smiled through much of their conversation. She’d had an easygoing nature with a great sense of humor. There had been no awkward moments or long gaps of silence. Under different circumstances he wouldn’t mind getting to know her better.
“The women in here may help repair your reputation.” Marty pointed to the binders he’d put together of potential wife candidates. “This one though will win the hearts of voters.” He nodded toward the newspaper on the table. “I don’t understand the problem. She’s beautiful and well-educated.”
Marty had him there. Addison was attractive and, from all he could tell, intelligent. Even with that knowledge, a corner of his conscience prickled at the idea.
Across the table Marty popped a pickle in his mouth and chewed as he waited. “If it helps look at it this way. Her involvement with you will put her business on the fast track. The whole thing will still more or less be a business agreement.”
Trent nodded. Marty had a point. If he and Addison became romantically involved it would do more for her business than an ad during the Super Bowl.
“If you’re going to make it in politics you need to learn to do what’s right for your career, everything else comes second. Trust me, I’ve been around long enough to know that few politicians make it with their conscience intact.” Marty pushed the paper closer to him. “So what’s it going to be?”
Addison’s face beamed up at him. “We’ll try it your way, but if it’s not working we will fall back to our original plan.” Sure, they’d had an enjoyable conversation over coffee but he was not prepared to wager the rest of his life on that. He picked up his untouched sandwich. “I’m assuming you made sure she’s not involved with anyone.”
The look Marty gave him said it all. “Unless she’s got a secret lover tucked in her closet, she’s single and has been for over a year.”
“Okay, I’ll let you know how things go. But in the meantime, keep working on who leaked this picture.”
Assuming the noise had come from the movie, he turned his attention back to the screen just as another rumble reached his ears. Next to him Addie tensed and he knew the sound hadn’t come from the movie. “They said we would get storms tonight,” Addie said as another clap of thunder filled the room.
He squeezed her hand. “Look on the bright side, we’re not stuck in an elevator this time.” Maybe if he made her laugh it would help her relax.
Before she could answer, a clap of thunder filled the room, this one so loud it sounded as if a bomb had gone off in the room. Under his arm Addie jumped, her head bumping into his. “Sorry,” she said as she pulled away to look at him. “I know thunderstorms are usually harmless but I still hate them.” She moistened her lips with her tongue, the action making his mouth hunger for the taste of her again.
“We all have things that bother us.” He lowered his head toward hers, set on satisfying his need to kiss her while at the same time distracting her from the storm outside.
“Even you?” she asked her voice softer now.
He stopped mere inches from her mouth. “Even me,” he whispered before his lips descended on hers. Her lips were warm and sweet and at first he kept his kisses gentle, allowing himself to savor every moment. The longer they kissed the greater the fire inside him burned. When Addie pressed her breasts against him and parted her lips, he couldn’t stop himself from thrusting his tongue inside to meet hers.
Outside another boom of thunder crashed echoing the thudding of his heart. Pulling his mouth away from Addie’s he trailed his lips down her neck and then back up to her earlobe. With his tongue he traced the outline of her ear causing Addie to sigh. With slow movements, he retraced his steps pausing once again at her lips and kissing her before working his way to her other ear. As he sucked on her earlobe, warm skin came in contact with his as Addie’s hands slid under his T-shirt and up his back. At first her movements remained tentative but when he once again pressed his mouth against hers, they became more confident. Like a wildfire devouring dry brush, desire overtook him and Trent reached for the buttons on her top.
Without breaking their kiss, he undid each tiny button eager to remove the barrier between them. When he got the last button undone, he pushed the top from her shoulders, tossed it on the floor and then pulled back. For a moment he stared in silence, his eyes taking in the site before him. “Beautiful,” he said as he reached out and slid her bra straps down her shoulders. When she opened her mouth as if to comment, he covered it with his again. Then he reached around her back and undid the hooks of her bra.
Overhead the lights flickered and thunder crashed again but unlike before Addie didn’t flinch. Eager to get rid of another barrier, Trent pulled back and tugged off his own shirt. Before he pulled her against him again, he reached out his hands moving down her bare arms before making their way up her rib cage to cover her breasts, which just barely fit in his hands. At the intimate contact, her nipples came to life under his hands and he couldn’t stop himself from lowering his head to take one into his mouth. When she moaned, he switched to the other side as his erection begged for some attention from the beautiful woman in his arms.
Still uncertain just how far Addie wanted to go tonight, he lowered her onto the couch and then looked down at her waiting for any sign he should stop. In response, her eyes met his then traveled down his body, her hands following the trail they made leaving a scorching fire behind on his skin. When her hand paused at his waistband, he assumed she’d reverse her path. Instead, she rubbed a hand down the front of his jeans before undoing the button. As she slid the zipper down, he held his breath and when she slipped a hand inside and touched him, he groaned. For a moment he lost himself in the feel of her hand on him, then he reached for her wrist and pulled her hand free. Before they went any further he needed to get them upstairs. While he planned on marrying Addie, that didn’t mean he needed any children complicating things right now. The only way to prevent that meant using protection, which was upstairs.
I started writing at the age of 10 on my grandmother's manual typewriter and never stopped. When I am not driving my 3 daughters (ages 7, 5, and 5) around to their various activities or chasing around our two dogs, I am working on a story or reading a romance novel. I just finished Redeeming The Billionaire book 5 in the Sherbrookes of Newport series, and I have started book 2 in my new series Love On The North Shore. You can visit my website www.christinatetreault.com or follow me on Facebook to learn more about my characters and to track my progress on my current writing projects.