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His Many Desires (His Many #3)
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I don’t fit into the world around me.
My brother and father are far more the billionaire type.
Art is what wakes me up. Expressing my soul through a paintbrush.
That and the beautiful woman that stole my heart years ago.
But she belongs to their world. An executive for the accounting firm my family runs.
And we live clear across the country from one another, but that doesn’t stop the way I feel.
Every time I see her, I want to change everything about myself until she takes notice.
Funnily enough, she doesn’t want me to change a damn thing.
She says that now, but when she finds out all that I desire of her, with her, she might not be so compliant.
Or maybe that’s what she’s been waiting on this whole time.
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“Remind me again why I said I would do this? It seems rather masochistic now that we’re in the thick of things.” I glanced over at Sophie and smiled as she plucked her ear-bud out and growled at me softly.
“What? Are you complaining about the weather again? It’s beautiful out here.” The stern look on her pretty face didn’t hold for long as she studied me.
I wiped my forearm across my head and took a deep breath as we bounded along the outdoor track near her house. Her dark brown hair was pulled back into a ponytail, and even without makeup, she was stunning. Where the snot-nose bully from my childhood had gone to was a mystery, but the woman that took her place was beautiful, and even scarier than when we were little.
“I’m not complaining. I was simply asking how you talked me into this.” I turned my focus back to the road ahead of us and let my eyes run across the tree line. The brilliant greens that covered the grass and treetops in Texas most of the spring and summer were finally starting to die off and bleed into the colors of fall. It had to be my favorite time of the year.
“You wanted to lose a little bit of weight, and I hate dogs. Remember? It was a win-win situation.” She popped me in the gut and started to jog faster.
“This sounds about as fun as our partnership in junior high. I wanted to lose weight and you wanted an extra ice cream cone, so my left over change became yours every day.”
“You had a crush on me. That’s why you gave up your change.” She glanced over her shoulder and smirked.
I chuckled, unable to help myself. What was it with me and cocky, overbearing women?
“I still have a crush on you.” I picked up the pace and blew past her as she yelped and tried to catch up. We’d been friends too long for anything to become of us, but it was one of the only solid relationships in my life.
“Liar,” she called after me and stopped at my side as I bent over and pressed my hands to my knees. We panted in tandem for a few minutes, before I glanced up at her.
“You know you’re like a sister to me.”
“You have a sister now, right?” She stood back up and adjusted her ponytail. “What’s her name? Bertha?”
“Don’t be like that.” I lifted my hands toward the clear blue sky and stretched. “Her name is Bethany and you’d like her a lot.”
“She’s taking my place. I hate her.” Sophie stuck out her tongue and took off again, leaving me with no other choice than to chase after her.
“She’s not taking your place. I’m a big guy with loads of free time, remember?”
“Speaking of free time.” She glanced over at me, her slate grey eyes filled with concern.
“Not this again. I’m fine. I’m going to Seattle this weekend and I’ll start figuring things out.”
“Leaving here isn’t a choice. You’ve lived here your whole life.”
“Yeah, and it’s not done me any favors. I’m twenty-eight and still without a career or a girlfriend. It’s time to start moving toward having something of my own. You know how much I hate having my dad support me.”
“Being a playboy billionaire is most little boys’ dream jobs.”
“Bullshit.” I laughed. “It’s to be a fireman or a cop or a billionaire tycoon with loads of responsibility and girls.”
“Okay, so I’m not a boy. I wouldn’t know, but I think you’re being too hard on yourself. You have the perfect opportunity to work on your art here in Dallas and live freely thanks to your dad’s money. What else is he going to do with it?”
She had a point, but I’d been trying to find myself for the better of four years and still felt like I was floundering around.
“He’s going to take care of his new wife and their future together.” I let out a loud huff as we stopped near the parking lot and walked back and forth down a short path to cool down. “I want a life of my own, I’m just honestly not sure what that life looks like, and besides, you know as well as I do that you wouldn’t be all right living off your father’s money-”
“If he had money.” She snorted and rolled her shoulders. “Find your passion, Matt. I’ve found mine. It’s reporting the news and digging deep for the story. It’s been the best four years of my life working for NBC. You should be able to say the same, but you know why you can’t?”
“Because I’m not a pretty reporter with a great rack?” I smiled and took the smack I deserved with good humor.
“Because you haven’t figured out what you want to do. Being a billionaire doesn’t mean shit if you don’t live a little with it.”