Granger was a leg man.
‘You’ve got legs
of your own so what’s the big deal?’ his best friend George would ask when the
subject arose. Needless to say George was a breast man.
conversations Flynn would lift a trouser leg, showing off his favoured argyle
socks and an unequivocally masculine calf covered in dark hair, with its scarred
knee from a horse-riding accident he’d had as a kid, and shaped by years of bike
riding and what amounted to an addiction for his rowing machine.
Then he’d say,
‘George, buddy, I may have two very fine legs of my own, but there is simply no
comparison. The sight of a woman’s calf muscles working as she passes by in a
pair of high heels does it for me every time. I love the slight criss-cross of
the feet, I adore the soft indent behind the knee, and I am putty in the
presence of a sway that starts at the floor and goes all the way up. Then there
is the sensation of running my hand along a smooth, lean, warm, willing woman’s
thigh. That is quite simply the stairway to heaven.’
surprising then, as Flynn did the last of his morning reps on his rowing machine
that Wednesday morning in April, when the nearby security monitor flickered to
life showcasing the sight of a pair of divine, smooth, creamy, stocking-free
legs wandering into his outer office in a pencil skirt and black high heels, his
attention was ensnared.
He eased back on
the handgrips until the magnetic wheels running the machine whirred to a stop.
He ran a quick hand through his sweat dampened hair and decided then and there
he really ought to give the woman longer than the five-minute appointment Wanda,
his pit-bull of a business assistant, had allotted her.
wanted from him, surely a woman with legs like that deserved at least a fighting
tugged her borrowed, too-tight pencil skirt downward, but the lowest she could
manage without having the waistline around her hips was for it to end up three
inches above her knees which was actually about three feet shorter than she
would have preferred for it to be.
‘Five minutes is
all I have allowed for you, Ms Parrish,’ said Wanda, a stern looking woman in
head-to-toe navy, a pageboy haircut, and tiny glasses, as she led her into Flynn
Abbey’s hand only
shook a very little when she ran it over her smooth French twist. ‘I
understand. And I appreciate you squeezing me in.’
‘I am a fan of
your grandmother from way back,’ Wanda said. ‘Even attending a march up Collins
Street which she had organised in my younger days. Consider this a favour to
It was hardly the
first time she had been accepted or otherwise because of her surname. So Abbey
merely nodded, and Wanda left, glaring at her one last time like she thought she
might make off with an ashtray the minute she turned her back.
Once she heard
the soft click of the hardwood door, she spun about on her borrowed shoes, the
untried pointy heel catching for a moment in a tuft of plush cream carpet. When
she righted herself, her heart racing as it pumped somewhere in the vicinity of
her throat, she was faced with what was hardly what any right-minded person
would call an office.
She bit at her
bottom lip, a nervous habit from long back. And she was nervous, for she felt
like she had stumbled into the male version of a boudoir.
All dark wood
furniture. A huge four-seater sofa with leather so soft it she would have been
surprised if the cow from which it had come had ever seen the touch of the
Australian sun. Pictures of sail boats and thoroughbred horses lined the
oak-panelled walls. And a massive red twist rug that spelt the life’s work of a
million silk worms swept across the huge carpeted floor at her feet until it
butted up against the base of a roaring wood fire.
The room was so
overtly masculine it made her feel queasy.
A scraping noise
ricocheted into the room from a half open doorway at the far end of the long
office. She caught sight of the corner of an unmade bed in the room beyond.
The intimation of red scatter cushions piled haphazardly on the floor and
draping chocolate satin sheets skittered unnervingly through her chest.
deep through her nose to bring oxygen to her parts that were feeling the lack
thereof, and reminded herself that the very fact that this room was an ode to
power and testosterone and pure male fantasy only meant that she had come to the
exact right place.
had heard and read and researched said that Flynn Granger was the man for her.
She had heard it said that he was it and a bit. A kid born of Melbourne social
royalty. A venture capitalist who preferred high risk enterprises yet came out
on top time and again. He was disgustingly rich, exceedingly popular, and a
playboy of the first degree. The fact that his office actually had a desk and a
chair as well as an unkempt bed ought to have been the bigger surprise.
the kid himself said in a dreamy deep voice when he finally sauntered through
the far door at three minutes past eleven. Though he was no kid. At
thirty-four years of age he had almost a decade on her.
Abbey said, standing taller for at six feet on the dot he would have a good six
inches on her as well.
She turned and
her knock-your-socks-off pitch dried up in her throat as she realised the guy
wasn’t wearing any. Socks.
Whereas she had
dressed to impress, her heart sank as she saw that Flynn Granger just as
obviously had not.
His feet were
bare. Large. Tanned, even between his toes. His hair was damp and tussled, as
though he’d just had a shower. He hadn’t shaved in at least a day, dark stubble
lining his blunt jaw. Loose black track pants barely clung to his lean hips,
and a plush coffee-coloured towel lovingly draped around his neck covered most
of his top half but left a pair of well-built arms exposed.
to slake a sudden case of dry mouth. ‘I’m Abbey Parrish,’ she said leaning over
and reaching out a hand as he ambled passed.
he returned, barely slowing as he shook her hand. Her small hand felt engulfed
by his. Feminine compared with his masculine. Soft against his hard. Overly
warm within his perfectly cool. When she saw that his fingernails were better
looking than hers, she let go quick smart.
He ambled over to
the massive desk beneath the huge ceiling-to-floor, wall-length, curtain-free
windows that showcased an intimidating view of the Melbourne city skyline. He
lowered himself into the swing chair behind his massive desk and rubbed at his
hair with his towel, blithely ignoring her very presence.
Okay, so she
hadn’t expected this to be a breeze, but she hadn’t expected him to be
so...indifferent. The guy was a famous skirt-chaser. So why wasn’t her skirt
doing it’s job? Was his radar that fine he could tell at first glance that she
was in genetically even more unapproachable than he?
Either way, the
swaggering SOB had picked a fine way of telling her that he simply didn’t give a
hoot about some obscure businesswoman from Fitzroy. And that just wasn’t at all
sensible of him, as it only served to piss her off.
‘I appreciate you
finding the time outside of your busy schedule to see me,’ she said. ‘I hope I
haven’t interrupted anything... important.’ She glanced pointedly at his towel
then back up at his face to find his eyes had finally connected with hers.
Dark, intense, astute eyes.