HER BEST FRIEND'S BABY
DescriptionWhen Zaierra decides it's time to have a baby before her eggs turn to powder, no one seems to be a better candidate than her best friend. Who could have guessed one night in bed with sexy Leith Stone could uncover her long hidden love for the one man that's always been there for her. In order to hide her true feelings for him, Zaierra calls off their arrangement, but it's too late. She's having his baby. Complications arise when his skanky ex just won't let go and has her own set of issues.
Excerpt:“Zai, mind if I come over right now?” Leith asked.
Zaierra pried her eyes open to glance at the clock on her nightstand. Two a.m., and she had to be in the office early to prepare for the executive meeting. The big wigs were coming in from all over the country to strategize. They did it every year, and she knew the routine for ordering them breakfast, lunch, and dinner since they’d be at all day. She already had her handouts started, and no doubt her boss would have more and changes because he couldn’t let her enjoy the well-oiled machine she had going in his department.
Of course Leith knew all of this because he was one of the junior executives, and he would be in on the meeting. She knew what he would eat and need even though she wasn’t his assistant, because they had been friends since high school.
“You’ve never asked before,” she grumbled, “and you have a key. Why are you waking me up at this ungodly hour, Leith Stone?”
“I’ll be there in half an hour.” The line went dead. She blinked at it and then hung it up, or attempted to. The receiver missed the base and crashed on the floor. Leith had been the one to bug her to get a landline since half the time at home she forgot to charge her cell. What would she do without him?
“Sleep,” she muttered into her pillow and drifted off. The next time she woke up, it was to the feel of Leith’s big body crushing her when he dropped onto her bed. Zaierra shoved at him, groaning. “Get off, you big ape.”
Leith didn’t move. She reached up to touch his head, her fingers tangling in his silky hair. He said something she didn’t catch, but they stayed there with him half on top of her, a thick comforter separating their bodies. Zaierra drifted off again with the sound of Leith’s quiet breathing above her.
In the morning, she woke to the sound of the shower going and the scent of coffee brewing. This routine was nothing new. Often Leith came to her apartment unannounced, used the shower, and found clothes for himself already hanging in the closet. They were like an old married couple with none of the physical benefits. Not that Leith used her. He’d pulled her ass out of the fire more than once. They just came from two different worlds that happened to collide in the same school. Leith came from an upper middle class family, and his parents provided him with a top education in one of the finest universities. Zaierra worked her way through community college and later transferred to the cheapest university she could find. Circumstances forced her to drop to part time, and she had finally finished last year. She expected to move up in her career one way or another, whether it was at Hanson and Associates where she and Leith worked, or somewhere else. One issue got in the way of that plan, an issue that had grown larger over the last couple of years, and no matter what she did, she couldn’t shake the idea of it.
Zaierra rose from the bed and shuffled into the bathroom. She didn’t bother putting on a robe. Leith had seen her down to skin plenty of times. Not on purpose of course, but it happened. She’d seen him too, and boy oh boy that man had a body. If he weren’t her best friend, she wouldn’t mind sampling the goods.
At the sink, she began brushing her teeth. “So, what’s up?” she mumbled around a mouthful of paste.
Leith didn’t answer right away, and she thought he didn’t hear her. She opened her mouth to speak louder, but he cut her off. “I ended it.”
She stared at the reflection of the shower behind her. “You’re serious?”
The shower door slid to the side, and Leith came into view. She forced her gaze to stay on his face, but her peripheral vision took in the big chest and broad shoulders. Water glistened on his taut skin, rolling downward. She shouldn’t be attracted to Leith, but damn if she wasn’t. That made her dilemma and the solution her crazy brain had come up with that much harder to dismiss.
“You broke up with Jenna Slutty, I mean Hutty?”
Leith glared at her.
Zaierra shrugged. “Come on. You have to admit her name does rhyme with slutty, and her character…”
“Okay, you’ve made it clear from the start what you thought of her.”
“And you made it just as clear you wanted her for her looks. You let her wrap you around her little finger and play with your emotions. I don’t know how many times I had to resist kicking her ass for the way she treated you, but if you say you’re done, that’s good enough for me.”
He ran a towel over his skin and wrapped it around his waist. Only then did she let her gaze travel lower to his abs. Mercy. They were toned to perfection, ripped, and hard. She knew just how hard because she’d teased him about washing clothes on them and used the excuse to run her fingers over his body. Leith had done the same with her. Not her abs because she fought with a pouch and extra weight around the hips and thighs, but just like he did last night, he liked to jump on her and tickle her until she cried uncle.
“Yeah, I’m finished being manipulated. Jenna liked to make everything a big production.”
“Only when you controlled the money too much.”
He had been on the way to the door and stopped to look back at her. “What was that?”
She smiled. “Nothing.”
Leith eyed her with suspicion, but he didn’t push. He left the bathroom, and she took her time with her shower and getting her hair together. By the time she walked into her room, Leith had vacated it and left his yummy male scent behind. Quiet prevailed in the apartment, and she moved to the kitchen to find a breakfast plate and coffee waiting. A note from Leith told her he’d see her later, and she sat down to eat. While she chewed her bacon, she considered whether she’d talk to Leith about her idea. Now that they were both free, it might work. The question was, would he agree and could she handle it if he did.