Title: The Billionaire’s Claim: Obsession
Series: The Billionaire’s Claim #1
Author: Nadia Lee
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Release Date: April 26, 2018
An angel. A virgin. My first love.
I fell for her hard and fast ten years ago…and paid the price on a night of shattering betrayal.
So I built a billion-dollar empire out of vengeance…
And now I’m coming for her.
A maverick. A self-made billionaire. My soul mate.
Ten years ago, he shredded my heart, even as he vowed he’d take what matters most to me.
I know he’s coming, and I welcome it. I need closure for what happened that night.
But the more time I spend with him, the more I wonder…
Can I ever move on…?
Note: This is the first book in The Billionaire’s Claim duet.
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“Do you really go by Elizabeth with everyone?” I ask, enjoying the smooth taste of the vodka. “No nickname?”
“Yeah. Everyone calls me that, except this one cousin who calls me Eliza. I think he felt rebellious when he was younger, you know? And it stuck. With him, anyway.”
She’s probably wrong about her cousin. Elizabeth is too formal a name for this woman. She’s too vivacious, too open and too sexy. She needs a shorter, snappier name.
“But…” She knocks back the second shot of vodka. “You can call me Liza. Nobody calls me that, and I think it suits me better than Elizabeth or Eliza, don’t you?”
I nod, ridiculously pleased I’m going to get my own name for her.
“So what’s your name?” she asks.
“Nice. I like it.” She smiles and runs a fingertip along my lips as she leans forward. “Can I call you something else, though?”
I feel the touch like an electric shock. My heart thuds. “Like what?”
I lose the track of my friends’ conversation as the fine hair at my nape bristles — not unpleasantly — and my gaze lands on the sole bartender on the other side of the counter.
Everything fades away except him.
I’ve met handsome men, hot men, aristocratic men, charming men on both sides of the Atlantic. My family alone has four brothers and four cousins who make women stupid with their looks. Having grown up around such male beauty, I’ve always considered myself immune — able to appreciate it without turning into some kind of infatuated drooler.
But the bartender…
Everything about him is absurd.
The absurd perfection of his bone structure. The absurd blue of his eyes. The absurd firmness of his lips. The absurd muscularity of his big, strong body.
When our gazes collide, I feel like every cell in my body is waking up after a lifetime of slumber. My heart beats a little bit faster, a little bit harder. Blood flows a little quicker, a little hotter.
Is this sexual attraction?
I shake my head inwardly. I’ve felt attraction to guys before. But nothing like this. This man shines like a brilliant gemstone, like the heavens opened up and a halo appeared around him.
Then I remember what Grandpa used to say.
“When I first met your grandmother, I knew she was the one.”
“How?” I asked. An exceptional artist, Grandpa has a propensity for exaggeration and dramatic flair.
“Because she made me forget where I was. Every time I laid eyes on her, nothing else mattered. Colors were brighter, food tasted better, and the air felt cleaner. All because I met her.”
I laughed. “That’s just infatuation, Grandpa.”
He shook his head. “No, no, my little angel. It’s called love. My soul recognized hers.”
I tried not to laugh at such a ridiculous story. On the other hand, Grandpa’s first marriage lasted until the death of his wife in a sailing accident. And by all accounts, they adored each other.
Suddenly Vanessa taps my elbow. “Earth to Elizabeth. Come on.” She tilts her shiny red head toward the bar. “We’re sitting at the counter.”
Apparently the decision has been made. “Okay.” I park my butt across from the bartender, Grandpa’s words about soul mates circling in my head.
Because if this bartender’s mine, he’s popped up at the most inconvenient time and the most inconvenient location.
Elizabeth reaches over and runs her fingers along my thigh. Her scent — vanilla and lavender — tickles my nose. An electric charge sizzles at the base of my spine, and heated blood pumps hard through my veins. “You going to start the car or what?” She smiles, her cheeks flushed.
Logic and good intentions grow fuzzy. I don’t hook up with women I meet at the bar. I want to set a good example for my baby sister so she knows to look for a guy who’ll take her seriously and treat her well. And I’m usually just too busy with life — college courses, taking care of my sister and working two jobs.
But with Elizabeth, none of that matters. The only thing is her being with me…and the undercurrent of instinctive knowledge that if I end this now, she’s going to slip away, never to be seen again.
My mouth dry, I speed toward my place, half an hour from the bar. I don’t run any red lights, but it’s pretty close a couple of times.
She laughs softly. “Love it that you’re impatient.”
“You want me.”
“What man wouldn’t?”
She grows wistful. “Not everyone wants me.”
“You’ve been with the wrong men.”
She opens her mouth, then instead of saying anything, drags her teeth along her lower lip.
New York Times and USA Today bestselling author Nadia Lee writes sexy, emotional contemporary romance. Born with a love for excellent food, travel and adventure, she has lived in four different countries, kissed stingrays, been bitten by a shark, ridden an elephant and petted tigers.
Currently, she shares a condo overlooking a small river and sakura trees in Japan with her husband and son. When she’s not writing, she can be found reading books by her favorite authors or planning another trip.
Stay in touch with her via her website, http://www.nadialee.net, or her blog http://www.nadialee.net/blog
Facebook Group: http://www.facebook.com/groups/nadialee