Derek hadn’t known Layla was in New York, not until Jack mentioned his meeting with her. He’d moved to New York to start recording his new solo album, fed up with Los Angeles and needing distance between himself and his old friends. He’d found an apartment, packed a few boxes, and bought a plane ticket. The sprawling house he’d left behind, where he’d spent countless stupor-filled nights, would be on the market soon, along with most of its contents that no longer held any meaning for him. He was starting new.
As he entered the bar, he found her sitting at a table by the window, bathed in the soft haze of early morning light. He hadn’t prepared himself for how alluring she’d look. They were there to discuss business, according to Jack, but Derek wasn’t in the mood to talk shop.
He hadn’t stopped thinking about Layla since the last time he saw her. So much had been left unresolved between them, and he wasn’t just thinking of the sexual frustration he’d suffered when their tryst in the barn had been cut short. Over the following weeks, he’d had lots of time to think about that encounter and knew his feelings for her ran deeper than she probably realized.
He’d planned out what he wanted to say to her, but all the perfect words he’d practiced disappeared from his mind as he crossed the room to her. She stood as he neared, her gaze locked with his. He’d met lots of beautiful women, but Layla stood out—effortlessly rocker chic and with a depth to her eyes he would never tire of. He willed himself not to let his gaze roam over her, but her black dress hugged every curve, daring him to admire her body, from her sleek shoulders down to her heels laced up around her ankles. She wore her hair down, just as he liked it, its strands falling freely, caressing the skin above the dress’ low neckline. Although he’d admired her at The Ranch, he’d never seen her look like that. She watched him approach, her eyes outlined in dramatic shades of brown.
“You’re late,” she said.
“I’m still getting used to New York traffic.”
“You look different.”
Derek glanced down at his simple black suit and matching black dress shirt, reminded of how she’d remember him in ripped jeans and stubble. “I still wear jeans and T-shirts, sometimes,” he sad.
She laughed, an easy laugh. “You kept the Converse, though,” she said, pointing to his feet.
He lifted a foot to show off the shoe. “Can’t sell my soul, can I?”
They stood in awkward silence for a moment before she asked, “Are we going to make small talk or get down to business?”
He didn’t want small talk, nor did he look forward to talking business. There were so many other things he’d rather discuss with her, like how he’d never met a woman like her who could shake him up like she had, but as she tapped the folder on the table, she seemed eager to start. Derek eyed the table, and the sidewalk just beyond the window. Anyone could look in and see him, and he didn’t want his time with Layla interrupted. Any other time was fine, but right then he wasn’t in the mood to take selfies with fans or sign autographs. The table in the dark corner would give them more privacy.
“Do you mind if we switch tables?” he asked, nodding toward the booth in the far reaches of the bar.
She stared at the table he’d selected like it was the last place she’d want to be, but shrugged nonchalantly. “Sure.”
Settled into the plush seats of the booth, she opened the file. “I suppose Jack told you why I’m here.”
He closed the file, his hand landing on hers. “Let’s start with breakfast.”
“Just coffee for me,” she said.
He opened the menu and looked it over. “Been here before?” he asked. She shook her head. “Jack stays here a lot when he’s in town. This place is a bar at night—but I don’t drink here,” he added quickly. He’d been doing well and following the rules. He hadn’t had a drink since before rehab. He’d even reluctantly agreed with Michael that sexual abstinence was good for his recovery. He’d tested his self-discipline for sixty days by not having sex, but thankfully that time was almost over.
A waitress came over, did a double take when she saw him, but didn’t say anything, only waited patiently for their orders. “Two coffees, please,” he said. The waitress smiled at him for a long moment before leaving with their orders. “So this is your new job?” he asked. “You work in New York?”
She nodded. “I work for a not-for-profit organization that delivers rehab services to the inner city.”
“Sounds perfect for you.” He stared at her with a big smile, not caring if he looked like an idiot. He hadn’t thought he’d ever see her again, yet there she was across the table from him. It was so easy to be with her. She hadn’t once asked him how he was feeling, or if he was clean. Everyone he knew constantly asked him how he was doing. He was sick of seeing his mistakes through other peoples’ eyes. Layla wasn’t like that.
“Let me tell you about my project,” she said, breaking eye contact. “It’s a fundraiser for our programs. We’re making an album, of which all the proceeds go to bringing help to addicts. You could be a big part of that—”
“This is your idea?”
“The album? Yes.”
“Then I’m in.”
She put the file in her purse. “That was easy.”
“On one condition,” he said.
The sound of rushing water came from the washroom. She thought of Derek naked and wet, and she pushed the door open to see his silhouette flicker across the frosted glass shower door. She stepped over his discarded jeans, shed her clothes, and hung them on the wall hooks. As she neared the shower her body ached to be touched, her nipples hard and ready at the thought of Derek’s hands on her.
Layla opened the shower door and stepped in. Derek faced the water as it pounded his head and ran down his body, over his muscled back and across his tight ass. He turned to face her and took her hand, like he wasn’t surprised she was there.
He pressed his soapy body to hers and wrapped an arm around her waist. The rough stubble on his face brushed against her as he lowered his mouth to kiss her neck, then whispered in her ear, “I need you.”
She grabbed his ass and her body tingled with excitement when his erection pressed against her stomach. She relaxed in his arms as he kissed her, dipping his tongue into her mouth to lap at her lips. She shut her eyes and savored the feel of his wet skin, running her hands down the front of his body to cup his balls. He groaned when she took his cock in her hand and stroked him, gliding along his soapy skin. The intensity in his eyes grew and he watched her face. Sex in the shower with a rock star, backstage at a concert—it was a scenario that pushed all her old boundaries, the ones she used to think she needed. Not anymore.
With her hand still working his dick, she kissed his neck, then his chest, licking water from his body, making her way to his hard abs and the chiseled line of muscles that led to his groin. Down on her knees, she licked the length of him, ending with a swirl of her tongue around his tip that made him quiver against her. He was hard and ready for her mouth.
He stroked her hair back as warm water sprayed around them. She took his tip in her mouth, tasting him, sucking him. Holding him at the base, she took him all the way into her mouth, easing down slowly and taking a deep breath until the tip of him pressed against the back of her throat. Above her, he made guttural sounds and buried his fingers in her hair as she held her breath, gripped his base with her lips, and swallowed him down. Exhaling, she slipped her lips back along his length and trailed her tongue along him.
He groaned her name and tugged at her shoulders to stand, but she wasn’t done with him yet. Taking him again and again, she worked him with her mouth as his balls tightened in her hand. Her own arousal grew until her muffled moans echoed in the shower. He was almost there. She wanted him, all of him, right down her throat.
But he had other plans. “Not yet,” he said, his voice raspy as he lifted her to standing. “I want to feel your pussy clenched around me when I come.”
He turned her around to face the wall and kissed her neck, from its base to her ear as he nudged her pussy with the tip of his hard length. Hooking her leg with his arm, he opened her for him, spreading her wider. She gasped and tried to grip the steamy shower tiles when he pushed an inch inside her. Derek pulled out, then thrust in farther, then farther until her body had stretched to accommodate his full length. She concentrated on her breathing as he moved inside her, slowly at first, then harder, pummeling himself inside her.
He reached around with his other hand and flicked her clit, finding a rhythm there to match his movements behind her. Layla hiked up her leg, wanting him even deeper, needing him to bang hard against the very depths of her. Then with a cry, orgasm crashed over her. Her head fell back to rest on his shoulder as she rode the last wave of pleasure until she went limp in his arms. He captured her mouth with his, but it was clumsy and primal how their lips bumped and slipped together as Derek picked up the pace and drove inside her. With his mouth still pressed to hers, he kissed away her gasps and thrust with new vigor. His body tensed and his fingers pressed hard into her flesh when his cum pounded her deepest walls, making her cry out with him.