Known to everyone as Chef, John wants nothing more than to be called his real name, to stop being responsible for everyone and everything around him. He wants to become the man who used to travel the world in search of - and finding - adventures. Sara wants to rid herself of Ms. Prim and Proper schoolteacher and is desperate to release the feminine power hidden inside. And how better to do that than to seduce John? When John meets Sara, the schoolteacher heats up the chef until the explosion consumes them.

The Chef
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We’re pleased to welcome you to The Pleasure Club. As you have already signed and returned the contract and filled out the forms necessary to ensure you receive your every wish, we will be in touch with you shortly with the details of your first Pleasure Night. Your Wish List and Pleasure Forms have been turned over to our staff of highly trained Pleasure Guardians, and they are hard at work finding your perfect match. We will endeavor to meet your personal fantasy.

When you are contacted again, you will be given a location where your Pleasure Night will begin, and you will also be given a safe word to use should you become uncomfortable. There is no shame in changing your mind. We’re here to provide pleasure, and should your safe word be used, your match for the evening will cease all activity and put the game on hold until a mutual agreement between you and your Pleasure Mistress can be reached.

Once again, welcome to The Pleasure Club. Please feel free to contact the office at any time should you have any questions.

Yours truly,

The Pleasure Club Management

* * * * *


Your Pleasure Night will begin at midnight on Sunday the 10th at 18 Front Street. Do not bring your knives.

Your safe word is spice.

* * * * *

He was tired, so tired, of being called Chef. He wondered occasionally if anyone remembered his real name. His parents were gone, and he had no brothers or sisters. All he had was the Serenity Café and the many people who worked for him. And, unfortunately, he was responsible for every one of them.

And at the Serenity, he was known as Chef. He had to be Chef.

Customers called him Chef. Suppliers and drivers and vintners and farmers and fishers. Everyone he knew­—including his bankers, his accountants, and his tailor—called him Chef.

He needed someone to call him by his real name. Needed, desperately, to step outside the jail in which he’d locked himself. He wanted—just for one night—to be the boy who’d run wild across the fields, the teenager who’d skied the black diamond runs, the young man who’d traveled across Europe, Asia, and Africa with only a backpack and his skills in the kitchen.

The trouble, of course, was that he couldn’t do it. He couldn’t leave, couldn’t give it all up and start again, not without losing everything he’d created. He could start again but the people who worked for him, the people he’d saved from the streets and helped to rebuild their lives, those people had nowhere else to go. His freedom wasn’t worth their lives.

So he could only think of one way to achieve that freedom, even for a single night, without risking everything.

He was going to call his old friend Calliope and ask her to set him up with The Pleasure Club. She’d emailed him a couple of years earlier to tell him she’d finally got together with her professor—and she’d done it through that organization.

He didn’t need a long term relationship. He simply needed the occasional night to be himself again. And he knew, because she’d told him, that The Pleasure Club could guarantee just that.

* * * * *

The winter wind—if this could be called winter—raised bumps on Sara’s unprotected arms. If she’d been paying attention to anything at all but the night to come, she would have noticed the unusual cold draft around her windows, would have felt the chill even in the parking garage. She would have worn a coat. But she hadn’t been able to think about anything except him.

Sara, a primary school teacher with all the baggage that implied, was tired of being Ms. Prim and Proper and was more than ready to let her hair out of the bun it had been in since she started teaching. But of course she couldn’t do that where anyone could see her. That would mean she’d lose her job, and she loved those kids.

But she had an ace in the hole—her old school mate, Calliope, and the story she’d told about how she’d finally, finally, gotten Geoffrey to notice her.

Sara didn’t need or want a permanent man. She had no time for that, but she did want, just once, to use the feminine power she was pretty sure she had. It had to be hidden somewhere. Sometimes she almost got it, sometimes she felt it coiled inside of her, waiting for something—although just what, she didn’t know­—to let it out.

So when Calliope first told her about The Pleasure Club, Sara had blushed, then ruminated, and then asked Calliope for their number. They’d recruited her, and this was her first night as a Pleasure Guardian.

She couldn’t remember ever being so excited.

Or so frightened.

She couldn’t wait.

She stepped up to the warehouse door and used her key in the lock on the big heavy padlock. She rolled back the door, reached around the corner for the light switch. Everything was exactly as she’d planned it.

Damn. The Pleasure Club Management is good at what they do.

She’d asked for, and received, the swimming pool sized tub, the table filled with food from her favorite gourmet store. Bottles of Veuve Clicquot sat in an ice bucket with two champagne flutes resting beside them.

She lit the sandalwood and jasmine incense she’d brought with her and placed the roses from her garden on the table, their rich fragrance adding to the exotic scents filling the room.

Dozens of candles lit a trail from the door to the room she’d created in the center of the warehouse. Silken walls hid the acres of cold, unused space around it. Rugs of every color and description lay on the floor, so thick and soft her bare feet made no sound at all as she moved around and lit the rest of the candles.

Two velvet soft robes lay on the king-sized mattress she’d had them place on the floor next to the tub, the mattress heated from the inside. The room looked, smelled, and reminded her of a sultan’s tent, each detail as perfect as she could make it.

The application her man—that’s the way she thought of him—had filled out sounded kind of sad, as if he were missing something or someone. Sara wanted to make him smile.

The candles flickered as a slight breeze blew through the silk. The door had been opened, then shut. He was here.

She could hardly wait.

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