Tuesday, January 1, 2008

All the Fixin' by Marie Rochelle

All the Fixin' by Marie Rochelle
January, 2008 - ISBN 978-1-59426-799-4
$6 eBook - Buy Now!

Author's Backlist Marie Rochelle

Chapter One

I can't believe this shit!" Craig growled, jumping up from his seat and slapping his hand on the polished table. "I know she did something to trick my aunt into signing those papers."

"Please take your seat, Mr. Evans. I won't have that kind of outburst again in my office," Mr. Terry threatened, pushing his glasses back up his nose. "This will is your aunt's final wishes, unless you can prove she wasn't of sound mind when she wrote it."

Craig Evans fell back into his seat and glared across the table at the woman he had grown to hate over the last two years of his aunt's life.

"Fine, don't worry, Mr. Terry. I'll find a way to prove that Miss Anderson isn't the nice, sweet woman she's pretending to be. She used my dying aunt's kindness to get her money."

"Mr. Evans, once again I ask that you please refrain from saying nasty comments about Miss Anderson," Mr. Terry uttered. "She has been sitting here without saying a word for the past hour. Maybe you could learn something from her."

Craig narrowed his eyes at his nemesis sitting across from him at the table. Sure, she would be quiet and not stir up any trouble. Why would she after his aunt left her in charge of an estate worth over six million dollars? She would never have to work again.

Today she was playing the role of grieving friend, wearing a slim black dress that molded her curves. Subconsciously his gaze was drawn to the small silt in the front, just revealing a hint of rich Hershey chocolate skin. She even had pulled her shoulder length bob haircut back into a tight bun, displaying her jawbone. He had to give her credit, Shea Anderson looked devastated about the passing of his Aunt Rebecca, but he didn't trust her as far as he could throw her.

How did she not know his aunt was the founder of the firmer and plumper lipstick chain? Luscious Lips had been in his family for years, and he was the only living relative. How in the hell didn't he get the company? He was close to his aunt, so there was no way she wouldn't have left it to him. No, Shea did something to trick his aunt, and he would find out what it was.

"Mr. Evans, are you listening?" his aunt's lawyer interrupted, making him push thoughts of Shea to the back of his mind, but only for the moment.

"Sorry, Mr. Terry, my mind was somewhere else for a few moments. I apologize," he answered, "Can you repeat what you just said?"

Mr. Terry pushed his glasses up for the fourth time today, then shifted his gaze from him back over to Shea before he continued. "Your aunt left a clause in the will."

"Thank God!" he burst out, happy his Aunt Rebecca hadn't been completely fooled by the sexy siren in front of him.

"Craig, I'm not going to warn you again about speaking your mind. One more comment and I'm done reading this will," Mr. Terry threatened.

"I apologize. I swear that was my last outburst."

"It better be," Mr. Terry exclaimed. "The clause in your aunt's will stipulates that Ms. Anderson has until Thanksgiving to turn down the estate. If Shea doesn't claim it, the estate automatically goes to you with no question asked."

Craig knew there was no way in Hell Shea was going to turn down that kind of money. Someone like her had finally found the pot of gold at the end of the rainbow, and giving it back certainly wouldn't entered her mind.

"Mr. Terry, I don't want Rebecca's money. I didn't become her friend for that," Shea's raspy voice interrupted, making him looking back at the woman who had tormented him for months. "I'll sign them over to Craig right now."

"I'm sorry, Miss. Anderson, but you can't sign the papers until then."

"Okay ... then I'll be back in touch with you in a couple of weeks," she uttered, surprising Craig. What was she up to now?

Craig watched as Shea grabbed her jacket off the back of the chair and made her way toward the door. He hated how he noticed everything was perfect on her five-feet-five inch frame. She didn't even glance in his direction as she went past his chair, out the door.

"Craig, don't you bully her into not taking the estate," his aunt's lawyer warned him as he gathered up the will and other papers off the desk. "Rebecca had her mind up until the day she died. If she let Shea all that money it was for a reason. Now it's left up to you to find out why."

"The only thing I have to do is be here on the day Shea signs over what's belongs to me," Craig stated getting up from his seat then he left with room without a backward glance in his aunt's lawyer's direction.
* * * *

Shea Anderson shoved her arms into the sleeves of her jacket and buttoned it, wishing the elevator would hurry up. She didn't have any more energy left to go another round with Craig. It took all her willpower not to stare at him during the will reading.

Craig Evans wouldn't want her drooling all over him. He'd made it clear when he visited his aunt that she wasn't his type of woman. No, Craig always brought the leggy strawberry blondes with him--model types who would always be a size zero no matter how much they ate or didn't eat, who had men like Craig dying to be with them.

Why did she have to be attracted to a man who thought she befriended his aunt for her money? God, he wouldn't believe she didn't know who Rebecca Anderson was until his aunt had told her two weeks ago. Rebecca said that she was leaving her something in her will, but her six million dollar estate never crossed her mind. Hell, she thought it was going to be the silver Jaguar she loved driving so much.

Leaning her shoulder against the wall by the slow moving elevator, she massaged her temple with the tips of her fingers. This day couldn't get any worse for her.

"Don't stand there and act all innocent when we both know you're counting the days until you have all of that money," a deep timber voice accused.

Pivoting, she threw Craig a hateful look and prayed he wouldn't notice the crush she had on him. Today his dark brown hair was styled back off his forehead and the ends were touched the collar of his white suit. The dark blue suit molded the perfect body she knew he worked out five days a week to keep.

She dropped her gaze down to his full firm lips, dreaming what it would be like if he ever pushed down the hate he harbored for her and kissed her. Shea quickly shook the thought from her mind. Craig detested her and didn't mince his words about it.

"Mr. Evans, aren't you late for a corporate meeting so something?" Shea sighed and faced the elevator door.

"Shea, don't you ignore me." Craig uttered behind her.

Craig wrapped his fingers around her arm and made her face him. He pulled her so close to him that her breasts brushed the hardness of his chest. She bit the inside of her lip to keep from moaning as the unexpected electric charged through her body. Her eyes darted up to Craig's face to see if he felt the same thing, but she only saw his same hard look.

"I won't let you steal my aunt's money. You aren't part of the family and never will be. That money should have gone to me to pass on to my future wife and kids."

Shaking off Craig's touch, she folded her arms under her breasts. "You'll get your wish on Thanksgiving, but until then stay out of my way, Mr. Anderson," she shot back as the elevator's door slid open behind her. "I want your aunt's money as about as much as I want to be in a relationship with your arrogant ass." With that finally comment hanging in the air between them, Shea got on the elevator. It closed before Craig had a chance to retort.