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A dark pleasure competition. An enemy for an opponent. A woman who may be my match.
My absurd tycoon of an uncle is retiring. Finally, my dream of being CEO over his publishing empire, including his coveted BDSM website, is nearing reality. But Uncle Harvey won’t hand over the reins so easily. He’s pitted me against my enemy… my cousin.
Best man wins it all, according to ol’ Harv. Fine. Because the best man is going to be me.
But we can’t do it alone. For fun, Unc matched us with a woman.
He chose Ava for me. She’s sweet, courageous, sexy… and vanilla to her very core. Since I’m a Dominant, that’s a problem. I don’t compromise, but she has me twisting my commands into requests, and thinking of her desires before my own. As the competition advances, we’re both pushed beyond our limits.
Worse, my cousin has plans of his own. Has desires of his own. And he always desires what is mine.
He wants Ava, and when I see him touching her, the contest explodes into violence, with consequences I couldn’t have imagined.
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“Ahh, here’s the playboy now.”
My uncle sat behind his mattress-sized desk, king of his publishing empire. Harvey Huffman was a legend, and even at seventy-eight years old, his salacious blue eyes lit up when the door swung open.
My eyes did something entirely different. They narrowed into slits of disgust as my cousin stepped into the posh office, looking like a women’s porn magazine’s dream with his dark wavy hair and friendly sky-blue eyes. One year my junior at thirty-three, Mason’s gray Armani suit and lighter gray silk tie screamed swanky bachelor.
I gritted my teeth and adjusted my already perfect tie. Hopefully, this impromptu meeting wouldn’t take long. It wasn’t like Uncle Harvey to force us into such tight quarters together. He knew our history.
They said that blood was thicker than water, but in our case, blood just boiled.
Raised by my single-mother aunt, Mason had adopted his father’s ways — moving from one woman to the next, indulging in long vacations punctuated by fine wine and lots of females he was constantly helping out. He was a billionaire bad boy with a heart of gold, who hid his soft heart behind a long string of one-night stands.
I’d never liked him. And the feeling had been mutual.
Mason nodded as our eyes locked. A swift, silent communication passed between us as it only can with someone you’d spent time with regularly as a child, and was forced to reacquaint yourself with at every family function since adulthood. Neither of us knew what this unprecedented meeting was about. Both of us were expecting a big announcement. Both of us planned on being the last man standing.
My leg jiggled, and I forced my muscles into submission before I caused the fine china on Uncle Harv’s sideboard to rattle. Even with Mason present, I could barely contain my excitement. There was only one reason Uncle Harv could have called us both into a meeting at the same time — unless he was jonesing for a bloodbath. He was getting up there in years, and he had to step down as head of his conglomerate sometime. With every fiber of my being, I knew he was about to name me as CEO and wanted to control the inevitable fallout from Mason.
It was time to pass the torch. To me.
I barely registered Uncle Harv welcoming Mason and offering him a seat in the plush leather chair beside me.
Finally, I was going to be rewarded with the role I’d dreamed of all my life. I’d coveted the publishing enterprise. All of it. The fashion magazines, the news and gossip websites. But especially the online publication that catered to a naughty clientele. My cock pulsed as I thought of the fetishes, the bondage that the website was known for. I had groomed myself to take over, and finally, the time had come.
Uncle Harv settled back in his massive desk chair and linked his fingers over his portly belly, a huge grin taking up most of his face. “Well, boys, it’s good to see you sitting next to each other in such an amicable manner.”
Mason stiffened beside me, and the woody I’d been working on deflated. The last time I’d been this close to Mason, I’d been tempted to bloody his nose at the annual Thanksgiving gala. He’d hit on a woman I was going after. Not one I really wanted, but it was the principal of the thing. He’d forever been putting his capricious fingers on what was mine — my coveted model airplane set when I was a kid, my first car when I was a teenager. My mom’s attention and affection. Hell, when he’d charmed my sweet sixteen crush, Amber DeGrasse, into bed, it had been the last straw, and I hadn’t been able to let it go. We’d been at war ever since.
Unc’s smile faltered at our silence, and he sat forward. “I’ll get right down to it. But first, I have a question.”
We waited. The room was so quiet I could practically hear Mason sweating next to me. He was going to be pissed when Uncle Harvey named me as his successor.
“What do you call a virgin on a waterbed?” Uncle Harv’s blue eyes beamed at us with humor, waiting for one of us to take the bait.
I frowned. My uncle was famous for his dirty jokes. It went with the territory. When you were a tycoon with world-famous holdings ranging from fashion to tasteful men’s entertainment magazine to a guilty pleasure website, you were expected to behave somewhat lewdly.
The question could be a test of some sort, but I’d never been too good at jokes. While I was wracking my brain and Mason was shifting around in his seat, the answer dropped like a K-Y Jelly-filled bomb.
“A cherry float.”
Unc reared back in his chair and roared as nausea joined the nervous clenching of my gut. This bawdy man had been my father figure since my dad, his older brother, died when I was nine.