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Building Our Love

Building Our Love

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Building Our Love

ratings:
4/5 (20 ratings)
Length:
271 pages
4 hours
Publisher:
Released:
Jul 9, 2014
ISBN:
9781310609596
Format:
Book

Description

A secret that tore them apart...
Chloe Jamison has spent three years away from the love of her life for reasons she can’t reveal. When a scandal causes her to lose her job prospects as an interior designer, she has no one else to turn to except for the family that was once like her own.
Architect Ryan Griffin waited five years for the girl he loved to be ready and then she dumped him for someone else after giving him her virginity. When she comes back into his life, needing his family’s help and wanting him back, he vows to protect his heart at all costs.

An arrangement that has to be broken...
Agreeing to give him her body whenever he wants it, Chloe soon realizes that having only a piece of Ryan will never be enough. When he comes to the same conclusion, they reignite their relationship while mixing business with endless nights of pleasure.
Combining their talents in and out of the bedroom, it seems nothing can come between them this time. But, lingering issues with trust may end their relationship for good. Chloe and Ryan’s love for each other, along with the revelation of the secret from three years ago, may not be enough to get them past the hurt they have inflicted on each other a second time.

Is love really worth it if you have to fight so hard to keep it?

Publisher:
Released:
Jul 9, 2014
ISBN:
9781310609596
Format:
Book

About the author

Crystal Perkins has always been a big reader, but she never thought she would write her own book, until she sat down in 2014 and did it. She's now published over 40 books, and has been featured in several anthologies as well.She lived in Las Vegas for over a decade, where you could find her running author events and winning bookseller awards. She's currently living in North Dakota to be closer to her family, but she still considers Vegas to be her home city. When she's not reading a few hundred books a year or chasing after her grandson, you can find her watching hockey (Go Knights Go!) and trying to find the perfect shade of lipstick.She loves Star Wars AND Star Trek, but if pushed to choose, it will always be Leia and her crew who come out on top. Her love of all things nerdy comes through in her book characters, no matter the genre. A mac and cheese connoisseur, she travels the world looking for the perfect version, while attending book conventions and signings as a cover for her research. Poutine research is also conducted regularly on her trips.Her first series, The Griffin Brothers, followed four billionaire brothers, and the third book, Creating a Love, was a finalist for a multicultural award in 2014. Her second series, Corrigan & Co. featured a secret society of female spies in Las Vegas. She followed this with Society Girls, which offered a glimpse into the training of the women who are recruited into the Corrigan & Co. Foundation, and the Society. The Company Men series featured the relatives of her secret society of spies.Activate is a Young Adult Sci-Fi standalone novel, and A Kiss Is Just a Kiss is a Romantic Comedy standalone book. If you like something darker, you can find her Horror short stories in the Never Fear anthologies!She’s currently writing about modern day witches in her Burn series, and bridesmaids for hire who solve mysteries in The Maids! In 2020, she will also be starting a hockey novella series.Crystal loves hearing from her readers, so please feel free to send her an email, Facebook message, or Tweet! She's also on Instagram, where you can see her monthly reads!Crystal@crystalperkinsauthor.comfacebook.com/crystalperkinsauthorTwitter: @wondermomlvInstagram: @crystalperkinsauthor


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Top quotes

  • I was an 8th grader dating the high school quarterback, so now I was cool. ButI didn’t want to hang out with them. They had tried to befriend me once before, to get close to Scott and Owen, but I wasn’t interested then either.

  • Well, I’m going to anyway. He’s 6 foot 2 with an incredible body that’s totally hot and ripped. He has jet black hair that falls into his amazing green eyes. I love to run my fingers through it when he makes love to me.

  • I pick up the phone in my office. “Chloe, can you come in here please?”She walks in and closes and locks the door with a smile.

  • Since my family is beyond wealthy, we pay our employees extremely well and can pay for the best to work with us.

  • But maybe she would have tried, and that would have been even worse than her leaving me for Adam.

Book Preview

Building Our Love - Crystal Perkins

Love

About Building Our Love

A secret that tore them apart…

Chloe Jamison has spent three years away from the love of her life for reasons she can’t reveal. When a scandal causes her to lose her job prospects as an interior designer, she has no one else to turn to except for the family that was once like her own.

Architect Ryan Griffin waited five years for the girl he loved to be ready and then she dumped him for someone else after giving him her virginity. When she comes back into his life, needing his family’s help and wanting him back, he vows to protect his heart at all costs.

An arrangement that has to be broken…

Agreeing to give him her body whenever he wants it, Chloe soon realizes that having only a piece of Ryan will never be enough. When he comes to the same conclusion, they reignite their relationship while mixing business with endless nights of pleasure.

Combining their talents in and out of the bedroom, it seems nothing can come between them this time. But, lingering issues with trust may end their relationship for good. Chloe and Ryan’s love for each other, along with the revelation of the secret from three years ago, may not be enough to get them past the hurt they have inflicted on each other a second time.

Is love really worth it if you

have to fight so hard to keep it?

Other books by Crystal Perkins

Gaming For Love (The Griffin Brothers #1)

For my dad…

He was the best man I’ve ever

known. Alzheimer’s took him from us,

but we’ll never forget him.

Cletus John Goetz June 1, 1915-July 4, 2008

Chapter 1

Ryan

As I head to my dad’s office, I can’t help but wonder what my brother wants to see us about. Scott usually sticks to his computers. Or his fiancé. He’s well underway with his new software project, so I don’t think there’s anything going on with that. It’s unusual for him to ask to see us in a formal setting.

When I get to the outer office, my dad’s longtime secretary, Angie, looks at me nervously. That’s strange. She usually playfully flirts with me, even though she is pushing 60, and I am just shy of 25. I don’t have time to ask her what’s wrong as Scott storms out of the office.

You didn’t tell me that she would be here! he yells over his shoulder. She? What she is he talking about?

The floor drops out beneath my feet as I hear the person he is yelling at respond. I had to bring her, Scott. Your family is her only hope. John’s here. And there’s only one her that Scott would be yelling about in relation to John. Chloe. The girl I gave my love, my everything, to. The girl who shredded my heart and never looked back.

Scott sees me then. Ry, I swear I had no idea. John asked if I could set up a meeting, but I didn’t know that bitch would be here.

Before I can say anything, John is in his face. Do not call my daughter a bitch. She may have made choices that you and I don’t agree with, but my daughter was a great friend to you when you were younger, and you will respect her in my presence. He then looks at me. I’m sorry, Ryan. I wouldn’t have brought her here if she had anywhere else to go. I need your help. Yours and your father’s. Please just at least listen to us. If you can’t bring yourself to help, we’ll both leave, and you will never have to see us again.

What do you mean, both of you will leave? Scott is panicking now. I know that John is his closest confidant, and I need to calm him down. Even if it will hurt me in the process.

No one will be leaving. We’ll help you, John. You’re part of our family, and if that means helping Chloe too, we’ll do it for you.

I walk into my dad’s office to find him looking uncomfortable while Chloe sobs into his jacket. I can only see the back of her, but my body instantly reacts to the sight of the only woman I have ever loved. Her soft blonde hair is cascading down her back and she’s wearing a flowered dress that hugs her thin body and perfect ass. She’s got heels on that bring her height up to six feet.

I stand there and just stare at her, wondering again about what I did to lose her. How bad was I as her first lover that made her leave me the next day for another man? No, I’m not going to do this. I don’t care why she left. I don’t care about her. But, I do. I still love her. That doesn’t mean that I’ll let her hurt me again. She will never get that close to me again. I need to take control of the situation.

What are you doing here, Chloe?

She turns, and her beautiful blue eyes take me in. She is as gorgeous in person as she’s been in my fantasies for the past three years. Maybe more so, now that she is no longer a teenager. She’s still thin with soft, natural curves and legs a mile long. There’s nothing fake about her body. It is just her who’s fake. I make my expression one of steel as she looks at me with a hint of sadness.

I had nowhere else to go, Ryan.

What about your fiancé? You know, the guy you left me for.

Adam and I are no longer together. He left me.

Karma’s a bitch, huh? Just like you.

Ryan, I warned you-, John starts to say.

Dad, it’s okay. I deserve whatever Ryan calls me. She takes us all in. Can we please sit down, and then I can explain why I’m here?

* * *

Chloe

Ryan nods, and we all take seats around the table in his dad’s office. I take a deep breath and my dad reaches over to squeeze my hand as I start to explain. I just graduated at the top of my class and I had offers from several interior design firms. Then Adam and I broke up, and what he told the press caused me to lose all of those offers. My student loan payments are pretty big, and I don’t want dad to take on the burden of paying those along with helping out my sister and her family. I need a stable job, and he thought you might be willing to give me one. I know it’s a long shot, but I had to ask. I promise that I will be professional and work hard.

I look at Ryan and have trouble breathing. He looks so gorgeous, even as he’s glaring at me. His black hair is a little long on top with a few strands hanging down into his eyes. Those amazing green eyes, that all the men in his family have, are like hard emeralds that are cutting through me right now. He’s clean shaven and conservative looking in his designer suit and tie. I can see his muscles trying to break free under the suit. He worked construction every summer to learn that side of building. He’s kept that strong physique and looks like he is carved out of marble. I remember the way it felt to be held in those strong arms, and I have to stop myself from jumping onto his lap. Yeah, that would go over well.

What do you mean you lost your job prospects after Adam went to the press? Gary’s voice breaks my trance. Ryan’s dad is a good man, and I hate knowing I let him down. Now I have to tell him things that will make me look even worse to him.

You don’t know? I thought that you would get the Chicago papers here.

Contrary to what you seem to think, we have better things to do than keep up with your love life, Ryan spits out and I flinch.

Adam told the press that I cheated on him throughout our entire relationship and that he caught me and broke up with me. I say it all fast. I need to get it out without thinking about it.

So, you made me wait five years, and then you just went crazy and fucked everyone in sight? Ryan’s eyes are now flashing and not in the way I used to love.

Ryan, I love you like a son, but I will not let you speak to my daughter that way. My dad is on his feet.

Dad. Please sit down. Ryan has every right to be angry. Even if what Adam said isn’t true. It isn’t true. The only man that I have ever slept with is the one in front of me with murder in his eyes. I can’t tell him that, though. I can’t tell anyone the truth.

Scott speaks for the first time since we sat down. I don’t have any interior design work, but you can help me if you want. I can pay you to be my secretary. God knows I need one. He laughs to try to lighten the mood.

I turn to thank him but Ryan’s voice stops me. It’s cold and hard, and when I look to him, he is sneering at me. If Chloe is going to work for us, she’s going to work for me. I happen to be in need of an assistant since mine left to get married.

Ryan, I’m not sure that would be a good idea, Gary says.

I’ll take the job, I tell them as I stand to face Ryan. Thank you.

Oh, don’t thank me yet, sweetheart. I’m not the sweet college boy who worshipped you anymore. You saw to that. You may not like who I am now.

I swallow hard before answering. I’m not the girl you worshipped anymore, either. And it doesn’t matter if I like you. I’ll work hard for you. He turns to leave, motioning for me to follow. I smile at my dad, hoping to reassure us both that this will be OK, and follow Ryan out the door.

We take the elevator down a few floors, and walk into an office full of cubicles. There’s one desk in the middle of it all, manned by a handsome guy who looks more put together than I do on my best day. Ryan introduces me to him as Kevin, and tells me he’s in charge of the secretarial pool. He tells him that I’m his new assistant and need training on everything. Kevin looks at me curiously as Ryan walks away.

You have no experience?

Not really, no.

How did you get this job, then?

I don’t want to lie to him so I sigh, and just say it. My father has worked for the Griffins since I was 11. I needed a job, so Ryan agreed to hire me.

Most people wouldn’t have admitted that so readily.

I guess I’m not most people.

No, you don’t seem to be.

Since there’s really no proper answer to that, I just give him an awkward smile. He tells me to move the chair in front of his desk around so that I can sit next to him. We spend the rest of the day with me taking notes while Kevin goes over each program that is used as well as the phone system. We stop for a quick lunch, where he introduces me to some of the other staff. They are all outwardly nice, but I sense some hostility from the women. I have no doubt that they wanted this job and are upset that I somehow got it.

By the end of the day, I have some grasp of everything, although I’m a little freaked out about working on my own. Ryan stops by to see how things went.

Is she ready? he asks Kevin, completely ignoring me.

To be alone? Um, no. We normally train the new people for two weeks before leaving them alone. Scott’s worked hard to make our systems easy, but there’s still a lot to learn.

Well, too bad. She’ll be alone starting tomorrow.

I don’t think—

I do.

Kevin looks at me with a concerned look on his face, and since I don’t want to get him in trouble for defending me, I speak up. I’ll do my best. You were a great teacher, Kevin, and I have my notes.

"Call me if you have questions, Chloe. I mean it.’

Thanks.

If you two are done flirting, I’ll show you where you’re working Chloe.

Flirting? Really? Kevin is so obviously gay, it’s not even funny. Maybe I shouldn’t have taken this job. I know I was desperate,and I was looking for a way to get Ryan back, but I had hoped for a job with Gary or Scott. They’re both angry with me because of what happened with Ryan, but at least they’d treat me fairly. I made my choice, though, and now I have to see it through. I wasn’t lying when I said that I didn’t want my dad to have to pay my loans for me. I get up and thank Kevin again, before turning to Ryan.

I’m ready.

He doesn’t reply, just turns and starts to walk away. I follow him, struggling a little to keep up in my heels. I’ve been referred to as an Amazon several times in my life, but Ryan is several inches taller and wearing comfortable shoes.

He stops at a large workspace outside a door with his name on it. There’s a desk as well as small file cabinets forming an L-shape. This is your desk. Familiarize yourself with it before you leave tonight. I expect you to be ready to work in the morning. You’re not getting any special treatment just because we used to know each other.

Like he had to tell me that. Okay, boss.

Do you think this is funny, Chloe?

No, Ryan, I really don’t.

Good. Because this job is usually in high demand and I just passed over people for you. You know how I feel about people earning their jobs, so you should understand that this is not normal for me. Don’t make me regret giving you this chance.

Why did you?

Because my brother was hurting, trying to decide whether he needed to be loyal to me or John. I had the means to fix that and so I did. Make no mistake—I don’t want you here.

That’s coming through loud and clear.

Good.

He goes into his office and I use my notes to log in to the computer and sign in to the phones. I do what I can to go through the programs. I don’t even know if I have any other things I need to know other than what the pool does. I’m guessing that with me being an assistant, and not just a regular secretary, there’s more to do. I’m scared to knock on the door and ask him, though. I’ll just have to figure it out and hope to hell that I don’t screw it up.

* * *

Ryan

I can’t believe I agreed to this. No, not agreed. I insisted on having Chloe work for me. When Scott said that she could work for him, I wanted to punch him. I don’t want her, but I was ready to fight my brother because I didn’t want her with him. Not that she would be with him. He loves Yasmin too much to even look at another woman. But maybe she would have tried, and that would have been even worse than her leaving me for Adam.

These past two weeks have been torture, as well as a big fucking mess. Chloe pretty much sucked at her job for the first week, although she’d been better the past few days. She didn’t do anything to jeopardize the business, but everything took her twice as long and she couldn’t even remember how to log in without her notes. Thank God she’s finally got the work down.

Now, if she could just stop looking so hot. I still hate the woman, but I’m not blind. She’s not dressing inappropriately or anything, but seeing her in her work dresses and heels has me thinking thoughts I shouldn’t be thinking. What have I done to try and combat those feelings? I’ve acted like a complete ass, pointing out her every mistake, while lacing my comments with enough innuendo to get her eyes blazing with both anger and lust.

Just the way I like it. I mean, used to like it. Oh, hell, I like it now. It’s totally hot when she gets angry, but has to rein it in to keep her job. What the fuck is wrong with me? If Ellen in H.R. knew what I was doing, she’d send me back to sexual harassment class again. If she knew that I was thinking of bending Chloe over my desk and fucking her until she collapses, it’d be even worse. I need to get control of myself and my damn cock.

I would say it’s a problem with not getting laid, but I am. I hooked up with a different woman every night last week. I met an especially talented one a few nights ago and so I haven’t had to go out to the clubs. I’ve just gone to her place every night. I don’t do that often and honestly, she’s been getting a little clingy. Maybe that’s the problem. I need to move on. I send her a quick text canceling for tonight and telling her that while we had a great time, I’m moving on. I know it’s a little harsh, but I did tell her up front that I wasn’t looking for more.

Chloe knocks on my door and I tell her to come in. She tells me she’s finished her work for the day and she asks if I want her to do something else. She wants to do something else? If my cock had its way, she would be on her knees sucking it with that luscious mouth of hers. We may have waited to do the act itself, but we had several years of oral fun with each other, and my cock remembers them well. I remember them, too. God help me, but despite her leaving me and now hearing that she slept around afterward, I still want her. I don’t know how this will continue to work.

Ry. Are you going to talk to me at all? She pulls me out of my thoughts by using my nickname. She has no right to that.

Do not call me that. We’ve shared too much for you to call me Mr. Griffin, but you will not use my nickname. Do you understand? I am barely holding on through my rage. And lust. Damn, but I want this woman.

Yes. Yes, I do. I won’t do it again, Ryan. She looks a little scared. Imagine what she would think if she knew that I wanted her to give me a blow job right now.

So, you want some extra work, huh? I would tell you what I really want you to do, but that would be sexual harassment.

Her eyes darken as she takes in my words. I wouldn’t ever turn you in for that. She walks over to my desk and starts typing something on my computer. Before I can stop her, she is printing something, signing the paper, and handing it to me. Here.

I read it, not quite believing what I see.

This is to certify that any sexual relationship between Ryan Griffin and Chloe Jamison is completely consensual and in no way sexual harassment.

Are you kidding with this? I ask her.

No, I’m not. I didn’t just come here for a job. I want you back, Ryan. I will do almost anything to make that happen.

I can’t deny that I want you, Chloe, but it would only be for sex. I won’t be in any other kind of relationship with you again.

I can do that for now.

No, Chloe. You don’t seem to understand. It’s not just for now. I want nothing more than sex. I won’t take you out. I will take other women out and have you send them roses the next day. I’ll take my own pleasure and not care whether you come or not. You can do that? God, I’m an ass. No, I’m not. She deserves it. I’ve never even thought about saying things like this to a woman, but I have to protect myself. This is the only way that I can think to do it.

Y-yes. If that is all that I can have, I can do it. But I need something.

No. This is my show, Chloe.

Just one thing, Ryan. I need it. Please.

I can’t deny her, even though I want to. Okay, I’ll give you one thing.

I can only do this if I’m the only one you have sex with. You can’t fuck the women you take out. Only me. And no oral or anything else with them.

I can’t let her know that all the women I’ve been with were just substitutes for her. So I continue to act like the biggest asshole on the planet. Fine. Now lock the door and get on your knees. I want that mouth of yours to suck me like you used to. You can use some of the new tricks you’ve learned, too.

* * *

Chloe

I obviously don’t have any new tricks, but he wouldn’t believe me even if I told him that. I can’t tell him, though. The consequences would be too big. And not just for me. I walk over and lock the door, and then unplug the phone. I know someone is covering the phones while I’m being trained, but I don’t want to take a chance.

I stand in front of Ryan and start unbuckling his pants. I push them down along with his boxers and see his beautiful cock pop free. It’s just as amazing as I remember, and I involuntarily lick my lips. That’s right, sweetheart. Moisten those lips.

I know that Ryan’s being crude on purpose, but it’s turning me on whether he intends it to or not. I sink to my knees and grasp him in my hands. He jerks

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