Falling in Fiji by Casey Hagen - Read Online
Falling in Fiji
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Summary

A woman betrayed...

Corinne Anderson designs the most stunning engagement rings on the west coast. A jewelry designer for the jet set and engaged to marry the man of her dreams, Corinne thinks she has it all—until her engagement explodes in spectacular fashion. Devastated, Corinne dares a sexy stranger to help turn her honeymoon from broken to breathtaking.

A frazzled financier...

Everett Harden, a sought-after financial whiz kid, is overworked and stressed to the max. Minutes away from closing a lucrative deal, he's approached by a tiny spitfire who slaps down two airline tickets and a challenge: join her on a beach getaway where the sand is hot and the adventures hotter. Intrigued and desperate for an escape, Everett accepts.

Adventures unknown...

Fiji began as a fancy-free trip, but with the high-tech Adventure App running the show, Corinne and Everett find more than paradise. But can their romance survive the pressures of the real world, where reality bites, adventure is hard to come by, and—there is no App for love...

Okay folks…this book is for readers 18+. I write open door sex scenes. Wide open! Like, you'll be right under the covers, in the chair, pinned against the wall, etc. with my heroines. You get the point. This is not an opportunity for a bonding moment between mother and daughter. Well, unless you roll like that. Personally, I don't. My mother will read this, but we will forever pretend there is no sex in it. She's a virgin, I'm a virgin. We will dwell in blissful ignorance. But I digress. If open door sex scenes aren't your jam…don't buy this book. Don't be that person who buys the book despite this warning and then slays me in the ratings because you didn't follow instructions. This work contains explicit language. Again, if this offends you, this is not the book for you. I don't drop f-bombs every sentence, but you will find some colorful exclamations. Now, if you're like me, and like sexy geeks, travel adventures, humor, and hot romance…this is the story for you. Enjoy!

Published: Hagen Novels LLC on
ISBN: 9780996769402
List price: $1.99
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Falling in Fiji - Casey Hagen

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Falling In Fiji

A Falling In Paradise Novel
Casey Hagen

Hagen Novels LLC

KENNEBUNK, MAINE

Copyright © 2015 by Casey Hagen.

All rights reserved. No part of this publication may be reproduced, distributed or transmitted in any form or by any means, including photocopying, recording, or other electronic or mechanical methods, without the prior written permission of the publisher, except in the case of brief quotations embodied in critical reviews and certain other noncommercial uses permitted by copyright law. For permission requests, write to the publisher at the address below.

Hagen Novels, LLC

5 Livi Lane

Kennebunk, Maine04043

www.caseyhagenauthor.com

Publisher’s Note: This is a work of fiction. Names, characters, places, and incidents are a product of the author’s imagination. Locales and public names are sometimes used for atmospheric purposes. Any resemblance to actual people, living or dead, or to businesses, companies, events, institutions, or locales is completely coincidental.

Editing By Arran McNicol of Editing720 and Lisa Ricard Claro

Back Cover Summary By Lisa Ricard Claro

Falling In Fiji/ Casey Hagen.  1st ed.

ISBN 978-0-09967694-0-2

Don't take that tone with me, young man.

Mom, I’m sorry. I didn't mean—

You've always been a good boy.

Mom, listen—"

Well, other than the time you ordered three hundred dollars of porn on pay per view.

He winced. Now he and Corrine were even with the embarrassing stories. When he dared to meet her eyes, he found her with her mouth agape, eyes wide. Could a hole just open up and swallow him now. Mom! Listen!

What?

You're on speaker. Say hello to Corrine Anderson. Corrine, meet my mother Barbara Harden.

Oh, hello sweetheart! I'm Everett's proud mama.

Nice to meet you, Mrs. Harden.

None of that Mrs. Harden business. Call me Barbara. I insist. I apologize for the porn talk. I hope you won't think any less of my son. He was fourteen after all, and fourteen-year-old boys have one hand in the fridge and the other in their underwear. My son was no diff—

Everett scrambled for the end button and for the first time ever in his life hung up on his mother. He braced his elbows on his knees holding his head in his hands when he heard Corrine try to suppress a giggle.

It wasn't that bad.

How nice of you to lie to make me feel better, but we both know that was the equivalent of having my breasts out at the water park.

Love isn’t something you find. Love is something that finds you.

-Loretta Young

1 The Dare

I never liked him!

Corrine eyed her best friend, Alexa, over her almost empty margarita. Thanks for telling me…now!

Awww, honey, you were positively gushing over that smarmy piece of shit. How was I supposed to tell you?

Alexa was right, but it still stung. As naive as it sounded, she never pictured her fiancé, Jordan Hunt of Hunt Industries, doing anything to tarnish his stellar reputation. He had been nothing but charming, respectful, and attentive since he first took her out on a date three months earlier. They enjoyed a whirlwind romance that should have culminated in their marriage—she glanced at her watch—two hours earlier. Too bad she found not only him, but also several of his higher-ups, sharing multiple women during a corporate massage session in his private conference room.

How many times had he done that over the course of their courtship?

He never touched me beyond kisses. I thought he was so romantic. I'm a damn idiot! To her mortification, tears threatened again. She’d cried for four days, through the numerous phone calls canceling all of her big plans. She had no choice but to make every call personally, since her mother refused to help her. Lanelle Anderson, Corrine’s haughty, country club elitist mother, refused to help Corrine make a huge mistake by ending the best marital option she’d ever had over such a minor transgression. Men have needs, she'd said. Men can't be held to the same standard as women. She’d shrugged before taking another measured sip from her dry martini. Corrine rolled her eyes.

Bull hockey!

She seriously questioned the nature of her parents' relationship, especially if her mother honestly believed the baloney she was trying to sell. Either way, Corrine deserved better.

Look at it this way, hon—better to find out before the wedding. What if this had happened after the wedding or after you had spent your best years giving him heirs to his fortune?

Corrine's eyes roamed over her world-savvy best friend. Fearless to the point of recklessness, Alexa stood out among the crowd with her revealing dress and mile-high heels. Her hooded charcoal eyes continually roamed the bar and the upper deck where patrons congregated and couples danced. Her eyes narrowed and a wide smile curved her painted red lips.

Well, look who's here!

Corrine followed Alexa’s gaze to the upper deck. Who?

She pointed a dangerous-looking nail to the lone table tucked into the corner. Everett Harden.

Who's Everett Harden? He sat with his back to the corner. Stacks of papers and folders lay before him. Engrossed in his task, he tapped away at his adding machine, oblivious to the noise and chaos around him.

The tavern owner, Dean, roomed with him in college. He's a tough nut to crack, that one. He’s shy, quiet, and look at those adorable glasses. I could just eat him up.

Corrine had to admit that he was cute. Dirty blond, unruly waves tumbled away from his handsome face. He nudged his dark-framed glasses up higher on his nose. His slightly rumpled, dark plaid shirt lay over a white T-shirt. She couldn’t see his pants, but she’d guess they were tan Dockers. He made an attractive package, but it was his intense focus on his work that spiked her curiosity. How could he concentrate with all the noise? With all the scantily clad women?

Is he gay?

Alexa laughed her deep, sultry laugh. God, no! Just dedicated to his work. He's a financial whiz kid. He's the kind of guy you need. Not the flashy and pathetically shallow Jordan, but someone like Everett. Polite, loyal, hardworking, and good looking. But not too good looking.

You sound like you're describing a Golden Retriever.

Hey, don't knock the dedication of a good dog.

Corrine signaled the bartender for another margarita. Her third. And they were big. She hesitated a bit—maybe she shouldn't.

Order it. You deserve it after what that louse did to you. Alexa slapped down a twenty and slid the glass right in front of Corrine.

You know what? I do.

Corrine drank her way to boneless, as images played through her head. Society teas, years of tennis at her parents’ club, air hugs and kisses, and whispered gossip behind flawlessly manicured hands.

I'm boring. That's why he did it.

Oh. My. God. Don't you dare own his shit! You did everything for that man. Sure, you're careful, but you're certainly not boring.

Name one adventurous thing I've done in the past year!

Ummm…

Ah ha! Corrine pointed right at Alexa's slack jaw, the momentum almost knocking her right off her stool. Damn being short and little anyway! She grabbed the bar and tried to brace her feet on the barstool rods.

So change it.

What do you mean change it? I can't change my past.

Alexa leaned in. No, but you can change your future. Starting now! Truth or dare? She winked.

What? I'm not playing some childish game with you. God, we're mature. We have homes, careers…

Chicken?

Okay, so one of us is mature.

You're the one who said you were boring.

Well, wasn't that the truth? And she was. She did as her parents wanted, with the exception of her career choice. Choosing a career as a jewelry designer hadn't earned her any brownie points with her overachieving parents. It sucked being the only creative one amongst her elite family, compromised of a world-famous cardiologist, his high-society wife, and her sister, with a photographic memory,  now a corporate lawyer, and already a junior partner at age twenty-six. If that wasn’t bad enough, her sister, Hannah, had been happily married for two years and had a baby on the way, due in less than a month. Corrine could practically feel her eggs shrivel at the thought.

Dare!

What? Alexa looked at her, puzzled.

I choose dare. Corrine experienced a moment of trepidation when Alexa's eyes lit up.

Yes! Okay, let's see. Alexa prowled the room with eyes that didn't miss a trick. Everett! I dare you to ask Everett to dance.

Corrine shook her head. He's working.

Come on, you're gorgeous. Your hair is properly tamed, which makes you a total bitch, by the way. You're rocking your jean skirt and the AC/DC T-shirt is killer.

Corrine frowned down at her outfit. She’d looked a mess until two hours ago. She’d been living in sweats the past four days. Having your heart ripped out of your chest will do that to a girl. The skirt was on the top in her drawer, and the shirt was the first one she’d grabbed. She hadn't cared what she looked like. Ummm…

And she balks! Alexa declared with a sad shake of her head.

Alexa thought she was chickening out? Was she? A life of family dinners, with men her mother handpicked, loomed before her. The pitying looks she'd receive from her sister as she rocked her high-profile career and raised the perfect child. No way!

I'll do you one better. Corrine threw back the rest of the margarita. She fluffed her hair. Adjusted the girls. She'd always seen Alexa do it, but never tried herself. Since her girls were rather small, her bra shifted above her left breast. Alexa laughed as Corrine tucked herself back in. She unzipped her purse and pulled out two tickets to Fiji—her consolation prize for catching Jordan The Man Whore Hunt with his pants down. She’d traded her Paris honeymoon for a Fiji vacation. She’d hoped to take the trip with Alexa, but three of her hairdressers were out sick with the flu, so there was no way she could leave for a vacation right now.

Wait! What are you doing with those?

Just watch! Corrine marched up the stairs, pushing past raucous laughter and couples with an affinity for PDA. She marched right up to the corner table and slapped down her two tickets to Fiji next to the adding machine. Startled dark blue eyes met hers. She spied Alexa watching her from the bar with wide-eyed fascination.

One week in Fiji. All expenses paid. Flight leaves tomorrow at seven thirty. I dare you to come with me!

Whiskey-flecked, olive eyes flashed when they met his. The sable-haired spitfire, with pink-stained cheeks, was batshit crazy. What the hell did it say about him, when the minute she’d uttered the words, he wanted to take the offer? That was what he got for having a two-year dry spell. Two years—had it really been that long since he’d had sex? Wow. He shook his head and looked back at the deranged little woman in front of him.

Didn't your parents teach you about stranger danger? He tossed his pen on the tickets, leaned back in his chair, and watched the thrust of her small breasts as she dragged air into her lungs.

I don't give a damn about any of the lessons my parents taught me!

Oh, there was a story there. A messy one. If he knew what was good for him, he would hand her the tickets, pick up his pen, and get back to the number puzzle before him. He’d almost had it figured out, until she showed up in one tight little ball of energy, that is. There was something captivating about the lovingly worn AC/DC shirt pulled across her gently curved breasts that muddled his flagging concentration.

For all you know, I'm a serial killer.

She snorted. Snorted! Yeah, right. You look perfectly harmless to me. Safe and sound.

Wasn't that just the damn problem? She saw what every other woman did. Safe, steady, great friend, but too nice to date. When they took a chance, they tried to change him, suggesting he shorten his hair, switch from glasses to contacts, and shop for fashionable clothes. They didn’t see the man behind the rims. The one who needed a break, a change of scenery, an adventure.

Here she was, offering just what he wanted. No strings, no planning, and at no cost. Not that cost would be an issue. Time. Time was always the damn issue. Dean's financial records weren't as bad as suspected, so another half an hour, and his work would be done. As his own boss, he sure as hell could bump back his schedule. Not something he did lightly, but dammit, she was too intriguing to ignore.

He glanced down at the tickets, noting the departure and return dates. One week to lose himself. He would turn off his cell phone, ignore his emails, and just be. No worrying about his parents. His father seemed to be bouncing back from his treatment for prostate cancer, making it much easier on his mother, who hadn't been resting well during the peak of his treatments. Constant trips to the hospital sapped the strength of even the healthiest, most energetic person. One week, sun and sand, and he could forget it all.

Maybe time away would give him the perspective to decide on his career path. He’d received a lucrative job offer that would mean putting down roots, being close to his parents, and weekends off. If only he didn't like maintaining control over his clients and his rates. Working for a large corporation meant giving up the puzzles he so desperately craved. It meant more paperwork, more keeping balance, and less putting out fires. Less excitement. People found him boring now. Safe and sound, as this spitfire put it. A suit, briefcase, and high-rise office would solidify that image.

He stood and offered his hand. What’s your name?

Corrine Anderson. She took his hand, sending a sizzle of awareness up his arm. He frowned down to where she still held his hand in a surprisingly strong grip.

Everett Harden. He lifted a finger and grabbed his phone. She looked normal enough, but, yeah, time to Google her, just in case. His search produced her LinkedIn profile and a Facebook account at the top. She wore a dark tailored suit in her LinkedIn picture. Nice. He tapped the Facebook link and found her profile to be private. Smart decision. Maybe she wasn’t a total nut after all.

It’s a deal. So, how do you want to do this, Corrine Anderson? Do I pick you up? Do you want to meet at the airport? On the plane?

Her eyes skittered to a woman giving her two thumbs up from the bar. He vaguely remembered seeing her before.

I'm not sure I should give you my address.

Ah, so those scruples only went so far. His face split into a wide grin, and damned if he didn't feel the tension of the past couple years loosen its vise grip on him. Two minutes ago you dared me to go on a vacation with you, and now you're worried about your address?

Okay, you have a point, but apparently those stranger danger lessons are in there somewhere, so let's meet at the airport.

Then I'll see you bright and early at the airport, Corrine Anderson.

She’d only made it three steps away from him, and already blood raced to his pants. Her tight jean skirt showed off a subtle flair of hips, a world-class rounded ass, and shapely legs all the way down to her pretty petite feet. Safe and sound, huh? He'd have to do something about that. Around Corrine Anderson, he felt anything but safe and sound.

2 The Meeting

Corrine almost lost her nerve.