Opposites attract and repel, but can opposites gel forever? Love Moonjay is an expert in business and knows her stuff. Her love life, on the other hand, is nonexistent. Maxwell, a popular singer and songwriter, is highly thought of by his screaming, panting, mostly female fans. He may be constantly publicly linked to beautiful women, but he guards his personal life as well as, if not better than, Fort Knox.
Love needs to shake things up, and step outside her comfort zone, if she is going to change her boring way of life. A girls' retreat to New Orleans and her first secular concert is a step in the right direction. Love is excited about the adventures that await her until she sets eyes on Maxwell.
Max, while uncomfortable with the attention his fame brings, is accustomed to certain responses from the opposite sex. His reaction to seeing Love in the audience in New Orleans puts him in unfamiliar territory. Max can't help himself, he singles her out. Once Max grips Love's hand no one else exist in the crowd arena. Max wants Love; therefore, she must desire him.
Love finds himself falling under the sensual spell of Max. What Max knows for sure is that Love will be in his bed tonight. Love knows seduction and its Max'z hypnotic eyes, intoxicating kisses, powerful hands and magical fingers.
Love and Max both regret the night before but for different reasons.
Fate and desire bring Love and Maxwell together. They want each other desperately but fear and secrets threaten to tear them apart.
Love wants marriage and children. Most importantly she wants real love. Does Max desire the same things? Or is he a smooth lothario and is Love his latest conquest? Time will reveal all truths, especially in love.
|Product dimensions:||6.00(w) x 9.00(h) x 0.48(d)|
Read an Excerpt
Love & MaxwellA Fantasy Reel
By Alicia Susan
iUniverse, Inc.Copyright © 2013 Alicia Susan
All right reserved.
New Orleans, Louisianaor simply NOLAbustled with tourists all eager to see the lingering devastation of Hurricane Katrina. Love Moonjay, an African-American, and Indian racially mixed, chocolate-brown, vision, was among them. She came to NOLA for the Essence Music Festival. Love enjoyed being in NOLA and wanted to continue her trip; she hadn't seen everything. Love looked forward to the homage for T. D. Jakes tomorrow. Afterward, it was home to New York. Tonight she had to suffer through her first secular concert. The expanded theater at the University of New Orleans Lakefront Arena, known as UNO, was colossal. Every seat was occupied. Love felt uncomfortable in large crowds; she became klutzy.
Her friend Shannon tore out of NOLA that morning bound for Fayetteville, North Carolina, devastated by the sudden death of a beloved uncle. Love was by herself. Never having been to a worldly concert, Love was horrified to see women in almost less fabric than the skimpiest beach attire. Love wore an A-line, black, knee-length lace dress; her three-inch red heels, elongated her body; showing off her curvy bottom, and shapely legs. Small diamond stud earrings, a black clutch bag, and a gold wristwatch completed her outfit.
The main-floor crowd sat between acts, but now many made their way to the front in anticipation. The crowds' chants for Maxwell hurried the band setting up. Love wanted the show over. Her feet were throbbing. Forget about her toes, which probably bled courtesy of a woman's weapon like hoofers. It was the same woman who'd purchased Shannon's ticket; and elbowed her way closer to the stage.
Silence, then ear-piercing screams filled the arena. Swooning women with flailing arms worshiped. The mayhem was over the man everyone had waited forty-five minutes to see and hear. Tall, honey-brown, toned, sexy crooner Maxwell slowly walked onto the stage, singing beautifully. Security rushed forward to prevent some women from trying to climb onto the stage. Love was raised in church and accustomed to expressions of praise and worship. African-Americans were passionate, demonstrative people, who didn't mind showing their emotions. To Love, at least, this exhibition was obvious idol worship for the singer, Maxwell.
A hush came over the crowd as Maxwell stood at the base of the stage. The arrested crowd was breathing; Love could hear their pants depleting the atmosphere of oxygen. She looked up at the singer and acknowledged his attractiveness. His asked for the houselights in a raspy voice. She inhaled sharply when Maxwell looked at her. He couldn't be, could he? He reached his hand out for hers. She saw her hand being gripped by his strong fingers. A heat surged through her and traveled throughout her body. Love was on stage with no memory of having walked up the heavily guarded stairs. It was a mystery.
Max never singled out a female at a concert before. Tonight, he couldn't help himself. He spotted this gorgeous woman as he stood in the wings. From that vantage point, he could see she was a heart-stopper. This close, her beauty overpowered him. Max gripped her hand, and for several seconds, no one else existed but the two of them. He had no idea how she got on stage. Someone in his team probably choreographed that maneuver, and he wasn't mad at them at all. Max examined her almost waist-length hair. Was it real or store bought? Either way, her inky black hair would look sexy against his pillows. Her expressive eyes and shapely body made him pine for sex. He desired to touch her, taste her, and sex her this night, all night long.
"Are you over twenty-one?" Maxwell purred into her ear. She didn't answer.
Maxwell repeated his question. He sighed in relief when she nodded yes. Her response was permission for him to mold her body even closer to his as he sang his current number-one hit. Max finished his song and looked down at her. He watched as her eyes seemed to search his for hidden secrets. Max, spoke to the crowd of mostly panting, hot, horny women. His eyes remained on Love's large almond ones.
"This woman looks too young to be older than twenty-one, doesn't she? How old do you think she is?" Max asked the now outraged crowd. The women began yelling out things like sixteen, fifty; she's an old ho. Maxwell felt Love's body shake as the mean-spirited comments rang out throughout the arena. He looked down at her alarmed features.
"You are gorgeous," Max said into the microphone.
"Thank you," Love said breathlessly and turned her face bashfully.
"We've got a shy one here," Max said. He liked that, being reserved, at times, himself.
"How old are you?" Max asked. He extended the microphone to Love, and her response filled the arena. He watched as Love lifted her arm.
"I'll be twenty-five in a minute," Love croaked into the microphone. She showed Max her watch.
"I want to be the first person to kiss you for your birthday. May I?" Maxwell panted into the microphone, and the women started screaming.
"Kiss me, Max. She's lying; it's not her birthday," someone yelled.
Max looked down at her and saw her eyes on his lips. When she nodded her agreement, he congratulated himself. He pulled her lower body even closer to his engorged manhood. He gently brushed his lips across hers. He leaned back and looked into her beautiful eyes, framed by impossibly long lashes.
"We have to do this thing right," Max whispered as he deliberately dropped the microphone rendering the shocked crowd speechless when the blaring noise rang out. His fingers gently brushed her face as he tucked a strand of her hair behind her ear. The crowd was deafening, but he was going to get his fill of this lady. Max buried his hand in her hair as he pulled her face closer to his. He tried to stick his tongue inside her mouth. He felt bereft when her hands pulled his fingers from her face. She broke off his attempts to kiss her. Max inhaled sharply when she grabbed his face and went in. She sucked his bottom lip, and he returned the favor by sucking her top lip as he melted with her. The crowd's boos were deafening. The pleasure from her soft kiss dwindled and died. His last impression was how soft her curves felt against his hard body. Max watched as the lovely lady backed away, turned, and raced toward the stairs. He looked around, found the abandoned microphone, and picked it up.
"Testing, testing," Max said into the microphone.
"Are you packing a weapon in those pants, Maxwell?" An enraptured fan yelled out.
The crowd erupted in laughter when Max placed his hands in front of his pants to hide his erection. Love was led down the stairs by several members of his security team, as Max watched. He became worried when quite a few women rushed forward to do violence to her. He had to bring order before pandemonium broke out.
"Ladies, ladies, there is enough of me to go around," Max said. His joke failed, so he attempted to start another song. However, those jealous women were determined to confer upon the lady a smack down for kissing him. Max stopped singing, and his crew stopped playing.
"Bring her up here before they kill her," Max said as he jogged toward the stairs and his security people.
"I don't want to read in The Times Picayune that a woman was killed at a concert over a kiss." Maxwell punctuated the words with his hand. He told his team to bring the young female to the lounge and breathed deeply when they were offstage.
"I want everyone to enjoy any gigs I'm involved in. So how about we do a little something?" Max said and started to sing as his team quickly struck up the cords and played. His sexy voice and moves soon had the women enthralled. His silky-smooth falsetto melted their iciness. Some women forgot about the kiss altogether while others fantasized it had been them in his arms.
Love was taken aback by the sheer luxuriousness of the lounge. There were a few beautiful titanium yellow leather armchairs. A huge, fixed projection screen TV overpowered one of the walls. Several barber chairs were lined up next to a mirrored wall. Flowers covered several surfaces, and a banquet table teemed with food, drinks, fruit, mouthwatering cakes, and a variety of pastries. The whole lot appeared ready to cave in. Beside members of his security, there were five other people in the room. Love sat in an azure love seat on the far end of the lounge. She openly studied the other people in the room. She wondered how they knew the guy who knocked her balance sideways. Love was given the once-over and then patently ignored by the other occupants. They watched the concert on the large screen and commented about Maxwell's performance. Pete Brown, an attractive, husky, mocha complexioned man in his thirties, wearing jeans and a T-shirt, approached Love. She spied cruelty behind his smile. She feared he'd break her with his massive girth by attempting to squeeze next to her on the love seat.
"Dang, can a brother get a kiss like Maxwell got?" Pete asked. Love was assaulted by his rude words. She shook her head no.
"Oh, it's like that, I see," Pete said and skulked away.
Love sat for what seemed like an hour. She stood and walked toward the door. Several security guards surrounded it, chatting to each other.
The guard facing her put his hand up, and motioned her to stop. Love stopped short and gave him a questioning look.
"Ma'am, I'm sure Maxwell wants to speak with you after the concert," the guard informed Love.
"I have to leave," Love said.
"Look, the concert is over," the security guard said looking past her. Love looked over her shoulder at the large screen as Maxwell walked off the stage. She began to panic.
"I must get to my car before the crowd. I don't want any trouble," she said breathlessly.
"I'll personally escort you to your car," the security guard said.
"If I make a move for that door, are you going to block me?" Love whispered with deadly seriousness.
The guard laughed. "No, I won't. You might want to stay here in comfort. You won't make it out of the arena or near your car for a while," the guard calmly informed Love.
Max breathlessly entered the lounge and let out a relieved sigh. The woman was still there. He sang for the crowd, but his mind was elsewhereher soft lips, that kiss, her body against his, occupied his thoughts. She felt better than the costly down pillows he took everywhere. He could immerse himself in her curves for days.
"Four curtain calls; that's hot," one of the women called out to Max, who stood in front of Love. His breathlessness was like someone who had run a mini marathon.
"I know you're not trying to take off. You haven't thanked me for saving your life," Max cooed to the pleasure of almost everyone in the room. Several occupants burst out in laughter. Maxwell grabbed Love's hand with his sweaty one and led her over to the place she'd just left.
Don't go anywhere, okay." Max demanded softly. Love didn't answer so Max leaned in closer. "Don't leave, okay," he persisted. Love nodded in acquiescence but bit her lip in confusion.
Max laughed at her surprised look. He softly kissed her full lips; walked away, and sat in one of the barber stools and had his stage make-up removed. All the performances were rehashed. Max stood up and unbuttoned his shirt.
Love sat and tried again to calm her hammering pulse. She couldn't take her eyes off Maxwell. Her lips were parted, her breathing shallow, and her slender, long piano fingers gripped her bag. She was nervous as his eyes scarcely left hers even though he kept up with the heady post-concert commentary. Love was panicked. She promised she'd stay, but she was at risk. Love wanted to leave, but invisible strings prevented escape. Her wayward thoughts and newly awakened desires were dangerous. She questioned if her legs would support flight. Before long, the onstage kiss came up.
How dare they talk about me as if I can't hear them?
Love jumped up to leave when Maxwell's hand began to peel off his wife beater T-shirt. She sat down abruptly. Her eyes were on his naked, toned, and sparsely haired torso. She nervously licked her lips and looked up to see Maxwell's eyes upon her. Was there an almost impish twinkle there? She couldn't tell because his expression quickly changed. Love was highly sensitized. She watched Max as he wiped sweat from his bare chest with a towel.
When Max stopped toweling his chest, her thoughts freed her. She saw the smile on his face when their eyes met. She didn't like his smirk. Was he laughing at her or silently making fun of her? She turned her head momentarily but couldn't stop looking back at the fine specimen of manliness. She watched as he pulled a clean T-shirt over his head. Gaining self-control, Love turned her head and placed her hand on her rebellious neck.
Like a silent panther, Max walked over to where Love sat. The pulse beating rapidly in her neck was the only indication that she was aware of him. Max was aware that the other occupants were watching with varied degrees of interest and disinterest. Max had battled and won over his natural wariness in order to approach Love. Max, so used to women approaching him, had become almost inept at initiating conversation with the opposite sex. A painful silence permeated the room.
"Is it really your birthday?" Max inquired as he lifted one eyebrow inquisitively. It had been the first thing that popped into his head. Love nodded of course to his question.
"Yeah, right, prove it," Pete was sarcastic.
"Pete, mind your business." Max said over his shoulder. He wanted to know if she told the truth, despite his spying friends listening on.
"Can you prove it?" Max asked.
Love opened her clutch purse, took out her wallet, pulled out her driver's license, and handed it over with shaking fingers.
"For every inquiring mind who wanted to know, including mine: Yes, it is her birthday; her name is Love, and she is over twenty-one." Max spoke over his shoulder to the group.
"We should celebrate your born day. Can I get you anything, a drink?" Max asked.
"Bottled water," Love croaked.
"Kelly, bring me two bottles of water, please." Max called out to his assistant.
"Do you need anything else?" Kelly asked as she approached Max. He pulled her into a corner and whispered in her ear.
"Try to make a copy of this or write the information down," Max said. He handed Kelly Love's driver's license. The noise level in the lounge returned to normal as interest in Max and Love waned. Max sat beside Love on the love seat.
"So Love, tell me something about yourself that few people know."
"I should get going." Love nervously licked her lips.
Max's eagle eyes narrowed, spotting his prey. Maybe Love licking her lips had been a nervous gesture, but it gave him pause. Did he have her all wrong? This girl could be a pro in the art of seduction, and her shyness, a mere pretense and con. He would find out. He promised himself.
"Now, now, you still haven't thanked me for saving you earlier from a vicious beat down."
"Thank you, I'm grateful." Love croaked and shyly looked away.
"That reeked of insincerity."
"When I say I'm grateful, I truly am." Love said solemnly.
Max said nothing, but fantasized how she could show her gratitude later. Kelly came back with two bottles of water. Max grabbed them both and handed one to Love. He watched as she opened hers and took a swig.
He sipped his more leisurely as he sat back and absently played with a strand of her hair.
She was parched.
Was she practically guzzling down her water because she wanted to run away? Max wasn't ready for her to leave. He watched as she finished her water. Before he could remove his fingers from her hair, she pushed herself forward on the sofa. Her yelp mortified him.
"Sorry," Max replied, thoroughly embarrassed by his obsession with her beautiful locks. Love stood up, patted down her hair, and looked away.
Max stood also and moved close, totally invading her personal space.
"I have to go." Love voice trembled as she stepped back and looked up at him.
What game was she playing? If she wants to put on a show that she isn't easy, I'll play along.
"Have you ever been to this arena?" Max asked Love.
"No, I've never been. This is my first trip to New Orleans," Love replied honestly.
"That should be considered a crime. NOLA is the one place every one of African descent should visit often. I'd like to show you around the arena. I'm sure most of the other acts are gone."
"Thanks, but no thanks."
"We could do it here if you prefer."
"Do what? Are you crazy?"
"You said I could be the first person to kiss you for your birthday." Maxwell was flirtatiously confident.
"You did kiss me."
Excerpted from Love & MaxwellA Fantasy Reel by Alicia Susan Copyright © 2013 by Alicia Susan. Excerpted by permission of iUniverse, Inc.. All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.
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