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Bree Washington, a young African American woman, has always wanted to become a doctor. When her father loses his job, she is forced to find other means to raise money to continue her schooling. Loving to dance and doing it well, she becomes an exotic dancer. Bree figures her dancing days will be history after she gets her medical degree.

Though being a doctor gives her a sense of fulfillment, Bree fears life is passing her by. Alone without any family of her own, more than anything, she wants to marry and have children. Fate intervenes when she saves the life of a child who had been in a horrific auto accident. She falls in love with the child's father, Richard Whitman, the DA for Harris County, Texas. Bree's future looks rosy until Richard Whitman decides to run for governor and her past collides with her future.

Chapter One

A loud rustling in the leaves of the old oak tree by my window woke me. Spring had come early this year to Texas, leaving record-breaking heat in its wake. I’d left the window open to try to cool off my room in order to help me sleep better. Probably a wind picking up or a critter, I thought, providing myself an excuse not to have to get out of bed and investigate. I closed my eyes and began to slip off into dreamland once more.

Suddenly I felt a large, calloused hot hand cover my mouth so I couldn’t scream out. Its mate was already exploring my scantily clad body, roughly squeezing my breasts. He took his hand from my mouth and whispered hoarsely, “Don’t make a sound.”

My heart nearly jumped into my throat. “Clint, what are you doing here?”

“I couldn’t wait until I saw you tomorrow night. Here, touch me. I’m as hard as that tree I just climbed.”

I reached down to feel the enormous bulge that threatened to rip through the denim of his jeans. Mercifully, I unzipped Clint’s jeans, freeing his hot, swollen member as if I were freeing a genie from a bottle. And I only had one wish in mind for it to perform.

Sleep was now the furthest thing on my mind as Clint’s lips covered mine. It was a rough, demanding kiss, the kind that always drove me wild and left me wanting more. His cock prodded my hip as my heartbeat quickened in anticipation. I felt his hand slip under the flimsy oversized tee shirt I was wearing and capture one of my breasts, rubbing its nipple into a firm raisin. I stifled a moan.

As his lips left my own to make their way down my neck, his other hand covered my wet pussy. I was ready for him. He walked his fingers through my forest of tightly curled hair before finally inserting two of them. I closed my snatch around them and rubbed my clit up and down, sending tiny explosions throughout my body.

He removed his fingers and licked them dry before slipping on a condom. I could not keep my body still as I waited. It was times like this one I’d wished I was on the Pill already. Those few moments felt like an eternity before he slipped inside me, filling me completely. Together we began to move in our rehearsed dance of love, the tempo increasing as our orgasms approached. Ever since Clint introduced me to this unbelievable joy and turned me into a woman—his woman—I never truly knew what love was all about.

I hoped the movement of my bedsprings didn’t wake my father. Most likely he wasn’t even in his room and could be found zonked out in the den. The thought of what would happen if he found us fucking was something I couldn’t bear. Luckily it didn’t take us long before we both came. I couldn’t wait until we were married and didn’t have to sneak around like this. We’d be able to sleep together and wake in each other’s arms.

“You’d better go,” I urged him, fearful our luck would run out. Clint pulled out of me slowly and rolled off the condom. I watched him pull his clothes on that hard, lean body of his, making me hot again. I was getting excited all over again. He leaned over and kissed my breast. Then he kissed my mouth.

“See you tomorrow night,” he whispered.

“Be careful,” I said, walking over to the window with him.

“I love you, Bree Washburn.”

“I love you, too, Clint Anderson. Now get,” I said slapping his ass and kissing him one more time before he went out the window.

He wrapped his arm around a tree limb and waved as he began to descend.

* * * *

The following morning I woke early feeling just as renewed as the new daffodils that were growing in our front yard. Dad had grabbed his lunch bag and was about to leave for work.  

“I left you some pancakes if you’re hungry,” he said.

“Thanks. I’m starving,” I said and kissed him goodbye.

Halfway through my stack of pancakes I realized that my brother, Doug, wasn’t going to join me. Knowing my brother, he probably got drunk last night and was sleeping it off, which was just fine with me. At least I’d be able to eat my breakfast in peace. Since I’d been home from school, he’d been getting in my face more often than not. I wondered if he was jealous that I was going to college.

He certainly had had his chance. Dad had wanted him to go and make something of himself, but Doug insisted he “wasn’t going to be some tight-assed college jerk.” Actually, he’d have to stay sober in order to attend.

I had some time before I had to go to work at the video store, so I gave Melanie Pryor, my best friend since grade school, a call.

“Jason called last night,” she immediately said after saying hello.

“I told you he would.”

“Yeah, I know…”

“What’s wrong? You don’t sound too happy about it.”

“I’m not so sure I still want to go out with him.”

“Don’t tell me, you met someone else.”

“Sort of,” she replied. “I helped the guy find the right video game.”

“But, Melanie, you work in jewelry,” I said not seeing the connection.

“I was on my way to the break room when I saw him standing there.”

“And you took that saying on the back of your Wal*Mart vest, May I help you, as gospel, right?” Melanie often changed boyfriends nearly as much as she changed her underwear. No guy could hold on to her heart for long.

“Of course,” she said and we shared a laugh.

After our laughter died down she said, “You sound mighty happy this morning. Did you get your grades back from the University?”

“I would have told you first thing if I had,” I replied. I knew I’d be hearing from them soon.

“Hmmm. That leaves Clint. But you worked last night. So…”

I told her about the crazy stunt that Clint pulled. All she could say was, “Omigod! What if you two got caught?”


I had to get ready for work, so we said goodbye and I washed up the breakfast dishes.

* * * *

Clint never showed.

He was supposed to pick me up by seven. As the hours passed, I found myself aimlessly walking from room to room, wondering where he was. At first, I figured he got tied up at work, but as I watched those hands go around the wall clock in the kitchen, I was beside myself with worry. I must have called Clint’s cell phone and apartment a dozen times. Where on earth was he?

I called his boss, but he told me that Clint hadn’t shown up at work that day. Now that couldn’t be right. He didn’t seem sick last night. Besides, he always put in for any available overtime, wanting to save as much money as he could in order to buy a small place of his own—for us.

Frantic, I called Melanie at 11:00. She suggested I call the hospitals and the morgue. We’d obviously watched the same crime shows. By 12:30, I’d called every single hospital in a twenty mile-radius, and yes, the morgue. The awful chill down my back joined my quaking voice as I spoke to the man on night duty. It felt like hours instead of minutes before he told me what every switchboard operator at the hospitals had, “Nobody here by that name.”

I then pictured the worst. Clint was lying dead in a ditch somewhere or had been badly burned in a horrific auto crash. This couldn’t be happening—none of it. It had to be a bad dream. And any minute I was going to wake up. It would be yesterday once more and Clint would be here with me. After all, that’s the only thing that made sense; everything else didn’t. Clint loved me—I know he did. We planned our marriage and the way things would be. He was even willing to wait until after I became a doctor.

By the time I cried myself to sleep; I was swimming in the deep end of a full-blown pity-party.

* * * *

The following morning I pushed myself off the bed like a sack of sawdust. My head felt like a lead weight and was still pounding. I padded into the bathroom, grabbed the aspirin bottle and washed down two tablets, hoping the bass drum in my head would quiet down.

I stared into the mirror at my red froglike eyes, swollen from all the crying. Suddenly a thought, so awful and hurtful pierced my heart like a blade. What if Clint actually got cold feet and left? Or, what if he’d tired of me and had decided to move on? Then what was last night, a goodbye fuck? No. That wasn’t it—it just couldn’t be. He wasn’t like that. It was something else. It had to be. He’d call or show up. I just knew he would—because he loved me.

Miserable, I dragged myself down to breakfast. Clint or no Clint, I still had to work. The part-time job gave me extra spending money at school. The throbbing in my head was now keeping time to my heartbeat—or so it seemed. Dad sensed I was upset, but didn’t press.

“Eat some breakfast. You’ll feel better.”

Food—every parent’s solution to problems. My solution was having Clint here with me. However, I sat down and played with my eggs.

The telephone rang. I jumped out of my chair, nearly knocking it over, to answer the call. Some damn solicitor wanting to sell me siding. My heart still pumping fiercely, I hung up and sat down. My eyes had filled with tears. What would I do without Clint?

From the moment we met, I knew I wanted to be with him. He wasn’t handsome like Brad Pitt, but he was good-looking, just the same. Blond hair, blue eyes and an easy smile that made her heart flutter. I liked the way his tight, small ass filled his jeans just right. It was round, not flat like some guys. To me a guy should look great from all sides.

It was slow that night when he’d first walked into the video store where I worked part-time all through high school to save for my college education. I knew right away from just looking at him that he was older. Politely, he asked where the thrillers were kept. And I took him to them.

After he had selected one, he brought it over to me and we began to talk. That was it. We went on our first date that following Saturday.

My thoughts of Clint were interrupted by the entrance of my brother. Doug looked tired. Perhaps he had slept off another bender. With him, who knew?

He poured himself a cup of coffee and sat down. There was a slight tremor to his hands as he held the cup. However, his knuckles were a swollen mass of red scabs. Obviously, he’d been in another fight recently. His eyes met mine and he smirked. Why in God’s name was he smirking? I hated when he did that.

“See that white bread, boyfriend of yours lately?” he asked.

“Have you seen Clint? Do you know where he is?” My fork fell from my hand, hitting the edge of my plate with a clatter.

“You’d better tell me!” I said glaring at him. I wanted to scream for my dad, who’d left the room minutes before, to come and help me drag the information out of Doug.

“All I can say is not to expect him hanging around here no more.”

“What did you do?”

“Who, me?”

“Yeah, you, you son-of-a bitch. Who else?”

The little egg that I’d eaten had already turned to acid in my stomach. I was gasping for breath.

“I did ya a big favor. The man’s a pussy; fought like a girl.”

“What did you do, Doug?” my father accused, walking back into the kitchen.

He shrugged his stocky shoulders. “Guess you might say me and lover-boy mixed it up in the wee hours the other night,” he said, looking directly at me, daring me to pursue it.

Suddenly I realized what had happened. Doug must have been slithering home, like the snake he was, the other night and saw Clint climb out of my bedroom window.

The last thing in the world I wanted was to have my father find out about that.

“Is he all right?”

“He’ll live. Maybe he’ll call you sometime after he settles down and then, maybe he won’t. Anyway, you want a real man not some cunt with a pecker.”

“Douglas, I don’t want to hear that kind of talk in my house.”

“You miserable bastard! Must you ruin everybody’s life!” I screamed as I ran out the door.