“Falcon Manchester. Not all men are created equal.”
The title was eye-catching. The cover of the men’s magazine featured his face. His penetrating eyes stared directly into the camera. The chiseled jaw was made more prominent by the ‘designer stubble look’ that his specialized trimmer preserved. He knew they were the very same ones that graced the chin of Hollywood sexy stars Channing Tatum, Bradley Cooper, and David Beckham.
Falcon had no interest in becoming a movie star. That was the same reason he declined being packaged as shirtless in the mag. The photographer was adamant, but Falcon was firm. In the end, they agreed on the sexy look that he sported on the GQ cover.
The photoshoot took half a day to finish shooting inside his 5,000-square foot, 5th Avenue penthouse. The editorial covered more than 10 pages of the magazine. It included photos of him sipping wine and looking down from the balcony of his 40th floor apartment, a series of shots taken inside his dressing room where Armani shirts, ties, and Balmain suits made the background.
He especially liked a particular photograph that showed him looking down at a map. If the cameraman had gone closer, anyone would have seen France on the map he was studying. A good detective would uncover the clue to his latest interest. Another addition to his growing list of toys for the big boys.
Falcon smirked as he read the write up about him.
Claire Ramirez, the author, wrote a titillating story of how he became the new king of strategic retail, outpacing the more established empires of the fragrance and cosmetic industries. It painted him as a man who worked tirelessly to climb the pinnacle of success at such a young age, sprinkled with gossip of women he dated.
Falcon knew it wasn’t mostly gossip. There was a long line of names from the past and an even longer queue in the future. He had a whole palette to choose from.
“Yeah,” he sighed. “If only it were that easy.”
For a man of his stature, the dating world was similar to shark-infested water. It was dangerous but he had to swim in it. The women were all beautiful, fun, and aspiring to catch his eye. But he was never sure of the real intentions behind the flattering smiles and whispered conversations.
Were they interested in who he really was, or, was the interest anchored on what he owned? Who wouldn’t want a billionaire in his early thirties with a BMW i8 for his daily ride, a jet in his private hangar with a Black Hawk helicopter parked right beside it?
Falcon didn’t want to think he had grown jaded. But he was feed-up with the whole scene. Celebrity dating was the name of the game. It was all part of the package that came with the success of Live Glow, his latest baby. And Falcon was a man who nurtured his business enterprises until it stood firmly above the rest.
Live Glow was one of the major sponsors of New York fashion week which was already in full swing. The streets of New York were crowded with stylish showgoers, street style photographers, and models going from one venue to the next. Add in the mix of Hollywood stars, famous bands, and other well-known celebrities, and you had a recipe for the wildest parties this side of Manhattan.
Tonight’s event was no different. The same “strictly by invitation only” stamped on the card and hosted by one of the most popular fashion houses. The same beautiful faces, the same inane conversation.
Falcon was tempted not to go. He would have preferred to pore over the stack of documents pertaining to the property in France. That sent his adrenaline spiking. But he gave his word to the party organizer that he would show up.
“Shake hands, pat a few shoulders, drink a couple of cocktails and I’m off the nearest fucking exit,” he muttered.
He reached for a bottle of Johnnie Walker Black, poured himself a stiff one, and hoped the whiskey would put him in some kind of party mood.
He glanced at his reflection in the full-length mirror, closed the light, and left his apartment.
Falcon was deep in conversation with a guy he just met. Malcolm, a fashion designer, was selling an idea.
“How about an exclusive line of perfume to match my very own select couture pieces? The one I’m preparing to launch in Milan?” Malcolm hinted.
Designer sketches were guarded like diamonds in a bank vault. A leaked design spelled doom for the designer and a whole fashion line could end up on the cutting floor. Malcolm was teasing him with vague hints of the ultra-chic line he was creating.
“I’ll think about it,” Falcon replied vaguely.
His interest had waned as he scanned the room for the nearest exit. The music was bouncing off the walls and ceiling. The DJ was in his element churning the best mixes of the year with house music, techno, minimal, acid, hip-hop and more. It was giving him a headache.
He noticed a group of girls that just entered the club. They all stood together by the door. The girls struck casual stances as they scanned the room before heading in different directions.
“Models?” Falcon mused.
There was something so deliberate about every movement as if each was calling attention to who they were.
He was about to turn away when another girl made an entrance.
Falcon felt his heart jump inside his chest. This one looked ethereal. The spotlight positioned by the door enhanced the shoulder-length blond hair that shimmered in a halo. She wore a silver beaded bodycon dress that showed everything beneath the sheer fabric, while actually revealing nothing. The dress draped perfectly over the lithe body in stunning perfection.
She didn’t have to strike a pose like the girls who came before her. There was a naturalness about her as she stood there. Falcon realized that the girl didn’t even have to call attention to herself. All eyes automatically went to her direction the moment she entered the door. Then she sashayed her way to a group of couturiers who welcomed her with enthusiasm.
“Who’s that girl?” Falcon asked.
“Her?” Malcolm asked in response to his question. “That’s Lindsay Davenport, one of the highest paid model in the world.”
Falcon couldn’t take his eyes off her. He knew he had to meet her. His eyes followed her discreetly, noting the way she would toss her hair casually backward while talking, attracting attention to the glorious hair.
“Would you like to meet her?” Malcolm asked.
“Who?” Falcon pretended ignorance.
“Lindsay Davenport. You seem interested,” Malcolm insinuated, then added, “I happen to know she just broke up with her boyfriend.”
Falcon was suddenly very interested.
“Okay,” he replied with as much indifference as he could muster.
“Malcolm.” Lindsay greeted with a breathy voice, offering her cheek for a kiss.
Falcon knew that Lindsay threw him a surreptitious look, studying him casually, while appearing uninterested. To Falcon, it was just a game. A ritual that made the chase more exciting.
Up close, she looked slightly older than the other models. It only added to her imperial bearing, instead of taking away from it.
He actually liked the idea that she was more mature than the rest. In Falcon’s mind, maturity meant having more experience and insight, instead of inane banter that most girls brought to the table.
Her hands lingered longer than necessary after Malcolm made the introduction. Falcon was encouraged. He was certain the attraction was mutual. He was even more surprised when Lindsay hailed a passing guy who looked familiar. He turned out to be a famous Rockstar from France. They spoke in rapid French. Falcon was even more impressed.
He searched the room for a table where they could sit and talk alone. He couldn’t find any so he called out to a waiter, whispered in his ear as he slipped a fifty-dollar bill into the server’s hand. A table magically appeared as Falcon led her towards it.
“My friends will miss me,” Lindsay remarked, batting her eyelashes.
“Would you rather be with them,” he asked.
“No, I d’ rather be with you,” Lindsay remarked flirtatiously. “By the way, I loved the article they did on you on GQ,” Lindsay added.
“So…she knew who I was,” the thought occurred to him.
Alone together, Lindsay entertained him with gossip about the fashion world. Falcon found himself amused by her stories. She had a way of looking into his eyes that made him feel they were the only two people in the party mayhem. But he also noticed that her eyes kept darting back to where the crowd was.
It frustrated him that he couldn’t get her alone for long. A parade of friends came and went. Falcon’s head was in a spin trying to make small talks and remembering all the names. It wasn’t long before someone else claimed her attention.
“I’ll be right back,” she said huskily, running her fingers casually down his shirt front.
Falcon was turned on by the deliberate movement. He was glad he stayed and met her. He knew there was something between them. He was interested enough and wanted to play this night perfectly.
The highest paid model in the world and Falcon Manchester? The equation felt perfect.
Lindsay stayed away longer than he would have wanted. She was still deep in conversation with a group of distinguished looking gentlemen at the opposite side of the room. Although he thought that any of the men looked old enough to be her father, he couldn’t help the feeling of jealousy that sprouted in his chest. He wanted to mark her as his territory, his possession.
“Don’t be stupid,” he chided himself. “It’s her job to make connections.”
Falcon thought some fresh air would clear his mind.
A door leading to the balcony stood ajar a few feet away from where he sat. He drowned the remains of his drink and headed towards it. He was glad to find it empty. He wanted to think and process all his thoughts concerning Lindsay Davenport.
Suddenly he heard the door open and a girl walked into the balcony. She didn’t seem to notice that she wasn’t there alone. She was of medium height with chestnut hair that touched her shoulder. He recognized her. He met this girl earlier in the party.
“You’re Lindsay’s friend, right?” Falcon called out to her.
The girl was startled upon hearing his voice. She seemed ready to flee. Then she glanced at his face and seemed relieved.
“Yes, Lindsay introduced us earlier” she replied after the initial shock. My name is…”
“…Carla. Carla Hornsby, right?” Falcon asked.
He wondered why he even remembered.
“And you’re Falcon,” the girl added.
Falcon thought she looked embarrassed that she remembered his name. There was something interesting about her. She didn’t strike him as a model. There was none of the deliberate poses or gestures to mark every word that came out of her mouth. She looked simple and genuine. Falcon did notice her earlier talking earnestly to some Hollywood producer.
“She must be an aspiring starlet,” he concluded.
The idea somehow did not fit the mold of the girl who was before him. Falcon had great instincts about people. He needed to know if his gut instinct was right or wrong.
“So, Carla Hornsby, what are you doing out here alone? Shouldn’t you be in there interacting and telling people how good you are at your job?”
“It gets stale after a while,” she admitted.
Falcon laughed. “Yeah, I know what you mean.”
He still didn’t know what she did for a living.
He looked out at the city that spread below them. Carla didn’t seem to mind the silence between them. He sensed she felt comfortable just being there and didn’t feel the need to fill the air with senseless banter. He liked that and thought it was refreshing.
“I assume you’re not here to sell yourself,” Carla asked jokingly.
“No, I’m not. I think the company is doing well by itself. I’m here to show my support as the sponsor of New York fashion week.”
“And what company is that?” Carla asked.
“Live Glow.” He replied.
He heard her gasp.
“She actually didn’t know who I was,” Falcon thought, surprised. “How about you, what do you do?” Falcon asked.
“I’m an architect. I design houses. It’s all boring stuff really, compared to what others do,” Carla replied.
“I always loved creating things from nothing. Tell me all about it,” Falcon replied.
Falcon was so absorbed with Carla’s stories that he forgot all about the party. He realized that he stayed longer than he intended. He glanced at his wristwatch.
“Lindsay must be wondering where you’ve gone to,” Carla volunteered.
Falcon was taken aback. Did people already assume he and Lindsay were a couple? Carla seemed to think so.
“Yeah, I should be getting back,” Falcon replied. “It was really nice talking to you, Carla. I hope to see you again,” Falcon added.
Even as his thoughts returned to Lindsay, a part of him actually meant what he said. He hoped he would run into Carla again. She would make a very good friend.
“Ready to go?” Lindsay asked, grabbing her purse from the table where she left it earlier.
Falcon was surprised she had returned while he was gone. He just assumed she would still be with the men he saw her with earlier in the evening. He suddenly felt guilty for spending so much time at the balcony with Carla. She was such a captivating talker, but she also knew how to listen. Proof were the intelligent questions she asked about his own interests. He had to admit he totally forgot all about Lindsay in the meantime.
Lindsay had a pout on her face. It was a silent message. The woman didn’t like being abandoned.
“You’re here,” falcon remarked, noting the pucker. “I went to the balcony to get some air,” he added. Deep down he resented the need to explain.
Lindsay didn’t reply. Falcon was mortified. It wasn’t a good portent for the rest of the night.
Suddenly, Lindsay relented and gave an endearing smile. “I missed you.”
Falcon smiled back. He knew Lindsay’s type. Spoiled, pampered, and they always got what they wanted. But she was so pretty, it didn’t seem to matter.
They made a beeline for the exit.
“Leaving already?” A chorus of voices followed them.
Lindsay seemed to enjoy the fact that everyone knew she was leaving with Falcon.
Inside the car, she stretched her back lifting her head up to relieve a crick on her neck. “I’m so tired. These parties are so boring.”
Falcon was taken by surprise. She seemed to have been enjoying herself immensely.
“Would you like me to take you home?” Falcon asked solicitously.
Lindsay was taken by surprise. “No, I just meant I was tired of talking to so many people. All I want is to be with you,” she replied.
She reached out and touched his knee before brushing her hand against his crotch.
Whoa! She doesn’t play coy.
“My apartment is just two blocks away. Would you like to come up? The view is magnificent.”
It was just a ploy and they both knew it. Lindsay smiled but didn’t reply.
“What was it they said about women?” Falcon racked his brain. “Silence means yes?”
She didn’t offer any resistance when he parked his car and ushered her inside the elevator that took them all the way into the penthouse.
“Wine?” He asked, filling a glass.
Lindsay took it, sauntered to a nearby couch, sat down and crossed her legs. Falcon took the space beside her.
“Oh, I forgot to mention. I was talking to one of your friends. Carla?” Falcon informed her. “She seems to be good at what she does. We talked for a while when you were gone.”
Lindsay frowned and replied, “Carla works for some small-time firm. Yes, she must be good at what she does. I’m not sure. We don’t talk that much,” Lindsay dismissed.
“I think she’s really good. We were talking about restoring old houses and she had this wonderful idea…”
“Let’s not talk about Carla,” Lindsay interrupted, sidling even closer to him.
“What shall we talk about, “Falcon replied as he reached out and caressed her cheek.
“You and me…” Lindsay replied suggestively.
Falcon’s hand dropped down to the front of her dress. He opened her top slowly, twisting each button with his thumb and forefinger. Lindsay grabbed his head and lowered it, staring into his eyes. Then she parted her lips slowly and moved in to kiss him.
Falcon run is fingers against her exposed breastbone before reaching in and caressing her breast. Lindsay gasped into his mouth even as she increased the intensity of the kiss.
Falcon began to fumble with the rest of her clothing. The desire had bloomed intensely between his thighs.
Suddenly, Lindsay pulled back and said, “Whoa. This is a 5000-dollar dress. Let’s not rip it, okay?’
Falcon was caught off-guard by her reaction.
Lindsay reached out, grabbed his arm, and said, “bring me to your bedroom.”
Falcon didn’t need a second invitation.
Once inside, he watched as Lindsay carefully hoisted the dress over her head. She then laid it carefully at the foot of the bed, smoothing an imaginary wrinkle in the dress. She came near to where he stood ogling her naked body.
Falcon studied her as she slinked towards him. When she was close enough, he caressed her breasts then licked her nipples before moving his lips down to her navel.
Lindsay wrestled with him playfully. She unfastened his belt and lowered his pants before easing his briefs down his legs. Then she knelt before him brushing the whole length of his shaft with her palms. She brought his cock to her mouth and opened her lips to take him in.
Falcon sighed and closed his eyes. It felt good. He couldn’t believe just how lucky he got tonight. He looked down and saw her watching him, watching his reaction to everything she was doing to him.
His eyes locked with hers as she hallowed her lips and took more of him inside her mouth. He felt the head of his penis touch the base of her throat.
“Lindsay, you are driving me crazy,” Falcon moaned.
Lindsay gave a throaty laugh and asked, “do you have a condom? I want you to fuck me. Fuck me hard.” She said.
Falcon walked to a nearby drawer and removed one from a pack. He slipped it on then returned back to her. He bodily carried her to the bed where he fondled her with expert fingers before allowing his tongue to weave their own magic. He slid down and kissed between her legs, rubbing, pushing, thrusting two fingers inside her vagina until she felt slick.
Lindsay writhed and moaned, opening her legs even wider, giving him access to everything that she was. “I want you inside me,” she invited.
Falcon sunk down to his knees and guided his cock slowly to the opening of her vagina. Lindsay desperately grabbed and wrapped her arms tightly around his neck. Falcon felt her legs entwined around his hip as she bucked and met his every thrust.
“I’m coming,” he heard her say.
Falcon thrust even harder as he heaved with ever-increasing intensity. He felt the heat inside his cock reach the point of no return. With one final thrust, he ejaculated inside her before flopping down, tired.
Lindsay squirmed from under him. She turned to her side and went to sleep.
Falcon slid carefully out of bed. He didn’t want to wake her. He walked barefoot and naked to the living room where he poured himself a stiff whiskey. Something bothered him. Something he didn’t want to address because it made him feel like such a rat.
Sex with Lindsay was good. But sex was always good with most women he had been in the past. Maybe he was expecting fireworks because he was so impressed when he first met her that night.
“She’s tired,” he consoled himself.
That made him feel better, but not for long.
Falcon knew he couldn’t lie to himself. It wasn’t just because tonight did not meet his expectations. There was something else. And he knew just who it was.
Carla. The girl he met on the balcony tonight.
Lindsay’s friend? His conscience twinge and reminded him.
There was something about her he couldn’t quite forget. Maybe because she wasn’t as egoïstic like most of the girls he knew. He had a sneaky suspicion she didn’t even think of herself as beautiful. She was strongminded about her opinion, open to hearing his, and driven to understand any differences.
Falcon brushed away his thoughts. Strongminded, open, and driven weren’t adjectives he wanted to describe a woman. He wanted them pliant and eager, like Lindsay.
“You’re such an idiot,” he chastised himself. “You have the world’s highest paid model in your bed and you’re thinking about someone else?”
Falcon gave a deprecating laugh as he placed his drink on the counter and returned back to the arms of a sleeping Lindsay Davenport.
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