Bad Boys After Dark:Brett(8)

By: Melissa Foster

“Seriously? I guess I just lost ten bucks.” Dylan wiped down the bar with a concerned look on his face.

“Who’d you bet? Carson?”

“No, Tiff. She was sure you’d sway Sophie to the sinful side. My money was on Sophie. I can’t believe she finally gave in to you. I guess I’m happy for you, because you’ve been trying to get with her for so long, but don’t hurt her, man. She’s Mick’s assistant, and neither he nor Sophie need trouble.”

“Fuck, Dyl. I’m not a dick.” A stab of guilt sliced through him. Whether that guilt was caused by Dylan believing they’d hooked up when they hadn’t, or because Dylan knew that when it came to women, Brett was a once-and-done type of guy, he didn’t know or care. The guilt lodged in his chest, digging deeper with every thought of her.

Dylan cocked a brow.

“Okay, I can be a dick, but I wasn’t. Sophie and I had a good time, but we didn’t hook up.”

“That’s probably a good thing, considering you’re working in Mick’s office Monday,” Dylan reminded him. There had been a rash of hacks into celebrity cell phones and computers, including two of Mick’s clients. Even though Brett and Carson’s company, Elite Security, had ensured Mick’s proprietary data was locked down tighter than Fort Knox and none of Mick’s files had been hacked, they were testing the systems just to be sure.

“I wouldn’t call it a ‘good thing,’ but whatever.” He didn’t want to think about seeing Sophie dressed in tight skirts and low-cut blouses. He’d been drawn to her incredible figure since the first time he’d set his eyes on her, but it was her intelligence and quick wit that had kept his interest. Sophie had it all—brains, beauty, humor, and those insightful, sexy blue eyes that stuck with him long after she turned him down. Or I walked away. Goddamn fool.

Dylan went to tend to a customer and Brett pulled out his phone, debating sending Sophie a text. They’d long ago exchanged numbers, but he’d always held back from using hers. It was one thing to tempt her when the opportunity arose in person, but he knew himself well enough to realize that once he opened the door to twenty-four-hour access, he’d have a hard time holding back until he got what he wanted.

Fuck it. He was done pissing and moaning about not taking his chance when he’d had it. He wasn’t a sit-around-and-wait type of guy. He was ready to play with fire. As he typed a text to Sophie—Miss me yet?—he told himself it was to get her out of his system once and for all.

He took another swig of his beer, and his phone vibrated. His heart leapt at the sight of Sophie’s name on the screen. He couldn’t open and read the message fast enough. I’m surrounded by a bunch of stuffy people at a wine tasting. Even your come-ons would be better than this.

As he conjured a host of dirty responses, a vision of Sophie as they’d said good night floated into his mind. He clenched his teeth against the squirrely feeling in his gut and typed, I’ve got a bottle of red from France with your name on it.

Her response was immediate. Did you have to erase someone else’s name to write mine in?

He hated the sting that accompanied her jibe. Before he could type a response, “Thrive!” rang through the bar. The cheer pulled Brett’s attention from his thoughts. He spotted his buddy Dex Remington, founder of Thrive Entertainment, one of the country’s leading PC game design firms, moving through the crowd. Dex waved to the people in the back of the bar who had called out the cheer. It was how his employees had greeted him since they began hanging out there.

Dex sidled up beside Brett at the bar.

“How’s it going?” Brett asked as Dylan came to take Dex’s order.

“Can’t complain.” Dex slapped Brett on the shoulder, then reached across the bar and tapped fists with Dylan. “Can I get a round of our usual?”

Brett’s phone vibrated again, and he glanced at the text from Sophie. 99 bottles of wine on the wall…He could think of ninety-nine ways he’d like to help alleviate her boredom.

“Coming right up,” Dylan said. “Where’s Ellie tonight?”