Not Good Enough….

15 May

Another GSP release from Author of the Week: G. E. Stills.

Not Good Enough by G. E. Stills

Before the cruise begins, Jay innocently asks Trish and her friend for a dance and is not only turned down, but insulted when Trish’s friend tells Jay he isn’t good enough for them. Trish is captivated by Jay’s smile, but once her friend has her say, Trish is sure Jay is lost to her. Trying to apologize to him later, Trish witnesses two men tossing Jay overboard and finds herself thrown in after him as well. Imagine Jay’s chagrin later when he finds himself washed up on an island with Trish and the constant reminder of their unpleasant encounter before the cruise. But Jay isn’t what he first appears to be, and as the two of them get acquainted, Trish realizes he is a keepeer. What will happen when they are rescued and Trish goes back to her mundane life, determined to forget Jay?

Chapter 1

“Wow, look at the arms on that one. And that hair . . . It’s just to die for, I tell ya.” Sheila pointed out the man standing at the bar with muscular arms and shoulder-length hair. “Or maybe that one,” she said, pointing to a man seated at one of the tables across the dance floor from them, wearing a three-piece suit. “I can smell the money on that one.”

Trish followed Sheila’s pointing finger as she directed her attention to the men around the bar. All of them were either handsome hunks, or had the look of wealth. Sheila downed another shot and chased it with gulp from her fruity drink. From the glassy look in her eyes and her slightly slurred speech, it was obvious to Trish she was getting highly intoxicated.

“Don’t you think maybe you should slow down on the drinks a little?”

“Naw, I’m okay. I’m not driving,” she said, shaking her head slowly, “and I’m going to find a man for you tonight yet.”

“Sheila, I don’t need a man. I just got out of a relationship.”

“Relationship? Is that what you call it? I call it slow death. You were with him since college. Trish, Todd treated you like crap.”

“Not in the beginning, he didn’t. Before I put on a little weight . . . and before the car accident, things were different.”

Sheila rolled her eyes. “You look fine, Trish. Maybe dressed a little conservative, in my opinion. I mean, you have to put yourself out there, show a little leg and cleavage if you want to reel in a man. Just look at me.”

Trish exhaled loudly in disgust. “I told you, I’m not looking for one. The only reason I’m going on this cruise is because you asked. And you say, look at you? Damn it, Sheila, if that dress you’re wearing got any shorter . . . well, it wouldn’t leave anything to the imagination. If it was cut any lower, your boobs would be hanging out on display—and how long did it take you to put on that makeup?”

Sheila ignored her. “Oh, damn, look at that one. Geez, I wouldn’t mind wrapping my arms around that one. Maybe even my legs, provided he has a lot of money.” She giggled, hid a tiny belch and then added, “Look at the guys I’ve been with compared to Todd.”

“Yeah, look at them. You’ve been married three times. Just ended one, and you’re only—”

“Careful,” Sheila warned her off the subject of age. “You’re older than I am.”

“I’m just saying that having been married and divorced three times by your early thirties is not exactly a good track record. Your life is not exactly a shining example.”

“The first one couldn’t afford the lifestyle I wanted. The second one tried to put me on a budget. Screw him. The third one . . . the third one couldn’t satisfy my other needs.”

“Imagine that. He was over twice your age. I sometimes wonder why you and I are even friends. We’re so different.”

“Ah, come on, Trish. You know you love me. We’ve been friends since childhood.” She might have continued, but just then a man stepped up to their table.

“Good evening, ladies. Would either of you care to dance?”

Trish looked up at him. Although he was dressed nice, it wasn’t a fancy suit. She cringed at some of the flamboyant styles the hunks Sheila pointed out wore. No, he was just dressed nice.

He had a pronounced widows-peak, thinning hair cropped short, and a slight bulge in the belly area. The man didn’t have bulging biceps, but his arms weren’t skinny either. His eyes were just a little glassy, like Sheila’s, indicating he’d had a few drinks, too. What really grabbed her attention though, was the brilliant smile on his face.

Just a normal guy with a wonderful smile.

Then Sheila spoke, and his smile faded into a frown. “Go away, fatso. You’re blocking our view of the real men. You know, the ones that aren’t fat. The ones that have hair . . . and muscles.”

He glared at Sheila “I was just asking. There’s no need for insults.” Turning, he looked at Trish. “And what about you, would you like to dance?”

“Loser,” Sheila sang out and made an L on her forehead. “She doesn’t want to dance with you, fat boy. You’re not good enough for her, either.” Sheila kicked Trish under the table to insure compliance.

“Fine,” the man growled. “A simple no would have sufficed.”

“Your kind don’t take a simple no. Now go away.”

“My kin—” Without another word and with a strong glare, the man turned and walked away.

“Geez, Sheila. Sometimes I’m completely embarrassed to be with you. You’re downright mean at times. After all he only asked us to dance.”

“The hell with him. He’ll get over it. I’m over it. Besides, after tonight we’ll never see him again.”

Sliding her chair back, Trish excused herself to go to the restroom, and as no surprise to her when she returned, Sheila was out on the dance floor, her arms wrapped tight around a Beefcake. She didn’t come back to the table for the next dance, or the one after that.

Trish couldn’t help looking for the man with the nice smile. Yep, there he was. Alone. She made eye contact with him and gave him her best come hither look. With a smile, she watched him get to his feet and start in her direction.

This time I’ll do my own talking.

He came to a stop at her table. “Where’s your rude girlfriend? I don’t think she likes me much.” That winning smile stretched across his face once more.

“She’s right behind you,” Sheila said. Neither of them had noticed her arrival with the Hunk in tow. “And you’re almost right; I don’t like you at all. I thought we got rid of you. Maybe you need a little physical persuasion.”

Turning to her muscle-bound companion, she said, “Theo, this person, I refuse to call it a man, will not go away. Perhaps you could convince him.”

Once again, the smile on his face vanished. This time his frown was directed at her. Trish wanted to slide beneath the table to escape the daggers his glare focused on her.

For once in your life, Sheila, shut your mouth.

“I was mistaken,” he said to her. “I thought that you wanted to—Never mind.”

Turning to Sheila he grumbled, “I was just leaving. I thought your girlfriend wanted to see me. Guess I was wrong.”

Theo clamped his hand onto the man’s arm. With a look of fury cold enough to make hell freeze over and a voice so low it was nearly a whisper, he growled at Theo. “Theo . . . if you value that hand . . . and don’t want it broken . . . you’d better take it off my arm.”

Oh God. That’s all we need is a fight.

She could see in the man’s eyes that the words were not an idle threat, but a promise. Now that she was able to look closer, she saw that, though not bulging with muscle like Theo, the man’s arms were very strong. His demeanor screamed, Don’t mess with me. She hoped Theo would see it, too. To her relief, Theo picked up the same vibes. He released his grip on the man’s arm.

With a glance at her—frigid enough to make her shiver, he walked away.

“Such an annoying person. See, I told you his type doesn’t take no for an answer,” Sheila said.

She sat down beside Trish, and Theo took a seat across from them. She introduced them. “Theo, this is Trish; Trish, Theo. Theo has a friend, and the two of them have invited us to an after-hours party in their room.” Leaning over, Sheila whispered in her ear. “I’ve seen his friend. He’s a beefcake, just like Theo. So anyway, how about it?”

She looked at Sheila and then at Theo before whispering, “Sheila, Theo can’t be more than his early twenties. He and his friend are probably looking for one thing, especially from an older woman. I really don’t think we should go.”

“He thinks I’m only twenty-five,” Sheila whispered back and giggled.

Shaking her head, Trish said aloud, “I think I’ll pass. I’m kind of tired. We need to get around early tomorrow for the cruise.”

“Well, I’m going. See you later, Trish,” Sheila huffed, clearly not happy with Trish’s decision not to go with them. “Come on, Theo; let’s see if we can find another girl to party with us.” With that, the two of them got up and left.

Picking up her drink, she wandered out onto the patio area and stood at the railing, looking up at the stars.

Why I put up with Sheila I will never know.

Glancing to her side, she saw the man with the smile again. She started toward him to apologize, but never got the chance. He spotted her at the same time, turned his back and walked as far away as possible.

So much for apologizing for Sheila’s bad manners. I’m sorry, she thought at him. Finishing her drink, she left the nightclub and strolled back to her room.

Links:

http://www.gypsyshadow.com/GEStills.html#NotGood

Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/Not-Good-Enough-G-Stills-ebook/dp/B005Z2F00S/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1400174101&sr=8-1&keywords=not+good+enough+g.e.+stills

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