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       Five Minute Man: A Contemporary Love Story, p.1

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Five Minute Man: A Contemporary Love Story


  Five Minute Man: A Contemporary Love Story

  Abbie Zanders

  Published by Pub Yourself Press, 2014.

  This is a work of fiction. Similarities to real people, places, or events are entirely coincidental.

  FIVE MINUTE MAN: A CONTEMPORARY LOVE STORY

  First edition. August 25, 2014.

  Copyright © 2014 Abbie Zanders.

  Written by Abbie Zanders.

  Table of Contents

  Title Page

  Copyright Page

  Chapter 1

  Chapter 2

  Chapter 3

  Chapter 4

  Chapter 5

  Chapter 6

  Chapter 7

  Chapter 8

  Chapter 9

  Chapter 10

  Chapter 11

  Chapter 12

  Chapter 13

  Chapter 14

  Chapter 15

  Chapter 16

  Chapter 17

  Chapter 18

  Chapter 19

  Chapter 20

  Chapter 21

  Chapter 22

  Chapter 23

  Chapter 24

  Chapter 25

  Chapter 26

  Chapter 27

  Chapter 28

  Epilogue

  Author’s Note

  About the Author

  About the Publisher

  Chapter 1

  Holly McTierney snorted in laughter as she re-read the passage one more time. This time she was careful to swallow her hazelnut flavored coffee first; the stuff burned like a bitch when it came out her nose the last time.

  A five minute orgasm, achieved in an elevator, for God’s sake? Five minutes?

  Max, her big Siberian mix, looked up at her with those freaky black-rimmed eyes – one brown and one pale blue – from his supersized fluffy doggie bed over by the radiator. She drew in a deep breath and wiped the tears from her eyes, dog-earing the page and setting the paperback down on the round polished black walnut table that fit so perfectly in the bow-windowed breakfast nook.

  Where did they come up with this stuff? Talk about your urban fantasy. It took her three times that long to achieve satisfaction, and that was using Vinny - her triple-threat Vibonator with port and starboard attachments. As if a man could actually manage something like that with nothing but his penis!

  The really sad part was, this particular piece of sci-fi was on the bestseller’s list of erotic fiction, while her latest collection of drafts was still sitting on the editor’s desk somewhere.

  A five minute orgasm, she chuckled. As if. It shouldn’t have been as funny as it was, especially since Holly was a bona fide published author of romantic fiction herself. But even she had to draw the line somewhere. Soul mates, love at first sight, bad boy alpha males with hearts of gold – yeah, she’d tapped those wells with the best of them, but this? Dr. Who was more believable.

  Rinsing out her mug at the double-basin stainless steel sink, she put it into the stylish drying rack atop her custom granite countertop. Holly’s kitchen was her Valhalla, the center of her universe, the top priority when she had a few extra funds after bills, gas, and groceries. So what if the rest of the tiny cottage looked like shit? She spent most of her time in here anyway, and once she sold a few more books, she’d be able to fix the rest up, too.

  It wasn’t like she didn’t like writing freelance for a couple of popular romance magazines; she did. And it paid the essential bills and put food on the table, even if there wasn’t a whole lot left over for other things. But it was selling her books that gave her the biggest sense of satisfaction. Each completed piece was like a much-loved child, and seeing one go out into the world and be successful was every parent’s dream.

  She hadn’t struck it rich, yet. Getting a book out there took time and money – cover art, editing, advertising – none of that stuff was free. There were plenty of times when she’d had to resort to mac-in-a-box and Max had to make do with the cheaper, store brand dog food during particularly lean weeks, but overall, they were doing okay. It would all be worth it someday, she hoped. With hundreds of thousands of new books flooding the market every year, becoming the next Katie MacAlister or Alexandra Ivy wasn’t going to be easy.

  Holly sighed. Enough lollygagging. It was time to bite the first bullet. Forty-five minutes of morning exercise to boost her metabolism, a necessary evil so she didn’t feel quite as guilty about spending the next several hours on her ass, drinking coffee with way too much cream (a staple of aspiring authors everywhere) and pounding out another desperate attempt at literary success. There just wasn’t a whole lot of physical effort involved in crafting a fantasy. If writing burned calories like Zumba, she’d be a waif-thin supermodel by now.

  Max yawned as she reached down to pet him before heading towards the guest room where she’d set up her makeshift fitness room, equipment courtesy of local yard and garage sales – those pieces that, after a few initial uses, had become dust-gathering, space-consuming, ergonomic clothes racks (God bless those lacking the willpower to stick to their New Year’s resolutions!). Here, the old hardwood floors – badly in need of a sanding and refinishing – were bare except for the couple of interlocking flex flooring squares she’d picked up on sale at Dick’s to preserve her aging joints; the dingy, yellowed walls screamed for some patching compound and a fresh coat of paint.

  This room was next on her list to fix up – she pictured gleaming white walls, motivational posters, some big mirrors, and maybe a small, mounted flat screen. It might make it easier to exercise if the room was more inviting. Maybe.

  Abs first. She hit the play button on her portable CD player and let the heart-pounding heavy metal soak into her skin as she mounted her AbCircle (“A treadmill for the abs”) and swung her ass left and right to the beat. Then it was a twenty minute walk/jog on a real treadmill to get her heart rate up. The chaser was fifteen minutes of strength/cardio circuits of 30 to 60 seconds each: push-ups, jumping jacks, squats, butt-kicks, planks, mountain climbers, wall sits, and calf-raises.

  All of which she hated with a red-hot burning passion, but forced herself to do because she absolutely refused to go up to the next size in jeans. Maybe big butts worked for the likes of J-Lo and Kim Kardashian, but Holly doubted she’d experience similar results.

  Sweaty and annoyed that she hadn’t been blessed with a tall, lithe figure, she chugged 16 ounces of eau de tap and plopped her five foot two, size six chubby butt down and got to work.

  Chapter 2

  While waiting for the server to take their order, Holly told her friend Liz about the Five Minute Man – as she had dubbed him in her own mind – when they met for their weekly dinner (Holly’s only consistent, voluntary socialization), but Liz didn’t find it nearly as funny as she had.

  “You don’t actually believe that kind of stuff is possible, do you?” Holly accused when she saw that far-away, dreamy look Liz sometimes got in her eye when they talked about some of Holly’s storylines (Liz was the best sounding board ever).

  Liz twirled the stem of her wineglass between perfectly manicured, blood-red nails while she considered her answer. One thing about Liz – she was one of the few people Holly knew who really cared about whatever came out of her mouth. If she said it, she meant it. The fact that she wasn’t saying anything now spoke volumes.

  “Jeez,” Holly murmured when it was taking longer than it should have. She took a sip of her unsweetened tea, scowling as the tip of the decorative lemon slice pushed up her left nostril. “Have you ever had one?”

  “No,” Liz finally answered. Like the good friend she was, she snatched the lemon from Holly’s glass
and relegated the offending slice to time out on the bread plate, which remained empty for both of them, given the insidious evil of carbs after 6pm. (Liz’s unsweetened red wine didn’t count because it was listed as a nightly staple on her latest “Sugar = Satan” diet , which was yet another reason Holly continued to see Liz on a regular basis - she was no natural Skinny-Minnie either.)

  “But I’d like to think it is possible. That there is some man out there capable of making me feel that way, pushing all the right buttons inside and out. I would think with all the steamy stuff you write in your stories that you’d believe in something like that, too.”

  Holly scoffed. “That right there is exactly why I write those stories. Because if I didn’t, there’d be no sex worth talking about in my life at all.”

  Liz giggled and covered her mouth. Holly closed her eyes and let the blush wash over her. “Our waiter is right behind me, isn’t he?” Not just any waiter, either, but a totally hot, college-age cutie with big brown eyes and an ass they’d both been discreetly ogling all night.

  Liz nodded.

  “Is he smiling or beating feet with a horrified look on his face?”

  Liz’s eyes – the only part of her face not covered by her hand - flicked over Holly’s shoulder. “He’s definitely smiling.” The words came out slightly muffled.

  Holly exhaled. Today was just not her day. She took one more deep, fortifying breath and addressed the young stud. “I won’t be having dinner after all,” she said wryly. “Turns out that the foot in my mouth is actually pretty filling.”

  Their waiter – his name tag read “Brandon” – gave her a 100-watt smile that probably got into more coed panties than Stayfree. He leaned a bit closer, lowering his voice. “For what it’s worth, I think you’re pretty hot for an older woman.”

  Holly hid her mortification behind a polished smile she’d perfected at around age 11 when puberty really started to take a noticeable hold. “I’m flattered, Brandon,” she said, lowering her voice as he had his. “With charm like that you’re going to be chasing them away someday. You know, when you’re old enough to shave.”

  Liz turned away, hiding her laughter. After a brief moment of wide eyes and initial shock, Brandon laughed, too.

  “You’re alright. And just for the record,” he leaned down further and winked, “I use my Dad’s electric shaver twice a week now.”

  Holly couldn’t help it, she laughed. The kid was just too damn cute for his own good.

  Two hours later, while clearing away the remains of grilled chicken and veggie entrees, Brandon picked up the best cash tip he’d had all month.

  Chapter 3

  Brandon was still chuckling when he made it back to his uncle’s place.

  “Good night, huh?”

  “Yeah,” Brandon said, collapsing on the couch. “These two ladies left me a fifty dollar tip on a thirty dollar bill. They were something else.”

  Adam Grayson sighed inwardly. His young nephew had the same curse his brother had – namely, irresistibility to the female sex. No matter where they were, what they were doing, women of all ages were drawn to him. It didn’t help that the kid was naturally charming, either. Adam didn’t mind so much when the girls were around Brandon’s own age, but it really annoyed him when older women set their sights on him. He was just a kid, after all, and a good-hearted one at that. The last thing he needed was some cougar getting her claws into him and taking a few bites.

  Brandon saw the familiar frown on his uncle’s face and guessed his thoughts. “It wasn’t like that. They didn’t come on to me. They were funny as hell, though.”

  Relief washed over Adam’s face. Only a dozen years older than Brandon, he still felt the need to look out for him. “Yeah?”

  “Yeah. It was pretty slow tonight, so I overheard a lot of their conversation.” He grinned. “They were debating on whether or not it was possible for a man to give a woman an orgasm within five minutes.”

  Adam choked on his beer. “Say what?”

  “You heard me,” his nephew snickered. “The one said she read a book where this guy took a woman on an elevator and gave her one in under five minutes. She said it was unbelievable, even for erotic fiction. The other woman disagreed.”

  “Jesus.” Is that what women talked about these days? Damn these romance writers. Between them and Disney they set women’s expectations too high for any regular guy to have a decent shot.

  “How old were they?” An image of little blue-haired old ladies debating Fifty Shades over Shirley Temples flashed in his mind and gave him a case of the shudders.

  “Not very. Thirty, maybe.”

  Against his will, Adam’s interest was roused. He was thirty-two. And single, wondering if he would ever find a woman he actually wanted to spend some quality time with. Most women his age were married, and if they weren’t.... well, he’d found out the hard way on multiple occasions that there was usually a good reason for that. “Thirty?”

  “Mmm-hmm. Pretty hot, too.”

  “How hot?” Adam blurted out before he could stop himself.

  Brandon pretended to think about it, but he’d been working on what he would say since the moment he’d realized neither of the ladies at the table was married. In his opinion, his uncle spent far too much time working and not enough playing.

  “Well, let’s see. One was about five-seven or so, blonde, blue eyes. Dressed nice, like she just came from an office or something. I think her name was Liz.” That was the one he imagined his uncle taking an interest in. Classically pretty, something of a romantic. She’d be perfect for his quiet, too-serious uncle.

  “Was she the believer or the non-believer?”

  “The believer.” Interesting, Adam thought vaguely, but not surprising. Sounded like many of the women he’d wined and dined. Pleasant. Attractive. Predictable.

  “What about the other one? She of little faith?”

  “Smaller, darker hair with some kind of streaks, I think.” While Brandon could remember nearly every detail of the blonde’s appearance, he didn’t remember much about the other one, even though she had been the one who had made him laugh so much. He’d been too busy eyeing up the blonde for his uncle.

  Adam nodded, but Brandon could tell his uncle was already getting suspicious. He decided to quit while he was ahead. With what he hoped was a believable yawn, he stretched. “Well, I’ve got an early class tomorrow, so I’m going to crash. I’ll catch you in the morning.”

  As he went to his room, Brandon was already forming a plan in his mind.

  Chapter 4

  “Tuesday night is Ladies Night,” Adam groaned a week later, annoyed that he’d been had by his conniving nephew. A fact confirmed by reading the laminated card clearly displayed above the trench of sugar packets on the table. “You set me up.”

  Brandon’s facial expression was just a bit too innocent to be completely believable. “Relax, will you? Just have a couple of drinks, a nice dinner, and watch the game.” Brandon indicated the huge flat screen mounted on the wall.

  Adam narrowed his eyes. He did have a good, unimpeded view of the screen, and the place really wasn’t crowded at all, at least not where he was sitting. Most of the action seemed to be at the fancy bar on the other side of the restaurant where drinks were half price, but his bullshit detector was sounding the alarm loud and clear.

  “Do not even think of sending a woman over to my table or buying one a drink and telling her it came from me.”

  “I wouldn’t dream of it,” Brandon lied smoothly.

  Adam knew for sure he’d been had when two women were seated behind him and Brandon came to take their drink orders. One was a thirty-ish blonde in a stylish gray suit; the other, a petite brunette with cherry colored streaks in her dark chocolate hair dressed more casually in jeans and some kind of loose-fitting top. The blonde caught his eye as they passed, her pretty blues widening with instant interest. The brunette didn’t even glance his way.

  “Hello again, ladies,” Adam h
eard Brandon say behind him. “It’s nice to see you again.”

  “You’re just saying that because I forgot my bifocals last time and gave you a fifty instead of a five,” one of the women said. Her voice was low and musical, filled with amusement. It was clear she was teasing him.

  “You’re not wearing your bifocals now,” Brandon observed.

  “No, but Liz is paying tonight, and she’s a notorious cheapskate.” Liz stuck her tongue out and flipped her the bird at the same time.

  Brandon laughed. “I’ll keep that in mind. Now, what can I get you ladies to drink?”

  ***

  Originally, Adam had planned on eating his meal as quickly as possible and getting the hell out of there. But he found himself taking his time. Not that he was in the habit of eavesdropping, but the two behind him were a hoot and a half.

  One of them - Adam thought it was the blonde - was a systems analyst at a software development company. The other, as far as he could tell, was currently a writer, though judging by the way they spoke about people at the office, he guessed they’d both worked together at one time.

  The analyst seemed nice enough, but it was the writer that piqued his interest. She had such a pleasant, soothing voice that was completely at odds with her rather pessimistic and jaundiced views. Oh, she laughed and made jokes (she really was quite funny), but he heard the cynicism underneath.

  It was ironic, really. The blonde worked at a software company but still believed there was a Prince Charming waiting out there for her; the brunette wrote romance novels for a living and believed the only thing awaiting her was a bunch of frogs.

  They didn’t talk about five-minute orgasms, but they did have a quite detailed discussion on female sexual aids that he found both shocking and quite fascinating. By the time they ordered their after dinner coffee, he was reeling. As if romance novels and Disney’s false expectations imprinted upon females shortly after birth weren’t bad enough, now a man had to compete with thrusting, revolving, life-like vibrators with front and back stimulating attachments?

 
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