Chapter One Fallen Angel

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Our band was on a break when I received a drink from
an admirer. Unlike a typical fruity cocktail, or worse,
a beer, this admirer sent a glass of champagne. A
brand, the bar we are playing does not stock. I lifted the delicate
flute and took my first sip. It was pure deliciousness. Closing my
eyes, I let the taste carry me away. I moaned at the pleasure on
my tongue, knowing the sound I emitted was drowned out by the
club's pounding music, the sounds of laughter, and loud talking.

When I looked around to see who my admirer was, my eyes
landed on him. A ruggedly handsome face with intelligent eyes
watched me intently, and his lips lifted in a smug smile. I felt a
tug deep down in my core. I would have to watch out for this
one; he spelled trouble with a capital T.

He did not approach me, and I did not invite him over to join
me. I was going to chalk up this new admirer to an intriguing,
but intimidating prospect and hope he would leave by the end of
the night.
When our final set ended, I left with my fellow band
members, Steve and Marshall. My admirer was nowhere in sight.
I sighed and made my way up to my darkened studio at peace.
My relief was short-lived. The next night, my admirer was there,
and each night that week.

We began a courtship dance of sorts. I hated to admit it, but I
began to look forward to seeing my admirer. On my break, he
would send me an exotic drink that my taste buds would
welcome, delighting my pallet every night. I would toast him
from across the room, acknowledging his gift but not inviting him
over.
The man, whose name I learned from the bartender, was
Iver. He looked like an Iver, tall, dark, and handsome, probably
6'4" with dark Anglo-Saxon features and bright blue eyes that
glittered in the darkness of the club. He had quite the physique,
not massive, but sculpted, and he was a total predator.
It was the final night of our gig, and our band was out in the
alley smoking a joint. I didn't usually indulge, been there and
done that. As it was the last set of the night, I figured why not.
After tonight, I had a week off until our next gig in Greenwich
Village and I was looking forward to it.

We were about to head back in when a gang of miscreants
surrounded us; our three to their six were not good odds.
Marshall and Steve stood in front of me; being the only girl in
either group, I guess they thought this made me vulnerable. Little
did they know, I'd been taking taekwondo for years. Being single
and a band girl out late at night, I'd signed up for classes at the
suggestion of my brother Finn.
It had been a good suggestion.

I was moving into a fighting stance when Iver and another
man of more enormous proportions stepped out of the back
door and into the alley, flanking us. The pack got the hint and
moved away, loping down the lane in the opposite direction.
Iver introduced himself and his friend, Raphe, to Steve and
Marshall. After shaking hands, they headed inside.

Following the 2 guys into the safety of the club, Iver asked if he could speak with
me for a moment. Steve glanced back, checking to see if I was
okay. I nodded, and he continued in the door, following Raphe
and Marshall, the three of them talking and joking around like
old friends.

"Isabelle," Iver said. And the way he said my name sent
shivers down my spine to my knees. His voice was deep but not
harsh. It soothed and invited me into his space. I felt compelled
and knew he was not a simple admirer.
I gazed into the light blue ice chips that were his eyes. They
seemed like endless glacier pools, but they held no malice in
them, the very opposite was true. His eyes were smoldering with
passion, fiery passion.

How could that be? I didn't know the man. What could I
have done to ignite such passion? I prided myself on being a
good judge of character, but he was such a contradiction. One
thing I did know that what I was seeing and what was real, were
not the same things. My instincts wanted me to run, while a
completely different side wanted to know this man.
"Who protects you, Isabelle?"

Say what? I was so engrossed in my thoughts that I almost
missed his question. Who protected me? I protected myself, of
course, but I got the feeling that was not the answer he was
asking. "I have two brothers," I finally answered, wondering
where his line of questioning was going.
"And where are they?" he asked gently.
"Living their lives," I said with an edge, "and I don't see how
it's any of your business?"

He frowned; maybe he was not used to an outspoken woman.
Or perhaps he thought I was rude. Either way, I didn't care. He'd
hit a trigger; who protects me? Really? What the hell was that?
"You need someone in your life, a protector, someone to keep
you safe and in line," he added with a small grin, his twin pools
emitting a strange light that I had not noticed before.

Despite his teasing, my body felt that sensation again, molten
lava right down to my core, making my knees weak, almost
giving out from the power of his words. Iver wasn't speaking to
my intelligence; he was talking to my psyche, what made me tick.
I had no doubt what being my protector meant with Iver.

Suddenly having a vision of me being held in his arms, seeing
him drive me to gigs and seeing him watching me, always
watching me, from the corners of the smoky clubs I was playing,
I had a shiver run down my spine and shook it off.
"That may be, but I have raised myself and have no problem
dealing with whatever comes along. It was nice to meet you, Iver,
but I must get back inside."

I headed in the door, feeling his eyes on my back until the door
swung closed. I blew out my breath, feeling as if I had just under‐
gone a battle and not sure I came out the victor. Now if I could only
avoid him for the rest of the night. My hope was short-lived; when I
re-entered the club, I spotted Raphe sitting with Marshall and Steve.
All th

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Written by Skylar West
Hochgeladen March 31, 2021
Notes Taking a chance, Isabelle allows the billionaire alpha male to escort her home, with the hopes of getting better action than her BOB has been providing of late.
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