Tease (Club Deep #1)By: Penny Wylder
Shit. I slam the car door, trying to shield myself from the rain with my bag. It’s not working. It’s pouring, and I can barely see the entrance to the club through the sheets of water. At least I’m getting a uniform today. Small favors.
Headlights cut through the rain, and I get a flash of the front door. There are some people gathered under the edge of the building, smoking. The club doesn’t have any glitzy neon signs like most clubs do. In fact, unless I didn’t know there was a club here, I might assume that it was a vacant building and that the full parking lot was being used by other businesses. I’ve only been here once before for my interview, and it was during the day. So I didn’t notice the lack of signs.
I give up trying to keep myself dry and sprint for the door. There was a major accident on the highway, so now I’m a half-hour late for my first shift. I’ll be lucky if they haven’t already fired me by the time I get inside. The main area of the club is one floor down, the basement opening up to a large two-story space. I’ve been told that Club Deep owns the whole building, though I don’t know what the upstairs floors are used for. None of my business, anyway.
The bouncer waves me through, and I gather my hair in my hands, trying to wring it out the best I can. I twist it up into a knot at the back of my head, trying to tie it back while I hurry down the stairs. I should have worn better shoes and changed into the heels once I got here. Lesson learned. Shoes are the only things the club doesn’t provide.
There’s a deep pounding through the walls. Bass from the music. I start to hear the sounds of people, and the stairs are lit up with flickering, colorful lights. This place was impressive when it was empty and dark, so I’m excited to see it when it’s full of life.
I hit the last stair wrong, and I stumble, fighting to keep my balance. In classic Andrea fashion, it doesn’t work, and I’m about to end up sprawled on the ground when an arm catches me around the waist, saving me. The person helps right me, and I immediately turn. “Thank you. I’m so sorry. It’s pouring outside and I must have slipped and—”
My words suddenly fall short as I take in my rescuer. It’s his lips I notice first. Full lips, begging to be touched. Then his eyes, which are dark. I can’t tell the color with all the lights, but I don’t need to see the color to feel the intensity of his gaze. He’s wearing a button-down shirt and vest. They fit him perfectly, and the sleeves are rolled up to show toned forearms with a peek of tattoos underneath. Arms that are still around my waist, holding me firmly to make sure I’m standing. Arms leading to a body that feels rock hard. Damn.
If this is the kind of person that frequents Club Deep, sign me up. Yes, please!
He smiles, slow and easy. “Are you all right?”
“Yeah. I think so.”
Behind him, I see a waitress passing by and my mind snaps back to why I’m really here. “I’m sorry, I have to go. You don’t happen to know where the employee dressing room is?”
Handsome man lets me go, pointing across the club. “It’s over there, entrance is behind the bar.”
“Thanks.” I wish I had more time to talk to him, but I need this job. Keeping it is more important than flirting. Unfortunately for me.
The club is already busy, the dance floor packed with people under the rotating laser lights. House music vibrates under my feet, and I weave through the crowd of people as quickly as I can. I’m hoping that my drenched state will earn me some sympathy for being late.
I find the entrance exactly where he said it was, and luckily someone is coming out just then. I use the opportunity to push inside the locker room. The sounds of the club fade to almost silence behind me. Soundproofed, then. The locker room is huge and comfortable, and I see a bunch of go-go dancers getting ready for the next shift, and a few waitresses scattered throughout.
A harsh voice cuts across the room. “Are you Andrea?”
“Yeah, that’s me.”
A petite blonde woman comes over to me with a smile. “I’m glad you’re here. I’m Rosie. I’m your supervisor. We’re a little understaffed tonight so I need to give you the rapid-fire orientation.” She hands me a pile of clothes.