A Bennett Affair is a series based on successful brothers delving into their own journey of life. Ironically, love comes for each one of them at different times with different experiences.
Book 1: Fearless Love
Sean B is an overly attractive man with a lot of pull, who’s able to navigate well in life. He’s an artist with several businesses under his belt, not to mention, he was once a professional football player but an injury ended his career. He has the money, fame, and Chelsea, who he considers as one of his best friends. Though they’ve been platonic friends for six years, there’s something brewing in Sean that he can’t seem to tame.
Chelsea is the definition of a strong-willed independent woman, who has everything under control as she steps out on new ventures in the entertainment business. She’s level-headed and stable but her past hurts from her notorious son’s father prevents her from fully giving LOVE a chance.
As close as these two are, could Sean convince Chelsea to get over her fear of LOVE?
If so, will she give him a try?
Is it possible to become fearless in LOVE?
The line outside was still long and it was a little after one am. 1 Oak was thick, and I could only imagine what the inside held. “Chelsea, oh wow, it’s great to see you supporting your friend Sean. You are here for him, right?” I looked at her with a slight smile and kept walking. These paparazzi people were a trip.
The speakers blasted Drake’s song, 🎶 ‘Mob Ties’ as I walked in. I quickly tried to make my way to VIP where I saw Sean’s security and his whole entourage.
The club was beautifully decorated as the chandelier lights shined throughout the club, illuminating the space giving it a scenic look. The ambiance in the club was a whole vibe and the partygoers added to it by being all the way turnt. The crowds were starting to notice me, and I saw people with their phones out trying to snap. I didn’t care to make a scene, I always been quite shy in a sense, but people would never know it.
Finally, I made it near VIP and security escorted me up. Sean didn’t know of my arrival, and I was glad because I wanted to surprise him.
The VIP section had the plushest seating areas I’d ever seen. The caramel leather seats sat high and the vaulted ceilings were amazing. This area had a different type of lighting that set a tone of sophistication.
Champagne juices flew everywhere. The bottle girls weren’t playing that night, they wore white shorts that showed 80% of their butt cheeks and the bra like shirts were see through. Nonetheless, all the girls were beautiful, and they made sure the VIP section was secure.
The man I sought out stood in plain sight. I saw Sean with his homeboy Dion, over the gold rail talking and looking down at the crowd, bobbing their heads. Sean’s style was a whole mood. I noticed his big gold SB chain around his neck, glistening so damn bright, with diamond cuts running all through it. He rocked some white pants with a fitted green and yellow Gucci shirt and some all black Yeezys. Seeing his muscle physique through the shirt put the icing on the cake. He outdid the mess out of his fit.
I crept up, wrapping my arms around him, while still trying to conceal my identity. I rapped the lyrics that were now blasting. Obviously, he heard and noticed my voice over the loud music and crowd. Without looking back, he brushed his hands over my arms then placed his hands on top of mine.
“So you made it after all?” I could see his smile despite him facing the crowd. As quick as he said that, he turned to face me and hugged me. I set my face right above his stomach, inhaling the mesmerizing whiff of his cologne. The smell of him alone would drive anyone crazy. We were both happy to see each other and we started turnin’ up to the music.
We were face to face rapping, singing, dancing and the night continued with the rest of the VIP guests. Then his new hit song came on and the club went off the wall. Sean was amped, the song only been out for 24 hours but yet the club goers knew it. So, I got in his face and started rapping his own lyrics to him.
🎶 “I got the drip and these fuck niggas mad
Baggin they bitches while I turn up my swag
Pulling up in my new Lambo Veneno
$10.5 Million, what the fuck does he know?”
Before I could finish rapping and vibing, he joined me, and the crowd hailed.
“Yass fuck it up, sis!”
“Are y’all together?”
“Oh my God, Sean!”
“We love you, Chelsea!”
“You better bag her bruh.”
I got real big headed. From the looks of it, we were a hit! Just like that my headache was gone or at least I forgot about it. About an hour in, I knew I needed to go. I had to be back on set at eight am. I congratulated Sean and we exchanged a few words but then he followed me out. We went through a secret exit so the fans wouldn’t notice him.
Walking out the back door, I observed how clear the sky appeared and the stars beamed brightly at us. The cool night’s air made me feel good. More importantly, I managed to come out and support Sean. Once outside, Sean wrapped his arms around my neck and started talking, “When did you learn the lyrics to my song? Cause in the studio, you act like you weren’t listening.”
I laughed. That day was crazy in the studio, but I didn’t miss a beat. “Of course, I listened. I’m your friend and one of your biggest supporters, Sean.” He seemed happy to hear that, but only replied with his eyes and licking his lips, while nodding slowly.
“Well, I’m a fan of yours too, you know. So how was your first day of filming? I mean, it’s a new show for you and you are a series regular now, which means you will be working a lot with this cast. Are you still up for it? This is what you wanted!”
Looking up at him I smiled, “Yeah, it was great but long. I met so many cool people, and I had a few fans too, which made me feel good. I’m just not sure I’m ready to make that big move here from Atlanta.”
He gave me a puzzled look. “What you mean, I thought that’s what you wanted? Is it the finances, fear or…?”
“No, my finances are fine. I just don’t want to leave Camden.”
“Oh ok, I understand. Well, you know I got you if needed. I will always have your back, Chelsea.” I could see the concern in Sean’s face but I also knew he meant every word.
We were quiet for a while, which led me to think how great of a friend and support we had been to each other. We met six years prior and been good friends ever since. Honestly, Sean was someone I talked to about everything. He knew who I been talking too and things that I wouldn’t share with the average person. I even knew who he smashed and the crazy things he would go out and do. Our bond was unbreakable.
A cool breeze hit my face while wrapping my arms around Chelsea. I loved hearing about her progress in life. She’s a hard worker that’s ambitious as hell and she had become a very good friend of mine.
Despite how fine she was, I knew I couldn’t ever take it there. I watched her, admiring how beautiful she was as her form-fitting dress hugged her physique. Her slim waist was very visible and her sun-kissed skin from her legs and face radiated underneath the stars. She may be short but every feature on her body compliments her well.
Then my mind went back to hearing her rap my lyrics in the club, which made me feel something extra for her and the thought made my dick throb. I was glad, I knew then she either been bumping my music non-stop or she really had been in tune when I recorded that night in the studio. In reality, her magnetic energy intrigued me and I felt so much support from her. I could only imagine what the blogs would have up in the morning.
Peering down with a smile, I watched her picture-perfect full lips. The way she exaggerated with her thin eyebrows while trying to prove a point always made me laugh. Lost in my thoughts, I didn’t even notice her getting quiet. In a whisper, she asked, “Sean what the hell is wrong with you, why are you staring at me in a daze?”
I gawked down at her for a second and brushed the tip of my fingers on her small pointy nose, “Nothing, just thinking about life and how blessed we are.” Of course, I lied, not wanting to tell her how fond I’d been of her at the moment.
She pushed me back and laughed not buying my lie. All of a sudden, we could hear the crickets. We were silent, which was rare because we never had a dry moment. Our conversations were always live, but tonight not so much. I gently pushed her back, “So when the next time we’re getting up with each other? It’s been a while since we sat down for dinner to catch up.” Chelsea and I chatted on the phone at least once a week and we would meet up in person anytime we were in the same area.
She let out a long sigh, “I don’t even know… My schedule is so busy that I can’t even wrap my mind around anything. But how can you ask me that when you’re the one that’s about to be on tour for like six months? Not to mention all the deals you have going on. I’m sure we won’t be talking much anyway.” Damn, she sounded concerned. I smiled, realizing I felt the same way about her too. I had been calling her, but our talks were so brief due to the increase of roles she received, but I was happy for her. That didn’t change the fact that I did miss confiding in her.
“That’s why I’m asking you now about us finding time while you here in LA!”
After hearing me get smart and avoiding my statement, she looked back up at me and moved in closer, holding my hands with our fingers linked. “Sean you are so good to me you know that? Every time I need someone to listen to me rant you’re there. Even when you don’t answer, you always find a way to reply back and I appreciate that.”
“So, what are you saying Chelsea?” She leaned in and rested her head on my chest. We had to be standing there just breathing each other in for a solid five minutes.
I knew then why it seemed different. Our emotions had caught up to us and our bond had grown exponentially. But I knew she wouldn’t want to go further than that.
“Oh my god, standing here with you, I forgot to let Nick know to pick me up… Ugh,” Chelsea shouted and pulled out her phone.
My nose flared, “Who’s Nick?”
“Oh, I forgot we haven’t talked much lately. Yeah, that’s part of my package deal. My agent negotiated for the production to pay for my room, travel fees, and a few miscellaneous things. I chose a driver as part of it. I really hate driving in LA traffic.”
I understood that, but I didn’t want her riding late with no man, driver or not. “How about I get my driver to take you back to your hotel and I can ride if you want me too?”
“No, Sean I’ll be fine; Besides you need to go back inside, the party will be ending soon an—” before she could finish her statement…
“Yeah, Sean, everyone’s been looking for you. Why you out here hiding?” Lexi yelled while coming out the back door of the club and observing Chelsea. “Oh, hey Chelsea. You came out to the club to get you a man, huh? I can tell by your outfit you’re looking for one.”
Chelsea seemed unbothered but ranted back, “Girl please, you know damn well men flock to me regardless. I ain’t nothing like you, besides, you the one that’s been with everybody in the industry, right?”
Lexi being an amazing artist would be an understatement because she holds many accolades in her field. But she also has a reputation that follows her for being an industry hoe. I didn’t invite her to my album release party but somehow, she showed up. Surprisingly many came through. Rappers, singers, actors and all types were in attendance. But my only concern at the moment was making sure Chelsea got back to her hotel safely.
Chelsea hadn’t moved away from me since Lexi came out. Chelsea stood in front of me but against me. Her back touching my abs and her butt touching my groin area. I don’t think she noticed since she stood listening to Lexi shout. Chelsea knew I had sex with Lexi before and of course, Lexi never cared for me and Chelsea’s friendship either. Shoot, even the media would throw rumors around about us dating, and though I wish they were true, it wasn’t.
“Lexi why you out here checking for me? I didn’t even invite you.” She looked hurt as she dropped her head down sobbing with tears. “Fuck you, Sean! It’s easy for you to say when you don’t give a fuck about no one else’s feelings.” She stormed back in leaving Chelsea and I standing there.
I noticed Chelsea hitting the send button for her driver, so I knew there was no point of stopping her now. As the all black Denali pulled up, Chelsea turned back around to face me. “Sean, I’m so fucking happy for you right now. I guess those sleepless hours you put in is paying off. You really inspire me and I hope we can always be there for one another.”
“Ssshh,” I whispered, placing one finger to her lips, pulling her closer to me. The aroma she possessed held me captive. I was losing it.
Glaring down, biting my bottom lip, I stroked her shoulders eventually making it down her back until it landed on her waist. We mounted like statues as I took in her hypnotic eyes. She twitched, while her hands laid still on the back of my arms. Her fingers danced in slow motion over my skin. I could sense her breathing pattern changing as she started moving her legs together in a way that made me think she was hot and bothered in between her legs. I was turned on than a motherfucka and I was sure she could feel my erectness touching her belly.
I leaned down placing a kiss on her forehead. She gripped me tighter, so I went to kiss her lips but she pulled away. “Unh unh Sean,” she pouted. It was at that moment I knew I was out of control. I fucking wanted her but didn’t want to fuck shit up.
“Sean, I gotta go. I’ll text you when I make it back to the room.” I nodded and walked her to the door, opening it for her, “Goodnight Chelsea.”
I watched the car drive off until it disappeared.
*END OF EXCERPT*
Book 2: Unjust Love
Benjamin Bennett leads a lifestyle that many could only dream of. He’s a star quarterback, well educated, and he knows how to get what he wants. But what he stays clear from is love because his ambition and goals don’t align with it.
“I am a single man with laser-sharp focus on and off the field. Nowhere in that equation am I thinking about being in a committed relationship.” ~Benji~
Riana is sassy and all about herself. Her world consists of her career as a musician and she doesn’t see anything outside of it.. Though her intentions are good, she battles issues from the past that hinders her from truly moving forward in life, especially in the love department.
Benji and Riana think they have things figured out until heartbreak shatters each of them leaving no choice but to rebuild themselves. But will they rebuild together?
One important thing they learn is no matter how much money you have or how many people wish for your life, some things can’t be avoided.
Is it possible for them to move forward in a relationship or is it best to focus on themselves? Are the circumstances they’re being forced to confront too overwhelming to work through? Most importantly, will Benji and Riana be able to fight against an Unjust Love?
My chest flew straight against the wall leaving me staring at the Basquiat artwork. Ri had a mean grip. I could feel her clawing at my back, “You full of it Benji. When will I find time to get my hair done now?” I turned around to face her and restrained both wrists before she created more damage to my body. “Ri, I’ll pay to get your hair done and push come to shove, I’ll find someone to come and fix it for you.”
“I don’t have time to get my hair redone. My schedule is jam-packed.” Listening to her whine, something stirred in my soul. I actually liked the girl, but at this moment mining for her gold was the objective. I gawked down at her and pulled her as close as I could. Her soaked body and the puddle below us reminded me to get out the foyer and shift to the carpeted room adjacent from us. “I got you, come on.”
We walked into the nearest room and she sat on the leather sofa. I ran into the other room to grab towels and came back to tend to her. “Stand up, Ri.” I dabbed the towel on her face and continued down her body until I made it to her centerpiece. I carefully stuck the towel between her legs, drying each individually. Looking up at her, my knees made its way to the floor and I observed Ri biting her bottom lip as she placed her hands on top of my head. “When you gone cut all that damn hair off your head?”
I motioned for her to sit down. As she relaxed, she parted her legs. She leaned back onto the couch as I slid the white bathing suit bottom to the side and kissed her bare lips, “That question isn’t important right now. I’m only concerned about one thing.”
I felt her shivering and attempting to close her legs. “Ri, do you want me to stop?” She gave a stern look and answered, “No.” But I was skeptical, I remember her drinking through the whole party and I didn’t want to do something against her better judgment. “Nah, we gon try this another time. I don’t wanna do this when you intoxicated.”
My man downstairs pleaded with me, throbbing and pressing against my swim shorts. But I needed to think with my brain. As I stood up, Ri snatched my hands, “No, I said I want to do this. I’m not drunk. I know what I’m doing and saying,” she squealed. If I was reading her eyes correctly, then I knew she was ready to devour me whole. Before I continued, I wondered where Chelsea and Sean could be since I hadn’t heard a peep from them. The thought quickly faded when I saw Ri removing her top and bottom. She laid on the couch butt ass naked and I was damn sure drooling at her splayed out in front of me.
“Damn Ri, you are beautiful, flaws and all.”
“Flaws? Where? Damn, you ruin everything!”
“What? I can’t let you think you got me wrapped around your finger. But for real, you do something to me.”
As I descended upon the chair she grabbed my shorts at the waistband and quickly pulled them down. My Johnson sprung out and popped the tip of her nose, leaving a wet spot on it. I chuckled, “See what happens when you get too close? That’s nine and a half almost ten inches right there.” We both laughed.
“Yeah, you and your wood are disrespectful as hell, slapping me and shit.” We laughed again but this time, I leaned down and hovered over her, landing kisses all over her face.
Her smell had me going in circles. I don’t know what pheromones she possessed, but all five of my senses were going haywire. My pecks made it to her navel and moans filled the room. I pushed her legs up, staring at the pink diamond ring hanging on the hood of her clit. My tongue circled around it, instantly her bud grew in size.
“Ben—jiii,” she purred. My tongue lingered while I simultaneously finger fucked her center. “Benji, Imma cum like this,” she cried. Her words added fuel to what I was experiencing inside.
Anxiously, I slid my hands underneath both butt cheeks, adding a firm squeeze that sent her through the roof as I aggressively tongued every inch of her. Her creampie filled my mouth and the wetness overflowed. I glanced up, teasing, “As wet as you are, there’s no way you ain't been wanting me.” She smirked with no verbal response and instead, Riana shook uncontrollably and seconds later, I could taste what she’d been harboring.
My erection was ready for its release and I was ready to go with it. I paused for a second realizing I had no condom. Shit… As bad as I wanted her, I wasn’t even prepared. Fuck my whole life, I thought. I could easily ask Sean for one but I didn’t want to ruin the moment. “Riana, uh, I don’t have a condom.”
“Here,” she reached behind the pillow on the sofa and handed it over. “Oh, so you ready ready? How the hell you do that and when?” I laughed but was truly shocked. “I figured your ass wouldn’t have it together, so I came prepared. I got it out my purse before I came running behind you and stuck it in my top.”
Instead of prolonging the conversation, I quickly tore it open and slid it on. Riana took the lead and shoved me onto the couch. She sat on top, straddling me with her hands clasped on the back of my neck. She sucked my bottom lip eventually kissing me fervently. The passion we shared was so intense that I forgot to breathe.
She lifted her body up a bit to take my manhood inside of her. The task was more difficult than we thought. She was pretty tight and my girth presented an issue. Luckily, she was soaked which made it easier for me to push and pull until I was all the way in.
Her movements began slow before catching a rhythm we both synced to. I gripped her, molding my arms around her body while she buried her face into my neck. She rode while I gyrated upward. “Damn you feel sooo good,” I growled. She increased her pace and so did her moans. The tunes flowing through her vocals were captivating and loud; I could only hope that Chelsea and Sean were far away on another level of the home.
Her overly seductive moans caused my body to wildly react, so I changed our position. I raised her up, flipping her onto her back. I reinserted myself and started pumping nice and slow. With every stroke, I watched my shaft disappear and reappear and the pink diamond clit ring glistened with her juices.
The ring was enticing and turned me on even more. I found myself banging her insides and my movements only got faster. “Yeeesss, baby, just like that,” Ri squirmed. Why did she go and call me baby? Instantly, I stopped all motion and positioned her on all fours. I barely gave her a second to brace herself for my fat stick.
“Ooohhh, Benj—, shiiit.” I slapped her butt cheeks and watched them clap. I pounded her backside as she gripped the arms of the couch. Instead of holding onto her waist for balance, I mounted over her caging her in like an animal while squeezing her breast and playing with her nipples.
Ri tried to escape the beating I was giving her, “Stop running girl. I thought you don’t fuck with young niggas? Take that shit!” Her body shuddered at the thunder of my voice and I could feel her walls tightening.
I leaned against her spine, making sure she heard every word that was about to escape my mouth. “You been dodging me for years but now I want you to acknowledge that my age has nothing to do with what I can offer you. Understood?”
She let out a faint whimper, “Wait, why are you slowing down? Keep going.”
“Not until you admit you were wrong about this dick. And I want you to tell me what you want out of this.” I stopped moving all at once at the last word.
She banged her balled fist against the chair with frustration, “No, Benji don’t do this now. Just a few more strokes, pleeeeaaase…” She turned her head to face me and I stared back smiling, knowing I had full control and she was near her climax.
“Don’t worry about it, when you figure it out, holla at me.” I was almost fully out of her when she threw her ass back against my shaft, forcing it all in. But she responded, “Benji, I like you and yes, you are more capable then I’d like to admit. Your dick, your personality, you’re smart as hell and fine. But I don’t want us to kiss and tell. Let’s have fun and keep it simple. Now keep stroking!”
I didn’t expect to hear her say that but I was fine with it. I wasn’t looking for a relationship, but I did get tired of her belittling me about everything. So, with that out the way, I was cool.
I crashed inside her, slamming into her from the back, making sure to give exactly what she’d asked for. “Lift that ass, girl. Are you still running? I’ve chased you long enough, don’t you think?” I joked while tugging at her hair.
Riana was in a euphoric state as she hissed. I was unrelenting and glad to deliver. I felt her convulsing and my time was near as well, so I picked up the pace as we finished together, with me toppling over her.
I heard movement in the hall, as we laid there. Looking at each other we smiled. I moved off of her and sat up. Ri cocked her head back, “Damn, we foul as hell. Having sex naked, with no cares in the world, like this our place. Which room will we christen next?”
Our laugh occupied the room as we got dressed. I wasn’t sure where Ri and I would go from here but I knew this was just the beginning.
I stared at the green Andretti sign that illuminated in front of me while sitting in my car. It was a little after 9 pm and I was waiting on Santos to arrive. He insisted on picking me up from my hotel but I convinced him I needed some alone time and would meet him at the spot. Since finishing the show the day before, I’ve had people around me constantly. The only two people near me now were my security guards, who trailed me.
I was excited to meet Santos. We’d been dating for about five months and things were cool. Every time we got together it was always fun, but I wasn’t a fan of him always being a yes man. No matter what I ask or say, he always agreed. Maybe I was being foolish and would get over it.
My phone vibrated, “❤️BFF Chelsea❤️” popped up on my iPhone screen.
“Girrrl, where you been?” Chelsea questioned without allowing me to say hello.
“Chelsea, I FaceTimed you this morning,” I chuckled.
“Duh, I know that, but I been calling you for the past hour and wanted to make sure you were cool since you were down about your parents.”
“Yeah, I’m good. Actually, I’m in the car waiting on Santos, in front of Andretti.”
“Oh, really? Y’all seem to be going strong. What about Benji?”
“Mhm, you being nosey?”
“Oh bitch, don’t do that because you stay in my business. All you ask about is Sean and our sex life. At least I ain't ask why you fucking Benji and Santos at the same time.”
I rolled my eyes because I too, had no answer to that question. I have been crushing on Benji on and off since I’d met him. Ironically, Andretti was one of the first places I hung out with him.
Yep, May 2012 was lit for my twenty-first birthday and Chelsea was turning twenty-two. She invited Sean and Benji to our party, but the following day she wanted to hang with Sean privately and asked me to tag along. That’s when I learned more about Benji and we flirted something crazy. But it never went past friends, flirting and joking; until recently. Just thinking about our rendezvous caused my body to have an immediate reaction to all the nasty stuff we did to, and with, each other.
“Damn you all right Ri, you mighty quiet over there?”
“My bad. I was reminiscing about Benji. I think I need to throw my whole vagina away.”
Giggles filled the air.
“Hell nah, Ri. That nigga doing it like that? Shiiit, I believe you. Sean got me pretty twisted myself.”
“Chelsea, for real. This is crazy, I can still feel my bud thumping at the thought of him. I’m searching for a napkin as we speak.”
Chelsea kept laughing but I continued shaking my head. I was tripping.
Bright blue lights flashed as Santos parked his black Audi R8 in front of me.
“He’s here, I’ll hit you up later.”
“Cool, but if not, make sure you text me when you make it back to your room.”
“I will love ya.”
“Love you too Riana.”
I watched my snack make his way towards my car. His chocolate ass was fine. His straight white teeth stood in full sight, as he opened my car door, grabbing my hand to escort me out.
“Hey babe,” I grinned from ear to ear, eyeing him from head to toe. His line-up was precise and his jet-black curly hair looked flawless with a temp fade haircut. Next, my eyes moved on to the crisp black t-shirt that hugged him perfectly along with his gray sweatpants and Jordans. He was dressed like he wanted to be taken advantage of later. “You ready to go inside? The way you’re biting the side of your lip makes me think different,” Santos teased while I smiled, kissing him on the lips.
Once inside, we grabbed a table and a bite to eat. “So, what’s up baby? We usually talk daily but our conversations been coming up short lately.”
“Santos, I’ve been really busy. At least I manage to talk to you every day. I've been at rehearsals, the studio, touring, and life been hitting me left to right.”
His long lashes fluttered, as he gave me that ‘yeah right’ look. He leaned in a bit, “I have a busy schedule as well, but I make time for what I want. Today, I was supposed to be in DC working on a major production. They need me to illustrate a few things to match their vision. And after that, I had a business meeting for another project, as an animator. But I rescheduled both because I needed one on one time with you and since I was already in Atlanta, I stayed.”
“You’re right, I’ll do better. But don’t expect me to drop everything. You knew how hectic my schedule was when we started talking. You said it wouldn’t be a problem.”
“Yeah, but I didn’t know how bad it would be.”
“You wanna break up?” I asked with irritation.
“I didn’t say that,” Santos answered with concern.
“I know, but I don’t want you feeling stuck with me.”
“Let’s just enjoy our night Riana. We’ll be fine.”
The waiter picked up our empty dishes and I excused myself to the restroom. Walking in, I was grateful it was empty. The moment we walked into the building, all eyes were on us. I knew what fame brought, but I missed being “normal” and having fun without my privacy being exposed for the world to see. All of that went out the window a little after my twenty-first birthday when I signed my first record deal.
My phone went off in my back pocket as I was drying my hands, pulling it out and looking, my heart skipped all types of beats. If there was such a thing, my heart would have hit the floor. “☠️No Good Benji💀,” shined as he FaceTimed me.
I quickly looked in the mirror. My hair was in its naturally curly state in a high ponytail, with curls serving bangs on my forehead. I rocked blue jean cut up shorts, with a casual button-up shirt.
He licked his lips and blew a kiss, “Hey, my love.”
“Why you playin’ me like that?”
“Just speaking my mind.”
“Haven’t heard from you in a few weeks Benji, you good?”
“Phone calls work both ways you know. If you wanted me, you woulda called. See, I’m calling you because I miss you.”
I leaned back on the sink, with no words. I stared at his topless chest, his hair spread wild on the bed, as he lay there. I don’t know why but my finger ended inside my mouth, my teeth gently tugging at my nail, “I miss you too, Benjamin Makai Bennett.”
With raised brows, “Hmmm, you using my full name now? That kinda turns me on…”
I smiled keeping it cool. “We’ll see each other soon and when we do—.”
He smirked, “Yeah, keep going. When we do, what? Never mind, no need to finish the statement.”
We talked a bit longer but I noticed we’d been on the phone for four minutes, I knew Santos would wonder what was going on so I cut the call short.
“I have to go Benji.”
“Damn you salty? I’m out that’s all,” I said it with more compassion than I cared too.
“Oh nah, I ain't trippin. I was letting you go that’s all.”
“Mmhmm.” We stared for a few seconds. Neither one of us wanting to end the call.
“Enjoy your night Riana. Be careful out there and call me if you need me.”
“Thanks, Benji, Goodnight.”
The phone went blank as he ended the call.
*END OF EXCERPT*
Book 3: Unexpected Love
Sebastien Bennett is a man that is focused on two things. His career and his family. He isn’t configured to add any stumbling blocks into his already perfectly crafted routine.
That is… until love comes unexpectedly.
Imani Barasa doesn’t care about the fanfare surrounding her work life. Her only concern is making sure that her clients stay out of trouble and out of the media for all the wrong reasons. Growing her company while working on her inner self, is her top priority. She’s doing her best to stay on track with these specific goals and will stop at nothing to make sure that no one or nothing interrupts.
She stuck to the rules, until… The eldest of the Bennett Brothers make an appearance attempting to disrupt everything she’s worked hard to achieve.
Profound family drama continues to plague Sebastien and Imani in this heart-wrenching story of secrets, lies, and forgiveness.
“Strutting around here with no panties will have you splayed out on that desk.” I tugged harder, loosening the tie before unbuttoning my shirt. The next thing I see is her dainty fingers flicking her cheekster underwear towards the window that covered the wall. “I’m telling you, be careful, Chelle.” Hard chortles filled my office between Michelle Davenport and me. She stopped by to drop off lunch, which was unusual since I never allowed women I was boning to pop up in my workspace. Those who choose to go against the grain were halted by security downstairs before ever stepping foot onto the 42nd-floor into the entrance of Bennett & Associates at Law.
The highrise building consisted of many different businesses. Still, starting on the fifth floor, no access was allowed unless you were cleared via your access card or security, who went through extra lengths of keeping the building secure. The fifth level held an entire radio station, all the subsequent levels contained companies ranging from PR firms, finance handlers, insurance, etc. Bennett & Associates at Law was the only law firm in the entire building which spoke volumes about the man who founded the business; my father, Samuel Bennett.
He didn’t always have it all together. Truth be told, when I was growing up, my family struggled financially. My mother was eighteen, in college, and my dad didn’t stop his schooling either. We lived with my dad’s mother and father until both of my parents finished college. I remember one day, my dad argued with my grandfather about being ready to move his family out, but gramps wasn’t hearing it. Grandad asserted that it was best not only for my dad to graduate from law school but that he should confirm with my mom that she was mentally prepared for them to be on their own. I could almost imagine his voice as strong as it was years ago, “Keep saving money for your family, Sam. There’s no reason to be running out into the real world, son. I could agree if you and Belinda didn’t go and have two more kids after Bastien, but that’s where we are. You have six months until graduating from law school. When you do that and pass the bar exam, then you can figure it out. You married folks think life is easy, but this is just the beginning. Marriage and problems are forever, so let me keep giving you guys a head start in the right direction. Your mama and I won’t be alive forever, Samuel.”
My grandparents provided the foundation that allowed our family to be stable by the time I hit my preteen ages. I don’t remember much about my little brother Sean coming into the world since we’re only two years apart. Although, I clearly recall Benji coming along when I was about six years old, and boy was that a transition into the real world.
"Mmm, Sebastien. M. Bennett." Chelle purred, enunciating every syllable in my name. She planted her hands flat on the surface and continued bending over my desk further and further until every inch of her body and kinky curly hair rested comfortably.
No longer did the dress conceal her full bottom but instead rested on her back. Not soon enough, I cupped her ass cheeks, spreading them apart. My slacks had already hit the floor, and I was wholly sheathed, so sliding into a whirlwind of lust courtesy of Chelle was nothing.
Not even four strokes in, Chelle started panting and throwing it back as if her life depended on it. She was no lazy lover by a long shot. She put in work just as much as I did. I pulled the ends of the curly ‘fro that she rocked to perfection, watching each loose strand that was out of my reach bounce along the arch of her back, and that curve in her spine blew my mind.
She wasn’t a woman I planned to marry. I mean, Chelle was beautiful, could provide for herself, and her career as a journalist surpassed her peers. Several news outlets wanted her, and the offerings to have her weren’t slowing down. But Chelle was charting her own path with a journalistic career that allowed her to have a healthy personal and professional balance. How could I be mad at that? Too bad, I couldn’t provide her the long term personal happiness that she was looking for. Chelle has never made it a secret that her end goal was to be a wife and mother, so she completely understood that what we had was on a timer. My workdays did not include a social life. I made it happen occasionally, but I felt no need to change too much since I was happily single. Chelle never made a big deal when I canceled dates, nor did she go on a rant. This was the main reason I kept her around, she understood the dynamics of what we had and didn’t expect anything more.
Ragged breaths lingered with perspiration filling the table. Chelle’s fingers gripped the edge for support, but then those moans got louder. My office was secluded from the other partnering attorneys, so I assumed no one could hear. But just in case, my palms hovered over her mouth, turning me on furthermore. The low inaudible grunts escaped my airway until I could feel the involuntary muscle contractions from Chelle's cove. I followed almost immediately, and seconds after I went over the edge, knocks filled the door.
I pulled out swiftly, maneuvering to the bathroom that was located inside my office. I requested one after we had plumbing issues in the beginning when we first moved into this location. The knock sounded harder and longer this time. “You can clean yourself up, I have washcloths and extra toiletries in the closet near the toilet.”
I finished cleaning myself with the soapy cloth and adjusted my pants and shirt while pulling the bathroom door shut. I strolled to answer the persistent knocking but was too late since the intruder barged in anyway. I looked up to the giant who stood four inches taller than me. At 6’3, I wasn’t a little dude, but no matter how old or big I got, my dad still seemed to be that man; tall, authoritative, and commanding. Whereas my brother Sean took after him in the looks department, I’d inherited most of his mannerisms… good and bad.
“Smells like sex in this room. Which is odd considering the size of this suite.” My dad kept rambling on and observing the area. I leaned against the built-in bookshelf, waiting. “Smeared handprints are all over the glass desk. And they’re too small to be yours.” His buff body settled into the black lounge, “is she still here?”
He walks in, interrogates me, and find evidence to support his claim against the crime I so called committed in my own office. In that second, I realized just how irritating I probably came across to my non-lawyer friends and family. Witnessing my dad in action was a clear indicator of how I presented myself to others. You know, the whole apple doesn’t fall far from the tree thing?
Instead of confessing, I sat behind the desk, propping up my elbows. “Mr. Bennett, sir, or if you don’t mind me summoning you by your informal moniker, Dad. It wasn’t too long ago that I came into your office, and your garments were quite disheveled as I happened to stumble over my mother's belongings. Not to mention the Harry Winston earrings that I bought her were on the floor in the corner panel of the window.” I reflected for a second considering how far I would carry on with the man who put me on this earth. “Is there anything of real value that you need to discuss with me, sir?”
My dad smiled in a teasing manner, being silly as he always was outside of the courtroom. As a man he’s always possessed a ton of personality, as an attorney, he smoothed it out by adding a dose of sarcasm. Many referenced me in the same manner, except I was a bit more serious and people didn’t know how to perceive me. Good.
“I’m married, Sebastien. I can make love to my woman wherever I please. And to be honest, that wasn’t a social call when she arrived at my office. She had done some incriminating things that I had to address. So I taught her a lesson.” He had the nerve to smile after saying those unsavory things about my mother.
I stood quickly from my chair. “Dad, you gotta go. You will not do this to me today. I care about none of your sexual acts with my mother.” He followed me to the door and excused himself out, tittering down the hallway. “My firstborn, I love you. Instead of you having meaningless sex in your office with god knows who, you need to be thinking about settling down and bringing your mother and me some grandchildren.” He finished his statement and disappeared from my office as quickly as he appeared.
The only thing I could do was hope that Chelle didn’t get any ideas of being the one I settled down with. I know she was probably listening to my dad as she was in the bathroom washing away the evidence of our afternoon quickie. Hell, I needed to get a better lock on my office door.
Today’s the day. It’s time to get real. I removed the impenetrable, black shades that covered the bags underneath my tired eyes. I’ve somehow become the girl who devoted all her time to loving the wrong person when I should have been focusing on me. I barely recognize the woman reflecting back at me.
Tears clouded my vision as I spoke out loud, “I say I love myself but do I? It comes a time when you have to learn to be real with yourself, Imani. Progress forward.” Damn, I started to feel like I belonged in an institution or sitting in front of Iyanla, begging her to fix my life.
I scribbled on a sheet of paper all that I’ve accomplished from eighteen to twenty-six years old; seeing the words spoke volumes, but I wasn’t convinced it was enough. In those eight years, I’ve built a business by myself, it was my baby, so it was only fitting that I called it Imani B. Relations, Inc. I ran a thriving Public Relations Company! I busted my ass in my college years by interning at a major PR firm that represented all top names. I understood that in order to take my career to the next level, I needed to work from the bottom up and build relationships with those individuals who were movers and shakers in the industry. I did things most wouldn’t care for, like slaving for the top dogs, getting coffee, and running tedious errands, but it paid off.
Amidst all that, I managed to find out what it was like to make six figures, invest in stock, knew the joy of being able to provide for my parents, have been in a relationship with my boyfriend for eight years and had several great friends, some who have been in my life since grade school. What more did I want?
All of my accomplishments were cool, and I wasn’t downplaying any of my successes. Still, more than anything, all I wanted deep down was to travel and live freely without the hassle of living for someone else. Somewhere in the equation, I completely forgot about myself. What I didn’t realize was that I was taking care of everyone but me. On top of that, I finally accepted that after eight years of being a girlfriend to a man that I went above and beyond to show that I could be a wife… he never intended to marry me. My dad always told me; why buy the cow when you can get the milk for free. He’s right, and I knew that.
It's time to step away from the mirror and stop feeling sorry for myself. I made my way to the kitchen with the intention of starting dinner and figuring out how to end my relationship. Unfortunately, Patrick's voice interrupted my planning, for both dinner and his one-way ticket to Breakupville, so now I had to once again listen to his insecurities. “You fucking somebody else, Imani? Keep listening to and following behind ya lil’ friends, and you gon’ end up just like them, single.” Patrick stood up from the black leather couch, marching through the double doors to the kitchen where I stood contemplating on if I should answer his ignorant ass question.
For many years I considered leaving him if he didn’t get his insecurities under control, but he never improved. I found myself turning down events and networking gigs because he felt threatened by my colleagues and clients. It took me losing a dope, meaningful opportunity a few days ago for me to say enough was enough. Yeah, it was time to let this go. My mind and heart couldn’t take another second of his antics, nor him messing up my coins.
“Why you ain’t saying nothing, Mani? I know for a fact you doing you. Just like all the other females. It’s cool though, pussy is pussy. You fuck a nigga, wash it out and move on to the next. That’s what you do? That’s what y’all females do, right?” It took everything out of me to not find the nearest object to strike him. I’ve never felt more violent towards Patrick than I did at this moment. It was time to go!
A week later, all my clothes were packed and moved out into my new apartment. I never answered Patrick’s question before leaving. If he didn’t know that I’ve never cheated on him, or didn’t trust me, the sight of my brand new, modern couch let me know that I made the right decision. I left all the furniture behind because I didn’t need anything reminding me of my past with Patrick. A clean slate is what I provided for myself. There’s no way to have and enjoy love without having it from within. Now it was time to travel and live freely. First trip on the agenda… surfing in Phuket.
“Man, I appreciate everything Imani, for real. It’s like people are more concerned with where my dick has been than who's paying their bills. You feel me?”
“Yes, as a matter of fact, I do, Mr. Jones.” Sitting across from Roland once per week for a mandatory meeting was necessary to make sure he kept the utmost respect in the media. Roland became one of my clients after Chelsea Bennett had been his rep for many years. In the three months of working with him, I’ve learned more about the judicial system than a law student. His legal name is nothing but a distraction, because his stage name, Shooter, depicts just the guy he truly is.
“Come on, you’ve been my PR rep for months now, you don’t have to be so formal. I need us to vibe and be comfortable with one another.” Not one time did he withdraw his eyes from mine. Shooter allowed his thick frizzy hair to grow on his face and head, giving him a rugged look, which his female fans made comments about creaming in their panties over.
I shuffled in the chair, removing the see-through pumps off my feet. Saturdays weren’t usually a day in the office, but today I made an exception for him. “I’m still adjusting to you, Roland.” His head cocked to the side as if I was addressing someone else. “I’m still trying to feel you out. I got the rundown from Chelsea and Riana about your past - both professionally and personally. Still, it’s hard to gauge what angle to take with your career considering you remain closed off.” I paused before continuing not sure how he was going to take what I had to say next. “Maybe I should invite Chelsea to all of our meetings since you become this free-spirited man whenever she’s around.”
He rushed off the cream leather couch and pushed over to my desk. “Imani, I don’t trust many. Chelsea is someone I completely trust. At least I'm trying to build that same thing with you. I’ve done everything you’ve asked of me.”
Imani B. Relations has been stamped as the go-to company if you need damage control. In all of my years in business, I’ve fought hard for that reputation, but Roland and his issues warranted another level of professionalism.
Currently circulating in the press was the reveal of him fathering one-month-old, Alexandria Cruz. Becoming a dad is supposed a blessing, but under the circumstances, Shooter felt pressure and appeared to be running from his daughter’s mother, Lexiana Cruz. TMI, PR3SSED, and other bloggers accused him of being a deadbeat, but honestly, he was the opposite. He showered his new baby with more material things than she’ll ever need, but seeing him interact with her in person was absolutely beautiful.
I stood up to be level with him, but I still only reached just below his chin, “You want me to unwind and get comfortable?” Blinking and swallowing hard, I grumbled, “no problem. First of all, Shooter, you are on probation. You’ve apparently violated several of those terms, and now you have a bullseye on your back.”
“Nope, Ms. Barasa. That’s where you’re wrong. I am officially a free man, as of yesterday. That’s why I expedited this meeting. I couldn’t wait to tell you that you no longer have to send those reports to my P.O.”
Wow! I was shocked by this news. This made my entire day. He got involved in a physical altercation a few days prior but somehow managed to not only walk away from the scene, but he got off of probation, too? Damn. Just how salutary is his lawyer? Only a resourceful, charismatic individual could make an impression with the unresponsive judge assigned to Roland’s case.
“Yeah, my man Sebastien did all of that. He told me to lay low after the blowup, so I did, and here we are.” The smirk that I’d become accustomed to over the last few months crept up gradually, coating his deep cinnamon skin. Who could criticize him after the system held him by the balls for three years? I was just happy to not have a client who was on probation and couldn’t seem to stay out of trouble.
Following the rundown of Shooter's upcoming communications plan and schedule, we found ourselves genuinely sharing a few laughs; I was appreciative of this breakthrough with my client. Especially since his sister is one of my best friends. What should have been an hour meeting suddenly turned into three. Once the digital clock on the wall displayed 3 pm, I called it quits.
“What you rushing for, Mani? I’m the one with a flight to catch in a few. I have some bars to lay down with Cole, Ross, and Sean in New York. Then tomorrow evening, I’ll be in Jersey for a show.”
“I’m not in a rush, but I do have a life,” I stated while clearing my desk of all the notes I jotted down during our conversation. Not only did we indulge in the ins and outs of his newfound freedom, but I also got him to view his personal and professional moves in a different light, considering he is a father now.
“You fucking my mans?”
Why would he ask that? Did my reaction to Sebastien show on my face while he was mentioned as Shooter’s attorney and the one responsible for getting him off of probation? I halted my steps, shoulders sinking, along with my brows scrunched together. No matter what our work relationship consisted of, I could never concede to Shooter inserting himself into my personal life. A few weeks before, I met Sebastien for the first time and the introductions did not come via Shooter. Although, us being acquainted would have presented itself eventually, but maybe not so early had we both not ended up in the same studio with Riana. That day, in my peripheral vision, I caught a glimpse of a caramel toned man adorned in a wintergreen sweater, sculpted three-dimensional biceps, and sporting cut up denim jeans showcasing his toned, long legs. Seemingly out of nowhere, I was able to materialize a visual of a naked Sebastien, a name I learned only after Riana not so kindly instructed me to pick my mouth back up before she introduced us. Even though Sebastien’s physical traits were a mix of both of his brothers, Sean and Benji, he moved and talked differently. I knew them both and had seen them in action.
Sebastien dominated the room with his presence. Every word expelled through his vocals contained charged atoms that ultimately loaded every fiber of my being with an electrical current. Sebastien Bennett exudes confidence. He held an edge of arrogance but in a healthy manner. Riana and Chelsea swore by the trio and claimed any women who caught a whiff of them would be cursed and spellbound by the Bennett Effect, and I’ll be damned if she wasn’t right.
Can't get enough? Text DONNIA to 33777 to SUBSCRIBE to the newsletter and stay on top of what's happening with events, book releases and more!
Sean and Chelsea's story had the drama, comedic flare, love, and plenty of sex. A friend's to lover story. Strong, bold, and smart female who didn't take crap from anyone. Male had to mature into a man, but handled his business. Lots Lots of obstacles and barriers to overcome but worth the fight. Like the supporting characters.
Hands down the best read I've had in a while. I love Sean's personality and his story with Chelsea. This book had some much action and my emotions were everywhere! I found myself happy, sad, angry and shed a few tears. But OMG I love the other characters too. Riana had me dying laughing. I can not wait for the next series. I hope you do Benjis story next!!
I cried and laugh through the whole story. The love Chelsea and Sean shared felt so real. Very relatable but more than anything the story was a mix of love, drama, hurt but the ending was everything. I love a man that has a heart but can show the hell out if they have too. I’m ready for part 2. Hope it’s Benji this time and Riana because Riana is funny as crap.
Great story to read and kept me wanting more. Chelsea was a freak for Sean and was the same for her. This is a great friends to lovers read. I wonder if they invited Randall since they were cool now. I know this next book gonna be a hot mess with benji and riana nasty self.
This book was so real I felt like I was watching it on t v. Everyone had an awesome part, not planned just lived. You are an excellent writer keep up the good work. I was so busy reading the two books I didn't leave a review for the first book now I can.
Loved Benji and Riana. Benji was so sure of himself. cocky and confident. All sexy traits. Glad to see his family issues didn't become his downfall. Riana had her own issues and dealt with them a lot differently, but the two balanced one another out, even though Riana tried to fight it. Great read.
I enjoyed this story and already looking forward to the next one in the Bennett series. This story had drama, humor, and most of all steamy love scenes. Ri was a bit high strong at times and I think Benji was able to mellow her out. They both did their share of dealing with other people, but they always made their way back to each other. The story had some interesting turns with the other characters and the struggles they had to be overcome. I would definitively recommend you give this book a go. well done Ms. Marie.
The second story was good. Some of the rehash from the first book was spot on. The family dynamic on both parts in the story was deep. Family secrets can be a force to reckon with. Let's see what happens with the third Bennett brother.
I read the first book I liked it. When I saw the second book was out, I knew I had to read it. Once again I was not disappointed. Cant wait for the next story in the Bennett series.
This book was so freaking good
From the story line to the characters
I can’t wait to read more form the author
Whew... Benji & Rianna were taken through the wringer in Unjust Love; by each other and their families! It seemed that every time they took two steps forward, life happened and the setbacks seemed as if they would never stop. Although they were both highly successful in their respective careers, that didn't stop them from experiencing things would have broken the average person. I was so happy that through it all they were able to find their happily ever after!
Now I am ready for Lexi & Shooter... Like really ready for these two as well as Imani and Sebastien.
Kinda wish the 3rd book was out already
But this was a really good read.