Built to Last (The Middleton Hotels Book 2)

By: C.M. Steele

Chapter 1


I sat in the seat facing the front desk at the bar. My espresso and my tablet rested on the counter top as I watched her walk in. Her long legs were striding to the reception area with haste. I didn’t have to look at my watch to know she was running late, I’d been waiting here for longer than I should have just to see her come in. For two weeks, I’d been watching her via the surveillance cameras. I had been doing a routine inspection of the systems we have in place when she caught my attention.

Everything at the hotel was running smoothly as usual, but I couldn’t say the same thing for myself. I was lost to the camera and the lovely Rachael Harrison on the other end of the lens. Thankfully, the footage had been sent via an email attachment that linked to the network, so I could be alone with my instant fascination. She was the reason I decided to make an impromptu trip to the hotel. I had to see her up close and personal before I lost my mind. My fantasies were on the brink of wearing me down.

She smiled at the young guy that worked alongside her most of the time. It really pissed me off, and someone’s schedule was going to be changed one way or another. It may be a dick move, but my ‘give a fuck’ flew out the window the second I laid eyes on her. I pulled her HR file, and I wasn’t pleased at all she was more than a bit too young for me. That was what took so long to get here. She was just barely legal. At twenty-eight, I was ten years older. The gap was huge, but I wasn’t going to let it stop me.

I took a sip of my coffee, letting her get settled before I stopped over there to talk to her. As the head of the Middleton Hotels, I couldn’t just ask her out. It was one of the big rules for the company, and I was all about rules. There were three of us boys, and as the oldest, I tended to always be the one who was uptight or as they put it - a “fucking stick in the mud.” It was a part of who I was, and in all these years, no one has been able to change that in me until a week ago. Yes, I saw her two weeks back, but I had maintained control of my desire and temper. It took one look at her laughing with Lance, the player wannabe, to piss me off.

I rearranged my schedule and headed up here. There were some renovations going on so that had been my excuse. I was here to evaluate the progress. Instead, I had little to no concern about the hotel’s construction. I was focused on the beauty at the desk. Her hair was swept to the side in an elegant and neat ponytail that rested on her shoulder. It was smooth and sleek and I wanted to fuck it all up.

“Mr. Middleton, would you care for another coffee, sir?” Dylan, the barista, asked.

“No, thank you,” I said, taking the last drink of my cup and pushing it to the edge. I gathered up my things and walked up to the front desk. The other employee winked at her before stepping out of the registration area. Perfect timing.

My heart was dancing an Irish jig in my chest as I grew near. She looked up from the computer and our eyes met. A subtle, soft, almost inaudible gasp left her parted lips. I stared longer than I should have, but there was something passing between us, or so I thought.

“Mr. Middleton, we were not aware that you would be visiting the hotel today,” she exclaimed in noticeable embarrassment. So that was what the tension was. She recognized me.

“Yes, Rachael. I’m here for a visit. And as it happens, I will need a room for the night.”

“Yes, sir,” she said quickly, her face still flush from the surprise.

“Relax, Rachael. You’re not going to get fired for not having a room ready. It was a surprise for a reason.” Yes, a reason solely based on her. She was a hundred times more potent in the flesh. My body and its unrelenting need was starting to make standing in front of her very uncomfortable. The fit of my suit did little to hide my growing cock, and I was grateful that I was where she couldn’t see my bottom half or the jig would be up. Lust flowed through me as I watched her type into the computer then look up at me with that hospitable, fake smile she plastered on for the guests.



“Yes, Ms. Harrison, please remember that a smile should be genuine. I can see that you are a bit frazzled still.”

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