The Mentor

The Mentor - High Resolution

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Don Manley knows about self-destructive behavior. A reformed alcoholic who has spent many years fighting his own demons, he’s rugged and sharp. When gorgeous Denver walks into the AA meeting with her head hung low, he knows she needs help. Complicating her problem is her fear of losing her boyfriend. When she reaches out to Don on her darkest night, he knows he has to do something. Time is running out. Denver’s boyfriend is about to steal her away and turn her out. The only thing that can save Denver is a hot dose of tough love from a man she can depend on. Can Don save Denver without destroying himself?

This book is a dark and gritty, a realistic erotic thriller romance. It’s for adult readers only.

Excerpt from The Mentor

She was cute, a real looker.

Thin brown hair, parted on the side. She wore it cut like a boy’s, but there was no mistaking her for a boy. Slim hips. Dark tights. Long, slender legs. She slipped into the Tuesday night AA meeting a few minutes after it started and then shuffled to the back of the room, head down. The walk of shame. Don Manley had seen it many times before. When a girl her age came into an AA meeting, looking like that, it could only mean one thing. She’d gone out for drinks over the weekend and done something she now regretted.

Don smiled and sipped his coffee.

He wanted another look but played it cool. He could still see her shapely legs in his mind. He liked the way her leggings picked up the light, showing off the muscles in her thighs, her bony knees. He imagined her kneeling in the bathroom of one of the local bars, a group of boisterous young men standing around her, their cocks in hand. With the designer drugs available these days, the girls came into AA with the most delightfully sordid stories. Sometimes they woke up with no memory of the night before, but found their phones littered with images. Those pictures told the story their minds had discarded. He imagined this girl grinning into her phone, her cheeks decorated with semen of a boy whose name she’d never recall.

Don shifted in his seat, resisting the urge to turn and check out her legs.

A lot of these girls weren’t really alcoholics. They were good girls, from good families, suppressing their own natural desires. They did it to accommodate their parents, their teachers, and sometimes priests or rabbis. Get a little alcohol in them and they just did the thing they really wanted to do anyhow. Maybe they’d woken up in the arms of a black man, or sucked the pussy of one of their best friends. Soon after they parted from alcohol, girls like these found themselves in a relationship with a black guy or dating another woman. There was a certain beauty in it, the way a thing that at first seemed like a horrible tragedy suddenly transformed itself into the most important and liberating experience of a young girl’s life.

Don stole a glance at her.

Not much makeup, eyes red-ringed and swollen from tears. Crossing her ankles under her chair, she held onto the seat with both her hands. When it came her turn to speak, she said her name was Denver and that she was using heroin. She talked about getting thrown out of college, fired from her job at Hardee’s, and being on shaky terms with her new boyfriend, the guy who gave her the heroin.

A silence descended on the room.

Denver’s voice choked and she dabbed a tear from her eye.

Everyone waited for her to resume. She lifted her shoulders and bit her lip. Glancing around the room, she shook her head once, and then cast her eyes to a spot on the floor. The room stayed quiet for a few seconds before erupting into a hearty welcome, including a chorus of cheers, lots of loud clapping, and even a war whoop.

Denver’s head popped up, her cheeks bright red.

She wore a big grin.

One of the young men jumped out of his chair and handed her a tissue. She bit her lip again, taking the tissue and dabbing at her eyes. A few of the other young guys raced over to the coffee pot. Soon one of the boys stepped up with a paper cup filled with hot coffee, which he offered to her with a goofy grin. She smiled at him, accepting the drink. Suddenly there was a raw, palpable, sexual energy in the room. The young guys were trying to be discreet about it, but it was clear they all wanted to bang her. They whispered amongst themselves, giving Denver hungry looks. A young Latino with tattoos on his arms and a gold chain around his neck slouched in his seat with his legs spread wide, feasting on her with his eyes. After a few minutes one of the other young men slapped him on the shoulder, and the Latino boy grinned, but he wouldn’t stop staring, wouldn’t close his legs.

Denver didn’t seem to mind the attention.

She fidgeted in her seat, pumping her knees open and closed a mile a minute.

At the closing prayer, there was a little stampede of men competing to stand on either side of her. Don grinned, holding out his hands to the person on either side of him, completing the circle.

In the parking lot, it was more of the same.

The young men surrounded Denver, growing boisterous, loud. She wore a big grin, holding her own in the middle of them. Finally, Margie, one of the women who’d been coming to the Tuesday night AA group a few years, marched into the pack, took Denver by the elbow, and steered her to the other side of the parking lot, where Don and a few of the others stood.

Don nodded and smiled at Denver.

He was a good-looking man, with a rugged face and a well-built body. Sober a long time, he was one of the old-timers at the Tuesday night AA meeting.

He was married. Trusted.

It didn’t take much to get her talking. She lived with her mother in a dodgy part of town. Her father had abandoned them. She was on probation for shoplifting. Had been expelled from school. Her biggest fear was that she might lose her boyfriend.

Don cut his eyes to Margie. The two traded a look. Margie squared her shoulders and took a deep breath. There was an awkward silence.

“Wait,” Denver said, ignoring Margie. “I want to stop using drugs.”

Don smiled at Denver.

“I want to get my life together,” she said, her voice rising.

She shook her head. She launched into a story about a time she was at a party, smoking crack. She said one of her classmates, a good-looking and very popular boy invited her to go upstairs. Looking at her feet, Denver worked the toe of her boot into the macadam. When she spoke again, her voice was lower, huddled with shame. She said she’d been too interested in the pipe to get up off the couch. Looking up at Don, she smiled sadly at him.

“Upstairs?” Don asked. He had no idea what she meant.

Denver raised her brows, a surprised look on her face. Slowly her expression transformed into a mischievous grin.

“Yeah,” she said. “You know. Upstairs.”

Don gave her a curious look.

Denver glanced toward the crowd of young men only now beginning to disperse. She twisted her hands. “All the girls like to go upstairs every once in a while,” she said.

She was telling him she had turned down an invitation for sex.

Margie averted her eyes.

Don snorted softly. His cheeks went hot and he looked at his shoes. He chuckled.

Some of the girls who came to the Tuesday night AA meeting weren’t really alcoholics, but Denver wasn’t one of them. She wasn’t suppressing anything. She had no one to accommodate. All she had was a girl-size hole in the middle of her heart, and she was trying to fill it with whatever she could find: booze, drugs. Men. Cocks.