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CHAPTER 2

          A satisfied smile appeared on his lips, and Victor glanced around his packed nightclub. He was the owner of all this… If there was one person to thank for the popularity of ‘The Sin Nightclub’, it was only him and his busy social life. In fact, he owned all twelve ‘The Sin Nightclub’ located throughout the States, from Vancouver to Miami.

          His nightclubs were the perfect gathering place for celebrities and professional athletes… Even some members from a few of the most important European Royal houses graced his establishments.

          And quite often, his picture was posted on gossip blogs right alongside them, with headlines like ‘Victor Lands a Princess’, ‘Mr. Hook and the Heiress’, and ‘Nightclub Mogul Parties Hard with the Dream Team’.

          Victor shook his head, chuckling at the latest story linking him with the daughter of a senator. He was young, single, rich, and good-looking. That’s what people saw when they looked at him.

          When people saw a picture of him standing next to a beautiful woman, Victor was automatically sleeping with her. If he’d actually slept with every woman that the so-called press had reported he did... well, he certainly wouldn’t have time to be the nightclub mogul they proclaimed him to be.

          While it would be nice if he found himself frequently in the beds of actresses and all kinds of influencers, it simply, sadly, was not the case. What about if a picture of Victor Hook holding a beer bottle or a glass of whisky surfaced? Automatically, he was portrayed as an alcoholic, a chronic drug user, and a degenerate who partied too hard every night.

          At first, Victor found it easy to laugh at how inaccurate the stories were… Any press is good press, right? As long as they talked about him, he was relevant and was good for business.

          But it was starting to wear thin. The fifteen-hour days that he typically put into his work were starting to exhaust him, and the extreme workdays had gotten far more frequent and longer since his Personal Assistant quit the job.

          Typically, Victor found only just enough free time in a day to eat, shower, hopefully, hit the gym, and maybe get a few hours of sleep. Women every night? Parties every day of the week? Sure… Maybe ten years ago, that reputation would have been warranted.

          Victor had grown up with nothing and his first taste of success had been extremely sweet. He had admittedly overindulged in his youth, in alcohol, women… A wild kind of life.

          But it was a local reporter scumbag Zack Slater who had been the catalyst for his turnaround. Slater had gotten a hold of a picture of Victor with a top model enjoying a… private moment, and then, he uncovered more and more of Victor’s bad deeds.

          He’d dredged up the details of Victor’s less-than-ideal childhood, with an absentee father and a drug-addict mother, a past that Victor had guarded carefully. To say it was embarrassing was an understatement.

          Victor had been cannon fodder for the reporter, who seemingly made a career of gathering information on him. Since then, Victor had kept it clean. He no longer overindulged. He never partied. He focused on his business and it had paid off.

          Day after day, Victor enjoyed an unimaginable level of success. Still, no matter how many nightclubs he opened, how much he gave to charity, or how often his company showed up on lists of preferred employers, people still saw him as a billionaire/womanizer.

“Not bad for a Thursday,” Victor said to Dustin, one of his best friends, and definitely the best bartender he had ever met.

          He was sipping the soda Dustin had handed him. Dustin finished preparing a Dirty Martini and a Negroni Sbagliato and handed them off to a waitress.

“Yeah, I agree. It must be the warm weather. Normally, the end of the semester makes college students hunker down, and study. But this place is clearly bumping tonight,” Dustin told him, throwing an appreciative glance over the scantily clad women dancing against each other on the dance floor.

“Keep it professional, Dusty,” Victor warned with a glare, before laughing.

          Victor knew that he had nothing to worry about with his friend. Dustin was a pro and would never overserve a guest, or use his position to take advantage of the young women who patronized the club.

          But it didn’t stop him from appreciating all the beauties that were in front of him. Victor bit back a yawn, and Dustin regarded him carefully.

“Listen, dude… Why don’t you go home and rest? I’ve totally got this.”

“I know you do, bro. But I’ve got a few things to finish up tonight. It’s been crazy since Vincent left.”

          Victor frowned at the thought of his former Personal Assistant.

“I’ve got a couple of early morning meetings tomorrow and then I have to head to the university and give a talk with some graduate class about entrepreneurship, entertainment, hospitality, and some other stuff.”

“Seriously? You? Standing and talking in front of a graduate class? That doesn’t sound like something you would normally do,” Dustin replied, raising an eyebrow. “Who’s the fortunate teacher you’ve got the hots for?”

          Victor was almost too tired to smirk at the question.

“It’s nothing like that, bro. I’m talking about Jonathan Behar. He’s the professor…”

“Oh, my bad... I see it now…”

“I owe him. It’s really the least I can do to pay him back for all his help.”

“Oh, of course…” Dustin nodded. “I remember what you told me about Professor B… And you’re doing this at the expense of any sleep you might get tonight?”

“Remember what the song says… I’ll sleep when I’m dead.”

          After taking another sip of his soda, Victor turned to survey his nightclub. A packed club was always good news for Victor, and there had been plenty of that as of late.

          All of his nightclubs were outperforming expectations on a nightly basis. But his brain was always working, knowing that he had to keep the guest experience fresh in each of his clubs to keep people coming back.

          Every time he looked around, Victor saw areas for improvement. Ways to make the continuous lineup to the front door more efficient, an enhanced VIP experience, flair bartenders and entertainers, A-list DJs and performers… The list was always growing.

          It was while he was surveying his domain, rolling through his mental to-do list, that Victor noticed a breathtaking young woman walking toward him. She wasn’t just… stunning. She was the most beautiful woman he had ever seen.

          Her long dark hair… maybe dark red, but he wasn’t sure, cascaded in loose waves over her shoulders, and a little black dress wrapped around her perfect body, highlighted legs that seemed to go on forever.

          She was looking straight at him, making a beeline for where he was standing at the bar. He sighed quietly and slightly shook his head. She obviously knew who he was. The gorgeous party girl wanted to cozy up to the single, rich owner of ‘The Sin Nightclub’.

          Even though her beauty was unique, Victor was exhausted and he didn’t have time for the attention of groupies tonight… No matter how gorgeous. When she was close enough to him, Victor extended his hand to her and put on his most cordial smile.

“Hi! What can I do for…”

          His words were stopped in his throat when her arms wrapped around his neck and pulled him forward until his lips found hers. His eyes widened as she kissed him. But they soon closed when he felt her tongue stroke his bottom lip. He stifled a moan and opened his mouth, to let himself be taken over by the feeling of this mysterious woman in his arms.

          Victor couldn’t remember ever being kissed so fiercely by a woman without him initiating the kiss. She was so delicious… and Victor was wondering if he was dreaming.

          Everything else seemed to disappear. There was no music, no flashing lights, no crowd of thirsty patrons lined up at the bar, and no Dustin, who, without a shadow of a doubt, was staring at them.

          It was when his hands found her hips, the spell broke and the sounds and lights of the club and all of the people around them came rushing back. The gorgeous beauty broke away from him.

          Still standing just inches apart, Victor saw the flush that stained her face and felt her breath on his chin. He got a good look at her and the thing that stood out most was the frightened, guilty look in those amazingly green, almond-shaped eyes.

          She was a second from hightailing it away from him, out of his life, and Victor knew it. He wanted to ask her name, maybe buy her a drink, anything to make her stay.

          After a beat, she shook out of her trance, mumbled an ‘I’m so sorry’, and did exactly what he thought she would. His mysterious lady turned on her heel and walked away, almost running, disappearing in the crowd of bodies on the dancefloor.

          Victor was rendered speechless for a moment, before he turned to Dustin, bewildered and out of breath.

“Bro, do you know who that goddess was?”

          Dustin laughed heartily.

“I have no idea, dude. But that kiss… You mean to tell me you didn’t know the woman who took your breath away with just one kiss?”

“No, I don’t know her…”

“Well… It definitely seemed as if you two were familiar… Wait a minute!”

          The bartender snapped his fingers in a moment of inspiration. Dustin turned to the computer behind the bar and consulted the names of the customers who had started drink tabs.

“Navy Remington is her name. She’s here with a friend, she’s drinking vodka-cran and the friend is a light-beer girl.”

          Victor ran a hand through his brown hair and checked his watch.

“Damn it! I’ve got to head back upstairs…”

          He turned to go, but stopped and faced Dustin again.

“Take care of their tab, will you? Make sure they get whatever they want.”

“Will do… Mr. Hook!” Dustin replied with a smirk.

Comments (3)
goodnovel comment avatar
Marlenny Fernandez
Even I felt that kiss. Lol
goodnovel comment avatar
Marlenny Fernandez
Asta yo sentí el beso
goodnovel comment avatar
Bella Jersey
Damn Navy i think you hooked yourself a Victor
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