Juliet Braddock’s first efforts in creative writing came long before she learned to put crayon to paper. In fact, she began spinning stories in her head nearly as soon as she could form complete sentences. As long as she can remember, she’d always created sagas about imaginary friends, family members and pop culture icons, and kept everyone around her entertained with her witty—but often very tall—tales.
For her sixth Christmas, Juliet’s mother got her a child’s typewriter to preserve all of those creative thoughts filling her head, but she quickly switched to ball point pens and notebooks when the ribbon ran dry.
Most of Juliet’s early attempts at writing romance focused on members of Duran Duran and Spandau Ballet or young leading men on Broadway. However, as she matured as a writer, she decided that it was just as much fun to create her own romantic heroes and heroines.
At an early age, she also developed a love for big cities, and the tallest of skyscrapers were never high enough for her. Juliet’s wanderlust would eventually lure her to New York, a city she often visited during her formative years, and her love affair with Manhattan began. She’d promised herself that one day she would return for good.
Juliet’s passion for writing and for big cities converged, and after graduating with a degree in Journalism, she decided to set out on a journey to find her heart…just where she’d left it.
A week after her college graduation, Juliet made the big move from a small town to New York City, where she has made her home ever since.
In between building a career in communications and writing on the side, she’s indulged in international travel, theater and art. A wine and food buff, she’s by no means a connoisseur, but she can give a few good restaurant recommendations if you’re in the city.
“There’s something so inspiring about living in a city like New York that’s so rich in culture and so very vibrant. Every neighborhood has its own story to tell,” Juliet says. “I often do my best plotting on the subway, just observing the lives unfolding around me. New York truly has a billion stories nestled between the skyscrapers.”
A proud Manhattanite, Juliet couldn’t live anywhere else—except for Paris, perhaps—and is a gushing cat-mom to a Russian Blue mix who was rescued as a kitten from the streets of Brooklyn.
“Ah, it’s Sloane…”
The Professor leaned into his desk and folded his hands. That afternoon, he wore his tortoiseshell framed glasses. Dammit, if he didn’t look absolutely fuckable. Sloane so loved a geek. However, she didn’t like the tone in his voice, and without thought, she kicked his door closed, readying for war.
“Professor…” she greeted him curtly and didn’t bother to obey his gesture to sit.
“I told you to call me—”
“Professor works just fine,” she snapped. “What’s on your mind today? My last paper, I assume?”
“Well, yes, as a matter of fact—”
“Look, no one can shine all the time,” she continued, watching his forehead wrinkle in a bit of surprise and dismay. “I busted my ass to give you everything I had this semester. I’ve given you some of my best work yet. And so it’s the end of the semester, and I just couldn’t overextend myself again. Maybe it’s not Pulitzer Prize worthy, but you—”
Calmly, he stood up and circled his desk. With a firm grip on the guest chair, he scuttled it to the corner, facing the wall, then raised his hand to silence her.
“In the chair, Sloane.”
There was something very different about the Professor that afternoon. In class, he was always relaxed. He joked around. In fact, he was the only professor to date that hadn’t bored her stiff. At that moment, though, she could feel the electricity between them, nearly burning her skin with its current. He was commanding and cool, yet she could feel the wild rush beneath the surface of his words.
Sloane prepared herself to turn around and walk out that door in a greater huff than when she walked in. No one bossed her around or ordered her into a corner. She felt so dastardly Dirty Dancing as she stood against his stern gaze. On top of being a horrible professor, he’d proven himself to be a male chauvinist pig, too! Just the thought of his expectation filled her with ire.
However, she also felt a suspicious rush of heat—on her face and between her legs. Knees weakening, she thought she might just drop to the floor, right in the middle of his damn office.
Every one of her senses had heightened. Jaw falling in shock and chagrin, she stood before him and stared into those challenging green eyes. She could still smell the fresh sea scent of his shower and shampoo lingering upon his skin. She could feel the swell of her breasts and the painful point of her nipples pushing against the thin silk of her bra. The silence of the nearly empty building left her trembling all the more.
Unintentionally, she rolled her tongue along her lips, incapable of saying a single word.
“You can sit,” he said as if he were speaking to a small child. “Or I can put you there, baby doll.”
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