Boy in the Club a boy & billionaire novel - Rachel Kane
“This is the stupidest thing I’ve ever done.” Grimacing, making sure everyone in a ten-block radius can feel my disapproval. My friends don’t care. They’re laughing about it. Their laughter echoes off the blank sandstone face of the building, as though the walls are repelling us. Keep out, those walls seem to say. Danger inside.
The building is aggressively neutral; it does not want to be seen. It’s sandwiched between two old banks, the architecture blending perfectly. There’s nothing to call it out. You wouldn’t notice it driving by. Where is the line of people waiting to get in? How can it be exclusive, if there’s no bouncer at the door, if there’s no line of people bound to be disappointed when they can’t get in?
“Of course it’s a little stupid,” says Daniel. “But everyone says this place is different. No wannabes. Just models and millionaires—well, and at least one billionaire, once you go in. I just can’t do a normal club anymore. It’s exhausting. The last party I went to, there was this boy who kept stealing shrimp off my plate. I wanted to slap him. Get your own damned shrimp.”
At least Hawk seems to sense my troubled mind. “You don’t have to socialize,” he says. “Just drink with us.”
“You don’t have to worry about me socializing,” I assure him. “It’s not in the cards.”
Daniel scoffs. “He’ll be drinking champagne out of some guy’s jockstrap by the end of the night, watch him.” Dan’s a motivational speaker. I wonder if he thinks that image is supposed to motivate me.
“It could be worse,” Hawk says. “Daniel was talking about taking you to a sex club at first.”
“That’s because Danny Boy wants everyone to see his ass.”
My friend stiffens. “I do not. I said no such thing.”
“You did!” says Hawk. “You wanted to go to that place with the wrestling masks!”
“The what now?” I’m laughing, and I don’t want to laugh, but trying to stop myself is going to hurt my throat. I haven’t been out with these guys in weeks, and I suppose I’ve missed the camaraderie…but I don’t want them to know it. I want to be sour. I want to frown.
This hurts, after all.
“I will pay you one hundred thousand dollars to shut your damn mouth,” mutters Daniel, but Hawk has already lost interest in whatever the joke was, and has grabbed my arm.
“It’s going to be okay,” he says.
“I’m not a wilting flower. I can survive a party. Stop acting like I’m going to break.”
He makes a little harrumph—now that he has the chance to show me some sympathy, he’s not going to miss out.
The limo hasn’t pulled away yet. There’s still time for me to escape. I can get in, tell the driver to take me home, or to a bar, or anywhere. My brother’s in Amsterdam at the moment, signing contracts in my stead. I could’ve been there instead of here, standing in front of this blank wall with its blank door, not even a doorman, no sign of life at all.
Danger. This is not for you.
Hawk whispers, low enough that Daniel has to look around to see if it’s gossip about him. It isn’t.
“You don’t have to go, Colby. You can go home. It’s just, you’ve been so lonely lately. So sad. What, you think we haven’t noticed? You’ve been like this since the funeral. Maybe this is what you need. Maybe it’ll pep you up.”
“You think I need alcohol to pep me up?”
“Come on, there’s anything you want,” says Daniel, soothed now that he knows Hawk isn’t talking behind his back. “Literally anything. The bar is fully stocked. That’s the point of the place.”
“So we just go in, and they… They throw themselves at us? What’s the point? What’s the difference between that and any other club we go to?”
Now it’s Daniel’s turn to whisper. He’s looking around the empty street as though checking for eavesdroppers. “The men. You have got to see the men they get here. They’re amazing.”
“It’s the best part about it,” said Hawk. “You’ll see.”
As though I care. They’re my best friends, and they’re trying hard, but they don’t understand. What I need is to be invisible. No more pictures of me in the papers. No more interviews with me in the business journals. No attention. I’m learning from my mistakes. I buried myself in my work after my father died. Doubled the size of our company. But that kind of growth attracts everyone. Hawk—who lives off a trust fund and