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  For MESY.

  © 2013 Vera Roberts, All Rights Reserved

  SMASHWORDS EDITION

  This e-book is licensed for your personal enjoyment only. This e-book may not be re-sold or given away to other people. If you would like to share this book with another person, please purchase an additional copy for each recipient.

  This book is a work of fiction. The names, characters, places and incidents are products of the author’s imagination, or are used fictitiously. Any resemblance to actual persons, living or dead, events or locales, is entirely coincidental.

  Joseph “Joey” D’Amato isn’t trying to settle down. He has a great career being the

  president and COO of Madre’s floral chain, lives in a very nice apartment in the world-famous TriBeCa district, and entertains a fleet of women all over New York, labeling himself as the Italian Hugh Hefner. But when he meets his brother’s assistant, all those plans go out the window.

  Zoe Mitchell has big dreams. She moonlights as an assistant/part-time nanny to her boss but what she really aspires to be is a fashion designer. While her parents and sister support her business aspirations, they also pressure her to finally find a nice young man to settle down with –

  something Zoe is not remotely interested in. But when she makes a trip to New York to make good on a bet her boss has made, she finds out love and fate often have their own plans.

  Can Joey convince Zoe to give up her California dreaming and make a permanent move to New York? Can Zoe convince Joey that he truly is a one-woman type of guy?

  All I’ve Ever Wanted is the fourth story in the D’Amato Brothers series. It is a

  sensual/erotic book that deals with long-distance relationships, trust, and commitment.

  A fool’s mouth is his destruction, and his lips are the snare of his soul. – Proverbs 18:7

  Prologue

  Coming here was a bad idea.

  Joey looked around the fashion show, wondering where he should sit should he decided to stay. He was mainly there to support his brother and sister-in-law but he also knew the real reason why he went.

  To see if she was there.

  It had been a year since he had last seen her and a lot had transpired. Madre’s was doing exceptionally well with three locations. The D’Amato empire grew and made everyone a household name, with talks of a reality show. The family’s wealth tripled and Joey officially got what he wanted – The D’Amatos were considered to be one of the wealthiest and respected families in New York.

  It didn’t mean much to him without her.

  He followed her progress from a safe distance, going out of his way so she wouldn’t feel threatened or intimidated by his presence. It was tough. No, it sucked, point blank. He knew she was meeting with his brother and he knew it would just be easy to “drop in” during a time they just happened to have a meeting.

  He couldn’t do that.

  It wasn’t pride.

  It wasn’t anger.

  It was love. Even if that love was unrequited.

  He hated her so bad when they broke up, though he never cursed her out and told her to go to hell. The feeling was on the tip of his tongue and he had played that scene in his head so many times, wishing he did tell her to go to hell and call her every foul name in the book.

  But he always stopped cold in acting in those threats. He loved her too much. He respected her still.

  Though she was the one that broke his heart and not the other way around for a change.

  He had never been the dumpee, always the dumper. He’d always bailed out of a relationship the moment he became bored or knew it was going nowhere. But with Zoe, his regina, he felt a future. He felt everything.

  She, in return, felt nothing.

  Maybe that wasn’t entirely true. They were together for a year and Joey was smart enough to know that you either loved someone or didn’t within that timeframe. He loved her with everything he had and showed it via gifts, trips, and unbridled passion in the bedroom. She returned the favor and then some, blowing his mind on how selfless she could be.

  When they made love, nothing was taboo or risqué, incorporating toys, porn, and whatever else to keep it hot. Whatever he threw at her, she threw right back at him, daring him to step up to her challenge. He could recall the countless meetings he had gone to, completely exhausted from being up all night but always had a big smile on his face. If only his colleagues and partners knew, he had just received a blow job before the meeting…

  And then the relationship was over with a snap of a finger.

  Joey decided he was going to stay for the show, after all. If not for her, then for his brother and sister-in-law in their latest business venture. His other brothers and their wives will be arriving shortly, so he wouldn’t be alone. That is what the D’Amatos do – they support each other, no matter what.

  He just hoped she wouldn’t see him. He didn’t think his heart would be able to take it.

  ****

  “Okay, people! The countdown is on! Twenty minutes and counting! Get your final outfits on! If you need to go poop and pee, please let the adult next to you know and do it now! I don’t want anyone ruining Zoe’s hard work! Let’s go! Let’s go! Let’s go!” Zoe’s assistant, Stephanie, barked out to crowded room full of children.

  Zoe put the finishing touches on small Black girl wearing a plaid Christmas dress,

  highlighting her winter line. “Are you nervous?” Zoe swiped a blush brush across the young girl’s cheeks.

  “No, Ms. Zoe,” the child replied back softly.

  “You’re confident! That’s great! I think I’m more nervous for the both of us,” Zoe dabbed a bit more blush on her brush and applied it to the child. “It’s good to see how confident you are.”

  “I was taught to do my best and that’s it,” the girl smiled, proudly showing her toothless grin. “and if I still fail, I know I did my very best.”

  “That is great advice!” Zoe sat back on her heels. “Who taught you that?”

  “My mommy and daddy!” The girl nodded, shaking her pigtails. “They taught me to be

  confident.”

  The girl’s smile was infectious. “You have great parents.” Zoe smiled. “They raised a bright little girl.”

  “Thank you, Ms. Zoe.” The child once again smiled.

  “You’re very welcome.”

  Stephanie rushed to Zoe. “Zoe, I hate to interrupt but we need to start the line-up soon.

  People are starting to arrive and get settled.”

  “Not a problem. We’re done here. Go ahead and get lined up, Jaime.” Zoe released the girl and she quickly walked away to join the other child models. Zoe stood up and put on her headset.

  “We have a lot of people out there tonight?”

  “You have a ton of people and…” Stephanie bit her lip.

  Zoe adjusted her headset and radio. “And what?”

  “He’s here.”

  He. Stephanie didn’t have to say who he was. Zoe was very aware who he is. A flurry of emotions hit her – was she happy he came? Was she agitated that he showed up? Was he going to mock her? Was he going to have words with her when all was said and done?

  It had been a year since she had last seen him, though it felt longer. Their breakup was painful and it was no doubt she was the reason for the split; a split she regretted almost every single day of the past year. It sounded good in her head and she felt it was best for the both of them at the time.

  She couldn’t have been more wrong. She was dead wrong.

  She didn’t attempt to date past the split, not because of the clothing line but rather, she was afraid that no man would even come close to him.

  His touch.

 
His caress.

  His thrusts.

  His dominance.

  His passion.

  His love.

  At night, her body craved him with her folds automatically becoming slick with moisture seemingly upon the very thought of him. She watched their homemade porn videos, over and over, smiling and laughing at how serious and silly they both were behind the scenes before she took matters into her own hands and finished the job the heat between her thighs created.

  Each time she put on a piece of jewelry, it reminded her of him. Certain outfits made her uncomfortable because she remembered how he would compliment that particular choice. And her lipstick? She hated applying it because she remembered the number of times she had to wipe off his lips because the color transferred onto his.

  Now he was at her show. And Zoe was pretty certain he was sitting in front row.

  She peeked from behind the curtain and quickly perused the room. Who’s Who in the

  fashion industry had arrived along with some celebrities and their children. She didn’t care about them. She was looking for Joey. Within moments she’d found him and she wished she hadn’t.

  Gorgeous. Absolutely fucking gorgeous.

  Wearing a dark suit with a white open collar, Joey played the role of wealthy business executive to a tee. His auburn hair was closely cropped and he was in the middle of a conversation with his brother, Tony. He occasionally looked up and acknowledged other people in the industry, and some of his celebrity friends who had stopped by to say hello. His eyes would briefly scan the room, possibly looking for her, before he returned to conversing with Tony.

  Damn.

  Zoe felt her heart thrust against the wall of her chest and it suddenly became too hot in the room.

  At the end of the night, they were going to see each other. There wasn’t a doubt about that.

  Now it was a matter of how to act when they crossed paths. It was either going to be second chances or one big-ass mistake.

  Fate had a funny way like that.

  One

  Two years earlier…

  Two weeks. Where has the time gone?

  Kieran D’Amato stared at the calendar on his computer screen. He had been in a mad rush to get everything done, much to the laughter of his wife. First he had to get the carpet cleaned –

  that was a must. Second, he had to clean the ceilings; there was no way a child of his was going to breathe in hidden fumes lurking behind the walls. Third, he had to baby-proof the entire home.

  His wife didn’t mind the padding on the tables and sharp corners. She had to put her foot down, however, when Kieran wanted to baby-proof the refrigerator. The baby isn’t here yet, honey, she politely reminded him.

  Tiana’s due date was in two weeks and Kieran wondered if he had enough time to hire an inspector to look over the home. His wife’s reassurances weren’t guaranteed. He double-checked the home insurance policy to make sure everything was covered – fire, earthquake, any type of natural disaster. He stayed up late researching the best parenting methods and what Tiana could eat to help develop their unborn daughter. While Kieran felt he was just being an overprotective father-to-be, Tiana thought otherwise and he was working the last good nerve she had. Baby, if you don’t go to work, I will call the police to report your sudden death by the hands of your wife, Tiana smiled at him.

  Forced to being at work, Kieran locked himself up in his office. He made sure his cell phone was on him at all times. He turned his office phone to the highest ring available so there was no way he would miss a phone call. He kept himself busy by following-up with families who had a nanny recently placed with them and newer clients.

  And he just waited.

  “You know, staring at the calendar isn’t going to make the baby come here any faster, Kieran.” Zoe Mitchell entered Kieran’s office and sat down in a chair front of his desk.

  Kieran grinned and closed his laptop. He hated how well Zoe could read him at times.

  “Just excited, that’s all,” he revealed.

  “Oh, I know.” Zoe leaned forward. “You’ve been driving Tiana nuts.”

  “Have I been that bad?”

  “Um…yeah.” Zoe nodded. “You almost bit off the head of the cleaning lady because you thought she didn’t clean the floors that well.”

  “I thought she missed a spot.” Kieran defended.

  “It was your reflection!” Zoe laughed at him.

  Kieran shrugged. Okay, he could admit he might have gone a little overboard with his OCD-tendencies. Though he was in the process of adopting Tyson, Kieran was really excited about his unborn daughter. It would be the first of many children he hoped he and Tiana would have between them. He favored Gianna as his daughter’s name, paying homage to his late maternal grandmother who assisted in raising him and his brothers.

  “So when are you going on leave?” Zoe asked.

  “Whenever Tee gives birth and for a couple of weeks,” Kieran leaned back in his leather chair, “and then I’ll be back here. While I’m gone, I want you to run the daycare in my absence.

  Just make sure everyone gets paid and all the families are happy. Handle all complaints and if someone wants to speak with me, tell them you can handle it or they can wait until I get back.

  Most importantly, please do not…”

  “…run your business into the ground and yadda yadda yadda…” Zoe rolled her eyes. “You give me the same spiel each time you leave, Kieran.”

  “Because I want to make sure I’m clear and you follow directions,” he grinned.

  Zoe flipped off her boss. “You’re lucky I’m not your wife.”

  “I’m lucky you’re not my wife!” He laughed. “Speaking of wedding bells, I thought you were dating, anyway.”

  “I have a date tonight,” Zoe yawned.

  “Let’s not get excited.”

  “I just…” Zoe briefly glanced out the office window. “…I’m happy being single. I’m

  happy being in L.A. I’m only going out with him because my mother is making me.”

  “Your mother is still setting you up on blind dates, huh?” Kieran smiled.

  “She’s still upset nothing happened between us, by the way.” Zoe mentioned. Zoe’s

  mother took her to Fits and Giggles on a recommendation from another friend to check out the

  ‘hot and sexy’ owner for a job. Zoe was hired as Kieran’s assistant but that was it, much to the disappointment of her mother.

  “I follow the Three C’s,” Kieran reminded his assistant, “I don’t date…”

  “…Colleagues, clients, and co-workers,” Zoe stuck out her tongue, “and yeah, that didn’t work too well for you, did it?”

  Kieran smiled as he looked at a picture of his recent maternity photo shoot with Tiana.

  They were out in the fields and both were wearing white. There was a slight breeze that day and Kieran remembered how the sunlight would seem to follow them where ever they went, as if their union and subsequent pregnancy was shined upon from the heavens. “Tiana was the exception and not the rule,” he smiled.

  “When you are you going to hook me up with your brother?” Zoe asked.

  “One’s married, one has a girlfriend, and the other two,” Kieran raised an eyebrow as he thought about Joey and Tony, “the other two need to get checked by the CDC.”

  “CDC?”

  “Centers for Disease Control,” Kieran mentioned. The sad part was he wasn’t sure if he what he said was a joke or not.

  “I’m sure they’re not that bad, Kieran.”

  “Ummm….” Kieran smiled at Zoe’s naïveté. “There’s a contest between them to see who

  can bang the most females in New York so that should tell you everything you need to know.”

  “Young, dumb, and full of…”

  “…exactly,” Kieran interrupted her. His cell phone rang and saw it was Tiana calling him.

  “I need to take this. Yeah, bella? You need what? When? Um…” Kieran glanced at
his watch.

  “I’ll see if I can do it. Okay, you’re going to what? Um, all right if you insist. Okay, I won’t. I love you, too.” He hung up.

  “What was that about?” Zoe asked.

  Kieran watched his phone ring again with Tiana calling him. “My wife wants me to pick up some food on the way back home but I have to go out of my way for a specific restaurant she had requested. However, she’s afraid I’m going to forget the order so she’s calling me back right now and leaving me a detailed message on what she wants.” Kieran looked back at his assistant.

  “You women are such strange creatures.”

  Two

  Joey D’Amato rubbed his forehead and let out a long yawn. It was a long day at Madre’s.

  He had to oversee the construction on the new Madre’s location on Long Island. Then he had to meet with another vendor interested in their services and negotiate reasonable prices. Finally, he had to meet with the Chief Financial Officer and talk financials.

  He loved every moment of it.

  It was a title he took seriously – President and Chief Operating Officer of Madre’s, Inc.

  His mother was the face of the brand she built, some ten years earlier, with some of her lottery winnings. All of the sons pitched in and helped build Madre’s from the ground up and as a result, all owned equity in the company.

  Joey was the brains behind it all. His mother’s lottery win happened to occur in the middle of him going to college and majoring in business, and eventually getting his MBA. He convinced his mother to hold off starting Madre’s for a couple of years so he could research more about the floral business and what it all entailed. He worked at other floral shops and studied their techniques. He looked up who grew the best flowers. Most importantly, Joey learned how to run a business. Most businesses failed within five years of starting up. He was determined to make Madre’s not be a part of that statistic.

  He wanted Madre’s to be different from the many other floral shops out there but he

  couldn’t figure out what was the magic touch. It had to have been different. It had to be something that wasn’t done before. Madre’s needed a secret weapon that no one else had.

 
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