Will Wilde couldn’t help it.  He was pissed again.  And, Jessica Mullaney was again the cause.  Less than two weeks ago, he had saved his wife by jumping in front of a bullet shot from the gun of a madman.  And, it was all caught on video. 

Yet, the video that had been played every hour of every day for the last two weeks was not his moment of glory.  Instead, it was the video of Jessica Mullaney breaking her husband’s nose.  And, although Will had to admit that Patrick Mullaney deserved to have his nose broken after the man went abroad with his son and abandoned his wife, who had then been arrested and imprisoned for their murder, Will still couldn’t help but be resentful that Jessica Mullaney was receiving more attention than he was … again.

Will tried to reason with himself.  He had no room to complain.  His family was safe again.  He was alive.  And, when the devil had come to call in the form of a madman who had kidnapped his wife, Shelby Baker, Will had risen to the occasion.  The bad guy was dead, he had protected Shelby and he had added a new dimension, and a respectable one at that, to his reputation as ‘A Hollywood Legend.’

Still, on the Friday night prior to his birthday celebration, he couldn’t help but be annoyed that Jessica Mullaney’s video, not his, was getting more run time.  However, the nail in the coffin had been when his brother, Rico, had called to say that, because Jessica’s birthday was four days away from his, this necessitated a ‘joint’ birthday celebration.  And, to make matters worse, he was expected to host the event. 

While Will Wilde couldn’t help but be pissed again at Jessica Mullaney, the Friday night prior to the joint birthday party, Jessica Mullaney had no thoughts whatsoever of Will Wilde.


Jessica Mullaney couldn’t help it.  She was in love.  And the man that she loved was Rico Wilde. 

It had been nearly two weeks since he had kissed her for the first time.  And, despite his first kiss occurring in a tent filled with fifteen or more watching policemen, she had pressed her flesh against him and announced that she wanted him.  Since then, there had been more kisses and more pressing of the flesh.  Jessica wanted him more than ever and she thought she had made it very clear.  Yet, Rico remained the gentleman. 

Rico kissed her in all the right places.  He repeatedly stirred her into a frenzy.  But, he never made the slightest effort to take it to the next level.  Still, Jessica had to admit that his kisses transmitted his desire for her.  And, when he pulled her close, she could feel that he wanted her as much as she wanted him. 

As they ate dinner out on Friday night and her son, Ryan, excused himself to use the restroom, Jessica couldn’t help but feel a sense of frustration when Rico looked at her with his teasing eyes and announced, “We’re alone again.”

“I see that.”

“Well, aren’t you going to sidle over here and give me a kiss?”

“Maybe you could be the initiator this time, Rico.”

“Two weeks,” he sighed, “and she’s already lost interest.”

“Very funny.  You just like me wanting you more than you want me.”

Rico laughed loudly, causing heads to turn at other tables.  “Jessica,” he began, “I just spent the last several months literally stalking you.  I want you, all right, but I’m just trying to be sensitive to Ryan.  After all, he’s just getting used to his mother being with another man.”

The thought of Rico worrying about Ryan sent Jessica’s heart afire and she slid quickly to his side to receive her kiss.  Rico was the master of kisses.  He placed his hand behind her head and lowered his lips to hers.  As he finished, she actually whimpered. 

“You guys need to get a room,” Ryan commented, as he returned to find them just releasing their liplock.

Rico laughed and Jessica sighed. 

“I’m crazy about your mom, Ryan.  I apologize if I embarrass you by showing it in front of you.”

“No, no need to apologize.  I can see that you make my mom really happy, and I’m glad.”

“Thanks, Ryan,” Rico replied.  “Listen, are you excited about heading off to Notre Dame on Sunday.  I’d imagine that you’re both excited and nervous about starting college.”

“I think more excited that nervous.  It will be a change after living in Africa for almost four years.  Mom has already lectured me about the multitude of things I’ll be exposed to that I missed out on in Africa.  Still, even if I drink too much beer and cavort with too many women, my grades should be fine given my background and the AP classes that I took while abroad.”

“Ryan, don’t torture me like that.”

“Oh come on mom, lighten up.  Besides, dad will be living not more than an hour away so I’m sure that he’ll be prepared to micromanage my life if I step out of line too far.”

Jessica rolled her eyes and didn’t respond. 

Rico, however, took the moment to say, “Ryan, you know your mom only cares about your well being.  Please don’t give her any reason to worry about you while you’re away or else she’ll be a basket case here in LA.  And, if she gets too bad, I’ll send her to South Bend for an extended visit.”

“Good point,” Ryan said as he laughed. 

Jessica beamed at Rico and kissed his cheek for his efforts.  He naturally put his arm around her and she reclined in the nook of his arm until dinner ended. 

In the restaurant parking lot, Rico shook Ryan’s hand and then kissed Jessica goodnight.  As often happened, his kiss made her knees weak and she leaned against her car for support as he walked away.  As Jessica watched him walk away Jessica admitted that Rico Wilde had become the shining star of her each and every day, and she couldn’t wait for him to be the star of her nights as well.   


Begrudgingly, Will rose early Saturday morning to begin setting up for the dual birthday party.  With each of his grunts and each of his sighs, his wife rolled her eyes, dismissing his ingratitude toward Jessica, whom Shelby credited with saving her life as much as she credited her husband.  As the first guests arrived, Will’s attitude changed.  After all, for the first time in a long time, all was right in his family and he really had nothing to complain about … even Jessica Mullaney.

When Jessica finally arrived, she was arm in arm with his brother, Rico, and her son, Ryan, preceded them.  Will shook Ryan’s hand and welcomed him.  Then, he started to greet Jessica and Rico.  But, one look at the googley eyes that they exchanged made Will roll his eyes. 

Jessica saw his response and laughed.  “Happy birthday, Will,” she greeted as she kissed his cheek and then headed off to introduce her son around.  Will stood with Rico and watched as Jessica made her way through the room.  One thing he had to give her, she had moxie. 

“So…” he suggested to his brother, Rico.

“So, what?”

“Have you done it yet?”

“Will, I’m not going to discuss my sex life with you.”

“Oh, come on,” Will cajoled, and then shouted, “Rico, give me something here,” as Rico moved away.

Later, Will stood by Shelby’s side with his arm around her waist as he watched the younger children being entertained by Ryan.  The kids begged him for ever increasing splashes as he jumped off the diving board and he accommodated them.  Meanwhile, Jessica watched her son and clapped.  Finally, she noticed Rico halfway submerged in the shallow end of the pool and she quickly dove into the pool and swam over to him.  She surfaced near him and he took her into his arms and she rested closely against his body.  She occasionally looked up at him and whispered to him and he would reply by kissing her or hugging her more tightly to him.  Finally, he said something that made her laugh and then he swam away to the deep end, where he took over as the entertainer for the children.  Ryan, released from his role, joined the older teens.

Jessica climbed out of the pool, wrapped a towel around her waist and then joined Will and Shelby.  As she watched the pool activity she commented, “Isn’t he wonderful?”

“Who, Ryan or Rico?” Shelby asked.

“Both,” she replied.  “Rico noticed that Ryan was spending more time entertaining the children versus hanging with the kids his own age so Rico intervened and took over as entertainment.”  Jessica then sighed.

Shelby sniggered and said, “Jessica, you are infatuated with that man.  I wish the two of you would finally have sex so that we wouldn’t have to hear all these deep sighs of longing.”

“Shelby!” Jessica exclaimed.

“Shelby!” Will echoed in mock exclamation.

“You two are such a pain,” Jessica replied as they all laughed.  After the laughter died away, Jessica said, “Shelby, can I borrow Will a minute?  I want to discuss something with him in his office.”  Shelby nodded and the two stepped away. 

Shelby didn’t give a thought to their departure until Rico approached her.  “Where’d Jess go?”

“Oh, she and Will headed to his study to discuss something.”

Rico stood by Shelby for a moment and watched the kids playing.  Then, he was struck with the realization of the ‘something’ that was being discussed. 

Rico hurried to the study and entered without knocking.  He found Will seated at his desk.  Jessica was seated on the small couch across from the desk, perusing papers contained in a manila file folder.

“Damn it, Will!” Rico exclaimed, as he quickly covered the distance to Jessica. 

As he approached, Jessica put the manila folder on the couch and looked off in the distance.  Rico grabbed the folder, which he knew contained a private investigator’s report of Jessica’s childhood.  It was opened to the picture of Jessica’s mangled ankles that bore the scars of the bizarre abuse she had been subjected to as a young teen.  He threw the folder on Will’s desk.  “Why did you show that to her?” Rico asked savagely.

“She wanted to see it, Rico,” Will defended.  However, Rico’s attention was not on Will.  Instead, he seated himself on the couch and pulled Jessica’s legs up over his lap and then grabbed her and held her tight.  Mesmerized, Will watched as Rico began to murmur to Jessica as she sat quietly, as if in a catatonic state.  Finally, Rico jerked his head toward the door to signal to Will to leave, which he started to do. At the door, Will met his wife.

“What’s going on?” she whispered.

“Rico is comforting Jessica,” he whispered back.

“Why is she upset?”

“I showed her the investigator’s file that contained the photo of her childhood abuse.”

“You idiot!  Why did you do that?”

“She wanted to see them,” he defended himself as his voice started to rise.

“Shhh,” his wife shushed him and she pulled him from the room and closed the door behind them.

Meanwhile, over on the couch, Rico comforted Jessica with every trick he knew but still had not received a response.  Finally, he whispered, “You scare me so much sometimes, Jess.  Did you know that?  You draw back into your shell and I worry that you’ll never come back out again.”  He continued to rock her gently as he held her closely to him.  Finally, he whispered, “Please, Jess.  I need you here with me.”

It was then that she moved to press her body tighter to his and she whispered, “I’m sorry.  I don’t mean to get so lost inside myself and block you out.”

“No, no, no.  After what you’ve been through, I understand why you block out the world.  Just remember that it’s all over now.  And all that remains are the memories in your head.  And, I can make you forget those if you give me a moment or two.”

Jessica laughed then, and said, “I have a moment or two.”  She then began to kiss him, starting under his chin and finally reaching the base of his ear, where she started pulling gently at his earlobe with her lips.

In an instant, he had shifted her legs so that she straddled him on the couch, whereupon he began to kiss her neck and her shoulders.  She groaned in pleasure, which made him laugh.  She then threw herself on him, pressing her body against him and forcing him back on the sofa.  Her kisses were desperate and Rico found himself responding in kind.  He rose from the couch, lifting her body along with him, and gently laid her across the desk.   

She looked up into his eyes and pulled him urgently to her as she proclaimed, “I want you so bad.  Take me now.” 

With fiery eyes and a racing pulse, Rico began to explore her body with his lips, while she wrapped her legs around him and moaned in response. 

Suddenly from the door, Will yelled, “Rico, what the hell are you doing?  Not on my desk.  There are extra bedrooms upstairs, for heaven’s sake.”

But Rico ignored him and climbed up on the desk, with Jessica’s legs still locked around him.  He kissed her closed eyes, her cheeks, her chin and then finally found her lips.  Then, he abruptly stopped all movement and she opened her eyes to see his laughing eyes inches from hers.

“When I finally make love to you, Jessica, it won’t be a five minute quickie on my brother’s desk.  I plan to spend days exploring every inch of your body to find out what pleasures you and making sure that you have orgasms that you’ll never forget.”  He then kissed her deeply.  She moaned in response and released her leglock in complete surrender.  Then, he climbed down from the desk and walked to the door.

As Rico and Will exited the room, Jessica let out a scream of exasperation just before the door clicked shut.  Shelby, who was heading to the study to find out what was going on as well, heard the scream of frustration as the boys passed her.

“What exactly were you doing to that woman?” she heard Will ask.

“I’m making her want me more than she’s ever wanted anything in her life.”

Rico, I never knew you had it in you.”

“Watch and learn, little brother.  Watch and learn.”