The butterflies in her stomach had nothing to do with the slight turbulence the plane was experiencing and everything to do with her impulsive decision to fly to Las Vegas and meet up with Zechariah Rohnan. This was no business excursion; on the contrary, it was all for pleasure. She glanced around the cramped commercial flight self-consciously, wondering if anyone close to her noticed the sudden infusion of color that flooded her cheeks as her body flooded with anticipation.
For the next several days, she would not be attending concerts as a music industry professional, and the truth of the matter was that she couldn’t remember the last concert she’d been to “off the books.” But neither was she going just for the opportunity to see IED live and hang out with the band. After all, she’d done that only a few days before. No, not this trip.
She wasn’t going to skirt the implications of Zach’s invitation. Anyone would recognize that agreeing to fly to Vegas to be with him meant just that and clearly had sexual overtones. And she was looking forward to it, probably had been since the interview at the studio if she were to be honest. Thinking about the clothes her brother packed for her, she grimaced slightly. She was fairly confident there would not be any alluring outfits or lingerie among the toothbrush and deodorant. She doubted he’d even thought to pack her perfume and makeup. When she’d talked to him about going by her house and picking up some things for her, she’d intended on heading up to her uncle’s ranch, so the bag was probably filled with jeans and thermal teeshirts, her preferred ranchwear. She made a note to stop by at least one boutique and acquire some appropriate seduction apparel.
Stop being so slutty! she admonished herself. Then she argued back silently that in a town full of showgirls and legal prostitution, how else was a girl to compete?
She must have dozed off because the next thing she knew, the person next to her gave her a nudge. She was an older woman, clearly ready to hit the strip, by the excited sparkle in her eyes.
“Wake up, honey. It’s party time!” Standing up, she removed an overstuffed carry-on from the compartment above. Starr only had her purse with her, so after she deboarded the plane, she headed straight for the luggage claim. As she impatiently watched for her baggage, she thought about calling Zach. He said he’d have a car pick her up at the airport and bring her to his suite at the Bellagio. But self-conscious of the excitement she knew he would hear in her voice, she opted for a quick text.
“Just landed. At baggage claim. Will wait out front in passenger pick-up.”
To her surprise, he texted back right away.
“GREAT! I’ll have a car there for you in 20. REALLY glad you came.”
Unable to help the gutter thought that crept into her mind, she thought, I’ll be really glad when you make me come. She’d already decided she would ask the driver to stop so she could shop for something dazzling to wear—inside and out.
An hour and a half later, she was dropped off at the beautiful hotel with her one suitcase and four boutique bags. Not sure what else to do with a bellhop patiently waiting, she went up to the hotel desk and gave her name. The young woman checking in guests did a double-take when she looked up Starr’s reservation.
“It seems your booked in Mr. Rhonan’s suite,” she murmured and Starr could have sworn she heard a touch of envy in the woman’s tone.
Starr wanted to shout, “Yeah, baby!” but refrained. Instead, she asked, “Is he in?”
“I don’t believe so. There’s instructions here to give you a key card and put any charges to the room on his tab.”
Starr wanted to feel embarrassed. It was evident she was here as the rock star’s romantic interest. It was also evident she wasn’t just some groupie. She really didn’t want to feel the wave of satisfaction flutter over her at the woman’s obvious resentment, but she couldn’t stop it, either. Trying not to appear smug, she accepted the key and headed for the elevator.
Once she was in the luxurious room, she headed over to the elegant couch so she could check out exactly what her brother had packed since she hadn’t had the opportunity to do so yet. As she suspected, it was full of jeans and tee shirts, some long-sleeve, some short. White bras, white panties. Oh, yes! Her make up bag was in there. She’d purchased some just in case, but just the bare essentials—mascara, eyeliner, lip stick (since it could be used for blush too!)—but she was glad to have all her colors with her now.
She noticed there was a card sticking out from a vase of two dozen white roses sitting on the coffee table with her name on it. Smiling, she opened it up.
“Here’s to a fantabulous week. Dinner plans for 8. Z,” it read.
Eight?! That only gave her a little over an hour to get ready. And the first thing she would do was shower. Grabbing the bag that had all the hygiene stuff, including a bottle of eighty dollar shower gel, she headed for the bathroom.
Just under an hour later, she preened in front of the full-length mirror in the master bedroom. She wore a sapphir silk cocktail dress, halter-style, with a low neckline and bare back. There was no wearing a bra with this number. It fell to her knees in a gathered skirt. She wore black, fishnet hose but only for the black garter belt that held them up around black-laced panties. Four inch black patten leather heels finished the outfit.
Her close-cropped hair lay flat and shimmering against her scalp with tendril curled along her cheeks. Large royal blue stars were attached to her lobes. Her eyes were outlined in a similar color liner with a bit of brown shadow below her brows that accented the color of her eyes. Ruby red lipstick and a touch of blush completed her look.
She bought a clutch almost groaning as she forked over another chunk of change. She’d spent nearly three grand at the boutique, but she rarely splurged like she had since she’d met Zach, so at least she had the funds, although today’s trip had gone on a credit card.
There was a knock on the door and she rushed to open it, but paused to inhale deeply, knowing the sight of Rhonan would leave her breathless. When she opened the door, her face fell in disappointment. It was only Junie, Zach’s “gal Friday,” as he called her.
“Well, come along, sweetie. That boy’s been itchin’ to see you. I’m ta take ya to the rendezvous. Tonight’s gonna be special… Just you wait and see.”