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THE

DARK SCARLETT

AVEN JAYCE

The Dark Scarlett

Copyright © 2014 Aven Jayce

Cover and Book Design by Triple J Marketing

This is a work of fiction. Names, characters,

and incidents are the product of the author’s

imagination and are used fictitiously. Any

resemblance to actual persons, living or dead,

or events, is entirely coincidental.

All rights reserved

No part of this book can be reproduced, scanned,

or distributed in any printed or electronic form

without permission. Purchase only authorized

editions. The only exception is by a reviewer,

who may quote short excerpts in a review.

Connect on Facebook at

www.facebook.com/AvenJayceAuthor

For Chaz Pink and KLP

From Aven: “The subject matter in this novel isn’t for the faint-of-heart, and, well fuck, there’s a lot of foul language plus some sex. Descriptive sex I should say. You should also know that my characters have issues and can be abrupt, nasty, or full of angst. They make bad decisions from time to time and aren’t all that likeable. As a warning, the content may be considered dark or taboo for some readers. This isn’t one of those stories full of sweet puppies and unicorns. Well, I guess it does have some dogs in it, but no puppies.”

Table of Contents

Prologue

Chapter One

Chapter Two

Chapter Three

Chapter Four

Chapter Five

Chapter Six

Chapter Seven

Chapter Eight

Chapter Nine

Chapter Ten

Chapter Eleven

Chapter Twelve

Chapter Thirteen

Chapter Fourteen

Chapter Fifteen

Chapter Sixteen

Chapter Seventeen

Chapter Eighteen

Chapter Nineteen

Chapter Twenty

Chapter Twenty-One

Epilogue

Author Page

PROLOGUE

“I think we’re finished with all this shit, son.”

My father takes my hand as the plane heads down the runway and lifts into the air. He knows I hate to fly. I try not to think about it or anything we just discussed with the Vegas detectives. Spending months in and out of the police station back home in St. Louis, and now here in Vegas, wasn’t by choice. I would’ve rather devoted my time to reconnecting with my father and hanging out with my new bride, Sophia, than discussing her father, Paul Jameson. I’m also a wreck when I leave others to run The Dark Scarlett, our family-owned wine bar. I’m not saying I’m a saint when it comes to taking care of the place, after all, I love to drink and fuck my wife while at work, but at least I’m around if there’s a problem and not hundreds of miles away.

“Talk to me, Cove. I’m not a fan of flying either, but I can tell you have a lot more on your mind than this plane,” my father says.

“Yeah, I worry about Sophia when she’s left alone. I asked Haverty, our head of security for the Scarlett, to keep an eye on her, but still, she’s a handful and has a mind of her own. If she wants to go out at one in the morning for a drink, she will. So hearing that David Rosen was part of the reason you were released from prison, and knowing how conniving that shithead can be, I worry. I just want to make sure she’s safe. She’s been known to sleepwalk when she’s under stress, and...”

“I’m sure she’s fine,” he cuts in. “Your mother’s just one door away from your loft and I’m certain she’s requested Sophia continue to sleep at our place until we return. Better yet, she demanded it,” he smiles. “Sophia’s a good woman, Cove, and I love her. Warm, tough, and beautiful.”

“Fucking amazing in bed as well.”

“Oh yeah?” my father laughs.

“Forget I said that.”

“No, it’s nice to hear you voice your feelings for once. You and I never got a chance to discuss things like this when you were growing up. We were distant from one another when it came to discussing women because of Paul Jameson. You deserve to be happy and in a relationship, you know?”

“Sophia deserves happiness too. Don’t ever tell her I said this, but I’m thankful each and every day that her father was murdered.”

“Me too, son,” he whispers. “Paul not only infected our family with his porn business, but many other innocent lives as well. You do know David Rosen was always the real thug in charge of that company and that Paul was just a pawn, David’s scapegoat if anything ever went wrong? He’d never admit to any of that. He was so fucking delusional. That porn company was full of drugs, people getting raped, kidnappings, and murders. I can’t believe the number of times they paid people off to keep their mouths...”

“Excuse me, Miss,” the woman in front of us signals to the flight attendant. “Is there an empty seat on this plane that I can move to?”

“Sure, follow me.”

The woman stands and frowns. “No offense, but the two of you are fucked up. What are you, drug dealers, or in the mob or something?” she huffs and follows the stewardess to another seat a few rows ahead.

My father turns and releases my hand. “We need to have a pile of notecards to pass around to people who sit next to us that reads, My son was forced into a porn ring when he was a young teen, and I was set up to take the fall for the same company for their illegal undertakings, spent years in prison as an innocent man, and was finally released after Paul Jameson was murdered. He was the guy behind most of our problems. And his daughter, Sophia, and my son fell in love, but not before Paul had them locked away in his Vegas home, and...”

“Dad, stop. You’ll need a book to explain all of that, or a trilogy for that matter,” I laugh. “It’s not gonna fit on a notecard.”

“Different subject?”

“I guess that would be appropriate for the rest of the flight. Why don’t we talk about marriage?” I say, twirling the ring on my finger.

“Yes, a much happier subject for most. Everything going okay? Is Sophia upset about the wedding?”

“I wouldn’t call it a wedding. And no, she’s not upset. It was her idea to get married at the courthouse.”

“Your mother’s not buying it. Most women want a big wedding.”

“God, there’s so much wrong with what you just said. You know Sophia’s not like most women. Besides, she has no family to speak of. A big wedding for us would include three or four people, all from our side of the family, and even that’s pushing it.”

“True. So the two of you are okay?”

“Better than okay. Having her in my life is like being a child and waking up on Christmas morning to a stack of presents under the tree. I understand that Sophia had a fucked up life, but so do I, or I did... who we are and what’s happened to us makes our relationship and love for one another that much stronger. I’m one lucky bastard. I can’t imagine any other woman wanting to be with me if she knew about my past.”

“That’s the only thing we have to thank Paul for; she wouldn’t be in our lives today if it wasn’t for him,” he says.

“I don’t know about that. I’d rather believe it was a chance meeting. I didn’t have to bring her into my loft the night I found her asleep in the hall of our building. And I didn’t have to pursue her after that. We made our relationship happen, not him.”

“True. I love the positive spin you’ve put on it. So if everything’s good, why do you want to discuss your marriage?”

     

 

2011 - 2018