The Prey: She knows all about you.

Asha Carrington stepped into Carter’s office looking good enough to eat. As soon as he saw her, he realized his attraction to her, no matter how crazy she had been.   She wore a black cashmere suit with a skirt that hugged her size 24 inch waist, and cupped her butt just right making it appear larger than it actually was. It flared at the hem line.   When she turned to remove her suit jacket, Carter automatically reached to help her. It was if he couldn’t help himself; he had to touch her.   As her jacket slid from her shoulders, Carter allowed his fingers to trace her arms. Asha smiled; her plan was coming together just as expected.

“Have a seat, Asha,” He said, as he looked up and noticed, Elise still in the doorway. Her expression told him she disapproved of his actions.

“I’m leaving your door open; call me if you need anything,” Elise said, as she walked away.

“So, what did you want to discuss with me?” Asha asked. Her aggressiveness reminded him of why he had her in his office in the first place.

“Well,” he started, “I’m curious as to what it is exactly you want from me, Asha.”

“Want?” She feigned confusion.

“Yes, want. You’ve sent me numerous gifts; expensive gifts I might add. Had flowers delivered to my home and insisted on a meeting exclusively with me to have your portfolio revamped. I’d say you want something from me. So, what is it?”

Asha took a minute to answer; she wanted her words to be just right. “When we met on the boat, in New York, I found you to be attractive. I noticed you were with someone so, I stayed my distance. But over the course of the following weeks, I couldn’t get you out of my mind. I knew that if you were on my heart that strongly, you were meant to be a part of my life.”

Carter looked at, Asha as if she had lost her mind. “How can you make that type of judgment call based on one boat ride? You don’t even know me?!”

“But, I do. Didn’t you like the gifts I sent? They were all your favorites. If I didn’t know you, how did I know you like shopping at Saks or eating at Croaker Spot or what type of perfume you enjoy smelling on your woman?! How would I know all of that, if I didn’t know you?!”   Asha’s demeanor had gone from one of calm and engaging to boarder-line agitation. Startled by her out burst, Carter chose his next words very carefully.

“Okay, let me put it this way, I appreciate your interest as a matter of fact, I’m flattered but―”

“But?!” she cut him off and jumped to her feet. “But?!” she repeated once more, “Don’t you find me attractive?”

“Yes, Asha you are a very beautiful woman, but I’m engaged to be married and I’m very much in love with my fiancée.”   The room grew dead silent and the same chill, Carter felt after his phone conversation with, Asha he now felt. She slowly returned to her chair and as she did, Carter swore he saw her eye color change from blue-gray to red.

“Listen, I’m not trying to hurt you, Asha but like I said, I’m already involved. If you want I can return the gifts, well, all except the flowers of course.”

Carter opened a drawer in his desk and removed her gifts one by one. When he placed the bottle of wine in front of her, she lost control.  “What the hell is this?” she hissed barely above a whisper.

“Your stuff.”

“My stuff? This isn’t mine, it’s yours. I gave it to you. I gave you gifts from my heart and you want to return them?” Her tone was quiet, too quite; like the calm before the storm.

“Asha, I can’t accept these things. I can’t accept gifts from clients.”

“Clients?” She continued to speak to him in an eerily quiet tone. Her words had a hiss to them. It was as if she became another person. “Is that all you think of me, is as a client? I moved down here to be close to you.”

“Look, I never asked you to do that. It was your decision to leave New York and move down here. Had you asked me, I could have saved you the trouble of relocating. I would have told you, I’m already in a committed relationship.”  Carter stood. “Now, if you’ll excuse me, I have another appointment coming up that I need to prepare for.”

Asha stood to her feet and moved to stand in front of Carter. To his senses, she appeared to move in slow motion. When she stopped just short touching him, he found himself once again becoming aroused by her.  “Damn, what the hell kinda perfume is this woman wearing?” He thought to himself, as he fought the erection building in his pants.

“Okay, I’m gonna leave baby because you asked me to but know this, it’s not good-bye.” She handed him her suit jacket and turned her back to him. As he slid the jacket up her arms, his fingers once again traced her flesh; he lingered on the nap of her neck. For some reason, he found that highly erotic.

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