Mister Manhattan (Cocky Hero Club) by Alexandria Sure





1





Jurnee





As I slipped into the booth, I glimpsed my reflection in the oversized mirror with the daily specials written on it in brightly colored markers. With no way to improve the situation, my fingers pushed my dripping reddish-brown hair back, revealing all the carefully applied makeup now running down my cheeks, making it look like I was crying.

“I bet you weren’t expecting me to look like this. It’s raining, by the way.”

“Clearly.”

His voice was what I wanted whiskey to feel like as it slid down my throat—smokey, controlled, arrogant, confident. Unfortunately, whiskey burned every time I tried to sip it, and I suspected he burned whomever he touched.

I gathered my wet hair and draped it over my left shoulder in an attempt to steady myself. “I’m so sorry I’m late, I’m usually prompt.” Strands of bangs fell over my eyes as I stared at his enormous hands cradling a tiny iPhone. The pink fullness of his lips against light brown skin sent a quiver through me as I imagined them on me. “You really downplayed how attractive you are.”

When he didn’t answer, I cleared my throat. “Okay, I’m ready.” I waited for him to look up. He didn’t. I continued, “It’s been two-and-a-half years since I’ve had, well, you know, and I’m in New York for a meeting, but I am using the meeting as an excuse to hang out in the city for a month.”

His sexy brown eyes narrowed as he dragged his glance from his phone to me. “What?”

“My two truths. I thought that we were trading two truths?”

His attention returned to his phone. I pulled at my wet clothes as I caught the first whiff of my date’s cologne, a mixture of peach, lavender, rosemary, and nutmeg. There was also a hint of sandalwood and flowers that strangely worked together into a sexy masculine scent.

“You smell really good. P.S. you really downplayed your looks.”

He glanced up at me again but said nothing.

“On the website, you stated you were alright looking. I would definitely call that downplaying. Also, I’m not sure how you stayed dry, but I didn’t have the same luck.”

His stare morphed into what I could only call extreme boredom. I tried again.

“I’m curious to hear what your two truths are.” Then, I did the toughest thing ever… I didn’t say another word. I stared at him, scrolling through his phone. He clearly didn’t have basic manners. There would be no second date, I decided in those moments of silence.

Clearing my throat, I lifted my brow, so he knew I was expecting something.

“What?” He asked.

The deep, commanding sound of his voice made me press my back against the booth. Girl, you are so addicted to assholes.

“Your two truths.” Swallowing, I tilted my head to the side, waiting for him to recall what I was referring to. Regret was creeping in quickly as I mentally combed through the emails we’d exchanged over the last week. “You asked about this yesterday when we finalized the date.”

He chuckled, but in a rude sort of way, like he was making fun of me. “Date?”

“Our conversations. What is…?”

“A conversation that you and I had?” He asked in a snide tone.

“From the website? The dating app. Not into Looks.” Now I was getting upset. What the hell was wrong with him?

A rail-thin waiter approached, looking like he hadn’t been in the sun in years, and gave me a once-over. “May I get you anything?”

“May I please get a cup of coffee?” When I looked over at my date, he looked as surprised as the waiter that I had actually requested my own beverage.

“And for the gentleman: coffee too?” The sarcasm dripping off him was thick enough for even a girl from the Midwest to grasp.

I waited for him to reply to the impatient waiter. Instead, he dismissed him with a quick shake of his head. He returned his attention to his vibrating phone.

“Still here. You want to share your two truths now?”

He set the phone gently onto the table in front of him and stretched his legs out until they were no longer under the table. When he reclined, his gaze dragged over me. I squirmed under his scrutiny.

“I got caught in the downpour, okay? I also got turned around on the subway train and went to the wrong restaurant. I’ve apologized for being late. Perhaps it’s time you apologize.”

He rolled his eyes. His phone vibrated. He reached for it.