Cruel Kiss – Cruel King Read Online K.A. Linde

Categories Genre: Contemporary, Erotic, Novella, Romance Tags Authors:

Total pages in book: 20
Estimated words: 19796 (not accurate)
Estimated Reading Time in minutes: 99(@200wpm)___ 79(@250wpm)___ 66(@300wpm)

A sexy one-night stand romance set in the glitz and glamorous Cruel world by USA Today bestselling author K.A. Linde…

Gavin King is not boyfriend material.
And neither am I.
That’s how our friendship works. We flirt and tease and joke, but at the end of the day, playing wingman is preferable to risking my heart.
Until I break up with my boyfriend the day that I leave for a two-week Caribbean vacation. And Gavin and I are the only single people on the island.
But remember that boyfriend I dumped?
Yeah, it’s his best friend.
The last thing I want to do is come between friends. And I swore the green eyes, wicked dimple, and chiseled body weren’t enough to convince me. But then I caught him in the shower…and he said he was thinking about me.
Now, I can’t stop picturing what I saw.
Maybe my ex doesn’t ever have to know.

*************FULL BOOK START HERE*************



“I’m going to miss you.”

I closed my eyes on a sigh as I stared out across the Manhattan skyline. Robert stood somewhere on the other side of his enormous penthouse, watching me. He’d been doing a lot of that over the last ten days. After he told me that he wasn’t going on our planned holiday vacation and I’d have to spend the next two weeks on a private island without him.

He thought I was upset.

And I was.

Just … not at him.

I was mad that I wasn’t upset. I should have been. We’d been dating long enough that I should have felt something when he told me he couldn’t get the time off work. I should have felt something at all about him even. But I didn’t.

Robert Dawson was classic Upper East Side good looks with tailored suits, a European haircut, and a boarding school pedigree. He hosted Gatsby-level parties, and he was in love with me. Like so in love with me. All of that combined should have been enough for me to fall in love with him too … right?

“Whit,” Robert said. He stepped up to the window and leaned against the glass. He had on a navy-blue pin-striped suit and a furrow formed between his brows. “Talk to me.”

“What is there to say?”

“You’re mad that I’m not going.”

“No,” I whispered.

He sighed. “I did try to get the time off.”

“It’s fine.”

“You’ve been off since I told you. It’s not fine.”

I shrugged and searched for my classic Whitley bravado. To all of my friends, I was the bubbly, flirtatious pixie, who always had a comeback and a wild dating story. But right now, I felt resigned to another relationship that wasn’t working out. One that I’d thought might actually happen.

Robert grabbed my arm and spun me to look at him. There was fire in his eyes now. He held in everything he felt so succinctly that I rarely ever saw fire from him. It was a nice change.

“You can talk to me.”

“I know.”

“Is this because all of our friends are coupled up? You can hang out with Gavin and—”

“No,” I said sharply. I didn’t want to talk about Gavin King. “No, it’s not that.”

Robert slid his hands into his suit pockets. “Then, what? Because I’ve apologized a thousand times for this. I don’t know how much more groveling you want from me. I’ve been perfectly accommodating with everything you’ve wanted out of this relationship. Relationships aren’t normal for you, but it’s been a learning curve for me too. So, if you have something to say, just spit it out.”

I finally met his gaze and arched an eyebrow. Well, that was new and different. Robert had always been a nice guy. I hadn’t expected him to push me here.

If he wanted the truth, then I owed him the truth.

“We should break up.”

His jaw set as he froze to stone. “What?”

“I don’t want to do this anymore.”

He pushed away from the window. He didn’t plead with me. I’d definitely thought that he would beg. Instead, he looked ready to rip his apartment apart. He picked up a glass and threw it against the wall. I jumped as it shattered into a million pieces.


“All because I can’t go on this trip?”

“No,” I gasped.

“I thought our relationship was going great. I’ve done everything you asked, Whitley. I … I fell in love with you. This is self-sabotaging. You’re running at the first sign of feelings.”

“That’s not true.”

“Then, what is it? Because from where I’m standing, you look scared out of your mind that you feel anything at all. When we first got together, I understood that you were a perpetual flirt and believed you were this broken girlfriend. You have a fraught history with relationships, but it doesn’t have to be this way.”

All of that was true. Except how I felt about him. Because if anything, I felt numb, empty. The first time he’d ever pushed me about anything was this moment. It was too little, too late.

“Thank you for psychoanalyzing me,” I quipped.

“Don’t do that. Don’t belittle this situation.”

“You’re the one who has it all figured out,” I shot back. “Did you ever think that it’s maybe just because I don’t feel the same?”

“No, you’re running scared, like normal.”

“I don’t love you,” I whispered, the wind dropping out of my sails.

He staggered back a step but said nothing.

I shook my head with a sigh. I didn’t feel anything at all. I wanted to. It would make a lot more sense if I did feel something for him. But it wasn’t there, and no matter how much I tried, I couldn’t make myself love someone that I didn’t. If that made me flighty and a broken girlfriend, then fine. Paint me as the villain.

“I’m sorry.”

“Don’t go like this,” he pleaded.

“I’m sorry,” I repeated.

Then, I grabbed my suitcase, purse, and winter jacket and exited his apartment. I leaned my back against the door when it shut behind me. My stomach twisted in knots as I heard something shatter on the other side. Fuck.