Baby Daddy (Bad Boy Billionaires Book 4)

By: Jessa James

I had my back to the group and was waiting for my cue to turn around when I heard Tori take a deep breath. She let it out roughly and declared, “I’ve decided to visit a sperm bank. That’s my gift to myself for my 30th birthday. I’m going to have a baby – no man necessary.” The women took a few beats to collect themselves before they all closed in on her with congratulations and feigned praise.

“That’s so brave of you!”

“You’re going to make a great mother!”

“Wow, that’s a huge step. Good for you!”

All of these women were just as shocked as I was, but for obviously different reasons. They probably thought that raising a child was freakishly hard - even with a partner - but I couldn’t help but wonder why in the hell she wanted a sperm donor. A real man would have given her children and helped her care for them. I felt the caveman in me beat his chest a little at the thought of some random dude getting to spread his seed on territory I had claimed. And one of the things I wanted most in this world was to have a family – a real family. One that didn’t leave you alone. And now Tori wanted to have that by herself.

I realized I was distraught, more than I had a right to be. I thought I had a few more months – or maybe even years – to woo Tori, to make her to see that I was six years younger but I wasn’t like other guys. Fuck! This was all my fault; I thought I had time. She said multiple times in the office that she had sworn off guys, but I didn’t think she wanted a baby without one. I gathered myself enough to storm to the men’s room, hoping for all the world that I didn’t look like my ass was on fire as I did.

Once I got into the (ridiculously over-marbled, overly-carved) restroom, I made sure nobody was sitting in the stalls before I laid into myself. “You dumbass, Wyatt! You shoulda moved on this sooner. You shoulda told her how you felt, screw the age thing. Now she’s gonna go get jiggy with a turkey baster and you’re gonna be stuck holding your dick in your hands!”

I let out a big groan of disgust, messing up my hair as I paced back and forth. I let out another long, painful sigh and turned towards the sink. As I smoothed down my hair, I looked directly at myself and felt the deep bullshit I had brewing start to bubble just below the surface.

When I met Jeff in college, it was pure luck. I had barely made it into college by the skin of my teeth, but at that point I was out of the system and on my own. I worked my ass off for that degree and managed to meet Jeff in my last year at university. Despite my efforts to stay on the right track, though, being the illegitimate son of a deadbeat dad and a crack addict had its downsides. I was totally lost, even though I’d worked so hard to put the pieces of my life together and it looked like, from the outside at least, that I had done it.

But the first day I saw Victoria Elliott, my second day on the job at Buchanan Industries, I thought, “That’s her. That’s the girl that’s going to make me get my shit together. I’ll do it for her.” And even though she didn’t seem to know I existed, I worked every day a little bit harder to make myself better for her. So that one day, she’d look up from that damn copy machine and see a man, not a boy. A man who was worthy of her.

And now she was going to get knocked up by some cold-pressed sperm with her legs in stirrups at a clinic. Instead of in the arms of someone who loved her, who wanted to share a life with her. Who wanted to be a father.

I stole one last glance at myself and said, “It’s go-time, Preston. Get your shit together. It’s time to take your hand off your dick and keep her off the turkey baster.” I turned to exit the marbled bathroom and almost ran into an elderly man who, apparently, came out of nowhere. I blew out all the air in my chest and turned bright red – there was no way he didn’t hear all that. Shiiiiit.

He looked at me with cataract-covered eyes and eyebrows that look like caterpillars and said, “We all have to give ourselves a pep talk from time to time. Go get her, kid.”

You’re such a fucking loser, Preston, I thought as I sidestepped the man and thanked him. I shook off my run-in with Father Time and headed to the Main Hall to get my future baby mama. I’d find a way to convince her that a sperm clinic wasn’t the only option. I have to find a way, I thought as I sped up the pace. I’m running out of time.

Chapter 2

Tori Elliott

I realized I shouldn’t have told the ladies from work that I was going to visit a sperm bank the second it came out of my mouth. I watched all of their faces shift from shock to pity to blatant judgment and then I couldn’t seem to backtrack. Smooth, Tori.

“Well, who knows if I can even get pregnant? My dickbag ex-fiance and I could never get pregnant and now I’m sort of glad we didn’t try invitro. I just don’t want to be 40, single, and childless, ya know?” I looked around, grasping at the straws of my dignity.

A few of them looked sympathetically at me but, like a well-oiled machine, they all started glancing around at the room or snuck a peek at their smartphones. Way to scare everyone off, Birthday Girl. I rolled my eyes at myself and lifted my champagne glass to my lips. At least you can drink yourself stupid now, I amended and turned to get some of those delicious crab cakes off the hors d’oeuvres table. As I pivoted on my deliciously tall pumps, I ran smack-dab into Why-Not-Wyatt, the baby-faced Finance guy who was the only man on my “Why Not” list.