Sample | Allegiance to Your Love

This excerpt is unedited and subject to change. 

Copyright © 2018 by Shanice Swint. All rights reserved. This book is a work of fiction. Names, characters, places, and incidents either are the product of the author’s imagination or are used fictitiously and are not to be construed as real. Any resemblance to actual persons, living or dead, business establishments, events, or locales or, is entirely coincidental. No portion of this book may be used or reproduced in any manner whatsoever without writer permission except in the case of brief quotations embodied in critical articles and reviews.

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Get a load of this! Mannix will have a lot on his hands with Naima, but it’s nothing he can’t handle. Besides, an exceptional woman deserves to be selfish with herself until someone sticks around and proves they are both genuine and worthy of her greatness! 

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MANNIX

“Can I help you?” Naima snatched the door open before I’d gotten far. She was peeking around it when I turned around to approach again.
“If you’re willing.”
“I’m not.” she folded her arms. I chuckled from being nervous, but Naima didn’t like that shit. She wasn’t in the mood to be anything other than stern, simply rude as hell over her current circumstance. “I say something funny?” she asked. Her bushy eyebrows were crinkled above her glistening brown eyes.
“I dropped by to check on you,” I admitted. “It’s been a few days.”
“And I haven’t used the number pinned to the refrigerator with your name above it because I’m fine.”
“I see.” I rubbed my fingers through my beard. “Again, If you need anything—“ Naima’s heavy sigh cut me off, and I’d pissed her off more when I chuckled again. “Is this how you treat people who try to help you?”
“No. Only men who seem to have hidden agendas.”
“Your discernment is off. You may need to get that fixed.”
Naima parted her lips to say something but quickly thought against it. Staring me down with slanted eyes, she awaited me to say something else. The chip on her shoulder could've supplied a village.
“What do you want from me, Mannix? You want your dick sucked for helping me? A stroke to your ego? What?”
There wasn’t much that shocked me, but her sarcasm took the cake. Along with amusing me, it heightened my interest. Naima had no idea that she was reeling me in despite trying to push me away.
“A traditional thank you will suffice for now.”
“Thank you.” she spoke quickly, wishing to rush me away.
“And if you—“
“If I need anything I’ll contact you. Got it.”
I laughed for my sake. Naima was the only woman who’d ever had me this flustered and uncertain of what to do next.
“Is there anything else, Mannix?” she asked, and I wanted to reply, yeah, be sure to keep saying my name exactly like that, just like that. But I had to play it cool. Not only for the sake of my pride, but because If she knew how much her presence affected me it would cause her to run from the safety I’d offered.
“That’ll do,” I quipped. She rolled her eyes but they landed on me, only for a moment before she tore them away.
“Bye.” she stated lastly and closed the door.
Shifting the tie around my neck, I loosened it and stalled in front of the door until her heavy footsteps descended.
“Do you have to be so mean to him? He’s nice. And fine as hell might I add.” her sister’s commentary gained a satisfying smile out of me. I loathed those thin ass walls when I initially resided there for a couple weeks. Surprisingly, they were coming in handy for me now.
“That’s how they get you. Nearly everything changes after that.” Naima replied. Heartache wavered her tone. She was holding on to that victim role like a security blanket. I only wanted to instruct her in my arms while I contemplated ways to fix the broken parts of her world.
To walk away after long seconds of silence lingered amid sniffles was the hardest decision to make. Trying again too soon would’ve made me look desperate. For the sake of salvaging who I was in her eyes, I decided to lay low. I exited the building with my pride in tact despite how much I was willing to risk it all for her.