Chapter 1: In The Beginning
Dylan Maxwell had the world figured out at an early age. His life lessons began shortly after his crack addicted mother Evelyn Maxwell had given birth to him on the filthy floor of a gas station bathroom. She took him home, handed him off to his grandmother and hightailed it back out to the streets to scrounge up cash for her next hit. Dylan’s instinct for survival was heightened, as he lay alone in his crib wet, cold and hungry, squalling his frustration. Grandmother had her hands full caring for his three young siblings. Evelyn spent her days chasing the next fix, getting high and lapsing into a stupor.
Chaotic and unstable early years bred in Dylan the drive to remain in complete control of his life and those around him. To him, other people were dim-witted cows to be milked and discarded, once they ceased to serve his purposes. A juvenile detention center counselor once explained his lack conscience inability to trust or feel affection as a reactive attachment disorder which developed during his neglect filled infancy.
It didn’t hold him back. On the contrary, women seemed to find his cold-blooded nature exciting. Dylan’s good looks were also a factor. His absentee father had passed down to him smoldering dark eyes and a sensuous mouth set in caramel colored skin. Starting in his teens, he had been physically intimate with woman from all walks of life and in a wide range of ages. Dylan enjoyed the thrill of the chase and found them interesting temporary diversions. They found him emotionally unavailable and ruinous to their finances.
Dylan wasn’t particularly ambitious. His impoverished upbringing had set the bar low. He was content to drift through life with goals no higher than meeting his physical needs and desire for entertainment. Dylan enjoyed the finer things in life, when one of his lovers had the resources to provide it, but was equally content living simply. As long as he did not have to work hard. He passed through his teens and early twenties going from one conquest to the next, leaving a trail of emotional and financial devastation in his wake.
Men were not exempt from Dylan’s machinations. He had no qualms in exploiting the man crushes he inspired in his male peers, borrowing money he had no intentions of repaying and moving on when they eventually wised up. The humiliation of stupidly ladling out money with no contract for repayment was usually enough to keep his victims from pursuing restitution.
Of course, there were always exceptions. From time to time, a spurned lover or friend would stalk him and threaten violence. The more unstable ones would repeatedly launch attacks. For that reason, Dylan was always looking over his shoulder. He became adept shaking off anyone who attempted to tail or keep tabs on him.
The average person would find such persistence unnerving. It was a sport for Dylan, who found it amusing. He loved any challenge which pitted his wits against others, finding himself always equal to the task. Dylan did not waste time or energy worrying about anyone. It was out of sight out of mind for everyone who passed through his life…until he met Rosa.