A Sneak Peek....
It was the quickest movement, but her gaze flickered down to our joined hands. The smile she gave me was bright, warm, inviting. But her eyes were wary. Searching.
Did she find what she was looking for? Most people would have believed the façade, but not Lyra. If I knew what was good for me, I would pick someone else. Someone easier. There was nothing easy about Lyra. She was looking for the real me, but she wasn’t going to find it. That would be dangerous for the both of us.
But still, she let me hold her hand and comfortably fit her small, delicate one in mine. The electric hum that snaked up my arm was almost impossible to ignore. The more time I spent with her, the more I wanted her.
When we reached the community garden in the park near our building, I stopped her. “So I’ve been thinking. It’s the third date.” I watched her visibly swallow, hard.
“I’m sorry. I’m really nervous.”
That moment of realness made me grin. “There’s probably no need to be nervous.”
Her brows lifted, and then she blinked rapidly in surprise. “Oh, right, yeah. Sure, totally. We can just be friends.”
Friends? I shook my head. For some reason, I had an aversion to that idea. “No, I meant before we—you know, get nervous about anything else, maybe we should kiss first?”
She choked out a laugh. “Oh my God, I’m like the worst date ever. I’m all stiff and awkward, then I proposition you.”
I laughed. “No. We’ve been busy and then on our first date, you got called for a work emergency.”
She winced. “I’m really sorry about that. And well, you were sick the next time.”
Right… sick. “We could try it now.” My voice sounded like someone had put it through a cement mixer.
You’ve been staring at her lips all through dinner, wondering if one kiss will tell you how this is supposed to go.
The community garden was helping me out with ambiance. It had tea lights strung around the trees inside. I’d helped with planting some of the flowers earlier in the year, and they had all started to bloom now. It was the perfect romantic spot for a kiss.
“Oh, right, yeah. L-let’s do this.”
There was something endearing about her. She was tiny compared to me. Five foot six or seven. I couldn’t tell properly because she was almost always wearing heels. Either way, I towered over her. I stood six foot three, so I had a tendency to do that to everyone. She was lean, slender but curvy. Great arse. The kind you could really dig your hands into.
I cleared my throat to erase that mental imagery. Nope. I would not think about slapping her arse. I would not think about her arse at all. This was just a kiss.
I would kiss her and see if she was okay with that. And then later—much later—I’d think about slapping her arse. Maybe doing other things to her arse, but that was beside the point.
She stepped in, her scent making me dizzy, coaxing me to lean in, get a whiff, and become ensnared in her trap forever. I took her arm, sliding my fingers along her soft, supple skin until my thumb reached her wrist and paused at the pulse point. I could feel the uptake as I gently rubbed that spot. Something stirred deep inside me as an answer to that rapid flutter. And then her other arm wrapped around my neck and she whispered, “Okay, Marcus Black, let’s see what you’ve got.”
I grinned then, and holy shit, as I leaned down and she leaned up, the scent of her, the feel of her against me, caused everything else to fade away. Black out our surroundings. Just fade to black.
She tasted sweet, like the plum cocktail she’d had at dinner. But there was something else. A hint of spice that was all her. When her tongue met mine, I stopped thinking and let the tingling, snapping heat fry my synapses. Her lips were soft and yielding. Then she whimpered, and all the blood went straight to my dick.
The hairs at the back of my neck stood at attention. And every instinct I had in me told me to take cover. Everything in me told me this was dangerous. That she was dangerous. And suddenly, we were knocked off our feet.
I protected her with my body as we both toppled over.
I quickly cradled her head as I rolled over her, reaching for my ankle holster before I remembered I was out in public with a woman who didn’t know I carried a gun.
Pulling back, I assessed her quietly. “Look at me. Are you okay?”
Her eyes were wide, and she looked like she needed a moment to recover. “Son of a bitch. He just took my purse.”
And before I could stop her, she jumped up and took off sprinting after the mugger in the darkened park with her stilettos in hand.