Author: Jill Shalvis
He laughed, and she grumbled, turning away from him to bend over to untie her bootlaces.
And abruptly his amusement was gone, replaced by a wave of sheer, unadulterated lust. It was her cute little thong’s fault, the one bisecting her sweet heart-shaped ass and shooting the temperature in the room straight into the stratosphere. “Maddie—” His voice was gruff and hoarse. Probably from blood loss.
She was still fighting with her shoelaces. “Yeah?”
Before he could answer, her cell rang from the floor about five feet in front of her. Shifting gears, she crawled forward.
Yeah. He was going to have an aneurysm. He could feel it coming on.
“Can’t,” she said into her cell, still on her hand and knees. “I…” She shot him a look over his shoulder, her gaze again dipping down to the front of his tented boxers. “Gotta go. ” She disconnected with a tap of her thumb. Still staring at him, she paused. “We’re in this freezing attic showing our… parts to each other. ”
“We need to grow up. ”
“Maybe. But not today. ”
She drew a breath, still staring at his erection. “Yesterday you said you wouldn’t be my escape. ”
“That was a stupid statement by a very stupid man who wasn’t thinking clearly. ”
“And you’re thinking clearly now?”
“Yes. This isn’t just sex between us. So if you want escape, and you want to use my body to do it, then I’m your willing victim. ”
“Magnanimous of you. ”
Done playing, he crooked his finger at her in the universal “come here” gesture.
She rose to her feet, took a step, and hit the floor with a heavy thud.
“Jesus. ” He surged toward her and dropped to his knees, pulling her up to face him. “You okay?”
She grimaced. “Tell me you have a clumsy dork fetish. ”
“Oh, I have a fetish. ” Her nipples appeared to be a fraction of an inch from breaking free of her bra. He slid his hands up her ribs, his thumbs rubbing over them. “For you. For everything about you. ”
She sucked in a breath.
“We have some more clothes to lose. ” He bent to work on untying her shoes, and then his. They kicked them off and then finally lost their pants.
“Maybe we should lose the underwear, too,” she whispered and ran a finger over the front of his boxers, right down the length of him, making him groan and reach for her, just as the doorbell rang downstairs.
“I’m going to shoot somebody,” Maddie said.
“Sawyer hates when people do that. It’s a whole bunch of paperwork. ”
The doorbell rang again, and Maddie crawled to the window.
Jax stared at her ass and crawled forward, too, planning on tearing those cute little panties off with his teeth. Then he’d grip her hips and bury himself deep in one thrust. Yeah, and then—
“It’s Lucille,” she hissed. “I can’t shoot Lucille. ”
“She’ll go away. ” Bending, he put his mouth to her hip, then let his tongue snake beneath the string.
“But she’s—” she whispered, slapping a hand to the window when he nipped at her with his teeth. “Oh, God. ”
“Give me a minute and you’ll be saying ‘Oh, Jax. ’ ” He slid a hand up the inside of her leg, not stopping until he hit lace. “Spread your legs, Maddie,” he said, kissing the back of her thigh.
She did just that, and then her other hand hit the glass, and then suddenly she stiffened, but not in a good way. “She sees me,” she hissed. “She thinks I’m waving to her. ” She dropped to her knees and stared at him. “She knows you’re here. Your Jeep’s here. And I’m in the window without a shirt. ”
“She’s a hundred and ten. There’s no way she could see you clearly. ” He kissed her neck. “She’ll go away. ”
“No, she won’t. ” She batted at his hands as he went for the hook on her bra. “The last time you and I were seen together, our kiss on the pier was the talk of the town. This can’t be the talk of the town. This,” she said, giving him a poke with her elbow, “is just for you and me. ”
He blew out a breath and sat back on his heels as she pulled her jeans back on, covering up that sweet ass, jumping up and down a little to work them over her hips. Her breasts jiggled, and he watched as first one and then the other nipple struggled and then managed breakaway status. Damn.
She grabbed her sweatshirt and yanked it on, inside out, covering the best view he’d had all week. “Crap. ” Yanking the shirt back off, she fumbled to right it, then noticed he was just standing there. “Get dressed!”
“Can you be this bossy when we get to a bed? Cuz it’s turning me on. ”
She threw his shirt at him. “Hurry up! You’re coming with me!”
“Yeah, now, see, I’d kind of hoped you’d be the one coming by now. ”
She groaned. “Stop teasing me!”
Lucille talked for eight minutes. Maddie lost track of what the conversation was about, struggling to nod and act as if she was following along—for eight long minutes. And for each and every single one of them, she was overwhelmingly aware of the big, tall, silent man standing behind the door, just out of view from Lucille, radiating heat and a sexual frustration that undoubtedly matched hers.
The old Maddie had gone with the flow. Had allowed others’ needs to come before her own. “Lucille,” she said suddenly. “I’m sorry. I’m really sorry, but I have to go. ”
Lucille looked puzzled, but she nodded. “Okay, dear. Just come by when you get a chance, and we can finish talking about the project. ”
“Sure thing. I will, I promise. The, uh, project sounds really worthwhile. A great project, as far as projects go. ”
She shut the door and closed her eyes. She felt Jax come up behind her, exuding testosterone and pheromones, the only project she was interested in.
A hand brushed aside her hair, and then she felt his mouth on her neck. Her head dropped back to his shoulder as his arm came around her, his hand running up her belly to cup her breast.
“I’m taking you home,” he said in a thrillingly rough voice, his thumb brushing over her nipple before he took her hand firmly in his. “To my place. ”
She opened her mouth to say “Hell, yes,” but he pushed her out the door ahead of him, barely giving her time to grab her purse, his big body giving her the bum’s rush.
“This,” he said in a repeat of her own words, “is a no-talking zone. ”
“Lucille at twelve o’clock!” she hissed, jerking her head toward the yard, where Lucille was making her way to her car. Slowly.
“Shit. ” Jax yanked Maddie back inside as they watched Lucille finally get into her car.
“She’s killing me,” Jax muttered.
It took Lucille even longer to turn her car around and pull out. And then Jax was tugging Maddie down the steps, his long legs eating up the space, forcing her to run to keep up. Izzy loped alongside, ears perked up at the hope that something fun was about to happen. A laugh escaped Maddie, half nerves, half anticipation, and one hundred percent hunger.
At the Jeep, Jax pressed her up against the door and leaned in to kiss her, possessive and deep, as if he had to convince her that she wanted this as badly as he did.
Wrapping her arms around his neck, she plastered herself even closer. “Drive fast,” she said and licked the rim of his ear.
He shuddered, then practically shoved her into the Jeep. They drove in silence across town, the only sound being her own heartbeat drumming in her ears. She was so worked up she nearly hit the roof when he touched her thigh. “That was anticipation,” she said. “Not… you know. ”
“Good. ” He entwined their fingers and didn’t speak again.
That worked for her. She couldn’t have kept up her end of a conversation to save her life. Not as revved up as she was. Nope, the only thing going to fix this was a man-made orgasm.
A Jax-made orgasm.
Driving faster than the speed limit, he turned into a quiet neighborhood on the bluffs three hundred feet above the ocean. His house was the last on the street and the closest to the cliff.
Jumping out, she glanced at his view and stopped in shock. Deep blue ocean as far as she could see, sparkling from the sun’s glow. “It’s breathtaking,” she whispered, taking a step toward it.
“Later. Much later,” he said and dragged her inside, giving her nothing but a quick peekaboo hint of wide-open rooms, high wood-beamed ceilings, and gorgeous wood trim and floors before he had her in his bedroom. “I’m going to toss you onto the bed now and have my merry way with you,” he said against her lips.
“Oh,” she whispered, trembling in anticipation, already wet for him.
“Yes or no, Maddie. ”
“Yes. God, yes. ”
Before she’d even gotten the words out, he’d done just as he’d promised. He’d picked her up and tossed her to the bed. Before she bounced, he was on her, the fire he’d ignited in the attic flaming back to life. Mouth on hers, he slid his hands beneath her shirt, his fingers teasing her nipples. She gasped, and he pulled back only long enough to peel her shirt over her head, and then his own.
She couldn’t take her eyes off him.
He bent and kissed the curve of her breast that spilled out of her bra, and then suddenly even that barrier was gone. “Love your skin,” he whispered against her nipple, flicking the pebbled peak with his hot tongue before sucking it hard into his mouth until she was writhing beneath him. “You’re so soft. ”
“It’s Chloe’s lotions,” she said inanely, and he huffed out a rough laugh against her.
“I’m pretty sure it’s all you. ”
His voice couldn’t get any lower or any sexier, and she felt like she could come from the sound of him alone. Then he upped the tension by sliding the tips of his fingers into her hip-hugging jeans. “Oh, my God,” she whispered.