Can Shane convince Jessie he’s the only man for her before her stalker attempts to end both their lives?
Jessalyn Banks is a respected gallery owner in a small coastal Florida town. She isn’t looking to make any major changes in her life, but events collide in a way that takes that option away from her. A stalker enters her life, and she has no choice but to notify the town’s police chief, Shane Moore.
Shane has been trying to maneuver his way into Jessie’s life for a year. Getting added to her Fourth of July planning committee is a brilliant move. Convincing her they belong together is much harder to accomplish. When her mysterious stalker escalates his activities and another woman is badly injured, events spin out of his control. Does Shane have the time to convince Jessie he’s the only man for her before the stalker makes his move?
“Let me up,” she said, her voice low and subdued.
He did, reluctant to give up the feeling of her pressed close to his chest or to leave her with the illusion, however brief, that he was letting her go. She moved across the room and lifted her chin.
“I’m sorry.” She waved a hand through the air. “I don’t ever do that. I don’t know what came over me.”
He shrugged, hoping to ease her back into relaxing with him. “You’ve had a hard day.”
“Not nearly as bad as Nancy.”
A lone tear tracked down her cheek. He was across the room in a second, and pulling her close, he rocked a little back and forth. Ah, baby, can’t you just let me in a little? He wasn’t sure when the comforting embrace turned sexual, but suddenly her hands were up his shirt, her mouth moving up his neck, and he had a raging hard-on. As much as he wanted her, he wasn’t going to let her turn this into another excuse to push him out of her life. He stepped back and ran a hand through his hair. Deep breaths, Shane.
She edged closer, holding one hand out to him and licking her lips. Those full pouty lips drove him wild.
“Shane. I need…”
She trailed off, meeting his gaze. He wasn’t sure what he saw there, but he didn’t have it in him to deny her. For now he’d delude himself into thinking she realized how much she needed him and not just any warm body. He growled, taking her hand and yanking her to him. His mouth covered hers, starving, taking, drunk on her taste and feel. Tongue pushing past her lips, he groaned. She was sweet and silky and most important, his. It made him weak-kneed. In any other circumstances, he might have laughed. Big bad Shane Moore brought down by the straight-laced Jessalyn Banks. Who was definitely not being prim, her hands tugging his shirt up his body. More than willing to accommodate, he stopped the kiss and ripped it over his head, which may have been a mistake. Her tongue flicked his nipple and then her teeth closed over it. The contact threatened to blow his little head off.
Heart hammering, he drew back. Not like this. He wanted to enjoy her, wanted to take his time and drive her wild with desire. And if he drove away a few of her demons at the same time, well, more power to him. But first things first.
“I need a bed this time, Jessie.”
Taking a deep breath that shoved her breasts up and made his dick bob in appreciation, she nodded and walked into the hall.
“Upstairs. Last door on the left,” she murmured.
He caught her at the bottom of the stairs, tossed her over his shoulder in a classic fireman’s carry and took the steps two at a time. After setting her down across the threshold and toeing the door shut behind them, he took a good look around. He’d expected frilly and was glad to be proved wrong. Her furniture was old, a deep walnut color with rolled tops and rounded carved corners. An intricate rug covered the pine floors and an unmade modern four-poster took up center stage. He walked to the bed and sat to take off his boots, glad he’d thought to leave his gun belt in the car before he entered the hospital. When the boots were pushed to the side, he sat back and looked her over.
She stood in front of the dresser, her expression wary and hungry at the same time, playing with a button on her fancy blouse. He felt a slow smile spring from his heart.
“Take off your clothes, Jessie. Nice and slow. I want to see you.”