Here’s a little taste of The Life She Wants – coming in June 2018 from Harlequin Superromance. Two people on very different paths in life. When those paths cross in Gallant Lake, they both have decisions to make….
“Where’s that thing you call a dog?”
“It’s quiet without her, isn’t it? Of course, the way she sheds, she’s always here in some form. She’s staying with Nora’s daughter, Becky. Do you want anything to drink?” She caught herself and gave a little laugh. “Non-alcoholic, of course.”
There was a weird vibe in the air, and Shane couldn’t put his finger on it. It had been a long, strange day of soul baring, and he felt more…exposed…than usual. He wasn’t sure if that was a good thing or not. Staying here any longer with her was probably a bad idea.
“Sure. I’ll have a ginger ale.”
Mel smiled so brightly that he couldn’t take back the words now. He sat at the kitchen island and watched with appreciation as she opened the refrigerator and bent low to pull two sodas from the bottom shelf. The woman had a really remarkable butt. She caught him staring when she turned.
“Taking in the view?”
“Just thinking about all that chemistry going to waste right now.” His brain was no longer filtering his thoughts from becoming words. He was just blurting out stuff he had no intention of saying. And he couldn’t stop. “Someday, we’re going to set this place on fire with it.” He finally reined himself in. “But not tonight. That would be wrong.”
She handed him his soda with a smile that held back some other emotion he couldn’t define.
“That would be wrong, wouldn’t it?”
That sounded more like an invitation than an agreement. Or maybe he was just hearing what he wanted to hear. What did he want to hear? Those last twenty miles or so in the dark car, winding through the dark mountain roads, with her hand warm in his, had clearly done something to his resolve. They hadn’t spoken a word, but he’d felt a rare sense of peace in that silence. As stupid as it sounded, he’d had a flash vision of the future, of the two of them driving that same road thirty years from now, holding hands and feeling content.
Large “DANGER!” signs started flashing in his brain.
“Mel…” Was it a warning or a plea? What the hell was happening?
“I’m not looking for a distraction, Shane. I’m looking for…chemistry. What if ‘someday’ turns out to be tonight?”
His hands rested lightly on her hips. It took all his strength not to draw her in closer. He had to think this through. He had to make the right choice here. For her. And for him.
“This is a bad idea. It’s been a crazy day. This might not be the best time…”
She leaned in and brushed her lips against his, silencing his voice and his brain. His hands lifted and his fingers twisted in her long hair. He kissed her. Hard. Unrelenting. Like he was mining for gold. Like he’d found it. Her soft moan just propelled him onward. His hands moved to the hem of her shirt and slid beneath it. So soft. So smooth. So fragile. He pulled away from the kiss, but not from her. Because that would have been impossible.
“We need to talk first.”
“Do we?” But she settled back on her heels, staying comfortably in his arms.
“There’s no going back if this happens, Mel. I don’t want to take advantage of you. I don’t want you to regret this. I don’t want to regret this. And it’s going to change things. Even if it’s just one night, it changes everything. We’ll have to deal with the fallout. I need to know you’re ready for that.”