Nell Newbery has trust issues.
It’s hard to trust when you’re the daughter of a fallen financial scion who bilked people out of billions. Nell’s done everything in her power to keep away from men who see her as their ticket to fortune and fame. All she wants to do is run her ultra-successful business, HELPFUL HUNKS, in peace.
But it wouldn’t hurt to find a guy who doesn’t know a thing about her father’s felonious past; one she can give her heart to and trust it won’t come back to her battered, bruised, and broken.
Is Charlie Churchill that guy? On the surface he seems perfect, all polished manners and quiet mirth. Nell’s convinced he knows nothing about her, other than she likes superhero movies and views junk food as a food group.
Can she trust him to be what he appears to be? Or is he just pretending?
For Nell, trust is everything in life…and in love.
We made our way into the assigned theater, found our seats and settled in. The theater was full to capacity but we had a great view, dead center and luckily the two people in front of us weren’t tall, so I’d be able to see the screen without shifting left or right.
I sighed when I realized my good fortune. Charlie turned toward me and asked, “Everything okay?”
“Yeah.” I lowered my voice. “I was offering up a silent thank you to the God of the vertically challenged because I’m not behind a giant. The last time I was at a movie the guy in front me had to be an NBA player. His torso was as long as my entire body and his shoulders obliterated the screen.”
He stared at me a moment, his forehead creased, his head tilted. “I wasn’t aware there was a God of the vertically challenged.”
I nodded. “Saint Shortstack.”
The lighting in the theater had dimmed, but his quick smile lit up my little area like a fourth of July fireworks explosion.
Concentrating on the movie should have been easy since I’d been looking forward to it for months. The man seated next to me, though, proved to be a huge distraction. Despite the spacious stadium designed chairs, our bodies came in frequent contact. His thigh brushed mine and our knees bumped several times when Charlie leaned over to scoop some popcorn from the tub in my lap. Our elbows met when we placed them on the armrests. The subtle, tempting scent of his cologne wafted toward me every time he moved closer to grab the candy box out of my hand and pour himself a few pieces. His fingers grazed mine as he handed the box back and a frisson of desire shuddered down my spine from the innocent touch.
My fantasy superhero actors filled the screen and my attention should have been focused on them. At any other time it would have. Instead, my concentration was centered totally on the man sitting next to me.
When Iron Man took Pepper into his arms and kissed her silly, I remembered the incredible sensation of Charlie’s lips on mine. When Black Widow cupped the Hulk’s cheek to reassure him, the memory of Charlie’s fingers skimming my jaw had me squirming in my seat. Even when the team was saving the world and I should have paid attention to who was getting knocked out or wounded, the fascinating man next to me stole my every thought.
At one point my leg started bobbing, an old tick from my teen years that reared itself whenever my nerves popped up. I nearly came out of the chair when Charlie placed a hand on my knee, leaned in close and whispered, “What’s wrong, Nell?”
My knee instantly stopped bouncing.
“Sorry. Thinking about something work related.” I had to lie. I couldn’t admit the reason I was so keyed up was because of him. Sitting next to him, his touch – however innocent – heck, eventhe smell ofhim, was such a turn-on that my body wouldn’t quiet down. It was like I’d drunk six cups of caffeinated coffee and then been forced to stay immobile while all my adrenaline fought to be set free.
He squeezed my knee then patted my thigh. Both gestures sent my nerve endings into hyperdrive.
“Work will always be there,” he said softly, his lips delightfully close to my ear. “Relax.”
“Impossible,” I muttered.
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Happy reading ~ Peg