It’s my turn over on the Romance Gems. This month’s topic: Life Lessons. My addition? TRUST
Until next time ~ Peg
It’s not difficult to figure out what the Sunday Snippet is this week, is it? Since IT’S A TRUST THING released on Friday, it makes sense I offer a little sumthin’ sumthin’ to whet your appetite and hopefully get you to read the book. Hee hee.
There’s nothing I like more than when a strong woman – or man – shows his/her vulnerability. In this scene, it’s Nell who does. This is the beginning of her learning to trust in a man she knows practically nothing about except he makes her feel like no other man ever has.
Can she trust him? We’ll find out, won’t we? Hee hee
This is nice,” I said again, eyeing the treetops and the panorama of the horizon. “Do you love sitting out here?”
“I do. Sometimes, when I’ve got nothing that needs my imminent attention, I’ll sit out here on an afternoon and read a book, or bring my laptop out and catch up on what’s going on in the world.” He glanced over at me. “Probably sounds pretty boring to you.”
“Not in the least. I love quiet days, truthfully, because they happen so rarely.”
“What’s your idea of a perfect day, then? One where you could do anything you wanted?”
I didn’t even need to think.
“I love to walk across the Brooklyn Bridge and spend an afternoon strolling along the waterfront.”
He cocked his head.
“Have you ever done that? Walked from Manhattan to Brooklyn?”
“I haven’t, no.”
“It’s so much fun, especially on a sunny weekend day. Families with kids in strollers; old folks walking arm in arm. Musicians set up along the walkway and play for donations. I love to people watch. Plus it’s a great way to get in a few miles of exercise without thinking of it as a workout.”
“We’ll have to do it sometime, together. Sounds like a fun day.”
“It is.” A little ball of pleasure bounced through me that he wanted to do it with me.
When I bit into the red velvet cupcake I’d put on a dish, I couldn’t help the moan that broke through my lips. I closed my eyes and let the sweet flavors dance over my taste buds, Forget pumpkin spice. I could eat red velvet cupcakes every single day,” I said, “and still come back for more. They’re so sinful.”
“Hmm. They are good.”
When I opened my eyes, Charlie was sampling his own. His lips, those full and utterly kissable lips, were open and pressed against the cake. A dab of cream cheese frosting dotted the corner of his mouth as he took a bite, then swallowed. Without even a thought to stop myself from what I was about to do, I reached over and swiped my index finger across his mouth.
Charlie went stock-still. He was so still I wasn’t sure he was breathing. The dimmed outdoor lighting reflected twinkling shards of moisture in his eyes as he stared at me. Silent anticipation drifted from him in waves.
Or maybe it was from me.
With a tiny bit of pressure, I swiped the frosting from his mouth, then slid my finger between my lips to suck it off.
How was it possible it tasted better coming from his lips than it had from my own?
The air suddenly changed around us as Charlie let out a deep breath. I was right in thinking he’d been holding his breath, because the volume of air he expelled was vast.
With deliberate and careful movements, he placed the rest of his uneaten dessert on the snack table between us, tossed his legs over the edge of the chaise, and rested his elbows on this thighs, his fingers folded together. With his chin dropped to his chest, he took in another breath, as if bracing himself for something. When he lifted his gaze to mine I had a pretty good idea what it was.
With the sun almost set and the lights from the city shining around us, his beautiful blue eyes had turned to pale ash. They were so enflamed with heat I wouldn’t have been surprised to see smoke billow from their corners.
The look of desire is something I’m familiar with. Too many times I’ve seen one of my hunky employees glance at one of Ella’s girls with blatant sexual hunger filling their faces.
I’ve seen it boldly displayed on some of the men I’ve dated who’d thought being with a fringe celebrity was a boost to their narcissistic fantasies, to puff up their already swollen egos. Their desire was more for the situation than for me.
The need in Charlie’s eyes wasn’t like any of those other examples. No, his was pure and raw and all about…me.
A moment ago the tea had protected me against the cool evening air.
But I didn’t need it now. The warmth from Charlie’s gaze was enough to counteract any external chill. And despite the cauldron of heat coming my way, the hairs on my skin stood straight up at attention.
This man, this lovely, charming man whom I still really knew nothing about except his name and a few minor tidbits of his life, wanted me.
No hidden agenda; no nefarious reasons; no thoughts to use me to his own gain.
How I knew this to be true was baffling. But I was as sure of it as I was that the moon would rise and then give way to the sun. What I was going to do about it was the question.
I don’t remember tossing my legs over the edge of the lounge chair or placing my dish on the table between us, but I did.
Charlie sat up straight, his face an open mask of curiosity with a dose of caution mixed in.
I took a step—literal and emotional—toward him, moving into the open space between his thighs. For a hot second I was afraid it was the wine making me bold.
In the next breath I realized that for the lie it was. Alcohol had nothing to do with what I was about to do.
“Nell?” His hands lifted to settle on my hips.
I licked my lips. “Can I ask you something?”
“Can I lie down, here, next to you?”
If he thought the question odd, he kept his opinion hidden as he continued to peer up at me.
“I have this overwhelming need for you to hold me right now,” I told him with more honesty than I’d ever given another man. “Is that okay with you?”
Intrigued? I hope you are! You can get your copy here: Amazon
Until next time ~ Peg