His Indecent Proposal – Excerpt!
Note from Elizabeth Lennox: Just like with Lila and Sam, there’s a bit of a back story but I started the excerpt where it is a bit more fun. I hope you like it!
“I’m going to kill it,” Kara James muttered furiously when the desk chair snapped again, almost tumbling her to the floor. She yanked open the drawer beside her and dug through the small toolbox she kept on hand. The hammer was easy to grab and she stood up, spinning around, determined to take her frustrations out on the useless piece of furniture. She just needed to figure out the best way to….
“It isn’t going to work, Kara,” a deep voice said.
Kara spun around, her blue eyes slashing from the diabolical chair to the doorway. He was here! Hunter West was here in her office and looking more devastatingly handsome than she remembered. His black hair shimmered in the overhead lights and not even the unforgiving fluorescents could diminish the disturbing appeal of his harsh features. He was Marlboro man without the lung cancer, she thought. He was superman without the “Good Boy” feel. This man, with his broad shoulders and muscle packed body, was a cowboy and superhero all rolled into one dangerous package. He was attitude and arrogance kept under control by bulging muscles and brilliance. A lethal combination and one she’d had a great deal of trouble resisting the last time.
Oh boy, she thought as her eyes moved up and down his tall, hard body. Already her limbs were trembling as flashes of their three dates together whipped through her mind. Not for the first time either! For six months, images of this man, memories of the way he would kiss her, touch her, had disturbed her sleep, broken her concentration and, just generally made her crazy with confusion, regret and a sincere wish that she’d never met the man.
“Hunter?” She shook her head, telling herself that this man couldn’t really be here. Not now. Not after last night’s dream. She was simply conjuring him up from her lonely-heart cravings.
A dark, devastating eyebrow went up and he dumped a heavily packed, plastic bag on her desk. “You remember me.” He sat down in the guest chair and started pulling boxes out of the bag. “I’m glad I made an impression on you.”
Hunter looked up at the incredibly beautiful redhead that had either haunted his dreams or kept him from getting any sleep at all. Her body was still so perfectly formed that his hands ached to touch her, to slide up and feel all of her glorious softness and tangle his fingers in those auburn tresses. And she’d used that body, that angelic looking innocence to the best advantage. Hell, even now, he could feel his body responding.
Then his eyes latched onto the pink, flowered thing in her hand and all thoughts of her soft, full breasts dissipated instantly as he looked at the object in her hands with horror and revulsion. She wasn’t even trying to hide it behind her back which she should be doing. “What the hell is that?” he demanded with abject disgust. His male mind simply wouldn’t allow him to accept the truth.
Kara lifted the hammer and looked down at it. “A piece of toast?” she offered, thinking it was obviously a hammer.
He stood up and grabbed her wrist, not daring to touch the flowered…thing. “You have a flowered hammer?”
Kara’s blue eyes looked up into his dark brown ones, confused. “Of course I have a flowered hammer. Why wouldn’t I have a flowered hammer?”
“Hammers are not supposed to be flowered!” he explained with as much patience as he could muster under the circumstances.
She wanted to laugh at his horrified expression but he was touching her. He was touching her and her whole body was tingling, remembering how…
She pulled her wrist out of his grip and stepped back, refusing to think about what used to happen when he touched her. Those reactions were what happened to her mother. Not to her!
And how dare he criticize her hammer! “Mine is flowered. And it works perfectly.”
This man…he was too big and too strong. He’d messed up her perfectly defined world and she didn’t like it. He made her feel…sexy. He made her want things that…
Kara sighed and gripped the hammer more tightly. This man made her feel wanton. And she hated it. Her mother…
No! She wasn’t going to remember.
And why was he looking at her like that? It was almost as if…
With a snap of his hands, he took hold of her upper arms in his strong hands. “What the hell have you done to your freckles?” he demanded, his green eyes flashing livid fire down into her blue ones.
Kara lifted her hand involuntarily to her cheeks. “My freckles? I don’t…” she shook her head, trying to deny that she’d ever had freckles. Grown women, professional women, did not have freckles! But the look in his eyes told her that she’d better not try it.
Straightening her shoulders, she pulled out of his arms. “I don’t have freckles anymore. And you shouldn’t be here.”
He dropped his hands, but his eyes continued to glare at her pale skin, trying to see something that she’d worked very hard to get rid of. Every freckle remedy on the market was now in her bathroom cabinet and she’d tried them all until she found something that worked. The annoying spots were still there, but faded, thanks to simple lemon juice. Lots and lots of lemon juice.
“Why are you here?” she asked, crossing her arms over her chest even while her eyes drank in his magnificent body. Every movement, every flex of his arms stretched the material of his tailored shirt across his chest and arms so that she could see those amazing muscles. Was he doing that on purpose? Was he taunting her with what she couldn’t have?
He went back to her desk and started unloading that plastic bag, placing white cartons all over her desk.
She felt her pulse speed up at the sight of all those muscles flexing underneath the material of his shirt as he emptied the bag. Stepping back even more, she dug deep down inside of herself for her normally nebulous willpower to keep her fingers from reaching out and touching Hunter.
She’d done that before! She’d touched and she’d explored, been amazed at all of his packed muscles and the incredible strength of him. Bad idea! Very bad! It led to nothing good!
“What are you doing?” she demanded when she was finally able to pull her eyes away from his back and shoulders because the smell…oh my…that smell! The tangy, calorie-laden scent of….
Kara’s body stepped back even further from her desk that was slowly being filled with… “Please tell me that isn’t Chinese food, is it?” she pleaded, licking her lips and staring at those long, tanned fingers as they continued to unload the bag. More boxes, more memories flooded her brain. Right! Like they’d ever left her brain, she thought with silent derision.
“You’re correct again.” And he pulled out two pairs of chopsticks. “Sit. We’re going to eat Chinese food and discuss business.”
Kara tried to breathe but the wondrous smells of rich Chinese food filled her nostrils and she stopped, holding her breath as if that could keep her from wanting what was in front of her.
His deep chuckle made her skin tingle with excitement and intense awareness. The man was fiendishly knowledgeable about how to turn a woman on! And he used that sexy, deep voice to his advantage every time!
Those green eyes looked up at her, almost taunting her. “That’s not going to work, Kara. You’re going to have to finish inhaling and the scents aren’t going away.”
Her eyes narrowed and she slowly released the breath she’d been holding. “You’re a cruel man, Hunter. I can’t believe you could be this pitiless.”
The man who reputedly never laughed, let out a soft chuckle as he dipped chopsticks into one of the white boxes. Kara watched, her eyes glued to his fingers. Slowly, as if he knew what she was anticipating, he pulled out a chunk of…
“Oh, that’s low!” she hissed and stepped back again, crossing her arms over her chest defensively.
He laughed softly again and shook his head. “I don’t know what’s so wrong about bringing you lunch. I’m taking over your lunch break and we’re going to discuss business. I would do this with anyone.”
She didn’t believe him. Not for a minute! “You’re evil, Hunter. And I can’t believe you’re even here.”
He shrugged one of those massive shoulders. “I decided that we weren’t finished.”
Her mouth dropped open as her blue eyes shot up to his. “We finished six months ago!” she declared adamantly.
He shook his head and took another bite, popping it into his mouth as he looked across the desk at her. While he chewed, he nudged another white box with the ends of his chopsticks. “I decided that we weren’t.”
She practically choked with his dismissal of her dismissal. “You can’t just…decide that we aren’t finished. I finished it.”
He pulled another piece of breaded chicken in a thick, tangy brown sauce out of the box, holding it expertly in the air with the chopsticks. “I thought about it. A lot.” His eyes moved to her blue ones. “I decided that we were unfinished.”
Kara wasn’t sure which was more alluring, the breaded chicken or the man. Well, definitely the man, she told herself. But the man was off limits. So far off limits as to be outer-space off limits. He was dangerous on so many levels that she couldn’t even elaborate. Which was why, after three dates, she’d just…stopped dating him. He’d called, she politely declined his suggested date. He’d called again, she told him no.
Now he was here? And he was… “Don’t eat that!” she gasped in horror.
Hunter froze, his mouth open and the chunk of chicken mostly in his mouth. But he pulled it out and looked at her. She was standing still and tense, almost pressing her back against the wall and her beautiful blue eyes were watching him with a powerful lust that made his body harden with equal fervor. At this point, he accepted that her lust was focused more on the Chinese food than on him, but he didn’t care. Lust was lust and he was determined to spin that feeling towards him.
“Want it?” he asked softly.
Her blue eyes darted up to his and she nodded. Oh yes. She definitely wanted! Him, the chicken, the whole dream.
“Come get it, Kara,” he coaxed.
Those eyes! They promised a sinfulness that was enticing, alluring. She stepped closer, her mouth-watering for both the bite and the man. Just a little bite wouldn’t hurt, would it? She could have that bite, then tell him no more. He’d have to leave. Just one bite.
Placing her hands on her desk, she leaned down, her eyes glancing from that tangy bite of chicken with the glistening sauce to his dangerous green eyes, telepathing a message that….
Goodness, he was good!