Wednesday, September 7, 2011

Finally His is here!

Contemporary / Erotic Romance / Rubenesque


Lucy has been in love with her brother’s best friend Nick for years. Too bad their last blind date failed spectacularly. In a final bid to make him see the light, she asks her brother to set them up again.

Nick has been trying to ignore Lucy’s curvaceous body for a long time, but it’s getting increasingly difficult. When they end up naked on the side of the road, he knows he’s in trouble for sure.

Trouble has never tasted so good. He needs more. He needs her. He’s just not sure their relationship can survive the secrets it’s built on.


Chapter One

It was now or never.
Lucy watched the taxi drive away and hooked her purse higher on her shoulder. Turning around, she caught her reflection in the restaurant windows. She’d bought a new dress for the occasion, one that showcased her assets and hid the bits of her body she wasn’t so fond of. She was even wearing makeup, her lips tasting faintly of cherries courtesy of the lip gloss she’d applied earlier. All in all, she thought she looked good. But would it be enough to get Nick to really see her, not as his friend’s sister but as a woman in her own right?
She stepped inside and spotted him straight away, the man she’d loved for half her life. He’d made an effort tonight and was wearing a jacket that strained at the seams. He’d grown muscles over the past year, and between that and his blond good looks, he was so hot every time she looked at him her heart skipped a beat.
He was leaning back against his chair, his posture relaxed, a faint smile curving his lips. A smile she was afraid would disappear as soon as he realized he’d been tricked into another blind date…with her.
The maître d’ murmured something to her, something she didn’t hear, but she did follow him, her gaze still firmly stuck on Nick. Why did he have to be the one? she thought for the millionth time. Why couldn’t she shake this obsession and move on?
She watched his head turn, the smile still in place. His features froze for a second. “No.”
Her gaze locked with his, she sat down opposite him. “Hey, Nick.”
“No, no, no. It can’t be you.”
“Tada!” She dropped the red rose she was carrying onto his plate. “I’m your date tonight.”
“No!” His voice rose along with his temper. “I told Alex I didn’t want him to set us up ever again.”
“Guess he didn’t listen.” She licked her lips. “Actually, don’t blame him. I was the one who asked him to play matchmaker again.”
“You’re kidding me. Why?”
“Because last time… Well, let’s just say it didn’t go according to plan.” She deserved a second chance but she didn’t tell him that. It was difficult enough as it was remembering their first date. Her hopes had been so high and then everything had come crashing down, making things even worse between them. She needed tonight to end well. She needed him to understand, to finally see the light. Please, Nick…
“You think?” he replied so loudly the whole restaurant turned around to stare at him. “It was a disaster! First, we got to the restaurant to find out they’d lost our reservation. Then we got the table near the kitchen and they upended a tray full of tomato soup. On me!”
“I know. I was there.”
“Exactly! You’re like this…this disaster magnet.”
Ouch. “Come on, Nick, I’m not that bad. Look, I even dressed up for you.” She pointed out her new dress. It was so low-cut her breasts nearly popped out of it. Surely, he couldn’t not like that!
Something flashed in his gaze. Lucy leaned forward, hoping this meant things were going to change. Instead, he jumped up and tossed a couple of bills on the table. “I’m out of here.”
She got up from her seat and hurried after him, pasting a fake smile on her face. “Nick!” she shouted as soon as she was out of the restaurant. Damn man had long legs! She panted as she ran after him. She could see him swear as he patted his pockets, probably trying to locate his car keys.
He finally fished them out and beeped the car open. He slid in the front seat just as she wrenched the passenger door open and jumped inside. “What the fuck do you think you’re doing?”
His voice was so loud inside the tiny sportscar she thought she’d gone deaf for a second or two. “Wow, calm down. I just want to talk.”
“No,” he hissed through clenched teeth. “No talking. Ever. Again. D’you want to know what happened the last time we talked? You started giggling so much you spewed Coke all over me. And that was after I’d cleaned myself up after that fucking soup accident!”
“But that’s a good thing surely. I was laughing so much because you were funny and…” She let her voice trail when she spotted the way his face was reddening. “Okay, so maybe it wasn’t very nice in the middle of a first date, but−”
“I can’t do this now. Get out, Lucy.”
She felt her control snap. After everything that had happened, she wouldn’t let him get out of this so easily. Couldn’t he see how important this was for her? “Nope.” Grabbing the seatbelt, she dragged it around her, then settled back into the seat, her arms crossed her chest. “You can drive me home, Jeeves.”
“What the hell? Who do you think you are?”
“Your date, dumbass.”
She swore his head was going to pop. “Nick, I don’t have a ride. I took a taxi earlier. Could you at least drive me back? It’s not asking much, surely. I mean, you’re supposed to be my date tonight.” So what if she’d made sure she wouldn’t have a ride back, knowing he would never leave her stranded? Desperate times called for desperate measures.
“I swear, it’s the last time I trust your brother. No more blind dates. No more fucking dates. I’m gonna have one-night stands until the end of all eternity,” he muttered under his breath as he revved up the engine and sent the car flying onto the hardtop.
“You might try slowing down,” she finally said after some long−very long−silent minutes.
“Did your brother see you go out like this?”
She blinked. “What?”
“Your dress’s too short.”
Lucy stared down at the hem, which stopped just above her knees. “No, it’s not. What’s up with you?”
“What’s with me?” he repeated, his tone incredulous. “Are you kidding me? And tug this down, for pity’s sake!” His right hand shot out. Fingers grabbed hold of her dress, the sudden sensation of his rough skin against her inner thighs making her moan.
He jerked at the sound, the wheel jerking with him. Nick wrestled with it as the car began to spin to the left. He corrected the trajectory, but she saw the road on the left and the gravel path that edged the cliff on the right.
“Right, Nick. Go right!”
“What? No.”
“Right!” she screamed and he listened to her at the last second.
The car veered onto gravel and then, after something that resembled a boom, stalled.
Silence reigned in the car. The car had stopped just as the path gave way to shrubbery, and feet away, the cliff’s edge.
“Shit,” Nick groaned, his forehead bumping the top of the steering wheel.
Eyes wide, she asked, “Are you okay?”
“I’m never okay with you,” he replied, sounding defeated.
“Let’s get out of here.” He opened his door and slid out and she followed suit.
They stood there in the relative quiet as they stared at the car. It was dead. Oh it might run again one day, but it sure as hell wasn’t going to get them back into town. Lights glittered in the valley at their feet. They were so close and yet…they were stuck.
“I can’t believe this!” Nick snapped, his booted foot connecting with the front tire. “I told you not to follow me. I told you I didn’t want to date you again! Can’t you see what you did? Can’t you?”
“I didn’t cause this accident, Nick.”
“It’s that dress’s fault!”
“Nick, come on. Listen to yourself.”
“Listen to myself? Listen to myself?”
That was only the start of his rant. She watched him get more and more agitated, waving his arms around as he swore. She tried speaking out, tried to make him see it hadn’t been her fault, but nothing managed to get through to him. He kept going on and on about her dress, as if her dressing sexy for once was the end of the world. So she did the only thing she could think of. Leaning against the trunk of the car, she lifted her hands and began unbuttoning the ill-fated garment.
It took him a moment, but he finally asked, “What are you doing?”
“What does it look like?” She looked back at him, her fingers never stopping. “I thought your sensibilities would be less offended if I took off the dress you so obviously hate.”
“Are you crazy?” He grabbed her arm and tugged her behind the car. “Everyone can see you!”
“Everyone?” She looked around them. “No one takes this shortcut but us.”
“You can’t know that.”
She rolled her eyes and pointed out, “It’s nearly fully dark now.”
“I can see you!”
“So what?” she shot back, and with a shrug of her shoulders, let the dress fall down her arms to the ground.
“Lucy, don’t…” He took a step back, almost as if he was suddenly afraid of her.
“I’m not wearing it anymore. Happy now?”
“Hell, baby, I… Just… I don’t…”
He was speechless.

Copyright © EMMA HILLMAN, 2011

All Rights Reserved, Ellora's Cave Publishing, Inc.