My mouth is agape and I might be turned on as hell, but I can’t let him manhandle me like this. Can I? I try to get up, but his big, fully clothed body drops onto mine, his lap pressed intimately to my bottom, his erection pushing between my cheeks. “Walker!”
“You want to make jokes in front of my staff about escaping, that’s fine, Meadow. I’ll play the game. But I’ve already lost you once today. I’m not sure what I’d do a second time, but it would be extreme. You hearing me?” He shoves his hardness against me and I whine his name. “Answer the way I like it.”
“Yes, my king.”
“Good girl.” He kisses slowly along my shoulder, licking my skin with savoring sighs. “I’m back to hating every second that stands between now and when I see you again.”
“Me too,” I say, with total honesty, before I can stop myself.
Before he walks to the door, he bends down, spreads my bottom cheeks and licks my back entrance with relish. Then he slaps my ass once and walks to the door whistling.
I smile. I smile because he’s an arrogant bastard and I can’t help but love it.
It excites me. It challenges me. It makes me feel alive.
I’m definitely not giving up the life I’ve built, but one night won’t hurt.
Tomorrow. I’ll definitely plan my escape tomorrow.
Today is far from the first time in my life I’ve heard gunfire.
It’s not even the first time it’s been aimed in my direction.
But it’s the first time it’s scared me.
When the first bullet strikes the brick building over my head, sending a plume of debris into the air, I see only Meadow in my mind. Her expression. Sly, aroused, outraged, heated, blissful, vulnerable. I think of her mouth on mine and how right it feels. How her lithe thighs feel flexing under my palms. How my heart reacts when she’s nearby, climbing up into my throat and lodging there.
Another bullet is buried in the sidewalk near my feet and I dive behind a parked car, drawing my Glock out of the shoulder holster I donned before leaving the house. Leaving Meadow.
We’ve just come from disposing of Randall, who turned out to be an unbearable weasel until the very end, and we must have been followed by the New York outfit that I offended by turning down their weapons transport deal.
Fuck this. I just fell in love today and I won’t be separated from her.
Righteous anger blares through me, almost deafening me in its intensity.
One covert glance through the car window to the other side tells me my rival was lying in wait. They’ve picked the wrong day to try and kill me. I’ve got so much to live for now—and she’s probably trying to climb down the drainpipe about now.
That possibility has me surging to my feet and firing over the roof of the car, taking down two of my targets. “Stay where you are. Watch the rooftops,” I shout to my men, who are hunkered down behind the SUV I just alighted from. They look like they’re waiting for an opportunity to run over and cover me, but unlike my old man, I don’t hide behind men in my employ or use them as shields. On the battlefield, we’re equals. “Shoot to kill.”
The glass above my head shatters and I use the resulting lull in gunfire to stand and take down a third target. Move. I have to move. My opponents are probably repositioning themselves now, trying to find a kill shot on the boss.
Not today, motherfuckers.
I turn on a heel and sprint for a doorway, barely reaching it in time before another hail of bullets strikes the building. After a centering breath and more thoughts of Meadow, I motion my men to circle around back of our enemies. Based on where the shots are coming from, they’re in the second floor of the tenement across the street. I cover them with several rounds as they go and minutes later, I see a series of flashes go off in the apartment.
Gregory leans out the window and gives me the all-clear signal, and with sirens beginning to blare in the distance, that’s my cue to saunter back to the SUV and climb into the backseat. My driver reaches the vehicle at the same time and fires it up, peeling away from the curb. “Home,” I bark hoarsely. “Take me home.”
Home has never had more meaning than it does in that moment.
Home is Meadow.
They almost took me away from her. I need to hold her.
I need…I think I need her to hold me, too.
That admission of weakness snaps my spine straight. Needing to be soothed by a woman? By anyone? That ain’t me. I need to get my fucking head together. It’s hard enough dealing with the fact that I love Meadow and she’s now my biggest liability. Yesterday I didn’t have any liabilities. I’ve never had a single one, save Richie, but Meadow is a different level. She’s gotten to my soul.