Her heart bungeed-jumped into her throat.
For a moment she considered letting him stay out in the cold, but the pounding started up again and she had no desire to listen to Mrs. Gregory lecture her about being a loose woman.
Never mind that Mrs. Gregory entertained three different men during the week. And by entertain, she meant sex. That little trailer, a camper really, would rock so hard that Melanie was sure it would fall on its side.
Unlocking the door, she shoved it open, almost smacking Carter in the face. “Can I help you?”
“Damn, woman. You could’ve reminded me that your door didn’t open like normal.”
She crossed her arms over her chest and glared at him. “Sorry, our doors don’t open the way people with real houses—”
“Be quiet.” Carter pushed past her, practically barreling his way into her house and shut the door behind him. “Louis home?”
“Thought you wanted me to be quiet?”
He raked a hand through his dark hair. “I didn’t come here to fight.”
“No, you came here to get your rocks off,” she said turning to face him. “And I remember telling you that I wasn’t in the mood.”
“Planned on getting you in the mood.” He leaned into her, his dark green eyes smoldering. “Planned to do something with your rocks, too.”
A cross between a laugh and a snort left her. “Oh you sweet talker, you. Now I know why April still wants to be with you.”
The smirk that kicked up the corners up his sexy lips made her stomach drop to her toes. “You sure are cute when you’re jealous, Miss Smith.”
Her jaw worked. “Go home, Carter. I’m sure April’s waiting for you, wedding dress at the ready.”
“Don’t want April.” Tugging on the sash of her robe, he crooked a finger at her. “Come here and let me apologize for being an insensitive man.”
Telling herself that she was only walking closer to him so that her sash wouldn’t give way and flash him, she found herself practically pressed against him. “Not gonna happen.”
He dipped his head, minty breathy invading her space. “I’m a sure thing, baby. And I’m sorry for not doing whatever you need me to. Maybe I need some lessons. I’m a fast learner.” The sash to her robe gave and the material parted, the throbbing, heated part of her making itself known. A cold hand slipped inside, cupping her breast and making her gasp. Her nipple beaded against his palm. “Damn, but your skin is nice and hot, better than any pair of gloves.”
“If you put another cold hand on me, Carter Mason Ambrose, I’ll knee you in the balls,” she all but growled at him.
But that sexy jerk did nothing but laugh and wiggle his fingers at her. Just as he attempted to slide his other hand inside, her knee came up. He stopped her with a twist of his hips. “What if I warm it up first, then I can touch you?” The hand cupping her breast moved lower, allowing his thumb to brush her nipple. Desire sparked, flaming higher and hotter with each lazy pass. “Thing is, sweetheart, you’re so damn hot that there’s no way I’d ever be warm enough to touch you.”
She felt herself softening, giving into him. Into his legendary charm that she’d never been the recipient of until now.
“I’ll give it a try anyway.” He vigorously rubbed his hand up and down the outside of his thigh. “Let’s see if I got it right.”
Breathing became hard to do as his hand hovered in the air. Her lashes fluttered as he gently touched her neck, his warm palm making her head fall back. She felt the tip of his tongue trace the base of her throat. His soft hair brushed the side of her face.
“Carter,” she whispered. “I’m still upset with you.”
“Did all the coffee come out?”
“Yes, but that doesn’t get you out of the hot seat.”
His tongue touched the lobe of her ear, then his teeth nibbled on the flesh.“No place I’d rather be than in your hot seat.”
“Oh God,” she moaned.
A low chuckle emanated from him, dark and full of so much promise that her knees went weak. Reflexes fast as his race car on the final turn at Daytona caught her around the waist before she fell. “Where’s your room?”he asked, kissing his way to her mouth. His tongue slid in just as her lips parted to answer, tangling with hers.
Tearing her mouth away for even a second was almost impossible to do, but she managed to gasp, “Behind me, door at the end of the hallway.”
“Is your dad coming home anytime soon?” Carter swept her off her feet and headed down the short hallway. “I’d hate to let him beat the shit out of me for catching me satisfying the hell out of his daughter.”
Dread reared its ugly head, breaking through a haze of lust and longing. If she told him where and who Louis was with, no telling what would happen. And she couldn’t have Carter thinking of her like that. Like she was the daughter of trailer trash, of a man who slept with other men’s wives and discarded them as soon as the next helpless, ignored housewife came along.
Not now, not when it seemed she’d finally gotten him to think of her as not just his kid sister’s best friend. “He won’t be back for a while.”
Carter nudged the door open with his hip. “A while means many things, baby. Humor me and clarify.”
“Not for a couple of days.” Usually that was how long he stayed away, when he and his new woman decided to go away together. She prayed Carter wouldn’t ask her to elaborate any further.
He set her down on her feet, and she felt every hard inch of him on the way down. “Then tonight we’ll stay here, but tomorrow you’re coming home with me. In fact I’m thinking that tomorrow is a holiday and there’s no need for us to go into work.”
She closed her eyes as he helped her out of her robe.
Muttering a curse, he said, “Or the next day either.” He stepped away, his hands caressing as they followed the curves of her body. “When the hell did you get a tattoo on your ass?”
“Eighteenth birthday.” She shook her head. The tattoo was low on her back, over to the side so it couldn’t be classified as a tramp stamp. “Tried to talk your sister into getting one, too.”
“Jesus H. Christ, Melanie. Don’t bring my sister into the conversation.”
Biting back a laugh, her eyes popped open to reveal their reflection in her mirror. She was naked as the day she was born while he was fully clothed. And he was watching her watching him as his hands explored her body.