You could move, a voice in my head suggests.

For a guy I’ve known all of three hours? That makes all of the stunts my mother has pulled over the years seem completely rational. At least she knew husband number three a whole four days before they decided to elope. Over my sixteenth birthday. And not tell me where she’d gone for the entire weekend.

Good times…

A few minutes later, he knocks softly, then opens the door, waiting for me with open arms. “Coast is clear, angel.”

He’s so handsome I can barely stop myself from smiling at him. “Thanks.”

The scent of the burgers and crispy fries fills the room. He ordered a bottle of wine, too—a delicious red that will totally elevate our bar food. He leads me to a chair that flanks a little table in the corner and holds it out for me.

I send him a sassy gaze. “A caveman in the bedroom and a gentleman in the dining room?”

He grins. “Something like that. Complaining?”

“Nope.” Actually, I love it. I feel protected, like he’d always look after me if I let him. For the girl who had almost no parental boundaries or sense of security growing up, I’m here for it.

“Good. Because that’s probably not going to change,” he drawls as he lifts the stainless domes off our dishes.

I dig out the condiments as he pours the wine, then he sits down to eat. We start talking. About friends. About our jobs. About some of the most embarrassing moments of our lives. I can’t picture him streaking through a pal’s house party, but in fairness, he was fifteen, super drunk, and lucky he didn’t get arrested. He gives me a sympathetic grimace when I talk about my run for seventh-grade class president and having to give a speech in front of my whole school—which ended with me losing my lunch all over the podium. We talk about our worst dates and our happiest memories.

As if by silent agreement, we don’t talk about anything heavy. And I absolutely don’t bring up my mother or mistake number five she’s hell-bent on making tomorrow.

We polish off our burgers and chat through the last of the wine. When the bottle is empty, he orders another. Together we open it and imbibe before kissing our way to the shower, where we both get squeaky clean. After we towel off, we tumble back into bed and get deliciously sweaty again.

I’m panting after yet two more orgasms that completely rock my world when I look over at him. “How have I lived this long without you?”

Something tender softens his black gaze. “I was wondering the same thing about you, angel.”

He kisses me long and slow before he turns out the light, wraps his arms around me, and settles my naked body against his. I burrow closer, not wanting an inch of space between us.

Sure, the wine softens my mood and makes me less resistant to Quint’s charm. But he’d already pried his way past my defenses and started climbing into my heart. This isn’t simply alcohol induced. That means one of two things is happening: I’m either falling in love or I’m turning into my impulsive mother.

Both possibilities are terrifying.

He drops a kiss onto my shoulder. “You’re tensing.”

“You’re changing my life,” I blurt.

He doesn’t reply, but I feel him smile in the dark before he lays a tender kiss on my lips. “Good night, angel. Sweet dreams.”

Chapter Five


I wake to the sweet scent of female. She’s curled against me, soft around me. Instantly, I’m hard.

When I pry one eye open, I see a long blond braid and a slender neck above the graceful curve of her shoulder. Her hip fills my hand. Her ass cradles my erection. Her nearness fills me.


I’d half hoped when I went to bed last night that I’d wake this morning feeling completely different about her. Half of me wanted to have fucked her out of my system so I could return to Santa Fe single and resume my normal life, since I don’t take to change well or easily.

But that half of me didn’t get its wish.

Gently, I roll Calla to her back so I can study her face. I’m mesmerized by the long sweep of her brown lashes on her cheeks and the smooth skin of her face, beautiful even devoid of makeup.

I could happily wake up to her for the rest of my days.

Jesus, I sound ridiculous. I need to slow the fuck down. I’ve known this woman for barely more than twelve hours. There’s no such thing as love at first sight, and no sane man wants to tie himself to a woman forever after less than a day.

At least that’s what I used to think. Now? I don’t know anymore.

Calla shifts in her sleep, and the sheet dips, the top barely covering those pretty breasts I remember sucking last night. My mouth waters. The rest of her is under that starchy white linen—her flat stomach, sleek thighs, tight pussy, and that glorious ass. No doubt, she’s gorgeous and she physically turns me on. But I’m actually even more attracted to her as a person. I love the way she’s both calm and prim—until I unravel her. I love the spark and the hint of sass—until she yields to my will. And I love her honesty. She doesn’t play stupid head games. She would never lead me on or fuck me simply for the sake of fucking with me. When she gives her body so openly, I can tell it means something to her.

Tags: Shayla Black Romance