Her gaze dipped down my body, slow and languid, soaking me in. Something in me twitched to life, like a phantom limb reminding me hot blood once pumped through my veins. All my veins. My groin got heavy, heat flushing my thighs. Because she looked at me.
I let that notion marinate and did my best to keep my brain on target. “If you plan on volunteering, show up at the construction site at 8:30 a.m. sharp. Nick will take you through the paces.”
“Will you be here?”
“Are you here every day?”
“Do you often answer questions with one word?”
She tipped her head, those stunning eyes intent upon me. Suddenly, heading home for beers and pizza didn’t sound as appealing. I dug my boots deeper into the earth.
She swiped her tongue across her full bottom lip. “All right, tough guy. I’ll be here next week, volunteer ready, where you may or may not be, depending on if you do or do not decide to show up.”
Every word dripped with flirtatiousness, but I stayed quiet. The way I’d all but grunted at her so far, probably better to keep my mouth shut.
So we stood there—her waiting on me to speak, a skateboarder barreling down the road at our left. Me unsure why she was affecting me.
I missed being with a woman. Missed the slide of soft skin and wet mouths, and locking my girl in my arms for the night. But I’d sworn I’d do it right this time. Not rush in. Make sure I dated someone with depth and interests outside of making bank. Everything about this spitfire girl read narcissistic.
When our silence slipped into awkward, she fluttered her fingers in my face. “It’s been…interesting.”
I offered her a curt nod.
Chuckling to herself, she spun around, but her right heel wedged into the loose dirt. Those damn shoes were lethal. She sank an inch and teetered, but seemed to catch herself. Then her massive purse fell. The thick strap landed on her forearm, tipping the balance. She shot out her hand, struggling to stay upright.
I lunged for her, clasping her trim waist to hold her steady. And close. Too close. Not near enough for her to feel how I was thickening behind my zipper, but the air swelled. It dilated with feminine scents. Something sweet. Nice.
She smelled like chocolate.
My hands spanned her waist from behind, her curves above and below all woman. Hour glass, like a modern-day Marilyn Monroe. Jean Harlow. Mae West. Over the years, I’d watched every classic movie there was, wishing I could slip to a time when men danced and women sang and loyalty and love were valued over getting ahead. An old soul, my nana always said. Or a romantic. Or just plain trouble.
Now I had my hands on a dangerous beauty.