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       Double Time, p.6

         Part #5 of Sinners on Tour series by Olivia Cunning
 
Page 6

  Author: Olivia Cunning

  Reagan was dumbfounded by his thoughtfulness. Weren’t rich and famous rock stars all assholes? “I’d really appreciate that, Mr. Mills. ”

  Dare laughed. “Oh please. No one calls me Mr. Mills besides my lawyer. Call me Dare. ”

  She smiled wondering why he would need a lawyer. “Thanks, Dare. ” Reagan lifted the strap over her head and handed her guitar to him.

  He held it in one hand and wrinkled his nose at it as if it had an infectious disease. “You know, since Max won’t need his guitars anymore, he’ll probably give you a few high-quality instruments to use until you find something more to your liking. ”

  Max played custom-made Gibson Les Paul guitars. Expensive custom-made guitars. “Are you serious?” she blurted.

  Dare chuckled. “Completely. I bet you’re a little overwhelmed at the moment. Go talk to Trey. Put a smile on his face for me. Just don’t take too long. My band can be sort of diva when you make them wait. ” He winked at her and carried her guitar down to the practice room where various clangs and twangs were being produced.

  As soon as she recovered from Dare’s flirty wink, Reagan rushed across the polished floor of the ballroom and slid into the bank of windows. Trey stood with one toe in the hot tub water. The rest of him was completely exposed. Completely. He turned his head at the sound of her graceless crash and offered her a crooked grin before slipping into the water.

  In those five seconds that his naked body had been in view, she’d snapped enough mental pictures to get her through several nights of adventure with her favorite vibrator. Trey’s body relaxed into the water and he sat there facing the windows, staring at her with the most unreadable expression she’d ever encountered. He obviously thought she was a total idiot, a klutz, and an embarrassment to the human species. Oh well. She’d made worse first impressions in her life.

  She opened one of the French doors and heard a faint beep. She glanced around looking for its source.

  “I think you just triggered the alarm,” Trey said.

  “Shit! What do I do?” Panicked, she slammed the door shut behind her.

  “Now you’ve triggered the alarm and locked yourself out of the house. ” He chuckled and hauled himself out of the hot tub. Naked, gorgeous, and dripping, Trey padded to a different door that led into some sort of changing room. Reagan scarcely heard the beeps as he entered some code into a touch pad on the wall. So much blood was rushing through her ears she would have had difficulty hearing a jet engine. As he crossed the enormous patio in Reagan’s direction, she couldn’t take her eyes off him. She prided herself on keeping her head when it came to men, but this one… Must be all the excitement of the day catching up with her and making her giddy with duh-ness.

  Trey made things worse (better?) by coming to stand before her instead of returning to the concealing water of the hot tub. Displaying no signs of self-consciousness, Trey stood there and waited for her eyes to drift from his bare feet to his thickening cock to his flat belly to his… thickening cock. Why was he getting excited? Surely not because she was there. She glanced around looking for the typical bikini-clad, sexpot supermodels these rock stars spent most of their time with. She found she actually was the only female in attendance. Weird.

  “Do you want to join me?” he whispered close to her ear.

  He didn’t touch her, but her entire body responded with electric jolts of lust that converged between her thighs. His low voice did jittery things to her already frayed nerves and she laughed. She laughed at Trey Mills instead of shedding her clothes and jumping into the hot tub with her ankles behind her neck. She bit her lip, suppressing the urge to slap herself in the forehead repeatedly.

  “I’ll take that as a no. ” He turned and started back to the hot tub.

  She caught his well-muscled arm and scarcely stifled an excited gasp. He paused and glanced over his shoulder to melt her into a puddle of Reagan pudding with those maddeningly sexy green eyes of his.

  “I…” she shrieked. Shrieked? What in the fuck was wrong with her? Keep it together, Reagan. Keep it together. She cleared her throat. “I didn’t come out here to join you in the hot tub. I came to challenge you to a guitar duel. ” What? No, not that. She’d come out there to console Trey about Sinners. To tell him there was no way Brian would ever leave the band. But what did she know? She didn’t know Brian. She was just a hopeful fangirl.

  His eyebrows lifted with interest. “A guitar duel?”

  “Yeah. I have to go practice with my band. ” She sucked in a breath of pure terror. She was certainly running through a wide gamut of emotions this morning. “My band… Exodus End,” she mumbled. “Oh my fucking God!”

  Trey laughed.

  Reagan took a deep steadying breath. “After we’re done practicing, I want to duel you, Trey Mills. ”

  “At high noon?” He whistled the theme to some old spaghetti Western.

  “After you’re done with your soak in the hot tub. ”

  “And if I win, you’ll join me in the hot tub?”

  Her heart skipped several beats. “If that’s what you want. ”

  He stroked a lock of hair from her cheek. “That’s only the beginning of what I want, Reagan. ”

  She laughed again. She really was just nervous, but she knew it sounded like she was laughing at him. Rejecting his advances. Never in a million years would she purposely laugh at Trey Mills. And yet, she kept doing it. He dropped his hand, a confused scowl on his handsome face. Reagan wanted to strangle herself.

  “If I win the duel, we’re going to the skate park,” she said. The skate park? What am I? Thirteen?

  “You skate?”

  “Sometimes,” she admitted. Oh God, he thinks I’m an immature idiot.

  “Sounds fun. ”

  Liar, liar, lack of pants, I’m on fire. “Yeah. Good. See you later, then. ” Mortified by her complete lack of poise, she fled into the house through the door Trey had left open and followed the sounds of music to the practice room.

  “There you are,” Dare said. “I was starting to think I was going to have to come rescue you from the hot tub and my brother’s libido. ”

  Reagan’s cheeks flamed. That might have been a possibility if she hadn’t made a complete fool of herself.

  “She’s not stupid enough to fall for that player,” Max said.

  Oh, but she was. Stupid. For that player.

  With his good hand, Max took Reagan by the wrist and led her into a large closet beside the practice room. They faced a wall that had guitars hanging from one end to the other on pegs. Some were Dare’s. Some Max’s. Some Logan’s bass guitars. All drool-worthy. Reagan sighed in bliss. Who needed men when you had guitars? She wanted to roll around on them naked. Which would probably be a tad uncomfortable, but she didn’t care. She was in lust with every instrument in the room.

  “Dare pointed out that I won’t need my guitars,” Max said, “at least for a while, so take your pick. ”

  “I couldn’t,” Reagan said, even as her fingers itched to grab the black guitar with electric blue flames directly in front of her.

  “At least try one out. I’d rather give them to you than get rid of them. Think of it as a gift. ”

  “Okay,” she gushed and lifted the guitar from the hooks in the wall.

  “Nice choice,” he said.

  She had the sudden urge to burst into tears. Maximilian Richardson had paid her a compliment. And let her touch his guitar. Even better, let her play his guitar. How was she ever going to get used to this?

  Once they had her hooked up to an amplifier, Max called out songs and everyone followed his lead. Reagan was really glad she’d practiced all of their songs to prepare for the audition. She actually knew what she was doing, and they seemed impressed that she was keeping up with them. Sweet!

  As she played with her new band, she had to continually remind herself that to really serv
e them as a musician she should mimic Max’s sound as closely as she could. It wasn’t much of a challenge. Max was a great guitarist, but Dare was the real six-stringed talent in the band. Reagan played with her usual heart, but damn if it wasn’t hard to concentrate in the presence of this many great musicians. These men were her inspiration. They were rock gods. Gods. And they already accepted her into their fold as if she belonged there. They played through about half of their set list. After several songs Reagan began to relax, but she was careful to keep the sound consistent. She spread her feet apart for balance, closed her eyes, and nodded her head in time with Steve’s hard and heavy beat that was made cohesive by Logan’s low bass. She let Max’s incredible voice carry her away. Paid extra close attention to Dare, to complement his hard, edgy sound rather than compete with it. When the song ended, Reagan opened her eyes to find the members of Exodus End staring at her.

  “What?” she said, her face flaming again.

  “Band meeting!” Steve called and climbed out from behind his drum kit accompanied by several loud thuds and clangs.

  Did a band meeting include her? She looked to Max for direction.

  He hooked his microphone into its stand, noticed her looking to him for guidance, and said, “Stay here, Reagan. We’ll be back in a few. ”

  Her stomach dropped. She was being excluded. They’d changed their minds. She knew this was too good to be true. And she’d mistakenly thought she was doing well. Fitting in. She’d been fooling herself into believing this miracle was part of her reality.

  “Okay,” she said with a cheerfulness she did not feel.

  It had been a phenomenal dream the forty minutes it had lasted.

  The band filtered out of the room, leaving her alone. She played one of Bait-n-Switch’s old riffs to keep herself occupied while she waited. A pair of bare feet entered her line of vision. Her head snapped up.

  “Is that the riff you want to duel me with?” Trey asked. “I’m not familiar with it. ”

  “It’s a riff I wrote, but it isn’t any good. ”

  “I kind of like it. Do you want to use it in our duel?”

  Trey snagged Dare’s guitar from its stand and lifted the strap over his head. The wide strip of studded leather rested at an angle across Trey’s well-defined bare chest. The body of Dare’s white guitar settled low in front of his pelvis. A no longer naked pelvis. Trey was still shirtless, but he’d put on his jeans. Gnawing on her tongue, Reagan stared at his nipple ring for a long moment before remembering that he’d asked her a question.

  “Naw. Too easy. You pick a riff. ”

  He lifted an eyebrow at her. “How about the intro to ‘Crazy Train?’”

  She loved this man. He had excellent taste. Reagan tore into the intro of “Crazy Train” without waiting for a signal. Flying through the series of building notes with no problem, she paused and Trey echoed what she’d played. When he reached the end, she upped the tempo of the intro and played it again. He echoed her perfectly. She played it faster still, concentrating so intently on the notes that she didn’t notice he’d edged closer until his arm brushed hers. She stumbled over a series of notes, the strings feeling awkward under her trembling fingertips. He was left-handed and she was right-handed, so the necks of their guitars faced opposite directions. Scowling at her mistake, Reagan pressed on. Trey copied her, down to purposely making the same error she’d made. She glanced up at him and grinned. He grinned back and winked at her. The next few notes she played sounded like drowned cats choking on strangled chickens. Her heart thundered in her chest. She lowered her gaze to his mouth. A spasm gripped her pussy as she watched the tip of his tongue slide over his lip. God, she wanted him to kiss her.

  As if he were a mind reader, Trey turned, lowered his head, and claimed her mouth in a deep, hungry kiss. Stunned, she pulled away and lifted a hand to slap him. She caught herself just in time. She got lost in his eyes, her hand suspended millimeters from his angular jaw. He tilted his head so that her fingertips brushed his cheek and then turned his head to caress her tingling flesh with his lips. Gentle, sucking kisses on the tips of her fingers drew a groan of longing from deep within her. She wrapped both arms around his neck and pulled him down to meet her desperate kiss.
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