Hot buttered rum standal.., p.14
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       Hot Buttered Rum: Standalone Romance (Silk Stocking Inn Book 4), p.14

           Tess Oliver

  I drew in a determined breath. “I’m glad my shoes provided you with some delight. I can tell you that at the end of a long work day, they are nothing but torture. I kick them off the second I walk into my townhouse.”

  He stepped back, and I felt it keenly, not having him just a few inches away. “Why do you wear them?”

  I was about to spurt out an answer, only no viable explanation came.

  “Guess the loud, confident clack of heels on floors lets some of the men you work with know you mean business. Me? I’d take you seriously even in sandals with that haughty chin lift.” He picked up his tool belt. It dangled from his fingers, a gesture that shouldn’t have been the least bit sexual, and yet, all kinds of erotic images floated through my head. Once again he’d knocked me off balance.

  “Or maybe you just know how good your legs look when you’re wearing them.”

  “That’s right, throw me a bone with the first ‘you mean business’ comment and then snatch it away by ending it with a tawdry comment about my legs. I’m the vice president of a large commercial real estate brokerage. I hardly need to have my choice of shoes analyzed by a man who pounds in roof shingles for a living.” I spun around to leave.

  I heard the tool belt drop behind me.

  He took a firm grip of my arm and turned me toward him. His gaze was dark and cool, and it sent a spark of thrill through me. “Vice president, huh? Impressive.” His mouth came right next to mine. My lips parted long before I realized that I wanted the damn kiss. “Nothing sexier than a strong, confident woman . . . even if she’s wearing hiking boots instead of heels. In fact, I really don’t give a damn what she’s got on her feet as long as her legs fit just right, wrapped around me when I’m fucking her.”

  I flinched from his coarse words at first. Then my body betrayed me. The heat of the previous night came back to me in waves, and moisture pooled in my panties. I swallowed hard as he once again stared down at my lips as if he was going to devour me.

  I held my breath as he reached up, and, with a gentleness that was in complete contradiction to the way he was looking at me, he stroked the side of my face. It was a split second of tenderness that made my heart melt. I felt utter disappointment when he dropped his hand.

  But it seemed he wasn’t finished toying with me yet. My heart raced again as he leaned his mouth even closer. His long, dark lashes shaded his heavy gaze as he concentrated again on my lips. “What you need, V.P., is someone who makes you lose that uptight attitude. Remember that beautiful naked woman who came with my tongue tucked deep in her pussy last night? Don’t forget to keep her satisfied and happy during your climb to the top.”

  My breath was coming in short spurts. The landscape was swirling around me in a green haze. I swayed a bit, almost dizzy with the idea of having Grayson take me right there against the weathered wood siding of the Silk Stocking Inn. As skilled as he may have been with a hammer, he was masterful at the art of teasing.

  I swallowed, took a steadying breath and stared back at him, determined to keep up my guard, even though my body was betraying me at every turn. “How do you know what I need? You don’t know anything about me.”

  “No? I know you purr like a damn kitten when my tongue is pressed against your pussy. Wonder how many of your friends and coworkers know that.” He straightened, and I nearly fell forward in my attempt to follow his mouth. I’d lost the kiss that I wanted so badly. My usual determination to be in charge had just splintered the hot and tense moment. He was good. Ruthless but good. I’d never had an urge to both kiss a man and slap his face until now.

  From the smug expression on his face, Grayson knew he’d gotten to me. “I’ll let you get to that walk.” He turned back to his ladder and picked up his tool belt.

  I stood, slightly shaken and more than a little heated by the brief encounter. But the heat had nothing to do with anger. It should have, of course. I should have been ready to stomp off in irritation. Instead, the heat had to do with the warmth that was curling around my body as I thought about him taking full possession of me again. I wanted it. I wanted him. He’d started a craving in me, and there was only one thing that could satisfy it.

  I should have been on my way. But I stood like a stunned statue and watched as Grayson buckled his belt low around his narrow hips. He was a perfect V, starting with strong broad shoulders that tapered down to a perfect ass. Long, thick legs carried him up the ladder. My mind swept back to the night before and the incredible size of his erection. It had filled me to capacity and had set every inch of my pussy on fire. His strong, rough hands knew just how to touch me, and just how much attention I needed to come. He was a handyman extraordinaire, I thought with a smile.

  Maybe I would stay on just one more night.

  Chapter 12

  A bit lightheaded and more than a little frustrated, I turned away from the very hot man on the roof and headed off on my walk. I hiked down the path that led along the bushes with tiny tubular flowers that I quickly deduced were the honeysuckles Coco had mentioned.

  Beads of perspiration rolled between my cleavage as I meandered along the gravelly path. Just as my hostess had promised, butterflies were dancing along the tops of feathery flowers and several hummingbirds were taking turns sipping sweetness from red flowers. I’d always loved nature and being outdoors, but I’d never taken the time to learn much about it, like flower and butterfly names. That had always been my sister, Leti’s, hobby.

  I, on the other hand, had always been the down to business girl, the don’t waste time knowing anything that won’t push you higher up the corporate ladder type. Now I’d made it to the second rung from the top, but, somehow, that achievement hadn’t been nearly as fulfilling as I’d hoped. Instead, it’d made me realize that there was more to life than just success in business.

  A hammer sounded back at the house. I glanced back and saw the shabby, slate gray shingle roof of the Silk Stocking Inn loom in the distance. It was the only building or sign of civilization in my sight radius. Willowy trees and stretches of wildflowers made it seem as if I’d landed in the middle of my computer screensaver, the meadow that I’d downloaded for when the day got stressful and I needed to drift off for a few minutes. In fact, it was remarkably similar to my computer wallpaper. Almost uncannily so, just like the mix of fragrance that I’d experienced in the kitchen when Grayson had walked inside. None of this could actually be happening and yet it was. I was standing in the middle of my screensaver meadow still reeling from the tenderness in my pussy wrought by the man who I’d dreamt up in my description. It was him. Grayson was him—my tall, dark and a pleasure in bed.

  If nothing else, the weekend might prove to be the most fascinating and mystifying of my life.

  I headed across the meadow and came to a rusted iron gazebo, like one you’d see in the finely manicured garden of a century old estate. It was a surprising feature in the middle of an otherwise wild and untamed landscape.

  Once I reached the ramshackle structure, I found that it had been fashioned with plush cushioned benches and a small table. I wished, suddenly, for a good book and glass of wine. I glanced back toward the path. I was far from the house and could no longer hear the hammer. The outline of the inn was hidden by tall trees.

  A whispery breeze pushed through the curled iron scrolls of the gazebo and cooled my warm cheeks. I sat on one of the upholstered benches. The fabric looked bright and new, especially in contrast to the dilapidated state of the gazebo. I propped a few pillows against the side rail of the bench, pulled off my boots and brought my legs up on the seat. I gazed through the opening on the gazebo as if I was sitting on a window seat staring out at a field of flowers.

  Delicate pink and yellow flower heads danced with the breeze, and the tall grasses carried the scent of nature through the gazebo. Something about the earthy fragrance brought my thoughts back to Grayson. He was nothi
ng like the men I’d been dating, men I considered a better match, men who worked in the business world and drove impressive cars and lived in overpriced apartments. Men who had clean fingernails and rarely broke out in a sweat. Men who tended to be just as boring in bed as in a board meeting. Grayson was none of that. And I couldn’t get him out of my mind. The long stroll had done nothing to cool the burning ache between my legs.

  It was a crazy idea, but then the last twenty-four hours had been nothing but crazy. I looked around. Other than a few birds perched on the edge of the gazebo railing, apparently waiting to see if I had a pocket full of bread crumbs, I was alone.

  This was all Grayson’s fault, I reminded myself as I unzipped the fly on my shorts. I leaned back and closed my eyes. I slid my hand down between my legs and pressed my fingers against my clit. The heady wildflower fragrance and warm breeze only intensified my need to reach orgasm. Grayson’s handsome face, dark blue eyes and tilted smile coasted through my mind. I moved against the pressure of my hand. I was still tender from the night with Grayson. That rawness only served to bring me closer to the edge.

  A sound in the gazebo made me freeze. My eyes shot open. Grayson gazed down at me with a nearly predatory hunger. I struggled to yank my hand free, but he reached down and held my arm in place.

  “No. Keep it there. Best damn game of solitaire I’ve ever seen.”

  He held my arm until I relaxed. He crouched down next to me. “I want to watch,” he said in a low voice.

  I shook my head and moved to pull my hand free. He dragged his fingers lightly along the bare skin on my arm. Just that small, light touch sent a wave of heat through me. “Come on, V.P., let’s see you let go of some of that uptight, no nonsense bullshit. Have some fun. Right here. In front of me. It’s the best thing I’ve seen since—well since you were naked beneath me on the bed last night.”

  He rose up on his knees, leaned over me and kissed me lightly on the lips. Then he drew his tongue along my bottom lip. “I don’t think you understand how fucking hot you are, Jessi.”

  A usual, my cheeks warmed at the sound of his voice and his words. His giant shadow loomed over me as he stood. Without warning, he reached forward and yanked the shorts down, exposing my hand tucked beneath my panties. I should have been embarrassed as hell, but the opposite was happening. My state of arousal was peaked. I wanted nothing more than to continue and have him watch me. It was by far one of the most erotic moments of my life, and it was all because of the man standing over me.

  “Now finish what you started, darlin’. Then you’re mine for the rest of the evening.” His last words sent me into a tailspin. My fingers caressed my clit, and I easily brought myself to climax beneath his deep blue gaze.

  The second I finished, he swept me up, sat on the bench and pulled me into his lap. His erection pushed at my near naked bottom. His scent was pure man, a mixture of sweat and soap and grit. I breathed in deeply, not wanting to miss any of it. It rekindled the heat between my legs.

  I curled my arm around his neck and lifted my mouth to his. He kissed me gently at first but then it increased with urgency. Being in his strong arms had knocked me nearly senseless. I hadn’t noticed that he’d pulled the shorts off my feet until the morning breeze brushed over my legs.

  He slid his hand beneath the crotch of my panties. “Now it’s my turn.” He slid his fingers between the folds of my pussy. I’d only just brought myself to climax, yet his touch made me want more.

  I sat up from his arms and straddled his lap. Up on my knees, I reached between us, fumbling with his fly. And all the while, he watched me, smiling up at me as my shaky, clumsy fingers worked the buttons on his jeans. But before I slid my fingers down to take his glorious cock in my hand, I sat down on his lap, slightly deflated. I might have decided to go along with this crazy fantasy weekend, but clearly, I was still holding on to some common sense.

  “We can’t do this without protection,” I said, astounded at the sheer disappointment in my tone.

  His smile never left his handsome face as he reached back to his pocket and fished out a condom.

  I laughed. “Now that’s what I call prepared for anything.”

  He lifted his broad shoulders with a shrug. “Not really. It’s just as I watched you walk away from me, I decided I wasn’t going to get through the morning without these sleek thighs wrapped around me at least once.” He rubbed his palms over my legs. His palms were callused and rough and altogether pleasing.

  I reached down below his open fly and briefs and took hold of his cock. It was hard and hot in my fingers. “At least once?” I asked as I lowered my mouth to his.

  His lids dropped over glazed blue eyes as his hands went firmly around my ass. “Well, once for the morning break anyhow. Those roof tiles aren’t going to set themselves.” He freed one hand from my ass and scooted his pants down. He opened the foil package with his teeth.

  I grabbed the condom from him. “Guess since you brought the party favors, the least I can do is put it on.” I sat back. His heated gaze never left my face as I rolled the condom down over his enormous erection. I couldn’t hold back a smile.

  “What’s that grin for, V.P.?”

  “You are—hmm, what’s a good term? Considerable? Sizable?”

  He wrapped his arms around me and pulled me against him. His hand slid down beneath my ass and between my legs, where he yanked aside the crotch of my panties. “Is that a good thing?” The tip of his erection played teasingly against my pussy.

  “Oh yes, a very good thing. A woman likes to know that she has invested wisely. And the dividends in this instance, well, the dividends are fabulous.”

  He leaned forward and kissed my breast through the cotton shirt. “I guess that’s what they call talking dirty in the business world.” He peered up at me. “All right, my hot little executive, how about I fuck you before my cock explodes with wanting you?”

  “We can’t have that.” I lowered myself down over him, taking in every glorious inch of him.

  A low, deep groan rumbled from his mouth as he kissed my throat. “Should have ripped this fucking blouse off first,” he growled as he reached to the hem and shoved it above my breasts, exposing my bra.

  I rose and fell down over his erection as he tugged the bra down below my breasts.

  I wrapped my arms tight around his head, pulling his mouth against my nipples, all the while milking him with my pussy. Warm friction built up where my pussy rubbed against his body. He jammed his erection harder into me with each pass and every time our bodies met, my thighs clenched tighter. I was desperate to keep him there, between my thighs coaxing me to climax with his strong, rough hands, hot mouth and hard cock. We moved in perfect unison as if we knew exactly what the other wanted.

  He pulled his mouth from my breasts, and his head lulled back as he concentrated on my pussy. His fingers gripped my ass cheeks, pulling them up and tight so that my clit was more exposed against his skin. I slid my body down and pushed my ass back, rubbing my clit until the heat and pressure caused my pussy to tighten.

  “Oh, Grayson. Fuck yes.” I closed my eyes and tried to stay upright as my body splintered apart and my pussy pulsed with pleasure.

  “That’s it, darlin’, you belong right there. Like a fucking glove.”

  I was still reeling from the orgasm as he held me tight over him and slammed his cock up inside of me. I tangled my fingers in his hair and held his face against me as I plunged down to meet his thrusts. The bench and the rusted gazebo shook as if the ground was moving beneath us. Sometimes it seemed he was too impossibly long and thick for me to take all of him in. Then he’d prove me wrong by going deeper. My tender pussy gripped him, swallowing him as he pushed inside of me.

  His hold on my ass tightened, and he held me down over him as he came. “Damn, Jessi, can’t get enough of you,” he growled in a low

  I relaxed against him. The meadow breeze tickled my skin as it floated through the gazebo. The sun’s warmth poured through the metal lattice overhead. All of it was too perfect, the setting, the sex, the man I was curled against. I wondered how long until I woke up. This was going to be a hard dream to let go of.

  He slapped my bottom and I sat up with a start. “Well, my perfectly sexy meadow sprite, I have to get back to work.”

  I climbed off with a disappointed sigh. I reached down for my panties and shorts. We both got dressed. I reached for the hiking boots, but he took hold of my hand and pulled me to him. I felt like a teenager in the arms of the guy I’d been crushing on. My heart couldn’t seem to stop fluttering. The way his strong arms wrapped around me made me feel secure and wanted. And deliriously happy.

  Grayson pushed my chin up with his fingers. “Tonight, darlin’. So rest up.” He kissed me and walked out of the gazebo. I let my gaze linger on his broad shoulders and great physique until he disappeared around the bend in the path.

  Chapter 13

  I’d offered to cut some herbs from the garden for Coco’s pot roast. I nibbled a red velvet cupcake as I wandered along the line of red clay pots looking for thyme and rosemary. It was, as Coco had warned me, the last cupcake. The others had all been bought by customers. It was strange because I never saw one person come up to the inn. Of course, I’d been mildly distracted.

  The herb garden took me around the corner of the house where Grayson’s ladder was propped up against the wall. Just seeing his ladder sent a thrill through me. I couldn’t remember the last time a man had that kind of impact on me. It was just a damn ladder.

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