Genres: Contemporary, New Adult, Romance
*This is a stand-alone sequel to Fearsome. No cliffhanger!
Dylan Blackard is back in town and certain everyone knows his secrets.
Putting away his notorious reputation as the wild guy with a womanizing past, he’s now on a new path, wanting to be the good guy his brother can stop worrying over. As long as he gives up his old vices—including women—he can keep himself on the straight and narrow and finally live up to everyone’s expectations.
However, obsessing about his lack of self-control is making Dylan one humorless, cranky hermit. That all changes, though, when his brother hires a new employee, the stunning Emma Keller, who will be sharing an office with him and all of his tightly wound nerves.
Emma, a spunky young woman from New Jersey, isn’t about to feel sorry for Dylan and his situation. She is beyond distracting to him, and that is enough to turn his emotional balancing act upside down. Not only is she intelligent, and a smart aleck, she’s also very determined to pull the sexy Dylan Blackard out of his self-imposed isolation.
From the moment he meets her, he feels alive again, but Emma doesn’t come as a gift with a pretty bow; she comes with major baggage—a family embedded in its own tumultuous history.
Will Emma be the tipping point that causes Dylan to regress into his past destructive behaviors…or will he actually pursue her for keeps?
*Due to adult language and sexual content, this New Adult Contemporary Romance is intended for readers over the age of 18.
Excerpt“Have I shocked you?” I ask softly. “Do you think less of me coming from this scummy life?”
“No, of course not. It sounds like you have a decent family, and that they happened to get strong-armed by the wrong people. I can’t blame you for that.”
“You blame Robert. He’s only three years older than me, and he didn’t have a choice in the matter, either. We both grew up with this as a part of our lives—it chose us.”
“Why are you apologizing for that guy? He’s an adult. If he’s involved in his family’s dirty dealings—”
“He isn’t. That’s why Robert went to law school. His parents are rich and they put all their kids in very good colleges and pushed education. I started dating Robert when I was on summer break from college. He was in law school at the time, and he talked about what kind of law he wanted to practice and his future didn’t involve the family. I do believe he came here to see me as a friend. I was one of the few people—aside from his college friends—that were part of the real world. Unlike his classmates, though, I knew what Robert had to deal with growing up. I think I’m one of his few connections to normalcy.”
“He’s certainly snowed you, baby.”
I like the endearment coming from Dylan, however I could do without the patronizing remark.
“If he’s legit and practicing law—how ironic by the way—then he can find normalcy someplace else, like with his interns or clients. I don’t give a shit how he pulls his life together except when he thinks it’s okay to come back into your life,” Dylan says, leaning back. He rests his arm across the back of the couch, barely touching my shoulders.
“I think he’s trying to do the right thing,” I add.
Dylan chuckles in disbelief. “Oh, man, you come from a colorful place, that’s for sure.”
“I guess my life sounds awfully nutty to people who grew up with typical families. Lauren never trusted Robert and was never friendly with him the whole time I dated him in college. She constantly tried to fix me up with nice guys at school. It’s hard for her to accept where I come from. She has such a nice, normal family. My family and I are trying really hard to detach ourselves completely from that life, Dylan.”
I inch closer to him, so we’re touching from my shoulder all the way down to our knees, then curl ever so slightly into him. He responds by lifting a thick lock of my hair and wrapping it around his hand. His gaze drifts from my hair to my eyes with a fascination that makes my heart do a little dance. Not any old dance—these are not feather light twirling ballerinas—I have heavy-duty, clog dancers pounding out their approval.
“I just got out of Crazyville, and I don’t want to go back there, but I will do anything to help you, Emma.”
I’ve had sweet promises from boyfriends before—including Robert—but none of them have ever seemed as authentic as Dylan’s funny yet touching declaration.
“Why would you put this kind of trouble on yourself? You barely know me, and I’m not a defenseless ninny.” I smile because I don’t know if I am making his intentions out to be more serious than they are.
“I like you a lot,” he says emphatically with an expression of complete seriousness. There is no beating around the bush about feelings and shielding himself from my strange past.
I can’t resist. I slowly trace the loopy scar on the soft fuzz of his scalp and run my finger down the razor stubble on his cheek. “I like you, too. But I thought you were against this going any farther. Does it stop here because you think I’ll drive you back to Crazyville?”
“I’m re-thinking this as we go along,” he replies with a grin.
He leans in to kiss me gently, his beautiful lips urging mine open, making me visibly weaken. My breath quickens and I feel a sense of urgency as a heat rises in me and pleads with me to get naked with Dylan. All sorts of images of his nakedness, those muscular arms and six-pack abs—or are they called eight-packs now? Who cares? All I know is that I want to be with him and not just groping on the couch, making out.
Dylan lowers me onto my back and our kissing amplifies, with tongues discovering new body parts as if I have never done this before. I spread my legs and he rolls himself between them, propping his weight on his elbows as he works over my neck and sensitive spots with his mouth. When I moan and yank his t-shirt up, he helps pull it over his head and flings it across the room. Then, after I arch and pull my shirt off, Dylan stares eagerly at my lace bra.
My hands rove across his chest and up to his neck before I pull him back down to me. We have finally gone over that safe point of exploration, and there is a hungry brutality to his kiss, which I return fully. I wrap my legs around him and arch up so I can feel his hard-on through his jeans, rubbing my center. I moan as he pulls down one cup of my bra and works his tongue over the hard nipple.
The couch is not wide enough to hold our rocking bodies, but I am not about to let this stop so we can move to a bed. I want his pants off, so I work my hand underneath his jeans and cup his erection through his briefs.
As I imagine his next moves and the highly anticipated, sweet, explosive orgasm I so desperately want with Dylan, my phone rings.
The Dad phone.
“No,” he growls in retaliation. “Goddammit. Can’t you let it ring?”
“No, then my father would worry and he’d keep calling until I answered.”
About the AuthorS. A. Wolfe lives with her very loud, opinionated children and husband. She is a voracious reader and passionate about writing, and when those two activities don’t keep her locked away in her room, she loves roaming the streets of New York City. Sometimes she even hikes mountains, but most of the time she finds excellent ways to procrastinate.
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