Joel wasn't sure how they'd made it to his bedroom, only
that they had. He wasn't going to complain about the trip, not now when
they were finally here. Sure, he'd've loved to have wrapped Willa's naked
legs around his waist and kissed her senseless the length of the hallway.
But he wasn't a miracle worker. What he was was in a cast.
Keeping himself upright when his motor control had been cut off by his
libido's jet engine, well . . . he wouldn't have passed a sobriety test
if he'd been asked to walk a straight line.
And even if he had been stone cold sober and able to stand
arrow straight, Willa was wearing workboots and jeans and he couldn't
handle either of those with any measure of finesse.
Not that the sweet talking of a first time necessarily
guaranteed smooth moves. The opposite was usually the case. The guy came
fast because, well, hell, he couldn't take the wait any longer. And the
lady--because he didn't have experience with any females who weren't
true ladies--was more often than not a bunch of nerves about doing the
right thing and didn't come at all.
Joel might not be able to sweep Willa off her feet or strip
her naked without her noticing his slight of hand, but he would damn
sure make her come.
"You weren't lying, were you?" she
She stood in front of him, facing the bed, her flannel
shirt held to her chest. Nuzzling the shell of her ear from behind, he
reached over her shoulder and tossed the shirt to the floor. Then he
reached for the hem of her tank. He took the shirt off over her head
then pulled her back into his body and, biting down hard on a shiver,
savored her warm and soft and supple skin.
Still savoring, he followed the direction of her gaze--toward
his headboard from which a dozen pair of handcuffs dangled. Complete
with keys, each was shackled to the narrow railing by one bracelet. No,
he hadn't lied. But right now he didn't want to explain the history of
He growled low in her ear and said, "The
better to have my way with you."
"Is that so?" She dropped
a light kiss on the forearm hugging her collarbone inches above her
"Or," he added with a bit of a chuckle. "The
better for you to have your way with me."
Leaning her head back against his shoulder,
she brushed fingertips over the tiny mark she'd left on his skin. "I
think I'd like to have my way with you. But first . . ."
No. No firsts. "First?"
"Will you tell me what you want
me to do?"
The invitation was every man's dream and left Joel speechless.
At that moment, he couldn't remember having ever wanted a woman with
this degree of possessive fierceness. It bothered him. A lot.
But it didn't keep him from saying, "What
I want you to do is simple. Let me make love to you."
Willa stared back at him over her shoulder,
her gaze confused yet satisfied, her mouth a spoiled pout. "That
defeats the purpose of the question, doesn't it?"
"Baby, right now I don't give a damn about the question.
Only about the answer." Her head was still tilted back. Her bound
ponytail brushed his skin.
Feeling her hair against his bare chest
was torture. He hissed out a low breath. "If I don't get inside
you and quick, I'm afraid I'm gonna go off."
She kept the line of her mouth straight but he knew it
wasn't easy. He knew that because when she turned in his arms to face
him, he saw that she'd caught her lower lip between her teeth to hold
back her grin.
Of course, she couldn't hold it long. "Are
you saying we may be dealing with an accidental shooting?"
He grinned, drew fingers down her spine,
stopped when he reached her jeans covered bottom and squeezed. "Does
the term weapon misfire mean anything to you?"
Her blue eyes flashed with humor and
the recognition that she was about to take a cop to bed. "I suppose
you're looking to holster that weapon?"
"Well now darlin'. I'd better do just that." He
squeezed again. Both hands. Both buttocks. "Or else we'll be dealing
with the consequences of a little friendly fire."
Willa threw back her head and laughed. "You
If anything, he was about to need a mop and a bucket because
her breasts were bouncing against his chest and now her fingers were
And they were moving over his skin. And they were unbuttoning
the copper buttons that barely held his fly together. And when she'd
finished with the buttons and stopped moving, he had a hard time not
jerking his pants to the ground.
She looked up. "I have a problem."
She had a problem? "Anything I
can do to help?"
"I'm having trouble with your pants."
The trouble was that she didn't have
them off yet. "What
kind of trouble?"
"I'm afraid I'm not going to be able to get them down.
I've run into an--" she tilted her head to one side and frowned "--an
What she'd run into was his hard-on. "Trust
me. It's . . . surmountable."
She rolled her eyes at that. "I'm
sure it is. You got your pants on, after all."
Joel frowned. They were either suffering a serious miscommunication
here or he was more impressive than he'd thought.
"I mean, I can get them down to your knees without
a hitch," Willa continued. "But I'm not quite sure what to
do after that."
His cast. She was talking about his
cast while he was talking about parts of his body that were as hard
as the navy fiberglass. "Ah,
that's easy. An old stripper's trick."
And then he ripped open the pants leg
from the point above his knee to his crotch. Willa smiled. "Velcro?"
"Pretty cool, huh? The wife of a buddy at work fixed
me up. Their six year old did a head over heels off his bike and broke
his ankle. She'd done the same for her kid. And when I got stuck with
this thing--" he indicated the cast "--I asked her if she'd
help me out. I have a couple pairs of tearaway jersey pants, but I'm
a blue jeans kinda guy."
"This is great," Willa said,
fingering the hidden closure.
"Yep. Four pairs of my jeans are now ready for show
time on the Richmond Strip." He did a little jiggle, a little bump
"I like it. I like it a lot," she said and ran
her fingertips up his bare inner thigh to the leg of his briefs. "But
I do have one more question."
And one more answer was probably all
he had left before his knees buckled. "One. That's it."
"It's okay, isn't it? If I make love to you, too?" Her
eyes were wide and blue and honest and more giving than he'd ever expected.
He hissed out a long low frustratedly
impatient breath. He knew what they were making here wasn't about love
but it sure as hell
didn't feel like just sex. "As long as you know that what happens
here this first time isn't . . . well . . ."
And after all the promises he'd made to himself, he was
going to blow it. He'd be doing good to last about as long as a randy
"Isn't, well, what?" She'd
slipped her fingers into his shorts now and was feeling up his backside.
He was going to have to stop her before
she made it around to his front. "I need to be inside you, Willa.
Now. It won't be slow and romantic. Not this time."
"You don't have to woo me, Joel.
I'm here. And I want to feel you inside me probably as much as you
want to be there."
He wasn't sure how to respond to that,
but if she felt even half the need ripping open his gut, this was gonna
be a hell of
a coming together. "So, you think we can get busy here? Or do you
"Directions?" She gave him a know-it-all lift
of her brows. "Like how to slide tab A into slot B?"
"Mmm. Something like that."
"You want directions? I'll give you directions." She
spun him around and pushed him back down onto the mattress. "Down
is a direction, right?"
"So's up," he said and thrust
his hips that way.
"Up? Like this?" Leaning forward
she ran her palms over his fly and up his belly. He squirmed in the
back further on the mattress so that if she decided to straddle him she'd
have a place to put her knees. He just hoped she took both their pants
Her hands continued up his sides, over his armpits, his
triceps, to his elbows, forearms, wrists, palms, lacing her fingers through
his when she reached his hands which were now high over his head. She
shifted on the bed until she was doing that straddle thing he'd been
Even with her pants on it wasn't far from heaven, feeling
her over him, her breasts suspended just out of reach of his mouth. His
tongue wasn't quite long enough to do more than flick lightly across
her bare nipples when he wanted to draw her deep in his mouth.
She drew deep on him instead, teasing his mouth with light
nips and love bites before kissing him full and hard like he wanted to
be kissed, with her tongue and her body, both of which he was getting
impatient to feel elsewhere.
And then, while he was doing his best to kiss her senseless
in return, while he was working to coax her into getting naked so they
could get this show on the road, she snapped handcuffs around both his
With a kiss dropped first on his forehead, then his nose,
his chin, center chest and low on his stomach, she hopped up off the
bed and left him there.
"Willa?" He called after her
when she left the room.
"Don't go anywhere, Joel. I'll
be right back."
Oh, she was a funny girl, this one. But she hadn't gone
far. He heard her banging cabinet doors, slamming drawers in the kitchen.
Then all was quiet and Joel realized he was half-naked with a hard-on
and handcuffed to his own bed.
Of course, he probably wouldn't have been so cocky if he'd
truly been trapped. But since each pair of handcuffs hung from the headboard
by one bracelet and he was caught in the dangling cuff of two separate
pairs, well, it would be easy to slide his hands together and open either
He only considered it for half a second, then decided to
hang around instead and see what Willa had in mind.
A minute or two more and she returned wearing nothing but
her white cotton bikinis. Joel's heart slammed to the back of his chest.
Seeing her now was nothing like seeing her earlier when he'd been to
drunk on her taste to focus on much of anything at all.
Her legs were long anyway, but those high cut panties seemed
to add another six inches. The curve of her hip was sweet. He'd thought
she might be more lean, more . . . solid and straight, but her muscles
were all female. Nothing boyish here about her figure.
But what struck him most about her--even more than her
legs, her strong arms and great shoulders, or even the way her breasts
were as arousing now as they had been inches from his mouth--was her
hair. This was the first time he'd ever seen it down.
She'd brought two pie tins back with her along with his
box of squat emergency candles. As she went about setting the tins in
front of either end of his dresser's mirror, her hair swung about her
shoulders. Once she had a half dozen of the plain white votives burning
in their shiny metal base, she flipped off the light shining brightly
Candlelight flickered as the flames ate up the wicks. The
mirror reflected the tongues of light back into the room--and over Willa's
hair. She turned to face him, leaned back against his dresser, framed
on both her right and her left by the flames of living light.
Her hair was fair and colorless in the subdued glow, yet
the light played the part of an artist's brush and turned the strands
to gold. He needed to remember to tell her how much he liked it down,
how good she looked wearing candlelight and white.
But he wasn't sure he'd be able to coherently remember
much of anything at all because right then she smiled.
And while she was smiling she worked off his single athletic
shoe and one sock. His jeans, already opened, slid down his legs freely--once
she guided the fly carefully around his most valuable assets.
He'd only thought he'd found paradise half-naked with a
hard-on and handcuffed to his own bed.
Paradise wasn't even the half of it.