Friday, May 01, 2009

Excerpt for Lorie O'Clare's

Strong, Sleek and Sinful

(c) 2010 Lorie O'Clare

ISBN-13: 978-0312943448


“He’s back,” she whispered, standing and closing the blinds while butterflies fluttered in her stomach. She glanced back at the computer screen and at the instant message box now sitting in the middle of her screen. “Oh shit,” she hissed, sliding back into her chair.
The screen name at the top of the box was PeteTakesU. She stared at the message in the box. Do your parents know you like sex? Returning her attention to the instant message box, she typed, duh. PeteTakesU typed LOL.
There was a firm knock on her door. The instant message box chimed again. You sound hot. Where are pictures of you?
On my MySpace profile. My profile is Kayla2010, same as my name here. G2G parents are near. She finished typing and minimized the chat box. Her heart thumped in her chest when she turned off the light, locked the door to the middle room, and headed down the hall to the front door. It just figured she got her first real bite and possibly from her on line predator and he’d come back.
“Yes?” she said, placing her hand on the door handle and leaning against the front door.
“Open the door, Kylie.” Perry’s deep voice sounded all business—or pissed.
She slid the chain into place on the door and unlocked the deadbolt. Opening it as far as the chain would allow, she flipped on her porch light and watched him squint as she blinded him.
“What did you want?”
“Open the damn door and let me in,” he growled.
It was tempting to spar with him, but she closed the door, slipped the chain free and stepped out of the way when he pushed the door hard enough that it swung open. She grabbed it before it hit the wall, staying clear when he stalked into her home.
“What were you doing?”
“When?” She watched him when he stopped in the middle of her living room and turned to face her.
“Just now. When I knocked on the door.”
“What do you think I was doing?” she asked, turning from him and closing the door. “I was studying.”
“Where are your books?” he asked, his demanding tone pushing as he continued watching her, slowly crossing his arms. Apparently he had the night off as he was still dressed in his t-shirt and jeans. God, he made simple clothing look deadly.
Kylie took her time answering, unwilling to spar with him full force. Already she felt the charge in the air, the sexual energy radiating off him. It was best to keep her head clear, stay focused on the fact that she quite possibly just communicated with their killer. Although that would mean Perry was innocent, it also meant if her man was on line right now, she needed to take this opportunity to get to know him.
“Why are you so interested in my studies?” she challenged, crossing her arms over her chest and watching his expression harden.
Perry walked toward her. If she didn’t move, he would have her cornered.
“I think you’re avoiding the answer to a simple question.” He grabbed her arm when she tried walking past him. “Where are your books?”
“I do most of my work on my computer,” she said honestly and looked down at her arm. “Is there a reason you’re restraining me?”
His hand was large and his fingers long. His skin was tanner than hers. She watched his fingers wrap around her forearm and then his grip loosened and slid down to her wrist.
“This isn’t restraint, darling,” he drawled. “When I restrain you, you won’t be able to move.”
“That is what restraining means.” Kylie laughed, walking away from him as she headed toward her kitchen. Perry let go of her but followed when she walked through the open living room that turned into her small kitchen. “You never told me why you’re here,” she said, keeping her back to him.
She grabbed a plastic cup from her cabinet and filled it with ice from the icemaker in her refrigerator. She hadn’t tried to grocery shop yet so other than the leftovers from the pizza, of which all fit in one box and took up a shelf in her refrigerator, there wasn’t any food in her kitchen.
“Because I know what you’re doing.”
Kylie put her cup under the faucet and let it fill with tap water. Then taking her time turning around, she brought the cup to her lips and watched him while sipping.
“Then why did you ask?” An ice cube brushed against her lip and she savored how cold it was. Anything to help keep her grounded.
“Ask what?”
“You asked me what I was doing when you walked in the door, yet now you say you know what I’m doing.” She smiled, sipped again, focused on the cold water soothing the fire burning inside her. “Did you learn this by my actions after entering my home?”
“No.” The hungry look in his eyes made them brighter. “Who is your professor?”
If and when she nailed her guy, it would come out that she was FBI. She wouldn’t insult Perry too much for questioning her.
“You don’t believe I’m a student.” She put her cup down on the counter and sighed, sounding frustrated as she started around him. Tingles shot through her hand when she touched muscle that was solid as steel.
“Where are you going?” he growled, searching her face.
“I don’t have my professor’s information memorized.” She gestured with her free hand. “I was going to get you his phone number so you can call him and prove to yourself who I am.”
“And will this professor also confirm what it is you’re writing your thesis about?” he asked.
“You can ask him, or believe me,” she said, softening her tone and looking up at him through her lashes.
“Here’s what I think. You might be the student you claim you are, and you might be working on a paper or thesis.” He let go of her arm but then gripped her neck, his long finger pressing under her jaw until she tilted her head back further. “I also think you’ve stumbled on to something, crimes that intrigue you, and now you think you’re Agatha Christie.”
“You see me as an old woman with a British accent?” she retorted, pulling free from him and hurrying out of her kitchen. She needed him to leave and the longer he kept his hands on her, the harder it would be to get him out of her house.
He was behind her faster than she imagined he would be. “Hardly,” he growled, flipping her around to face him once again and this time pulling her into his arms. When he kissed her, the savage hunger he displayed had her insides boiling feverishly within seconds.
Kylie tried moving her hands to his chest. Maybe he thought she meant to push away from him, and in some part of her brain, she knew that she should. Get him to leave. Return to work. Her thoughts grew more muddled the longer he devoured her mouth. Not to mention the way he tightened his hold on her, pinning her with his arms against his rock hard body, turned her on a hell of a lot more than she should let it.
There was something about a man who got a bit rough. Something about how a demanding nature, taking and controlling and leaving no room for any reaction other than submission, got her so hot she swore she’d be a puddle at his feet in moments.
“Perry,” she gasped, managing to turn her head and break the kiss. Her lips tingled and a pang of regret hit her when she sucked in a deep breath. If she moved her face, looked into his intense eyes, she would initiate the next kiss. And she couldn’t do that. “Why are you doing this?” Her voice was no more than a raspy whisper.
His voice was rough. “It’s what we both want.”