Hot water chased the chill from Matt’s bones. Several spots ached but he agreed with his hostess. No serious injuries and bruises were to be expected. He wasn’t sure if the accident had brought good luck or bad. He groaned and thought of his bike. How much damage?
An image of the woman who had rescued him appeared. The accident hadn’t been all bad luck. Auburn hair, green eyes, long slender fingers. The shapeless shiny yellow raincoat had covered the rest of her. What had she kept hidden and why had she continued to wear the garment.
Mentally he removed the coat and envisioned a tall, slender naked body. Long legs were a given. She was taller than his usual preferences. He gave her a slender waist and breasts large enough to fill his hands. A few subtle moves on his part and the night could turn into a lover’s delight.
His cock throbbed. Down boy. Rushing this lady would mean a strikeout. She had seemed shy and even skittish. He couldn’t give in to his desire to leap into action. Seduction was the way to go. He grabbed his erect member and worked a bit to remove the edge. He had all night.
After drying he pulled on sweatpants and his favorite tee shirt. The blue matched his eyes and acted like a magnet drawing eyes to his chest. He shoved the towel in the hamper and hung his trousers on the towel bar.
Matt left the bathroom and collided with his hostess. He grabbed her around the waist to prevent their crashing into a wall. He’d been on target with every imaginary feature of her body. Need flared.
“Are you accident prone?” she asked.
“Not usually.” He stepped back to leisurely study her. His gaze followed long legs to a slender waist. Even her breasts were as perfect as he’d hoped.
Their gazes locked. A fire spread over her cheeks. Had she read his intentions? In an instant his thoughts leaped from a simple thank you to finding a way into her bed. He grinned. Her stare made him wonder if her intentions matched his.
She stepped back until she pressed against the wall. He braced his hands near her head. “Thank you.” His mouth brushed hers. She tasted of chocolate. He ran his tongue over her lips. She gasped. He plunged inside.
His hands slid around her and pressed her closer. Their tongues danced. He cupped her rear and held her against his erection.
She pushed against his shoulders. He gasped a breath. She turned her head away. “You’ve taken your thank you far enough.”
Laughter he dare not release choked him. He planned to take his thanks a long, long way. “You’re right. We should introduce ourselves. I’m Matt Blakefield, Editor of Good Livin’, one of the Good Magazines.”
He frowned. “How? Have we met? There’s no way I could forget you.”
“Try high school.” Frost coated her voice.
“I’m drawing a blank.”
Knowledge arrived like boulders rolling down a mountain slope during an avalanche. Shame washed through him. “You’ve changed.”
Great line, jerk.
Her eyes narrowed. “I have. I’m no longer a scarecrow with bottle bottom glasses and carrot hair.”
He groaned. “What I said that day was wrong.”
“In a way but the description fit. Wasn’t nice to hear though.”
Her voice chilled him. Visions of an uncomfortable time formed. Did she want an apology? He would give her one and more. “Believe me or not, after you ran off I tried to find you. I stopped at your house. Your mom said you weren’t home. At school on Monday I looked for you. You weren’t there. You never returned. What happened?”
She stared at the floor. “Asking you out that day was my last chance to make my dream work. We moved that weekend. My step-father was reassigned.”
“What spurred you to ask?”
“The cheerleaders said you were shy and liked me. I took a chance. Dumb move.” She shrugged.
Shy. Him? That was a joke. A flurry of emotions cascaded. “Can I make it up to you, Cassandra?”
“Cassie. Only my mother calls me Cassandra.” She slipped down the hall to the main room and sat on the couch. “What happened years ago can’t be changed.”
“I could try.” The desire storming his body should have subsided following her chilling glare and the fountain of guilt. His younger sisters had told him of how the words and actions of teenage boys hurt girls. How badly had his ill-chosen words hurt Cassie? He sat beside her and rested an arm on the back of the couch. “Are you sure there’s nothing I can do?”
“Absolutely sure.” She reached for the remote and turned the movie off.
How could she be so sure? Hadn’t she experienced the urgency of his kiss? His body hummed with energy and need. He glanced at the champagne flute on the table. “Expecting company?” If some man arrived they would surely lock horns. For tonight this woman was his.
“Why are you here alone?”
She looked away. “Needed time and a quiet place to think. What are you doing miles from nowhere?”
“Escaping a wedding.”
Her eyes narrowed. “Yours?”
“Not in a million years.” What had happened to cause the bite in her voice? “My brother’s. Do you remember Mark?”
“I do.” She folded her hands in her lap. “How are your sisters?”
“Getting married in December. Double wedding. Dad recently married.” He shuddered. “Had to escape the celebration and all the schemes to make me the next victim.”
He inched his hand toward her shoulders. “All the recently paired spend hours trying to match me with their single friends. I hate weddings.”
“So do I.”
He edged closer. A woman who shared his views. The possibilities of this chance meeting excited him. “I thought all women loved the fuss and bother.” Then he noticed her name engraved on the champagne flute. “I see. What happened?”