Highlighting the gnaw-your-knuckles-twist-in-your-seat romantic suspense One True Thing by Amber Lea Easton on Frisky Friday! When the world knows your name, there's nowhere to hide...friends become enemies and strangers become allies... Check it out! Adult content excerpt, blurb below that.
Stay? Go? Dominic lingered in the room and watched the quiet conversation she held with her bodyguard. Curiosity about her abrupt dismissal of the Secret Service kept him standing in place.
Not my concern, he thought as he stood there with his shirt open and loose. Go upstairs into your own suite and retreat into your safe, predictable life. Go.
His feet refused to cooperate with his brain.
When the bodyguard who looked like a James Bond imitator walked back into the room, face devoid of expression, Dominic flicked his gaze toward Vanessa's back.
"You should go," John said. "We have the situation under control and she's had a brutal day."
"I assume press are outside?" he asked.
"If not, they will be," John answered. "Your security is doing well at keeping them from entering the building."
"Not too well if two suspicious looking men were wandering the building."
"I should go back to my house despite the renovations," Vanessa said, returning to the room, face pale and eyes wide.
"No," the two men said in unison.
"I'm putting innocent people at risk staying here." She looked between them, her large eyes full of shimmering tears.
"You're safer here." Dominic may have been living in a bubble for the past eleven years, but he prided himself on being smart and handling himself in crisis situations. He turned his back on her and looked John in the eye. "I'll be staying with her tonight."
"Understood," John said with a curt nod before looking past him to where Vanessa had moved from the sofa to stand behind him. "I'm sorry about your sculptures, ma'am, but the worst thing you can do now is move back to your house before we've made the necessary security improvements. We're coordinating with the Secret Service and will work through the night."
With that, the bodyguard left them alone.
The silence ate all the air from the room.
He heard the rustling of her dress dragging along the carpet and turned to see her headed for the balcony. It was after midnight and her entire day had been nothing but one catastrophe after another. What do you say to someone who knew she'd become a walking target?
I need to go, he thought again.
Chin resting on folded arms against the balcony, she stared down at the streets below, erratic energy zapping from her bent body encased in violet while the breeze tossed her long tresses against bare shoulders.
She was too beautiful, too known, too wild, too…much. He knew that she was the kind of woman who could devour him, who would know his soul, who would wield her power over him with advanced skill. Yet he couldn’t leave. Maybe that’s why he had come, armed with chili-cheese fries, to dare destiny.
"My great-grandmother was a painter," she said after he'd joined her. "Being an artist is all I've ever wanted to do."
"And you did it. You had a successful showing and—"
"Someone destroyed them all."
"Yes, they did." He couldn't imagine having one of his resorts go up in flames. Maybe it wasn't the same exactly, but he poured so much of himself into each design, into every part of the decision making process, that it would feel like...a death. He didn't know what to do or what to say to ease her pain.
She blew out a long breath before standing straight and looking at him through the shadows. "It's at least one in the morning by now. Time for bed. Are you joining me?"
He inhaled sharply at the idea of resuming where they'd left off.
"Don't you want to...talk or something?" he asked.
"About my feelings?" Her lips twisted. "It sucks. It hurts like hell. It pisses me off. There. I talked about my feelings. We good now?"
He'd never met anyone like her. Vanessa Warren was definitely one-of-a kind. She sauntered to him, almost like a predator about to go in for the kill, stood on her tiptoes until her breath caressed his chin, and whispered, "Make me believe in something good, something better than a lie."
He grabbed her ass and lifted her up until they were eye-to-eye. Hair licked with fire slipped across his face when she leaned over him, all color and warmth. He wanted this, wanted her. This is why he had come, to feel this again, this agony of desire that he had suppressed for years.
Fingers twisted in the strands of hair that slipped against his face. He crushed her to him, ravaging her mouth like a dying man grasping at life. Tongues teased. Teeth nipped. And he fell past a point he had never thought to cross, not that he cared, not that it mattered. In his mind, he could see the lights of the city, blurring with speed and spinning beneath them.
God, she felt good. Intoxicating. Her lips nibbled across his neck.
“I shouldn’t want you so much, but I do. I can’t stop myself,” she whispered.
“Why do you want me?” He held her firm with his fists wrapped in her hair. “Tell me.”
“You wanted me when you didn’t know who I was. We were just two people, strangers, without a past or a future. I knew you wanted to fuck me against that mural, beneath that tarp, I saw it in your eyes, thought about it all damn day. Then tonight there you were. You walked up those stairs like a predator, seeking me out, sweeping me away.”
“You want to be swept away?”
"I'll do my best." He scooped her off her feet and carried her from the balcony to the bedroom. He fell onto his back against the mattress with her silk-encased body draped across him.
“Damn dress.” She propped herself above him and grimaced. “Help me out of it?”
“With pleasure,” he whispered against her neck.
His fingers moved to the discreet zipper at her side and — with his gaze never leaving hers — he slid it down. She shrugged it off her left shoulder. As if unwrapping a Christmas gift, he wasted no time in sliding the rest from her lean, toned body. Velvet hissed down her torso and slipped from her legs. Clad only in strapless bra and panties with her hair falling in wild layers past her shoulders, she kicked the tangled material off her feet and flashed him a devilish smile.
“You’re deadly.” But what a way to die.
Off came the bra. She grinned like the seductress she was and tossed it aside. “I’ll be gentle.”
“Don’t lie to me anymore.” His hands covered her breasts, claiming them. “Game’s over.”
“Wrong, Nic. It’s just getting started.” She pushed his shirt from his shoulders and breathed against his neck.
He grabbed a handful of her hair and crushed his mouth to hers. No going slow. The need to satiate the lust was too strong, too overpowering. Every kiss, each touch set off a chain reaction of moans and longing.
Somehow — as if in a trance — he stripped free from his clothes. It had been too long since he’d had this release, this intensity of emotion, felt the wildness pumping through his veins. Years of abstinence abandoned in one night. He’d think about why later. He had to have her. Now. Fast. Hard.
Legs wrapped around him, she urged him to thrust inside her. Take her. Mindless passion erupted when he entered her with one sure, hard movement. Hands were everywhere. Glorious. Every sensation electrified his skin. Their lips found each other in the dark as they moved as one ferocious animal with one singular thought: possession.
“It’s been too long,” he said into her mouth.
“I love the way you feel inside me,” she said. “Please, Nic. God, Nic.”
That’s all it took. The sound of his name coming out of her mouth at that moment. The huskiness of her voice, the warmth of her body encompassing his, her hand pulling at his hair. Damn.
But she was with him all the way, biting his shoulder and clawing at his back. Energy bled from his soul, powerful and intoxicating. Sweat soaked their bodies like a layer of oil. Damp hair stuck to his neck and forehead.
“Don’t move,” she instructed against his ear. “Stay inside me.”
He pushed his hands into the hair against the sides of her face and struggled to decipher her features in the dark. “I couldn’t wait. It was too—"
“You’re not complaining are you?” She squeezed her thighs around his hips and laughed.
“Me? No, I was just—"
“You talk too damn much. Next time we’ll go slow.”
“Ten minutes from now too soon for you?” Her tongue flicked across his lips.
“Make it five.”
Back cover blurb...
Power...it's a heady drug.
Vanessa Warren is America's favorite rebel. Daughter and granddaughter of US Presidents and sister to a future one, her family connections and notoriety are seen as leverage for manipulating the White House—if she's captured.
One little lie leads to a whole lot of trouble.
Reclusive international resort developer, Dominic Varga, needs a date to ward off his matchmaking parents. When he persuades the notorious Vanessa Warren to play his girlfriend for the night, he has no idea he's stepped into the crosshairs of kidnappers who will do anything—destroy everything—to get to her.
One true thing...
Trapped in a rapidly escalating international terror plot, Dominic and Vanessa's lie becomes the only real thing in the midst of betrayals, conspiracies, and murder. As their world falls apart, they suddenly only have each other to rely on against ruthless people who will stop at nothing to achieve their goal. Who can they trust? Who is behind the plot—her own family, a political rival of her family's, or a terrorist organization? How far will the kidnappers go—what will they be willing to sacrifice—to control the power of the White House? Is there anywhere in the world where they can find safety?