My life just went South…
Twenty-four hours. That’s how long it took my life to flip upside down.
Wake up in bed alone after the best night of my life? Check.
Get fired instead of the promised promotion? Check.
Wealthy parents cut me off when I refuse to follow their path for my life? Check.
Now I’m in Cricket Creek, SC—a place where no New Yorker belongs—disowned and broke, with a new job that I can’t mess up. Oh yeah, and staring at my one-night stand, who happens to be the complete opposite of my type.
Noah Hunter never should have made it back to my apartment in NYC, and I definitely shouldn’t be in his small town. But fate had another plan. Or a horrible sense of humor.
Who knew Mr. Wrong could feel so right…
I found myself wishing I lived in a simple studio, nothing grand, so he would feel we were on an even playing field. Somehow I knew that would impress him more than the reality—he’d come home with one of the wealthiest people in New York—hell, all of America.
I started to open the door, then paused and spun around, causing Hunter to bump into me. My body burned with embarrassment, and I wondered why I was so nervous. I’d hooked up with guys before, so what was so different about this?
I took in the stubble on his face, his buzzed hair, the waffle-knit shirt, worn jeans, all of it so unlike any other guy who’d been to my apartment. And that was when I had my answer—everything. Everything about this was different.
“Grace?” He bent forward, closing the small space between us, his hand covering mine over the doorknob, twisting. It was the first time he’d said my name, and I was surprised by how much it soothed me. I wished he’d say it again and again. The accent that had grated on my nerves mere hours before now sounded like slow, warm syrup, coating me in a caress I never knew I craved.
His breath hit my neck, and I lost my mind, all sense of reality. “Grace?” he repeated.
“We don’t have to do this,” he whispered.
“I want to, I just…this…I’m…”
Hunter’s lips gently touched mine, ending my rambling midsentence, and the small spark in my stomach roared to life, spreading out through me in tingles that could warm me even in the coldest of winters. Apparently, I didn’t need a coat after all; I just needed Hunter.
“This is on you, City. Your choice. But I’m in. I’m so in.” For once, just once, I didn’t want to think. I turned the knob and walked inside, listening as Hunter shut the door behind us and turned the deadbolt, then there was only silence all around us—no lights, no sounds to distract us. Hunter took my hand, his eyes on me, and slowly kissed each of my fingers then tugged me toward him. His lips found mine, this time rougher, taking a deep inhale instead of a breath, nothing about it calm or pretty. I knew then and there that this, whatever it was, would be unlike any night I’d experienced before.
I led him to my room, my pulse hammering in my ears, my body unbelievably keyed up. I couldn’t stop thinking, couldn’t relax.
“Don’t do that.”
I turned in his arms, lifted my chin. “What?”
“Hide in here.” He kissed my forehead, then trailed slow kisses down the side of my face, heat hitting my ear as he whispered, “Let me take the worry away. For one night, just be you.”
“One mind-blowing night.” Hunter’s hands dropped to my waist, his gaze following his hands, igniting my insides all over again. “What are you afraid of? Me…or yourself?”
About the Author
Melissa West writes heartfelt Southern romance and YA sci-fi romance, all with lots of kissing. Because who doesn’t like kissing?. She lives outside of Atlanta, GA with her husband and two daughters and spends most of her time writing, reading, or fueling her coffee addiction.