She’s holding out for a happy ever after.
I know where to find my happily ever after—between the pages of a romance novel. It’s why I sell books, why I blog about them, and why I’ll never get disappointed by love.So what if my brother’s best friend from high school is now a bestselling author? Or that he just blew back into town on a Harley, filling out a pair of jeans like he never did before? Or that he’s agreed to do a signing at my bookstore on such short notice? Because despite all his adoring female fans, I kind of hated his book.
The last time I saw Annie Denning, she was a senior in high school, three years older than me and way out of my league.
Now I’m her last-minute date to a wedding, and what started as a night of pure fun has turned into something more real than either of us anticipated.Annie is my muse. When I’m with her, my writer’s block fades away, and the words finally flow.The only problem? She wants the fairy tale—her very own happily ever after—and anyone who’s read my book knows the truth. I just don’t believe they exist.
“I want it to be you, too,” she blurted, and he could hear the tremble in her voice. Because here they were, six days into their friendship, admitting it might not be enough, that there might be something more brewing beneath the surface.
She chewed her bottom lip, and then her expression broke into the biggest, most beautiful smile he’d ever seen, and Jeremy knew he was in deeper than he’d ever meant to go. Yet he had no intention of swimming back to the surface.
“I’d give my right hand to kiss you right now,” he said. He watched her neck as she swallowed and knew he was pushing the envelope, but he couldn’t help it. She wanted him, too.
“Are you right-handed?” she asked, her eyes sparkling now with a mischief he’d never seen before.
“Then don’t do that. Makes it harder to imagine what that hand could do to me in three months.”
Holy shit. He was hard as a rock in a millisecond. What was she doing?
“Do you have any obligation past your ten o’clock deadline?” he asked, wanting to whisk her from this place and then…what?
She shook her head. “Not really. I just have to post about my experience on the Facebook page—per the contract— then I’m free. What did you have in mind?”
Christ. He had a lot of things in mind, but he couldn’t do any of them.
“How about this?” she continued. “You go home and get comfortable. I’ll go home and do this little post thing. Then I’ll call you, and we’ll see if we can’t do something…together.”
Fuck. She was serious. He swallowed hard.
“Can you elaborate on that, please? Because if I let my imagination run with this and I’m misinterpreting you, there’s a certain vital organ of mine that will be really disappointed.”
She narrowed her eyes. “Your heart?”
He fought the urge to adjust himself right there in the chair.
“You’re not going to make this easy, are you?” he asked.
She shook her head slowly, leaning toward him over the table. “Why would I do that when it’s so fun to watch you squirm?”
And squirm in his fucking chair he did. “Do it now,” he insisted.
“Do the post now. Then get in a cab and go home. Better yet, do the damn post in the cab. I’ll walk so it takes me a little longer to get to my place. Then call me the second you walk in the door. I mean, as soon as that door closes behind you, have my number up and ready, and then hit send.”
I can touch myself all I want.
He let her words play on repeat inside his head, not caring that his dick throbbed, that he ached like he’d never ached before. Because he was going to talk her into the biggest fucking orgasm she’d ever had. Even if it brought him to his knees.
And he knew it would.
They walked to the door together, wordlessly. He whisked Grace out the door and put her in a cab.
“Talk soon,” she said, before he closed the door.
All he could do was nod.
Her voice and her words remained on loop as he made his way back to his apartment, though this time his limp had nothing to do with his leg.
About the Author
AJ Pine writes stories to break readers’ hearts, but don’t worry—she’ll mend them with a happily ever after. As an English teacher and a librarian, AJ has always surrounded herself with books. All her favorites have one big commonality–romance. Naturally, her books have the same. When she’s not writing, she’s of course reading. Then there’s online shopping (everything from groceries to shoes) and, of course, a tiny bit of TV where she nourishes her undying love of vampires and superheroes. And in the midst of all of this, you’ll also find her hanging with her family in the Chicago burbs.