By Jess Austen
Jared loved a bookstore. He loved the smell of the books, the feel of them in his hands. There was nothing more sensual in the world than the leather bound cover of a book. Or the cloth binding of a hard cover. With the dust jacket. Just having one of those in his hands was like holding a glass of the finest wine; the bouquet of an exquisite red was as heady as a glorious story. He sat down with his bag, his mug of hot Sumatran coffee—black, thank you—and two maple bacon pastries. What to read first. What did he want to fill his time with before heading home.
The bell jingled as the woman pushed the door open. Damn, she was hot. Absolutely, the hottest thing on two legs. And baby, she had some serious legs. Long, firm, and in those heels, the heart shapes of her calves were almost more than he could handle. He lost them in the skirt she wore, but it was form fitting enough that her hips said it all. She had some damned fine curves, too. He loved ‘em with a little meat on the bones. Hell of a rack. Those breasts were fine and high.
What he couldn’t do to that body. His mouth, everywhere. His hands everywhere else. Peeling that skirt off those thighs like the peel of a banana. Pulling that blouse up over her head to release those glorious tits. He had a moment to wonder if she was wearing a bra before she turned away from him, heading into the stacks.
“Damn, you are gorgeous,” he muttered to himself. “Put you on your back and have my way with you.”
He had finally tossed the paperback copy of The Sensuous Woman that he’d read to almost shreds. He’d found a more recent hard cover on the shelves and it was now his. He pulled it out of the bag, gently caressing the spine. He took a ginger sip of the still hot coffee and crossed one leg, sitting back to enjoy some of the dated hints and tips on how to make love to women. Sixty years after the original publication, he was happy to see that people still bought this thing. But there was still some good information in here. Things to make a woman completely—
“Hey. That looks interesting. I read that when I was a kid.”
There she was, standing by his side, looking over his shoulder. Standing so close, he could smell the orange blossom of her perfume. Feel the heat from her skin. His cheeks warmed, getting caught reading something that was out of his league. But was she?
“You don’t look old enough,” he answered with a smile. “You’re, what? Mid-twenties?”
“Oh, ha ha.” She was holding a large cup of something still steaming, carrying her own book with what appeared to be the receipt stuck between some pages as a bookmark. She gave him a return smile, but there was something very smoldering in hers. “It’s been a while since that time of my life.”
“You surely don’t look it.” He gestured to the seat across from him. “Care to join me?”
In a voice dripping in pure musk and honey, she gave a bit of a sashay to her walk. That fine ass in that skirt strained at the seams just enough to make him hard as stone under the table. “I’d love to.” She set her cup and book down before smoothing the line of the material down around her hips and thighs, then sat.
She nodded in acknowledgement. “Sophia.”
“So, what did you get? What’s your book?”
“Oh. Uh.” She held it up, her own guilty smile on her lips. “Everything a Woman Should Know About Men.”
“Good book. I love Joyce Brothers. Wonderful writer.”
“I think so too, Jared.”
He slid the other pastry over to her. “Here, Sofia. This is really good.”
“I shouldn’t,” she said, her expression saying anything but. “I do have to watch my figure.” She lifted one shoulder in a small self-deprecating move, adding, “Such as it is.”
Jared put his pastry on the plate, not even taking the bite. He crossed his arms, resting them on the table as he leaned forward. Oh yes, the things I could do to you. To make you scream my name.
“Sofia, darlin’, if I’m not coming on too strong, I think you have a very fine figure. How about you let me watch it instead.”
“You think my figure is fine? Really? I feel so fat.”
Jared shook his head. “Lady, you may be a lot of things but fat is not one of them. You have all the right curves in all the right places. You got a body that I would really love to take all night exploring. Get a little sleep and wake up to explore some more.”
She matched his position, pushing her plate back a little to rest on the edge of the table. “You really are rather forward.”
“Yes, I am,” he agreed. “When I see something I want, I’m not shy about going for it.”
She looked down the bridge of her nose, her tongue slowly wetting the upper lip from corner to corner and then back again on the lower lip. “What if I’m not interested?”
He grinned, eyeing her much like a hungry wildcat would be eyeing the rabbit trying to hide. Licking those lips? Damn, he really wanted to kiss them. Bet she’s a great kisser.
“You’re not only interested, Miss Sofia, but you have a look on your face that says you might just be giving it very serious consideration.”
She raised her left hand, flashing the diamond solitaire and matching wedding band.
“You like being naughty, Mrs. Sofia. The naughtier, the better. I think you look like the kind of woman that likes to live dangerously. Am I wrong?”
“Actually. No. You’re not.” Now she was the one with that long, lean, hungry look. She had the demanding feline air of a woman who is probably a little more practiced at this than she should be. “So, let’s just say that I am interested. And I am naughty. What are you going to do to make it worth my while?”
“Start at your toes and nibble my way to your knees. I do mean nibble, baby. Find that soft place on the backs of them and rake my teeth there. Make you beg for mercy.”
“And then what?”
“Kiss the rest of the way. See if those thighs are just as sweet as I think they are. Might even give you a few bites there.” Jared took another sip of his coffee, starting to cool a little. “My lady is really sensitive there. And those love handles of hers. Damn, she loves it when I scratch my cheek scruff there, but I do it very lightly. Just enough to tease.”
“My man loves it when I rake my nails there too.” She licked the pastry, getting some of the sweetness in her mouth. The shine of the sugary glaze on her lips. “I’d love to bite you there. Maybe show you what I can do with my tongue.”
“Now, who’s being forward?”
“And naughty. Remember? You said I was naughty.”
“And forward. It’s pretty hot.”
She winked at him. “Think so, do you?”
“Yes, I do.” Jared put his book back in the bag. “I like naughty women. Naughty, bawdy, hot, and unafraid.”
With a knowing look, she smiled. “Well then. Aren’t you glad you married me?”
“Sofia, my love,” he answered. “Only every damn day I’m with you.” He stood up, reaching out for her hand. “How about we take our books and go home. And let me show you how glad I am.”
“Don’t forget your donut, baby. You’ll need the sugar. I intend to make you work for it.”
He watched her pick up her bag and her pastry, then turn and walk out the door. That walk, that fine ass in motion. Made him hard as a rock. And so deeply in love with her.
“That reminds me, we’re out of whipped cream.”
Jared made sure to tip the server well and followed her out the door and home.
Jess Austen is a well-traveled Kentuckian with a romantic soul and a vivid imagination. Her first series is the romantic suspense Her Super Spy trilogy (Deadly Memory, Deadly Payback, and Deadly Communion, currently available through Amazon in paperback and eBook formats. Ms. Austen lives in Lexington.