Kieran never thought he’d return to White Pine, Minnesota, much less see Audrey again. Gorgeous and smart as ever, she’s just as irresistible as he remembered. She still doesn’t know why he had to leave-or that he’s missed her every day since. But he can’t deny he wants more than the no-strings fling Audrey proposes. As things between them heat up, Kieran must choose between the secret he’s sworn to keep and the woman he never stopped loving.
Audrey was just coming out of the women’s bathroom—makeup on, and bustier laced, and ready for work—when Kieran came striding around the corner from the other direction. Audrey pulled up short, thinking that the sight of Kieran could stop any woman in her tracks.
He was wearing a white collared shirt that had Harley Davidson embroidered above the breast pocket. The crisp material set off the dark-flamed color of his hair, and the impossibly pale green of his eyes. He’d tucked the shirt neatly into jeans with a black leather belt, and he wore black, thick-soled Harley boots on his feet.
It was the perfect blend of professional and edgy—that same mix of contrasts that she’d once found so appealing about Kieran—and she found herself staring longer than she should have. Just walk past, she commanded her legs, but they stayed rooted on the spot.
“Little late, aren’t you?” he said gruffly, glancing at his watch.
It was 9:55, and work didn’t start until ten o’clock. But instead of firing back, she gave him a slow smile. The kind of smile a woman who dressed in a leather bustier all the time might give a man she wanted. I can pretend I have an alter ego, she thought suddenly. She could be a different Audrey altogether—a badass, sexy Audrey—who could ride a motorcycle because Kieran would teach her. She’d tilt-shift Kieran Callaghan’s world, instead of the other way around, and get him to do what she wanted for a change.
The idea was ludicrous—and thrilling.
In spite of the alarm bells sounding in her head, she inched closer to him. Her pulse ricocheted just beneath her skin, and she prayed she wasn’t sweating visibly. “Maybe I’m right on time,” she whispered.
His eyes widened in surprise. She could already feel moisture collecting at the small of her back. Internally, she repeated shut up to the part of the brain screaming to stop what she was doing already and get to work.
She was ready to turn away when Kieran made an animalistic sound in the back of his throat. It froze her in place like prey in the wild. His eyes flashed dangerously. She’d had an effect on him.
“This isn’t how you get ahead in businesses that I run,” he said, low and gravelly.
“That’s because,” she demurred, “maybe you’re talking about the wrong kind of head entirely.”
If he started to smile, he pinned it back quickly. “I don’t remember you being so forward.”
“A lot can change in five years.”
He looked her up and down. His gaze was ravenous. “Clearly,” he growled, thrilling her.
The raw emotion coursing through her was suddenly carnal enough to spark fear. It jolted the logical part of her brain into action. What was she even doing? This was downright reckless. It was tawdry. She could lose her job.
“I should….” She started, but the words faded away into less than a whisper.
She should what, exactly? A few weeks ago, she thought she knew how to answer that question: She should work hard at a job that would reward her efforts. She should try not to make waves. She should put others first. She should guard her heart so no one like Kieran Callaghan would come roaring into her life ever again.
Which had all led her here. Broke. Underemployed. Restless. And with Kieran Callaghan staring at her like he wanted to devour her.
Turn away, her internal editor commanded. Go to work. But instead she simply watched as Kieran’s hand grasped her upper arm, and he pushed her straight back into the women’s restroom from which she’d just emerged. It was just a single stall and a sink, a cramped space, which felt smaller still from the heat of Kieran’s body and the overwhelming mass of him. Had he always been this tall?
He turned the lock with a satisfying click.