Read Lipstick on His Collar Online
Authors: Inez Kelley
Tags: #Literature & Fiction, #Erotica, #Romantic, #Romance, #Contemporary
For Gin—Feel the Power
“Damn, it’s hotter than Satan’s nutsack.”
The overheard complaint earned his agreeing snort. Despite his frosty last name, Bram Winters’ internal temperature registered somewhere near charbroiled. The heat pressed down like a woolen blanket. The air felt thick enough to spoon. Fire season, he mused, when the land lay so dry and the air so hot, the barest spark erupted like a powder keg.
He surveyed the gathered crowd, scanning the jostling bodies. People weren’t so different from nature. Slow molasses heat made people near sick with fever, made tempers flare, impaired judgments and pushed people to take daring risks. Anything to break the drudgery of sloshing through the half-baked daily grind. His skin crawled with the hum of trapped adrenaline. Fever that needed an escape.
A local brewery was making a mint selling frosty-cold, hometown beer. The icy brew quenched the dry inferno in Bram’s mouth as he stared out over the open firehouse bay. Small-town festivals were the same all over the country. Cotton-candy vendors, local craftsmen, and giggly teenaged queens waving from cars decked out in crepe paper. The heavy scents of hot sausages and kettle corn filled his nose, and Bram’s stomach growled. It looked like he was going to make festival fare his dinner tonight.
The little mom-and-pop motel he’d dropped his bag in had a diner attached. He’d glanced in the window but the festival noise and activity had pulled his attention. Besides, what the motel sign boasted as air conditioning was really tepid, stale air spitting loudly from a boxed unit. If he was going to sweat, he’d do it with a full belly. He’d stopped just long enough to shuck off his suit jacket and tie and take a leak. He’d pitched the laptop on the bed and turned off his pager and cell, dropping both on the cheap dresser. He was an Emergency Communications Specialist officially out of communication range.
An amp emitted a high-pitched squeal as the firehouse band took a break, and the prerecorded strains of a sensual ballad rose into the night. The scent of alcohol blended with old turnout gear and oil in the bay, wafting on a hot summer breath through the wide-open doors. Fire engines, pumpers and ladder trucks lined the parking lot, creating a dance floor made of blacktop and ringed by gleaming cherry-red and silver. Strobing red and white lights flickered over the crowd. Something in his blood responded to the familiar flash, urging him, turning up the dial on his buzzing adrenaline. Every sense went on high alert, poised for the siren to sound.
The sultry song mingled with heated night and a flash of crimson caught Bram’s eye. He exited the bay and looked over the shoulder of one very rotund man with a mullet.
Alone, in the middle of a small dance area, oblivious to the couples around her, a woman swayed. A punch of pure sexual longing knocked the breath from his chest. The tiny little dress in deep blood-red skimmed her thighs and clung to curves that made him salivate. Her shoulders and hips moved to the tune, her eyes closed, lost to the music’s caress. A dewy glow turned her skin to gleaming gold in the summertime evening sun.
She swooped her long honey-brown hair off her neck and it trickled through her fingers like a waterfall of silk. Thoughts of steam baths and saunas rushed his mind. Blood and temptation rushed his groin. Usually Bram preferred cool Nordic blondes or ebony-haired women with creamy skin but this woman spiked his interest into the red zone.
The generous curve of her breasts strained at the scooped neckline and caused the thin little straps at her shoulders to narrow. Normally, that dress would have been nice, youthful, cute maybe, definitely not lust inspiring. But in this heat, with those movements and the euphoric shine the music kissed her face with, Bram’s grip tightened on the bottle. Long, lean legs streamed from beneath the flared skirt. A firmly rounded ass flexed with her steps. He could almost feel her legs wrapped around him.
“Damn, she could wet my whistle.”
A fierce swell of ownership surged at mulletman’s whispered observation. Bram clenched his jaw. He had no claim, didn’t know her from Eve. But he wanted to. Wanted to know her in every sense of the word, biblical included. Common sense told him he was crazy. She could be married, might have a husband, or a homegrown boyfriend standing nearby watching this public bit of melodic foreplay.
His mind heard the protests but his dick ignored the words. Jamming his hand in the pocket of his suit pants, he hid the evidence of his instant woody. Her lips entranced him. Full and wide, they were almost too big for her face but when she smiled at some private thought, he bit back a groan. A vivid, potent image of those painted lips wrapped around his cock blasted into his mind, wiping out all caution.
The twirling lights caressed her skin. His fingers and his tongue ached to follow. A tiny upturned nose combined with her almost-pointed ears to give her a wanton elfish look. The delicate line of her jaw begged to be licked. Her head rolled with the song, exposing the cream of her neck, and he unconsciously took a step toward her. A couple wrapped in an embrace circled between them, and he paused.
She opened her eyes and her gaze landed on him like a brushfire. Hot met dry, and a spark flashed, exploded and raged through him. Intense and appreciative, unblinking and direct, she did not look away. There was no chance she had accidentally engaged his notice. The look was too conscious, too appraising. With a quick drop of long lashes, her gaze vanished then returned to snag his.
Not unintentional. Deliberate.
Need scorched him, blazing hotter than the temperature and more intoxicating than the beer in his hand. She never stopped her rhythmic motions. But now, her eyes—wide mossy-green and shining with interest—locked with his, and she danced only for him. A pale pink tongue darted out to caress her upper lip, and he mimicked it, longing to taste what she silently offered. Temptation swept over him like a blistering tidal wave, stealing inside before he could think to shove it aside to break the powerful connection. He should. He would. In a minute.
She turned and rolled her hips. She held his gaze over her shoulder, her lips pouting as she finished her slow spin. Long fingers tipped in a frosty pale color slid down her body, and his palms itched. He knew fire sirens but she was a
, her call reaching across the ocean of people to entice him, lure him, draw him closer.
Mulletman spat a brief grunt when Bram handed off his beer, thrusting it into the other man’s gut. In three long strides, he stood in front of her. She was tall, the top of her head reaching his nose, her mouth not far from his. She tilted her head back, smiled and kept dancing. Green shouldn’t smolder but her eyes did. Bram forgot all about the possibility she had a partner—didn’t even consider she might slap him—and lowered his head. Her hips kept time with the sensual melody and her hands skated up his chest to circle his neck. For one long second he paused, drawing in her breath, tasting her desire as it mingled with his.
A feminine scent of citrus and sunshine wafted to his nose as she leaned close, nuzzling his cheek. Her kiss seared his bones. This was no gentle first kiss. It was a detonation of lust, yearning and passion like he’d never felt.
The song ended but he kept kissing her. Another livelier song began and she kept kissing him. Her lips parted and his tongue slipped in to find hers waiting. Drowning in the savory taste of her mouth, he tugged her close. Full heavy breasts pressed against his chest and her hips moved against his groin. She had to feel how hard he was, but she just circled her hips more firmly. His hand slid down to cup her ass.
“Hey, take it out of here. We got kids around.” A gruff-voiced intrusion pulled Bram’s lips from hers and he stared down into her face. Lust burned bright in her eyes. The flashing lights sparked like tiny fires in her gaze and her chest heaved as hard as his. Taking his hand, she stepped back and pulled him toward the crowd at the dance floor edge. Everything else faded away. In his lusty red-tinged sight, all he could see was her, beckoning him.
She rounded the firehouse, slipping into the slanted shadows between the fire station and the hardware store. Bram quickened his pace. The narrow passage held deeply muted darkness and he nearly collided into her. She spun around, and in an instant, he had her back against the wall, his mouth taking hers. Semi-privacy emboldened him and the kiss deepened, jacking his hunger higher.
Short nails raked down his spine and her breasts thrust up. He cupped one, thumbing the tight crest until a whimper eked from her mouth. It tasted of spicy homemade wine and forbidden promises.
“What’s your name?” he whispered between tastes of her.
“What do you want it to be?”
Pulling his hand from her breast, he touched her bottom lip. She licked his fingertip. He bent for another kiss and his smile caressed hers. “Seriously, what’s your name?”
“Bram. Bram Wi—”
Her hand flew to his mouth. “Just Bram, okay?”
So that’s the game we’re going to play
. Nodding his head, his tongue flicked out, stroking her palm. She smoothed her fingertips across his lip and he caught one, sucking it into his mouth for a fast nip. “Okay. What do I call you?”
“Yours.” She took his mouth hard, fingers tugging at his hair until he was gasping. He pulled back to suck in oxygen. She leaned her head on the brick and looked at him. Filtered sunlight showed him her tilted kiss-swollen lips. “You’re not from here.”
“No, just passing through for work.”
Her fingers slid from his hair down to his neck, slipping into the vee of his collar. She toyed with the button before opening it. Her mouth teased with a lick and her words brought a shiver. “Where are you staying?”
“The Sleepytime Motel.” He grinned. “Is there anywhere else to stay in this rinky little town?”
She smoothed her hands down his chest to circle his waist. “No. I’ve got a business opportunity for you, Bram.”
A warning light flashed in his brain.
Oh shit no.
He pulled his frame away from hers, held a tiny space between them. Did he nearly get suckered by a pro? Humiliation circled outside his lust, waiting to pounce. He’d never paid for ass and wasn’t about to start, no matter how hot she was. “Business…like as in…professional? Are you a prostitute?”
Her laugh chimed like music, ringing with surprise but not shame. “Oh God no, I just feel daring and wild and…I want to play…with you.”
Hallelujah. Thank you, God, for women’s lib and sexual freedom
. His hard-on returned with throbbing force. “What kind of business proposition?”
“My business.” Her lips caressed his Adam’s apple. “And your business.” Along his thigh, her leg crept higher, pressing her damp feminine heat into his groin. “And nobody else’s business.”
“Alright, I’m listening.”
She angled her head, shaking her dark gold hair from her heart-shaped face. “Right this second, what do you want the most?”
A shift pressed his erection into her stomach. “One guess.”
Her eyes closed and a carnal smile lifted her cheeks, rounding the flushed color. Her mouth found his neck again and her tongue slicked to his jaw. “Anything you want. Just give me the night. Treat me like your queen and I’ll be your everything.”
Thundering need pounded in his belly when her fingers dropped to trace the outline of his cock through his zipper. It strained toward her touch and any doubts he might have had disintegrated with a shudder. “Elizabeth, Victoria or Mary, Queen of Scots?”
Like a whiskey-laced tonic, her laugh shot through him. She licked up his chin. “Isis. Artemis. Athena. Venus.”
His chuckle stirred her hair. “Those are goddesses, not queens.”
“Then make me your goddess and I’ll take you to heaven.”
Accompanying her promise was the long, slow slide of his zipper and a groan ripped through him. Her hand delved deep, curving around the head of his dick. His eyes slid closed and he clung to the sizzle of pleasure. This libido-intoxication was too alien to examine right now. The sensations raged too exotic, too intense to dissect and scrutinize. He chose to relish the unexpected and uncharacteristic flash of lust in hedonistic fashion, thrusting his hips closer.
This wasn’t him. He didn’t pick up strange woman, nameless ones at that, and indulge in wild one-night stands. Some men in his position might, but not him. But he was going to. Tonight. With her. Whatever her name was. Self-recrimination could come later.
Steamy hot and erotic, her tongue rasped over his jaw and down his neck, nipping, biting. Her hand stroked him, a too-slow rhythm that only propelled his hunger. She could be whoever she wanted, have anything she wanted—his car, his wallet, maybe she wanted his left nut, it didn’t matter.
“What do you want, lady?”
“Cotton candy and night at the fair. After that, you, hard and fast…and more than once.”
Bram eased away from her with difficulty, tugging at his zipper. He was stiff as an oak two-by-four and straightening hurt.
Cotton candy? Sure, easy, no problem, whatever, I want to fuck you.