Unraveled, p.5
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       Unraveled, p.5

         Part #3 of Woodlands series by Jen Frederick
Page 5


  We stared at each while she talked on and on. She’d moved past my own personal courage and her child’s dexterity to speak about her own bravery in having children given her small birthing channel. I felt Teresa wiggle her hips to draw attention to them but I couldn’t look away from the guy at the bar.

  As she talked on, I watched as he pushed slowly away from the wall while maintaining eye contact. There was something familiar about him, and for a second I wondered if we’d met before. He walked so confidently, his bearing erect. His arms were held just so at his sides, as if he was ready for anything. With purpose, he strode toward me. I would have remembered this guy if we’d met before. Even in my fog of grief, I would have been able to appreciate a guy who stood an inch or two over six feet tall and whose shoulders were so broad that I wondered if he had trouble fitting through an ordinary door.

  Those shoulders tapered into a lovely V that would have made any other girl’s mouth water. Good thing I was immune to those feelings. I could look, appreciate the work of art in front of me, and go home unaffected. If I hadn’t been completely unsusceptible, I’d be in big trouble but, as I reminded myself, I liked slim, short guys, not men whose jeans could swallow me whole or who could hold me up while we had sex—which short guys could do anyway.

  “Hey, sweetheart. ” The stranger bent down and brushed his lips against the side of my face in what seemed to be a kiss. It’d been so long that maybe it was just a puff of air against my cheek, but I thought I felt his soft lips touch my skin. Whatever it was, it raised a flock of winged things inside my stomach. “I’ve been waiting for you. Gotta introduce you to my boys. ”

  My gaze flitted from Teresa’s wide-eyed gaze to the stranger’s, which I now saw was hazel. I ignored the flutter in my belly and the feeling, well, lower. It wasn’t my heart rate that had accelerated. The pounding in my ears had to be from some other source. Hot males didn’t affect me like they apparently affected Teresa, whose eyes had glazed over and who might actually be trying to sniff the guy. The man signaled to Steve, the indoor bartender, who came over and led Teresa to a chair. I watched the whole thing like I was in a trance.

  The stranger cupped my elbow and directed me toward the patio, but I didn’t want to go back to the patio. Strangely, I directed him down the hallway, past the bathrooms, and then turned right before an emergency exit door that was just an ordinary door, which all the staff knew, and probably some of the patrons as well. I couldn’t extricate myself from his grasp if I’d wanted to. The touch of his calloused fingers against my elbow was as powerful as an alien tractor beam.

  “I, ah, thank you,” I stammered out.

  “You just looked like you needed a rescue,” he murmured, his mouth inches from my head. We were facing each other, his hand still holding my elbow. I swore I could feel his breath ruffling my hair and my whole body shivered from the sensation.

  “Is that your gig? Rescuing folks?”

  He stuck his tongue into the side of his mouth. “Yeah, you could say that. ” His eyes wandered over me, taking in my unkempt hair, mascara-smudged eyes, and slightly damp T-shirt, made wet by the constant handling of mugs, bottles, and shots.

  Teresa may have been tipsy or drunk but she’d still looked immaculate. Her blonde hair, lighter than mine and perfectly dyed, had been blown out into the perfect summer beach wave hairstyle. My own hair was drawn into a simple ponytail and I was acutely aware of all the strands that had snuck out during my hours of work and how my fingers were pruny from handling all the liquids behind the bar. I wore sneakers, low ankle socks, black cotton shorts and a simple white T-shirt. Even the worst-dressed bar patron was more put together than me.

  I smoothed a few strands behind my ears, an action that loosened his firm grip on my elbow, before I caught myself. What was I doing? Why should I care what this guy thought of how I looked? I tucked my fingers in my shorts pocket. My elbow already felt cold, missing his touch. I frowned at myself. This was so unlike me.

  “Do we know each other? You look really familiar to me. ” I looked at him suspiciously.

  He smiled broadly at me. “I don’t think so but let’s remedy that. Gray Phillips, from San Diego. ”

  “Sam Anderson. ” I took his right hand in my right hand and shook it. “From here. ”

  “You’re working the patio bar, right?”

  I nodded, still holding his hand, enjoying the feel of it. He had a nice grip, firm, calloused, but not too rough. And it was very large. Very, very large. Like I think it could span my whole waist. Before I knew it, I was pressing his large hand against my stomach. His eyes widened and his nostrils flared at my unthinking invitation, and before my good sense could catch up with my instincts, his head was lowering toward mine.

  A faint scent of spice and ocean invaded my nose, the subtle smell drowning out the heavier smells of the bar. I should be smelling sweat from the dance floor and yeast from the spilled beer or maybe even ammonia from the cleaning supplies behind me but in this little corner my senses were filled with him.

  “I’ve been watching you all night. ” His mouth was right above the tip of my ear and I felt something crack inside me—a fissure was forming in the mask I’d donned earlier today or perhaps his breath, his touch, his words were simply hastening the demise of the barriers I’d held between myself and everyone else for two years. Inside my body, it felt like there was an awakening, and every fiber of my being reached toward him, upward and outward as if I were a flower on the first day of a spring rain. I lifted my head to gaze up, wide-eyed and anxious with anticipation.

  Some part of my brain was telling me that the storage closet was just two steps to my right and that the exit door was just beyond that. I knew my Rover was outside, and all three were safer than standing here almost in his embrace, but I couldn’t hear the warning over the pounding of my heartbeat. He bent toward me, his face serious. Even in the low light of the corner, I could see the gold flecks feathering out from the center of his eyes.

  “Im going to kiss you now. ” His voice was deep and rough, and it matched the rest of his thoroughly masculine body.

  “I know,” I whispered back. And I wanted that kiss from Gray, even though he ordinarily wouldnt be my type at all. I wanted it more than I wanted to breathe. When his mouth molded against mine, it felt like bliss—as if my whole cold body had been submerged into a warm bath. If I thought I had been engulfed before it was nothing like I felt at that moment. My entire world—my thoughts, my feelings, my senses—were full of him. I tasted the mint and hops on his tongue. I inhaled the scents of cinnamon and bergamot and ocean of his faint cologne into my airways. I felt the calloused palm on my waist and then lower against the exposed skin of my thigh. His dense muscles were drawn tight under his skin and the fabric of his t-shirt and he felt as strong as a citadel. The moan that had been building since he first backed me into the wall escaped. It had been so long since I’d had the touch of a man’s hand on any part of me, and I nearly wept at the pleasure of it.

  Every square inch of my body felt sensitized, as if I’d been an unlit Christmas tree and I’d just been plugged in. I wanted to feel his hands all over, not just on that patch of thigh. I needed his touch in those secret places, those places I thought had calcified. I’d thought I’d been waiting for the smooth hands of an accountant but the longer, rougher fingers pushing the hem of my shorts up couldn’t belong to a man who worked in an office.

  His tongue and mouth broke from mine to leave a hot, wet path from my mouth, across my jaw line, and down to my neck. My leg lifted of its own accord and he took it as a sign to hitch me up higher until both my legs either dangled off the floor or wrapped around him. I chose to wrap my legs around him and was rewarded with a thick hard column pressing into my sex. We both groaned at the contact and I could feel his sound against my neck. The reverberations sent minor shocks throughout my nervous system. Holding me up against the wall, he began thrusting against me rhythmi
cally, every impact of his hips making me hotter and wetter than I thought I could get.

  I gripped him tighter with my legs and dug my hands into his hair, using every bit of his body as leverage. He held me up with ease, as if I were a feather. One hand was under my right butt cheek and the other was exploring my left side, pulling out my T-shirt, only to find the tank underneath. Needing his mouth back, I tugged on his hair and he took the hint immediately. He fastened his lips over mine and we devoured each other, still rubbing our lower bodies against each other as the bass from the dance floor pounded the floor boards.

  Whimpering, I begged in moans and small cries for more. A familiar but almost forgotten tension was winding its way from between my legs outward. All thoughts of storage rooms and hallways and strangers were lost in the swirl of bright lights bursting behind my eyelids.

  “I got you, baby,” he growled against my mouth. “Just let go. ” And so I did. I closed my eyes and let those long-dormant feelings wash over me, spreading from the inside of my legs to the nerve endings in my toes and fingertips and the very top of my head. And he kept grinding and grinding and grinding against me, whispering in my ear how I was the hottest thing he’d ever held, how he couldn’t wait to taste me, how he’d die if he couldn’t be inside me tonight.



  I’D GONE INSIDE TO TAKE a leak and to look at the top shelf row of liquor to see what kind of celebration drinks I could buy the boys when I’d seen the little blonde bartender from the patio. Her hair was caught up in a high ponytail that swung like a rope down her back. I’d already caught myself staring at her several times throughout the night as the crowd at the bar, which was mostly dick, parted and closed like a peek-a-boo game. The glimpses they’d revealed weren’t half as interesting as the whole package. Standing about ten feet from me and caught in the grasp of another woman, the bartender had shot me a deer-in-the-headlights look. I couldn’t resist helping a sixty-year-old grandmother at the airport, and I had even less fight against the unspoken plea for assistance from a twenty-something beauty.

  I abandoned my liquor hunting and headed over. I’d had no plans to lead her down the dark hallway and dry hump her to an orgasm because, as I told the Woodlands crew earlier, these types of bar hook ups were generally unsatisfactory. I’d thought to escort her back to the bar outside but when she paused and stared at me like she knew me, I felt a jolt. Suddenly I didn’t want to take her outside where there were other people—other men—who would look at her and want her. I’m not sure who turned down the dark hallway first, but it was the right place for me to taste her full lips and grip her long ponytail.

  Her lips had felt as soft and suckable as I thought they would be. She tasted tart, as if she’d had a vodka lemon shot. The hot cavern of her mouth made me think of other hot, wet areas on her body and I wanted to explore all of them.

  There wasn’t much thought in my head other than how kissing her wouldn’t be enough. At the very least, I needed to get my hand under those shorts or under her shirt. I had to touch more bare skin but her shorts only went up so far and under her shirt there was more damn fabric. I really wanted to rip those shirts up over her head and draw one delicious tit into my mouth.

  Before I could get any closer to her, I’d felt a trembling in her legs and her breath had started to come in harsh, jagged pants. She was so turned on by just the kissing, just the press of our bodies together, that she was ready to come right then. And I wasn’t going to stop that. I pressed my hard-on with more force against her cotton-clad pussy and felt her explode.

  Feeling her come apart in my arms just from kissing her made me feel like a giant, and it left me with a hard-on the size of California. Had I ever been a fool to say that a bar hookup wasn’t good? Maybe I just hadn’t had the right bar hookup. All my little rules about dating, hook ups, and women were somewhere in a puddle under my feet. There was only one thought in my mind now. I needed to find us some privacy—immediately. Desperate to lay her down on any surface, I pulled away from the wall, holding her against me. Her body was lax in its post orgasmic state. There was a door just to her right.

  “Sam,” I whispered as gently as I could, not wanting to disturb her moment but desperate for some relief myself. “That room. Is it private?” Sam turned her head, still resting on my shoulder.

  “Yes, storage room. ”

  I started for the door before she got past the word yes. “I need you bad, Sam. Once we’re inside, I’m going to strip off these shorts and stick my head between your legs and lap up all the juice your body just made for me. ” She shuddered and clenched her legs tighter around me. She liked the dirty talk. I’d have to remember that. We got to the door, and I leaned down to open it, not wanting her to let go. “After I’m done eating you out, I’m going to—” I never got the rest of the promise out.

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