First Pallas and now you,” the gray-haired man said, shaking his head at Nick. “It’s like I’m running a goddamn dating service around here.
I've been in love with you since the very beginning. You asked why there isn't anyone else in my life, and the reason... is you.
If you also thinks it means I wake up every morning wondering what I did to deserve having you back in my life, well, you'd be right about that too.
We're out of time, Payton. You said it yourself: the only way we'll make it is for us to go into this together. I know we can do this. But I need you to believe it. You need to believe... in us.Peyton didn't say anything for a long moment, and J.D. could literally hear his heart beating. Then she finally answered.It would have to be called Kendall and Jameson.It took J.D a moment to catch on. Then he grinned. No way. Jameson and Kendall. It's alphabetical.You told our boss that you banged me on top of your desk.Kendall and Jameson sounds great
Like a shot from a movie, the morning sun shone brilliantly around him like a god—his dark hair glinted warmly in the light, and his eyes gleamed bluer than the south Pacific Ocean.Taylor's mind went blank. And suddenly, she couldn't remember why the hell she ever had been angry with Jason Andrews.But then he spoke.Sleeping in this morning, Ms. Donovan? he drawled.Moment over.
Don't take this next undercover assignment. Stay with me instead.Nick's eyes pierced hers, refusing to let her off that easily. Tell me why.Because... I love you. She exhaled. No take-backs. The words were out there forever.And it felt great.
My God, Jack - with a look like that, you two should just get a room. And try not to pick the one with a dead body next to it this time.
I’m not sure I trust myself around you I liked you from the start, J.D. I really wish things had been different, that's all.
You told me men don’t do this.”“Do what?”She walked around the counter, speaking animatedly. “Two years ago. We were at Firelight, having drinks. Cade and I had split up and you said that men don’t mope around after a breakup. You said that men avoid issues, get drunk, and pick up a new girl to forget the old one—but that you don’t brood.”Ford held out his hands in disbelief. “How do you remember that? And I’m not brooding.”She folded her arms across her chest and looked at him.“I know you’re my friend,” he said. “But please, for once, can you just act like you have a penis?Because I don’t want to talk about this.”She shrugged. “Fine. We’ll just sit here and listen to music.” She reached for his phone again.“Have you heard Taylor Swift’s new song?”“No.”“Well, you’re going to—on endless repeat until you start talking.
Putting aside your blatant patriarchal biases in assuming the necessary presence of a male familial figurehead, yes, I had a nice brunch, thanks.
You know, just sit in the corner and glare at him the whole time. See if he crumbles.” “I’ve seen your hard-ass face, Tuck,” Charlie said. “Mostly, you just look constipated. Ford, you’d better do the glaring.
Seriously, Jack, I think you might be the only guy in this city who hasn’t read his stuff. Collin McCann is like the Carrie Bradshaw of Chicago men.”“You mean Terry Bradshaw,” Jack corrected.“No, Carrie,” Wilkins repeated. “You know, Sarah Jessica Parker. Sex and the City.”A silence fell over the room as Collin and Jack stared at Wilkins, seriously fearing for the fate of men.
You're tough when you need to be, and you can charm the pants off men who have three times your experience. Well, yes. Although I try not to take advantage of that too often. Very awkward negotiating with people who are sitting around in their underwear.
She spoke under her breath to Nick. Is there a reason he's only wearing one sock? He puked on his foot. Oh. She turned back to Huxley. Can we get you another sock? Maybe a blanket or something?
What about you? Girlfriend? Wife? Kids? Perhaps a gaggle of towheaded, extra large boys who already excel at sports and know how to make fire with the ass end of a lightning bug?
Do you know how long I’ve waited for you to look at me this way?” She assumed he was teasing her. “What are you talking about? You didn’t even like me for most of the time we’ve known each other.” He bent his head before turning to go, his voice low and confident in her ear. “Or maybe I’m just that good of an undercover agent.
When do you leave?” she asked. His fingers paused. “Labor Day weekend.” So soon. Only two and a half weeks away. She nodded, going for a joke. “Good. That’s about when I was planning on getting sick of you, anyway.” “Pfft. I’m already counting down the minutes until I can make my escape from this room.” “It’s your room.
So you’re saying the ball’s in my court.” He bent his head, stopping just before his mouth touched hers. “The ball has always been in your court, Jessica,” he said huskily. “From the first moment I walked up to you at the Academy.” She looked at him for a moment. Then she stood up on her tiptoes and leaned into him. The instant her lips touched his, John slid one hand to her waist and threaded the other in her hair. About damn time.
We’ll try to be more sympathetic to your hot nemesis problem. Is she a nightmare to work with?” An image popped into John’s head, of him kissing Jessica against the hotel room wall in Jacksonville. He could still feel the softness of her skin and hear her breathy moan as he slid his hand underneath her dress. Hardly the stuff of nightmares. “It’s been… interesting.
Since you’re obviously in need of something to do, instead of shouting at me through this whole drill, isn’t there some tree you could fell with your bare hands, or a boulder somewhere that needs tossing?
You do realize that getting down on one knee generally refers to a proposal, right?” Sidneycontinued. “A marriage proposal?”His eyes, a warm green-gold, daringly held hers as he softly sang the next line of the song. “‘Yousmiled . . . and then the spell was cast.’”Okay, he pretty much just melted her heart right there.
Kids, Roberts,” she said, just to be clear. “I have fertile eggs in me, and I’m talking about havingbabies.”She waited for the eye twitch. Or hell, even a tiny twinge.Instead, with a smile, he pulled her in for a kiss.
He shook off the thoughts—that wasn’t anything he needed to worry about tonight. Any secondnow, he was going to hear the chime of a new text message, the chime that signaled the demise of rich,slick Maybe-next-time-we-can-meet-for-more-than-two-minutes-which-also-happens-to-be-how-long-I-last-during-sex Tyler Roland, Attorney-at-Law.Vaughn picked up his phone to check that it had a signal.Yep, any second now.
Do you recall telling Dr. Phillips during your appointment on February second of last year that you needed to be tested for sexually transmitted diseases because—let me make sure I get this correct here . . .” Taylor read out loud from her file, “Because, quote, ‘your weasel-dick husband slept with a skanky whore stripper and the cheating bastard didn’t use a rubber’?” Ms. Campbell shot up in her chair. “She actually wrote that down?” The jury tittered with amused laughter and sat up interestedly. Finally—things were starting to look a little more like Law & Order around here. “I take it that’s a yes?” Taylor asked.
Hopefully not another employee stealing credit cards, Brooke mused. Or any sort of headache-inducing “oops moment,” like the time one of the restaurant managers called to ask if he could fire a line cook after discovering that the man was a convicted murderer.“Jeez. How’d you learn that?” Brooke had asked.“He made a joke to one of the waiters about honing his cooking skills in prison. The waiter asked what he’d been serving time for, and he said, ‘Murder.’”“I bet that put an end to the conversation real fast. And yes, you can fire him,” Brooke had said. “Obviously, he lied on his employment application.” All of Sterling’s employees, regardless of job position, were required to answer whether they’d ever been convicted of a crime involving “violence, deceit, or theft.” Pretty safe to say that murder qualified.Ten minutes later, the manager had called her back.“Um . . . what if he didn’t exactly lie? I just double-checked his application, and as it turns out, he did check the box for having been convicted of a crime.”Brooke had paused at that. “And then the next question, where we ask what crime he’d been convicted for, what did he write?”“Uh . . . ‘second-degree murder.’”“I see. Just a crazy suggestion here, Cory, but you might want to start reading these applications a little more closely before making employment offers.”“Please don’t fire me.
So I’m reading some poem by Louise . . . something, I forget her last name, but it’s about Hades and the underworld, and I don’t even notice that Paige has come up to my table until she says, ‘Doesn’t everyone want love?’ And I’m thinking, wow, that’s a pretty deep question, but then again Paige is really smart, and this is my chance to finally show her that I’m not just a dumb jock. So I say, ‘I heard this theory once that love means your subconscious is attracted to someone else’s subconscious.’”“Very deep,” Cade said.“Exactly. And I’m feeling proud of myself for that one, until she points to the book and says, ‘Oh, that wasn’t a question. I was just quoting a line from the poem.
…He rocked against her, his body shuddering against hers again and again, until he collapsed on top of her and buried his face in her hair.Brooke felt his heart beating against her chest as they lay there, boneless. For two people who preferred to speak in quips and sarcasm, that had been unexpectedly…intense.She wasn’t quite sure how to feel about that.Then Cade spoke.“I think this is the first time I’ve ever used this table,” he said, against her neck.Brooke began to laugh. My God, he was still inside her and she was already giggling. “I take it you don’t do a lot of formal entertaining.”He pulled back, his dark hair falling across his forehead. “Were you not entertained, Ms. Parker?
His eyes were dark. “Brooke.”She knew what he was asking. “Yes.”Immediately, Cade took her hand and led her – quite briskly – along the sidewalk.“Thank God I’m not wearing the red high heels today,” she said.“In two minutes you’ll be wearing nothing,” he said in a low voice.Well, then.
John turned to her, with streaks of dried blood along his face. “Thank goodness we got the easy job.
Her eyes widened as he guided her backward until she was trapped against the bed. He turned her around so that she faced it.“You remember when we met, how you told me off in your office? Ever since then, I’ve wanted something.” He smoothed his hands up her legs and pushed up her skirt. With one sharp tug, he ripped her lacy thong and tossed it to the floor. “You at my mercy.”He heard the excited catch of her breath and bent his head to murmur in her ear. “Good thing you still have those heels on.
Is that an invitation?”“I suppose it is.”“Good.” Cade’s voice dropped lower, adding one last thing before hanging up. “And tell your friend in the striped shirt that he’s in my seat.
Cade thought about this. “Let me get this straight—you secretly pretend to like poetry to impress the smart girl in your English class, while she’s secretly pretending to like football to impress you.” He paused. “That’s gotta be the cutest fucking thing I’ve ever heard.”“I guess her subconscious finds my subconscious pretty irresistible,” Zach said, all teenage confidence right then.“You were lucky to pull that line off once, Garrity. I wouldn’t push it.
Brooke stared in surprise. “You brought me lunch?”“I was in the neighborhood.”She checked out the label on the bag. “DMK is twenty minutes from here.”“I was in that neighborhood, and now I’m here,” he said in exasperation. “Seriously, woman, you are impossible to feed.” He strode over and set the bag on her desk. “One cheeseburger with spicy chipotle ketchup and a side of sweet potato fries—chosen specifically for a certain spicy and sweet girl I know—and a green dill pickle for your eyes. So there.” He crossed his arms over his chest.Brooke studied him. “You seem very ornery right now.”“As a matter of fact, I am.”“Why?”“I don’t know,” he huffed. “Just . . . eat your Brooke Burger. Stop asking so many questions. Sometimes a guy just wants to buy a girl lunch. Any objections to that? Good. Enjoy your Sunday, Ms. Parker.”He strode out of her office, gone as quickly as he’d appeared.Brooke stared at the doorway and blinked.