Injured Parole Officer Jeremiah “Jim” Borden never expected Calista Barlow, the sassy blonde waitress he’s craved for months, to ring his doorbell. She slips into his heart—and his bed—but he’s obsessed with a gangland investigation that threatens his career and maybe even his life.
Calista doesn’t trust easily, not with a daughter to protect and the stalker who keeps calling her. After her violent ex-boyfriend returns, she finds solace in Jim’s arms.
Jim may have to forego his need for answers to protect the ready-made family he adores, but how will he and Calista escape an unseen enemy that is always one step ahead of them?
Tagline – When threats escalate, will Jim and Calista succumb, or fight for a love they can’t deny?
“What’s so complicated, Calista? We can rent a delivery truck to move your furniture, clothes, dishes, and everything else here. If you don’t like the way I decorate, or my lack of décor, fine. I’ll donate whatever you don’t want. This will be your home. Truth be told, I prefer your place to mine. It’s warm and inviting there. I want you to bring that hominess here.”
“You don’t understand.”
“Damn right, I don’t.” He tossed the clothes back down. “What about Lacey? You really gonna separate her from Niko? She loves that cat.” Air hitched in his throat as tears welled in Calista’s eyes. He kicked the wall and pressed the heel of his palm to his forehead.
“You have secrets, Jeremiah. I’ve finally shared everything with you, and I mean everything, even though it humiliated me. But you won’t do the same. You don’t trust me enough. That’s the main reason why I won’t stay.” Calista grabbed her blouse and forced it over her head. “I’m not a kept woman, by the way. It’s time I look for another job. I’ve been alone for too long to rely on a man for everything I have and to fall under his thumb.”
“What the hell? When have I ever tried to control you?” He would do anything to get off the subject of secrets. “You’re independent, and I respect your work ethic. I will, however, act like a first-rate dick if you apply for a job at another crappy diner. You shouldn’t have to deal with bad managers and perverts all day. Besides, you’re a chef. You should open a bakery. That’s what you want, right?”
She slid on her panties. “Yeah, it is, but I won’t deplete Lacey’s college fund or possibly go into debt with a business loan to fulfill my dream.”
Jim cupped her hot cheek. A small, barely noticeable blemish remained on her skin, and he brushed his lips across it.
“You promised me time, Jeremiah. Don’t push me into something I’m not ready for. When or if I choose to rent a truck, I’ll let you know. Until then, don’t mention it to me again.” Jim rested his forehead on hers. He loved her. If he didn’t have her, he would live the rest of his life incomplete. He needed a promise of marriage, but he just had to wait.
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