Made for you the best mi.., p.17

Made for You (The Best Mistake), page 17

 

Made for You (The Best Mistake)
 


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But it wasn’t any of that that made her breath catch.

  It was Will, blond hair darker than usual for being wet as it fell across his forehead. Like her, he was clad in PJ pants, but unlike her he’d forgone the shirt, as though he knew that his abs were her Achilles’ heel.

  And then she saw his eyes, and her heart dropped an entire foot to her stomach.

  He’s scared.

  Brynn moved slowly toward him, stopping when they were scant inches away, but not touching. Wordlessly, she reached for his hand. Put it against her cheek. I’m scared too.

  His eyes closed and he let out a shuddering breath. When they opened again, they were more like the Will she’d come to know, although there was still something odd about his expression. Something she didn’t know how to read.

  His other hand moved up to cup her face as he slowly moved his face toward hers, giving her a chance to run away. To take them back to their usual frenetic pace instead of this slow, dreamy firelight seduction.

  And even though every instinct was yelling mistake, Brynn wanted to know him like this. Just once, she wanted to know this part of Will Thatcher before they were gone from each other’s lives.

  They kissed each other slow and sweet, as their lips teased and explored, tongues barely touching as they breathed in each other’s scent, listened to what made the other person’s breath catch. He continued to hold her face in the most gentle of caresses and Brynn felt the inexplicable urge to cry.

  When he finally lowered her to the blanket, she waited for him to speed it up, to take them somewhere fast and safe, but he refused to be hurried as he ran a hand lovingly along her side, his palm just barely brushing the places that she wanted him to touch.

  “Brynn,” he said quietly. “Brynn, I…”

  She grabbed his hair, pulling his mouth down to hers before he could say something that would destroy her. Destroy them both.

  A hot hand slid up under the back of her sweater, his palm pressing into the damp hollow at the base of her spine, tilting her up to him, even as he kept the kisses slow and drugging.

  “Let me make love to you,” he whispered against her lips.

  Brynn nodded, helpless to do anything else but accept whatever he was offering.

  She lifted her hands over her head as he slowly pulled the sweater up and off, before pulling back slightly and looking down at her.

  “You’re beautiful,” he said quietly, moving a hand beneath her breast and lifting her slightly. “Perfect.”

  “I’m small,” she said nervously.

  He showed her what he thought of that by lowering his head slowly and swiping the flat of his tongue against her nipple, making her gasp.

  “Perfect,” he said again, before giving the other breast the same treatment. Back and forth he went, licking and nibbling until she was making small keening noises she didn’t even recognize. He glanced up at her then, waited until she met his eyes and then closed his lips around her nipple and sucked hard, her hips bucking up against his as she said his name.

  “Again,” he said, raking his teeth over her nipple. “Say my name again.”

  “Will,” she said, her voice breaking slightly.

  He slowly moved down her body, kissing every one of her ribs before slowly sliding her pants off. He smiled in gratification when he saw she was completely naked.

  “No underwear,” he said gruffly.

  She licked her lips and looked down at where his face hovered above her hips. “Seems someone forgot to pack them.”

  Will slowly pushed her legs apart, sliding his hands beneath her butt and meeting her eyes once more. “It was so I could do this.”

  And then his mouth was on her, loving her in a way that she’d always thought was depraved, but felt so damn right.

  Brynn had always been too distracted by the intimacy of the act to lose herself in it before, but Will wasn’t accepting anything but complete capitulation as he sucked and stroked and licked in exactly the right way.

  Brynn felt his hand shift, his thumb slipping inside of her before he pushed the flat of his tongue against the sensitive nub of nerve endings, licking her in small, tight circles until she was helpless to do anything but rotate against him.

  Together they found the perfect rhythm until Brynn broke into a million pieces, grasping at the blanket beneath her as her hips arched up against his wet mouth.

  As the fireworks turned into tiny aftershocks, Will planted tiny kisses along her inner thighs before moving back up her body and finding her mouth was his.

  “So that’s how Will Thatcher makes love,” she said dreamily between kisses.

  He moved his mouth to her closed eyelids, kissing them each in turn before planting a lingering kiss on her forehead.

  “No. This is.”

  Her legs fell open against the gentle pressure of his hands, and she felt the tip of him against her sensitive opening before he pressed all the way in. Her eyes squeezed shut at the perfection of the moment, and her mind had the fleeting, alarming thought that this is where she belonged. Always. He stayed still, waiting for her to open her eyes. When she did, Will gave the tiniest of nods as though confirming her traitorous thoughts. As though confirming that she was his. But then he started moving, and her thoughts were pushed aside by pure sexual pleasure.

  She wrapped her legs around his waist, giving herself over to him, but instead of taking her harder, he kept the pace steady and slow until she thought she’d die from anticipation.

  Wanting to send him over the edge like he had her, Brynn moved quickly, catching him off guard enough to give her the chance to roll him onto his back.

  His eyes widened slightly as she raked nails over his chest before she took him inside her with deliberate precision, watching his face tense as she took him inch by inch.

  “Brynn,” he said hoarsely.

  She allowed herself a small smile, even though she could barely think. “I like when you say my name too.”

  His hands found her hips, and Brynn began to ride him, refusing to let herself worry about all her sharp angles, or how small her breasts must look.

  She only cared about making Will feel.

  Only cared about Will.

  He tried to maintain the tantalizing slowness of before, but she wouldn’t let him, moving faster and faster, milking him for everything he had. Only when his eyes squeezed shut in that way that told her he was close did she slide a hand down her belly to touch herself, moving her hand and hips in rhythm until Will let out a hoarse guttural cry, his body arching toward hers just as Brynn exploded for the second time.

  Brynn tried to ease herself down gently, but her muscles didn’t seem to work, and instead she collapsed awkwardly on his chest.

  Will didn’t seem to mind, instead wrapping shaking arms around her narrow back, and holding her pressed against his furry chest.

  They were both damp and sweaty and panting, and it should have been gross, but instead it was unexpectedly perfect.

  Eventually he rolled her off him so she was lying on her side. He pulled the blanket up over her shoulder as he pushed her hair back from her face.

  “You hungry?” he asked. “I got some of that stinky bleu cheese you like. And the weird rice crackers that taste like air, except without as much flavor.”

  She smiled and wiggled closer. “Later. Can we…can we sleep like this? Together?”

  His eyes went soft as he eased back down beside her. “Of course we can.”

  Brynn smiled into his crinkly chest hair and let her eyes close as the aftermath of two fantastic orgasms settled her.

  But the subconscious was a wily little happiness-wrecker, and before she drifted off to sleep, she kept picturing Will’s face as it had looked when he’d first laid her on the blanket.

  Brynn, I…

  What had he been about to say?

  And why had she been so desperate to make sure he didn’t?

  CHAPTER NINETEEN

  There’s no shame in being in love with your car
eer.

  —Brynn Dalton’s Rules for an

  Exemplary Life, #6

  Hey.”

  Brynn’s head shot up from her locker at the unfamiliar male voice.

  She nearly dropped her geometry book.

  It was him.

  She’d seen him several times since that day on the football field. Had felt his eyes on her across the cafeteria, across the courtyard.

  It should have been creepy, but it was oddly exhilarating. And not just because he was a junior and one of the most popular guys in school.

  It was like he saw her. Knew her.

  “Hey,” she said back, keeping her voice as level as possible even though she kind of wanted to puke. She’d never been good at talking to guys. Mostly because they’d never wanted to talk except to ask if she was related to Mr. Ed. Or to tell her there was a wait list on the swings.

  She’d like to think that most of them had grown out of their meanness by now, but she wasn’t taking any chances.

  Much better to keep her distance.

  Her heart still pounding, she closed her locker and began walking in the direction of class. She realized too late that she was walking in the opposite direction as her geometry classroom, but she couldn’t very well turn around now. Not when he was already following her.

  “I’m Will,” he said, easily matching her pace, watching her face as she walked.

  “Congratulations,” she said, not glancing up at him.

  Stop being a bitch, her mind ordered.

  But it was as though her brain was putting up walls, trying to protect her from this too-gorgeous guy who couldn’t possibly be interested in her. The dry sarcasm was just there. Keeping her safe.

  He let out a little laugh. “And you are…”

  She didn’t answer. Too afraid that she’d say Dumpy Dalton by accident. Because sometimes preemption was the best defense.

  “It’s Brynn, right?”

  “Ding ding ding, give the boy a prize.”

  His hand lightly touched her elbow, and she had the strangest urge to lean into this boy she didn’t even know.

  She swallowed nervously and came to a halt.

  “You’re nervous,” he said softly, giving her a sweet little smile.

  Well, duh, the hottest guy in school is talking to a nerdy, quiet freshman, so…yeah, I’m nervous.

  “Nervous or uninterested?” she heard herself say.

  His head snapped back a little, and his eyes were considering, as though to say, so it’s going to be like that, then?

  She forced herself to meet his gaze, as she silently answered back. Yeah, it’s going to be like that. Don’t pretend that you’re interested.

  He gave a curt nod, his expression somewhere between irritation and disdain.

  “See you around, Princess.”

  “Whatever,” she muttered, flipping her hair over her shoulder.

  She felt his eyes on her back all the way down the hall, and she wanted to turn around and apologize. Wanted to turn back and ask for a do-over. Wanted to explain that she didn’t know how to act around a boy who was nice to her.

  That she was afraid that it wasn’t real.

  Finally she worked up the courage to turn back.

  But he was already gone.

  * * *

  It took Will several minutes to figure out what he was looking at.

  He pulled himself into a sitting position, wincing a little at his sore back. Apparently, he was past his days of being able to sleep on the floor all night without repercussions. He rubbed one hand over his face groggily as he accepted the mug of coffee that Brynn held out.

  He would have been able to tell it from her face, but he didn’t have to. Her clothing and the suitcase by the door said it all.

  “You’re already dressed,” he said simply.

  She nodded once from where she sat on the hearth. The fire had gone out long ago, leaving nothing but dark, depressing ashes in its place.

  The symbolism wasn’t lost on him.

  He took a bracing sip of coffee as his eyes swept over her put-together face. She’d applied makeup he hadn’t even known she’d brought with her. This wasn’t the rumpled Brynn on a casual beach vacation.

  This was carefully styled career Brynn.

  She pressed her lips together before folding her hands and carefully setting them in her lap, her shoulders back and straight, and her sterling posture confirmed what he’d known the second he’d seen her.

  The old Brynn was back.

  “I got a call from Susan today,” she said, her voice steady and even.

  Will shook his head to indicate he didn’t follow.

  “Susan’s my partner. She’s been covering me while I’ve been on this little…meltdown.”

  Will didn’t misinterpret her word choice. Meltdown. Not adventure, or vacation, or even rebellion.

  It had been a meltdown.

  Her time had been cut short and now she had to justify it to herself. He got it. Had been waiting for it. Didn’t mean he was going to make it easy for her.

  Will didn’t say a word. Didn’t prompt her. Didn’t give her a reassuring smile. He just waited.

  “Anyway,” she said, licking her lips nervously. “Susan’s mom had a stroke. She’s flying down to San Jose this afternoon and will be in California for at least a week.”

  “There’s nobody else who can cover?”

  “Well, there’s Dr. Anders, but he’s not ready to handle the whole office by himself.”

  “So what, you just go rushing back? Cut your vacation short?”

  She gave a short huff of irritation. “It’s a Tuesday, Will. It’s time I start being an adult.”

  His head snapped back slightly at the scorn in her voice, and he remembered her blatant dismissal of his own “work” the day before. Never mind that he had more money than he knew what to do with and had worked his ass off to launch some of the most innovative start-ups in the tech world. Never mind that he’d stepped back and put all of his companies on autopilot so that he could help her with her life.

  “Got it. Better get going, then,” he said, calmly setting the coffee mug on the hearth and getting to his feet, not caring that he was buck-ass naked.

  She averted her eyes and blushed, and damn if that didn’t just about say it all.

  By the time Will got out of the shower, Brynn had already put half the stuff in the car and was wrestling with the big blue cooler, which was still heavy because it was still full. Full with food for a long getaway.

  Full of hope for something that had just disappeared.

  Will shook the maudlin thought from his head as he wordlessly pushed her out of the way and easily lifted the cooler into the trunk before tossing his duffel on top.

  “Ready?”

  If she noticed his curt tone, she didn’t show it, and she merely nodded before climbing into the passenger seat as he locked up the house. The overcast skies of yesterday were long gone, and the sun was warm and bright on his face as he headed toward the car.

  It was an absolutely perfect day for the beach picnic he’d planned, and he opened his mouth to coax her into it.

  But then he caught her glance at her watch and give a little sigh. So no picnic, then.

  Will resisted the urge to slap his fist on the roof of the car before he took a deep breath and slid behind the wheel. He’d known it would come to this, but that didn’t mean he had to like it.

  Brynn made pleasant, inane conversation most of the drive home, but he couldn’t manage more than a few forced smiles and courtesy laughs at her carefully worded stories.

  This was dinner-party Brynn. And he hated it.

  Finally she ran out of meaningless things to say and they rode in strained silence for the last thirty minutes of the trip.

  By the time he pulled into Brynn’s driveway, his knuckles were clenched around the steering wheel. He’d spent the entire drive trying not to bellow like a wounded bear at her lack of acknowledgment of what had happened
last night.

  She was going to pretend that it hadn’t happened. That they hadn’t happened.

  “You don’t have to see me in,” she said, putting a bright smile on her face.

  His hand faltered briefly as he reached for her suitcase, half tempted to let her get the bag herself and scurry into the safety of her house where she could retreat behind nine-to-five and cardigans. Leaving him free to do…well, shit, he didn’t have the faintest idea.

  Will yanked her bag out of the car with more force than necessary and waited patiently while she let him inside, both of them all polite manners as they were careful not to touch, not even in the most accidental of brushes.

  It was only when he’d set her suitcase by the stairs and turned to face her that he saw a tiny break in her placid reserve. There was the briefest crumpling of her face, and he wanted to believe it was pain, regret, but then her expression went blank again and her spine stiffened with something else entirely.

  Impatience.

  She wanted him out of her house. Out of her life.

  He forced himself to accept what he’d been suspecting the entire day.

  He’d failed.

  And it hurt.

  Will allowed himself to meet her eyes—really meet them—for the first time since he’d woken up that morning and seen her with her suitcase.

  “Just like that, then?” he asked.

  “Will…”

  He crossed his arms over his chest and gave her his best derisive, you don’t matter smile. “I get it, Princess. No room for unemployed boy toys in your real life, huh?”

  Her mouth went stubborn. “It’s not like that.”

  “No? What’s it like?”

  Her silence spoke volumes.

  When she finally opened her mouth, he already knew what was coming. “You knew this wouldn’t last. We both went into this eyes wide open, knowing it was a fling. Knowing that we’re horrible together.”

  I didn’t know. The thought felt like it was ripped from the deepest part of him.

  “We’re good in the only area that matters, though,” he said instead, letting his eyes linger insultingly on her chest.

  It was exactly the fuel she’d needed. “See that? That is why someone like me would never be with someone like you. You’re all about the short-term gratification of sex and don’t have a clue about how to build something lasting. How to build something that matters.”

 
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