Manipulated: a Rockstar Romantic Comedy (Hammered Book 3), page 14
She turned at the clicking sound, frown in place.
“What?” I paused, then palmed the pick automatically.
Callie’s head tilted, then she lowered her bag to the ground. Here we go. I could always spot her in artist mode. Something shifted in her eyes. They went sharp and focused, where my everyday bunny was usually all over the place.
This was Callie in full control.
She lifted out a camera and went down on one knee in front of me. “Do it again.”
Fuck. “Not right now, love.”
I’d just gotten myself under control. I truly couldn’t handle her on her knees in front of me right now.
“Do you always use a steel pick?” She brought her camera up and took a few shots before fussing with her settings. “Or is just the one you have in your pocket with you?”
I had something in my pocket for her, but it wasn’t the damn pick.
“I play guitar and bass. A pick is always on me.”
“Well, yeah I understand that, but not everyone uses a steel one.”
“Because he’s particular.” Zach dug into his pocket and came out with three plastic picks, a bone one that he used sometimes, and a few quarters that did the job in a pinch.
“Huh.” Callie quickly took pictures of Zach’s palm.
“You want me to get rid of the lint first?” he asked with a grin.
“No, it’s cooler with it.” She whipped around her camera and showed him. “See?”
Zach leaned in closer to look at the viewfinder. “Jesus.” He looked back down at his hand. “Really? You got all that from this?”
She shrugged. “You’d be surprised what my lens picks up. Besides,” she stood up, “this is my micro-focus camera. I once perched on a rock for three hours to catch the perfect lighting for wildflowers for the Wildlife Preserve.”
Zach tipped back on his heels. “Talk about dedication.”
Callie shrugged. “You can play guitar for hours, right?”
“Not much different.” She turned back to me. “For the most part.” She moved closer, angling downward until her camera hovered over my fingers. She danced her fingertips over my tattoo and the chunky skull ring I wore on my ring finger. “I love that ring.”
Her gaze shot to mine and locked. “I have a thing for skulls.”
My grin widened. “I remember.”
She cleared her throat, then touched her camera back in her bag. “Where are we going anyway?”
“It’s not as quite as impressive this time of year, but I thought you’d enjoy this place.”
Zach grinned. “I know where you’re taking her. Yeah, man. Summertime. Definitely gotta get her here in the summer. She’ll just die.”
“I will?” She shouldered her bag again.
Zach beelined for my ride. I’d parked it away from the main doors of the hotel and under a tree. The top was down, and the green Buick Wildcat gleamed in the dark.
“That’s your car?” Callie spun around, walking backward.
“And we have company.”
My voice lowered to a growl. “Yes.”
“That’s so wrong.” She swung back around and jogged after Zach.
I wasn’t sure if she was referring to the same thing as I was, but she was right. It was so damn wrong.
Zach jumped in the back of the car.
“Actually, would it be okay if I got back there?” Callie nibbled on her thumbnail. “I’d like to get some shots.”
“Oh, yeah. Sure. I just thought I’d be gentlemanly and shit.” Zach hopped out, but opened the door for Callie and flipped the seat forward for her to get into the back.
I got into the driver’s seat and revved the engine loud enough to make her eyes widen. I met her gaze in the rearview mirror and revved it one more time. She pressed her lips together, but couldn’t stop a little twist of a smile at the corner of her burgundy lips.
Damn, those lips would good wrapped around my cock.
And I needed to halt that line of thinking. No need to have a hard-on with my mate next to me.
We drove through the city. Callie shifted from left to right, her camera clicking behind me. The shutter sound was oddly comforting and at the same time it ramped me up. The deeper we got into the city, and the closer we got to the bridge, the more she kept popping up on her seat.
“If you don’t sit down, I’m going to tan your hide, bunny.”
Zach glanced from me to her, then back again. “Dad voice.”
I was not having fatherly thoughts, but damn if I didn’t sound like my da.
She bounced and swapped cameras again. “I know. Sorry, sorry. There’s just so much to see. I’ve never been here before. Barely anywhere actually.” She set her camera carefully on the seat, then held her arms out wide as the wind took her braid. I looked away just long enough to jolt as she suddenly sat forward and stretched her arms between the front seats. “Say cheese.”
I gave her a side-eyed glare.
She just laughed and changed her focus to Zach. He was more than willing to ham it up.
It was nice to hear Zach laugh again. He was the other half of the Terror Twins in our group, and his partner in crime was far too absent these days.
I pulled off when I saw signs for the Austin American-Statesman building. Luckily for me, my co-pilot and backseat badass were not paying enough attention to realize our destination.
I rolled around to a side street and avoided the usual tourist haunts. It was off-season, but there were still people who wanted to see the famous Bat Bridge—otherwise known as Congress Street Bridge. We rolled to a stop along the overgrown trees at the bank of the waterway. Fuck, if I could remember the name of it. I was almost as much of a tourist as Callie.
We didn’t get much chance to play as people thought. We were usually in and out within the same day. We just happened to be in town for two shows this particular stop.
Callie hopped out of the car before Zach or I could open our doors. I shook my head and set the brake, laughing as one of her shoes came flying back up into the beams of my headlights, then dropped to the grass in front of the car.
“She like this all the time?”
“We met her at the same time.”
“Right.” Zach eased back in his seat and turned toward me. “You’re a good friend.”
“I like to think so.”
“Nah, I get it.” He pointed his chin toward the water where Callie was already in up to her knees. “You’re into her. And I am third-wheeling it hardcore.”
“Can’t even lie convincingly.” Zach waved it off. “It’s fine. I really just wanted to get into town. I’ll Uber it back to the hotel. Sixth Street has a bunch of bands playing tonight.”
My heart gave a kick. I didn’t want to dump my friend off in the middle of nowhere. “Are you sure?”
“Yeah, definitely. Besides, if I had that hot bit of gorgeous at all interested in me I wouldn’t have been so generous, bud.” Zach threw open the door, then slammed it. “And if you’re smart, you’ll make sure no one else has the chance.”
My eyes narrowed. “No one will.”
Zach’s grin tipped into a broad smile. “Yeah, I’m thinking you’re right.” He saluted me. “Good luck.”
Uncomfortable with the idea that everyone could figure us out this quickly, I cleared my throat. “I, uh—”
“Nah. Don’t sweat it, O. It’s our secret for now. No trash-talk. Besides, she’s too sweet.”
He loped off toward the lights on the bridge and monkeyed his way up the rail that blocked cars off from driving straight down.
I got out and followed the sound of splashing. She’d thrown on a bright red jacket that the lights under the bridge caught and reflected against. There was just enough moon out to create a beacon for me anyway. Her hair was almost white-blond in the dark.
But I know I wouldn’t be making my way through that murky water.
Seemed as if she had the same idea. She was barefoot on a large rock, taking pictures.
“We should come back here in August.”
She turned carefully, her camera cupped in her two hands. “The view is amazing now.”
“You should see it when the bats take flight around nine in the evening.”
“Bats?” Her voice rose and laughter bubbled out of her. “Are you kidding?” She leaped back onto the embankment.
I was actually surprised. She seemed like she was a bit of a catastrophe waiting to happen sometimes. Then again, she held her camera. The damn thing was magic in her hands. Both in the talent that came out of it—I’d seen the spread online for Music Life—and the confidence that it gave her.
I held out my hand to her and she clasped my fingers. “How many bats are we talking?”
“Roughly a million, give or take.”
“Yeah. It would have been amazing to show you, but then again the view is pretty inspiring at the moment anyway.” I curled my arm around her waist.
She lowered her camera to her side. “Is that right?” She looked around. “And my, so secluded.”
I shrugged. “Off-season, sure. During the season, this area is crazy.”
“Handy it’s this time of year.”
“Handy, indeed.” I leaned down, bumping my nose with hers. “Cold?” I glanced down at her toes.
“Not at the moment.”
“Sure?” I hovered closer to her mouth.
“Well, maybe a little.” Her eyelashes swept down as she stared at my mouth.
“Have a hold of that camera?”
“Glued to my hand.”
“Good.” I boosted her into my arms.
She squeaked. “These jeans are not made for this.” But she hooked her legs around my hips anyway.
“Then maybe we should take them off.”
“Here?” Her eyes got huge. “I was thinking that we could, you know, make out.”
“I’ve made out with you enough, bunny. I want to be inside you.” I hiked her up until she was just above my eye-line. I nipped her chin and coasted down her neck. “There’s one thing I love about these old cars.”
She curled both arms around my neck. Her camera dug into my shoulder a little, but the padding of my leather jacket helped. “What’s that?”
“Big backseats.” I slowly made my way up the hill to my Buick. She wasn’t heavy, but the incline was definitely working against me.
“Is that right?”
There was pleasure winding through her husky voice. Enough that my pants were more than uncomfortable. I’d swapped from jeans to cargos so I could get a break from the eternal strangle of denim lately. It didn’t much matter. Everything felt like too much fabric when it came to getting close to Callie.
I set her on the edge of the hood. I meant for her to slide to her feet, but she hooked herself tighter around me.
She pushed her camera up to the windshield.
“Don’t want to put that away,” I said, smiling against her mouth.
“Right now, I just want you.” She reached between us. “And this moon and star-filled sky seems like the perfect backdrop.”
My cock went from hard to painful. “Christ.” In the backseat of the car was one thing, but here? My bunny was always surprising me.
I looked over my shoulder. There were so many vantage points for someone to catch us. Her cool fingers had slipped past my zipper when I was looking around.
I hissed as she circled the base of my cock.
“Oh, wow. I kinda forgot what one of these felt like.”
“Not the little vibe I found in your shower.” I pushed myself into her hand.
“No, you are not.” She stroked me lightly.
I groaned. “Firm. Let me know you want to touch it.” My mouth hovered over hers as she leaned back to get a better hold of me. “Oh, yeah. Like that.” I closed my eyes as her grip increased. She rolled up against me and I pushed her back. “Keep that up and I’ll have you laid out on this hood.”
Her eyes widened. “Yes, that.”
“Here?” My eyebrow spiked up. “Are you sure?”
“Sure of anything that’s you and me? No, not really. But this?” She let out a slow breath. “I just want to get this over with.”
“Gee, thanks, bunny.”
“No. I just mean I need to get this first time over with so I can move forward. I want more. I want to experience everything.” She brushed her thumb over the head of my erection. “I want to know what it feels like to let go.”
“Don’t let go, love. I like where your hand is.”
She laughed. “I can’t remember the last time I laughed when I was in this position.”
The thought of her with any other man teased that possessive demon out of my chest. “As long as you’re not laughing at me, then we’re good.” I covered her mouth and let out the attention-seeking bastard inside me. I liked to laugh in bed as much as the next guy, but right now, I wanted her groaning. I wanted her desperate.
“Oh, no,” she said between panting breaths. “Definitely not.”
“Good.” I thumbed open her jeans. “Because I intend on making you scream.” I shrugged out of my jacket and stepped back. I threw it behind her and lifted her enough to get her onto the leather. Her eyes went wide as I peeled down her jeans and pushed her back.
Stone had nothing on me right now. “Well, fuck me. You keep on saying that name, bunny.”
I scraped my fingers down her belly and through the silk covering her trimmed curls. I dipped my knuckle right down through the seam of her lips and groaned at how ready she was for me. My mouth followed my fingers, my tongue breaching her barriers. Her taste flooded my mouth.
No hesitation lived in me. I wanted this, wanted her taste destroying my senses. I wanted to make sure there was no way I could forget this night. No way she would forget it either.
I knew her body. The few times I’d managed to get my hands on her, I’d learned the little sounds that she made when I found a particularly intense spot. I attacked every one of them like a damn marauder. I wanted her shaking.
Her fingers went right to my hair and twisted as she bowed up. I held her down, my thumb stroking her little hidden clit. I circled and circled until there was nothing but soft shudders around my ears. Her thighs quaked and I went for broke.
I lapped at that spot as I drilled my fingers into her. I knew I couldn’t be gentle, so I needed her beyond ready for me. She practically heaved up off the car and I slammed her back down.
Christ, I hope I didn’t hurt her, but she was wild under my touch.
Just like I wanted her.
I just wasn’t sure I could withstand it.
I dragged her down the hood of the car so I could get between her legs and line us up. When I felt her break against my mouth, flooding my throat with everything that was good and holy on this beautiful planet, I went for more.
“Not done,” I mumbled as I gripped her ass.
I was going to come in my damn boxers if I didn’t get inside of her. I drew back, and the freaking world shimmered. I’d stopped breathing, my only focus to get more of her inside me. She grabbed me by the shoulders and hauled me to her mouth.
The quick hum of surprise had me drawing back. Some women didn’t like the taste of themselves.
She reached between us, groaning around the kiss as our tongues tangled. I growled against her lips as she stroked down my shaft. Pre-cum was going to be cum in a moment if she didn’t stop.
My brain literally fogged as I pulled myself out of her hol
Her mouth was swollen from our ravaging kisses, and her pupils blown. One leg dangled off the side of the car and the other was propped on the headlight.
“Fuck, you’re the most beautiful woman I’ve ever seen.”
She swallowed. “Thank you?”
I laughed. “Aye, was a compliment.”
“Then why are you over there?”
“Because one more stroke from that lovely hand and I’d have been filling it with the goods.”
“Oh.” She licked her lips. “Then what’s the term? Suit up?”
I laughed and the need backed up enough for me to search the pocket of my jacket. I flipped the wallet onto the hood and pulled out a condom. “Last chance to say no. I’ll probably have to have a good cry down by the water, but I’ll live through it.”
She scraped her teeth over her naked mouth. For fuck’s sake, I was probably wearing all of her lipstick, but I didn’t care. She was gorgeous and she was mine.
I ignored the little voice. It didn’t have any place here.
I snapped the condom in place and hissed around the little flash of pain. It helped. It would allow me to curl those perfect legs around my hips and melt into her perfect pussy.
And maybe, just maybe, I wouldn’t be a goddamn two-pump-chump.
If there’s a God up there in the heavens, please let that be so.
I moved forward just as she scooted to meet me. I gripped her hip and snaked my other hand under her frilly little blouse. I swiped over her nipple. I hadn’t even had time to get the pretty little bits out of her shirt. But right now, my cock was making all the rules.
I was heading in.
My head bumped along her slick hood. She hissed as I rubbed along her clit.
“Won’t you let me in sweet, Calliope?”
“God, yes.” She reached between us and pushed me down just enough for a homecoming like I’d never known before in my life.
I wanted to slow down. She deserved for me to slow down.
I couldn’t. I thrust in until I was seated and she gloved me like she was made for me. I threw my head back.
Two? I wasn’t entirely sure I’d make it one.
Her nails nipped into my side as she pulled me closer. Somehow I found the strength to go for more. I drew back and sank inside of her again. Her gaze locked with mine as she took me again and again. The wonderment faded to pleasure and agony that matched my own.
TARYN ELLIOTT SERIES:
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- Manipulated: a Rockstar Romantic Comedy (Hammered Book 3)Rocked
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