Kade’s heart jumped into his throat when he saw Shannon walking determinedly in his direction. She wore her hair up to show off her slender neck and the diamond earrings he knew Mal had bought her. God, she was gorgeous. He liked strong women, and that was definitely Shannon. All the feminine strength in that sexy package, he was having a hard time resisting her. Everything in his body, especially one particular body part, told him to go after her. But his brain wouldn’t let him. He couldn’t act on his attraction. Mal was his best friend, and one of the things he’d always believed in was you didn’t fuck around with your buddy’s sister. Since Kade knew he wasn’t cut out to be involved for the long haul, he had to ignore the lust that was circling his gut right now.
Damn, as she neared, he saw she was coming after him for something. What had he done? With Shannon, you never knew what would happen. The woman ran a tight ship at work, and no one, not even her trained-to-kill Navy Seal brother, got away with jack shit with her.
“Hey, Kade,” she said just as the band started up with a slow country song. Even with the music playing, he could hear her accent. “Do you think you could dance a little two-step with me? I know you have to be one of the only guys here who knows how to do it right.”
The way she said it made him think of sex. Who was he fooling? Everything she said made him think of sex. But now, she was smiling, those green eyes sparkling up at him, and he couldn’t think again.
She laughed. The sound of it sunk into his blood and made his pulse do its own two-step. “Dance. You, me. Two-step. You haven’t forgotten how to do it, have you?”
The memory of her teaching him to two-step filtered through his mind. It had felt like purgatory, stuck between heaven and hell. Her body had moved against his, her soft breasts pressed against his chest…he’d almost lost it. The only thing that had saved him was that Mal was on that very same dance floor and probably would have beaten the hell out of him if he had known what Kade was thinking.
“Uh…yeah, I remember.”
She didn’t wait for a yes or no. She just grabbed his hand and dragged him behind her to the dance floor. She stopped then waited for him to step closer. Kade hesitated, trying to get his brain back into the game. Of course, his little brain wanted to do most of the thinking. His cock twitched as he drew her into his arms. They started to dance, and he tried to keep her further away. She slipped closer.
Oh, shit. Just the little brush of her body against his had his cock hardening. He just hoped she didn’t notice.
“I thought you and Mal would be off having a good old time.”
He glanced down at her, wondering about the tone. There was a thread of irritation in it. She was smiling up at him as if there was nothing wrong, but he knew there was something she wasn’t telling him.
“Apparently your brother had a woman picked out already.”
She nodded. “He’s a slut.”
Kade couldn’t help it. He threw back his head and laughed. Shannon had a way of talking about her brothers, especially Mal, that Kade knew was to remind them they were still just her brothers.
“What about you?” she asked.
“I’m not a slut.”
She chuckled. “The jury’s still out on that one.”
“Your brother needs to learn how to be a little more picky.”
Her lips curved up at that comment, and he felt the moisture dry up in his mouth. God, he wanted to kiss that smile off her face—then move down her body, exploring every delicious inch of her. He knew her flesh would be sweet.
“I noticed you’re pretty picky.”
He nodded as he worked her around the dance floor. “I don’t fall for every pretty face that comes along.”
She said nothing. Instead she laid her head on his shoulder. The gesture was so natural it was as if she did it every day. He knew he should tell her not to. His brain said he should do it. But he couldn’t. It was too close to what he wanted, what he yearned for. For five long years he had wanted her, wanted to feel this way with her, her head on his shoulder, her soft, warm body in his arms. He had wanted that for so long, he just couldn’t bring himself to stop her.
It was bad enough he would probably have to take a five-hour cold shower when he got back to the room. Sweat slid down his back, and he had to fight the urge to lean down and brush his lips over her forehead.
He had talked himself into not doing more when she sighed and relaxed even more against him. Her breasts were pressed against his chest, and with every breath he drew in that sultry scent that was so unique to her. His head started to spin. His body started to duel with his mind. His brain was starting to lose when the music ended. The band swung into a fast-paced Hawaiian tune. His body protested when he had to pull back.
Even to his own ears, his voice sounded gruff. She raised her head and blinked as if coming out of some kind of daze. Her breathing hitched, and her breasts rose above the neckline of her dress. His gaze slipped down, he could see her hardened nipples through the delicate red fabric. He curled his fingers into his palms and counted backwards from ten. If he didn’t get away from her soon, he would definitely lose control. There would be nothing to stop him from tearing off her clothes and bending her over a banquet table.
The wind shifted, pulling a few strands of her hair loose from the complicated style.
He cleared his throat. “Well, that was…nice.”
Fuck. How lame could he get? She studied him for a second, her expression serious, thoughtful. Then in the next moment, her lips curved.
“You know where my room is, doncha?”
Lust soared. His body reacted at the direct question. Any doubts he had about her interest in him vaporized. She apparently thought there was no reason to hide her attraction to him anymore.
He nodded, unable to form a word.
“Well, then you know where to find me later.”
With that, she walked away, and he couldn’t help watching her hips and that magnificent ass of hers.