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Sweet and Sinful
By Jodi Lynn Copeland
Copyright © 2008 Jodi Lynn Copeland
All right reserved.
Chapter One She'd finally done it. Turned her porn star dreams into reality.
Freshly showered with a fluffy white robe wrapped around her, Courtney Baxter exited the hotel suite bathroom and beamed at the naked male ass asleep on the coverless bed.
Technically, it was more than an ass. A prime, hard-bodied, and excellently equipped specimen of the male species was attached to that fine backside. And she hadn't exactly become a full-fledged porn star, or ever dreamed of becoming one, for that matter. But she had enticed Mr. Hot Buns into letting her videotape their wild antics.
To think, less than two months ago she couldn't score so much as a dinner date for her average looks and behavior. Now, thanks to a little guidance from her across-the-cubicle coworker at Pinnacle Engineering, Courtney was neither average nor lacking for men to date, dine with, or just plain do.
Thanks to Candy Masterson, Courtney was a bona fide sex diva and loving every minute of it. A sex diva that was overdue to make her exit.
The secret of having fun with sex, Candy had told her, was getting out while things were still going good. In other words, not sticking around until Mr. Hot Buns woke up from his post-orgasm slumber and Courtney had to face that awkward "I never got to know more than your sexual preference and marital status before I laid you" moment.
The beefcake in mention shifted on the bedbefore rolling onto his back and trapping both the top and bottom sheet beneath well-developed calves. She held her breath with the idea she'd missed her getaway opportunity. Thankfully, his eyes never opened. He just started into some serious snoring that suggested he wasn't waking anytime soon.
Releasing her breath, she took advantage of his vulnerable state and slid her gaze along his body.
Black hair covered his solid frame, thick on his head and groin, thinner on his chest and the rest of his big body. A mustache touched against his upper lip and, oh, the wickedly wonderful ways he'd used that coarse bit of hair on her.
Her pussy pulsed with the memory of his mouth down there, his tongue inside her folds, lapping at her cream. Instinctively, her gaze drifted lower, past the solid expanse of his stomach to his cock. As if he could feel her watching him, his shaft stirred, rousing to its previously solid state. This time minus the condom so she could see every inch of steely male flesh. Plump pinking head. Pre-cum oozing from the tip ... just waiting for her tongue to reach out and lick.
Damn, it was tempting to shake the robe off her shoulders, climb back onto the bed, and let first her mouth and then her sex gobble up his erection.
It was always tempting.
But tempting fate by making it seem she was after more than a little harmless sex was not the point. Having fun was. Enjoying herself, her body, her twenty-six-year-old sex drive before it started petering out and she had to face the reality of an average life all over again.
That rather depressing thought got Courtney moving as it always did.
This time making her getaway meant more than chucking the robe and pulling on the red leather pants, black baby-doll top, and four-inch-heel stilettos that had taken her the better part of a week to learn to walk in without resembling a newborn foal taking its first steps. This time leaving meant gathering up her camera, tripod, and taping supplies.
She moved as soundlessly as possible through the hotel room, searching out rashly cast-aside clothing and pulling it on. She was dressed and nearly finished storing the camera and accessories in their bag when Mr. Hot Buns' snoring came to an abrupt end.
Ten feet behind her, sheets rustled. The bed gave a creak.
Courtney swore under her breath and went deadly still, silent. Pulse pounding at her throat, she felt far too much like she had when she'd gotten trapped by a wild boar on the outskirts of her parents' blueberry farm.
Cornered, and desperate for escape.
Please stay asleep.
"You should have woken me," came a sleep-roughened male voice.
She bit her lip to keep her groan inside. With the boar, she'd gotten lucky and her dad had come to her rescue. With the beefcake, her luck had run out.
Aware the only way she was going to get out of this hotel room was with action, Courtney finished stowing the tripod and zipped up the camera bag. Hooking the bag's strap over her shoulder, she pasted on her most sensual smile and turned around. Mr. Hot Buns sat in bed, his back to the plain wood headboard and his cock at full mast and calling to her from across the room. Even more than his willingness to go along with her videotaping desire, he'd been a great lay. Eager to please, again and again.
She still had to go. Now.
This sex game was about confidence, arrogance even, so she took her smile from sensual to smug. "Not on your life, buster. The way you were snoring, it was clear that I wore you out."
A frown twitched at his lips as he nodded at the camera bag. "Going somewhere?"
She'd picked him out of all the men at the bar because of the self-assured aura he gave off. Now that aura was nowhere to be found. Now he was brooding-his cocoa brown eyes reminded her of a wounded puppy-and the country girl of her roots was threatening to resurface and make her want to jump him more than ever. "It's late."
"I have this room till morning."
Yeah, and she had a personal promise to maintain. One that meant not permanently falling into the arms of the first guy who wanted her beyond an initial screw. "Sorry, but I have morning plans that require sleeping in my own bed tonight."
"I won't be getting a number, will I?"
"You said you were after a night of fun."
"I guess the whole videotaping thing made me realize you're more than a pretty face and hot body." His frown stayed in place a few more seconds, and then he shook it off and eyed the camera bag hanging from her shoulder. "Can I at least get something to remember you by?"
Something to-Oh. He wanted a copy of her tape.
Nerves ate at Courtney's belly with the thought of truly being porn material for Mr. Hot Buns, and potentially his friends as well. She considered refusing the request. But then, it was his tape, too. And it would look incredibly insecure of her to turn him down for fear he would show it to others. She'd worked way too hard at this sex-diva thing to appear timid.
"All right." Really, she would never meet his friends or probably ever see him again either. Besides, what could one little naughty videotape hurt? "I don't have an extra tape along, but if you give me your name and address, I'll mail you a copy."
"What could one little naughty videotape hurt?" Gail Taeber's voice was a cross between disbelief and outrage. Hands on her shorts-clad hips in the middle of the living room of the downtown Grand Rapids apartment they shared, she gave Courtney the evil eye. "What, are you nuts?" She waved a slim hand dismissively. "Never mind, don't answer that. It's clear what you are, what you've become. A slut."
They'd been friends since their freshman year in college eight years ago; far too long for Courtney to be offended. And truthfully, before taking control of the more pleasurable aspects of her life, she would have felt the same way.
Now Courtney knew the value of letting life's daily stresses fall to the wayside by way of a hunk to do.
"Mmm ... Guilty as charged." Hoping to get a laugh out of her roomie, she licked her lips exaggeratedly, then segued into a little bump and grind hip action that reminded her how tight the red leather pants were. She'd intended to come home and head straight to her bedroom to slip into something literally more comfortable, but then Gail had been up watching a movie and, from the instant Courtney stepped through the door, had started in with the grilling.
Without a hint of amusement, Gail scraped her fingers through her hair, pulling back the naturally white-blond, mid-back-length locks. "I don't get you anymore."
"You don't get 'it' at all." Courtney regretted the words the instant they left her mouth. Just because she was living her desires didn't mean she felt everyone had to do the same.
Hurt passed through Gail's eyes. Then her hands returned to her hips and her expression became one of aversion. "Is that all you think about these days? Sex?"
"Of course not!" Assuming an impish smile, Courtney gave a last attempt at humor. "I think about all the places I've yet to pick a man up."
Gail's eyes narrowed. "You're unbelievable. Not even close to the girl I used to know."
Accepting she wasn't going to get to her bedroom and comfy clothes anytime soon, Courtney dropped down on the blue and beige striped sofa. "I was kidding," she assured soberly while removing the killer stilettos and tossing them aside. "I still take plenty of things seriously. You are right about one thing, though. I'm not the girl you used to know. She was average. Boring. Afraid to take a chance for fear of failure." A country bumpkin who'd nearly let the best years of her sex life flash before her eyes.
"Now you're a woman who leaps into bed with every guy she meets without a thought to looking beyond if his equipment appeals to her."
"I don't do every guy I meet. There have been a few this month and, yeah, a handful last month. But so what? I'm happy. And I leave them happy."
"So you think. What happens when you hook up with a guy who wants more than a single night and is ready to do anything to see that he gets it?"
"I hook up with guys who want the same thing I want." If they changed their mind after the fact, the way Mr. Hot Buns had tonight, that was hardly her fault. Even so, Courtney was a good enough judge of character to spot a lunatic. And smart enough to know that when she did dare to walk the line, as in the case of the promised videotape, to send her package "signature required" lest it end up in the wrong hands. "That doesn't include stalkers or rapists, if that's what you're implying."
"I'm implying," Gail started sharply. Then all the bluster came out of her on a whooshing breath and a muttered, "Oh, hell."
Wearing a contrite smile, she dropped down next to Courtney on the sofa. "I don't really think you're a slut. You know me better than that. I just worry-there's always so much crap on the news about some woman being beaten, or shot to death by an ex-lover."
"Thanks for your concern," Courtney said sincerely, "but I'll be okay. We took that self-defense class in college, and I have pepper spray in my purse, if there ever comes a point when I need it. I'm not going to live in fear of such an unlikely event. This is my time for fun, for pleasure, to be more than average. No psycho man is going to ruin it for me."
Seriously, there was nothing to worry about. Courtney was behaving just like Candy, and Candy had been behaving this way for darned near a decade without incident. She would be fine. Better yet, she would be well sexed and purring like a kitten whenever the urge to get laid struck.
After spending the last two-and-a-half months in the scorching desert heat of Iraq, overseeing the first phases of construction of a multimillion-dollar wastewater treatment system, Blaine Daly was damned glad to be back to Michigan's generally mild late-June weather. Back to his role of construction manager for Pinnacle Engineering's Eastern Region. Back to an air-conditioned office building with nearly all the amenities of home, at least on those days he wasn't required to supervise in the field.
Back to Candy.
Blaine's smile was automatic as he said good morning to Sherry, the fifty-something, bottle-redhead admin working the front desk, and then breezed on past the short fogged-glass partition that separated the lobby from the two-story building's general resources and production area. He and Candy had no sexual history and too little chemistry to consider a future fling. Still, he respected her no-holds-barred approach to sex. And he enjoyed the hell out of the way she filled her scanty clothes and livened up an office otherwise occupied by mostly stoic workers.
He'd also always enjoyed her hair, dirty-blond waves that caressed her shoulders and flowed partway down her back.
The woman rifling through the double-wide filing cabinet across the room wore Candy's risqué style of clothing. A barely mid-thigh-length black skirt hugged the lush curve of her ass. Sheer thigh-high stockings, with black pinstripe, picked up where the skirt left off, and led to dark green three-inch heels that matched her off-the-shoulder, short-sleeve top.
It was her hair that was different.
This woman was a brunette. The ends of her straight, chin-length locks tipped with a lighter shade of brown, bordering on dark blond.
Had Candy gotten a cut and dye job, or who was the woman?
Blaine joined Jake Markham, one of the construction field guys he supervised, at the interoffice mail bins a few feet away. Jake's hand held open the manila mail folder with his name on it, but his attention appeared fixed on the same spot-make that babe-as Blaine's.
"New employee?" Blaine asked casually.
Jake looked over at Blaine with far too much appreciation filling his eyes for a guy still in his first year of marriage. But then, hot women had a way of screwing with a guy's best intentions, and looking wasn't really a crime. "The new Courtney."
"Baxter?" Holy shit.
Testosterone pumping through his system like mad and his thoughts far from work, Blaine zipped his gaze back to the woman.
To Courtney Baxter. Mindblowing, yet not a total shocker.
He'd always believed she had an inner dirty girl. Her job as a technical writer responsible for the firm's local proposal efforts meant they worked together from time to time. Each time they got close, he swore her blue-green eyes revealed naughty thoughts. He'd nearly asked her about them a time or two, and if they didn't happen to involve the two of them without a stitch of clothing. But he hadn't wanted to embarrass her, just in case he was mistaken. And nothing ever came out of her own mouth that wasn't 100-percent professional.
Until now? Or was changing the way she dressed as far as things went?
Without looking Jake's way, he mused, "Wonder what brought the transformation on?"
"Knowing how women are, she probably realized she's creeping up on thirty and figured she'd better start using it before she loses it."
Doubtful. Courtney's twenty-seventh birthday was still a month away-he recalled seeing her last one mentioned in the company newsletter and the date stuck in his mind for whatever reason. As for losing it, the raw sensuality floating off her body and sucking him in from thirty feet away made it seem unlikely there was a chance of that happening anytime in the next six or seven decades.
"I wouldn't go there," Jake said, apparently keyed into Blaine's thoughts.
Or, shit, Blaine admonished himself, maybe it was the way he was eying Courtney up like a fresh-off-the-grill porterhouse. Losing the wolfish look, he glanced at Jake. "Why's that?"
"Rumor has it she's on a pleasure quest, but that she already has a man lined up for when she decides she's had enough of the hunt."
Was that supposed to dissuade his interest in her? If so, the attempt failed miserably.
Blaine had never told Courtney that he was as attracted to her as she sometimes appeared to be to him, because he believed his player reputation could be a turnoff. Now it seemed that was exactly what she was after. A guy who knew when he was wanted and had no problem moving on when that want had run its course.
His body kicking to full awareness with the knowledge, Blaine looked back at Courtney. Only, she wound up being a whole lot closer than planned. If she were taller, he would have ended up with his nose stuck between her breasts. As it was, and with her heels on, she was almost mouth level to him and he came damned close to brushing her lips with his.
For the instant it took her to gasp and step back, he felt the warmth of her breath mingling with his own. Saw the flicker of unmistakable lust in her eyes. Caught the hitch in her breathing as her response to his nearness moved from surprise to desire.
He grinned as the truth flooded him.
He hadn't been mistaken with his wonder if her naughty thoughts were about the two of them naked. She wanted him. And the rousing of his cock spoke volumes about his want for her.
Excerpted from Sweet and Sinful by Jodi Lynn Copeland Copyright © 2008by Jodi Lynn Copeland.Excerpted by permission.
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