Breathless

Breathless

by Cherrie Lynn

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Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781640634640
Publisher: Entangled Publishing, LLC
Publication date: 11/19/2018
Series: Ross Siblings Series , #8
Sold by: Macmillan
Format: NOOK Book
Pages: 116
Sales rank: 21,673
File size: 1 MB

About the Author

New York Times and USA TODAY bestselling author Cherrie Lynn has been a CPS caseworker and a juvenile probation officer, but now that she has come to her senses, she writes contemporary and paranormal romance on the steamy side.

Read an Excerpt

CHAPTER 1

Seth "Ghost" Warren wiped his oil-smudged hands on a well-used rag, frowning into the depths of his 1969 GTO's engine. That should do it. She'd been running hot lately, but he thought he had it pegged to an airflow problem. At least that was what he hoped, since he wasn't too keen on sinking more money into her right now. Frigging thing had been a drain on his finances ever since he'd bought her, but like any good addict, he couldn't stop — at least not when the alternative was selling her. They'd been through too much together.

Thunder rumbled overhead, signaling an afternoon spring thunderstorm and the end of his patience. Sighing, he dropped the hood and gathered his tools, heading toward the garage just as the first fat drops of April rain began to slap the pavement. He could've worked on her under the roof of the garage, but he didn't like the closed-in feel, preferring to tinker with her in the driveway. Until ten minutes ago, it had been too nice of a day to be inside — but that was Texas weather for you.

Just as he putting his tools away, the bottom really fell out — a sudden deluge of rain that he was damn glad he'd escaped. It was so loud he almost missed his ringing cell phone on the workbench, but at the last minute he noticed the lit-up display. Unfamiliar number. Ordinarily he didn't answer those, but it was local, so he relented. Could be a client with a new number, and he never wanted to miss out on work at the tattoo shop.

"Yeap," he drawled, his usual greeting that was lost somewhere between "yeah" and "yep."

"Hey dude. Long time no see."

Ghost's spine shot ramrod straight. What. The. Hell. "I don't see you now, motherfucker."

"And you haven't changed any." Mark laughed, asshole that he was. Ever since Ghost had quit his position as lead guitarist of In the Slaughter, the band Mark fronted, there had been absolutely no reason to talk to the slimy little bastard. He'd deleted all evidence of him from his phone, and his life, and had been happier for it. Mark's little brother had filled Ghost's shoes in the band, which was exactly what Mark had always wanted. Everyone's problems solved. So there.

"Have you?"

"Nah."

"Well. That's a problem."

"What's that noise? Is it raining?"

"What am I, the fucking weatherman? Look out your window." He slammed a cabinet shut and glanced around. Nothing was left out that Macy might ride his ass over later. His wife was a damn neat freak, even though he'd clearly specified the garage was his domain. That didn't seem to matter to her, though. "And is there some reason you're on my phone right now?"

"I can't call up an old friend?"

"You never called when we were friends, unless you wanted something."

Oh. Yeah, that should have occurred to him right from the start. But the only thing more interesting than fucking with Mark was finding out what Mark could possibly want.

"Okay, so you caught me. But I've got a proposition for you. Just hear me out, all right?"

"Before you even waste your breath, you know I'm walking the straight and narrow now, right? So carefully consider just how fast I'm going to tell you to fuck off before you even ask whatever it is you're going to ask."

"I heard you got married. My invitation must've gotten lost in the mail."

"Yeah, your invitation that I never sent must've gotten lost in the mail. That's it."

"Look, short and sweet," Mark began, obviously getting tired of the verbal sparring he never won, "we wanted to ask if you'd like to come back for a gig with us."

Ghost nearly laughed, wondering how many times the other guys had counseled Mark to ask as nicely as possible. Indeed, it wasn't like him. And in the split second before Ghost's phone had rung, if someone had asked him his thoughts about rejoining In the Slaughter for any length of time, he probably would have punched them in the face for their insolence.

But with a real offer on the table ...

"I don't know, man." Macy's SUV pulled into their driveway, headlights on, windshield wipers beating furiously against the gray curtain of rain. "Hang on a second." She crept past the GTO and eased into the garage. Ghost didn't necessarily want her to hear the conversation he was having right now, so he put the phone down and helped her carry her bags into the house before hurrying back out and snatching it up again. "All right. You've got my attention. Tell me more."

"Drew broke his hand in an ATV accident. He's out for a while, but we have a show in Austin in three weeks. I know it's been a while for you. Would that be enough time to practice? It would all be familiar stuff."

"How's Gus been doing?" he asked, referring to the other guitarist and pretty much the only guy in the band Ghost gave much of a shit about.

"Well, you know. He's Gus."

Yeah, that was about what he'd expected. While he'd been in the band, he'd adopted a big-brother approach with Gus, but in the end he'd had to wash his hands of the whole thing. Too many co-dependent woman problems, too much substance abuse. You couldn't help a guy who didn't want to help himself.

Besides all of that ... Ghost had bad fucking memories of the last Austin gig he'd been a part of. Between Mark and Raina scheming behind his back, and Raina damn near tricking him into fucking her when he was almost passed out, he'd nearly lost Macy. He'd watched the best thing that had ever happened to him walk away, in large part thanks to the guy on the phone who never listened to a fucking word Ghost ever said. Did he really want to get involved with that old crowd again?

"Is it at Crossbones?"

"Yeah. The usual."

"You're gonna have to let me sleep on it, man. But I gotta tell you, it's probably gonna be a no."

For the first time, a hint of desperation began to creep into Mark's voice. "If there's anything I can do, any promises I can make, anything — say the word. I'm sorry for all the shit that went down between us. It was a bad deal. I know that. And ... it goes without saying that Raina will not be there."

No, it really didn't. Macy might have sent her running once, but his ex- girlfriend showed up wherever she damn well pleased, and if she caught wind of In the Slaughter playing in Austin with Ghost on the axe, she would be there. Oh, would she ever fucking be there. Not that she was even a blip on his radar of shit that mattered, he just preferred not to be the target of any flying beer bottles from the audience.

"Pardon me for saying that coming at me with all this shit now rings a little hollow, you know?"

"I know it must seem that way. But we need you, man. And if it's a chance to repair some shit and have a great time, it's all for the good, right?"

Sure. What could go wrong. He was being completely sarcastic, even in his head. "I'll call you back in a day or so." Jesus, did he even dare bring this up to Macy? He would have to, of course, but he fully expected that would be the final nail in the coffin of the whole idea. Macy didn't have fond memories of that night, either.

Yeah, he thought as he hung up. Macy would shoot this down. But damn, the thrill. Even now, he felt it awakening in his veins. No matter how much time had passed, he remembered how it felt to be up there playing on a stage. In the Slaughter had only been small-time, mostly a cover band, but he'd loved it until all the bullshit drama began to erode the friendship he'd had with his former bandmates. All of it had come to a head, and he'd bailed on the band when he and Macy were getting together, but what would one gig hurt?

Just one. Maybe she would understand.

* * *

Macy Warren glanced down at the little plastic stick on the counter, then tore her gaze away and fixed it resolutely on her reflection. Two minutes, the instructions had said. So she would give it two minutes before she looked, before she really really looked. She set the timer on her phone.

Had that briefest of peeks showed her the tiniest hint of a plus sign forming, though? Could it be?

Bouncing on her toes, she snatched her gaze higher, to the ceiling of their master bathroom. Come on, come on. She hadn't told Seth about her suspicions. She didn't even know if she should be having suspicions yet. Two days late, hell, that was pretty much the norm for her. It had been a few months since they'd thrown caution to the wind and foregone all forms of birth control, and though they weren't necessarily trying to conceive ... they damn sure engaged in the act enough to make something happen.

And oh, how she wanted something to happen.

Hands laced together in front of her mouth, she turned from the vanity and paced a circle, the plush bathroom rug under her bare feet pushing between her toes. What would Seth say if it had happened? Holy shit. She was going to explode. She had to look.

No! Don't look yet.

Macy glanced at her phone. It had been one minute and forty-two seconds since she started the timer. God, she was going to die.

Just look! The result will be showing by now!

Wouldn't it? Damn, she'd never taken one of these things before.

Oh, to hell with it.

She whirled around, snatched up the stick, and looked.

Negative.

Shoulders drooping, she put it back down on the counter and thought about giving it a couple more minutes, but there was no reason to prolong the agony. The control line was evident, so she had her results. Locking gazes with her reflection again, she thought her eyes looked a little sadder.

Well ... there were two tests in the box, and maybe she would take the other in the morning. That was the recommendation, anyway — take it in the morning. Maybe it was too early to detect. Or maybe she would accept defeat and save the other test until next month.

Sighing, she cleaned up and stuffed the evidence deep in the trash, wondering if she should talk to Seth about it. She hadn't actually let on to him how badly she'd wanted that test to be positive just now. The test he didn't even know she'd taken. The sole reason she'd run to the store a half-hour ago, actually, was to pick one up, though she'd given him an excuse about needing coffee creamer.

Oh well, it would happen soon. Right? Maybe next month. Or even the one after. Her mother kept telling her to enjoy their alone time while they had it, and it was true they had only been married for six months. Still, so much excitement fluttered in Macy's belly when she even thought about becoming pregnant. Getting to occasionally babysit her best friend Candace's little boy wasn't helping matters — Lyric was so sweet and adorable. Every time Candace and Brian even mentioned tentative date plans, Macy was quick to offer her services.

Not to mention that watching her bald, inked, pierced, badass husband playing with a one-year old made her want to jump his bones on the spot. Of course, she couldn't, with the kid being present and all. That might indeed be a problem once they had their own — no spontaneous sex in the kitchen. Or the laundry room. Or, hell, the front entryway.

Well, back to reality. She left the bathroom and went in search of him, remembering now that he'd been on the phone when she'd first pulled in. Abuzz with excitement over taking her very first pregnancy test ever, she hadn't even stopped to wonder who he was talking to and why he'd put them on hold to help her. She located him in the kitchen now, shirtless and throwing together a sandwich.

"Did you get the car fixed before it started raining?" she asked, walking over and standing on her tiptoes to kiss him, though he tried to duck her, the silly boy.

"Don't get too close. I probably need a shower." Like she cared. He smelled like oil and the faintest hint of the sweat that sheened his heavily inked skin, and she practically felt her ovaries growl. Oh God, yes, she wanted this man's baby. "But yeah, I hope so. Else it's gonna know hot when I set the fuckin' thing on fire."

"You are so not going to do that." She stole a slice of turkey breast off his sandwich and popped it into her mouth. He chuckled and replaced it with another one. "I have faith in you."

"I'm glad someone does." He slapped bread on top of his sandwich and took a bite while she thought about the struggle she'd endured only moments ago. It wasn't fair to leave him out of that. But if his disappointment turned out to be as acute as hers, then yeah, she wanted to spare him from it. She simply didn't know.

"Are you okay?" he asked suddenly, and she jerked her eyes up to find his dark, assessing ones steady on her face.

"Yeah," she said brightly. "Why wouldn't I be?"

"You want me to sell her, don't you?"

Startled, she frowned at him and shook her head. "Babe, that's completely up to you."

"But I'm asking you."

"You love that car."

"I do. And I love you."

"Well ..." Macy struggled for words for a minute. The conversation had come up a handful of times before with no real resolution, and she found her feelings were mixed. On one hand, financially, it would be a burden off them. On the other ... "That car is you." He chuckled and regarded her thoughtfully for a moment. "I just mean that you would be devastated if you got rid of her."

"Yeah," he grunted. "I would be. But your dad's friend offered a pretty decent chunk of change to take her off my hands. I've been thinking about it."

She wasn't quite sure how to put into words what she was feeling about that. Hell, maybe she was being too sentimental. But that car was such an integral part of them as a couple that she couldn't imagine letting it go, either. They'd talked about so much, laughed about so much in the front seat ... not to mention all the naughty things that had happened in the backseat. Their first time together. Their second time together. She would never, could never forget those nights.

"That car is us," she said at last. Broken, beaten parts that had been lovingly restored. Shiny, powerful, made new again.

Sometimes, Seth's usual sardonic expression melted especially for her. She always loved those moments, when she could plainly see the adoration he had for her burning away everything else. "Baby, we're us. I don't need a car to remind me of that."

"I know," she said softly, butterflies fluttering up from her belly at the way he looked at her. "I don't either. I'm being silly, I guess. It's just sad to think about."

"Then we don't have to think about it right now."

She smiled and turned to go to the Keurig, putting an extra sway in her hips as she went, feeling his stare on her as she prepared her afternoon caffeine jolt. If she knew him — and she did — she wouldn't get around to drinking it.

* * *

It was a little game they played, where she liked to go on about her business as if he wasn't getting hard in his jeans just looking at her. They each liked to see how long the other could hold out before they ended up fucking on the spot. But he wasn't in the mood to play it, especially when she so casually began asking him about, of all things, dinner plans. "We could do Italian, we haven't done that in a while. Or we could grill some burgers. Ooh! How about —" She turned and looked up at him with those bright hazel eyes alight, and it was his undoing. The breath rushed out of her as he caught her face in his hands and kissed her.

This, this was his favorite part of domesticity: her gorgeous body within reach at all times. The reassurance of her slender arms around him, the solidity, because sometimes he couldn't believe she was real and she wanted him.

But God, how she did. She grasped the back of his head, kissing him back as fiercely as he kissed her, each of them trying to assert their dominance, her tongue dancing into his mouth.

Letting the tips of his fingers slide around the backs of her thighs, he teased just under the hem of her shorts, eliciting a shivery groan from her. Her mouth fell open in bliss, and he took the opportunity to nibble her bottom lip, suck it gently, show her just what he would happily do to her nipples and her clit once he got her clothes off. She clung desperately, her nails biting his flesh.

On second thought, maybe he would leave her clothes on. God, he loved fucking her with her clothes on. He loved when she made it hard for him ... in more ways than one.

"I love you," she murmured against his lips.

"Love you, too." Ever since the first time she'd dragged those words from his mouth, from his heart, he couldn't stop telling her.

"But you're trying to change the subject with sex."

"Yeah?" he growled, taking another taste of her. "How am I doing?"

"Hmm. Food debate, or sex ... however shall I choose?"

"I'll choose for you." Each word was punctuated with a heavenly mouthful of her. Her hair slid like silk around his fingers as he stroked up her back. She still trembled for him after all this time, and he still burned for her. He always would. This woman held all the power in the world to destroy him, and like an idiot he'd willingly given it to her — but even if someday she used it, he'd have no regrets.

(Continues…)


Excerpted from "Breathless"
by .
Copyright © 2018 Cherrie Lynn.
Excerpted by permission of Entangled Publishing, LLC.
All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.
Excerpts are provided by Dial-A-Book Inc. solely for the personal use of visitors to this web site.

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Breathless 3.3 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 4 reviews.
Lost-N-Love-N-Hopeless 15 days ago
need their beginning to fully enjoy their now . . . I felt as if I was step-in on something that was ongoing, but it in no way detracted from the connection that I was feeling between Seth and Macy. While I felt like I was missing the beginning of their story, I enjoyed the part of their love I was able to share in. I will be heading back to the beginning of this series and enjoy each new couple as they come and see Macy and Seth from the start. Would certainly read again in context to the other books of the series.
Anonymous 20 days ago
Another great installment in a awesome series. My favorite couple in the series.
kstokes 20 days ago
I was undecided about how I felt when I heard we were getting another book about Ghost and Macy, but decided to try to reserve judgement and give it a chance. I loved Macy and Seth's story and was hopeful that this book would be good unfortunately this book is a complete waste of time and it is overpriced for how short it is! In my opinion this book had nothing of substance to offer and seems to my to be a money grab.
Lori-Gonzo 21 days ago
How I loved this book with the continuing story for Ghost and Macy. I had to reread their first book to get the full effect of this one before diving into this. And I fell in love with their characters all over again. Ghost is such a special man. In this one I adored how he reassured Macy and just helped her through her insecurities. His words were beautiful and his convictions strong. Macy was great in that she got to grow a little more. She saw Ghost a little more honestly, with a closer look at a different part of him. And once she did, there was no reason for her doubts. She fully understood him. And their love scenes were freaking hot, each and every one. They are such a fabulous couple together. Stand beside one another and love unconditionally. I loved this update with them. Would it be too much to ask for another of their future in a few years? ;D I received this book in exchange for an honest review from the publisher through Netgalley.