Toni Langston has been in love with Simon, her best friend, for years. The night Simon breaks up with his longtime girlfriend, he and Toni make love. Toni is devastated and humiliated when, in the heat of the moment, he calls her by his girlfriend's name.
The next morning, Simon remembers nothing of the previous night and Toni is only too relieved not to remind him. Two months later, she discovers she's pregnant. She wants Simon to love her, apart from any obligation he might feel because of the baby.
So she embarks on a quest to seduce her best friend, to make him see her as more than a little sister, to make him love her as much as she loves him. It works. Maybe too well. Now when things are perfect, she faces telling him of the secret she's kept.
A Blackstone Audio production.
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By Maya Banks
Samhain Publishing, Ltd.Copyright © 2006 Maya Banks
All right reserved.
Chapter OneToni watched from the couch as Simon turned and walked over to her once more. She smiled tentatively up at him as he knelt by the couch. "How you doing? Any cramping?" he asked.
"You've been reading my pregnancy book again," she said with a laugh. But she found it endearing he had devoted so much time to reading about something that affected her.
She reached a hand up and placed it on his chest. "Thank you," she whispered.
"For what?" he asked, confusion clouding his eyes.
"For caring about me," she said softly.
Not taking the time to ponder whether this was the appropriate moment, she smoothed her hand up over his shoulder and over the back of his neck. Pulling him down at the same time she raised her lips, she pressed her mouth to his.
He stiffened in surprise, but she moved her lips softly over his, seeking, almost pleading with him to respond. His mouth opened, and he took control of the kiss. His hand slid up to her neck holding her against him as his tongue darted forth.
She moaned softly, twining her fingers in his hair pulling him even closer. Heaven had nothing on Simon. His kiss was possessive, strong, everything she'd dreamed about since their first night together. Only now he knew what he was doing.
A giddy thrill shot through her body as the kiss went on, his hot breath on her face only fanning the out of control flames.
Then he jerked away leaving her struggling to catch her breath. His eyes were bright with ... regret? Shock? He rocked back on his heels and ran a hand through his hair, then swore.
This wasn't the reaction she'd envisioned.
She struggled to sit up, wrapping her arms around her chest in a protective measure. Then she waited with dread for him to speak.
"Jesus, Toni. I'm sorry. Christ, are you okay?"
She nodded, too numb to speak. He was apologizing. Humiliation edged every bit of the euphoria that had swept over her just seconds ago. Slow heat spread up her neck and over her cheeks. "I'm fine," she finally murmured.
Not saying anything further, she rose, wrapping her dignity around her like a tattered blanket then walked through the kitchen toward her room.
"Toni, wait," he called.
Ignoring his plea, she quietly closed the door behind her and locked it. If she didn't get out of there soon, she was going to lose all semblance of self control.
The tears came before she got to her bed. She knew it was a long shot, but hope springs eternal. Or it did. Now she was going to have to face the music. She was pregnant and alone. Simon didn't see her as anything more than a kid sister. The sooner she came to terms with that the sooner she could get on with her future. Single motherhood.
Her doorknob jiggled then a soft knock sounded. "Toni? Toni, open the door please. We need to talk. God, I'm sorry. I had no right to do that."
She buried her head further into her pillow and shut out the sound of his pleading. After a few minutes, she could hear him walk away.
She rolled onto her side and gripped the pillow against her chest. What the hell was she going to do? She couldn't face him now. Once again, she'd screwed up royally. And this time she'd probably ruined their friendship as well.
Excerpted from Seducing Simon by Maya Banks Copyright © 2006 by Maya Banks. Excerpted by permission.
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