|Publisher:||Amber Quill Press, LLC|
|Product dimensions:||5.25(w) x 8.00(h) x 0.35(d)|
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Rafferty Sinclair knew the plan was doomed the moment his falsies dropped to his navel.
He was sitting down at the time and didn't think the woman snoozing in the seat next to him on the commuter airplane headed for the Keys noticed.
He wriggled his shoulders and dug his elbows into his abdomen in an attempt to keep the damn things from slipping any lower. A quick decision was needed here. Unfortunately, his stringent training and ten years with the FBI hadn't included a section on cross-dressing on the job.
Twisting his broad body again, he tried desperately not to awaken the woman next to him. Oops. He dug his straight, upper false teeth into his bottom lip as he felt what could only be a bra strap break free. He'd told Duncan they were stuffing too much padding into the D-sized bra cups, but his partner, and now former friend, was adamant that it was better to be over-stuffed than not full enough. Now, after slight air turbulence, Rafferty's fears had come true.
If he was ever able to get out of his window seat and walk on his ludicrous high heels to the rear of the plane, he'd kill Duncan. After he got him to help fix these current problems.
"Is something wrong, Ramona?"
Rafferty looked into the blue sleepy eyes of Annie Blaszak. Her eyes, with their long, black lashes, were the only thing extraordinary about her. But as she straightened in her seat and stretched like a sleek little kitten waking from a nap on a sunny perch, he revised his opinion. Maybe her eyes weren't her only spectacular feature. "Are you airsick again?" she asked.
Once again Rafferty cursed himself and his bright ideas.This case was a low priority to his superiors. Hell, it was even a low priority for Duncan. In fact, all his co-workers thought he was insane to be putting in time on something that resembled more a low-budget comedy than a threat to national security.
That's why when the woman agent who'd been assigned to work with him had come down with the flu, his superiors hadn't even attempted to bring in another female. Rafferty had been instructed to improvise. Well, the improvisation had only been in action for a few hours and already things had gone from sugar to shit, with no signs of getting better. At least not while he was wearing a bra.
He cleared his voice and imitated the hard-edged Texas businesswoman he was supposed to be.
"No, honey. I'm a mite uncomfortable. I wish the airlines would take out a few seats so normal people wouldn't feel like they'd been stuffed into a sardine can. But that's a battle I've been fighting for a lot of years." Rafferty smiled and tried to keep his eyelashes from sticking together. First he'd had to glue 'em on and then Duncan had insisted he plaster them with mascara. Black, for God's sake. He'd be lucky if he didn't look like a friggin' raccoon before he left the airplane.
"Oh, I know what you mean." Annie smiled knowingly. "I think everything made for women has been designed by men. Personally, I'd like five minutes alone with the man who invented high heels. Boy, would he be sorry."
Rafferty fought a blush from rushing to his face as he noticed that Annie was looking directly at his nylon-wrapped, size eleven-and-a-half foot. Wonder where the damn shoe is?
As if sensing his embarrassment, Annie placed a comforting hand on his forearm. "I don't blame you for kicking them off. A few months ago, I decided I wasn't going to torture myself any more. So it's flats now, no matter what."
Flats? Oh, she meant flat-heeled shoes. Rafferty wondered how he had managed to get through thirty-four years of life without realizing women spoke a different language than men. At least to each other.
Hoping he wasn't sounding dumb, he replied with a frown, "Wish I could. But in my position I can't afford any compromise."
Annie nodded slowly. "Well, you're on vacation now. I say, get rid of the death spikes, the pantyhose, and all the rest. It's time to let your body breathe."
There was the out he was looking for and he wasn't about to pass it up.
"Well, I don't know about all that, but I think I will go back to the head–I mean the little girls' room–and make a few repairs. But, girlfriend, you wait until we get to the hotel. Then I'm going to be free."
Rafferty stood, and keeping his back to her, found his errant shoe with his toe, stuffed his foot into it and climbed into the aisle. Maybe she'd be asleep again when he returned. "You know, I fly a lot and I've seen the view a hundred times. Since it's your first time, you can take my window seat for a while."
Annie laughed. "How did you know this was my first time? Am I that obvious?"
Great. Open mouth, stick in foot. "Er…"
Copyright © 2004 by Karen Troxel