by G.G. Andrew
The next in my contemporary romance series Love & Lawbreakers will be out May 13th. Called Stolen in Love, it’s a second-chance romance between a single dad cop and a recovering kleptomaniac wild girl.
If you dig second-chance romance or reading love stories that involve people like thieves and artists, here’s a sneak peek of what I’ve been working on. This is a scene near the beginning of the book where Officer Scott Culpepper has his neighbor’s black sheep of a daughter, Kim, watch his daughter while he’s on duty. When he comes home, he finds her asleep with his little girl on the couch. After he puts his daughter to bed, this is what happens…
His mouth dry, he was having trouble forming words, and after an awkward pause, she stood.
“Well, thanks for everything,” she said.
He uncrossed his arms, surprise at her leaving so quickly mobilizing his mouth. “Thank you. Lily really seems to like you. I’ve never seen her fall asleep with someone else before, besides me.”
“Oh?” She was pleased. “Well, I like her.” There was something sad in her voice, but before he could fathom its source, she was reaching the front door.
“Wait.” He walked until he stood beside her. The doorknob was already in her hand.
Kim studied him expectantly.
He didn’t know why he’d told her to wait, exactly. There was something he’d wanted to say, but it’d slipped his mind at the sight of her. It probably wasn’t important. There wasn’t anything to say at this late hour, not with Lily fast asleep and the knowledge that he should be headed in that direction, too. But something in him didn’t want this to be it, didn’t want this woman to be leaving. In the long moments where he furiously tried to think of something to say, her large brown eyes stared at him, her pretty pink lips pointed upward. They were like two ripe petals—or, something, he couldn’t figure out what—and they drew his eyes down and his body like a magnet and she was so sleepy and pretty, and before he knew it, he’d touched his lips to hers. Lightly, just once, like he’d only meant to kiss her goodnight.
In response, Kim’s eyes widened. She was wide awake now, and she reached up and drew his head to hers and deepened the kiss.
As her eyes fluttered closed again and her lips parted underneath his, he drew in a quick breath at the sensations that ripped through him. The obscene softness of her lips, the heat of her mouth. The sudden urgency that gripped him and made him tug her forward by the waist to press against him, his free hand bracing against the door to hold them both upright. Her tongue darted in his mouth, feverish and wicked. It was just a kiss, but dammit if he didn’t want it all then, everything, her pink mouth and crimped hair and curves and her naked on his couch with his kid sleeping down the hall.
He shouldn’t have found out what he’d been missing.
She was the first to break the kiss, confirming his suspicions that she was stronger and also that she wasn’t as overcome. “You shouldn’t have done that,” she whispered against his mouth, but he could tell she was smiling.
He remembered what he’d meant to say before. “I’ll watch you leave,” he said, out of breath and with a telltale tightening in his pants. “I’ll keep an eye on you until I know you’re back at your parents’ with the door locked behind you.”
She stepped away, and the temperature dropped as she removed her heat.
“You’re a good guy,” she said softly. “You deserve a good woman.” She opened the door and left out into the night.
His hands shaking, he pushed the door open wider and watched her go, his eyes scanning both of their yards. His cop instincts hadn’t yet left him. Good. Even if he’d just been about to ask Kim Xavier to stay the night, at least he had a brain cell or two jingling around in there.
She walked across the street and across the dark expanse of her parents’ lawn and entered a side door, turning to give a little wave before she disappeared into the house. He raised a hand in farewell, but waited an extra beat to make sure that, true to his word, the door was safely locked behind her.
Then he shut his own door and leaned his back against it, exhaling.
Dammit. He didn’t want a responsible, suitable woman without a criminal record. He didn’t want someone who’d make a stable girlfriend, someone he could invite to neighborhood potlucks or to come around the station and meet the guys.
He only wanted Kim Xavier.