Site updated 5/21/00
|An Excerpt from MUSTANG ANNIE
An August 2000 release from Avon Books
"An irresistable hero, a remarkable heroine, and a wild ride...
Don't miss it!"
--Megan Chance, author of A SEASON IN EDEN
"What's that scent you're wearing?" he asked softly.
She looked at him over her shoulder. He'd clasped his arms behind his head, and the heat of his stare had the air around her crackling. "It's saddle oil."
"No, the other. The flowery one."
Her lilac soap? "Why?"
"It's nice." Silence fell for a moment. Rain pattered on the canvass like little feet.
"There is nothing more evocative than the scent of a woman, did you know that?"
Wonderful. Now she wouldn't be able to use her favorite soap without worrying that it got him excited. Sarcastically she replied, "I suppose if you say it, it must be true. After all, you're the expert, aren't you?"
"You know what they say--practice makes perfect." She caught a flash of white teeth in the darkness. "It starts with a look--the kind that makes her feel as if no one else exists."
His soft, slightly accented words made Annie's breath catch in her throat.
"Then sound--a whisper of her name in the darkness."
She could almost hear it; the whisper of her name...
"Scent comes next. Sometimes soft and alluring, other times musky and potent. And touch. The heat of a hand on flesh. Lips against lips. The heart starts beating, fast and furious--" He turned his head, looked pointedly at her breast. "Just like yours is now."
Her gaping mouth shut with a snap. He was right, damn him; her heart rate had tripled. She crossed her arms over her front and flopped onto her side, not trusting the darkness to hide the perking of her nipples from his view. Damn him. He'd done it on purpose, tried seducing her with words. "You think you know so much about women."
"I know what they want, and I know how to give it."
It wasn't a boast, just a simple statement of fact that had the power to kindle a fire in the pit of her stomach. "And what does she get out of it?"
"She gets to feel needed. Cherished. Desired." Each word fell in tempo with her heartbeat. "Think about it, Annie.
She did. In excruciating detail. Worse, she had the picture of him wading in the creek to help her. All that muscle. All that power. All that...utter and absolute maleness. And it could be hers with a crook of her finger. She could hardly remember the last time the blood in her veins had felt so hot. "Is bedding women all you think of?" she demanded.
"Bedding you is all I can think of."
Even if she could think of a reply, Annie wasn't sure she could utter it. The timbre of his words made her feel as if she were the most desirable woman on earth. Her tongue stuck to the roof of her mouth, and her heart galloped in her chest. For despite the lightness of his remark, she detected a seriousness that both disturbed and aroused her.
"You don't believe me?"
This is not a conversation she wanted to have with him. It made her remember all the things she'd lost, all the things she missed. The touch of a man, the warmth of his embrace, the sensual connection of two people sharing a mutual need. "I think you'll do or say anything to get what you want from any woman handy."
"You're opinion of me grows more flattering by the day. Tell me, who gave you such a low opinion of men?"
"Who gave you such a low opinion of them?"
"What's that supposed to mean?" he asked, sounding confused.
Annie realized that she wasn't quite brave enough to answer. So he was strict with the men who worked for him. So he wasn't as patient and tolerant a teacher as Sekoda had been. Who was she to judge him? "Never mind. Let's just get some sleep."
She rolled onto her side and crunched the blanket beneath her head. What kind of fool was she anyway? Seduction could just be part of Corrigan's plot to deceive her, and here she lay with him nearby, letting him stir up forgotten memories, letting him weaken her with his words, letting him rouse longings inside her that she'd buried four years ago....
Damn him for making her want to feel like a woman again.
Click here to order your copy of MUSTANG ANNIE from Amazon.com