Excerpt from An Inescapable Attraction

     
     When Thaddeus closed the door and turned around, Ellie stood up slowly. Their gazes locked, and suddenly, she hurtled herself into his arms, laying her head on his chest and holding on tightly. Grasping his shirt with her left hand, unknowingly she pressed the gun she still held into his other side.
     Nervously, he eased the weapon out of her grasp and laid it gently on the chair along with his own. It took him another moment to close his arms around her, so stunned was he by having her pressed closely against him.
     He patted her back, feeling awkward. If she was crying, he would make soothing noises, but she wasn't. She was dead silent, still as a statue. Then he felt a little tremor that began in her fingers where she clutched him; it spread throughout her body until he could feel it under his hands where they rested on her back.
     Heat shot through him, and he felt himself growing hard. He hoped to hell she couldn't feel him through her skirts, but he angled his hips away, all the same.
     Over his thudding heart and hers, he heard the men talking and then their horses' hooves as they rode away. Only then did he relax. Ellie must have heard them leave, too. Lifting her head, she glanced toward the window and then up at Thaddeus.
     Having her so close against him, her arms around his waist, he couldn't think clearly. He'd been sleeping beside this woman, trying desperately not to touch her, night after night. Now, she'd gone and thrown herself at him. He was no saint.
     He moved his hands up to cup her face and lowered his head, seeing her crystalline eyes close and her eyelashes fan her cheeks at the last moment before he touched his lips to hers.
     They'd kissed before, when they were teens, and for a moment, it was as if no time had passed. They could be standing behind Drake's barn in Spring City with the blazing sun on their heads and all around him, the smell of grass and wildflowers and Ellie's hair.
     Her soft lips felt like warm satin under his, and he kissed them lightly at first. However, as the ache in his groin persisted and as she opened to him, he deepened the kiss, nibbling on her lower lip before slanting his mouth and fitting it tightly against hers.
     He heard her moan, a throaty purring sound, and felt her fingers move from his waist to his chest where she clasped his shirt. It was his undoing. Next thing he knew, he'd slipped his tongue into her mouth to dance with hers. Her tongue flicked against his in response.
     A groan slipped out of him, and he lowered his hands to her hips, pulling her against him so she could feel what she was doing to him—what she'd always done to him.
     Effortlessly, he backed her up until they fell headlong onto the bed. Still locked in an embrace, he slid his leg between hers, trapping her skirts, and pressed his thigh against the warm mound between her legs.
     From her lips, he kissed along her jawline and down her neck, as she arched back to expose herself, smooth and porcelain-white. Nipping at the skin at the hollowed base of her throat, he ran out of bare skin at the neckline of her gown. All his lust-filled brain could think of was undressing her, fervently, rapidly, so at last he could look his fill of her naked body.
     As he reached down for her skirts, she spoke.
     "Thaddeus," she breathed out his name, and her soft, sexy voice stopped him cold, frozen from head to toe. She was not one of his whorehouse harlots. She was Ellie, his childhood dream, whom he'd just tumbled onto her back.
     Goddamnit! He was not going to take her for a quick roll then get up and leave.
     He scrambled off her and leaped from the bed as if he'd been hit by a bucket of cold water. He wanted to punch someone, mostly himself. He wanted his throbbing erection to go down, though probably he needed actual cold water for that to happen anytime soon.
 
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