On the run from her father and the marriage he wants to force on her, Monica Burns gets a job at Fantasy Ranch, an adult playground outside Reno, Nevada. Her hopes of staying in one place for longer than a few weeks are dashed when he tracks her there, but before she can run again she gets an offer she can’t refuse from owner Harlan “Harley” Majors.
Harley has personal issues of his own to deal with, and when Monica reveals her predicament he offers a marriage of convenience as the solution to both of their problems. But the union catapults them into a world of smuggling and deception that forces Monica to face the startling truth about her past.
Warning: Some scenes in this book not suitable for minors. Rated R.
“Evening, Harley. Nice night for a ride.”
Harley gave a curt nod. “Sure is. Something wrong, Kurt? I’m pretty sure I wasn’t speeding.”
“No, no you weren’t.” He shined his flashlight up to peer at Monica’s helmet. She turned away from the brightness. “Ma’am, I’ll need to you to take that off, please.”
She struggled to get free, finally finding the right angle to pull the molded headgear off. Holding it awkwardly under one arm, she brushed her tangled hair out of her face, holding up a hand to shield her eyes from the light.
She whipped her head around at Braden’s voice, instinctively holding tighter to Harley as she watched her nemesis run over from the police car. He stopped by the officer, panting at the effort of running ten whole feet. What had Harley called him? Pansy-ass. Right. She worked to keep a smile off her face as a warm hand squeezed her thigh.
“This guy says you kidnapped his fiancée,” Kurt said, tilting his head at Harley. “I thought you were gonna stay away from the ladies for awhile after that last rape charge.”
Between her legs, Monica could feel his hips and legs stiffen up. “Jury found me innocent, you know that. Monica’s with me of her own free will, isn’t that right?”
“Yes.” She swallowed, fear coursing under her skin. She’d never meant for anyone to get hurt, and now this man was being forced back into a nightmare because of her. She had to make sure he didn’t pay for her decisions. “Braden’s been stalking me. He’s the one you should be questioning. He followed me all the way from Chicago.”
The officer glanced at Braden, then back to Monica. “That doesn’t explain why your father filed a missing persons report two months ago. He’s been looking for you for awhile now. Most people don’t just run off like that unless something’s wrong.”
“I–” Monica started to tell the story, then remembered the last time she’d told the authorities anything. Her father had retaliated by insisting she wasn’t in her right mind and that she needed psychiatric help. It had taken a lot of talking and a midnight bus ticket to get out of that mess. Harley’s fingers rubbed her leg, returning her to the present.
“She came out to meet me,” he said, deliberately reaching back to lace his fingers with hers. The contact was soothing, and she hung on, listening to his mellow voice as he continued. “We met over the internet, and fell in love. I asked her to marry me tonight.” He glanced back over his shoulder, his warm eyes locking with hers in a silent plea. “Tell them your answer, honey.”
She hesitated. He was giving her a choice. Either take his deal, or take her chances with the police. As far as she could tell, there wasn’t really a third option available, and she started trembling, knowing she was trapped either way. He squeezed her hand tight and released it, along with his gaze as he faced Kurt again. He took a breath, as if he were about to speak.
“Yes,” she blurted out, her voice ringing louder than she’d intended. “I mean, yes, we’re getting married.” Heat suffused through her as Harley’s hand caressed her thigh, and she was sure her face was beet red. Braden kicked a rock hard, sending it flying out into the desert.
“I don’t believe it. You’re lying,” he yelled, pointing his finger at Harley. “You put her up to this, you bastard. Arrest him, officer. She belongs to me.”
“I don’t belong to anyone,” Monica said, irked at the implication. “I’m marrying Harley because we’re in love. That’s all you need to know.” She flinched as Harley reached down and grabbed one foot, pulling it up over his lap. He twisted and grasped her waist, then swung her around before she could protest so she was straddling his legs, tight against his arousal. He guided her arms up around his neck, and she hung on, if for no other reason than she felt like she’d fall over backwards at any second.
He stared into her eyes, his lips curved into a wicked grin. “She belongs with me,” he growled, the sexy timbre sending a flood of moisture between her legs as he covered her mouth in a searing kiss.