“I’d like that. Mama would too.”


“Good. Then when we’re alone we can gossip about Keely’s latest cowboy on a string and you can tell me exactly how my sexy, gruff brother-in-law deflowered you.”


“Macie! How’d you know?”


“I didn’t until you just told me.” She laughed again. “You’re so easy to tease. Oops, Carter’s bellering at me, gotta go.”


The rest of the morning zipped by. AJ fixed lunch, and settled her mother down for her afternoon nap and a massage. She packed more boxes, pleased by how much she’d accomplished. She’d gone into the garage to find a crowbar, when she heard a vehicle pull up. After stepping outside, she blocked the bright sunlight with her hand and squinted at Cord’s 350 diesel.


He climbed out and the truck door slammed.


“Cord? What’re you doing here?”


“AJ. My dad asked me to stop by and give Flo some papers.”


Disappointment made her shoulders sag. He wasn’t here just to see her. “She’s sleeping. Since she hasn’t been sleeping well, I don’t want to wake her.”


“I understand.”


“You want to leave the papers with a note?”


“How long before she wakes up?”


“Probably an hour.”


He frowned. “Huh. Is Jenn around?”


“No. She and the kids are in town. Why?”


“So you’re all alone?”


“Yeah. Why does that—”


Cord crushed his mouth to hers and pushed her into the barn.


This was what she wanted. Darkness, heat, need. Cord devouring her. Kissing her like she was everything. His rough hands racing all over her body as if he couldn’t decide which part he wanted to touch first.


He ate at her mouth and trailed his teeth down her throat. “Drove me insane when you weren’t there this mornin’. Why didn’t you wake me?”


“Was I supposed to? I don’t know anything about morning after stuff like that. I saw the clock and panicked. You said no overnights and no one knew where I was.”


“I wanted you. I woke up wantin’ you. Seein’ the imprint of your head on the pillow.


The room smelled like you. Sunshine. Sex. The scent of your sweet juices was still in my beard. Made me instantly hard, rememberin’ tastin’ you. Feelin’ your hands on me. That naughty mouth suckin’ me dry. I’ve spent all goddamn day hard as a posthole digger.”


“Cord—”


“Right now, AJ. I wanna pin you against the wall and fuck you hard enough to rattle the stalls. Then I want to bend you over the railin’ and take you from behind, sinkin’ my teeth into that spot at the base of your neck that makes you scream my name.”


AJ swallowed. “Um. Let’s start with just one and work our way down the wish list, okay?”


Cord slanted his mouth over hers. Somehow he lifted her and wrapped her legs around his waist, all while kissing her, all while walking backward.


She opened her eyes. They stopped outside the tack room.


After setting her on her feet, he grabbed her wrists and held them above her head.


“I’m tyin’ your hands. I can do whatever I want and you hafta hang there and take it like a good girl.”


“But—” Crap.


His dark blue eyes narrowed. “That’s one.” He looped her wrists with baling twine and fastened it through a rope pulley above her head, which was used for loading bales.


Cord’s show of domination made the inside of her thighs moist, her sex ached for the attention of his fingers or his mouth or his cock.


He ripped open her blouse and unhooked her bra. Stripped off her shorts and underwear. He leisurely traced the contours of her body from the valley of her breasts straight down to her slit. Although his mouth never touched her, his hot breath drifted against her damp skin. “You like this. My sweet angel has a devilish streak, huh?”


“Yeah.”


“Good to know. ’Cause you’re dealin’ with the devil himself right now, baby doll.”


Cord unbuckled his belt. “Such a pretty picture you make.” He released the zipper on his jeans a tine at a time.


The sound of his buckle jingling as he worked his jeans down his thighs drove her wild. No other noises existed. Nothing existed but this man and her burning need for him.


Her nipples were hard as cherry pits and her whole body quaked. “Please.”


“Please what?”


“Please touch me.”


“No.”


“But—” Double crap.


“That’s two. And trust me, I am keepin’ track.” Cord fisted his hand around his cock and stroked himself with more force than she’d dared try.


She rubbed her thighs together, searching for any kind of friction. “It doesn’t hurt when you pull hard like that?”


He grinned. “Nope. You are such a curious little kitty-cat. Have you thought about jackin’ me off?”


Yes. “No.”


“Liar. I jacked off last night while I was havin’ you as my midnight snack.”


“You did?”


“Yep. You weren’t next to me this mornin’ when I woke up with a dick hard enough to break concrete, so I had to whack off right there on the sheets that smelled like you.”


Something shifted between them—maybe the balance of power, maybe a sense of inevitability.


AJ locked her eyes to his. “Enough teasing. Either get over here and fuck me or let me go.”


“Mmm. This kitty-cat has claws?”


“This pussy has an itch and if you ain’t up for scratching it right now, Cord McKay—”


He lifted her, pressed her knees wide against the partition, and slid into her in one fast stroke.


“Yes. Oh yes.”


Cord buried his face in her neck, withdrew and plunged in again. And again. He changed the angle by bending his knees, and clamped his fingers on her butt, pistoning his hips fast as a jackhammer.


AJ twisted her body, trying to grind into his pelvis, wishing she had the use of her hands.


“Hold still,” he growled.


“But I need—”


“That’s three. What you need it to not get slivers in this sassy ass. We are doin’ this the way I want, AJ.”


“Please.”


He never moved his head, never missed a stroke when he said, “No.”


She circled her legs around his waist and jerked him closer. Sweat trickled between her breasts. The hair on the back of her neck lifted. Every inch of her skin tingled. All that energy shot straight to her core and the orgasm blindsided her.


“Oh-man-oh-man-oh-man.”


Colt whispered against her throat, “Harder, baby doll, bear down on me harder.


That’s good.” His climax burst with enough force she felt her insides bathed with his heat.


Her womb kept contracting to keep all that seed inside. Each throb and pulse was longer than the last and she whimpered.


“Ssh.” His mouth found hers. A gentle brush of his lips as he looked into her eyes.


While he kissed her, his hips kept bumping in tiny increments. Not fast or slow. Steady until the spasms ended. With the last movement he withdrew from her completely and set her on her feet.


Wetness gushed out. She wondered if the twine wasn’t holding her up if she’d even be able to stand.


Cord stepped back and yanked up his jeans. “Like I said earlier. I was needin’ you bad, AJ.”


Not missing her, needing her. “Untie me. I have to get cleaned up before I go in the house.”


Zipped and buckled, he ignored her request and demanded, “There any baby wipes in here?”


She frowned. “Why would we have those?”


“Most places have them around for one reason or another.”


“I don’t know. Might be some in the tack room. Can’t you let me loose before you go looking?”


Cord’s gaze traveled the length of the rope. “Your arms hurt?”


“Not bad.”


“Then you can wait until I find somethin’ to clean you up.”


“But—”


“That’s four.”


Feeling surly, she snapped, “Why don’t we get it up to an even ten? But but but but but but.”


“Smarty. Lord. I am gonna enjoy the feel of my hand on those soft cheeks. In case you were curious, kitty-cat, that means ten each side, not ten total.”


She averted her eyes to the hay-strewn ground.


“What’s wrong? Does that scare you?”


“Never had a spanking. Not as a kid, definitely not as an adult.”


“Never was a bad girl?”


“No. I followed the rules and did what I was told.”


“Just like me.”


She snorted. “You were the bad boy of the county, or so I heard.”


“Maybe you heard wrong. Anyway, we’re just gettin’ into all sortsa new things, ain’t we?” Cord grinned cheekily. “Sit tight. Or stand tight. I’ll be right back.”


“Ha ha, McKay. I’d like to see how you’d react if the tables were turned.”


He poked his head back around. “You’d like to tie me up? Or just whup my ass?”


“Both. Let me down.”


“After you threatened me? No way.” He cracked open the pop-top on a plastic cylinder and pulled out a couple of sheets. “These’ll work.” Cord gently wiped the inside of her thighs.


AJ gasped, “That’s cold.”


“Almost done.” Cord shook the hay from her panties and shorts, helping her get redressed. Then he released the pulley, loosening the rope and freed her hands from the twine. Before he allowed her to rub her wrists, he checked them. “Does it hurt?”


“Not much.”


“Good.” He gave each ligature mark one a quick kiss. “I’ll get the papers and you can pass ’em to Flo when she wakes up.”


“You aren’t gonna wait around?”

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