“I’ve been waiting half an hour for you to wake up.” His voice was uneven and raspy.

“Is that right?” she murmured.

He just groaned when she stroked him once, twice, three times. Making such a dominant, sexy man shudder made her feel powerful in a way she hadn’t realized she could easily start to crave. Pulling her hand back, she pushed at his chest until he was on his back.

Belle had only had one lover—and that term was a bit of a stretch—when she was in college. The few times she’d had sex before Grant had been perfectly pleasant. And perfectly forgettable. After that experience she’d never had the urge to repeat it. Not with her full load of classes at school and then her full time job at the hospital. Why bother with something that didn’t give a worthwhile reward? Of course her feelings on that had changed practically the moment she’d met Grant.

He just exuded a kind of power and sex appeal she could barely explain to herself. All he had to do was look at her and heat bloomed between her legs. She felt a little crazy for the reaction he brought out in her, but she wouldn’t change it for anything.

Shoving the covers off, she quickly straddled him. She loved how broad and muscular he was everywhere. For a moment she was overwhelmed, wondering where she should start kissing him. His stomach muscles clenched when she lifted up on her knees, brushing her wet sheath across his hard length.

Teasing him was too much fun even if it was torturous to her own sanity. She was already slick with wanting him.

As she slid her hands up his body, bending forward until her breasts brushed against his chest, his fists tightened on her waist. She knew he wanted to just lift her and impale her on him but he held back. She could feel the bare restraint humming through him. The fact that he was holding back was incredibly hot. But it only made her want to tease him even more.

She started feathering kisses along his collarbone, nipping with her teeth then following up with strokes of her tongue. His hips kept jerking upward, his cock nudging her entrance insistently.

As if she didn’t know what he wanted.

Smiling against his skin, she couldn’t hold back a giggle. That’s when she found herself flat on her back, the air rushing from her lungs.

Grant’s eyes narrowed. “You’re enjoying teasing me,” he growled, a bite of neediness in his voice.

“Of course I am.” She stretched her arms above her head, grasping onto the headboard. Daring him to take over. The action pushed her breasts out and drew his gaze to them, just like she wanted. He’d already proved he had a very talented mouth and she wanted it on her body now.

Immediately his head dipped and he was licking and sucking. He feasted on her like he was a starving man. Her inner walls clenched with the need to be filled by him until the absence was almost painful. She squeezed her legs around him and lifted her hips, trying to entice him. No such luck.

Each time he stroked one of her hard nipples, she felt the sensation shoot straight between her legs. The tingling in her clit was almost unbearable. “Now who’s the one teasing?” she managed to gasp out.

He chuckled against her breast, the sound rolling through her entire body. Combined with his stubble rubbing against her, her breasts felt over sensitized. Lifting her hips against his again she figured he’d take the hint this time, but he surprised her by grasping her waist and flipping her onto her knees.

Looking at him over her shoulder, she watched in fascination as he stared at her body in an almost reverent way. Like she was some sort of pagan offering. That thought was wildly erotic. Of course only if she was being offered up for him to feast on. A shudder ripped through her as images of their intertwined bodies danced in her mind.

His chest rose and fell, the harshness of his breathing filling the room. He slowly ran a callused hand down the length of her spine before settling on her backside. Then he trailed a finger down her crease. She tensed, wondering what he was doing, but when he continued until he pushed into her wet sheath, she let out a low moan.

Belle wanted a lot more than his finger and she didn’t want slow right now. Before she could tell him exactly what she needed, he removed his finger. He grasped her, his hands flexing on her hips in a tight, dominating grip and he thrust into her.

She was a little sore from last night but not enough to stop. When he’d woken her during the night he’d slowly made love to her, but she felt almost frantic right now.

Even though she’d been able to defend herself from that attacker yesterday she’d been scared out of her mind. And even though she’d told Grant to stay away, he hadn’t. He’d come to the police station knowing he’d face her anger. He’d been there for her. The man could be pushy and a little overbearing but with him she found she didn’t mind. He listened when it really mattered and right now he was listening to what her body wanted.

It amazed her how he’d learned what she liked so quickly. When she tightened her grip on the headboard to steady herself, one of his hands slid from her hip to her mound. He moved his finger over her clit in bold strokes. Normally when she touched herself it was with steady soft caresses. His rougher touch should have been too much. Hell, it almost was, but his teasing pushed her over the edge so quickly she didn’t realize she’d been so close to climax.

Her back arched as her inner walls rippled around Grant’s hard length. Her orgasm seemed to go on forever, pulsing around him until he was coming with her.

“Belle,” he gasped out, the need in his voice punching through her.

The feel of his heat inside her as he climaxed was even more arousing. As he eventually stilled behind her, she slowly eased forward and twisted around so she was facing him.

Needing to hold him, she wrapped her arms around him and buried her face in his neck until limp and exhausted, she finally fell back against the mattress. The bed was soft, inviting and she could barely keep her eyes open as she felt Grant stretch out next to her.

He tugged her until her back tucked against his torso, but she still didn’t open her eyes. She’d completely fallen for Grant and part of her wanted to tell him. But she was nervous of how he’d react. She was scared he’d reject the truth of her feelings, try to tell her she didn’t care for him as much as she did. Or worse, maybe he’d just completely push her away. Sighing, she cuddled deeper against him. She had time to worry about that stuff later. Now she just wanted a few more hours of sleep before she had to get up for work.

* * * * *

Belle pulled her hair back into a ponytail before glancing at herself one last time in the mirror. She’d left Grant’s place half an hour ago to get ready for work even though she could have stayed in bed with him all day. She wanted to stop and pick up coffee on the way to the hospital. She had a solid twelve hour shift ahead of her and desperately needed a caffeine fix.

As she hooked her purse over her shoulder, her doorbell rang. Wondering who it was—and hoping it was Grant—she hurried downstairs. She peeked through the peephole and saw a man wearing a baseball cap with the name of the furniture store she’d ordered her new guest bed set from.

She disabled the alarm but instead of answering right away, she looked out the window of her living room just to make sure it wasn’t some guy in a stolen uniform. Sure enough, a big delivery truck with the same company name emblazoned on the side of it was in her driveway. Feeling a little foolish—and cursing her unknown stalker for this constant fear that lived inside her now—she called through the door. “What are you delivering?”

She watched him through the peephole. He looked down at a notepad. “Ah, says here I’m delivering the 3-piece Oasis Oak bedroom set.”

Relief coursed through her as she opened the door. She smiled and held the door open. “I totally forgot you were coming this morning. I’m so glad I haven’t left for work yet.”

The man adjusted his cap and smiled at her, but something about him was off. A thread of unease slid down her spine, chilling her veins. His dark brown eyes seemed almost devoid of emotion and his smile definitely didn’t reach his eyes. “I’m glad you haven’t left either.”

That’s when she saw the stun gun in his hand.

Terror forked through her, splintering out like jagged lightning to all her nerve endings. She turned to run, to hit the distress button on her alarm keypad, but his arm shot out and the taser connected with her neck.

Pain like she’d never known blasted through her. Paralyzed from the electrical voltage, she fell to her knees then onto her face. Her cheek throbbed where she’d fallen but it was almost dull compared to the tiny knives of agony shredding her nerves. All her muscles spasmed out of control but she couldn’t move. That alone was terrifying—then to see the man bending over her but not being able to do anything chilled her bone deep.

Blinking through tears, she opened her mouth and tried to scream but only a croak of nothingness escaped. A syringe flashed in her attacker’s hand and she was helpless to avoid it as he plunged it into her neck. The sting was fleeting.

She struggled to hold on to consciousness, just like she’d done in the pool, but a dark wave of blackness swept over her, tugging her under until she had no choice but to stop fighting it.

* * * * *

Grant stepped out onto his front porch, phone in hand. He’d called Belle once, wanting to see her before she left for work. She’d told him she wanted to give him a kiss goodbye and even though it made him feel like a stupid teenager, he was excited at the thought. After last night he figured he should be somewhat sated, but no such luck. He was apparently greedy because the more he touched her, the more he wanted her.

When he saw a furniture delivery truck in her driveway he headed over, figuring he could help. It was Saturday and even though Belle had to work, it was his day off. He could set up the furniture for her while she was gone if it wasn’t included in her delivery fee.

He rang the doorbell but no one answered. Frowning and trying to ignore the instinctive increase in his heart rate, he tried the handle. The door swung open and he immediately spotted her keys on the tiled entryway.