With a few final thrusts, he emptied himself into the condom before collapsing onto the tangled sheets.

Wordlessly she sidled up next to him and laid her head on his chest. “We could have been doing this for weeks,” she murmured against his skin.

Grinning, he kissed the top of her head. “I’m going to take a shower. Want to join me?”

She shook her head and scooted over to lay her head on her pillow. “No way. I need a little time to recover.”

He shook his head and chuckled before walking into her bathroom.

Her stomach clenched at the sight of his sculpted naked backside. A man didn’t have the right to look so good. When she heard the running water, she forced herself into action and slipped a summer dress over her head. She might want to stay naked all day, but her stomach was demanding sustenance. Since she didn’t have anything in her refrigerator, she grabbed her purse and sunglasses. She needed a shower too, but was a little too tender to join him this morning. And something told her that if she got in there naked with him, he’d want to get busy again.

She rapped on the door and stuck her head in.

“I’m going to grab us some coffee.”

His response was garbled, but it sounded like he said “okay.” It was barely seven, but if she didn’t hurry, the coffee shop down the road would be packed before she made it there.

As she predicted, the shop was starting to fill up, but after a short wait in line she was sitting in her car with two steaming cups of coffee and a small box of assorted pastries. Her stomach rumbled for the tenth time so she pulled out a blueberry mini-muffin. Her mouth was watering, but the second she started the ignition, her cell rang.

Her heart stuttered when she saw Adam’s number. She rolled her eyes at herself and took a calming breath before answering. She was in serious trouble if the sight of his name on her caller ID got her twisted up this much. “Hey.”

“Where are you?” His words were clipped.

She frowned. “I told you I was going to get coffee.”

“You said you were going to make coffee, not get it. Some maniac could be out there watching you right now. What the hell were you thinking?”

he growled.

She hadn’t been thinking about anything other than him and the night they’d spent together and how much she was looking forward to doing it again. Thinking about potential stalkers wasn’t second nature to her. He was right though, and that annoyed her.

With the cups secure in the holders, she tossed the muffin back in the bag and glanced in her rearview mirror before kicking her car into reverse. “Can we talk about this later? I’ll be back in five minutes and I don’t want to talk on the phone while I’m driving.”

“Damn it, Izzy, what were you thinking.” This time it wasn’t a question, but an accusation.

“Uh, I was thinking that I’m hungry and if you’re not nicer to me I’m not going to share with you.” She knew she should apologize but his attitude put her defenses up.

He sighed but it sounded like he’d lost some of his earlier steam. “We will talk about this Izzy… Be safe.”

When they disconnected, she pushed down the twinge of guilt bubbling up. She tried to tell herself that the crazy stuff happening in town was only at night and the women being accosted had been taken from bars. Not quaint coffee shops in the middle of the day. But Adam was right.

Palm trees and closed shops flew by as she drove through the downtown area. She missed her historic hometown of Savannah, but Coconut Bay was fine for now. It wasn’t as if she wanted to settle down there, but it had seemed the perfect place to get away from her father and experience a nominal amount of freedom. If only for a few months.

If she was completely honest with herself, she’d chosen the town because it wasn’t too far from her home. Though she’d rather chew on glass than admit that to anyone. Especially her dad.

As she pulled up to a stoplight, her car jolted violently in sync with the sound of crunching metal. Her head snapped back against the headrest with the force of the impact. Groaning, she touched the back of her neck as she looked in the rearview mirror. She cringed and cursed under her breath.

A black truck had run into her. She hit the steering wheel with her palm. Just what she needed this morning. Flipping on her turn signal, she planned to pull into the empty parking lot of Yanna’s Jewelry Boutique, but before she had time to react, the truck reversed, then slammed into her again.

A bolt of terror surged through her. This was no accident.

Glancing around, she realized there were no other vehicles on the street. Her heart went into overdrive. “Think Izzy, think,” she muttered to herself.

The light was red, but no other cars were coming from either direction. Her Volkswagen Beetle was a V6, but probably couldn’t outrun the mammoth truck behind her. If she could manage to get back to her place, she’d be okay. Or at least she prayed she would.

She glanced up and down the street. Other than the coffee shop, every other place was closed. She had nowhere to run.

Gunning her engine, she shot out into the intersection. Sure enough, the truck followed a second later. Her throat clenched. Oh shit!  This guy was serious. There was a tinted strip across the windshield, making it impossible to see anything inside the vehicle other than a big silhouette. She might not know what he looked like, but she knew exactly who it was.

She leaned over to grab her fallen purse, but another sickening jolt had her scrambling back for the wheel. She needed to call Adam, but her phone was in her purse on the passenger side floorboard.

Tightly clasping the wheel, she floored it.

Unfortunately the truck did the same.

Panic like she’d never imagined settled deep in her bones. He was gaining on her fast. If she couldn’t get back to her place before—no, she couldn’t think like that.

Her tires squealed as she made a sharp right turn. She sped up even more as she pulled onto the four-lane road that led from downtown to her apartment. The drive was a mere three minutes, but it suddenly seemed like an eternity stretched out before her.

Keeping an eye on the rearview mirror while trying to watch the road in front of her, she once again made an attempt for her purse. This time she snatched it up.

As she righted herself, she looked in the rearview mirror again only to see a deserted stretch of road behind her.

“What the he—”

Another jolt jarred her entire body as she struggled for control of the wheel. She glanced over her left shoulder. The guy had hit her again and had now moved up next to her.

Unsure what to do, she gripped the wheel and yanked to the left. The impact against the other vehicle had the desired effect.

The truck swerved to the far side of the other lane, close to the grass median. The only thing that separated them from the opposite road.

Luckily—or maybe unlucky for her—there was no one else on the road.

Her heart slammed against her ribs as her limited options flared through her mind. She’d only have one chance to gain the upper hand so she took it. She jerked the wheel and raced across both lanes, ramming into the truck once again.

She wasn’t sure if she took him by surprise, or if she just hit his truck in the right spot, but that last push was all it took to shove him into the dipped median. Her gaze stayed riveted on the rearview mirror as she sped away. It didn’t flip, but the truck swerved into the grassy ditch.

Her neck and shoulders ached, but she ignored the pain. Without waiting to see what happened, she took the next exit. As she paused at the yield sign, some of her panic subsided. No one was behind her.

With shaking hands, she fished out her phone.

Her fingers felt numb as she dialed Adam.

“Where are you?” He answered on the first ring.

Unexpected tears sprung to her eyes at the sound of his voice. Even if he did sound angry.

She quickly relayed what had happened. After telling her he was calling the police, he disconnected. As she pulled into the parking lot, Adam came rushing down the sidewalk to her car.

She opened the door and before she could say a word, he enveloped her in a crushing hug. Her legs nearly gave out so she was thankful for his support.

“I’m okay.” Though she didn’t want to give up his warm, safe embrace, she finally gave his chest a small shove.

“Come on.” Practically dragging her, he wrapped his arm around her shoulder until they were back inside her place and sitting on the couch. “The cops are on their way.”

Her hands were still shaking as she grabbed a throw pillow and hugged it to her chest. “What about the guy who tried to kill me?”

“They’re sending someone down to route 64 to check everything out and they’re sending two detectives here.”

“I left the coffee and muffins and stuff in the car,” she blurted. She realized how ridiculous she sounded, but was unable to censor herself.

He frowned at her for a second, but he stood.

Reaching behind his back, he pulled out a scary looking black and silver gun and placed it on the table.

Her eyes widened. “What the hell is that? And why do you have it?”

Ignoring her questions, he motioned to it.

“There’s no safety and there’s a round already chambered. That means it’s ready to fire. Use it if you have to. Don’t open the door for anyone but me, including the cops. I’ll be back in a few seconds.”

What?  She stared at him in disbelief but he retrieved her keys from the kitchen table and disappeared out the front door before she could think of a suitable response.

She was surprised he’d listened to her silly request, but something told her he wanted to check out the parking lot and make sure she hadn’t been followed. Not that it really mattered.

Her would-be attacker obviously knew where she lived anyway. She seriously doubted he’d happened to stumble across her at the coffee shop.

Hell, or maybe he had.  It was a small town. The thought that someone was walking around, completely free to terrorize women sent another shiver through her.