Everywhere they touched, his body burned. When she locked her ankles behind his back, he groaned into her mouth.


He gripped the back of her head tightly, afraid she might change her mind. At the rate he was going, he’d be done in thirty seconds. And that was something he couldn’t allow to happen.


Using sheer willpower, he unclenched his hand and pulled his head back. Her dark hair pillowed seductively around her face. Bracing his hands on either side of her head, he stared down at her perfectly swollen lips.


Her green eyes widened at the loss of contact. “What are you doing?” she whispered.


Braden hovered over her. “Giving you some foreplay, woman.”


Grinning, she possessively slid her hands over him, raking her nails down his chest as she stroked. “I don’t need it,” she murmured.


His stomach muscles tightened at her words. “Too bad,” he growled. His body was a raging inferno. Every part of him felt touched by lava. As she ran her hands lower, he jerked back and away from her.


Her lips curled up at the corners as she propped up on her elbows, pushing her small breasts out further. “It’s a little late to start playing hard to get.”


Ignoring her comment, he slid lower until his face was between her thighs. Tasting her again was something he’d fantasized about too many times. He wasn’t passing up this opportunity. For all he knew, she might decide this was a one-time thing. And he planned to take everything he could from her.


Pressing lightly on the inside of her legs, he stroked between her folds with his tongue. She let out what he could only describe as a purring sound as she fell back against one of the pillows.


Her entire body hummed with energy and passion. He could feel it as if it was his own heartbeat. As he teased her with his tongue, the sound of her labored pants and moans filled the quiet room.


When she laced her fingers through his hair and clutched his skull, he relented and lifted his head. “Hold that thought,” he whispered. He quickly scanned the room for their discarded clothes. When he spotted his jeans on the floor, his heart thudded faster. In record time, he pulled out a couple of the condoms he’d shoved in his back pocket earlier.


With his teeth he ripped one of the foil packets open. As he sheathed himself, his hands shook. He cursed his unsteadiness, but grinned when Lilly sat up on her knees and grabbed the hard length of him.


Their mouths meshed as she slid her arms around his waist, drawing him closer. When she rubbed her hardened nipples against his chest, his cock jerked in response. Gripping her by the waist, he flipped her so that she was flat on her back. Instantly, her hands moved to clutch his shoulders. He’d tasted her readiness, but he dipped a finger inside her wet channel to be sure.


She arched her back as he dragged his finger against her inner wall. “I’m ready,” she panted.


As he hovered at her entrance, he propped himself up on one arm and cupped her cheek. “You’re so beautiful, Lilly.” Normally he wasn’t a big talker during sex and he barely managed to squeeze those few words out before he drove into her.


Lilly was on fire with need. Her inner muscles clenched around him as he mercilessly thrust into her. She wrapped her legs around his waist, locking her ankles behind him. Tracing her fingers up his chest and shoulders, she savored the feel of his taut, muscular body.


When he dipped his head toward her breasts, she arched her back, giving him better access. In measured movements, he licked and laved one breast while palming the other. His calloused palm over her sensitive skin sent erotic vibrations to all her nerve endings.


This was a side to him she’d never seen. His whole body shook with need and the dark look in his eyes was startling. Not that she was afraid he’d hurt her. He just looked…hungry.


And she was the main course. Gripping him tighter with her legs, she met him stroke for stroke. In more ways than one, he completely filled her. She couldn’t believe she’d gone so long without seeing him. Now that she’d tasted him once more, she didn’t think she could walk away from him again.


A groan gathered deep in her throat as the pressure built. Just looking at him was enough to get her turned on, but what he was doing with his hands and mouth should be illegal. She was ready to combust.


Her inner walls began contracting the faster he moved. He must have felt her response because he lifted his body up and braced his hands on either side of her head. His hands weren’t touching her but he stared at her with those soulful dark eyes and she found her release.


For a second her vision clouded over as the building pressure inside her exploded. Her back arched and her legs bowed as her inner muscles clamped around him. All the anxiety that had been humming through her was set free as she pushed over the edge.


Maybe he’d been waiting because as soon as she climaxed, he thrust into her with a few more long strokes before collapsing onto her.


After a few moments passed, she giggled and pushed at his chest.


“Laughing is not good for my ego,” he murmured as he rolled onto his back, stretching out next to her.


“I think your ego can withstand it. That was…was…”


“I really hope that sentence has a good ending.”


She shifted onto her side and placed a calming hand over her chest. Her heartbeat was still knocking erratically against her ribcage. “That was the most intense orgasm I’ve had in…ever.”


He propped up on one elbow and grinned at her as if she’d just told him he won the lottery. “Don’t let it go to your head, Sheriff.”


“Too late.” He grabbed her hip and rolled her over so that she was stretched on top of him.


She laid her head on his chest and listened to the steady thump of his heart. Being with Braden like this was surreal. Almost too good to be true. After what they’d just shared she wanted to open up to him, tell him the real reason she’d left.


“What are you thinking?” He traced a lazy finger down her spine.


Her mouth opened but the truth refused to come. She lifted her head and grinned. “I was thinking that we are definitely going to do that again. And soon.”


As he started kissing her, she pushed all other thoughts from her head. There would be time enough in the morning to worry about the outside world. For now, she wanted to enjoy what little pleasure she could find.


Using the darkness as cover, he crouched against the sand and stared at Debra Carmichael’s house.


That bitch Lilly was in there screwing the sheriff. He just knew it. Instead of being disgusted by her pathetic problems, the good sheriff was falling back into the slut’s web.


Probably wanted to protect her. Maybe he wouldn’t feel so chivalrous if he knew how dirty she was. How she’d teased every male in town. Including him. She’d flaunted herself in front of him every chance she got.


Moving his hand over the front of his jeans, he shifted against the sand and rubbed himself as he watched the house. About an hour ago the lights had gone off and they hadn’t come back on since.


The light in the guestroom had never gone on, though. Which meant they were fucking in her room. Just like old times. Maybe when he was done with Lilly he’d kill the sheriff. He’d thought about letting him live with the knowledge that he couldn’t save his precious Lilly but he might have to finish him off too. That kind of loose end could come back to haunt him later.


He shut his eyes and massaged his temple. A low buzzing started in his ears and he knew another headache was coming. Pushing up from the sand, he tried to shove away thoughts of the two of them in bed together.


It didn’t work though. No matter how hard he tried to control his thoughts, pictures of Lilly naked and writhing assaulted his mind. She was the only woman who’d ever gotten away from him. Well, almost the only one.


He glanced at his watch and a new idea set in. Apart from Lilly, there was one woman left on his list in Hudson Bay. If he hurried, he could make it to her right as she left work. Instead of jogging back to the pier where his most recently stolen vehicle was parked, he stole a sedan a few houses down from Lilly’s. If he wanted to keep off the radar, he needed to trade vehicles as often as he could.


As expected, the drive into town was short. It was Thursday after all. Not much going on in this beachy shit hole except on the weekends. Once he finished what he should have a decade ago, he was heading back to Vegas. Or maybe Los Angeles. He’d only lived there briefly, but the concrete jungle was perfect for someone like him. Losing himself in either city would be so easy.


Yes, he’d go to L.A. first. There were so many immigrants moving there every day. No one gave a shit about them. He could kill without worry of being constantly pursued.


His heart rate sped up as he neared the drycleaners on Main Street. When he drove past, he saw the lights click off. Normally he preferred to stake out a place longer, but it appeared he was right on time. He quickly turned onto the next street, then doubled back and parked in the alley behind the line of stores. Everyone else had closed an hour ago.


Except Allbright’s Dry Cleaning.


After popping the trunk so that it was open a few inches, he hurried to where Barbara—or Barbie as her friends called her—was parked.


He’d been watching the residents of Hudson Bay for the past year. Most people stuck to the same schedules. Day in and day out. It was surprising how unaware most people were. Especially women. Even when they were scared of someone, they’d smile and act polite for fear of being rude.


Made what he did a lot easier.


He peered over the hood when he heard the metal door of the drycleaners slam shut. A few days ago he’d blown out the only street light that illuminated the alley. So far, no one had replaced it.


Barbie’s shoes clicked over the concrete as she neared her car.


She was so close he could taste her.


His heart pounded erratically. Just a little closer. When the beep of the car unlocking sounded, he made his move.


Jumping from his position, he rushed at her.


“Hey—” She started to swing her oversized purse at him, but he was fast.


Moving swiftly, he punched her in the stomach.

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