The room wasn’t anything different than the other cheap rooms they’d crashed in for the last week. In the darkness her senses were attuned to sound. The thump of her bag on the carpet. The rattling wheeze of the air conditioner kicking on. The click of the chain as he secured the door. The blood rushing in her ears. The prickle of his beard on her nape as he moved in behind her.
“We’ll talk later. Right now I need to be inside you before I lose my ever-lovin’ mind. Let me show you how much I missed you.”
No. She would not relinquish control to him this soon. She turned and sank to her knees. She had him unbuckled, unzipped and in her mouth before he knew what hit him.
“Goddammit, Channing, that’s not what I wanted… Oh fuck that feels good. Oh, darlin’, just like that. Baby, don’t stop.”
Channing sucked him off, taking her own sweet time to build him to madness. Dangling him over the edge of reason again and again before she relented to his begging whimpers and finished him in her mouth.
Colby staggered backward and sagged on the bed.
She escaped to the bathroom. Maybe if she cowered in there long enough he’d fall asleep and she could sneak out because being here was a bad, bad idea.
Two seconds later, two raps sounded on the door. “Channing? You okay?”
Crap. “I’m fine.”
“You gonna hide in there all night?”
Colby laughed. “Well, as long as I’ve got your undivided attention, let me set you straight on a few things.”
“I can turn the water on so I don’t have to hear you,” she said with false syrupiness.
“And I can break down this cheap-ass door so you’ve got no choice but to listen. You really want that, darlin’?”
“No.” Before he could sweet-talk his way around her, Channing blurted, “Did you ask Amy Jo to come to Cheyenne?”
“No! Why would you ask—”
“Because Trevor hinted you told your dad to bring her here for you.”
“Trevor was drunk. My dad’s been tryin’ to fix me up with her for the last year. Poor thing is shy and unsure of herself and she needs a little—”
“Little Amy Jo didn’t look so shy and unsure of herself when you two were dirty dancing,” Channing retorted.
He chuckled again. “Amy Jo asked me to teach her to dance like that because she don’t know how. And it appears she’s already set her cap for some cowboy back home. So she’s tryin’ to shed her wholesome image. I showed her some pointers. Plus, she wanted to rub it in Keely’s face. And my cheeky little sister deserves it after taunting Amy Jo all these years.”
“Oh.” What else could she say that didn’t make her sound like a jealous idiot?
Silence. Colby sighed. “Shug, please come out here.”
Channing cracked the door an inch and peered a him. “You left your ropes in the horse trailer, right?”
“Yep. Just me, just you.” He held out his empty hands. “See?”
“Okay.” The second she scooted out, he blocked her attempt to dodge him and hugged her spine to his chest.
She tried to squirm away.
“What’s this? I thought you liked me? Now you’re treatin’ me like a leper?”
“I still like you. I just don’t know why I’m here.”
Colby kissed her crown. “Because I missed you. Talkin’ to you.
Touchin’ you. Getting to know you. We’ve had fun learnin' about each other, haven’t we?”
“Do you mean in the biblical sense?”
He tapped her ass. “No. I meant in every sense. I want to be with you, Channing. And not just with my dick in your mouth.”
She leaned back, allowing his solid warmth to seep into her. “You didn’t like it?”
“I loved it. But I don’t know why you felt you needed to distract me. I wanted to touch you, too. Lord, I’m achin’ to put my hands on you. But I can wait until you’re ready. And. Ah. It don’t have to be tonight.”
That shocked her. Wasn’t this thing between them supposed to be about sex?
Colby whirled her to face him. A hint of hesitation darkened his eyes.
“Are you comin’ to the afternoon rodeo tomorrow to watch me compete?”
“I’d like to but I don’t have a ticket. I’ve heard they’re pretty hard to come by.”
“I bought one for you today.” He sifted her hair through his hands.
“Your hair is so soft. You smell so good. Everything about you is soft and warm and sweet.”
Channing was melting. Giving in.
“And after the rodeo I’ve planned something special for us.”
“Do we get naked for it?”
Colby scowled. “Maybe I’d like to spend time with you with our clothes on, Chan.”
“That’d be a first.”
“You’re pushin’ your luck, darlin’. I’m tryin’ to be civilized. Givin’ us a chance to talk this out.”
Channing stood on her tiptoes and licked his neck. “I like you uncivilized and wild. Talk is overrated. I’d rather fuck it out.”
Another weighty pause. “Your choice. But now that you’ve made it you don’t get to change your mind.”
Then he was on her. Kissing her, tearing at her clothes. In the blink of an eye she was naked and at his mercy.
They crashed to the bed in a tangle of arms and legs. Colby crushed her to his chest and rolled with her so she was writhing beneath him.
He scissored his legs on the outside of hers, immobilizing her lower half. He encircled both her wrists together in his large hand and pinned them above her head.
Colby’s free hand slid between them. He plunged two fingers inside her wetness. He coated his shaft with her juices, guided his cock to her entrance and drove in.
Channing groaned. Yes. This is what she wanted, what she understood about this man. The primal need.
Body to body, forehead to forehead, he thrust into her. Long, hard deep strokes. Not fast, not slow. Just strong and steady and true.
“Why haven’t you ever let me love you like this? Face to face? Heart to heart? So I can look in your eyes while I’m makin’ love to you?”
Because it’s not lovemaking, it’s just sex.
“What are you afraid of?”
That you’ll see my feelings for you and cut and run.
“Look at me, Channing Kinkaid.”
She angled her chin up an inch.
“What I said the other night? I meant it. Maybe it was crudely put instead of poetic, but I meant every damn word.”
Play it cool, play it dumb. Breezily, she said, “Oh. Remind me again what you said. I don’t remember.”
A calculating look came into his eyes. “Oh I’ll remind you all right.”
Channing realized she’d made a huge mistake baiting him.
“I told you that you are mine. You belong to me. Remember now?” He rocked his hips with short, precise thrusts.
Her body softened for his, yet her mouth remained clamped shut as a rusty well cover.
“Maybe I should repeat it. Then you can say it back to me so I know you understand. And remember.”
God. He was relentless.
“Say it. Say you’re mine.”
Channing blinked as he thrust. In. Out. In. Out. In a compelling rhythm as exotic as it was arousingly familiar.
She couldn’t believe he was doing this. Pushing her emotions as he pushed her body to the limit.
“You’re mine. Say it.”
She stared at him, pretending a detachment she didn’t feel.
No change in his expression. No change in the solid motions of his thrusts. No change or concession in the words he demanded from her.
“Say you’re mine.”
Channing turned her head away.
With his chin he forced her face back level to his and peered in her eyes. “Goddammit, Channing. Say it.”
She watched him warily. Physically, she wasn’t scared of him, but at some point in the last hour, on an emotional level, he’d set out to conquer her. Completely. He wouldn’t be satisfied until he had her total surrender. And she was teetering on the brink of submission.
Channing shook her head, wanting to distract him with her hands.
Her mouth. Anything. But she was totally under his control.
“Say it. Say you’re mine.”
She found her voice. “Why?”
“Because you are mine and you’ll damn well admit it. Say it.”
“You can. You will. Say you belong only to me.”
“Damn you, Colby. Why are you doing this?”
“You needed a reminder, remember? Say it.”
The repetition of his words say it say it was stuck in her head. The repetition of his body plunging in and out of hers stuck her pleasure center like a thousand needles.
“Say it. Say you’re mine.”
“Say it. I won’t stop fucking you. We’ll be here in this bed, locked together until you admit to me out loud what I see in your eyes, Channing Kinkaid. What I feel in your body whenever I touch you. So say the words to me so I can say them back to you.”
Was she prepared to give in to him? Especially when he hadn’t clarified if he meant that she belonged to him only for the rest of the night? Or did he mean forever?
Maybe she should take a chance and find out.
Channing locked her gaze to his. “I’m yours.”
Fire danced in his eyes. He set his jaw and rocked into her harder.
“Yours.” That tingling pressure for release began to build low in her belly.
“Whose? Say my name.”
Sweat dripped down his temple. “Who do you belong to?”