Aidan dropped the bag from his shoulder and walked through his living room, down a hall to his bedroom, and out a sliding glass door to what was a private deck.

Which she knew because she was still following him like a lamb to the slaughter.

Aidan hit a button on the hot tub and the jets started up with a rumble. He pushed the cover aside and kicked off his shoes.

“What are you doing?” she asked.

He still didn’t look back at her. Again, just as well, because she was pretty sure where this was going and her eyes—glued to him, naturally—would one hundred percent give her away.

“I’m going on four hours of sleep over the past few days and I’m sore as hell,” he said. “I’m getting into the hot tub.”

Yeah. That’s what she’d thought. “But—” She broke off when he pulled off his shirt and dropped it to the deck.

Gah. He was just so damn beautifully made. Like heart-stopping, drool-inducing, cut with lean muscles and smooth, tanned, sleek skin, beautifully made. She wanted to lick him from the base of his throat to the dangerously low and sinking lower by the second waistband of his pants. And then maybe she also wanted to bite his—

He unbuttoned his cargoes and she stopped breathing.

With his back still to her, he dropped the cargoes.

He was commando. And it was official. She definitely wanted to bite his—

He turned around to face her and caught her gaping. He smiled and gave her the finger crook. The universal “Come here.”

“Oh. Well …” His chest was hard, his abs were hard, his thighs were hard … everything was hard, and she felt herself staring, unable to tear her eyes off the hardest thing of all, which was pretty much standing up and waving hello at her.

She swallowed hard. “Um— You’re—”

“Yeah, ignore him,” Aidan said. “He’s just happy to see you too.”

Oh boy. Her feet moved her over there and once again Aidan took the bag from her and set it aside. Then he pulled off her sweater.

“Um,” she said again, inanely.

He went brows up. “No?”

She hesitated, and he surprised her by backing right off. “It’s okay,” he said. “You can just watch if you want.”

And if that wasn’t an image that would fuel her fantasies for nights to come …

Unconcerned, he ambled over to the hot tub and got in, lowering his body into the hot water with a groan. Closing his eyes, he leaned his head back and let out a long breath.

“A rough one, huh?” she asked sympathetically. She could see a bruise across one of his shoulders and arm, and he rolled his neck like it ached.

“Yeah,” he said without opening his eyes. “And you’re still staring.”

Without even realizing it, she’d moved closer. Giving in, she kicked off her sandals and sat on the very edge of the hot tub, hiking her skirt up to her thighs to stick her feet into the water.

And then realized Aidan was now watching her, eyes glittering with things that made her thighs tremble. “What,” she said defensively. “You were making all those happy noises so I had to check it out. The water’s nice.”

“Happy noises?”

“Yeah, like when you—” She broke off as she felt her cheeks flame again and she clapped her hands to them when he tipped his head back and laughed.

“Stop it,” she said.

“No, I want to hear this,” he said. “I make the same happy noises when I what?”

“You know what.”

“Tell me,” he said, and pushed away from the edge he’d been leaning back on to wrap his arms around her calves and press his chest against her knees. With his face practically in her lap he smiled up at her. “Tell me a dirty story, Lily.”

With all those hard, warm, wet muscles leaning on her, he looked like something right off one of Jonathan’s favorite Tumblr pages.

“You’re bad,” she said, giving him a kick, which only made him laugh all the more.

“Yes,” he agreed. “Very, very bad.”

She leaned back to grab the bag she’d brought and handed it over to him. “Gray said you had to open this in front of me.”

“Nice subject change.”

She just thrust the bag beneath his nose.

He took it, looked inside, and blew out a breath. “Son of a bitch.” He said this almost conversationally.

“What is it?” she asked.

“You didn’t look?”


He pulled out a pair of men’s briefs with little red hearts mixed with little red lips all over them.

She stared as Aidan dangled them from one finger. “Are those … yours?” she asked.

“No,” he said, sounding disgusted.


“They’d better not be.”

“I don’t understand,” she said.

“Yeah, because you don’t have any asshole brothers—a fact for which you should be eternally grateful.”

She blinked. “I still don’t get it.”

“I have to wear these tomorrow no matter what my day looks like, and if Gray or Hudson show up, I have to drop trou and prove I’m wearing them.”

She looked at him, horrified and yet trying not to laugh. “No matter what you’re doing at the time?”

“No matter what I’m doing,” he said grimly. “On Gray’s last turn, Hudson delivered him a man thong the night before a management meeting. It was pretty good,” he admitted reluctantly. “Especially when Gray had to do some exhibition mountain biking that same day. It was kinda fun watching him squirm past a wedgie all day long.”

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