Evelyn Lassiter is a New York-based sex therapist whose book becomes a bestseller. When she travels to London on a promotional tour, she is romanced by reporter Neil Savant. Their interview takes a kinky turn and the horny pair discover falling into bed is easy. The hard part is falling in love.
(Previously published by Cobblestone Press as License To Thrill.)
GENRE: EROTIC ROMANCE
CONTENT: M/F; LIGHT BDSM; ADULT LANGUAGE
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“It would be nice if you crossed your legs, Miss Lassiter. It makes for a sexier picture.”
Evelyn Lassiter inhaled a long breath and followed the photographer’s instructions. She shifted one thigh across the other and tugged at the hem of her ridiculously short skirt. “Is that better?”
“Much. Now smile wider. Gimme some teeth!”
She sighed and parted her gloss-saturated lips. Her grin felt pasted on, stuck to her face as if chiseled in marble. If she’d had a choice, she’d be anywhere else in the world. Funny, given how excited she had been at the beginning of this visit.
She’d been in London for almost a week, but she’d barely seen the city. Instead, she’d been whisked to morning chat shows or twiddled her thumbs in her gorgeous hotel suite. She’d caught glimpses of Big Ben through car windows and craned her neck to gaze at the River Thames, but she feared she’d leave London without really having explored much of it.
Worse, she hadn’t managed to get away to do any shopping.
Not that she hadn’t had a little fun. Problem was, the fun was had with a hot guy whose profession required him to dig into the nooks and crannies of her life. And while Evelyn had precious little to hide, she was certain fucking the star reporter of one of Britain’s biggest tabloids would make her more famous than any chapter in her book ever could.
She nibbled her bottom lip and tried not to think of Neil Savant. Reporter. Spy. Same difference, right? If she’d brought him up to her suite last night—and boy, she’d had to stop herself from doing so—Evelyn was sure she’d have awoken to an illuminating editorial.
Sex and the Single Ballbreaker. Or something equally tacky. And true.
Not that she’d be able to avoid her new friend for long. He was scheduled to come interview her in a few minutes. Last night—and the night before—had been all about flirting and drinks. And listening to his delicious accent. And wondering if he liked his women on top.
Warmth spread through her, drawing her out of her reverie. Geoff, the photographer, winked at her.
Mindful of the light crisscrossing her skin, she tossed back her head. Her layered, bone-straight chestnut hair tumbled over her shoulders. She smiled so hard her cheeks hurt.
What on earth had ever made her listen to Marty? Her agent had assured her the interview and photo shoot would propel sales of her already best-selling book. Her looks and youth would catapult her into the limelight.
But did she really want to be famous?
If the past week was any indication, she didn’t have much of a choice.
Her first book, Loving Hard, Loving Long: A Guide to Making Love Last All Night, had leaped into the top five of every bestsellers list the week it debuted. She’d immediately begun fending off calls from talk shows, sex clubs, and a couple of horny male celebrities.
According to Marty Resnick, it was all about the marketing.
“I don’t give a damn what’s inside the book. The moment people flip the book jacket open and see your glorious face, they’re gonna buy!”
“I wrote the book to help people.”
“And you will, Evelyn. You will. Just remember this. You’re selling sex, and part of that is selling yourself. You’ve got the goods. Use ‘em.”
Against her better judgment, she’d taken his advice. But she’d put her foot down when he suggested she pose for the top men’s magazine in the world.
“I’m not taking off my clothes, Marty!”
“How about one of the lad mags?”
“Don’t even ask.”
She’d refused to allow her agent to turn her into a sex symbol. She would promote the book and her practice. That was all. She was a sex therapist, not a sex kitten.
And yet, here she was, grinning into a camera. She arched her back, thrust out her chest, made sure the photographer got some good snapshots of her awesome new stilettos.
I’m ready for my close-up ….
Twenty minutes later, the photographer and his assistant began packing their equipment. Some of her tension drained away—but only some. Before she could really get comfortable, her cell phone rang.
“Hello. It’s Neil Savant from The London Ledger here, Miss Lassiter. I’m stepping into the hotel’s lift now. You decent? Actually, I rather hope not.”
She groaned. “See you in a minute, Mr. Savant.”
The photographer snapped the lens cap on the camera and grinned. “Just in time.” He set a heavy leather case on his hip. “I can’t wait to read the interview.”
“Me, too,” she said, muffling the phone with her hand.
She didn’t have time to collect her thoughts. When the photographer had gone, Neil Savant appeared in the doorway. He stood there for a minute, his gaze moving from the bottoms of her sharp red stilettos to the tops of her thighs. She shifted under his gaze and pulled down her skirt. It was too short, but she knew Marty would approve.
And from the look on his face, Neil did as well.
“How are you, Evelyn? I tried calling you after our date. Didn’t you get my messages?”
She faltered before answering. If she had her way, she would listen to him talk all day. Neil had the best accent ever. “Not until this morning.”
He moved into the suite, shutting the door firmly behind him. He seemed to glide across the plush rose carpet until he stopped in front of her.
He was too damn close. Too familiar. Gazing into his sea-green eyes made her breathless. And his hair. Thick, smoky black, with a shocking white tendril curving just over his forehead. She wanted to rake her fingers through it, feel the wavy strands caress her palms. Hell, she wanted to pull it. She’d guess Neil was at least fifteen years older than her thirty-four years, but he carried himself like a man half his age. He was one hot older man.
She wrapped her arms around his neck and kissed his cheek. “My other reason for not returning your messages is I knew I’d be seeing you today and I didn’t want you to get bored with me.”
“That would never happen.” He wrapped his hands around her waist and pulled her close.
“Not so fast, Neil. Business first.”
He ran his hands down her back until each palmed one of her curvy ass cheeks. “Sex is your business, right?” Squeezing the bounty he held in his hands, he dipped his head to suck on her bottom lip. “You can say anything you want into my recorder, but I’d be remiss if I didn’t gain firsthand knowledge of your practice.”
She grinned and tried not to look as turned on as she felt. It had been much too long since her last sexual encounter—nearly a year since she’d been fucked long and hard. Not that she’d gone out of her way to avoid sex. It was just that she’d been too busy writing about fucking to actually do any. During that time, she’d written chapter after chapter about the best positions in which to climax, with only a black rubber dildo as her guide.
For two nights straight, she’d gone out with Neil Savant and let him buy her drinks—something that could have repercussions for both of them. Undoubtedly, his bosses would not be thrilled to hear their star reporter had coerced a subject. And despite her agent telling her to use her sexuality to market her book, even Marty would have frowned at her being cozied up with the handsome reporter.
As hard as she tried, she couldn’t be too hard on herself. Neil’s arms looked so strong. And they felt so good around her waist.
She could have slept with him last night, but that would have been much too easy. When he’d kissed her in front of her hotel suite, he’d expected her to invite him inside. But where was the anticipation in that? Guys like him never needed to work hard for sex. He was probably the type who had thongs stashed in his glove compartment next to the tissues.
Neil was also the type of guy who shifted into a subordinate position with just a few well-placed words. She’d noticed it the previous evening after she’d playfully dropped her handbag. He’d quickly knelt to retrieve it, only to find her heel pressed into the soft flesh between this thumb and forefinger. Instead of looking at her oddly, he’d smirked.
As the evening progressed, she’d made it her business to learn as much about him as possible. “Tell me everything,” she’d prodded. “And don’t leave anything out.”
“What?” His hand released an almost imperceptible tremor as he gulped his scotch.
“I don’t think it’s fair you get to delve into my life and I know nothing about you.” She’d stopped to gauge his expression. “And sit up straight.”
He’d straightened and signaled the bartender for another round of drinks.
She’d enjoyed playing with him but had decided not to push things any further. After all, she’d be on a flight home in a couple of days. One-night stands, no matter how tempting, weren’t usually her thing.
But why not? she wondered now as she gazed at her eager guest.
Everyone is getting off on my book. Everyone but me. It’s time to remedy that.
Pointing to the chair in front of the writing desk, she narrowed her eyes until he removed a yellow legal pad and pen from his bag and sat down.
She stood in front of him. “Do you have a recorder, or do you like to take notes?”
He raised an eyebrow. “Both. The recorder is for accuracy. I take notes to add nuance—information about what you’re wearing, your expressions, tone, etc.”
She leaned against the desk, glad Marty had convinced her to wear such a short skirt. It rode up and exposed her thighs. Feeling playful, she shifted from one foot to the other. Like a cat stalking a mouse, Neil followed every move she made.
She licked her lips. “What do you want to know first, Mr. Savant?”
“I want to know what makes you an expert about sexuality.”
“Sex is merely a behavior. My specialty is determining how emotions create and drive our sexual impulses.” She leaned forward and ran her finger over his yellow notepad. “For instance, you’re driven to conquer. You have a need to be the smart guy. You like to be the dude with all the answers. It’s why you became a reporter. It’s also why you want to get into my pants so badly.”
Neil blinked. “Is it really that simple?”
“Yep. No matter what I tell you, you won’t feel like you know the real deal until you fuck me. That’s why you invited me out for drinks the last couple of nights. It’s why you’re determined to fuck me right now.”
“Come on. It couldn’t possibly be that simple.”
“Why can’t it?”
“Well, golly gee whiz, Evelyn,” he whined in a terrible American accent. A smirk parted his lips as he drummed his pen against the notepad. “You’re determined to make this difficult for me, aren’t you?”
She laughed. His annoyance didn’t bother her in the slightest. He’d spent the previous two nights flirting outrageously and making sure every time he stroked her hand or thigh she’d go a little crazy inside. He’d given her plenty to fantasize about when she entered her suite last night. She both desired and hated him for it.
She’d always preferred giving over taking. Today, she’d give Neil something to fantasize about.
“How about an exclusive? Something I’ve not shared with other media.”
His eyebrow lifted. “I’d rather like that. And I suspect The Ledger would, as well.”
She stood in front of him and made sure he took a good, long look. When she lifted the hem of her skirt to reveal the tops of her sheer stockings, quickly followed by her panty-less crotch, Neil’s pen and pad sailed to the floor.
“Now, don’t you feel special?”