Gentling the Cowboy(4)

By: Ruth Cardello

He considered each of his past female companions, although none were recent. He chose partners with care—experienced women who understood that he had nothing more than a few hours of mutual pleasuring to offer them. He didn’t promise them anything, and they were too smart to think they could come to his ranch uninvited and receive anything but a cold escort to the road. The only people who were welcome on his ranch were the ones who worked there, and even they knew to stay out of his way.

The pink-and-green checkered luggage that greeted him as he entered the house brought a rush of heat up his neck. He heard the downstairs shower running and a female voice mixed with the sound of the spray. Almost positive he must be hallucinating from the heat of the day, he walked toward the bathroom. With a bang, he opened the door, stepped inside, and stopped dead when he saw the outline of a small woman dancing behind the fogged glass.

She must not have heard him because she kept singing—some pop song, he figured. Not a tune he knew. The tone he chose was one that had cowered many grown men over the years. “What the hell are you doing in my shower?”

The water cut off and a hand shot out, grabbed a towel, and snatched it back behind the glass door. A second later, a wet blonde head poked out. “Hi, I’m Sarah,” she stated, as if that explained everything. “I didn’t think you’d mind if I took a quick shower while waiting for you. Sorry if I surprised you.”

Her face wore a warm, sheepish smile even while water dripped down from her hair across her forehead. He caught a glimpse of a bare arm as her hand came out to wipe the water away. His gut tightened in response.


Long, wet eyelashes framed two unguarded brown eyes. Small dimples made her classically beautiful features less intimidating. Here was a woman who seemed unaware that a man could have the air sucked right out of his lungs and be rendered speechless with just one look at her.

The front of his jeans became uncomfortably tight as his body came alive with the desire to strip and join her in the shower. He could see the outline of her towel-clad body and the expanse of exposed legs behind the lightly fogged glass. In her rush to cover herself, she hadn’t taken the time to dry off. He imagined sinking to his knees and burying his face in her damp pussy. Would it taste as sweet and fresh as her lips looked? Would she throw her head back and to the side when he lifted her naked against the shower wall and suckled the full breasts he could now only see the rounded tops of? Would her smiling mouth round in a gasp of pleasure as he drove his cock into her for the first time?

He wasn’t an impulsive man when it came to women, but the throbbing need that swept through him made him want to be.

Easy, cowboy. A man can’t be blamed for where his thoughts go when he finds a beautiful, naked woman in his shower, but thinking and acting are two different things. She could be anyone with God only knows what sort of intentions. Something that appears too good to be true almost always is. “I don’t know what made you think—”

Securing the towel chastely around herself, she stepped out of the shower. With shocking audacity, she smiled and put her hand out to shake his. “I admit I wasn’t sure if it was okay to take a shower before you came home, but I figured since I’m staying here for the summer you wouldn’t mind.”

Oh, hell no. “You’re what?”

Her extended hand shook, then fell to her side. She took a quick step back, eyes darting past him to a pile of clothes she had stacked on the counter near the sink. “I thought you knew.”

He towered over her, more out of habit than a desire to intimidate her. The press had become more creative recently in their attempts to interview him, but would they go this far? Her pale, creamy skin and pink manicured toenails warned him she’d be trouble. But, damned if he didn’t care. “I’m listening.”