Bad Boy's Revenge:A Small-Town Romantic Suspense(6)

By: Sosie Frost

Maddox was none of those.

Trusting him was a mistake. Welcoming him close was a disaster. His warmth consumed me. Entirely. Dangerously. Inescapably.

“We broke up.” I said it gently because I hated saying it at all.

Maddox nodded. “That was my mistake.”

“You shouldn’t be here.”

“This is the only place for me.”

“When did you…”

“I had a parole hearing…” He tensed in the doorway, his fingers crushing the wooden frame. “You didn’t get my letter?”

Uh-oh. “No.”

“You didn’t take any of my calls either.”

I stumbled backward, hating that it looked like an invitation. Maddox stepped inside my apartment, shutting the door.

Trouble came in many forms, the worst of which existed in my heart. My back pressed against the wall, and I looked up to meet the shadow of his stare. I was never once afraid of this man, not even now when he studied me, memorized me, towered over me. Not many people knew the real Maddox. No one gave him a chance. I did, and I was the fool who fell for him.

“How’d you get so beautiful?” His voice lowered to that honeyed growl. “Christ, I missed you.”

I didn’t speak if only because I didn’t trust what I’d say. How badly I missed him? How I was lost without him in my bed?

How angry I was that nothing I did had prevented what happened.

His hands flattened on the wall behind me, pinning me beneath the simmering, molten man. My heart thrashed, beating everything inside my chest well beyond soft peaks. The paleness of his skin clashed against my smooth, nutmeg brown complexion. I resisted the urge to touch him and entwine our hands. I used to love nothing more than to admire how beautiful we looked together, light and dark, tender and hard, gentle and…




But surrendering to his touch was risky. Maddox stared at me, hungry and desperate and so unbelievably lonely.

And I knew why. It shamed me. It hurt me.

But I had no choice.

“I wanted to find you.” His words roughened, but they were as much a caress as Maddox could give. “I had to see you again. To hold you.”

He wanted more than that. His chest strained the thin T-shirt, hardly containing the twitching, testosterone-packed muscles. The leather jacket creaked as he leaned in, crackling the tight material. I hadn’t looked down yet, but I knew what waited in his jeans. Something hard. Something equally wicked.

I held my breath. It did nothing but invite his spicy, cedar and black pepper scent deeper into my lungs. It banished every lingering, nauseating nightmare rattling in my memory. Burnt sugar. Acrid smoke. Antiseptic.

Was it possible the man I lost, the one I couldn’t let myself love again, was the only one who could chase away the fear from the fire?

I spent a year fighting to forget him.

I tossed and turned every night denying my desire for him.

I refused to let my heart break for him.

And it was all for nothing.

Maddox descended on me. His lips crashed against mine in a blind fury, ravenous, unrivaled by the times in our past when he was so desperate to make me his. He was the first man to take me, the only one who’d ever had me. Maddox transformed me from an innocent virgin into wanton woman, transfixed by his strength and eager for his grip upon my hips.

He grabbed me. Time stilled. I counted.

One second, and my gasp blended into a gentle mew.

Two seconds, and he pressed me hard against the wall.

Three seconds, and I was his again.

His lips didn’t nibble, and his kiss wasn’t kind or slow. Maddox was ravenous.

When he wanted me, he took me, and nothing prevented us from exploring that pleasure. A man as fierce as him should have terrified me. Instead, I was only overwhelmed by his lust. A year of separation only made that need worse.

His tongue flicked against mine, quick and insistent. This wasn’t a tease. I clawed at him, pulled him closer, and waited for that moment when I might have caught my breath. I should have stopped him from leading us into a temptation beyond what we could handle.

But I’d missed him. I ached for him.

I wanted Maddox more than anything—more than my store, more than finding the real criminal who destroyed my life with this perfectly imperfect man.

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