Desert Heat:Sinclair Sisters Trilogy 02By: Kat Martin
Dallas’s hold subtly tightened and any thought of talking slipped away.
By the time the song was over, he was holding her snugly against him, and her arms were around his neck. Patience couldn’t help noticing how good he felt, how perfectly they fit together.
He reached up and tucked a strand of her hair behind an ear. “I’d really like to kiss you. I haven’t been able to think of anything else since the moment I saw you tonight.” A corner of his mouth edged up. “You won’t slap me again, will you?”
Slap him? When he looked at her that way, hitting him was the last thing on her mind. “No. I’ll just kiss you back.”
Something flashed in those blue, blue eyes. He didn’t wait, just lowered his head and captured her lips. His were warm and softer than they looked, sinking in, molding perfectly to hers. He tasted her, kissed her more deeply, started over and did it all again…
She tried not to be frightened. She told herself it was coincidence. He hadn’t followed her there. He had only come to the supermarket for groceries, just like everyone else. She wasn’t afraid, she convinced herself; she simply refused to be.
But Tyler Stanfield wasn’t like everyone else. He was the man who had made her life miserable for six long months. The man who had spied on her, followed her for hours on end, phoned her at all hours of the day and night, and written her dozens of letters, some professing his undying love, others warning her that if he couldn’t have her no one would. She had been forced to get an unlisted number and a new e-mail address, but that hadn’t stopped him.
Night after night, he watched her apartment from the street below her house. By day, he followed her around the Boston University campus, making it nearly impossible to concentrate on her work. He had hassled her, embarrassed, and harassed her.
Finally, he had broken into her apartment, using a key to the back door she hadn’t known he had. He needed to talk to her, he had said, tears in his eyes as he approached where she lay nearly paralyzed in bed. Fortunately, she had told one of her neighbors about the trouble he had been causing. The woman heard the commotion and called the police, who were patrolling a few blocks away and arrived before things got any further out of hand.
Patience wanted to press charges but Tyler’s parents were important people who made heavy contributors to the school. It took the help of two of her college professors, her parents, and one of her girlfriends to finally get a restraining order against him. Tyler Stanfield, an above average graduate student, was forbidden to have any sort of contact with her. He was ordered by the judge not to come within a hundred yards—the length of a football field.
Still, the area just off campus where she lived while she studied for her Ph.D. wasn’t all that large and she was bound to run into him on occasion. Just as she had today.
Patience shifted the bag of groceries from her right arm to her left, dragged her keys out of her purse, and unlocked the trunk of her gray Nissan coupe. Her palms were sweating, the brown paper bag soaking up the moisture as she looked over her shoulder, trying to spot Tyler’s silver BMW.
Six months ago, she had thought he was attractive. Nearly six feet tall, a well-built, blond man in his late twenties, Tyler was intelligent; they both went to B.U.; and she was intrigued. She rarely dated. When Tyler asked her out, at first she had said no, but needing a break from her thesis, the third time he asked, she said yes.
He took her to dinner at the Top of the Hub where they could look out over the city, and she had to admit she had fun. His family had money and Tyler always had a pocketful. He had expensive tastes and a brand new car, and in the beginning, he showed her a very good time.
She had slept with him. It was a terrible mistake. The sex wasn’t good and she suspected it wasn’t going to get any better. And there was something about Tyler…something she couldn’t quite put a finger on. A few weeks into the affair, she told him she didn’t think the relationship—such as it was—was going to work. She refused to see him, tried to make him understand she simply wasn’t attracted to him.
That’s when her nightmare began.