Nicole's Military Men (Elite Dragoons #2)(3)

By: Becca Van

It was getting nearly impossible to hide her body’s reaction to the three men. She pushed that thought away.

Then there was Ty. Ty was slightly leaner and shorter than Rand but no less appealing, and he was still more muscular than anyone she’d ever known, and if he didn’t weigh well over two hundred pounds, she would eat her shoes. His hair was also short but instead of black like Rand’s it was a deep brown and his eyes were an amazing emerald green. Ty was the eldest of the three men, at thirty-three, and he was also a real hard-ass. She hadn’t battled wills with him and hoped she never had to, because she didn’t think she would be able to win. She’d heard his dominant tone when he had spoken to his younger siblings.

Brom was an inch taller than Ty but shorter than Rand and although he was ripped with muscle, his physique was more like an athlete’s with his wiry build. His hair was brown and his eyes were a mix of blue and green, but he was also more lighthearted than his brothers. Bromley was always quick to step in between Rand and Ty if it looked like things were going to get out of hand when they argued. He was the mediator of the three and made her smile more than the other two.

Nicole inhaled raggedly when Rand’s chest connected with her back and then his massive arms wrapped around her ribs just beneath her breasts. Her heartbeat picked up speed as did her breathing and all hope that he wouldn’t see or feel her reaction to his close proximity flew out the window.

“What are you doing out here, sunshine?” His deep baritone voice sent shivers along her spine and she was only just able to stop her body from shuddering. She loved the way he called her sunshine. It made her feel special, but she would never tell him that.

“I–I just wanted some air.”

“Hmm,” Rand murmured against her neck, and without thinking about what she was doing, Nicole reached up and clutched at his forearms. “You smell good.” As his words sank in, she became aware of the hard muscles, sinew, and warm skin beneath her hands.

“Are you cold, Nicole?”

“No,” she replied breathily.

“You’re shaking, sunshine. If you aren’t cold, then you must be scared.” Rand released her and the heat from his body disappeared as she moved away from him.

Nicole turned around to face him and found him further away than she’d anticipated. Even though she didn’t want to reveal too much, she couldn’t let Rand go on thinking she was frightened of him. A bit intimidated by his strength and size, yes, but scared, no. His arms were crossed over his massive chest and she could see he was holding himself taut.

“I’m not scared of you, Rand.” She looked up toward his eyes but since it was dark and the moon wasn’t out she couldn’t see him properly. She just hoped she could convince him she wasn’t fearful of him.

He lowered his arms to his sides and took a couple of steps toward her. Nicole didn’t move and kept her body relaxed, hoping to portray a tranquil demeanor. Rand took another step and then stopped. He was close enough for her to see more clearly.

“If you’re not scared of me, then why were you shaking?”

Nicole cleared her throat, trying to buy some time. She didn’t want to answer that question and since she wasn’t about to let on how he made her feel, she decided that silence was the best approach. But because she wasn’t going to reply, she decided that to continue looking at him wasn’t a smart thing to do, so she once more turned until her back was to him.

His hands landed on her shoulders and he began to knead the tight muscles under her skin. She bit her lip to prevent the moan working its way up her chest from coming out of her mouth. A light was switched on and the entire length of the veranda was illuminated. Nicole felt more vibrations underfoot and didn’t have to look over her shoulder to know that Ty and Brom were making their way toward them.

“What’s going on?” Ty asked in a firm voice.

“You’re scared of him? Why is that?”

“I was just asking Nicole why she was so scared of me.”

Nicole couldn’t keep her gaze on his green eyes and not answer that question truthfully, but she had no intention of responding to him. So she did the only thing she could think of and pushed her way through them. Just as she thought she had escaped, a large muscular arm snagged her around the waist, and since she was feeling a little trapped, not physically but emotionally, she came up fighting.