Authors: Beverly Preston
Tags: #Contemporary, #General, #Romance, #Fiction, #C429, #Extratorrents, #Kat
Tom lay on his side next to her with his head propped up on
“That’s really not fair,” she groaned.
“Why, whatever do you mean?” he asked, his voice thick with
“I haven’t had anyone’s hands on me, including my own, in
over a year.” She shoved her face into the beach towel. “I can’t believe I said
that out loud. You are totally messing with me on purpose.”
“Tess, it sounds like you’re complaining,” he pointed out
“Oh no, I’m not complaining.” It came out muffled, her face
still buried in the towel.
What the hell was I thinking coming here like
this? I should’ve taken care of myself a long time ago
Mr. Rene blew his conch shell. “Lunch is ready.”
“Go ahead. I’ll be there in a minute,” she stammered, hiding
her face in the towel.
“I’m sorry, really I am. Let me help you up.”
Tess waved her hand at him to go away, so she could collect
“I know you’re hungry. Seriously, I’ll play nice.”
She smiled to herself and lifted her hand for him to help
her up. After lunch, Tess swam in the shallow turquoise water while Tom
received a crash course in Tahitian culture from Mr. Rene. The conch shell blew
again. The boat was loaded and it was time to go.
They sat beside each other on the bench, their shoulders
gently brushing every time the boat hit a swell. The motion of the waves and
heat from his skin relaxed her.
“Tom, can I ask you a personal question?”
“How does a man who seems so…wonderful and kind and
gorgeous, have a girlfriend like the one I saw in the lobby? I mean, she’s
beautiful, I understand the physical attraction but how do you put up with
“First off, did you just refer to me as wonderful, kind and
gorgeous?” He grinned.
Tess flushed and wrinkled her nose. “Shit.”
He chuckled, smiling immensely. “Second, she’s not my
girlfriend. It’s more like an out of town date. I didn’t want to come here by
myself so…she seemed nicer three days ago. Sometimes it’s more for show, you
know, aspiring actress or model. It gives them publicity, and it keeps me in
the magazines, too. Honestly, I just haven’t found someone I’d like enough to
keep around.” He shrugged nonchalantly.
“Ever?” Tess asked with surprise.
“Not really, maybe a few times when I was younger, but it
didn’t work out.”
“I travel a lot and my work has always come first. My date
didn’t want to come out and have fun with me, so I’m sure as hell not going to
sit by the pool all day,” he said matter-of-factly. “Besides, I’m having a
great time with you.”
“It’s probably just as well she didn’t come with you today.”
Tess bit her lip with a naughty grin.
Tom smiled, too. “What do you mean?”
“Well, if she would’ve been here, I’m sure I might’ve felt
bad. When I knocked her overboard and took you back to my bungalow!”
“Is that so?” Hidden under his gorgeous grin lay a candid
“Yes, that is so,” she flirted brazenly.
Unsure if it was Tom, Bora Bora, or the fact she’d been
alone for so long, Tess wanted to take him to bed. She wanted to feel his warm
lips and hands on her body. Even more so, she yearned to touch him, everywhere.
The mere thought of tasting him sent her pulse rocketing.
He stroked her shoulder with his fingertips. Every inch of
her body craved his touch. She sighed several times, trying to calm herself
down. It took every ounce of self-control to keep her hands and lips to
As they approached the resort, the boat slowed. Tess would
never forgive herself if she didn’t ask. Tom sat on the bench, and she stood to
face him. His lazy smile drifted over her midriff, before she heard a small
breath of air catch in his throat. She entwined her fingers in his and he
grinned up at her. “I can’t believe I’m going to say this,” she said. “Tom, I’m
going to be at Bloody Mary’s for dinner tonight at eight o’clock. I would love
it if you’d meet me there. I realize you’re here on a
, but if you
can find a way to throw her overboard....”
Before he could answer, Tess turned to say goodbye to Mr.
Rene. She stepped off the boat and sauntered backward down the pier, flashing
him the sexiest grin she could muster. “I know you can’t answer me right now,
but I’ll be there.”
She wanted to kiss him goodbye, but it would be impossible
to stop at one kiss. At this point, she might accidentally hurt him if she
tackled him to the ground. Full of life and vigor she repeated, “Eight o’clock.
Tess had never been so audacious in her life. Asking Tom to
ditch his date to meet her for dinner wasn’t her style, but today, she didn’t
care. She wanted Tom more than she could’ve ever imagined. Loving another man
was something she knew she’d never be capable of, and Tom Clemmins wasn’t the
kind of man who fell in love. But for the first time in her life, a carefree
vacation full of passion, lust and great sex might be just what she needed.
The guilt she felt subsided.
I’m not cheating on Richard.
Nothing I do now will change the fact that I was a faithful wife. Whether he
meets me for dinner or not, I’m not going to be miserable any more. It’s time
to move forward and be happy
Anxiety kicked in as she took her time getting ready. She
swept her dark brown hair across her eyes, and gathered the rest loosely in a
sterling silver clip.
What if he doesn’t show? He probably acts like this
with every woman. He’s a total flirt. What the hell was I thinking? Great, I
just made a complete ass out of myself…again
She rummaged through her clothes, finally deciding on a
scoop neck black dress showing off all those hours Tracy had dragged her out of
bed to run. Thanks to the Tahitian motto, No Shoes Required, Tess usually went
barefoot. She put on her cutest black sandals and silver hoop earrings before
heading out the door.
Tess took the five-minute boat ride to the main island. She
meandered down the barely paved road, passing several dive shops and
I hope he shows. Then what? Will he come back to my bungalow?
Will he ditch his date and stay with me? I haven’t slept with another man in
. The possibility of a mere kiss, let alone going to bed
with him, fueled a fire within her.
When she reached Bloody Mary’s, several couples entered, but
she didn’t see Tom. She paced back and forth outside.
Should I wait outside
or go in?
The deep sexy voice came from behind and she turned to see
Tom leaning against a palm tree, looking more gorgeous than she thought humanly
“Hey.” She beamed, sauntering over to join him under the
“You look stunning.”
“Thanks, handsome.” She scanned over his flip-flops, jeans
and nice black shirt. “I hoped you would show,” she stammered anxiously.
He held her hands in his. “Before you say anything Tess, I
need to ask you something, and I don’t want you to get upset with me. All
“Are you sure you’re ready for this? I mean, are you really
ready to be with another man because this isn’t something I want you to regret
She gazed into his dark eyes and considered his question.
“Yes, I’m sure. I want to stay with you, for the rest of my trip.” She
clarified with a slight nod.
His cocked his head to one side. “So if I told you right
now, at this very moment, all of your belongings are being packed up and
brought to another resort, you’d be okay with that?”
“That depends. Are all of your things being packed up and
taken to the same resort?” she questioned timidly.
“Yes, whether you decide to stay with me or not. I sent my
date home. I changed resorts and I’d like it if you’d stay with me.”
“Are you hungry?”
Hungry for you
. “Actually, I’m starving from all the
“Do you have your heart set on eating here? I had something
a little different in mind.”
Room service in bed?
“Wherever you want to have
dinner is fine with me.”
“I was hoping you’d say that. I have a surprise for you.”
Tom led her across the street to a boat dock. “After you.” He held his hand out
to the side so she could step onto the boat before him.
“Where are we going?”
“I think you’ll like it.”
The Tahitian man introduced himself. “
, I am
Mr. Rene’s cousin. My name is Tayia.”
,” Tess said.
The boat skimmed across the lagoon, casting ripples through
the reflection of the fiery sunset. Cool, moist spray tingled her warm face.
She sat between Tom’s legs and leaned back against his chest
. I haven’t done
this in so long. I hope he’s a good lover. Please, please, please be good in
. She glanced over her shoulder and he grinned at her.
Crap! Is he
sitting here wondering if I’m going to be a good lover? Tess sat up a little
taller. Oh, I am definitely going to be good for him
With every draw of breath, her chest lifted and lowered. Tom
must’ve noticed her nervousness. He placed his palm over her heart. She felt
the hint of his smile as he nuzzled her neck.
She inhaled the scent of his skin. “You smell
Tom held her arm out to the side and lowered his nose to the
inside of her elbow. “So do you.”
Her gaze drifted to his profile, watching as his eyes
closed, taking in the scent of her perfume. The heat from his breath tickled
her skin as his lips pressed against her arm. Tess’ lips parted and her tongue
toyed with the corner of her mouth, wanting to taste his mouth.
The boat slowed, interrupting her gaze. Tess couldn’t
believe what she saw as they pulled up to a deserted
. “How did you
do this?” she whispered in awe.
Tiki torches surrounded a lovely table set with a white
tablecloth and a bouquet of flowers. The setting sun cast a glow on the white
sand, turning it nearly pink. She held up her dress a little so it wouldn’t get
wet, hopping off the boat.
Tom stood in the sand and wrapped his arms around her. “Do
you like it?”
“It’s beautiful.” She turned to face him, reaching her lips
up to kiss his.
“Not yet Tess, not yet,” he whispered in a teasing tone.
Slighted by Tom’s response, her eyes filled with
“Awe, don’t look at me like that.”
Her expression didn’t change, yearning to feel his lips.
His thumb coasted gently over her cheek. “Do you trust me?
Hmm? I trusted you with the sharks. Remember? Will you trust me now?” He
brushed his lips against her neck, causing goose bumps to cover her skin.
“Yes, I remember. But-”
“I assure you, I’ll make it worth the wait.” He toyed,
whispering in her ear. “I promise I won’t disappoint you.”
She remembered how fantastic his hands felt. “I have no
Tayia finished setting the table with a bottle of wine and a
delicious meal before leaving in the boat. Their conversation flowed easily all
through dinner. They talked for hours discussing everything from places they’d
both traveled to charities they supported. He spoke little of his career, and
made it clear he was on vacation and didn’t want to discuss work. She shared
stories of her kids, but kept them to a minimal.
After dinner, they lay side-by-side on a white blanket Tayia
left for them. Tess stretched out on her back with her legs crossed at the
ankles, and Tom lie on his side with his head propped on his elbow. She hadn’t
felt sexy in a long time, but he made her feel unbelievably sensual. Every
stroke of his hand on her arm or back, sent a current of blistering heat
washing over her, filling the absence of longing and desire that had filled her
life over the last year. The simple act of brushing the hair from her eyes
caused her to lean closer into the warmth of his fingers. She wanted more,
needing him to touch her, so she could set free the raw need she’d buried for
Deep in her own thoughts, she tried to deal with a multitude
of feelings. The sense of betrayal loomed heavily, but so did the burning ache
between her thighs. She bordered on the edge of virgin-ish nervous. It might
Not to mention I might get off before we even get started
Shadows from Tiki torches flickered across Tom’s face as he
stroked her arm from shoulder to wrist. “Tess, are you still sure about this?”
“I’m sure. It’s just…it’s been a long time. I’m a little
nervous.” She smiled timidly. “How long do we have before he comes back to pick
“Did you forget already? You’re supposed to trust me. No
They stared up at the star-filled sky, listening to the
waves roll onto the beach. He delicately traced her collarbone and neck. As his
fingertip reached her lips, she rolled her tongue around it and heard him sigh
Tom stood up, holding out his hand to Tess. They strolled
along the beach and gazed out at the moon hanging over the ocean. He turned to
face her and pulled her into his arms. Her heartbeat turned unruly as his head
dropped, grazing his parted lips over her temple. Tilting her face toward his,
Tess tensed and held her breath. He made a quiet sound of amusement and rested
his palms on the sides of her neck. “Breathe, Tess, just breathe.”
Tom’s tongue drifted down her neck and back to her lips,
playing slowly with her tongue. The warmth of his sweet mouth tasted so good
that she instantaneously began to kiss him back. She had suppressed her need to
feel desire for a man, hidden the longing of a man’s hands on her flesh and
buried her cravings in sleepless nights full of tears.