I was still pondering that about three a.m. when my friends left and I was alone, curled up in an armchair with my e-reader. I’d given up trying to work. Between thinking about Frederic and Jack, I didn’t have the attention span of a gnat.

My cell phone rang, startling me. It wasn’t Jess or Dani’s ring tone, so it had to be Jack, unless it was someone trying to sell me insurance. I fumbled the phone, almost dropping it as a big case of nerves scrambled my brain and nervous system.

“Hey there, beautiful.” God, it was him, his voice still sexy and sinful, even over the phone.

“Hi.” I had no idea what else to say. “How was your night?”

“Not nearly as much fun as last night,” he said. “How about you?”

“The same,” I admitted. “Thank you again…for everything.”

“You’re very welcome, sweet thing.” His gravelly chuckle had my body responding. “Looking forward to tomorrow night? I know I sure am.”

“Of course.” I squeezed my legs together to contain the moisture that gathered just at his words. The man was like a drug! One taste and I couldn’t help wanting more. “What are we doing?”

“It’s a surprise,” he taunted. “Wear something dressy—and it wouldn’t break my heart if you left the underwear at home.”

“O-okay.” Great, now I was stuttering. My breasts had started to ache just from remembering his touch. I couldn’t wait to have him touch them again.

“Are you at home?” he asked after a moment of silence.

“Yeah,” I answered.


“Yes, Jack.” I automatically reverted to the response he’d demanded in bed, and I could feel my pussy clench as soon as I said it.

“Are you naked by any chance?” I could almost see him licking his lips at the idea.

“No.” Though I kind of wished I was, if the idea would please him. “Are you?”

He laughed. “No, me neither. I’m sitting in my living room with a glass of scotch. You?”

“In a chair in my bedroom with a glass of diet cola.”

“Reading? Watching TV?”

“Trying to read,” I admitted. “Mostly just thinking.”

“What were you reading?” He sounded genuinely curious and once again I marveled at meeting a man who was truly interested in his partner.

“Chemistry journal,” I answered with a laugh. “How about you? Do I hear the TV on?”

“DVD,” he replied. “An old favorite. Monty Python and the Holy Grail.”

I giggled. “I love that movie. ‘Your mother was a hamster and your father smelt of elderberries.’ Though I like The Princess Bride even better.”

“Another classic,” Jack agreed with a chuckle. “I’m not at all surprised to find out you’re the happy-ever-after type.”

“Is that a bad thing?” I didn’t think he’d intended it that way, but I’ve never been very good at reading inflections.

“Not at all. Based on what little you’ve told me about your past, I’m impressed that you’ve still got such an optimistic outlook.”

“Well, I’m not sure if liking fairy tales makes me an optimist or just an idiot,” I replied. “But I can’t see going through life always looking for the bad in everyone. That would make me want to stake myself out in the sunlight.”

“Good for you.” His voice dropped down a bit. “So my happy little vampire. What are you wearing?”

Should I tell the truth, even though it wasn’t sexy? In the end, I couldn’t lie. “A pair of blue sweatpants with a matching jacket,” I confessed. “White tank top and undies beneath it and…”

“And what?” The teasing lilt was back in his voice. “Come on. Tell me the truth. No matter what. Then you can ask me a question and I have to do the same.”

“What if I have a question you don’t want to answer?” I couldn’t believe I had the guts to tease him back.

“Then I have to pay a forfeit,” he purred. “Say, take off a piece of clothing. First one naked…”


“Maybe,” he replied. “Want to find out?”

I couldn’t say no. I swallowed hard, and said, “Sure.”

“Okay, so what else do you have on besides your sweats, tank top and panties?”

“Bunny slippers.”

There was a long pause then I heard a roar of laughter. “Damn, woman, you’re priceless. Okay, your turn to ask a question.”

Honestly, even though we’d fucked like minks, I didn’t know him very well. This was a great opportunity, but where to start? Duh. The beginning. “Where were you born?”

“Maryland,” he replied. “I was the first member of my pack born in the New World. My father and uncle came over with Kosciusko during the American Revolution. They were amazed by all the unspoiled wilderness, so after the war they stayed and sent for more pack members to join them—including my mother and older siblings.”

“Cool,” I answered. “How many of you—”

“Uh-uh. My turn,” he interrupted. “What was your childhood like?”

I shrugged, even though he couldn’t see me. “Pretty normal, I guess. I grew up in a Greek enclave in New York. My father owned a small grocery store. My mom died when I was young, and my grandmother mostly took care of us. My older sister and I fought and squabbled all the time, but I missed her so much after she got married.”

“Okay, sweetness. Your turn,” Jack’s voice was so gentle, as if he understood the sadness that thinking of my family always gave me. It still bothered me that I’d hurt them by running off with Frederic.

Time to lighten things up, I decided. “What’s your favorite sports team?”

“Tigers, all the way,” he said without missing a beat. “That was too easy. Now here’s one a little more challenging for you. Favorite type of music?”

“Jazz,” I admitted. “I was a teen in the ’20s. I wanted so badly to go to nightclubs and hang out with jazz musicians, but I wound up with Frederic the first time I tried, and never got the chance again.” Not that I’d have been any good at the club scene, I knew now. I’d been such a naïve little thing with no sense of self-preservation.

“Well, now you have a club you can hang out in all you want,” Jack said in a suggestive murmur. “I’ll even hire a sax player one night if you’d like.”

“Oh, like your customers would appreciate that,” I said with a laugh. “Rock and roll is okay too, even if it is a little loud in there.”

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