In keeping with my release celebration, here's the following excerpt. Answer one or two questions to be entered to win one or two times. I will draw two numbers from the entries, and if you answer twice, you'll have two entry numbers, thus two chances to win. Send your answer/s to firstname.lastname@example.org with WEDNESDAY CONTEST in the subject line. Good luck!
1. What does Remy want from Cole?
2. What did Remy used to call J.D.?
She’d been frank with Cole about her expectations tonight—that this would be a friendly, casual, not-quite date, yet he’d acted overjoyed to take her out anyway.“I really appreciate you doing this.” She wrung her hands as she stared up into his laughing eyes. He didn’t have the same perfection J.D. had, but Cole’s rough masculinity was its own kind of beauty. She knew his social life had never been less than active. “I hope you didn’t have to cancel any dates for me.”“Don’t worry. There’s enough of me to go around.”“So it says on the bathroom walls.”He laughed with her. “I like you, Remy. Now why don’t you tell me what’s really going on with you and J.D.? Because when I told him about our date earlier, he had visions of tearing my head from my shoulders.”“He did?” Why that gave her pleasure, she didn’t want to think about. “I mean, well, we have a history. Young love gone wrong.” Way wrong. “It was all innocent and years ago. There’s nothing between us now.”“Uh-huh.” He crossed his arms, looking a lot less than believing.“Really.” Why did she have to explain herself? “I don’t appreciate the third degree. I had a nice time tonight. I guess I’ll see you tomorrow.”Cole’s lips quirked. “I know you hate to hear this, but you are so cute when you’re mad.”“Shut up.” She tried to glare at him and ended up smiling. “You’re so annoying.”“Yet women love me. It’s part of my curse.” He dropped his arms to his side and closed the distance between them. “Now tell me what you need. A friendly ear? A warm hug? For me to tell you again how cute you are when mad? Or how hot you are, and that all the guys at work want to do you?”“Cole.” She flushed.“Yeah. It’s that sexy innocence. You’re a beautiful woman, Remy. And I’m your friend. So come clean. What’s really with asking me out on a date?”“I need you to kiss me.”He blinked. “Why?”“Because you’re handsome?”“I am, but that’s not why.”She rolled her eyes. “Forget it.”“Now, now. I can’t have you telling everyone I’m a tease.” He drew her closer, his warmth welcoming. “You want a kiss? Okay. Just promise you won’t zap me if you don’t like it.”She tentatively put her hands on his shoulders, amazed at how much larger he was up close. “I won’t, I swear.”He cupped her face in his hands. “I won’t lie and say I haven’t been wanting to do this,” he confessed before settling his mouth over hers.Remy stilled as his soft breath met hers. He kept his hands on her face as he deepened the kiss. A gentle trespass, but no more than she allowed as he sipped at her lips. She felt a spark of interest, but it was nowhere near the intensity of what she’d felt with J.D.Cole tasted like crème brulee, and he kissed with a smoothness that spoke of experience. He moved carefully with her, and she appreciated his consideration. He was a good friend, but nothing more.“Not bad,” he said as they parted. He studied her. “But not great either, hmm?”Remy blushed, wishing she hadn’t been so obvious.Cole laughed and pulled her closer for a hug. “I’m teasing you, Remy. Relax. Be honest—our kiss was pleasant, but it didn’t rock your world.”“You could tell?” She swore she’d felt something hard brush her belly when they hugged, but she didn’t want to be presumptuous and think she’d aroused him. Could she? Had she?“You kissed me back, but you aren’t breathless. No squirming, either. Definite tells. I have enough experience to know these things.” He touched her nose and pulled away. “I’m betting you don’t. Do me a favor. Make J.D. work for his kiss. Trust me, he can stand to give you a little romance. And you’re worth it.”She blushed again but smiled as he left. The awkwardness she might have expected after their date hadn’t been there. Her friend at work—and outside of work, apparently—Cole remained her protector.If only she could have felt a deeper connection with him. Who knew where their night might have ended? Not with sex, though she looked forward to that day. But intimacy with Cole wouldn’t have been outside the realm of possibility. She liked him. She knew him, and the fact that he had psychic ability made her feel at home.She moved into her bedroom and slipped on a slinky nightie she’d purchased ages ago, her one concession to dressing sexy. The rose-colored satin gown ended at midthigh and had spaghetti straps. Wearing it made her feel like a real woman, and the matching robe that went with it would keep her warm while still letting her feel feminine.She’d just filled a kettle of water for tea when someone knocked at the door. Setting the kettle down, she hurried to the peephole, wondering if Cole had returned. And if he had, should she let him see her like this?She peered out to see J.D. staring over his shoulder. Her heart raced and she had to consciously catch her breath. What was he doing here? It had to be close to eleven at least. She unlocked and opened the door a crack. Before she could say anything, he burst through.“Where is he?” he asked grimly. He looked around her living room before stalking down the hall toward the bedrooms. Remy followed in his wake, more than a little annoyed.“What are you doing here?” She tried to tamp down the thrill at the thought that he might be jealous. She shouldn’t want that, yet she liked him not wanting her with anyone else. Because she felt the same way about him, even though she had no right to such possession. God, I’m such an idiot.She waited in the hall while he stormed through both rooms, oblivious to the fact that he had no right to do so.“Cole’s not here,” he said in confusion. He turned back to see Remy, and his eyes widened. “Good Christ. What are you wearing?”It dawned on her that the sexy outfit might give the wrong impression. And then he was there, in her space, backing her against the wall.“Did you wear this for him?” he asked, his voice husky—with rage or arousal, she couldn’t say.“No.” She licked her lips, aware he followed the movement like a hawk. “Cole left before I put on my pajamas. We had dinner and a movie. I like him. He’s a friend.” She tried to move, but he caged her between his body and the hands he braced against the wall on either side of her head. “Move.”“Make me.”“J.D.…”“That’s not what you used to call me,” he murmured.“Joshua,” she breathed, feeling him with more than her body. Her heart and her energy, always confused and needy when around him, pulsed with desire. It didn’t help when his energy sought hers, like to like, and aroused her to no end.He glanced down, shuttering his gaze. “I see your nipples, hard little buds. You scared, baby?”“Of you?” she tried to scoff, but he ran a finger over her breast and she sucked in a breath.“Of me.” He smiled before lowering his mouth to hers. He gave her every chance to pull way, but she waited, needy, hungry.The kiss melted her into a puddle of “hell yes” in seconds. He groaned into her mouth and pinched her nipple. She gasped and ground against him, arching up when he cupped her breast and moved to the other one, giving it more attention.“Fuck,” he rasped. “You feel so good.”“You too,” she whispered, not sure when she’d put her hands on his shoulders, holding him close. The distrust, the anger, the pain—all of it paled next to this growing need. What she could never feel for Cole or any other man.He stared into her eyes and she saw the same desire, the same baffled lust she felt. His lips parted, but his gaze never wavered. “You are the sexiest thing I’ve ever seen. I want to stay away. I need to, but I can’t.”“So don’t.” No more talking. No past or future. Only the present mattered. Him and her. Finally together. Remy’s body demanded she take charge. She’d dreamed about this with him.J.D. dragged her close and kissed her again. And that’s when she lost her train of thought, because though she might comprehend the mechanics, the nuances of his taste and touch scrambled the rational woman she tried so hard to be.He deepened the kiss and pushed her robe to the floor. Just like their time before, except now she knew they wouldn’t stop. Not until she had him where she wanted him.