Read Her Lifeline: (A Romantic Suspense) Online
Authors: Danica Chandler
There seemed to be more to it. Reaching out, he took her hand in his. "I get it. Seriously, Amelia, it was the fertilizer. No need to lose any more sleep over it, okay?"
Her grip tightened around his, and she moved closer, keeping her eyes downcast. What kind of message was he sending her? Last night he was the one who ended it and now he was the one pulling her in again. He couldn't make up his mind to save his own life. She was inches away from him again, her perfume tickling his nostrils through the breeze.
Looking up, her blue eyes were bright. "You always so helpful?"
"I'm not sure what you mean, Amelia."
She cupped the back of his head and kissed him, quick at first, and then deeper. Her tongue shot between his lips and teeth and just as fast as it started, she stopped, taking a few steps back again. A smile crept on her lips. "Lunch is at twelve. Noah requested something other than sandwiches, so don't be late."
Nick wasn't sure what to say. Her kiss made him weak, and he leaned back against the tailgate to brace himself. What in the hell was going on? His will to resist her was dissipating, and soon, it'd be completely gone.
A couple of weeks had passed since the shed explosion. Nick could tell that it still weighed heavily on Amelia's mind. She didn't say much, but subtle comments about the ranch made him wonder if there was more to her problems than just needing a younger man around to take care of the chores. He didn't want to press the matter - if she wanted him to know, she'd tell him, and so far, she didn't disclose much about it.
A couple of weeks had also passed since their last kiss out by the well house. In that time, he had gotten to know the Tucker family, from quiet evenings on the patio, to early mornings over coffee. With her dad being there and Noah, he didn't want to make things tense, but they all seemed to click. He was also starting to get attached to Noah. The kid was little, but he had good work ethic with the things he was able to do. He was great with the horses and stronger than most adult men that Nick knew.
Standing at the stables, Nick watched the wild horse that no one had been able to tame. Reaching his hand in, he held out some hay, but the horse neighed and stomped his hoof.
"He's not very nice," Noah said as he walked in. Two dogs followed. "You name that dog of yours yet?"
Smiling, Nick tossed the hay down and helped him with fill some feed into buckets. "No. Haven't really thought about it much."
Nodding, the boy hoisted two of the buckets on his shoulder. "He needs a name. How'd you feel if your mama didn't name you?"
For all Nick knew, she probably didn't. Brushing that thought aside, he grabbed the other two buckets and followed him. "You got any suggestions? I'm not good at naming animals? I come up with the usual names. Patches, Rex, Socks."
Noah rolled his eyes. "Seriously, Mr. Nick? He doesn't even have patches or socks."
"See, that's why I need your help!"
Noah thought about it for a second, pouring the feed in a stall. "He's your dog. But I'll try to come up with something."
Nick tousled his hair. "Good. I appreciate your help."
"What are you two doing? Noah, are you bothering Nick again?" Amelia came around the corner.
"No, he's not bugging me. In fact, I think I'm bugging him."
"He was just helping me feed the horses, Ma. And he wants me to name his dog." He grabbed the last bucket from Nick and poured it in the feeder.
"Your grandpa is needing to go into town. He wants you to go with him. He said something about ice cream."
Noah's eyes lit up. "Ice cream? Y'all wanna come?"
Nick let out a laugh and adjusted his baseball cap. "No, I've got too much to do here. Thanks for inviting me."
"Suit yourself!" He ran through the barn, leaving Amelia and Nick alone.
"He's a good kid, Amelia."
She folded her arms over her chest and smiled. "He is. I'm damn proud of him." Tucking a strand of hair behind her ear, she said, "We've been so busy, I feel like you and I haven't had much time alone to talk about the job in general. Everything going okay? You've been here for a couple of weeks now."
Nick gathered up the buckets and they walked back to the front of the barn. "It's great, Amelia. I'm really enjoying it. I hope I've been getting your stuff done the way you want."
"You're doing so much more. I would've never been able to get all of this stuff done as quickly as you have."
"Thanks, that means a lot."
They both stared at each other, neither breaking the silence. Keeping eye contact, Nick stepped forward. "It's been great getting to know you and your family. I've never had that feel before. You're great people."
Amelia looked down, her cheeks reddening. "I'm sorry you've never experienced it, but I'm glad you're seeing it with us."
Nick placed his index finger under her chin, pulling her gaze up to his. Looking up at him, her blue eyes were so beautiful. Leaning in, he placed both hands on either side of her face and kissed her as he backed her against the far wall of the barn. Pressing his body against hers, he couldn't stop himself. Her scent, the way she tasted, the soft skin beneath his sandpaper palms. A low growl escaped his throat.
"Amelia..." he whispered. "I can't resist you anymore." He buried his face in her neck, nipping at her.
A groan vibrated in her throat. "I know, Nick. I can't resist you either. It's killing me." Looping her finger in his belt, she tugged at him, pulling him through the barn door. "We've got a little time. Daddy usually takes awhile in town, and with him taking Noah for ice cream, that works for us."
Nick felt the excitement in the pit of his stomach. He pushed any doubt aside, even the most nagging reason of all - she was his boss. "Where do you wanna go?"
"The bunkhouse." She still had her finger around his belt loop, tugging at his waist. "Is that okay?" She cocked her head to the side, giving him the most seductive look he had ever seen.
"Yeah." His voice cracked. Hopefully she didn't catch on. Why in the hell was he so nervous? He had wanted this to happen for so long.
Shoving through the threshold, he kicked the door shut and kissed her again, letting out a moan when he felt her hand move down between his legs, feeling the bulge beneath his jeans. Her other hand worked at the buttons on his shirt and he helped her in the process. Peeling his shirt off, she stood back and bit her bottom lip.
"That sunburn is healing nicely, Nick."
Without answering her, he wrapped his arm around her petite waist and led her down the hallway to his bed. Pushing her back, he took his time in removing her shirt, exposing a black bra. Hovering over her, he admired her curvy figure and the treasure that was waiting for him under the last bit of clothes she was wearing. Amelia tugged at his necklace that dangled down, kissing him again as her hands flowed down his chest.
"I never move this fast," she said.
Nick reached for the clasp on her bra, but stopped at her comment. "If you want to stop, let me know. I don't want you to feel pressured or rushed."
She put her hand on his, guiding it back to the clasp again. "I'm ready. Are you?"
Without hesitation, he replied, "Yes, definitely."
He undid the bra, exposing her breasts. He traced his index finger over each nipple, causing her to arch her back at his caress. His mouth replaced where his finger was, and he sucked and flicked his tongue over each one as his hand made its way to her waistband, pausing at the button on her jeans. Looking up at her, she nodded to give him permission.
Undoing the button, he slowly moved the zipper down. Grasping the waistband with both hands, he slid the jeans down over her hips and completely down her legs. Tossing them to the floor, her panties were soon to follow. Again, he couldn't help but admire Amelia laid out in front of him, completely naked, completely beautiful, and at that moment, completely his.
Sitting up, Amelia looked nervous. "What are you looking at?"
"You, Amelia. You're absolutely stunning."
She blushed and let out a whimper as he began to kiss up her legs and the insides of her thighs. Spreading farther, his hand moved upward and he dipped one finger deep into her warmth, followed by a second. She was ready for him. He slipped his fingers deeper.
"You're so wet, Amelia."
She fell back against the pillows and Nick watched as her chest rose and fell. Her eyes were closed and she let out short, quick pants, moving with the rhythm of his fingers plunging inside of her. Opening her eyes, she pushed his hand away and crossed her legs, smiling.
"Time to get your pants off, Nick."
Pushing him on his back, she took her time freeing him from his pants and boxers. The cool air hit his bare skin and the shrill of excitement panged through him when she put her hand around him. Stroking up and down, she gave more attention to the tip and down to his balls. He was so hard in her grasp and he propped himself up on his elbows to watch her work her magic.
"Damn, Amelia..." he whispered between deep breaths. "That feels so good."
She crawled back up to him, kissing him again. Her lips trailed down his neck and then back up to his ear where she said, "Make love to me, Nick."
Her voice was so velvety that he was certain it aroused him even more than he already was, if that were possible. Leaning toward the nightstand, he opened the top drawer and pulled out a condom. "Good thing I'm always prepared," he winked, handing it to her. "You do the honor?"
Amelia unwrapped it and slipped it on. Nick positioned himself over her, looking deep into her eyes as he spread her legs, running his fingers over her one more time before he slowly slid inside of her. She was tight, and he took his time until every inch was in. Pausing, he smiled and kissed her forehead. Taking one of her breasts in his hand, he began to thrust, almost completely pulling out before pushing back in. The headboard hit the wall behind them, and as he quickened his pace, their breathing matching it. Her hips bucked up to meet his, and with each second that passed, he found himself wanting to be deeper, to move faster, and to have her as close to him as possible.
"Nick," she spoke his name, whimpers and moans making him want to pleasure her even more.
"Amelia..." he felt himself about to finish, and just as he was about to, she came with him, pulsing around his erection. Pumping a few more times, he collapsed on top of her, ensuring that he was keeping the brunt of his weight off of her. Nick buried his face in her chest, enjoying her ample breasts for a few more seconds.
Finally pulling out, he scooted in beside her, pulling her in for a tight hug, enjoying their skin on skin contact. Neither spoke right off, but the silence spoke volumes. Her heart raced under his face and she ran her hands through his sweaty hair.
"Amelia, you okay?" He didn't look up. He didn't want to move from where he was. It was the most comforting feeling he had ever felt, to have her right next to him, her heart beat right in his ear.
"Never been better, Nick. You?" Her voice vibrated in her chest as she spoke and her fingers sent a chill down his spine.
Amelia wanted to lie there forever, but she had to get up and get dressed before her dad and Noah got back. Enjoying the embrace until the last possible second, she pulled free from Nick's hug and slid off of the bed.
"Leaving so soon?" he asked, followed by the sexiest expression Amelia had ever seen.
She searched through the pile of clothes, pulling hers from under his. Suddenly she felt exposed in front of him, and crouched to hide her naked body. She had just made love to the man. It was a little too late to be timid with him.
"My dad and Noah will be back any minute. I don't really want to have to explain anything. Do you?" She pulled her bra and panties on, followed by her shirt.
Pulling the blankets off, he walked across the room, and Amelia couldn't help but admire him as he grabbed his clothes. His ripped abs were so... she pulled herself from the day dream and slipped into her jeans. Looking in the mirror, she ran her hands through her tousled hair. Her mascara was smeared under her eyes. Damn, he had really rocked her world.
"No, I guess it's a little early to have to explain." He wrapped his arm around her waist and hugged her from behind, moving her hair from her neck. His whiskers tickled her skin and she leaned in, savoring it.
"Don't get me started again," she said, forcing herself to pull away. Looking back at him, she caught herself staring again. He had his jeans on, but they weren't buttoned up and he was shirtless. His taut muscles were going to be the death of her.
Pulling his shirt on, Nick didn't button it up, making it even sexier. Amelia approached him and grabbed either side of the shirt, tugging him closer. He smelled so good. His aftershave was faint, but enough to drive her wild. He smiled and leaned in, his lips barely caressing hers.
"But it's so fun," he said as his hand cupped her ass.
"I know. If it wasn't the middle of the day, I'd say let's go again." What was she thinking? The man had only been on their ranch for a few weeks and already she had climbed into bed with him. She was ashamed of herself, but at the same time, her attempts to resist him finally fell flat. She hadn't been with many men, but being with Nick seemed more real than anything she had ever felt, including her ex husband. That had to stand for something.
Or was it lust? She had never been with a man as good looking as Nick was. Did her sexual desires cloud her judgment? She tried to shove any doubt aside. She'd like to think that she could look past his smoldering green eyes, his crazy dark hair, and those full, soft lips that worked wonders all over her body. She was a strong woman. How could a man come in and completely rock her world like this?
"There's never enough time." Nick smirked and started to button his shirt up. "I'm glad this happened. Are you?"
The question hit her blind side. Of course she was happy. Why was it so hard to answer? "Yes, I am, Nick. It's been really nice getting to know you." She heard the truck pull up and the engine cut off, followed by two doors slamming. "That means they are back."
Nick nodded and slapped his baseball cap back on. "I'll go finish tending to the animals."
"See you at dinner?" Amelia asked as they walked out onto the porch. Noah was running around, playing with the dogs and her father was already in the house.