Read One Special Night Online

Authors: Caridad Pineiro

Tags: #contemporary romance, #erotic romance, #new adult and college, #military romance, #adult contemporary romance, #new adult romance, #new adult erotic romance, #jersey shore

One Special Night

BOOK: One Special Night
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ONE SPECIAL NIGHT

A New Adult Erotic Romance Novella from

NY Times and USA Today Bestseller

Caridad Pineiro

He never expected that on one special night his life would change forever . . .

It's been nearly six months since Tommy de Salvo’s fiancée cheated and left him in the midst of wedding preparations because up-and-coming businessman Tommy was all work and no play. The last thing Tommy wants or needs is to be attracted to another woman who won’t be around for too long.
 
A woman just like Navy Corpsman Jasmine Reyes.
 
She’s rough, tough, and determined to go it alone, but Tommy knows that if he passes up this opportunity, he may regret it more than the loss of his fiancée . . .

 

She has ignored her needs for too long until now . . .

Jasmine “Doc” Reyes is both emotionally and physically scarred after her tour of duty.
 
Wounded in battle, all she can think about is rebuilding her life and continuing with the career that she’s dreamed about since she was a young child.
 
She has no time for rich sexy men who’ve never had a care in the world and wouldn’t understand her determination.
 
But Tommy’s charm is seductive and she knows that she has to explore the attraction, even if it’s only for this one special night . . .

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Chapter 1

It occurred to
Tommaso
de Salvo as he eyeballed the guests milling about on the beach in front of his family’s home that this could have been his wedding day.
 
Except that six months earlier,
while
 
knee
-deep in their wedding preparations, he’d caught his fiancée cheating on him with her personal trainer.
 
Apparently she'd thought he was spending too much time learning how to run the family business and not enough time with her.

He’d been shocked, disappointed, and relieved all at once. Valerie and he had been dating throughout college and during the year after when he’d been working to complete an MBA.
 
Some would have said the signs had been there all along. If he had to be honest with himself, he’d occasionally sensed that something was off in their relationship.
 
That Valerie had only been interested in the de Salvo money, but he hadn’t wanted to believe that.

Maybe he should have listened to what his gut had been telling him.

“Don’t think about it, bro,” said
Jase
Hart, his best friend and soon-to-be-brother-in-law.
 
He sidled up to Tommy as he stood by the makeshift altar that had been set up for
his sister
Nickie's
wedding
instead of his own
.

“Was it that obvious?” he asked and faced his friend.

Jase
was wearing his dress blue uniform and two weeks of Jersey Shore sun had helped eliminate some of the hospital pallor.
 
He’d been seriously wounded three months earlier, along with several members of his unit.

“She was never the right woman for you,”
Jase
said and reached up to smooth the tuxedo over Tommy’s shoulders.

“You say that now
– ”

“Because if I’d said it before you'd have gotten pissed off at me.
You know how stubborn you can be.”

“Yeah, you’re probably right,” he admitted.
 
He was stubborn, determined, and loyal which only made Valerie’s betrayal all that much harder to handle.

“When you meet the right woman, you’ll know it,”
Jase
said with certainty.
  
His injuries hadn't dimmed his friend's resolve.
 
If anything, he'd become more determined.
 
As soon as
Jase
had gotten out of the Intensive Care Unit, he'd immediately asked Tommy and
Nickie's
über
Old School Italian father for permission to marry his daughter.
 
Without missing a beat, he had then proposed to Tommy's older sister.
 
In the two short months since
Nickie
had accepted, the de Salvo and Hart families had planned the mother of all military weddings to occur during
Jase's
convalescent leave.

He glanced at his friend and there was nothing but determination on his features.
 
“So when did you know you were in love with
Nickie
?”

Jase
laughed and shook his head.
 
“You wouldn’t believe me if I told you, bro.”

“Seriously,
Jase
.
 
I want to know.”
 
I need to know
, he thought, not that he could ever trust another woman again.

“When she turned sixteen and sprouted boobs,”
Jase
said with a quick chuckle and a boyish grin.

He could only smile at his best friend since his humor was so infectious.
 
“If you weren’t injured, I’d beat the crap out of you.
 
I thought you appreciated more than just my sister’s boobs.”

Jase
playfully nudged him.
 
“Of course, I do, Tommy.
 
She’s got brains, beauty and lots more, but it was her boobs that got my attention.
 
Shit, you know how we were at fourteen.
 
All raging hormones.”

“Good thing you’re finally doing the right thing,” he said, although he was still a little uneasy about the speed at which things were happening.
 
It had only been a year earlier that
Nickie
and
Jase
had finally gotten around to admitting their true feelings.

Jase
had deployed shortly thereafter and now here they were, ready to commit to each other.
 
Ready to become man and wife for life.

“Are you sure about this?” he asked again, worried that his friend’s recent near death experience was somehow clouding his judgment.
 
Jase
might be his best friend, but
Nickie
was his sister and he had to make sure she wouldn't be hurt.

His friend's entire attitude became dead serious. “Do you remember what you told me on graduation day when I was still hesitating about
Nickie
?
 
You said ‘Go big or go home.'
 
I went big and
Nickie
is
home, Tommy.
 
I have no doubt about that.”

He’d had few doubts about Valerie as well and look how that had ended.
 
The last thing he wanted for two of the most important people in his life was for things to go south only . . .

The chamber music quartet’s silence sent a signal to all gathered there and in seconds, the guests quickly hurried to take seats for the start of the ceremony.

He couldn’t linger any longer.
 
“I’ll be back,” he said and rushed off to take his spot in the wedding procession.

* * *

Jasmine Reyes was late.

First t
he train from New York City had been delayed by switch problems.
 
Then there had been no taxis when she had reached the station.
 
After pacing back and forth in front of the tracks for fifteen minutes, a cab had lazily rolled to a stop in front of her.
 
Now, after another twenty minutes of stop and go beach traffic, she was finally at
Second Lieutenant Jason Hart’s wedding.

She’d barely had time to admire the gorgeous home when a member of the wait staff hurried her across a lawn where tables were set for the reception and down a short boardwalk to the beach.

Neat rows of chairs ran across the sand on either side of a bright white runner strewn with multi-colored flower petals.
 
Off to one side of the chairs, a chamber music quartet was just beginning to play some kind of
march
. The guests were all seated and craning their necks in her direction as she stood at the base of the boardwalk.

Shit,
she thought as she realized she was in the way of the bridal procession getting ready to exit the home and head toward the altar set up at the far end of the beach.
 
Not to mention that with all attention turned toward her, any hope of making an inconspicuous entry was gone.

As she hurried toward the chairs,
Jase
noticed her arrival, dipped his head in greeting, and smiled.
 
He looked so much better than he had a month earlier when they both had finally been shipped stateside for their final weeks of recovery and convalescent leave.

She smiled back hesitantly and took a seat at the edge of the crowd, not sure if she should have come.
 
The spot on the end of the row would let her make a quick exit just in case things got a little too hard to handle.

She wasn’t quite ready to be out and about like
Jase
.
 
It had taken every fiber of courage in her body to put on this dress and leave her family’s small two floor walk-up in Spanish Harlem.
 
But she had formed a special bond with
the lieutenant
and his men during their recent assignment and a night from hell they all wanted to forget.

Unfortunately, she had the scars on her body and in her head to remind her each and every day of that night.

The murmur that swept over the crowd dragged her attention from
Jase
and those memories to the first couple in the bridal procession.

She sucked in a breath at the sight of the man, tall, dark, and handsome in a designer tuxedo, who helped the maid of honor down the boardwalk stairs.

The bride’s
brother and
Jase’s
best friend
, she thought.
 
She recognized him from the assorted pictures the lieutenant had always kept in plain sight in his quarters.
 
There had been many moments during quieter times that the lieutenant had told her stories about growing up with Tommy and
Nickie
.
 
So many stories that she almost felt like she knew Tommy, not that they'd ever met.

She’d always thought he was attractive, but the pictures hadn’t done justice to how good-looking he really was or how he carried himself with a cocksure air that just screamed sexy.
 
Jase
had recounted more than one tale of Tommy confidently leading them into one adventure or another. Know she understood how that was possible.

As he and the maid of honor reached the altar where the groom waited, he smiled at the woman.
 
In her mind, she pictured that assured smile directed toward her and a curl of desire ignited within Jasmine.

It surprised her, that abrupt awakening of need.
 
She hadn’t thought it possible any more since she’d felt so dead inside during the many months she’d spent in the hospital.
 
But there it was, warming her center.

As he took a spot beside the groom and looked out toward the guests, his gaze settled on her.
 
Dark eyes glittered with life and his lips curved up in that sexy smile again, this time for her.

Damn, but he was handsome,
and as she imagined being up close and personal with him, her nipples tightened and that unexpected zing of need became a steady pulse of desire between her legs. She shifted uncomfortably, battling that awakening since it was the worst possible time for her long lost sexuality to come alive.

She wasn’t ready for anything and wasn’t sure if she ever would be.
 
Plus, that very sexy man was like a brother to the lieutenant.
 
The last thing she wanted was to cause a problem for the man who had become a confidant and supporter during the many long months they’d worked together and healed together.

A moment later, the next couple in the procession emerged from the house and slowly paraded down the lawn and boardwalk to the altar.
 
The groomsman was
Jase’s
second-in-command, Trevor Mason, looking healthy and handsome in his dress uniform.

As she glanced back toward the house, she realized there were another five military men as part of the bridal party.
 
She didn't recognize a number of them and assumed they were the lieutenant's friends from his days in the ROTC program.
 
Besides Trevor, however, there was one other man from their unit.
 
He'd been injured also and like
Jase
and Trevor, was on leave so he could heal.

Only some wounds never healed
, she thought as she gingerly rubbed her shoulder.
 
Sitting on the train so long had started an ache where shrapnel had torn into her shoulder. She kept her massage light since the area was still tender to the touch from the second degree burns she'd also suffered during the dogfight.

BOOK: One Special Night
6.55Mb size Format: txt, pdf, ePub
ads

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