Authors: Paige Tyler
The Badge Bunnies Series:
Seducing Officer Barlowe
Royce Barlowe scanned the deserted streets on either side of him as he slowly drove his patrol car through San Diego’s industrial section. Since it was Sunday afternoon, he didn’t expect to see much of anything, but there had been some vandalism and break-ins in the area recently, so Robbery wanted uniforms doing regular patrols there. Police presence could sometimes be a damn good deterrent.
He glanced down the next cross street, expecting to find it as empty as the others, and was surprised to see a car parked there with its hood up. His eyes narrowed, his cop senses immediately tingling. A stranded motorist wouldn’t normally be enough to raise his suspicions, but this was a damn strange place for someone to break down. In a city like San Diego, this area was as in the middle of nowhere as a person could get.
Royce grabbed his radio and thumbed the switch as he turned onto the side street. “Dispatch, this is Five-Twenty-Five-John, I’ve got a 10-46 on Carlton. I’m going to check it out.”
“Roger that, Five-Twenty-Five-John.”
Royce frowned when he rolled to a stop behind the vehicle and didn’t see anyone inside. That might not mean anything. For all he knew, the driver could be hoofing it back to civilization right now to get help. But five years on the force had taught Royce to cover his bases.
The car was a newer model Ford with a rental car company sticker on the right rear bumper. That didn’t mean it wasn’t stolen, and that whoever had stolen it wasn’t stripping it for parts. Which was why he was damn sure going to run the plates before checking it out further. He input the tag numbers into the MDT computer outfitted in his squad car and waited. When the information came back from the central police database a moment later, it confirmed the car was indeed a rental, and that no, it hadn’t been reported stolen.
Maybe it really was just a stranded motorist.
Royce got out of the police cruiser and looked around, then cautiously approached the car, his hand resting lightly on the butt of his weapon. He did a quick visual sweep of the vehicle’s interior, but other than a woman’s purse with half its contents strewn across the passenger seat, it was empty.
The sound of metal scraping metal under the hood made him jerk his head up. He unsnapped his holster and wrapped his hand around his gun.
An “Ouch!” came from the front of the car quickly, followed by a “Shoot!” in what was a decidedly female voice. That explained the purse on the seat.
Royce relaxed his grip on his weapon. Snapping the holster closed, he made his way around to the front of the car, only to stop in his tracks at the sight of two long, shapely legs and an unbelievable ass, which at the moment was high in the air because its owner was currently bent over the hood inspecting the engine.
If he wasn’t sworn to serve and protect—and assist stranded motorists—he probably would have been having all sorts of inappropriate thoughts. Who the hell was he kidding? Police officer or not, he was having them anyway—in the form of a very vivid fantasy involving the woman bent over the hood of the car like that while he fucked her from behind. The image made him go rock-hard inside his uniform pants, and he swore silently.
Down, boy. One of us needs to be professional here.
He cleared his throat. “Need some help?”
She jumped and took a startled step back, her hand flying to her chest as she teetered on her high-heels. Fear flashed on her beautiful face, but it disappeared the moment she took in his uniform and realized he was a cop.
She sagged with obvious relief, letting out a nervous laugh. “God, you scared me. I didn’t hear you come up.”
Royce gave her an apologetic smile. “Sorry about that. I didn’t mean to frighten you. I saw the hood up and figured you could use some help.”
She blew out a breath, making her long bangs flutter, and he wondered if she knew how sexy that was. Dear God, the woman was perfection on high heels. Tall and slender, she had curves in all his favorite places. He’d always had a thing for blondes, especially ones with pillow-soft lips and big, blue eyes.
“The car is a rental,” she explained. “I don’t know what happened to it. The darn thing was fine when I picked it up, but while I was driving, it just stopped and I couldn’t get it started it again. And on top of it, my stupid cell phone died.” She caught her bottom lip between her teeth and gave him a sheepish look. “I don’t know anything about cars. Do you think you could take a look at it for me?”
Normal police procedure would be to call a tow, but that would mean handing her off to some big guy with tattoos named Tiny, and Royce was too selfish at the moment for that. If he couldn’t fix the problem, he’d get her a tow.
He grinned. “Sure. I’d be glad to.”
His cock was pretty damn thrilled, as well. Mainly because when he leaned over to take a look at the engine, so did the gorgeous blonde, which gave him a great view of her cleavage. Damn, she had some nice firmware. All smooth skin and luscious curves. It was all he could to drag his gaze away.
“I really appreciate this,” she said. Her voice was soft and sexy, like the rest of her. “I thought I was going to be stranded here all night.”
He gave her a sidelong glance, studiously avoiding her cleavage. Or at least trying to. “What are you doing in this part of town anyway? It’s not exactly on the list of the top ten places to visit on a vacation to San Diego.”
She reached up to tuck her long, silky hair behind her ear, inadvertently brushing against him. Or maybe not so inadvertently. He wasn’t sure. Whichever, it made his cock throb.
“I’m not on vacation. I’m here on business,” she told him.
“What kind of business?”
“I’m in IT. I’m going to be setting up a new software system for a company here.”
IT, huh? Well, then he was a new fan of the computer programming field. Hell, he might even become a card-carrying member. “On a Sunday?”
“Tomorrow, actually. I was just going to drive by the company’s offices on the way to my hotel to make sure I knew where it was. But I took the wrong exit off the freeway, then ended up getting completely turned around and couldn’t find my way back on. Guess I should have paid extra for GPS when I got the car. Not that it would have helped since the stupid thing conked out.” She looked at him hopefully. “Do you think you can fix it?”
“Maybe. If I can figure out what’s wrong.”
He methodically checked out each of the usual suspects under the hood that could be responsible, before finally turning his attention to the battery. He couldn’t test it without the right equipment, but he could jumpstart it for her.
“I just realized I didn’t introduce myself,” she said. “I’m Harley Miller.”
“Harley.” He grinned as he checked the battery connections. “That’s an unusual name.”
Her cheeks colored in the late afternoon sun. “My dad was obsessed with motorcycles. Boy or girl, my parents were determined to name me after one. It could have been worse, I suppose. My last name could have been Davidson.”
He chuckled. “Or they could have named you Yamaha.”
She groaned. “I think I’ll stick with Harley.”
“Good. Because it’s pretty.”
He turned his head to look at her, and suddenly the temperature under the car’s small hood went up a few degrees. Damn, she had eyes a man could get lost in. He dragged his gaze away and straightened up.
“I—um—think I found the problem.”
She blinked. “You did?”
“The grounding wire on the battery is loose. I’ll grab a wrench and tighten it up for you, but you really should go back to the rental place and tell them you want a new car. If the connectors are faulty, the same thing will end up happening again.”
Telling her he’d be a minute, Royce walked around to the rear of his squad car to grab a wrench from the trunk. And put the brakes on his sex drive, which was completely revved up thanks to one Harley Miller. He was going to need to go back to the station so he could take a cold shower after this.
When he went back over to Harley, she was standing where he’d left her, and despite his best efforts, his gaze lingered on her long legs before he ducked under the hood again.
“Have you always been a cop?” she asked as he tightened the loose wire.
She was leaning over the engine again, her perfect breasts on display. He swallowed hard. “Since I was old enough to join the academy.”
“Oh.” She flashed him a sexy smile. “I thought you might have been a mechanic or something. You seem to know a lot about cars.”
His mouth quirked as he straightened up. “That’s because I had an old beater in high school and a part-time job that barely paid enough to keep it running. The only way it ever got fixed was if I did it myself.”
Harley laughed. “I had one of those jobs in high school, too.” She chewed on her bottom lip. “So, what does your wife think about you being a cop? Since it’s so dangerous and all.”
Was that her subtle way of coming on to him, or was she still making polite conversation?
“I’m not married.”
Surprise flickered in her eyes, along with something he could have sworn looked like relief. “Oh. What about your girlfriend, then?”
“Don’t have one.”
More surprise, and this time, it was definitely followed by relief. Hot damn, she was coming on to him.
Harley chewed on her lower lip again as if considering what to say next. Finally, her gaze slid to the car. “Is it fixed?”
“Start her up and let’s find out.”
She walked around the car, her hips swaying provocatively under her short skirt. Royce was so fixed on her curvy derriere as she leaned in to turn the key he almost didn’t hear the engine purr to life.
Harley let out a cheer. “Yes! It worked.” She shut off the engine, hurrying back over to him. “I can’t thank you enough for helping me, Officer.”
He gave her a smile as he closed the hood. “Just doing my job.”
“Doing your job would have been calling a tow truck. You went above and beyond the call of duty.”
Royce didn’t agree, but when she looked at him like that, she could say anything about him she liked.
She looked up at him from under her lashes. “There must be some way I can repay you?”
He could think of lots of ways she could repay him, and all of them involved getting naked. What he said was, “That’s not necessary.”
Her lips formed a pout. “Are you sure? There must be something I can do to show my appreciation, Officer.”
His cock hardened to new and painful proportions inside his pants. Man, she was killing him here.
Royce opened his mouth to tell her that getting her safely on her way was thanks enough for him, but Harley must have decided she needed to make her thanks more apparent.
Before he could say anything, she reached out and wrapped one hand around the back of his neck to pull his head down. He could have stopped her, probably should have, but with an invitation like the one he was getting, what was a man supposed to do?
So, he met her halfway, leaving no room for doubt that when their mouths finally came together it was because he wanted to kiss her as much as she wanted to kiss him. And once he started, he didn’t want to stop.
Kissing Officer Barlowe was crazy and impulsive. Considering they were in the middle of the street where anyone could see them, maybe it was even a little reckless. But it also fulfilled a long-time fantasy of Harley’s—part of it anyway—and she wasn’t about to pass up the chance to grab it—or him— with both hands.
She ran them up the front of his shirt, exploring the hard muscles underneath. Damn, he was built. Which she already knew, of course. She’d just spent the past fifteen minutes admiring the way his biceps flexed and bulged while he worked on her car. She’d wanted to reach out and give them a squeeze so badly, and only barely managed to restrain herself. Well, she didn’t have to resist the urge anymore.
So, she let her hands go where they wanted to go and do what they wanted to do. And so did Officer Barlowe.
While hers wrapped around his big biceps, one of his found its way into her long hair as the other cupped her breast through the silky blouse she wore. She sighed, melting against him. That’s when she discovered another part of his anatomy was just as hard—his cock. Had he been aroused the whole time he’d been fixing her car? The possibility made her pussy purr.
“I want you,” she whispered against his mouth.
He lifted his head with a groan. “I want you, too. But we can’t.”
She blinked up at him. “Why?”
He kissed her again before answering. “Because I’m on duty.”
She undid the top button of his shirt. “Even police officers take lunch, don’t they?”
“It’s a little late for lunch.”
“An early dinner, then.”
He gazed down at her, his dark eyes smoldering. Muttering something under his breath she didn’t catch, he thumbed the button on the radio.
“Dispatch, this is Five-Twenty-Five-John.”
The radio hissed. “Go ahead, Five-Twenty-Five-John.”