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Page 21


“It really is,” he said around a bite of pizza, ignoring her rather obvious gesture as he sat on the couch and got comfortable.

Struggling with an overwhelming urge to cry or throw something at him, she rubbed her hands down her face. “Look, I’m not in the mood to play whatever game you’re playing. I’ve got a lot of work to do tonight thanks to your boss and the Council so we-”

“Have to have our date here,” he finished for her with a putout sigh and a shake of his head.

She rubbed her hands down her face, having absolutely no idea how to deal with a man this stubborn. Normally when she said no to a man, he might make another half ass attempt to get her to change her mind before he shrugged and moved on. Then again, she’d already come to the conclusion that Danny wasn’t normal.

“This isn’t a date,” she said a bit more slowly as she once again gestured towards the door and waited, rather patiently in her opinion, for him to get off his ass and leave before she was forced to do something that would require that defense attorney that she couldn’t afford.

“Yes, it is,” the stubborn bastard said around another bite of pizza.

“No, it’s not!”

“It really is.”

“It isn’t!’

He paused to take a sip of soda before he said, “It really is.”

“Oh my God!” she yelled. “What the hell is wrong with you?”

He blinked up at her, looking adorably innocent and further pissing her off even as she had to resist the urge to roll her eyes at him. “Nothing. Why?”

“Because you think we’re on a date!”

“We are,” he said, gesturing for her to sit next to him.

“No, we’re not! For Christ’s sake, you don’t even like me!” she pointed out, the tenuous hold she’d had on her patience quickly running out.

The smoldering look that he shot her sent a warm shiver tearing through her body. It also had her eyes narrowing on him and her hand twitching to grab the can of soda out of his hand and chuck it at his head.

“I like you just fine, Tinkerbelle,” he murmured, running an appreciative gaze over her.

“Well, I don’t like you!” she snapped, because honestly, she really just couldn’t take any more of his bullshit tonight.

He frowned, looking adorably confused, which of course made her wonder how a man who had more than a foot and a hundred pounds on her could possibly look adorable. He quickly dragged her out of her musings when he asked, “Then why did you agree to go out with me?”

Oh, that was it!

“I never agreed to go out with you!” she snapped, shutting the cover on the pizza box, picking up the stack of boxes and dropping them on his lap.

He sighed heavily as he stood up, placed the boxes back on the coffee table and reached for her. Before she knew what was happening he had her in his arms and his lips were hovering a few inches above hers. His expression was tender as he gazed down at her.

“No,” he said with a slight shake of his head as he leaned down, tilting his head to the side and pressing a kiss against her cheek, “but you will.”

Chapter 13

“I hear it skips a generation.”

“That would explain it,” Trevor said conversationally as the three of them walked around the library, trying to see if any of the structure could be saved and reused in the new building.

“It would definitely explain a few things,” Jason said as he placed an orange sticker on an ornate bookshelf by the wall, marking it as reusable.

Danny ignored them as he’d been doing since they’d arrived an hour ago and focused on the job he’d been hired to do and the little librarian that seemed to be going out of her way to avoid him. That was fine with him since the marine in him was more than up for a challenge, and she was definitely a challenge, he decided as he casually tracked her every move.

“Do you want some advice?” Jason asked as he knelt down to check the molding that ran along the edge of the wall.

“No,” he said, making a few notes on his iPad as he ignored his cousins.

Trevor sighed heavily from his right. “I’m afraid that you’re going to need our expertise on the matter if you want to win over your future wife.”

Without looking up from his notes, Danny pointed out, “Jason had to kidnap Haley to get her to marry him and even then she only did it out of pity and didn’t Zoe marry you because she lost a bet?”

He ignored their outraged gasps and watched the object of his desire as she bent over to put together another box and had to bite back a groan. God, she had a great ass. A week ago he would have been able to ignore her and focus on the job, but that damn shower…….

Over the years he’d seen his fair share of naked women, and while some had left him hard and panting, he’d never reacted this way to any of them. He couldn’t stop thinking about her or just how good it had felt to run his hands over her before pain had shot through them and they’d eventually gone numb. Even after he’d lost all feeling in his hands he’d still enjoyed the experience. There was just something about watching his hands run over her smooth, soft skin that had left him mesmerized. Even the pain that came and went in his hands hadn’t been able to take away his enjoyment in touching her. The pain had kept him from showing her just how much he liked seeing his hands on her, but it hadn’t been enough to keep him from imagining more.

“We need to get this building inventoried before tomorrow,” he said, forcing his thoughts away from Tinkerbelle and all the things he would love to do to make his little neighbor light up.

Jason nodded as he looked over his notes. “I’ll go check the basement and see if they’re ready to start moving everything out.”

“I’ll start taking down the doors and everything else the Council wants to reuse,” Trevor said, giving him a pointed look before he shifted his gaze to where Tink stood, glaring down at the clipboard in her hands as she tried to pretend that he wasn’t there.

Well, he couldn’t very well allow that, now could he?


That cocky, glitter encouraging, parking spot stealing, pizza teasing, kissing bastard was walking towards her, again. All afternoon and most of the morning, he’d been doing everything within his power to drive her out of her freaking mind! Everywhere she went, he followed. Every time she looked over her shoulder, he was there, watching her with a touch of that smug grin of his that normally made her hands twitch with the need to throttle him, but now…….

Now, she had absolutely no idea what she wanted.

He was driving her out of her mind and there was nothing that she could do about it. It seemed that Danny Bradford was in charge of rebuilding the library, something that she really wished she’d known before she’d agreed to work this summer. Okay, so she didn’t have much of a choice since she needed the money to pay off the debt the asshole had left her with, but still……

A little warning that she was going to be stuck spending the summer with the bane of her existence would have been nice, especially since he seemed intent on driving her out of her damn mind. She didn’t know what kind of game he was playing, but he was definitely playing with her. It was the only explanation that she could come up with that would explain how he’d gone from tormenting her to acting like he wanted nothing more than to strip every last inch of clothing from her body and-

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