What do you get when you mix a charming British hero, a temporary marriage of convenience, and a smart & sassy heroine? PART-TIME LOVER, the brand new, standalone rom-com from #1 New York Times bestseller Lauren Blakely! Get your copy of PART-TIME LOVER now!
My little mermaid has swum back into my waters. I have half a mind to toss her on my shoulder and walk out of here right now.
But, there’s the little issue of not being a caveman.
Unless she wants me to be one in bed, and we’re not there yet.
For now, the gentleman is up, and the caveman is standing down.
“And why does that come from me?”
“Because a woman that bold, a woman who took pictures, a woman who shouted bravo, is a woman who’s going to show.”
A smile crosses her pretty pink lips. “Of course I wasn’t going to back out.”
“Damn, I wish we’d gone to the same Jane.” Finally, I can enjoy a close-up view of the lovely lady who caught my interest, and the view is worth the wait. Her dark hair curls over her shoulders in thick waves. Her chocolate-brown eyes are warm and inviting, and her black glasses intrigue me. I’ve always loved a woman in glasses. While I haven’t been pining for her for the last year—honestly, that would make me a pathetic twit—I am ridiculously pleased that our friends are friends. “And I’d like to know who the hell thought it was a good idea to have two Janes.”
She narrows her eyes. “I’d like to find that person and give him a piece of my mind. I’d like to tell him I was most dissatisfied to learn of the mix-up.”
I inch closer. “And if we’d seen each other that night, you would have been…most satisfied.”
Her mouth widens—those lips are so damn enticing—and she points at me. “You are cocky.”
“But what if it’s true? Is it cocky then?”
“Since that night has passed, I’m not sure we’ll ever know,” she says coyly. It’s clear she likes the cat-and-mouse tease.
“Listen, little mermaid, I may never learn, but I intend to try. What do you say we make sure we don’t miss a second chance at a first date?”
“Are you asking me out when we’re already out?”
My eyes drift briefly to Joy and Griffin, tangled up together, whispering whatevers in each other’s ears. “Shockingly, our friends are amusing themselves without us. Let’s you and I have a night of it. Can I buy you a drink?”
“You may absolutely buy me one. In fact, I’m not even going to attempt to pay for a thing tonight, and I’m going to tell you right now that I’m not going home with you.”
I crack up. “That only makes me want to test the strength of your resolve.”
I set a hand on her back and guide her to the bar. The bartender signals he’ll be over in a minute, so I turn my focus to Elise again. “So, tell me, did you enjoy looking at your nude photos of me?”
She arches a brow. “So, tell me, do you regularly flash the tourists?”
“Ah, so this is how we play it.”
“Yes, this is how we play it. I want to know why you dropped your drawers. Is it a kink of yours?”
“Is it a kink of yours?”
“You don’t get to know my kinks until you answer some questions.”
“But you have kinks you’ll share?”
She moves in closer and whispers near my ear, “We all have kinks. The question is whether mine match yours and vice versa.”
A bolt of lust slams into me. She’s everything I imagined she’d be that night. And I’m more determined than ever to learn more about her.
I’ll say this about Christian — he made one heck of a first impression. When I first saw the strapping man, he was doing handstands naked on a dock along the canal. His crown jewels were far more entertaining than anything else I’d seen on the boat tour, so I did what any curious woman would do — I took his photo. I might have looked at the shot a few dozen times. Little did I know I’d meet him again, a year later, at a secret garden bar in the heart of the city, where I’d learn that his mind and his mouth were even more captivating. But given the way my heart had been trampled, I wanted only a simple deal — No strings. No expectations.
Our arrangement worked well enough until the day I needed a lot more from him…
Let me just say, this whole part-time lover thing was her idea. I’d have gone all-in from the start, but hey, when a gorgeous, brilliant woman invites you into her bed, and only her bed…well, I said yes.
But then, one hysterical phone call from my brother later, begging me to find myself a wife so grandfather’s business stays in the family, and I need a promotion with Elise. Turns out a full-time husband suits her needs too, and a temporary marriage of convenience ought to do the trick, until we can simply untie the knot…
As long as no one finds out…
As long as no one gets hurt…
As long as no one falls in love…
But our ending was one I never saw coming.
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