After dropping out of pastry school and messing up her big break on a reality cooking show, Leah Sullivan needs to accomplish something in her life. But when she returns home to Lucky Harbor, she finds herself distracted by her best friend, Jack Harper. In an effort to cheer up Jack’s ailing mother, Dee, Leah tells a little fib – that she and Jack are more than just friends. Soon pretending to be hot-and-heavy with this hunky firefighter feels too real to handle . . .
No-strings attachments suit Jack just fine – perfect for keeping the risk of heartbreak away. But as Jack and Leah break every one of their “just friends” rules, he longs to turn their pretend relationship into something permanent. Do best friends know too much about each other to risk falling in love? Or will Jack and Leah discover something new about each other in a little town called Lucky Harbor?
ALWAYS ON MY MIND excerpt:
He stared at her. “That’s quite a list of shortcomings,” he eventually said. “Is that all?”
“No.” She shoved her wet hair from her face, though she managed to keep her regal stance, nose firmly in the air at nose-bleed height. “I held back because I didn’t want to be overly rude.”
He laughed softly. “Don’t hold back, Leah. Let’s hear all of it.”
“Well, your truck has more sporting goods than a store, you never say you’re sorry, and your girlfriends look like supermodels. I mean, what is that? There’s nothing wrong with real boobs, you know!”
“I fail to see the problem.”
She snorted again, and he was starting to feel greatly insulted. “You’re not exactly a walk in the park, Leah.”
“No. You’re flighty, you live for your every whim, you downplay any real emotion you feel.”
She hugged herself tight. “Good thing this is all pretend then, isn’t it,” she said softly.
She was freezing. And hauntingly gorgeous, so damn gorgeous standing there wet and silvery by the moon’s glow, like a goddess. It’s Leah, he had to keep reminding himself. Leah, who’d once beaten him in a marshmallow-eating contest, only to puke all over him. Leah, whose dark-green eyes had a way of telling the world to bite her. Leah, who’d run off on him and left him heartbroken. He took a step into her—for what exactly, he had no idea—and she poked a finger into his chest.
“God,” she said. “You’re so…” Words apparently failed her, but she let out a sound that managed to perfectly convey how annoying he was.
“Ditto,” he said, and then grabbed the finger drilling a hole between his pecs and tugged her hard enough that she lost her balance and fell against him.
He wrapped an arm around her waist, entangling a hand in her wet hair.
She went still as stone and stared into his eyes. And then lowered her gaze to his mouth.
Yeah, they were in sync there. Suddenly he couldn’t breathe. Hers caught audibly in her throat, a good sign, he decided. Maybe she wouldn’t knee him in the balls. Testing the waters, he grazed her jawline with his teeth.
Then he slid his mouth to the very corner of hers and was rewarded by the clutch of her hands on his shirt. Having her hold on to him like this, like he was her only anchor, sent a bolt of lust straight through him. “Leah,” he murmured, hearing the surprise in his own voice, feeling the heat course through him as he finally—God, finally—covered her mouth with his.
Her lips parted for him eagerly, and he groaned, drowning in the erotic collision of her hot tongue and chilled, wet body.
Serious trouble. He was in serious trouble.
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