Heating Up

Nugget Romance #7
July 19, 2016
Kensington Publishing (Lyrical Shine)
Available in: e-Book, Trade Size

Heating Up

Nugget, California, is remote, picturesque—and the perfect place to fall in love. Even when you’re trying desperately not to…

Dana Calloway is tired of being second choice. No question she was her parents’ consolation prize, and now she’s placed second in the race for a guy’s heart—a guy she could have sworn was The One. Is it any wonder such a normally type A person accidentally burns down her house in one distracted moment?

Cal Fire arson investigator Aidan McBride came to Nugget to do a little soul searching about his commitment phobia. But there’s only one available apartment in this tiny town, and the headstrong woman who just had a house fire needs it too. Of course, there are worse things than sharing living quarters with someone so beautiful…

Dana’s determined to resist her sexy new roommate, but it isn’t long before Aidan realizes he doesn’t have a commitment problem when she’s around. And the hotter things get in their apartment, the brighter the blaze when someone finally ignites that first spark…

Aidan banged on Dana's door. "You dressed?"

"Yes, but I'm-" He didn't let her finish, just barged in. "For goodness' sake, Aidan."

"Whoa." He just stared at her, his eyes bugging out of his head, making her feel even more self-conscious. "That'll work. Let's go or we'll be late for dinner." Aidan started to drag her out of the room.

"Stop, I want to put something else on." He gave her a wolfish grin and threw her over his shoulder in a fireman's hold as if she weighed nothing.

"No time."

She struggled to hold her dress down. "Shouldn't we at least bring something?"

"Like what?"

"Wine, flowers, I don't know." She pounded on his back until he put her down and ran in the kitchen. She searched the fridge for wine and remembered she'd polished off her last bottle of chardonnay the night before. That was when she saw the Calloway candy and swiped a few tins.

"Hey, those are mine. What are you doing?"

"I'll get you more," she told him, and they headed to Aidan's SUV.

"Just a couple of hours; then you have to take me home."

He looked over at her. "You know, it wouldn't kill you to be more social."

"I'm plenty social."

"Not from what I can tell."

"And I guess you would know my whole life story after being my roommate for all of a week."

He laughed. "I know enough."

"Really? Like what?" she challenged.

"Like if you wore that dress more often your social life would vastly improve."

She hiked up the neck. "You ever think that maybe I'm happy with my social life just the way it is?"

"Nah, you're too pretty to sit home every night organizing your underwear drawer." He winked at her again and she rolled her eyes.

"Is that the best line you have? You're too pretty to sit home every night," she mimicked. "Lame, Aidan."

He turned off the highway into Sierra Heights and whizzed past the empty guard station. In Brady and Sloane's driveway he pulled behind a RAV4. "You ever been here?"

"Of course. It used to be one of the models I showed to perspective buyers. It's gorgeous."

Aidan came around to her side to help her out. For a smartass, he was the consummate gentleman.

"You have anything to put this in, a basket or something?" She held up the candy. "It seems sort of tacky to just hand them random boxes of chocolates."

He touched his nose to hers, and while he was there, he looked down her dress. "You're funny, Dana."

"You getting your eyes full there?"

"At the risk of being fresh, I'd like to get my hands full." She swatted at him to knock it off, but her girl parts were saying something entirely different, like: Go ahead and feel me up right here in the front seat of your truck. But she knew he was only flirting with her because the woman he loved was marrying someone else. Today. Probably at this very moment.

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