Beginning the week with a sexy peek inside In Between, book one of the two-part Dancing Barefoot series.
From the back cover...
In between responsibilities and dreams...
Jessica Moriarty has always played by the rules, but for once in her life, she's doing exactly as she pleases. In between graduate school and 'real life', she's in Florence, Italy, indulging her love of art and abandoning inhibitions.
Meeting Jacques Sinclair rocks her off center. Whereas rules and living up to expectations have dictated her life, he is the opposite. A rebel. A photographer. A man who lives for the moment. He sweeps her up into a riveting romance that makes her question all she's ever believed to be true.
The drum of old commitments echo through her heart as time ticks away. Will the crush of 'real life' undermine the love she's found in between...?
This is book one of the two part Dancing Barefoot series.
They couldn't stop touching each other. All the way to their apartment building they'd take turns pulling each other into alleys or doorways for stolen kisses that promised so much more.
Jacques lifted her off her feet and carried her up the narrow stairway, his lips creating havoc on her neck.
"Careful. You wouldn't want to slip and fall," she teased against his ear. "A fall like that could kill a man."
"Dangerous." He lifted his head and smiled. "What am I going to do with you, Jessica Moriarty?"
In front of her apartment, she slid down his body until her feet were firmly on the floor. His hands were already on her ass beneath the hem of the dress.
"I'm sure you know exactly what to do with me." She turned long enough to unlock the door, enjoying the way his hands moved beneath her dress and over her skin.
Not only was she confident that he knew exactly what to do with her, she had a few things of her own that she wanted to do to him. All of them involved nudity and inhibition.
He kissed the side of her neck, his hands already unsnapping her bra and sliding over her breasts while she locked the door behind them. Dress pushed up to just beneath her shoulders, she took the initiative and ripped it over her head. He moaned his approval while his fingers toyed with her nipples.
Nothing in life had prepared her for this complete surrender. She hadn't known she was capable of it. She pressed her hands against the back of the door and let him touch her as he pleased. Pushing her hair aside, he kissed the back of her neck before running his tongue toward her ear. One hand on her breast, the other moved over her abdomen and slipped beneath her panties.
Smiling, she turned within the circle of his arms and unbuttoned his shirt. This wasn't going to be a one-sided affair. She craved his skin as much as he wanted hers. Tossing it over his shoulders, she pressed her mouth to the center of his chest and indulged in the salty sensation beneath her tongue.
He walked backward until falling on top of the discarded clothes on her bed. "You didn't get a chance to settle in yet."
"Oh, I'm settled." She reached for the zipper on his jeans. "This is how I settle into a new place, just shove it all onto the floor."
He raised an eyebrow, a laugh on his lips as he did as instructed.
Her hand cupped his erection beneath his jeans before bending over to kiss his abdomen. The promise of his hardness drove her to madness.
His hands wrapped themselves in her hair as she yanked his jeans past his hips. Her mouth closed over the tip of his penis that was hard and throbbing against her lips.
He had the body of a Roman God; the fact that he was Belgian meant nothing. Being in Italy, she preferred the Roman idea as she licked his length with deep appreciation for what it was about to do to her.
"Jacques," she whispered against his abdomen, needing him inside her. Fast. Hard. Deep.
Hands still in her hair, he pulled her up until their mouths fused with passion. In one move, he rolled her onto her back and slipped his hand between her thighs.
Their gaze connected through the darkness as his finger moved inside her. He dipped his head to suck on her breast. His fingers moved in and out with a slow rhythm that drove her to the brink. Glancing up, he reached for his discarded jeans for a condom.
"You came prepared," she whispered against his chin.
"I'm an optimist." He smiled in the dark while ripping open the package.
No more words. He rocked into her with a force that pushed her deep into the mattress. She sank her teeth into his shoulder, grabbed his ass, and spread her legs wide. Harder and deeper he thrust into her, his hands propped over her head until he shouted with orgasm.
She arched her back, body shuddering with ecstasy, eyes squeezing shut with the force of pleasure.
He collapsed against her, face buried into the top of her head, and chest heaving with rapid breaths.
She had no more strength, doubted her ability to move. From somewhere deep down in her soul, from the tip of her toes upward, a laugh rolled up and out until she quaked with joy.
He propped himself up on his elbows, smoothed the hair from her face, and smiled. "Is the laughing a good thing?"
"It's the best thing." She leaned up and kissed him, eyes wide open. "I want more wine, then more of you."
"I can deliver both of those things." He winked before slipping himself from her, taking a minute to kiss each breast before pushing away from the bed and walking toward the kitchen counter.
Lights from the street illuminated the room just enough for her to indulge in a beautiful view of his naked body. Hair a complete mess from her hands and muscles highlighted by streetlights and shadow, Jacques Sinclair was definitely gorgeous.
Hugging her knees to her chest amidst the discarded clothes on the bare mattress, she grinned when he sat next to her and handed her the open bottle.
"What are you smiling about?" He kissed her knee.
"Ways to keep you naked."
"Maybe we should have a nudity policy whenever we are in your apartment."
Her iPhone's ring broke through the silence of the room from where she'd dropped it beside the door. Laughter faded while she debated answering. She knew who it was and knew the right thing to do; she simply didn't want to do it.
Jacques looked toward the ringing. "Is that your boyfriend from the States? Are we having an illicit affair?"
She looked at him then, wine bottle propped between them, and shook her head 'no.' Heart heavier than it had been moments ago, she touched his face with her fingertips. For the next four months this was home and nothing else mattered.
"I picked the right apartment," she whispered.
He moved the wine bottle to the floor before pulling her onto his lap. "Have I sufficiently welcomed you to the neighborhood?"
"I think I need more welcoming."
He pushed her hair away from her face, eyes seeing more than she'd intended him to see in the moonlight, and kissed her with an intensity that set her heart on fire and drowned out the incessant ringing of the phone.
The need to break free of the ties that bound her pushed her toward recklessness. She welcomed the rush. Senses on hypersensitive, she savored the freedom of being exactly who she wanted to be in this moment. The wine, the moonlight, the breeze from the window, the taste of him on her tongue, and the feel of his skin against hers obliterated everything else.
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