His eyes swept over her. “I’ll say.”

“Umm, why am I naked?”

“I tried to find you something to sleep in last night, but you started taking your clothes off. I decided it wasn’t a battle I wanted to fight, so I helped.”


She bet he did.

“Don’t look at me like that,” he said. “You’ll notice I’m not naked. And for the record, it was damn hard keeping my clothes on.”

She decided to cut him some slack. He normally did sleep naked, and holding a nude woman all night would be trying for any man. “Thanks for staying.”

“I told you last night I wasn’t going to leave.”

“I meant for not leaving this morning.”


“I didn’t want you to wake up alone,” he said softly. “After last night, I wasn’t sure how you’d feel this morning. I didn’t want you to be scared.”

She started to say something, but her stomach rumbled. He grinned at her, his disheveled hair falling across his forehead.

“How about I make us breakfast?” he asked.

“There’s nothing here to make. I’ve been with Nathaniel and Abby.”

“You don’t have anything?”

“Cereal and almond milk.”

He propped up on an elbow and looked down at her. “You are never again to make snide comments about my coffee. Cereal and almond milk? Seriously?”

“We all can’t be gourmet chefs on the side like you.”

“How do you milk an almond?”

“How do you what?” Her brain obviously wasn’t working at full power yet.


He reached under the covers and slapped her butt. “You get dressed. I’ll get the cereal and milk. We’ll eat.”

It was only a playful slap, but his touch sent a spark of desire throughout her body. She suddenly wished she’d turned breakfast down and suggested they remain in bed. “And after we eat?” she whispered.

He’d already sat up and moved to get out of bed. At her question, he turned and looked over his shoulder. “We’ll see.”

Two words. That’s all he’d said. Two tiny words even. Yet those two small words echoed in her head during breakfast. We’ll see. They were back in Delaware, her father had been dealt with, his father’s business had been tied up, and they had agreed to start over.

There was nothing holding them back.

Fifteen minutes later, she looked across the table to where he sat eating as if it were any other day. As if he ate at her kitchen table regularly. God, he was such a man. He caught her staring at him and winked.

Fucking winked.

She crossed her legs and uncrossed them. Crossed them back the other way.

“Are you okay?” he asked, spoon halfway to his mouth.

“Yes. Fine.” She took a bite of her cereal to prove it.

“I was thinking about last night,” he said, and her heart sped up. He put his spoon down. “How the evening would have gone if we hadn’t been interrupted.”

“Me too.”

“Then I suggest you hurry up and finish eating. We have unfinished business to take care of.”

Her appetite was gone. Without a word, she pushed back from the table, walked to where he sat, and held out her hand.

“Be sure,” he said.

“I am,” she replied, and she knew truer words had never been spoken.

He took her hand and led her down the hall. He turned to face her once he reached the middle of the bedroom. “Before we go any further, I have to make sure you know.” He lifted a hand to her throat and gently curled his fingers around it. “If I take you again, there’s no going back. You’ll be mine.”

His touch felt warm and protective, but she hated the glimmer of doubt in his eyes. Hated that her past actions had put it there. If she had to, she would spend every day, every night erasing those doubts. “And you’re mine,” she whispered.

The devilish grin she loved so much, the one he so rarely shared with anyone, teased the corners of his mouth. “Got that right.”

She placed her hand over the one he still had around her neck. “There’s no place for doubts here today.”

“And no room for guilt,” he softly commanded. “Or apologies.”

He knew her so well. Knew her struggles and strengths. “I need to say one thing.” At his nod, she continued. “When you took your collar back, I said one day you’d beg me to wear it again—”


She shushed him by placing a finger at his mouth. “I don’t need you to beg. Just knowing you want me back is enough.”

“I’m all prepared to beg.”

“I like it better when I’m the one begging.” She grinned. “Sir.”

His eyes grew dark. “Like I said once before, when I have you beg, it won’t be about that.”

It stung just a bit that he didn’t call her “Angel,” but she decided not to dwell on it. Technically, they weren’t in a scene and she wasn’t wearing his collar. There would come a time when he’d use the name again regularly. She was certain.

She ran a hand down his chest. “Do you plan to make me beg for something else this morning?”

“I have lots of plans for you. Of course, they all involve you being naked.” He unbuttoned the top of her shirt. “Let me fix that.”

She closed her eyes to better concentrate on the feel of his hands on her again. His touch was sure and warm and made her entire body quake with need. The brush of his fingers against her while he worked on her shirt made every nerve she had tingle. No one else had the power to make her feel so much with such a small touch.

He made quick work of the buttons, and when he finished, he dropped his head to place a kiss on her shoulder before slipping the shirt from her body. Then his hands were back on her, teasing her nipples with his thumbs.

“Your body was made for mine,” he whispered coarsely in her ear. “The way we fit together.” He unhooked her bra and tossed it aside. “Watch,” he said, cupping her breasts. “See how perfectly you fit in my hands.”

She pushed her chest out, giving him more room, all the while delighting in the rough feel of his touch.

“I used to think we were too different to be good together.” He moved behind her and pressed her naked back against his chest. “Now I see it’s those differences that make us so right.”

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