“Just help me upstairs, boss.” His voice held that teasing note she’d heard so often years ago.
“Don’t you want me to fix you something to eat first?”
A groan was her answer to that question. “We’re alone.” He announced. The house was deserted. His parents and the twins, Trace and Trevor, were in Austin with Abby. All the rest of the boys were at school. Apparently Abby had insisted her injury be downplayed to such an extent that most of the family was going about their normal routine.
“Don’t worry your virtue is safe with me.” She did some teasing of her own. The second and fifth stair creaked like normal. Charlee didn’t need to be told where Justice’s room was located. She’d snuck up these stairs or shimmed up the drain pipe to his window more times than she could count while growing up. “Let’s get you into bed,” she winced, he was getting heavier by the second.
“Sounds good to me.” Justice murmured. “I’m beat.”
“You’ll feel better soon,” she assured him, checking the thermostat, making sure his room was warm enough for him. He obediently stood next to the big four poster bed, looking to her like a cross between a sexy teddy bear and an old west desperado. Justice always reminded her of Chris Pine in a cowboy hat.
“You smell good, like a woman.”
Charlee had to laugh. “You are drunk.” At his snort, she added. “At least something about me is womanly.” It sure wasn’t her shape. Charlee’s unfortunate chest was as flat as a board.
“There’s not a damn thing wrong with you.” His voice was low and raspy.
Charlee shivered. “Never mind. Let me get the covers turned back and I’ll help you get your boots off.” This wasn’t the first time she’d helped him to bed. Of course, the other times he’d been hurting with one of those damn headaches he was plagued with.
“I think I need help with the rest of my clothes.”
His whisper sounded a little suggestive and Charlee blushed from her nose to her toes. “I think you need a cold shower.” She made light of his comment. Charlee had seen Justice flirt many times, but she’d never been the recipient. She’d always been relegated to the role of best buddy.
“Will you take one with me?”
“A shower?” She choked back a laugh. Was he tormenting her on purpose? “Not a good idea.” Charlee fluffed the pillows and turned on the bedside lamp, anything to keep her eyes off the handsome hunk who was unbuttoning his shirt and eyeing her like she was a tasty treat. How many times had she dreamed of this moment? The only problem was – the Jose Cuervo talking, not Justice.
“Come here. I need to hold you.”
The teasing tone had left his voice completely. This sexy Justice was almost more than she could handle. “Hush. Let me help you. You’re making a mess.” She stepped close to him, her whole body quivering at the sight of his gorgeous chest, lightly furred, muscles rippling as he struggled with the shirt which was behind him, still fastened at the cuffs.
While she was so near and he was otherwise occupied, Charlee dared to do something she’d only dreamed about. She placed a small quick kiss over his heart and felt hers jump in her chest.
“That’s good. Now kiss me up here.”
Caught. She lifted her eyes and he was staring at her with unmistakable heat. “Sorry.”
“God, don’t be. I need you.” He tossed the shirt across the room and began tugging at his pants. “Damned buttons.”
“Justice, you don’t want me.” The words slipped from her lips unbidden even as her hands joined his, tugging to get his belt out of the loops.
“Yes, I do. I want you. I need you.” He bent his head and she felt his lips on her neck. “Feel.”
He took her hand and moved it below his waist – and he was right. She could feel him big and hard. For her? Not possible. Unable to rest, she shyly cupped him, marveling at the way he throbbed in her hand. “I’m not your type, you said so. Remember?” Each word tore a little bit of her pride away.
“You’re my friend. A guy isn’t supposed to lust after his friend. But I can’t help it.” His words were still a bit slurred, punctuated by kisses as he licked a path from her cheek to her collarbone. “Don’t think I’ve missed those hot little nipples pressing against your shirt, or that wild flush on your cheeks when we sit close. You want me, Parker.”
“We don’t always get what we want, Justice.” Charlee tried to muster up some fight, some strength to push away his hands. But she couldn’t. She had wanted him forever. By age fifteen, she’d been aware of Justice as a man and by the time she was eighteen, she’d burned for him.
“I do, I’m not afraid to reach out and take what I want when I see it.”
God, he was potent. “All I’ve ever wanted was for you to be happy,” she offered as she tilted her head to give him access. Frissons of excitement covered her skin.
“I want your soft touches, like how you used to caress my forehead when I was sick. Now, I want you to whimper for the pleasure I can give you.”
Right on cue, she moaned for him as he skated his hands up under her shirt. “Justice,” she gasped his name in prayer.
“Your skin is like toffee-colored silk and your hair drives me mad.” He ran his fingers through the long thick chocolate colored waterfall.
“It does?” Charlee was losing her mind. This was surreal. His hands were now working on her clothes, soon she would be naked in his arms.
“Yea, I love the taste of you. Sugar cookies. You’re sweet on my tongue.” Justice kissed her neck again, this time sucking a bit of soft flesh between his teeth. God, he was so excited, he was seeing stars. “Are you gonna let me love you?”
Did she have a choice? Her mind might be wary but her body was melting at his touch.
Justice slipped an arm around Charlee and lifted her to him, his other hand making quick work of the remainder of their clothes. Wrapping Charlee’s hair around his fist, he pulled her head back and claimed her lips with his own.
Their first kiss.