FROM THE NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLING AUTHOR OF THE LOVING ON THE EDGE NOVELS, THE FIRST IN A SENSUAL NEW SERIESOvertime has never felt so good…Marin Rush loves studying sex. Doing it? That’s another story. In the research lab, Marin’s lack of practical knowledge didn’t matter, but now that she’s landed a job at The Grove, a high-end, experimental sex therapy institute, she can’t ignore the fact that the person most in need of sexual healing may be her.Dr. Donovan West, her new hotshot colleague, couldn’t agree more. Donovan knows that Marin’s clients are going to eat her alive unless she gets some hands-on experience. And if she fails at the job, he can say goodbye to a promotion, so he assigns her a list of R-rated tasks to prepare her for the wild clientele of The Grove’s X-wing.But some of those tasks are built for two, and when he finds Marin searching for a candidate to help her check off her list, Donovan decides there’s only one man for the job—him. As long as they keep their erotic, off-the-clock activities strictly confidential and without strings, no one will get fired—or worse, get attached…
Marin moaned when he parted her lips to deepen the kiss, and a swift rush of arousal flooded her, making the neglected parts of her throb and ache. His tongue stroked hers, teasing with a rhythm she could only imagine in other places. Her nipples became hard points, straining for touch, and her sex pulsed between her thighs. She wanted to rub herself on him like a cat, find relief. He seemed ready to oblige. Donovan backed her into the wall, his body aligning with hers and his hand sliding down to knead her hip like he was barely restraining himself from tearing off her clothes. Heat against heat, hardness growing against her belly. She was dying. She needed this. God, did she need this.
But a swift knock sounded behind him, shattering the protected moment and blasting through her lust-drunk brain. Marin gasped, and Donovan jumped back and dropped his hands to his sides like she had burned him.
The door swung open, and Ysa poked her head in. “Hey, guys I—” Her words faded as her gaze bounced between them. “Uh, sorry, didn’t mean to interrupt.”
Poker face. Poker face. Poker face. Marin pushed off the wall and fought hard to look like everything was fine even though her cheeks were burning hot, her lips slick, and her body pulsing in time with her frantic heartbeat. She had a feeling she was failing miserably at pulling it off. They may as well have a neon sign above their heads that read In Flagrante Delicto.
Donovan, on the other hand, owner of the world’s most impenetrable therapist mask, looked cool and unaffected as he tucked his hands in his pockets, presumably to hide his burgeoning hard-on, and looked at Ysa. “Not interrupting. What’s up?”
Ysa glanced between the two of them again but kept her thoughts to herself. “Just wanted to let you know your nine-thirty is here.”
Marin gave her a quick, tight smile. “Thanks. We’re on our way.”
Ysa gave them one last questioning look and then shook her head and disappeared back out into the hallway. When the door shut, Marin put her hands over her face and groaned. “Son of a bitch. Now there’s more grist for Dr. McCray’s rumor mill. I cannot believe I just did that. Here. With you.”
Donovan stepped into her space again and took her wrists in his hands, gently tugging them away from her face. “Take a breath. It’s okay. Ysa didn’t see anything. And even if she figured it out, she would never say anything to anyone.”
But Marin hardly heard any of it with her head spinning and anxiety rushing through her. “God, how could I be so stupid? I don’t know what I was thinking. I just—”
“It’s not your fault, Marin,” he said, his voice gentle. “I crossed the line first.” His mouth hitched up. “Plus, I should know not to stand that close to a woman who spent all night watching porn.”
A sharp laugh burst out of her, her nerves bubbling up and out. “Right. I’m bound to grab anyone within reach to use for my lecherous purposes.”
Donovan looked down at her for a long second, some of that heat from earlier returning, burning her slowly. His hands flexed around her wrists. “I wouldn’t mind being used by you, Marin.”
Her stomach dipped.
“I didn’t make the offer last night because it would’ve been a selfish move. And a risk. But I want you in my bed. Know that. It’s not altruistic. Or professional. And it’s out of line.” His voice was like water gliding along her skin—smooth, clear, quietly powerful. He lifted her hand and flattened it against his chest over the inner pocket of his jacket. “But if you decide you might want that anyway, know there isn’t a thing on this list that I wouldn’t love to check off for you. Completely and thoroughly. I could make you shameless, Rush.”
She could barely hear him over the roaring sound in her ears. How the hell was she supposed to form words after that?
He released her hands and stepped back but kept her pinned beneath that white-hot gaze. “So if you ever need me . . . off the clock, you just have to ask. And if you want me to go to hell and steer clear, that’s all you’ve got to say, too. It’s your call.”
Everything inside her was buzzing. Her mind had gotten hung up on the words completely and thoroughly. He wasn’t going to pressure her, but the look in his eye said he could rock her celibate world right off its fucking axis. The temptation was like a bright, glittering thing blurring her vision.
But taking that offer would come with a price. Keeping things secret. The risk of being caught. And there would be a time limit. He didn’t do relationships. This would just be sex.
Really hot, really intense sex.
Roni wrote her first romance novel at age fifteen when she discovered writing about boys was way easier than actually talking to them. Since then, her flirting skills haven’t improved, but she likes to think her storytelling ability has. She is the New York Times and USA Today Bestselling Author of The Loving on the Edge series.
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