Then he let go. “I can give you your privacy,” he said and turned. “Sean, stop.” Laura crossed her legs and arms. “No bullshit. Do you FIND me attractive? At all?”
Sean blinked. “Of course, I do. I think you’re…I think you’re a knockout.”
“A knockout. Thank you. Then why don’t you show it?” Laura asked. She strained to keep her voice friendly and even, but a tinge of her temper reared in it. She tightened her jaw.
“I don’t?” Sean asked.
She wanted to say Not a fucking bit, but she compromised with herself. Laura said. “Not enough.”
“Oh,” Sean said. He shuffled like a little boy needing to pee. He wanted out. Laura sighed. “Leave if you want to.”
Sean didn’t move. Instead, he stared at the floor and twisted the ties together. If he added white, he could make a barber pole, Laura thought.
Laura counted to ten silently and when Sean still didn’t speak, she said, “I’m sorry. Why don’t you get out and we’ll just—”
“No,” Sean said sharply. His shuffle disappeared, his appeasing tone hardened and his eyes flared at her. This dangerous-looking stranger replaced her tall teddy bear.
Laura’s breath caught in her throat. He spoke slowly, but if her voice had edged with temper, his edged almost with rage. “I’ve had relationships that started a little strong, to put it mildly. I wanted to take my time with you.” The braided ties became taunt in his hands. “I like you.”
“I don’t mind slow,” Laura said, repeating her earlier thought. “But not glacially slow.”
“You want faster?”
She nodded eagerly. “Kindness is nice, but I want real passion.”
“Passion,” Sean said. “Real passion. Are you sure?” His dark eyes bored into hers. For the first time she thought Sean appeared…cruel.
She uncrossed her legs. Something changed in the room. A dim, deep heat smoldered in her and now the crotch of her pantyhose felt tight. A tightness she welcomed. The air felt charged like thunder on the savannah. Something was about to happen.
“I am,” Laura said.
“I’ve held back,” he said. “A lot. But I won’t anymore.”
Sean lowered his head. His chest rose and fell faster. His body stiffened.
Then he overwhelmed her. Laura’s mouth puckered into an O of surprise. Her first thought was simply Thank God.
She knew “passionate” men. Their “passion” lasted as long as their erection but no longer. He’d kiss her here, enjoy some heavy petting, and they’d leave. Tonight, they’d lounge at his house, find themselves in his bedroom and end the evening having polite, sterile sex. Then she’d—
He came for her. He twisted her blouse in his fist, yanked her off the bench and kissed her…
But it wasn’t a kiss. It was an attack. His kiss ravished her, plundered her, invaded her. He kissed like a cannibal. His insatiable mouth opened to swallow her whole.
Never had she been kissed with such deprived passion. Its urgency alarmed her. If she asked Sean to stop right now…she didn’t think he would.
Surprisingly, that turned her on even more, and her lust boiled over.