How can a man win the heart of a woman when he’s competing with a dead man? That’s the challenge Mark faces when he meets Isabelle, a feisty, capable, redhead who’s happy to deny the truth about why she’s never given love a second chance.
The fact Mark is a cop provides the perfect excuse for Isabelle to push him away. Her husband died in the line of duty—she’s been there, done that, ended up single and alone. She realizes overcoming her heartbreak is the only way she’ll ever be able to love again, but is she ready? When Mark refuses to step out of her life without a fight, Isabelle must decide whether it’s time to move forward or stay stuck in the past.
Healing her heart will take courage and strength, two things Isabelle isn’t sure she has, unless Mark can convince her otherwise.
Even though this novella is Bk 3 in the series as with all my books it can be read as a stand-alone story.
Excerpt from Sensual Healing
He placed his hand on the small of her back and led her farther into the room then took a seat on the sofa while maneuvering her down next to him. Luckily, she’d been distracted undoing the present and didn’t notice his overzealous crotch.
“Oh, this is my favorite perfume. I love it. You shouldn’t have− it’s far too expensive.” He could tell by the look on her face that she really did love the gift. She placed one hand on his shoulder, the other at the back of his neck, and pulled him forward, placing another kiss on his cheek. He decided on impulse, this time he wouldn’t let her pull away so quickly. His arm entwined her waist, his hand scooped the curve of her neck, and his lips met hers for the first time.
He pulled her onto his lap and deepened their kiss as her lips parted slightly, releasing the little gasp of shock that accompanied her change in position. She had the sweetest-tasting mouth. As he released her lips, she moaned quietly. He rested his forehead against hers and allowed his hand to roam along her back. The chemistry must be there for her as well since she had returned his kiss and didn’t move away. She allowed the gentle caress and didn’t protest when he moved his free hand along the side of her legs and up onto her thigh. He edged his hand just under the hem of the robe. His fingers came into contact with lace, then the clip of garter strap.
Don’t go any further, you barbarian. Dinner first, then see what might happen. Slow and steady wins the race.
“I’m glad you liked the perfume.” His fingers continued to tease the lace top of her stocking.
“Can I ask you something?”
He nodded as he raised his head and gazed into her eyes. She could ask him anything, get him to do anything for her. He was a sitting duck.
“Does the kiss mean dinner’s off?”
“No, not at all.” Mark took in a deep breath, letting it out slowly. Her hands roved over his shoulders, down across his chest, moving lower. “It just means we might need to eat fast and possibly skip dessert.”
He clasped her hands in his when they reached his stomach. If she went any lower, they wouldn’t make it to dinner. Her robe had fallen open slightly, one shoulder and the top of her sheer black bra now exposed to his gaze.
“Our kiss did answer a couple of questions I’ve been wondering about, though.” He released her wrists and moved his hand toward the cleft of her throat. He began brushing his fingers over the small freckles leading from her throat down over her chest.
“What questions were they?”
“You taste as sweet as honey, you’re attracted to me in the same way I am to you, and these adorable little spots do lead all the way to heaven.” She gasped as his fingers reached her breast and flicked across her distended nipple.
It took all his reserves of control to pull the robe back in place and motion her off his lap. From her body’s reaction, she was just as turned on as he was. The hard points of her nipples, the little mewling sounds she made as he touched and kissed her, there could be no doubt. Her eyes had deepened in color, and she had the look of dazed arousal that he adored seeing on a woman’s face. He walked her across the living area to the open doorway that exposed her bed and the black dress laid out on it.
“Let me help you finish getting dressed.” Isabelle nodded as he untied her robe and removed it from her body.
Mark’s heart raced. Isabelle wore black, sheer, see-through bra and panties, and a wide garter belt attached to the sheer, lace-top stockings he’d played with. He drew in a deep breath attempting to calm his need to throw her on the bed and take her then and there. She picked up the dress and stepped into it, pulling it over her hips and slipping her arms into the sleeves. He would enjoy taking the dress back off as much as he loved watching it go on. She turned her back to him and raised her long hair, exposing the delicate column of her neck. He nearly came in his pants when she looked at him over her shoulder and asked him to fasten the zipper.
Once he had secured the zipper, he kissed the side of her neck. “You are the most beautiful woman I’ve ever met in my life, and I’m looking forward to getting to know everything about you.”
“Ok, then the first thing I should tell you about me is…” Isabelle blushed, turning to glance over her shoulder at him through upturned eyes. “I’m not hungry.”