Title: Another Round
Author: Nikki Belaire
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Cover Design: Taylor Sullivan
Release Date: September 30, 2019
She knows I would die for her. Even if her father is the one who wants me dead.
A call I don’t expect. A job I don’t want. A hassle I don’t need. I’d protected his wife a long time ago, and now the notorious mob boss wants me to keep his daughter safe. I resist the tempting and troublesome mafia princess for as long as I can, but once I take her, there’s no going back, no giving her back. She thinks what we have between us is just a fling, but I know we’re forever. Regardless of what she says or her dad orders.
Another Round is a friends-to-lovers, older man/younger woman mafia romance and touches on sensitive topics. Reader discretion advised. No cheating or cliffhanger.
Relief floods my clenched muscles once we reach the landing. Only a few more feet, and she’ll be inside her apartment. Safe from danger. Safe from me. She pauses at the door and looks up. Hope bubbling in her expression where there shouldn’t be any. I shouldn’t have created any.
“Wait just a second. I’ll be right back.”
This isn’t good. I should tell her good night and lock the door behind her. Walk away literally and figuratively. Instead, I stand here waiting once again. Not impatient or irritated. Because I know she’s coming back, and she’s always well worth the wait.
Of course she’s fucking gorgeous when she does. A sparkling smile, glowing with joy and mischief, grows with each step closer.
“What are you up to trouble?”
She holds up the heavy pink blanket draped over her slender arm. “Want to be naughty with me?”
Impossible to resist with her eyebrow twerking up in challenge, I nod automatically. Without thought or reason for what’s right or logical or decent. My turn to be curious as to what she’s implying. She points to the silver metal ladder attached to the wall at the end of the corridor.
“Let’s go up on the roof and look at the stars again.”
Beyond wrong, but I can’t seem to tell her no with the excitement brewing in her expression as she flexes on her feet. Eager to climb up. Keen to learn more. “All right. For a little bit.”
I’d kill a man for keeping me from enjoying the ecstasy radiating in her from my agreement. As usual, she practically runs to the narrow access and I definitely have to run to catch up. I allow her to ascend the first three rungs before I scramble behind her. Sheathing her small body to mine to keep her from falling if she loses her grip. Our ascension is quick which is a blessing since I can’t think straight with her captured between my arms. Fighting against the overwhelming need to touch her more.
Adorable when she turns around after stepping onto the concrete and offers me her hand. Unwilling to offend her by declining her unnecessary assistance, I accept and squeeze her fingers in appreciation. But let go as soon as I’m up. Much to her dismay if the faltering grin is any indication.
Picking a spot in the middle, she billows the bedspread across the surprisingly dry and clean surface and kneels down to smooth the wrinkles. I sit beside her. Spreading my legs in front of me and crossing my feet at the ankles. Attempting to keep a virtual barrier between us as she crawls closer to me once she finishes her efforts.
She lays back on the cover. Silky hair splayed around her. Longer than when she first arrived since she hasn’t found a salon yet that she likes. Fucking crazy that I know this kind of personal girly stuff, but since she tells me everything, I know everything.
Except what she’s thinking right now. As she looks at me, rather than the dark expanse above us. Her soft gaze studies me, contemplative and inquisitive.
“Will you show me some more constellations?”
I have no choice. I have to lie down with her because how in the hell can I deny her request. As soon as my back hits the fabric, she scooches closer and curls onto her side. Friendly and innocent resting her head on my shoulder. Until she tucks her face into my neck.
Inhales my scent with a deep breath.
Fists my shirt with her small fingers.
Whispers my name with a needy murmur.
Hardens my cock with no effort at all.
“What are you doing?”
Barely able to get the words out, my voice rasps with the same desire that she conveys with her actions.
“I don’t know.”
Then we shouldn’t be doing this. Not if she’s as terrified as I am that we’ve gone too far. We can’t go back. We can’t undo what we’ve done.
Obvious she doesn’t agree. Not with her delicate hand cupping my face. I shouldn’t do it but I can’t resist and look down at her. So fucking perfect staring back up with a longing that mimics my own. Jesus.
I’m so fucking weak. I push it. Push her to see if she really wants this. Wants me. I roll over, pinning her underneath me. Raising up on my forearms to keep from crushing her. “You really are trouble.”
That accusation makes her grin. And caress her fingers over my short hair. And rise up to kiss me. Gentle and tentative and soft. Everything I’m not. But somehow I restrain myself and let her lead with tender brushes of her lips. “I know.”
She pulls back, smiling up at me. My cheeks fill her dainty palms from me smiling back down at her. Behaving like the gentleman she deserves and expects and knows. Tamping down the beast roaring inside me from the proximity of my hungry dick nestled between her legs. From the heat engulfing me with her trapped beneath me with no escape. From every inch of her body molding to mine without hesitation or fear.
“You are too.”
That I am. And, it’s unfair to her. I remain motionless. My question answered that she’s not ready. She can’t handle me or what I want to do with her.
Nikki writes contemporary romantic thrillers and admits to a weakness for bad boys, especially ones who can't live without the strong women they love. She spends more time in her characters' lives than her own. But, when she's in the real world, her passions include reading, wine appreciating, running, and spending time with her husband and daughter.