Lucky in LoveBy: Jill Shalvis
“Are you coming on to me?”
“Well, technically, you’re on top of me,” Mallory pointed out. “So I think that means you’re coming on to me.”
With a groan, Ty pressed his forehead to hers and swore beneath his breath, and not the good kind of swear either. And though she should have seen this coming, she hadn’t.
He didn’t want her. It was perfect, really. Perfect for the way the rest of the night had gone. Horrified, Mallory pushed at him. “Sorry, I got caught up in the moment. I’m not very good at this, obviously.”
Ty merely tightened his grip. “Not good at what exactly?” he asked.
“Really? You need me to say it?” She sighed. “Attracting men. Now if you could please get off.”
He lifted his head and cupped the back of hers in one big hand. “You first,” he said rough and gravelly, leaving no mistake to his meaning.
She gasped and he took advantage of that to kiss her, his lips moving against hers until she gasped again, in sheer pleasure this time. Things went a little crazy then. His mouth was firm and hungry, his tongue sliding against hers, and God, she’d almost forgotten what it was like to be kissed like this…
“Jill Shalvis is a total original! It doesn’t get any better.”
—Suzanne Forster, New York Times bestselling author
To Laurie, Melinda, and Mary for finding all my mistakes. If there are more, it’s all on me.
To Helenkay Dimon, Susan Anderson, Kristan Higgins, and Robyn Carr for the bestest limo ride I’ve ever had (okay, ONLY limo ride I’ve ever had) on the day after I’d turned in this book (and winning a Rita that night was the icing on the cake!).
To Jolie and Debbie for the help in putting Ty together.
To Robyn Carr, for just about everything else.
Love you all!!
All you need is love. But a little chocolate
now and then doesn’t hurt.
Lightning sent a jagged bolt across Ty Garrison’s closed lids. Thunder boomed and the earth shuddered, and he jerked straight up in bed, gasping as if he’d just run a marathon.
A dream, just the same goddamn four-year-old dream.
Sweating and trembling like a leaf, he scrubbed his hands over his face. Why couldn’t he dream about something good, like sex with triplets?
Shoving free of the covers, he limped naked to the window and yanked it open. The cool mist of the spring storm brushed his heated skin, and he fought the urge to close his eyes. If he did, he’d be back there.
But the memories came anyway.
“Landing in ten,” the pilot announced as the plane skimmed just beneath the storm raging through the night.
In eight, the plane began to vibrate.
In six, lightning cracked.
And then an explosion, one so violent it nearly blew out his eardrums.
Ty dropped his head back, letting the rain slash at his body through the open window. He could hear the Pacific Ocean pounding the surf below the cliffs. Scented with fragrant pines, the air smelled like Christmas in April, and he forced himself to draw a deep, shaky breath.
He was no longer a SEAL medic dragging his sorry ass out of a burning plane, choking on the knowledge that he was the only one still breathing, that he hadn’t been able to save a single soul. He was in Washington State, in the small beach town of Lucky Harbor. The ocean was in front of him, the Olympic Mountains at his back.
But hell if at the next bolt of lightning, he didn’t try to jump out of his own skin. Pissed at the weakness, Ty shut the window. He was never inhaling an entire pepperoni pizza before bed again.
Except he knew it wasn’t something as simple as pizza that made him dream badly. It was the edginess that came from being idle. His work was still special ops, but he hadn’t gone back to being a first responder trauma paramedic. Instead, he’d signed up as a private contractor to the government, which was a decent enough adrenaline rush. Plus it suited him—or it had until six months ago, when on an assignment he’d had to jump out a second story window to avoid being shot, and had reinjured his leg.
Stretching that leg now, he winced. He wanted to get back to his job. Needed to get back. But he also needed clearance from his doctor first. Pulling on a pair of jeans, he snagged a shirt off the back of a chair and left the room as the storm railed around outside. He made his way through the big and nearly empty house he’d rented for the duration, heading to the garage. A fast drive in the middle of the night would have to do, and maybe a quick stop at the all-night diner.
But this first.
Flipping on the lights, Ty sucked in a deep, calming breath of air heavy with the smells of motor oil, well-greased tools, and rubber tires. On the left sat a ’72 GMC Jimmy, a rebuild job he’d picked up on the fly. He didn’t need the money. As it turned out, special ops talents were well-compensated these days, but the repair work was a welcome diversion from his problems.
The ’68 Shelby Mustang on the right wasn’t a side job. She was his baby, and she was calling to him. He kicked the mechanic’s creeper from against the wall toward the classic muscle car. Lowering himself onto the cart with a grimace of pain, Ty rolled beneath the car, shoving down his problems, denying them, avoiding them.