My best friend Laurie’s brown eyes look past me and grow wide. “Oh. My. Gawd.”
“What?” My heart hammers in my chest, threatening to knock me out cold. No need to look. I know who she’s staring at.
She pinches my arm. “Andrea, it’s him, the guy on your book cover!”
“Oh.” Feigning mild interest, I look over my shoulder, all muscles tense.
Yushka must be the best-looking model in Eden Luna Publishing’s stall. Young, tanned, muscular, with cheekbones so high and eyebrows so long and black there is no doubt about his origins. Though I’ve researched him all over the net and found no information. Not even his last name. I planned to uncover some of the mystery during our Meet & Greet this afternoon, but after finding him in the arms of another woman, my inspective instincts have been effectively put to rest. In fact, he can go to hell.
If only my galloping heartbeat would agree with that.
Carrying the aura of a rock star, dressed in jeans and black leather, he strolls toward the elevators with a slight roll of his large shoulders. The long black hair is combed back into a ponytail, revealing a single earring in his right lobe. Tall and confident, he glides into the group of hens like a hot knife in butter, inducing awestruck silence and a timid retreat from a few of the women.
“C’mon, it’s your chance to meet him!” Laurie squeals, practically jumping up and down with excitement.
Oh, no, that’s not happening.
Before I have the chance to find an excuse, she grabs her suitcase and my arm, spins me around, and pulls me to the last place I want to be. By the time we reach the elevators, one of the doors opens and Yushka herds a bunch of hesitant women inside.
He hasn’t spotted us yet. I’m ready to bolt. Where to, I don’t know, but I can’t stand the idea of being near him at this moment. I’m so pissed I’d kill him with a single look. At the same time, I’m afraid of the bizarre sizzling feel in my stomach, something akin to lust. I’ve spent half my life building a good home for my kids, not caring for my carnal needs, so staying composed in the presence of a sex god can be a serious challenge.
The door closes while the second one opens. He steps inside with a half dozen short, plump women, all puffing and sweating from the weight of their luggage. Thank God, there isn’t enough place for Laurie and me.
But that’s when she makes her move, the smart-head. “Wait!” Laurie presses inside, squeezing her suitcase against their thick legs.
I’ll take the other elevator instead. Yushka is so busy handling the commotion, he still hasn’t seen me. I have time to move discretely aside and wait for the door to shut.
Nope. In the last second, as it begins to slide, Laurie holds out an arm and up it goes again. Everyone turns to see the obstruction. Standing a head taller than the others, Yushka glances over, his sharp black eyes studying me. Damp heat mixed with sweat and perfume drifts out from the confined space, adding to my unease.
He holds my look, a smile growing at the corner of his sexy mouth. My heart palpitates. He’s so stunningly gorgeous, I’m going to have an attack. Can he read it in my eyes?
“Jumping on board?” he asks, moving back some, making a little room for me.
Lost in a stare as shiny and dark as the blackest diamond, I hesitate and shift weight from one foot to the other.
“No?” He cocks his head and flashes me a teasing, white-toothed smile.
Dear God, I can’t help glancing at the hunk’s close-shaved jaw and…um…lips. On pictures, he embodies male perfection, but in real life, less than a meter from my face…
Copyright @ 2023 Lea Bronsen