I love the Author’s Choice days on Snippet Saturday even though it often means it takes me twice as long to choose which snippet to use because I have so many favorite scenes. Today I’m posting one of my favorite scenes between Troy and Sandy from Hidden Heat. To me, it’s one of those earth-shifts-beneath-their-feet moments, when their relationship begins to change. In this case, it’s the start of their relationship…

Hidden Heat

Copyright © 2012 Leah Braemel
All rights reserved — a Samhain Publishing, Ltd. publication

[I]’m still ticked off with you, you know.”

Placing his hands gently on her shoulders, Troy turned Sandy to face him. “Same goes. You need to be more careful about who you trust. There are some nasty types out there who will gobble a pretty girl like you up for a snack.”

He couldn’t resist playing with her collar as a way to cover his need to touch her hair. To touch her.

Her expression softened. “I know about the nasty types, Troy. I have to file the reports that agents submit, as well as sit in on the initial meetings with clients, which means I know exactly why they require bodyguards. I also volunteer with the Safe and Sound program. I’ve seen what those women have experienced before they made it to the shelter.”

a story that is complete with lots of push and pull, sexual desire, and heat…a wild ride readers will relish ~ ShannonThe Romance Studio

When she shook her head, her hair brushed the back of his hand in a soft caress.

All his protective instincts bristled that she could be put in danger from one of those abusers. “Tell me no one’s been harassing you from there. None of the husbands who think it’s easier to blame you than himself.”

Her eyes closed briefly and a soft huff of exasperation escaped between her lush lips. “I’m fine. And stop trying to distract me about how you interfered back there. I’m still mad at you.”

Smart girl. He caught a strand of hair and rubbed it between his fingers. “He wasn’t your type.”

“And you are?”

Not hardly. “No. I’m the big bad wolf. That’s why you need to trust me that he wasn’t right for you.”

“What big eyes you have, Grandma?” Her lips compressed though the corners twitched as if she were trying not to smile. Then she tilted her head until her ear touched his thumb and the ground slid from beneath him. Why was it so hard to breathe from such a simple touch?

He gave in to impulse and lowered his head. Her eyes widened briefly, then they closed as he took the kiss he’d dreamed of for so long.

She tasted of strawberries and sugar. And everything good that must be found in heaven. Heaven became even more attainable when she slid her hands beneath his coat, around his waist and flattened them over his back, pulling him closer. He sank deeper into the kiss, her innocence a benediction, a cleansing of all his sins.

The Honda parked beside his SUV beeped and its headlights flashed, breaking the trance he’d fallen into. He couldn’t remember a time when he’d ever been so reluctant to break off a kiss, but he forced himself to lift his head. To step back.

As the owner of the Honda cleared his throat and gestured to the door Troy was blocking, he took Sandy’s hand and led her to the front of the car. She didn’t say a word as she followed, but the look of complete trust she gave him wracked him with both guilt and desire. Her tongue darted out to moisten lips swollen from his kiss. In what seemed to be an unconscious gesture, she touched a hand to smooth the hair he’d managed to further tousle. Is this what she’d look like waking up beside him?

Stop it. She’d run screaming if she knew you killed an unarmed man this morning.

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