Page 23 of Soaring on Love

“You wouldn’t.”

He stalked toward her like a lion that was seconds from pouncing on its prey. “Oh, I would.”

“But my snowball was the size of a gumdrop. Yours looks like a bowling ball.”

“Don’t fault me for having large hands.” Large hands he wanted to use to explore every inch of her body.

“But…but…I owed you that.”

Roth didn’t bother asking her why she felt she owed him a snowball to the back of the head. Instead, he kept stalking toward her. If they were playing eye for an eye, he owed her, too. Owed her big. Owed her for making him experience all these crazy and confusing feelings.

The snow crunched under her feet as she took cautionary steps back. A beat later she took off running. “You won’t take me alive.”

Aiming, he chucked the snowball, hitting Tressa smack-dab in her left butt cheek. When it wiggled a little, he groaned to himself.

Tressa yelped, then grabbed her behind. “Ouch! That hurt.”

“Oops,” he said. “I was aiming higher. Really, I was.” He’d have probably been more convincing if he’d have said it slipped.

Her face lit with laughter. “I’m going to get you for that, Roth Lexington.”

“Take your best shot.” He did a fake right, then a fake left.

For close to an hour, they ran around the yard like kids, blasting each other with snow. It was the most fun he’d had in years. This was how he wanted to spend his time with her. Having fun, not at each other’s throats about a bunch of feelings.

“Time, time,” Tressa said, forming snow-covered, gloved hands into a T. A blink later she fell back into a pillow of snow, flapping her arms and legs.

“Woman, what are you doing?”

“Making a snow angel. You have to make one, too.”

She was crazy if she thought he was getting down there. “I’m not lying on that cold-ass ground. Have you ever heard of frostbite? Hypothermia?”

“Wimp.”

Roth barked a laugh. “Name-calling won’t force me to change my mind.”

“Pretty please with a cherry on top.”

All it took was one look into those spell-casting eyes. Dammit. “Okay, okay.”

Roth wanted to pretend the idea of making snow angels didn’t excite him, but it did. As a kid, he’d always seen it done on Christmas movies and had secretly wished it were him sprawled out in the snow, enjoying the time with his parents like the laughing children on the television.

“Closer, Roth. I won’t bite.”

A corner of his mouth lifted. Too bad. Biting could be fun.

“What just ran through your mind?” Tressa said.

“Um, how cold the ground is.” His response sounded more like a question, rather than an answer to hers.

“Mmm-hmm.”

She truly didn’t want to know what had raced through his mind, what always raced through his mind when he was with her. Finding the nearest hard surface, and the ground would do to make love to her. By the time they left Silver Point, he’d need counseling.

They moved their arms and legs simultaneously. With angels formed, he made a motion to get up, but Tressa stopped him.

“Tressa, this ground is hella cold, woman.”

“Two seconds.” She reached into her pocket and pulled out her cell phone. “We have to take a selfie.”

A selfie? He was freezing his balls off, and she wanted to take a selfie? “Are you serious?”

“Yes. Lie back and smile, you big brute.”

Tressa positioned her head close to his. He had to admit, onscreen they looked great together. After several snaps—some of them smiling, some of them making silly faces—Roth couldn’t feel his ass.

“Three more and we’re done,” she said.

But before she could press the red dot on the screen, the phone vibrated in her hands. Cyrus’s ugly mug filled the display. Roth snarled at the phone, then caught himself.

“I’ll give you some privacy,” he said. He’d wanted a reason to get off the hard, cold ground, and now he had one.

Tressa swiped her thumb across the screen, sending the call to voice mail. “I don’t need it.”

“Why?” Catching himself, he swallowed his words. After the general store incident, he’d vowed to mind his own damn business. “Can we get up now? I can’t feel my legs.”

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