Chapter 1

“Miss Jensen, I can’t find Gerry!”

I groaned and closed my eyes briefly. Briefly as in, like, two seconds. This was because I’m a teacher and I had a class of twenty kindergartners sitting in front of me and you can’t look away from them. You do, there’s no telling what would happen.

Case in point? Gerry, the classroom gerbil was now MIA. For the second time this week.

Remind me why I became a teacher? Oh. Yeah…because I wanted to shape the mini-minds of the future. And because I love kids.

Seriously, I do. Most days, anyway. Which is why I’d gone through cosmetology school, and worked my way through college by cutting hair. Last year was the first year I’d taught, so I felt pretty confident that I had my finger on the pulse and all that shit.

Turns out I was wrong. Namely, because I thought it would be a good idea to have a classroom pet, hence Gerry the Gerbil, aka Houdini. I shouldn’t give him all the credit for being an escape artist; it’s more that the kids giggle and twitch when they hold him and then set him down and…well, you get the idea.

I clapped my hands and raised my voice as I said, “Alright, kids. Settle down and sit down, please. Maybe then we’ll be able to see where…”

I sighed as a muffled scream sounded from the room next door. Guess we knew where Gerry went, huh?

That pretty much set the tone for the rest of my day. Thank God and every single star in the sky that it was Friday and, not to mention, a long weekend because of Labor Day. Which I had dearly been looking forward to, because I’d get to spend some time with my family.

I pulled into the garage attached to my house with a sigh, hitting the button to shut the world out behind me. I gathered my purse and my bag overflowing with lesson plans and all that good stuff and headed inside.

Dropping everything onto the kitchen table, I walked directly into the living room and plopped down on my couch, sprawling out less than gracefully, not caring that my skirt rode up and my panties were showing to anyone who wanted to see them.

The next thing I knew, I was being shaken awake, a voice like sinful velvet teasing my ears and pulling me from the arms of Morpheus.

“Leah,” Ian said, softly.

I blinked up at him, his gorgeous face shadowed in the dim light coming from the kitchen. I sat up quickly, making him jump back to avoid our heads colliding, looking out the window in shock.

“Holy shit, what time is it?” I asked, stretching and yawning as I noted the street lights popping on against the darkening sky.

Ian chuckled and moved up behind me, wrapping his arms around my shoulders and pulling me back against his chest. “Seriously? That’s all I get from you after I haven’t seen you all day? You try to break my nose and stare out the window, no hello kiss, no, ‘hey honey, I missed you like crazy and can’t wait to suck your face off all night long,’ nothing? Huh.”

I rolled my eyes and spun in his arms, jumping up so my legs were around his waist, my arms were laced around his neck, and my lips were level to his. He caught me gracefully, completely used to me doing this by now.

“Hmmm…” I murmured against his mouth. “Is this better?”

I parted my lips and traced the seam of his with the tip of my tongue, silently asking to be let inside. He complied immediately, a low groan breaking from him as I slipped it in to slide against his, our tongues tangling sinuously in a slow, sensual dance.

His hands squeezed convulsively on the taut cheeks of my ass where they held me, pulling me even closer to his body, letting me feel every inch of hardness hidden behind the denim of his jeans against the soft, giving flesh at the apex of my thighs.

I finally broke the kiss, leaving us both breathing hard, our foreheads pressed together, eyes locked. We stayed that way for a while, trying to catch our breath and…

“You blinked!” he hollered into the stillness suddenly, dropping my feet to the floor and doing a weird victory dance that was just Ian while I stood in front of him, hands on hips, shaking my head.

“Yeah, yeah, yeah…doesn’t matter. I’m still winning by like, what is it now? 16 to 4?”

He leaned in and kissed me once more, a brief peck, before he moved back to flop down on the couch. “Do you think we’re seriously bent? I mean, who else in the world plays the staring game in the middle of a heavy make-out session?”

I shrugged. “Nah. People are probably jealous because we’re cool like that.”

He nodded, puckering his lips out and giving me that ‘I’m cool’ look. Trying to, anyway.

“Duck-face says what?” I asked him, giggling when he scowled at me.

I moved to the couch and straddled him, sitting on his lap. He leaned his head back and watched me, his hands coming up to cradle my hips. I drank him in, the sight of his hardened, tattooed body stretched out beneath me. His beautiful eyes, heavy lidded with a combination of contentment and lust, stared back at me, the dark green of them, flecked with gold, warming as they watched me. His lips quirked into a smile, their fullness beckoning me closer until I couldn’t help but lean forward and touch them with mine.

He opened immediately, driving the kiss deeper until we were both moaning and arching into each other, the friction of our bodies pushing me dangerously close to the edge of shattering. My hips jerked against him as his fingers dug into me, pulling me harder and harder against him, urging me toward the finish line.

He moved his lips away just enough to whisper, “That’s it, baby…come for me…”

And that did it. I arched my back and closed my eyes, letting out a long, low moan as pleasure washed over me in waves, leaving me breathless and slumped against him when it was over.

“Hey!” I cried out in mock outrage as Ian’s hands came down on my ass cheeks, smacking them smartly.

He chuckled and squeezed them gently, kissing my forehead once more before he asked, “Wanna go get some food?”

I sat up and looked at him strangely. “Seriously? You get me off and suddenly you want nothing more than food?”

He pecked my lips and moved me off his lap onto the couch beside him. He got up and held his hand out to help me up as he winked and said, “Don’t worry. You’ll pay me back later.”

I laughed and let him help me up, shaking my head and muttering, “See? We’re seriously bent,” as I followed him to get ready to leave.

Chapter 2

Staring across the table at Ian an hour later at dinner, I had the fleeting thought that I should really thank my brother again for taking me to the UFC fight with him that night. Actually, I should thank the drunken bastard that started being a douche and set in motion the events that led to Ian carting me out of the fight over his shoulder. Just looking at him, drinking in all that was Ian, I still can’t help but feel amazement that he’s been mine since that night over a year ago.

Yeah, so I second guessed myself a few times in the beginning, especially when that whore-face started showing up everywhere we went, claiming to be his girlfriend. She almost earned herself a beat-down when Ian and I had gone to his house one night (one of the rare times we slept at his place instead of mine), and Victoria was in his bed. Naked. Did I mention that she was IN. HIS. BED. NAKED!?

I didn’t get a chance to show of my own personal UFC skills, because Ian had gone nuclear, but in that quiet way of his. The way that you can see the depths of fiery-pissed-off-ness blazing in his eyes, every inch of his body tight, almost vibrating with rage, but his voice is so deceptively calm and dark that it makes you unable to decide whether or not to run, piss your pants, or come all over yourself. Okay, so that was the way I felt about it, and, thank God, that anger has never been turned at me. Ever. But Victoria? She’s good at invoking that beast.