“Well… you’re the type of woman who has damn good aim with the handgun she clearly knows how to use properly, so by that alone, yes. You look like you could be prepared for just about anything.” He smiles sexily, making my toes curl against my cold kitchen floor.
I give in. “Ugh. You’re right. Drawer under the microwave.” I’d get it for him, but his big body is blocking it. When he pulls it out and sets it on the counter then begins to struggle trying to hold the dishtowels to his shoulder, I finally jump into action. “Here. Sit down at the table.” I tug his arm gently toward one of the chairs. I’m worried the legs on it might snap he looks so large as he lowers himself into it, but when he stays upright, I set to work.
Grabbing some scissors from a drawer, I cut off the short sleeve of his black tee he’s wearing under his leather biker vest with all its patches. I vaguely remember it being called a “cut” after binge-watching Sons of Anarchy. The bullet went straight through, so I have him hold one folded towel to the front of his shoulder while I hold one to the back before grabbing the end of the tape with my teeth. But I stop, thinking twice.
“Hold that thought,” I tell him, setting the tape down on the table before quickly disappearing into my bedroom. “Shit.” Realizing I can’t use one of my belts, because I wear super blingy ones that July would recognize in a heartbeat, I hurry back to Z. “Stand up a sec,” I say, and he cocks his head to the side with a small smile before doing as I requested.
Without much thought, I reach for his waist, lifting his black t-shirt to reveal that he is in fact wearing a black leather belt… and a tiny bit of his rippled, tan stomach that has a soft-looking patch of hair leading from his belly button down into his jeans. Gulping, my hands tremble as I unhook his belt, way too much of a chicken shit to look up into his ruggedly handsome face when I pull it from the loops.
My voice is quiet when I ask him to sit back down, adding, “Duct tape on armpit hair seemed like a bad idea on top of being shot. I think I’ve tortured you enough for one evening.”
“Not even close.” His voice is a cross between a growl and a purr, way too sexy for my lady bits to ignore, and I can’t help but meet his eyes. There’s a shit load of heat there, along with a silent question I don’t understand. What are those dark chocolate eyes asking me?
Deciding not to respond so I don’t embarrass myself, I put my dishtowel back into place and wrap his belt tightly around his arm. His shoulder and bicep are so huge the belt actually fastens through one of the holes, making it easy to keep it in place. I hurry over to my kitchen counter, pulling off a bunch of paper towels and wetting them before returning to Z’s side. I clean up the blood that had dripped down his arm since he rinsed it in my sink and check the makeshift tourniquet, thankful when I see I’ve made it tight enough that no more blood is oozing from the wound.
“That should get you to July’s house,” I tell him. “Again, I’m so so—”
“I’m fine, kitten. It’s actually kinda a relief,” he interrupts, making my brows furrow in confusion.
“Quit calling me that. My name is Kayan. As in Kay-Anne. Not cayenne. And definitely not kitten. Now, how could being shot be a relief?” I question.
He ignores my griping. “Means you aren’t this helpless little thing that needs constant protection. You’re not the damsel in distress your tiny, delicious little body makes you appear,” he rumbles, and my face flushes.
“I told you before I don’t need to be protected,” I whisper shyly, unable to make my voice any louder, and I watch his eyes twinkle.
“You’re as shy as a kitten. Don’t think I’ve ever had shy in my bed.” His words from when I ran into him at Momma’s Country fill my mind, sending a tickle through my belly.
Before either of us can speak, there’s a knock at my door, snapping me out of my Z-induced haze. “Must be Wes,” I say, and hurry over to let him in. When I open the door, the words rush out of my mouth. “It’s not my fault. He crawled in through my window while I was sleeping, and my dog—” I gesture toward LeFou’s crate, seeing the little creature has curled himself into his blankets and gone back to sleep. “—was freaking the hell out. I didn’t know it was him! Please don’t tell July.”