Lucky pulled back enough space to look into her eyes. “You were a virgin?’


“I didn’t know. You acted…you said…” His mouth opened and closed, the questions on the tip of his tongue never quite making it out into the space between them.

“I didn’t want you to change your mind. I knew if you knew I was a virgin, you’d talk yourself out of it.”

“Tay.” His heart broke a little with the knowledge of what he’d done. What he’d selfishly taken. And then he was glad—overjoyed—to have been her first.

“Lucky. I’m glad I lied to you. I wouldn’t change it. I wanted you to be my first.” She nuzzled deeper into his arms, burying her face against his neck. “I’m glad that none of the losers I was with after you was my first.”

“Taylor. You deserved better than a horny college kid taking you on a blanket in a barn. You should have had romance, candlelight…something more than me pawing at you like a starving caveman.”

“It wasn’t like that. I remember every kiss. The way you touched me. The sound of my name on your lips. The scent of your skin and the taste of me on your mouth.” She looked him straight in the eye, making sure he heard every word. “I’ve had terrible luck with men. I always pick the ones who let me down, the liars, the cheats, the users. But you were perfect, and I’m so grateful you were the one.”

“I could be your last, too.” He leaned down to kiss her again. Taylor melted against him, her body responding to his touch with sweet surrender. Lucky tunneled his fingers through her hair, holding her still while he slowly explored all she offered.

He released her lips, trailing kisses across her cheek, and it was the most natural thing in the world to begin a slow dance with her under the moonlight. The music from the lake house, something country with the slow, sultry edge of a Cajun melody, guided them through the gentle sway. Taylor sighed, her body loose as she laid her head on his shoulder and let him lead their steps. Lucky memorized this moment and let go of everything but being here with this woman, in this place—all thoughts of how it could change floating away on the breeze.

The music ended, the chorus of night sounds resuming the rhythm. ”You want to go celebrate?”

“I thought that’s what we were doing,” she teased, a little breathless.

Her palm coasted over his erection, and he bit his lip at the rush of pleasure. He grabbed her hand, determined to take her to his special place and show her how much her wanted her to stay. Tonight he felt like he could do anything—including convincing Taylor to rearrange her dreams for him.

“Come on. I’ll take you to heaven.”

Chapter Nineteen

“I like your idea of the afterlife.”

Taylor opened her eyes, taking in the broad expanse of star-spangled night sky from her position lying in the blankets on the bed of Lucky’s truck. She turned her gaze to him and he shrugged, giving her a crooked half smile so sexy it caused her breath to catch in her chest.

“You come here a lot?” She glanced around the smooth glass of the lake, the grassy lawn leading down to the pier and the beautiful old shade trees tinted deep purple in the night

“Not as much as I want to. It’s a great place to relax, get away, think about things.” His voice was gravelly against her shoulder where he rested his head while his fingers idly traced figure eights on her belly. The touch, innocent enough, had kept her on the knife-edge of arousal for a while now. “This is my favorite place in the world.”

They’d sneaked into the barn, grabbing a cooler, a few extra beers out of the fridge kept in the tack room, and a couple blankets. Jumping into his truck, Lucky had driven onto the main road and reentered the edge of the Landon property via an old hunting trail. In the moonlight, it was gorgeous. Magical.

“It is amazing. I bet all the girls you bring here love it.”

“I’ve never brought a woman here before.”

Taylor’s stomach did a flip-flop at his answer.

“Thank you for keeping an open mind about us. I know it isn’t easy,” he murmured.