“Sorry. He’s… Well, don’t feel bad. He horrified me at my first pitch.”

“You pitched here?”

I shrugged, in disbelief that I was now sitting on the other side of that table after a matter of months. “Yeah, that’s kind of how we met.”

“Wow. He must have really liked your idea.”

I laughed and fought the blush that I felt certain was coloring my face. He liked something.

“Blake is a great person to have on your team. He’s taught me a lot.” I reached into my purse and handed him my card. “Here’s my info if you need to reach out to me for anything. I might contact you with a few more questions before our meeting. I need to let all that information marinate for a bit though.”

“Of course.” He studied the card closely. “Clozpin?”

“That’s my startup.” I decided not to mention that Blake refused to print my Angelcom cards until I changed my name. Damn, the man was possessive.

Geoff looked up, his elated smile now a seemingly permanent feature on his face. “Awesome. I can’t wait to check it out.”

“I’ll be in touch, okay?”

“Great, thanks again.”


As Geoff turned to leave with the others, Blake spoke in quiet tones to someone through the open door. I leaned back against the table, waiting for him to return. He closed the door and stalked toward me.

“Alone at last.”

I bit my lip. “How did I do?”

He slowed in front of me and wrapped an arm around my waist, drawing me closer to him. “You made me proud. You always do.”

“You put me on the spot. Are you going for some sort of record for the number of times you can drive me nuts in this room?”

He smirked. “Would you expect any less from me?”

“No, of course not. Tell me what you really think about his idea though. Am I way off?”

“It has promise. I had a feeling you’d bite.”

I skimmed my hands up to his neck, sifting through the hair that fell a little long against the collar of his shirt. “What if you hate something that I love? It’s our investment. Shouldn’t we agree?”

“I guess, ideally. But if you like something, grab it and go. Just like you did today.”

He ran a finger down the front of my dress and back up, cupping my breast through the fabric. I leaned into his touch. The unmistakable proof of his desire was hard against my hip.

“I take it you like when I’m decisive.”

He pressed his hips forward, trapping me between the table and his hard body. “I’m not like most men whose dicks go limp at the sight of a woman who has her own mind.”

He brought his lips to my neck, trailing down over my collarbone. Goosebumps raced over my skin and my nipples hardened into points that strained against my dress. I arched against him, desperate to give them some relief, but the more our bodies touched, the more out of control I felt of my own.

“You realize that runs in stark contrast to your compulsive need to be in charge of me, right?”

Curving his hand at my nape, he gazed at me. The now serious look in his eye stole my breath.

“I don’t want to run your life, Erica. I want to be a part of it, and I want you to be a part of mine. But I won’t have you exclusively calling the shots for both of us, especially when it comes to life and death.”

I stared, speechless and breathless—from his intoxicating proximity, his possessive hold on me, and the painful knowledge that our relationship hadn’t been the only thing in peril over the past few months. At times, our lives had been too. For that, I wasn’t entirely blameless.

“That’s not too unreasonable, is it?” The tension around his mouth softened.

“No,” I whispered.

We’d been to hell and back, negotiating the terms of who held the power in our relationship. He’d made concessions, and in the end, torturous as it had been, so had I. I’d given him more control than I’d ever given anyone.

He relaxed his grasp, roaming over the fabric of my dress, down to where the edge of it met my thighs.

“Good. I’m glad we cleared that up. Now that work’s done for the day, I’d like to fuck you on this table, if you don’t mind.”

I paused, gauging the seriousness of his statement. “I wouldn’t mind, but I’m sure no one in the company wants to walk in on that. There’s no lock on that door.”

“Doesn’t matter. I gave Greta explicit instructions not to disturb me in here—under any circumstances.”

“Explicit instructions?” I teased.

A small smile broke his earlier seriousness. “Yes, they were filthy. She was appalled when I detailed the things I planned to do to you.” He hiked my dress over my hips and effortlessly lifted me onto the table.

“She might be too busy wishing it were her to keep people out.” I covered his hands with my own, trying in vain to push my dress back down to a decent place over my thighs. He pushed farther between my legs so I was nearly baring everything.

The reality of what he was proposing crept over me, heating my cheeks and setting a slow burn over my skin. I saw no shred of doubt in his eyes. A second later, he covered my mouth with his, overwhelming me with his hungry kiss. Starving for him too, I let his tongue pass between my parted lips. I sought the warm sweetness of it and gave myself over to it, but where was this really going?

I gasped when he broke away, bringing his mouth down, kissing me behind my ear and down my neck, drawing a decadent path of desire over my exposed skin.

“Blake... We aren’t really doing this, are we?”

Sifting his fingers through my hair, he mangled the twist I’d carefully arranged earlier. “I’m going to be balls deep in you in about thirty seconds. So, yes.”

I struggled for my next breath, anticipation and fear robbing me of air.

“Are you wet for me, Erica? Because I’m coming in hard.” He pressed his fingertips into the meat of my ass, bringing us closer so our bodies connected through our clothes. “Fast and hard. Is that how you want it?”

Fuck, yes. In time with my mind’s silent reply, I gripped his shirt at the shoulders, drawing him closer still.

He kissed me roughly, tugged down the arm of my dress, and spread a torrent of hot, wet kisses over my collarbone and shoulders. I let my head fall back, my mind humming with desire. My breathing became shallow. I spread my legs wider to accommodate him, hugging his hips and welcoming his advance. Lifting my knee, I hooked an ankle around his thigh to urge him against me.

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