Fighting For You:A Danvers Novel(6)By: Sydney Landon
“Beth signed you up with a dating service?” At her small nod, he blew. “Is she out of her damn mind? She actually thought it was a good idea to put you out there for every freak in the world to try to get their hands on you? Hell, why not just sell tickets?”
Ella took a step back, unused to Declan raising his voice to her. “I . . . I asked her to. It’s not her fault.”
He took a step toward her and put his hands gently on her shoulders. “Babe, why would you want to do that? You’re a sweet, innocent girl. Those types of men will just try to take advantage of that. You need to cancel or whatever the hell you do to stop it.”
Startled, Ella put her hand on his chest and looked up into his handsome face. “No, Declan, I can’t. I’ll be careful, but I have to keep dating.”
“I said stop,” Declan snapped. “If you’re that desperate for a date, just let nature take its course. You don’t need a dating agency. I mean it Ella, cancel—or whatever you need to do—now.”
Ella shook her head, looking down at her hand on his chest. “I can’t stop.”
Visibly frustrated, Declan shook her lightly and asked, “Why? I don’t get this.”
Still unable to avoid answering a direct question, Ella admitted, “I can’t stop because if I do, I will never have you.” She felt him stiffen under her hand as if he had stopped breathing.
“What do you mean?” he asked hoarsely.
Ella raised her eyes to his and said softly, “It’s the only way to get you to see me as a woman. So I have to keep doing it.”
Declan felt his gut clench as he looked down at the gorgeous woman in front of him. He still couldn’t process what she had just said. She had joined a dating service because of him? What could she possibly have been thinking? And the better question was what could Beth have been thinking? How could she have gone along with this whole thing? Did she have no idea what could happen to someone like Ella if she went out with the wrong man?
“Baby, I don’t get this whole thing. I know you’re a woman. Trust me, I know it too well. You don’t have to prove anything to me.”
“I like you Declan . . . as more than a friend. And I know I’m not the kind of woman you probably go for, but I can change.”
A harsh laugh escaped his throat as he looked down at her. Here was the woman he had been trying to stay away from because he wasn’t the kind of man that a woman like her needed and she was trying to change to be the kind of woman that she thought he needed. Man, the universe was truly fucked-up sometimes. He knew he wasn’t going to give her what she wanted in life, but if he could have just one taste of her before he pulled back, maybe it would last him a lifetime. Hell, or it might scare her so bad that she would give up her crazy plan and go back to her safe life.
Declan ran a thumb over the plump curve of her lower lip and inhaled sharply as she trustingly parted her lips for him. “Oh, Ella, girl, what am I going to do with you.” Then before he could talk himself out of it, he lowered his head and took her mouth in a kiss that was surprisingly soft and gentle. He could feel her heart thudding against his chest as he pulled her closer to his body. What she lacked in experience, she more than made up for in eagerness. Her arms wrapped the rest of the way around his waist bringing their bodies into close contact.
Soon, Declan was powerless to control the stir of his erection. His body reacted to her presence like gas on a fire. When she innocently rubbed herself against him, he was in serious danger of losing all control in that moment. He wanted to pick her up and have her wrap her legs around his waist so he could rest his cock in her softness.
Then when he felt her tongue slide against the seam of his lips, he threw all caution to the wind. Gone was the gentleness and in its place was a fire that he hadn’t let out of control in oh so long. He took possession of her mouth and tasted every sweet inch. He lowered one hand to grasp the sweet curve of her ass and used it to pull her even closer.