Title: Courting Trouble
Author: Kimberly Dean
Genre: Erotic Romance
When times get tough, how bad does a good girl have to get?
Sienna Blakely is bright, articulate, and woefully underemployed. In order to get by, she’s forced to rely on the one asset she vowed never to use – her looks. With bills piling up, Sienna signs a contract with Luxxor Escort Services. A contract that strictly forbids any sexual contact with clients…
And then she’s assigned to escort Jason Sloan.
Just meeting the hockey player turned business shark causes a full-body jolt. Arrogant, powerful, and sexy, he’s trouble. He can see beyond the facade she’s erected, right down to the intelligent and sensual woman underneath. He challenges her wits, and he challenges the rules.
When he gets Luxxor to upgrade her to an exclusive and more lenient contract, just how far will Sienna go to pay her rent? And to explore her deepest, most intimate desires?
“My roommate and I found a new place,” she explained. “I sublet my half of that crummy old apartment to a co-worker… er, a waitress at the Apple Tree.”
A job where he’d known she’d worked. The job that Nina had rescued her from, just for him.
So last night could happen.
Sienna folded her arms around her legs and rested her head on her knees. She felt guilty, but not as much as she should have. Last night had been special for her, too special to regret. She was more than willing to forget the circumstances and tuck the memory away deep inside.
Only Jason didn’t look pleased. “I could’ve helped you. I could have hired someone or gotten some guys to haul your stuff.”
“We managed,” she said.
“Are you going to give me your new address?” he muttered grumpily. “Or am I going to have to steal your purse again?”
She sighed. “I was going to give you a tour when you took me home today.”
He grunted. “Who said you’re going home?”
“I’m serious. We have that gathering at the French cultural center you recommended to Marie. The Dumondes are expecting us.” He pointed at her. “You put her up to that. I’m not going alone.”
Sienna bit her lip. “Is that tonight?”
He took a drink of his coffee, looking more pleased with himself. “Yup. So, why don’t you just stay here today? We can be lazy, order some take-out, and screw like monkeys.”
“You want to cook?” He shrugged, but the grin on his face was boyish. “I suppose we could do that, too.”
She let out an exasperated sound. He could be so aggravating at times and so fun and lovable at others. She rubbed her temple against her knees as she watched him.
“Can I see your ankle?” she asked softly.
The question came from out of the blue, surprising even her. She hadn’t meant to ask, but that limp, negligible as it was, made her stomach hurt.
His good humor faded as he looked at her. She saw the guard come up in his eyes, but also the questions. The glass and brass clock on the far wall went tick, tick, tick.
Dropping her feet to the floor, Sienna patted her lap.
With an uncomfortable shrug, he turned and propped himself up against the other end of the couch. He dropped his bare feet onto her lap and lifted his coffee cup, saluting her.
Yet she could feel the tension in him as she tentatively touched his shin.
“It’s hurting you this morning,” she whispered.
He watched her steadily. “Not that bad.”
“I should make you amend the contract so you’re not allowed to pick me up or carry me.”
He scowled. “Are you trying to start a fight?”
“No.” She traced her fingers along the scar on his right ankle and tried not to envision the horrible play where he’d been injured. She’d watched it once online, and she hadn’t been able to get it out of her head since. It had made her cringe, and it had made her cry.
“I’ll stay the day, if that’s what you want,” she said.
The muscles leading up to his calf were tight. She instinctively began to massage them to get them to loosen.
A sound came from the back of his throat.
She looked at him sharply. “Should I stop?”
The heat burning in his eyes told her she’d better not.
Liquid molasses began swimming through her veins, sweet and warm. The worries and reservations that had been giving her a stomach ache eased. Their arrangement might be unusual, but, in a way, he was right. That contract had freed her to do things she normally would never do. Like pull the thorn out of the angry lion’s paw.
Or explore her sexuality in ways she’d never dared before.
Her breath was shaky as she warmed his cold toes. He was offering his most vulnerable side to her right now, simply because she’d asked. He’d told her he didn’t trust women, and she understood why.
But he was trusting her.
Neither of them said a word. They simply moved as one, he dropping his feet to the floor and she climbing across the cushions so she could straddle his lap.
Her eyelids became heavy when his hands slid under the hockey jersey she’d borrowed. She hadn’t bothered to put on anything underneath it.
“I’m sorry about the way I went about it, but I’m not sorry I’ve got you in my bed,” he said, low and firm. His fingers bit deeper into her flesh as he pulled her forward until her knees sank into the cushions behind him.
Sienna grabbed the back of the sofa on either side of him. “Nina said you’d hired escorts through Luxxor before. Have you negotiated other exclusive contracts?”
His expression darkened. “Hell, no.”
She relaxed. He was changing her. Not only did the crassness not offend her, it made her happy.
What’s the first binge-worthy book you read and why was it a must-read?
I binge-read every book I read. Once I start, I have to finish. I’m not somebody who can put a book down and walk away for a few days. That being said, the book that stands out as being binge-worthy was Nalini Singh’s Slave to Sensation, Book 1 of her Psy-Changeling series. I loved the world she built and the stark contrast between the Psy who are cerebral and have banished emotion and the Changelings who are so physical and raw with feelings. The characters had to be together, needed to be together. Once I found out there was a whole series like this, I was all in.
What makes this a binge-worthy book?
Courting Trouble is binge-worthy because it’s hot and sexy, but most importantly, there’s a strong connection between the hero and heroine. Their chemistry is what hooked me on writing the story. The reader gets to venture into the risky and risqué world of Luxxor Escort Services and experience all the emotional ups and downs that come with it.
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