MONDAY BOOK PROMO: KISSING SHERLOCK HOLMES

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  • WINNER of Passionate Ink (special chapter of Romance Writers of America) 2012 Passionate Plume Award, Historical Category!! This is HUGE!
  • Kindle edition is a genre best-seller at Amazon.com, Amazon UK, Amazon Germany, Italy, Spain, and Amazon France!

KISSING SHERLOCK HOLMES
by T. D. McKinney & Terry Wylis

http://www.amberquill.com/AmberAllure/KissingSherlockHolmes.html

Genres: Gay / Historical / Mystery / Detective / Action / Adventure
Heat Level: 2
Length: Extended Novel (73k words / 188 paperback pages)

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“My dear Watson, how does one go about kissing a woman?”

Sherlock Holmes’ question leads to a lesson Watson never expected to teach.  And feelings he never thought to explore.  A single kiss alters Watson’s world, while the announcement of Holmes’ upcoming marriage sets an odd fear in his heart.

Amidst the beauty of an English country party, the greatest detective the world has ever known searches for a traitor. Somewhere among the glittering nobility a sadist lurks, using blackmail to destroy lives and endanger a nation.

Only Sherlock Holmes can save an innocent man and bring the traitor to justice.  It’s a search that could cement the greatest friendship of all time into something far deeper and stronger…if the hunt doesn’t end Watson’s life first.

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REVIEWS:

5 STARS!! “…the authors have done an excellent job remaining faithful to Sir Arthur Conan Doyle’s characters even as they give them a new and definitely non-traditional spin. … capture the essence of Holmes and Watson very precisely in this book…  If you are at all a fan of Sherlock Holmes and 221B Baker Street, then I highly recommend Kissing Sherlock Holmes. It is very well-written, highly absorbing and undeniably romantic.” –Bobby D Whitney, Book Wenches

4.5 NYMPHS!! “The quirky title for this book caught my attention first but the idea of turning the classic mystery characters of Holmes and Watson into lovers while they solved a crime is what made me want to read this story. It’s a crazy notion but it’s also what makes this writing duo so successful…they think outside the box. … Put all this together in an English country house with some interesting secondary characters, witty dialogue and a few chuckles and you have all the components needed for an enjoyable read. Give this one a try.” –Dragon Minx, Literary Nymphs Reviews

4 DIVAS!! “It’s delightfully in character that Sherlock Holmes would launch this story by precipitating a change in his and Watson’s relationship in the name of acquiring information. While Kissing Sherlock Holmes does not break new ground in assuming a homosexual attraction between them, TD McKinney and Terry Wylis do provide a sexually charged pastiche with a mystery to solve. … Kissing Sherlock Holmes is a good, solid read, and the prospect of Holmes and Watson’s return to 221b Baker Street is a joyful one.” –Cryselle, Dark DivasReviews

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EXCERPT: (additional excerpt available at http://www.tdmckinney.com/KSHexcerpt.htm)

 “Winnie, my dear, you’re quite right. This is my dear friend and chronicler, Doctor John Watson. Watson, do forgive me for not introducing you properly. My fiancee, the Honorable Winnifred Farnham.”

Miss Farnham cast him a look of long-suffering tolerance. “You also didn’t convey that Sherlock is the most horrid stickler for convention and propriety.”

I found myself laughing as I briefly took her hand. “Our cases often veer from that as well. I’m delighted to meet you, Miss Farnham.”

“And I you, sir. Without your literary efforts, I’d never have suspected Sherlock could be the sort of man I’d care for. I might have missed him the crowd.” She dimpled up at Holmes.

“I can’t say as I’ve ever thought of Holmes being missed in the crowd.” Thank God I’d never hidden my affection for him, else I might have found myself in an awkward moment as I glanced at him.

“Ha!” His explosion of laughter set butterflies in my stomach. He seemed more magnificent by the moment. “As you see, I am well loved.” He gazed down at that little face turned up to him in such animation. “As are you, Winnie.” To my amazement, he bent and pressed a lingering kiss on her smiling lips. His long arm crept about her waist, supporting her as he held her close. Then he opened his eyes and stared at me.

I barely saw her. Dearest God! His face! I’d never seen such a light in it or such contentment.

I shall simply pretend I’m kissing you when I’m with her. The word reverberated in my mind. They shone in his clear gaze.

Me. My knees went watery. So he must have looked when I held him in my arms. That glow, that radiant happiness, because of me. …

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Enjoy!

Terry Wylis

MONDAY BOOK PROMO: Copperhead Road (Southern Beaus Book 3)

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cover image by Trace Edward Zaber

Copperhead Road (Southern Beaus Book 3)
by T. D. McKinney & Terry Wylis 

ISBN-13: 978-1-60272-485-3 (Electronic)
http://www.amberquill.com/AmberAllure/ CopperheadRoad.html

ISBN-13: 978-1-61124-989-7 (Paperback anthology with Book 4, Tensaw Blues)
http://www.amberquill.com/AmberAllure/ SouthernBeaus.html

Everyone in Bay Mignon knows the Truitts are white-trash bad news, generations of moon-shiners and drug runners, and none more so than handsome Bolt Truitt. Rumor insists some of the fifteen years he’s been away were spent in prison. Cameron Fontaine knows that’s true. But he also knows the town doesn’t know the real Bolt.

Cameron does. He’s loved Bolt since they were both kids, just discovering life and each other. Even though fate ripped them apart, Cameron never stopped believing in Bolt, never stopped loving him. And his heart swears Bolt’s different, the drug dealing left in the past. No matter his other sins, Bolt has never lied to Cameron.

Until now. Evidence, words from Bolt’s own lips, shatter Cameron’s trust and his heart. Still, a lifetime of love, even separated for so long, can’t just be set aside. Though he can’t trust Bolt any more, Cameron will risk everything to see his lover safe…even his life…

Genres: Gay / Contemporary / Action / Adventure / Series
Heat Level: 2
Length: Novella (26k words)

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REVIEWS: (Expanded reviews available on the sales page)

“5 Stars!…Excellent…. this story is a great ride….This is a great tale of romance and love. I highly recommend it.”

–Matthew, Rainbow Reviews

“4 Nymphs!…A whirlwind of action set in sultry Southern Alabama. …Kudos to the authors for a great, exciting, and sexy read.”

–Satyr Vael, Literary Nymphs Reviews

“4.5 Stars!…Another well-written, well-paced story from the writing partnership of T.D. McKinney and Terry Wylis… If you’re looking for a story that’s exciting, with engaging characters, a terrific plot and lots of atmosphere because of the location, I highly recommend Copperhead Road, which I couldn’t put down.”

–Wave, Reviews By JesseWave

“4 Angels!…T. D. McKinney and Terry Wylis give us a tale of love and redemption set in the Gulf Coast region of Mobile, Alabama. This story is well written and will capture the reader’s interest with both emotion and action. … While the twist at the end is not unexpected, it is definitely welcome, because we all love a happy ending.”

–Whitney, Fallen Angel Reviews

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ADULT EXCERPT:

“Cameron! Slow down. I want…” The button on the jeans popped open and Cameron ran his fingertips under the waistband of Bolt’s underwear. Tender skin, so soft and warm, hid there. The action freed another of those wonderful little moans from Bolt. “Oh, Christ, forget it. I just want you.”

Good. Because now that he had those tight jeans open, Cameron had no intention of slowing down. The old crystal doorknob turned under his hand and he steered Bolt past that portal. He’d always wanted Bolt in his bedroom, in his bed. The one place they’d never been together. The idea of facing Cameron’s father if caught had killed even the strongest adolescent hormone overload.

Gleaming oak scuffed under Cameron’s boots as he pressed Bolt toward the bed, finally pushing him down onto the white-on-white quilt. He stared, transfixed by raven hair spread across the old comforter, by long limbs sprawled in disarray, by that delicate patch of inky hair peeping from Bolt’s open jeans. “Dear God, you’re gorgeous.”

“I ain’t complaining about the view from here either.” Amusement sparkled up from silvery eyes, a snowy smile, and the diamond studs set at lip and ears. “Damn, you got tall.” Desire flushed coppery skin and widened jet pupils.

“So’d you.” Cameron wanted to explore every inch of that length, too. In a bit. As soon as he quenched the nuclear furnace raging through his veins. He knelt between Bolt’s spread legs and ran his hands down the length of that smooth chest and firm abdomen. Bolt’s head tipped back, long column of his throat begging for Cameron’s attention. He explored there for a moment before working his way to that broad chest and down. His lover’s river-kissed, salt-rich skin tasted of all the things Cameron craved.

Bolt yelped and arched his back when Cameron bit, gentle and careful, just above the patch of darkness peeping from the waistband of white briefs. He licked the spot before kneeling back and grinning at his startled lover. “I’m not sixteen anymore. I learned a few things along the way.”

Bolt shivered. “I noticed.”

Cameron chuckled and reached to pull off first one of Bolt’s still very damp boots, then the other. Their thump as they hit the floor pleased him more than he thought so simple a sound could. The wet socks followed, giving Cameron a moment to admire the elegant, narrow feet. “Still ticklish?”

Trepidation widened Bolt’s eyes further. “Cameron…”

“Don’t worry. I never did torment you that way, did I? I know you can’t stand to have anyone mess with the bottoms of your feet.” Cameron massaged a trim ankle, Bolt’s foot jerking when he pressed a kiss to a high-arched instep. “Yep, still ticklish.” He grinned before releasing that pretty ankle and moving back to the waistband of Bolt’s jeans.

Sharp tugs freed long limbs from damp denim, admiration for the glory of slim thighs setting new heat low in Cameron’s belly. He’d take the time to savor those. Later. Right now, hard desire tenting the white cotton of Bolt’s briefs claimed all his attention.

“I see some other things haven’t changed either.” He pulled the underwear down and dropped them on the jeans. He fisted rigid want and bit that spot just a few inches above it again. “Do I still get you harder than anyone you can think of?”

Long fingers threaded through Cameron’s hair, pressing him to river-scented skin. “God, yeah!” Bolt half sat up, his fingers tightening, urging Cameron away from that glory to Bolt’s lips. Cameron continued to play with the granite length in his hand as he let Bolt ravage his mouth, his lover’s kisses hot and frantic. Tongues dueled, dancing with abandon against each other as Bolt’s body arched and relaxed only to arch again. A sharp cry broke the kiss as Cameron pressed his thumb across his lover’s tip, slickness there sweet as new cane syrup to his senses.

Cameron scrambled in the bedside table for a moment, finding the tube he needed to spread a new sort of slick, then easing a finger into his lover just to watch Bolt’s head tip back and his mouth go slack. Cameron fought his own belt and zipper as he pleasured Bolt, adoring the way the other man fisted the quilt tight, hips working to match the rhythm. Cameron had to finally release Bolt long enough to push his own pants and underwear down, growling at the delay.

Cameron bent one of Bolt’s long legs to his chest, ankle warm on Cameron’s shoulder so he could reach what he wanted so badly. When he pushed inside, tight heat welcomed him and he paused, gasping, just savoring that delicious warmth embracing him.

Bolt’s lungs bellowed, one hand gripping Cameron’s upper arm, the other fisted in the quilt. Sweet profanity fell from his beautifully shaped mouth, offering encouragement and gratitude for something that felt so damned good. The sound of it loosened the tiny hold Cameron maintained on passion. Desire demanded he do all he could to turn Bolt’s words to primal sounds of ecstasy, to push them both beyond the ability to speak.

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Enjoy!

Terry Wylis

Monday Book Promo: PORTRAIT OF A KISS (Southern Beaus Book 1)

Portrait of a Kiss
(Southern Beaus Book 1)
T. D. McKinney & Terry Wylis 

ISBN-13: 978-1-60272-410-5 (Electronic)
ISBN-13: 978-1-60272-908-7 (Paperback)

 The painting’s compelling blue eyes drew him in.  No matter how he tried, he couldn’t escape the portrait’s fascination.  Or those beautiful eyes.  They couldn’t possibly belong to a killer.  But according to all in this small Alabama town, that’s exactly what the gorgeous man on canvas was. 

Former police detective David Schaeffer never expected his inherited mansion to come with its very own ghost.  And certainly not handsome, mischievous Brian Terhune, chained to his family home, accused of a horrific double murder he didn’t commit.  The fascinating man in the portrait.

When his ghost proves to be not just a pretty face on canvas but a wonderful, sensitive man, that fascination turns to passionate love. Deeply enamored, David vows to clear his adored Brian’s name, wading through a fifty-years-cold web of hate and suspicion. 

But clearing Brian comes at a price.  Acknowledged as innocent, Brian will be freed, able to pass over to the peaceful rest he deserves.  Breaking Brian’s shackles could very well break David’s heart.

Genres: Gay / Paranormal / Ghosts / Hauntings / Mystery / Detective / Romantic Comedy / BDSM (Light) / Exhibitionism / Public Places / Series
Heat Level: 2
Length: Novel (67k words / 180 paperback pages)

Read an excerpt HERE.

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 REVIEWS:

 4 Nymphs! – “I thoroughly enjoyed Portrait of a Kiss by TD McKinney and Terry Wylis. The main characters are drawn to each other from the very beginning and have a definite chemistry. With the aid of some excellent secondary characters, the writers were able to weave humor in a story that deals with a very gruesome crime. I loved the scenes between David and Brian when they forgot about the other people around them and the fact that they could not see or hear Brian. You will need to keep a box of tissue next to you however as this does have some intense `tear jerker’ moments. You will not regret picking up this book.”  — Critter Nymph,Literary Nymphs Reviews Only

 4.5 Stars! – Portrait of a Kiss Has It All  “This story unfolds with rich southern charm, thick and heavy with romance and mystery, love and loss and humor, and tragedy tempered by hope. The characters are very fully drawn and as the town around David and Brian starts to shed its prejudice and warms up to David, and as the truth starts coming out little by little, Brian too, what’s revealed is a an old southern lady full up with unique secondary characters that are quintessentially “small town” – with all the quirks and harmless oddities and charms. … a highly recommended read.”    — Tracy “Book Junkie”, Amazon.com customer review

“5 Stars!…Reader caution–read this novel with a box of Kleenex. I cried tears of love, tears of grief, tears of joy, copiously. This is a wonderful story which will tug your heartstrings and transport you through the toils of grief into the beauty of hope and faith in the eternal transforming power of love.“–Frost’s Fancy, Rainbow Reviews

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Another A+ Review for KISSING SHERLOCK HOLMES!

ImageManOhMan Reviews has given Kissing Sherlock Holmes a fantastic review. Quoting reviewer Joe:

“McKinney and Wylis write with a grace and elegance that would make Doyle himself proud. It’s almost as if they channelled his creative spirit to create a wonderful tale that feels as if it’s a part of the official Holmes’ canon.”

“The authors write with great respect for these beloved iconic characters… The language they used made me feel like I was reading a book that had been published during the 1800s, … which I loved.”

“McKinney and Wylis have not written some kind of gay pornographic slash fantasy between the two characters but have rather created a world that show two men who are best friends, as close as brothers, and who love each other deeply and have started to question just what kind of love they have for each other.”

Wow. I can’t even begin to describe what it feels like to read those words and know it’s about a book I helped create. — Terry Wylis

UPDATE – Ugh, so sorry. Looks like the link no longer exists. It WAS there at one point, honest. Disengaging link today. 1-11-2015 TW

What a review!!!!

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cover art by Trace Edward Zaber (c)2011

“T.D. McKinney and Terry Wylis have pulled off a great coup…writing this book so convincingly that there was not even a single inkling it hadn’t been written in 1896.”

Happy dances commencing – what a review for KISSING SHERLOCK HOLMES!! Full review here.

4.5 Stars (okay, Ribbons) from Romance Junkies!!

Wow – Romance Junkies, named by Writer’s Digest as one of the 101 Best Web Sites for Writers in 2009 and 2010, with over a million hits a month, has reviewed our Sherlock Holmes pastiche and given it 4.5 Blue Ribbon Rating! Here’s the meat of the review itself: (italics added)

KISSING SHERLOCK HOLMES by T.D McKinney and Terry Wylis is a new and intriguing take on the legendary characters of Sherlock Holmes and his friend John Watson. This novel answers the question what if Watson and Holmes fell in love in a surprisingly believable and very entertaining way. It was very interesting to see such a cold and calculating character as Sherlock Holmes behave with tenderness and concern toward Watson. His reactions and feelings didn’t feel out of character to me. The authors have made the feelings these to men share both believable and moving. The tone of the novel is appropriate for the time period in which the novel is set. It truly felt like a Sherlock Holmes mystery. The mystery is an equally important and satisfying part of the story and it kept me guessing to the end. I highly recommend this novel.

Read the entire review here: http://romancejunkiesreviews.com/artman/publish/suspense/Kissing_Sherlock_Homles.shtml

A FREE eRead! With a story behind it…

STRIPTEASE by T. L. Lawrence and T. D. McKinney
G
ENRE: M/F Contemporary romantic adventure
WORD COUNT: 60,000
CONTENT RATING : 3

Click here if you just want the book without the story. But it’s a good story. 🙂

FBI Special Agent Justin Hensley thought he’d left it behind. Two years with an elite undercover unit, specializing in the sexy, seamy underside of politics and pole-dancing. And her. Rachel “Rack” Coleman. The woman who broadened his horizons and then pushed him out into the world with the sure hope he’d fly.

Leaving the unit cleansed his soul. Leaving her broke his heart.

Now Rachel’s back for one last sting before she retires. And Justin discovers it’s not just his talents on the dance floor she needs.

“Couldn’t get any closer without writing from a case file.”
¾FBI Special Agent Rick M.

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A not-so-long time ago, in a corner of cyberspace not-so-far away, T.D. McKinney and I took the biggest left turn into La-La Land imaginable. We deviated from our much-loved Amber Quill Press and submitted a manuscript to a publisher we were both editing for at the time.

Mistake.

BIG mistake.

The Imperial Death Star of mistakes.

(You’ll see who it is on the eBook file, so I’ll just call the grand nemesis Publisher to avoid any screaming accusations of “slander!”)

The manuscript got lost in the editing pool until we made some noise about it, our well-intentioned assigned editor said “I can’t see a thing wrong with it” on the first read (which meant we ended up editing ourselves, so we didn’t get that crucial second set of eyes), and then when it finally was released (Dec 31), we were told it hadn’t sold a single copy. Which is a lie, because the book was at the top of their best-seller list the month it came out. But hey, no sales, no sales, right? Shrug and move on.

Then February rolls around and I get a 1099-MISC in the mail – with a figure of $119 and some change under “royalties.” I believe it’s the first time in my life the phrase “What the FUCK?” has crossed my lips.

So I emailed Publisher, who is also the Editor in Chief, the Accountant, the Managing Editor, the Official Schmoozer of Potential Authors and every other title the control-freak can tuck under her belt. “Oh, there must have been a mistake. We (ha!) will send you a corrected version immediately.”

It never showed.

In the six months I worked as an editor, and the now two years the book has been out, I never received a royalty. I edited at least six books for Publisher, and not once was I paid. The only income was the flat rate I’d agreed on ($25 a month) for MANY, MANY hours of work as the acquisitions “gatekeeper,” a submissions reader, and sort of a production-line set of eyes for the editing pool (I lost count of how many manuscripts had to be resubmitted because they’d simply been lost). I received exactly ONE royalty statement in that time, and that was only after I sent a breach-of-contract letter to Publisher. The letter was ignored, by the way.

The book is still up on numerous sales sites, and as it has actual RANKINGS I know it hasn’t just been sitting there collecting dust. And by this time we had the right to end the contract at any time. So we BOTH asked for it to be taken down in accordance with the contract.

Ignored.

Other authors also found breach-of-contract problems and sent similar letters and emails to Publisher.

Ignored. Blatantly. Certified letters refused until it was outside the “time frame” stated in the contract. (everyone has paperwork proving the letters were delivered on time, but Publisher is just ignoring them).

So. Screw it. We’ll GIVE it away.

It belongs to us – Theresa did the cover herself, so no problems there. We’ll plaster it as far over the Net as we can. We won’t make a cent – but neither will Publisher. And that’s the important part.

So here it is – STRIPTEASE, a M/F romantic thriller with some interesting non-formula twists thrown in just because we’re contrary that way. J Feel free to pass it along to anyone and everyone you like. Hell, pass it along to people you meet on the street. And we’ll gleefully drain one more source of Publisher’s ill-gotten gain.

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EXCERPT:

“What the hell?” Justin heard her voice, that little lilt of surprise and confusion. “Vicky, I don’t– Vicky?” A soft huff of frustration and the click of heels on the stage. “What’s this stuff doing out here? We’re not doing the biker routine.”

Perfect. “Aren’t we?” He stepped onto the stage. “I think I got everything the way we liked it. Except for this.” He brought his offering from behind his back. “Late-night florists are wonderful things.”

Rachel’s eyes widened at the single rose he held out — yellow, not red. Red was for expensive hookers, unless you grew them yourself. “Trey? What are you talking about?” Even so, she moved close enough to take the flower from his hand.

 She always used his stage name. Ever since the day he left. He shook his head. “Trey’s on a break. Do you still remember me?”

Her throat worked. “Justin.” It came out sharp and breathy. Well, it seemed Vicky and Mona weren’t too off in their suppositions. If not love, something was certainly going on with his Rachel. She swallowed and tried it again. “Justin. Since when is the name a problem for you?”

“Just curious why you haven’t said it since the day you decided I wasn’t worth a special request to stay with your unit.” Soft — he had to keep it soft and even or she’d bristle and run and he’d never find out the truth. He reached for her hand and ran his fingers over the back of it. “Maybe in a discussion about me, but never to me. Why, Rachel?”

“You were worth a request to stay! You were just worth too much for me to keep you.” She still sounded breathless. “What does a name matter, Trey? We’ve used dozens over the years.” And she really sucked at avoiding the question. That was a bit telling all on its own.

“I remember the last time you used my name, Rachel.” Justin watched that wall around her heart tremble every time he said hers. He pulled her hand against his chest, letting her feel his heart beat under the red silk t-shirt. “You whispered it in my ear the night before I left Chicago for DC. You know, I didn’t know until later that you had a personal rule about never sleeping with your agents more than once. I didn’t know I was the exception.”

“I heard that story got around.” Her hand trembled just the least bit against his chest. “I had rules. It’s dangerous to get too close to my agents. Someone ends up dead when you let things get too emotional.”

“Then why me? Wasn’t I too dangerous as well?” He grasped her shoulders gently and stepped to her, noting her hand stayed on his chest without guidance. The citrusy scent of her hair brought back so many wonderful memories. “Or is that the real reason you allowed my transfer? Did I get too close?” He brushed her cheek with his lips. “Did I get in under all those rules?”

“You know you did. For two years you were…more than the others.” She swayed closer to him, those absurd shoes making her only a few inches shorter than he was. He knew he could press his body close to her and still reach her lips without bending. “Trey, please. This is all the past. Why ask this now? You didn’t ask it seven years ago.”

“Because I never suspected I was anything more in your heart than a talented dancer and a very good lay.” He felt her flinch and stroked her cheek. “Rachel. What else could I think? Why didn’t you tell me? At least I would have understood why you needed me to go. Or we could have been together all this time, instead of both of us struggling to avoid admitting we were empty inside.”

“How?” A wail hid in her soft question. “I’m undercover for months at a time. Doing whatever the government wants me to with whoever they designate. How could a man sit home and wait for a woman like that? You deserved better. I thought by now you’d have a wife and a couple of little Hensleys. I don’t see how you can still be…alone. You have so much to offer.”

His breath escaped in a laugh. “Unfortunately, the bulk of the female population out there doesn’t seem to have your keen sense of taste.” He felt his shoulders lift in a shrug. “I kept looking for someone who made me feel as alive as I did when I was with you. Sadly, there’s a shortage of truly passionate, dedicated women out there who can also samba to bring a man to tears.”

Her laugh contained a sob or two and she now pressed close. “Are you sure? I’ve seen you dance with Vicky. Looked like an awful lot of passion there. I’m way too old to play the other woman.” Her fingers knotted in the silk knit of his shirt. “What are you trying to say to me, Trey? Seven years is a long time to carry a torch for someone.”

“Who are we talking about, Rachel? I never got the chance to carry a torch. I’m still trying to adjust to the idea you might have been carrying one for me. And while Vicky makes me feel alive, we’re just friends who like to cuddle up.” He threaded his fingers into her hair, scattering pins and letting that firefall spill. “You’re up for a Deputy Director position, yes? One that puts you directly above me, or not?”

“Not.” Blue eyes met his steadily. “You report up through domestic and foreign terrorism chains. I’d still be working graft and corruption. White collar crime.”

Her face felt so good in his hands. “Then I just have two questions for you. One: If you’re worried about Vicky, who do you think pried the truth out of Mona and then nearly tripped over her own tongue trying to tell me? And set up this little role-play in the first place?”

“Looks like Special Agent Moss is a damned good investigator. And an awfully decent person.” Rachel didn’t try to pull away. “You said two questions. Was that both?”

“No. That was just the first one. Second one might be easier or harder to answer. I’m just not sure.” He pressed a kiss to the corner of her mouth. “But I’m asking for the truth, Rachel. Will you give it to me?”

She nodded, lips still, not reaching for his, not yet. “I will.”

“Question Two then: What do you want?” He pulled back, letting her breathe, just waiting. His choices would depend on her answer.

Maybe she expected something more specific, because her eyes went wide and silence stretched between them. “I…I want you, Justin.”