ARE YA READY? ARE YA READY?
Clint and Joe are ready to roll into your imaginations and your sexiest dreams. All you have to do is go out and get out them. Knew there was a catch didn't you? LOL
DANGEROUS GAMES and REAL MEN DO IT BETTER featuring FOR MAGGIES SAKE
the second and third installments on the Tempting Seals series. Get yours, Tuesday, February 6, 2007
St. Martins Press
Navy SEAL Clint “Iceman” McIntire didn’t earn his nickname by being a coward. Or a quitter. Having crushed an infamous drug cartel in Colombia, Clint was nothing short of an American hero. Now he’s home, on a much-needed leave, but instead of some R&R, he finds himself neck-deep in trouble with his best friend’s little sister, Morganna Chavez, the only woman who has the power to bring him to his knees. . .
Morganna has been secretly working with the DEA to uncover a thriving date-rape drug, which leads her to a shadowy faction that is more deadly than anything her team has ever encountered. Now it’s up to Clint to keep this beautiful, determined agent out of harm’s way, even while the passion between them threatens to consume them. Soon Clint’s greatest mission will be not just keeping Morganna safe, but getting her into his arms and never letting go.
Ten Years Before
Clint McIntyre, twenty five years old. A Navy SEAL. A fully grown, sensual, dominant male. He was a man that other men looked to in respect. A man who had grown in confidence and in power. He wasn’t a child fighting to hide the abuse he suffered any longer. He was a man who tolerated nothing less than his best from himself and the men he fought with.
But he was a man that nearly came to his knees that night at the sight of one small teenaged Lolita decked out in a short skirt, a thin pale blue blouse and high heels. Dark brown hair flowed around her in a multitude of curls and gray eyes sparkled back at him with a hint of laughter, and interest. Too much interest.
He was a grown man, aware of his sexuality, his tastes and his hungers. To even consider the beginning pulses of awareness he could feel moving through him was a crime. One he refused to allow to take hold.
She was his best friends sister. She was his sister’s best friend. And normally she was the bane of his existence.
Morganna Chavez had been tormenting him in one form or another since the day she learned how to walk and toddled to him to smack him on his eleven year old head with her bottle to get his attention. She had been getting his attention in one form of another ever since.
He hadn’t expected this though. That glimmer of awareness. The way he noticed the full high breasts beneath her thin blouse, and the long, shapely legs beneath the short skirt. Pink lips glistening with a soft gloss and gray eyes that looked smoky, seductive, rather than immature and filled with child-like wonder.
He deserved to be shot.
“So, are you going to stand there like a knot on a log or are you going to dance with me?” She propped one hand on her hip and smiled slowly. “It is my birthday after all.”
His lips twitched at her flirtatiousness. She had been flirting with him for as long as he could remember too.
He stared around the backyard; the lights strung through the trees cast a soft glow over the thirty some teenagers enjoying the party her brother had allowed.
Reno had lost his mind this year. He glanced across the yard where his best friend, Morganna’s brother was testing the punchbowl for alcohol to the laughing amusement of the kids gathered around the table.
They were kids. Morganna was a kid.
“Go dance with one of your friends, brat.” He smiled to soften the rejection. He didn’t have to fake his affection for her, she was as much a part of his life as his sister was, when he was home. He did care for her. Deeply.
“Coward.” She flicked him an amused look from beneath her lashes. A look far too mature for her years, and far too knowing.
No man that he knew would ever call him a coward. He was fierce. Strong. Deadly. He was scared to death to be within a hundred feet of her.
He shook his head and laughed at her. A soft indulgent laugh that had her brows drawing together and her gray eyes dimming with a hint of vulnerabity.
“Go play Morganna,” he told her gently as he turned away. “Leave the grown ups alone.”
He should have never agreed to chaperone the party. He wouldn’t have if he had known what he would face, if he had even suspected that for even a second in time that he would see Morganna as anything other than his best friends sister. Or his sister’s best friend.
Two years later
She was eighteen. Tall and lithe, a gypsy, a hellion, the most beautiful woman he had ever laid his eyes on. Two years, a multitude of lectures, and endless nights of dreams he should have been shot for, and the awareness of her had only grown.
Sexy, sensual Morganna.
“When are you leaving?” They were on the back porch of her home, the home she shared with her brother Reno since the death of their parents.
The elderly aunt who had once stayed with Morganna while Clint was on assignment hadn’t arrived, but there was no reason to wait for her. Was there? Yet, Clint was standing there waiting on her for Reno, who had been forced to leave earlier than usual to take command of the small force of Navy SEALs he was leading into a mission. Reno was comfortable leaving her home alone this time. Clint wasn’t.
He also wasn’t comfortable sitting on the back porch, his jeans tighter than normal, his skin too sensitive. The situation was getting out of control. Two years he had fought this awareness of her, and it was only growing rather than dimming. He was only growing hungrier, and that scared the hell out of him.
“Earth to Clint,” Morganna announced when he hadn’t answered her, waving her hand in front of his face as he shifted in his chair and thanked God she couldn’t see the erection swelling mindlessly beneath his jeans.
“I head out day after tomorrow.” He shot her an irritated glare as she leaned against the post directly in front of his porch chair.
Right in front of him, where he could see the rise of her full breasts against the soft cotton shirt she wore, and received the full effect of those long gorgeous legs encased in snug denim.
“Everyone’s leaving me,” she said softly, staring over his shoulder with a wistful expression. “Raven’s got her internship in the art design school this fall, she’ll not even be in the state. You and Reno will be gone. It’s going to be lonely here.”
Morganna had accepted a scholarship at Atlanta University to stay close to home.
“You have your friends,” he reminded her, forcing back a grimace at the thought of the pimpled faced boys she ran with in that crowd.
“Yeah.” She nodded firmly. “I do. I’ll be fine.”
He watched her inhale slowly, deeply and tightened his jaw at the realization that he had managed to hurt her. Though how he didn’t have a clue.
“Aunt Beth remarked that this is the last time she’ll have to stay with me,” she said then, her tone a little too bright. “Reno was a little slow on this one. I think he’s afraid I’ll burn the house down or something.”
“Reno worries about you being alone.” He worried. God did he worry.
“You could stay with me,” she said softly. “You have two more days before you leave. I could call Aunt Beth. She would be happy to be able to stay home with her flowers and her neighbors.”
His gaze sharpened on her face as he swallowed tightly and rose quickly from his chair.
“Won’t work, brat.” He forced the words past his throat. “I have to get ready to head out.”
“Yeah. Sure.” She nodded quickly, pushing away from the post as she moved to go around him. “Look, head on back to that rinky dink little apartment of yours and whatever flavor of the week you have in your bed. I’m sick of watching you track each vehicle down the road praying its Aunt Beth. I’ll be fine without you.”
He caught her arm as she moved for the back door, pulling her around and making the biggest damned mistake of his life. Because he saw her tears. Because he saw the hurt in her eyes as she turned away.
“I know what you’re doing,” he said softly. “I know what you’re offering Morganna. Don’t make me hurt you. I don’t want to do that.”
Her expression twisted, determination, defiance, and God help him, adoration filling her eyes. She saw him as some damned knight there to fulfill all her girlish dreams. He was a bastard for even daring to consider touching her. And he wasn’t, he assured himself. He wanted to touch her, but he was only enough that wants wouldn’t hurt him.
“I love you,” she whispered. “I’ve always loved you Clint.”
“No.” He shook his head firmly, maintaining his hold on her arm as his other hand lifted to touch her cheek gently. His thumb slid over her lips, just because he needed to know if they were as soft as they looked. “You have a crush on me. I’m the only man you can’t twist around your little finger.” He smiled gently. “That’s all Morganna. And nothing can come of it. Nothing can happen but the loss of something I cherish. Your friendship.”
“I can’t pretend,” she whispered passionately. “You still see me as a child. I’m not a child.”
“Then don’t act like one,” he suggested in return.
Pain flared in her eyes a second before he something more. Determination yes. But something shocking, something almost frightening. He saw hunger. Sexual, intense, and more than he ever wanted to see in her eyes.
“Just kiss me goodbye then,” Her breath hitched. “Just a little kiss.”
“Morganna.” He held her still, staring down at her in regret. Regret for more than she could ever understand. Then he made the mistake of stroking over those soft lips once again.
They parted, the warmth of her mouth searing his flesh as her tongue peeked out to swipe over his thumb before her lips parted and her sharp little teeth nipped at the pad.
And he lost his mind. Hell, he couldn’t even claim insanity, because even a crazy man would have walked away. Instead, in less than a second he had her in his arms, his hand snagging her hair at the back of her neck to pull her head back, and his lips covering hers.
She was innocent. He tasted it in her kiss. Felt it in the shock that stiffened her body as he gave her a man’s kiss. A man’s hunger. Slanting his lips over hers he fought to consume in one kiss, all the hunger, the sweetness and the insane need possible. To hold inside his memories.
Sharp, hard kisses parted her lips. His tongue licked over them, before thrusting inside, before possessing her in a way he knew he should have never tempted.
Because she was sweeter than sweet. Hot as hell. And the pleasure ripped through his senses like a cascading explosion as she moaned against his mouth.
As quickly has he had taken her lips, he released her, jerking back to glare down at her as she stared back in shock, in a pleasure that darkened her gray eyes and flushed her heart shaped face.
“It’s never going to happen,” he snapped, gripping her shoulders to give her a little shake that he prayed would instill some common sense inside her. “Little party girls and Navy SEALs don’t work out Morganna. Stick to the little boys you run with and leave the men alone. You’ll be a hell of a lot safer that way.”
Before she could argue, and he knew she would argue, he turned and strode quickly from the porch and across the yard to the car he left parked in the back lot. Staying with her any longer was out of the question.
Morganna at twenty-one
Being alone sucked. Morganna stared around the living room of the house she had once shared with her parents and her brother. Her parents were dead, her brother was gone more often than he was home, and one day, he wouldn’t be here at all.
Her best friend Raven spend most of her evenings and nights studying the graphics design she had grown so adept at, and Morganna was stuck in an office job she hated.
And she was alone. Because she didn’t have the common sense to let go of a dream and a man that didn’t want her.
She walked through the living room, moving to the shelf of pictures she kept and the memories they brought.
Clint was in most of them. With her, her brother and her parents. Handsome. Tough. Hard. He had always been harder than he should have been, tougher than anyone else around him. And he had ruined her heart for any other man.
But, she was still alone.
Tucked between two of the pictures were the pamphlets she had kept from the Academy. The Law Enforcement Academy was accepting applicants.
She had meant to discuss it with Reno when he was home the week before, but the stay had been a brief one, and he had been exhausted. He had slept the two days he had been home only to have to leave again.
She laid her head against the shelf and closed her eyes. He would worry if he knew anyway. And Clint, jerk that he was, would do everything to stop her. And he could stop her. He had connections in Atlanta, connections she couldn’t afford to let him use. As long as no one knew she was Reno Chavez’s sister, then there wasn’t a chance of anyone saying anything to Clint. And what were the chances to the guys at the Academy would really care to call Reno and let him know jack. Especially if his name wasn’t on her list of contacts.
She tapped her nail against the papers.
She was bored and she was alone. She wanted more than secretarial job going nowhere and a silent house every night. Like Reno, she wanted to make a difference. She wanted more than to keep dreaming of something that didn’t exist.
She sighed wearily. Restlessly. She was tired of just being Reno’s sister. Or Clint McIntyre’s responsibility when Reno wasn’t around. She was tired of being put on a shelf and taken down to perform when they decided to visit.
She was strong enough to be who and what she wanted to be. And she didn’t want to wait on Clint any longer. She pulled the papers from the shelf, shoved them in her purse and grabbed her car keys. She wasn’t waiting any longer.