I just can’t get over this book…. One of my favorites ever! Click here to read my review then enjoy the deleted scene 🙂 Oh and don’t forget the giveaway at the end! xx
“One day I’m going to touch you in a thousand different ways and show you how to touch me,” he said.
And he did.
Struggling with a tormented past, undergraduate Olivia Winter once led a practical but isolated life. Then she met Professor Dean West, a brilliant scholar of medieval history who melted Liv’s inhibitions and taught her the meaning of both love and erotic pleasure. But after three years of a blissful, lusty marriage, Liv and Dean now face a crisis that threatens everything they believe about each other. And when dark secrets and temptations rise to the surface, the fallout might break them apart forever.
I had good reason to distrust men, to shy away from them, even sometimes to be afraid of them. Except Dean. Never once did I feel the slightest hesitation about him. Not from the second I looked up and saw him standing on the other side of the counter at the registrar’s office.
Several weeks after I told him about my past, he come over to my apartment to watch a movie—some foreign thing about Cardinal Richelieu that was so slow I started to get sleepy less than halfway through. Dean, who apparently found the movie interesting, was commenting on the depiction of the Huguenots when I fell asleep.
I rarely slept well. A persistent unease filtered through my dreams—not nightmares exactly, but the strange sense that something was wrong, that danger was imminent.
Someone shook me by the shoulder. I startled awake, my heart pounding, uncertain for an instant where I even was.
“Liv?” A second hand closed on my other shoulder.
Dean’s face came into focus in front of me, his eyebrows drawn together with concern. Just the sight of him eased the tightness in my chest, the lingering fear. I knew where I was then. I knew I was safe.
“You were twisting and turning. Restless, like you were upset.” He pushed my hair away from my face. “You okay?”
“Yeah.” I sat up. “Sorry. I just…sometimes I don’t sleep all that well.”
“Just…I don’t know.” I pressed my hands against my cheeks, unsure how to explain my broken sleep. “I didn’t sleep well as a kid. Sometimes I still don’t.”
“Bad memories, I guess. I spent a lot of time trying to sleep on lumpy sofas or living room floors. Never really learned how to get comfortable.”
I pulled my knees to my chest and rested my chin on them. He sat down and tugged the blanket away from me. I took that as the invitation it was and scooted over to tuck myself against him. He smelled like soap, a hint of laundry detergent clinging to his shirt.
He brushed his lips across my forehead. “Happen often?”
I shrugged. “More often than I’d like. I wake up a lot. Can’t settle down easily.”
We sat there for a long time. My heartbeat and breathing eased back to normal. Dean’s body against mine was warm, solid.
I shifted to look at him, drawing my gaze over the sharp planes of his face and jaw, his thick eyelashes. Already he’d become so familiar to me, so comforting. His presence alone made me happy in ways I’d never felt before.
It was all new and different. Uncertain.
“What?” Dean asked.
“I don’t know. I’m just…a little scared.”
“Not of me,” he said.
I almost laughed. “I’m scared of most other men, but you?” I shook my head. “Never.”
“Good.” He slid his hand around to the back of my neck and pulled me closer. He settled his mouth against mine, and that simple touch made my blood warm like honey in the sun.
“So what is it?” he murmured against my lips.
I knew to my bones I could be nothing less than completely honest with him.
“I don’t want this to end,” I whispered.
“Neither do I.” He studied me for a minute, then tucked a lock of my hair behind my ear. “You think it’s going to?”
“Isn’t that the way things work?” I asked. “Don’t good things always end?”
“Not always.” Something dark flashed in his eyes. “I hate whatever made you think like that.”
So did I. And I wasn’t looking for his pity or even his sympathy. It was just the plain truth of my childhood. I’d had good things in my life—my father, decent friends, places that were secure if unconventional—and they’d all gone. I’d even lost touch with friends from high school and college, likely because I’d learned to be distant with people.
Maybe because of that, because of him, this particular good thing wouldn’t end.
He put his other hand on my hip and tugged me against his chest. A little more shifting and he was lying back on the sofa with me sprawled on top of him. I loved the feeling of his strong, lean body beneath mine, his big hands splayed on my lower back.
I threaded my hands into his hair and lowered my lips to his. Pressed a little harder to urge his mouth open—not that he needed encouragement. Our tongues tangled together. His kisses were always easy and intoxicating, filling my blood with warmth and pleasure.
He slipped one of his hands beneath my T-shirt and rubbed my bare skin, then eased his fingers beneath the elastic of my yoga pants. Then lower so his hand covered my bottom, the heat of his palm burning through my underwear. I shivered, sighed. I wanted his fingers lower. Even through his jeans, I felt the press of his erection against my thigh.
I lifted my head to look at him. Desire simmered in his eyes, but even then I knew it wouldn’t happen tonight. At least, not all the way.
But that didn’t mean we couldn’t be intimate. I moved my hand between our bodies to cup his groin. His heavy bulge pressed against my palm. Lust jolted through me. He winced a little and shifted, then grabbed my wrist.
“Liv. Not yet.”
I tried to swallow my disappointment.
“Okay.” I started to move away from him.
A hoarse laugh rumbled in his chest. He grabbed me and hauled me against him again, cupping a hand to the back of my head so he could quite thoroughly and deliciously plunder my mouth. I went all soft and mushy, like ice cream melting on hot apple pie.
“I meant,” he murmured, “not yet for you.”
I didn’t get it. I stared down at him again.
“Uh huh.” A wicked glint shone in his beautiful dark eyes. My pulse rate kicked up higher.
“Um…what does that mean?”
In response, he pulled me down alongside him. On my sofa, it was a tight but cozy fit. I hooked a leg over his hip and felt his cock so hard beneath his jeans I ached to take it out, stroke my fingers over his smooth length. I hadn’t even seen him naked yet, but God in heaven, I didn’t want to wait much longer.
“Dean, are you sure…”
“I’m sure.” His voice was strained, but unyielding.
I was oh so tempted to try and change his mind, but then he spread his hand flat on my belly and down into my pants. Again, not beneath my underwear. I squirmed, spread my legs farther apart in invitation. A very thin layer of cotton prevented him from touching my bare sex.
I was certain he’d slip his adept fingers under the elastic, that any minute now I’d feel his forefinger probing into me…I thrust my hips upward to give him a hint. He gave another low chuckle and pressed his lips to mine while dragging a finger along the folds of my panties.
“Dean.” His mouth was so warm. My blood filled with light and heat.
“Yeah.” The tip of his finger teased harder.
He pressed the flat of his hand right against the place where I ached the most acutely. I writhed hard and rubbed my breasts against his chest to soothe my tingling nipples. He pressed the damp cotton of my panties into my cleft and worked his fingers in slow, delicious circles that had me soaring toward a climax faster than I wanted to go.
I curled my fingers into his shirt and held on as he stroked me faster, as if sensing I was about to shatter. I pushed my tongue into his mouth, gasping, straining, and then one more hard rub made the tension snap into a riot of color and sensation.
I sank against him and tried to breathe while he worked the last vibrations from me. He pulled his hands from my pants, a self-satisfied and hot expression flashing in his eyes. I pressed my hand against his crotch again.
“I want to do it for you,” I said.
“I want that too. More than you know. But not today.”
“Because when you do, you have to be sure about us.”
“I am sure about us,” I said, forcing the candid confession out. “It’s just…not a lot of people have stuck around in my life.”
“I’m not a lot of people.”
No. He was different from anyone I’d ever known.
“But even you can’t change my past,” I said.
“We can change your future.”
I didn’t realize until later that we already had.
One digital copy of Arouse (mobi or e-pub) is up for grabs!
The giveaway is open internationally. All you have to do is comment below and tell me your favorite book(s) of 2013 so far! While you’re at it, head over to Jessy’s Book Club on Facebook and like the page
Giveaway closes on Friday 3 May 2013 at 17:00 EST.
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