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A Baby for the Boss(4)

By:Maureen Child



“Really hate to move from this spot,” Mike said, “but I’ve got to get down to the convention floor early.”

“I know. Me, too.” Jenny cuddled in closer. “My uncle needs me to set up his booth. He can’t get here until tomorrow, so...”

Mike ran one hand up and down her back and his fingertips felt like tiny sparks of heat against her skin.

“Yeah?” Mike asked, his voice low and slow and lazy. “Who’s your uncle?”

“Hmm?” She was nearly hypnotized by the slide of his fingers and the deep rumble of his voice. “Oh. Hank Snyder,” she whispered. “He owns Snyder Arts.”

Mike suddenly went still. His hand dropped from her back and she felt a hard shift in the lovely little glow they’d been sharing. Then there was a physical shift as Mike pushed to a sitting position and rolled Jenny right off his chest.

She plopped onto the bed and stared up at him. “What?”

“Hank Snyder?” Mike jumped out of bed and stood staring down at her with a wild, dark gleam in his eyes, sharp as a knife blade. With the morning light streaming in through the window behind him, he looked like a naked avenging angel.

The haze in her mind was clearing and a cold, sinking sensation opened in the pit of her stomach. Slowly, she sat up and tugged the blankets over her breasts. Pushing one hand through her hair, she shoved blond curls out of her eyes and met his hard gaze with a look of confusion. “What’s wrong?” she asked. “Do you know my uncle?”

He snorted. “Wow. That’s really good. The little hint of innocence in your voice? Nice touch.”

Completely confused now, she shook her head. People should not be expected to be coherent in the morning before several cups of coffee. “Innocence? What?”

“Oh, drop it,” Mike snapped and stalked across the room to snatch up his clothes. He dragged them on as he talked, flicking her quick, icy glances. “Gotta say, you were good.”

“What are you talking about?” The sheet where he’d been lying only a moment ago was rapidly cooling and she shivered in response. “Good at what? You’re not making sense.”

“Sure. You’re confused.” Mike nodded. “You know, I bought the whole act last night, but trying to keep it up now, when I know who you are, is only pissing me off.”

She didn’t have the first clue what he was so angry about, but her own temper was beginning to boil in self-defense. How could they have gone from lovemaking, to snuggling, to spitting ice at each other all in the blink of an eye?

“Will you just tell me what’s going on?”

“What I don’t get is how you knew I’d be in the bar last night.” He pulled his long-sleeved white shirt on and buttoned it with an almost eerie calm that belied the fury in his voice and eyes.

“I didn’t know—heck, I didn’t even know I was going to be in the bar last night until just before I went in.”

“Sure. Your uncle,” Mike said, nodding. “He had to have planned all this for you anyway.”

“What does Uncle Hank have to do with us?”

He laughed but there was no charm or humor in it. “Everything, sweetheart, and we both know it. Snyder Arts has been trying to get us to incorporate their programs into our games for the past year and a half.” His gaze dropped to her chest, then lifted to her eyes again. “Looks like Ol’ Hank finally decided to pull out the big guns.”

Every word Mike said echoed weirdly in her mind until at last, Jenny understood what he meant. What he was accusing her of. Anger leaped into a full boil in the pit of her stomach. Her heart pounded crazily and she felt as if she couldn’t catch her breath. Her mind racing, Jenny practically leaped out of bed, preferring to meet her accuser on her feet. She held the blanket up in front of her like a shield that could somehow protect her from the ice in his eyes.

“You think my uncle sent me here to have sex with you?” God, she could barely force the words past her tight throat. “So I could convince you to use his arts program?”

“That about sums it up,” Mike said flatly.

Jenny’s brain burned. She was torn between insult, fury and complete humiliation. Instantly, images of the night before streamed through her mind like a movie on fast-forward. She saw him, over her, staring into her eyes as his body claimed hers. She saw herself, straddling him, taking him deep inside her. And she felt in that flash of heat the pleasure, the sense of completion his every touch caused. Then the mind movie ended abruptly, and she was here, in this sunlit room, staring at a stranger who now knew her body intimately, but her heart and soul not at all.

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