Divine Deception was so much fun for me to write. This couple doesn’t want to like each other, but when their sex becomes hot and heavy, their hearts can’t help but tangle in the deceit.
EXCERPT:The moment he’d arrived on the property, Nick had lived up to his playboy reputation, letting her hit on him in the field. The lame excuse about Joseph had been as obvious as the erection tenting his Levis. She had no doubt he knew the man was terribly ill. Well, she’d gone for broke and melted in his presence like some love-struck teenager drooling over her first crush. It had been almost too easy. Everything was moving in the right direction. It pissed her off that her body hadn’t gotten the memo about remaining aloof. Though her lips had barely feathered over his, he’d left her panting and weak-kneed as he strode back to his Harley.She turned back to her lab table and the grapes that needed to be assessed for sugar content. “Well, at least he’s not too hard on the eyes.”“What?”
She wheeled around at the sound of Nick’s voice. As if her thoughts had conjured him, he stood there, all six feet of solid danger wrapped in black leather, sucking the air from the room.
“Mr. Gradin, I didn’t hear you come down the stairs.” She was pleased the words were delivered evenly and without a nervous stutter.
“Please, call me Nick.” He slipped his hands into his back pockets and tipped back on the well-worn heels of his biker boots. A silver hoop earring winked at her from below the short crop of hair. Dark spikes, highlighted with bronze framed a strong face and accented the growth of beard shadowing his jaw. He oozed confidence. A sense of superiority sparked in the gold of his eyes but she needed to ignore it or it would just piss her off. Anger wasn’t the angle she was looking for here.
“Have you come to assess the wines?” she asked coyly. “I was just going to do that myself.” Frankie shot a quick glance at the grapes in the baggie then back to him. “Well, after I do the sugar levels on the fruit from the vineyard. I’m thinking we can begin the harvest next week. The pinot noirs are right on schedule. I’m planning on getting the netting out in the next couple of days to protect the grapes from the hungry birds.” The words were tumbling out too fast for comfort and she bit down hard on her tongue to keep it still. A seductress shouldn’t be nervous.
The man stared at her, a smile curving his arrogant mouth. A mouth accented by full lips that could probably bring hours of sinful enjoyment to a woman’s flesh. Well at least her business would also be pleasure. That thought brought a smile.
“There should be a shiraz we’re looking to bottle in the next couple of weeks?” His gaze traveled slowly up the tall rubber boots, over the stained apron covering her thighs and tummy and lingered on her breasts. She held her breath not wanting him to see how hard she was finding it to fill her lungs. With tantalizing seduction, he dragged his eyes to meet hers. “If you wouldn’t mind, I’d love to have a sample.” He arched a thick brow. The double entendre was not lost on Frankie. He was making this so damn easy.
Grabbing two glasses and the wine syringe, Frankie invited him to follow her to the back room. Recessed lighting ran under the edges of the low-hanging ceiling, washing the room in its golden hue. Wine casks lay on their side in the metal framework. These barrels held the wines she had nurtured for years, mixing and tasting until the blend was smooth and full bodied. Now she’d see them bottled and never know the satisfaction of another wine well aged in her own cellar. Frankie swallowed the sadness before turning back and handing the glasses to the man behind her. She pulled the stopper from one of the casks, inserted the thief into the hole, pulled back the syringe and extracted a generous amount of wine.
“How long have you been working with Joseph?” The question was casual but the condescending smile Nick flashed pissed her off.
Frankie released wine from the oversized syringe into a glass rather than over his head and the cocksure asshole in front of her offered the second. “A few years,” she said sweetly.
“It took me years to work the thief. I’m not sure I could do it today without having wine all over the floor.” Nick swirled the wine in the glass and brought it to his nose. “Joseph’s a good teacher. You’re lucky he took you under his wing. He doesn’t open his cellars to just anyone.”
Oh, she wanted to hit him. He acted as if she wasn’t good enough for Mill Tavern wine cellars. Frankie set the thief on the barrel and took the glass from him. Lifting it to her nose, she took a slow, steady breath as if savoring the shiraz’s bouquet but actually using the moment to tamp down her irritation. “He’s been gracious sharing his knowledge.”
One corner of Nick’s mouth curved. “Not blending the grapes I hope.” He swirled the wine in the muted light and watched its fat legs descend the sides of the glass. “I mean, those are family secrets.”
Either he had no idea who she was, or Nicholas Gradin IV thought family had to do with blood rather than sweat, tears and love. She opted to believe the former. “That’s true.” Frankie sipped the wine, tasting nothing but resentment. Sharing her thoughts would get her nowhere, so she opted to focus on the superb vintage in her hands and save the confrontation for another time. “What do you think?” She lifted the glass.
Pulling the burgundy liquid into his mouth, the man closed his eyes and savored it on his palate. She hadn’t known tasting wine could be so sensual, but as he swallowed, Frankie couldn’t take her eyes from the pulse in his throat.
“Full bodied with a rounded flavor of plum.” He paused and sucked his bottom lip into his mouth.
Frankie pressed her thighs together against the heavy ache in her womb. What she wouldn’t give to have that mouth on her.