Lover Undercover
Author:Samanthe Beck

chapter Eight

Trevor sat in a VIP room at Deuces, sipping vodka, waiting for Stacy and fixating on a whole bunch of stuff that had nothing to do with the job. What would she be wearing? How would she dance for him? How was she holding up?

Ramon occupied a dark corner in the back of the room, but for some crazy reason, the possibility of a two-hundred-and-fifty-pound homicidal nut-job lurking nearby didn’t distract his thoughts from Stacy. A half hour of private time with her had quickly become the high point of his day. Among his fellow detectives, he had a reputation as a focused investigator, even a bit of a workaholic. But Stacy scrambled his priorities so badly he had a hard time remembering the real purpose for his visit—a minor matter of solving two murders.

The door opened and Stacy walked in. No, that wasn’t right. She glided through the door in a cloud of vanilla and coconut, looking sleek and sexy. The black cap and large silver-rimmed aviator sunglasses of her stylized chauffeur’s outfit concealed her hair and eyes, adding an air of mystery. She wore a black jacket that fit like a second skin. Beneath, it looked as if she wore nothing except a narrow black necktie. Leather driving gloves covered her hands and a tiny black G-string covered the essentials. The tall, shiny boots he remembered so fondly from a week ago encased her endless legs. When she turned around to shut the door, he enjoyed the way the tails of her coat shifted to offer glimpses of her delectable ass.

Then she turned to face him and sagged against the door. Something in his chest contracted, quick and sharp. Tough little Stacy held up, but it cost her. Thanks to the sunglasses, he couldn’t really gauge just how much, and that frustrated him. He wanted to see her eyes.

“Hello, Trevor.” Her husky voice held a note of resignation. “What would you like tonight?”

“I’d like you to take off the hat and shades.”

She shook her head, dislodging the hat so it tumbled to the floor, and pushed away from the door. “The glasses stay. What kind of dance do you—”

“Fifty bucks to lose them.”

Her lips pursed into the stern pout that always got him right by the balls. “This isn’t an auction. I’m not taking the glasses off.”

He gave her the cop stare, and he prided himself on having a good one, but he got nothing back except his own reflection in the damn mirrored glasses. “Why do you work here, Stacy? For the satisfaction of a job well done?”

“I work here to make money,” she clipped out.

“Strange how you’re turning mine down with some regularity then.”

Her lips parted, ready to fling a response, then slowly closed. She shrugged. “You’re not a real client. I don’t want your money.”

“I’m way beyond a client and you know it. You also know what’s going on here is undeniably real.”

Her face actually paled at the observation. She couldn’t look more skittish if he’d pulled his gun and aimed at her. Fair enough. Rules applied, even in their unusual game. He ought to stick to them, for both their sakes. Physical intimacies everyone expected. There were recognized plays in this particular sport. Emotional intimacies were out of bounds. Lowering his chin, he inhaled deeply. “Come here.”

“I don’t want to.” Her protest barely qualified as a whisper.

“I want you to,” he insisted, and patted his leg like an owner signaling a recalcitrant pet. Apparently he was trapped in the role of asshole tonight.

Reluctantly she obeyed. When she neared, he parted his legs. She stepped between his knees and perched lightly on his thigh, clearly prepared to bolt at the least provocation.

“Relax,” he breathed, nuzzling her ear, slightly light-headed from her nearness, her scent.

“I can’t,” she choked out. Then she burst into tears.

Shit. Completely freaked, he wrapped an arm around her and pulled her closer, until her head rested in the hollow of his shoulder and she more or less collapsed against him. “Don’t,” he begged. “Baby, I’m the oldest of three boys. I can handle a fist to the face, an elbow to the ribs, even a flying tackle. But a woman’s tears? They scare me, straight to the bone.” His confession provoked a quick little hug from her, but the waterworks continued unabated. The way she shook in his arms, the misery in her quiet sobs, simply ripped him apart.

He pulled her glasses off, folded them one-handed, and slipped them into the breast pocket of his black button-down. Bringing his hand back to her cheek, he lifted her face and carefully wiped the tears with his fingertips. One look and he understood her insistence on the glasses. Even in the low lights, he could see shadows under her eyes.

“Stacy, baby, don’t cry. Please.”

If anything, she cried harder. Pressing her face to his chest, she gripped his forearm. “Don’t say my name. Don’t say anything. Just…give me a minute.”

Helpless, he alternated stroking her hair and running a hand over her back while the storm of tears battered her. He wasn’t a good judge, but it seemed to go on a long time. When he couldn’t take any more, he cupped his hand at the base of her head, eased her face away from his chest, and leaned close. “Shhh.” He let his lips brush under one swollen eye, tasted salt and soft skin. She shuddered and a small sound escaped her throat. Eyes closed, arm tight around his neck, she tipped her head back into his hand and offered her lips.

An offer he couldn’t refuse. Trailing his mouth over her damp cheek, he traced the tracks of her tears to the corner of her mouth, swept his tongue along the delicate crevice. Her lips parted. He delved—but gently, cautiously. Her tongue crept closer, slid over his almost tentatively, and then retreated. He held his breath as she approached again. This time her tongue tangled around his, and she sighed. He answered with a tortured groan, and his control slipped away.

Time spiraled while he lost himself in her. Her strawberry-sweet lips, the luscious depths of her mouth, that hot, hungry tongue eagerly tasting everything it could reach. Other subtle inputs registered further back in his mind: the weight of her breasts against his chest, taut nipples jutting through the jacket and his shirt. The curve of her hip wedged tight in his lap. When she closed her lips around his tongue and sucked long and slow, his dick sprang to attention and thrust hopefully against her thigh, as if to say, “Me, too!”

Without breaking the kiss, she shifted slightly and, next thing he knew, fondled him through his pants. On a strangled groan, he drew back and, against her mouth, said, “We need to talk.”

“Don’t talk,” she pleaded, lips brushing his while, down below, he throbbed to life in her hand. Even as his imagination replaced her hand with her soft, moist mouth, his mind tried to apply the brakes. Yes, undercover work allowed physical intimacy within certain boundaries, but a hand job exceeded the limits. Too bad his dick didn’t care.

Clinging to reason, he tried again. “Stacy, stop. I need to talk to you.” His voice held a thread of desperation—a plea—but she wasn’t in a merciful mood. She gripped him hard, and drew her clenched fist slowly up his shaft, wringing an agonized curse from him.

“Let me,” she whispered, more a demand than a request. “Tell me what you want.”

He wanted to tell her to stop; needed to tell her to stop. Instead, he grabbed her waist, buried his face in the warm, fragrant curve of her neck, and begged. “Christ, do that again. A little faster.”

She did, again and again. Not so much expertly as attentively, like every shudder and twitch of his body fascinated her. He barely registered her reactions, too distracted by the pressure building between his legs. He must have made some sound of protest—or warning—because she squeezed his balls and repeated, “Let me.”

“Jesus. I—okay.” In less than a minute, he was an inarticulate mess, begging in one-word bursts of “faster…harder,” and fighting a nearly overpowering instinct to push her down onto her hands and knees, tear off the scrap of lace between her legs, and thrust so deep inside her she’d think they were conjoined.

She leaned in, closed her lips around his earlobe, and bit down. Bright light flashed behind his clenched eyelids, the few brain cells he had left imploded, and he came with a strangled groan.

A flat voice behind him called out, “Time’s up. Fifteen minutes to close.”

She kissed his slack mouth. He tried to move his lips and capture hers, but wasn’t quick enough. She was already sliding away. “I need to talk to you.” Christ, his voice sounded like tires on gravel, and achieved about the same traction. Stacy slipped out the door.

“Thanks for the escort, Gary.” Kylie dug the keys out of her bag as they started across the parking lot.

“No problem, Stace. Nice job tonight. I notice you picked up a new regular.”

Trevor. Her stupid heart skipped a beat. “Yeah.”

“Ramon says he likes to bend the rules.”

Word was getting out. The realization sent claws of alarm skittering up her spine. “He’s fine. Good tipper.”

As they closed in on the yellow Bug, Gary said, “Don’t let the good tips get in the way of your good sense. If this guy crosses the line, you let me know.”

“Stacy, I need to talk to you,” a deep voice cut in from the shadows on the other side of the car. Trevor was little more than a dim outline, but she’d know him anywhere.

“It’s quarter to three,” Gary barked. “Talk to her tomorrow. We’re closed.”

Trevor ignored the blond man. “I’ll drive you home.”

Eyes on Trevor, she told Gary, “It’s okay.” To Trevor, she said, “I can’t. I’ve got to be somewhere first thing tomorrow. I need my car.”

Crossing his arms on the roof of the Bug, he looked at her, his expression inscrutable. “All right, you drive me home.”

“Get in.” She tapped a button on her key fob and popped the locks.

As Trevor got in, Gary whispered, “Ah, dammit, what are you doing? You don’t get involved with the clients. Never mix business and pleasure. I thought you were smarter than this.”

“Gary…” She crossed her arms and banked her frustration. “It’s not what you think. Don’t worry. I know what I’m doing.”

“I used to think so, but lately, Stace, I’m not so sure.” With that, he stalked off.

Yeah, well, join the club, she thought miserably as she opened the driver’s side door and climbed in. She slammed the door, started the car, and drove to the exit. Finally, because she couldn’t ignore him any longer, she turned and faced Trevor. “Which way?”

Straight to hell, Trevor thought, where he’d been since last Friday night, when he’d arrived at the scene of a homicide and found himself drowning in the deepest blue eyes he’d ever seen.

Those same eyes faced him now, holding a fascinating mixture of anger, desire, and fear. Anger and desire he could handle, give back in spades, but the fear clutched at him. Was she afraid of a killer at large? Afraid someone might discover whatever secret she guarded? Or was she afraid of him?

Instead of asking, he gave her directions to his place, and then sat back and let the silence balloon while she drove. Sure, it was a psych 101 tactic, but often effective. People—women particularly—grew uncomfortable with prolonged silence. Discomfort compelled them to fill the void with conversation, and once the words started flowing, revealing monologues often followed.

Not Stacy. He stared at her profile as the minutes ticked away. Apparently it would take more than silence to crack her tough little shell. Uninvited, images of how he’d like to crack it filled his mind. He wanted her under him, wanted to bury himself inside her, wanted to hear her scream his name as she came.

Maybe his breathing changed, or maybe she read his mind, but she glanced over at him with big, wary eyes. “Stop looking at me like that.” Her voice sounded a little breathless. “I’m not on the job.”

“What, you think just because you’re not airbrushed with makeup and wearing some skimpy costume you don’t turn heads? You’re a beautiful woman. Truth is, you’re even more beautiful now, in a T-shirt and”—he eyed her tight black pants—“whatever the hell those things are. You don’t need to dance around in heels and a G-string to make me want you.” He gave her a moment to let that sink in. “Turn right up here. I’m the third house on the right.”

She drew in a shaky breath and looked at him again. “Do you? Want me, I mean?”

“You know damn well I do,” he said, not bothering to hide his irritation. The deliberately naive question reminded him this was some kind of act on her part.

Stopping in front of the flagstone driveway of his Laurel Canyon bungalow, she turned to him. Her eyes homed in on his fly. He felt the weight of her stare as palpably as a touch, and his body responded accordingly. Her sharply indrawn breath assured him she noticed, even in the darkened interior of the car.

“You have the same effect on me,” she confessed. Without seeming to realize it, she leaned closer. Her lips parted. “I’ve never wanted—”

Him either. They lunged at each other, mouths ravenous. He cupped her jaw in one hand, splayed the other along the back of her head. Her fingers dove into his hair and held on. When her hot mouth started roaming his chin, taking hungry nips from his jaw, he pulled her over the seat, sprang the door, and half-lifted, half-dragged her out of the car. “Inside,” he ground out between kisses. “Now.”

Somehow they made it across the front yard and in the door. As soon as he got the damn thing closed, he backed her up against it. Hands planted on either side of her head, he leaned in and captured her lips again. Sweet as berries, soft as cream against his tongue.

He feasted like a starving man until they were both breathless. Slightly dizzy, he pulled back, hit the lights, and looked at her. Heavy-lidded eyes, flushed cheeks, and damp lips greeted him. A pulse beat erratically at the base of her throat. Then those slumberous eyes blinked open and wide, dilated pupils fixed on him.

Her hand curved along the back of his neck. She tipped her head back and whispered, “Please,” with such a mixture of longing and despair, something tightened in his chest. Something in the vicinity of his heart. Lowering his forehead to hers, he tried one last time.

“Tell me what you’re hiding. You can trust me.”

She closed her eyes. Her fingers curled into his shirt. “I wish I could tell you,” she breathed. “I can’t. I promised someone—”

“If this person cares about you, they don’t want you to put yourself in danger.” He drew back slightly to gauge the effect of his argument.

She simply shook her head, and then leveled a conflicted gaze on him. “It’s nothing like that. I’m not holding back information that would solve this case.”

“But it’s related. Otherwise you wouldn’t be so nervous. Tell me.”

“I can’t.” She winced as she said it. “I have to, um, take the fifth.”

His hands tightened on her arms. “Are you involved in something illegal?”

The wince turned into a look of pure misery. “I don’t know. Maybe. But talking about it won’t help you find a killer. It would just look”—troubled eyes fled from his and took refuge somewhere over his shoulder—“bad.”

He took her chin and pulled her attention back to him. “Bad for whom?”

“For everyone.” Tilting away from his grasp, she shook her head and gave him a weak smile, filled with regret. “I should go. This is a terrible idea. I’m no good for you. Getting involved with me is going to land us both in trouble.”

She was right. Getting tangled up with her bent all kind of rules, but when she turned and opened the door, all he thought was, Hell, no. Following instinct rather than reason, he reached over her head and slammed it closed. She jumped, but stubbornly faced the door.

He leaned in, trapping her with his body. Inhaling her familiar scent, he said, “You’ve taught me something about myself.”

Into the swelling silence she released a pent-up breath. “What’s that?”

“I like bad girls.” He grazed his teeth along her neck, provoking an aroused little moan from her. “One in particular, I can’t resist. I may have to take you into protective custody.”

He braced her palms on the door, nudged her feet apart with one of his, and then sent his hands under the hem of her T-shirt, up the silken ladder of her ribs. She moaned again when he cupped her breasts. Her hips shifted restlessly against him when he squeezed.

“Oh, God. Are you frisking me?” Helpfully, she stepped out of her flip-flops. “I’m unarmed. I promise.”

“You were born with weapons, and you know it.” Tugging her bra out of his way, he feathered his fingers over her puckered nipples. Her low, guttural cry of appreciation went high and sharp when he pinched lightly. Before she could recover, he grabbed the bottom of the shirt, whisked it over her head, and then coaxed her arms higher so he could pull the garment off.

After pressing her forearms to the door, he kissed his way down her back, pausing to unhook her bra. She shivered as it sprang open. Kneeling behind her, he sent his hands around to her breasts again and got to work there while his tongue slid over the curve of her spine.

“The thing is…,” she panted.

He rested his hand low on her stomach and swept his tongue under the band of her leggings. Her abs tightened beneath his palm. He scraped his teeth along her skin. “Thing is?”

Her forehead bonked against the door. “Ah…jeez. The thing is, I’m really not—”

Without further warning, he yanked her pants down, baring her spectacular ass to his view, save for the little black triangle of her thong.

“Oh!” she gasped.

He cupped her cheeks, thumbs riding along the undersides and lifting slightly. Then he ran a finger under the back of her thong, all the way down between her parted thighs. Toned muscles trembled. “You’re really not what?” he prompted, brushing his lips against her smooth flesh.

He sank his teeth into one luscious cheek, slid his finger beneath the panties and straight to the slick little pad of flesh throbbing for his attention. Her whole body stiffened and she gasped, “Oh, Lord. I’m really not a bad girl. I’m not. I’m not,” repeating the denial like a rosary prayer.

Nibbling and licking his way to the other cheek, he used one hand to work the tights off her legs while the other stayed busy delving between her thighs, circling and retreating. She arched and writhed in a dance he found far more erotic than any routine she performed at Deuces.

“I know,” he murmured. Hand on her hips, he spun her around, and knelt there until her dazed, blurry gaze locked on his. “I know,” he repeated, and nudged his face between her legs, then turned and kissed the inside of one trembling thigh.

“Trevor,” she panted, “I’m not…I don’t know…”

“Shhh.” He kissed the other thigh, and then watched her as he hitched that thigh over his shoulder and kissed her in between—where she was soft and wet and incredibly hot.

“Please…” Her head fell back. Her hands sank into his hair, fingers curving to overlap at the back of his head while her body arched up to meet his mouth.

“I’m about to please you,” he assured her. Then he dragged her panties aside and used his tongue.

Her knees buckled when she came, but he caught her, held her tight, and devoured every sweet, fluttering pulse of her orgasm.