Authors: Aliyah Burke
Adam eyed him sideways. “You aren’t going to have a problem with a woman pilot?”
He smirked. “I get in the Army you didn’t fight with women but in the Corps, a Marine is a Marine. She can do her job, I’m good.” He turned his attention to Derek. “And to answer your question. Fuck off. You know I don’t like people in my house. No one is there and had I brought someone back from Belize you would have seen her at the airport.” He unlocked his door and slid in. He gave them all a brief wave and he drove away, looking forward to claiming some more sleep for himself.
“Does all that make sense, Alyse?”
She pulled off her black leather gloves as Rhodi held the door for her, then shoved them in the pockets of her bomber jacket. The heat had her sighing with relief. Cold wasn’t her friend but this job had been such that she’d ignored where it was and just applied. It wasn’t winter here
“I got it. You all have a nice set-up here.”
D.A.R.K. Cover, Inc headquarters was a nice two-story building and they had their own private airstrip. She’d looked over the plane she would be flying for them. They also had helicopters he showed her in case that was what she was needed for. Either worked for her, she could fly fixed or rotary wing.
She had to give the scenery props. This was her first time, other than the interviews, to Montana. She’d pictured it as a barren wasteland. It wasn’t even close.
“And you have a place picked out?”
“I got one, yes. I’m in the town so maybe fifteen minutes from here, especially if I go the speed limit. I can make it faster if necessary.”
Rhodi grinned. “Perfect, I think you’ll fit right in here. I know you’ve met Derek and you’ve talked via the phone to Adam, but let’s go introduce you to the other two that make up D.A.R.K. Cover.” He led the way down the hall to the elevator bay.
Alyse returned Karen’s wave as they passed the front desk, once Rhodi had given her a wink and his own smile. She learned that Karen had worked here before than married Rhodi. The attractive blonde was sweet and their child Brayden was adorable.
Adam. Derek. Rhodi. Kristopher. Four brothers who were the owners and operators of D.A.R.K. Cover, Inc. Bodyguards and rescuemen if the situation called for them to fill those shoes. Things she greatly respected and admired.
They entered a conference style room and she saw Derek immediately. He sent her a large grin accompanied by a wink.
It didn’t matter to her, he could flirt all he wanted, he was out of luck in that department. She
mixed business with pleasure.
“Derek,” Rhodi said. “You remember, Ms Lamar.”
He stood and she couldn’t help but admire his looks. Even dressed casually he was a man who took your attention. So was Rhodi. Another man stepped from the back and she gave him a smile.
Damn, all these men are hot.
With their dark hair and eyes they had her thinking things one shouldn’t when imagining their employer.
“Of course, I do,” Derek said. “Glad to have you on board.” He took her hand and bent over it brushing a kiss along the back.
She shook her head and smiled at him. The next man stepped up and offered his hand. “I’m Adam, Ms Lamar. Nice to finally meet you in person instead of over the phone.”
She took his hand and did her best not to ogle the way these men filled out their jeans. “Please, don’t call me Ms Lamar. Call me Alyse.”
His grin was just as potent as Derek’s. Hell, even Rhodi’s wasn’t anything to ignore but she was well aware his attention was taken by Karen. She respected that. Plus, again, she didn’t mix business with pleasure.
She glanced about the room. “Is Kristopher not here?”
“He’s on his way,” Rhodi informed her.
“Why don’t we sit down and I’ll fill you in on your first job with us,” Adam said.
They all sat and Adam pulled out a remote and within moments there were images on a screen she’d not previously noticed on the wall. She removed her jacket and hung it over the back of her chair then leaned forward paying attention.
“Our newest client is in Arizona,” he stated. “This,” he gestured to the image behind him, “is where you will land the jet. A small out of the way airfield in the middle of the desert.”
She gazed at the picture. Not a decent runway but better than some she’d done. “Okay, not a problem.”
“We leave tomorrow morning at Oh-four-hundred.”
She made note of that in her phone and began to stand. All three of them looked at her. She paused. “I’m sorry, I didn’t think you wanted me to know more than where we were going. I drop Adam and Derek off then return here. Would you like me to stay?”
“Normally, no, we wouldn’t. We’d just give you the destination at the airstrip. I was hoping Kristopher would show up. You can leave, it doesn’t matter, you’re not flying him anyway and we can do introductions later. Welcome aboard, Alyse.”
She slipped on her jacket, and sent all of them a nod. “Thank you. I’ll see you two in the morning.”
Derek sent another sexy grin her direction. “Can’t wait.”
She didn’t comment, just walked out and headed to the stairs. She jogged down them instead of taking the elevator. Pausing in the lobby, she waved to Karen and reached for her gloves when the front door opened. Then her heart stopped.
It can’t be.
But it was. The man striding through that door was none other than the man she’d spent that amazing night with in Belize. Wild.
He spied her a moment later and froze. She took in his dark blond hair, the broad shoulders covered by a black leather jacket and jeans that highlighted powerful legs. He had black boots on his feet.
“Hi, Wild!” Karen called out.
“Karen,” he responded without taking his gaze off Alyse.
He advanced toward her, each step predatory. Alyse knew she was in trouble when her legs grew weak and all she wanted to do was jump him and allow him to do whatever he wanted to her.
“Alyse,” he said on a soft rumble.
She couldn’t stop staring at him. The stubble on his face made her mind relive every second his head was buried between her legs or rubbing along her breasts. Her belly clenched and her breasts grew heavy with want.
He stopped right before her. Close enough to touch, close enough to smell his masculine scent which had combined perfectly with the crisp air from outdoors.
She put her hands in her pockets to keep from reaching for him. “So, Kristopher Wilder?”
“Everyone calls me Wild,” he said by way of explanation. His blue eyes singed her. “Well, there are some people who have been known to scream my name, we both know you fall into that category.”
At Karen’s gasp Alyse flushed. This was not how she wanted her first day of work to go. Not at all.
“Good to see you. I have to go, have a flight tomorrow and I need to unpack a few things yet.”
“Where are you staying?”
“In town. And no, I won’t give you the address.”
“Why not?” He stepped closer. “We were very good together.”
mix business with pleasure.” She made to step around him and he gripped her arm, halting her. Alyse held his gaze, lifting a brow at his action, even while on the inside she trembled by his touch.
“We have a lot to discuss, you and I, Alyse.”
“I see you met our new pilot, Wild. Thanks for being on time.” Adam’s droll voice reached them.
“Yeah,” he said with a slight drawl. “I’m looking forward to her being my pilot.”
“Sorry, she’s taking Rhodi and Derek to Arizona tomorrow. Had you been here, perhaps you could have gone instead.”
“Mind letting go of my arm?” she asked.
“I mind,” he replied softly so only the two of them could hear it. “I mind a lot but I will let you go for now. Expect me later.”
How pathetic am I for missing his touch on my arm?
She didn’t respond, just finished putting on her gloves and walking away without a look back. The heat from his gaze bore into her back as she made her way to her Subaru B9 Tribeca. Expelling a sharp breath as she closed the door behind her, she shook her head.
“This just got awkward on a whole new level. I can’t believe I fucked one of my bosses. Only to me would this happen.” She started the engine and drove away without a look back. “And here I thought I was safe having something in Belize.” Alyse stared at herself in the rearview. “Shows what I get for thinking.”
She parked at her apartment building and climbed out. Locking it as she walked to her new place, she headed inside, berating herself the entire trip, and carrying the food she’d stopped to pick up on her way. Once inside, she leaned against the door and moaned. “What the hell have I gotten myself into this time?”
She toed off her shoes as she placed the bags on the chair by the door so she could shrug out of her jacket. Bags back in hand, she went to the kitchen and set her items on the counter.
“I really need to go grocery shopping, I can’t keep eating out like this.”
Eating out wasn’t a luxury she normally afforded herself, but lately, she had been so busy with this move and settling in this new place she’d yet to go. Now, given the news she would be flying out tomorrow there wasn’t point in going anyway.
After she changed into sweats and a tank top, she headed to eat her take out. She stabbed the pancit noodles and tried to work out in her head how this would play out. “Maybe it won’t be so bad. There’s a pilot for each brother, basically. I can hope I don’t have to fly Wild.”
Her body responded to just the memory of him. And what he did to, and for, her. She shifted on the chair and bit back her whimper of longing.
I’m in so much trouble. No matter how I look at it. There are no rose glasses big enough to show me I’m not wading through it, this time.
Alyse finished eating, cleaned up, and got back to unpacking. When she reached the photo of the small dark-haired boy, she paused and touched his face.
“Hang in there, Ricki.” She put the picture on her shaky dresser. There was an identical photo of him in her locket she also wore. Her nephew, Ricardo, called Ricki by family, was battling cancer. Staring at the image she found her resolve to keep business business. “I can always buy more batteries.”
She spent the afternoon putting away the few boxes she’d arrived with and turning the small one-bedroom apartment into something more like home. As she decided what to have for dinner, her phone rang. She eyed the screen.
“Five minutes and I’ll be at your door. Let me in, I’m bringing food.”
Immediately her breathing deepened and she felt the urge to rub herself against something, preferably something hard. Wild would work. The man in her thoughts hung up before she could drag her mind out of the gutter and the memories of her time in Belize with him and refute him stopping by her place.
She groaned and allowed her head to rap hard against the counter. “I can’t even question how he got my address.”
Sure enough there was a sharp knock on her door five minutes later. She muttered things to herself as she walked across the small space to face the man on the other side. With a final deep breath, she turned the knob and opened the door.
Damn, this man is just too fine.
His rectangular semi rimless sunglasses with their polar gray lenses hid his Mediterranean blue eyes from her. He’d rid himself of the scruff on his face from earlier and she wasn’t sure what to make of that. His mid-length dark brown leather jacket fell about to the top of his strong thighs and she wanted to run her hands over it.
Then under it because I know exactly what is there.
He held a plastic bag in one hand and had his other in a pocket. “You planning on letting me in, Alyse? Or did you want to stare at me some more?” A sexy grin lifted his lips and he used his free hand to remove his shades. “Because I’m all for that. I’ll strip for you and you can look all you want. So long as I can do the same.”
Tempting. Oh, so tempting. She bit the inside of her cheek and stepped back to allow him entrance. “No thanks, I meant what I said earlier,” she said as the door clicked behind him.
He went directly to her kitchen and placed the bag down. Then he faced her and shrugged out of the jacket. Shit! His tee molded tight to his large upper body, not hiding any of the muscles he sported. The bottom of it, hung over his waistband but not enough to hide his impressive size.
Wild raked his gaze over her that perpetual sexy expression of his in place then strode toward her. His hands were in her hair and his lips on hers before she could say a word. Instantly she melted into him, a soft purr escaping as his tongue plundered the depths of her mouth. His taste. Oh, she couldn’t get enough. There wasn’t any way for her to possibly get enough of it.
Great, here I go again, kissing my boss.
That was the thought she needed to snap her from the desire-induced haze he submerged her in. She broke from his touch and put some distance between them, despising her carnal reaction to him. All it took was one touch and she was lost.
“No,” she said. “I told you, I don’t mix business and pleasure.”
He didn’t look at all perturbed. In fact, he appeared almost amused by her words as if they were a challenge. One he was going to enjoy winning.
Wild couldn’t believe it. He had found her again. Not only that, she worked for his company. She stood before him wearing a pair of pink sweats and a white tank top that had the Breast Cancer Awareness ribbon on it.
Her pants also bore the ribbon and as he dragged his gaze back up over her curves—Derek had it right when he made his motion at breakfast the other day about her body shape—he forced himself to stay put. He knew she wanted him, she was aroused. The dilated pupils, rapid pulse combined with the way her nipples poked out her thin tank top, provided him that information.
“What’s the matter?” He inched closer to her, unable, apparently, to stay away.
“Stay there.” Her order was accompanied by a vicious finger stab.