Read Enemy Mine (Unseen Enemy Book 3) Online

Authors: Marysol James

Tags: #Romance, #Fiction, #Military, #Contemporary, #sex

Enemy Mine (Unseen Enemy Book 3)

Enemy Mine

(Unseen Enemy #3)

By Marysol James

© 2014 by Marysol James.
All rights reserved. No part of this document may be reproduced or transmitted in any form or by any means, electronic, mechanical, photocopying, recording, or otherwise, including information storage and retrieval systems, without prior written permission from the author, except in the case of a reviewer, who may quote brief passages embodied in critical articles or in a review.
This book is a work of fiction. Any references to historical events, real people, or real locales are used fictitiously. Other names, characters, places, and incidents are the product of the author’s imagination, and any resemblance to actual events or locales or persons, living or dead, is entirely coincidental.
Cover design:
www.doc2mobi.com
Cover photo: © Artem Furman/Fotolia

Dedication

For K.
For being able to build a life out of the devastation.

Chapter One

 

Jennifer Sawyer stared out the window at the children playing in the park across the street. She’d sat in this exact spot often enough that the sight was as familiar as the view out of her own windows at home. She even recognized a few of the kids; she noted idly that the girl in the green hat was toddling now, and that her older brother had a new winter coat.

Zoe Donovan watched Jenny quietly. She knew that the woman was at a critical place right at the moment, and Zoe wanted to give Jenny the time she needed to make her decision. These things couldn’t be rushed, Zoe knew, and so she sat and waited.

Jenny turned to Zoe now. “OK, I’m ready to talk about it.”

Zoe nodded. “So. Tell me about touching Dallas.”

Jenny sighed. “I – I can’t explain what happened. He was just so upset about Liv being so badly hurt, and the fact is that Dallas had just killed someone. I know that he had no choice at all in the matter, and it’s not like it was the first time he’d done that… but it still wasn’t easy for him to pick up that rifle and do what he did.” She bit her lip. “And he’s just such a big guy, you know? Strong and a trained killer and when I saw him sitting there like that, hurting and alone, I just – I don’t know. I just wanted to help him.”

“And you thought that touch was the best way?”

“I thought it was the
only
way.” Jenny tucked her long blonde hair behind her ears. “It seemed like the
only
way to really offer him any comfort.”

“And how did it feel to make physical contact with him? Were you frightened?”

“No.” Jenny breathed out. “No. I felt… connected to him. Like, emotionally. I knew it helped him for me to hold his hand, and I was happy to be able to do that for him.”

“Did it help you? Did it make you feel better?”

“Yes.” Jenny looked down at her hands, remembering Dallas’ touch on them. “I was so afraid for Liv, you know. And when Dallas was right there next to me, it calmed me down a bit.”

Zoe leaned back. Jenny had been coming to her once a week for almost six years now, and this was the first time that Jenny had made a connection between male touch and positive emotions.

My God. I think it’s time
.

“Jenny.”

Jenny looked up at Zoe; her blue eyes met the therapist’s green ones.

“Can we talk again about surrogacy?”

Jenny sighed again. “Yes… yes. I think – I think I’m ready to explore that.”

Zoe smiled. “I think you are, too.”

“And you’re right, what you said a few weeks ago when we last talked about it.” Jenny looked back out the window at the children. “I don’t think a professional is the best option for me. I think it needs to be him.”

“Good.” Zoe leaned forward, her long black hair falling around her serious face. “Let’s discuss how you can broach the subject with him, OK? How to answer his questions, and how to deal with it if he says no.”

Jenny nodded. “OK.”

**

Chris Brooker was staring out his kitchen window at the snowfall, waiting for the coffee to perk. He’d been up for most of the night with the blonde from the bar, and he was wiped out. He was just happy that today was Saturday, and he could fall back in to bed after she left.

He heard a noise behind him now and he turned around. The blonde stood there fully clothed –
thank God
– and carrying her purse.

“Hi,” he said. “How you doing?”

“Good.” She looked around his tiny apartment, taking in its neatness. “Is that coffee?”

“Yeah.” He sighed internally as he realized that she’d be staying for a while longer. “You want some?”

“Please. Milk and sugar.”

She sat in the armchair and looked around again. “You’re very clean for a man who lives alone.”

He grinned at that. “Yeah, well. Years in the military will do that to you, I think.” He brought her the cup of coffee. “Here you go.”

“Thanks.” She took it absently, still staring around. “You were in the military overseas, right?”

“I was.”

“Man, that’s so fucking hot…”

Chris felt his whole huge body tense up. It never ceased to amaze him that women found it sexy that he’d killed people in Afghanistan; it barely mattered to him that he’d
had
to do it. “You think so?”

“Damn right.” Her large brown eyes took him in now as he stood there in just his boxer shorts. “You soldiers have bodies that just won’t quit.”

“I wasn’t a soldier. I was a Ranger.” He heard the stiffness in his voice.

“What’s the difference?” she asked.

“Never mind. It’s not important.” He pushed down hard on his frustration, knowing that it was directed more at himself than at her. He’d gone to The Cave for a few beers the night before with Dallas, Dean and Jim, and he’d promised himself that he wouldn’t pick up some random chick and bring her home to fuck. But after three rounds, he’d just given up the internal battle, and started things up with the woman who now sat in his living room and whose name he had completely forgotten.

Chris turned from her now, poured out his own coffee. He ran his large hands through his dark blond hair and took a deep breath.

Cool it, man. It’s not her fault that she isn’t the woman you want to be sitting here with.

She came to mind now, as she so often did. Long silky blonde hair, soft blue eyes, a heart-shaped face. Curvy and luscious and warm. Kind and sweet, soft and lovely. Totally desirable and totally fucking off-limits. Frightened, hurting. Damaged.

Jenny.

Chris would give a lot for it to be Jenny here with him right now, sipping coffee and watching the snow. He’d do anything at all for it to have been her in his bed the night before, panting under him and moaning as she came again and again. He longed to hold her close, kiss her perfect lips, watch her shatter under him with pleasure.

But that was never going to happen. In almost five months of knowing her, he’d never even so much as touched her baby finger. He didn’t know exactly what had happened to her – he and the guys had seen enough assaulted women overseas to know that Jenny had almost definitely been raped – but he
did
know that she was scared to death of men. The fact that she let Chris anywhere near her at all was nothing short of a fucking miracle.

He thought back to two weeks ago, when Jenny had sat down right next to Dallas in that hospital waiting room, when she’d just reached out and taken his hand. The rest of them had stared in utter shock at her sweet gesture, totally amazed that she’d voluntarily made contact with a man. And even though he’d been shocked and upset about Liv, Dallas had had the generosity of spirit to know what it meant for Jenny to reach out that way and he’d thanked her later. She’d given him a shy smile and then turned away; Jenny hadn’t touched any of the guys since.

Chris sighed and turned around to look at the woman again. She was gorgeous, no doubt about that. She was just his type, as a matter of fact, with a small waist and rounded ass and soft thighs. He had no major use for skinny women, preferring women with generous curves and breasts.

Women like Jenny
.

Annoyed now, he shook himself. He forced a smile at the woman and she responded. She finished her coffee and then to his immense relief, she stood up.

“Well, I’d better go,” she said. “I’m meeting some girlfriends for a late breakfast.”

“OK, hon,” Chris said. “It was good to meet you.”

She laughed. “Oh, you too…
really
good. Maybe we can do it again sometime, if we run in to each other again at the bar.”

“Sure,” he said automatically, though he had no intention of ever bringing her home again. Chris wasn’t in to repeat performances.

He helped her put on her coat and walked her to the door. He opened it and started when he saw Jenny standing there, her hand raised to knock.

Jenny jumped when the door opened, then she felt embarrassment and fear as she took in Chris standing there in just his boxers. His upper body was massive, much bigger than it looked when he was clothed, and he had a large tattoo on one arm. He was strong and muscled, and the sight of all that brute strength and male power made her want to run screaming.

Beside him stood a blonde woman who narrowed her eyes at Jenny and looked her up and down. It was glaringly obvious that these two had had sex, and Jenny had no idea where to look all of a sudden.

Oh, God… has he got a girlfriend now? If he does, none of this is going to work
.

“Hey, Jenny,” Chris said, trying to look and sound calm. “Hey, how are you?”

“Good,” Jenny said, avoiding his eyes. “Is this a bad time? I can come back later.”

“No, it’s OK.” He stood aside. “Come on in.”

“You got a revolving door on this place, huh?” the blonde said with a smirk. “You got us all on as schedule?”

Jenny flushed bright red and Chris felt anger surge in his chest.

“Take care now,” he said to the woman and shut the door behind her. He turned to Jenny, who backed away from him. Chris suddenly realized that he was half-naked. He was also between her and the door.

Right away, he stepped to one side and then casually, he moved across the room, keeping his distance. She started to inch closer to the door, looking more relaxed.

“I’m so sorry, Chris,” she said. “I should have called…”

“No, it’s fine.” He gave her some more space. “Look, I’ll go get dressed, OK? Then we can talk.”

She nodded.

“Help yourself to coffee, if you want some. It’s fresh.”

“Thanks.”

In his bedroom, he yanked on a clean t-shirt and a pair of jeans, then looked in the mirror and flattened his hair. He was horrified that Jenny had witnessed his one-night-stand walk out the door like that, but he was more worried that she’d seen him without all his clothes on. He hoped that the sight hadn’t triggered something in her – he was absolutely positive that she hadn’t seen a half-naked man in a very long time.

Probably since whatever happened to her happened.

Jenny’s hands shook as she poured herself a cup of coffee and she sucked in a deep breath. She closed her eyes and reminded herself that it was Chris she was there with. He’d never hurt her, not for anything. He wasn’t that kind of man.

Just because a man
can
hurt a woman doesn’t mean that he
will
.
Remember why you’re here, OK? You need his help… just ask, right? The worst he can say is no, and if he does, you and Zoe will think of another way. Just breathe.

Chris came back in to the living room and studied her. She looked pale and tense.

“You OK, sweetheart?” he asked, keeping his rough voice low.

She stared at him, contemplating that question seriously. Finally, she took a shuddering breath. “No.”

He froze. “What’s wrong? What’s happened?”

“Can we – can we talk?”

“Yeah, of course. Sit down.”

He watched as she selected the chair closest to the door, then he settled himself on the sofa a few feet away. He tried to keep his face calm, but worry was rising in him. Everything about this entire situation was way off: her just showing up like this unannounced; her wanting to talk; her honestly claiming not to be fine.

What the fuck is going on here?

She cleared her throat. “I just came from Zoe.”

Her therapist. He nodded.

“She and I have been talking about something for a few months, and I want to – to ask you for help.”

“Anything. Just tell me what you need me to do.”

She shook her head. “This is – different. Don’t agree blindly, OK? It’s complicated, what I’m asking.”

That gave him pause. “OK.”

Jenny looked at him, unsure where to begin. She and Zoe had talked this through, but none of their scenarios had involved a woman leaving Chris’ apartment as he stood there with only his underwear on.

“Before I ask, though… is that woman your girlfriend?”

“No.” He felt the color rising in his face.

“Oh.” She stared down. “OK.”

“Jenny?”

“Yeah?”

“Are you upset?”

“No, not upset. Just a bit – shaken. I wasn’t expecting that when you opened the door.”

“I’m sorry.”

“No, don’t be. I should have called ahead. I just – I just had this insane burst of courage to come and have this conversation with you, and I thought I’d better get over here while I still felt brave.” She tried to smile. “But it seems my guts have failed me.”

“Don’t be scared, OK?” he said softly. “You can ask me anything. Tell me anything.”

She nodded and turned the coffee cup around in her hands. “Yeah. I know.”

They sat in silence for a few seconds.

“OK,” she said. “I – this is hard for me to talk about. Really hard. So… can you just let me talk? I’m afraid that if you interrupt me or ask me anything, I’ll lose my nerve. Can you just – just let me babble? You can say whatever you want after. Is that OK?”

He leaned back, suddenly deathly afraid of what was coming. “Yeah. I’m listening.”

She took a deep breath. “I know you know that I’m – that something happened to me. That I was hurt.” She forced herself to meet those steady gray eyes. “Even without me or Emma or Liv or Kat telling you anything, you and the guys, you all know… they never get too close to me, and you never stand between me and my escape route.”

Escape route? Is
that
what she sees when she looks at a door?

“I can’t talk about that right now, Chris. I want to tell you, and I will, but not now, OK? If I start to talk about that, I’ll get distracted from what I really want to ask you.”

He nodded.

“The thing is – what happened to me happened over six years ago, and I haven’t let a man touch me since. I’ve been totally fine with that since I haven’t wanted a relationship, at all. But I’ve come to realize lately that I'm thirty-one years old and I actually
do
want a relationship one day. I’d like to… to have a boyfriend. A husband, kids. But the way I am right now, none of those things can happen.” She swallowed. “I’m scared of a man’s touch. I’m – I’m scared of men.”

Other books

El secreto de mi éxito by Jaime Rubio Hancock
Front Row by Jerry Oppenheimer
My Immortal Assassin by Carolyn Jewel
The Sacrificial Daughter by Peter Meredith
The Body Lovers by Mickey Spillane
Stiffed by Kitchin, Rob


readsbookonline.com Copyright 2016 - 2023