Chapter 61

Jon made a circuit through the crowd, making small talk when he couldn’t avoid it. This was his home and he’d been in the area long enough that a lot of people knew him in varying degrees.

As the night came to a close, couples started to populate the stage as the music went from upbeat to the slow and sexy. Keeping to the outskirts he slowly made his way around the stage, watching Tessa work the stragglers like a pro. She was a natural born schmoozer and the ease in which she smiled and offered a touch, a handshake or a hug was ingrained.

He could tell she was looking for him and it made his blood warm. It was nice to feel wanted again. Toward the end of his marriage he’d felt like an outsider in his home, like he was the uncle that came to visit every few months. Dot had carved out such a singular existence that she’d just sort of outgrown him. And with each passing album, tour and project they spent less and less time together. And when they had been alone things had become awkward and he couldn’t quite pin-point just how or when it had happened.

The only thing he knew right now was that he didn’t want to let that kind of life happen again. He wanted to be important enough that it mattered when he wasn’t around, not just worked in when it was convenient. Tessa made him want to make the effort.

Finally alone, he shifted through the crowd until he was directly behind her. She swayed to the music, unconsciously rolling her hips with the beat. Unable to stop himself he moved in on her and crowded in, linking his fingers with hers and turning her toward him.

When her surprised eyes went a dark and glittering green he smiled and pulled her onto the dance floor. “Dance with me,” he said gathering her into him.

“But people will see, I don’t want to-.”

“People see what they want to see, all they will notice is me,” he interrupted.

Humor shimmered with the sweet punch of lust. “And you, the very important Rock Star is going to dance with the little shopkeeper out of the kindness of your heart?”

Pulling her closer he growled, “When in reality I’ll be hiding my hard on and copping a cheap feel under their noses.”

She laughed and rested her hand on his shoulder and clasped his other hand close in between their bodies. The song slid into a soft and slumberous song that did well to get them closer.

The woman’s voice was thick with longing and soft with ache.

Don’t know how you do it

Like there’s nothing to it

You just look my way

You come a little closer

I lose my composure

Don’t know what to say

I’m overwhelmed, you smile, I melt

And somewhere inside oh baby, I

Shiver, tremble, I never

No I never once felt so much

It shakes me how you take me

Deeper then I’ve ever been

It’s to the core, under my skin I


With little thought and all emotion she moved into him and their bodies fit like they always did. The words left her raw with want. So close to how she felt about him. The way he made her feel a little lost, and so very found in his arms. Her hand slid up his shoulder to the tease the ends of her hair and brushing his neck with just the tips of her fingers. She could feel his heat and smell the crisp, light scent of him that never seemed to be far from her memory.

His knee slid between hers as they did a slow, lazy circle. His hand eased down to her hip and his fingers slipped under the sweater to her waist and found a sliver of flesh where her undershirt had come untucked. His touch was barely there, just a tease…a whisper of fingertips that left her barely able to breathe.

I love the way your whisper

Slowly, softly lingers

In my ear

You move a little lower

The world starts spinning slower

Then it disappears

Your lips so close, we kiss almost

Just barely touch, but that’s enough

To make me

Shiver, tremble, I never

No I never once felt so much

It shakes me how you take me

Deeper then I’ve ever been

It’s to the core, under my skin I


Looking up at him she automatically lifted her mouth to find his and stopped just a whisper away, the words drifting over them, pushing her to touch and to act on the ache it brought. Instead she turned at the last moment safely brushing his cheek once before righting herself.

She felt his touch go from butterfly soft to gripping as the pulse of longing locked them tight. The heat of him surrounded her and he bent to her ear.

“I always want you, it never stops.”

Their joined hands pulled in closer and he traced his pinkie over the curve of her breast. Even through the thick cable knit she felt the burn and prayed she wouldn’t go mad with it.

The song crested and he turned her, stepping closer until he brought them into a full thigh to thigh press for a split second before he pulled away. As the slumberous voice drifted away so did the spell. Blinking up at him she saw the tick of his jaw and the heat in his bright blue eyes. She let her hands drop away, knuckles and fingers bumping for a moment before he stepped back.

“Thanks for the dance, Miss Donovan.”

“Anytime, Mr-“ and at his look she sighed, “Jon.”

“Tessa, if you’re done enjoying yourself we can wrap things up.”

The voice of her waking nightmares jarred her out of the soft haze he’d managed to lull her into. Crossing her eyes at Jon briefly she stuck out her tongue until he laughed. “Thanks for coming Jon, we appreciate the support”

“Anything for the Association, Miss Donovan,” he said with eyes full of humor and a mouth slashed in a wry grin.

She turned to Carol and smiled thinly, struggling not to flinch when he flicked a nail along her palm before walking away. With her body still humming she listened to Carol drone about the incompetent help and the late hour. Too pleased with herself and the evening ahead she ignored the harping and helped close the fair down for the night.

Thirty minutes later she was heading to her car, digging her cell phone out to find Jon.

Song: Shiver

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