“Harder, Archer,” she breathes against my ear, making me shiver. “I want to come with you inside me.”
Ah hell, she’s as good of a tease as I am. Increasing my pace once more, I f**k her hard against that wall, her body thumping loud with my every thrust, our sweaty skin clinging to each other, my hand tangled in her hair as I grip the back of her neck and bring her in for a kiss. Our lips meet, our tongues stroke, and then I’m groaning against her, coming so f**king hard I swear I see stars.
She’s coming too. I can feel her clench all around me, milking my orgasm further until I’m absolutely spent. We stand together for long, quiet moments, the only sounds our stuttering breaths, our frantic heartbeats. I’m not ready to let go of her yet, not ready to slip out of her hot depths and I stay there. Wrapped tight in her embrace, never ever wanting to move again.
“I . . . uh. Wow,” she murmurs minutes later, and I chuckle as I lift my head away from her to meet her gaze. “That was . . . I didn’t mean for that to happen.”
“Really?” I kiss her, not insulted in the least. I don’t doubt for a second she didn’t mean for that to happen. I really didn’t either.
But when she’s sitting there talking about her lack of orgasms, it was like she threw down a challenge. I had to prove to her that she was wrong.
Did I ever.
“I just . . .” She laughs and shakes her head. “You make it hard for me to form words, after all that.”
“Mmm.” I kiss her again, her swollen lips parting for me easily as I search her mouth with my tongue. “We’re amazing together.”
“We are, aren’t we?”
“I’m going to enjoy showing you just how amazing again and again over these next two weeks.” I say it like a promise. A vow. Because it is.
She presses against my chest with her hands so I move away from her, but I still don’t let her go. “That sounds promising.”
I meet her gaze, schooling my expression, needing her to know the truth. “I was an idiot for pretending what happened between us didn’t exist. And I’m sorry about that.” Leaning in, I drop a soft kiss on her swollen lips. “I’m sorry I let you down. I can’t wait to start working with you. I trust your instincts. I believe in your skills. And I can’t wait for us to work together on this project and make my resort the best f**king thing the entire industry has ever seen.”
A slow, sexy smile curves her lips and she kisses me again. “I love it when you talk like that.”
“What, like an arrogant a**hole?”
“Yes.” Her lips linger on mine. “I find your arrogance . . . arousing.”
“Really?” I’m doubtful, but I’ll go with it.
“Yes. Really.” She licks my cheek and I flinch. What the hell was that for? “Take me to bed, Archer. Show me what else those magic hands and fingers can do.”
“Wait until you see what my magic tongue can do for you.” I get hard just thinking about it.
“I can’t wait to see.”
ELEVEN DAYS. I’VE been in Calistoga with Archer for eleven days and I can’t believe how wonderful it’s been. Busy and tiring and exhausting but also . . . freaking amazing.
I don’t ever want to come down off this high.
We’ve been working nonstop on Crave. It’s small and quaint and gorgeous and sophisticated all at once. I’ve poured over endless fabric swatches, paint colors for the interiors, and searched through enough furniture catalogs and websites to make my eyes cross until I finally came up with the perfect color scheme for all eight of the suites, plus the lobby and spa accommodations.
All with Archer’s approval, of course, and he’s loved everything I’ve come up with. Considering we have similar taste, it’s been a relatively easy road. For all our arguing and fighting from the past, it’s hard for me to believe just how easily and well we work together. He’s brilliant and smart and comes up with the best ideas. I constantly compliment him as if I can’t help myself.
And then he thanks me by kissing me stupid, stripping me nak*d and having his way with me. Again and again and again.
Every night that we’re together it’s like this. We come together in a frenzy of heated breaths, delicious kisses, soft sighs, and wandering hands over nak*d skin. During the day we’re on our best behavior, working hard, going over plans, all sorts of plans, or returning to Hush where Archer has to take care of his day-to-day responsibilities, which are tedious and sometimes irritating, but he always handles them with ease.
He’s so good at his job, it’s a joy to watch him in action. I admire the easy way he has with people. How efficiently he handles a guest complaint, an employee complaint, a call from some reporter inquiring about the Calistoga location. It’s nonstop, everything he has to do.
As each day passes, my admiration for him grows. I care for Archer far more than I want to admit. I think he cares for me too. Spending so much one-on-one time with this gorgeous, frustrating, adorable, volatile, sweet, stubborn man, I can’t get over how much I didn’t know about him until now.
His drive. His passion. His intelligence. He so believes in what he’s doing, the service he provides for people, he will do everything he can to ensure that he offers his guests the absolute best service their money can buy. And he’s pulling out all the stops for the new resort. It’s costing him a fortune. He’ll charge his guests a fortune too. But I have a sneaking suspicion they’ll love it and come back for more.
And he’ll become an absolute success all over again.
Running my fingers through my hair, I scratch the back of my head, squinting at my laptop’s screen. I’ve been searching for the lobby rugs and I can’t find them. I have a visual in my head, but so far nothing comes close to my imagination. I’m afraid I’m going to have to settle.
I know if I told Archer that, he would flip. Demand I continue my search until I find rugs I absolutely love. He’s definitely not about settling, even for rugs.
Hunched over my laptop, I curl my leg beneath me on the chair and sigh, scrolling through yet another textiles website, looking through a ton of ugly rugs that are all wrong, no matter how much I try to make them right. My vision is blurry and my neck aches. It’s past seven, I’m so ready to call it quits but I’m trying to wait for Archer to return.
Silly, yes, but I can’t help myself. I want to see him.
When we’re not in Calistoga, we’re headquartered in Archer’s office at Hush. That’s where I’m at now, waiting for him while he handles some sort of urgent issue. There are always urgent issues for Archer to handle. He does everything at Hush. The man has so much on his plate it overwhelms me, and I’m not the one who has to take care of it all; I’m only an observer. Most of the time he’s putting out various fires, which must get super old.
But I guess this is what comes with being the owner.
Stretching my arms above my head I grimace when I hear and feel my neck pop, then settle back into position. I curl my fingers around the mouse when big, warm hands settle on my shoulders, making me yelp in surprise.
“So tense,” Archer murmurs, his deep voice sounding directly in my ear.
“You scared the crap out of me.” I sink my teeth into my lower lip when he starts to rub to keep a moan from escaping. Oh my God, that feels so good. I think I might melt into a pool of nothing if he keeps it up.
“Sorry. You were too busy scowling at your laptop.” He continues to massage my shoulders and I close my eyes, savoring his touch. How good he makes me feel. “Find what you want?”
If we’re talking about you, yes I sure did. “Not really,” I admit with a sigh.
He’s standing directly behind my chair, rubbing my shoulders, his fingers digging into my flesh. My entire body warms and loosens at having his hands on me and I want to turn around, grab him, and tell him let’s go back home.
Scary, how I’m starting to think of his house as home. I’m certainly not spending my nights in the guest room, that’s for sure. Or at Hush like we’d originally planned. No, I get to spend them in his amazing, humongous bed in his equally amazing, humongous master bedroom.
The man certainly knows how to live with every luxury available. My parents may be wealthy, but they’re downright modest compared to Archer.
“You should schedule a massage,” he murmurs, dropping a kiss on top of my head.
My insides warm at the sweet gesture. I’m dying to have that mouth of his on mine. “Why would I need to when I have you?” Opening my eyes, I heave a big sigh. Yes. Yes, I’ve lost it. All over Archer.
All for Archer.
“True.” He sounds amused, his voice warm, his touch gentle as he squeezes my shoulders. “I’ll give you a more thorough massage when we get home.”
“I like the sound of that.”
“It’ll involve special oils from the spa and you completely nak*d.” His voice drops to a husky whisper, sending shivers down my spine, and I smile at my laptop screen.
“Sounds absolutely amazing.”
“It will be, I can promise you that.” He crouches beside me, his face level with mine, and I cut my gaze to his, marveling at his handsome features. His dark brown hair falls across his forehead, making me want to reach across and push it away. So I do, my fingers sifting through the silky soft strands. “Still looking for rugs for the lobby, huh?”
“It’s been a rather . . . frustrating process.” I click out of the website I was perusing and turn more fully to face him.
“I know someone who designs rugs. Has a studio where they’re hand woven.” He smiles. “Every one of them is like a work of art.”
“I’m sure they are. Very expensive works of art,” I stress. We’re completely over budget but he flat out doesn’t care. He spares no expense. It sort of drives me crazy.
And makes me admire him even more.
He shakes his head. “I’ve never seen a person so obsessed with rugs before.”
“That’s because I have an idea in my head I can’t shake.” I tap my forehead. “And it sucks because I’m forever disappointed in every stupid rug I see.”
“That does it. I’m calling her right now and we’ll make an appointment to see her tomorrow. She can create whatever you want, she’s that good.” He whips out his phone and starts scrolling through his contacts. “Actually, I’ll text her, see if she’s available in the morning.”
“Archer, we only have a few days until we’re open. No way can she get them done in time.” I shake my head, shocked he would go to such lengths to please me.
“Then we’ll throw some solid color rugs out for a few days to cover while I insist she rush the process. Trust me, they’ll work on the rugs twenty-four-seven if I pay her right.”
“They’re not worth that much . . .” I start, but he silences me with a look that I find so incredibly sweet and sexy I feel my heart crack a little more every time I see it.