“I can’t argue with that. Most men are ass**les who behave like spoiled children.”
I nodded slowly, glad we were on the same page. I thought he’d try to convince me otherwise, or at least tell me that he wasn’t one of them. But he just stayed quiet, watching me with those gorgeous blue eyes of his, making my skin hum with nervous anticipation. What were we doing?
“I could take care of you tonight, make you feel good, if you let me,” he whispered, his mouth just a few inches from mine.
My heart rioted in my chest. He was so good-looking, so sexy. I knew it’d be incredible. But the word tonight stood out to me. I was done with men who wanted one night with me. I supposed a string of failed dates and one-night stands would do that to you. I was looking for something more, a deeper, intimate connection; a real relationship. Not a one-night stand, not a guy who wanted nothing to do with me in the morning. Braydon had a way with words, I’d give him that. That didn’t mean anything was going to happen, though.
“A few sexy words and you expect me to just hand over my panties?” I quipped.
“No. I’d prefer to peel those off you myself. Slowly. Savoring every delicious inch of skin I exposed.”
My eyes slipped closed. My body was screaming at me to give in, to pull him into the nearest coat closet or restroom and let him have his way with me. To make this ache between my thighs go away. But my brain, ever in control, knew I couldn’t do that.
“May I kiss you?” he whispered.
Temptation to kiss him flared inside me, unbidden and unwelcome. I’d been unconsciously watching the way his mouth moved when he spoke, as he took sips from his glass, fantasizing about how those full lips would feel against mine. Despite my body’s urgings, I slowly shook my head.
“What are you afraid of?” he whispered. “Falling for me?”
I raised an eyebrow, looking at him like he’d grown a second head. “There’s no chance of that happening,” I scoffed.
“Then kiss me,” he rasped.
“Why would I kiss you?” I asked, breathless yet fighting to remain in control.
“Because you want to.” His statement was bold, direct, and sure. I hated how well he could read me.
“No, I don’t,” I murmured weakly. Stay strong, Ellie.
He chuckled softly. “Okay, kitten. Then let me kiss you. I want to see if you’re still as feisty when that pretty mouth is occupied.”
My silence was the only answer he needed.
He took my hand and dragged me the few paces to the women’s restroom across the hall. In this quiet part of the hotel, it was deserted.
Braydon’s warm palm cupped the bare nape of my neck, his thumb lightly rubbing against the soft skin. A chill darted down my spine. The simple contact from his hand was more than enough to ignite the fireworks between us into a raging inferno. His touch was firm, knowing, and decidedly confident.
With his hand still planted firmly at the base of my neck, he guided my body to his until our chests rested together. Our hearts pounded against each other, and I didn’t know if it was from the adrenaline surge of arguing with him or the desire I felt flooding my system.
He certainly knew how to make my heart race.
All the bickering and heated arguments gave way to this moment. His blue eyes gazed fiercely down at mine and my tongue unconsciously darted out to wet my bottom lip. Braydon didn’t miss the movement, his own lips parting as he softly inhaled.
I had no idea what he saw in me—what he must think of me—with my razor-sharp tongue and the neon sign above my head advertising how much I distrusted men. But in this moment, he obviously didn’t care. He was every bit as wrapped up in this as I was. Maybe he was just horny, maybe it was our roles as maid of honor and best man at our best friends’ wedding that had brought us to this moment . . . but regardless, there was no denying I wanted him to kiss me.
He was the king of mixed signals. He’d poked fun at me all day, and now he was looking like he wanted to devour me from the inside out. The thought made my stomach flip. With my chest brushing his, I felt my ni**les harden beneath my satin gown. I wasn’t sure if he felt it too, but Braydon’s eyes grew dark with his desire and began to slip closed. I didn’t know what to make of him, but before I could even begin to sort out my feelings, his lips pressed tenderly against mine.
The softness in his kiss was unexpected. His fingers curled around my neck, fastening my mouth to his while he demanded I give in.
Knowing we were tucked away, with no chance of being discovered, I gave in to my desires. His fingers slowly knotted in my hair as he pulled me closer and deepened the kiss, his tongue lightly probing my mouth.
He was too sure. Too skilled. My libido immediately took notice, delivering a healthy dose of moisture to my panties. He turned something as simple as a kiss into a promise for sweaty, heart-pounding sex. If he kissed this well, surely he would be commanding and confident in the bedroom. Why did that thought excite me so much? I kissed him back with everything I had, my tongue sliding intimately against his as I tangled my hands in his hair.
After several moments, he slowly broke away, grinning against my mouth. “That wasn’t so bad, was it?”
I parted my lips and drew a slow, shaky breath. I wanted to beg him to kiss me again, but instead I lifted one shoulder then dropped it in a noncommittal shrug. “It was okay.”
He tipped his head back and laughed out loud. “You’re lying. I can see your body’s response to me, kitten. Your panties are probably wet right now. Just from that one kiss.”
I didn’t deny it—I just held my eyes on his. Even in these insanely high heels, I had to tilt up my head to look at him. He evoked strange responses from my body. One minute I wanted to bite his head off for being a player, and the next I wanted to mount him and make him show me just how experienced he was between the sheets. God, I should be checked for multiple personalities. Hold it together, Ellie!
He bent down and his hands disappeared under the hem of my dress, skimming my naked calves and thighs. Chill bumps broke out in the wake of his smooth hands roaming along my skin. Was he honestly going to check if my panties were wet? And was I seriously going to let him? I knew I should stop him, slap his hands away, step back—something—but instead I stood there like a lovesick idiot, letting him manhandle me.
His fingers slid in through the sides of my panties and slowly twisted them, pulling them down my thighs. I knew I should say something. This wasn’t okay, this wasn’t me. Yet I watched in wonder as he let them fall to my ankles.