Take Two (Page 41)

Take Two (Lights, Camera #1)(41)
Author: Laurelin Paige

Maybe.

At least for the duration of the shoot.

She searched his eyes, seemingly trying to read his silence. “What?”

He shrugged. “I haven’t had sex without a condom in years. I’m hard just thinking about it.”

“No you aren’t.” She reached her loose hand down to his crotch. Her eyes lit up. “Oh. You are.” She scooted herself closer to him and wrapped her arms around his neck, bringing him in for a lingering kiss.

When she leaned away minutes later, her face was flushed and her eyes dilated. “Happy sexiversary. I can’t believe I ran from you… I wasted so much time.”

He smoothed the hair behind her ear. “I liked the chase.” Then he remembered the days he spent alone and wishing for her. “Well, parts of it.”

And he’d needed time. If she’d slept with him the day he’d made his first move, they’d be done with by now. But she’d pushed him for something more and here they were with a week under their belt.

“Parts of it were really nice.” She rubbed her lips together as if remembering something particularly juicy. “I’m going to have to thank Adam again for begging me to come out here.”

He wanted to take her mouth again, but an old question niggled at him. “Why didn’t you do the show from the beginning? You said something about personal issues on the ride from the airport. At first, I thought those issues might be me.”

“Like I hadn’t gotten over our fleeting night from the past? Narcissistic as always,” she teased. “I turned the movie down because of Beaumont. I didn’t know you were on this film until I saw you at the airport.”

“All these years we could have ended up working together. I have to admit, if it had happened at a different time or in any other way, I might not have been ready for this.” He pulled at her earlobe, noticing she didn’t have any earrings in. There was a pair sitting on the counter in the bathroom of his hotel—their hotel, really. She’d spent every night there since they’d first slept together. He should invite her to bring all her stuff over. He bet she had more earrings back in at her own hotel.

Sharing space. The concept warmed him. And terrified him. Mostly warmed.

“Would it have been wham bam thank you ma’am?” She pulled his hand from her lobe and sucked on the pad of his index finger, causing his c**k to jump. “Could you really have resisted me after you’d gotten in my pants once?”

“I would have pretended that I could. And I might have been quite an ass**le in the process.”

“Then I’m very glad it happened like this.”

He traced the outline of her mouth, knowing he would take her soon. Still, he had time. They had the whole day off, and he’d already had her once that morning. With their exhausting workdays and their insatiable longing to f**k like bunnies, what they didn’t get much of a chance to do was talk. He wanted to know her, all of her, and he was taking the opportunity now while he had it. “So Beaumont? You’ve worked with him before?”

She stiffened. “I did. Years ago. It was a fiasco.” She chuckled to herself at some private joke. “A Beaumont fiasco.”

He wrinkled his forehead. “Tell me.”

She did, though he sensed her reluctance. He listened to her story, imagining her excitement when Beaumont initially invested and, when she got to the end, feeling an intense hatred at his director for what he’d done to the talented angel in front of him. His chest ached with her disappointment while every muscle in his body burned with an overwhelming desire to beat the guy to a pulp. “He really blacklisted you?” He gritted his teeth. “That f**ker.”

“Whatever. I’ve moved on. I like what I’m doing now.”

“I have a feeling that’s not a reference to doing me.” He waited for her to deliver the playful smack that he knew she would before he got serious again. “But, Maddie, you might like what you’re doing, but you love your movie. I never see you so excited as when you’re behind that monitor. Except when you’re beneath me. And on top of me.” He planted a kiss on her temple. “Anyway, it’s your passion.”

She shrugged, averting her eyes. “I don’t have to make a career out of my passion.”

He knew that was her pain talking, understood how much she’d rather be calling the shots than focus-pulling. “But if you can, why wouldn’t you? Why are you even making your movie if you don’t plan to do anything with it?”

“I’ll enter it in film festivals or something. People will still see it.”

“Like a handful. It deserves to be seen by more. And it’s good enough to get picked up. You just have to fight for it a little.”

“I can’t.” She seemed to truly believe her words. “I tried. I f**ked it up.” Her eyes brimmed with tears. “Beaumont f**ked it up.”

“Hey,” he whispered, wiping at the tear spilling down her nose. “You made a powerful enemy. That sucks. But you also have powerful friends.” He kissed the spot where he had wiped her tear. Without any hesitation, he hinted at the offer he’d made before. “I’m a powerful friend.”

She bucked her h*ps against him playfully. “You’re right on the powerful.”

“I’m actually talking about something besides sex. For once.”

“I know.” She snuggled deeper into his arms and laid her head on his chest. “I don’t want to talk about it anymore. Is that okay?”

He inhaled the delicious smell of Maddie. “Of course.” He would put the subject away for now, but he vowed to himself he would help her in the future. He hadn’t been feeding her bullshit when he said he had been looking to invest in someone. He wanted to diversify, build a future that didn’t rely on fads and good looks. Producing was a logical career move. And Maddie’s film was good. It made sense and he meant to pursue it.

Did he really mean that promise? He did. It was a huge step for him, and he didn’t fail to notice its implications. He’d been burned in the past by Nichelle when she used him for his connections, and maybe Maddie wouldn’t be any different. But besides the fact that he trusted her and knew that she was different, he also didn’t give a shit if she used him. He just wanted her happy.

What was that about?

“Can I help you with your lines?” she asked, interrupting his heavy thoughts.