He’s a Brute
I took a few careful steps toward her because something about her made me uneasy. From the other end of the table, she’d been lovely. A pretty face with a pouty frown. By the time I was one third the way down the conference table toward her, she was devastating. I stopped because she was affecting me plenty from twelve feet away. Long and glossy dark auburn hair. Ivory skin. Fine bones, a smattering of freckles, and a warm glow to her cheeks. Her eyes were the real showstopper, though. They were an unfairly high chroma green, like blades of grass darkened after rain. They glittered with defiance and not a little contempt for me as she spoke.
“Understood, Mr. Salvatore. I look forward to showing you how misplaced your concern is. Until then, I’ll remember not to take such stingy optimism personally.”
No one spoke to me like that. I was Zedekiah Lazaro Salvatore, Deirdre O’Shea and Brando Salvatore’s firstborn. Boston fucking royalty, king of the soccer field, and prince of the city’s Italian criminal underworld. People kissed my ass and rolled out the red carpet. They bowed their heads and averted their eyes. Nobody gave me shit. Except Nairne MacGregor, apparently.
I dropped my grip on my jacket to hide the boner her sharp mouth gave me and feigned a smile. “You’ll excuse me.”
Waiting for her polite acknowledgment was out of the question. If I stuck around, she’d know exactly what her sass did to my body. I stormed out, knocked shoulders with someone and muttered an apology, then barreled toward the exit. I wasn’t normally clumsy—both of my professions were predicated on exceptional coordination and hyper-awareness—but I chalked it up to ninety-five percent of my blood gathering in my dick rather than my brain. Finally, I landed outside where I sucked in a breath and oriented myself.
Observing her during the meeting had been torture. Elbow on the table, jotting things down then setting her pen exactly parallel to the paper’s edge. Precise. Perfectionist. She’d listened while her wide green eyes darted between people as they spoke. Nairne was neurotically observant, cunning even. Watching her gears turning had turned me on. Big time.
She hadn’t spoken much, but when she had, I’d noted her vowels were off. She had an accent, and it wasn’t Southie. I couldn’t place it, and just like her hair that wouldn’t make up its mind between mahogany and rich red, her speech was another wrinkle in my morning. I’d never been this simultaneously annoyed and aroused.
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