A Family for the Billionaire

By: Dani Wade

Silence greeted him. He waited for the past to resurface, but thoughts of Dorothea drowned out the screams. Her little pink nipples had puckered in the cold, eager for his mouth. A dark thatch of curls had shielded the portal to paradise. Her legs had been toned but soft, long enough to wrap around him and strong enough to hold on to him until the end of the ride.

Excitement lingered, growing more powerful by the second, and curiosity held him in a vise grip. The Dorothea he knew would never show up at a man’s door naked, requesting sex.

Maybe he didn’t actually know her. Maybe he should learn more about her. The more he learned, the less intrigued he’d be. He could forget this night had ever happened.

He snatched his cell from the nightstand and dialed Jude, LPH’s tech expert.

Jude answered after the first ring, proving he hadn’t been sleeping, either. “What?”

Good ole Jude. His friend had no tolerance for bull, or pleasantries. “Brusque” had become his only setting. And Daniel understood. Jude had lost the bottom half of his left leg in battle. A major blow, no doubt about it. But the worst was yet to come. During his recovery, his wife and twin daughters were killed by a drunk driver.

The loss of his leg had devastated him. The loss of his family had changed him. He no longer laughed or smiled; he was like Daniel, only much worse.

“Do me a favor and find out everything you can about Dorothea Mathis. She’s a Strawberry Valley resident. Works at the Strawberry Inn.”

The faint click-clack of typing registered, as if the guy had already been seated in front of his wall of computers. “Who’s the client, and how soon does he—she?—want the report?”

“I’m the client, and I’d like the report ASAP.”

The typing stopped. “So this is personal,” Jude said with no inflection of emotion. “That’s new.”

“Extenuating circumstances,” he muttered.

“She do you wrong?”

I’m not stick thin or sophisticated. I’m too easy, and you’re not into pity screwing. Trust me, I get it.

“The opposite,” he said.

Another pause. “Do you want to know the names of the men she’s slept with? Or just a list of any criminal acts she might have committed?”

He snorted. “If she’s gotten a parking ticket, I’ll be shocked.”

“So she’s a good girl.”

“I don’t know what she is,” he admitted. Those corkscrew curls...pure innocence. Those heart-shaped lips...pure decadence. Those soft curves...mine, all mine.

“Tell Brock this is a hands-off situation,” he said before the words had time to process.

What the hell was wrong with him?

Brock was the privileged rich boy who’d grown up ignored by his parents. He was covered in tats and piercings and tended to avoid girls who reminded him of the debutantes he’d been expected to marry. He preferred the wild ones...those willing to proposition a man.

“Warning received,” Jude said. “Dorothea Mathis belongs to you.”

He ground his teeth in irritation. “You are seriously irritating, you know that?”

“Yes, and that’s one of my better qualities.”

“Just get me the details.” Those lips...those curves... “And make it fast.”

CAN’T HARDLY BREATHE—available soon from Gena Showalter and HQN Books!

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