Lila picked up her knife and fork, not exactly sure how to even approach such an enormous pile of carbohydrates. She smothered the breakfast cakes with butter, then poured on the syrup.
“You’re doing it wrong,” a male voice said.
Lila was so startled that her knife and fork clattered to the Formica tabletop. Perhaps her nerves were propelled a bit by guilt for eating such non-nutritious foods.
And then her fingers were even clumsier as she stared at the man approaching the table. Several words popped into her head all at once. Gorgeous. Rugged. Hard. And pathetically moonstruck.
The “pathetic” and “moonstruck” words applied to her. Not to the man. The enormous man. The man looking at her as if he wanted to rough her up. Goodness, what was he about to do? Surely he wasn’t going to sit down across from her. Was he?
Lila pushed her plate away. “I didn’t know…” she stammered out. “I apologize.” Her cheeks were turning pink and she was looking around, painfully aware that others in the diner were now staring at her. Or perhaps they were staring at this man. He really was a huge man!
Oh my goodness, he actually did it! He slid into the booth across from her, his calloused hands resting on the table. Lila might still have the whole table between them, but just his presence caused her to pull back. She was stunned by how broad his shoulders were and, in that instant, she felt crowded by his size.
“You need to cut them up, then put the syrup on. That way, the syrup soaks into the pancakes better,” Jake explained.
He was staring at the gorgeous woman who looked like she’d just helped her grandmother keel over. The guilty expression was almost laughable, and he felt slightly bad for startling her.
Lila continued to stare at the man, still trying to absorb how large he was. Perhaps the jacket was adding several inches to those shoulders, but even still, he was huge! She realized that he’d just spoken to her but, for the life of her, she had no idea what he’d just said. “Excuse me?” she replied politely, not really sure what he was talking about. Her mind had gone completely blank and no matter how hard she tried to jump-start her mental acuity, it was a lost cause with this man sitting across the table from her.
Jake thought about explaining again, but he was just a bit too flabbergasted by this woman. She was, quite simply, stunning! He was surrounded by beautiful women all the time, women who spent hours primping and spending obscene amounts of money at day spas.
None of them could even come close to the startling beauty of this redhead, her hair sparkling in the sunshine streaming in through the diner’s window not to mention those blue eyes that told the world everything she might be thinking.
As he sat across the table, he could see the dark circles under her pale skin and her nails were broken, unpainted, her sweatshirt was about four sizes too big and he still was trying to hide his body’s reaction to her. There was just something about her, a frailty or perhaps a vulnerability that she didn’t want, but couldn’t hide either. Well, and that hair! Damn, her hair was a gorgeous color and he wished she hadn’t scraped it back and braided it. He’d like to see it spread out around her shoulders. Or even better, spread out on his pillow.
His Scandalous Commands Description:
She could sing like a hummingbird, had numerous platinum albums to her credit. But Lila Jamison, a.k.a. Delilah James, had no life. She went from concert to recording studio, working until she literally passed out. Fresh air, sleep and relaxation were the doctor’s orders. That’s how Lila found herself standing on her one hundred acre ranch with nothing but fresh air and pancakes to soothe her tired soul. Unfortunately, her ranch came with the hottest, orneriest, sexiest neighbor who had a horrible habit of stealing her pancakes. But was he the enemy? Was Jake really a reporter in disguise, ready to tell the world how sad and pathetic she was in real life?
Someone was trying to kill Jake and was willing to hurt innocent bystanders to achieve that goal. So he headed out of the cities and to his ranch in Montana where he could spot a stranger from miles away. So what was he to do about the beautiful red-head that came to town the day after his arrival? Surely this couldn’t be his assassin, he thought. She didn’t even know how to eat pancakes properly!
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