‘Ready to go?’ Holly nodded and he pulled on the helmet for her and
fastened the strap beneath her chin. ‘Very fetching. Don’t forget to
hold tight.’ He put on his own helmet and then climbed on an enormous
black machine. She sat very primly behind him, her hands scarcely
touching the sides of his waist. Then he started the machine and without
further warning moved off and she threw herself at his back and clung on
for dear life.
Roaring up the lane, the stab of the headlamp into the dark the
only source of light in a black world, was bad. As dreadful as it could
be. But it was nothing to do with the noise of the bike, or the speed
with which the hedge flashed by them. It was her body pressed against the
supple leather of his jacket, feeling the steady reassuring hammer of his
heart against the crazy counterpoint of her own, beating much too fast.
It was her arms around his waist, her hand clasped desperately under his
ribs. That was what she feared. The unavoidable closeness and what it
was doing to her.
Then it was over. They were in front of Highfield and she was
sliding quickly from the machine in an effort to escape, her legs wobbly
as she had known they would be. She fought desperately with the
uncooperative strap of her helmet to remove it before he could help her,
touch her. But her fingers couldn’t, or wouldn’t, find the release and
after he had removed his own helmet he bent to do it for her. She
‘Are my hands cold?’ he asked.
‘No. Yes.’ With his long fingers brushing against her neck she
couldn’t think clearly.
‘Well?’ he asked, pulling the helmet off and putting it with his
own on the seat of the machine and leaning back against it. ‘Which is
‘They’re cold,’ she managed before turning quickly away,
determined to get inside before she betrayed herself totally. ‘Thanks for
the lift, Joshua,’ she said, from the doorway.
‘Holly?’ His voice grated against her spine and she stopped and
turned slowly back to face him. He hadn’t moved.
‘Yes?’ she asked, from the safe distance of her porch.
‘There was something else.’
‘Can’t it wait?’ She fumbled desperately in her pocket for her
‘I don’t believe it can.’ Her margin of safety proved illusory
as in a stride he was beside her, his eyes smoky dark as he searched her
face. It was a look that seemed to touch her, stroke her, burn her up
until she thought she would cry out. After a moment, or it might have
been an age, in which she felt as if she was suspended at the top of a
roller-coaster, waiting for that dizzy freefall plunge, he spoke. ‘I
don’t believe it can wait another moment.’
She closed her eyes in an effort to blot out the desire in his
eyes, not quite trusting it, but knowing that it was far too late for her
to fight the echoing response he must all too clearly see in hers.
Knowing that she was helpless to resist.
He took her face between his hands, tilting her face upwards and
holding it cradled in his long fingers, until she could bear it no longer
and her long lashes fluttered open. ‘Please…’ The word, barely more than
a sigh, escaped her lips, but whether she was begging for release or
capture she scarcely knew. Until he kissed her and by then it was too
His lips were cool as they began to feather her face with
butterfly kisses, each touch to the delicately veined lids of her eyes,
her temples, the smooth curve of her jaw the gentlest, teasing caress,
that gradually turned her bones to jelly.
She was trembling as at last he slid his hands inside her jacket and
pulled her tight against his chest and held her there.
‘What are you doing?’ she whispered, her eyes jet dark in the
sudden shaft of moonlight breaking through the clouds,
He laughed, very softly. ‘If you have to ask, my darling Holly,
I must be doing something wrong.’ But he wasn’t doing anything wrong, she
was quite sure of that. In fact as his lips continued their philandering
progress, she had the very definite impression that he was an expert.
Then he raised his head and she moaned very softly.
‘Don’t stop,’ she protested.
‘I haven’t stopped.’ His arm tightened about her waist, drawing
her so close along the length of him, that suddenly she didn’t have any
breath for words. And then that was no longer a problem, because she had
something else to occupy her mind as his mouth claimed hers and she knew
he had spoken nothing but the truth. He left her in absolutely no doubt
of his meaning.
Her lips parted under the sensuous prompting of his tongue and she
responded with an urgency that at once shocked and elated her, her arms
snaking around his neck, pulling him down to her until with a groan he
wrenched himself free.
His ragged breathing matched her own as they stood just inches
apart, staring at one another in stunned amazement at the reality of what
had just happened to them both.
She shook her head. It wasn’t a time for words. Her hand
fastened on the cold keys in her pocket and she held them for a moment,
clenched tight in her fist. Then, her cheeks flushed with bright colour,
she extended her hand and offered them to Joshua.
For a heartbeat they hung from the tip of her finger, glinting
in the fitful moonlight between the two motionless figures, then he
reached out and his fingers closed around them and she surrendered them
into his care. He turned to the door, fitted the key in the lock. The
sound of the lever drawing back in the mechanism was like the crack of a
pistol in the unnatural silence and then the door swung open.
Like it? Buy it!
From the book
OLD DESIRES by Liz Fielding
Classic Romance 2012