OPEN IN PRIVATE erotic Christmas romance by Samantha Gentry
R-ADULT EXCERPT #5: (one step at a time)
He rubbed his hand across the back of his neck as he stood up. “I’m sorry. I seem to be totally fucking this up.” He picked up his jacket from where he had draped it across the back of a chair the night before and withdrew an envelope from the inside pocket. He held it out to her.
“I went over the Christmas list you gave me and made all the appropriate changes. Here’s this year’s revised holiday shopping list.”
Carli took the envelope from his hand. “Thank you.” She whispered the words as she closed her eyes for a moment in an attempt to clear her mind. She had never been involved in a more confusing or convoluted conversation, at least not in the last seven years since her divorce.
Parker had just given her the go ahead on Christmas, so he obviously didn’t intend to terminate their business arrangement. But what about the fact that they had spent an incredible night engaged in hot sex followed the next morning by uncertainty and awkwardness? How did that factor into things?
“I, uh, I think it might be better if I didn’t stay for breakfast. Apparently my actions and words have upset you even though that was the farthest thing from my intention.” He stared at the floor, his brow wrinkled in concentration as if he were trying to decide what to say. “We seem to be veering off in a wrong direction.”
She felt her eyes widen in surprise, the same shock that ran rampant through her reality. “What do you mean?”
“Maybe it would be better if we stepped back for a little bit and took a fresh look at what’s going on.” He placed a tender kiss on her lips, allowing the physical contact to linger for a moment. “I’ll call you.”
She watched in stunned silence as he walked out the front door. She heard his car start, but it seemed like several minutes before she heard him drive away. Almost as if he had sat there for a while considering his options.
Parker Simmons doesn’t want anything more permanent than what’s on the menu for today. But Charlene’s enthusiasm to experiment in bed satisfies his darker appetites and suddenly he’s craving more. Parker might need her help with holiday gift ideas but he’s got his own shopping agenda. On his list? Gifts only for Charlene—to open in private.