Welcome to this week’s Wednesday Words with author, Michelle Roth. She is the author of the Private Relations series on Siren-Bookstrand. Her latest book, Lip Service, was just released.
The Blurb for Lip Service:
For Chris Marks, his best friend’s little sister, Chloe James, has always been off limits. In a moment of weakness he admits his attraction to her and Chloe seizes the opportunity to take what she’s always wanted. Him.
On the heels of a break up, Chloe isn’t looking to settle down. She’s just looking for a good time and she suspects that she’ll be able to find that with Chris. Together they explore her submissive side and she discovers that they’ve got more in common than she ever thought possible.
Chris isn’t looking for a relationship. He isn’t looking for any sort of emotional attachment at all. He gets far more than he bargained for though, when he starts to have real, deep feelings for Chloe. Will Chloe be able to break through the thick walls that Chris has built around his heart? Will he be brave enough to let her in?
Even though she had known him for over a decade, she was still incredibly nervous as she pulled into the driveway. Things had been slowly shifting between them for the last few weeks. It hadn’t been explicitly discussed, but she was pretty sure this was a date. For some reason, despite the fact that this was precisely what she’d been angling for, she felt a little unsure of herself.
After checking her hair once more in the visor mirror, she got out of the car. With her purse and the promised bottle of wine, she made her way to the front door. Lifting her hand, she knocked and waited for Chris to answer the door.
When he opened the door, he was barefoot, wearing a pair of khaki cargo shorts and a navy polo shirt. She was glad she’d dressed casually, too.
“Hey. Come on in,” he said, smiling.
He reached out and took her free hand, pulling her inside.
Smiling, she said, “Hey.”
Moving inside, further, she glanced around and said, “Where should I set the wine?”
“Here. I’ll take it.” Turning the label he said, “Malbec?”
“It’s Argentinian. Good stuff. It has less of the after taste than a normal red.”
“Interesting. Never tried it,” he said.
He moved across the room, into the kitchen to set the wine down.
Peering into the living room area, Chloe said, “You redecorated. This sofa is new. Tables, too, right?”
The brown leather sofa had been replaced. There was an overstuffed gray sofa with a chaise in its place. It had a few throw pillows in varying shades of black and gray on it.
“Yeah. I got these about a year ago, I think. Has it really been that long since you’ve been here?” he asked, his face clearly showing surprise.
Snickering, Chloe said, “The last time I was here I kicked your ass so badly at that racing game that I feared you’d never invite me back…” her voice trailing off sadly at the end.
Narrowing his eyes, he said, “God. I am so going to enjoy wiping that smirk off your face, Chloe. Ready to get your ass kicked?”
The battle was long and intense but after three hours, they decided to call it a draw. They had been pretty evenly matched even though Chris had just barely edged her out for the overall win.
Setting down her controller, she rolled her shoulders and said, “Commence gloating. You earned the right.”
Laughing he said, “I did win, didn’t I?”
He waited a beat and then said, “Well. It really is a man’s game.”
Chloe smacked him in the arm and said, “What the hell!”
Rubbing his arm he laughed and said, “Kidding. Kidding! Your face was priceless though.”
His smile softened a bit and he asked, “Hungry yet?”
“A bit, yeah. I didn’t want to stop playing but now that my downfall is complete,” she said, smiling wryly.
They got up from the couch and headed to the kitchen. As they walked through the entrance, she asked, “Is there anything I can do to help?”
Shaking his head, he said, “Nah. I’ve got in under control. Keep me company?”
Nodding, she headed over to the other side of the island and she stood there and watched him work for a moment, then asked, “You’re sure?”
“Just relax and have a seat. Let me make you dinner,” he said, then paused before adding, “By the way. How was CrossFit? Did it break you again?”
“My muscles are a little stiff from sitting for so long,” she said, gesturing to the living room. “But not like the other night. We did lots of shoulder work today.”
“You’re tough, Chlo. I don’t think I could handle that stuff. Especially with my knee. Swimming and weights are about all I’m good for.”
Surveying him a moment, she said, “Well, clearly that’s working out just fine for you.”
“Glad you noticed,” he said, smirking.
“Hard to miss,” she replied, rolling her eyes.
She continued to watch him in fascination as he moved to the refrigerator and took out the steaks. They were on a plate, and looked like they’d been seasoned already. Setting it aside, he grabbed two potatoes out and what looked like the beginnings of a salad.
As he was preheating the oven, he looked back at her and saw that she was watching him intently.
“What?” he asked.
“I don’t think I’ve ever seen you cook anything that didn’t involve a microwave before. Frankly, I didn’t know if you knew how. I’m impressed.”
Smirking, he said, “A man’s gotta eat. Besides, this is mostly just grilling. My genetics demand that I be able to cook over open flame.”
“Easy,” she said, laughing and holding up her hands in surrender. “Nobody’s doubting your manhood. I just realized there’s a lot that I don’t know about you even though we’ve been friends for years.”
“I know what you mean,” he said. “It’s strange to think that we’re still getting to know each other after all this time.”
Chloe rolled her shoulders again, and stretched her neck.
Glancing up at her again, he shook his head. He set the potatoes on the counter, and slid the steaks back in the fridge. Moving to the sink, he washed his hands and dried them on the dish towel.
She watched him curiously, not exactly sure what was going on until he walked up behind her and placed his hands on her shoulders. Gently, he began to massage her knotted muscles.
Groaning, she said, “You really don’t have to do that.”
After a brief pause, she added, “But don’t expect me to fight you on it. That’s great.”
“You’ve been rolling your shoulders since you walked in the door. Besides, I’ve wanted to get my hands on you since you got here, anyway. This is convenient for both of us.”
Smirking, she said, “Carry on then.”
Buy Lip Service
Where to find Michelle Roth
Thanks to Michelle Roth for visiting with us today on Wednesday Words and sharing her latest book, Lip Service. The series looks great and I’m adding it to my TBR list and I’m sure I won’t be the only one! Next week join us again when Elle Boon comes to visit.
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