Read An Excerpt

by Jill Shalvis

Genre: General Contemporary Romance, E-book, Contemporary Romance

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“You’re thinking so hard your hair’s smoking,” Nick said, his voice low and sexy. Teasing.

Mia reached out to touch her hair, but Nick caught her hand in his and smiled. “Like the look,” he said. “Is it for me?”

“No!” But she smiled back at him. “I have my date night LBD in my bag. That’s for you.”

He took her hands and spread them out at her sides, studying the skimpy Mrs. Claus costume. “Mmm, I’m happy to settle for this.” His sun-kissed hair was the same color as the aged whiskey in the bottle on the bar behind him, and matched his eyes as well. His tie was loosened, his shirt sleeves shoved up past his deliciously corded forearms.

But it wasn’t his looks that stopped Mia’s heart.

“Love that smile,” he murmured.

That. It was that way he had of making her feel like the prettiest woman in the world. She had it bad for him, and knew it.

The hostess seated them before she could change clothes. Each table held a flickering candle and a sprig of mistletoe. Nick picked the mistletoe up, held it over Mia’s head, and then leaned in for a kiss. He squeezed her hand, his callused thumb slowly gliding over her palm. She’d never considered her palm a particularly sensual spot before, but his touch altered her breathing and made her shiver.

Or maybe that was just him.

His eyes darkened as he pulled back. “Hmm,” he said, his voice like sex on a stick. “I definitely want to know what you’re thinking now.”

“It’s you,” she blurted out. “You have the most amazing eyes.”

He brought her hand up to his mouth and nipped the pad of her thumb. “And just think, my eyes aren’t even my best part.”

She laughed. “And as I’ve seen all your parts, I’m in a position of authority to verify this as fact.”

“Maybe you should re-verify later. Just to make sure,” he said, flashing her a panty-melting grin.

Mia knew she could get lost in him. Had gotten lost in him.

She was giving him his Christmas present early, which was a flight to her aunt Chloe’s Christmas Eve wedding. It would mean flying across the country on a whim and meeting the people who meant the most to her. The restaurant was intimate and exquisitely decorated for the holidays, and she hoped that maybe Nick had a surprise of his own up his sleeve.

They’d been dating for six months. Mia had gotten into graduate school, and Nick was working around the clock to make a name for himself and reduce his monumental college debt—which was currently rivaling the size of the national deficit. So his restaurant choice had to mean something.

Was tonight the night he’d finally use the L-word?

Her heart picked up at the thought because that would be a most excellent Christmas present.