All That Matters Feb 10th, 2015
The Billionaire Bargains, Book 3
Will Weston knows Emily Steele is too good for him. She's too good for any of the guys he knows-even if he does know an astonishing number of suave, handsome millionaires. But Emily's special. And he thought so even before he realized he had a little crush on his boss's niece.
Emily Steele would definitely consider herself intelligent and worldly. Born into privilege, she's been exposed to travel, culture and the best education. A billionaire's daughter, Emily is used to having everything she could ever need or want-cars, clothes, trips. But she isn't used to being single. When she decides she needs a break from her eight year relationship with the only boy she's ever even dated, Emily realizes she has a lot to learn. About the world and herself. And men. Definitely about men.
A friend's bachelorette party in New Orleans is the perfect place to get in touch with her inner vixen. Some drinking, dancing, flirting and fun seems like a great plan. Too bad she knows nothing about flirting. And has never actually met her inner vixen.
When Emily's uncle insists that his assistant, Will, accompany Emily to New Orleans, he knows it's not a good idea. The minute she was single, he suddenly became all too aware of how beautiful, charming and interesting she is. And that can only mean trouble. But when Emily offers Will's best friend a million dollars to be her date for the weekend instead, there is no way Will is staying behind.
Warning: Contains a woman with enough money to buy a date for a weekend in New Orleans, a guy who's never going to let that happen, a bachelorette party on Bourbon Street, hot sex to slow jazz and beignets... because there has to be beignets.
© copyright Erin Nicholas, 2015
She took a deep breath. She knew what she wanted from Will. She just wasn't sure she could tell him. But she had to. She was tired of sitting around, unsure, waiting for something. The new ice cream wasn't coming to her. So she was going to have to go out and get it.
"Do you—" He cleared his throat. "Do you want to take one of the bedrooms downstairs? Gus or I could stay up here."
She wet her lips. "That's not what I'm worried about right now."
He frowned. "What are you worried about?"
"That you won't kiss me even if I ask you to."
Will froze. He stared at her. His mouth moved, but no sound came out.
That lasted for about ten seconds.
Then he leaned back. Then stepped back. Then he started shaking his head.
She frowned at him. Wow. Talk about an overreaction. "Thanks a lot."
"You don't want me to—" He coughed. "K...kiss you." It sounded like he was forcing the words out.
"I do." She really did. She wanted to kiss someone. Someone not Chad. But she wasn't going to kiss Gus or any random stranger. If it wasn't Will, it was going to be no one.
"Emily, that's...not a good idea."
Her eyebrows both lifted. "Why?"
"Because..." He was clearly casting around for an argument. "I'm...me. And you're...you. And that's..."
She watched him floundering. Seriously? "What's that mean that I'm me? That doesn't sound complimentary."
He shook his head. "It's more that I'm me."
She frowned. "That doesn't make any sense."
"It does. Trust me."
"I do trust you," she said sincerely. "That's part of why this is so great. I need to kiss someone. But there's no one I want to kiss. Except you."
His head stopped shaking. He moved in a step closer, almost as if it happened without him thinking about it.
She took a deep breath. "I really want to kiss someone new. I've never kissed anyone but Chad. And I've been out and around all these guys for five months, and tonight Gus will be there, but you are the only one that I want to kiss."
His eyes searched hers.
Emily knew she was staring back, but she couldn't stop. There was a heat in Will's eyes she couldn't look away from. Her whole body responded to just the way he was looking at her. Wow.
"Did Gus or Tony put you up to this?"
Why would Gus or Tony put her up to this? "As far as I know, Gus and Tony are both unaware of my feelings for you."
Will took another step closer, one that put him almost on top of her. "Your feelings for me?" he repeated. She'd told him she was attracted to him. But feelings were, well, feelings. That was different. More. "You have feelings for me?"
She wet her lips again and nodded. His gaze dropped to her mouth and lingered there.
"What are those feelings exactly, Emily?" he asked softly.
Oh boy, there was that hot, swirling stomach thing again.
"I feel...very attracted to you," she said. "I feel like I can trust you. I feel like I like being around you. I feel like you're someone I'd like to spend more time with. And..."
His gaze hadn't left her mouth but when she trailed off, his eyes lifted to hers. "And?"
"I'd really like to kiss you," she said softly, like he had before.
Something flickered in his eyes and she sensed a little hitch in his breathing.
That was good. Wasn't it? Maybe not. Maybe she was just confusing him. She had no idea how guys reacted to—anything. At least not any guys other than Chad.
It was the weirdest thing. After months of feeling nothing but nerves and frustration in her interactions with guys, suddenly this felt...tingly.
That was the best word for it.
And addictive. Like she wasn't sure there would be a time she wouldn't want to feel this way. Like she'd do whatever she could to keep feeling this way.
She stepped forward, bringing her close enough that the front of his shirt brushed the front of her dress. "Help me out here, Will. Please. It's just a kiss. I really need to know that I can want to kiss someone other than Chad."
Will swallowed hard. "This is crazy. How did this happen?" he asked. But he lifted his hand to her face.
The heat and tingles intensified with that one simple touch. "I told you I've been thinking about you."
Will slid his hand from her cheek to the back of her head, sinking his fingers into her hair.
Even that much felt so good.
Maybe she was just touch deprived. Not that she and Chad never touched, but he hadn't been big into public displays. They'd held hands, they'd hugged. And more, of course, when they were alone.
But she didn't remember Chad ever cupping the back of her head and looking at her the way Will was looking at her. That she could get used to too. He looked...hungry. And affectionate. Strange combination maybe, but there it was.
"This feels different than just wanting to sleep together."
She'd have to take his word for it. She'd only ever wanted to sleep with Chad. And that had been less about wanting and more about being together for four years and it seeming like a natural step in their relationship.
Now she wanted Will. "I have no idea. Doesn't it always feel like this?" she asked.
Will's gaze roamed over her face. "Feel like what?"
She took a deep breath. "Like I'll die if you don't kiss me."