Sophie Maplethorpe paused to look at the naked man sprawled across the hotel bed. Even in the early morning darkness, she immediately understood why her best friend had gone to bed with the complete stranger. Maybe not why she'd done so after her own bachelorette party, but if the bottom half of him was as glorious as the broad shoulders and muscled arms presently splayed across the white linen sheets, not to mention all that thick, dark hair curling against his neck... well, even Sophie might have toyed with the idea of risking her entire future for one last fling.
Except you are risking your entire future. And she hadn't even gotten the hot sex first.
Tearing her gaze away from the bed and the naked man, Sophie took another second to let her eyes adjust to the dim interior of Room 706, king, no smoking. Delia said her cell phone had likely fallen out on one of the chairs while she'd been straddling-- Sophie shut that image down immediately. But her gaze was drawn to the bed again. And the man presently in it. Daniel Templeton. Investment capitalist, in Chicago for a few meetings. And, apparently not averse to mixing a little consensual pleasure with business.
She sighed. Just a bit. Yes, she'd been focusing on her job to the point where, maybe, just possibly, her personal life had suffered a little. Okay, a lot. As in she didn't presently have one. Still, even if she wasn't ignoring certain needs for the sake of more important, immediate goals, any normal, red-blooded woman would look at that back, and that backside, clearly and quite deliciously outlined under that casually tangled sheet, and wish, just for a fleeting moment anyway, that she'd been the one doing the hot chair tango last night. All night, according to Delia. The man had stamina. And just because Sophie had to stifle another longing sigh didn't mean she was sex starved or anything.
No, that, apparently, was her best friend's problem.
Well, not anymore.
Sophie resolutely dragged her attention back to the pair of standard hotel chairs arranged in front of the wall-sized picture window, presently hidden behind heavy hotel drapes. She had approximately fifteen minutes to find that damn phone, sneak back out of the room and deliver it to her best friend, before Delia's fiancé made his daily and perfectly punctual 7:00 a.m. morning phone call. Delia's fiancé being Adam Wingate, of the Chicago hotel magnate Wingates. The Wingates who happened to own the chain of hotels she was presently breaking and entering in. The very same hotel chain that employed her as a newly promoted night manager.
She didn't have a pocket in the pants she'd changed into after her shift was over, so she slipped the lanyard holding her master key card back over her neck for the time being, and tiptoed toward the chairs, trying not to think about the fact that she was risking that very promotion, not to mention possible arrest, and God knew what else, all for a damn cell phone.
The instant Delia finished her morning call with her soon-to-be groom, Sophie planned a little lecture of her own. Not that she didn't understand Delia's last-minute bout of cold feet. She'd been telling her friend for, well, almost as long as she'd been dating him, that Adam Wingate was a possessive control freak who, from their very first date, had been categorically programming every last bit of fun and spontaneity out of Sophie's normally bubbly and vibrant best friend.
Delia had countered with the fact that Adam adored her and put her on...
Donna Kauffman (Author)
Donna was first published with Bantam's Loveswept line in 1993. After 14 books, she moved on to write contemporary single titles for Bantam. In 2001, she returned to her category roots and had her first release from Harlequin's Temptation line. Donna is also writing for Harlequin's Blaze line. She enjoys creating characters that like to push the edge a little.Donna lives in Virginia with her husband and rapidly growing sons. She also has a rapidly growing menagerie of pets. Her two Australian terrors, er, terriers, were recently joined by a baby cockatoo named Cha Cha. Donna's husband is fairly sure it won't end there. Donna's fairly sure he's right.