Game of Love series
Weary of small roles in low-budget films, actress Gemma Norwood isn’t sure if her heart still lies in making movies, but giving up would be admitting failure and throwing away her dream. An escape back to her hometown, a snow-covered small town in the Catskills, is the perfect place to contemplate her life. Even if the chances are pretty good that she’ll run into the one man who broke her heart. She can handle it. After all, she is an actress.
Winter is the worst season for pro baseball pitcher Adam Hudson. It gives him too much time to think. He may have physically healed from the line-drive that fractured his skull, but emotionally, he has a long way to go. Questioning whether he can continue to play the game he loves leads to questioning everything, including the choice he made that took Gemma away from him.
Coming face to face in nearly the same way they’d originally met, Adam and Gemma can’t deny their chemistry is still there, or that they’ve both kept tabs on each other in the four years since their break-up. But with so much time passed, and emotions unresolved, and things left unsaid, can they start something new, or will old hurts and new fear threaten to strike them out?
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When she pulled back, her fingers curled into the front of his shirt. Her gaze searched his, then focused on his mouth, then raised to meet his again. Time apart hadn't weakened their connection. He couldn't stop the surge of his heartbeat. He tilted his head, leaning down, drawn to her. The delicate shiver that shook through her body snapped his focus to her comfort. "Let's get warmed up."
Wrapping his arm around her, he walked with her into the kitchen and started a fresh pot of coffee. While it brewed, Gemma told him stories of Bear’s exploits over the years—the separation anxiety, the encounters with mail carriers, and the dog’s insistence on being a lapdog regardless of his size.
A few minutes later, they settled in the den with cups of coffee laced with a shot of bourbon. Bear lay on the floor by their feet. As she drank her coffee, Gemma's eyes softened and the smile gracing her lips widened. Little by little, they shifted closer together and the room’s temperature ticked up a few degrees. The need to kiss her overwhelmed him. He set their cups on a side table. When he sat back, Gemma snuggled against him.
In the quiet room, the only sounds were the ticking of the clock and their breathing. Violet eyes steady on his, Gemma laid her hand on his chest. His eyes briefly closed at the contact. No one compared to her.
He cupped her cheek with his hand and brushed his thumb across her lips. They parted under his touch. He fought against the need to rush. She was back in his arms and he wanted to savor the moment. Adam moved in slow and gently pressed a kiss to her right cheek. Then, he placed a kiss on her left cheek.
He pulled back, a breath away, his pulse pounding. Her eyes locked on his and she smiled. They watched each other as they slowly moved together and lips pressed against lips.
Her scent, her taste, her feel, were all the same as before. The powerful punch of sensations overwhelmed him. Drawing back, he traced his finger down her cheek. Whispering his name, she tilted her face toward his, her eyes filled with emotion. Adam slanted his lips over hers and shifted to a more comfortable position. His fingers on her neck urged her closer.
Gemma slid her hands around his back and held him tight. The soft curves of her chest and hips pressed against him.
He groaned. With one hand tangled in her hair and the other reaching under her shirt to caress the soft skin of her back, he opened himself to feelings and sensations he'd tried to bury.
She was as intoxicating as ever.
Bear leaped from the rug, and in one graceful move, settled his one-hundred-twenty pound bulk across their laps. Grunting under the weight, Adam pushed, trying to shift the dog's body off of Gemma.
Her laughter filled the room. "Sorry. He doesn't realize he's too big to be a lap dog. Bear, down."
Bear whined, but resumed his spot on the floor, this time, lying directly on their feet.
"This guy deserves a medal for bravery." Adam patted the soft fur.
"So do you." Gemma directed his lips back to hers, and he didn't care if ten more dogs piled on top of them.
Kissing Gemma after such a long delay was better than any medal.
Better than anything else in the world.