This close, she could see too much. Entirely too much. The years hadn’t been particularly kind to Ajax, but then, he’d started off entirely too pretty for his own good. She remembered him in his feral early twenties, bright and blonde and so stunning that tourists had followed him around the French Quarter like they thought he was a harmless wolf cub set loose from his pack, like that hard smile of his was merely teeth and there was something more than violence in his sweet blue eyes.
I’m so glad you came back from Afghanistan in one piece, she’d heard one of the besotted tourists giggle at him once upon a very late night, over at one of the Priory tables with her too- short denim skirt already shoved out of his way.
And Ajax had responded, that angelic face of his never quite as hard as those eyes, No one comes back in one piece, bitch. With his hands high on her thighs and murder in his tone. They just come home.
His face was leaner now. Tougher. Less angel, more warrior. This Ajax wore his danger and his power right there on his face, in the lines that made his eyes look bluer, in the beard that made him look like the walking calamity he was, and no one would mistake this man for anything but that, blue eyes or not. He was lethal. And Sophie couldn’t help but think that he was far more beautiful for it, God help her. A battered, dark gold, finely-honed machine of a man, and he was grinning at her like he already had her pants at her knees and her ass over the nearest table.
No small part of her wished he did.
And she was fucked, because once that image was in her head, she couldn’t think of anything else—and she was positive he could read it right there on her face.
“You better tell your girl to put down that phone,” he said softly, so softly and so close that Sophie had to blink to make sense of it, so entranced was she by that mouth of his. “If the police show up in the middle of my homecoming party I might lose my sense of humor.”
“I’m fine, Danielle,” she called, and the bartender behind them froze, her cell phone clenched tight in her hand. “Sean here is just an old friend of my father’s.”
“You don’t have any idea when to quit, do you?”
“Because you, of course, are the model of restraint.”
That dangerous curve of his mouth tightened, and so did everything inside of her. “I’m not the mouthy piece of ass pinned up against the back of a bar, with a golden opportunity to rethink my attitude. If I were you, I’d take it.”
“I’m not afraid of you.”
Ajax studied her. “Then you’re as dumb as you act. Bad combination, babe. Especially in this neighborhood.”
“Should I interpret that as concern for my well-being?” she asked, her voice as acidic as it was sweet. “It’s hard to tell while you’re choking me out.”
A different sort of grin lit his face then, changing that look in his eyes and then dancing all over her. He shifted, sliding that big, hard hand of his up over her chin and then dragging his thumb over her lower lip, slowly. The grin drained from his face as he watched and he looked . . . hungry. Needy. Then he tested her teeth on the way back with the pad of that big thumb of his, and the urge to close her lips around him was so intense, so overwhelming, she lost her train of thought.
There was only Ajax, big and threatening and so beautiful it was making her shake.
He did it again. And it was the way he did it. It was pure sex in a simple little scrape of his thumb on her lip, then against her teeth, and it was dirty as all fuck.
Ajax lifted his gaze to hers then, and his blue eyes had gone hot. It shuddered through her, intent and heavy. A threat, she told herself. Dark and hard and life-altering. A distinct and deliberate threat.
But she was far more worried it was a promise.
Accordingly, she graduated from Vassar College and got her MA and PhD in literature from the University of York in England. She wrote her doctoral dissertation on AIDS literature, mostly so she could wallow in her obsession with the remarkable multimedia artist David Wojnarowicz and her idol, the bitter and hilarious David Feinberg. After many years in the rain and subject to the whim of seasons, she followed the sun to Los Angeles, where she lives with too many pets and an artist named Jeff. She is still plotting her Broadway debut.
There was so much raw emotion between these two characters and this isn’t your typical romance. This romance is a little on the darker side because these two characters are used to getting what they want and this story has a darker, dirtier edge to it. I really liked Sophie because she was smart, independent and could definitely hold her own with these guys. Especially Ajax. Ajax to me was very much an anti-hero because he played hard, loved even harder and was never afraid to get his hands dirty for the right price. To me that was extremely sexy and I could definitely understand Sophie’s attraction to him because his presence took up the entire room. I enjoyed Make You Burn and I’m looking forward to reading the rest of this sexy series in the Big Easy.