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Everything About You

Ever After Series, Book 6

Gia and Silas' story. An enemies to lovers, brother's best friend small town romance. Blurb coming soon.

Silas Sharpe is enemy number one—my biggest competitor and my brothers’ best friend.

Seeing an opportunity to “spy” on the offerings at Chesapeake Resort under the guise of attending a “friend’s” wedding, I took it, dragging my best friend and my brother with me.

When Silas cornered me in a utility closet during the wedding reception, I finally succumbed to the years of pent-up frustration and hate, giving in to my baser instincts.

This was supposed to be a onetime thing, but in true Silas Sharpe fashion, he refused to give up until he had the one thing that had eluded him for years—me.

He played the game well, offering me a chance to plan a high-end wedding at his resort—something I’d always wanted. But I refused to trust in the relationship growing between us, knowing that, as my competitor, Silas would capitalize on any moment of weakness, leaving me to pick up the pieces.

As time went on, Silas showed me that I could relinquish a little of the control I’d held on to for so long. That there was more to life than just work.

But what happens if I let go?

If I’m not careful, I’ll lose more than just my business to Silas. I’ll lose myself, too.
 

+ Excerpt +

“If you’ll excuse me, I’m here to enjoy the wedding.”

Her hair was pulled back in some complicated knot that bared her neck and shoulders. Her dress wrapped around her body in a way that made me want to unravel and discover her secrets.

Gia brushed past me, her floral scent lingering in the air as she strode with purpose down the aisle toward my hotel.

Irritation burned in my gut as I followed her. I hadn’t known she’d be here. Gia Giovanni was my best friends’ younger sister and the woman who never failed to spark every one of my competitive instincts.

I couldn’t believe she’d shown up at one of my weddings. As the owner of a wedding planning service, Happily Ever Afters, she was my primary competitor when it came to weddings.

I kept a wedding planner on staff, Hannah, and didn’t allow couples to use any other planner. A few years ago, Gia came to me with her offer to plan weddings for her brides at my resort. I could torture myself by working with the woman who drove me crazy, or I could distance myself from her. I didn’t need the temptation.

I loved the Giovanni family, and the last thing I’d ever do was mess around with their youngest daughter and sister, no matter how much I wanted to usher her into the nearest closet and have my way with her. She was off-limits. Forbidden. And it only made her more attractive.

Gia opened the door to head inside the hotel. I grabbed it just in time, and she looked back at me in surprise.

“What are you really doing here?” I hissed into her ear.

I stood so close to her that I felt the ever-so-slight tremble in her body.

She pulled away from me, but I followed her, looking for somewhere I could talk to her alone. When I spotted a corner covered by a large potted plant, I grabbed her elbow and guided her there.

She looked up at me with a challenge in her eyes. “Why do you think I’m here?”

I braced my hand above her head. “To check me out.”

I’d clearly lost my mind because I was fairly sure she was here to scope out my five-star resort, not get in my pants, but I loved the way her eyes flashed with red-hot anger. Getting a rise out of Gia had always been easy and unbelievably satisfying.

She placed the palm of her hand on my chest, right above my pounding heart, as if to push me away. Instead, her fingers curled around the material of my shirt, making my heart race. “You wish.”

I smirked. “I wouldn’t touch my friends’ younger sister.”

She tipped her head to the side. “Then why did you drag me into this corner?”

“I won’t let you get away with whatever you’re up to,” I growled, a little distracted by her proximity.

She crossed her arms over her chest, pushing the globes of her breasts higher. “I’m not up to anything.”

One blonde strand of hair fell from her updo and curled over her forehead. I wondered if the dyed-blonde hair was an act of rebellion from her Italian family. I swept it aside, loving the flash of awareness in her eyes as my fingertips brushed over her forehead. She wasn’t immune to me. “You’re always up to something.”

She cocked her head. “Wouldn’t you love to know what it is?”

“That’s why I’m standing here.” I moved closer to her, wanting to press my body against hers. I wanted to trace a trail of kisses down her neck, over her collarbone, and lower. I wanted to tug down the bodice of her gown so that her breasts spilled over. I bet Gia wore sexy-as-hell lingerie.

I’d gathered important details about her over the years. She was feisty, quick to start a fight, and highly effective at ending one with her sharp tongue. She always rose to a challenge, and I seemed to be the ultimate one.

I lowered my head, breathing in her scent, floral with a hint of something spicy, and her breath hitched. I let my breath trail over the shell of her ear.

“What are you doing?” Her voice was shaky.

“You’ve never been seduced?” I taunted as my pulse kicked into overdrive. There was a roaring in my ears that drowned out my good reason and any sense of self-preservation.

“Is that what this is? A seduction?” Her voice was light as air. She tipped her head slightly so I had more access to her neck.

I cupped the back of her head, giving in to my desires, and sucked hard on her neck. She moaned softly into my ear, and it was the most beautiful sound I’d ever heard. I would enjoy making this woman come apart. It would be the greatest challenge of my life.

I lifted my lips slightly and said, “We could be so good together.”

Her fingers tangled in the hair at the back of my neck, and she pressed her tits against my chest. “That’s a bad idea.”

Her words said one thing, but her body was saying another.

“But so good,” I said as I kissed her neck and then her shoulder, not remembering any reason why I shouldn’t be touching and kissing her. I couldn’t remember anything except for the hum of desire beneath my skin and the throbbing of my cock. I wanted her in a way I hadn’t wanted anyone before.

Then she nipped the underside of my jaw, and everything inside me ran molten hot.

“Fuck. I want you.”

She pulled away, her eyes flashing with irritation. “You can’t have me. I’m not some prize to be won.”

“I never said you were.” I pulled back, a little confused about her reaction but knowing I shouldn’t be touching her. Not with her brother, Leo, nearby.

I felt sluggish as she ducked under my arm and walked away. I let her go because I shouldn’t have touched her at all. I straightened, running a hand through my hair. I’d seriously screwed up.

I prided myself on always being in control. I’d imagined myself making a move on her and kissing her a million times, but I never thought I’d lose my mind when I did.

I didn’t need to watch the wedding because Hannah was excellent at her job. I only hired the best. But I couldn’t stay away. When the ceremony started, I stood outside to keep an eye on Gia.

When the ceremony was over, the bride and groom walked down the aisle with their joined hands raised to cheers and a standing ovation.

I should have walked away. There was no need for me to ensure a smooth transition from the ceremony to the cocktail hour and then to the reception. But I couldn’t move.

I was rooted to the spot as Gia walked down the aisle on Leo’s arm. Her best friend, Harper, was on his other side, but I only had eyes for Gia.

She was gorgeous in anything, but there was something about that dress. The tease of that ribbon was fucking with my head.

Gia’s gaze flashed to mine as if she remembered the way she’d pressed her body against mine only a few minutes earlier. I couldn’t forget her breathy moans in my ear and the insistent way she tugged on my hair.

I had a fleeting thought that Gia would be wild in bed, but then Leo nodded in my direction, and my throat tightened. I shouldn’t be lusting after his younger sister. I shouldn’t be thinking about her at all. As far as Leo knew, we hated each other. Everyone knew it was difficult for us to be in the same room together without fighting. But when we were alone, that fire turned into desire.

I headed inside, knowing I should be doing anything but watching Gia Giovanni. If she’d stayed in Annapolis, I would never know what she tasted like.

To get back on track, I checked in with Brad, the chef in charge of the food for Naomi and Chris’s wedding. Then I completed a quick tour of the hotel grounds, ensuring everything was running smoothly. I did this route several times a day to clear my mind, and it gave me the opportunity to check in with the various managers of each department.

I believed in hiring the best, but that didn’t mean I wasn’t closely involved in the running of my hotel. I’d bought the resort and renovated it into something beautiful, a five-star resort that was booked months ahead of time. I also wanted to be known as the premier wedding destination in the area, but Gia’s business threatened that.

Early on, I set the standard that couples booking a wedding at my resort had to work with my wedding planner. They had to choose between Gia and me. Some dropped Gia and agreed to my terms. But others wanted her. It made me respect her even more.

She was good at her job. Now she represented a challenge not only to my business but to my body.

I wanted what I couldn’t have.

What if we took out our frustrations in the bedroom, and to hell with everything else? It didn’t have to mean anything. Her brothers would be pissed, but remembering that kiss, I was willing to risk it.

My footsteps faltered in the hallway of the hotel when I came around a corner and saw the flash of blue and heard the click of heels on the floor. Gia.

I quickened my strides until I was even with her. “What are you doing?”

Her expression was smooth, her tone dismissive. “I rented a room for the evening.”

My jaw tightened. “I didn’t authorize that.”

Gia stopped moving and smirked. “You approve all your guests?”

“I should,” I said, grinding my teeth together. I wasn’t sure why she got to me.

Gia had stopped in front of a utility closet. Without thinking about what I was doing, I opened it with one hand and snagged her slender wrist with the other. I tugged her inside and shut the door behind us. I turned the lock and walked toward her until she was pressed against the door. She hit it with a thud and a release of her breath.

She looked up at me, her expression a mixture of wonder and heat. “What are you doing?”

“This,” I said, just as my mouth descended on hers. Her hands grabbed at the back of my suit jacket as her lips moved under mine. I cupped her face, angling her so that I could dive inside that smart mouth.

I’d do anything to shut her up, to get her to think of me as someone other than her brothers’ best friend and her competition. I wanted her to see me as a man she desired.

We volleyed for control.

She moaned into my mouth as I moved one thigh between her legs.

She lifted her leg and hooked it around mine so that I could press against her center.

“You feel like heaven, sweetheart.”

“Don’t call me that,” she said as she claimed my mouth again. Her hands pulled me closer as she pressed herself against my cock.

I pulled away slightly and said, “I call it like I see it.”

“Shut up and kiss me.”

Kiss her. Touch her. Fuck her. I needed to be inside her. I needed her. I couldn’t describe this out-of-control feeling. I was desperate for her. It was like we’d held ourselves back for so long that as soon as we unleashed this desire, we were unstoppable.

I pulled back, making sure the heat in her eyes matched mine before tugging on the bow at her waist. “I want to see you.”

Her dress gaped open, her breasts spilled over a strapless bra, and a tiny strip of flesh-colored lace covered her pussy. I dropped to my knees, needing to smell her, taste her. “Fuck, Gia. You’re so gorgeous.”

Her chest heaved in time with the rise and fall of her breath.

“Are you wet for me?” I asked, looking up at her but not touching her to confirm.

She tipped her hips in my direction.

“You want my mouth, baby girl?”

Her jaw tightened. “I’m not your baby girl.”

“Sure, you are, sweetheart,” I insisted, loving how I riled her up, physically and mentally. “If you want my mouth on you, you’re going to have to tell me.” I wanted her to be honest with me. I wanted to hear that she desired me. That this wasn’t a power play. I needed to know she wanted me as a man.

Gia narrowed her eyes on me. “Silas, touch me—”

I raised a brow, needing to hear the dirty words.

Her hand rested lightly on my hair. “I want your mouth on my pussy.”

“Fuck. That word on your lips.” Heat rushed to my cock as I hooked my hands in the band of her lace panties and tugged them over her hips. The sweet smell of her arousal spurred me on as I spread her legs with my shoulders.

Her fingers tightened in my hair as I breathed her in.

“I like you on your knees for me.”

Without responding, because I loved it, too, I dove in, licking and sucking, devouring her sweet taste. She relaxed against the door, her hands an anchor in my hair as she tipped her hips toward me, and I added a finger.

I looked up at her, wishing I’d taken the time to remove her bra. “I want to see you. Feel you.”

Gia got the hint because she reached behind her back and unhooked her bra, allowing it to fall to the floor. Her hard nipples and pert breasts had me harder than a rock.

She was gorgeous. The hottest woman I’d ever had the pleasure of being with. In my lust-filled haze, I had a feeling it was because there was something else between us. Not just desire but mutual respect, an attraction that went beyond the physical, but I wouldn’t explore that. This was a release of tension. An unraveling of pent-up desire. I wouldn’t let it be anything else.

I wouldn’t let the tenderness swirling in my chest soften my touch. In my wildest dreams, I never thought I’d be pleasuring Gia Giovanni in the closet of my hotel. Knowing this might be my only chance with her, I wanted to make it good. I wanted her to think of me long after her orgasm had faded. I wanted to ruin her for all other men.

I wanted her to light up only for me. A sense of possessiveness struck me while I added a second finger, mimicking how I’d fuck her with my cock. I sucked her clit and reached up to cup her breasts, rolling her nipple with my fingers.

She bit her lip and arched into me, whimpering with desire and need.

I wanted to make her feel good. I wanted her to call out my name. I found that spongy spot deep inside her and curled my fingers.

Her nails scraped my scalp as her muscles tightened, and she cried out. Her walls spasmed around me, and I held her up as she came down.

Her eyes were a little unfocused as she looked down at me.

“Next time you come for me, say my name,” I growled.

The fog in her eyes lifted. “There won’t be a next time.”

She snatched up her bra and hooked it, covering her breasts and pulling her dress around her, not bothering with her panties. She tied the ribbon with jerky hands and straightened her hair. Then she turned away from me, her hand on the doorknob.

“You don’t want to return the favor?” I asked, unable to resist taunting her.

There was something hard and uncomfortable in my chest I couldn’t seem to dislodge. I didn’t want her to leave.

“I have no words except this”—she gestured in my direction—“was a mistake.”

She turned the knob and was gone, leaving me in the dusty storage room that was filled with spare towels and cleaning supplies. I stuffed her panties into my pocket, pleased to have a memento from our time together. I had a feeling it wouldn’t be happening again.

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