I was on edge. There was a break-in at Easton’s ReSail store, similar to the others in the area. I didn’t like not making headway on the investigation.
I needed to talk to Remi and tell her how important it was that she remember to arm her alarm system and that she walk with someone for her deposits in the evening.
Glancing at my phone for the time, I saw it was ten. Her store closed at six. Knowing she was probably home by now, I pulled the address from her police report and headed over there.
Parking near her place, I told myself I was doing what I would do with any other victim of a crime. I planned to talk to Max, too.
The door to her apartment was located on the side of the Java Coffee building. Pushing the button for the intercom, I questioned whether I should be here. I wouldn’t drop in at Max’s home this late.
“Yes?” Her voice came over the intercom before I could change my mind. If I thought she sounded husky, it had to be my overactive imagination.
“It’s Colton. I need to talk to you.”
Before I could add it was official police business, the buzzer sounded. Was she always this accommodating? Did she let in every guy who dropped by?
Irritation pricked my spine as I climbed the narrow stairs and knocked on her door.
Opening the door, I said, “Please tell me you don’t leave your door—”
I stopped in my tracks because she was leaning over in tiny shorts so small, they barely covered her ass. Part of my brain registered that she was gathering her long mane of blonde hair into a ponytail. When she straightened, wrapping a band around it, my mouth was dry for a different reason. She wore a lace top that revealed everything. A deep purple bra, bare skin, and the curve of her breasts.
I forgot what I’d asked.
She shot me an exasperated look. “The door downstairs is locked.”
I snapped my mouth shut. I couldn’t argue with her, not when the lace of her top did nothing to hide her body. It only enhanced her ample breasts and toned stomach. I should have told her to cover up, but I couldn’t look away. I felt good about my decision to drop by late.
She stood in front of me, her hands on her hips. “You said you needed to talk to me?”
She seemed unaffected, prancing around in front of me, wearing basically nothing. Was she doing it on purpose? I cleared my throat. “Easton’s shop was broken into.”
Her face fell. “Another break-in?”
I nodded, still incapable of full sentences.
“Is he okay?”
“Yeah, he wasn’t there.”
“He had an alarm?”
“That’s good he wasn’t hurt. Was anything taken?”
“Not that he’s aware of. He’s going to take some inventory to make sure. He didn’t keep cash in the store, especially with the other burglaries.”
“You think all three break-ins are related?”
I swallowed, struggling to maintain my focus on her face. “Until I have evidence otherwise.”
Her tongue darted out to lick her lips. “Any new leads?”
I was losing the fight; my gaze drifted down over the swell of her breasts and the curve of her hips, wondering if she wore panties under those tiny shorts. “Nothing, unfortunately.”
“He didn’t have cameras?”
I sighed, leaning a hip against her kitchen counter while she moved around, grabbing a glass from an upper cabinet. Her lace top slipped up, revealing an enticing sliver of skin above her shorts.
When Remi looked over at me, I forced my eyes to her face. “Cameras are expensive.”
“Is it something the city could put in?”
“If they have the money, the means, and the right motivation.” Dealing with the mayor and the city council on anything took a lesson in patience.
“I would think a string of break-ins would be enough.”
“Nothing taken. No one was hurt.”
She filled her glass with water. “Did you want anything to drink?”
I almost said no, but my mouth was dry. “Water’s fine. Thank you.”
We fell silent while she got me the water, moving close to hand it to me. She looked up at me from under her lashes. “Do you always make late-night house calls?”
Clearing my throat again, I said, “Almost never.”
“Honest”—she laughed—“I like that.”
I nodded. “I’m always honest.”
She sobered. “I bet you are.”
“You don’t like liars.”
She shrugged. “Who does?”
I wondered if it had something to do with her past or if it was a recent boyfriend or friend that had her appreciating honesty. “Some people feel the need.”
“With me, what you see is what you get. I don’t play games.”
What you see is what you get. Gorgeous curves covered by black lace.
She’d always been in the periphery when I was dating Delilah. I’d kept thinking of her as Delilah’s little sister so I wouldn’t see her as more.
Seeing her in her apartment, that black lace had blown all my careful thoughts out of the water.
Remi was gorgeous. Smoking hot.
She was probably sweet and kind, but all I could focus on was the swirls of black lace and the tease of bare skin underneath. I had to know if she was wearing purple lace underwear to match her bra or nothing at all.
Remi stepped back, and I drank the water like I was in the desert and hadn’t seen water for days. Draining the glass, I set it on the counter.
I needed to focus. Remi was a victim of a crime. I was here to keep her updated on the investigation. Not add thoughts of her bare skin to my spank bank.
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