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THREE FOR THE ROAD
LS Books
February 2016
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Melanie Bell, Hayden Trask and Charlie Smith have been best friends since childhood. The trio look out for each other, laugh with each other, play with each other, live with each other, and have each other’s backs no matter what.

Only, Melanie secretly dreams about hot nights and sweet days with both men, tangled in each other’s arms. Charlie has silently craved both Melanie and Hayden forever. Years ago, Hayden made a personal vow to shield Charlie and Melanie from any and all harm, and over time that protection has morphed into confusing passion and attraction for both of his best friends.

What if one long steamy day together turns into a night where hidden raw desires are exposed? If Charlie and Melanie can convince Hayden to leap without a net, they just might discover the answer is a passionate love between all three friends that will last a lifetime.

Excerpt Rated PG-13 - This little snippet is just a tease of when Hayden, Melanie, and Charlie are about to succumb to the attraction between the three of them for the first time.

…Well into the darkest hours of the night, long after the last of the guests had left the party, Hayden prowled down the hallway, gritting his teeth as Melanie’s sultry chuckle and Charlie’s smooth as silk laughter floated through the house.

In flannel bottoms and nothing else, his eyes gritty from lack of sleep, Hayden stalked through the shadowed kitchen to the dimly lit TV room. The sight and sound that greeted him stabbed knives of need and rejection straight through his heart.

A bag of trash forgotten on the floor between them, Melanie and Charlie tossed an orange and a lime back and forth between them, always trading them at the same time, counting each time they both caught the fruit. The endurance game, how long they could go without dropping whatever items they were throwing, was one the three of them had played along with Drew hundreds of times when they’d been adolescents and teens.

To see Melanie and Charlie playing now, just the two of them--her in a floral little nightie and him in black boxer briefs and a gray T-shirt--fuck, why are they both so damned sexy--infused a heady mix of heat and jealousy in Hayden’s core.

That spark pushing at his frayed senses, Hayden flipped the light switch, flooding the room in a shot. Melanie jumped, and her toss of the orange went wild. Charlie cursed and dived for the piece of fruit, snagging it out of the air with his left hand, and landing on the couch on his side.

Bouncing back to his feet without missing a beat, Charlie shook his head and pointed Hayden’s way. “Nice try, Trask,” shades of the sea deepened the light in his eyes, “but you aren’t sabotaging my game tonight. I will beat you fair and square one of these days, even if you do tower over me like a mountain, acting the quarterback hero you never wanted to be.”

Gritting his teeth and glaring--Charlie fucking knew Hayden hated anyone even mentioning that part of his former life--Hayden muttered, “I thought we agreed to get some sleep and clean up in the morning?” Drew and Griffin still hadn’t returned from their outdoor tryst, which was what had prompted Charlie to suggest they clean as a group the next day. “If you changed your minds you could have woken me up.”

Her features so fucking bright and alive for three-thirty in the morning, Melanie grinned at him as she grabbed the orange Charlie lobbed her way. “It wasn’t intentional.” Her hair piled in a messy bun atop her head, she zigged around Hayden and tossed the fruit over his shoulder to Charlie, while Charlie circled behind and sent the lime in a high softball pitch over Hayden’s head. “I couldn’t unwind, so I got up to be useful.”

“And I needed to take a piss,” Charlie explained. Hayden bobbed out of the way, but Charlie popped up right next to him on his other side, so damned close, his inky hair in enticing disarray. “When I got up, I heard her bitching to herself about rude people not respecting that they’re a guest in someone’s home and leaving their empty cups and plates all over the place.”

Melanie charged in on Hayden’s other side, her breasts brushing against his arm, tormenting him in a way she surely didn’t realize. “Shut up! I was not bitching.”

A sudden twinkle hit Charlie’s too-blue eyes, and his grin went downright cheeky. “I could say you were moaning, but I’ve never heard you moan up close before, so...”

Pink bloomed on Melanie’s cheeks, but she raised a perfectly sculpted blonde brow at him and replied, “Hey, I haven’t heard you either. I’m not giving up any of my tit without some tat from you.”

Oh shit. Unable to help himself, Hayden bit his lip to stuff down a chuckle, even as said body part of Melanie’s grazed his bare arm for a second time and wound a coil of pleasure straight down into his cock.

Charlie’s cheeks and eyes popped like a puffer fish for a split second, and then he expelled and threw his head back, busting out laughing, the robust sound booming through the living room.

“What?” Furrow lines pulled Melanie’s smooth brow.

Wiping his hand down his face, not quite removing the smirk, Charlie reached across Hayden’s chest and tapped his finger to the center of Melanie’s forehead. “Replay in your mind what you just said out loud.”

Not a heartbeat later, Melanie’s eyes widened, and the pink in her cheeks turned full-on scarlet. She shoved her hand against Charlie’s chest. “Jackass. I didn’t mean it like that.” Glaring up at Hayden, she jabbed him in the shoulder too. “Both of you.”

Before Hayden could talk her down, Charlie sing-songed, “I don’t know.” Reaching around Hayden in front and back, he poked Melanie’s waist in rapid succession, first the left and then the right side, and then both at the same time. “Maybe secretly, you did.”

Melanie rushed around Hayden, trying to smack Charlie, shouting, “Stop teasing me!” but Charlie swung to the other side, out of her reach.

“I can’t help it.” Poking his head around Hayden’s shoulder, Charlie reached around the other side and tugged loose the ribbon holding Melanie’s hair atop her head. “You’re so easy, it’s fun.”

Melanie made a stink face and shot Charlie the finger. “Screw you, spaceboy.” Usually she called him spaceman.

She tried to grab for his boxer briefs, but the fabric slipped out of her fingers, and Charlie declared, “Oh, it is on now, girl!”

Charlie bounded around Hayden toward Melanie, and Melanie shrieked and circled to the other side, just out of his grasp. Back and forth, around and around Hayden they went, reaching and leaning around and over Hayden’s body to tweak or poke or pinch the other.

With every move from them, Melanie’s smooth skin and lush breasts rubbed against Hayden’s back or arm, and Charlie’s warm, hard flesh pressed against Hayden’s side or even once to his chest--all of which picked at Hayden’s confusion and already frayed needs. Even worse, the laughter lightening their voices and open love that maybe they couldn’t see, but Hayden so clearly could, hacked even harder at the pain and loss brought to the surface in Hayden over this potential move that would take him out of their lives for years.

When Melanie slid across Hayden’s front, her belly touched dangerously across his cock, while Charlie’s crotch brushed across his ass at the same time. Fuck.

In a shot, Hayden grabbed each one of them by an arm and held them a distance away from him. “Guys. It’s too late for this shit.” Tightness consuming his frame turned his tone harsh. “Come on.”

Instantly, Melanie turned her focus to Hayden, tickling the bend of his arm. “Come to think of it, Hayden,” her throaty tone, so damned much a natural part of her, sank right through him, grabbing hold of his nuts, “I’ve never heard you moan either.”

Charlie added, “Neither have I.” With his free hand he tickled Hayden’s side. His surprisingly rough fingers grazed Hayden’s bare flesh, right at the low-riding waistband of his flannel bottoms. Damn it.

Hayden sucked in a breath as Melanie pushed, “Moan for us, mountain man,” stroking his ego with that name only she ever called him, and only on the rarest of occasions.

Pushing against Hayden’s hold on him, Charlie said almost on top of Melanie, “Yeah. Give us something nice and throaty and deep.”

Charlie tickled Hayden again, in which Hayden swore the man’s thumb slipped the slightest bit under Hayden’s loose pants. Fucking hell. Melanie moved to Hayden, right up against his side, and tapped him on the nose. She moved lower, letting her finger snag and pull on his lip. Jesus God, no. Instead of giving them that moan they were messing with him about, Hayden growled, his control barely tethered to a deep cliff. He grabbed Melanie around the waist and hoisted her up onto the bar separating the kitchen from the den.

Hyper aware of Charlie only a couple of feet away, the imprint of the man’s hand on Hayden’s waist so damned fresh, Hayden snarled, “What the hell are you playing at right now?” He cuffed his hand around Melanie’s neck, his breathing coming too fast and hard, but unable to control it. All day this strange sexual vibe had hovered close to the surface, only to dip back under, and then show itself above the shoreline again. “What the fuck are you trying to do to me?”

Her gaze wide with shining chips of citrine, Melanie clung to Hayden’s forearm, her slender fingers digging into his hard muscle. “I don’t know.”

Just how close they were--Christ, I think I can smell her honey--hit Hayden in the gut like a sledgehammer. His hand slid from her neck, and his throat tightened even more. “Then back the fuck off.” His order was barely more than a low, rough sound.

Before he took a full step back, Melanie grabbed his hand, halting him in place. “Maybe I can’t.” Tugging him in, her focus so bright, she straightened, putting them only inches apart. “Maybe I don’t have it in me to pretend tonight.”

“Wha--”

In a shot, Melanie closed the distance between them and feathered her lips across Hayden’s. She paused for the barest moment, then brushed her mouth against his again, the most enticing contact he’d ever experienced from another person in his life.

A wash of fire instantly flooded Hayden’s entire being--Jesus, God, yes--but at the same time, he automatically reared his head, his senses sending warning bells screaming through his system. Melanie stayed with him, nodding when he shook his head no. She moved her mouth against his again, and this time dipped out her tongue the slightest bit and grazed his lower lip with the tip.

Mother of God, help me. Hayden shuddered. He curled his hand into a fist, bracing himself against the bar. “Melanie...” Every repressed urge in Hayden pushed him to grab her and consume her, to feed the starving man he was, but self-preservation kept his hand locked tight to the granite counter. “I don’t--”

Her gaze steady as a rock, Melanie put her finger to his lips, silencing his protest. “It’s okay.” She took his hand and placed it against her breast, over her heart, only a thin layer of flowery cotton between his skin and the fast beat pounding from within her. “In this moment, let’s let go and do whatever we want, without consequences.”

She held eye contact, gave him a little extra nod when he shook his head again--so fucking beautiful--and Hayden lost the battle inside himself. He sank into her, a slave to the permission in her eyes. He crushed his mouth to hers, claiming her with a rough kiss he wished showed some tenderness but that right now he didn’t know how to corral. Hayden pushed his tongue into her mouth, tasting the smallest piece of her, and moaned as her spicy sweetness took over his taste buds.

A sexy little mewl escaping her, Melanie kissed Hayden back and flitted her fingers against his stomach, touching but not quite, never letting her fingers land for more than a second. Nipping her upper lip hard, Hayden pushed her hand across his stomach and around his waist, forcing fuller, harder contact, stealing a caress he was afraid she might not willingly give.

So very focused on Melanie, pride rushing through him as she scratched her short nails across the small of his back, Hayden was shocked--although, with the direction of his desires lately, maybe he shouldn’t be--at how precisely a soft noise drenched in pain from Charlie cut through his middle and sliced his soul in two.

Charlie started to step away from them.

Fuck no. Instinct taking over, driven to own Charlie too, Hayden snaked his arm out, tangled his fingers in Charlie’s T-shirt, and found Melanie’s hand already gripping the fabric. Without any communication between them, other than the hot lock of their gazes, they both pulled Charlie back in and swung their focus to him.

Studying every inch of Charlie’s face, noting the striking angular lines mixed with a smooth sweetness that created something so damned cute and enticing, with clouds in ocean eyes he’d known and trusted forever, Hayden uttered, “You’re not going anywhere.” Protective desire claimed his voice.

Melanie pushed her hand up Charlie’s chest, scratching over the gray fabric, and didn’t stop until she cupped his cheek. “This doesn’t happen without you.” That same permission she’d given Hayden held strong in her eyes for Charlie, and Charlie groaned and swooped in, taking her mouth with an invasive, claiming kiss…

 

Copyright Protect Work
Jamie Urban, author / LS Books, publisher

 

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