I lift her by the waist and set her directly on my lap.

She lets out a little, “Oh!”

Then, when I grab the back of her neck and drag her lips to mine, there’s a longer “Ooooh.” She melts into me.

Those lips I’d watched her gloss for years are finally mine. She tastes slightly salty, like the air here, like margaritas. I take all the time I want, learning her mouth from corner to corner.

The world is filled with interruptions, but we will have none here.

But also, I realize, no condoms. No comfortable bed.

I’ll make do.

My tongue slips between her lips, and she opens for me. Now it’s my turn to dissolve into her. I draw her in, sliding one of her legs around so that she straddles me. My fingers sink into that silky hair I touched so briefly earlier.

I’m drowning in her mouth, her tongue, the heat of her. We’re not wearing all that much, and I know when she feels me hard against her, because she sucks in a breath, her body shivering lightly.

This is my favorite part, accelerating toward the goal

Her body pressed to mine is a revelation. I have her alone. No office. No barriers. No damn nonexistent boyfriend.

My hands ache to learn every curve of her body. I reached down and circle her ankles with my fingers, squeezing to memorize the distance around them. I rub my thumb against the tender arch of her foot. She groans, and I work them harder, feeling all the tension ease from her.

She hangs onto me, her mouth seeking mine, arms around my neck.

I squeeze her feet and make my way up. I slide my hand along her calves, measuring the swell of her muscle and knocking stray grains of sand from her skin.

The kiss yawns wide, and we fall more fully into each other.

The urge to rush shudders through me, but I set it aside. Tonight is for exploration. Discovery. For chasing down paths that have been built in my mind for years. Destinations I never thought I would actually get to explore.

My fingers make it to her knees, bumping along the hollows like I am reading her body in Braille. There is nothing about her I don’t want to know. I slide my fingers along the taunt tendon at the base of her hamstring. Nothing is too insignificant to map as the terrain of her.

My pulse quickens as I make my way up her thighs. Her mouth goes still on mine, her breath hitching when my thumbs rest on the edge of her bikini bottom.

She pulls back for a moment, her gaze on mine. I’ve never seen her eyes like this, glossy and half-lidded, expressing her need.

My throat tightens. “You okay?” I lessen my grip on her thighs.

“I was just thinking ahead.”


She laughs, a ringing sound in the quiet. “I’m on the pill, but I wasn’t sure where you were on the condom situation.” She glances around. “I have a feeling we’re short on those at the moment.”

I press a finger just slightly inside the edge of her bikini. “I can do so many things to you that don’t involve condoms.”

“But if we want to do that…”

“I’ll follow your lead.”

“When was the last time…”

“Not in months.”

“And things seem okay?” She watches my expression.

“All okay.”

“So we can do whatever we want, then.” She grins.

My dick jumps, and her eyebrows lift. She’s right on top of me, with little between us.

“We can,” I say.

“I might want to do all the things.”

“Whatever the lady desires.”

This time, when I drag her against me, I turn so that she’s down on the beach towel. The sand shifts beneath us, conforming to the shape of her body and my elbows and knees, carving out a Bailey-and-Rhett-sized space on this island.

The bikini has a clasp behind her neck, and I flick it open easily. The stretch of the top releases at the lack of tension, and with a quick flip of a second clasp behind her back, it falls away.

I’m ready to worship her. Bailey dresses conservatively at work, all silk blouses and pantsuits. I’ve seen precious little, rarely even cleavage, and now the feast is right here.

She arches her back as I hold her breasts in both hands. The firelight flickers over her body, leaving bright tips and shadows that I memorize.

When my mouth closes over a pale nipple, Bailey sucks in a breath, her hands curled near her ears. Her hair is spread over the bright colors of the towel, now muted in the dark. “This is a sight,” I say, feathering kisses from one breast to the other.

“Is it?” She lets out a gasp as I take in the other side.

“I’ve been longing for this view for a long time.”

Her voice is ragged as I start to make my way down her belly. “The whole time?”

“Mmmm.” I slide a finger along the top edge of her bikini bottom. “Since Gloria brought you into my office for your first interview.”


The bottom is held with similar clasps to the top, one on each hip. “Mmm hmm.” I flick one open. “You were wearing a dark burgundy dress with a black jacket.”

“They didn’t quite match. I got them at a thrift store.”

“When you sat down and crossed your legs, the skirt caught on your knee and revealed some of your thigh before you straightened it.”

“You remember that?”

I open the second clasp. “I remember everything.”

“What did you think of me then?”

“I was worried about working closely with someone that set me off like you did.”

“I did?” She sounds like she doesn’t quite believe it, like no one has told her what an effect she can have.

“I spent half the interview trying to focus on the questions. You were smart and capable, and I could see I would be an idiot not to hire you.”

“But.” Her voice wavers as I slowly inch the bikini bottom away from her skin.

“I kept wanting to do things like this.” I spread her thighs apart and take my first long, slow lick of her. Her body is warm and perfectly wet. I use my thumb to spread her wider. I want farther in.

Her entire body shudders as I take a deeper dive. She’s deliciously responsive, her hips lifting to meet me.

And I have all the time in the world.

“Rhett,” she murmurs.

I lick my own finger to make sure there isn’t any wayward sand before sliding it inside her. I work her from the inside, while flicking my tongue against all the spots I’m learning make her writhe beneath me.

She grabs handfuls of sand, and some of it dusts my shoulders as she realizes what she’s done and lets it go. Ah, we are going to be a mess. A naked swim will be perfect after this. I want to watch her orgasm in the moonlight, half emerging from the sea like Aphrodite.

“Rhett!” Her voice rises, more urgent as I speed up, curling my finger to add pressure.

Her thighs quiver, her belly tight. I could do this all night, my face buried in her, my gaze lifting to skim her naked body, breasts tipped in firelight, her hair in disarray.

She’s a goddess. She’s mine. I will make sure we never have to wish for each other across an office desk, unaware of how the other feels.

Her nub swells, and I suck on it. This takes her over the edge. She shouts into the night, my name, her creator, unintelligible sounds. The waves crash behind her voice, the moon rising over the water.

Fuck, this is hot. I’ve been half in love with her for years, but this is the final straw.

“Rhett, Rhett, Rhett, Rhett.” Her body quivers, and her sandy hands grip my hair.

Then she relaxes, her body resting back on the towel. She rests an arm on her forehead, then sputters. “Oooh, I’m sandy!”

I laugh, kissing my way back to those perfect breasts. “No sheets to grab. Shall we take a dip to wash off?” I am so going to fuck her in the waves.


I stand and help her up. She looks at my swim trunks. “Without those, though.”

“Your wish is my desire.”

I pull on the tie, but she pushes my hands away. “Let me.”

When she kneels in front of me, her naked body licked by firelight, I’m not sure my dick can get any harder. Every beat of my blood rushes to the same place.

But she’s not done. When my trunks hit the sand, her mouth is one me, taking me in. Now it’s my hands in her hair, my face to the starry sky.

I will never want to leave.

She works me to the brink, but I want more of her. All of her. I step back and sweep her into my arms. “I’m going to do unspeakable things to you in the ocean.”

She squeals as I dodge fallen beach chairs and branches. “Rhett Armstrong, you are so crazy!”

I slow down in the surf, unable to know for sure if debris lies below the dark water. When we’re out waist-deep, I turn her in my arms to face me, her legs around my waist.

The moonlight washes her body in blue. We’re wet now, dripping, and I’ve never wanted anything more in my life than I want her.

She holds on to my neck. “This is the wildest thing I’ve done in my life.”

“Let this be the first of many.” I shift her against me. “Ready?”

“Hell, yeah, I am.”

I hold nothing back when I slam into her.

She lets out a shriek that’s lost in the pounding of the surf.

I hold onto her thighs, reveling in the slickness of her body tight around me. The water shifts and moves as I lift her away, then slide her down, away, and back.

Her breasts are even with my mouth, so I capture one. Her body clamps down on me.

“Fuck, Rhett. Jesus!”

I hold her tight against me, gyrating deep inside her. The friction between us sets her off. “Goddamnit, Rhett. Not again. Not again. I can’t.”

I shift her against me, realizing what’s getting her. I double down, grinding our bodies together. She whimpers, clutching my shoulders. “It’s happening. Rhett. Oh my God.”

And I can feel her body responding, the tightening, the gentle pulse.

When her words crumble into random syllables again, I relinquish my control. I feel her, all the way to the core of me, her thighs, her wet skin, her gentle breasts.

I unleash, feeling the warmth course from me to her, the way the friction becomes silken, and how our bodies, for a moment, seem to quiver in time with each other.

I bring her tightly against me, her wet hair sending rivulets down my back. Her face is buried in my neck.

The waves keep coming, sparkling with moonlight, endlessly moving toward the beach in their forever path.

I hold on to Bailey, wondering how and why we waited so long to figure out all our missteps, but knowing, with all the certainty of this ocean endlessly reaching for the shore, that I would never let her go.

They finally figured it out! Now they aren’t going to want to leave!