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Gennita Low @2015
The man was delicious to look at. What Americans would call “hot.” Tall. Dark-haired. Rakish-looking with that stubble. And, as always, that look in his jewel-green eyes gave her a sudden need for a long cool drink, preferably with vodka.
She’d long passed the point of wondering why he’d affect her this way. Just that he did. And each meeting, she anticipated that gaze, so direct, so damn intimate, and each time, she couldn’t help herself. She winked at him. And then, depending on the situation, they would pick up or exchanged items in the middle or one of them back away, following the unspoken protocol of a first-come-first-serve basis.
It was part of the game. She could play it a bit hotter but knew she couldn’t afford it. It was just too bad they were on opposite sides because she had a feeling it’d be more than a bit hotter.
Scorching, more like.
Her superiors wouldn’t approve any consorting without their say-so. After all, she was their fixer. She couldn’t afford to be seen being friendly with someone who could use it against her.
But damn he was hot. She waited for him to step back did his usual two finger salute to acknowledge that she arrived first this time, but instead, he started walking slowly toward her.
She frowned. This wasn’t their pattern. Nowadays, their respective agencies had agreed to do things with the least casualties as possible. Yes, some peace treaties actually included secret clauses like “first come first serve,” “positional operative compromise” and “negotiable exchange.”
She didn’t back away as he approached. Curiosity stopped her. He had a hand in his jacket, probably a weapon. It occurred to her that she might be a target but she didn’t think so. If he’d wanted to kill her, he’d have done so already from five meters away. Or any number of times she’d bumped into him the last year.
They’d never spoken to each other directly. He’d never touched her. Their long looks at each other had been when there were no witnesses.
She watched, unable to move, as his hands came up and cupped her face. Tilted it up. His thumbs rubbed her cheeks. She didn’t do a thing as his head swooped down and his lips caught hers. His tongue swept into her surprised mouth. Tangled. Tasted. Vodka and lime. Five seconds, tops.
He stepped back and gazed down at her, those eyes cool and unreadable. The corners of his lips lifted slightly, a smile of a man who had just found a secret.
“I’ve wanted to do that for a while now,” he softly said, that husky Southern twang sending a tingle down her spine.
That voice was distinct to the European underground. The Cowboy had a reputation of getting things done his way. But she had a reputation too, a lethal one.
She continued watching him as he disappeared into the shadows. Five seconds could get a man killed. Five seconds could change one’s life.