Exclusive Excerpt from Be Still My Heart
by Charlie Cochet
Red’s playful poking had Laz squirming, and when Red slid his fingers under Laz’s T-shirt as they walked, Laz couldn’t stop his snort-giggle. Normally he didn’t like anyone tickling him, but Red was just so damned adorable that not only didn’t he mind it, but Laz welcomed his touch.
“Oh my God, quit it.”
Red let out a mock gasp. “Are you ticklish, Lazarus?”
“What gave me away?”
“Ooh, you’re just full of sass, aren’t you?”
They reached the kitchen, and Laz turned to face Red, stood on his toes, and nipped at Red’s bottom lip. “I’d much rather be full of something else.”
Jeez, what had gotten into him? Well, he knew what he wanted to get into him. He really needed to get ahold of himself, but being around Red made him feel kind of giddy, and now that he’d tasted Red, he wanted more. Something about Red made him feel so bold and confident. Was it because he felt safe with Red? Because he knew that Red would never purposefully hurt him or make him feel bad about himself?
Red groaned and made a grab for Laz, but Laz slipped from his grasp with a laugh, walking backward into the kitchen.
“Nice try, Russell.”
“Little smart aleck.”
“Sit that fine butt down while I whip us up some eggs Benedict. Do you like avocado?”
Red took a seat at the counter. “You kidding? Lucky would disown me if I didn’t eat avocado. His mom serves it at every meal; I kid you not.”
“His family’s in Miami, right? Along with Ace’s?”
“Yeah, they have a cousin who lives down there too. He’s a SWAT officer. Actually, he’s getting married in a few months. Maybe if you’re not doing anything around that time you’d like to come?”
Laz paused halfway through opening the fridge door, his heart skipping a beat. “That depends.”
“Whether I’ll be going as a friend or your date.” Laz glanced at Red, holding back a smile at the way Red toyed with the fruit bowl in front of him, his cheeks flushed. Unlike Laz’s skin that was a natural tan thanks to his Greek roots, Red’s skin was exceptionally fair, which meant when he blushed, it was very evident, and gorgeous.
“I was, um, hoping you’d like to go as my date. If you want. No pressure. I don’t want you to think you have to just because, um…. Crap. My God, could I be any more awkward?”
He really was too sweet. Laz smiled wickedly. “You mean because we got each other off?”
“Yeah, that,” Red replied with a cough.
Laz closed the fridge door, and Red swiveled his chair as Laz rounded the counter. He visibly braced himself as Laz put his hands on Red’s knees and spread them before stepping in between his legs. He loved the man’s strength, but mostly he loved how despite Red’s impressive physique, he was gentle and often uncertain, like he wasn’t aware of how amazing he was.
“Were you under the impression I was all sweet and innocent?” Laz asked, slowly running his hands up Red’s thighs. Red swallowed hard, and Laz slid his hands up and under Red’s T-shirt.
“Well… not gonna lie, it kinda crossed my mind.”
“Sweet, yes.” Laz leaned in to brush his lips over Red’s. “Innocent, not so much. Are you disappointed?”
“Disappointed?” Red’s eyes darkened with want, and he slipped his fingers into Laz’s hair, grabbing a fistful of it, his other hand taking hold of Laz’s right hand and moving it over to the hard cock tenting his pants. “Does that feel like disappointment to you?”
Laz groaned. It most certainly did not. He loved how Red seemed incapable of not touching him, particularly his hair. “You know, at this rate we’re never going to get anything done.”
“Yeah, but on the other hand, sexy times.”
“You make a very solid”—Laz stroked him through his pants, making Red release a growl that went straight to Laz’s groin—“point.” He pulled away and smiled at the little whimper Red let out.
“That’s just mean.”
“Aw, your pout is so adorable.”
“And yet….” Red motioned to his groin before swiveling back toward the front.
“Sorry-not-sorry.” Laz laughed. “And yes. I would love to go with you to the wedding as your date.”
About Be Still My Heart
Former Special Forces medical sergeant Russell “Red” McKinley knows a thing or two about wounds, like the fact some can take a lifetime to heal, if they heal at all. The scars Red carry run deep, and living with PTSD often means battling the memories of his past. Injuries he received while working an executive protection case with fellow Kings and co-owners of Four Kings Security, have once again forced past heartaches to the surface, but Red is determined not to let it derail his blossoming romance with sweet and sexy fashion photographer Lazarus Galanos.
Laz can’t deny there’s something special developing between him and Red, but Laz has wounds of his own. He’s hesitant to jump into a new relationship after his recent explosive breakup. Experience has taught Laz to doubt his judgement when it comes to men. Guys who seem too good to be true, usually are, and no one appears more perfect than Red.
When an attempt is made on Laz’s life, Red is determined to keep him safe. Laz may not be a client, and Red is still off duty, but Laz is one of their own, and nothing means more to the Kings than family. While an investigation is underway, Red and Laz are growing closer, but can they find a way to help each other heal and take a chance on love, or will their fears and insecurities cost them more than their future together?
Available at: Amazon
About Charlie Cochet
Charlie Cochet is an author by day and artist by night. Always quick to succumb to the whispers of her wayward muse, no star is out of reach when following her passion. From adventurous agents and sexy shifters, to society gentlemen and hardboiled detectives, there’s bound to be plenty of mischief for her heroes to find themselves in, and plenty of romance, too!
Currently residing in Central Florida, Charlie is at the beck and call of a rascally Doxiepoo bent on world domination. When she isn’t writing, she can usually be found reading, drawing, or watching movies. She runs on coffee, thrives on music, and loves to hear from readers.
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Don’t forget to check out Susan65’s review of Be Still My Heart to see what she thought of it!