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Playing Rough by Zoe Dawson (1)


The Story


It took every ounce of Catherine Everhart’s self-control not to stare at Shane Bishop, nicknamed Monster Man, who lounged with deceptive ease like a hungry predator across the conference table of the posh offices of the San Diego Wildcats. The Wildcats believed community support initiatives were an important part of their football franchise image, and Shane was spokesperson for the Wildcats’ new Touch the Moon Foundation, set up to aid single parents and their children. Although she hadn’t worked closely with him, Cat saw Shane often in her capacity as community relations assistant.

As her boss Holly Masters spoke, Shane turned partway in Cat’s direction and stole a sideways glance at her. Her heart pounded just a little bit harder. She couldn’t stop thinking about the bulge he sported every Sunday beneath his skintight football pants, his fine ass looking so taut. He must be huge. She shivered.

He did it again and this time his gaze lingered, caressing her eyes, her cheekbones, the fall of her sassy red hair. Out of the corner of her eye, she could see him slide his scorching, nearly savage gaze down her throat, lingering over her breasts long enough to make them tingle and her nipples harden. Slow, seductive heat mushroomed inside Cat, drenching her aching core. She crossed her legs to keep from squirming and that monster of a man smiled.

Shane was, in fact, a massive monster of a man. He was a strong safety on the Wildcats’ impressive defensive team and played close to the line of scrimmage. Because of his ability to cover the deep zone—man, she’d like him to cover her deep zone—and defend against runs, he was All-American, currently the leading safety in sacks, touchdowns, and recoveries in the league.

Most of the women in her office were hot for veteran Clay Masters, the Wildcats’ equally hunky quarterback. She wasn’t sure how Holly felt about it. She was Clay’s ex-wife, but Cat wasn’t sure she’d ever gotten over their public break-up and divorce. Rumors were rampant that Clay had been cheating, but that was never proven.

But Cat only had eyes for Shane, all six feet, two inches of his 212-pound massive body. He had to have a big cock, and she was dying to measure—and savor—every inch of it with her mouth and tongue.

She bit her lip in frustration. Problem was he was strictly off limits. Raymond T. Harding, owner, CEO, and killjoy of the Wildcats, prohibited front office employees from fraternizing with the players.

But the forbidden aspect just added a layer of sizzling excitement to the temptation. It didn’t help that Shane was drop-dead gorgeous, with shaggy, jet black hair, slashing cheekbones, sensually full lips and almond-shaped eyes, suggesting an Asian ancestor somewhere in his family tree.

“Cat, do you think you can handle that?”

Oh, shit, the boss is talking to me. Bad move, since the promotion she’d worked so hard for was hanging in the balance. It was between her and that suck-up, Dick Samuels. Dragging her eyes from Shane to Holly, a very attractive brunette who was both fair and smart, who sat waiting patiently, she realized she had absolutely no idea what Holly was talking about. Holly was about ten years older than Cat and had been on the fast track. She’d just been promoted to player relations after receiving her law degree. She was now vacating the community relations position, giving Cat an opportunity to advance.

“I’m sorry, Holly, but what did you say?”

“I’m assigning you to bring Shane up to speed for the Touch the Moon Foundation event next Friday night. Halloween fits right into our moon theme.”

“Work with Shane…I mean Mr. Bishop?” she squeaked and finally met Shane’s eyes. They were mysterious and deep, seeming to suck her into a whirling blackness from which she had no desire to escape. Yet, even though he met her eyes calmly, Cat could see something dangerous and wild just below the surface, waiting to break free.

“Is that a problem, Ms. Everhart?” Shane asked. He had a slow way of speaking that she found irresistible. She would lie awake at night thinking about the naughty nothings he’d whisper in her ear.

“No. Not at all.” Cat stood and turned to Shane. “Mr. Bishop, if you’ll follow me.”

“Anywhere you want to lead me, Ms. Everhart,” he whispered in her ear in his unhurried, rumbly voice. She closed her eyes to gather her composure. Unfortunately, it only served to focus her senses. She felt the heat from his big body, smelled his spicy hot scent, and was surrounded by the resonant, deep timbre of his voice.

She decided to ignore his comment as she told her hormones to heel. They told her to shut up and fuck him hard. And a rush of rebellion burned through her. Screw the whole forbidden thing! It only added to his allure.

He was a big, enticing presence at her back while she led him to her corner office. She entered and turned to direct him to a chair, but Shane kept walking and plowed right into her, knocking her backwards. The grip of his big hands on her upper arms saved her from a fall.

“Are you falling for me, Ms. Everhart?”

He knows. Of course he knew. She practically undressed him every time she looked at him. Her breath caught as she gazed at his face. A face that was much too close and much too handsome.

“Dangerous ground, Mr. Bishop.”


“I think it’s safer if I call you Mr. Bishop.”

“Shane. I insist.”

He flashed her one of those melting grins and she found herself nodding like one of those plastic dogs in the back window of a car.

“Can I get you anything to drink?” Her assistant Lizzy Jordan poked her head in and smiled. Shane released Cat and sat down in a chair in front of her desk.

“Coffee, black, please,” Shane said. He was wearing a pair of tight jeans with the knees ripped out and a tattered Wildcats sweatshirt in the team colors of gold and black—a faded but still ferocious wildcat on the front, and she knew she’d see “Bishop” imprinted in gold letters across his impossibly broad shoulders. With the sleeves ripped off, his biceps bulged and flexed when he moved.

Which in turn made her crave and ache all the more.

“What can I get for you, Cat?” Lizzy asked.

“Huh?” Cat said, her eyes on Shane.

He looked at her and smirked.

“To drink?” Lizzy pantomimed a beverage with her cupped hand to her mouth.

A bucket of ice water. “Water. Cold water, thanks,” Cat said, trying to force her mind to concentrate on business. She picked up a sheet of paper and handed it to Shane. “Here’s the speech I drafted for you. You can add or subtract whatever you’d like.”

Shane scanned it while Lizzy walked in with the drinks. Cat took them. Lizzy left, closing the door behind her. Cat put the water down on her desk, swiveling towards Shane at the same moment that he reached for the coffee cup. His hand hit the cup and knocked it. Hot coffee splashed onto his thigh.

His gasp of pain sliced through her. “I’m so sorry. Are you burned?” She set the cup down and grabbed the tissue box sitting on her desk, wiping at the coffee on his leg. As she swiped, her arm came into contact with his groin and the hard, rigid bulge beneath his zipper. Suddenly, she was the one burning.

Shane Bishop didn’t know what was more tantalizing, having Cat’s hands on his thigh or her arm against his raging hard-on.

When her arm brushed the full heat of his throbbing dick, his eyes almost crossed. Fuck, but she turned him on, and it took everything he had to resist picking her up, throwing her across the desk, and pumping into her slick, heated pussy.

Her smoky gray-blue eyes snapped up to his. In the three years he’d played for the Wildcats, he’d never been able to stop fantasizing about what it would be like to have her in his bed. Hell, against a wall, on the floor, on a desk. He didn’t give a damn. But that stupid Hardass Harding rule forced him to keep his distance. But the way she looked at him? Yeah, his restraint wouldn’t last much longer.

“Oh no,” Cat whispered as she backed away, dropping the sodden tissues in a trashcan. Shane rose, unable to resist the pull of her, knowing he was crossing the line, but unable to stop. He stepped closer, his attraction warring with a self-control that was waning fast.

Her hands flattened firmly against his chest. “Shane. We can’t.”

“You want me. I know you do.”

She nodded. Her hands moved against his pecs and her hands weren’t pushing him away, but clenching in the fabric. His dick pulsed, hard as he thought about her holding on to him while he went deep.

When he looked down, his gaze snagged on the hard points of her nipples, beading against the soft silk of her shirt. “Never been one for rules.”

“I bet you know how to break them good.”

“Lock the door and I’ll show you how I break them…bad.”

“Oh, God,” she said, her voice soft and breathy, and his control slipped another notch. Her eyes went to his mouth and lingered there. He wanted her soft, luscious lips, too.

“One kiss. I just need to know.”

Cat threw a look at the door. “If someone were to walk in….”

“Yeah. Makes it exciting. Take a walk on the wild side—Wild Cat.”

Her hands skimmed up from his chest to the back of his neck and her lips slammed against his. The hungry monster inside him lunged and snapped free of its tight leash.

Her mouth was ravenous, skilled, and glorious. She opened to him and he groaned. Her taste was hot and sweet and he wanted more. Her hands found the hem of his sweatshirt and snaked underneath, the warmth of her palms brushing over his tight, hard nipples. His heart beat in rhythm to those soft, searing sweeps. His hands got busy with her shirt, undoing buttons until he could slide his fingers along the curved plumpness of one breast.

He lifted his head slightly, stared down at her heavy-lidded, freaking beautiful green eyes. Got lost in her. With a soft curse, he changed the slant of his kiss, settling his mouth more firmly over hers, squeezing her breast roughly, his thumb rubbing over her nipple until she was gasping into his mouth.

He needed more. His hands went to the navy blue skirt she was wearing. As he pressed her back against the desk, he hiked it up, his hand on her creamy, soft thigh. Hooking his fingers into the scalloped top of the cup of her pink concoction of a bra, he jerked it down and his mouth clamped onto the tight bud of her nipple. She arched her back and cried out softly. With uncontrollable bursts, his hips bucked against hers, his dick straining against the zipper of his jeans. His hand went to her hot little box, pressing against her panties. She was drenched. For him. Damn, what a turn-on. He shoved aside her underwear impatiently and plunged three of his thick fingers into her slick channel.

She clutched his shoulders and he laved her nipple with broad strokes of his tongue, bit down with a growl, then sucked her hard. When he pressed his thumb against her clit, she jerked and buried her face into his neck to muffle the sound.

He was well aware they could get caught and it only heightened the danger, the forbidden quality of having her against the rules.

She thrust her hips, murmuring his name, her muffled groans increasing. Her open mouth panted against his skin as her tongue licked and sucked until she cried out and stiffened. She went liquid against him with the most delectable feminine sound he already craved to hear again.

“Is she in her office?”

They both froze at the sound of Dick Samuels’ voice, and then whirled when they heard the swift knock and the twisting doorknob.

Panic clutched with piercing claws and all the hot sensations that thundered in her every pulse point dulled. Damn that jerk. Still stunned, she drew a stabilizing breath.

Shane moved with the lightning speed he was known for on the football field. He shoved his shoulder against the door and whispered. “Cat...”

Cat looked down to see her skirt hiked up and her blouse hanging open, the aftershocks of her orgasm still pumping through her. She took deep, calming breaths while she tugged her skirt down and fumbled with the buttons, her nipple still damp from his mouth, aching and throbbing still.

The door opened slightly, but Shane leaned in and it closed in Dick’s face.

“Catherine? Are you in there?”

“Tell him the door sticks,” Shane whispered with an unholy grin on his face.

Cat had to suppress a laugh in spite of the serious situation.

“I’m sorry, Dick. The door sticks.” She was almost to the top button. All she had left was to tuck her blouse back into her skirt. “Shane, could you help Dick with the door?” She almost choked on her giggles.

As soon as she was finished with her clothes, she scooted behind her desk and picked up her water.

“Dick, you might want to put your shoulder into it,” Shane said, and as soon as he did, Shane let go of the door and stepped back. Dick stumbled into Cat’s office and Cat had to grit her teeth and swallow to hold back laughter.

Glaring at Shane, then at her, Dick straightened and yanked his suit coat back into place. “Do you have the list of patrons for the Halloween night event?” he snapped.

Cat leaned forward and scanned her desk. “Here it is.”

Dick came over and snatched the folder out of her hands. He walked to the door and eyed it before grasping the handle. Just before he shut it, he looked at Cat. “Get maintenance to fix this door.”

She nodded, biting the inside of her mouth.

The moment the door closed, her eyes sought out Shane’s. “Yeah, get maintenance to check out the door,” Shane mimicked perfectly, and laughed. “The douche.”

“You are so bad.” Cat couldn’t help but join in. But her laughter faded when Shane walked over and put both hands on the arms of her chair. Her mouth went dry when he leaned forward.

“You have no idea how bad I can be, and I promise all that badness will be so damned good for you.”

He leaned in and kissed her moist lips. She kissed him back, clung to his mouth. He pulled away enough to whisper. “I want to fuck you. Right now. Pick a surface. I don’t care. I just want my dick buried in you until I can’t think, fucking you until you make that sound for me again.” He grabbed her hand and pressed it against the erection in his jeans.

She wanted to throw all caution to the wind as she leaned forward, reaching for his zipper.

“Cat?” Holly’s voice came through the door.

“Dammit. Cold reality doused her and she sighed, pulling away. “It’s time that we really do some work, Shane.”

He dropped his head and a thick lock of hair fell over his forehead. She ached to push it back.

He lifted his head, his laser gaze drawing her in. “We both know what we want, Cat.”

She got up at the knock and Holly’s voice again as she sidled past that mountain of muscle. Cold reality doused her again. This was madness. She loved her job. He wouldn’t be the one who was fired. Coming to her senses, she said, “I won’t deny I’m attracted, but I can’t take the chance.”

“I did only ask for one kiss.” He moved away from her chair and sat, drawing the hem of his sweatshirt over the huge bulge in his pants. Cat groaned inwardly. Damn she wanted to see him, all of him.

Cat drew in a shaky, grateful breath. “And you took a little bit more,” she said as she reached the door.

His eyes lingered on her lips. “Now I know why they say a little knowledge is a dangerous thing.”




Cat rubbed at the back of her neck as she left the Wildcats’ office at the end of the day. Her thoughts heavily on Shane and what had happened and almost happened in her office. When she reached her car, her footsteps slowed. Shane was leaning against it. Her heart stopped, he was so gorgeous. He’d changed, shaved, and tamed his unruly hair. He was wearing a silky red T-shirt and a pair of sinfully tight black jeans.

“I can see by your expression that you aren’t too happy I’m here, but I thought we could continue the discussion about the Halloween Night fundraiser over dinner.”


“That’s a wonderful idea,” Holly said from behind her. She whirled to find her boss standing at her left shoulder. “You don’t mind, do you, Cat? We’re a little bit behind on the planning.”

There had to be a God. There really, really had to be a God.

She turned back to Shane. He was smiling wickedly as he sauntered toward her in that sexy, loose-hipped way she loved.

“Of course, she’ll need to be paid overtime.” Shane gave her a conspiratorial wink as Holly moved away towards her car.

“Fine, fine,” she said, waving.

“Shane, you know the last thing on your mind is that project.”

“What’s a little dinner?”

“What’s a little kiss?”

“Busted. Look, I just want to spend time with you. A crime? Not last time I checked the playbook.”

“Wouldn’t that be the rulebook?”

“Who cares? We’re two adults discussing work over dinner, and if we happen to talk about other things, too, well that’s our business.

“I know what you want to talk about.” He followed her to the car and they collided at the driver’s door. “It’s my car. I’ll drive.”

He tipped his head in a knee-melting, sexy way and reached to pull open the door. “I was trying to get the car door for you.”

Soon they were ensconced in a small café that looked shabby from the outside but was very cozy inside. And dinner had been surprisingly tasty.

“I have to admit. I didn’t think this was going to be….”



“They don’t call me Monster Man for nothing.” Shane laughed and rested his forearms on the table. The waitress had left the check, but neither one of them moved. He looked at her in that deep way that made her feel as if she could fall forever into him.

“You have gorgeous eyes,” he said.

His enticing cologne blended with the primal scent of man to tease her senses, triggering a raw, aching hunger that drew her closer to him.

“And your skin is so soft.” He reached out and stroked her face, his fingertips warm and teasing. Spellbound by the intimacy of his touch, Cat had to close her eyes to keep control of her swelling desire.

“Excuse me, Mr. Bishop?”

Shane looked up. A girl stood holding on to the arm of a reluctant teenage male who wore a San Diego Wildcats jersey. “My boyfriend thinks you are awesome. He just loves the way you play ball.”

Shane stood and reached out his hand. “It’s a pleasure, buddy.”

“Oh, he can’t hear you. He’s deaf.”

Shane began to sign. The look on the teen’s face was worth a thousand words. His eyes lit up and for a few minutes, they carried on an animated conversation.

The young girl was beaming as the teen walked away. “Thank you so much. The Monster Man rules! Kick ass on Sunday!” she said, punching her arm into the air and pumping her closed fist.

He was grinning when he sat down, and Cat felt like she’d been sucker punched. She hadn’t wanted to know this man’s dimensions. It made their attraction far, far more dangerous.

He took a drink of his iced tea. “What’s important to you, Cat?”

“My family, friends—the people in my life.”

“Good answer.”

“How about you?”

He sat back and ran his fingers through his hair, something she’d wanted to do all night. “I need to do the right thing.”

“You learned sign language from the program we did with the deaf.”

He nodded. “I want to be a good role model.”

For a moment she simply couldn’t speak. Her heart tightened, and she reached across the table covering his hand with hers. It wasn’t fair he was as gorgeous inside as he was outside.

“You think that’s corny?”

She shook her head.

He stared at her, his gaze like a soft caress up and down her body. She disengaged her hand and grabbed up her purse. “It’s getting late. We’d better go.

After he paid the bill, Shane followed her to the car. With his heat simmering all along her back, he said softly, “I can’t stop thinking about having you. We have some volatile chemistry.”

She huffed in a little puff of air at the feel of his warm breath on her neck, the sensitive skin behind her ear. His words made her hot to have him. She tried to control it, but it was like trying to control the tides. She leaned back into the hard wall of his chest and his arms encircled her, but then she remembered the job competition and jumped away. “Shane. I really can’t.”

He nodded, breathed deep, and opened her car door. They were back at the stadium almost before she knew it and Shane was getting out of the car.

“Shane, wait.” He paused and looked back at her. “I can’t stop thinking about it either. It was so hot.”

“Let’s do it again sometime.”

She grabbed his shirt and jerked him forward. That unholy grin flashed across his face and he said breathlessly, “I guess now is a good time.”

“Shane, shut up,” she said, her voice hoarse. She fused her mouth to his, wrapping her arms around his neck, knowing she was taking a risk, and not giving a damn. Someone could see them. A security guard, a late night worker, and she would lose her job. But drugged by sensation, paralyzed by the soft heat of his mouth against hers, she opened her lips, begging for more. Shane delved in with the seductive wet heat of his demanding tongue and Cat started to unravel.

Suddenly, in the quiet of the night, her horn went off with a loud blast and she jerked away from him.

“Reality bites,” he said softly, resting his forehead against her chin, breathing raggedly.

His hair smelled so good and, without meaning to, her fingers had crept to the nape of his neck and delved into his thick, silky curls. She used to dream about doing this on Sundays while she watched Shane on the monitors in the owner’s box. Whenever the camera would focus in on him, the tantalizing view of the dark curls caressing his neck, tamed only by his sexy helmet, made her fingers itch to touch them.

Shane lifted his head. “Cat, I promise you right here, right now, that I’ll keep my distance. It won’t be easy, but I’ll do it. If you change your mind, you know where to find me.” With that, he gave her a melting kiss and got out of the car. Cat watched him go, trying to stifle her looming panic. He was leaving it up to her? Oh, damn. She was doomed.

The next afternoon Cat realized she needed a photo release signature from Shane for the Halloween Night fundraiser brochure.

She tried his home number, but there was no answer. Finally she decided to check with Lizzy, her see-all-know-all go-to gal. “Do you know where Shane Bishop is right now?”

“Yes, I have his schedule here somewhere on my computer. He gave it to me so I could plan his engagements for the fundraiser.” She depressed her mouse a few times, then peered at the screen. “He’s down in the locker room working out. He pumps iron every morning until ten thirty. You should be able to catch him in the weight room.”

“Thanks, Lizzy. I’m going to go over to the hotel to check out the banquet room and make sure we’re all set for next Friday. I’ll probably be gone for about an hour.”

Cat smoothed her mango-colored sheath, gleefully sure the body-hugging fabric would have his tongue hanging out. Grabbing her purse and her keys, she made her way down into the bowels of the stadium. She pushed on the door to the weight room and looked inside. No one there. She looked at her watch and huffed a little irritated breath. Where was he? It was nine thirty-five. He should be here.

She walked into the locker room and stopped dead. Shane was there, at his locker and oblivious to her presence. Her mouth went dry and her heart beat a fluttering tattoo against her breastbone. Then he drew his sweat-soaked T-shirt over his head, and her greeting died on her tongue. The man had a back sculpted by hard iron and God.

Glorious muscle rippled and flexed as he turned and bent down to unlace his sneakers. She still couldn’t speak. His biceps bulged, his shoulders and chest heavy with muscle. He was living art. His skin was a burnished copper under the harsh locker-room lights and glistened with sweat. Cat wet her lips and watched a droplet of perspiration run from his damp hair, down his neck, and over his collarbone. Then, before she knew it, he was stripping down revealing strong, muscular thighs, a tight butt, and a flat washboard stomach.

Ohmigod. He was magnificent, every inch of him.

He grabbed a towel, soap, and shampoo out of a black gym bag and headed for the showers. Cat followed him, admiring how he moved with an unconscious kind of athletic grace rare for such a big man.

Monsters were supposed to be horrifying, revolting...but they were also often alluring. It made sense that many monsters were hawt. They were the ultimate predators, and they needed to be able to lure their prey into their clutches. Plus, they represented the forbidden and sexy danger.

He was called Monster Man for a reason.

He turned on the shower, and she examined every inch of him while he washed his hair, large hands splayed into thick, wet strands of ebony, big, ropy muscles moving under all that smooth, soft-looking skin. After rinsing, he soaped his body, dragging the bar over his massive chest, hard stomach, and taut thighs. Her body slammed into lustful overdrive, and her knees went so wobbly she had to lean against the wall as the spray from the shower misted her skin.

He turned off the water, quickly dried off and wrapped his towel around his waist. By now Cat was weak with desire, her clit on fire, drenched and throbbing. He bent down to retrieve his items. As he rose, he froze when his eyes met hers.

For long moments he studied her face, and then his eyes traveled unhurriedly down. He dropped the items at the same time that Cat dropped her keys and her purse.

His voice was a husky rasp that seemed to whoosh over her skin like wildfire. “I’ve been waiting for you, babe.”

His eyes traveled over her face, the scrutiny slow and purposeful, as if he wanted to memorize every inch. He untucked the towel and let it drop as he prowled the distance between them.

“You have?” she whispered. She watched as he walked towards her, his cock growing with each step, thick and long…and…big. Monster big.

“I’ve seen you watching me during practice. I love the way you watch me,” he said. “Like you would devour me if you could get your mouth close enough. Get close…now.”

“Oh, God,” Cat said softly, this reality far more staggering than any fantasy she’d ever had. “Yes.”

“Why do you like watching me?”

His big hands were already sliding up her arms, slipping up to the neckline of her dress and pulling the zipper down her back, drawing the material away from her lacy white bra.

“The way you move,” she whispered. “I love the power in your body, your leadership on the field, your skill, and the sheer energy in your stride. I can’t control the adrenaline and heat you generate inside me.”

“Inside where? Show me,” his voice rasped against her ear, sending shivers of epic proportions cascading down her body.

Cat took his hand and pressed it to her stomach, against the silky fabric, and then slid it under the dress and up between her legs.

His eyes darkened and his hands tightened against her. “You’re so wet, so hot for me,” he murmured. “Why don’t you show me how I make you feel? I like watching, too.”

He took her hand and pulled it down so it was cupping her sex. “Show me, Cat, how I turn you on.”

A small, rational corner of her brain insisted she was taunting a primal beast, but she didn’t pay any attention. Something urged her to recklessness, the added risk that at any moment they could be discovered only heightened every sensation.

His eyes trailed fire down her body as he followed her hands.

She lifted the hem, rotating her hips against the wall drawing the material up until she could reach her clit. Pushing the skimpy bit of thong aside, she slid her fingers into the wet, welcoming heat of her body.

“Do you want to know what I fantasize about, Shane?”

His nostrils flared. “Tell me, Cat, I’m dying to know,” he rasped. He watched her hand, his eyes darting up every few seconds to her face, as if he could see her sensations in her expression, and participate in everything she felt.

His reactions were there in his eyes, exposed, jagged and raw. His desire for her was so intent and thrilling, her skin tingled in response.

“I think about how it would be to have your cock deep inside me,” she said.

As he stared at her, his eye color turned to dark chocolate; his gaze on her flesh burned her skin.

Her voice came out hushed and breathless. “I imagine you behind me, your hands sliding over my belly, then cradling my breasts in your hard, hot hands, caressing their softness. I imagine your lips against my throat, your breath warm against my skin, the rasp of your stubble as you kiss my neck and shoulder.

Shane made a growl of appreciative pleasure deep in his throat.

“I can almost feel the heat and sucking wetness of your mouth as you kiss and lick me, your tongue swirling and tasting. You look so dangerous and untamed. I know you’ll be rough and I want that. I wonder what kinds of things you could do with that beautiful, clever mouth.”

She stroked herself, following the path that Shane’s hands would travel if they were on her body. His hands clenched into fists, as if he fought his own overwhelming desire. “You would use those big hands to part my slick pussy,” she gasped, moaning, “while you tease the stiff, engorged bud of my clit with your tongue.”

The words coming out of her mouth shocked her. But the animal in her was responding to the monster in him.

The hot need in his eyes was almost unbearably compelling. Seeing his arousal made need pulse in her body, heavy and hot.

She was overcome by the restless ache between her thighs. With fierce, moaning impatience, she pressed back against the wall, eagerly sliding her sensitized skin against the silky dress.

Her legs fell open and her fingers slid eagerly over the dampness between her legs. She imagined him lifting her against the hard wall, could feel the heat, the press of his hard, powerful body. Then glorious contact as he thrust into her with one frenzied stroke, and then staggering pleasure as he pumped his muscled hips against her. She would wrap her arms around him for balance, as an anchor, clutching him tight while he thrust deeper and harder, and his powerful arms supporting her, his eyes gazing into hers, seeing her soul revealed, luminescent, fully his.

That pushed her over the top. She arched against the wall with a sharp cry and came. Her body shaking with a continuous, shuddering surge of carnal gratification, more forceful than any orgasm she had ever experienced.

When she opened her eyes, Shane was no longer on his feet. He was kneeling on the tiles, panting; sweat trickled down his temples, over his dark stubble, down his throat.

She’d brought him to his knees. It drove her wild, tearing down her image of herself, releasing something deeper and fiercer, something heightened and exalted and savagely feminine.

He looked up at her, his eyes burning, paying homage to her in her wickedness. Softly, his voice ringing with power, he said, “Come here.”

His fingers found her hot and wet and he moaned, “Beautiful.”

When he parted her, she couldn’t control her hips. They thrust forward wantonly in uninhibited pleasure, the aftershocks of her orgasm making her more sensitized. “Shane,” she begged, “please.” But he pressed his face against her hot, slick skin, trailing to the damp, soft curls tantalizingly above him. He breathed in her hot fragrance, his mouth burning against her swollen flesh.

She jerked in pure sensual reaction to his lips on her secret folds. He lifted her leg and draped it over his shoulder, giving him a better angle to plunder her soft cleft. She moaned his name. Her heart was beating so fast she thought it would burst out of her chest. Her whole body was aflame with a whole body-clenching desire that was almost frightening. It only took moments for his magic tongue against her clit to send her skyrocketing again. She arched her back as she came violently.

His mouth moved up her body and she clutched at his shoulders. When he reached full height, he slipped his hands around her waist, pushing the dress off. She curled her hands around his heavy erection, sliding one hand down over his balls. He closed his eyes, twisting his head up and to the side.

She gasped when he opened his eyes. They were deep and dark, with an intense, hot longing that gave her shivers and made her breathing ragged.

His eyes narrowed, fierce and hungry, all civilized male gone as he transformed into the beast she wanted.

He growled low and spun her around, pressing her against the wall. His hand went into her hair, tugging her head back. His legs widened on either side of her hips. She moaned, pushing her palms flat against the wall, lifting her hips and straining back toward him as much as her position would allow, eager to be filled. He fitted the head of his shaft against her slick opening and pressed into her an inch, just enough to tease her. She sucked in a breath, opened her legs wider. He leaned over her, his mouth skimming her cheek, his breath hot, heavy, and moist on her skin.

“Is this what you want, Kitty Cat?”

“Yes,” she panted. “Oh, yes.”

He thrust the rest of the way into her, lifting her off the floor as he drove into her, the size and hot, silken length of him stretching her while he impaled her to the hilt. She bit back a sharp cry, and he groaned and withdrew before plunging in again and again.

He scraped his teeth along her shoulder, biting her just short of pain at the base of her neck, and the fiery tingles spiraled down to her aching clit.

“Shane,” was all she could manage.

“Yes. I need your wet pussy. Need you calling my name. Touching me. Fucking you. God, I’ve wanted to fuck you,” his voice guttural.

His hips pumped against hers, the muscles in his arms and down his back shifting and bunching each time he thrust deep. Bracing herself against the tiles, she lifted her bottom and pushed back, giving as good as he gave.

He slapped her ass once, then again, the slight sting only adding to the heightened arousal of every cell in her body.

A growl rolled up his throat, and she felt him shudder. Fisting her hair more tightly, he locked an arm around her waist, holding her still, in ultimate control of her body, their movements, and her pleasure.

“Geezus you’re so tight,” he whispered. “I could fuck you forever.”

His hand glided lower as he continued to drive into her, slipping over her pubic bone and working his fingers between her thighs, where she was wet with wanting and aching for his touch.

When he touched her, she trembled and cried out, melting.

The second stroke tore a low, ragged moan from her throat. His mouth opened on her neck as he laved her skin, and sank his teeth in again. The triple sensual assault of his mouth, his cock, and his fingers manipulating her body shattered her defenses, and she came on a long, deep orgasm.

Shane held her immobile against the shower room tiles, now heated from her body. His face buried in her hair. Finally he took an unsteady breath and raised his head. He ran his tongue along her throat. “Damn, you taste like pure heaven.”

He pulled out and spun her around. He lifted her against him and she wrapped her legs around his waist. He shoved into her again, his eyes fiercely holding hers and he pumped into her, until he groaned deeply, burying his face in her neck. He groaned again, thrusting deep and slow, then pulling out and shoving in one more time. He pressed her against the wall as if she weighed nothing.

She cupped his face as he panted and recovered, running her sensitive palms over the sexy stubble. “If you’d been in the weight room like you were supposed to be, none of this would have happened.”

He took a breath, exhaled slowly. “Then I’m really glad that I decided I needed an early workout. I wouldn’t have missed this for anything, Cat.” He gave her a wicked grin. “Did you watch me in the shower the whole time?”

“Yes and I enjoyed every moment.”

“Glad I could oblige.” He kissed her while he let her slip down his body, supporting her until her toes touched the tiles. Quickly she put her clothes back on and followed him out of the shower room. While he was dressing at his locker, Cat leaned in, snagged his jersey, and folded it neatly.

“What are you doing?”

“Taking something to remember you by.”

Shane’s hands froze on the top button of his shirt. “I see. This is one time only.”

“If we give in, then it won’t be forbidden. Will it?”

He huffed a heated breath. “You’re killing me, Cat.” Shane hit the locker with the heel of his hand and paced away. “Damn that rule. I have half a mind to go up to Hardass Harding’s office and tell him I’m going to see you and there’s nothing he can do about it.”

“He can take away the promotion I’ve worked so hard to get, Shane.”

He cupped her face and threaded his fingers through her hair, studying her expression, looking deep into her eyes.

Cat looked away. “I’ve got to get over to the hotel. I should have been there a half an hour ago, but I’ll have to go to my apartment first. This dress is a mess and I need a new bra.”

“I’ll do whatever you want me to do, Cat. Just don’t ask me to stay away from you.”




She had to interact with Shane almost every day, and it was torture. He constantly found opportunities to say or do something calculated to drive her crazy. The memory of him taking her in the shower made her yearn. She didn’t think she’d ever yearned for a man before. She watched all his practices, and she noticed how Dick Samuels was watching her. She tried to shrug it off, but she had to wonder if he had figured out something was up between her and Shane.

And as she ached and yearned, it was soon Halloween and time for the Touch the Moon fundraiser. She walked into the party, which was decked out with big full moons, witches flying on their broomsticks across the faces. Ghosts hung creepily from the ceiling, and black cats and pumpkins were glowing menacingly in every corner, the demonic faces grinning out at her.

The room was so dim she couldn’t be sure if Shane was already here. He wasn’t scheduled to deliver his speech until later. She missed him, and wanted to connect, even if only briefly.

Then she felt a presence behind her and, before she could turn or say anything, someone pushed her out of sight behind a curtain. He pressed her up against the wall with his very heavy body, his mouth against her neck.

“You make a very delectable angel to my beast boy,” he said softly. “You gave me a hard-on.”

“Well, that wasn’t very angelic of me,” she said. He chuckled and turned her around. She smiled into his dark eyes, reaching up and running her fingers along the amazing pointed green ears. His skin was green, too, on all exposed parts of his body. When he smiled she could see fangs. His body was encased in black spandex that delineated every muscle he had, including the one between his legs.

“Tell me your cock is green, too,” she whispered, and then realized the music would mask their conversation.

He chuckled. “You’ll have to look to find out.”

Every time this man got close to her, she lost all rationality. He smelled like soap, shampoo and exciting male. Her insides just melted and then she was kissing him.

He slipped his hand under her hair, tugging her down, and she willingly went to her knees, her face level with that huge bulge in his pants. “You’ll have to help me out here. I can’t go out there in front of everybody and deliver my speech with a freaking hard-on. It’s your fault, so be an angel and take care of it.”

“How am I supposed to…ah…get access to that…secret weapon?”

He chuckled again. “There’s a handy flap.”

“Oh, so there is,” she said, opening it and reaching inside to release his stiff shaft and balls.

“Ohmigod. It is green. Just for me?”

“Just for you, babe,” he grinned.

He stroked his fingers along the length of his cock, and she watched, fascinated, as he thickened even more. She brought her face closer and he rubbed the broad, swollen head against her lips. “Take me.”

Then his hand fisted in her hair, tightened as if to keep her from pulling away, but she wasn’t going anywhere. She submitted to his domination because she wanted to pleasure him.

She let her eyes stroll up the length of his body and, holding his hot gaze, she parted her lips and took him as deep as she could, surrounding him in wet heat and the silken caress of her tongue along the underside of his shaft. She relaxed her throat, practically swallowing him while his hand cupped the back of her head, holding her, guiding her, as his hips rocked rhythmically and his cock slid in and out of her mouth.

The people just outside their curtained alcove made it even more likely she could be caught—during a business function, sucking Shane off. But the risk only heightened the pleasure.

Geeezzzuusss,” he hissed, and a muscle in his jaw stood out as he gritted his teeth to keep quiet.

She knew he was about to come; she could taste the change in him, hot and salty, could feel the steady throb of the vein running along the underside of his cock, and his testicles were drawn up close to his body. A shudder rocked him, and she swirled her tongue over the engorged, sensitive tip, then closed her lips tightly over the crown and sucked, hard, pushing him higher, increasing his pleasure with each stroke of her mouth on his sex. He groaned, closed his eyes, panting. Oh, so close. His stomach muscles tightened. “Oh, fuck,” he said, more a growl then a word.

His hips surged, and he threw his head back, shuddering, coming for her while she worked him over hard. She looked up at him to watch. He had pressed his hands flat against the wall. His mouth open, his breathing was ragged, his eyes dark with passion and a hunger as raw as the one she was satisfying in herself.

She took her time settling his cock back against his body and doing up the flap as his hand caressed her scalp.

He pulled her against him and she tipped her head back to meet his fierce gaze. In a breath, he was on her, his mouth rolling heavily over hers, his hands riding up her back to lodge in her hair. She wanted this. Wanted him…and thought that maybe a job just wasn’t worth the effort it took to resist this man.

A muffled sound and the hush of cloth falling back into place brought Cat out of her languor. She broke away from Shane just in time to see the curtain fall into place. Was that a puff of air from someone walking by, or had someone been standing there listening…or watching?

“Oh, God,” she whispered. Could someone have seen her? Them? Her heart was in her throat.

Shane stepped closer while she peered out into the crowd. “What’s wrong?”

She couldn’t hide the panic in her voice. “I think someone saw us.”

“Are you sure?” Shane asked, looking out as well, scanning the crowd.

“No.” She grabbed his arm and pulled him back behind the curtain

She glanced at her watch. “Damn, it’s almost time for your speech.”

She smoothed her hand over his groin to make sure he was fully covered. And recovered.

“You trying to get me hard again?”

“No, just making sure you’re decent.”

He bent his head and breathed in her ear. “I’m not decent. At all.”

She sucked in a breath. “Knock ‘em dead.”

“I will. The money’s as good as in the bank.”

Shane strode up to the podium and the room quieted. Then he began to speak. He had totally discarded her speech and spoke from the heart about his mother, about his luck, and about other people just like him who couldn’t get a free ride. When he finished, there wasn’t a dry eye in the house, including hers.

Cat turned away to dab at her eyes and encountered the knowing, smirking face of Dick Samuels.

Her heart lurched into her throat. Does he know? He was staring at her, then at Shane.

“Well, we’re getting close to the announcement of the promotion. Who do you think it’ll be?”

The weasel. He was taunting her. She could feel it in her bones. That self-satisfied smirk made her skin crawl.

“I guess we’ll just have to wait to see who they decide is the best fit for the job,” Cat said, giving nothing away. He wouldn’t see her sweat.

Lizzy came up to Cat with a beaming, megawatt smile. “Shane was amazing.” When she saw Dick, she stopped talking. “I’m sorry to interrupt.”

“No problem,” Cat said, “Dick was just leaving.”

After he was out of earshot, Lizzy said, “What a dick. I sure hope you get the promotion so you can rub it in his snotty face.”


“He’s creepy.” Lizzy said, shuddering.

Cat turned to her assistant, not wanting to dampen her triumph with potential bad news. If Dick had seen her, she was toast, but he hadn’t said anything, and she couldn’t imagine Dick would be able to resist rubbing it in if he had. She was probably off the hook. “You’ve been having a fun evening?”

Her assistant looked pensive.

“You pining over Tyler Davis again?”

“He’s way too young for me, Cat. Give it a rest.”

“You and that rookie running back.” Cat rolled her eyes, then peered closer at Lizzy’s face. “Is that drool?”

“What?” She went to check her mouth and then laughed and shoved Cat. “Stop it. All I can do is look and fantasize.” Lizzy closed her eyes and pretended to swoon. “Damn, he’s so gorgeous.”

“And eight years younger than you are, Lizzy. Is my Little Miss Goody-Two Shoes a cradle robber? Who would have guessed?”

“I was making an observation,” Lizzy sniffed.

“There will be plenty more fundraisers to ogle him.” Cat said, searching the room. “At the very least, you can continue to watch his practices with me.”

“I only caught a glimpse of him, and then he left right after Shane’s speech. That was a killer. I thought one of the guys at my table was going to start blubbering.”

Shane came off the stage and Lizzy said her goodbyes.

Cat wished she could give Shane a hug. He looked like he could use one. “That was a really touching speech.”

He shrugged. “It was the truth.” Then he softly added, “I want to slowly strip that dress from your body and kiss every inch of you.”

“My place or yours?” Cat replied, just as softly. The room was clearing out.

“Mine. I want to show you something.”

“I’ve already seen it and it’s quite impressive.” She bobbed her eyebrows.

He laughed. “Not that.”

“I’m disappointed.”

“Come home with me and you won’t be.”




All the way over to his house, Cat debated telling Shane about Dick. Yet the jerk hadn’t threatened her or even mentioned her kissing Shane, much less anything else they’d been doing. By the time she got to Shane’s house, she talked herself out of mentioning it at all. It was pure speculation, anyway.

He lived in Sunset Heights, an area populated with the rich and famous. His house was huge and a bit intimidating. Shane always seemed so reserved and modest. It was hard to believe he owned such a palatial home.

“This is very impressive.”

“Thanks,” he said casually, as if she was talking about his trailer sitting in a trailer park.

A golden retriever met them at the door with a soft woof. “Hey, Sunshine.” He bent down and rubbed at the dog’s silky fur while the tail went a mile a minute. “Cat, this is Sunshine. I call her Sunny for short.”

Cat bent down and the eager golden sniffed her hand and then gave her a lick. She caressed the dog’s head and—just like that—she was in love. “Shane, she’s beautiful.”

“Wait till you see this. Come on, girl,” he said, heading through the impressive foyer and living room until they reached a set of French doors. Shane went through them to a pool area and a garden complete with a Koi pond.

The dog immediately went to the water and put her nose in. A huge golden, red, and black Koi came right up to the side of the pond and nuzzled the dog.

“That’s amazing. Are they kissing?”

“Yeah. They love each other. I’ve never seen anything like it.”

He grabbed her hands and tugged her toward the pool. “Want to go swimming?”

Before she could reply, he unsnapped the catch on her provocative glittering tutu and pulled it off her. When she was naked, he stripped too, and they slid into the warm water. Shane leaned against the side of the pool, supported by the stairs and drew her between his legs as she settled with a moan onto his thick, hard cock.

“Stay with me tonight, Cat,” he said as she started to move her hips.

No way was she going to object. It was what she wanted.

They shared a long, beautiful night of lovemaking. In the morning Shane made her breakfast in bed and she threw tidbits to his sweet golden. Afterward, they drove down the coast and took a hike on the beach, away from anyone who could recognize either of them.

Even as she loved him deep into the night, she knew she needed to tell him in the morning that she had to end it. It was too hard for her to sneak around.

She’d worked so hard to earn that promotion, and she knew in her heart if she gave up her job for Shane, she would resent him. He, of course, would never ask her to do it, either, because that would never occur to him. She had to accept that it was time for them to go their separate ways.




Sunday dawned beautiful and bright. Shane was up early. He was always too jazzed to sleep late before a game. He sat on the window seat and sipped coffee, the sun warm on his shoulders as he watched Cat sleep, and finally admitted to himself that he didn’t want her to leave his bed or his house.

His heart tightened. It was a tough situation, and they were caught between a rock and a hard place. She wanted her promotion and he really had no right to jeopardize it. He wanted to go to Harding, but again, if he did and Hardass fired Cat, she’d never forgive him.

But this hush-hush arrangement wasn’t working for him, and he couldn’t continue with the secrecy. He wanted everyone to know that Cat was his. He’d never felt like this before and couldn’t believe he’d waited three years because of a stupid rule that was outdated and unjust.

But what could he do?

Cat opened her eyes, stretched, and smiled. “Hey, where’s my coffee?”

Shane returned her sweet smile and walked down to the kitchen to pour her a cup. On his way back upstairs, he had to pause at the top. Emotions were swamping his chest, and he didn’t want to go in there and spoil anything. Once he had himself under control, he entered the bedroom and gave her the cup.

“I should get out of here soon and let you get ready for the game this afternoon.”

“I do have to get to the stadium. You have time to finish your coffee.”

She sat up in bed. “This has been a wonderful weekend, but I’ve come to the conclusion that…well that I can’t continue like this.”

His heart froze.

“I’m very fond of you Shane,” her voice thick, “I truly am, but continuing this relationship is just courting disaster.”


“No. Please, Shane. Let’s just treasure this time we’ve had and end it before it’s ruined by outside influences.”

He swallowed hard around the lump in his throat. “We can still be friends, right?”

Cat bit her lip and looked away. “Of course we can.” She came off the bed, settled on his lap, wrapped her arms around his neck, and held on tight. Shane felt as if the bottom had just fallen out of his world.




Shane was slow off the mark as he dove for the running back, and just missed him. He should have made that play with his eyes closed. His heart wasn’t in it. To compensate, on the next play, he rammed into the next guy and the next, charging right for the quarterback. He hit him with a punishing tackle. He got flagged for unnecessary roughness, but the aggression felt good.

Then the play of the game. They were tied, the opposing quarterback threw the ball, it wobbled and Shane leaped, stole the ball out of midair, and started running. Just before he was hit and taken down, time ran out. They had won. Yet the elation he usually felt was absent as Shane went down hard under a rough-hitting tackle.




Cat watched Shane play from the owner’s box, feeling as if everything bright and beautiful had just been snatched from her. Her mother would call it sick at heart.

“Hi, Cat.”

Great. Dick Samuels. Just what I need.

“It looks like you can’t take your eyes off Shane Bishop. I wonder why that is?”

Cat sat up a little straighter and turned towards him, seeing the knowledge in his eyes.

“What do you want, Dick?”

“I want that promotion, Cat. And you’re going to hand it to me on a silver platter. Turn it down or you won’t have a job at all,” he said and smirked. “I saw you and Shane doing the nasty during the party. I know you broke the golden rule.”

“You are such a stinking little weasel.”

“Do as I say, Cat, or all your hard work will have been for nothing.”




As Shane came off the field, he pulled off his helmet, holding it by the face mask. The heaviness returned, settling between his shoulder blades and weighing on his heart.

He looked up toward the owner’s box and met Cat’s eyes through the glass. Something was wrong. He could tell by her stiff body language.

As soon as he got to his locker, he called Cat’s cell. She answered on the first ring.

“What happened?”

“Dick saw us at the fundraiser. He threatened to tell Harding. He wants that promotion, and he’s happy to tell all in order to get it.”

Shane gritted his teeth. “He’s not getting away with this.”

“Shane, please don’t do anything drastic,” Cat said.

“I’m going to Harding.”

“Shane, no!”

He ended the call.

He barged into Harding’s owner’s suite without knocking. And he’d already decided to skip the pleasantries and go straight to the issue. “Catherine Everhart and I are involved, and if you don’t like it, I’ll be the one to walk.”

“What are you talking about?” The white-haired, bespectacled Harding looked confused.

“Catherine Everhart. If it comes down to someone losing their job on this franchise, it’s not going to be her.”

“The hell you say. I pay you $8 million a year, boy. You’d give all that up. Why?”

Shane walked to the desk and slammed his helmet down on top of the polished wood. “Because I want to be with her.”

“You do?” Cat whispered behind him, and he turned to see tears streaming down her lovely face.




Shane turned and met her eyes and her heart rolled over. He had that penetrating, black-hole look in his eyes. Walking toward her, he gathered her up in his arms and kissed her, right there in front of Harding.

Shane turned around and lasered back in on Harding. “It’s your choice. She stays or I walk.”

“Ah, what the hell, it was a stupid rule I made when my daughter worked here. I didn’t want her getting involved with a football player. Besides,” he gave Cat a direct look, “I can’t do without my new Director of Community Relations, now can I?”

Cat looked up into Shane’s eyes. Monster Man was hers in all his untamed glory. She believed, with everything in her, that they were headed into a bright, beautiful future. “I want to be with you, too, Shane.” With his arm across her shoulders, they left Harding’s office.

He stopped her in the hall and pulled her close. His warm mouth touched hers and Cat melted into his embrace. He was the man for her, and she was through kidding herself. Now they were free to explore their relationship out in the open.

“I think you scared Hardass.” she said when he broke the kiss.

“They don’t call me Monster Man for nothing.” He kissed her again. “There is nothing more important than you, my wild Cat. Let’s get out of here and find us a surface.”





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