Excerpt – King of Evanston by J.L. Campbell
With one arm around Camilla, he whispered, “I’ll do everything in my power to protect you and Ayanna.”
“I know.” Camilla’s eyes softened and she cupped his cheek. “Thank you.”
Shaz turned his head and kissed her palm. “It’s what any man would do.”
“Don’t be too sure about that.” She hunched and hugged herself. “Tell you the truth, I’m a little scared. Why would anybody want to kidnap Ayanna?”
“Would Porter stoop to that?”
She hesitated. “Hard to tell, but if he has an agreement with that disgusting politician and money is his goal.”
Despite his instinct and the text update Daron sent, Shaz allowed his mouth to say the opposite of what he suspected, though the park had been filled with other children. “Maybe it was a random occurrence.”
With both hands, she combed through her hair and rested her elbows on both knees. “I sure hope so. It’s bad enough that she’s not well, but to think about her being a target.” She sat up and peered at him. “D’you think Alderman Bennett could have anything to do with this?”
“He has no reason to do something that puts him at risk. Already, he’s walking a fine line.” He squeezed her to his side. “Sweets, don’t get your brain in a knot over this. Are you willing to let me handle this in the way I see fit?”
After staring at him long and hard, she nodded.
“Good.” He removed his arm as he went into planning mode. “I’m going to have someone watch you for the next week or so—”
“Wait a minute.” She raised both hands. “Are you talking about security?”
“Yes, just until we’re sure this was not deliberately aimed at you and Ayanna.”
“I don’t know, Shaz.” Her frown conveyed her doubt and concern. “Already you’re doing more than necessary for me. I don’t want to be more indebted to you than I already am.”
He pulled back a little. “More than necessary? We’re further along in our relationship than you thinking I’m doing this as a favour to your auntie. Woman, I … let’s just say what we share is more than a passing attraction.”
Looking at her hands, she said, “I know, but I still don’t understand how you can check for me like that when I’ve done some really stupid things. Like this whole situation.”
“Cut yourself some slack, Cam. You were travelling and trying to raise the money you need for the surgery. Passport and visa issues crop up all the time. What we’re dealing with here, is a bit more.” He took her hand in his. “Let me do what I do best, and you worry about taking care of Ayanna, okay?”
Camilla pulled her hand from his and stroked the side of his face as her gaze went to his mouth. “Thank you,” she whispered.
She leaned in until her lips brushed his. Then, her eyelids closed and her lips parted. With soft kisses, he eased her mouth open. A soft moan welcomed him as their tongues collided in a languorous dance that had Shaz gripping the back of her head with one hand.
Her fingers stroked his locs as he delved deeper and took control of the kiss. With more urgency, she clung to his neck letting out soft groans that told him they were in danger of crossing a line. He pulled back, pecking her lips, and fighting not to make physical contact with her again.
When she opened her eyes, they were hazy with need.
Unable to resist, he kissed her once more. He had a fever in his blood that he’d been holding back because of the business end of things, but each time he touched her, he was in danger of taking Camilla where he was sure she wasn’t ready to go.
National Bestselling Author, J.L. Campbell, writes contemporary, paranormal, and sweet romance, romantic suspense, women’s fiction, as well as new and young adult novels.
Campbell, who features Jamaican culture in her stories, has penned over thirty books. She is a certified editor, who also writes non-fiction. When she’s not writing, Campbell adds to her extensive collection of photos detailing Jamaica’s flora and fauna. Visit her on the web at http://www.joylcampbell.com
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