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Title: Bullets & Bonfires
Author: Autumn Jones Lake
About Bullets & Bonfires:The one man she’s always wanted is now the sexy sheriff of their hometown. Battered but not broken, grad student Brianna Avery returns to the childhood home she abandoned four years ago. With her abusive ex behind bars, Bree needs the summer to relax and recover before returning to school. But her overprotective brother decides she needs someone to babysit her in his absence, and he picks the one person guaranteed to drive her nuts. She’s the one woman he can’t have. Telling Bree no has never been easy. Four years ago, Liam Hollister did it to preserve his friendship with his best friend—Brianna’s brother. Now, no matter how she tempts him, he’s determined to do the right thing. As deputy sheriff of their rural area, Liam is torn between protecting Brianna and wanting her for himself. Take a risk or lose the chance. Spending so much time alone together challenges them both. Old feelings and hurts resurface immediately. With each hot, sweaty day it’s harder to deny their attraction. It’s going to be a long, hot summer.
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About Autumn Jones Lake:Autumn believes true love stories never end. She’s easily amused, a procrastinator and loves romances with true alpha heroes who cherish the sassy women they fall in love with. Her past lives include baking cookies, slinging shoes, and practicing law. Playing with her imaginary friends is her favorite job so far. Autumn prefers to write her romances on the classy side of dirty, and she’s a sucker for a filthy-talking, demanding alpha male hero. The bigger the better. Connect with Autumn! Website | Facebook | Twitter | IG | Goodreads | Amazon Author Page | Newsletter | Bookbub | Personal Facebook Group
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Why’d I bait Liam like that?
I slip into a pair of shorts and fresh T-shirt and fling myself down on the bed.
I’d never, ever date one of Liam’s friends.
Date. I have to be out of my damn mind to be worried about dating.
The front door opens. There’s a pause and then it clicks shut.
The thud of Liam kicking off his shoes.
I exhale hard and realize I’d been holding my breath. Afraid I’d chased Liam away.
Scooting off the bed, I work out an apology in my mind. I stop and pull my hair out of its ponytail and brush it until it’s not as ratty.
I open the door and find Liam standing across the hall, leaning against the wall. Both arms crossed over his chest. The same way he’d watched me at the gym, except here in the house, he seems so much larger. His biceps and forearms bulge in a way that sends heat zipping through me.
“Hey,” he says.
My mouth’s too dry to answer. I run my tongue over my lower lip, and Liam’s gaze follows the movement.
“What are you doing? Holding up the wall?”
Except for a tiny quirk at the corners of his mouth, his expression doesn’t change.
His silence flips my annoyed switch.
“What is this, Liam? Some sort of cop interrogation technique?”
That gets his attention. He crosses the short distance, invading my space. Making me aware of his size and strength.
“Maybe. Want to tell me what you meant out there?” He jerks his head to the side.
I don’t answer. Instead I study his expression. His eyes seem to simmer with desire. But lord knows I’ve been wrong before.
“Shouldn’t I get a warning, Deputy Hollister?”
That finally makes him chuckle. “Sure. Anything you say, can and will be held against you.”
I lift an eyebrow in silent challenge.
“In that case, Liam,” I say, using my huskiest voice.
I’m rewarded with a sharp intake of breath.
My heart thumps as he comes closer, leaning down to whisper in my ear. “Baby girl, you are playing with fire.”
He settles his hands on my hips and pulls me closer. Taking a chance, I wrap my arms around his neck. “I can handle the burn.”
Everything fades away the second his lips brush against mine. His cinnamon taste tingles over my lips. The slow slide of his tongue against mine sends heat boiling through my body.
That’s right. Finally. He’s been rejecting me for days. Bracing my hands on his shoulders, I push him back.
“Wait a second. I showed some interest in your friend, so now you kiss me?” Anger and desire won’t stop warring inside me. I try to shove past him to go outside and clear my head, but he’s impossible to move.
He watches me for a moment then takes a step back.
“That’s not it, Bree. You’re Vince’s sister. I’m supposed to be watching out for you.”
“I appreciate that, Liam. I do. Thank you for everything you’ve done for me.” My throat tightens. “But I can take care of myself.”
“I know you can, baby girl.”
My gaze drops to the floor. “Why can’t you ever see me as Brianna? Not baby girl. Not Vince’s little sister. Just me.”
He steps closer, and runs the back of his hand over my cheek. “I see you.”