By: Lois Greiman

It occurred to me through a foggy sort of unreality that no sentence should begin with the words “my toilet” when a man was looking at me like this man was looking at me, but I couldn’t seem to stop myself, to catch my breath, to function with a modicum of normality. I love normality.

I cleared my throat and reached for my professional voice. “My toilet overflowed.”

“I missed you,” he said, and shifted closer. Our thighs brushed. His were hard.

“I was just…” My hormones were jumping like Mexican beans and had begun shouting obscene suggestions. But the last time I listened to my hormones I’d been accused of petty theft and threatened with a restraining order. Long story. “…cleaning up,” I said.

“Looked like you were practicing for a pose-off.”

“My septic system is…” I felt light-headed and overheated. Maybe I was wearing too much clothing. He sure as hell was. “Ummm…somewhat out-of-date.”

He shifted a half inch closer. I wouldn’t have thought it possible. “Legs look good, though.”

Maybe I would have commented, but I was concentrating on breathing. And there was a commandment I was trying rather desperately to recall. It went something like…thou shalt not covet thy neighbor’s ass. “I didn’t want to get it on my shoes.”

“Shoes look good, too. I like the bows.” He propped a hand against the wall behind me. He was so close I could taste him. My insides twisted up like silk undies.

“Hope I didn’t…” Drooling would be bad. I shouldn’t drool. “…get them dirty.”

“Damn things should be registered as lethal weapons.”

I was beginning to pant. “The shoes?”

“The legs.” He was so close I could feel his breath on my face. Jesus God, he was going to kiss me. The last time I’d kissed a guy…Ahh, hell, I couldn’t remember the last time I’d kissed a guy.

“Rivera!” I gasped.

“McMullen…” he murmured.

I tried to be strong, or conscious. “I don’t think we should—”

He kissed the corner of my lips. Something below my waist whimpered. Might have been the dog. Kinda doubt it.

“Let’s skip dinner,” he said.

I opened my mouth, but even my stomach failed to object. Maybe I was temporarily dead. This was heaven. The celestial toilet rested against my left knee.

He slipped his hand behind my neck. My brain went limp.

“Damn,” he said, “you’ve been driving me crazy ever since you killed Bomstad.”

A few cerebral cells bumped around, trying to work out the meaning of life, or how to remain vertical. “I didn’t kill Bomstad.” My voice sounded kind of breathy.

“Used to believe that,” he murmured, eyes half-closed, head tilted the slightest degree. “But one look at you in this alleged skirt probably stopped his heart.” He shimmied his hand down my back to the skirt in question. I shivered to my toenails and let my head rest against the wall behind me.

“How’s your heart?” I asked. I sounded funny, like someone had taken sandpaper to my larynx.

“Last physical said my heart was pretty good.”

I swallowed. “What’d they say about your other stuff?”

The left corner of his mouth hitched up a tad. “Other stuff’s feeling pretty good, too.”

I couldn’t argue. It was pressed up against my thigh.

“Kinda out of practice, though,” he said.


“Use it or lose it.”

I was so damned weak. Even the memory of my past seventy-six beaus couldn’t convince me to kick and run. “Wouldn’t want that.”

“I could make dinner…afterward.” One of his thighs was between mine, kind of cradling me. “If I live that long,” he added, and kissed me.

I kissed him back. He had one arm on each side of my head, holding me up, locking me in. If this was torture…

His hand moved to my breast. I locked my knees to keep from falling into the toilet, or climbing him like a spider monkey. He kissed my neck. His lips were firm and warm. I was vibrating with need just like the heaving-breasted women in the romance novels I’d been reading since I was old enough to hide under a blanket with a flashlight. His chest felt like sun-warmed marble against my palm—just like a romantic hero, all brawny and sexy and…

The vibrating near my crotch was joined by a tinny, almost recognizable melody.

Now, that was something different. Even Danielle Steel hadn’t thought of that. I pushed him away, glanced down. “Is your…” I began. I was hardly panting at all. Excellent. “Are your pants singing?”

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