Home > Gentry (Wolves of Winter's Edge #1)(4)

Gentry (Wolves of Winter's Edge #1)(4)
Author: T.S. Joyce

“Hidey ho!” she called, stepping from the car. Hidey ho? God. Blaire shook her head and wished for the millionth time in her life she didn’t blush so easily. Stupid fair skin. She cleared her throat and tried again. “I’m here for the cabin rental.”

The sexpot jerked so hard he knocked the mug off the railing. Quick as a whip, he reached out and snatched it out of thin air. By the handle. Hot coffee splashed onto the snow near the porch.

“Whoa,” she murmured. “That was some kind of ninja move.” Ninjas were sexy.

The man stood ramrod straight and hid the mug behind his back. “Uh, I think you have the wrong place.” His voice was a deep baritone that vibrated from her ears to her chest to her nethers.

“Why does everyone keep saying I’m in the wrong place?” She leaned into the rental to pull out the paperwork, then shoved it up at him. “Look, my friend rented this place for a week.”

The man’s eyes narrowed to striking green slits. “I’m not looking for a week-long renter. The ad was supposed to be for something more permanent. Maybe for someone willing to put some work into this place, or, I don’t know…” He ran his hand up the back of his head and stared off at the frozen lake behind the other two cabins. “Just take care of it so I don’t have to.”

“Oh.” Blaire looked around the property with new eyes. There were stacks of paint buckets on a sheet of plastic on the porch and a bunch of tools spread out over a porch swing. “Well, I traveled a long way to get here, and it’s paid for. Can I stay this week, and you worry about getting a long-term renter when I leave?”

“Uuuh, I don’t think that’s a good idea.”

“Why?”

“Because you’re…”

“I’m what?” she asked loudly, utterly frustrated by the men in this weird town.

The man puffed air out his cheeks and leaned his hip against the porch railing. Fine, he could give her the silent treatment all he wanted. With a growl, she yanked the giant purple suitcase from the backseat and bullied it toward the stairs.

“What are you doing?”

“I’m”—she yanked the suitcase up two stairs—“moving”—two more stairs, and she almost fell but saved herself—“in!” She stumbled onto the porch and settled her suitcase on its wheels.

She had come in hot and nearly ran into Giant Sexypotamus her hand out for a shake. She blew a red-gold curl out of her face and said, “I’m Blaire Hayward, nice to meet you.” Whoa, he smelled good. She sniffed. It was some kind of cologne. He still wouldn’t take her hand and was looking at her as if she’d lost her mind. Ridiculous man.

Blaire snatched his limp hand and pumped it a few times. “And your name is?”

“Gentry. Gentry.”

“Cool names, but my momma said never trust a man with two first names.”

A tiny smirk took his lips as he looked down at their still clasped hands. “No, it’s Gentry Striker.”

“Your last name is Striker? Your middle name is Badass, isn’t it? Or wait! Gentry Chaos Striker. Am I close?”

Gentry removed his hand from hers and almost, almost smiled when he said, “You’re an odd one, Blaire Hayward.”

There were much worse things he could’ve said, so she offered him a prim, “Thank you,” and dragged her suitcase across the uneven flooring toward the door.

“Unless you feel like sleeping in my room, you may want to divert that big-ass suitcase of yours toward the cabin over there.” He pointed to the smallest one with the newest looking paint that sat across the parking lot, closest to the frozen lake.

“Right. Is there a key?”

“Nobody locks doors around here.”

“Okay then. The paperwork said three meals a day. Shall we eat them in the big cabin?” she asked innocently. She’d just made that part up.

“Uh, if you like macaroni for every meal, you’re welcome to beg food.” That sexy little smirk was back like he knew she was bullcrapping him.

Blaire gave him a coy smile, which probably made her look like a gremlin because she hadn’t flirted in a very long time, and then bounced and bumped the suitcase down the stairs behind her. She made it approximately five feet across the snowy parking lot before the luggage was pulled from her hand and one sexy Gentry Striker went striding by her, holding the heavy case like it weighed nothing. Hoowee, and he was strong? His sweater sat right at his hips so she could see his firm butt moving with each step.

“Are you checking out my ass, Ms. Hayward?” he called, as if he had eyes in the back of his head. She checked to make sure, but nope, he just had sexy, mussed hair.

“I would never,” she said, then pursed her lips to hide her smile as she followed promptly behind him.

Why was her stomach doing flip-flops? Probably because she hadn’t eaten dinner. “Hey, where is a good place to eat around here?”

Gentry cast her a quick, unreadable glance over his shoulder. It was just a flash of those green eyes, and then he gave her his back again. “This town closes down pretty early during winter.”

“Okay, but there has to be somewhere I can get some dinner. You don’t want to see me when I’m hangry,” she said in a Hulk voice.

She giggled. He did not.

Gentry led her up a few stairs, across a small porch with a single rocking chair, and into the cabin. “Look, if you’re going to stay here, you need to stay inside after dark.”

   
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