“It has to be just-because. My birthday already passed, and our anniversary isn’t for another three months. I love that man so much.”
“I know you do,” Janae said with a laugh.
“If it wasn’t so late, I might drive over to your house tonight and let you see it.”
No way would she let Karen come over and find Terrence staying overnight. “Yes, it is late. I’ll see it on Monday. I’m sure you’ll still be wearing it.”
“What about tomorrow? I don’t want to wait that long.”
“I have a few errands to run, and I don’t know how long I’ll be out,” Janae replied quickly.
“Oh...well, okay. I guess I’ll have to wait,” Karen grumbled.
The sound of music floated into the kitchen. Curious, Janae stood and went to the kitchen door. Terrence stood in the center of the floor, shirtless. “Oh. My. Goodness,” she whispered.
“Janae? What are you talking about? What’s going on?”
Karen called her name several times before she answered. “What? What did you say?”
“I asked what’s going on? What are you looking at?”
“A magnificent male specimen,” Janae answered absently.
“Ooh. Sculpted pecs and biceps?” Karen asked excitedly.
“Like you wouldn’t believe,” she whispered in awe.
“If my count is correct.” Terrence’s smooth, rich chocolate skin and rippling muscles mesmerized her.
“Janae. What channel are you watching? Hurry up, girl. I don’t want to miss it.”
“What? What...channel? What are you talking about?”
Karen sighed impatiently. “Girl, what’s the matter with you? I asked you what channel the hunk is on?”
“Are you drunk or something?”
“Of course not. Are you crazy?”
“That’s what I’m wondering about you. Now let’s see if you can understand me. What...channel...is...the...sexy...man...you’re...watching...on?”
“Um, he’s not... I’m not watching TV. I have to go. I’ll talk to you later.” She could still hear Karen fussing as she disconnected.
Janae stood there and watched Terrence with his head tilted back as if in deep thought. Then she heard the music. It didn’t sound familiar, and she knew it wasn’t his music or his voice. The up-tempo beat sounded okay, but the voice didn’t move her. He must have sensed her presence because he opened his eyes and turned his head toward her.
“I’m sorry. I didn’t mean to interrupt you.”
“You didn’t. Come here.”
When she got closer, she noticed a tattoo across his heart. “Nice tattoo. A curved music staff with notes, huh?”
“Music is my only passion. My only love.”
She nodded. He confirmed what she already knew. “What are you listening to? I know it’s not your music.”
“It’s a demo of a guy who wants to be represented by our label. I have a meeting with him this week. What do you think?”
“Are you sure you want my opinion?”
“Well, the music is not too bad, but his voice doesn’t move me. It sounds... I don’t know. I can’t put my finger on it.” He stared at her so long she thought she’d said something wrong.
“I agree. That’s why I’ve been listening to it so many times. I think I finally figured out what the problem is.”
“Do you think he’ll be someone you’ll represent?”
“Probably not, if what I suspect is true.”
“I bet you get lots of demos.”
“We do, but there’s a team that listens to them. I only get the ones that they want me to take a second listen to, or those that have promise. Even if I like the music, there’s no guarantee of a partnership. In addition to great music, the artist and our team will need to be able to work together.”
“I can see that. If they’re not a good fit, it would be hard to get things done.” Janae did her best to keep her eyes on his face and her hands to herself.
He stopped the CD, which he’d put on repeat. “No more talk about work. I’ll have to get back to it soon enough. I want to take advantage of every minute with you.” He lowered his head and kissed her gently. The kiss quickly heated up. Terrence angled his head and deepened the kiss.
Janae ran her hands up the strength of his arms, across his smooth, hard chest and around his neck, then melted against him. Her knees buckled, and he tightened his grip to keep her from falling. When the kiss ended, they were both breathing harshly. His hands on her body drove her insane.