A loud blast of triumphant strings floated into the air and he tipped his head to the side in the direction of the car. "This music isn't so bad."
Juanita laughed. "I'm sure Puccini would be thrilled to hear it."
He laughed too, but quickly sobered. His features took on an intense look as his gaze scanned her face, lingering on her mouth. She leaned a little harder into the car. "We're not very alike, you and me, are we?"
She shook her head. That was an understatement. "Not really. No."
"What's your favourite music?"
He rolled his eyes. "I already figured that. Who?"
"Favourite footy team?"
Juanita always hated this question. Like she was abnormal because she didn't get why anyone would pay a bunch of sweaty men an obscene amount of money to kick a ball around a field. She tried to think of something to say that wasn't oh puhlease, but a chuckle escaped his mouth before she got there. Obviously her absence of answer was clearly enough.
Her arms broke out in goosebumps from the delicious ooze of that chuckle, despite the heat belting down on them.
He screwed up his nose at that one. "Is that a thing?"
"Yes it is and it's delicious. I suppose yours is mmmeat lover's pizza."
He nodded. "Not exactly, but I am partial to a meat lover's. With extra bacon." He grinned. "Of course."
Juanita rolled her eyes. "Of course."
He sighed, placing a hand over his heart. "I suppose you don't eat pizza?"
"Not true," she said, propping her hand on her hip. "There's a little place down the road from me that makes the best Margherita pizza you could ever hope to find. If you're ever in Sydney, I'll take you there."
The invitation slipped out before Juanita could think better of it. Her hand fluttered to her throat and she lowered her eyes as she realised her gaffe. Awkward.
Except now she was looking at his belly, the music tripping in simpatico with her heartbeat as her gaze snagged on the streak of dirt that started at the bare flesh above one hip bone and ploughed into the fine dark hair that formed a wide strip down the centre of his abs.
It was utterly fascinating.
"Well at least we have that in common," he murmured.
Juanita glanced up, their gazes meshing as the music crashed to a halt and the entire landscape seemed to hold its breath. "What?"
He took a step forward, their bodies pressing together as drums and trumpets blared out in a triumphant cacophony. "We both like dirty," he said, sliding his hand onto her cheek and dropping his mouth to hers.
The kiss wasn't hard. It wasn't fast or furious. But it wasn't gentle either. It was thorough and insistent and steady, his hand firm on her jaw, his mouth open against hers, taking over, taking her away. Away from the extraneous and into her body. To the thrum of blood to her breasts and belly, to the drum of her pulse through her ears, to the rush of hot air in her lungs, to the tight bunch of muscles in her ass and thighs and the hot delicious tingle between her legs.
The music was forgotten. The landscape was forgotten. The fact they were on the side of the road was forgotten.
Maybe it was his semi-nudity, maybe it was the heat, maybe it was the Heaneys, but Juanita didn't even think of turning away from him. In fact she moved closer, sliding one hand onto his arm, the other around his waist. All she knew was that he tasted good and felt solid and smelled like a guy who'd just finished doing something really freaking manly; her body was back in that hotel room and it felt right.
His arm was sweaty beneath her palm and his chest was sweaty and grimy, but his mouth was just right and, along with his tongue, it created a hundred kinds of havoc and she welcomed every one of them, as she opened wider, clung on harder.
They didn't hear the approaching car. Juanita probably wouldn't have heard a fighter jet buzzing them. But the blast of a siren sure as hell broke into the bubble.
"What the fuck?" he muttered, frowning at the approaching cop car as they broke apart, his delicious sweaty bicep falling from her grasp.
Juanita couldn't make any sense of it. Why was a cop car with a siren pulling in behind them? Was it illegal to play Puccini out here or were they doing something else wrong? Apart from kissing of course. Which she shouldn't be doing.
"Ethan … Don't worry," he assured, shaking his head. "It's just my brother being a smartass. I promise you're not going to be arrested for kissing in the middle of butt fuck nowhere."
Yeah. But maybe she should be. In fact if she had any sense she'd beg to be arrested for gross stupidity and welcome some time alone in the local pokey to reflect on her misdemeanour.
"I'm … sorry," she said, even though she wasn't sure why she was apologising. She wasn't the one who'd initiated it for crying out loud. But there was something excruciatingly embarrassing about being sprung by one of your siblings kissing some person they'd never met before.
It was mortifying as a teenager and not that much better as a thirty year old.
"Don't be," he grinned, as the door of the cop car opened. "It's the first time I ever pashed to Puccini."
"Well, well, well," the newcomer-Ethan-said, slapping a navy blue cap on his head. "What do we have here?"
He strode towards them, big and broad like his brother, clearly amused at busting a shirtless Marcus with a female stranger on the edge of the road.
"Flat tyre," Marcus said.
Ethan raised an eyebrow, clearly enjoying himself. "Is that what we're calling it these days?"
Juanita glanced from one to the other. They seemed easy and relaxed in each other's company. Ethan pulled up in front of them and smiled at her. "I don't believe we've had the pleasure?"
He held out his hand to her. So this was the guy JJ supposedly had a thing for. She could see why. Good genes obviously ran in the Weston family.
"This is Juanita Slattery," Marcus introduced as Juanita shook his hand.
"I've not seen you around here before. Are you new to town or are you," he flicked a look at Marcus, "passing through."
"I just started work here. At the hospital."
Juanita met his assessing gaze nervously. She didn't know what Marcus's brother thought of her. She didn't even know why she cared but she did. "Ohhh, yes," he said, a light finally dawning in his eyes. "You're the new psychologist." He nodded and grinned, clearly pleased with himself for placing her. "Welcome."
Juanita smiled back, struck by how similar the two brothers were. Or their smiles anyway. "Thank you."
Ethan turned to his brother with an accusatory glare. "You're hitting on the new shrink?"
Marcus chuckled, clearly unconcerned by the accusation. "I was trying to."
Juanita's face heated a little more. "That's not what was happening," she said. Even though she couldn't adequately explain what had happened.
Ethan didn't even look her way as he continued. "Dude, you need to stop dicking around and take this seriously and she has a Hippocratic oath to uphold. She doesn't need you sticking your tongue down her throat trying to seduce her out of it."
Juanita cringed. Was that what it looked like?
"Your high esteem of me is heartwarming," Marcus said, but he didn't look all that insulted as a small smile played on his mouth and one dimple winked from the depths of a stubble-covered cheek.
Marcus Weston, it seemed, wore his Casanova badge with pride...
Paramedic Marcus Weston is losing it. The loveable larrikin of Jumbuck Springs is battling PTSD after a horrific incident during recent bushfires. He thought he had a handle on it but not even boozing, partying and wild women are helping this Casanova get outside his head anymore.
Psychologist Juanita Slattery is looking for a sexy distraction. The long, tall stranger in a pair of Wranglers with his big old flirty smile and rugged country looks is just the ticket. And he doesn't disappoint as they burn up the sheets together in an unforgettable one night stand.
Fast forward a few days and they come face-to-face again. But this time Juanita is in Jumbuck Springs as part of the post-fire counselling team and Marcus is sitting on the other side of her desk. He just wants to get back to work. She knows he needs help. Professional boundaries dictate that they keep their distance, but intense physical attraction rarely follows reason…
From "SOME GUYS NEED A LOT OF LOVIN'" by Amy Andrews
"I loved this book....actually, I've loved all of the books in the Outback Heat series. They're all excellent contemporary romances, but this book raises the ante and tackles some difficult subjects that are very emotional. In this book, Marcus is suffering from PTSD, but thinks he can handle it by himself. Unfortunately, that decision is taken out of his hands when he is forced to seek treatment. What follows is his struggle to be a "manly man" while suffering from his demons. He is doubly determined to stay strong because of the sexy psychologist that he is attracted to. In the Weston family, men are men, and not in touch with their sensitive side. With all of this in play, the author creates a captivating romance novel that focuses on a very difficult topic."
"It was clear from the start that Marcus and Juanita had a deep connection. In Some Guys Need a Lot of Lovin', Amy Andrews tackles emotional subjects. Marcus is dealing with the traumatic aftermath of a horribly heartbreaking experience. Juanita is looking for a way to escape the stresses brought on by her job. A chance encounter leads to something more until the outside world intrudes. Some Guys Need a Lot of Lovin' is a story that has an uplifting message. I experienced a ton of emotions but Marcus made it all worthwhile."