Meet Stuart Knight in One to Take!
A STAND-ALONE NOVEL in the “One to Hold” universe. Prepare for strong language, panty-melting sexy times, and heart-squeezing angst. Readers 18 and older only, please.
Life is never simple.
Even perfect couples face storms.
The question is whether our love is strong enough to survive.
I believe it is.
She told me to leave.
If I leave, I take her with me.
ONE TO TAKE
By Tia Louise
© TLM Productions LLC, 2016
When I open my eyes again the next morning, and I’m alone in bed, I’m pissed. Sitting up, I know what I have to do. I pull my hair around, over my shoulder and weave it into a thick braid then I throw back the covers and stomp over to the window. Still raining.
Going to the closet, I jerk it open, pulling out a bright red floral dress and pulling it over my head not bothering with a bra. It buttons up the front, but I only fasten the middle ones. I’ve had enough of this behavior.
Amy is sitting at the kitchen table when I emerge from the hall. “Hey, Mare! I want you to read my coffee grounds!”
“In a minute,” I grumble, going straight to the door and outside. Light rain gathers in little beads on my hair, making it look like I’m wearing a veil.
Into the barn, I scan the open space looking for Bill. As far as I can tell, the only person in the area with the horses is Stuart, just the man I’m looking for.
He’s in Ranger’s stall, and I go straight to the door, pull the latch, and go inside. He stands up slowly, a confused smile on his face, and it hits me so hard. He’s gorgeous in those loose jeans and that damn grey Henley I stole last year.
“Hey, babe—” but I don’t let him finish. I go straight to him and grab the front of my favorite shirt.
“I’m sick of it!” From the corner of my eye, I see Ranger’s ears lay back, but I don’t care.
Stuart’s brow lowers. “Sick of what?”
“Stop treating me like a fucking China doll!”
“No!” I push him, but he doesn’t move. The man is a wall of granite. “Before you knew, before I told you, when I was already twelve weeks pregnant, if I left you in the bed alone one morning… One! You were pissed!”
He’s fighting the urge to grin, but I won’t have it. I push against his arms and grab the front of his shirt, shoving it up his lined torso.
“What are you doing?” He tries to catch my hands, but I push his away.
“You’re going to fuck me right here and now in this stall.”
“What the…” He steps forward, past me to the door of the stall and looks out into the barn. “Where’s Amy?”
“She’s in the house having breakfast with your mom. I don’t know where Bill is.”
“He went into town,” Stuart says quietly before turning to face me.
“Then we’re alone.” My hands are on his waist, but I only get the top button of his jeans open before he catches them.
“Take it easy. We’re not doing this here.”
The tightness in my chest almost makes me scream. I’m breathing fast, and my whole body is on fire with fury and hormones and lust. “Stuart William! You’re the only man I’ve ever slept with!”
“I’m glad to hear it,” he says, that sexy smile returning.
“You taught me how to make love—fierce and rough and demanding. I want you to love me like that now.”
I unfasten the buttons on my dress, allowing the front to fall apart, revealing my bare breasts heaving beneath. His expression darkens, and I see a glimmer of the old Stuart in his eyes.
He reaches out and catches my waist, pulling me hard against his chest. A flash of need spikes in my veins. “Yes,” I whisper. “Like that.”
The muscle in his jaw moves, and he looks away. “I can’t get off thinking I might hurt you.”
“You’ve never hurt me before.” Sliding my hands up his arms, I grip his biceps. “You’re hurting me by holding back.”
Reaching for his hand, I guide it down, pulling my skirt up so he can feel I’m not wearing panties, so he can feel how wet I am. “I want you. The real you.”
“Mariska,” he growls as his fingers curl against my sex.
Putting both hands on his face, I pull him to me and kiss him hard, parting his lips and pushing my tongue inside. At the same time, his fingers plunge into me, and a low moan scrapes from my throat.
I rise on my toes, chasing his lips, and he’s kissing me back with just as much passion, plundering my mouth. When I pull back, I nip his bottom lip with my teeth, and our eyes meet, burning with the fire I’ve been missing so long.
He takes my arm and turns me around, pushing me against the wooden side of the corral.
“Yes,” I gasp, clutching the wooden slats, arching my back as I brace against the wall. Cool air sweeps along my thighs and ass as he sweeps the flowing skirt away.
He studies my body as I hear his zipper lower. One large hand grips my hip, kneading my skin. “So beautiful.” His voice is rough and hungry.
“Please,” I whisper. I’m on fire, and I ache deeply for his rough touch.
At once I feel a stinging SLAP! against the soft skin of my behind followed by another kneading grip. The biting pain only spikes my desire.
“Oh god, yes,” I sigh. My legs tremble. Sparks of pleasure fizz in my veins, and waiting for him is almost painful. I moan as he slides his erection up and down my slick folds until finally, in one hard thrust, we both groan as he plunges inside.
ONE TO TAKE
By Tia Louise
© TLM Productions LLC, 2016
~ Mariska ~
“Can we go somewhere else?” Our faces are so close, and Stuart’s smoky hazel eyes brim with… something. “Away from the noise?”
I’m afraid to be alone with him. I don’t know if I’m strong enough yet. I’m pretty sure I’ll never be strong enough to tell him to go to hell. I don’t even know if that’s what I want to say. Still, with all we’ve been through and all I’ve learned, I can’t be the person I was before.
“I don’t know,” I answer truthfully. “I’m not sure if I’m ready.”
He glances down, and my eyes run all over his face. His hair is longer than he usually wears it. It ends in shaggy curls around his ears. His face is lined and tired, and his body is lean again, like it was when we were first together when he was fighting the drugs.
“You’ve been working.”
“Trying to kill the pain.” His voice is rough, and it moves something inside me.“
The stairs in the back lead down to the beach.” I point in the direction of the DJ booth. “We can walk along the shore if you want.”
He nods and follows me as I lead us through the crowd to the back entrance. A wide patio is attached to the back of the club, and couples are scattered around in different levels of engagement. I don’t linger, walking through them and going down the wide staircase to the beach below. Stuart is right behind me, and the closeness of this man sends waves of desire crashing through my insides. I have to fight it.
“It’s warm tonight,” I say, pausing to slip off my booties.
“Can I help you with those?”
Shaking my head, I walk straight to the water. It’s breaking in small waves tonight, sending little ripples of briny sand between my toes.“
So you’re here with Pete?” I can’t tell if that’s jealousy in his voice, but I decide not to notice.
“He’s easy.” My voice is quiet. “Safe.”
“Since when do you like safe and easy?” The taunting in his voice makes me want to cry. I can’t do this with him. Not after everything.
“What do you want, Stuart?”
“The same thing I’ve always wanted. You.” Another wave of emotion crashes in my chest. “No.” Shaking my head, I turn to the side. “I can’t hear that from you. You left me when I needed you. I reached for you, and you weren’t there.”
Stepping forward, he catches my hand, pulling me to his chest. “You were so hurt. I felt like seeing me hurt you more.”
I push him away. “You blamed me. You went away because you were angry with me for what happened. Be honest. You went away to hurt me.”
His chin drops, and I watch the line of his jaw move. “I was angry.”
“I knew it!” I shout, turning to walk away, but he grabs my arm, stopping me.
“But not at you.” The pain in his eyes expands, and I see my torment reflected there. “I was angry with myself. I didn’t protect you when you needed me, and I couldn’t forgive myself for letting you be hurt. I love you, Mariska. You’re my gypsy. You’re my wife.”
I shake my head, pulling away. “I’m not your wife. I’m not your anything. I never was.”
He looks down, and I watch as he runs a hand over his stomach. “To me you’re everything.”
“No.” Shaking my head, I cover my ears with my hands. “I only wanted a family. I wanted one so badly, I was ready to believe anything to make it real. I was young and stupid.”
“No you weren’t. You’re mine.” His strong arms surround me, pulling me to his body. “We can’t go from what we had to this. It’s not possible. You came in and changed my life. You changed everything. Every day you’re in my mind. I can’t shake you no matter how hard I work, no matter how hard I punish myself.”
“Stop…” My insides ache. Every word he says is a firebrand to my chest. “You don’t know what I know. When those things happened, you thought I had a gift. You thought I had special knowledge, but I don’t…”
ONE TO LEAVE is the first Stuart & Mariska love story. Get it on SALE for just 99 Cents this week only! #DirtyCowboy
About the Author
Tia Louise is the Award-Winning, International Bestselling author of the ONE TO HOLD series.
From “Readers’ Choice” nominations, to USA Today “Happily Ever After” nods, to winning the 2015 “Favorite Erotica Author” and the 2014 “Lady Boner Award” (LOL!), nothing makes her happier than communicating with fans and weaving new tales into the Alexander-Knight world of stories.
A former journalist, Louise lives in the center of the USA with her lovely family and one grumpy cat. There, she dreams up stories she hopes are engaging, hot, and sexy, and that cause readers rethink common public locations…
Books by Tia Louise:
One to Hold (Derek & Melissa), 2013
One to Keep (Patrick & Elaine), 2014
One to Protect (Derek & Melissa), 2014
One to Love (Kenny & Slayde), 2014
One to Leave (Stuart & Mariska), 2014
One to Save (Derek & Melissa), 2015
One to Chase (Amy & Marcus), 2015
One to Take (Stuart & Mariska), coming Feb. 22, 2016!
Paranormal Romances (all stand-alones):
One Immortal (Derek & Melissa, #SexyVampires), 2015
One Insatiable (Koa & Mercy, #SexyShifters), 2015
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