We have an awesome hump day excerpt this week — an exclusive scene from Christina Lauren’s Wicked Sexy Liar, an RT Top Pick!, available next week! You’ve already heard all about the Not-Joe story appearing in the special Target edition, and today we’ve got a sultry look inside the beginning of Luke and London’s relationship. And we’ve also got a clip from the audiobook for you to listen to! Are you excited? Because we are very excited.
Fresh out of college, London is perfectly happy riding waves and tending bar. She’s not one for casual hookups, but even she is not immune to Luke Sutter’s charm. Luke enjoys playing the field, but something about London has him wondering if there’s more to life than a string of one-night stands …
I’m not sure what it is about this girl that’s so different from every other girl I’ve let into my house, but I find myself racing up the steps and getting to the door before her, doing a quick scan of the dark living room, a tiny peek toward the kitchen.
Not too bad.
No food left out on the coffee table and—more important—no boxers on the kitchen floor. I’m doing the mental trigger finger salute to the gods to make sure we’re on the same page here: there’d better not be any condom wrappers visible in the bedroom. Or the bathroom, for that matter.
I open the door wider for her and grin. “Come on in.”
Logan looks at my face and then into the darkness before taking a cautious step forward. I reach past her, flicking on the living room lights.
And there it is: the difference. Most girls enter my house walking backward, with their fists curled in my shirt. Some step inside with their eyes on my face, waiting for the tiny lift of my chin to the left, the silent The bedroom is that way. This one walks in looking at everything the way she looks at me, like she’s not sure she wants to touch anything.
I can almost hear the words embedded in her deep inhale before she says them out loud: “I just realized I have no idea what I’m doing here.”
I step back a little. Without hesitation, my answer is, “Nothing you don’t want to do.”
But inside I’m letting out a long-suffering groan; it’s been a long day with a lot of drama. I’d really like to lose myself in some fast sex tonight, but don’t want it to be a long, drawnout seduction.
As if it’s already given up on plan A, my stomach rumbles and I glance toward the kitchen. “Hungry?”
She shrugs. “A little?”
“I have some . . .” Walking over, I open the fridge and lean in, inspecting. “Beer. Tortillas. Sriracha. Celery, pepperoni, and . . .” Opening a drawer, I say, “String cheese.”
I turn and look at her when I’m met with silence, and her wary expression is hilarious. I draw a circle in the air, asking, “What is that face?” “I have no idea what face I’m making,” she says, straightening and giving me a little smile instead.
I lean my arm on the open refrigerator door. “Then tell me what you’re thinking.”
Her brows lift as if to confirm that I really want to hear it. When I nod, she says, “You’re almost too stereotypical to be real.”
A laugh barks out of me. “Am I?”
The truth comes out in a torrent: “You’re hot as sin, had to double-check to make sure the last girl didn’t leave her underwear on the couch, and your fridge is bachelor-level empty.”
So let’s add observant to the list of things that intrigue me about this girl.
I shrug, flashing her a quick grin. “I eat out a lot.”
She skirts past my innuendo with a tiny smirk. “But if these things are all as well correlated as I suspect, it means you’re really good in bed and probably have an enormous penis.”
A smile tugs at the side of my mouth, and I fight it as long as I can but end up bursting out laughing. Finally, she gives in to a real smile of her own and it snags me somewhere dusty and unexpected. Sexy smiles go straight to my cock, but her smile isn’t just sexy, it’s happy. And it isn’t just the dimples. It’s the twinkle in her eyes, something that seems to look deeper than the surface. I don’t even know if it’s possible for a true smile to be anything other than happy but hers is the best happy smile I’ve seen in . . .
I wipe my face with a palm and then move closer to her, fighting the ratcheting tension in my gut as I reach for a loose strand of her hair. I smooth it behind the curve of her ear, whispering, “Look, Logan.”
Her eyes narrow skeptically for a moment, and then she’s biting back a grin.
I consider asking her about it, but it’s a little disarming to see her like this, away from the dim, colorful lighting at Fred’s. There, she looked a little harder: guarded eyes behind her teasing smile. Here, I can see that her eyes aren’t just blue but a ring of deep cobalt around the brightest turquoise, and her nose is dusted with the faintest freckles. She chews the corner of her lip as she surveys my living room again.
Holy shit, is she a virgin?
Should I ask? No. She’s wearing shit-kicking boots with a short plaid skirt, and there’s no way I’m risking taking those steel toes to my shin, or worse.
“If you want to fool around, I’m down,” I tell her. “You’re beautiful, and sweet, and your mouth looks like candy.” I’m looking at her lips when I say this, but I can’t help sense that she’s just rolled her eyes. She gives off the oddest duality: a tough exterior coupled with the impression that she still requires careful handling.
“Or,” I say, taking a step back, “we can order pizza and play some Titanfall on the Xbox.” I’m guessing she’ll pass on that one—which we all know is fine by me, because I can’t imagine a girl this hot even knows what Titanfall is.
I don’t expect the way her eyes brighten and, before she can put the expression away, I see her glance at my living room. Clearly, I’ve pegged her all wrong.
Kicking off my shoes, I walk back into the kitchen, grab two beers, and nod to the living room. “Let’s go.”
With a smile and a little bounce in her step, she walks over and settles on the couch beside me. I watch her grab the controller with her right hand, her thumb expertly sliding across the small joystick. “Will it embarrass you if I kick your ass?” she asks.
I shake my head, smiling as I boot up the system. “Nope. My Grams got this for me last week, and I’m sure she’d be tickled to know a lady friend beat me.”
I feel her stare on the side of my face as I click through the start-up menu. When I turn to look at her, her dimples flash as she smiles. “That’s cute.”
“It’s cute that my grandma got me a first-person-shooter game?” I’m tempted to tell her about the year Grams sent me to Vegas for my twenty-first birthday and told me tattoos were okay but made me promise I wouldn’t hire any hookers. When I replied that I never needed to pay for sex, she smacked me on the back of the head.
“Yeah.” Logan looks away, at the television. “Although you’re what? Twenty-two?”
“Twenty-three. Twenty-four in October.”
“Aw. Twenty-three and a half!” She pinches my cheek. “My eleven-and-a-half-year-old cousin does that, too.”
“You’re very funny.”
Her answering laugh vibrates through me. “Almost twenty-four,” she says. “So maybe it’s time to give up the video games?”
I nod toward her hands. “You look pretty comfortable holding that controller, Pot.”
She shrugs, and looks at me again. “Let’s just say I’ve held one of these more recently than one of those.” She nods to my lap in return and I cough, nearly choking on my sip of beer. When she looks back to the television, she barks out a laugh, pointing to the screen. “Please tell me you’re not GiantD92.”
With a wink, I tell her, “I think you know I am.”
Logan shakes her head at me, but it doesn’t read like exasperation. Her cheeks are clearly pink, visible even in the dim light from the television, and she’s sitting only a few inches away from me.
She joins the game and we choose our pilot types. It’s only once the game loads and we’re dropped into the map when I realize I’ve never played video games with a girl, other than my sister Margot, who’s terrible. I’ve got the basics of running up walls, vaulting and the like, but am still trying to easily transition into the Titan controls and some of the tactical tricks. Beside me, Logan has no problem with any of it; I’m beginning to think maybe she’s a hustler.
She’s not a small-talker. She’s sweet, but not giggly, and is clearly not trying to impress me. Even so, she is already kicking my ass. Regardless, it’s easy between us like this, with nothing but the sound of video game gunfire and our occasional string of curse words in victory or frustration.
“Use your sniper rifle!” she shouts, even though she’s right next to me.
Our thumbs hammer on the controllers.
“No, I like the MK5.”
“Dude, you’re blasting everywhere, you’re going to hit me, just be more precise for like two fucking seconds!”
Laughing, I switch my gun and in a few shots manage to take down an Ogre, clearing a path forward.
“Tell me I was right,” she sings.
“You were—fuck!” I yell. In a rain of blood, my pilot is killed by fire from a chain gun from the other team. “Where the hell did that one come from?”
She pauses the game. “Wow. You didn’t last very long.” Her eyes are bright with amusement, lips twisted in a sardonic grin.
She seems so comfortable cracking innuendo, joking about sex—about why we’re here—but I sense the act itself is what she can’t initiate.
“Can I ask you a question?” I say.
She reaches for her beer. “You mean another one?”
I stare at her, straight-faced.
Giving in with a teasing smile—those fucking dimples make something inside me melt then begin to boil—she says, “Yes, fine. As long as you won’t be offended if I decline to answer.”
“Why did you leave with me tonight? At the risk of sounding like a complete asshole, you said you don’t go home with customers, but here you are.”
“I don’t,” she says quickly, but quietly. “Ever.”
I meant the question generally, but her answer surprises me. “Never?”
She shakes her head. I wonder if that’s all I’m going to get. She didn’t answer my question, but when I look at her, it feels like she’s still mulling it over. Finally, she pulls one leg up on the couch, facing me.
“Let me ask you a question, too,” she says.
Lifting my chin in a small nod, I take a sip of my beer, waiting.
“Do you do this a lot?” she asks.
Although her gesture when she says this encompasses the whole room, I’m pretty sure she doesn’t mean the video game.
I try to do a quick count in my head. Maybe ten in the past couple of months? That might sound like a lot to her. “I mean . . . not every night, but yeah, sometimes.”
“Why?” she asks.
Why? The question sounds absurd. Why do I have sex? Is she for real?
I study her; those brilliant blue eyes are fixed on my face, waiting for an answer. How is it possible for someone to seem so innocent and so wary all at the same time?
Truthfully, I’ve been asked some variation of this before, maybe a handful of times. Usually the woman looks up at me in bed, before or after we fuck, and voices it as casually as possible.
You must have a lot of girls in your bed.
When was the last time you just brought someone home?
I hope you know I don’t do this all the time. This is different, Luke.
But I never get this question on the couch, conversationally, while fully dressed, with clear eyes staring at me and mostly free of judgment. It just feels like Logan wants to understand.
“Right now I’d be terrible at anything more,” I tell her. “I don’t mean I’m scared of commitment or any shit like that. I mean, I’ve been in love before and am not sure I could do all that again.”
She lets out a short, sharp laugh at this, nodding as she tilts her beer to her mouth.
“At least,” I continue, “not right now when I’m working like crazy.” This sounds ridiculous. I can hear it, can hear the absurdity. We’re all working like crazy. We’re all busy and young and chaotic. “But, regardless, I’m a guy. I like sex. I like women. Is that the level of honesty you’re looking for?”
“Your turn,” I say. Something ancient seems to be creaking to life inside my chest. It’s been forever since I’ve had a conversation like this—earnest, and open—with someone other than my family, and I forgot how nice it feels.
She drinks deeply from her beer again before answering. I watch her throat as she swallows. It’s long, pale, and smooth. “I left with you because I was barreled by a wave this morning.”
She surfs . . . that certainly explains her body.
“It’s been so long since I was rolled like that,” she says, staring down at the bottle in her hand. “I forgot how scary it is. For the first part of the morning, I couldn’t catch a single good wave. And then one came along that just ground me to dust. All day, I’ve been tense and out of sorts. It’s like it never occurs to me to work out tension with sex. Tonight I figured, Why not?”
“Why not?” I repeat quietly, feeling my pulse charge forward as it seems to become a possibility.
She nods but her eyes are on my lips now.
“Whatever you want, okay?” I tell her.
Slowly, so slowly I can see every emotion pass through her eyes—uncertainty, fear, desire, determination—she leans forward and brushes her mouth over mine. It feels like silk.
“We’re only doing this tonight,” she says, pulling back a few inches to meet my eyes. And when she says it, it sounds nothing like it has coming from other girls. She’s not worried she’ll fall into the trap of thinking it’s more; she’s worried I will. Her dimples dig into her cheeks as she smiles, saying, “So make sure to show me all your tricks.”
I laugh into another kiss. “Yes, ma’am.”
“And don’t come back to the bar expecting to get head in the parking lot,” she says against my mouth. “I’m not that girl.”
See? I was right.
I pull back to look her in the eye and salute her with my fingers at my forehead. “Understood.”
Without much ceremony, she reaches for the hem of my shirt and helps me out of it. Her hands come up, warm but tentative, fingertips before palms smoothing over my skin. Exploring, as if it’s been forever since she did this and she’s forgotten what skin feels like. Her hands are soft; her nails are only long enough to scratch lightly down my chest and over my stomach before she gets to work on the buttons of my jeans.
I slide my hips just out of her reach, pulling a condom out of my pocket and placing it near her hip. “Do you want to go to my room?”
She shakes her head. “Here is good.” She tugs me closer and works my pants and boxers down my hips before a thought seems to halt her movements. “Do you live alone?”
I kiss her, speaking against her lips, as I kick my pants to the floor. “You’re getting me naked on my couch, so, God, I hope so.”
I feel her giggle against my mouth when I bend to suck at her throat, and subtly shift away from her hands. I don’t want her hands on my cock yet; neither of us is ready to fuck and what’s the hurry? It’s a complete one-eighty from only five minutes ago. She’s not hesitant anymore, not even a little. I wonder if she’s like that in everything: cautious, then almost recklessly committed. Even so, there’s still a film of detachment there, as if she’s checking things off a mental list without really giving over to anything.
Usually I sense a frantic need for connection—the inescapable snare of eye contact, a quiet string of questions, kisses that feel like secrets being offered—and it means I can choose how much of it I want. But Logan isn’t looking for deep connection with me; she seems to want the paradox of getting it over with and being consumed.
I’m oddly reminded of driving through the Rockies with my parents during a snowstorm: Mom happily remarking on how lovely it was while Dad focused intently on the mechanics of getting us all there safely. My job is to navigate us both through this.
She guides my hands to her shirt and then closes her eyes as I unbutton it down her front, kissing. She smells like oranges and the sweet scent of girl.
I pull her shirt from her shoulders, down her arms, and unclasp her bra. Fuck, her chest is nice, too. Breasts just bigger than my hands. Flat, toned stomach. She has the body of a girl who unself-consciously surfs in a bikini: curved, tanned, and defined. I want to lose myself in this, want to sense her own relief from it, or even feel some urgency overwhelm her ability to control. For once I want to linger on my bed, lights on, talking nonsense while I kiss all these perfect parts of her.
But I can feel the tension in her abdomen, the way she just wants to move forward, keep going, get there.
Is this how it feels to be with me when I’m distracted and simply need to fuck?
Bending, I kiss her chin, her lips, parting them with mine. Her tongue is small and soft in my mouth and beneath the tang of beer she tastes like oranges, too. I imagine her reaching for one at the bar, idly sucking on it between mixing drinks.
“Come on,” I whisper, sucking at her lower lip. Give me something. “Touch me.”
She licks my upper lip and a tight noise of want escapes her mouth. “It’s okay to want this. I want this. You’re not doing anything wrong here.”
A tentative hand slides around my neck, her legs spreading as she pulls me between them and
I feel it, when she softens under me, giving in. Her hand comes up to my face, the other reaching for me, curling around my dick. I harden from her touch, and inhale the sweet citrus smell of her, bending to suck a soft nipple into my mouth, groaning at the way it stiffens against my tongue.
I get to work on her skirt, easing it down her hips.
“Oh, shit,” she says, and then stifles a laugh with her hand.
I freeze, looking up at her.
Goddamnit—of course this will be when she remembers she’s on her period.
“What?” I ask, as calmly as I can.
Her blue eyes stare up at me, wide with playful apology. “I haven’t shaved my legs in . . . a while.”
I exhale, relief making my hands clumsy as I yank the skirt the rest of the way off.
“Don’t worry. I haven’t, either.”
She giggles, and when I look down at her, she’s fucking stunning. She stills under my attention, letting me look up and down the length of her naked body. Her legs may be unshaven, but I’d never be able to tell. Suffice to say, Logan is a natural blonde, and every other bikini-conscious part of her makes my mouth water.
It’s only when I’m over her like this, positioned between her thighs and registering how entirely relaxed she is being nude before me, that I appreciate it fully: Dimples isn’t here for anyone but herself.
Most girls don’t come home with me solely for their own pleasure. As much as they may insist that’s the reason, they come because they want a relationship, want to be adored. They want me to keep them beyond a single night, to like them beyond what we do together in bed.
But Logan doesn’t seem to really care what I think of her or whether we even see each other again. She’s using me.
I feel the sting of rejection and the warmth of respect at the same time.
She worries that sweet bottom lip with her teeth. “Everything okay?”
I close my eyes, taking a deep inhale of her. “Just looking at you,” I tell her. “You’re . . .” You’re surprising. “You’re really fucking pretty.”
She doesn’t thank me. She barely reacts at all, only watches me with heavy eyes.
I run my hand down between her breasts—full swells, small pink tips—and across her ribs, lower down her toned stomach. Her hips mirror the movement of my palm, chasing my touch.
“Let me kiss you here?” I ask, drawing my fingers between her legs. She’s soft, wet enough to tempt me but not enough that I’m sure she’ll go off like a bomb the way I want.
She shakes her head a little, smiling that wide-open smile at me. “No way, sir. That’s special.”
Fuck. It is special and for the length of a sharp inhale, it thrills me that she feels that way. But then frustration inches in: the more time I spend with her, the more eager I am to ensure this night blows her goddamn mind. If she’s come to a movie theater to be entertained, I’m going to show her the motherfucking Godfather.
She reaches down to the cushion by her hip and finds the condom, handing it to me.
“I thought you wanted me to pull out all my tricks?” I tease.
She laughs, a single burst of sound, but the smile stays. “Just come here.”
Shaking my head I tell her, “If we’re skipping the previews, you’re at least putting that on me.”
With a cute little eye roll, she pushes herself up on an elbow, tearing the condom wrapper with her teeth. Slowly, slowly, she rolls it down the length of me and I bite my lower lip, groaning.
Seeing her naked . . . tasting her tongue . . . the warm grip of her hand on my cock and I’m ready to fuck, but her hands don’t immediately leave me. She touches my cock, my balls, my hips and stomach. Now she’s deliberate, now she’s relishing. Her fingertips explore me, soft and gently tickling up my chest until she curls a hand around the back of my neck, pulling me over her.
“Come here,” she whispers again, kissing my chin, my jaw, my neck.
Maybe I should be in charge; she’s got more innocence buried beneath her steel than she does true cynicism. But I don’t want to lead right now. She reaches for me, slipping me around, playing with the tip of my cock on her clit, and I feel the way my arms shake, planted beside her head. She wants to lead it, wants me to stay still, wants to use this part of my body to feel good. Every muscle along my spine is bunched, every thought banished but the feel of her. The fucking feel. I watch her face and the million expressions I see tense and relax across it. I’ve never been so wrapped up in watching someone give in before.
Finally, she slides me lower. I sense the dip, the invitation, and ease my way inside.
She holds her breath but doesn’t make a sound. I want to roar. She’s warm—crazy warm—and wetter now. I have to ease in and out, an inch at a time because she’s small, and I worry I’m hurting her but her hands find my ass and she pulls me forward, rocking with me to get me deeper, more, all the way.
I groan when I’m finally there, but she’s quiet. She’s so quiet even with the clench of her all around me; with the way I’m squeezed inside her, how can she not make a single sound? I’m all the way in, grinding to get the feel of her, mouth on her neck, her tits. I feel unleashed, ravenous.
I could lose myself. I could fuck hard.
But, God, when she rolls her hips under me I know I could also fuck slow.
Whatever the hell she wants, it’s so good and her tits pressed to my chest make me rub against her, skin to skin. “It’s okay?” I ask, quietly checking in.
She nods, swallowing. “It’s good.”
I groan, pulling back and then moving back into her.
The slow drag out, long easing in.
She smells good, too.
Hands all over my back, up my neck.
Logan’s quiet, but it feels good for her, I can tell. I sense it in the way her fingers tangle in my hair, the rolling of her hips and tightening of her nipples. She’s had good sex before; she knows what her body wants. She wants deep, she wants me pressed right up against her and grinding. She’s not getting shy now that we’re getting down to it. No, she’s taking and taking and taking.
Women sometimes talk. Either that or I do. But here we’re just breathing; there’s only the sound of inhales, forceful exhales, and the shifting of our bodies together. And then the involuntary gasps we both make when I start moving faster, and harder. Her breasts move beneath me, hips rise from the couch. She rides me from below, showing me the speed, the pattern she needs.
That she remains so quiet means her orgasm comes as a total shock to me; it comes like the crashing of a wave and when I hear the noise she makes—a tight, relieved cry—I am completely frantic: I need to hear it again, and longer.
I ride it out for her until she seems to deflate under me in relief, but then I’m rolling onto the floor, carrying her with me so that she straddles my hips.
“Take,” I whisper, hoping she understands. I want to give her every drop of relief tonight.
The way her eyes shine when she looks at me tells me she needs this. She loves sex. I mean, holy hell, why a woman with this degree of experience and sensuality doesn’t fuck whenever she wants is beyond me. She rolls her hips, starting to ride me, and then she’s off on a new tear, working herself closer to that tipping point again. Her skin grows shiny with sweat, fingers press sharply into my chest, up my neck, gripping me. Almost threatening. It’s got to be better this second time, her body says. Bigger. Longer. Harder.
“Oh, shit,” she says on an exhale and there—fuck—there it is. Wild and tight and wet, so fucking wet she’s all around me pushing herself farther onto my cock. I groan, fighting the way my body wants to give in, wants to come so hard I’ll see stars.
But I know we’re not done here.
I find myself staring at the smooth arch of her throat, the grace of her straight collarbone as she rides me slower now, coming down. I study the quick rise and fall of her breasts as she gasps for air. She’s completely given herself over to it. To me. For this perfect moment she trusts me.
She’s beautiful, smart, and a little defensive, but even so, she’s here, letting me feel her. I want to deserve this. And I worry I’m going to come hard and wild, and still be left unsatisfied because the tiny taste she’s giving me isn’t going to be enough.
“You’re good?” I manage, running my hands up her waist and higher, cupping her breasts. She lifts her head with effort, eyes hungry. “I want you behind me,” she says.
Without a word, I lift her off me, help her onto her knees, and then slide back in, unable to keep from groaning, low and long.
I’m obsessed with the muscular lines in her back, the way her clit feels under the slide of my fingers. I’m obsessed with the way she moves no matter what position she’s in, with the sound she makes when she comes.
I know when this is over I’ll drive her home—because she won’t want to stay. But right now, the sex is good—it’s so good—and every time she turns her brain off long enough for her body to take over and collapse into orgasm, I feel some tiny shell chip away.
I want to see her tender pieces.
Fuck. It’s been forever since I wanted tender.
Want to know how the chapter ends? We won’t leave you hanging! Listen to the audio clip below to see what happens after Luke and London’s steamy tryst.
Wicked Sexy Liar will be available in print and digital next week. Grab the special Target edition featuring the extra Not Joe story here, or pre order a copy on Amazon | BN | Kobo | iBooks | IndieBound. And if you’d like to check out more hot Hump Day excerpts (who wouldn’t?) we’ve got ya covered.