Free Harlequin Online Read: Hands On by Clare Connelly

Are you excited for Harlequin Dare? Featuring strong fearless heroines in unforgettable stories, we’re giving you an early look at the kind of reads you can expect when the new series launches in February!

When Gemma Picton accepts a job with billionaire Jack Grant, she expects a challenge. A professional one—not to be distracted from the tasks at hand by her outrageously sexy new boss! As work travel and late nights at the office force the two together, the instant attraction of their first meeting burns hotter, but neither will let it consume them…

***

PEOPLE KEEP TELLING me that ‘time heals all wounds’.

That in time, things will go back to normal. I know they’re wrong. I know that nothing will ever be normal again.

How can it be?

Once I was alive…

And now there is just this… Existence, in a post-Lucy world. A matter of survival, but survival isn’t living.

I watch as the woman opposite me crosses her legs, her expression impossible to interpret, her long blonde hair pulled into a sensible bun low at her nape. I think it’s the bun that does it—the sensible hairstyle makes me ache to loosen it.

Something long forgotten stirs inside of me. Something unwelcome and unmistakable.

A rush of sexual interest fires my blood and it angers me. It’s too soon. What kind of lousy-arse husband am I that I could actually be getting turned on not even three months after burying my wife?

“Tell me about yourself,” I invite, pushing back in the chair, my attention wandering almost as soon as she starts speaking.

She has nice lips. They’re full and perfectly shaped, like rosebuds. She is animated when she talks. I doubt she has known grief in her life. She has the air of one who still believes life will be easy and simple, that happiness is guaranteed.

She laughs at something she’s said and leans forward.

Oh, shit. Her shirt gapes a little and my body goes into overdrive. Guilt is hot on its heels. What am I doing fantasizing about this woman?

Any woman?

That’s not how this is meant to go.

Sex is sex, I remind myself. Or maybe that’s my dick doing my thinking for me. He certainly seems keen to join the conversation, if the hardness straining against my pants is any indication. Of all the times for my libido to literally rear its head, this is definitely not ideal.

For a start, even though she’s attractive, there’s a coldness to her that makes me think she’d be bad in bed. She laughs again and my dick jerks.

Or maybe not.

What the hell is going on?

I mean, sure it’s been a long time. A really long time. Lucy was sick for months and months, and our sex life non-existent, but obviously that didn’t even bother me. I didn’t feel deprived—I had far more important things to worry about, like keeping my wife alive. Up until now, I haven’t even thought about sleeping with anyone.

Except suddenly I do; I feel like I need to make up for lost time, starting with this woman.

Jesus. I can’t even remember her name but I think I can guess her cup size. I can imagine the feel of her breasts in the palm of my hands, their warmth and softness would just about fit perfectly.

She’s stopped talking and I’m staring at her breasts. So far as job interviews go, this is definitely one she’s going to remember for all the wrong reasons.

“Look, Mr. Grant…”

“Jack, please.” It seems appropriate she should use my first name, given that I’ve just been fantasizing about yanking her over the desk and straddling her onto my lap.

“Jack.” She nods. A curt, professional movement that refocuses some of my attention. “You’re having difficulty keeping someone in this position.”

Great. Let’s talk about positions. That’ll help.

I say nothing. I fear I’m about one minute away from googling the Kama Sutra and seeing exactly which position she’d like best.

“I’m not a quitter. I like a challenge, and I want this job.”

 

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