“What are your plans this weekend?” she asked, feeling like she needed to keep the conversation flowing. When they grew quiet, her imagination took the reins and drove her train of thought straight into the gutter in Sexyville, USA. And that gutter was filthy!
He lifted one shoulder, passing her the dish towel so she could dry her hands after she removed the drain plug. “Poker night Saturday, then I think I might take Gabe to The Museum of Flight on Sunday. He loves it there.”
Right, his “dads’ club” and their weekly poker night.
What were they all like? Did they sit around bashing their ex-wives? Bashing women? Or was it more of a support group for the struggles of independent child rearing? Or were they typical men and didn’t talk about their feelings at all and just drank beer, ate junk food, grunted and gambled?
Probably the latter.
“Sounds like a good time. Do you really gamble away your money, or is it all for fun?”
He hung up the dish towel, his gaze sliding toward her. “Real money.”
She pursed her lips. “Wow. Maybe when I have two pennies to rub together again, someday I can take a trip to Vegas and sit at a poker table. Take in the action. The excitement. Are you any good?”
His smile was coy. “I win more than I lose.”
She needed to get going. She needed to get home, get away from the delicious-smelling single dad standing in front of her wearing a black T-shirt far too tight to leave anything to the imagination, and gray sweatpants she wanted to rip off him with her teeth.
“Well, I … uh … I guess I should get going. Those fish aren’t going to feed themselves.” She slid her hand along the cool quartz countertop, letting it ground her and bring down her body temperature. She was in a full-on inferno. The way Mark was looking at her … it was giving her false hope. It was giving her the wrong idea.
The wrong idea to be bad. To do bad, bad things.
Bad, bad fun things.
But, no she couldn’t go there.
Not with her boss.
Not with the single dad.
His gaze never left hers as his head bobbed in a nearly indiscernible nod. “I guess so.”
Was that disappointment on his face? Were his eyes asking her to stay? Were they asking her to strip naked and bend over the counter?
Oh God … Uncle John eating chicken wings without a shirt on, his enormous, hairy, barrel chest covered in barbecue sauce, sitting in a kiddie pool with water wings and a floaty ring.
Phew. Crisis averted.
Keeping her hand on the counter for balance, because her faculties seemed to have suddenly escaped her, she went to move past him, only her fingers knocked something off the counter onto the tile floor.
“Shit,” Tori murmured. She glanced down, only to find Mark’s phone, of all possible things, on the floor. “Oh no!”
“It’s okay.” He bent down to get it.
She bent down too.
Just as her hand wrapped around the phone, his hand wrapped around her wrist. Electricity ripped through her the moment his fingers grazed her skin. A pulse so intense, so hot, so charged she felt like she’d stuck a fork into an electrical socket. She leapt back, dropping the phone and pulling her hand free from his grasp.
“Sorry.” He stood up.
Tori swallowed the lump in her throat, pushing down the emotions, the arousal, the pure animalistic lust she felt for the man standing in front of her. “I—I’m sorry. I hope I didn’t crack the screen.”
He turned the phone over in his big, sexy palm, a roguish grin pulling at the corners of his delicious-looking lips. “Not a scratch.”
She licked her lips. “That’s good.”
His eyes locked on hers. “Yeah.”
Tori’s mouth parted, little puffs of air coming out as if she’d just run a mile. Her heart beat rapidly in her chest, and her palms grew clammy.
Mark’s gaze burned into her. “Tori … ”
And then he was on her.