Title: Be My Temptation
Series: Book 2 of The Crawford Brothers (can be read as a standalone).
Author: Rachel Brookes
Release Date: June 29th 2015
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Cover Designer: Wicked by Design
Photographer: Perrywinkle Photography
SynopsisOne night connected them. One decision separated them. One craving tempted them. Ashlyn Hart was done with men, or at least those outside of her books. After stupidly falling for the charms of her cheating ex and having her heart broken yet again, she decided to create a new life. One that involved a career change, a new wardrobe, and the possibility of moving abroad. There was just one hurdle: the confident, stubborn and insanely-tempting Josh Crawford. Josh Crawford hid behind the cliché bachelor lifestyle and a never-ending parade of women. He knew the game and played it well, but the night he tasted perfection four years ago never left him. Back then, he made a spur of the moment decision, one that he has battled with ever since. But beneath the playboy façade was a yearning that wouldn’t disappear. A craving for the only woman who could bring him to his knees: Ashlyn Hart. Two weeks changes everything. One night unravels the deepest of desires. A simple taste unleashes memories that can’t be tamed. When the girl who dreams of a happily ever after collides with the guy who lives the ultimate cliffhanger, what ending awaits them? Will fear overshadow love? Will the past play hindrance to the future, or will temptation conquer it all?
Prologue Four years earlier
Jesus Christ, she was tight. The more I edged in, the tighter her body squeezed my cock, which inevitably sent pleasure spiraling through me. The feeling of tightness, combined with her tiny whimpers, were like music to my ears, and acted as the perfect melody for the act I was about to perform. This moment started with a fleeting glance across the bar, a connection of our eyes, and the offering of a smirk; the same smirk I’d been known to use to get into the pants and apartments of girls plenty of times before. I wondered if the look across the bar tonight was when she thought what was happening started. She would be sorely mistaken if she did. I had noticed Ashlyn Hart long ago. Ashlyn Hart was the stunning, blond-haired girl with the insane green eyes and kissable lips that grabbed my attention the start of freshman year. I first noticed her in the library, surrounded by books. Her glasses were sitting on the edge of her nose, and she was chewing on the end of a pen. Her blonde hair was piled on the top of her head, with loose strands surrounding her face, and she looked completely in her zone. I couldn’t take my eyes off her. Yep, I certainly noticed her for all the right reasons, and tonight was no different. Tonight was the first night in God only knows how long that I succeeded in getting my older brother Ky to leave the seclusion of our apartment. He didn't even fight me, which was surprising. The moment we arrived at our local bar he started downing beers, while I started scoping out the other patrons, looking for some fun for the night. It seemed that fun would come in the form of Ashlyn Hart, and my eyes latched onto her fiercely. She was toward the back, standing close to the guy I knew was her older brother, Austin. They were in a serious conversation, his hands on her shoulders, and she was looking up at him with wide eyes and a worry-filled face. Rumor around campus was that Ashlyn was from a well-off family from the West Coast, but she didn’t have much to do with them. Apparently she had fled for the east as soon as she finished high school and was here under a scholarship, which could explain why she always was studying. Although Austin was five or so years older than her, he would randomly come and visit, and I had seen her out with him a few times. As soon as I saw her dodge her way through the crowd and head to the bar, I swooped in. She was a beautiful girl, and since I was a guy with an overactive imagination and a cock that really liked beautiful girls, she was definitely on my radar. Ashlyn was unique and refreshing. And though she hid behind her glasses and oversized clothing, her eyes, flawless face, and womanly curves that would be dangerous to any guy's libido, grabbed a tight hold of my attention. Tonight, my plan was to test the waters, to see if she could be my fun for the night. I stepped up beside her at the packed bar as she waited to be served, and that would be the first of many times she’d shock me for the night. When Ashlyn greeted me by name, offered me a flirty smile, and gave me the indication that she was just as willing to test the waters as I was, I was completely floored. Where had this sassy woman been hiding? My interest skyrocketed, and I needed more. As we drank beer, I bought pizza for us both and she showed me another side of her, a side that had been hidden in the books and sweaters. Austin, her brother, had gone long ago, and at that moment all I saw was her, and all I wanted was all of Ashlyn Hart. It would seem that she had plans to give me all of her. Now as she was wedged below me, looking up at me with the widest and most eager eyes I had ever seen, I couldn’t believe my luck. Her face was flushed, her lips parted, and her tits rose with every deep breath she took. She was a fucking delight to look at. My hands cupped her face and, with eager intent, my lips fell to hers as I feasted on the perfect pout that was previously covered with bright-red lipstick. I had been craving this moment for a long time, and I wasn't afraid to admit that. I didn’t know what got my attention most, whether it was the innocent look she had going on, which she completely obliterated tonight, or the fact that I never actually saw her with any other guys or girls. She was a one-woman show—a woman of mystery, and I would make it my mission to discover who she was. "Fuck me, you're so tight." I moaned against her neck as I shifted my hips higher and attempted to push further into her slick wetness. Her whimpers increased, and her nails dug into my back, grating their way down to my ass with every tiny movement I made. Everything spun around me the moment I hit a barrier inside of her. She couldn't be. "Please don't stop," Ashlyn begged softly. I tore my face from the confines of her neck and my eyes met pleading green pits of desire that flickered with anxiety. She was a virgin. There was no way in hell I was doing this. No fucking way. I had never taken a girls virginity, and I wouldn't be starting tonight. I shifted and slowly began pulling out, but halted when her hands gripped my naked ass and held me in place. “I don’t deserve this,” I whispered into the electric air as I avoided her gaze. "Josh, do you really think I would have come here, kissed you like I’ve never kissed a guy before, gotten naked, and let it go as far as it has if I didn't want it?" "Do you really want your first time to be with someone you barely know? I have wanted inside you from the moment I saw you, and it's because I'm just a guy who wants to fuck. You deserve romance, candles, and the whole shebang for your first time." Her face twisted as a smile graced her lips and her eyes softened. "You bought me beer and pizza." "Fucking hell, woman. Buying you beer and pizza does not entitle me entrance to your virginal pussy." "Can you please stop saying virgin?" "But you are a virgin; a sexy as fuck virgin, but still a virgin." "Why are we even having this conversation?" She rolled her eyes, spitting the kind of sass that I was quickly learning was fucking incredible for my libido. My gaze roamed over her face, and I found a woman who wanted exactly what I could give her. She tempted me from the very moment I laid eyes on her, and the confident woman now writhing beneath me was a woman I had never seen her portray before. The oversized sweaters, the glasses that sat on the edge of her nose, and the top knot she always sported were long gone. Now I was witnessing a sexy woman who wanted to give me her greatest gift. Her eyes burned with desire, and her lips were swollen from my earlier attack. "Fuck!" I groaned and buried my face in her neck. Why was I even hesitating? If this was any other girl, I would have fucked her hard and fast and she would be on her way home, so why was I hesitating? I moaned as Ashlyn started lifting her hips and moving her body. My cock with a mind of its own found her hot, eager pussy, but soon I was reminded of what was at stake when I once again hit the barrier. I pulled out quickly and slid off the bed with a huff. "Josh!" Ashlyn called and covered her eyes with her arm. As I reached the door, I twisted back to look at her. She was stunning, and seeing her in my bed, naked and glorious, was crazy to comprehend. She had gone from being a one-night stand to someone who wanted me to become a forever memory. You always remembered the person who took your virginity. Fuck, I remember exactly who took mine when I was seventeen. Did I want to be a forever memory to Ashlyn Hart? I shook my head and rushed out of the room with only one thing on my mind. I'd give this girl romance. As I scrounged around the living room for candles—why the fuck Ky and I had candles was anyone's guess—I heard movement coming from down the hall. The layout of the apartment allowed me to see into my bedroom, so I turned and saw Ashlyn sitting up on my bed, pulling on her shirt and fixing her hair. Something in me switched as I began witnessing the loss of sassy Ashlyn, and I refused to allow her to leave. Everything about tonight had shifted, and now all I had was a carnal need to give her everything she wanted and then some. "Do not cover yourself, Ashlyn. Lie back down, keep that shirt off, and be ready for me." I knew I was being bossy, but I couldn’t let her leave. Her eyes shot wide, and her head whipped around to look down the hall at me. Thankfully, she wasn't offended by my harsh tone. As if in slow motion, her hands disappeared behind her back and unclasped her bra, letting her plump tits bounce in freedom before she slowly lay back down. Fuck me dead, she was a vision of stunning beauty. I rushed around frantically, and finally found what I was looking for. "What are you doing?" Ashlyn asked softly, her eyes following my every move as I entered my bedroom and closed the door behind me. Without responding, I switched off the lights, and in the darkness stumbled my way to the dresser. A glow permeated the room as I ignited three vanilla-scented candles. Her shocked gasp rang through the room, and my eyes slammed shut at the intensity of the situation. What the fuck was I doing? "Josh." Her voice was so delicate that it sounded like it would shatter if I didn’t acknowledge her. I slowly turned to face her, and then crawled on the bed until my body covered hers. "I'm not taking your virginity without giving you a little piece of romance, Ashy." That would be the first time I’d use her nickname, and that would be the first time she would slowly take hold of my heart.
I woke to a delicious ache throbbing between my thighs, and a heavy arm over my naked stomach. I was on my back, my legs entwined with another’s, and warm breath tickling my neck. I was completely and utterly satisfied. My mind was alive as I reminisced about every detail of the night before. Everything was so clear and concise, and locked so tightly in my memory bank that there was no chance I’d ever forget it. I’d handed my virginity to Josh Crawford on a platter, and he took it like it was his last meal. With a subtle move, I turned my head until I was face to face with him. His eyes were closed, leaving his long lashes to caress his cheeks, and his even breathing told me he was still in a deep sleep. The lips that had devoured every inch of my body continued to taunt me as my gaze lingered over him. Last night, after he brought the candles into the room, he climbed onto the bed and hovered over me. I would never forget the look that filtered over his face in those few seconds before his lips fell back to mine. He looked at me like I was the most precious commodity; like I was a gem that he wanted to discover and keep for eternity. It shocked me. Josh spent the next thirty minutes kissing and caressing my body with his fingers, hands, and mouth until he thought I was ready. I was a panting mess. In one swift move, he pushed deep inside of me. I didn't know what to expect. Yes, it hurt, but only for a brief moment. Then I felt my body tremble with delight, and it felt like a thousand fireworks were set off in one go. I knew of Josh, but I didn't know Josh. Does that make sense? I admired him from afar. He was dangerously sexy, and he’d wreaked havoc on my body and thoughts for months, even though he had absolutely no clue. His eyes reminded me of pots of melted dark chocolate, his lips were luscious, and he always had the just-got-fucked hair going on. His reputation around campus was that of a legend. I knew he slept around; I had overheard plenty of girls talking about him, and just how well-endowed he was, but that didn't stop me. If anything, it encouraged me. The question was bound to circulate: why did Ashlyn Hart give Josh Crawford, practically a stranger, her virginity? The answer was simple: my virginity was mine to give. I wanted spontaneity, I wanted craziness, and I wanted someone who knew what they were doing. My life had been so structured and mapped out that I wanted to be in charge for once. I wanted to make the decision. I knew their virginity was a huge deal to some people; those who waited their whole lives to find that special someone to share it with. But I was never that girl. Judge me as you will. I slowly lifted Josh's arm from my naked stomach and held my breath as he scrunched his face and shifted in bed. After sliding out, I stood completely naked next to him and waited. Now that would be an awkward good morning—him finding me naked and staring at him. Once he settled, I moved quickly and rounded his room, grabbing my panties, bra, jeans, and top that Josh had thrown around. I dressed quickly, threw my hair into a crazy-ass bun on the top of my head, and snuck out of his room, but not before giving him one last longing look. I was free. Or so I thought. I gasped loudly, and my clutch fell from my hands and crashed to the floor as I rounded the hall and came face to face with Ky Crawford. Not only did he wear scruff better than most men, but the same could be said for the sweatpants that hung loosely on his hips. I knew who Ky Crawford was. Everyone knew who Ky Crawford was. He was the key witness against Jeremy Davis, who was charged and later convicted of the attack and rape of Eden Rivers. He was also the guy who had been destroying himself ever since. His head jerked up at the sound of my clutch colliding with the floor tiles, and shock covered his face as his eyes ran over me. "I'm sorry, I was just leaving," I said in a rush, crouching down to salvage my things while humiliation took over. He crouched down beside me, and I cringed as he started to help pick up my lip-gloss and loose change. "You stayed here?" "Um, yes. With Josh," I stammered, then jammed the last of my things into my clutch and rose to my feet. "Well, fuck me," he said, amusement hitting his words as he joined me on his feet. The small talk was making me flustered. Two attractive Crawfords in one day was too much for any girl to endure. "Sorry to bother you. I was just leaving." "I've seen you around campus. You’re in some of Josh’s classes." Ky stepped away and headed to the kitchen. He moved straight to the coffee maker, switched it on, then pulled two mugs from the overhead cupboard. My eyes trained on him, and when he poured two steaming-hot, freshly-brewed coffees for him and Josh, I knew I had to get out of there. To say I was shocked beyond comprehension when he handed me a mug was an understatement. Well, this was completely weird and unexpected. I lifted the coffee to my lips and sighed as the hot liquid flooded my veins and helped push aside the exhaustion that was quickly gripping my still-humming body. I looked at him over the top of the mug before I asked, "Do you provide coffee to all the girls your brother brings home?" His smile replaced the confused look I saw earlier. "He never brings girls back. Consider this a celebratory coffee. I think little Josh Crawford may be growing up." Nervous laughter left my body as I tried to cover my shock. Josh never bought girls home, but here I was. I stammered as I said, "It’s just a one night thing. He’ll probably never see me again." "You can’t be missed. I've seen you around campus. I’m pretty certain every man with a functioning cock has seen you." I choked on my coffee at his blatant disregard of subtlety. "You Crawford boys aren't afraid to say what you really think, are you?" “Over the past six months, I’ve learned that you just have to say what you think. Screw the consequences, because you don’t know if you’ll ever get the chance again.” I watched as his eyes lost the sparkle and darted away from mine. Suddenly, the urge to offer this stranger comfort took over, and I decided to provide a little humor to get the sparkle back, so I took Ky’s advice and laid it out for him. “Last night your brother rocked my world and bought me pizza and beer. And now you’ve made me the best coffee I’ve ever had. I might just get used to the Crawford brothers.” He clinked his mug against mine and smiled. “My brother would be an idiot not to keep hold of you.” “Well, yeah, I’m clearly a catch.” And that was the first time I thought of Josh like that.
About The AuthorRachel Brookes is the author of The Breathe Series and The Crawford Brothers and lives on the east coast of Australia where beaches, kangaroos and surfers roam free. She spends her days writing stories that contain a dash of drama, a cup of romance, a spoonful of sexiness and delicious men to season. She is crazy for The Walking Dead, a fan of long island iced teas, a cupcake creator and a lover of book boyfriends. Rachel sometimes forgets to eat, sleep has become non-existent and more often than not she can’t remember the last time she cleaned her apartment, but she wouldn’t have it any other way. When she steps away from her laptop, you’ll find her reading, people watching, taking photos and planning her next big adventure. She is also obsessed with social media, so come say hi. Facebook | Twitter | Reader Group | Instagram | Mailing List | Goodreads
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