A Sins In the City Novel
by Cara McKenna
Publication Date: September 1, 2015
Genre: Erotica Romance
The first in a new series from the “wicked-hot”* author of Hard Time and Give It All explores the fantasies of a daring married couple—and those of a stranger invited to play along in their scandalous little games… When he’s working, Mike Heyer is all business—every inch the alpha male, with the hard, capable body to back up his persona. But at home he can be a different man entirely, harboring appetites only his wife gets to glimpse…
When Samira first learned of her husband’s fantasies, she was reluctant, even alarmed. But after witnessing the way they set him on fire, she yielded, and happily indulged. As their games have intensified, so has the rush. And now so has the risk—they’re poised to take Mike’s indecent desires to the next level, by opening their bed to a sexy, brazen stranger. A man seeming custom-made to grant every last one of Mike and Samira’s sinful wishes.
Welcoming someone new into their lives was always a dangerous proposition, but the couple imagined if anything was at stake, it was their privacy…not their hearts.
*New York Times Bestselling Author Jaci Burton
CROSSTOWN CRUSH by Cara McKenna
She headed for the bustling bar, and oh fuck, there he was.
He’d told her what he’d be wearing, but it was his face she recognized. Funny how accurate her mental picture had been, based on only that one snapshot. She slowed to a halt, her stomach plummeting to her feet, the room feeling like an elevator with a snapped cable.
Be cool, kid. You’re a shameless slut tonight, and don’t you forget it.
She blew out a tense breath and kept on walking.
Bern’s picture had attracted her, but he was so much . . . more, in three dimensions. Even seated on a stool, she could tell he was big. Big and substantial, with long legs and a strong, handsome profile. His hair was as messy as in the photo, tucked behind his ears, black in the low light of the bar. That picture must have been taken at the height of summer, as his complexion was fairer than she’d expected. A modest beard covered his jaw, neither wild nor fussy. He looked rugged and capable, as though he’d just come from the woods, doing something obscenely manly. Or that was what Sam’s libido decided.
She swallowed, throat feeling thick. He was as sexy as any guy she’d covertly checked out during the girls-only cocktail dates, casting her fake flings. Sexier. A pang of pleasurable guilt warmed her skin.
Sexy and punctual.
Move aside, Nick.
Bern turned as she approached, and she thrilled at the recognition that flashed across his face. His smile was the perfect mix of mischief and shyness, so exactly what she felt, herself.
There were no free stools, giving Bern a chance to bank some chivalry points and kick off his role as smooth-talking, seductive stranger. He stood as she reached the bar. Sam kept her attention on the taps as though she were deliberating.
“Here,” he said, patting the stool.
“Are you sure?”
“Please.” He grabbed his half-drunk glass of beer and stepped back so she could have a seat. She sat with her back to the bar, crossing her legs. Just as her single self might’ve done if a handsome, actual stranger approached her, she kept her purse in her lap to camouflage any unflattering business her snug jeans might be doing to her belly. Huh. Twenty-five again, indeed. She hadn’t felt this self-conscious in years.
“Sure.” Oh, he was tall. Taller than her husband, perhaps six two to Mike’s five eleven, meeting one point of his criteria. As promised, he wore a plain gray T-shirt, and beneath it she could make out the contours of his chest and shoulders, trim and powerful as his bare arms. She liked the soft-looking hair there, the shapes of the fingers wrapped around his glass.
I could totally bang this guy if I wanted. Crazy. And did she want that? For herself, as much as for Mike . . . ?
“Can I buy you a drink?” he asked.
“Sure. Cabernet, please.”
He came close, leaning between her and the next seat to get the bartender’s attention. She studied the silver streaked at his temples and peppering his facial hair and nearly swooned right off her perch. His eyes were blue, but not bright like Mike’s. More a stormy sea than a summer sky. Breathing him in, she found no cologne, just the faint but distinct smell of a new man, a scent you couldn’t buy at Sephora. He ordered her wine and told the bartender to add it to his tab, his voice twice as rich and deep and thrilling as it had been on the phone.
For a split second Sam felt busted, realizing Mike was watching her checking Bern out. But busted was the name of the game.
Bern passed her a dangerously large glass of red and stepped back, tucking a thumb in his front pocket and sipping his beer. His thigh was only a couple inches from her crossed knees, and she wondered how warm he’d feel through their two pairs of jeans.
“On your own tonight?” he asked.
She nodded. “You, too?”
“Yeah. My name’s Bern.” He freed his hand to shake hers. And what a shake—firm and warm and solid. She wished Mike could have felt it, too. Meet the man I might just want to fuck while you watch.
“I’m Samira. Sam’s fine.” And she stalled.
Oh shit, what were they going to talk about? But wait, they had plenty to talk about. It wasn’t as though Mike could read lips. They were free to drop the act and he’d still get to pretend they were just meeting.
She offered Bern a familiar smile. “Are you nervous?”
His posture changed, visibly relaxing, and he smiled back. The gesture made him an entirely different kind of sexy. The warm and easy kind of man that you wanted sitting across from you at a diner, versus the wicked one you wanted to take you home from a bar. “A little nervous,” he admitted. “How about you?”
She nodded. “I was terrified, up until I saw you.”
“Worried that photo was from the seventies and I was really some retiree with no teeth and overgrown fingernails?”
“Well, no, but you know . . . Anyway. You’re a very pleasant surprise.” A very, very, very pleasant surprise.
“So are you. You’re even cuter when you’re not blurry.”
She laughed. “I hope you hadn’t worried I was trying to hide anything. I just didn’t want to use a photo that anyone could pick me out of a lineup from.”
He stepped closer so they could talk without being overheard in the din, and his leg brushed hers, sending a bolt of energy up her thigh to settle in her belly.
“I’m guessing you’re not from Pittsburgh any more than I am,” she said.
He laughed softly, a warm, airy chuckle that raised the bar’s temperature by five degrees. “Whatever gave me away? But you’re right—I’m from Kentucky. Raised in a tiny little farm town about halfway between Louisville and Nashville.”
“That must’ve been a culture shock, when you moved.”
“At first, but I love it here. I’ve always been a city boy at heart.”
“I bet I wouldn’t last an hour out in the country . . . Thanks for coming out of your way,” she added.
He waved the thought aside as he took a taste of his beer. “Drive took me ten minutes. And I’ll say this—you’re the most interesting date I’ve had in ages.”
“I’ll bet. Have you not met anyone for what you’d gone on that site for, originally?” she asked, meaning his exhibitionist streak.
“I quit looking, after you and I started talking. It was getting discouraging. There’s so few women on there, looking for that kind of thing. And I didn’t even really know how to roll it out without sounding like a perv. I think it’s sort of a lost cause. I got a hundred and one replies from so-called women, wanting to watch me . . . you know. On a webcam. But I wasn’t born yesterday.”
She frowned her sympathy. “You’d probably have better luck finding an open-minded steady girlfriend.”
“I know. But I ended a long-term thing this past winter. Not really ready for anything serious yet.”
Another point for Bern, that he’d had a grown-up, normal-person relationship. More proof that he was just as new to all this kinky stuff as they were.
Still, the topic wasn’t spurring their chemistry, and she knew there was a man sitting ten yards away, who was itching to see some physical boundaries bent. And they were hers to bend, as Bern couldn’t be expected to make the first move, not with somebody’s husband watching him.
So Sam uncrossed her legs, letting the instep of her high heel brush his calf.
He took the hint and stepped closer, his knees just breaching the V of her thighs.
Intruder, she beamed to Mike. Intruder between your wife’s legs. However barely.
Bern stooped a little to say, “I’m not nervous at all anymore.” His tone was dark, not particularly innocent. The shadow of a smile played just behind his lips, and Sam imagined kissing him. She could now, if she wanted to. He wanted it, she thought, and her body did as well. It was only her brain that needed a push. She took a deep swallow of her wine.
“I’m still a little nervous,” she admitted. “But it’s nice.”
Cara McKenna writes smart erotica—sexy stories with depth. A little dark, a little funny, always emotional. She also writes red-hot romance under the name Meg Maguire. Her wonderful publishers are Harlequin Blaze, Penguin / InterMix, Samhain, and Signet Eclipse. She loves writing sexy, character-driven stories about strong-willed men and women who keep each other on their toes, and bring one another to their knees.
Before becoming a purveyor of red-hot romance and smart erotica, Cara was a record store bitch, a lousy barista, a decent designer, and an over-enthusiastic penguin handler.
Cara now writes full-time and lives in the Pacific Northwest with her bearded husband and baby son. When she’s not trapped in her own head she can usually be found in the kitchen, the coffee shop, or jogging around the nearest duck-filled pond. Cara is a very proud member of the Romance Writers of America®. She is a 2015 RITA® Award finalist, a 2014 Romantic Times Reviewers’ Choice Award winner, a 2013 and 2011 Romantic Times Reviewers’ Choice Award nominee, and a 2010 Golden Heart® finalist.