When Beth Cho is tasked with interviewing elusive musician Tristan Harty, it’s hate at first sight. Despite his sapphire eyes and lithe frame, he’s got to be the most infuriating man on the planet.
Tristan Harty is already sick of reporters and this one is proving no different. Sure, she might be adorable with her ebony hair and big brown eyes. But her incessant need to dig into his past is dragging on his last nerve.
The bickering duo vow never to meet again, but Mother Nature has other plans for them, trapping them in a Vermont cabin via a blizzard. The more Beth learns about the aristocratic Tristan, the harder it is for her to keep her professional distance, just as Tristan discovers a familiar heart beating in the beautiful reporter’s heart.
But what happens when the snowstorm’s over, and the melted Tristan and enamored Beth are free to leave? Can their reluctant attraction bloom into a deeper love with the thaw of their judgmental ice. Pride & Pancakes is a sweet yet steamy contemporary story inspired by Pride & Prejudice.
Tristan and Beth have been at each other’s throats while trapped in a cabin during a blizzard for three days. When the power goes out, they decide to share a shower to use the last of the heat.
“You are…” Tristan grappled for words, his breaths scrambling like a man straining off a cliff’s edge. Raising his fallen palm, he hovered it less than a centimeter above her drenched body. As he skirted around her hip and trailed deeper to her waist, she shivered at the electricity sparking between them. He didn’t touch her, but the heat of his body, the rising scent of his masculine form, the beading of water against their skin set her off.
Panting and shivering, Beth clenched her toes in anticipation of his palm touching her. Of it parting through the fall of rain to grip her arm, the hand tugging her to his lips. But Tristan held off, his gaze never leaving hers, and she returned the laser focus as he circled up around the edge of her bust.
“I can’t stop,” he whispered, ignoring the nipple straining through her waterlogged bra. Swerving along her shoulder, he slowly walked the tip of his fore and index fingers across her narrow collarbone, every touch of his finger matching her rising heartbeat.
At the hollow of her throat, he rested his fingers before they began to ascend her jaw. From the tip of her wide chin, he glided the back of his forefinger, slicing off every water droplet on the way. “Tell me to stop.” His paused his finger. “And I will.”
Launching on her tiptoes, Beth circled both her arms around the back of his neck. “I can’t do that,” she said just before guiding his lips to hers. This was no sweet and uncertain kiss. Tongues spun in time with one another, lips sucked upon lips, and they drank of each other as they abandoned all pretense of civility.
Tristan surged forward. With the imaginary forcefield broken by her consent, he wrapped his hand around her hip. Where on the ice it’d been cautious and chaste, now it was a lascivious massage. He pulsed his fingers deep into the side of her buttock while his thumb wrapped the band of her panties around itself.
God! When he tugged on that elastic, Beth gasped into his mouth. Water struck the intimate skin exposed to the world, sending her heart racing. He paused, darting his gaze to her out of concern, but she knotted her hands through his hair and tugged him tighter to her. They slipped in the rising water but landed against the shower’s wall. Tristan spun with her, placing them both on equal footing into the water’s path. When Beth’s back bounced against the shower’s tile with no faucets in the way, Tristan’s hands landed on either side of her head for balance.
Both pulled in a cleansing breath, only the sound of their panting and the soothing fall of rain filling the bathroom. Tristan was vulnerable, all his weight in the palms spread across the tile. Most was in the left hand to protect his poor damaged right palm. The one he’d cut in saving her.
Water pulsed against Beth’s side, the steaming heat drenching her hair and his. It pressed flat to his forehead like dark copper ribbons, rivulets of water streaming down his cheeks. Tristan’s mouth fell agape to aid him in breathing air instead of water. Every gasp and sputter puffed against Beth’s cheeks, her body delighting in the sounds of the man turning primal.