“I’m Thornton Maxwell…your attorney.” He turned away, but not before she caught his look of displeasure. “God. Woman, do you even know what a mess you’ve got on your hands? We need to talk. A real pressure cooker is about blow.”
Cynthia froze. This wasn’t part of her erotic fantasy. What was he talking about? Should she just come out and admit she had no idea of what was going on or get him to divulge what demanded damage control?
She pretended unconcerned boredom in an attempt to buy some time to think. “Someone’s got his panties in a real twist.”
This wasn’t the first time she’d needed legal. But if he was her new go-to man, she was tempted to screw more things up.
This was a conundrum. He was too damn good-looking. This type of man didn’t appreciate a dumbbell. Did he know how hard she worked or that sometimes contracts needed to be bent? “Explored” is what she liked to call it. Wasn’t that why McGavock Publishing hired a boatload of first-year attorneys anyway? Shoot, he was probably upset because his weekend golf game was about to be rained out.
He paced in front of her desk while raking fingers through his thick, dark hair. Cynthia noticed the way he flexed and moved his arms, his muscles pumping and expanding. He stopped, spun around, and marched back to her desk.
“Lewis, when you cross out clauses and write your own notes into a publishing contract, we don’t have a legal leg to stand on in court when an issue is disputed. The things you’ve included to get an author to sign without consulting legal is tying us in knots. The next time you promise a writer the moon, you better consult me first and NASA second. Not whatever pops into that pretty little head of yours. You need my help with this lawsuit, and I expect your cooperation. You might as well know now that’s going to mean during office hours as well as evenings and weekends.”
His finger was pointed directly in front of her face. She imagined sucking the tip until her sex-crazed brain finally grasped his message.
What? She was floored. Her stomach felt punched, the fist of surprise still lodged in her ribcage. Her mind reeled. It wasn’t possible. She was being threatened with a lawsuit for a couple of silly additions to a contract, and now this man expected her to drop everything. Was he joking? Slowly she inhaled.
“I’m innocent.” She stared back at him. “Sure, I’m not beyond bending the rules, but a lawsuit? No, that’s not possible; it’s impossible. You’ve got to help me.”
“We definitely need a sit-down. Not your usual brush-off and expectation for legal to jump through a hoop. This one is serious.” His gaze swept over her face and downward. The space between them crackled with static energy. He was more than steamed. But he was ready to step in and help her. A spasm of pleasure trilled in her veins. He was her knight in shining armor. She wasn’t the enemy. Not his at least. With all that pent-up fury of his, it was a shame to let it go to waste. He was handsome beyond belief…another time, over cocktails or at a party, she’d not think twice about what her body wanted. His dark eyes weren’t all anger…passion brewed there, pulling the cords to her attraction, making her skin tingle. Oh, my. He wanted to school her good. But maybe she could teach him a thing.
“Thor…Thornton, sit down.” She recouped her confidence. He was in her dominion. The door was closed. Her assistant always knocked before entering. The glass panels were mirrored. He was so near…all she had to do was reach out to him.
She met his bad-boy stare with excitement screaming in her ears.
“Please.” She was almost purring, beseeching him over the rim of her eyeglasses.
“Fine, I’m all ears.” He pulled up a chair closer to her desk. “Well?”
She studied him. If the man ever smiled, he’d be drop-dead gorgeous. She let the papers slip out of her fingers, and she pushed her glasses up on top of her head. Cynthia rubbed her ankles together, and his eyes fixed onto legs.
Ding, ding. Johnny, she had a winner.
She lifted her legs and stood, acting as if arranging her papers was vital. She felt, rather than saw, that his gaze was upon her.
“Client-attorney privilege?” She rounded the desk, trailing her fingers along the surface.
“Yes, whatever you share. Go on.”
“Where shall I begin?” She stopped and leaned back on her desk, directly in front of him. Eighteen inches of space separated them.
“Haven’t you ever longed for something to the point of breaking a few rules? Just once?”