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Seduction:Her British Stepbrother(10)

By:Lauren Smith

"Tristan," Kat said, so softly she was surprised when he glanced over his shoulder at her.

"Not now, Kat. I'm not in a good mood." The subtle warning in his tone went unheeded.

She didn't want to leave him, and she didn't want to sit alone in her  room, hating herself for this whole stupid situation. The last few  months she'd been craving an adventure and now she couldn't experience  the adventure that called to her most. She didn't want to risk her  father finding out, but she was more scared that she'd fall in love with  Tristan.

The night she'd agreed to be with him, she'd convinced herself that she  could enjoy him and not worry about what tomorrow would bring. Yet  tomorrow had come, and she was facing the consequences of losing him.  Falling in love with him was too dangerous an adventure for her.  Heartbreak was not on the list of things she ever wanted to experience.

Still, she stood there, so close to him, unable to walk away.

"Don't send me away."

He dropped a hand to his side and finally looked at her.

"I'm not a bloody saint, Kat. If I stay here with you … " His eyes were  almost feral with hunger and desperation. "I won't be able to stay away,  not in the way you want. This thing between us, it burns too hot. I  want to take you to my bed and never let you leave. The things I want to  do to you … " Tristan stepped back and raked a hand through his dark  hair, tugging the strands as he blew out a ragged breath.

"The things I want to do to you … " The words made her shiver with  excitement. She knew just what sort of bad, dirty, and explosive things  he could do to her and she knew she'd love every minute of it. Because  it was him, her beautiful British bad boy, the one who knew her secrets,  the one she'd let get dangerously close to her heart.                       


"Don't test me. We both know I can seduce you. Just one touch … " His  right hand lifted as though to cup her face, but he paused, then dropped  his hand, his face contorted with frustration.

He's not angry at me. He's angry that he can't have me. Just like I'm upset I can't have him.

Her skin tingled where he would have touched her, as though it had felt  his phantom caress. That little voice inside her head whispered for her  to move closer, to encourage him to touch her.

The first one to cave would drag the other into trouble. It would only  take one wrong touch, one teasing kiss, and they'd be up against the  wall, breathless and panting.

"Fucking hell." He shouldered past her, leaving the room.

I'm an idiot. Because she'd let him walk away. Because she'd wanted him, and it was going to destroy them both.

Her heart froze to stone in her chest with every step he took and she couldn't help but follow him as he left the media room.

He descended the main stairs, walked past the dining room where her  father and Lizzy were still having dinner, and snatched his black coat  from the coatrack in the entranceway. He slung it on and dug around in  his pockets for his keys.

Throwing open the front door, he paused. "If you really want there to be  nothing between us, stay far away from me." His voice was low, soft  enough that they're parents wouldn't overhear from the dining room.

He met her gaze. "Now that I've had you once, I crave you like I've never craved anyone else. Don't test my fraying control."

Kat's knees buckled, and she clutched the banister as she watched him  storm out into the snowy night. A second after the door slammed shut,  she sank to the floor, sitting on the bottom stair. The cool wood  spindles of the railing pressed hard against her cheek as she sat there,  hating how badly she wanted to leave with him.

I have to keep my distance, even though we're stuck together for the holidays.

Would his mother still make him show her around London? How would they  cope with having to be so close? She would have to summon nerves of  steel to withstand the building tide of emotions.

I can't fall in love with Tristan Kingsley.

Chapter 6

Tristan leaned over the bar to take his third pint of Guinness from the  bartender at the Stowaway Pub. It was one of his few haunts that the  paparazzi hadn't discovered yet. Partially because it wasn't the sort of  place they expected him to go. He usually dined at the best  restaurants, frequented the most expensive clubs, but here, in this  tiny, backdoor establishment, he could be what the name suggested: a  stowaway, content to have a pint in peace.

"Thank you," he said, nodding at the bartender before turning back to  the pub's crowded room. Despite the snow, Londoners had flooded the  small, warm, wood confines of the pub. He ignored the rowdy occupants  and tipped his glass back.

What a wretched day. To have Kat under his roof and not be able to touch  her was killing him. When they'd been in the bathroom together, he'd  been so close to seducing her. He'd seen that look in her eyes, so full  of a hunger that matched his own, but she was fighting the attraction  between them.

I could keep it a secret. It would even be fun … But Kat wasn't a  secretive girl. She was open and honest, every emotion showing on her  face. Their parents would figure it out sooner or later, and the game  would be over.

She was more than an itch to scratch. If she were, it would be easy  enough to move on. But she was an obsession, and if he didn't regain his  control, he'd push too fast and ruin his plans to have her. His mother  expected him to take Kat around London over the holidays. He was happy  to have more time with her, but he knew it would be a test for him to be  on his best behavior. Or at least the best he could manage, because he  couldn't hide how much he still wanted her.

It was going to be hell.

I'll play by her rules, but that doesn't mean I won't fight dirty to get  her back in my bed. He was a master at slow seduction, with caresses,  little knowing smiles, a brush of lips … He would make it impossible for  Kat to resist him.

"Hello, Tristan." A feminine voice halted his deep drinking.

He slowly lowered his hand, peering through the froth-coated glass at  Brianna Wolverton. She was wearing a long, white wool coat and sleek  black pants. Even in slushy winter weather, Brianna had flair. She'd  pulled her pale blonde hair back in a fashionably messy ponytail, and  she was studying him curiously

"Brianna." He chuckled. The ale was relaxing him, and he didn't mind her companionship. Their friendship stretched back years.                       


"Carter said you might be in London for the holidays." Her eyes darted  around the room. "The chances of you coming to the Stowaway were in my  favor." A knowing smile played on her lips. She knew him well. It was  the nearest pub to his mother's town house, and they'd often met here  for drinks before having a bit of fun.

"How are you?" Tristan asked, raising his pint in a salute to his former paramour.

With a little tsking noise, she stole his pint and drank the rest of it, then plopped the glass down on the bar beside him.

"I'm fine, thank you. How many have you had, Tristan?" She nudged the  empty glass with an elegant fingertip, her eyes full of concern. They'd  both lived wild lives, but they'd always watched each other's backs,  too.

"Not nearly enough," he growled and started to turn back to the bar again, but a hand gripped his arm.

"It has been a long time since I've seen you like this. Tell me, what's  the matter?" Without waiting for an answer, Brianna tugged him through  the crowds to a small table out of the way. Tristan let her shove him  into a chair.

Brianna nudged his shin with her booted toe. "Talk, Kingsley. What's  your father done this time?" she asked. "Was it the photo of us? I saw  that. I can't believe someone spotted us in that mew. We were well  hidden." A little frown tugged her full lips down.

Tristan scowled. Another fortune tossed at the papers to silence the  rumors of his love life. He was surprised his father hadn't called to  berate him.

"No, it's not my father. It's my mum, sort of." He grumbled and eyed the  bar counter where the barkeep was filling up more pints.

Bloody hell, I want to forget tonight.

"Your mum?" Brianna's eyes widened. "Oh dear, what's happened?"

He laughed bitterly. "Where to start? She's engaged to an American  investment banker, and I'm inheriting a stepsister. The worst part is  that I've just met the loveliest young woman who"-he paused, tailoring  his words-"was absolutely stunning in bed."

Brianna nibbled her bottom lip. "Wait a moment, that's an awful lot to  take in. Let's start with the first part. Your mum is getting married?  To an American? I'm sure your father doesn't like that."