Wicked Me:Wicked in the Stacks Book 1(6)

By: Lindsey R. Loucks

But holy shit, it had been hot. He had been hot, with his mirrored sunglasses and the way his just-woke-up blond hair fell over them, that stubble along his chin that had lightly scraped against my cheek when I turned my head, and the way he kept looking at me. Even with those sunglasses hiding most of his face, the power of his gaze slid up and down my body like an actual caress. I could still feel it, and it pulsed a hum between my legs that refused to go away.

And he knew my name. How could it be that he was a stranger to me, but I wasn’t to him? Did I know him from somewhere? Surely I would remember meeting someone who looked like they’d just strutted out of Lick Me, I’m Gorgeous magazine.

Between the enigma that was him and the D.C. heat on a late May afternoon, my brain was thoroughly scrambled. I’d forgotten what this kind of sweltering heat felt like. Humidity swelled the air so thick, I could hardly breathe.

I needed something to take my mind off everything so I could get to my destination without accidentally flinging myself into traffic—something like my best friend Kay. Somehow, while towing all my luggage, I pulled my phone from my pocket without missing a step.

“H-hello? Paige? Aaron, take mommy’s bra off your head and the stilettos out of your mouth,” Kay warned her two-year-old. “I swear my son loves my clothes more than I do. Can cross-dressing begin this early?”

“Try not to judge,” I said between pants. “It’ll just confuse him.”

She sighed. “Maybe it’s just a phase.”

“Or it could be...because he’s two...and your clothes smell—and taste—like you.”

“Ugh, you’re right. Are you there already? Why are you breathing hard?”

I could confess one cause without giving her any reason to believe there was a second, much hotter, sexier cause. “I’m walking to Riley’s.”

“Are there no cabs in D.C.?”

“It’s only...four blocks.” Maybe I should’ve rethought my strategy, though. Nothing says ‘Thank you for letting me stay with you for six weeks’ like a good whiff of rank body odor. But I’d walked these tree-lined streets as a child, and a part of me wanted to relive those carefree days. Plus, the whole notion of time travel and mixed-up body molecules prompted the Dr. Who theme song to play through my head, and I didn’t want to stop it.

“Well, it’s your funeral.”

“Thanks, Kay,” I said dryly.

“So, I’m thinking about hooking up with the cute handyman here for some male influence.”

“For you or Aaron?”

“Both of us, silly. Speaking of male influence, you didn’t forget to pack Slave, did you?”

A flush burned through my cheeks. A balding man tended to the flowerbed around the mailbox just ahead, and I quickly looked away while trying to convince myself he couldn’t have heard talk about my vibrator through my phone. I’d turned my speaker up loud so I could hear over my rolling luggage, but surely he couldn’t hear, too. He looked up and smiled, but that was all.

“No, I didn’t forget,” I hissed once I passed him.

Kay laughed. She’d bought me the sex toy for my last birthday. Her current reading habits dictated her nicknames for them. For example, she’d named her handcuffs Hogties. We have different reading habits, so I didn’t know the meaning behind that one, nor did I want to. But Slave was a...nice companion. Okay, an explosive, try-not-to-wake-up-the-neighbors companion.

“Then again, maybe you won’t need it since you’re staying with Riley,” she said in a low, suggestive voice.

“Maybe.” Riley Cleary was my childhood friend, and our families swore we’d be married one day. There was even a picture of us when we were about five with a dishrag veil on my head and a bouquet of dandelions in my hand. But I had no romantic interest in Riley. I never had, but especially now that my thoughts kept straying to the stranger who knew my name in the library. “Hey, I’m almost there. Call you later?”

“Knock ’em dead, sugar plum,” she said and ended the call.

I paused at the street corner to unhook my stiff fingers from my luggage and flexed them to work out the kinks. Speaking of kinks, my neck felt like it’d been contorted into a chocolate-and-vanilla twist cone.

Oh, that sounded good right now. Nice and cold... I licked my lips while I rubbed at the crick in my neck. And that was how I was standing, on a street corner, rubbing and licking and dripping sweat all at the same time, when a red car booming loud bass turned the corner. Sometimes, it amazed me how classy I could be.

The dipping sun cast a glare on the windows, and the car thankfully rolled past without slowing. Good thing, too, since my hope for a successful career in prostitution ended after second grade once I found out what they actually did for money. Plus, I didn’t have exact change.

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