But he remembered laughing. Frankie had broken through the grief that had swamped him over the previous year. His mother had died. She’d been the last woman who had given a damn about him. The only woman who had genuinely cared for him. His mother hadn’t cared about his money or the power he wielded. His mother had demanded that Kade come home for Thanksgiving and call her every Sunday night, just to check in. His mother had consistently refused his money, demanding his time instead.
Frankie had done that for him too. She’d sat down across from him and reminded him how to laugh. She’d paid for his drinks, refusing his money. Those glittering green eyes of hers had warmed his heart and reminded him that there was good in the world. And beauty! Damn, Frankie was gorgeous!
Not to mention delicate, but he doubted he’d ever be brave enough to say that out loud within earshot. She had one of those figures that men would fight over, would die for! But she probably had no idea of the impact her tight, petite body had on the male population. The woman wrapped herself up in jeans and boring tee shirts that did nothing to hide her tiny waist and beautiful ass! She had long, lean legs and strong arms. He’d seen the muscle definition when she’d pulled her leather jacket off. But there was something about Frankie that defied her daredevil image. Something delicate and vulnerable.
She was such an incredible mixture of contradictions.
“Why did you walk away in Dallas?” he demanded, needing to know.
She stiffened and he could tell that she was thinking hard. He could see it in her eyes.
The woman shuffled her feet uncomfortably. An interesting reaction, he thought.
“Because I had a flight the next morning,” she replied. “Remember? I wasn’t lying. It was the truth.”
Kade shifted, mirroring her stance by crossing his arms over his chest. “Yeah. You mentioned that. But you didn’t even look back at me as you walked away.” He watched her carefully, then chuckled softly. “You were scared,” he said, the statement almost a whisper as he realized the truth. And yes, it was there. In her eyes! Damn, those green eyes were alluring.
“I wasn’t scared,” she shot back, her voice laced with heat. “You don’t scare me, Wilson.”
He slowly shook his head. “I scare the hell out of you. Why?”
Kade watched the flash of panic in her eyes, but it vanished almost immediately. It was hidden behind those beautiful green eyes and elfish freckles. The tough-girl façade was again firmly in place. That pointy chin lifted and those green eyes narrowed, almost as if she were trying to outstare him. It wasn’t working though.
“I’m not afraid of you, Wilson. But are you going to give me the DNA sample or not? Because I have better things to do than argue with you.”
“Temper temper,” he replied, chuckling. He contemplated his next move carefully. If he told her that he wouldn’t give her the DNA sample that she wanted so desperately…and yes, there was desperation in her voice…then she’d simply turn around and walk away. Maybe. Maybe not. There was a stubbornness about her that belied the idea.
And in that moment, an idea came to him. One that would play that adorable stubbornness to his advantage.
“I’ll make a deal with you.”
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