Rule's Obsession

By: Lynda Chance


****

Damian looked passed his reflection in the mirror and watched, entranced, as Goth girl walked up behind him and immediately began babbling, "So Janice had to leave because her kiddo is sick. I'm Angie and I'm going to cut your hair today if that's okay?"

Her voice was feminine and husky, and his brain temporarily short-circuited as all the blood in his body seemed to pool to his groin at the mere thought of her even touching his hair. He gritted his teeth, fisted his hands around the arms of the seat to keep from grabbing her and locking her to him. Could he sit still while she touched him without reaching out and picking her up and carrying her out of here? He tightened his abs and nodded once in answer to her question and watched in fascination as she lifted a black comb to his scalp.

Her hands looked delicate and soft, with beautiful slender fingers that ended in tapered fingernails. Fingernails painted black. His insides clenched with arousal, but his brain fought the involuntary reaction to the inappropriate sight.

Her black-tipped fingers were trembling subtly and without thinking about his actions, he lifted a hand and wrapped it around a blue-veined wrist. "You okay?" he bit out.

She raised her eyes to his in the mirror, licked her lips and sucked in a deep breath. He could see the pulse beating visibly in her throat but she didn't answer him. He'd bet his last dollar she couldn't answer him, and he knew in that second that he affected her the same way that she affected him.

Well, shit.

Good fucking luck trying to stay away from her now, Rule.



****

The guy was hot, no question about it. And he was even hotter up close like this. But Jesus, that didn't mean she had to tremble, did it? She glanced at him in the mirror and was able to clear her throat and get her vocal chords working enough to answer his question. "Yeah, I'm fine. You just want a trim, right?" At her words, his grip tightened on her wrist, sending a heated rush to the juncture of her thighs, but then he dropped his hand back to the arm of the chair.

"Just a trim." His voice was low and brusque, and Angie felt the deep cadence reverberate down her body in a current of sensation.

Unable to stop the movement, she ran her fingers through his hair, as if to gauge the length. As she slowly started the cut, she studied him. Probably early thirties, he always wore a bespoke suit and he kept his hair severely short. He was conservative, no mistaking that. She'd bet he absolutely hated the fact that he was attracted to her. And it was obvious that he was. She'd caught him watching her more times than she could count.

But she didn't care to be noticed by a guy like this; he seemed just like her father. Angie knew that deep down, she loved her dad, but she admitted they didn't have a close relationship, even though he'd been a decent enough father. He'd taught her more about money and finances than she could ever possibly need to know and he'd made sure she could stand on her own two feet before he'd moved across the country. But her father had an addiction that she didn't care for. Women. Her mother had died when she was young and since then, Angie had known more stepmothers than she cared to think about, because her father became bored very easily.

And Damian the Devil had that same look about him. Was she judging him, probably unfairly? Yeah, she was, but she didn't care.

Janice had told her weeks ago that he had asked about the way she dressed and there had been disapproval in his tone. He didn't care for her clothes. And that suited Angie perfectly. And it was true that she didn't care what anyone thought of her; she damn sure never wanted to be noticed by a control freak like she was sure this guy was. She didn't care how freaking good-looking he was, she didn't care how fast he made her heart race, it didn't matter how quickly she thought she could drown in his bedroom eyes if she wasn't careful.

Did he look like he knew what to do in bed? Absolutely. But Angie had no time for a guy like this one. No time and no desire to be tempted. So it didn't bother her that too-conservative men like him usually stared a little too long before looking away. Being left alone by businessmen of his ilk was a fringe benefit of the gothic style she'd created for herself.

It wasn't as if she was truly gothic; she admitted she was just a poser. She'd started dressing in black because she'd found a couple of adorable outfits at the mall, and the reaction of her male customers at the salon had been more than positive. Her tips had almost tripled every time she'd worn black. She was a fairly quick study, and after the unexpected influx of cash, she'd taken on the persona with relish, buying tons of accessories and developing a heavy hand with her make-up. Dyeing her hair black had given her pause, but it didn't have to be permanent, and she knew any damage caused by the chemicals would eventually grow out.

Now, as Angie cut his hair, she didn't try to make conversation with him, and she refused to look at him in the mirror again after finding his eyes glued once to her face, and then frowningly, to her breasts. Her tiny, barely-there breasts, hidden beneath a flimsy bra and her favorite tight, black Nine Inch Nails t-shirt.

His brows were furrowed as he studied her shirt, and the harsh look on his features sent shivers of heat through her system. After intercepting that look, she avoided meeting his eyes again. Instead, she concentrated on giving him the perfect cut, and she soon became lost in the feel of his damp hair beneath her fingers. When had giving a haircut ever seemed so intimate? It was insane really, because she gave cuts all day long, mostly to men and boys, who were the type of clientele the salon attracted. So why did she now have to become aware of exactly how close she stood to this particular man, what his hair felt like sliding between her fingers, and the way his eyes stayed fastened to her as if he wanted to strip her naked?