Surrender to Desire

By: Tory Richards

“And you must be Marissa.” Callie accepted the hand Marissa held out to her. “I would have been here earlier but I got lost.”

“And Blade found you?” She cast an amused glance at him. “So I guess I don’t need to introduce you to your new housekeeper.”

“Nope.” His gaze moved from her to Callie.

Lord, he’s a sexy man. Under the kitchen light she was able to see his dark complexion, and how handsome he was. His jet black hair was long to the point that he’d tied it back with a strip of leather. Dressed in a denim work shirt that hugged his powerful torso, faded jeans, and worn, muddy boots, he looked almost dangerous.

“I have some work to take care of. Do you mind taking care of Callie for me, and showing her around?”

“Sure,” Marissa smiled. Both women watched him pivot and leave the kitchen before looking at each other again.

“When is your little one due?”

Marissa’s hand automatically smoothed over her protruding belly. She was a beautiful woman, more so in person than on TV or in the newspapers. Her hair was a beautiful shade of sable and long bangs emphasized her smiling, dark eyes. Minimal makeup exposed flawless skin that had a natural glow to it. And it was obvious that even without the huge baby bump the woman had curves.

Callie knew Marissa was a plus-sized model, and that she and her husband, Beau, had recently moved to a new ranch, leaving the family ranch to be run by Beau’s brothers, Blade and Chaz.

“In six weeks.” She smiled. “Are you hungry?”

Callie shook her head no.

“Well, there’s a pan of lasagna in the oven when you’re ready. Come and I’ll give you a quick tour.”

Marissa walked Callie through the house and showed her where the bedrooms, baths, den, main living room, formal dining room, and pool area were located. The layout of the house was divided so that the bedrooms were located at one end, the public rooms in the middle, then the kitchen and what she soon found out was the main bedroom at the other end.

“This is your room.” Marissa opened the door that led to a huge bedroom located just off the kitchen. “You’ll have all the privacy you need at this end of the house.”

“Very nice,” Callie said, walking around the room. She could tell by the faint smell that it had recently been painted. The furniture was antique mahogany. She knew because her grandmother had a set that was very similar. The quilted spread and curtains looked new. There were plenty of windows and a set of French doors that led outside.

“There’s a connecting bathroom over there.”

“This is great,” Callie said with mild surprise. “I don’t think my last apartment was this spacious.” She gave Marissa a smile.

“When the whole family lived here this was the parent’s bedroom.” Marissa sat down on the end of the bed. “The only two who live here now are Chaz and Blade. Once Beau and I decided to move to our own place Blade decided to stop working for their security company so he could run this ranch. Chaz is gone most of the time on business.”

“So it will just be me and Blade here most of the time?” Callie didn’t know whether to feel excited or nervous at the thought of being cooped up alone with Blade.

Marissa nodded. “Callie, Val explained your situation to me. I haven’t said anything to Blade out of respect for your wishes. But I think you need to tell him. ”

Callie sank down on the bed next to Marissa. “I’m so tired of running. If Donald manages to track me down this time…” She bit her bottom lip, not sure what she would do.

“All the more reason to tell Blade what’s going on. Look, it’s what he does. He knows how to protect people. Beau, Blade, and Chaz are Evans Security. And they’re very good at what they do.”

Callie chuckled. “Do you really think Blade will want me to stay when he finds out I’m being stalked? I guess we can trade services, my housekeeping duties for his protection services.”

“That’s not a bad idea,” Marissa laughed teasingly. “But seriously, Blade’s a good man.” She stood. “Look, Val’s going to call me in the morning. She has resources and she’s going to find out where Donald is and what he’s doing. We’ll talk more about it then.”

Callie nodded in agreement. “Thank you.” She got to her feet. “I don’t know what I would have done without Val.” They started to walk back towards the kitchen.

Marissa laughed. “Val and I go way back. She’s a gem. When I told her we wanted to hire a live-in housekeeper she immediately thought of you. It’s the perfect solution.” She picked up a sheet of paper from the table. “Do you have any questions before I go?”

“Only a hundred and one with regard to Blade. I know nothing about him.” Except that he was sexy, and hot.

“It’s all here on this sheet,” Marissa said, handing it to Callie. “Everything I could think of and then some. And my phone number is at the bottom, so call me anytime. Plus, I’ll be around on and off.”