Over the Line
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by Denise A. Agnew
Category: Erotica/Erotic Romance/Romance
Description: Nothing could be more complicated than having hot, over-the-edge, inappropriate sexual fantasies about your boss. Except maybe acting on them. Working for the Division Six Director brought agent Ellie Sterling into close contact with the gorgeous Scotsman on a daily basis. She couldn't ignore any longer the smoldering looks and electric chemistry that surged between them, but their chaotic attraction could destroy their careers. When Ellie receives threatening notes and Ben's protective streak kicks in, she realizes she must take action that could put them both in harm's way or separate them forever. Nothing could be more complicated than having hot, over-the-edge, inappropriate sexual fantasies about your assistant. Except maybe acting on them. Ben Darrock, Director of Division Six in the Special Investigations Agency, knows that intimate interactions with his assistant, the beautiful Ellie Sterling, could cause them both their jobs and damage Ellie's reputation. But the attraction is getting harder and harder to resist. When Ben decides his need for Ellie must come before his career, sparks fly and passions heat up the Colorado winter. Enter into all this mix, a stalker who must be caught before he can move on the threats he has made on Ellie's life. Only then can Ben and Ellie attempt to create a life together, no matter what. This is a story set in the Special Investigations Agency but can be read as a stand-alone.
eBook Publisher: Ellora's Cave/Ellora's Cave, 2004 Ellora's Cave Publishing, Inc.
eBookwise Release Date: May 2005
45 Reader Ratings:
Available eBook Formats: OEBFF Format (IMP) [131 KB]
Reading time: 79-111 min.
Special Investigations Agency
Somewhere in Colorado
"This isn't going to be easy," Ellie Sterling said to the empty hallway as she strode toward her boss's office, the last bundle of message traffic in hand.
Fluorescent lights in the narrow hall burned her tired eyes. She'd spent too many sleepless nights worrying about the measures she must take.
Ben Darrock would bust a gasket when he saw the other note nestled among the items she needed to show him. Correction. The big Scotsman would come unglued and start demanding she take action.
When she arrived at his door, she stopped and stared at the nameplate. Ben Darrock, Director, Division Six. It always took nerve to step into this room. To talk with him. To be near him.
"Come," a voice deep with a Scottish accent said through the closed door.
Come. She couldn't hear that innocent word in his voice without wondering what it would feel like to climax with him deep inside her. Since the first day she'd walked into the agency as a new employee she'd felt this insatiable sexual reaction to him, unstoppable and fierce. Fantasies about having Glasgow-born Ben Darrock in her bed frequented her nighttime dreams more than she wanted to admit. But reality and castles-in-the-sky didn't mix at work, and she understood that as well as the next person.
She strove for a year to convince herself she couldn't break rules and code of conduct in the workplace. Drooling over the boss didn't fall under the category of responsible, sensible, or any other ible she could recall. Now she didn't care. As the cliché said, life was too damned short. Get on with it. He isn't going to wait all day.
As she clasped the doorknob, a flush heated her face. Here goes.
Seconds later she stepped into his large but austere office. He kept it clean, organized, and modern to the point of dull. The whole place lacked warmth, and one of the secretaries in Division Six once suggested Ben must be like that in bed. Cold. Perfunctory. Boring.
While Ellie possessed no tangible evidence, she knew by instinct Ben owned a passionate nature that, once aroused, could consume a woman. Make her want, say and do things she'd never imagined before. Oh yeah. A woman could find fire in his arms.
She had the evidence. Over the last year she'd encountered him in situations where they stood close together talking about work. She'd breathe in his crazy-making scent, a tantalizing combination of sandalwood and musk. She would look up and see the sparkle of amusement or a devouring gaze which said he appreciated her as a woman.
Less than a week after she'd met him she saw warmth in his gaze, an interesting mix of gentleness and pure male hunger that made her tingle from her long braided hair to her barely there bikini panties. Heat stirred inside her remembering the bone-melting attraction and craving she experienced each time he looked at her that way.
Then Ellie's gaze fell on the picture of his long dead wife sitting on his bookshelf and a little of her enthusiasm faded. Maureen Darrock, gone ten years, stared out from the picture, blonde, icy, and beautiful.
A memory with which Ellie couldn't compete.
Some people said Ben couldn't get over his wife's murder. Well, she didn't really blame him. How many people could ever recover from knowing their loved one was slain so callously and cruelly?
Long moments drew out until the Scotsman looked up from his desk and the papers in front of him. "Ellie." An almost tender smile touched his lips. "What have you got there?"
His one hundred percent rich Scots accent held the right amount of sexy nuance to make her feel lustful and excited in less than a heartbeat. Whenever his melodious voice said her name, heat coasted across her body like a flash fire.
"I brought the latest messages. I could have emailed them, but I needed to see you."
He captured her gaze and held it. Dark coffee eyes smoldered with instant, unmistakable admiration. Whenever he looked at her she received an instant boost from the caressing, intent look in his eyes.
He nodded. "All right. What's this about?"
To her surprise he left his desk and came towards her. Today he wore a dark green sweater that couldn't hide the impressive width of his shoulders and neat dark slacks that fit as if tailored for him. He stopped in front of her, too close for comfort.
"The daily message traffic is heavy. There's some disturbing data here on the situation in Ireland I thought you'd like to see," she said.
When he reached for the file, his fingers brushed hers. Tingles raced through her hand at the innocent touch. He flipped through the file and perused the messages without a word.
While he read, she couldn't stop looking at him. She loved his face. His chiseled nose and well-drawn mouth belonged on a movie star, but he was in no way a pretty boy. The close-cut, attractive trim of his mustache and beard sculpted his face. Some women thought his just below collar-length hair a bit too much. All she saw was drop-dead, outrageously sexy. The fact he could get away with the look in the SIA said much. The man proved himself professionally time and again and no one denied it.
And his body. Well, his body defined all a woman could want. At least, all she could want anyway. Over the time she'd worked with him she saw him in suits and ties, casual work clothes, and even once at a picnic wearing a tight T-shirt and shorts. The T-shirt had molded his wide shoulders, lovingly hugging muscled arms and chest to perfection. Her gaze had snagged on the hint of six-pack stomach under that white shirt. His shorts had also not hidden the fact his ass was world class. And his legs--oh, his legs. Long, hard with strength. All SIA agents had to be in tiptop shape, but he'd gone out of his way to hone an athletic frame to die for.
While she topped five six in stocking feet, his six foot two frame towered over her. His muscular body always made her feel safe and female in the most primal way. As a fully trained agent for the SIA, she could take care of herself. Despite this, she couldn't help the tiny, primitive sensation of enjoying his protection. No matter what the situation she couldn't help feeling that no matter what went down, this man would protect her unto death.
Yeah, the man is categorically, undeniably fuckable.
Finally, he said, "I'll let Mac Tudor know right away. He'll want to get some agents on this problem immediately." Before he reached the last note, his gaze flicked up and caught hers. "Was there something else you needed to tell me?"
Ben's eyes held an energy that penetrated, a charisma that caught her in his spell. Looking all intense seemed to be his specialty. God, the man was so delicious. Those striking eyes ringed with dark, thick lashes held a special hunger.
Her throat went dry and she almost couldn't swallow. "There is something else you need to hear. About the ... the stalker."
Instantly his attention went razor-sharp, concern evident. "Tell me what's happening."
She needed to stop gawking and speak before all courage left her. Now is the time. Tell him. "The last note isn't regular message traffic. I received it in my home mailbox this morning."
She knew the minute he saw the expensive cotton notepaper shielded inside a clear acid-free cover. Ben scanned the hateful words.
His frown increased tenfold and his brow creased. "Damn it." He put the folder on his desk, but kept the note she'd dreaded showing him. "This one is worse. Much worse. This is the sixth note in two weeks?"
She nodded. "All of them came to my house."
A muscle tightened in his jaw. When he'd heard the first time the culprit knew where she lived, he about blew his stack. "You gave it to the lab?"
"Yes, I did. They didn't find any evidence to identify a perp. No fingerprints. The note was done on a laser printer and that's all they know."
Concern burned in his gaze, but so did something else she couldn't define one hundred percent. "This can't go on, Ellie. You've got to have protection."
Here we go again. "I'm an agent for SIA just like you, Ben. Granted, I'm not a field agent, but I've been trained for it. I can handle whatever comes down the pike."