Gold Dollar Seduction
By Sage Burnett
Cowpuncher Ben McCade has a pocketful of money and a thirst for good whiskey...and for Rose Dixon. But she belongs to his former boss, Johnny Howard. Undeterred, Ben offers Rose thirty gold dollars to share her bed for the night. It's a risky offer, but one Rose is willing to take. She desperately wants her freedom. The money not only tempts her, but so does the rugged cowboy.
When Johnny catches them, all hell breaks loose. Ben and Rose manage to escape, and Ben promises to find her a safe place to live. He also promises to collect his money's worth from her. Rose willingly lives up to her end of the bargain when it comes to granting Ben McCade sexual pleasures. Unfortunately, the deal between the two of them wasn't supposed to involve her heart.
Ben leaned a shoulder against the doorjamb. Up close he saw that she was older than he first thought. Her porcelain skin and silky brown hair were enough to drive a man too drink. “I’m afraid I can’t do that, ma’am.”
“And why is that?”
“I’d like to buy you for the night.”
“I’m not for sale.” She tried to close the door on him, but Ben put up a hand to stop it.
“I know about Johnny Howard. You can do better than that.”
Her face flushed pink. “If you don’t leave I’m going to summon Hal. He keeps a shotgun under the bar.”
“I reckon he does. Why don’t you invite me in and we can get to know each other better.”
Ben studied her. For the second time, awareness flickered in her gaze. “I can see in your eyes, that you’re interested.”
“Men and their bravado. Always believing a woman wants them.”
“The way I see it is, I want you. Now I’d venture a guess you’re not sure if you want me. But I’m damned good at persuading.”
Ben’s eyes lowered and lingered. He noticed how her nipples were hard peaks under the blue satin.
“Stop staring at me.”
“You’re a mighty fine looking woman. Does ol’ Johnny appreciate that?”
“That is none of your business.”
“Let me properly introduce myself. Ben McCade.” He touched two fingers to the brim of his cowboy hat. “It’s a pleasure to make your acquaintance, Rose.”
Her delicate brows scrunched together. “How do you know my name?”
“I make a point of knowing things I want to know.”
“I’m afraid, Mr. McCade, that’s all you are going to know of me.”
Ben inched his way farther into the room. He fought back the urge to reach out and feel one of her breasts. Kissing came later when a man went too long without a woman. Studying her lips, he knew he could kiss this woman first. And kiss her dozens of times more during the night.
He closed the door behind him.
“Stop this nonsense now. If Johnny catches you in my room, he’ll...”
“He’ll what? Shoot me? I doubt that. He’s a lousy shot.”
Her eyes widened. “You know Johnny?”
Ben shrugged. It didn’t matter to him that he worked for Johnny’s father.
“Please, you must leave.” A hint of desperation clouded her voice.
“Do you know for a fact Johnny is coming to see you tonight?”
A shadow passed across Rose’s delicate features. “And that is none of your business, either.”
Ben rubbed his chin. “I’m going to take a gander and say he shows up unexpected whenever he has a mind to.”
Her cheeks colored again. “I’ve already told you this matter is not your business.”
“You probably get all gussied up every night and wait.”
She pursed her lips together.
“It would be a shame to waste that pretty dress.” And to waste what was under it. He itched to get his hands under that dress and do some exploring.
“Mr. McCade, you are out of line. Please leave.”
“I haven’t seen hide nor hair of Johnny tonight.” Ben wondered if she knew of Howard’s engagement. He didn’t plan on telling her. “Why spend the night alone when you can have company?”
“If I’m in need of company, I’ll find it elsewhere.”
Spirited. He liked that. Ben brushed past her and walked over to the velvet settee. She smelled of lavender and woman. He turned to face her. “Why don’t you come and sit down?”
Anger flashed in her eyes. “Get out.”
“You’re going to have scream for Hal.” He sat down and stretched his long legs out.
Rose planted her hands on shapely hips and glared at him. A moment later she walked over to a steamer trunk, opened the lid and pulled out a Derringer.
When she pointed it at his chest, Ben’s lips curled up at the corners. “You probably could get away with shooting me with all the ruckus going on downstairs. And everybody up here is too busy having a poke to care.” She held the small gun with a steady hand. If she was a good shot, then he’d damn well meet his maker without getting any of that fine womanly body.
“If you wanted to shoot me, Rose, you would have done it by now. And if you wanted me to leave you would have summoned Hal.”
She scoffed. “I’m giving you a chance to save yourself.”
“Why thank you, ma’am. I truly do appreciate your offer of good will.” He leaned back. “Does Johnny give you what you need besides a roof over your head and fancy dresses to wear?”