This is an unedited sample and is subject to change.
Voluntarily walking through the doors of Camden City Police Department wasn’t something I’d ever saw myself doing. Memories flooded me as I stepped across the threshold of the precinct. I shook my head, pushing away those thoughts and the feelings attached to them and walked right up to the Sergeant’s desk.
“One second, honey.” The cop behind the desk said, holding up one finger to silence me as he continued to scribble in the notebook in front of him. I gritted my teeth practically biting my tongue in half. Do not show your ass in this police station.
After what seemed like an eternity, the officer lifted his head. Within seconds his countenance went from rude and dismissive to leering. “What was it you needed, beautiful?”
“I want to file a report.”
His mouth twisted into a sour expression. “For what?”
“Property damage. I was detained by one of your officers last night and she damaged my lens. I’m a photojournalist for The Philadelphian and I need the lens for work.”
The desk sergeant sighed and reached under his desktop. “Fill out this paperwork and someone will contact you about reimbursement.”
No-fucking-body was reimbursing me for the damage to this lens. I mentally assessed the balance of my credit cards and tried to figure out if I could replace it as I filled out the complaint form.
When I was done, I brought the clipboard and my form back to the desk. “Can you give me some info on two men arrested last night?”
“What are their names?”
“Two guys with the first names Giovanni and Khalid.”
The sergeant entered the names and took some time to scroll through the records. “Looks like Giovanni Perez was released on bail this morning. Khalid Williamson is still in custody.”
“Okay, thanks.” I pushed away from the desk and turned to leave…
And slammed right into a sweaty, panting Officer Raymond.
My eyes didn’t know where to land first. His gorgeous face, dark brows, thick dark lashes. A droplet of sweat trickled down to a broad muscular chest covered in curling wet hair. And the slightly damp sweatpants that hung low on his hipbones revealing those two lines on either side of his abdomen that said hey, look here! and, holy shit, was that the imprint of his—
“Ms. Greene? Is everything all right?”
I managed to drag my eyes away from his crotch back to his face.
“Those guys didn’t come after you did they?” he asked, looking genuinely concerned. “Did something happen?”
I shook my head, eyes tracking a droplet of sweat from his neck to his chest. “No. No…I…” My mouth was suddenly very dry…can I please lick that droplet of sweat off of your chest? “Your partner broke my camera lens,” I blurted. “I came in to file a complaint.”
His brow crinkled. “Okay. I’m sorry to hear that your property was damaged. I’m sure the precinct will take care of it.”
“Yeah, yeah, sure they will,” I said rolling my eyes, annoyance overriding my sudden bashfulness.
He stared at me a moment longer. “Is there something else you need? Are you lost? Do you need me to escort you somewhere?”
“Escort? No, No, I’m good.”
“Okay, I just wanted to make sure.” He gave me an uneasy smile.
“Well, I did want to thank you for walking me home.” Wait. No. That’s not what I meant to say at all.
“Really? You didn’t seem all that grateful last night.”
“Yes, really. I’m not usually that rude. Well, no. That’s a lie. I am usually that rude, but maybe I was a little too harsh—”
“Miss Greene…it’s fine.”
“Please, call me Ava.”
“Ava,” he said. “You can call me Levi.”
And suddenly I was thinking about how that voice would sound in a much lower, much more secretive tone.
“I admit that it probably wasn’t the best time to pay you a compliment.”
“No, it wasn’t but I still should’ve been more gracious.”
“Okay, how about this. How about you treat me to a cup of coffee?”
“Buy me a cup of coffee and all is forgiven.”
“I…but I’m on my way to work.”
“So I’ll take a raincheck.” He hooked his thumbs into the waistband of his sweats, tugging them just a bit lower and short-circuiting my brain.
“Is that appropriate?” I asked.
And more importantly was this what I wanted? When I walked into the police station I meant to file a complaint against his partner for damaging my lens and find out about Giovanni. But Levi, standing in front of me all sweaty and hairy and manly in all the right ways demanded more of my attention. And he smelled so good. How could he be so sweaty and smell so good? God, he smelled like something I wanted to hold in my mouth, roll over my tongue, savor for a good long time.
“So what do you say? Coffee? Doughnut? And I’ll accept your deep and abiding gratitude?” Officer Levi Raymond grinned.
I swayed on my feet. What the fuck? Was he so goddamn fine that he actually made me swoon? And was that really the outline of his fucking dick in those sweatpants?
Shit. I’m staring at his crotch again.
“So raincheck? I’m off on Wednesdays.”
“Yeah, sure. Raincheck.”
Am I really this inarticulate?
“How about you give me your phone so I can put my number in.”
“Okay.” I reached into my bag and produced my phone.
“You have to unlock it, Ava.”
“Yes. Right.” I took the phone from him and pressed my thumb to the home key until it unlocked then handed it back to him again.
Levi entered his name and his number and handed the phone back to me. “So give me a call or text when you want to meet up for that coffee or a drink or whatever.”
“Okay.” Oh, god. What was my face doing? Was this a big stupid grin I feel spreading across my face?
“So, I’m gonna go back here and take a shower so…”
“Yeah, right of course. See you later.”
He gave me a smile that made the grin on my face stretch wider if that was humanly possible. I must look like the Cheshire damn cat right now. Then I topped it all off with a girlish wave as he disappeared behind the door.
All the bad memories of my last visit to this police station were far away as I made my way back to the door. I practically floated out of that bitch. But by the time my doc martens hit the sidewalk the witchcraft of his smile had worn off.
Did I just agree to go on a date with a cop?
Thanks for reading!
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