Home > The Single Dad (The Dalton Brothers #3)(8)

The Single Dad (The Dalton Brothers #3)(8)
Author: Marni Mann

Except him.

“That didn’t take much to get over your jet lag.”

I huffed out a mouthful of air, not knowing how to say he’d made it disappear. But I had to say something, so I glanced around the bar. “It must be the energy in here.”

“Or it’s me.”

I felt my eyes go wide as they connected with his.

He reached forward, and I held in my breath, expecting his hand to land on me but it didn’t; it just tugged on the hair that was stuck to my lip, moving it out of my face.

“What’s your last name, Sydney?”

“My … last name?”

He smiled. “I’ve now bought you a drink, and I’ve shown you the sources of my power.” He winked. “It seems only fair that I know a little more about you.”


“Sydney Summers,” he said, his tone the grittiest it had been so far. “I like that.” He took a sip of his new drink, sucking one of the ice cubes into his mouth. “I’m Ford Dalton.”

“Ford Dalton,” I repeated. “That’s like the perfect celebrity name.”

“No interest in being one of those.” He paused. “I like right where I am at.”

“In life or …”

“Right now.”


Gabby was right.

This man was dominant.

I let his response simmer, my chest pounding, my hands steamy even though they were wrapped around the chilly martini glass.

“You know how I ended up here tonight.” I glanced behind him at his friends. “What’s your story?”

He shrugged. “The guys were going out, and I was craving a drink.”

I would have needed the break and looked around the bar. Not Ford. He stayed glued to me.

“This is one of our favorite spots. The rest … you’ve witnessed.”

Because he’d spent that time with me.

First at the bar.

Now here.

Where I swam through his gaze.

Had it been seconds?


I had no idea.

“I have this feeling about you, Sydney. This hunch that won’t go away.”


He moved a little closer, our faces now aligned, to the point where I could even see his eyelashes. “You’re really not the kind of girl who cuts off people in line. Something tells me you’re a healer, not a fighter.”

I nodded and said, “You’re right.” I exhaled. “I don’t know how you know that.”

He shifted just a few inches, the movement causing his coat to part, showing more of the button-down he wore beneath. With the collar open, I could see there was a hint of muscle and a light dusting of hair. “I’m reading you, Sydney.”

“If that’s true, then what else do you know about me?”

“Do you really want to know?”

My heart was on the verge of exploding.

My lungs couldn’t take in any more air.

There was shaking happening from somewhere inside me, but I couldn’t place it, and I couldn’t stop it.


“Your breath hitches every time my eyes land on you. The longer I stare, the harder you breathe.” His voice lowered again as he continued, “Your skin is heating. There are goose bumps slowly rising over your arms.”

I could feel them.

The sweatiness too.

He was right.

About everything.

His mouth moved even closer. “There’s a tingle inside your body. You’ve been trying to repeal it, dismiss it. But you can’t.”

The tingle had been replaced with fire.

One that was so strong that it owned me.

And I was completely, utterly lost.

“Do you have the same ability, Sydney?” He waited. “Are you able to read me?”

I shook my head, unable to form any words.

This time, when he reached forward, his hand landed on me. It held my cheek as his thumb pulled at my lip—I hadn’t even realized I had been chewing on it—and he freed it from my teeth.

“What I’m thinking about is your mouth.” He ran his thumb over my bottom lip and then the top. “What it would taste like. What it would feel like.” His gaze was there, on the spot he was speaking about, making those same lips part. “And I don’t know how much longer I can wait to find out.”









“You want to kiss me”—her voice was soft, breathless—“in the middle of the bar?”

With my hand still on her cheek, I aimed her mouth up to mine. “It’s not just that I want to.” I lowered my face until we were only inches apart. “It’s that I have to.” The feeling inside me was so brutally overwhelming that I couldn’t leave this bar until I had her taste on my tongue. Until I was satisfied with the feel of her lips. That was why I’d moved my seat next to hers. To have this moment between us, to re-create the fire that I’d felt before. “If you don’t want this, Sydney, tell me to stop.”

I waited.

And just as I was about to close the space between us, she whispered, “Ford …” She swallowed. “I want this.”

My mouth crashed against hers, my tongue slipping between her lips, a tropical coconut scent filling my nose.


She tasted even better than I’d anticipated. A sweetness that hadn’t just come from the liquor she’d been drinking or her perfume. A sensuality that dripped from her body that she seemed unaware of.

This woman wasn’t just sexy.

She was breathtaking.

As I pulled her closer, moving her to the end of her chair, her back arched. I ran my fingers up and down her spine, taking in the temperature of her skin. There was a thin bra strap, lacy material holding her tits in place. Her nipples hard and poking, dying for me to lick.


My cock fucking throbbed.

I widened my legs to move her in between them and held her face, devouring her lips, memorizing their feel, flavor.

When I finally came up for air, every bit of her flesh was flushed.

I was sure mine was, too, and I couldn’t catch my breath.

All I knew—what I was absolutely positive about—was, that kiss wasn’t enough.

She touched her mouth, blinking several times as her fingers traced across it. “Ford …” Her hand flattened against her chest, pushing as though she were trying to move air through her lungs. “God, you can kiss.” She lifted her hair off her neck.

That was because it hadn’t just been a kiss.

It was a promise.

But, fuck, I wasn’t the same man I had been four years ago, when I would have taken her by the hand and brought her back to my place. It wasn’t just my house anymore; it was Everly’s, and my daughter came first. That meant random hookups and one-night stands were all sacrifices I had given up when she was placed in my arms.

Sydney’s fingers were on my stomach, rubbing the outline of my abs, causing my cock to fucking pound against my zipper. I would do anything to be inside her pussy right now, to feel her naked body pressed against mine, to have her moans filling my ears.

To give her so many fucking orgasms that she lost her voice from screaming.

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