HAVE YOU MET JACKSON STEELE?
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“Fans of dark, intense and emotionally scorching romances will surely adore this series opener.” – RT Book Reviews
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“You didn’t tell me until today that your Atlanta fling grew up to be a hot-shit celebrity architect. Hot shit and just plain hot, right?”
“That’s about the sum of it.” I stumble for a moment—because how do you describe perfection—and then I stop, because he is right in front of me. Not the man, but his image, projected on the screen behind the bar for all the world to see.
“Whoa,” Cass says as she follows my gaze. “Shit, fuck. Seriously? That guy is positively gorgeous.”
I nod, my eyes glued to the screen, my throat thick. I’d thought that the magazine cover did him justice, but I was wrong. On the cover, he is brushed and polished, his rough edges smoothed away by the magic of Photoshop. But this—this is raw and grainy. It’s candid and stunning and awe-inspiring.
It’s Jackson, standing astride two parallel iron girders at least thirty stories above a city I don’t recognize. He’s wearing jeans, a long-sleeve white T-shirt, and a white hard hat. He is holding on to a giant hook suspended in front of him, and seems unaware of the camera that I can only assume is taking this shot through a long lens from a safe distance.
The shadow of beard stubble is as unmistakable as the brilliant blue of his eyes, which seem to burn in the white light of the sun. His free hand rests against his forehead like a visor, blocking the sun as he surveys the structure rising all around him. Behind and beneath him, the city spreads out, but it is Jackson who is the focal point. And from this single image, there is no question that Jackson is a man with the power to grab hold of the earth and remake it as he wants it. And in that moment, I can only hope that what I can offer is something that he wants to claim.
I hug myself, then step back as the image fades and is replaced by another building site. I turn and find Cass staring at me. She sighs, then shakes her head slowly.
“Christ, Syl. I can see it on your face.”
I look away, but she grabs my arm.
“This job isn’t worth it. He’s going to rip you to pieces all over again. He half has already.”