Temperatures Rising

By: Brenda Jackson

“Don’t you think you can control yourself in here alone with me?” he asked in a teasing voice.




“I’m the one who should be asking you that,” she said, snapping out the words. Too late, she wished she hadn’t, when she saw the darkening in his eyes. The look he was giving her had her pulse beating erratically at the base of her throat.

“Since you brought it up,” he said, his gaze roaming her figure from head to toe. “I was going to be a gentleman and control myself, but now I don’t think I will.”

She backed up and lifted her chin. “You think you’re going to force me to do something against my will?” she asked.

He smiled that sexy smile of his and she knew she’d lost the battle already. That darn dimple did her in. “No, but I may force you to admit something you’re being rather stubborn about. Although our relationship goals in life are different right now, at this very moment in time we want each other and there is no way you can deny it.”

“I do deny it.”

“Let’s see for how long.”







Chapter 1




“S herri, I would be honored if you joined me for dinner at my club tonight.”

Sherri Griffin never, ever got headaches, not in all her twenty-seven years. At least not until recently, when she’d taken the job of producer and program director of WLCK, a Key West radio station. That was when she had encountered Terrence Jefferies, a former NFL player for the Miami Dolphins and one of the station’s sports commentators.

He was also the owner of Club Hurricane, a popular nightclub in the Keys frequented by celebrities. From what she’d heard, when Terrence began playing pro football he had been nicknamed the Holy Terror by sportscasters because of his oftentimes surly attitude on the field. Besides Mean Joe Greene, there had not been another defensive tackle that had been so respected and feared. But when it came to pursuing women, he used an entirely different strategy. He was all smooth and debonair and never came across as intimidating or bad. Just relentlessly determined.

The man was also handsome as sin.

Drawing in a deep breath, she pulled herself together before looking up from the document she was reading to acknowledge Terrence’s entry into her office. Her answer today would be the same one she’d given him yesterday, the day before and for the past few weeks. Little did he know, it would take more than a gorgeous face, broad shoulders and tight buns to make her change her mind. She had to admit, though, there was definitely something about muscle shirts and jeans that clearly defined a well-built male body.

“Thanks for the invitation, but I’ll be busy,” she responded.

He simply smiled, and that softening around his lips actually sharpened her senses…as if they weren’t keen enough already where he was concerned. “One of these days I’m going to follow you home to find out just how you’re spending your evenings,” he said in a deep and throaty voice.

Definitely without you in them, she thought, wondering if perhaps she was making a mistake by avoiding him, as her best friend, Kimani Cannon, claimed. According to Kim, whenever the Holy Terror made a pass, any normal woman would run with it and rush for the goal line, not turn away like she constantly did. Kim thought the man was as gorgeous as any man had a right to be, and wildly sexy. Grudgingly, Sherri could only admit Kim was right.

But Terrence also had a reputation a mile long, one she would never be able to tolerate. She hadn’t been at the station a week when his breakup with some wealthy socialite had been plastered all over the front page of the Key West Citizen.

“Sherri?”

She returned her attention to him, wishing he wouldn’t say her name like that. Doing so always caused her to remember him in her dreams. And yes, she would admit she’d dreamed about the infuriating man a few times, but as far as she was concerned that meant nothing…other than the fact that she was a woman who could appreciate a stunning male with definite sex appeal.

She placed the documents in her hand down on her desk as she met his gaze. “How I spend my evenings shouldn’t concern you, Terrence.”

He smiled again and she tried like heck to ignore the little shivers that ran down her spine. The man had a dimple in his right cheek, for heaven’s sake! She let out a sigh. He was getting to her, and dimple or no dimple, she was determined not to let him. She knew getting her into his bed was all a game to him—a game of conquest that she had no intention of playing.

“And what if I said I wanted to make it my concern?” he asked, sitting on the edge of her desk and leaning in close.

She tried to ignore the clean and manly aroma of his aftershave. “In that case I would say you have more time and energy than you really need. You might want to channel them elsewhere.”

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