Normally silence didn’t bother him, in fact, Cam preferred it. But tonight, he wanted to talk, if only to hear her voice. “Did you have fun before the cops showed up?”
“Yes. We danced and drank and gossiped. I’ve never actually seen a bar fight.”
Cam snorted. “You must not hang out with Keely much. That girl is always finding trouble.”
“She seemed pretty pleased she’d popped my cherry tonight.”
He nearly wrecked the car. “What?”
Domini blushed. “It was my first Wyoming bar brawl. Keely came up with the cherry-popping phrase, not me.”
“It figures. I’m curious. What else did you ladies gossip about?”
“Family. Babies. Men. Sex.” Domini’s gaze pierced him. “You.”
“Me? What about me?”
“Your sister asked if something was going on between us.”
His stomach dropped at the thought of his family gossiping about him. “What did you say?” Cam eased the patrol car alongside her building.
“No. But I did say I wished something was going on between us.”
Cam didn’t know how to respond. Evidently saying nothing was the wrong response, because Domini attempted to bail out of the car.
“Ah-ah-ah.” Cam caught her wrist, holding her in place. “Wait just a damn minute. You don’t get to say something like that and then just leave.”
Domini just stared at him intently.
“Why would you want to start something with a gimped-up, scarred man like me?”
“That’s not what I see when I look at you.”
Fuck. This is what unnerved him about Domini. She saw too much. “Maybe you need glasses.”
“Maybe you’re the one who’s blind.”
He winced internally, but managed, “What’s that supposed to mean?”
“I see the fire in your eyes when you look at me, Cam. I feel it when you allow yourself to touch me. Yet, you won’t take what you so badly want.” Domini cocked her head. “Why? Are you a martyr? Or a masochist?”
“Neither. I’m just a man.” Not even a whole man.
“If I begged you to prove your manhood to me you’d run again, wouldn’t you?”
Heat rose up his neck. “I didn’t run.”
“No. You apologized first and then you ran. Which was way worse.”
Shit. He had no idea how much she’d misunderstood his reaction to her months ago. “Domini, let me explain—”
“No. Stop right there.” She drew away from him until her back rested against the door. “No more excuses. You either want me, or you don’t. You will either come upstairs right now and we can explore this—” she gestured to the space between them, “—or you can drive away and we will never speak of it again.”
Cam’s anger surfaced. “And if I drive off, you’ll what? Find another man?”
Her shoulder hitched in a half-shrug. “Perhaps.”
“Harold Henderson is always flirting with me.”
“If I ever see that fucking pervert looking at any part of you, I’ll gouge his goddamn eyes out,” Cam snarled.
“Then you’d better add Deke Nealon to that list because he asked me to a movie last week.”
“I’ve arrested Deke before and got no problem doin’ it again if he messes with you.” His head spun. No one touched Domini but him. No one.
Really? You haven’t been touching her either. She’s supposed to wait around for you to get your head out of your ass?
India’s comment, Either go for it, or let her go. But it’s selfish to try and have it both ways, haunted him because he knew she was exactly right. The time had come for him to fish or cut bait, as Colt always said. “Who else?” he demanded.
“Last night Marshall Benson offered to take me to Ziggy’s.”
“Marshall Benson? He cheats at pool!”
“So do I. You going to arrest me too?”
“Hell yes, if it’ll keep you from going out with a loser like him.” Stay calm. “What are you trying to do, Domini? Piss me off by naming all the guys who want to do you?”
She jabbed her finger at him. “You asked, Deputy. And I’m tired of waiting for you to come to terms with what you want to do to me. I especially want you to get over your mistaken belief that I am somehow…too fragile to handle you. I told you I like that you take charge, Cam.”
“You really wanna see that side of me, princess? The rough man who expects his demands to be met without question or hesitation?”
Lightning fast, Cam curled his hand around her neck and hauled her close enough to kiss. “I don’t play at this. It’s not a phase, not bedroom games. This is who I am.”
“Then that is who I want,” she said softly.
His resistance shattered. “I’m giving you one last chance to change your mind.”
“My mind has been made up for a lot longer than yours has.”
He put his mouth on her ear and growled, “Get upstairs. Get naked. Wait for me.”
Domini slipped from the car with such grace and determination Cam wondered what he’d gotten himself into.