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It was annoyance at first sight.
She had a smart mouth on her that had Colton’s blood racing. He put all of himself into his work. He didn’t have time for a relationship or for these feelings Sugar brought out in him.
But Sugar wasn’t like anyone else. He shouldn’t want her but he did. He didn’t deserve her, but he knew he couldn’t say away.
It started with his dog knocking Sugar on her ass. It ended with her wanting so much more with Colton. He was arrogant and sometimes cold. But underneath that ice and rock he was gentle, sweet even.
She wanted to chisel away at the wall he’d built around himself. She wanted to bury herself in his heart.
They both wanted the same thing but denied it through and through. It wasn’t until they were forced together that they must face the reality.
They were meant to be together.
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Sugar tried to keep up with her tiny Pomeranian as she hustled ass down the street. She tightened her hold on the white leather leash, Poppy’s little bell dangling from her collar, ringing with each step she made.
The streets were packed with bumper-to-bumper traffic, the sidewalks filled with pedestrians. Although she loved the city for its culture and variety, she hated it for the fact there was no intimacy.
She stopped at the crosswalk and waited for the sign to indicate she was safe to go. As soon as the little white stick man popped up she walked across the street, Poppy trailing behind her. She was at the park about five minutes after that, the enclosed dog area a place for Poppy to let off steam and interact with her furry friends. It also gave Sugar time to catch up on emails.
Once Poppy was in the dog run and Sugar was seated on one of the benches, she watched for a moment as her spunky Pomeranian ran around in hyper circles. Sugar fished out her cell and started going through her emails, answering some, verifying appointments in others, and doing things she’d rather put off.
Periodically she checked on Poppy, who was now busy chewing on a stick under the shade of a large tree. A second later Poppy ran over to Sugar, the stick in her mouth almost as long as her body. She lay down at her feet and started the process of chewing at the end. A breeze picked up, a reprieve from the hot July weather beating down on them.
Sugar was vaguely aware of the sound of the dog run gate being opened and closed, and of the tinkle of tags dangling from a collar coming closer and closer. She looked down at Poppy, who perked her head up and made this combination of a low growl and whining noise.
“What’s wrong?” she said to Poppy a second before a large furry body propelled itself onto her, successfully knocking her off the bench so she landed on her ass beside her yipping Pomeranian. Her phone was knocked out of her hand and lay a few feet from her sprawled body.
The dog on top of her had shaggy hair and started frantically licking the side of Sugar’s face. She couldn’t help but chuckle as she gently pushed the beast off of her, hanging on to his collar in the process.
“You’re just so excited, aren’t you, boy?” She patted his head.
“Dammit,” a deep male voice hollered out and she looked up to see what she presumed was the owner hauling ass toward them. He was dressed in a pair of slacks and a crisp looking button-down shirt, the light blue coloring coordinating perfectly with the navy shade of his pants. His short, dark blond hair was immaculately styled, and the shine of his loafers was almost blinding.
Although this was the city and it wasn’t like she wasn’t used to seeing people in business attire, usually when they came to the park, especially the dog run, they tended to go with more relaxed clothes.
She righted herself and started scratching behind the dog’s ear. He immediately lay on his side and started kicking his legs, Sugar obviously having found his sweet spot.
“You’re just encouraging him.” The deep, gruff voice came through like a crack from a whip.
Sugar felt her body tense as she lifted her head and looked at the man, who now was only a few feet from her. The brown leash he held looked designer, with gold accents and little wear. She stood fully and brushed off her legs, pieces of dirt and grass falling from her thighs. “Excuse me?”
“Come here, Boscoe,” the man said and patted his side. The dog jumped up a little uncoordinatedly and trotted over to his owner. He started licking his hand, and although the man was stiff and stern looking, he ran his palm over the dog’s head.
“What exactly did you mean by that?” Sugar asked again and crossed her arms over her chest.
“I’m sorry he knocked you over but I’m trying to train him. So rewarding him by giving him positive reinforcement after he just put you on your ass is not the message I want to send to him.”
Is he for real?
Sugar lifted her brow. He was reprimanding her? She could’ve laughed. “Well, I could suggest keeping your dog on a leash, but given the fact we’re in a dog run, isn’t the point for him running around to let off some steam?” She saw the way his jaw tightened under his clean-shaven cheek. Sugar could tell what kind of man this was.
He was used to getting his way, maybe not having someone challenge him or talk back to him. But then again, he’d obviously never met a woman like her, strong and independent, not about to let him talk down to her.