“I’m coming, Noah.” Dani’s voice was filled with laughter as she came around the table behind Tyler to help her son.
The sandwich fell onto the table, and Tyler swallowed the bite in his mouth. “You two are tag-teaming me now?” He grabbed Dani when she tried to get by and pulled her onto his lap. “That’s fine, I’ll get you, too!”
But with Dani’s mouth just a hairbreadth from his, her soft round ass pressing into him, both of them stilled. Their breath mingled, and Tyler’s eyes locked with her bright green ones.
Noah had crawled out of his chair and was struggling to climb on top of Dani. Once the toddler had put himself between them, he wrapped his chubby arms around her neck. “My mama.”
The spell broken, Tyler helped them both off of his lap, trying to ignore the hard-on that had sprung to life.
“Sorry, I got carried away,” Tyler said.
Dani’s cheeks and neck were scarlet. “No, it’s fine. It was fun. I don’t know why you say you aren’t good with kids. You’re a natural.”
Words that should have sent prickles of warning down his spine. Instead, he held out his hand and changed the subject. “Do you have your phone on you?”
THAT NIGHT, DANI stood in her kitchen, sipping a glass of wine and staring at the number in her phone. She’d already carried Noah to bed after watching two episodes of Mickey Mouse Clubhouse with him and having him fall asleep snuggled into her lap. Now, with the place so quiet, she was really tempted to press the little phone icon and call Tyler.
Are you crazy? You just saw him earlier today! You do not want to freak him out.
God, was it wrong to like him so much? Despite every warning bell ringing in her head that he was a player and a jerk, the way he was with Noah today . . . playing with him, making him laugh.
But it wasn’t just that. The fissions of electricity between them had made her almost lose her mind and kiss him. In front of Noah. She knew enough from reading the stack of parenting books and magazines her mom gave her that you never introduced your kid to anyone you weren’t serious about.
This situation is a little different. He met Noah by accident twice. You can always keep them separated until you figure out if he’s playing you.
Just the thought of putting herself out there again, of trusting someone with not just her heart but Noah’s, too, made her palms sweat buckets.
Setting her phone facedown on the counter, she took her glass of wine and went to sit on the couch. She had time. She didn’t have to decide right now what she wanted to do with that number.
TYLER WAS AT Mick’s Bar playing pool downstairs, and against his will, he checked his phone again.
“You waiting on a call or something?” Kline asked as he took his shot, knocking one of Tyler’s balls in. “Fuck, I quit!”
“You can’t quit until I beat you.” Tyler slipped his phone into his pocket, refusing to talk about Dani with Kline or anyone. Hell, he wasn’t even sure why he’d given her the damn number anyway, but the ball was in her court.
Besides, it was Thursday night at Mick’s, which meant Ladies’ Night. The place would be packed with women looking to get drunk and hook up.
So why was he sweating Dani so hard?
“We’re out of beer,” Sparks said. “Your turn, Best.”
Tyler laid his pool cue down and took the pitcher from Sparks. “Don’t touch my stick.”
“Not even for a million dollars.”
Tyler chuckled as he climbed the stairs to the upper level and pushed his way through the throng of people toward the bar. The place was filled with women in skimpy tube and halter tops, their sweet body sprays and perfumes making the air almost cloying.
Since when aren’t you into tube tops?
Since he’d seen Dani in her gray oversized sweater today.
The bartender waved him forward, and he held out a twenty. “Pitcher of Bud.”
He nodded and went to fill one up. While Tyler waited, he caught the eye of a tall, stacked brunette with red dick-sucking lips. She smiled coyly at him, and it was a message he recognized.