Career-minded Agent Daphne Taylor is in crisis mode. A pregnancy test comes back positive, but when she’s tapped as a competitor on a cooking reality show, her stress level spikes. Vowing to keep the baby news secret, especially since the father is her partner, Jason, she throws herself into the case to find a murderer.
Geek and tech guru Agent Jason Patterson has been assigned the lead on this new case. Daphne’s involvement in a cooking competition is all fun and teasing until a freak accident reveals a staggering secret she was keeping. His feelings of friendship for her grow into something stronger and he wants a shot at that life.
As pressure to solve the case mounts, Jason struggles with his job and romance, while Daphne works through emotions building between them. But their budding love is threatened since the killer is determined to chop them both from life.
"What are you doing?" The butterflies began an intense ballet.
He gently cupped her cheek, his long fingers framing the side of her head and furrowing into her hair. "Kissing you," he murmured. He dipped his head and fit his lips to hers. Her eyelids fluttered closed.
After so many years of being in control, of initiating her relationships with men, of guiding them and keeping them specifically only to the physical, Daphne surrendered to Jason's embrace with a soft sighing moan. He didn't push or rush as he pressed his lips to hers, but he did remain still as if waiting for a response from her to continue. She blinked her eyes opened and caught him staring at her, questions in his gaze. Then she laid a palm against his chest. His muscles tensed. Did he assume she'd push him away?
Heated desire coiled in her lower belly, but behind that need, familiarity built and joined hands with a calm she'd not known for a long time. She lifted onto her tiptoes and more firmly encouraged the kiss. When he slipped his free hand to the small of her back, she closed her eyes and let the feelings from the embrace consume her.
There was no other way to describe the waves breaking over her as Jason moved his lips over hers. This wasn't one of the wet, sloppy, drunken kisses they'd shared in July. No, this was sweet and dare she say romantic, almost as if he wanted...
Daphne faltered and broke the kiss before it could grow and take her places she didn't know if she wanted to go. Her lips tingled, but as she stared at him and saw his bemused expression, she backed away a few steps. "Jason, I... I..." What? She couldn't deny the heat and connection between them, so what exactly did she want from Jason Patterson?
"Don't say it, Daph. At least wait a few minutes before you tear a strip from me." He turned away, hiding his eyes and expression from her. "I won't apologize for that."
"I didn't ask you to."
"I can't even guarantee I won't do it again." He didn't sound remotely sorry.
Despite her confusion, she smiled. "Not if I come at you first." She gasped, and he faced her, hope blazing in those deep blue depths. Apparently, the decision had been made by her subconscious. Maybe she'd known what she'd wanted all along. "I mean..." She couldn't summon enough words to backpedal.
"I know what you meant." This time his grin oozed charm and something else that sent tendrils of heat up her spine. "Don't tell Mitchell."
She licked her lips and when he followed the gesture with his gaze, she cleared her throat. "Tell him what?" She needed to hear the words.
"That we're dating. He'll go nuclear."
Dating. She and Jason were dating. Daphne blew out a breath. It didn't terrify her as much as she'd assumed it would. "I won't tell if you won't."
What the hell? Life was all about chasing down new experiences. Why shouldn't they be with him?
God help me.