Saved By The Lumberjack

Page 9

I give him a tight nod.
“Anyway, I should get going. You should drop by the café soon. Marianne misses you,” he says, and with another smile in Daisy’s direction, he vanishes.
Once he’s out of earshot, Daisy raises an eyebrow. “You don’t seem to like him.”
“I do like him. He’s a good friend.”
“Well, you didn’t act like it. He seemed nice.”
I grind my teeth. “Yes, he’s very nice. Especially to beautiful women. I just didn’t want him to get the wrong idea about you.”
“Oh, and what would that be?”
“That you’re…” I trail off and rub the back of my neck.
“I just didn’t want him to think you’d be interested in someone like him,” I grit out.
“Well, good,” she says, standing up and reaching for my hand. “Because I’m not interested in him. Or men like him.”
Burke blinks at me, and then the shadow of a smile plays around his lips.
“Good,” is all he says before he starts walking.
Good. He thinks it’s good men like Stephen aren’t my type. I mull the short word over in my head, trying to extract meaning from it. Does he think it’s good I don’t like Stephen because he’s a womanizer? Or because maybe, just maybe, Burke wants me to be into men like, well, Burke?
I glance at his handsome profile out of the corner of my eye. Am I into Burke? I can’t deny that I find him attractive. And that I like him as a person. Sure, he’s a bit grumpy and rough around the edges, but underneath all that, there’s a kindness that warms me to my core.
And last night, after I kissed his cheek—well, I can’t claim that I didn’t imagine what it would be like to kiss him properly.
“Why are you staring at me?” he asks, and I blush, feeling caught.
I swallow. “Maybe I just like looking at you?”
He turns his head to look at me, and the intensity of his gaze makes me shiver. And to my surprise, he says, “I like looking at you too.”
I open my mouth to respond, but can’t think of anything to say. So instead I squeeze his fingers, and when he squeezes back, a warm glow settles in my stomach.
“You have an eyelash on your cheek,” he murmurs, and with the hand that isn’t holding mine, he reaches out and dabs at my cheek. My heart hammers in my chest. Somehow, this feels incredibly intimate.
A second later, he holds out a leather clad finger, an eyelash stuck to the tip. “Make a wish.” His voice is quiet and hoarse, and I can see his Adam’s apple bob as he swallows.
I blow the eyelash away and close my eyes. I wish to be happy and safe. When I open my eyes, I see Burke’s smiling face, and my heart stumbles. I wonder if the man in front of me just might make my wish come true.