When An Alpha Purrs

By: Eve Langlais

“Did I startle you, mouse?”

Her expression clearly said, duh, what do you think. He didn’t seem repentant at all, judging by the smile curving his lips.

Ack. Look away. He was much too cute when he did that—and distracting. She tried to veer things back onto a less alluring footing. “What are you doing here?” As she asked, she cast a glance around for eye witnesses, anyone who might come to her aid should he decide to murder her for her faux pas of the day before.

Then again, perhaps she overreacted. He didn’t seem angry today. On the contrary, his eyes smoldered with something, but if she wasn’t mistaken, it was more like flirtation than ire.

Given his extreme reaction, and her recollection of his arrogance, she didn’t trust it.

“It occurred to me after our little mishap yesterday that perhaps I might have come off too strong.”

“You mean you behaved like an ass.” She deliberately insulted him, more to regain her sense of equilibrium than anything.

“I admit some of my words might have been ill chosen. I apologize for that.”

He did what? She could feel her eyes widen at his unexpected apology. “Um, thanks. I guess I should probably say sorry for massacring your hair.”

He couldn’t quite hide his wince at the reminder, and it was then that she took note of the fedora he wore. It matched the dove gray of his tailored suit, but still… She bit her lip lest she snicker. While a nice looking hat, it just didn’t suit him.

“About my hair. It occurs to me that I owe you a second chance. A real chance to cut my hair. Albeit, probably shorter than I initially intended, given our misunderstanding.”

“Excuse me? Did I just hear you say you want me to cut it? Now I know you’re screwing with me.”

“No tricks. Once I calmed down yesterday, I had a chance to reflect on what happened. I never truly gave you a chance. I let chauvinism cloud my judgment. But in my defense, my only other haircuts by women were done by my mother and aunts, whose idea of a trim involved a bowl and kitchen scissors.”

Kira’s turn to wince. “Ouch.”

“Indeed. Perhaps that might help you to understand my hesitation. I should also admit I later spoke to your uncle at the barber shop. Initially, I’d planned to return to see him to have the damage blended. However, he assures me you are the best they have after Dominic.”

She couldn’t help but swell with pride at the praise. “I’m in pretty high demand.” Or had been until her old shop got burned down under suspicious circumstances.

“What do you say we start over? Hi, my name is Arik.” He stuck his hand out, and she stared at it.

Was he screwing with her? She shot him a wary glance but saw nothing in his face but sincerity, or a really good fake of it.

Given he was one of her granddad’s clients, and only a bitch would throw his apology in his face, especially after what she’d done, she slipped her fingers into his massive grip.

An electrical tingle of awareness slid through her. Whatever his faults, she certainly couldn’t deny her attraction to him.

“I’m Kira.”

“Kira.” The way he rolled the syllables of her name sent a tingle through her. Good thing he didn’t host late night radio. There’d be a lot of tired women in the morning. “Well, Kira, now that we’ve been properly introduced, would you cut my hair? Please.”

Oh dear god, the way he said it. She almost leaned against the door for support. Her attraction to him was truly insane. But it wasn’t his fault. She obviously had a problem.

I wonder if there’s a pill I can take to prevent attraction to the wrong kind of guys.

“I don’t think that’s a good idea.”

“But I need you to do it.” Purred softly. He inched closer, and all her attention was taken by him, the towering height and breadth of him, a big man just the way she liked. His eyes were focused on her, intent, not afraid to meet her gaze, which was ridiculously sexy.

She wanted to press herself against him and soften the hard line of his lips, taste the teasing smile lurking at its corners.

How could she hope to cut his hair when all she wanted to do was run her hands over him?

She needed chaperones to keep her in line. “If you come back in about an hour when we open, I’ll get you all fixed up.”

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