By Luanna Stewart
Lindsey Marshall rolled over on her bed, again, and punched her pillow, again. What the hell was wrong with the guy? It wasn’t her fault Shelby had taken a liking to him. God knows why. Sure, he was gorgeous, but he wasn’t exactly putting out friendly signals. And she doubted dogs were swayed by chiseled features and killer bods.
Except for that arm.
Shit, she’d been staring again. Her curiosity would be her downfall. She just wanted to know the story. And what it felt like, or didn’t, as the case may be. Asking deeply personal questions in the middle of the night when they were both half-dressed, and not in bed together, was, as her daddy always said, ill advised.
She flopped onto her back and knew it was hopeless. She couldn’t get the image out of her head. Not the whole missing arm business. The other, toned muscle, smooth skin, damn near perfect, business.
She flicked on her bedside light and stared at her phone. Four o’clock. Her coffee maker was programmed to switch on in two and a half hours. There was no way in Hades she could wait that long for caffeine. She climbed out of bed, pulled on a pair of running shorts, and shuffled into the kitchen. Shelby thumped her tail from her bed in the corner.
“Yeah, good morning to you, troublemaker.” Luckily for the mutt, she was the cutest thing ever, and so it was easy to overlook her bad manners. Volunteering at the shelter came with the risk of wanting to bring home a pet. Shelby had caught her eye on a day when she was feeling particularly lonely. And just last week she’d been mightily tempted to adopt the cutest calico kitten.
She switched on the coffee maker and headed for the bathroom. Finished with her shower, a cup of java in hand, she stood in front of her closet and considered what to wear. She had to fill in for someone at Paws for Veterans, so her usual working attire might not be appropriate. She’d take her gym clothes and change before heading to her first class. She pulled on skinny jeans and a cotton tunic then examined the effect in the mirror. Put together but casual. Stylish but approachable. Heck, who was she kidding, they were clean.
After taking Shelby for a walk, on the leash so there’d be no more forced interactions with the grumpy guy next door, she sat at the table and reviewed the info she’d been given from Paws for Vets. Only one meeting scheduled for the morning, an amputee who’d recently moved to the area. She gazed in the direction of her cute neighbor. He might benefit from a companion dog. Maybe she should mention something the next time they ran into each other.
Or maybe not.