I don’t know what love is anymore.
Well, that’s not entirely true, but I’m going to tell you a little secret: I’ve lost the spark.
You know the kind of spark I’m talking about?
Where butterflies take flight in your stomach from two hands innocently colliding. Or catching your breath when you first meet someone attractive. Yeah, that spark.
Except I haven't felt that feeling in forever; there is nothing left inside of me.
Normally, this wouldn’t be a problem--but I’m a writer on a serious deadline, and my editor is breathing down my neck for a romantic, Nicholas Sparks type love story. No pressure, right?
That's how I find myself flying across the country to crash a wedding in the name of research, dress and heels stuffed into my small suitcase.
It should be the easiest book research ever. Drinking some free champagne, basking in the love of two strangers, and tapping into my romantic side. That will be a breeze. I'm a pro. I can handle this.
Until I mistakenly end up in the wrong hotel room, naked as the day I was born, with the sexiest human I have ever met staring me down, wondering what I'm doing taking a shower in his bathroom. I don't think calling it research will get me out of this pickle.
Crystal-blue ocean shines below me, and if I wasn’t so scared of Zoey and her repercussions for being late, I would take the time to appreciate Mother Nature. Instead I hurry into my room, flop my suitcase on my bed, unzip it, and grab my toiletries.
Not taking a second longer, I strip down, leaving my gross airplane clothes on the floor, and practically skip to the shower where I stop mid stride.
In the shower stall is a black razor, with accompanying shaving cream. That’s odd. Is that courtesy of the hotel? This place is fancy, but not that fancy. Spinning on my heel, I turn toward the sink behind me and spot a white and green toothbrush, tube of toothpaste, and men’s cologne. Shit, turning toward the room, my eyes frantically roam the space, spotting a black suitcase in the corner.
Shit, shit, shit.
Naked, I cover my breasts with my arm and open the closet door only to come face to face with a few hung-up shirts.
Yup . . . I’m in someone else’s fucking room.
And whoever this room belongs to is the neatest person ever because who honestly lines up there toothbrush and toothpaste tube perfectly on the counter?
Reaching for the phone, I call down to the front desk.
“Mr. Wilder, how can we assist you?” Oh yeah, totally not in the correct room.
“Uh, yeah, hi, this is Rylee Ryan. I just checked in. I was given the key to room 625 and it seems to be occupied.”
“Oh dear, let me check.” There is a pause on the phone and then the lady comes on the line again. “I’m terribly sorry, Miss. Ryan. We have you in room 626. Would you like to come down here and grab a new key?”
Is she kidding? The trek it took to get over here ate up enough of my time. I can’t possibly take a shower if I have to run back to the lobby, grab a key, and run all the way back here.
“Would you mind bringing it to room 625? I have dinner plans and have to get changed.”
“Oh, of course. I’ll send someone up with a key right away.”
I hop around naked, eyeing my pukey clothes on the floor and the shower in the other room. Twisting my lip to the side, I try to decide what to do. I can be super quick, like really fucking quick. I just need to scrub the puke and throw on a dress, simple. Two minutes tops. The water doesn’t even have to be warm. I’ll write a polite note to Mr. Wilder—whoever that is—leave him five dollars as a kind gesture and quietly leave. No problem with that. Right?
Turning on the shower, I hop in before the water can warm up and hiss from the frosty temperature. I douse soap all over my hands and scrub my neck and body vigorously first, which normally I would wash my hair first but . . . puke. Once I’m satisfied with the amount of scrubbing, I wash my hair, condition it in a minute, do one more soap scrubbing all over my body before rinsing and turning the shower off. Two minutes.
Just in case Mr. Wilder is sitting outside the bathroom, I peek my head out the door, towel wrapped around my body, and call out, “Hello?”
When there is no response, I check that the coast is clear then strut to my suitcase and find a simple black sundress. Not bothering to look for underwear or a bra—I really don’t need one with my perky B-cups—I lay out my dress and dry off.
Hopefully Mr. Wilder doesn’t mind me using one of his towels or his room for that matter. He’s probably some old dude away on his golfing vacation. I hope I don’t give him a heart attack.
I drape my towel over the bed and run my hands through my naturally wavy, black hair. This will have to do. Picking up my towel one more time, I scrunch my hair, trying to soak up all the water just as the hotel door swings open, light blaring through, a tall, dark silhouette shadowed in the doorframe.
I still, frozen from the tips of my toes to the hand scrunching a towel in my hair.
Toned calves and legs are covered by black board shorts, slick to his thighs, a bulge prominent. Narrow waist where his board shorts ride low on his hips, a black shirt dancing across his broad chest, cinching sleeves cuffed over his biceps, and a V-neck providing a glimpse of how far his tan extends. Head cast down, eyes transfixed on his phone in front of him, he doesn’t notice the naked girl standing in the middle of his hotel room. He stuffs his keycard in his back pocket and looks up, startled.
He grumbles something unintelligible as I point out the obvious. “Ahhh, my boobs are naked!” It might be a little concerning that I consider my boobs to be the only things naked at this point.
As quickly as I can, I cover my body, towel making a poor attempt to hide my girly bits.
The man turns away, covering his eyes with his arm while muttering, “Oh shit.”
“What the hell do you think you’re doing?” I ask, struggling with my towel. I know damn well the man in front of me must be Mr. Wilder, and this is in fact his room, and I’m the one intruding, but I still feel the need to place the blame on him for walking in on me naked.
“Grabbing my sunglasses,” he says, his voice terrified but also deep and rumbly. “What the hell are you doing here?”
Still trying to cover myself, I scramble to grab my dress and back up to the bathroom. “Washing my neck,” I answer, nervously, boobs swaying with my erratic movements.
Eyes still covered, he keeps his back toward me but straightens up. “Washing your neck? Is that code for some kind of weird Key West thing?”
I back into the bathroom and make quick attempt of putting my dress over my head and righting it so everything is covered up. Hair still damp as well as my body, I step out into the room and clear my throat, dress sticking to my damp skin. “No, it’s not code for anything. I really had to wash my neck.”
“And you chose my room to do that in, because . . .”
Bending down, I shove my dirty clothes in my bag and zip up, giving Mr. Wilder the heads-up that I’m dressed. At least he’s a gentleman . . .
When he turns around, he eyes me up and down, his gaze curious and heated when he sees just how hard my nipples are from the cold shower . . . and the unexpected peep show.
“I didn’t choose your room to take a shower in.” I move my suitcase to the floor and pull up the handle. “The hotel gave me the key to this room by mistake, and since I had puke on my neck from the airplane—long story—I decided to take a quick shower while I waited for my room. I apologize for taking up your space, but I think we’re skipping an important detail here.” I cock my hand on my hip. “You saw me naked.”
“No, I didn’t,” he retorts rather quickly, despite the slow grin that spreads across his face.
I’m calling bullshit. “You totally saw my boobs.”
“I really didn’t. Your scream scared the shit out of me. I didn’t have enough time to see anything before you covered up.”
Eyeing him suspiciously, I ask, “You promise you didn’t see anything?”
Hmm. “Okay, because being hotel neighbors and all, that would be extremely awkward if you saw me naked.”
“Good thing I didn’t then.” He rocks back on his heels, hands in his pockets, unsure of what to do. Finally he reaches out to the desk next to him and holds up his black Ray Bans. “Just needed my sunglasses.”
Born in New York and raised in Southern California, Meghan has grown into a sassy, peanut butter eating, blonde haired swearing, animal hoarding lady. She is known to bust out and dance if “It’s Raining Men” starts beating through the air and heaven forbid you get a margarita in her, protect your legs because they may be humped.
Once she started commuting for an hour and twenty minutes every day to work for three years, she began to have conversations play in her head, real life, deep male voices and dainty lady coos kind of conversations. Perturbed and confused, she decided to either see a therapist about the hot and steamy voices running through her head or start writing them down. She decided to go with the cheaper option and started writing… enter her first novel, Caught Looking.
Now you can find the spicy, most definitely on the border of lunacy, kind of crazy lady residing in Colorado with the love of her life and her five, furry four legged children, hiking a trail or hiding behind shelves at grocery stores, wondering what kind of lube the nervous stranger will bring home to his wife. Oh and she loves a good boob squeeze!