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By Tessa McDermid

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She asked softly. " He felt an urge to swat her behind. Instead, he pressed a hard kiss on her lips. "That's exactly why, you little minx. " The implication in her quiet words acted like a tonic on him. He wrapped his arms around her, dragging her off the ground. This time her lips answered his silent pleas and parted under his kisses, letting him taste the ful ness of her mouth, her tongue meeting his again and again. His breath ragged, he slowly lowered her to the ground and knelt beside her, his hands stil on her arms.

She nodded. " She turned to him with shining eyes. "But I could sneak into your room tonight—" He groaned and seized her hand, almost running down the road with her. "Not another word, Marian. " He drew her back onto the road. She giggled. "They haven't tarred and feathered anyone since some salesman came into town last spring, trying to sel us al some worthless tonic. Not sure why, though. " A quick glance at her showed that she wasn't the least bit sorry. He struggled against a strong urge to spin her around in the road and kiss her until her teasing expression was again replaced with one of desire.

Several loose curls danced around her face and her hands fluttered with each word. " He frowned, trying to fol ow her lightning change of topic. " "They're in the Bible, sil y," she said. He dug in the dim recesses of his mind. Church on Sundays had been a regular part of his growing-up years, walking the few blocks with his mother and two sisters. Their dad always stayed home to read his paper in peace and quiet. " he ventured. She nodded. "My parents see themselves as Abraham and Sarah. They had decided it was God's will that they never have children.

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