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Peaches and Cream
Author: Georgia Beers


Chapter One

   “From the gentleman on the other side of the bar.”

   The bartender’s voice was low and gravelly, and she had to lean in very close to Sabrina in order to be heard, which Sabrina didn’t mind because the bartender was also super hot. Tall, piles of dark hair, and she smelled great—like strawberries and something woodsy—which she wouldn’t have known if she hadn’t had to get so close. A glass of bourbon, neat, was slid in front of her. She shifted her gaze to meet the eyes of the guy across the bar who held up his beer in salute. Handsome enough, tall, dark hair short on the sides and a little floppy on top. Younger than her, clearly. Tie pulled loose and askew over his white shirt.

   She thanked the bartender with a nod and finished the bourbon she currently had, then slid the empty glass in and grabbed the new one. And stifled a sigh because men constantly hit on her. Women never did. She hadn’t been able to quite figure that one out yet.

   She took a sip, and her gaze went not to the guy who’d sent the drink, but to the brunette sitting at the two-top table behind him. She’d caught Sabrina’s eye the second she’d arrived. She’d been alone for a good fifteen minutes, and Sabrina was working up the nerve to go talk to her when a cute blonde arrived, kissed the brunette on the cheek, and took the other seat. Sabrina had sighed internally. If they’re not straight, they’re taken. That had been her experience for the past several months as she’d traveled from city to city. Not that she was looking for a relationship. Who had time for that? And while she loved the idea of some soft conversation, a shared bottle of wine or a meal, maybe a warm body for the night, she wasn’t really that person. Picking up a stranger and taking them home? She wished she was built to do that, but she just wasn’t. She had been aching for longer than she cared to admit, and she looked with longing at the brunette again. It would be lovely to at least talk to somebody, though. Sadly, getting in the middle of something like the two women at the table wasn’t on her list of things to do today.

   Resigned, she sipped again, feeling the zap of the bourbon as it warmed its way down her throat and settled in her stomach. And lower. It was one of the reasons she loved bourbon. It settled far south, created a comfortable, subtle buzz between her legs.

   Aaaand here he comes. As she knew he would, the guy who’d sent the drink was making his way around the bar.

   “Hi there,” he said, sidling up next to her and holding out his hand. “Eddie.”

   “Hi, Eddie.” She shook it, making sure to do so firmly, like her mother taught her. Something useful for business, as was typical of her mother. “Sabrina.”

   “Sabrina. I like that.”

   She had to force herself not to roll her eyes. Which she felt bad about because Eddie wasn’t doing anything wrong. Truth was, she was tired, she was bummed about the brunette, and she didn’t have the energy to play nice with this guy who had no idea how wrong the tree he was barking up was.

   And then something surprising happened.

   A tall, gorgeous woman came into the bar, crossed to the two-top table, and kissed the blonde on the mouth. Then she pecked the brunette on the cheek and stood next to the blonde’s chair with her arm around her as the three of them talked.

   Well, well, well, isn’t that an interesting turn of events?

   “I haven’t seen you here before,” Eddie said, yanking her attention back to him.

   “No, you haven’t.” She didn’t offer any details, which she knew was rude, but seriously, why let him waste his time? “Listen, Eddie, thanks for the drink,” she said, doing her best to be polite, but not inviting. “I really appreciate it, but—”

   He sighed, crestfallen. “You’re married. Have a boyfriend. Both.”

   She laughed softly—she couldn’t help it. “I’m sorry,” was all she said, because outing herself to strange men wasn’t something she did if it was possible to avoid it.

   He shrugged and gave her a boyish grin. “Can’t blame a guy for trying, right?”

   “Not at all. And seriously”—she held up her drink—“thank you.”

   He nodded once, then turned and headed back to his side of the bar. As she followed his retreat, her gaze was snagged by the table of women.

   All three of them were looking her way.

   She swallowed hard. Her heart began to pound in that anticipatory way it does when somebody you find attractive notices you. Her lower body tightened deliciously as she wet her lips, then pulled her gaze away and sipped her bourbon.

   Allowing herself only surreptitious glances for the next few moments, she almost jumped up and cheered out loud when the blonde and her girlfriend said their good-byes to the brunette and headed for the door. Sabrina gave it another moment. Two. Waited to see if the brunette was in a hurry to leave, but she didn’t seem to be. She signaled the bartender.

   “That woman over there by herself, what’s she been drinking?”

   “Pinot grigio,” the bartender told her.

   With a nod, Sabrina ordered a glass.

   * * *

   Adley Purcell worked too much.

   Her best friend Scottie told her so all the time, and she had known her since they were kids, so if Scottie said she worked too much, Scottie was probably right. She worked too much—she needed to get out, find a hobby, meet other people, get laid for God’s sake, maybe even find that special someone. Easy for Scottie to say. She’d met Marisa almost a year ago and had been floating on a cloud ever since. While Adley wasn’t against cloud floating—seriously, who would be?—she just didn’t have the energy to go looking.

   Which was why it was so weird when the blonde at the bar who had caught Adley’s eye the second she walked in—the blonde that both Scottie and Marisa had noticed and pointed out to her—approached her table with a half-drunk glass of what looked like whiskey in one hand and a full glass of white wine in the other.

   “Hi,” the blonde said, and holy shit, she was even more beautiful up close. Small, but with big energy. Adley could feel that right away. The bluest eyes she’d ever seen and just the barest hint of dimples when she smiled at her. “I’m afraid I’m about to be really presumptuous, but I haven’t been able to take my eyes off you since I got here. You’re gorgeous. And I brought you wine.” She set the glass in front of Adley and waited.

   Adley knew she was blushing. She could feel the heat in her face, her ears. She swallowed down the ball of nerves that had taken up residence in her throat. “I mean, if you brought wine, you already get points.” She indicated the other chair. “Please. Sit.” She reached for the wine, took a sip. It was exactly what she’d been drinking. “Thank you for this.”

   “You’re welcome.” The blonde held her hand across the table. “Sabrina.”

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