Her Marine Next Door - Aliyah Burke

Chapter One

Skylar Radford jumped and emitted a squeak at the unwanted, deep, and unmistakable rumble of the Harley roaring down the cul-de-sac. That obnoxious, earsplitting sound could only mean one thing. He had returned.

Parker Jax.

With a frustrated sigh—a mixture of sexual want and irritation—she climbed off the stool at her workstation and went to the window to steal a hungry look. Hugging the wall, she barely moved the gathered curtains. Only enough to peek beyond the cotton boundary.

Wouldn’t do for her to be caught staring at her hot-as-fuck neighbor. His incredible array of sexy tattoos all over, the scruff on his face, and buff build invaded her dreams. A Recon Marine body was definitely what she dreamed about.

He was perfect. He was a blond-haired, green-blue-eyed, inked god. Or would be, if he weren’t such an enormous ass.

He deliberately played loud music. Revved his engine—and hers from afar—at inappropriate times. And don’t get her started on the endless stream of fake-titted, ass in thin lips for plumping, bleach-haired women who arrived when he was home. The ones who got what she could only dream of.

It was so pleasant when he was gone. No vehicles blocking her driveway for parties she wasn’t invited to. No long nights of insanely high-pitched laughter from the women there vying for his attention.

“Can’t wait for the parties and the other loud shit to begin again,” she muttered sarcastically.

There wasn’t any one thing specifically that irritated her about the man; he just rubbed her the wrong way. Oil and water. Sweet and sour. Hard and soft. Fast and slow. Hot and cold.

They were such opposites she couldn’t recall a time they’d had a nice conversation. Their time typically revolved around her knocking on the door, demanding someone move a vehicle so she could leave her driveway, or her tossing shit back over the fence into his yard, or receiving a grunt and a chest scratch when she tried to be a good neighbor.

She didn’t call the cops or have vehicles towed when they were in her driveway, but still, she was made out to be the bad one.

Facts that rubbed her raw.

Most of the neighbors were elderly, which led to the quiet she coveted. She had her own reasons, her own demons, to run from, and what she didn’t need was the sexy-ass distraction.

Skylar sighed and moved to back up. He turned his head toward her, removed his helmet, and winked as he revved the motor once more before vanishing into the garage.

Of course he’d seen her.

What bothered her far more than having been caught sneaking a peek was that her body responded to his simple and utterly meaningless gesture.

With a litany of muttered curses flowing from her mouth, she went back to the intricate commissioned piece she had to finish. She picked up the chisel to carve the door lying before her on two sawhorses.

Soon enough, she was lost in her own world. A place where anything was possible, and the man next door didn’t invade. Her music was on, providing background ambiance.

Bam. Bam. Bam.

Jumping at the intrusive noise, she swore at the stab in her palm from the sharp edge of the blade.

“Damn, damn, damn. Dammit!”

After jerking her stinging hand from the work of art, she ignored the blood running along her skin and wiped the dark red liquid off the door. Then she focused on her injury.

Bam. Bam. Bam.

She gritted her teeth and took a deep breath. Hand wrapped in a dingy yet clean light blue towel, she stomped from the workshop garage through the house to the front door.

“Yes?” she demanded, yanking it open.

It was a struggle, but she forced niceness into her tone. It might actually be a neighbor she liked.

It wasn’t.

Lusted after, sure. Dreamed about, definitely. Liked? Nope.

“You,” she growled.

Beyond him, she saw a line of cars, some in her driveway, and knew the night would be loud.

“Took you long enough, Skylar.” His deep rumble bypassed her ears to hit directly on her lady parts that had been ignored too long and tease them.

Fuck, she was surprised he remembered her name. Usually all she got were glares and grunts.

Her anger simmered, but she tried—so hard—to remain calm. Faster heartbeat meant more blood pumping and more blood loss. Her hand had begun to feel numb, though the throb had yet to completely vanish.

“What could you possibly want?”

Those incredible green-blue eyes moved over her figure, pushing her pain to the back of her mind and setting up an entirely different type of throb. Entirely

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