A shout cuts through the music as half-naked women scatter, and my eyes dart to Mike the bouncer, who’s pulling some guy out of his chair. Probably touched the girl dancing for him—big mistake. Clancy watches Mike handle the situation. He doesn’t need to intervene; Mike’s already pushing the guy toward the side door, expecting the break bar to spring the door open. Instead, Mike slams into him from behind, and I hear the guy’s loud ugh over the music. I cringe because that must’ve hurt like a mother. Mike’s a big guy, and I mean really big. He’s got a good run on the last guy I dated, was engaged to, who left me, motherfucker.
I see Clancy has cringed too, and then he looks at me. I give him a half-smile with a brow arched in silent inquiry. He just shakes his head and rolls his eyes as Melody (her real name is Sally—yeah, try to use that in a strip joint) runs over to him. She grabs his arm and lingers a bit too close, telling him what happened, all the time fawning over him. It’s so damn annoying. Those who’ve been here longest know better than to fawn over Clancy. He’s not interested, which I find very strange for a gentleman’s club owner.
I don’t realize I’m squeezing the cup of water in my hand until water runs down my arm and splatters on the floor. “Fuck.” I drop the cup and reach for a towel.
Clancy looks up at me, sees the mess I’ve made, and his sinister grin appears at full volume. Crap, how stupid can I be? He pushes Melody away and tells her to get back to work. I crouch down and pick up the cup, which gives him a nice view of my ample cleavage, not on purpose. It’s the corset I’m wearing. Damn thing is tight as hell. He steps behind the bar and heads my way as I stand again.
“You okay?” he asks, the grin still bright and shiny.
“I’m fine,” I snap, and toss the cup into the trash and the towel on the shelf beneath the bar.
“Good thing that wasn’t glass.” He takes my hand and runs his fingers over my palm. I barely control a shudder at his warm touch. “Then I’d have to take care of you.”
That’s not a good subject for me. I yank my hand out of his. “I can take care of myself, thank you.”
Clancy chuckles softly and leans forward. “I bet you can. Done a good job of it so far, haven’t you?”
I roll my eyes and look at all of my customers, who are preoccupied. I’m not sure if I should be happy about this or not. I lean over the bar to grab an empty glass and the sensation of flesh on flesh hits me like a sonic wave. I feel fingertips running against my skin between my corset and my jeans, sliding right around my hip. I jump damn near out of my skin, drop the glass, which does break, and run right into Clancy behind me, where I become entangled in his long arms as he catches me.
“Oh, for fuck’s sake, Clancy!” I grumble and turn around in the circle of his arms. Big mistake.
He laughs, and I can feel it rumble through my body. The sensation makes me want to melt where I’m standing, and I won’t even go into how he smells right now, but oh dear God . . . what’s my name again? I didn’t know a man could smell this delicious.
He leans over again, his breath floating across my skin when he says, “A bit jumpy, aren’t we?”
I snap out of my daze and slap at his chest. “Fuck off!”
He laughs again, steps to the side, and grabs a towel to clean up the glass. “You’re a touchy one, Nemy-girl,” he says with the evil grin.
Oh. Shit. I might faint. I refocus my attention back to anger because it’ll save me. The man knows better than to touch me. He did that touchy-feely thing on purpose. Why is he tormenting me like this?
Clancy picks up the bigger pieces with his fingers and wipes down the shelf to catch the smaller ones. Luckily, the ice bin wasn’t beneath me when I dropped the glass, otherwise I’d have to clean it out and refill it with new ice. Wouldn’t want a customer to get a piece of glass in his drink, unless he’s being a real creep.
“I’m not the one touching people where they shouldn’t be touching people,” I finally spit out.
He stands abruptly, surprised. “I’m sorry for startling you. It won’t happen again.” He throws the towel in the discard pile I keep off to the side and walks away. “Be careful when you pick those up at the end of the night,” he adds over his shoulder, and reclaims his seat.
I blow out a frustrated breath from the close call that had me wanting to attack him, tuck a lock of my loosened hair behind my ear, and get back to work.
Pick up Nemesis on Amazon today.