The way it changed is this: I was at the club working the stair-climbing machine to keep my booty in shape. I don’t have the body of a porn star, but I know I’m good-looking and the repeated stares I get from guys have confirmed that. I was wearing an electric blue leotard with pink wristbands and a blue headband under my honey-blonde ponytail to match my bodysuit. (No shorts.) A guy came up and stood right in front of me as I picked up the pace with the programmed routine I had set for myself. He watched for a couple beats looking me up and down, smiling his approval. Then he said, “Looking good, angel,” and took a swig from his water bottle.
“Oh, please,” I answered with an eye-roll. “Don’t you have somewhere to be? I’m trying to achieve something here.”
“I’m right where I need to be,” he said, crossing his arms and leaning back a bit to size me up some more. “And you are definitely getting results.”
I flushed slightly as the program switched to the cool-down cycle. I wasn’t used to being hit on so openly, especially not by a hunk like this guy. He had cool blue eyes, sandy hair, and was as ripped as a bodybuilder. (In fact, he was a bodybuilder.)
“My name’s Reese. Don’t get the wrong idea. I’m a trainer part time here at the club, so I have a professional interest in seeing the clients succeed. And you are clearly succeeding, sweetheart. You are one tight little package.” His eyes gleamed and seemed to bore two holes right through me. I began to feel a tingle rising from the tops of my thighs up to the pit of my stomach. He was certainly making the impression he was aiming at, but I refused to let him see that.
I tried to look away, pretending to watch one of the boring cable news monitors across the room.
“Here, take a shot of water.” He held out his bottle to me. “I know ladies never sweat, but you have a real glow going there and you’ve got to keep hydrated. I’m a pro. I know what I’m talking about.”
“Like I’d take a drink from a bottle you just used.”
“Really? You’re going to tell me you’ve never exchanged saliva with a man before?” His eyes sparkled a mischievous dare at me.
“In fact I have. With my husband. I’m married.” I played the trump card that I knew would win this face off. But he wasn’t fazed in the least.
“He’s a lucky guy. You with him here at the club?” He looked around disinterestedly to see.
“No, he’s at work. I’m here on my own.”
“I see. Well, then. Take a drink for him. I’m sure he cares about your hydration even if you don’t.”
I glared at him. The machine shut down. “Oh, all right.” I took a long drink from the bottle extended to me. I was pretty thirsty, after all.
“How’s that? Feel better?”
“Yeah, actually, it does. Thanks.” I handed the bottle back and stepped off the machine. “So what kind of training do you lead here at the club?” I asked. I knew I’d been acting the prissy bitch, and I wanted to make up for it with a little small talk.
“Oh, some cardio. Kickboxing and such. But mostly weight training.”
“Yeah, you look like you’d be good for that.” It was hard not to drool as I said it. He had the physique of an MMA fighter with tanned delts and lats bulging out the top of the tank shirt he was wearing.
“Thanks. I try to keep up with things.” He stretched out a fresh white towel with both hands. “Here. Looks like you could use this.”
I eyed him for a moment. “Yeah, that was a little more intense than what I’m used to.”
I stepped toward him to take the towel, but he made a move to one side and abruptly wrapped it around my neck and shoulders, pressing it into me with his large, powerful hands as he wiped the sweat from my skin.
“How’s that? Better?”
“Yeah. Thanks.” I was completely off balance. His confidence, the sureness and strength of his well-conditioned hands and forearms were turning me on and making me forget myself in a way I wasn’t used to.
“You done here now?”
“Yeah, I just need to grab my bag and catch the bus.”
“The bus? No, you don’t want to ride the bus home. I have my car here. Let me give you a lift.”
“No, I couldn’t,” I started to say as I leaned down to pick up my bag.
“It’s no problem. I’m happy to do it.” He took my gym bag and slung it over his buff, round shoulder. “Where do you live?”
“Over on Lansdowne. A couple miles from here.” He walked along with me as I headed for the door.
“Yeah, I know it. Not far from my place. Maybe we could stop there for a smoothie on the way.”
“No. I don’t think so. I don’t even know you and I need to get home. My husband is waiting for me.”
“Relax. I’m not going to eat you. We’ll do just what you say.”