I persuaded my best friend that I should be her first…

I’m Hayes Elliott. Since second grade, I’ve had one best friend, Echo Hope. When she graduates from college, of course I have to give her something amazing. Since I’ll be on a business trip to Maui, I’m bringing her along for a week of fun and sun. But once she sheds her long skirts, serious buns, and combat boots for bikinis, I can’t deny how stunning she is…and I can’t stop wanting her. Worse, she’s determined to lose her V-card—and has asked one of our man-whoring buddies to pluck it.

I’ve got to step in.

It’s underhanded, but I offer to do the job properly. Since I’m no one’s Prince Charming, I have no intention of following through. Suddenly, the kisses start and the clothes come off…and I can’t remember why I’m not supposed to make her mine in every way. Or why I shouldn’t be in love with her. But if I want Echo for more than a vacation fling, I’ll have to fight. And she’s about to find out how determined I am to upgrade my best friend to wife.

Book Type:

Contemporary Romance

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Excerpt: More Than Possess You
By Shayla Black

Excerpt: More Than Possess You

New York Times and USA Today bestselling author Shayla Black returns with a new story in her More Than Words series. MORE THAN POSSESS YOU is out this week and you can read an excerpt from this standalone novella below!

I’ve never seen Echo look more than cute. Right now, she’s beautiful.

“Wow, you look great.” I’ve complimented her appearance a hundred times and meant it…except when I tried to be nice because she was sick and looked like hell. This is the first time I’ve ever felt awkward saying something. Does she know I mean it more than I should?

“You clean up nice, too. Xavian just texted. He’ll be a few minutes late. I guess it took him a while to get into his room.”

More likely he hung around the lobby with Miss Hawaiian Ta-tas. Does Echo suspect that? Would it upset her?

We head down to the restaurant, and the maître d’ sits us beside a short iron railing with gorgeous views of the property and the beach. Five minutes later, we have a cocktail. We clink glasses and order appetizers, then look up to see Xavian rushing to the table in his collared shirt and khaki shorts.

“Sorry, guys.” He slicks back still-wet hair and takes a seat. “What did I miss?”

Moments later, the waiter delivers appetizers. X scans the menu while we give our orders, then he tells the smiling older man in the Hawaiian print shirt to bring him some mahi-mahi and a mule.

We make small talk about the resort, work, and school while we consume liquor, food, then more liquor. It’s nice, like old times—mostly. I hate that I’m noticing that the exposed flesh of Echo’s breasts playing peekaboo with her dress are a few shades lighter than the rest of her.

Is that as pale as her skin gets…or are there other parts of her not only unseen by any man, but the sun?

I shouldn’t speculate about that. I shouldn’t be thinking about her at all. And the way X is looking at Echo, I’m convinced he’s wondering the same thing. I want to throttle him.

Glancing down into my greyhound, I swallow to get my temper under control. Despite the fact I’ve warned X away, he’s not backing off. I’m sure he thinks I’m jealous or something. But I intend to keep my best friend from getting hurt.

Dessert comes. Echo digs into her brown butter banana, dripping in caramel sauce and slathered in ice cream, and she moans. The little sounds from her throat have me pushing my cheesecake away and shifting uncomfortably in my seat. I’m hard just from listening, I admit it. She’s sounds like she’s having a fucking orgasm.

Has she ever had one?

None of my business. I need to stop wondering shit like that.

A glance tells me Xavian, staring fixedly at Echo, is having dirty thoughts, too.

I motion to the waiter for another drink. X points to his glass, as well.

Fuck, maybe it was a mistake to think I could sleep in the same bed with my best friend, no problem. Something tells me it won’t be as much like putting my sleeping bag next to hers as I believed.

Finally, she finishes the last bite of her dessert with another wrenching moan, eyes closed as she licks her spoon like a lover.

Shit. Echo is…sexy? When did that happen?

In front of me, my phone rings. I glance at the display, then smile. “Hey, Gramma.”

“How’s Hawaii, young man?”

“It’s gorgeous. I’m sitting here on the open lanai, finishing dinner and drinks with Xavian and Echo. How are you?”

“I hate Boston, and your grandfather, may he rot in hell, insisted on living in this shit hole. And now I’m too old to leave.”

“You’re not. If you want, I’ll move you to Cali the day I get home. I’d love to have you closer.” I worry about her now that she has no family back there to take care of her.

“I’m not pretty enough to live in Hollywood. Besides, you can’t move my house, and I’m not leaving it.”

We’ve had this argument before. “Stubborn broad.”

“Headstrong ass,” she quips back.

I laugh. We’ve had this argument before, too. She raised me during summers when my mom was working two jobs and my dad was too busy plowing his new piece of ass on “business trips” to be bothered with his kids.

“Hi, Gramma Liddy!” Echo calls across the table.

“Tell that young lady of yours I said hi. And tell her I said to keep you in line.”

“Gramma, we’ve talked about this…”

She’s convinced Echo hung the moon and I should marry her tomorrow. It’s precisely because I care about her that I never would.

“And I still think you’re wrong. You’re not your philandering father. He came out of my vagina a raving asshole. Never did care about anyone but himself. You’re not like that.”

“Thanks, Gramma.” What the hell else am I going to say when my grandmother is talking about her female parts while Echo and X look on intently?

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