The illustrious romance writer, sex educator and actress Briana Cole returns with Couples Wanted. Her other romance books, like The Marriage Pass and The Unconditional Love series, examine more of these “unconventional” relationships and make readers question their own preconceptions about love, lust and monogamy. In Couples Wanted, Cole allows readers to dig into a whole new romantic adventure that goes terribly wrong.
See the alluring cover and read an exclusive excerpt from Chapter 1 below.
If Bridget hadn’t been so caught up in the moment, she probably would have turned, just a little to the right, and noticed the couple with their eyes fixated on her. She probably would have questioned their quiet exchange, sizing her up and nodding in unanimous approval. No, she was too busy with her own hidden agenda, her attention completely enthralled with one particular gentleman as he stepped into the restaurant.
Bridget noticed him first, and that element alone was enough to excite her. The thrill, the secrecy. Hell, the sexual tension between them was hypnotic, despite them being several feet apart. So much so, she had to stop herself from glancing around to see if anyone else was turned on by the apparent chemistry.
She shifted on the barstool and took another sip of the Vodka and Sprite, continuing to eye the man over the rim of her glass. Expecting the interaction, she had dressed with care, the navy blue bandage dress clinging to the dips and curves of her 5’8 frame. The sleeves hung off her shoulders to reveal a tapestry of butterfly tattoos shading the mocha flesh of her neck and collarbone an ombre of orange hues.
She lifted her hand to signal the bartender, the encrusted diamonds of her wedding band catching the pendant lighting from overhead. The bartender moseyed over, dragging a cloth along the marble bar top along the way. A gold tag with the name, Alisha, was perched on the breast pocket of her button-up uniform shirt.
“Another drink?” Alisha greeted with a knowing smile.
“Not for me.” Bridget nodded in the direction of the man who was now being seated alone in a nearby booth. “Send a Hennessey and Coke to him for me, please. Tell him it’s from me.”
Alisha nodded and headed off to fulfill the request.
Bridget continued nursing her own drink as she waited. She felt eyes on her, and she tried her best to hide a gloating smirk. It was foolish to feel nervous. Yet still, she felt her heart racing with excitement, or maybe it was anxiety. Either way, she had done her part. It was now up Mr. Handsome to take the bait.
The voice had a grin cracking Bridget’s face and she cocked her head, only slightly, to eye the visitor. He too, was smiling.
“I just wanted to thank you for the drink.”
Bridget nodded, exaggerating a lick of her plump lips. “My pleasure,” she flirted.
The man eased onto the stool next to her and Bridget appreciated how he didn’t bother hiding his visual assessment of her body. “How did you know I like Hennessey and Coke?”
She shrugged. “Lucky guess, I suppose.”
“Either I’m that easy to read, or you’re just that good.”
Now Bridget did turn to face him, crossing her legs to allow a sliver of thigh to peak through from underneath the bar. “I’m just that good,” she said with a wink.
He laughed and held out his hand. “I’m Chris.”
Bridget already had her own lie ready. “Veronica,” she said, accepting his hand.
“Well Veronica. Are you always this forward? Buying drinks for guys in bars?”
“Actually yeah. I like to go for what I want.”
She caught the glint in his eye. “Is that so? And what exactly do you want Ms. Veronica?”
“It’s Mrs.,” she corrected, politely and held up her hand, fingers spread apart to give him full view of her wedding ring.
The gesture didn’t seem to faze him one bit. “I apologize. Mrs. So what does your husband feel about you being alone in here? Flirting with me?”
Bridget giggled. “Flirting? Is that what we’re doing? I just thought we were here, having a drink, enjoying each other’s company. No harm in that right?”
Now it was his turn to shrug. “You tell me.”
The liquor had Bridget feeling bold and she leaned forward, a mere breath away from his lips. She could almost taste him as his Versace cologne assaulted her nostrils and awakened every inch of her body, that delicious musk of lust and desire like an intoxicating drug. To hell with it.
“I won’t tell if you won’t,” she whispered and leaned forward, pressed her lips against his to drink his very essence. She swallowed his moan as he deepened the kiss, using his tongue to wrestle with hers. He broke contact first, resting his forehead against hers as they both tried to catch their breath.
“You don’t play fair,” he murmured with a low chuckle.
Bridget kissed him once more and pulled back to take a healthy swig of her drink. “Hey, I tried,” she said. “But you came here looking so damn good I couldn’t resist. What was the name you used this time? Chris?” She wrinkled her nose in distaste as she side-eyed her man. “That doesn’t really suit you, babe.”
“Well Veronica was definitely throwing it at me. A few more minutes and you were about to hop on this dick right here at the bar.”
Bridget laughed out loud. “I’m sure you wouldn’t have minded. Lucky for you, that’s been my dick since I married you.”
Alisha approached again, a wistful smile already planted on her face. She sat a breadbasket between the couple. “Are you two done with your roleplaying?”
Bridget jerked a thumb in the man’s direction. “Yeah, Girl. Roman here couldn’t keep a straight face.”
Roman smirked as he nuzzled his wife’s neck, startling a squeal from her lips. “I’ll tell you what I can keep straight.”
“You are so damn freaky.”
“That’s why you love me.”
Alisha poked out her lip, feigning a jealous pout. “You too are so damn cute, it’s sick. You come in here, every Saturday night with this little pretend thing you do. Are y’all newlyweds or something?”
“Or something,” Roman said with a grin.
“We’ve been married for two years,” Bridget chimed in, dropping her hand to her husband’s thigh. “Just a little something to keep the sparks alive. It’s like our little date night.”
“Well you two look so happy,” Alisha gushed. “Whatever y’all are doing, it’s working. Teach me your ways.”