I’m starting to get it now, this Aloha spirit. It’s still far too hot and humid for me and I flinch at every chicken I see thinking it’s that motherfucking chicken. I only recently discovered there’s a place called Ice Palace Hawaii with an adult hockey league starting up in January, but I’m not sure if that will be enough for me. My idea killed it at today’s meeting with the big bosses but I can’t guarantee this job will turn out to be more than temporary.

Yet Hunter seems to be thriving here and it’s already brought us closer together, plus Loan seems like a great fit for our mini family. And even with the heat and humidity, there’s something both primal and purifying about the sweat, about living in a land this lush and wild that makes you want to strip all your inhibitions away and run around naked in the jungle.

Of course there’s only one person I want to do that with.

And there she is, wading into the surf, the faded remains of a golden red sunset coloring the water.

Right now, she’s a Supernova.

“Hey,” I call out to her.

I’m at the beach closest to the house. I should have figured to check here first.

She’s in the water up to her waist, her back to me, her shapely curves setting fire to the waves around her.

She glances at me over her shoulder but her face is in shadows. I’m going to assume she’s not happy to see me.

“How are you feeling?” I ask, kicking off my shoes and socks on the grass before stepping into the soft sand.

“Seems the salt water is the only thing healing me today,” she says in a low voice, the sound nearly swallowed by the lapping waves. I can tell she doesn’t want to talk and I should probably turn around and go back to the house, spend time with Hunter, help Loan with dinner, do something.

But like a Supernova, she’s caught me in her pull and I’m too stupid to leave.

“The last time I saw you that drunk I think it was New Year’s Eve, back in the day.”

I can tell she’s glaring at me. “Why are you here, to tell me what an idiot I was last night, or to tell me everything I missed at work?”

“I just wanted to see you,” I admit, stepping back as the waves chase my toes.

“And why the hell do you think I want to see you?”

Feisty, feisty. Just a few more pokes and she’ll unleash that reservoir.

“Maybe you needed some eye candy.”

“Oh, fuck you.”

“Wow, I thought the water would be cooling you off.”

“I was fine until you got here.”

“Do you always go swimming at night? Don’t you worry about sharks?”

“The only shark I see is standing on the shore.”

“Zing. You know, I thought maybe you’d be, I don’t know, grateful.”

I can see her eyes flash in the shadows. “Grateful?”

I shove my hands into my pockets. “Not many people would let their employee have the day off because they have a hangover.”

“That wasn’t your choice to make!” she hisses at me, coming forward a few steps until her body is positively glistening in the last light. She looks amazing in her tiny bikini, the strings look so fragile I imagine it wouldn’t take much to undo them.

And there I go, getting hard again.

I clear my throat. “I’m an executive and I made an executive decision to let you sleep it off. I pride myself on being a kind and just boss.”

“You’re a conniving asshole, that’s what you are. You didn’t do that because you felt sorry for me, you did that so you could sabotage me!”

“Sabotage you?” I frown. “What the hell are you talking about?”

“You knew I had an important meeting today,” she says. “It was a meeting we both should have been there for, not just you.”

“How is that sabotage?”

“Because you know that your job is temporary and that if anyone is going to take it from you, it’s me. So why not make me look bad?”

“Why would I make you look bad?” She’s really lost it now.

She grumbles something and starts heading deeper into the water, trying to escape me.

Without thinking, I quickly take off my shirt and undo my pants until I’m in my boxer briefs. It’s dark enough now that it looks like I could be in swim trunks, and there’s only a few people on the beach anyway, hanging out at the other end and drinking.

I hate being in water for many reasons, so I’m not taking this lightly that I’m going in after her, in the motherfucking ocean of all places. But by the time I’m splashing in up to my chest and my feet are still firmly on the bottom, I’ve grabbed her arm and I’m pulling her back to shore with me.

“What the hell are you doing?” she says, and tries to swim away but even in water, I’m stronger and my legs are firmly rooted.

“I need to get one thing straight with you,” I tell her, pulling her toward me, her breasts pressed up against my chest, her lips mesmerizingly close to mine. “I am not your enemy. Okay? You can go on thinking that all you want but it’s not true. I am not your enemy. I’m barely even your boss. I am your equal and you are mine.”

“I am not yours,” she says but her words falter.

“You very much are,” I murmur, my voice growing rough as the rest of me burns with impatience.

The other night was only a taste.

I’m starving for the rest of her.

Before she can protest, before she can duck out of the way and swim from me, I grab her face in my hands and kiss her, hard. There is no softness here, the only silk comes from the bracing ocean waves as they roll through us. This kiss is fast and powerful and bruising, my mouth pressed against hers until she’s kissing me back, our lips, teeth, tongue tangling.

If this is the explosion I was looking for, I’ve got it.

She’s moaning into my mouth, her hands around my neck, legs wrapping around my waist as her tongue continues to dance with mine. She’s gone wild and I’m fueling her flames, one hand pushing her bikini top aside until her gorgeously perky breasts are free. My mouth dips into the water, tasting the salt, sucking her nipple into my mouth until she lets out a sharp cry, her head going back into the waves, her neck exposed as the water runs down it.

Nova has never looked sexier. No woman ever has. I have a combustible star in my grasp and I know I’m playing with fire and I don’t care if she takes both of us out. I want her, I need her, just like this, unleashed like the waves.

“Kessler,” she whispers, and her hand is sliding down the lines of my abs all the way to my dick. She pulls it out of the band of the boxer briefs, gives me a hard stroke from root to tip and now I’m groaning with a mad sort of lust, like if I don’t come inside her right now I’m going to die.

“Fuck me,” she whispers, her mouth at my neck, tasting and sucking and biting as she strokes me harder and tighter with her fist, the water all friction.

I manage to pull myself together and not blow my load right there. It would be so easy, everything about this is so perfect, especially as the moon is rising and the twilight is fading to a narrow, electric blue strip at the horizon. I’m not even thinking about the fact that I’m in the ocean at night, all I’m thinking about is getting her off.

“I’d fuck you all night long,” I tell her, sucking her lower lip into my mouth with a grunt. “But I don’t have a condom here and it’s not up on the shore either. That won’t stop you from coming though.”

I shove my hand down the front of her bikini bottoms and her legs spread wider around me, hanging on for balance and to give me easier access. We’re still about chest high in the water and if the people at the end of the beach looked over here, there’s no question it looks like we’re getting it on.

I don’t care. Nova doesn’t care either. In fact, whenever she looks over my shoulder at them, she gets this wicked, almost decadent look in her eyes, like it would bring this to another level if they were watching us.

Yes. This is the Nova I remember.

And yet this Nova now is so much more, on so many levels.

She’s my equal and she’s mine, that’s all there is to it.

With a heated grin I slip my finger along the lushness of her clit and then thrust it inside her.

She gasps, her nostrils flaring as her grip at the back of my neck stiffens. She’s tight, so fucking tight and the lack of lube from the water doesn’t help. Luckily I know how to get her wet in a second.

I take her earlobe between my teeth and tug at it, sucking hot and wet in my mouth, while stroking my thumb around her clit in a quick circle. The combination has her moaning my name, her legs falling even more open to let me in.

Yes, let me in.

Let me in deeper.

Let me see all of you.

My gorgeous fucking universe.

I slide my finger out, slowly, teasingly, then plunge two back inside her. Then three.

“Kess,” she murmurs, eyes pinched shut as she tightens around me. “Don’t stop, don’t stop.”

“I wouldn’t fucking dream of it,” I tell her. I grunt as I start working her harder, tapping her swollen G-spot, knowing if I keep at it she’ll be coming on my hand in no time.

“God I want you inside me,” she manages to say before she kisses me with everything she’s got. “I need you.”

Fuck, I’ve been dreaming about hearing those words.

Those words have been fueling so many fucking fantasies.

Not just in the last week or so.

But the last years.

“I am inside you,” I murmur into her mouth. “And I’m about to make you come so fucking hard, you’ll think you’re drowning.”

I kiss her, violent and rough.

My fingers work her into a frenzy.

Before long she’s opening wider around me, her head going back until her hair dips in the water and her bare breasts and arched neck sparkle in the moonshine.

“Don’t stop, don’t stop,” she cries out, breathless, and I’m sure her voice is carrying over the water, or maybe it’s swallowed by the waves.