New Hampshire
Heart of Stone

"There's my friend," she murmured, unconsciously breaking the companionable silence.

"Which one?" Brock's gaze narrowed on the rear view mirror, trying to identify which of the cars they had passed that had contained her friend.

"Not that kind of friend." Her smile broadened as she pointed. "Him. The old man of the mountains." She gazed at the jagged profile Mother Nature had carved into the granite millennia ago. "I used to make up stories about him when I was a child—the way some kids do about the man in the moon, I suppose."

"If he's my only competition, I've got it made." Brock sent her a sidelong glance that was warm and desiring, beneath its teasing glitter.

"At least your heart isn't made of stone like his." They had passed the granite profile, immortalized so long ago by Nathaniel Hawthorne in his classic "The Great Stone Face." Stephanie settled back into her seat again, letting her gaze roam to Brock's profile, much more virilely alive and vigorous. Just to look at him made her feel warm. "When I was little, I was certain there was a way that I could make him come to life, some magic I could perform the way the fairy godmothers did with their enchanted wands. And he would tell me all the secrets of the world." She laughed at her whimsy.

"Now?" Brock sounded curious, speculative.

Stephanie shrugged. "I grew up, I guess."

"No. All you have to do is touch me and I come to life." His low delivery was heavy with its sexy intonation, repeated by the languid yet serious gleam of his look. "I can prove it whenever you want."
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