Love is in the Air. Devon Vaughn Archer
interested in what was below the waist than above. Was that his intention, as well?
“Maybe we could start this conversation over,” he said coolly. “My name’s Anderson.”
Holly looked at him as she considered the name. It somehow suited him, and maybe even piqued her interest a tad. Did he live in Portland? Houston? Or neither?
“Holly,” she said simply.
“Nice to meet you, Holly.”
“You too.” She responded as she would to anyone she was talking to at the airport. Even if Anderson was drop-dead handsome and seemingly interested in her. Or was he simply just passing the time waiting for their flight to board?
* * *
Anderson Gunn tried to read the sports section. But the truth was, he was captivated by the beautiful lady seated next to him. Even without being overly dressed up or wearing much makeup, it was obvious that she had the complete physical package: tall and slender, with just the right amount of curves and bends. He liked her butterscotch complexion and heart-shaped faced. Her lips were full and seemingly created to be kissed. He imagined if her hair were down, it would be silky smooth were he to run his fingers through it.
Though his attraction to her was undeniable, there was more about her that piqued Anderson’s curiosity. There was no question that he had seen her before. But where? Maybe at a bar? On the street? At a social event? Then it hit him like a bolt of lightning.
“Wait—” He leaned forward, peering into eyes that were like black pearls and just as enchanting. “You’re Holly Kendall! You do the evening news on KJTW.”
Holly frowned. “You’ve got me. Except that I’m the weekend anchor in the morning on KOEN.”
Damn. Blew that one, he thought. “My apologies. To tell you the truth, I get most of my news from CNN and Fox, along with my iPhone. But I do catch some local news and recognized your face—albeit the wrong time and wrong channel.”
“Don’t worry, I won’t hold it against you,” she said, even if it bruised her ego just a bit. “It happens.”
He feigned a sigh of relief. “Glad to hear that.”
“So I take it you live in Houston?”
“Yep, born and raised there. Spent some time living in Dallas, Sacramento and Memphis along the way.”
“I see.” She wondered if he was a military brat. Or did his family just move around a lot?
“I’m guessing you grew up in Houston, too, by the accent.” He’d detected it right away. It was subtle but unmistakable nonetheless, just as he supposed his accent was.
Holly raised a thin brow. By most accounts she didn’t have an accent, per se. Especially not on the air. Admittedly, she did let her guard down somewhat when being herself and conceded that maybe she did have a slight Southern drawl.
“Yes, I’m from Houston,” she said, sipping her water. “And I’ve never lived anywhere else, though I’ve traveled to quite a few different places.”
“It’s a great city to hang one’s hat,” Anderson said.
“You didn’t happen to attend the University of Houston, did you?” Anderson asked.
“Yes, in fact, I did. I received my bachelor’s and master’s degrees in communication there,” Holly said proudly. She looked at him, guessing he was about two or three years older. “Did you?”
“Yeah, I did my time there as an undergrad before moving on to the University of Houston Law Center.”
Her eyes grew wide, impressed. “So you’re a lawyer?”
“Not a practicing one,” he told her, not wanting to bore her with the details of his change from a high-powered corporate attorney to a less stressful and time-consuming occupation. “Actually I’m a legal consultant.”
Either way, Holly imagined that he was making good money. She wondered who he was spending it on. As if that was any of her business.
“Is that why you’re in Portland?” she asked.
He nodded. “I have a client here. How about you?” He hoped to hell she didn’t say she was carrying on a long-distance love affair, though he couldn’t imagine any guy wanting to be that far apart from such a smoking-hot woman.
“I have a brother and two nieces living here. I was just up for a short visit.”
“Cool.” Anderson found that he’d lost all interest in reading the paper. Especially when he’d rather read into Holly Kendall and learn as much as possible about who she was. Would she be okay with that? Or would he be pressing his luck by continuing the conversation?
Before he could say anything else, Anderson’s phone rang. He took it out and saw that it was his Portland client, Dodson Paul, who ran a very successful law firm.
Anderson frowned at Holly. “I have to take this.”
She batted her lashes. “Don’t let me stop you.”
Holly watched him shoot to his feet before answering the call. It gave her a moment to further assess him. He was tall at around six-four, and appeared very fit, as though he worked out regularly. She thought his pecan complexion suited him, and his square-jawed face with a prominent nose and wide mouth only added to his physical appeal.
He stepped farther away, turning his back, as though to block anyone from hearing the conversation. Not that she wanted to hear him saying sweet things to his wife or girlfriend. A tiny piece of Holly felt envious, since she had no one at home waiting for her. But she had put loneliness on the back burner in favor of the rich life she had otherwise.
When it was announced that first-class passengers could board, Holly stood. It had been nice to have the brief chat with Anderson, but she doubted either of them had any room in their lives for one another in Houston.
She stood up and looked his way. He was so absorbed in his conversation that he didn’t even notice. She grabbed her bag, leaving the paper behind, and took her place in line.
* * *
When Anderson got off the phone, he noticed that the plane was boarding. He also saw that Holly was gone. Damn—he hadn’t gotten a chance to say goodbye.
Anderson grabbed his briefcase and headed for the plane. He definitely envisioned Holly as girlfriend material. She was gorgeous, sexy in an understated way, educated and obviously successful as a television personality.
But he seriously doubted that with her qualities she was just sitting around waiting for a man to pop into her life. He couldn’t get that lucky. Could he?
In any event, he realized it probably didn’t make much difference now since that window of opportunity had passed. For all he knew, she was sitting beside some dude on the plane who was busy trying to win her over.
Anderson boarded the plane. The moment he entered the cabin, he spotted Holly sitting all by her lonesome in a window seat in first class. It wasn’t till he checked his boarding pass that he realized, against all odds, that she was his seatmate.
And she was occupying his seat.
He grinned when she looked up at him. “Well, hello again,” he said.
“Hi.” Holly colored a little from the intensity of his stare. She peeked past him as if trying to point out that other people were in line behind him, waiting for him to proceed down the aisle.
“Looks like we’ll have time after all to finish the conversation we started,” he said with a glint of amusement in his eyes.
“Excuse me?” Her lashes fluttered at the notion.
“We’re sitting side by side,” Anderson said. “Actually, if you check your boarding pass, you’ll find