Excerpt: The Art Lover by Maggie Wells

The Art Lover by Maggie Wells

The Art Lover by Maggie Wells

The Art Lover

Starving artist Kelsey Tecato takes being The Templeton Museum’s artist in residence a little too literally. By day, she puts on a show of painting for the crowds that shuffle through the galleries, but at night, her muse runs wild.

Mitch Jameson is a guy’s guy. A cop moonlighting as a security guard, he has little use for the artsy-fartsy stuff, but the mysterious Ms. Tecato’s sexy portraits call to him.

So does an interior alarm.

When Officer Jameson goes to investigate, he finds a paint-splattered goddess working on a self-portrait—in the nude.

A couple tubes of paint and a roll in the drop cloths later, free-spirited Kelsey helps Officer Jameson discover his passion for art.



“About time you showed up.”

A woman. The intruder was a woman and she’d been expecting him. Irked by the presumptuous amusement in her tone, he stepped into the open doorway, prepared to let her have it, and almost swallowed his tongue.

Screw the flashing red lights. Alarm bells clamored in his head the moment recognition clicked. Kelsey Tecato. Artist in Residence. Painter of hard-on-inducing nudes. Live and in person, standing in the Templeton Museum after hours.

And naked as the day she was born.

As if that on its own wasn’t enough to keep the synapses from firing at full force, she was motioning him closer. The jiggle of bare breasts beckoned to him. The neatly clipped triangle of dark hair between her thighs made his mouth water. Sheer force of will helped him hang back. He needed a second to let a few simple facts soak through the red haze of lust. Jerking his gaze up, he started at the top, figuring it was safer to work his way down.

Her sable hair was longer than it was in her photo. And curly. Wild, untamed curls the color of unground coffee beans. Pleased with his own attempt at artistry, he allowed his gaze to drift a little lower. The hazel eyes remained true to her photograph—wide-set, heavy-lashed, and breathtakingly direct. Green and gold appeared to dominate the brown, but he figured that might be a trick of the light.


He blinked then stared stupidly at the crazed assortment of shadeless lamps scattered around the cramped room. Bulbs ranging from soft pink incandescent to silver-white fluorescence gave off a glow that shone pale gold against the darkness in the hall and backlit a figure more heart-thumpingly curvaceous than stylishly slim.

A silhouette oh-so-familiar to him. The same sensuous curves that made his nightly stroll through the gallery fraught with danger were now displayed for his eyes only.

The tiny hairs on the back of his neck tripped over each other in their haste to stand on end. Raw, unchecked desire rippled through him. His dick stirred, his mouth ran dry and his palms prickled. All the usual and expected results when confronted by a beautiful woman without a stitch of clothing. But what he could never have predicted was the strange sense of calm that settled on his shoulders. Or the weird rightness he felt when their eyes met. He didn’t even attempt to dissect the soul-deep chant of “yes” drumming in his brain.

The flashlight slipped from his grip and crashed to the scarred tile floor. She cocked her head and crooked a finger, coaxing him into the room like a reluctant stray. “Come in.”

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