Lizzie glanced furtively at the little map on her phone, showing the Ryde car that seemed to be winding its way to her through Halloween-night traffic. She tugged self-consciously at the too-short white miniskirt, and the heavy metal cross she wore around her neck thudded against her stomach. She wondered if the accessories were too much, or not enough. Was Madonna from the Like a Virgin album cover too obvious? Vance and Tanner—her best friends—were throwing the mother of all Halloween parties, and she wasn’t about to let them down. Besides, she’d always loved Halloween. Loved that it gave her—the normally buttoned-up librarian—a chance to wear things she’d never dream of wearing in public on an ordinary day.
Like the sky-high white stilettos on her feet, and the lacey corset that made her seem like she actually did have cleavage. A lie—all a lie—thanks to the double-cup-enhancement wonder bra by Victoria’s Secret. Still, the outfit made her feel dangerous. Sexy. Adventurous. All things she wasn’t in her daily life. She glanced back at her phone and noticed the Ryde was less than a minute away. She was late already, and so she dashed out to the front of her apartment in Denver’s River North Art District. Revelers crowded the sidewalks—some in costume, some not—and in the far distance, peeking between two skyscrapers, she saw the shadow of the Rocky Mountains against a clear night sky. She saw a black Ryde SUV and glanced at the screen of her phone. Yep, that had to be it. Then the car flashed its brake lights and looked as though it were about to pull away.
“Wait!” she cried, waving an arm frantically as she jogged over to the street, well aware that she was already running late for the party, and she had at least a twenty-minute trip ahead of her. The SUV pulled away from the curb, turn signal flashing.
“Wait! I’m here!” she cried, waving her arms, her black rubber bracelets threatening to fly off her wrists. Suddenly the brake lights blinked red, and the Ryde car stopped. Thank goodness. She pulled on the back-door handle and pulled the door open. “Where were you going… I…” But the words dried up on her tongue. She realized—too late—that the back seat wasn’t empty. There, in the back, sat a dark-haired god, with broad shoulders straining his US Navy pilot jumpsuit, and mirrored aviator sunglasses tucked into the second open button. Lizzie wasn’t one to stare, but come on, the man was walking eye candy: dark spikey hair, muscles that seemed not to be contained by his army-green sleeves and a clean-shaven, chiseled chin that could cut diamonds. What the hell was Maverick from Top Gun doing in her Ryde?