Willow shoved him away and struggled out of the viselike strength of his arms. Frantic, she scooted away and sat up. She pulled her knees against her and wrapped her arms around them, as if it would afford some sort of protection against the formidable man in her bed. “You’ve lost your mind.”

He sat up as well, but fortunately allowed her to keep the distance between them. “It’s the perfect solution.”

“No. It’s not. No, no, no, no, no, no, no. And in case that’s not clear, no.” She wasn’t ready. Her entire future—away from Houston—pursuing her dreams was waiting. She couldn’t allow anyone to derail her. “I’m not marrying anyone. Especially you.”

His nostrils flared, and she trembled, knowing she’d well and truly pissed him off.

The world closed in on her. By going to bed with him, she’d been ensnared by the steel trap that was Jaxon Mills.

He reached for her wrist, and claustrophobia closed around her, triggering a need to run. She leaped from the bed so hard that her knees wobbled when she touched the floor.

“Damn it, Willow. Listen to me.” He raked a hand down his face, man and fury, naked, his cock hard, and all his muscles and sinews coiled tight, ready to spring.

“Stay where you are!” She raised a hand. “I mean it. I need some space.” Her heart thundered so loudly in her ears that it drowned out all other sounds. She hurried across the room to snatch up the thick robe provided by the hotel. With shaking fingers, she knotted the belt.

She backed up against a wall. To his credit, he stayed where he was, even though his jaw was set in implacable lines and temper burned in his eyes. She shuddered.

“Please, come here so we can talk.” He’d dropped his tone, removing the threat and making the words an invitation.

“No.” Willow refused to be swayed by his skilled vocal inflections. “It’s time for you to leave.”

“I’m not sure I was clear,” he countered, words still measured, not betraying the emotion that was conveyed by the rapid tic in his temples. “We’re getting married, Willow. We’ll need to work out the details.”

Was he deaf? She glared at him as she shook her head. “This isn’t the eighteen hundreds, Jax.” Hysteria bubbled through her, making it impossible to breathe. “You don’t have to protect my virtue.”

“Of course I do. I scened with you at the club, then took your virginity.”

“Stop it. Please. You didn’t take it. I gave it. There’s a huge difference.” Why had she slept with him? Any other man would have been happy to fuck her and leave her. “I make my own decisions.”

He shrugged. “I warned you before I took you to a private room.”