Hudson (Thoroughly Educated Book 1)

Chapter One

Reagan stepped into her lit comp class and found a seat near the back. Despite having arrived on campus early enough to unpack and learn her way around, she felt disorganized. She’d hardly slept the night before, pestered by flashes of what she’d done the previous week. Maybe who she’d done was a more accurate term. She’d always been the good girl, focused on what was expected of her and not on having fun. She and her brother, Grant, were orphaned at the ages of twelve and seventeen, and Reagan had done her best to never give her brother a moment’s grief as her court-appointed guardian.

Six years later, it was still ingrained into her psyche to be cautious. She was the studious type, earning straight A’s and a scholarship to the University of Maryland. Grant was incredibly proud of her, something he never failed to tell her. Unfortunately, he remained in their hometown in Virginia, unable to get enough time off from his job as a mechanic to accompany Reagan to school. She'd ended up stopping overnight at a hotel because of the pouring rain . . . and because of the stranger she'd helped on the side of the road.

As she sat in her first college class, she reminisced about that night, where she acted on her impulses and threw caution to the wind.

She was aware of the safety rules when it came to picking up hitchhikers and stopping for strangers, but that hadn't mattered when she came upon a BMW pulled over to the shoulder of I95 with its hazard lights on. The downpour was so heavy Reagan could barely see a foot in front of her own car, but the flashing lights caught her attention on the darkened road. She'd pulled over and lowered her passenger window to ask if the person needed any help. The driver window on the two-door slid down and the occupant leaned away as the rain made its way inside his car.

“Could I borrow your cell phone?” He'd had to shout to be heard over the pelting on the roof. “Mine died, and my cord is buried somewhere in a box in the trunk.”

Reagan felt sorry for him. Unbuckling, she scooted over the center console and held her hand out the window, grateful in that moment that she'd gotten a hardy, waterproof phone. They both stretched out their windows until the gentleman had her phone. They rolled their respective windows up, and Reagan tapped her fingers on her thighs as she waited. A few minutes later his window went back down halfway and she did the same so he could hand the phone back over.

“Well?” she shouted.

“Nobody's open right now.”

She heard the pained groan and felt a surge of sympathy for him. Feeling no danger from this man, she offered, “I guess I could give you a ride.” She thought about the pepper spray in her purse and even fished it out.

“That would be amazing.”

She hit the unlock button and rolled her window back up. She was soaked on the right side of her body as she shifted her way back to the driver's seat. She shoved her purse in the back to the floorboard and clutched the pepper spray in her left hand. A minute later the passenger door opened and the man climbed in with a small overnight bag. He locked his car with the keyfob and settled into the seat.

“Thank you so much. I thought I was going to have to sleep in the car and flag someone down in the morning.”

His voice was smooth, rich, and made her think of expensive coffee. “I know what it's like to need help. I'm going to the Bayview Inn, will that be all right with you?”

“Yes, absolutely. I really appreciate you taking a chance and helping me.”

They were silent as she pulled back onto the interstate. After a few miles of tense silence, the stranger spoke up again. “I'm Hudson, by the way. I can't believe I forgot to charge my phone before I headed out.”

“My name is Reagan. Where are you headed?”

“To the new job I start next week.”

She nodded, spotting the sign for her exit and decelerating. They were quiet again until she pulled up under the portico of the hotel.

“Well, thanks. I’ll go get checked in.” He paused with his hand on the door. “Do you need help with your bags or anything?”

“No, thanks.” She watched him as he slid his long legs out and stretched to his full height. He appeared to be tall, as much as she could tell from her spot inside the car. His hair was dark, but that could have been because it was wet. He had a lanky build and his scent lingered in her car.

She shook her head and got out, grabbing her purse from the back floorboard and locking the car as she headed inside. The rain had let up, but it was still steadily falling. She got in line behind Hudson and then spent the wait time studying him. She was right; he was tall, maybe in the six feet range. His hair seemed brown and a little shaggy, falling over his ears after he ran his hand through it. He had a full beard that she found fascinating, and he was wearing a navy blue blazer that was currently covered in raindrops, leaving dark splotches throughout, and matching pants.

Reagan stepped forward as Hudson moved up to the desk. It was there again, his scent remaining after he’d moved on. It smelled of the rain over a spicy musk, something she couldn't put her finger on.

He turned and flashed her a smile as he walked toward the elevator with a key card in his hand. She flushed at being caught staring, then recovered by moving up to the desk and checking in. The whole process only took a few minutes, and soon she was heading back out to her car to park it. The lot was illuminated by plenty of light poles, but Reagan felt a bit uneasy as she walked back to the entrance. The rain had slowed her progress, and she was later than she’d planned on being at check-in time. The clouds seemed to hug the sky, blocking out any light that might have come from the moon.

When she reached the elevators with her bag she breathed a sigh of relief. A shower to get warm seemed like the best idea. Dry, comfortable pajamas would be next on the list. As she stepped off the elevator on the fourth floor, she saw Hudson walking by with an ice bucket in his hand. She actually shivered at the idea of anything cold at that moment. His blazer was gone, leaving him in a white button-up dress shirt with the sleeves rolled up.

“Oh, hi, Reagan. Same floor, huh?”

“Yep, looks like it.” She smiled brightly at him and headed down the hall toward her own room. She couldn't help but feel his eyes on her as she walked, and a tingling started at the base of her spine. By the time she made it to her door, the sensation had reached the nape of her neck and tickled her scalp.

She unlocked her door and slipped inside, leaving the door a crack to spy through. She watched Hudson disappear into the little anteroom with the ice machine, heard it churn out ice, and then watched him walk back to his room. She didn't want to admit to herself that she’d purposely noted his room number, but that was exactly what she’d done.

She closed her door and engaged the security bolt before stripping her wet clothes on the way into the bathroom. The water in the shower heated up quickly, and she was grateful for that fact as she stood under the scalding spray and rid herself of the rain that she felt was stuck to her skin. The water was hot enough to turn her body red; her philosophy was that if it wasn't hot enough to scald your skin it wasn't even worth it.

Once she was wrapped in a stingy towel she went out to the main room and sat on the bed. Pulling her bag over, she searched for her pajamas under the clothes she’d packed for the following day. After she was dressed, she propped herself on the bed pillows and turned on the TV, not bothering to put away her wet clothes or the towel. Her one flaw, if it could be called that, was that she was a slob. Her room was constantly a mess, and she often couldn't find what she needed without digging through a pile of clothes first. It was usually anyone’s guess if the pile was clean or dirty.

She tried to find something to watch, some mindless show that would suck her in until she was ready for sleep, but her mind kept wandering back to the stranger. He was only a few rooms down. She pictured him stripping and getting in the shower and discovered that she liked the thought very much. She didn't think he was too muscular, which was a good thing; that wasn't her type. Lean and tall was sexy, someone that dwarfed her short stature. Not that any of the guys back home cared what her type was. She’d had trouble with dating because everyone saw her as the poor orphan girl. That, and Grant was intimidating as hell. She was positive that she shied away from men with his physique for a reason. Grant was a great big brother, and he’d done a terrific job of raising her from the time she was twelve. He was just a little overprotective.

As her thoughts went back to the possibilities of her stranger naked in the shower, she found her hands roaming over her body in a mimic of washing herself. Over her full breasts, down her sides, to the curve of her hips and further. Shifting on the bed, she pictured his hands in between her legs instead of her own. Her soft cotton sleep shorts were thin, and she could feel that she was wet. She’d experienced her own fingers too often, frustrated that she didn't have a man to help her out in that area. She stroked over herself a few times, then froze when there was a loud bump against the wall behind her head. She rolled her eyes and flopped over on her stomach.

Reagan was going to be a freshman in college and she was a virgin. None of her friends back home were virgins, not by a long shot. Not that she was terribly close with any of them because she would rather study than hang out at some stupid party, but none of the girls she’d spent time with were bothered by having casual encounters. Reagan had reached the point where she just wanted to get it over with.

She sat up. Surely it wouldn't hurt anybody if she went a few doors down and made a not-so-subtle suggestion, would it? Most guys would be game to sleep with an attractive, curvy blonde coed, wouldn't they? She considered herself to be average looking, not hideous, chunkier than most girls, but pretty enough. Already, she felt like she was trying to oversell her attributes. She took a deep breath and stood, decision made.

What's the worst that can happen? He says no, and I go on with my life. It's not like I‘ll ever see him again.

She grabbed her keycard off the dresser and followed her instincts out the door and down the hall. She hesitated in front of room four-twelve. She took a deep breath and blew it out, then knocked before she lost her nerve. She heard some mumbling and the TV from behind the closed door, and then he opened it.

Hudson was stunned to see the beautiful young woman that rescued him standing in the hallway. She was short, curvy in all the right places, and young. Probably too young for him, but she was traveling alone, so he hoped she was at least eighteen. About the time she opened her mouth was the time he realized he’d been staring and not speaking.

“Do you mind if I come in?”

Her voice sounded throaty, a bit deep for someone her age, and he could see her nipples straining against her thin shirt. She was obviously dressed for bed, making him entirely unsure of the reason for her visit.

He stepped back and held the door open. “Um, okay.”

“What a surprise, your room looks just like mine.” She turned in a circle, and he tried not to groan at the sight of her plump ass under paper-thin shorts.

“So, to what do I owe the pleasure of your company this evening?”

She stopped turning and looked at him. He was wearing a white t-shirt and a pair of red plaid flannel pants. She realized that his hair was, in fact, red. She bit her lip, trying not to doubt herself. “You and I are complete strangers.”

“Yes.” He was unsure where she was heading with this.

“You seem older than me, but not in a creepy way.”

Hudson frowned. “How old are you?”

She grinned. “The million dollar question. I’m eighteen, and have been for a few months.”

Thank God. He swallowed the saliva that pooled in the back of his throat. “I am older than you, though not in a creepy way.”

Reagan laughed as he repeated her words. “As long as you’re in your twenties, I don't care about exactly how old you are.”

He suddenly had a feeling he knew exactly where she was going with this. “Look, Reagan.” He loved the way her name sounded, the old-fashioned southern charm it conjured in his head. “I don't know why you’re here. It was really great of you to give me a ride, and I appreciate it. I’ll even pay you gas money or something if you want.”

“No, that’s not what I want. I was already heading to this hotel anyway.”

He was positive that the longer she stood there, the less he was going to be able to resist her when she got to the point. He’d thought of her in the shower, wondering if she was showering, too, and wanted to see more of her rosy flesh. Then, like an answered prayer, she was there. “Reagan, you’re gonna have to spell it out for me.”

“I want to have sex. With you.” There, she’d had the courage to say it out loud. It was up to him whether anything happened or not.

“I was afraid you were going to say that.”

She frowned. “Why, because you don't want to? I—”

But he had her pressed against the nearest wall before she could complete her sentence. His mouth covered hers, and his hands went to her breasts without second-guessing what he was doing. His knee went between her legs, and she shamelessly ground against him. His tongue found its way into her mouth, and she felt a rush of need as he smoothed it along hers. She’d been kissed before, but not by anyone as exceptionally good at it as Hudson. She moaned when he twisted her nipple, the feeling causing both pleasure and pain to surge through her chest and down to her belly. She didn't complain when he moved his knee and plunged his hand down her shorts, finding her without any underwear on. She was wet and hot, and he couldn't help sinking a finger inside her.

“Are you sure, Reagan?” he asked as he let go of her mouth to let her breathe.

She panted for a second, her eyes glazed over as she stared up at his handsome face. She nodded as his finger moved against her. “Yes,” she said so that he was absolutely clear.

“Good.”

A whimper caught in her throat as he moved once more, his finger finding her clit and flicking it. She was nowhere near as good at that as he was, and she felt heat rise from somewhere between her legs and engulf her entire body. Realizing that she should move, she reached for the waistband of his pants.

He stopped her with his free hand. “Uh-uh.”

He pulled her hands above her head and rested them against the wall. He used her wetness to coat his fingers, then went back to rubbing her clit until she shuddered and clamped her thighs together. When she dropped her arms, he raised them back up and locked them there with his own hand.

He went back to kissing her, and she couldn't think straight as she came down from her orgasm. Her breasts were aching to be touched, but he seemed to have a strategy in mind if the way he kept putting her hands above her head was any indication.

He backed away then, keeping her against him with an arm around her waist. She went willingly, sinking down on the squeaky bed with him. He pulled her shirt off before guiding her down to the comforter, then he used his mouth on her breasts and neck until she was squirming.

“Hudson.” She cried out as he bit her shoulder. “Oh God.”

“Is there anything you don't like?” he asked as he pressed his lips all over her exceptional cleavage.

“N-not that I can think of.” She wasn't about to tell him she was a virgin.

“Mmm. Good.”

He wanted nothing more than to show her what he really liked, but a three-star hotel in the middle of nowhere was not the place for that to happen. Instead, he moved his way south of her torso and pulled her waistband down as he went. When she was naked and writhing, he stood and found a condom in his wallet. He pulled off his clothes while she watched through heavy eyelids and then rolled the condom on.

“Last chance to bail, Reagan.”

“Not a chance.”

His naked form was what she expected, but more. Tall and lean, a bit of sculpting as though he lifted weights but didn't make it his priority. His dark eyes flashed as he kneeled on the bed, jerking her down to meet him at the edge. He wound her legs around his waist and thrust into her, not stopping as she tensed and never relaxed.

Reagan was regretting her decision not to tell him about her virgin status as he pushed his way into her body in a not-so-gentle manner. It was so fast and hard that she held on to the bedcovers and watched him moving as he stood next to the bed. It didn't ever become as comfortable as she would have wanted, so she closed her eyes and thought about the fact that she would never have to worry about the pain after this time. His groans and grunts were quite hot, and she wondered if he liked dirty sex or kinky stuff.

Hudson gripped the ample flesh of her hips tightly as he came. She used the pain to center herself and opened her eyes to fake that she’d enjoyed it. It had been amazing until he got to the part that included popping her cherry.

He pulled out and made his way to the bathroom. Reagan laid absolutely still, wondering if she’d made the right decision or not. When he came back out, he pulled on her legs until she was properly parallel with the mattress.

He kissed her cheek as he climbed into bed and pulled her warm body close to him. She hadn't considered staying the night, but it seemed like a good idea as her eyes drooped on their own accord.

Returning her focus to the classroom, Reagan pondered the fact that she had probably made a mistake that night ten days ago. She should have either never done it, or told him ahead of time that she was inexperienced. What else did she expect but for him to plow forward when she’d assured him there was nothing she didn't like? At any rate, they’d gone at it twice more before he kissed her goodbye at ten the next morning and informed her he’d found an open tow company and would be heading out. She’d enjoyed the third time much more than the first two, and he indeed liked more interesting aspects of sex than she’d ever bothered to consider.

She’d been sore and a little miserable as she arrived at the campus the next day. She shared a room with a loud, boisterous girl that she had nothing in common with. She’d tried to unpack, but her thoughts continuously went to that night with Hudson. She wondered what his new job entailed and if he was happy there. She wished she could find him and jump him, ask him to show her what else he liked, and have sex until she couldn't walk. Three times with him, and she found sex to be an enjoyable pastime.

Her thoughts only returned to class as the professor walked in, judging by the blazer she could make out from her seat at the back of the lecture hall.

“Welcome to Literature and Composition one-oh-one. My name is Professor Clark.” She heard the low squeak of the dry erase marker as he wrote his name on the whiteboard. She looked up from her notes, where she’d written Professor Clark in her precise handwriting. Her breath caught, and she choked on her saliva even as her mouth went dry.

Professor Clark was her cherry popper.