Authors: Elizabeth Nelson
“I’ve missed this.” He swirled the tip of his tongue around my nipple and I clamped my fingers down on the cap of his shoulder.
I’ll never get enough.”
“Ever.” His lips traced the crest of my collarbone, slowing and gentling at the lingering bruise where it lifted into my shoulder, then up the top of my shoulder and to my ear where he suckled my lobe deep and hard. It was one of the few areas that had gone uninjured and he certainly paid it homage for staying above the fray. I was a gooey puddle in his arms as he molded and played me, designed me into whatever he wanted in the warm afternoon sun.
This was all I’d ever wanted from him, just time for us to get as close as we possibly could. I wanted to be the same person. Forever.
He slid his hand between our bodies and unsnapped my pants, then his lips
were on mine and his tongue swirled around mine, drinking the sweetness of my mouth as he shimmied my pants lower. I pulled his lower lip between my teeth and drew my head back until I’d stretched it enough to make him open his eyes. I let go and he swept his lip across the bite marks I’d left. “You’ve come a long way, baby.”
“Learned from the best.” How funny that everything had started here in this town and now we’d escalated our sex life to having a wild romp out in plain sight. He glanced over his shoulder, then pushed his pants down to his ankles. I
hooked my ankles around his hips and pushed mine off and threw them in nearly the same vicinity as our other clothes. We were naked from the waist down and as his warm thighs slid against mine I thought I’d die with wanting him. We fit together so perfectly, and as his fingers traced the lines of my ribs, I arched up into him and brought him home.
He thrust against me, holding my ankles to his waist to keep me from falling off the rock
. And I tried to balance myself but it was just so hard to concentrate on anything other than the feel of him. Spirals of colors played tricks with my vision until I couldn’t keep my eyes open any longer, so I closed them, drunk on the pretty pictures that lifted me higher and higher toward orgasm.
His fingers tightened on my ankles and he moaned, then screamed my name, startling a flock of birds in the trees above us. With one more thrust, I found my own and shook with the force of it as it devoured my body.
As I came back to earth, he held me to him, kissing my hair and cheeks. “You’re so amazing.”
Beyond the hill toward the parking lot, a car door slammed and I yipped in surprise. He helped me off the rock and around to where we were secluded from the trail, but I couldn’t keep from laughing as we pulled on our clothes.
He grinned and kissed the tip of my nose. “I love you.”
“I love you, too.”
On the way back to Sasha’s parents’ house, we swung by the grocery store and I grabbed a bottle of wine and the whiskey that her dad liked to drink. I was a bundle of nerves all of a sudden and the fact that I just ravaged their daughter in the wilds of a state park didn’t help my conscience any.
In the car,
Sasha patted my leg. “It’s fine. Relax. They’ve already met you.”
“Yeah, but then thing
s with your mom fell apart.”
smiled and twisted in her seat. “Well, you did get her daughter knocked up.”
“Thanks.” I hand
ed her the bottles and shifted into drive. I’m extra cautious and look both ways about a dozen times before pulling out into traffic. Everything about my driving style had changed, and I was a basket case with her in the car with me.
rubbed her hand along my thigh. “Relax.”
We pulled into the driveway and I grabbed her and tugged her nearly into my seat. I inhaled deeply and brushed my lips across hers, then plundered the sweet recesses of her mouth. She twisted and crushed her breasts to my chest, angling us closer and swirling her tongue hungrily across mine. I lifted my head and drew a deep breath. “Okay, better.”
She laughed and climbed out of the car and waited for me at the hood. I stopped and looked down at her, curling my fingers around the back of her nape.
“I’m glad you came.”
I breathed her in. Leaving tomorrow was going to suck big time. “Me too.” I wanted to tuck her against me and never let her go. Maybe if I could charm her mom into feeling better
about me, she’d let me take Sasha home. I almost laughed. That was the worst possible idea, ever. Not that I was totally bad for Sasha, but I was terrible for her recovery. I was pretty sure what we’d just done did not count as part of her therapy.
I wound my fingers down her spine and hooked them through her belt loop. “Dinner?”
“I’d love to.”
trolled up the steps arm in arm and her dad opened the door as we got to the threshold. “Just in time.” His smile was tight and I didn’t try to charm him.
“You look better than the last time I saw you.”
He took my outstretched hand and shook it, posturing so I knew that he was still the shit around here, heart attack and all. “Thanks. I feel better.” His gaze swung to Sasha. “Glad to have her home for a bit.”
I pushed gently on the small of her back so she’d step into the house, then I followed. “Yeah, I’ll bet. I’m in the boat on the other shore.”
He grunted and we moved into the living room. Sasha’s mom came out of the kitchen, hands in a towel as she wiped them off. “Oh good, you’re back. Looks like the walk did you both well.”
ed to cover up my laugh. “We’re famished, for sure. What smells so good?”
beamed beneath my praise and I was glad I could do something to get her scowl to ease up. If it was compliments she wanted, it would compliments she’d get. She waved the towel dismissively. “Just grilled chicken and corn.”
“It’s been a long time since I’ve had a home-cooked meal. My mom’s been dying for me to get up to see her, but wit
h all the time in the hospital . . .” I trailed off and couldn’t believe I didn’t see that train derailing. I had to keep the conversation light and moving if I was going to survive the night unscathed.
Sasha quickly pull
ed me into the dining room and squeezed my hand. “You’re fine. Relax,” she whispered as I pulled out her chair. Her parents come in behind, chatting in hushed tones. I cleared my throat and tried to stop freaking out.
“Anything I can help with?” I ask
ed before sitting.
“Yes, please. If you could carry
these platters over.” She handed me a set of potholders and pointed to a gloriously loaded plate of chicken that looked like it toppled out of a magazine spread.
“Wow.” I took
the plate and looked up at Sasha. “And you fed me pizza for all these months?”
She dropped her
chin and a blush crept up her neck. “Mom didn’t exactly pass those genes on.”
I know.” I set the platter down in front of Jack and ruffled the top of her hair.
“Believe me,” he
said with a choked laugh. “It wasn’t for lack of trying. Those two searched high and low for something Sasha could cook without burning. Most of the time they were experimenting with my dinner.”
Charlise slapped him with the edge of her oven mitt. “Oh come on, you were a good sport, and how else was I going to teach her?”
He swatted her rear as she sat. “I commend you both for giving it the good ol’ college try.” He laughed heartily.
I busied myself with loading my plate while he chided
the girls. “So no chance of her ever learning then, huh?”
She elbowed me as she grabbed the plate of chicken. “Not with that attitude.”
I leaned over and kissed her ear. “It’s okay, baby. I’ll keep taking you out for waffles.”
Jack slapped his leg. “Wow. I forgot about the waffles.” He leaned over conspiratorially. “She still drown them in syrup?”
I nodded like I was revealing a massive secret and he laughed. “I wish I could eat waffles like that.”
you were any good at moderation you could.”
in up in shock, but the corner of her lips were turned up in a smile, so I relaxed a little that they weren’t about to have it out right here at the dinner table. Maybe this wasn’t going to be so bad after all. We hadn’t ever had a chance to talk much about this part of Sasha’s life
He stuck out his tongue and I couldn’t keep the laugher in. Dinner took a spastic turn for the good and we ate most of the rest of the meal with Jack telling me the worst things that Sasha had cooked for him and I teased her relentlessly, interspersed with kisses.
“I’m sure I have other skills,” she said with a pout that made me laugh even harder. She’d never pouted about anything in her entire life.
“Oh, I love you so much.”
I curled my arm around her shoulders and pulled her close. “I don’t care if you can’t cook. I mean,” I sighed and pretended to sound utterly devastated, “it would have been nice, but what’s a guy to do?”
She elbowed me and I
coughed. Jack stood up and gathered the plates, leaning over and kissing the top of his wife’s head. “Thanks for dinner.”
I helped clear
, and together Jack and I took everything into the kitchen. He bagged up the chicken and I dumped the chicken bones and rinsed the plates, then loaded the dishwasher. Sasha came in while I was taking the chicken platter from Jack. “We’re going to run and grab some dessert. Any requests?”
I could tell that
we’d hurt her feelings a little so I refrained from teasing her. “I’ll eat whatever you bring back.”
Jack hugged her. “You know I’m just teasing you, right
She nodded and hugged him back. “Yeah, but the tag team was kind of shitty.”
I paused and opened my arms for her. She hugged me and I held her tight. “Sorry. That was a dick move. I can’t promise that I won’t do it again.”
I looked over her head at Jack, but he was trying to avoid watching us. I still wasn’t sure that he’d bought off on us just yet, but I still felt like Charlise was my bigger challenge.
She pursed her lips like she was weighing my forgiveness. “Alright.”
I kissed her and let her go as her mom came in. “Back in a few minutes, boys. You’re sure there’s nothing you want?”
“Nope.” I went back to loading the dishwasher and Jack echoed my statement. I ran out of dishes before the front door closed and we wiped down the counters.
Finally he put me out of my misery by
starting the conversation I’d been dreading. “You’ve put that little girl through the ringer a couple times now.”
I folded the towel and set
it on the edge of the counter and leaned my hip against it. “Yeah. Takes me a while to get smart.”
He tossed his paper towel in the trash and squirted dishwashing soap in the machine and pushed the button. “
He straightened and gave me his best tough-guy stare. “I’m a big fan of that girl, you know.”
“Me too, sir.” I swallowed and tried to make him believe just how much I meant it.
“I can’t live without her. I’m not really sure how I’m going to do it tomorrow, actually.”
“I’m a little more concerned about what you’re going to do beyond then.”
My throat dried up. I’d thought of nothing else the entire drive up here, but I wasn’t sure that I wanted to spill my tentative plans to anyone just yet, and that included Jack.
But there were some parts that needed his blessing.
Mom was surprisingly jovial as we grabbed Dad’s favorite dessert of fresh strawberry shortcake. I waited the entire shopping trip for her to lay into me about Jesse and, more specifically, what we’d been doing before dinner. I was sure she’d known. But she just laughed about all our dinner fiascos and it was impossible to not get drawn into a past that had included so many good times.
“Oh, Sasha,” she laughed, swinging her arm around my shoulders. “Jesse is nothing like Shawn.
” She shook her head. “He’s . . . like Jack.”
didn’t want to say, “I told you so,” but it was nearly burning a hole through my tongue. There wasn’t any point in dragging us down into mud-slinging, finger pointing, so I let it ride and laughed. “Not always, but yeah, he’s kind of the best of both of them.”
She put our groceries on the conveyer belt and turned to me. “I can see why you’re smitten.”
I laughed. “Yeah, smitten about covers it.”
“What are you guys going to do when he goes on tour, though?” Th
ere was genuine concern, but it was laced with our recent laughter, making it sting less and keeping me from getting a stiff back about the inquiry.
I shrugged and wheeled the cart closer. “We’re going to talk about that tonight, or tomorrow, before he goes. I want to know the plan so I can figure out what to do about school and stuff.”
She sighed and smiled at the cashier. “We don’t need a bag, thanks.”
I drummed my fingers on the cart. When she glanced back at me after paying, the laughter was starting to fade and I bumped her hip with the end of the cart. “Quit.”
She stuck out her tongue. “I can’t stop being a mom, Sash.”
“Just for tonight?”
We’d been having so much fun and I didn’t want her to ruin it with a lecture. Or me, with a nasty retort that I wouldn’t be able to hold back. If we couldn’t agree, I at least wanted us to wave the white flag for the rest of the night like we’d done so far.
She tucked the strawberries under her arm and handed me
the shortcake and whipped cream, eyeing me sideways with her sternest look. I bit my tongue.
“Alright. I’ll reserve
judgment until after he’s broken your heart.”
I laughed. “I guess that will have to do.”
“That’s a pretty big concession.”
I hugged her to me. “I know, M
om. I know.”
When we g
ot back to the house, the boys had already started in on the whiskey and I thought how long it’d been since Mom let him drink because he was already hysterically buzzed. Mom let me take a break from dessert making and my legs could use a rest, so I landed next to Jesse on the couch. “How much have you guys had?” I whispered as I kissed his cheek.
“First drink, I swear.” He snuggled me close. “Well, Jack had a shot, but that’s pretty much his first one with ice.”
“What’s with all the whispering?” Dad slurred the end of the sentence and I bit my tongue to keep from laughing. Never, in all the years he’d been with us, had I even seen him finish a drink. It was one of the things that had always endeared him to Mom. He was a precision-controlled drinker. Never prone to accidental drunkenness. Tonight was exceptional. But I didn’t mind at all. I was glad he was enjoying himself. And things must have gone well while he and Jesse were alone, which left me only a single obstacle and the one that hadn’t changed from the beginning—Mom.
I felt like the trip to the store had revealed
an okay space for us. If she could laugh and call a truce, she had to be darn close to giving in. Either way, for now I was willing to take it.
Mom brought dessert plates in and
Dad made her sit in his lap while we talked of mundane silliness. As his hands roamed a little too comfortably across her body, I fidgeted. No way was I going to be able to watch them sit here and make out if that was where this flirting was headed.
I yawned and took Jesse’s empty dessert plate. “I think I’ll turn in for the night. Mom, Jesse’s staying in the guest bedroom?”
She looked up from a giggle fit of trying to keep Dad’s hand from creeping up her thigh and I blinked. Her nervous laughter twittered out, making me smile. I liked that they were still super happy. I just didn’t need to see it, thank you very much.