We Were Once - Page 25

Just when I think I’m reading her correctly, a new expression appears. Is it . . . trust? Trust in me? There are no doubts in her eyes, and her body is free for me to explore. Chloe’s trusting me.

And for the first time, I see her so clearly, and I see us reflected back at me. Running my thumb gently over her cheek, I rest my forehead on hers, my thundering heart still loud in my ears. “You fascinate me, Chloe.”

“Good or bad?”

The question pulls a light laugh from me. Can she not see how weak I am around her? How she’s ten thousand miles out of my league? “Good. Always good.”

“Good,” she replies. “That makes me happy.”

I kiss her temple just as the feel of her hand slips between us and tucks into the top of my jeans. One button is undone, causing my breath to stagnate. Another and I’m breathing double time. The third has me desperate to shed these strangling jeans. Four, and I’m rock hard for her, my hips thrusting of their own accord.

My gaze slides back to her face—pink cheeks and red lips swelling from kisses.

I’m fast to return my hand under her shirt, wanting to push until we both find relief. “Keep going. Harder,” she whispers against my ear.

So close already. I take pride in my work, but damn, even I’m impressed. I bet it’s all that pent-up energy from studying. I get restless, too, and more so this week from a hunger to see her again, to touch her, to feel that electricity like I’ve finally opened my eyes after a long hibernation.

Cupping my face, she kisses me again as our bodies find a rhythm that’s going to send me over the edge as well. She pushes my jeans down enough to scrape her nails over the fabric of my boxer briefs. The friction feels good, too good for me to focus on anything but chasing down a release.

Her head tilts back and her mouth falls open. “Yes,” she breathes, her body tensing as she squeezes her eyes closed.

Watching her fall apart underneath me has my orgasm ripping from my core before I can control it. “Fuck,” I grit, my forehead dropping against her neck, my body a live wire exposed to air. Losing myself, I devour the darkness that sparks to life.

And then exhaustion takes me down.

My neck is kissed, over and over again, so I lift on my forearms, not wanting to suffocate her. Her cheeks are rosy red, her lips officially swollen, but it’s her eyes that drive me wild. As if she caught the sunshine inside, they sparkle like gems. “How are you?” I ask, my voice husky.

“Never better.” She tries for casual like I’m not on top of her. A for effort, but I hear the teasing in her tone. “You?”

I push off and balance precariously on the edge of the couch. Holding her, I kiss her shoulder. A stupid grin crosses my face before I can wrangle it not to look like a fool who just kissed a girl for the first time, much less what we just did. “Not to be overly confident or anything, but I think I totally nailed this interview.”

She bursts out laughing. Scooting to the side to get a better look at me, her arms remain loose and around my neck. “You definitely nailed it. When can you start?”

“I think I already did.” I kiss her. Tired of being on the verge of falling, I move my legs down and stand. Fucking hell. Seeing the wet spot I left on her . . . this is just plain embarrassing. I yank my jeans up, and ask, “Bathroom?”

“In the bedroom.”

Offering her a hand up, I help her land on her feet and kiss the side of her head. “Do you need it?”

“You can go first.”

I work my way through the one-bedroom apartment, noticing she doesn’t have curtains in either room. The bed is messed like she took a nap, but everything else is put away. She’s the neatest girl I’ve ever met.

When I’m done in the bathroom, I walk out to find her wrapped in a robe waiting on the bed. “You need window coverings. People can see in.”

“You’re worried about me?”

“Of course, I’m worried.” I sit next to her. “That’s what boyfriends do. Hey,” I say. When she looks at me, I wrap my arm around her lower back. She rests her head on my shoulder. “I know we were playing around earlier, but what do you think about being my girlfriend?” Nerves zip through me, and everything feels so real. I’m fucking nervous, so nervous, because what if she says no. What if, even though she’s never made me feel otherwise, she doesn’t want me want me?

Her hair is still wet, though, it didn’t bother us a few minutes ago on the couch. The tangles are forming, but I don’t think I’ve ever seen her look more beautiful. Tilting her head, she takes my hand and doodles on my palm with her nail. The light tickles feel good, the attention to parts of me that never get love. Love? Fuck. It’s too soon for that.

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