“Really? Hmm.” I try to think of a courier we sent for, but I don’t recall needing any documents today.
“She was about this tall with blond hair.” He holds up his hand around his shoulder, and when I hear “blond” I think of Erin.
“You say she had files for me?”
He nods. “She couldn’t recall your last name right away and got really flustered and darted out. We tried to get her to come back, but she hopped in a cab. There wasn’t a problem, I just wanted to let you know in case it was important and you didn’t have what you needed.”
I’m picturing Erin in my mind trying to make the exchange and for some reason it’s adorable. “Yeah, I appreciate that. Thanks for letting me know.” I push away from the counter and nod to him. “Take the rest of those donuts home to Sharon and I’ll see you tomorrow.”
“Will do, boss,” he calls as I go outside and get in my waiting car.
On the way to my apartment I’m fighting back a smile as I imagine Erin coming into the building with an armful of folders and no idea on how to get in touch with me. I laugh and shake my head, thinking I need to give her my number. I can’t believe I haven’t done it yet, but I’ve been a little preoccupied with just being with her every time we’re close. Somehow the rest of the world fades away and it’s only her that matters.
I wave to the night doorman as I enter my building and take the elevator up to my floor. My heart is never this light and excited about coming home, but knowing Erin is there and waiting makes it so much sweeter.
When I push open the door, I stop as I stare at Erin sitting with a giant fluffy dog on the couch surrounded by crumpled and dirty paper. She looks up at me with tears in her eyes and squares her shoulders like she’s about to deliver the worst news of her life.
“There appears to have been a struggle,” I say, and she bursts into tears.
Devin stands in front of me with a look of panic on his face. “I’m sorry I ruined them,” I sniffle, trying to get myself under control. He’s some high-powered attorney and I’m a blubbering mess. “I…I…I…” I’m trying to explain myself but the words won’t come out and now Moose is whimpering next to me, joining in on the tear-fest.
“Erin. It’s fine.” Devin rushes over to the sofa and pulls me into his lap, which only makes me cry harder. His hands rub up and down my back as he makes soothing noises. “You have got to stop crying. You’re killing me here.”
“Okay,” I hiccup, but don’t stop. “I’m trying, I swear,” I mumble into his neck.
“If you want to cry, I’ll just hold you.”
I suck in a deep breath and lift my face out of his neck. Now I went and ruined his super-fancy suit too. “Does anyone actually want to cry?”
His lips twitch. I don’t know what he finds so amusing.
“I didn’t want to stop you if you are bound and determined to have a good cry. I’ve seen it do my sister some good a few times. Plus, you crawled into my lap. At this point I’ll let you do anything you want. Any request? The deed to the building? A trip to Paris? More Chinese food?”
I laugh around my emotional recovery and shake my head. “I don’t need the whole building. Maybe just the bathroom. I think I could live there just fine.”
“It’s all yours.” He brushes his thumb along my cheek and catches a tear. “It might be hard living in the bathroom since part of this deal is you have to stay in my lap. It’s okay, we’ll figure it out.”
“Don’t make me laugh. This isn’t supposed to be funny.”
“I apologize.” He leans back, putting his hands behind his head. It’s then I realize that I’m straddling him. “Carry on.”
My eyes drop to his mouth. Here I am a mess and he’s as handsome as ever, making me forget what I was crying about. His hands cup my cheeks as he slowly leans in. I close my eyes and feel his lips gently brush against mine. They’re so soft at first, and while he lingers there it’s a good way to keep me from crying.
“Open for me,” he breathes against my mouth, and I part my lips before giving him what he asks for.
When his tongue touches mine, I get lost in the kiss and all my worries melt away in the moment. It’s only the two of us and I’m having my first kiss. Our first kiss. I don’t know how any others will ever live up to this one.