The Darkest Star (Origin 1) - Page 121

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He made this deep, throaty sound as the bridge of his nose dragged along the side of my neck. “Peaches.”

I shivered.

“God.” He nipped at my skin, eliciting a sound from me I’d never made before. “I love peaches.”

Things kind of spun and spun from there. My shirt was gone, we were skin to skin, and my legs were wrapped around his moving hips. There was a popping sound in the room and a sudden scent of burnt plastic. Way, way back in my mind, I thought I should be concerned about that, but I was drowning in him, in us, and his skin . . . it was humming. I could feel it vibrating under my fingertips, against my own skin, and it was the strangest, most amazing feeling.

There was no room for thinking or feeling beyond this moment. Not when his mouth made its way back to mine, not when I was panting against his swollen lips, and I knew I was on the precipice of something major, something beautifully unknown, and then I was falling over that edge, tumbling and spinning. I was humming.

“Luc,” I said, gasping.

He suddenly stilled above me, his breath dancing over my lips, and I was waiting—wanting him to do more, want more. He cursed and wrenched away, flipping onto his back, onto the bed.

My eyes went wide, and I was once again staring at the ceiling, my entire body trembling as the pleasant, sultry haze faded. Slowly, I turned my head to look at him.

I sucked in air.

A faint, whitish shimmer surrounded his entire body. One arm was thrown over his face. The other hand was clenched, resting atop his heaving chest. My gaze dipped. His jeans were unbuttoned and shoved down his lean hips. Had I done that?

I so had.

“Luc,” I repeated.

“I need a moment.” His voice was rough, like sandpaper.

I waited a moment. “Luc.”

His knuckles looked like they were bleached white. “I can’t.”

All the liquid heat that had invaded my muscles vanished in an instant. Suddenly cold, I folded my arms over my bare chest and sat up. My hair fell forward, slipping over my shoulders. I shivered for a different reason. “Can’t what?”

Luc pulled his arm away from his face. His eyes were squeezed tight. “I can’t do this with you.”

A sickening sense of dread filled me. “I don’t understand. It sure . . . felt like you could. That we . . . that we would.”

He made this sound like he was in pain. “Your head is so messed up right now. Doing this feels like I’m taking advantage of you, because come tomorrow, you’re going to be pissed at me again,” he bit out, jaw clenched.

I hated to even think about it, but he kind of had a point there.

He sat up with startling speed and rose from the bed. He stood before me. His hair was a tumbled mess, his chest and stomach bare, those jeans unbuttoned. “I can’t do what I want to do to you, with you, when you don’t even know who you are.”30

Luc was right.

And Luc was wrong.

I realized that about fifteen minutes after he walked out of his apartment. Without his shirt.

After flopping onto my back again, I stared up at the exposed beams in the ceiling, wondering what the hell had just happened between Luc and me. I couldn’t believe I’d kissed him. I couldn’t believe he’d kissed me back. That we ended up where we did, on this bed, and so close to—

Smacking my hands over my face, I groaned. If Luc hadn’t stopped, I wouldn’t have either. I would’ve gone as far as we could’ve. I would’ve dived headfirst without thinking about any of the many, many consequences.

Like, for example, I didn’t have condoms on me, because of my nonexistent sex life. Did he have them? Could I even get pregnant? Get an STD? Like that was exactly what I needed in my life at the moment.

Why in the world was I even thinking about that now, way after the fact?

Because I was dumb.

I dropped my hands to the bed.

My entire body cringed. God knew, with everything going on right now, my head was so not in the right place. I got that. I did. But having him realize that, having him say that was absolutely mortifying and infuriating.

If I was going to make a mistake, I was damn well entitled to make that mistake.

And yeah, that sounded ridiculous, even to me.

Do what I want to do to you, with you . . .

I sucked in a sharp breath as I shivered. What did that even mean? Who was I kidding? I knew exactly what that meant and what that statement was leading to. What did it matter? It didn’t. What did was the fact that I was now going to have face him sooner rather than later, knowing he’d seen me shirtless.


Tags: Jennifer L. Armentrout Origin Romance
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