“I’ll take what I can get, but just so you know, my lips are going to wither up and fall off if I can’t kiss you soon. And not just your neck and shoulders.”
Tressa laughed, which turned into a ferocious coughing fit. Roth retrieved the glass of water from the nightstand and offered it to her once she’d settled. “Sick sucks,” she said, claiming her position back on Roth’s chest.
Roth glided his hand up and down her back. “You’ll be 100 percent soon.”
Tressa closed her eyes, but remembered the package she’d received earlier. “I have a gift for you,” she said, coming up with one elbow.
Tressa sent Roth to the kitchen for the package on the counter. If there was one thing she was good at, it was one-click shopping.
Roth slid back into bed with her, then removed the crystals. “Um…you got me coal? Have I been a bad boy?”
She swatted him playfully. “They’re called black tourmaline.” One of her coworkers had told her the stone, along with amethyst, was supposed to help ward off negative energy. “It’s a protective crystal. Place it by the bed, and it’ll ward off nightmares. We’ll keep some here and some at your place.” Tressa ticked off the other benefits of black tourmaline: promotes detoxification, balances the chakras, relieves stress, improves mental alertness. “And there are a few more. I just can’t remember them all. I think it’s supposed to be good for memory, too. That’ll—” She smiled when she saw the way Roth eyed her. “What?”
Roth’s expression was unreadable. Was he trying to process all of the uses or was he thinking she was bat shit crazy? A second later he smashed his lips to hers. He didn’t try to gain entry into her mouth with his tongue; he just held his lips against hers.
When Roth finally pulled away and looked at her, he didn’t have to say a single word, but he did. “I’ve never met anyone like you. You are an amazing woman, Tressa Washington. Your heart…” He shook his head. “Come here.” He pulled her into his arms again and lay back on the bed. “Woman, you’re the answer to all of my unspoken prayers. I’m a damn lucky man.”
And she was a damn lucky woman.
* * *
Roth glanced over at the black torpo… Black toma… The black crystals Tressa had got him. He didn’t know whether or not he should put much stock into their powers, but the fact that Tressa had been thoughtful enough to purchase them gave him incentive. His heart had swelled even more from her kindness. When he’d said he was a lucky man, he’d meant every word.
He glanced down at her, fast asleep in his arms. Her hair was strewed, she didn’t have on any makeup and she snored—loud. But in spite of all of that, she was the most gorgeous woman he’d ever seen. All he wanted to do was take care of her, protect her. In his head, he knew he needed to slow down, but Tressa made him want to move at the speed of light. His feelings for this woman grew more powerful every single day.
Lifting her arm, she squirmed but didn’t wake. He gingerly snaked out of bed. If he fell asleep at seven in the evening, he’d pop up in the middle of the night, wide awake. Moving from the bedroom to the kitchen, he snagged a banana, laughing at the two monkeys climbing up the arm of the aluminum banana holder.
Though he’d probably not have been ambitious enough to choose the color, the pear-green-themed decor in the room played well with the cherry cabinets and stainless steel appliances. He wondered if she’d specifically chosen this house because of the spacious kitchen. Roth imagined her there at the oversize island, chopping, dicing, smiling as she prepared for him and their kids.
Their kids. He chuckled and washed a hand over his head. “Slow down, Lex,” he mumbled to himself. There was no guarantee Tressa would give him the football team he wanted. At least six. Even more if she agreed. Possibly even adopt. There were a lot of kids out there who needed a good home and love. He had a lot of love to give.
Abandoning the thoughts of his imaginary family, he moved from the kitchen and into the living room and dropped onto the chocolate sofa. Grabbing the tablet he’d brought with him, he tapped in his pass code. Might as well use the time to get some work done.