Pru told the little voice to shut up and concentrated on Thor. “I found him first,” she whispered.
Thor growled again.
Thor didn’t look impressed in the least. She opened her mouth to further argue but Finn spoke, his voice low and morning gruff. “There’s plenty of me to go around.”
Pru felt the pink tinge hit her cheeks and she shifted her focus from Thor to Finn.
Yep. He was wide awake and watching and, if she had to guess, more than a little amused that she’d been willing to fight her own dog for him.
“He’s mine?” Finn repeated.
“It’s a figure of speech.” She grimaced at the lameness of that but he smiled.
“I like it,” he said. “I like this. But mostly, I like where we’re going.”
If she could think straight, she’d echo that thought, but she couldn’t think straight because every moment of every single day she was painfully aware she’d built this glass house that couldn’t possibly withstand the coming storm . . .
“Pretty sure I just lost you for a few beats,” Finn said quietly, eyes serious now, dark and warm and intense as he ran a finger along her jaw. “Was it what I said about liking where we’re going thing?”
She tried to play this off with her customary self-deprecatory humor. “Since where we’re going is always straight to bed, I can’t do much complaining about that, can I,” she said in a teasing voice, desperately hoping to steer the conversation to lighter waters, because one thing she couldn’t do was have the talk with him while naked in his arms.
But she should have known better. Finn couldn’t be steered, ever.
“This is more than that,” he said, voice low but sure, so sure she wished for even an ounce of his easy confidence. “A lot more.”
His gaze held hers prisoner, daring her to contradict him, and she swallowed hard. “It’s only been a few weeks,” she said softly.
“Three,” he said.
“It just seems like we’re moving so fast.”
“Too fast?” he asked.
She gnawed on her lower lip, unsure how to answer that. The truth was, she’d already acknowledged to herself how she felt about him. And another truth—she wouldn’t mind moving along even faster. She wanted to leap into his arms, press her face into his neck, and breathe him in and claim him as hers.
But she’d gone about this all wrong, and because of that she didn’t have the right to him. Not even a little.
His fingers were gentle as they traced the line of her temple. “Babe, you’re thinking too hard.”
She nodded at the truth of this statement.
“You’re scared,” he said.
Terrified, thank you very much. She nodded again.
“No. No,” she said again, firmly, cupping his face. “It’s more than I’m scared of what you make me feel.”
He didn’t seem annoyed or impatient at her reticence. Instead he kept his hands on her, his voice quiet. “I’m not saying I know where this is going,” he said. “Because I don’t. But what I do know is that what we’ve got here between us is good, really good.”
She nodded her agreement of that but then slowly shook her head. “Good can go bad. Fast.” As she knew all too well.
“Life’s a crap shoot and we both know it,” he said. “More than most. But whatever this is, I can’t stop thinking about it. I can’t stop wanting more. I think we’ve got a real shot, and that doesn’t come around every day, Pru. We both know that too.” He paused. “I want us to go for it.”
Heart tight, she closed her eyes.
He was quiet a moment, but she could feel him studying her. “Pru, look at me.”
She lifted her gaze and found his still warm, but very focused. “Say the word,” he said seriously. “Tell me that this isn’t your thing, that you’re not feeling it, and I’ll back off.”
She opened her mouth.
And then closed it.
His fingers on her jaw, his thumb slid over her lower lip. “You’re the self-proclaimed Fun Whisperer,” he said. “You’re the one preaching about getting out there and living life. So why are you all talk and no go, Pru? What am I missing?”
She choked out a laugh at his sharpness and dropped his head to his chest.
“Tell me what you’re afraid of,” he said.
Her words came out muffled. “It’s hard to put words to it.”