Being with Rose is the closest I’ve felt to myself since I don’t know when. I want to explore this. Explore what we share, what she makes me feel, what we are when we’re together.
She’s ready to kick me out and I’m ready to cling. Talk about a total role reversal. I need to get my head back on straight and focus.
“Caden.” She matches my tone, watching me expectantly. When I don’t say anything she rolls her eyes. “Do you realize I don’t even know your last name? What does that say about me, that I’d let you into my room and—fool around with you for hours and I don’t know your last name? It’s appalling behavior.”
“Appalling behavior? You sound like a crabby old school-teacher.” I want to laugh but I don’t. She’s dead serious. I think she’s just shocked herself with what we’ve done.
I’ve shocked myself too, but in a good way. While she acts like we’ve committed the ultimate sin.
“You wouldn’t understand.” She averts her head as if it pains her to look at me and I move closer to her, reaching out to tuck a stray strand of hair behind her ear.
“It’s Kingsley,” I murmur, wishing I could kiss her. Comfort her. But that’s not happening, not yet. I’ve got to take it slow.
She turns, a little gasp escaping her when she discovers how close I am. “What?”
“My last name. It’s Kingsley.”
“Are you serious? Of course it is.” She tosses her hands up in the air, making her breasts jiggle, and I jerk my gaze away from her chest.
“What do you mean by that?”
“It’s such an—arrogant name. Caden Kingsley. Please don’t tell me your friends called you King or something silly like that when you were in school.”
Hell, no, they didn’t call me that. They teased me unmercifully when my father lost all his money in bad investments and when he became involved in a pyramid scheme. In his shame and embarrassment he did the unthinkable.
And I’ve dealt with his choice ever since. Worn it like it was my cross to bear. I hate him for what he did. Hate him for how he destroyed my life, Mom’s life, lost all our money until I turned to the one thing that was the easiest fix.
I guess I’m more like my old man than I thought.
“I was born with the name.” I shrug, uncomfortable thinking about my past shames. “Not like I chose it.”
She’s studying me a little too closely and I want to squirm like a little kid. But I don’t. I remain as still as I can, returning her stare, wanting her to think she doesn’t scare me.
But fuck, she does. She scares the crap out of me. Maybe I should leave. Bail out of here like she wants me to and forget all about this woman.
You won’t be able to. It has nothing to do with the necklace or anything that you can gain from her. You just want her. Pure and simple. What’s the harm in that?
It’s who she is. What she represents. She’s exactly the type of woman I need to avoid. Not cling to.
“I should go.” I start to rise but she clasps my wrist, her fingers keeping me in place.
I stare at her hand clasped tight around my wrist, then lift my head to meet her imploring gaze.
“Don’t go,” she whispers.
Go. Go. Fucking go. “What are you saying? You changed your mind?”
Her gaze never leaves my face and I know she’s searching for something, some hidden secret I supposedly have. And I do have them. A ton of them. I’m not about to reveal them to her, though. She’ll only use them against me. No one knows my secrets. I keep them close to my chest.
It’s better that way. Easier.
“Do you want to go to dinner?” She’s changing the subject and I’m okay with that. The conversation was taking an uncomfortable turn, one I didn’t want to deal with.
“With you?” I ask.
She laughs and shakes her head, her grip on my wrist easing, but she doesn’t let go. And I like that. “I deserve that, don’t I? Yes, with me.”
Her honesty is refreshing. The women I’ve been with always play games. Natural, I guess, considering I’m a game player too. We say one thing and mean another. Being with a woman was always about chasing the pleasure, seeking the orgasm. Whitney is the only female friend I have and I still end up seeking the orgasm with her, so much so that I have her conditioned to want it anytime she’s with me.
Meaning I’ll eventually ruin that friendship too.
“Yeah, that sounds good.” The relief in my voice is evident and for once I don’t care. I don’t want to hide it. For once in my life I’m tempted to be open with a woman.
More like real scary. What the hell am I thinking?
“I need to take a shower first.” She waves a hand at me. “So maybe you can turn around so I can go to the bathroom?”
“Are you serious?” I grab her, causing her to shriek. Clamping my hand over her mouth loosely, I roll over so she’s beneath me, her breasts pressed against my chest, her sheet-covered legs squirming beneath mine. “Baby, I’ve seen you completely naked. You rode my face. You came all over my face. And now you’re acting shy?”
She struggles against me, reaching out to shove me, and I grab at her wrists, lifting her arms above her head and pinning them there. “Let go of me.”
“Don’t be embarrassed.” I dip my head, brush my nose against her cheek, along her neck. Her struggle eases, her body going limp beneath mine when I run my mouth along her skin, scenting her, tasting her. My body is spent but my cock is hard and I’m afraid I could become easily addicted to this woman.