Today we are leaving to see my brother. I have been dreading this moment all week, but Stephen was right. I needed to prove myself. Not to my brother, but to me. I walked over to the white painted horse that was gifted to me when I first left. I smiled at him, stroking the horse’s neck. He shook his neck, making me laugh. I could see Jace a few yards away, talking with his father. He glanced over at me, and gave me a sweet smile. I forced back a blush and a smile, as I bit my lip.
"You two are doing it?!" A female voice squealed behind me.
"What?" I exclaimed, flipping around to see Izzy.
"I can see that sly look between the two of you!" She exclaimed, nudging me with her hip.
"Can you quite down? You don't need to announce it to everyone." I hissed, continuing to pet my beautiful horse.
"You're married. People already think that you who are getting hot and sweat under the sheets." She waggled her eyebrows at me.
"By the Angel, stop!" I finally covered her mouth, feeling my entire face erupt in flames. She snickered, shoving me away from her.
"You are way too modest." She scoffed, as her horse was brought to her.
"Better modest then crude." I huffed, moving to hop up on the horse. I attempted to jump up, but failed. I sighed, attempting to get on again.
"Do you need some help?" Jace's voice came up behind me, making me feel a little more relaxed.
"Yes, that would be nice." I exhaled in defeat, letting him help me.
I stepped on his hand, hoisting myself upwards. I realized I was facing the wrong direction, which caused Jace to burst into laughter. "Shut up." I snapped, as I carefully turned myself around. Falling on my face would have been even more embarrassing.
"Have you even ridden a horse before?" He teased, as he got up onto his.
"Yes, I have." I furrowed my brow at him in annoyance.
"Really it doesn't look like you have." He trotted over to me with a broad grin on his face. "How about a kiss for the road?" He puckered his lips at me. I punched him in the chest, making him gasp for a breath, which was followed by a quiet chuckle.
"I'm going with you. You don't need a kiss for the road." I held onto the reigns tightly, kicking the horse into a slow gallop. I was trying not to be entertained by his goofiness, but I was.
"Oh, come on." He was still snickering when he rode up next to me.
"Maybe later." I grinned slyly. "But you have to work for it." I mocked, keeping my eyes forward.
"What do I have to do?" He leaned closer to me, obviously up for some quest.
"Stop annoying me." I forced the sides of my lips down, trying to stay composed. I could not let him win this.
"It is done, my fair lady." He announced loudly, riding ahead of me. I giggled to myself at his silly behavior, watching him now socialize with Alec.
"He is so in love with you." Izzy came up next to me.
"He is not." I rolled my eyes at her, following the rest of the group.
"He is." She countered almost immediately.
"Whatever." I breathed, adjusting myself to get comfortable. He didn’t love me.
"How do you not see it?" She shook her head, clicking her tongue at me.
"We are just getting closer is all." I shrugged, holding the reigns tightly. Could he actually be in love with me?
"Jace never acts like that around anyone, which means your special to him. Who would have known being a traitor would bring you closer together?" She said nonchalantly.
"Isabelle." I widened my eyes at her. How dare she bring that up now? I was forgiven.
"What? We are all thinking it." She gestured to the group of people we were traveling with.
"It doesn't mean I want to hear it." I kept my eyes forward, feeling anger fester in my gut.
"You need to have a sense of humor about yourself." Izzy snorted.
"Well you need-"
"What's going on here?" Jace rode back over to us.
"Nothing I just-" I paused, sighing heavily. I over reacted.
"Come ride with me." He gestured for me to follow him. I huffed quietly, going up next to him. "What is it, Angel?" He asked.
"Angel?" I wrinkled my nose at him, trying to decide if I liked that.
"Just thought I'd try it." He shrugged. "Now what's wrong?" He asked again, flicking his eyes towards me.
"Izzy just said something about me, and I got annoyed." I sighed, feeling a little embarrassed about it.
"You are not a favorite right now. People are saying some pretty terrible things about you. You just have to ignore them." He assured me, reaching over to pat my leg. I stayed quiet, keeping my eyes cast down. "Look at me." He breathed, drawing my attention towards him. "It doesn't matter what they think. You are my wife. I have accepted you, and that's all that should matter." He spoke softly.
"Ok." I took a deep breath, knowing that this was going to be a long ride.
We set up camp right after the sunset, and I was sitting with Jace by the fire. I was nibbling at a roll of bread we had brought with us.
"Have I earned that kiss yet?" Jace teased, bumping our shoulders together.
"I don't know." I smiled, plopping another piece of roll into my mouth.
"Oh, come on, I've been a perfect gentleman." A grin still stretched across his face. I pecked his lips lightly and quickly, sitting back in the position I was in before. "I was thinking more like this." He held my cheek, leading me into a deep lazy kiss. I sighed against his mouth, holding onto his knee to keep my upright. His teeth nipped to my lip, making me gasp in surprise, as I finally pulled away.
"I can see why you would like a kiss like that." I coughed, trying to regain my composure.
"Let's go on a walk." He breathed, tucking a strand of hair behind me ear.
"Do you actually want to go on a walk or a walk?" I bounced my brows at him, curious about where he was going.
"I don't care either way." He chuckled, twirling his fingers around one of my curls.
"We just spent the whole day riding, and now you want to go on a walk?" I whined a little, not wanting to move that much.
"Or we could do the other thing. I wouldn't be opposed to that." He laughed. "Please, I need some space from these people, and I don't want to go alone." He groaned, dropping his head back.
"Ok, I'll go on a walk with you." I decided to go, climbing to my feet.
"Seriously?" He perked up, hopping to his feet. "This way." He mingled our fingers together, pulling us away from the crowd. We walked for a few minutes before he wrapped his arm around my waist. Hand hesitantly moved to my hip, as I slowly slipped over the curve of my butt.
"You did want the other thing!" I exclaimed with laughter, as he pulled me up against him.
"Maybe I did." He chuckled, holding me firmly against him. "Is that ok?" He questioned, raising an eyebrow at me.
"Outside?" I questioned, feeling a pit of something grow in my stomach.
"No one’s around." He shrugged, kissing me gently.
"I don't know." I glanced around, wondering if this is actually ok. "Alright." I bit my lip, accepting that I wanted him right here. He smiled deviously, tangling our mouths together. We stumbled backwards, until my back him a tree. I whimpered against his mouth, tangling my fingers into his hair.
I wasn't sure how Jace was going to go about this, but I let him take control. He obviously was the one who knew what he was doing. I reached down, undoing the laces on his leather pants, as he hiked my legs over his hip. I moaned quietly, as his mouth latched onto my neck. After a week of this, I think I'm officially hooked in this man. There is no doubt in my life that I could ever be with anyone else. I wonder when wanting and needing turns to loving.
Wait is Izzy right? Does Jace love me? Do I love him? I felt Jace's lips slow, as he pulled away from me. "What's wrong?" He panted, resting our forehead together.
"Nothing." I inhaled deeply, trying to catch my breath. I didn't want to admit I was thinking about our feelings, which is something Jace spends a lot of time avoiding.
"Don't lie." He drew away from me, adjusting my weight in his hands, so he was more comfortable.
"It's just something Izzy said earlier." I shook my head, not wanting to talk about this right now. I wanted him to kiss me and touch me.
"I told you to ignore her-" I shook my head, telling him to stop.
"No, it was about you." I spoke softly, cupping his cheeks. "She said that you were in love with me." I played with a lock of his hair, keep my green eyes locked with his gold.
"She did?" His voice squeaked, as he set me down on my feet.
"See this is why I said it was nothing." I poked his chest in annoyance, lounging against the tree trunk.
"What are you talking about?" He furrowed his brow, crossing his arms.
"Any time I bring up feelings you get all closed off. We talk about everything, but the way you feel. Don't get me wrong I know you care about me, but I don't know anything other than that." I picked at my nails, feeling his heavy gaze on me.
"What more do you need?" He is eyes scanned my face, not understand what I was saying.
"Do you like me, or tolerate me, or love me. You can care about a cat. How do you care about me? Am I a woman who shares your bed, or am I your queen?" I whispered, feeling vulnerable. "You are more than a bed warmer to me. I want you and I need you." I breathed, casting my eyes down. I knew I was giving him an opening to potentially hurt me, but I had to know what he thought.
"I need you too. You are one of the few people I trust and let in. I don't think I'm in love with you, but I know we are on track. I'm very fond of you. Give me more time." He played with my fingers, weaving them together.
"Ok." I bit my lip, looking up at him through my lashes. I took a deep breath, squeezing his hands. "Kiss me again." I murmured, releasing his hands, so I could wrap my arms around his neck.
He crushed his lips against mine, picking me back up. I sucked in a breath, accidentally inhaling his lower lip. He groaned in pleasure, squeezing my legs tightly. He pushed my skirt up to my waist, as I finished undoing his pants. I pulled on his golden curls, as his mouth attacked mine. My heart pounded heavily in my chest, and I knew I didn’t want to be anywhere else.