He swallowed and pressed his forehead against mine again, “You know what your problem is?”
“What?” I asked in confusion.
“You think too damn much.” He growled before capturing my lips in his again.
A knock sounded at our hotel door and immediately I kicked Axel off from me. Sitting up, I looked at him wide-eyed as if we both were caught doing something really bad. Axel ran his fingers through his black hair roughly, pulling slightly at the ends.
I moved to go answer but he grabbed my elbow and pulled me back down onto the bed.
“Axel, someone is at the door,” I whispered, trying to get up again.
“Forget the door. Forget ever thinking. Fuck, this is not going the way I want it to go. Out of all the woman I have met in my life, you are the most thick-headed.”
“Ok, I am actually offended.” I glared at him. Struggling to get away from him.
He growled in frustration and grabbed both of my arms, shaking me slightly.
“Listen to me.” He said, lowering his head so his eyes were leveled with mine.
After a minute, ”I am listening.”
He rolled his eyes. Again, I watched him become speechless. His mouth opened only to snap shut.
I arched an eyebrow for him clearly concerned now. This was not Axel. Axel is confident and savvy.
I placed a hand on his forehead to feel if he had a fever.
“Are you okay? Do you need a cup of water?” I offered mindlessly.
He laughed unbelievably before clicking his tongue and running another hand through his hair. He glanced back at me and whatever he saw--determination flashed across his dark chocolate eyes.
“Let’s go on a date.” He said, exhaling slowly.
Date? Like date date or just date?
“So, you want to hang out?” Thinking he wants to reassure we were still friends.
“No.” He growled, his jaw ticking. He glanced up at the ceiling as if he was praying for patience.
“Then what on earth do you mean?” I asked in exasperation.
“Christ, Ryleigh. I want to date you. Before you say anything, it is a request completely unrelated to us being friends-”
I lifted a hand to stop him. Surprisingly, he did.
“As in date date?” I clarified.
He nods, “date date.”
I touched his forehead and then cheek, “Did you have too much to drink?”
"Hermosa. No me estás escuchando." He gritted with a flash of annoyance.
I dropped my hands into my lap. I can hear his frustration with me. I really looked at him and saw how serious he looked. There was no teasing in his eyes.
“You are serious about this?” I asked.
He nods, ”Hermosa, I like you a lot.”
It was my turn to become speechless.
How can someone like Axel ask someone like me out? I didn’t know what to say or even how to respond. My best friend someone who has seen me wail, heard me fart, and belch wants to ask me out on an actual date.
“Say something.” He said, and a hint of uncertainty filtered in from his tone.
“I-I...” I stared at him.
He stared back.
“Why?” I manage to ask to stutter past my lips.
“Why not?” He retorted.
“But we are friends,” I told him like he didn’t know this already. “What if us dating doesn’t work out? What happens to our friendship?”
“Then we go back to being friends.” He replied as if it was something easy to do.
“I don’t know.” I tore my eyes away from his and looked down at my hands, feeling uncertain and strangely excitement pulse through my body. Axel was asking me out on a date.
“Can’t you see past the fact that I am your best friend?” He asked, his eyebrows furrowing.
That’s the thing...I can, and it scares me.
He grabbed onto my hands and clutched them to his chest, “You know me, Ryleigh. I won’t ever hurt you, not on purpose anyway.”
I rolled my eyes and the corner of his lip twitched into a half grin.
“But you’re my best friend...” I argued still.
“I can change your mind.” Determination and desire filled his dark chocolate irises and my stomach clenched in response. I bit my bottom lip as I looked at him.
“You really want to do this? Or are you joking with me?” I asked.
He cupped one side of my cheek, “I really want to do this. Let’s make this relationship real.”
I sucked in a breath, oh lord, I can’t breathe when he was this close around me. Suddenly, my throat felt dry. I licked my bottom lips nervously and his eyes dropped to the small little movement. I watched his Adam’s apple bobbed up and down as he swallowed.
“Ok,” I said.
He smiled, “Ok?”
I nod, “Ok.”
He was grinning when he pulled me in for another quick kiss. I could probably get used to this. His kissing was starting to become a habit and truthfully, he was an excellent kisser. A second later, he pulled me up from sitting on the edge of the bed. He dragged me to the bathroom sink and turned on the water.
“What are you doing?” I questioned in confusion.
My hand that had Juan’s number written on there, he placed it under the running water and started rubbing at my palm-getting rid of the ink.
“Hey!” I tried pulling my hand back.
“You don’t need his number.” He replied. “You have me.”
“Yeah, well he lives in Spain, you don’t. He could’ve shown me around.” I muttered as I watched in horror the number disappears.
“He’s a stranger, Hermosa, for all we know he could kidnap and sell you off to the highest bidder.”
I scoffed in disbelief, “You’re incorrigible.”
He chuckled humorously, and I knew internally he took pleasure in rubbing off Juan’s number. Evil. There was no regret in his eyes.
When he was done, I yanked my hand back and grabbed a towel to dry it. All the while, glaring at him. He looked pretty damn proud of himself.
After I was done drying my hand, I placed the towel on the bathroom counter, “I don’t know if I like this idea now.”
He smirked and leaned forward. I backed up, completely pinned in as he placed two hands on the bathroom counter.
“You like it.” He said huskily. His eyes dropping to my lips again.
I swallowed the lump in my throat, clearing my throat I answered him.
“No,” I told him.
He leaned closer, his lips mere inches from mine.
“You like the idea that I am yours.” His eyes flitted up to mine after gazing at my lips. My core responded immediately, crying out for him to do something and my heart was beating so fast I swear he probably hears it.
I let out a squeak when I felt his thumb slowly drew circles on my hip. I can feel every stroke like it was fire licking my skin. He bit his bottom lip and suddenly I wished I was the one biting his lips.
“Axel...” I squeaked.
“Hm...” He murmured, his eyes moving back down to my lips.
I summoned whatever strength I have left and pressed two hands against his chest, shoving him away. He blinked in surprise.
I huffed and straighten out my clothes before stepping out of the bathroom leaving behind a shocked Axel. I hurried to the other side of the room. He came out of the bathroom and hopped onto the bed, turning to lay on his side and propping up his head with one hand.
“We are going to do this slow.” I reasoned with him and started walking back and forth.
He watched me pace with a bored expression on his face.
“Axel!” I snapped and glared at him.
He chuckled, “Why? Are you afraid I will ravish you alive?”
“As a matter of fact, yes. You look like a hungry wolf about to pounce on his prey.” I retorted, turning to face him and propping my hands on my hips.
He grinned, “Wolf, huh?”
I rolled my eyes and pressed a palm to my temple. I think I am coming down with something. I heard him laugh again.
"Hermosa, don’t worry. We will take it slow.” He agreed.
I removed my palm to look at him suspiciously. He was still wearing that sexy smirk that told me he wasn’t telling me everything.
“Axel...I mean it. This means no touching. No kissing. No hugging. You will sleep on your side of the bed and I will sleep on my side of the bed. George will be in the middle.”
“Wow, that slow huh?” He laughed and with the speed that I didn’t even think he had, he got up, grabbed my wrist and pulled me down onto the bed with him. All in under a minute. The only thing I manage to do was let out an unladylike squeak before I was effectively underneath him and him perfectly on top of me.
I blinked in surprise and he smirked upon seeing my shocked look.
“Why can’t I touch you, Ryleigh?” He asked, his voice dropping down a notch. “Why can’t I kiss you? I know you like my kisses.”
I do. So much. God, I am horrible, but I wasn’t going to be another one of Axel’s one-night stand. I won’t give it to him just like that.
“Axel, get off me,” I ordered but I didn’t sound very convincing. He feels perfect on top of me and there was a part of me that was screaming for him to kiss me. That part of me was a shameless hussy.
“I promise you I won’t touch you until you ask me to, but I can’t promise you that I won’t kiss you.” His eyes dropped to my lips and with one hand cradling my cheek, he rubbed his thumb sensually across my lower lip. My lips tingled with the tender brush of his thumb.
“I like the taste of you, Hermosa. Estoy adicto a tu sabor como in drogadicto esperando su proxima alta. (I am addicted to the taste of you like a drug addict who is pining for his next high.) I will go crazy if every day I see you but am not able to kiss you.” My heart hammered in my chest. The way he was looking down at me--no one had looked at me that way before.
Under his intense gaze, for the first time, I felt wanted and beautiful. A feeling of empowerment washed over me. It was exhilarating that I couldn’t find it in myself to deny him.
“This is crazy,” I whispered with finality.
An hour later and Axel and I were getting ready for bed. I placed George in the middle but he was carelessly thrown at the foot of the bed.
“You don’t need him. You have me.” Axel got under the covers.
I made a sound of disbelief before fluffing my pillow and moving to the edge of the bed. A second later, he wrapped an arm around my waist and pulled me to the middle.
“If you need someone to hold you at night, you have me now.” He replied, spooning me from behind.
I could argue with him but it was extremely comfortable wrapped up in a heated cocoon and after today events I was completely exhausted. So, I let him win. I closed my eyes and allowed sleep to take over.