She freezes against me just for a second until my lips move on hers. With my eyes barely open - watching her, I caress my tongue on her bottom lip to ask for entrance. The taste of strawberry wine and swiss cheese bury inside my taste buds. She grants me my wish, and I swallow her little moan as it goes deep inside me. It impales straight through the wall I’ve been building for the last decade.
Elena let me in. I’m able to explore and taste. Melting against me, she slides her arms around me in pure submission. She trusts me with this, and I have never felt so damn giddy.
This is her first kiss. I’m her first. As I press her body closer to me, I can feel her chest against mine; her legs wrap around me like a vise, and all I can think about is wanting more. The desire to taste all of her, to bury myself deep inside her physically and metaphorically, is taking over. Oh, all the firsts I want to give her...
Having her here in my arms is worth it to me. It’s worth being clawed inside out by her fury that will inevitably come.
I try to pull myself away. Just a little, to rest my forehead against hers so we can both replenish the air in our lungs as we pant in sync.
Apparently, she doesn’t need the break. Hungrily, she glides her hands to cup my face and guides me back to her lips. She moans again as I take her mouth, kissing her deeply with as much intensity and passion as the first one.
Not trusting my hands to wander just yet, I grip her tighter. I only allow my one hand to gently fist the golden strands brushing against my arm behind her back. She tightens her legs around me and kisses me with a certain boldness.
With our tongues exploring each other, her hands take a generous fistful of my hair, pulling at the roots. I can tell there’s a wildfire under this angel exterior begging to be released...
This is a mistake.
Asking her out was a slip-up. I shouldn’t have let it go this far, but I can’t stop the way I feel about her. Ever since I met her, I’ve wanted to claim her, to have her be mine. Over the last two months, those feelings have been getting stronger - no matter how much I fight it.
Tonight... I caved.
What was I thinking? I never date. Over the past two weeks, she has been through so much that I just wanted to show her a good time; show her that not all men are creeps. We’re all jackasses, but not all of us are creeps...
I’m a jackass for doing this to her. Often, I forget that she has no idea who I really am... what I’m doing, what I might have to do to get Marcus locked up for good.
She’s a job. My job. I must stop this kiss before it goes too far. My body doesn’t agree with me, but I can’t ever let it go further than this. I’m okay with her shattering me – I deserve it, but that doesn’t mean I want her to break. I have self-control...
Not with her, you won’t. I hiss at that thought while I gently push her away from me. Watching her as she opens her eyes - which have darkened with want. I take in the sight of her swollen lips and flushed cheeks. My conscience is right.
“Wow,” she breathes while a drunken kiss type smile tugs at the corners of her perfect soft pink lips.
“Yeah. Wow,” I exhale. I rest my hands on her lap and let my fingers sprawl out on her thighs; she rests her hands on my shoulders.
I’m not sure what to do now. I never stopped at a kiss. I’ve never even shared a kiss like that with anyone before.
What do we do about her dad? The whole job will go away if he finds out this happened. He’ll pull away from our deal. He’ll take Elena away, not to mention he’d kill me – he made that perfectly clear tonight. He can’t find out.
“So, what now?” I ask, not having a fucking clue.
She smiles and locks her fingers behind my neck. “My dad can’t find out; he’ll have a cow.” I nod my head. “So, I guess that means we’ll have to kind of sneak around.” As she grins, I dig my fingers into her sensitive thighs to tickle her.
I watch her head as it flings her hair back and forth from laughing, her body jiggles, and her hands are trying to pull off my tickling grip from her legs—what a sight.
Ending the torture, she begins to sober. “You want me to be your dirty little secret, huh?” I ask with a smile, knowing my answer.
She nods. “Unless you don’t want to...that’s cool, too.” Her forefinger is tracing the words ‘Live free, Die hard’ on my bicep. Oh, how true those words are...
I flash her a wicked grin. “Oh, Kitten, I’m all in.”
On the way back, I force her to listen to the Police and Eric Clapton. She seems to like them, but afterward, the cab was filled with bickering over the radio and joking about each other’s tastes in music. I prefer the heavy metal and rock and roll; she believes it will make her ears bleed.
Watching her smile throughout the whole ride back - I guess it’s safe to assume that she’s having a good time with me tonight. The organ in my chest grows at the ability to make her so happy.
As I pull into my driveway, I see two men on bikes waiting for me. I really didn’t want to deal with this tonight, but it was bound to happen.
I help Elena out of the truck -the men wave at her in the distance, and she, being the lady that she is, smiles and waves back. I don’t want either of them to think that’s an invitation so, I guide my girl to her front door before anything more comes from the encounter. I give her a quick kiss on the cheek, wish her a good night, and wait until she steps inside. Taking in a breath, I stomp over to my yard to see what is needed from me.
“Hey, Red.” The tall, lean dark-haired boy greets me.
“Why are you two here?” I ask, a little annoyed. I wanted to take my time saying goodnight to my girl, and they interfered with that.
“Well, we haven’t seen you around for a while, except for at the shop, and there’s a plan to discuss. I’ve informed Paul here about it,” Jace explains.
The plan, I haven’t forgotten. I’ve just been a little preoccupied lately. “Let’s go inside,” I say, leading them through the door.
Paul and Jace make their way to my couch while I stop at the fridge to take out three beers. Popping the top of each one at the edge of my countertop, Paul breaks the silence.
“Sorry, man, we didn’t mean to get in the way of your date tonight.” I look over at him; he seems genuine.
Jace, on the other hand, says, “Yeah, didn’t mean to cock block you.” He chuckles; I swat him on the back of his head. “Owe,” he whines. Stupid Jace.
Giving Paul a beer, I place Jace’s in the center of the coffee table as I take my seat in a leather Barcalounger across from him.
“Really?” Jace complains while he gets up for the beer on the table. Paul and I laugh as I toast to Jace - he flips me the bird as he takes back his seat.
“So,” Jace starts. “We’ve been going over our options as we wait for Connor to give us more specifics on the deal Marcus wants us to do. For him to show his face- so we can capture him- we are pretty sure Elena is the key. Unless, of course, you know for a fact, he’ll be there for the 1.3-million-dollar transaction and not just Connor- which isn’t guaranteed. So, one of our options could be to have Elena be somewhere secluded waiting for you. We hide – surrounding her, of course, Marcus’s men would come for her and take her.” My blood is starting to boil with the thought of this plan.
“Of course, we will follow them; then we can tell the detective where Marcus is as soon as we see him with Elena. Then there it is. We got him.” I narrow my eyes at Jace. I’m not too fond of that plan. So much could go wrong. They could know we’re following them. There’s no way he’d come out of the house, bunker, lair, or whatever the hell he lives in if he knew there was a chance that we could turn on him...
We’d have to get inside - without having someone on the inside - that would be impossible. I wouldn’t want her breathing the same air as him without my eyes on her.
“Or.” It’s Paul’s turn. “We tell Connor that if Marcus wants Elena, we will deal with him, and only him. You met him once – right?” I nod and cringe.
“You’re the only one who knows what he looks like. He will only deal with you; you’d have to be the one who hands her over.” My eyes widen at him. “You could blindfold her. She wouldn’t have to know it’s you.” I’m listening closely.
“As soon as the transaction is made and he’s leading her to the vehicle - that’s when we all come out of hiding to get her out of there and get Marcus,” Paul has a point. Still, I wouldn’t say I like it.
“I don’t want to use her. What else could he want?” I ponder.
Then, I remember...
“Detective Cobra said that he has a son at the school. If we can find out who he is, then maybe we can use him to get Marcus out by using him, then Elena wouldn’t be harmed at all,” I offer.
“How would we find out who he is?” Jace asks.
I shrug my shoulders. “It’s a small school. I could corner each boy and ask him what his father’s name is,” I say.
“Eh,” Paul interjects. “People will talk. Word will get back to him.” He has a point.
My hand twists the now empty beer bottle on my knee. “The house that the party was at. We need to go to that house. Something ain’t right about it. I know the kid who lives there, and I feel that he is connected to Marcus somehow. I’ll start with him; I’ll go to the house and see what happens,” I tell them.
“Not without backup,” Jace says. I look over to Paul, and he nods his head.
“When do you want to go?” Paul asks.
I place the empty bottle on the coffee table. “How about next Thursday? That will give us enough time to scope the place out a bit.”
We run through some detail and finish a few more beers before I walk them to the door. Closing the door behind them, I reach for my phone in my pocket then walk back to the couch. As I hear their bikes rev, my thumb hovers over the name of the person that may as well be an illusion from my past.
Pressing the name that I haven’t pushed in what feels like for ages - it starts to ring. The sound is foreign, abnormal, and takes too long. It’s been a while since I’ve checked in, and I need some answers. I’ve been avoiding it for too many years.
The other line picks up, and the voice I hear on the other side is enough to wad up a lump in my throat.