A Dash Of Him

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DUKE Chapter 13

My lips curved into a tiny grin. His cheeks and forehead were burnt from the sun but he had an instant god glow. He stepped out and towered over me, he was taller than Emilio. Then I noticed his shoulders were a crimson tone. "Does it hurt?" I lifted my finger and gently touched the raw skin. He flinched a bit as our eyes aligned. It's like the universe stood still. It was only me and him but I quickly realized that I didn't want to do this, not right now when I'm a complete mess.

"It's very uncomfortable but I'll survive. I've broken bones and that's a different kind of pain," he winked and that's when my heart skipped with joy. He had a special kind of power that numb my pain. It's like Emilio was here but in Dash's body.

"What?" his handsome smile went from ear to ear then I got lost in his ocean blue eyes. My cheeks got hot as I averted my gaze. I'd rather not tell him that he reminds me of Emilio. Then he did the unexpected, he interlocked his fingers with mine and that sent a surge of electricity down my spine. All I did was give him a faint smile.

"Do friends hold hands?"

"I think they should normalize friends holding hands because right now I'm liking this," I glanced down and his fingers were larger than mine. He rubbed the outside of my hand with his calloused thumb, at this point my hand was trembling. "But if it makes you uncomfortable then I could retract my hand?"

Deep inside I wanted this but my heart was being stubborn. My heart was locked like a fortress. I was waiting for Prince Charming again but I didn't want to get hurt. I'm still bleeding love, how do I let someone inside a broken heart?

"You can start by letting yourself feel?" he startled me out of my trance. His lips were close to the shell of my ear. He was in my head, it's like we're on the same wavelength. I aligned my eyes with his and this time they swirled like the blue ocean, they had tiny orbs of light that danced with desire. His eyes smiled and that's when I squeezed his hand.

"Let's normalize friends holding hands."

He pulled me towards the lobby and into a festive Mexican restaurant that was by the entrance. The music was loud as the colorful flowers decorated the entrance. Nobody cared that we were holding hands but then again I saw millions of posters of this place being supportive to the LGBTQ community.

We walked into the cheerful restaurant as we were welcomed by a handsome young man. He wore a floral shirt as his tan made his skin glow. His thick eyebrows were neatly groomed as his eyes fell to our interlocked fingers. His white teeth gleamed like the sun. "Welcome to Beach Paradise, I'll be your hostess. Follow me," I glanced at Dash who had a huge grin on his lips. What would it be like to feel his plump lips on mine? I shook my head and smiled.

The hostess gestured to a wooden booth. There were sunflowers placed in the middle of the table as the silverware was neatly placed on each side of the table. The lights were dim but the music was still loud in the background. "Are you two on your honeymoon?" the hostess asked and my eyes widened. I quickly turned to Dash whose cheeks were a cherry tone as well.

"Yes, we are," now my eyes were really wide. Dash reached over the table and grasped my hand again. "I love this man with all my heart," my heart twitched as one brick fell from the fortress I built. I closed my eyes and held back the tears that threatened to come out.

I opened my eyes as Dash's eyes swirled with desire. I glanced at the hostess. "He's the one for me," it's like I was married again. It felt so good to feel this warmth inside me. I let darkness take over since Emilio's death and I lost who I was.

"I could feel the love and attraction between you two, are you ready to order, or do you need some time?" His accent was attractive, it reminded me of Emilio's mom. What would she say if I started dating someone else?

"Give us a few minutes please," Dash said politely.

"My name is Emilio," my heart stopped and broke a little. Emilio left and I knew my heart hid back inside the fortress, just hearing his name changed the ambiance. But Dash squeezed my hand. I thought he had retracted his hand but he held mine firmly.

"It's ok to dwell but not for so long. Let yourself be happy. What would Emilio want?" He asked as I took a deep breath.

"He would want me to be happy."

"Exactly, so why make yourself miserable. I know you loved Emilio and I know it's hard to let someone else in but I'm patient, besides we are pretend married," we both chuckled as my heart thumped loudly inside the cavity of my chest.

He retracted his hand and took out his phone from his pocket. His eyes were glued to his screen almost like he saw a ghost. "I need to take this but I won't be long," he stood up and got closer to me. He squeezed my cheek and left towards the lobby of the hotel. I wonder who it was?

I glanced to my right and noticed a man opening a small black box. The woman covered her mouth as she nodded her head in acceptance. I loved being married. I still hold onto whatever is left of my marriage with Emilio but I know sooner or later I'm going to have to let him go. It's best for my sanity. I need to be happy again and Dash is slowly breaking those walls that I built the last year. I'm not saying I want to marry him right away but he is very sweet and a gentleman. I wouldn't have expected that from a professional athlete. I'm used to hearing they are man whores but Dash is different. Was he ever in a relationship before me?

I saw him walking towards the table as he put his phone in his jeans which were well fitted and his muscle shirt insinuated all his steel tone muscles from his arms to the indents of his abs. He sat down as he scrunched his brow in pain. "Fuck it's going to be a mission to fall asleep tonight," he fidgeted his back. His shoulders were getting redder from earlier.

"Have you put on aloe vera gel?"

"Yeah, but it didn't work. I need something stronger."

Then I remembered I packed an ointment I got from my dermatologist. I knew it would come in handy on this trip. "Come back with me to my room and I'll put some ointment cream on you," his muscles flexed as his dimple appeared on his cheek. This man is going to melt me with his charm.

"Well, how else are we going to spend the night. We are technically "married"," he put married in quotation marks. I chuckled but his ocean blue eyes studied me deeply. I had to change the subject before I say something dumb.

"Is everything ok with your call? I noticed you got worried?" Great now he's going to think I'm in his business.

"Oh yeah," he scratched the back of his neck. "It was a good friend that I haven't seen since high school. He wants to meet up when I get back," his cheeks were red as he gave me a faint smile. I'm thinking it was more of a friend but it's none of my business.

I didn't say much after. Emilio came back and ordered our drinks. We ordered the whole menu. We both laughed when our table was bigger than a buffet. We had a couple of margaritas and that loosened me up. The restaurant got busier throughout the night.

I stood up and grabbed Dash's arm. I was in a dancing mood. I'm not sure why because I'm a terrible dancer but being with Dash gave me the courage as the margaritas gave me liquid courage. "Dance with me," I pulled him out of the booth as he drank the last of his margarita.

"I'm liking tipsy, Duke," he locked his fingers with my hand again as we walked to the dance floor where people were already dancing then I regret my decision. I didn't know how to dance. I never could, Emilio always lead but I remembered Dash danced with me at the other restaurant.

"Just follow my lead and you'll do great," he pulled me closer to his hard body. He moved his hip left then right. I followed his lead. I couldn't help but laugh and smile. I haven't had this much fun since I can remember. His hands gripped my waist and that's when our eyes aligned again. He licked his cherry lips as I gazed at the plump flesh in front of me. He slowly leaned closer as my heart rattled inside my chest, was this really going to happen but then I stepped wrong and my ankle twisted. He caught me before I could fall as we both laughed. "Ok, I think it's time to take a walk then back to your room."

He grabbed my hand as he lead me to our table. He took a wad of money out of his pocket. It looked like Mexican currency as he dropped a couple of bills. "This meal was on me, babe," the word babe, made my heart stop. I think he was into this whole pretending we were married but I liked it. I least I had someone with me on this trip.

He grabbed my hand again as he locked his huge fingers with mine. We saw Emilio taking some plates to another table as we waved at him.

"Good luck with the honeymoon," he yelled as my cheeks got hot again. We exited the restaurant and walked towards the large pools outside.

The humidity was heavy even at night but the night sky was clear with tiny stars that twinkled brightly. The outside was empty. It was closed for the night but the lights gleamed from underneath the crystal blue pool. I walked behind Dash as he studied the night sky, his fingers still gripped with mine. The margaritas were still heavily inside me. I started to laugh and that's when Dash stopped by the edge of the pool.

"Look at you laughing or is it the margaritas?"

"It's a little of both," I admitted. He came closer and pulled me by the waist. I took a deep breath as my throat trembled at what was about to happen.

"So where were we," he licked his plump lips and leaned closer. I swallowed hard. I wasn't drunk anymore. I was intoxicated by his presence and all I wanted was his sweet poison but I stepped back and it was too late. I fell into the pool but I grabbed Dash's muscle shirt when I heard a rip. We both fell with a huge splash. The water was warm as I swam back up to catch my breath.

We both laughed hard as I stood by the edge of the pool. He wiped his hair from his face and that's when I noticed his shirt was ripped from the chest area, revealing his toned chest and part of his abs. I couldn't help but admire the water falling on his god-like body. But he didn't waste time he got closer and prisoned me with his steel body. "No more interruptions," he slammed his lips on mine and that broke another brick from my heart. I wrapped my arms around his neck as we kissed like it was our last breath. I couldn't breathe but I didn't care. His lips were raw and his sweet poison was being injected into my broken body.

"Hey! You two are not supposed to be in the pool. It's closed," security shouted as I pushed him away. I touched my raw lips and savored his potent kiss. He got out of the pool and then helped me out.

"Sorry, we fell inside," Dash said as the security nodded and left. "Fuck, my phone," he took out his phone from his jeans. "Let's hope it works when it dries."

I grabbed his hand as water dripped from our wet clothes. "Let's go to my room and dry up."

He simply smirked and squeezed my hand. "You can massage that ointment on my back because now it's stinging," he winked at me as I lead him inside.

My mind was screaming at me to take a chance but my heart still was being stubborn. Is Dash the one for me?
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