All These Years

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Chapter 18

The Dillenger building’s penthouse apartments take up the entire top three floors and they are massive. Shane occupies the top floor and the floor below is split into two apartments which are still huge. Harley and Hampton share one of the apartments downstairs and Finn has the other one. Every evening, as long as everyone is in town, they eat dinner here in the penthouse as a family, just as we had tonight.

We walk out of the dining room and leave the others to finish talking, their laughter dying quickly as the door shuts. I quickly make a mental note that the room must be soundproof like his office. Shane glances back at me and grabs my hand with his, entwining them together. The contrasting textures of our hands excite me, his rough and calloused, mine. This wine is definitely giving the desired effect and spirals through my veins, my blood heats and radiates through my entire body.

He pulls me along down a hallway, first, showing me the kitchen that he tells me will always be staffed with a chef. The kitchen is beautiful, as is everything in the building apparently. Deep mahogany cabinets line the walls, occasionally broken up by stainless steel appliances. A giant island sits in the middle of the kitchen with bar stools neatly lined around the white marble countertop.

We continue, hand in hand, to yet another hallway that opens up to an immaculate living room. The floor is sunk in lower than the hallway with two stairs leading to plush white carpet covering the floor. Pristine white couches sit on the matching carpet with black and gold throw pillows tossed on each couch impeccably.

Two entire walls, opposite from where we stand, are glass. I follow Shane over to them and look down on the beautiful city below. Taxis and people look so small from this high. The view of the dark city is breathtaking, everything illuminated in the late evening hours. This is definitely the city that never sleeps. The view of the city goes on for miles. Red lights and headlights from the cars litter every street forming a colorful maze. The brightness of the city drowns out any stars in the night sky. That’s the only thing that saddens me about the view that sprawls in front of me.

Out the right window, Central Park sprawls for miles, carpeting the land with its beautiful snow-covered trees. Small lights dance in the snow throughout the park and I linger at the window, thinking how wonderful it would be to run like these few people are right now. I lean against the window, both hands pressed firmly against the cool glass, and sigh with content. I notice the contrast of my burning flesh and the frigid January air outside has caused steamy handprints to form on the glass.

“There’s still one more hallway love” Shane whispers close behind me, his breath tickles my neck, and my eyes involuntarily flutter shut.

As I press myself against the glass wall I can’t think of anything except him at this moment. I push off the glass and glance at the city below us one more time before I turn around to face Shane, and the look on his face has me wanting to do anything other than tour another hallway. I inch back and Shane takes a step towards me. I stop when my back meets the cool glass and I press my back against it. Shane stands inches from of me, placing one hand on the glass, forming another steamy handprint, on the side of my head. He brings his right hand to my chin and tilts it so Im face to face with him. I see nothing but Shane as his strength radiates around me. The muscles in his arm dwarf me, making me feel safe yet turned on at the same time.

His fingers push into my hair, behind my shoulder then slowly wound into the hair at the base of my neck pulling my face even closer to him. My mind empties and I’m aware of only Shane and our breaths mixing together in this small space between our lips. He pulls his hand from the window and rests it on my waist, his fingers grazing the tiny sliver of skin between my shirt and my jeans. All the places where his body touches mine are superheated, the contact sending sparks through my entire body.

Shane pushes my shirt up slightly to gain purchase of more of my flesh, his long fingers dance across my skin. Goosebumps spring up and spread from my stomach, up my chest then across my back. My overly sensitive body reacting in more ways than one to every small touch Shane places on my body.

Finally, after an eternity has passed in this tiny space, he lowers his lips to mine yet he pauses, still touching them. I need him to hurry up and kiss me or I’ll burn alive from within. The earthy scent of wood, whiskey and a small touch of citrus fill my nose, his body heat made the scent of his cologne even stronger. I want all of him. I slowly close my eyes and rest my hands on his hips. The rough fabric of his slacks rubs against the delicate skin of my palms is disappointing to me, I want to feel his skin and that need fills every thought. I bit my bottom lip in agitation and furrow my eyebrows .

“Love, you biting that lip is not something I can handle.” He whispers into my lips with frustration. I think I whimper, I can’t be sure honestly as lust and wine cloud my senses. “At least here in my living room.”

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