We reach the end of the driveway where he’s left his truck. I shift back and forth on my feet as he positions himself beside the driver’s side door, struggling to find the right words to say.
“I know parties aren’t exactly your thing,” I say. “But I hope you had fun.”
Okay. Not exactly the right words I think I need. But they’re true enough.
He watches me, falling back into deadpan silence I hoped was far behind us. Ordinarily, I’d make an obnoxious comment to stir a grin or maybe even a chuckle. But it doesn’t seem right at this moment. So instead of tapping into my playful side, I search my heart, hoping it will speak better than my mind.
I take a step forward, keeping my voice light. “You know, I was hoping you’d kiss me tonight, especially after you sang me that beautiful song.” I clasp my hands in front of me, feeling suddenly shy. “Am
I crazy for thinking you might?”
“No. Not at all,” his deep voice rumbles.
I raise my head slowly, shock hitching my breath. Callahan edges back and opens the door. Instead of climbing in, he stretches his long body across the seats, slipping back out with a spray of gorgeous wildflowers.
“You brought these for me?” I ask, barely able to get the words out.
“No.” The corners of his mouth lift. “They’re for Sean seeing how I make his panties wet.”
I start to laugh, but it doesn’t last, because the way Callahan is looking at me is very different from the way he was looking at me seconds before. This expression is the perfect blend of sweetness and ardor, just as it was when he sang to me.
He doesn’t know that the song he chose is among my all-time favorites. Nor does he realize how his deep soothing voice and the gesture affected me. I want to tell him, but I’m not sure how to express something that touched me so deeply simply with words, especially now that the sadness he stows deep inside of him, finds its way to the surface.
I take a risk, and ask him what
I’ve wanted to know since I first saw him. “Are you okay?”
When he doesn’t answer, I’m not sure he will. Yet when he does, I feel it like a pull, drawing me closer.
“Not always,” he admits quietly.
I purse my lips, struggling to stay strong for him. “Do you hurt?” I ask.
His stare travels down as I inch to his side, close enough that the leaves from my flowers sweep against his chest. “Sometimes,” he answers.
I tilt my chin and meet his face.
“Are you lonely?”
He lifts his head slowly, pitching me with such an intense stare, it holds me in place. “Not when I’m with you,” he whispers.
He moves forward, sliding his right hand behind the curve of my neck to cup the base of my skull. His other hand winds carefully around my waist. As I try to remember how to move, he skims my jaw with his thumb and lowers his mouth to meet mine.
At first his lips scarcely touch, trailing over me so softly I can barely sense the contact. The care he uses is sweet, subtle, but carries enough fire to warm all the right places and make me crave more. Yet what he’s doing feels so right, and so pure, I don’t force it, allowing him to lead us.
My lips follow his, brushing lightly, teasing gently, fitting perfectly. It’s only when his tongue probes forward and the tip flickers over mine that everything changes.
And dear God, there’s nothing pure or tender about what happens next.
Callahan devours me, fueling a frenzy within me and inciting me to ravish him just as hard in return. I moan and whimper, my heart racing hard enough to fill my ears with its beat. This isn’t a kiss. Oh, hell no. This is our tongues having sex!
He grunts, whirling me around and pressing my back against the truck door. My legs fasten around his waist as he hoists me onto his hips and deepens our kiss.
Something hard presses against my belly.
My lids flutter when he slips his tongue inside my ear.
My hands yank up his shirt, traveling upward to smooth over his hard chest and graciously erect nipples. But when my teeth find his neck, and he swears, I just about rip his clothes off.
“Trin? You out here?”
Callahan breaks our contact and lowers me to my feet, stepping on my abandoned flowers as Sean appears with Mason.
“Trin?” Sean calls out, yet again.
I stomp forward and throw my hands out. “What? Tell me what is so important you have to interrupt quality face sucking time?”
“Can we have the wine?” Sean asks, looking at Mason who’s doing his best not to crack up.
“Sean!” I yell. “Did you even have to ask? Drink the whole thing for all I care.”
“Thanks, Trin,” he answers all excited-like. “Later, Callahan.”
“Night, Callahan,” Mason says, no longer able to hold back his laughter.
I turn back to Callahan who, like me, is panting. But very unlike me he’s chuckling as he rubs his jaw.
“Sorry,” I squeak.
“It’s all right,” he tells me. But then he says the last thing I want to hear. “I should go.”
We’re not going to have sex against your truck? It’s what I think— and after that kiss no one can blame me. But contrary to popular belief, I don’t always say what I think.
“You don’t have to,” I stammer.
“It’s late,” he says.
“Oh.” Let me rephrase that, how about we have sex against your truck?
He stares at me for a beat then bends to retrieve my flowers and passes them to me. The daisies are broken and the peonies have seen better days. And yet I’m so touched by the sweet gesture from a man who’s so hard and almost impossible to get to know, I find it hard to keep my voice steady. “Thank you,
Callahan. They’re lovely.”
His features soften apologetically. “They don’t look quite like they did in the store.”
“I don’t care about that. It’s the nicest thing anyone’s done for me in a long time,” I tell him truthfully. “Thank you for thinking of me.”
Again he watches me. I’m hoping he’ll change his mind and stay.
But he doesn’t.
“Goodnight, Trin,” he says quietly.
I find a way to smile despite my disappointment. “Goodnight,