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The light is fading outside, the rays of the setting sun stealing through my blinds and spilling into my room until we are painted in glowing stripes of deep orange.

One of his hands rests lightly on the rippled wall of his abdomen. I focus on that as I lay half on my side, one hand caught beneath his shoulder, the other hand still gripping the bedpost. I’d held on so tight to that post when he pounded into me that I wonder if he’ll have to help pry my fingers free from the wood.

A luscious, little shiver runs over me. The things he does to me. The thoroughness in which he takes his pleasure and gives me mine. My ni**les tighten. Thankfully, Drew hasn’t noticed. He’s turning away to take long gulps of water from the bottle sitting on the bedside table. And that’s when I see it. The room is shadowed but not enough to hide some things.

“You have a tattoo.” There’s a sing-song quality about my observation that I can’t hide and don’t want to. Because I’m grinning. An evil grin.

And he turns back to glare at me properly. “Yeah.”

“It’s a battle axe,” I add with glee. A cute little cartoon style battle axe about the size of my thumb on the crest of his left butt cheek. Like something Papa Smurf might wield. How can I not have seen this before? Right, because normally he’d have hauled his pants up and would be headed out the door about now.

Drew’s high-cut cheeks go pink. “Fucking Cancun. Spring break, my sophomore year, I got so wasted one night. I vaguely remember a burning sensation on my butt cheek while my teammates chanted ‘Battle, Battle.’ That’s about it. I woke up na**d in a bed full of….” The blush returns with force, and he runs a hand through his hair, which makes it stand up on end on the right side. It’s kind of adorable. So is his embarrassment. “Full of girls and guys.”

I laugh, a crackling mad witch laugh that earns a pillow tossed at my face.

“It’s not funny,” he insists, though there’s a hint of humor in his voice. “I was in an orgy and don’t remember a thing. Imagine the horrors.” He mocks a shudder.

This only makes me laugh harder.

“With the mother of all hangovers,” Drew adds bitterly, though now he’s definitely smiling. “And this f**king tattoo.” He cranes his neck to glare down at his ass. “Fucking, stupid battle axe.”

“Battle Butt Baylor.” I’m dying now. And give a small screech when he dives for me. There’s a bit of a tussle, mainly involving Drew cramming another pillow in my face while I howl with laughter. But then he ends up half over me, his thick thigh pushed in between mine and his chest pressed against my torso. We’re still laughing a little, though, and he smiles down at me.

“I swore off drinking to excess that very moment and got myself checked for every disease known to man the second I returned home.” His smile dims a little, and his gaze searches mine. “I’m clean, you know. I get regular checks.” The seriousness of his tone and the way he says this makes me believe he’s suddenly worried I’ll bar him from further play due to his checkered past.

“I am too,” I say. “The day I turned sixteen, my mom put me on the pill and started me on a biannual STD check.”

Drew’s brows rise. “That’s kind of…”

“Paranoid?” I suggest. Lord knows I didn’t need to be on the pill back then.

A little shiver of sensation travels along my scalp, and I realize that he’s playing with a lock of my hair, curling it around his finger. His voice is low between us. “I was thinking more like ‘untrusting.’”

I don’t want to explain just how wrong he is, because then I’d have to tell him that not a single boy even looked in my direction for the whole of high school. Instead, I lift a shoulder. “My mom’s an OB-GYN. For her, it’s a sign of love. You know, like how a dentist’s kid will be forced to brush and floss three times daily before she’s two.”

Drew grins, but then his expression goes quiet and intense. I feel it down in my heart, as though he reached through my ribs and gave it a squeeze. He’s looking at me as though he likes me far too much. As though he likes this intimacy.

“Let me see it again,” I say. Because I need to move out from under him. And because I truly do want to look at his little mark of shame again.

“No,” he whispers with a small smile. He leans in, the tip of his nose almost touching mine. I can see the individual lashes curling thick and dark around his eyes. His irises are polished amber and alight with amusement.

“Yes,” I say, breathless.

“No.” His lips brush my jaw, my chin. He’s too close to my mouth. Too close to me.

“Yes.” I push a thumb between his ribs, and he yelps.

“Jones,” he warns, skittering away when I do it again.

“Baylor,” I intone. “Let me see.”

“Easy with the thumbs of evil, woman.”

“Then let me see.”

“Okay, okay. The things I do for you,” he huffs, as he rolls over with a mutter.

Oh, God, but his body is a work of art. Long, lean, muscular. Perfect in proportion. His back is narrow and straight, the valley of his spine deep between slabs of tight muscle. The valley dips then sweeps up to the rounded globes of his fine ass. An ass so strong that his butt cheeks indent on the sides. His long legs are covered in a down of light brown hair and are as sculpted as the rest of him, with thick thighs and well-defined calves.

I want to lick him from neck to heel. And take my time about it in between. But he’s waiting for me. His butt is twitching as if he’s feeling my stare. Chin propped on his bent arms, he turns his head to give me a sidelong glare. “Well?”

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