Reaching up, I wrap my arms around his neck, and it makes him look back down at me. I lift up on my tiptoes, and he meets me halfway, putting a soft kiss on my lips. “I’m only yours. I promise,” I tell him when I pull back.

“I know. But I don’t like fuckers looking.” His hand rests on my back, then slides down to my ass, giving it a small squeeze. I kiss his exposed neck before dropping back down.


“Oh, sorry, I got some lipstick on you.” I swipe at the shimmer on his neck, but he stops me.

“Leave it.” He squeezes my ass one more time, then pulls me into his erection. It digs into my stomach, and he makes a grunting noise. “I like your mark on me. You should have let me leave one of my own.”

Bending down, he kisses my neck, but I pull back before he can deepen it. “No more hickeys. At least where anyone can see them.” He smiles against my neck, and I’m happy that his inner caveman is appeased. For now.

“Not the kind of mark I was talking about. I meant between your legs. I think I would have felt a hell of a lot better about you in this dress if I knew that right now you had me coating your thighs.” He takes a little bite of my neck, and I shiver with desire. “And your pussy.”

My core clenches at his words, but I only tilt my head more for him. I wish we’d done what he’s saying, but that would’ve been hard with security waiting for us in the living room when I’d come out ready to go. Which is probably why he didn’t mark me to begin with.

“Miles,” a man says. Oz tenses a little at the sound of his name, and he reluctantly lets me go. He turns around, and I redden even more at being caught having a little make-out session.

“Tom.” Oz pulls me close to his side with one hand. With his other, he reaches out to shake the speaker’s hand. He looks to be in his midfifties with salt-and-pepper hair, and I get the sense I’ve seen him before, but I can’t place where. Like everyone else here, he’s dressed in a tux that probably cost more than I make in a year.

Tom looks at me with curiosity. I saw a few of those looks from others when we walked in together. Oz said people aren’t used to seeing him with a date, unless his mom comes with him.

“Mallory, this is Tom Sanders. He works in real estate.” Tom reaches out to shake my hand. It’s then I realize where I’ve seen him before. His face is plastered on buildings and buses around the city.

He takes my hand and bends to kiss it, but Oz grabs my wrist, pulling my hand back and kissing it himself. The other man laughs.

“Never thought I’d see the day,” he says, and for some reason, I feel a sense of pride. Oz has only ever wanted me.

I look around the room and see others looking at us, but they turn away when my eyes meet theirs. There might have been some buzz about Oz and me possibly dating, but everyone will know now that it’s much more than that.

“The day was long ago. She’s been mine for years, just not here in the city for me to be able to bring her along,” Oz corrects, making me smile up at him. Every time I tell him we might be moving too fast, he always corrects me, too. He says we’ve been together since the day he laid eyes on me, and I roll my eyes. But inside, I always melt. It’s still hard to wrap my mind around the fact that this man waited years to be with me. Which makes me understand even more why Oz is so stingy with sharing me. He’s waited all this time, and he’s selfish when it comes to me. How could I not adore that?

“No more Vivien then?” I can see the disappointment in the man’s face, and it sparks my interest. I’d never even thought about Oz’s mom dating, but clearly Tom’s interested if the look on his face is anything to go by.

“Not tonight,” is all Oz offers, and even I’m a little disappointed at that.

“I’ve seen your face around on buildings, haven’t I?” I ask, drawing Tom’s eyes back to me.

“God, those things are haunting me.” He laughs. “My marketing team’s idea. Suffice it to say, I will not be doing that again.”

“Why? I think you look handsome on them.” Oz’s hand on my hips flexes, and I elbow him. “I remember I saw one when I was with Vivien and she said the same thing.” I can’t stop the little white lie from slipping free.

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