Yet.

“Does he want you back?” I sound like a croaking frog and I clear my throat.

“Yeah. He admitted as much yesterday when we talked.” My gaze cuts to hers and she’s staring at me, her eyes wide, her expression serious. Too serious. “I don’t want to be with him. I told him that from the very start.”

“Yet you went to the party with him.” Dressed like…fuck, like that. All sexy and shit. I can hardly focus on the road ahead of me. All I want to do is run my hands over her bare legs.

“Kelli wanted me to go with them so I agreed. She knew it was at your frat and she was banking on you being there.”

“Were you banking on me being there?”

“Why do you think I wore these shorts?”

Surprise filling me, my gaze meets hers again and she’s smiling at me, looking rather pleased with herself.

“So you wore them for me.”

“In the hopes that you’d be there…yeah.”

“You about gave me a heart attack when I first saw you in those shorts,” I mutter, my gaze going to her pale thighs. I want to touch them. My fingers are fucking tingling, I want to touch them so bad.

“The shorts are Kelli’s. They’re way too short for me,” she explains.

“They’re perfect.” I give in and reach out to rest my hand on her thigh, sliding my fingers between them and she shifts beneath my touch, trapping my fingers. Her skin is silky soft and so fucking smooth. “You’re a tease.”

“I think you like it when I tease you,” she whispers.

No use denying the truth. Removing my hand from her legs, I clutch the steering wheel and press harder on the gas. Eager to get back to my house so I can drag her up to my bedroom and end this night on the right note. Nothing is stopping us. No drunken Jade. No random girls bursting into my room and calling us fuck birds. No period issues. No Shep issues.

Well. I can’t guarantee I won’t have an issue but I gotta ignore it. No panicking allowed. No worry over what she wants from me. No worry over what I might want from her. I need to focus on the here and now. That Jade is willingly in my car and is going home with me—again, willingly. This is major. I can’t mess it up.

I refuse to mess this up.

Within minutes I’m pulling the car into the garage and I practically leap out of my seat, going round to the passenger side so I can open Jade’s door. All I see are her legs as she climbs out of the car, my mouth going dry as I drink them in.

I am in serious trouble tonight.

Taking her hand, I tug her into the house, through the kitchen, the living room, down the hall, heading straight for my bedroom. She’s been there before. I had her pinned to my bed that one night when we finally kissed for the first time. How long ago was that? It feels like months though I think it’s really only been weeks. How can I feel so connected to a girl I’ve known for only a short time? I want to learn everything about her—and not just what gets her off. I want to know what makes her tick, what she wants out of life.

This is the sort of thing that scares the crap out of me so I push the crazy thoughts from my head as I pull her into my bedroom and shut the door behind her, turning the lock, watching as she stops at the foot of the bed, slowly turning to face me.

There’s no light on in the room but my blinds are still open and slivers of moonlight spill into the room, illuminating Jade in shadow. I say nothing and neither does she and I wonder for a panicked moment if she can hear my heart racing. It’s like all I can hear, the rushing sound filling my ears, filling my head.

She sits on the edge of the bed and takes off first one sandal, then the other. They both fall to the floor with a solid thump and she pushes her feet into the floor, her toes curling as I hear them crack.

“Those sandals were killing my feet,” she murmurs.

Relief floods me. God, she’s so normal. So…regular. And not in a bad way. In a wonderful, perfect way. Any other girl would’ve tried to jump me the second the door closed. Or she would’ve offered up a strip tease, ending up sprawled across my bed looking nothing like I imagined. Push up bras hide small tits. Excess makeup hides regular features. Teased, blonde hair lies when the pubic hair is revealed to be pitch black. Or worse, there’s no hair, nothing but a very bare, very pubescent looking pussy and that just turns me off.

I’m starting to realize I don’t mind regular girls. Everyone has flaws, including me. Lies are just that. Lies. With Jade, everything I see is what I get. The vivid red hair. The freckles—so many fucking cute freckles. Her breasts are real. I’ve felt them enough to know there’s no padding in that bra, those tits are one hundred percent Jade’s. Pale, creamy skin, no spray tan in sight. She’s natural.

Beautiful.

Real.

I approach her, stopping just in front of her. She tilts her head back, all that red hair spilling down her back and realization dawns.

“Did you wear your hair down for me?” I ask, keeping my voice low, not wanting to break the spell that’s slowly forming between us. Everything’s quiet in this room, the only sound our breaths and I wonder if I should put on some music but I’m afraid that’ll ruin the mood.

She nods. “Yes,” she whispers. “Everything I’ve done tonight, has been for…” She presses her lips together for a brief moment, like she doesn’t want to offer up this bit of information. Makes me want to hear it that much more. “It’s all been for you.”

“Why?” I don’t deserve her trying to do anything to impress me. I damn near ruined this.

Jade starts to laugh, the sound light and pretty and making my skin tighten in anticipation. “I wanted to look amazing so I could knock you on your ass, tease you into wanting me again and then walk away from you without a backward glance.”

Okay yeah, she was setting me up but I’m stuck on one tiny bit of her admission. “Wait a minute. Did you say tease me into wanting you again?”

She gives me a funny look. “Well, yeah. Because clearly you…”

“Clearly I nothing.” I touch her, slip my fingers into her hair and push it away from her forehead gently. She leans into my touch, her eyes sliding to half-mast. “I never stopped wanting you, Jade,” I murmur. “Ever.”

“It felt like you did,” she admits softly. “I thought I didn’t…please you. After what happened, it’s like you didn’t want to have anything to do with me ever again. I figured that was all on me.”

I close my eyes for a brief moment and breathe deep. Guilt settles over me heavily. That she’s in my room at this very moment, giving me another chance…I should get on my knees and thank the lord above. “I’m an asshole. I—panicked.”

She frowns up at me, appearing genuinely confused. “Panicked? Why?”

How do I explain that she scares the hell out of me? How my feelings for her scare me even worse? “I don’t know.” I shrug. I’m such a liar.

Slowly she stands, her body rubbing against mine, her gaze intent. I don’t back up, don’t move away from her and she’s so close, I absorb her body heat, inhale her sweet, clean scent, and my hands automatically settle on her hips.

“I’m probably going to regret this,” she whispers as she settles her hands on my chest. Her fingers are hot, burning through my T-shirt, branding me and I wait in anticipation of what she’s going to say next. “This won’t end good for us, I know it. But—”

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