Page 18 of We Were Once

But Chloe’s standing there like we weren’t interrupted. As much as that fascinates me, we’re running short on time.

“You were flattering me with sweet nothings of I like making out with you. I’m sensing a but coming.”

“But I want to spend more time with you.”

Smiling, she moves in even closer. Her lips so close, our height difference the only discrepancy. “That’s a good but.”

I’ve been dying to touch her all day, feeling the urge to wrap myself around her—feel her against me. As I take hold of her hip, we both shift our middles closer, and an urge begins to churn deep inside. Fuck me, she’s driving me wild. I have to use my head, but my heart is suddenly going crazy in my chest—nerves kicking in. What if she says no? What if making out is all she wants from me? What if we’re only hooking up, and I’m reading this all wrong?

Her chest rises and falls, each breath seeming to anticipate what I have to say.

Fuck. I gulp so embarrassingly loud. I’m either doing this, or I’m not. Spit it out, Evans. “I have to work tonight, but I was wondering if you’d like to get together this weekend?”

“You’re asking me out?”

“Or in. Whatever you like. I just want to spend time with you.”

I’m fairly certain I hear her gulp this time as she takes hold of a dry part of my shirt with her free hand, holding me closer. Blood pumps through my veins like a race car. Judging by the lust in her eyes, I’m thinking I didn’t fuck this up entirely. “I’d love to spend more time with you, Joshua. We should kiss on it.”

“Stop stealing my lines, lady.” Before she tries to control this like the other times she so sexily stole my lips for her own purposes—completely to my benefit, I might add—I kiss her. I want her to feel how she’s made me feel this week—alive and not shy to show affection to someone I’ve started caring about. I want to be the one who kissed her right here for everyone to see, to show her what she means to me. She’s not just another girl; she’s the one who has captured my imagination.

I kiss her again. And again, as I run my hands over her ribs, touching, exploring, memorizing how much space she takes up—not much—her body slacks against mine. Her lips soften in greeting and then firm when she kisses me, her tongue exploring my mouth as much as I taste the heat of what’s in store the next time we’re alone.

Pushing her hair back, I deepen the kiss, making sure that every part of her remembers me. If she deserves anything from this, it’s to be kissed like we’re the only two people in the world.

The sound of shuffling feet behind me signals that our time is up. She lowers down, flat on her feet, and whispers, “I need to go. I have to run to class.”

I don’t want her to go. I want to spend time with her right now, but I know it’s impossible. Exhaling a deep breath, I put space between us and nod. “So do I.”

“I’ll see you this weekend?”

“Yes, absolutely.”

Lifting onto her tiptoes once more, she kisses my cheek, her lips searing my skin so I won’t forget how this felt either. “Bye, Joshua.”

“Bye, Chloe.” I watch her walk away, occasionally glancing back until she turns a corner after a little wave.

I go to the fountain and splash my face, needing to cool down. My mind has kicked into overdrive, wondering why everything feels so different with her . . . this year.

Somehow, I hadn’t noticed how heavy my thoughts had become until the lightness she brings swept through me. But as much fun as it has been kissing Chloe, I kind of want to know everything about her. I want to know what she eats for breakfast. I want to know what she wants out of life. What would she bring to a desert island? This is the shit that fills my head, and I want to know everything. All of it.

She goes against everything I figured she would be, yet she’s exactly who she says she is. The facts are that I know little about her other than she’s a senior from Newport who has a bonsai tree. Having two out of three in common doesn’t justify how I’m starting to feel about her. I mean, shit, before we kissed outside the diner, I thought the girl hated me.

I’ve spent more time with her in my head than I have in person, so none of this makes sense to me. Like why does it seem like she just discovered the joys of kissing? Like she’s never known what it feels like to lose your body in someone else’s. For us, every brush of our lips is a bit or piece of us sharing something more. Or maybe she’s wild like a preacher’s daughter—prim and proper on the streets and a vixen in the sheets.

Tags: S.L. Scott Romance