“Yes you do—-” He pulled her close again, and placing his head atop hers, he murmured, “and it’s too cute.”
The prince thought she was…cute.
From feeling like she wanted to bawl like a kid one moment, it was all she could do not to jump for joy the next.
The prince thought she was cute!
She scowled hard against the crook of his neck, the only way not to grin just as hard. But then the prince’s arms tightened around hers, and it was impossible to keep resisting, and her arms slowly wound around his neck—-
The prince murmured against her hair, “If things weren’t too dangerous now, I’d never leave you. You know that, don’t you?”
She shook her head. “I don’t know that.”
The prince chuckled over her head. “You’re actually acting spoiled.”
The prince gave her an almost painful squeeze as he spoke, and she let out a surprised yelp.
“It’s your fault,” the prince said without pity. “You were being too cute.”
The prince pulled away, and when their eyes met, he said quietly, “If it’s any comfort…” His beautiful lips twisted. “And I can’t believe I’m saying this to you—-”
Her eyes went wide, and then she couldn’t stop herself, saying eagerly, “Tell me.”
He winced. “And now I’m wishing I hadn’t said anything at all.”
“Tell me, tell me, tell me—-” The prince stopped the rush of words with a finger on her lips.
But then her puppy brown eyes flew to his, and it was almost like he could hear the same words coming from her.
Tell me, tell me, tell me.
She won, he lost, and taking his finger off her mouth, the prince said with a sigh, “I’ll probably miss you a thousand times more, parthena mou. When you’re not with me,” the prince muttered, “I’m thinking of you, and when you’re with me, I still end up thinking of you—-” He broke off.
Fawn gazed at him searchingly—-
And then she saw it.
Fawn gasped. “Are you blushing?”
The prince glared at her. “No.” But fuck it, he knew he was.
Fawn was still staring at him.
The prince wanted to strangle her.
Fawn opened her mouth.
The prince said coldly, “Don’t even think of it—-”
“If you’re not blushing—-”
“Do you want to die?”
“—-then why are your cheeks red?”
Fawn rubbed her eyes once, twice, thrice, but oh! It was really happening.
A darker shade of red was staining the prince’s high-boned cheeks, and she blurted out, “You’re so cute, too—-”
The prince suddenly pinched her cheeks hard. “Shut up.”
“Woway.” That meant okay, and she really was okay with shutting up, but oh, what she couldn’t do was stop herself from grinning.
The prince would miss her a thousand times more!
The prince thought of her when he wasn’t with her!
Made her happy.
Her entire body sagged at the realization.
The prince made her happy.
She stared at him with eyes made blank by all the memories rushing to her mind.
“Fawn, answer me. Are you alright?”
“I a-am.” And she was, even if all her eyes could see was the prince in the past.
She remembered the days she had used to desperately hide from him while working, and the day that he had caught her in the hallway outside his study—-
“That’s quite a frown you’ve there.”
She remembered the way she had tried so hard to smile—-
“You look like a clown.”
And when she had tried harder—-
“A psychopath now, but it will do.”
She remembered the day she had spewed water all over the prince’s shirt.
“You know I didn’t mean it. It’s j-just that I didn’t expect you to be here. I mean, everyone said you’d be away for another week—-”
Any other employer would have her fired on the spot, but instead the prince had actually apologized, albeit sarcastically.
“I apologize if I failed to inform you in advance about the change in my schedule.”
He was the Prince of Darkness, a man whom everyone thought was colder and crueler than most people, and yet all she could remember from him was kindness.
She looked at the prince.
And she remembered the day when she found out about Grant cheating on her—-
She remembered the prince using the darkness to protect her, covering her eyes as he asked—-
What do you want to do?
And it was such a simple question, but even then she had known.
The prince would have done anything she would ask of him.
Because he was that kind of man.
The kind that could make her smile, laugh—-
The kind that could make her happy—-
The kind that could make the bitterness disappear, the sadness fade—-
And just like that, she knew.
She wanted to make him happy, too.
Because she loved him.
The prince’s gaze narrowed when Fawn suddenly looked at him with determined, calculating eyes, almost the way a predator eyed its prey. It was a ludicrous idea, considering how he was much more powerful than her, but even so, the slightest frisson of unease ran down the prince’s spine.
When Fawn started leaning towards him, he almost leaned back to avoid her—-