As she turns away, I swat her ass for good measure. Then I step into the shower and close the glass door behind me. I stick my head under the searing water and let the heat relax the muscles in my neck and back.
Through the glass a blurry Kate moves around, beginning the long getting-ready ritual. “I called your parents to see how the baby was doing.”
“What’d they say?”
“Your mother sounded half-dead, but all of the kids are great.”
Just as I expected.
Five minutes later, I’m out of the shower. I towel off and slip on a fresh pair of boxers. Then I step up to the sink and lather shaving cream on my face. Kate reenters the bathroom and stands beside me, putting makeup on. Her hair is damp but the robe is gone. In its place is a mouthwatering matching bra-and-panty set.
They’re pink silk with a black lace overlay. The panties are high cut—bikini style—and the bra pushes her tits up and together, creating a sexy-as-all-hell deep cle**age line. She dusts powder onto her face while I check her out.
“New underwear?” I keep a mental catalog of all of Kate’s undergarments, organized by color and style. I’ve never seen these before. I definitely would’ve remembered them.
She turns her hips, showing me the goods. “Yeah, aren’t they cute?”
Cute? No. Boner inducing? Definitely.
“There’s a La Perla boutique downstairs. I bought them before our spa treatments.”
I can’t help but contemplate what she was thinking when she bought them. I mean, a steamy night at home after James is asleep is one thing—a new outfit always makes that more interesting. But tonight we won’t even be hanging out together. Depending on what condition we’re in when we make it back to the room, we’ll be lucky if we even pass out next to each other.
That one syllable gives her pause. The hand that was applying eyeliner stops and she looks at me. “What?”
I keep shaving. “You don’t have any . . . other . . . underwear with you?”
Her brow wrinkles. “Sure I do. You don’t like these?”
I rinse my razor in the sink. “No . . . they’re fine. I just thought maybe you could wear something different. Something whiter, cotton, more full coverage.”
A triple-locked chastity belt would also suffice.
Her head tilts, trying to figure out where I’m going with this. “No, Drew, I didn’t bring any granny panties with me.”
You think I’m crazy, I know. But I’m not. I told you a long time ago—I play chess. I don’t just think about the next move; I think about the move five moves from now. So I can’t help but question why the hell would Kate buy new panties that would make any man with half a pulse want to sink to his knees in front of her and shred them with his teeth? It’s like . . . when a woman shaves her legs before a first date, even if she’s wearing pants. Maybe she doesn’t realize it, maybe she doesn’t want to admit it—but the only reason she’s doing it is because some part of her brain is hoping she’ll get laid.
Kate just looks sideways at me. I pat my chin with a hand towel while she finishes her makeup. As she smooths gloss over her succulent lips, I can’t help but speak up.
“Flavored lip gloss, huh?”
“Okay, that’s it.” She puts the cap on the gloss with a snap and drops it in her bag. Then she turns toward me quickly. “You need to stop. Right now.”
“Stop what? I didn’t say anything.”
“You didn’t have to. I know what’s going on in that deviant head of yours.”
I cross my arms. “You think so?”
“I know so. You’re having this whole conversation with yourself about why I would buy new underwear and who I’m going to let see it. Then you’re thinking, why am I putting on flavored lip gloss? Why not just plain lip gloss—unless I want someone to taste it?”
God, she’s good.
“But the truth is, I bought the underwear for me. Because having bras and underwear that match make me feel more put together. And you should know, Mr. I See Everything, that the flavored lip gloss is the only gloss I use. Every day.”
“You sound awfully defensive, Kate.”
“This isn’t defensive. This is a natural reaction to having to deal with the twisted way you view the world.”
We stare at each other for a few seconds, arms crossed, not giving an inch. Until Kate does. She plucks a tissue from the box on the back of the toilet and wipes the gloss off her lips. With a ring of sarcasm in her tone she asks, “There. Happy now?”
I should be. I mean—I won, right? But it’s kind of hard to be happy when you’re acting like a douche.
“And since the underwear concerns you so much”—she slides the scrap of silk and lace down her legs and tosses it to me—“I won’t wear any.”
She moves to exit the bathroom, but I step in front of her. “Whoa! Wait up—let’s pause the crazy talk for a second.”
I hold Kate’s gaze for a few seconds. Then—thoroughly contrite—I sink to my knees in front of her.
Her arms are still folded, but her eyes soften. Kate likes me on my knees.
“Your point is well taken.”
Her eyebrows rise in feigned innocence. “What point is that?”
I smile. “That I should trust you. That I do trust you.” I pick up one foot and kiss her light-pink-painted toes, before sliding it through the leg of the underwear. Kate drops her arms, using my shoulders for balance, as I repeat the action with the other foot. I slide the panties up her legs, kissing each thigh reverently as I go. “Every flavored-lip-gloss-slathered, f**k-hot-panty-covered inch of you, I trust.”