“I like your room,” she says.

“It’s a room.”

She disagrees with a shake of her head. “No, it’s more than that. This is where you live. This is where you sleep. This is where you feel the most privacy in your whole entire life. This is more than just a room.”

“It doesn’t feel very private right now,” I say, watching as she skims her hand across every surface of my room. She turns and looks at me, then faces me full-on.

“What’s the one thing in this room that tells the biggest secret about you?”

I laugh under my breath. “I’m not telling you that.”

She tilts her head. “So I’m right. You have secrets.”

“I never said I didn’t.”

“Give me one,” she asks. “Just one.”

I’ll give them all to her if she keeps looking at me like this. She’s so damn adorable. I walk slowly toward her and she swallows a gulp of air. I stop when I’m several inches from her, then I nod my head down toward my mattress. “I’ve never kissed a girl on this bed,” I whisper.

She looks down at my mattress, then back up to me. “I hope you really don’t expect me to believe you’ve never made out with a girl in your room before.”

I laugh. “I didn’t say that. I stated I had never kissed a girl on this particular bed. I was being honest, because it’s a brand-new mattress. I just got it last week.”

I can see the change in her eyes. The heavy rise and fall of her chest. She likes that I’m so close to her and she likes that I’m insinuating I want to kiss her on my bed.

Her eyes fall to the bed. “Are you saying you want to kiss me on your bed?”

I lean in closer until my lips are right next to her ear. “Are you saying you would let me?”

She sucks in a soft rush of air and I love that we’re both feeling this. I want to kiss her on my bed so damn bad. I want it more than I even wanted the damn bed. Hell, I don’t even care if it’s on the bed. I just want to kiss her. I don’t care where it is. I’ll kiss her anywhere she’ll allow me to kiss her.

I close the small gap between our bodies by resting my hands on her hips and pulling her to me. Her hands fly up to my forearms and she gasps. I dig my fingers into her hips and rest my cheek against hers. My mouth is still grazing her ear as I close my eyes, enjoying the feel of this.

I love the way she smells. I love the way she feels. And even though I haven’t really given her an honest to God kiss yet, I already love the way she kisses.

“Daniel,” she whispers. My name crashes against my shoulder when it rushes out of her mouth. “Will you take me home now?”

I wince at her words, immediately wondering what I just did wrong. I remain still for several long seconds, waiting until the feel of her against me no longer has me completely paralyzed.

“You didn’t do anything wrong,” she says, immediately easing the doubt building inside me. “I just think I should go home.”

Her voice is soft and sweet and I suddenly hate every single guy in her past who has ever failed to get to know this side of her.

I don’t release her immediately. I turn my head slightly until my forehead is touching the side of her head. “Did you love him?” I ask, allowing my brilliant brain to completely ruin this moment between us.


“The guy in Italy,” I clarify. “The one who hurt you. Did you love him?”

Her forehead meets my shoulder and the way she fails to respond to that question reveals her answer, but it also fills me with so many more questions. I want to ask her if she still loves him. If she’s still with him. If they still talk.

I don’t say anything, though, because I have a feeling she wouldn’t be here with me right now if any of that were the case. I bring my hand up to the back of her head and I press my lips into her hair. “Let’s get you home,” I whisper.

“Thanks for buying me dinner,” she says when we reach her front door.

“You didn’t really give me a choice. You left your house without a penny and then you shoved the bill in my face.”

She laughs as she unlocks her front door, but doesn’t open it yet. She turns back around and lifts her eyes, looking at me through lashes so long and thick, I have to refrain from reaching out and touching them.

Kissing her at dinner was definitely spontaneous, but I was sure it would make this moment a breeze.

It hasn’t.

If anything, I feel even more pressure to kiss her because it’s already happened once tonight. And the fact that it’s already happened and I know how damn good it feels makes me want it even more, but now I’m scared I’ve built it up too much.

I begin to lean in toward her when her lips part.

“Are you gonna use tongue this time?” she whispers.

I squeeze my eyes shut and take a step back, completely thrown off by her comment. I rub my palms down my face and groan.

“Dammit, Six. I was already feeling inadequate. Now you’ve just put expectations on it.”

She’s smiling when I look at her again. “Oh, there are definitely expectations,” she says teasingly. “I expect this to be the most mind-blowing thing I’ve ever experienced, so you better deliver.”

I sigh, wondering if the moment can possibly be recovered. I doubt it. “I’m not kissing you now.”

She nods her head. “Yes you are.”

I fold my arms over my chest. “No. I’m not. You just gave me performance anxiety.”

She takes a step toward me and slides her hands between my folded arms, pushing against them until they unlock. “Daniel Wesley, you owe me a do-over since you made me kiss you in a crowded restaurant next to a dirty diaper.”

“It wasn’t crowded,” I interject.

She glares at me. “Put your hands on my face and push me against this wall and slip me some tongue! Now!”

Before she can laugh at herself, my hands are casing her face and her back is pressed against the wall of her house and my lips are on hers. It happens so fast, it catches her off guard and she gasps, which causes her lips to part farther than she probably meant for them to. As soon as I caress the tip of her tongue with mine, she’s clenching my shirt in two tight fists, pulling me closer. I tilt my head and take the kiss deeper, wanting to give her all the feels she can possibly get from a kiss and I want her to have them all at once.

My mouth isn’t having a problem remembering what to do this time. What it’s having a problem with is remembering how to slow down. Her hands are now in my hair and if she moans into my damn mouth one more time I’m afraid I might carry her to the backseat of my car and try to cheapen this date.

I can’t do that. I can’t, I can’t, I can’t. I like this girl too much already and I’ll be damned if this isn’t our first date and she already has me thinking about the next one. I brace my hands on the wall behind her head and I force myself to push off of her.

We’re both panting. Gasping for breath. I’m breathing heavier than any kiss has ever made me breathe before. Her eyes are closed and I absolutely love how she doesn’t immediately open them when I’m finished kissing her. I like that she seems to want to savor the way I make her feel, just like I want to savor her.

“Daniel,” she whispers.

I groan and drop my forehead to hers, touching her cheek with my hand. “You make me love my name so damn much.”

She opens her eyes and I pull back, looking down on her, still stroking her cheek. She’s looking at me the same way I’m looking at her. Like we can’t believe our luck.

“You better not turn out to be an asshole,” she says quietly.

“And you better be done with that guy in Italy,” I reply.

She nods. “I am,” she says, although her eyes seem to tell a different story. I try not to read into it because whatever it is, it doesn’t matter now. She’s here with me. And she’s happy about that. I can tell.

“You better not take back the girl who broke your heart last night,” she adds.

I shake my head. “Never. Not after this. Not after you.”

She seems relieved by my answer.

“This is scary,” she whispers. “I’ve never had a boyfriend before. I don’t know how this works. Do people become exclusive this fast? Are we supposed to pretend we’re not that interested for a few more dates?”

Oh, dear God.

I’ve never been turned on by a girl laying claim to me before. I usually run in the other direction. She’s obliterating every single thing I thought I knew about myself with every new sentence that passes those lips.

“I have no interest in faking disinterest,” I say. “If you want to call yourself my girlfriend half as much as I wish you would, then it would save me a whole lot of begging. Because I was literally about to drop to my knees and beg you.”

She squints her eyes playfully. “No begging. It screams desperation.”

“You make me desperate,” I say, pressing my lips to hers again. I choose to keep this kiss simple, even though I want to grab her face again and hold her against the wall. I pull away from her and we stare at each other. We stare at each other for so long I begin to worry that she’s put some kind of spell on me, because I’ve never wanted to just stare at a girl like I want to stare at her. Just looking at her causes my heart to burn and my chest to constrict and I’m sort of freaking out that I barely know her at all and we’ve just made ourselves exclusive.

“Are you a witch?” I ask.

Her laugh returns and I suddenly don’t care if she’s a witch. If this is some kind of spell she’s put on me, I hope it never breaks.

“I have no idea who you even are and now you’re my damn girlfriend. What the hell have you done to me?”

She holds her palms up defensively. “Hey, don’t blame me. I’ve gone eighteen years swearing off boyfriends and then you show up out of the blue with your vulgar mouth and terribly awkward first kisses and now look at me. I’m a hypocrite.”

“I don’t even know your phone number,” I say.

“I don’t even know your birthday,” she says.

“You’re the worst girlfriend I’ve ever had.”

She laughs and I kiss her again. I notice I have to kiss her every time she laughs and she laughs a lot. Which means I have to kiss her a lot. God, I hope she doesn’t laugh in front of Sky or Holder because it’s going to be so damn hard not to kiss her.

“You better not tell Sky about us,” I say. “I don’t want Holder to know yet.”

“What about school? I enroll tomorrow. You don’t think it’ll be obvious when we interact?”

“We’ll pretend we hate each other. It could be fun.”

She tilts her face up and finds my mouth again, giving me a light peck. “But how do you plan on keeping your hands off me?”

I slide my other hand to her waist. “I won’t keep my hands off you. I’ll just touch you when they aren’t looking.”

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