Stay with Me / Page 36

Page 36

I got my first complete look at him.


That was also awesome.

Jax was . . . I stared at him, taking in the thickness and length, and yeah, I really had no words.

“I don’t mind you staring at me like that, but this is going to be over before you even touch me if you keep it up.”

“Seriously?” I dragged my gaze to his.

He grinned. “Seriously.”

“I kind of like that,” I admitted.

There was a pause, then he threw his head back and let out a deep laugh. “I bet.”

Before I lost my courage, I reached between us and wrapped my hand around him. His laughter faded into a masculine moan and then his h*ps jerked as I slid my hand up his length.

I didn’t have to fumble around and figure out what he liked, because he placed his hand over mine, setting up a rhythm and pressure. He even did this thing with my thumb, where he moved it over his tip, and by the way he kissed me after, going deep, I knew he liked that. So after I made another pass from the root to the tip, I did it again.

“Fuck,” he growled, burying his head in my neck; kissing and licking and touching him already had my turned-on body revving into high gear. When he got a hand between our bodies, careful of what I was doing, I spread my legs for him. “God.”

His finger moved over the center of my undies and then his fingers were inside. At first contact of his skin against mine, I cried out, and when I said his name, he ground out another “Fuck.”

He moved his hand and then he lifted my hips, dragging my panties down my legs. My hand tightened on him as I really started to get breathless. I opened my eyes and tension coiled tight in the pit of my belly.

What I saw was like a blast to the hormones. My hand wrapped around him, and he was swollen, pink, and hard. But beyond that, my undies were down my thighs, almost to my knees, my legs open and his hand between them.

Then he slid a finger inside me, and my body reacted. My h*ps punched up and my head kicked back.

“Calla, baby, you’re so tight,” he muttered, and by the heaviness in his voice, I figured this was a good thing. He moved his finger slowly—a lot slower and smoother than what I was doing and then I stopped doing everything, because he picked up pace. “I’m thinking you like this.”

“I . . .” I didn’t know what to say to that, but I knew I wanted more. I wanted him. The finger was great, but I wanted more. I didn’t stop to think about where I was taking this. “I want you.”

“I know.”

My eyes narrowed, and he chuckled as my hand tightened around him. I could feel him pulse against my palm. “I want this,” I told him in a thready whisper. “I want this in me.”

His h*ps thrust halfway through what I said, and he made that deep sound again that curled my toes. He dropped his forehead to mine, and the next kiss was sweet and soulful, a different kind of kiss. As that kiss shifted into something far more sensual, he added another finger.

“Oh God,” I gasped against his mouth.

“I want nothing more than to be in you. God, I could come just thinking about it.” He moved slowly, dragging out the feel. “But this thing of yours has to come off.”

His words cleared the haze. “My tank top?”

“Yep, baby, it’s got to go.” His tongue trailed along the seam of my lips. “You ready for that?”

Okay. Today was a different day, but it wasn’t that different and some things would never change. My shirt might come off, but the tank top was never, ever coming off.

“No,” I whispered.

“That’s what I thought.” He kissed the tip of my nose. “But you need to understand something, honey, I’m not going to get in you until we’re skin to skin.”

My pulse thundered at his words, but the look I gave him said we’d see about that, and he answered with an amused chuckle and another scorching hot, wet kiss. His hand shifted between my legs, putting his thumb right over the most sensitive part of me. It wasn’t long before my h*ps were moving against him, following the pace he set, and then setting my own. He gave me what he could with those two fingers sliding in and out, his thumb pressing on the bundle of nerves.

“That’s it.” He lowered his mouth to mine, slanting his head and kissing me deeply as the knot built to a point. “Ride my hand.”

Any other time, I would probably die of embarrassment hearing those words, and maybe later, I’d care, but right now? I did what he said. I rode his hand as I moved mine over him. Then there was only a subtle warning—a deep flutter—and then the knot whipped out, unraveling inside me, and I cried out as I came. He kept up, prolonging the sensation until my legs went weak.

Then he slowly eased his fingers out of me and then circled his hand around mine. I watched him—I watched us—through heavily hooded eyes. There was something wholly intimate about this, something that nestled in my chest and got lodged there. His body moved beautifully, full of masculine grace. Muscles along his h*ps flexed and rolled as he thrust against my hand.

His mouth was on mine when he came, and that had to be the most awesome thing out of all of this. Feeling the tremors in his body, the grunt of release that was caught on my tongue, and the way his h*ps slowed. But the most amazing part was the minutes immediately following.

Jax stayed with me for a few moments, half his weight on me, and the kisses went back to something sweet, a tenderness that meant more, and further lodged that feeling in my chest. When he did get up, he strutted into the bathroom in his na**d glory and returned quickly with a damp washcloth. He cleaned up what he left behind and then he slid my undies back up my hips, but he wasn’t done there.

Wrapping his hands around my wrists, he forced me up into a sitting position, and it was too late when I realized that this exposed my back and everything he could see that the tank didn’t cover.

Panic exploded in my gut and I started to throw myself under the covers, but Jax was quick and the f**ker was clever. He slid in behind me, sitting up against the headboard, and then he wrapped his arms around my waist. He tugged me between his spread legs and against his chest—my back completely flush with his chest.

I knew he could feel the rougher scars on the back of my shoulder blades, because the tank top was one of those damn razorbacks. And I also knew he’d seen them before he pulled me against him. Maybe not a good long look, but he had to have seen them.

Muscles tense, I focused on the window across the room as his arms folded around my waist and he dipped his chin, resting it on my shoulder.

“Did I tell you about the first time I met Clyde?” he said.

Shaking my head, I whispered, “No.”

“It was on a Sunday. Met him at the bar. He ended up making me tacos.” He paused, chuckling softly in my ear. “Said it was tradition if I was going to be a part of his family.”

The next breath I took was sharp as a little more of that drowning weight lifted off me.

It was later in the day and Jax was finishing up with his shower before he took me back to the house so I could get ready for our date.

Our date.


It seemed odd to be going on a date, with everything that was happening, but Jax operated on his life-is-short mentality, so I wasn’t too surprised by it. And in spite of all the craziness and my hang-ups, I was feeling good about the date—about this morning and about us.

Since he was busy, I tried calling Teresa and I was thrilled when she answered on the third ring. “Yo,” she chirped into the phone. “I was just thinking about you.”

I sat on the edge of Jax’s couch. “You were?”

“Yep. I was wondering if you were still bartending, and if so, were you going to become our official drink mixer when you get back to Shepherdstown.”

I laughed. “I don’t know if you want that. Most of the people up here order straight from the tap, the bottle, or shots, which is a good thing because I’m not that good at mixing drinks.”

“I still can’t believe you’re bartending.”

I was sure there were a lot of things that Teresa probably couldn’t believe about me. “How’s the beach?” I asked.

Teresa’s sigh was audible. “It’s great. I have an awesome tan, and Jack really loves it here. It’s the first time he’s been to the beach.”

Jack was Jase’s little brother, whom he was superclose with.

“And you should see the two of them together out on the sand. Nothing makes your ovaries get all happy than seeing a hot guy with a kid,” she explained, and I grinned and then I pictured Jax with a kid, and there was a quiver somewhere down below. “Anyway,” she went on. “We’re leaving in a couple of days, but I swear, I think I could live at the beach.”

I really needed to get my ass to a beach at some point.

“So tell me about things in the great state of Pennsylvania. Is everything cool?”

“Well, yeah, things have been . . . they’ve been great,” I told her, glancing at the stairs. “I’ve, um . . . I’ve met a guy.”

There was silence.

And more silence.

I frowned. “You there?”

“Yes. Yes! You just caught me off guard. You went from things are good to there’s a guy and I was waiting for, you know, more detail.” She all but shouted the last word. “Like lots of detail.”

With another glance at the stairwell, I told her about Jax and our date tonight. I ended my impromptu confession with “So, yeah, I’m pretty sure he likes me.”

“Well, duh. Of course he does. So the place is called Apollo’s? Hold on a sec,” she said, and then her voice sounded farther away. “Hey, Jase, look up Apollo’s outside of Philly. What? Just do it.”

Oh my God.

“Back to the liking-you thing. Why would you be surprised that he likes you? Brandon totally liked you, but you—”

“What?” I interrupted her. “He did not.”

“Oh, yes, he did. It was cute. You were all quiet when he first started coming around and he was always looking at you, but then you really didn’t pay any attention to him. I thought maybe I read you wrong and you weren’t into him.”

Teresa was smoking crack.

“Do you like him?” she asked suddenly. “Because Jase just looked up Apollo’s—and, by the way, Jase says hi.”

“Hi,” I mumbled back.

“She says hi!” she yelled and then, “He says the place looks pretty classy. Do you like him, Calla?”

I closed my eyes and nodded. “Yeah, I like him. I really do.”

“Good. I can’t wait to meet him. And to see you. But I really want to meet him.” She giggled when I laughed. “I’m happy for you. Seriously.”

Sighing, I then admitted something kind of scary. “I’m happy, too.”

I got off the phone after making a promise to give her the details, and it was when I tucked my hair back behind my ear, I felt it—the awareness of not being alone.

Oh no.

Biting down on my lower lip, I twisted around and saw Jax standing at the bottom of the stairwell, already dressed for our date. Dark denim jeans and a white button-down. He looked damn good.

He was also grinning a smug little grin. “So you like me? You really do?”

I groaned, cheeks heating. “Shut up.”

Jax tipped back his head and laughed. He was lucky he had such a great laugh.

Lip gloss was almost the finishing touch and I was glad I was done getting ready. My tummy was grumbling and I really hoped Jax liked girls with big appetites because I had a feeling I was going to gorge myself on food.

I’d put loose waves in my hair and parted it on the side. I’d skipped on the Dermablend again, opting for the light look with smoky eyes.

The dress I had on, since I had to bring all my clothes with me, was cute and flirty. It was a strappy dark blue sundress that was fitted through the breast and waist. Maybe a little clingy around the hips, too, but then it flowed around, the skirt bouncy and ending just below mid-thigh. I paired it with a pair of sandals with a low heel. The final touch was the baby blue cap-sleeve cardigan that ended just below my br**sts and was also fitted.

Checking myself out in the mirror, I had to say that I looked pretty damn good.

I nodded at my reflection like a dork and then marched into the living room. While I’d been getting ready, Jax had puttered around the house and then made his way to the couch, where he was reading his book.

Studying his profile, with his chin dipped and his face masked in concentration, I had to say that he was hot. But when he looked up and saw me he was even hotter.

“I’m ready,” I said, and then added, “To go to dinner and eat.”

Yep. It was official. I was an uberdork.

His eyes darkened and heated. In a second he was on his feet, and then he was in front of me. One hand curled around the nape of my neck and the other landed on my cheek. His thumb moved along the bottom of my lip and got my stomach doing cartwheels.

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