Then he made the mistake of looking into her eyes and froze. Her expression was so open, so full of tenderness and longing as well as heat that he almost balked. This was supposed to be about closure, about having the goodbye they’d never gotten last time. How was he supposed to leave after if she gave herself to him this completely? Her hand came up to cradle the side of his face, her thumb stroking back and forth across his jaw, her touch gentle and loving. Need you, she murmured,It was good. Even better than he remembered. Liam buried his face in the side of her neck and sucked in a breath, struggling to hang on. Being cradled in Honor’s arms, buried to the hilt inside her while she opened her body and heart to him was the most incredible thing in the world. How the f*&^ was he going to walk away later? Without warning his eyes began to sting. As though she sensed how close he was to coming unglued, Honor murmured to him and pressed kisses to the side of his face, her hand urging his head to turn toward her. Liam shook his head, unable to bear that final level of intimacy when he knew this was their last time. Keeping his face in her neck he fought back the swell of emotion and began to move, a slow, shallow rocking motion that was more profound than words could ever be. He loved her. Would always love her, but it wasn’t enough because some things couldn’t be undone and he just couldn’t let her in the way he had before. All they had left was this bittersweet farewell and he was going to make it memorable. .... A lump settled in his throat and he squeezed his eyes shut, torn between the excruciating pleasure swelling inside him and the need to see her face as he took her this last time. In the end, his heart won out. Powerless to stop himself, he lifted his head and looked down at her. Anguish sliced through his chest when he saw the tears glistening in her beautiful eyes. Don’t. Don’t cry. Shit, he didn’t want either of them to hurt anymore. He was sick of hurting. That’s why he was ending it all tonight. With a low sound of regret he covered her mouth with his, his tongue sliding against hers as he took her. Honor kissed him back deep and slow...Cupping her cheek with his free hand he gave her everything he had left to give, allowing his emotional shields to drop for these final moments.She ran her fingertips up and down his back in a soothing motion, her body limp and pliant beneath his, legs still wrapped around him. And all of a sudden he felt like crying. He felt too much, was in too deep again.He didn’t know what to say to make this any easier. After what they’d just shared he was more conflicted than ever about what to do. I’ll miss you, she murmured and he caught the slight catch in her voice. Ah, fu&%. He gritted his teeth. It would be so much easier if they could just hate each other. For a moment he considered saying something to make her do exactly that, but couldn’t. Even he wasn’t enough of an a**hole to end things that way. And that look on her face… Against his better judgment, Liam sat back down on the edge of the bed and pulled her into his arms. Honor went willingly into his embrace, pressing her face to his chest as she hugged him tight in return. I’ll miss you too. Dammit, he should never have come here tonight. I wish it could be different, but I just… I can’t do this anymore. I’ll always love you but I can’t afford to let you back in again. I’m sorry.
Kaylea Cross
This night is going well.Hello there.I speak too soon.Dunstan enters, his two cronies behind him. Everyone standing around goes quiet. I flinch, but not for me; he's gazing at Ivy like a lion at a piece of meat. Ivy just keeps grinning.And may I say you are the prettiest girl I've seen all night, Dunstan says, not noticing the fact Ivy's already taken.Ivy stares down at her feet, a pale blush the color of pink roses brushed across her cheeks. You don't mean that, she whispers, not knowing she's accidentally flirting.I really do, Dunstan continues in his oily, supposedly charming voice and I roll my eyes. I want to pull Ivy away, but if I do, Dunstan will notice me. And without Melanie breathing down his neck, who knows what he'll try to pull?So what's your name, beautiful?Ivy blush deepens and i feel my nails dig into my skin. I am the one whose supposed to tell her she's pretty, not this jerk.My name is Ivy, Ivy replies.Ivy. I like it. It suits you.I feel an arm on my shoulder and turning around, I see Aidan holding me back. Unconsciously, I've stepped forward, ready to challenge him.So what is your name? Ivy asks, still shyly peering down at her shoeless feet.Acting all surprised he got asked this, Dunstan runs a hand through his hair. My name is Dunstan.Ivy's flush instantly vanishes, the corners of her mouth turns down and her eyebrows knit together.Dunstan? This is your name? Quiet as she's being, I know there's anger there. I'd hate to be the recipient of this tone.But Dunstan the egotistical baboon butt isn't aware of the change. Yep, that's me.What is your last name? I feel someone shaking. Aidan's still hanging on to me and he's nervous, too.Dunstan still doesn't detect her malice. Why, my last name's Lebelle. Dunstan Lebelle. He chuckles. Perhaps you've heard of me?Oh yes, Ivy hisses, suddenly radiating ferocious fury. I've heard much about the boy who nearly got Rylan Forester killed.Even with blaring music in the next room, you can hear a pin drop throughout the kitchen as everyone goes quiet, having lost all ability to talk due to flapping jaws. Someone whistles.Excuse me? Dunstan sounds like he can't believe what he's hearing.You heard me. Ivy glares, knowing she has him caught. You pushed Rylan into the swamp where the alligator attacked him. Sure, you can blame the alligator, but when you really think about, if you had not pushed him in, Rylan wouldn't have nearly died. Who, by the way, Ivy steps back, clasping my free hand in hers, happens to be my friend and my date.Everyone bursts into titters—no one has ever spoken to Dustan Lebelle like that—as Dunstan stares at me wide-eyed, finally taking in my existence. But before he can do anything, Ivy pulls my hand.We're leaving, she declares, giving Dunstan one last stink eye. And with her nose in the air and me following, Ivy boldly walks right out the back door.
Colleen Boyd