The hike I had signed up for scheduled in the afternoon. I caught Mark's eye when they announced it was starting soon. I knew he’d signed up for it too because we’d talked about stuff to do together. He nodded toward the group of hikers, who were getting ready to head out, and I excused myself from my current conversation to join them.
Becky didn’t go, and since I didn’t really know most of them, I fell back a bit. They were a lively group, as they took off down the trail. Mark discreetly adjusted his pace to match mine and it wasn’t long before the others had left us behind.
“Finally caught you alone,” he said, glancing over at me as we walked along side by side.
“It’s about time,” I jokingly said. “I was beginning to think I would have to text my boyfriend.”
“Oh yeah?” He said, shooting me one of those sexy grins. “I bet he’s in an uncivilized place where his phone doesn’t have a signal.”
“What would he be doing in a place like that?”
“Probably wishing he could touch you,” Mark said, his tone teasing. “But someone told him to keep hands off.”
“Why would they do a silly thing like that?” I asked, knowing perfectly well it was because I was scared to death of what touching him might mean.
“I’m still not sure,” he said, glancing over at me. “It’s okay though, I get it. She’s still nervous about those chatty Cathy women walking up ahead.”
“She had her reasons,” I couldn’t seem to quit talking in the third person. “Although she hadn’t realized just how handsome and touchable you might actually be.”
Mark’s laugh was warm and melodious as it rang out, interrupting the birds.
“Oh yeah?” He asked.
“She’s wondering if she should let you anywhere near her Venus love trap,” I babbled on, not even sure if what I was saying made any sense.
“Her what?” He choked back more laughter as he looked at me.
“Well what would you call it?” I challenged him.
“I’m not answering that, on the grounds I’ll incriminate myself,” he said, still grinning. “I’m almost afraid to ask what you would call mine.”
“You mean your manly love sword?” I was all in now. Might as well keep going.
“Oh yes, it’s very manly,” he snickered. “At least you got that part right.”
There was a decided lack of civilization around as we walked down the old country path. Bird songs filled the air. The sun warmed our skin as a gentle breeze teased our hair. His long legs easily kept pace with mine as we strolled along together.
“Do you always walk with your hands shoved in your pockets like that?” I asked.
“It’s a new habit,” he said, glancing over at me and I thought I saw some heat in his eyes.
“I started doing it this morning,” he said and this time I know the look he gave me was filled with untapped passion mixed with humor.
“Why would you start such a nasty habit today, of all days?” I asked, needing him to say what I think he meant.
“If I don’t keep them there, they might do something I promised they wouldn’t,” he said and his words confirmed what I suspected.
He wanted me. My belly twisted with the knowledge and I felt molten lava pooling from my heated thoughts. Knowing Mark wanted me too heightened my body’s arousal. The thought made me catch my breath and I looked away, nervous about what that might mean.
Keep it together…. he’s only teasing you. Quit freaking out. Just because his lips look so yummy…...and his hands look…...large …….and his…..quit it!
We came to a bend in the path where a babbling brook danced its way through the woods. There was a fallen log close to where the path crossed the water, and as I moved to walk over it, he stopped me by putting his hand on my elbow.
I turned to look at him, and because I'd stepped up on the log, my head was level with Mark’s. This time I couldn’t mistake the heat in his gaze.
“Be careful,” he said, not letting go of my arm.
Just kiss me already, you’ve teased me long enough!
The words wouldn’t come out of my mouth, but maybe if I thought hard enough, he’d hear. I’m sure he can see how much I wanted him as I stared into his eyes, not moving, while time seemed to stand still.
I felt his fingers tighten around my elbow and saw him swallow while staring at my mouth. I licked my suddenly dry lips. All the moisture in my body had gone south. Mark seemed fascinated by the sight of my tongue and when it disappeared back into my mouth, he groaned, the sound rumbling deep in the back of his throat, and pulled me forward.
Oh my god, yes! He's going to kiss me.
I barely registered the thought before his mouth captured mine. His tongue stroked and teased mine, alternating between hard and firm and then soft and teasing, making me breathless. The long-dead fires of desire I'd locked away gushed out. I couldn’t remember the last time I'd been in the arms of a man who truly desired me. His mouth reawakened feelings I'd almost forgotten how to feel.
For months I’d been fantasizing about touching him and all the things I wanted to do with him, but at that moment all I wanted was to drown myself in his kisses. Simply feel his hardness against my softness as he devoured my mouth and pulled my body close.
One calloused finger ran down the side of my face, tucking a piece of stray hair behind my ear. His hands pulled me close and stroked my arm, circling my waist, hesitating to touch me anywhere else. His desire for me strained against his jeans, pressing into the apex of my thighs, but he held back.
He was the man of honor he’d portrayed himself to be, igniting a spark of hope in my heart. My confidence grew when I realized he wouldn’t push any further than I was willing, in spite of all the sexy banter we’d exchanged over the past few months. Realizing I could trust him gave me the courage to touch him when I might have been too shy otherwise. My hand slipped under his shirt and stroked the bare skin of his back. His skin was warm to my cool fingers and I felt him shiver under my fingertips.
What if we kept going? Do I dare? Every time I try to do what the church says I’m ‘supposed’ to do I’ve gotten hurt. It’s time for me to live and take a chance.
The thought fluttered through my passion-hazed brain as Mark’s mouth continued to ravage mine. I couldn’t think straight. I could only feel, lost in the bubble of sensations his lips and tongue were creating with his fiery kisses. I felt myself getting wetter as a mini-orgasm exploded in my core. Moaning into his mouth, I shuddered and leaned into him. It was becoming difficult to stand on my own.
Do you have any idea what you’re doing to me with these incredible kisses? Holy shit. I had no idea I what I was missing!
My legs no longer willing to hold me up, I stumbled into him and felt him bend forward. His kisses didn’t stop as he stood up and I gasped as I felt him carrying me like a child, hands under my knees. My arms automatically circled his neck as I broke off the kiss with a gasp of surprise.
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