How was it possible to get to twenty-nine years old and never feel longing and desire so intense I ache with it, or even just the feeling of contentment to have him close? It’s not like I’m a virgin, there had been an asshole in the first year of college who was more interested in my knowledge of economics than me outside of bed. In my last year I met a sweet, kind, and secretly gay guy who was hoping I was okay with that. Which I would have been, as a friend, if he hadn’t already been having sex with me for the previous six months.
When I moved back to my grandmother’s house after finishing school I felt lost. The house had been given to me with the stipulation I couldn’t sell it until I was thirty and came into the remainder of my inheritance. I was lonely, the house was too big, except, just the thought of leaving it made me cry. With my parents actually reaching out to me, I was loathe to leave, fearful physical distance would lead back to our previous distance. My parents introduced me to one of my father’s colleagues from work at a dinner party they had, their matchmaking obvious.
Colin was much older, yet still handsome. He also enjoyed many of the same things I did—like art, museums, opera, and traveling. For a few months I believed things were going well. On our first trip together visiting Moscow I came back from shopping to find his computer open and unlocked by the bed. Curiosity had filled me, he’d been almost ridiculously obsessive about me not touching it.
A few clicks told me why, it was filled with the most vile and illegal porn I’d ever seen. By the time he came out of the bathroom, I was already packed and walking out the door. When I got back to Dallas I reported him to the police. Weeks later, my father called and raged at me for getting Colin arrested, causing him to lose his job, and ruining his life. All I cared about was finding out he’d been sentenced to three years in prison and would be on the sex offender list.
Considering my last relationship had started for all the wrong reasons, it was hardly surprising when it crashed and burned. I was bored and he was there, only two apartments away from mine. Almost six months in I still hadn’t met any of his friends or family and the whole thing felt off. Then he lost his phone and asked me to call it. I found it in the bed ringing, with my contact name showing as fatty. The word felt like a punch to the chest. Instead of being sorry, he was rude, he’d only started sleeping with me because of my tits and he heard fat chicks were willing to do anything in bed. Which apparently was an urban myth because sex with me was so boring he didn’t know how he managed not to fall asleep before he was done. He walked out, and thankfully moved out of the complex only a month later.
At the remembered pain, I rub my eyes, pissed at the tears that fall. Would this time be any different than the others? Closing my eyes, I remember the way Nick smiled when he called me adorably fuckable, the desire and longing in his eyes as he touched my lips. No man had ever looked at me as if I was a tempting treat he couldn’t have. No man had ever taken care of me as if I mattered to him; no man had ever taken care of me, period. My phone’s ring startles me, I don’t have to think, I know it’s Nick.
“Hello?” Fuck, do I sound breathless?
“No, I think the nap was too long. Are you busy tonight?” The real reason why is swallowed without a thought.
“A little, Mom said you were busy. Did you catch up on work?”
“Hmm, is your mom spying and relaying everything back?” I’m thrilled to know he was busy, yet still taking the time to call me. Then I wonder just how much will she tell him about me.
“Fuck yes, I need all the help I can get to make sure you aren’t doing anything you shouldn’t, and to take care of you when I can’t be there. How is your knee feeling?”
“Not bad, it’s actually my ankle hurting. The ice didn’t feel great, but after it was off I missed it. You know I can take care of myself, I’ve been doing pretty well for a long time. This is kind of an unusual circumstance.”
Nick’s laughter in my ear makes me shiver. “There’s how you take care of yourself and there’s how I want to take care of you.” The way he says it makes my panties wet and my mouth dry. “If you knew all the ways I want to take care of you, the things I thought of in bed, with you down the hall, close yet untouchable, it’s a good thing you aren’t mobile or you’d run as fast and far as you could get.”
Longing is clear and coats his every word, leaving no room for doubt; Nick wants me. Remembering the way he told me I make his cock hard thrills me. “And if I don’t want to run?”
The intake of air in my ear makes me smile, no he wasn’t as cool as he seemed. “Maggie,” it’s a whisper, “I will hold you to that, under me and against me until I’ve made us both so weak you couldn’t walk if you wanted to. You’re killing me and I love it. Three long weeks since I first saw you and I walked into a damned car because I couldn’t stop staring at your gorgeous ass.”
“What?” No fucking way.
“I was finishing my run, going back through the parking lot when I saw you bent at the fucking waist, tying your shoe. My cock has never gotten that hard that fast in my entire life. I couldn’t take my eyes off you and walked straight into a parked car. I didn’t want to let you get away, except my cock wouldn’t cooperate. Like a fucking kid, I hid behind a car and watched you until you disappeared. You were cracking me up the way you were talking to Pickles, like you expected her to talk back. You just rambled on and on complaining about the humidity and early mornings and all the tall, skinny bitches. I wanted to follow you to hear what else you had to say and to watch your ass in your tight jeans.”
“Oh, my god,” I groan at the idea of him hearing me talk to Pickles. “I can’t believe it. That is so embarrassing. Wait, when was that?”
“March sixteenth, I remember it vividly because I was supposed to have a date that night, but I called and cancelled. Right then and there I didn’t want anyone but you. As you walked away, I consoled myself with the knowledge I’d be back at my new time for a better chance of seeing you again.”
“Wow.” His honesty is clear, he really has wanted me since the moment he saw me. Me, Margaret Jane Pruitt, wow.
“My thought exactly, when I saw your ass. I never understood the whole fascination with any one facet of a woman until, with one look, I wanted to be behind you with your hips in my hands watching your body move with my every stroke. Then you took my perfect view away and I saw those bright blue eyes and your wide luscious mouth. I thought, no I want to watch her face. I want to see your eyes dark with passion, your face flushed in excitement, your mouth wide as you beg for more.”
Oh. My. God. “Nick?” It’s an exhale of breath, I’m too stunned to speak.
“I knew it, you’ve had sex but never fucked. A man has been inside you but never made you scream his name. Did they even get you wet, baby? Hmm…did your pussy flood with need to have their cock inside you?”
Wrong, dirty, so fucking hot. How could he know? “No.”
“It wasn’t your fault, it was theirs. So sweet, knowledgeable, yet innocent. Tell me, baby, is your pussy wet for me right now?” I can’t answer that, does he really want me to say it out loud? “Maggie, is your pussy wet for me?”
“Yes.” I choke out the word.
Biting my tongue until I’m afraid it will bleed, I don’t even consider not answering him even though I’ve never used the word in my life. “My pussy is wet for you.”
“I know. I just wanted to hear you say it. I like knowing I’m not the only one leaking with desire.” I hear a door open and a male voice talking to him. I deflate a little, I don’t want this to be over, not yet. His voice full of regret. “I have to go, baby.”
I don’t say any of those things, I’m pretty sure he already knows. “I know, goodnight.”
He ends the call. I push my face into my pillow and scream. Nick hadn’t been able to take his eyes off me. Hearing him talk about the moment he saw me, his wonder came through clearly enough I almost felt it myself. How could he do that? Tear me up and put me back together saying the sweetest things, fill me full of desire using the naughtiest, dirtiest words I have ever heard as easily as if he were talking about the weather. The doubts swirling before his call disappears, and in their place are things I haven’t felt, ever, when it came to a man: desire, excitement, and hope.