I take her hand and guide her off the stool. It's been a while since I played, but I can impress her even rusty.
I reach for the rack and set up the table. "Have you ever played?" I ask.
"Once or twice."
I grab the balls and put them into the rack, setting the game up. "Do you want to break?" I ask.
"That's when I start?" she asks curiously.
I get the feeling I'm being played. "Yes." I consider making a wager, suggesting I take her out if she wins, but I don't date. That's not who I am.
"Okay," Hannah says.
I gather the cue sticks and hand one to her. I grab the chalk and show her how to apply it to the pool cue tip before handing the chalk to her to use.
"Don't hit the eight ball in until the end. And you have to call the pocket."
"That's a lot of rules to remember." She puts her empty glass on a nearby table.
"Do you want another drink?" I ask.
"Are you trying to liqueur me up so I lose?"
I chuckle under my breath. "Never said I was a gentleman."
She bites down on her bottom lip and aims her shot, glancing back at me over her shoulder. "If I win, you buy the next round of drinks."
I can live with that wager. "You're on."
The girl is badass and a pool shark. I don't get a single shot. She knocks one ball in after another, gaining a second, a third, and fourth turn, before calling the pocket for the eight ball.
I don't like to lose, especially to a girl. "Hard to believe you've only played once or twice."
"Once or twice—a week," Hannah says, having left out that important tidbit earlier.
"What are you drinking?" I ask. I don't plan on going easy on her on the next round. She's good, but I don't lose.
"Same as earlier," she says.
I don't like leaving her alone, not even for a minute. Another man could swoop in and capture her attention. I'm quick and hurry to the bar, ordering her another Fuzzy Navel. She's across the room, and it's difficult to see her with the crowd tonight.
I'm back as quickly as I can be, and already, some dumbass is trying to vie for her affection. No chance in hell, buddy.
"You're hot," the short, blond stranger says, ogling Hannah.
My breath caresses her ear as I lean in to ensure that she can hear me, along with the idiot trying to gain her attention. "Hey, babe. Here's your drink," I say, handing it to her.
I rest my hand on her lower back possessively. She's not mine, but I intend to change that tonight.
"Thanks," she breathes a sigh of relief and sips her drink.
When the guy standing not more than a foot away doesn't seem to get the hint, she grabs me by the tie and pulls my head down toward her lips.
Her boldness surprises me, but it's refreshing even if she is doing it just to get rid of that pitiful man attempting to flirt with her.
She’s the hottest girl in the room. I’m lucky that she hasn’t told me to walk away. She is way out of my league.
Her lips cover mine, and I pull her tighter, harder, closer. I want to devour her.
My fingers pull her tight against me. She tastes like strawberries, and I'm starving.
The music blares overhead, the beat quick and fast, making it hard to concentrate with my heart pounding from her mouth latched onto mine. I want to fuck her but not here. She’s too good for the bathroom or a quick lay in an alley.
The girl wears sophistication like it's a crown, and she's queen.
Our kisses are fevered and full of passion. With every breath exchanged between us, my head fills high above the clouds like floating on air. It’s almost as if she is a drug and I’m an addict.
Hannah finally pulls back and runs a hand through her unkempt hair, breathing heavily. "Thank you."
"For the drink or for helping you ditch that fool?"
Her cheeks burn, and she smiles weakly, glancing down. Is she embarrassed about the kiss? What sane, hot-blooded male wouldn't want to kiss her?
"You're welcome," I say, not needing further explanation. "How about another round of pool?" I ask.
"Let me guess, you want to go first?"
"Seems only fair since I didn't get a turn."
Bringing the glass to her lips, she takes a swig. "Sure, you can go ahead and try to beat me."
Hannah lifts her phone and unlocks the camera app. "Come here," she says and takes another gulp of her drink before putting it on the edge of the pool table.
I shake my head and wiggle my finger at her. "No chance." I have my reasons why I hate being in front of a camera, not that she needs to know any of them.
"What do you mean, no? Are you three?" Hannah laughs and grabs my arm. "Smile."
She lifts the phone and wraps an arm around my shoulders, pulling me closer for a photo.
I force a smile. It's not that I'm not enjoying my time with her, but I don't know who will see the photo, and I've done what I can to keep a low profile.
Hannah glances at the picture, unconvinced that she's done. "Another one," she says, and this time I give her a genuine smile if only to get her to stop with the pictures. I would never have thought she was the type who liked photographing every moment of her life.
She snaps two photographs, and then I plant my lips on hers, and she snaps one more. The world momentarily disappears around us as I pull her against me. Her body is warm and melts into my embrace.
“Do you want to get out of here?” I ask, breaking apart the kiss long enough to speak.
Hannah nods, and I take her hand, leading her out the front entrance. She pulls out her keys, her hands shaking. “I’ve never done this before.”
The look on my face must give away my surprise. Is she a virgin?