“What you did wasn’t making love.”
“Is that what you call it when you want to have sex?”
“Yeah, but it’s usually a euphemism. A way of prettying up something that’s really just physical.” The timbre of his voice vibrated her senses. “What we’re going to do, though, Nell, it will be making love.”
“Oh.” Her cheeks felt as if they were flaming. “Have you...?”
He shook his head. “I’ve had sex. I’ve never felt like this before, though.”
If she’d been standing, she would have melted like candle wax. As it was, her fear melted away. Oh, please, Nell thought, please let him mean it. She reached out tentatively and laid her hand on that lovely bare chest. He tensed, and she felt a thump as if his heart had thrown in an extra, hard beat.
“Explore all you want,” he murmured.
For a few minutes, he only watched, groaning a few times, as she did exactly that. She kneaded, curled her fingers in his chest hair, followed it down to the elastic band of his shorts and chickened out there. That was okay—she reveled in what she could see. Eventually she got brave enough to lean close and kiss his neck and even lick the hollow at the base of his neck, loving the salty taste of his skin. No ugly memories surfaced, to her relief. Maybe she could do this. She drew circles around his small, flat nipples, then daringly kissed them, too. That groan was especially guttural. His hips seemed to lift from the bed momentarily.
She drew back. “Is that okay?”
“Yeah.” He sounded breathless. “Nell? Can I do a little exploring, too?”
She bit her lip and nodded.
“Is it okay to lose the shirt?” When she nodded again, he said, “And the bra?”
“Yes. I don’t, um, actually need it, you know.”
“Sure you do.” He smiled at her. “It’s armor.”
It was. She wore lots of armor, she realized.
She sat up and let him pull her shirt over her head, then watched his face as he took her bra off and looked at her. She was barely a B cup, but the dark flush that ran over his cheekbones and the glow in his eyes convinced her he liked what he saw.
“You’re beautiful,” he said, low and rough, then bent his head, first to kiss her. It was deep, passionate, fueling her rising tension. But he didn’t linger; instead, his mouth moved down her throat, then her chest until he kissed one nipple.
The sight of his dark head bent over her was erotic, but even so she hadn’t imagined how it would feel when he drew her nipple into his mouth and sucked. She squeaked and her hips bucked and he slowed enough to slide his tongue in a slow, sensual circle around her nipple. Then he moved to her other breast and did the same.
By the time his hand slid inside her panties, she was past feeling shy. She needed his touch, first pressing, rubbing. When one finger slipped between her folds, she moaned and opened to him.
Every so often, he lifted his mouth from her body long enough to talk. He told her over and over how beautiful he thought she was, how sexy, how he loved the way her hips rocked and her nipples peaked and how she blushed.
After coming back to her mouth for another slow, hungry kiss, he lifted his mouth and just looked at her for a minute. “Your eyes have always gotten to me,” he said, his voice transformed by hunger.
Nell ignored the twinge of unease that gave her. Right now, it didn’t matter what he meant by always. She was savoring the sight of his eyes, too, almost black with need and tenderness. The muscles in his back and upper arms were rigid, and instinct told her the deliberately slow pace of his lovemaking was costing him. But, oh, it was wonderful. So like him. He’d never been anything but patient with her. There was none of the groping, ugly urgency she remembered, only that patience and...love. It felt like love.
Her panties were gone, and suddenly, so was her patience. She wanted to feel, to see.... She curved her hand over the thick, hard ridge barely contained by fabric and squeezed gently.
His laugh was closer to a groan. “Let me...”
“Yes, please,” she said politely, and he laughed again, more genuinely, if still strained.
The shorts went flying and he lay, rigid, letting her stroke him, cup him, tease him. And then he made an inhuman sound, growled, “Enough,” and reached for the packet he’d set beside the bed. He had to push the covers back, giving her a chance to see his thick, pulsing penis before he sheathed it. The sight was the first to awaken something unpleasant in her head. She’d seen...
Colin noticed that she’d frozen. He caressed her face. “We’re making love,” he whispered, and began to kiss her and touch her again, until that glimpse of a memory was forgotten and hunger to merge her body with his swept away any doubts.