Trashed / Page 56

Page 56


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“Goddammit, Adam. Let me go.” She breaks the kiss, speaks the words with her lips to my ear.

“No.”

“You left.”

“I said I needed a minute. How does that translate into leaving?”

“I told you the truth and you—”

“Needed thirty fucking seconds to process it, Des. Jesus.” I’ve still got her hands in mine, but she’s not fighting it now.

“And?”

“And I get it. If you’d told me, I would’ve…I don’t even know. Gone slower. More gently. Made it special. Made it the best night of your life. Something you’d never forget.”

“It already was.” She leans her forehead against my cheekbone. “It already is that.”

“Come back, Des. Let’s talk about it upstairs, okay?”

She nods, and I let one hand go, keeping the other gripped in mine. I don’t exactly drag her back upstairs, but it’s clear she’s hesitant, maybe a little afraid. Once we’re in my apartment, I stop with my back to the door. Des keeps going a few steps into the no-man’s land between kitchen and living room, and then realizes I’m not beside her anymore.

She stops, turns back, looks at me. Sees me staring at her. “What?”

I shrug. “Like I said down there, I get it. Doesn’t mean I’m not still a little pissed off about it. I feel guilty. I took your virginity and I didn’t even know it. I just don’t know what to think, what to feel.”

“Does it change things between us?”

“Is there anything else you haven’t told me? That I should know, I mean.”

She shrugs. “No. I mean, I told you about being molested. That’s the only other thing I tend to keep to myself. For obvious reasons. People look at you different if they know. I tried therapy on my own, once. With a counselor at Wayne. And she just…she always had this pitying look on her face whenever we talked and I just couldn’t handle that shit. So I never told anyone else. That’s the big one, for me. Some of the other foster fathers would beat up on me, but that’s only a trigger when someone gets in my face or tries to restrain me.”

My gut sinks and my blood goes cold. “Like I did downstairs, just now?”

She bobs her head from side to side in a neither-yes-nor-no motion. “At first. More when you came up behind me and grabbed my arms. I don’t like being surprised or grabbed like that. That’s the trigger. But when you held my wrists and kissed me…?” She trails off and doesn’t finish.

“What?” I prompt.

She’s blushing. “It was…kind of hot. I feel like it shouldn’t be, considering things in my past, but it was.”

I take a slow, prowling step toward her. “Des, do you understand, all the way down to your soul, that I’d never, ever do anything to hurt you?”

She ducks her head. “Not on purpose, I guess, yeah.”

“You’ve been through so much, Des, and you deserve to be treated—”

She looks up sharply, her eyes fierce. “That’s just it. I deserve to be treated normally. I can’t stand being coddled or pitied or like I’m…fragile.” She says this last word bitterly, like it’s the vilest of curse words. “I’m not fucking fragile. I’ve been through shit most people can’t even fathom. I was jumped in the bathroom more than once during high school, six or seven girls beating on me just for being new and white. I’ve been mugged. I’ve been sexually molested. I’ve been through a shitload in my twenty-two years, Adam Trenton, and I’m fucking fine. I don’t need help. I don’t need pity. I don’t need to be treated like some delicate fucking little flower.”

I close the space between us, palm her waist and pull her lush body flush against mine. “Treat you like you’re delicate? No.” I drag my lips across hers, slip the tip of my tongue along the crease of her mouth, kiss the corner. “Treat you like you’re precious? Absolutely.”

Her breath hitches, and she tilts her face to mine. “Nice line, asshole,” she breathes.

My hands find the lower edge of her T-shirt and lift it, I work my fingers beneath it to find her warm soft skin, and she finally exhales softly, her palms going flat on my chest. I slide my palms up her back, bringing her shirt up as I go, bend my head to kiss the side of her neck. Her head tips back, offering me her throat, and I kiss her there, then down and down to the point of her V-neck. Unable to wait any longer, I lift the T-shirt over her head and drop it to the floor. Her bra is purple silk with white lace running along the upper edge of the cups, her tan flesh mounded and tantalizing. I leave her bra on for the moment, kissing down between her cleavage, down again to her stomach, lowering myself to my knees.

Her hands catch at me as I work the button of her jeans open and lower the zipper. “Adam…what are you—what are you doing?”

I smile up at her as I hook my fingers into the denim and tug down. The jeans come off inside out, and she steps free of them. I push the garment aside and run my palms up the backs of her legs to caress the soft taut silk of her underwear, matching purple with white lace running around the waist.

“I’m glad I wore a matching set today,” Des murmurs. “This is the only thing even close to lingerie I have, and I’m only wearing it because everything else is dirty and I haven’t done laundry yet—”

She’s rambling out of nervousness, which is cute, and unlike her. “Des.”

“Yeah?”

“Shut up.” When she frowns down at me, I smile back. “You’re sexy. And honestly, I couldn’t care less what kind of underwear you’re wearing. It’s all coming off, whether it cost fifty dollars or a thousand. To me, it’s all about what’s underneath.”

I pull the elastic at her right hip down an inch or two and kiss the flesh as I bare it, slide my finger across and beneath her navel, and do the same to her opposite hip. She’s not breathing now, and her hands slide through my hair, her fingers combing my short, gelled black spikes. Another gentle tug, and her left hipbone is bared, my lips graze her skin as my fingers drag over her stomach just above her core now. I lower the silk on her right hip.

I do this again and again, teasingly slowly until the top of her pubic hair is revealed. Her fingers freeze on my head, fingernails digging into my scalp. She gasps as I curl the index fingers of each hand into the elastic at her hips and tug her panties off in one quick motion.


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