“Oh my gosh! You have this whole bed to yourself?” Felicia climbed up onto the king-sized bed in Aaron’s hotel suite. Aaron had made good on his promise to take the girls to dinner at the resort and show them their ostentatious hotel rooms. Felicia was particularly drawn to Aaron’s bed. “I want to sleep on this bed.” She sprawled her arms and legs across the bed as far as she could reach in all directions.
Aaron’s jaw dropped and he groaned in frustration, bumping his head against the side of the door jam. “You’ve got to be kidding me.”
“Good luck with that, dude.” Owen patted Aaron on the shoulder as he brushed passed to enter his own hotel room.
Hayden paused and draped his arm around Aaron in mock solidarity. His voice was low and sympathetic. “How long’s it been, man?”
“Too long,” Aaron squeaked out. “Help.”
“This is all you,” Hayden said. “I’ll echo Owen’s sentiment. Good luck.” Hayden did the unthinkable. He walked away. Leaving Aaron alone with the most beautiful girl he’d ever met lying across his bed.
“You should come sit with me,” Felicia said, maneuvering up to lay her head on one of the pillows. “This is the greatest bed I’ve ever seen.” If she knew how tempting she was, she wouldn’t be encouraging him. Then again, maybe she would.
“I respect her. I respect me. I respect her father,” Aaron chanted softly as he thumped his forehead against the doorframe again. “Her father would kill me. My father would kill me. My mother would kill me. Her mother would probably feed me. Okay, that decides it.”
Aaron pushed away from the doorframe, leaving the door wide open just in case his body didn’t realize he was joking. With controlled strides he walked across the room reminding himself with each step that nothing was going to happen.
He would keep his hands to himself. He would keep his thoughts as pure as he possibly could. He would calm himself down so he could concentrate on getting to know Felicia as the beautiful human being she was and not the beautiful body that was lying on his bed.
Sitting cautiously on the edge of the bed, he swung one leg up and then the other, maintaining distance by sitting facing her rather than beside her. She wasn’t having that. Felicia sat up and reached for him, tickling him beneath his arms. That set him off and he had to retaliate, tackling her in the process.
Felicia squealed playfully as Aaron tickled her and nuzzled his face against her neck, placing a quick kiss there before she could object. Not that she would have. He could easily take complete advantage of her in that moment and she would have been willing to get carried away.
He reigned in his own desires and stopped tickling her, instead he lay beside her and propped himself up on one elbow, gazing down into her now serene face.
“You like my bed, huh?” Aaron asked, reaching up and lifting a strand of hair off her face.
“I’ve never slept in a bed this big,” she said. “Heck, I don’t usually get to sleep in a bed by myself.”
“If you slept in this bed, you wouldn’t be by yourself.” Aaron was aware his voice lowered, and his breathing increased.
“Yes, I’m aware of that,” she answered, her lids heavy and more sensual than they’d been the moment before.
“Are you?” Aaron pulled his bottom lip between his teeth knowing from experience what his sultry gaze did to women. “And is that something you want?”
“I want”—she paused for dramatic effect— “a lot of things.”
“Most of which you are not going to get right this moment.” Aaron lifted his hand and tapped his finger on the end of her nose. “Because I respect you.”
She sighed playfully. “Darn.”
“My sentiment exactly.” Aaron scrutinized her as if from afar and twisted his face in mock consideration. “There is one thing I can give you right now.”
“What is it?” Felicia’s hand wrapped into the fabric of Aaron’s shirt and she pulled him a little closer.
“Your first kiss,” he whispered.
“How do you know it would be my first kiss?” she asked.
“Will it be?” he baited her.
“Good guess then.”
“What about you?” she asked. “Have you ever kissed a girl before?”
“What do you think?” Aaron averted his eyes.
“I think you’ve probably kissed many, many girls.”
“Does that bother you?” He toyed with the hem of her shirt where it rested just over the side pocket of her jeans, still avoiding her gaze.
“Have you kissed any girls since you met me?”
“Since you called me last week?” Aaron returned his gaze to hers. “No, I have not kissed any girls since you called me.”
“Do you want to kiss any girls besides me?” she asked.
“No ma’am, I do not.”
“Then what does it matter how many girls you’ve kissed in the past?”
“What if I’ve done a lot more than just kiss girls?” He wondered if this was the moment she would push him away and run from the room crying, discovering that the man of her dreams had defiled himself. Repeatedly. Had not waited a day beyond puberty to begin experimenting with any girl he could get his hands on. Had done things he’d be embarrassed to talk about, even with his brothers or his best friends.
“I’ll repeat my previous question,” she said in all seriousness. “Do you want to be with any girls besides me?”
Aaron shook his head softly, not daring to speak, not daring to believe that she would offer forgiveness that readily.
“Then what does it matter how many girls are in your past?” she whispered. “Everything from your past made you into the man you are today. The man I’m sort of crazy about.”
“The man you’re crazy about is sort of crazy about you too,” Aaron said.
“I know.” Felicia gripped her hand into his shirt again, pulling him down to meet her lips.
Drawing from years of experience, having learned what women want from a man, Aaron took his time, softly, gently, a feather touch before molding his lips to hers, deepening a kiss that could arguably be the best first kiss a girl could ever want.
“Oh, heck no! Get your hands off my niece,” Kisa said from the doorway.
Aaron was glad he’d left the door open and simultaneously frustrated that he’d left the door open. He groaned and pulled away slightly, his eyes unapologetically locked with Felicia’s. “Don’t worry, Aunt Kisa,” he said. “I wouldn’t have done anything.”
“Yeah right.” Kisa huffed and turned to leave the room. “Come on. Let’s go to dinner.”
“She wants to go to dinner,” Aaron whispered down to Felicia, who still lay in the crook of his arm, still gazing up at him with bedroom eyes.
“She must be as hungry as I am,” Felicia answered, also in a whisper.
“I doubt either of you are even close to being as hungry as I am.” Aaron leaned forward and placed another sweet kiss on Felicia’s lips then reluctantly pulled away and extricated himself from her arms. “Come on. Let’s go to dinner.”