“I’m so sorry about your sister,” she adds quietly.
I clench my jaw at the pain that slices though my chest. “I don’t want to talk about it, Red. Just let it go.”
She begins to apologize again when a loud crack of thunder sounds through the air and the sky opens up. Fast and heavy rainfall immediately soaks us.
“I guess that’s our cue.” I stand and offer her my hand.
She places her small, soft one in mine and allows me to pull her up. Her white dress is already soaked through and plastered against her body like second skin. I curse my dick for growing hard at the sight and hope she doesn’t notice.
Looking up at me, her seductive green eyes shine bright with a longing that matches my own. But they are also filled with questions, asking me for things I know I can’t give her, but fuck do I wish I could.
Before I do something stupid, I pull her to me and lean into her ear so she can hear me over the rain. “Be safe, Red.” Then planting a hard kiss on her forehead, I turn around and get the fuck out of there. The entire time I walk away from her I have an ache in my chest I haven’t felt since I was fifteen years old.
Oh my gosh, oh my gosh. I can’t believe I am doing this. I swipe my soaking wet hair out of my eyes and fight my way through the heavy rainfall as I try to find Cade’s camp. Please, God, don’t let me get into trouble… or shot at.
My teeth chatter, making me wish I would have gone back to camp for dry clothes and an umbrella first. I have no idea if I’m going the right way. I can only guess based on the little information he shared with me, on where he was stationed, and the direction he walked from when he came to see me.
I realize that walking around in the pouring rain looking for a naval base is probably not smart. But ever since Cade walked away I haven’t been able to get this sick feeling out of the pit of my stomach. The feeling that I was making a huge mistake by letting him go. I know the kind of man he is and what he believes. I know he does not do more than one night. But something tells me that having one night with him will be better than not having him at all.
I still can’t believe he came back tonight. I was so sure he had left and that I would never see him again. I walked around all day with a heavy heart, feeling like I lost something I never had. Then as I sat in that field tonight, remembering our nights together, the regret I felt about how it all ended became too much to bear. I was crying, lost in my grief, when suddenly he was there… my dark angel. That has to be a sign, right? Yes, I know it. I can feel it deep inside of me. Please, God, let me find him.
As soon as my mind speaks the words, I come up to a camp, I’m assuming is his. A chain-link fence lines acres of land that houses a bunch of small buildings. A helicopter sits off in the distance along with a few Army vehicles. An American flag stands tall and flaps wildly in the storm. The outside is completely deserted. I begin walking around the fence, wondering if there is even a way in, when I slam into a hard body.
“Shit!” Large hands grab my shoulders to help steady me.
Looking up, my eyes go wide at the incredibly attractive, soaking wet man in front of me. His eyes roam over me with blatant appreciation and I feel my face heat with the realization that I’m wearing a white dress that is completely soaked. I’m praying that my white bra and panties lessen the indecency.
He gives me a charming smile that I bet girls drop their panties for in a heartbeat. “Well what do we have here? You lost, Country?”
I swallow nervously and brush my hair out of my face. “Um, I’m looking for Cade Walker,” I yell to be heard over the storm. “Do you know him by a chance?”
Recognition flashes in his dark green eyes and I instantly know he does. His gaze latches onto the heavy metal cross that’s hanging around my neck, and his eyes narrow in suspicion. My teeth begin to chatter uncontrollably as I wait for his answer. “How do you know Cade?”
“Umm, well, the last week we have been meeting in the evenings and…”
“Whoa, wait!” He puts his hand up interrupting me. “You’re the place he has been going to every night?” I nod timidly and start to worry I am getting him into trouble.
“Un-fucking-believable,” he chuckles, shaking his head. “Yeah, Country, I know him. I tell you what, see that building over there?” I nod at where he points. “Go to the third door on the right. That’s his room.” He pulls me over to an opening in the gate and helps me in.
“Thank you,” I yell back at him, hoping he hears me over the rain.
As I start jogging in the direction he pointed out, he yells, “Tell him not to worry about the Admiral, that Sawyer will take care of it.”
Sawyer… I smile with relief, knowing it was his friend I was talking to. Once I make it to Cade’s door, I put my hand on my stomach and try to calm the giant butterflies that are dancing in my tummy. Crap, I still have no idea what I’m going to say. ‘Hey. I know we don’t really know each other that well, but I have this crazy attraction to you and I want to lose my virginity to you.’ Oh god, what am I thinking? This is such a bad idea. Bad, bad idea.
No! I can do this… Squaring my shoulders, I gather all the confidence I can muster and knock.
My heart pounds wildly in my chest and I swear I’m about to throw up. I wring out my soaking wet hair, needing to do something with my trembling hands. The longer it takes for him to answer, the more I seriously start to consider making a run for it. But as soon as the thought emerges the door swings open, and any thought I have (rational or otherwise) flies right out the window.
Holy mother of god. A shirtless Cade fills the entryway, wearing nothing but a pair of black athletic pants and a towel draped around his neck that catches drops of water from his rain-soaked hair. My eyes briefly take in swirling black ink that wraps around the most powerful body I have ever seen, just before landing on metal… Oh my god, nipple rings…
My eyes snap to his stunned face and I gasp in surprise when I’m suddenly yanked into the room with force.
Cade sticks his head out the door and looks both ways to see if anyone saw me before closing it. Turning around, he gapes at me in shock. “What the fuck are you doing here? How did you find me?”
“Ummm… well… I…” Chewing my thumbnail nervously, I begin to pace the small space back and forth, not knowing how to say what I need to. Stopping, I walk a little closer to him and throw my hands up. “Honestly, I don’t know. I don’t know what I’m doing.” He stares at me like I’ve lost my mind and I’m not so sure he’s wrong.
Shaking my head, I gather my thoughts and take a leap of faith. “All I know is, since the moment you walked away from me tonight I feel sick. Like I’ve lost something I never had. I know it sounds crazy and I know you’re not the kind of guy who does the whole girlfriend thing. But I also know if I let you go without knowing what it’s like to feel you inside of me then I will regret it for the rest of my life. I know we barely know each other, and I’m probably really creeping you out right now. So if I am, feel free to stop me and…
My words are cut off with a surprised gasp when I’m lifted off my feet and slammed against the wall. I barely have time to register what’s happened before his mouth lands on mine.
His lips are warm, firm and demanding. It takes me no time to respond. Wrapping my legs around his lean waist, I thread my fingers in his dark hair and grip the wet strands tightly before kissing him back like I have been dying to do, since the day I first laid eyes on him. His groan vibrates against my lips and his tongue slips into my mouth. Warmth explodes through my body, spreading right to the tips of my fingers and toes. My heart skips a beat and time stands still. Our tongues slide together in perfect harmony, and even though it’s all new, it feels like we have been doing it our whole lives. It feels right. At this exact moment I know, without a shadow of a doubt, that I am having ‘the kiss’. The one I’ve been waiting for my whole life. One I will remember forever.
Minutes, seconds, hours… I have no idea how much time passes when he pulls back. Inhaling lungfuls of much needed air I slowly open my eyes, and collide with his fierce gaze. “Do you hear that, Walker?” I whisper with a smile.
His eyes narrow in confusion. “Hear what?”
Recognition registers in his eyes, knowing what I’m saying. “That’s because it is silent, Red. We are the only two here.” I burst out laughing and a smile tugs at his lips.
“Shhh. Don’t ruin the moment, just go with it,” I whisper teasingly before attacking his sexy mouth again.
With a low growl, he grips my wet hair with one hand and wraps it around his fist, ending my control. I whimper against his mouth and begin to grind myself against him, desperately craving more of him.
All too soon he’s pulling away again. “Shit! What the fuck are we doing, Red?”
My eyes snap open at the torment in his voice, and even though his eyes blaze with an undeniable need, I also see a war rage in their depths. Our chests heave rapidly for breath as he waits for me to answer. “I’m hoping we are about to do something that I haven’t been able to stop thinking about since meeting you.”