Seth can still feel the warm hollow where Ryan was lying before he got up, pulled on his jeans, and left the poolhouse. Summer knows he can because she can too. Now, she knows, is when Seth will roll over and stare at her with one of his hands tucked under his face, and make a funny Seth look, and say something stupid and ridiculous, and ruin the moment. Then she'd have to say something, or whatever, and not only would it ruin the moment but it would ruin the whole fucking day and night and experience and everything.
It would ruin everything, which means that any second now Seth is going to open his mouth, because Seth can't help but always ruin everything. It's just what he does; it's what all the Cohens do, or so Summer's been able to see.
Summer waits and holds her breath and doesn't move and watches Seth -- but he doesn't move either. He lies on the bed and stares at the ceiling and has an arm bent over his face, so maybe he's not staring at the ceiling. He's totally naked, and he's not what Summer ever thought she'd end up with, especially now that he's back from wherever he was all summer -- Tahiti, New York, Boston, Seattle, Toronto, Portland, Kalamazoo, blah blah blah, whatever. He's all. He's all like. Like tan. And lean. And long. And it's no wonder that Ryan couldn't say no to him because Summer couldn't say no to him either, and Summer'd never had trouble saying no to him before.
But Seth came back with more than a tan and a scowl -- he came back with, like, purpose. And that was kind of hot. And clearly Ryan thought so too, because when Seth dragged Summer into Ryan's pool house -- where he was, once again, although no one was able to tell Summer exactly what had happened -- Ryan didn't make them leave or say anything nasty. He just kind of squinted.
And then Seth started to strip.
Summer was kind of into it, actually; she was a normal girl, or whatever, normal for Newport. More normal than any other girl in Newport. Watching her boyfriend tongue another guy she thought was hot -- not that she would tell anyone she thought Chino was hot, but he was hot. Hot enough.
It was hot.
It was totally hot.
Which sucks, because it's not like she can tell Coop or anyone about this, but she can keep thinking about it, keep watching Seth's chest rise and fall across the indent Chino's body left in his bed. Purple marks mar Seth's skin, dark on top of his tan, and Summer can even see teeth marks on his stomach. Chino was down there, not Summer; Chino -- Ryan. Ryan had been wild.
It was like maybe Ryan had just been waiting his whole life - or just like a year or something - for this to happen.
Summer couldn't blame him for that. Or for any of it. She could have been like, No, stop, whatever, blah! But she didn't say anything because obviously she'd been dry for, like, ever. Two months; Seth was gone for two months. Summer didn't have sex for two months -- didn't even want to, wasn't interested. She could have had anyone -- she could have had Coop, who was drugged up enough to fuck a donkey in Tijuana. Not like she did or anything, but she could have. She would have, if Summer hadn't stopped her from driving to TJ by herself, probably.
Summer could have gone to Portland and had sex with Luke, but ew. She could have stayed in Newport and had sex with Holly or Kyle or Jack -- or anyone. Anyone.
She was glad she hadn't when Seth showed up at her door in shorts and a t-shirt and bare feet, driving his mother's SUV, and didn't even say hello, just grabbed her and kissed her, just grabbed her and hauled her out of her house, didn't stop for breath, brought her up against his body.
Who knew Cohen could be so manly?
And two weeks later, he was doing the same thing to Chino. Maybe he needed time to work up his nerve, maybe he just -- maybe he just wanted to make sure Summer was so addicted to him she wouldn't say no.
Well, he'd played that one wrong, definitely, because Summer could always say no.
But she hadn't wanted to, so it was okay -- this time.
Next time wouldn't be so easy; Seth would have to do more than just put her hand over Ryan's dick and shove his tongue down her throat, and Ryan would have to do more than kiss her neck and palm her breast and dig his fingers into her boyfriend's back.
Seth rolls over and stares at her and Summer stares back at him. His eyes are sleepy and his mouth is soft, and his face is red from whiskerburn, and he smiles at her, just a little, and he looks like the old Seth, like nothing changed, and Summer smiles back, because she has to, because her mouth just curves up all by itself.
And Seth reaches across the still-warm spot that Ryan had been in only moments before and runs his finger down her cheek; with his hand still on her skin, his eyes close and he goes to sleep, and through the open windows she can smell Ryan's cigarette, see his profile, and she closes her eyes.