She likes the way he kisses.
He never worries about her lipstick, doesn't care when it gets smeared across his lips, bright red and waxy.
Later, when she's getting ready for a show, she finds smudges of red on her pale skin: behind her ear, on the curve of her neck, high on her thigh, right next to the tattoo. She shivers, remembering the feel of his mouth on her.
She doesn't wipe the traces of lipstick away. It's like she's wearing him on her skin and she feels like she's falling.
Sometimes, when they kiss, she can taste her lipstick, just for a moment.
Then she can taste him, cigarettes and coffee, and she's addicted to that combination. Every cup of coffee she drinks, every cigarette she smokes reminds her of him. Her blood races and she feels giddy.
Looking at herself in the mirror, she touches up her lipstick and thinks of the wet warmth of his kiss.
He never stops talking, even when he kisses her.
"Beautiful," he mumbles against her lips, eyelashes fanned out against the curve of his cheek. "Perfect."
She nips at his lower lip and threads her fingers through the hair at the nape of his neck, tugging a little. "Shut up."
He smiles against her mouth and she can't help but smile back. She giggles, laughter bubbling in her blood like champagne.
She thinks it's lipstick, but when she touches the spot, it's tender and sore and she flashes to the night before, biting kisses pressed to her neck.
It's right over her pulse and she can feel her blood thrumming and her skin prickles in reaction to the memories.
She ties her bandana not around her neck, hiding the mark, but around her wrist. When she's on stage, she looks directly at him and drags her hand slowly, sensually down her throat.
The heated look he gives her makes her fingers tremble on the neck of her bass.
He watches, heavy-lidded, as she gets ready for her set, putting on her stage clothes, washing off the old makeup and starting anew. He moves to stand directly behind her, chin on her shoulder, intent as she applies mascara, liner, foundation, powder, blush, shadow.
She saves the lipstick for last.
His fingers squeeze her waist a little and they stare at each other in the mirror, poised on the edge of something; she's not entirely sure what that something is, but she can feel the cliff edge under her feet.
She takes a deep breath and lets herself go.