They had been married for all of 3 days now and it was already becoming familiar to Alex. Driving to the house after work already felt like coming home. But to be honest, she had always felt like home to him. Even before they became friends. Even when she got under his skin at every turn. Even through all of his suspicions about her in the beginning, he still felt safe with her. He always knew that he needed her, loved her even. And he always believed that somewhere deep inside, she needed him too.
He had always been so cautious with her though, never pushed her to admit it to him. If there was one thing he didn’t want, it was to make her uncomfortable. She had endured enough discomfort and shame in the presence of men.
It was later that evening, the third night he had stayed in her house, that everything changed. As he ascended the stairs, he heard her crying in the bathroom. He had seen her cry before, seen her in anguish many times, but tonight was different. He couldn’t stop himself, drawing nearer to the strip of light coming from the crack in the bathroom door. He reached an arm out to push it open further, slowly, so as not to frighten her.
“Norma?” he asked softly. She sniffled, turning to meet his gaze, her robe hanging open, exposing the nothingness beneath.
Half a second passed before he averted his eyes, turning around quickly and stepping out of the room. “Shit, Norma, I’m sorry. I didn’t see anything, I promise,” he said, suddenly flustered. He stood awkwardly behind the door, trying to push away the image of her perfect, naked body from his mind and the feelings that came with it. The three glasses of scotch he had just finished certainly weren’t helping.
“Alex?” he heard her whisper from behind the door.
He sighed, fighting the urge to walk straight into Dylan’s room and go to sleep. Maybe they could just pretend it hadn’t happened and in the morning, everything would be back to normal.
But something kept his feet firmly planted to the floor. His desire to avoid the awkward situation was overshadowed by his fierce need to comfort her. “Are you okay, Norma?” he asked through the door.
“No,” she answered immediately, the pain in her voice cracking his heart a little.
His eyes slipped closed, his brows furrowing. “What can I do?” he whispered.
The silence stretched on for several seconds and he shifted uncomfortably. Maybe he should just go to bed. He already felt that he was intruding and maybe she didn’t want him there. For Christ sake, the marriage wasn’t real. It wasn’t his responsibility to comfort—
“Come in here,” she finally said, snapping him out of his spiraling thoughts. Her voice suddenly sounded stronger. An edge to it that he couldn’t quite pinpoint.
His eyes opened slowly, and he stared down at the doorknob, unsure of what to do. “Umm. Are-are you decent?” He asked, awkwardly.
He swallowed thickly, heat thrumming through him and his fingers unconsciously twitched forward. But he stayed frozen to the floor. He would never take advantage of her. He refused to be the reason for her pain.
“Please come in here,” she tried again, the lust in her voice now unmistakable.
He slowly reached out, opening the door and keeping his eyes trained to the floor. He stayed as still as he possibly could.
“Alex, look at me,” she whispered and his eyes fell shut.
“Norma…” he sighed, suddenly in physical pain. She had no idea the effect she had on him. Then again, maybe she did.
“Please.” Barely audible.
His eyes reluctantly, flitted open and he met her gaze. Refusing to look lower, though he could clearly tell that she now wore nothing. Her eyes were darker than he had ever seen them, her lips slightly parted.
Before he could stop himself, his eyes dropped to her chest. Her nipples hard, and her breasts slowly rising and falling with each shaky breath that escaped her lungs.
She watched the muscles in his jaw contract as he memorized her and all her nerves suddenly felt as though they were on fire. She felt stunning under his gaze.
His hands balled into fists at his sides and his jeans were suddenly becoming tight. His eyes drifted lower, following the curve of her tiny, beautiful waist, down over her hipbones. His breathing turned to shallow pants as he continued to study her.
She stepped toward him then, snapping him out of his trance. His eyes met hers once again and he stepped backwards. “What are you doing?” he whispered.
“I just want to be close to you,” she whispered as she stepped forward again.
“Norma, I don’t think we should do this now.” His mind was reeling. Was this really happening? He had wanted this for longer than he cared to admit but this is not how he envisioned it happening.
“Alex…” she breathed, sending a new wave of desire coursing through him. She stepped toward him once again and this time he didn’t move. Wasn’t capable of moving.
“Norma, this is not a good idea,” he mumbled, half-heartedly, as she continued to approach him. He kept his eyes trained on hers the whole time, trying to hold on to the last shred of his self-control as she hypnotized him.
When she finally came to stand directly in front of him, she looked up through her lashes, her hand coming up to rest on his chest. He trembled under her fingers.
“Touch me,” she whispered, her breath ghosting over his lips, now mere inches from hers.
His eyes stayed locked on hers as his right hand reached up slowly, lightly grazing the skin of her hip. She inhaled sharply, expecting him to grasp her breast first. But he didn’t. His gaze softened as his hand came up to cup her cheek.
She froze in place. The fear gripped her then. This look, his expression, it was too much. Too tender, too emotional. She had expected him to lift her off the ground, throw her on the bed and fuck her until he came. Then roll over and go to sleep. Just like all the other men in her past. Instead, he looked at her as though she were the only thing in the room.
His thumb reached up to wipe away her earlier tears and she watched him carefully. She had never felt more out of her depth than she did in that moment. Her plan had been to seduce him, to get what she wanted and for him to comply willingly. She knew he wanted her. But what she didn’t know prior to that moment was that he wanted all of her. Her mind, her body, her soul.
She tried to shake off the anxiety that had suddenly found roots in her and leaned forward in an attempt to meet his lips. Instead, he slid the hand that was on her cheek around to her neck and pulled her into his chest.
He held her gently, wrapping an arm around her naked waist. “Norma, I’m here, talk to me,” he whispered, ignoring the heat radiating off her bare chest.
“I don’t want to talk,” she breathed, pressing a kiss to his chest, through his t-shirt.
She felt his hand slide up her back as he pressed his lips against the top of her head.
He swallowed hard, fighting the urge to pull back and kiss her lips. “Are you sure?” he whispered.
She reached her hands up under his shirt, and clawed her nails lightly down his back. He shivered, his fingers instinctively tightening in her hair.
“I’m more than sure.”
He pulled back then, slipping a finger under her chin to tilt her head upwards. “So, what do you want, Norma?” He already knew the answer, but he wouldn’t do anything until he heard her say the words.
“You,” she said. Strong, self-assured, not a hint of uncertainty in her voice.
His heart swelled with happiness at her declaration. What he couldn’t have known in that moment was that she didn’t mean she wanted to be with him. She was too wrapped up in her own grief to know what she wanted in that moment. All she knew was that she wanted to forget. Forget what was bothering her. Forget her hatred of herself. She wanted to feel loved and knew that he could provide that for her. But she wasn’t ready to give her love. Not yet.
“I’m yours,” he whispered before leaning down to kiss her lips softly. That wasn’t going to work. She did not want to make love. She wanted to fuck. Her hands reached up, her fingers tangling in his hair as she pried his lips apart with hers, shoving her tongue in his mouth. He groaned, his hands everywhere and the bedroom suddenly too far away, though in reality it wasn’t more than a few feet.
He lifted her easily, pressing her back against the wall and her hands were already going to work on unbuckling his belt. He lifted his shirt over his head, dropping it to the ground the same moment that she shoved his pants down. She gripped him roughly in her hand, pumping him a couple times, even though he was more than ready, before aligning him with her entrance. He panted, holding her hips up to hover above him. He tried to pull back to meet her eyes but she clutched his shoulders, holding him against her. She dropped her hips but he caught her before she could fully plunge down on him.
“Alex,” she huffed in his ear, annoyed at his hesitation. “Fuck me, please.”
A small part of his mind registered the fact that this was unusual behavior. Even for Norma. That something was bothering her and that this wasn’t how it was supposed to happen. But too much of his attention was on the way her body felt against him, how she breathed heavily in his ear and how his arms shook with the effort of holding her up. Not because he wasn’t strong enough to hold her but because he was dying to feel her pulsing around him.
So, he stopped thinking, stopped worrying and just focused on feeling. Feeling her, feeling this. He let her slide from his grip, and felt her envelope him as he supported her weight with his thighs. He sighed out a relieved breath at finally being buried inside her. She mewled softly against his ear, her fingers running through the hair at the base of his neck. He could feel her hands pulling his face deep into the crook of her neck, urging him to kiss her there.
So, he nuzzled his nose under her jaw, breathing in her scent and she pushed her hips against his, encouraging him to move.
He pressed a hand against the wall beside her head, digging the other into her hip and began thrusting in and out of her, slowly, gently. “Norma…” he groaned, a smile in his voice that instantly filled her with regret. He wasn’t supposed to be this gentle, this loving.
“Faster, Alex,” she moaned, pulling him harder against her.
“Norma, I can’t.”
“Why?” she breathed.
“Because this will be over too soon if I do,” he confessed.
“That’s okay, just come for me.”
He felt an uneasy twist in his gut at her words. She wanted this to be over quickly. She didn’t want to take her time with him. This wasn’t about him. Wasn’t about them. She just wanted to feel better.
He reached behind his back, gripping her wrists in his hands and pressing them gently against the wall at either side of her head. She smiled wickedly at him, thinking he wanted to take her roughly. But he just needed to get her attention. To stop her oncoming advances and pleas to keep going.
He looked deep in her eyes, seeing the hurt there and his decision was made. He released her hands, reaching down to hold her hips and slid out of her. “What are you doing?” she growled, reaching around to pull him towards her again when he set her back on her feet.
He ignored her, pushing her hands away gently, and pulled his pants back on.
She followed him into the bathroom and watched, in shock, as he reached down to pick up the robe she had left there. What the hell was he doing? She wondered as he turned back to her and wrapped the robe around her naked body.
“What?” she snapped, when he pulled back to look at her expectantly.
“What do you mean, ‘what’, Norma? Tell me what’s going on,” he said, tiredly.
“I don’t want to talk about it, Alex, I told you that,” she said, stepping towards him.
“Well you need to. Or don’t. But don’t use me to make yourself feel better.”
Her blood boiled. No one had ever resisted her like this. She bit her tongue to keep from screaming at him and he continued to watch her.
“I’m not, Alex. Please just take me to bed, okay? I promise I’m fine,” she said as sweetly as she could manage.
He stayed silent, trying to read her expression and waiting for any clear sign as to what he should do.
She reached out, rubbing him through his jeans and his hands shot out to grasp her wrists.
“Stop it,” he said through gritted teeth and she couldn’t contain the sudden flare of anger that boiled up.
“FINE!” she screamed, turning on her heel and stomping down the hall toward her room. She slammed the door behind her collapsing into bed, fighting off her tears of frustration and leaving Alex frozen in the bathroom.
He ran a hand through his hair, breathing heavily, completely shocked by the turn of events. He always felt a step behind her, never knowing which direction her moods would take. But in that moment, he vowed to himself that he would figure her out. That one day, she would finally trust him enough to let him in. To let him love her. All of her.
To be continued…