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The first time they kissed was in the shower.

Showering together became a habit without either of them even questioning it. They are aware that it could be considered an odd thing, but it really is not. Seeing each other completely bare is almost a daily routine, what is the difference in being naked under the water? We are being kind to the environment he once said. That way, I’ll know you actually showered she said back in reply with her back to him, throwing him a naughty smile.

And just like that, it was settled. They were to shower together to save the planet and make sure that he smelled lovely. Where was the wrong in that?

That’s how they ended up in the shower together on a cloudy Saturday evening. The day had been hard, cold, and physically exhausting.

She would never admit that she’d been dying to be with him only and wash away the exhaustion of the day. She’s afraid he might guess from the way she’s uncharacteristically clingy and silent, the only sound earable being the calming noise of the water.

‘’ Bad day then? ‘’ His voice is low, reserved just for her even though they are the only one in the hotel room.

‘’ Yes, I am fucking tired, ‘’ Her eyes are on the floor, afraid of admitting such a thing.

‘’ I know I should not be complaining, ‘’ He tenderly brings his finger to her cheek, bringing them up to her temples resulting in a quiet moan from her.

‘’ You can be exhausted and still be grateful love, ‘’ She hums as a reply, wishing that his soothing movement never stops.

‘’ You go to bed so late every day, you need to sleep more, ‘’ When of his hands moves to the back of her neck, she can’t help to bring her forehead to his shoulder.

‘’ I can’t go to bed before midnight, habit, ‘’ Her voice is muffled, but he hears her loud and clear. He could hear her voice anywhere.

‘’ If we follow your wee logic, maybe we should sleep in the same bed, that way I could make sure that you sleep reasonable hours, ‘’ She can hear the smile in his voice when he says this, and she brings her head up only to see him wink at her.

She slaps his chest playfully, and regretfully leaves the comfort of his embrace to grab at the shampoo standing in the corner of the shower.

She is squeezing the fruity product in her hand when he starts singing. Terribly off-key and so suddenly, that she almost jumps out of her skin from the sound of it.

Oh, my life

Is changing every day,

In every possible way

She is completely facing him, torn between laughing and asking him if he is all right. Something in her eyes seems to satisfy him though, and he goes on, mischief in his look.

And oh, my dreams

It’s never quite as it seems

Never quite as it seems

‘’ Sam, what the fuck are you doing? ‘’ She is laughing though; she just can’t help it. The sight of him naked in the shower, singing a song from the cranberries like she never even imagined could be sung, somehow takes the stress of the day away. She knows that this moment will be what she’ll take away from this day. Not the way she could feel her legs aching from constantly going up a hill, or the way some people were not too diplomatic in their requests.

She can feel her heart doing a weird summersault from that realization, something so strong and uncommon, she has to bite the inside of her cheek to stop herself from saying something stupid.

He never answers her question, instead choosing to bring his arm around her waist, trying to make her dance in the small space. She is full-on laughing now, composure be damned.

She sees it in his eyes, he is satisfied.

I know I’ve felt like this before

But now I’m feeling it even more

Because it came from you

He brings her closer, her breasts fully pressed to his chest. She knows that this is more than just one of their simple shower sessions. That perhaps this is the moment when everything will change between them. It was bound to happen. But she foolishly liked to believe that maybe things between them will continue to be normal, controllable, predictable.

But she knew from the first moment she saw him that he was going to ruin her.

She’s pressing kisses to his neck before she even knows she’s doing it, and he holds her closer and never stops singing.

Clearly, he meant to finish the bloody song.

And oh, my dreams

It’s never quite as it seems

‘Cause you’re a dream to me

Dream to me

And then he just starts yelling, clearly trying to mimic the notes of Dolores O’Riordan. It sounds nothing like her, and nothing like the actual song if she is being honest, but somehow, she prefers the sound of it.

But he is just too much, and she brings her head back, crying tears of laughter.

‘’ Come on Cait, let it out. Sing with me, ‘’

She’s laughing too much to even think about singing, but she tries to focus, for him.

So, she too starts singing, and the moment is so euphoric and freeing, she might be having an epiphany. Why the fuck does she always need to feel in control? Why can’t everything always be that easy? How does he even do it?

They need to stop at some point, both still laughing.

‘’ Thank you, ‘’ She knows her words are lame, but she can’t find other words to tell him. She does not know how to tell him that his wee spectacle has put a balm on her soul. She’s also not sure that she could tell him that no one has ever come close to getting her the way he does. That it scares her, petrifies her even, but that she is also secreting hoping that it means something (everything). But how could this work? How could they be together with the show, the pressure, and without herself losing control?

She likes to act cynical, but deep down she is a romantic at heart.

‘’ Anything for you, ‘’ She is back in his arms in a flash. ‘’ Even singing, which you know I despise, ‘’ Oh, she knows.

‘’ What are you thinking about? ‘’ His voice puts an end to the storm inside her head, and of, fuck it.

Everyone has always told her how much she overthinks everything, how yes being rational is good, but how being too rational can potentially ruin one’s life.

If he does not want to be with her, maybe he’ll still want to fuck her. Everyone has always told her that she was the best at seduction. Or she can blame it on the fact that she is tired, confused and – Shit, is she overthinking again?

‘’ Nothing, I am just tired and frankly still speechless from your singing talents, ‘’

‘’ You’re so beautiful, ‘’ She does not have the time to tell him that she probably looks like an ugly wet dog (she hates the perm), for his lips are suddenly on her own.

They are kissing. Sam and Caitriona. Caitriona and Sam.

His lips suddenly leave hers, and she can’t help the moan of protest escaping her. It’s not long before she can feel his lips on her ears, breathing into them.

‘’ Is this ok? ‘’ Of course, he would ask.

She fiercely nods and then, ‘’ I need you, ‘’ Tonight, tomorrow, forever.

What is happening to her? She wants to touch him all over, but she also feels like she can’t move.

His lips slowly move down her neck, planting gentle kisses as he moves his mouth lower and lower until it eventually reaches her breasts. She can feel him growing hard between their pressed bodies, and the thought of him inside her makes her dizzy. The need is so strong and visceral, she could die from it.

His lips continue their journey down her body until he eventually ends up kneeling on the floor of the shower, his arms strongly holding her waist, his head on her stomach.

She is about to bring his head lower where she needs him when she feels it: the water has turned icy cold.

“Fuck. No,” he says and laughs as he leaves her panting whilst he turns off the shower. She is aching in her core, burning with a need for him to plunge into her, claim her. But he does not go back to her. She knows this is not about rejection (and he is probably right to stop), but somehow her pride burns as badly as her need.

“Sam,” she whimpers.

“I am not going to fuck you against a shower wall,” he says with something resembling disgust in his voice. She wishes she could find the words to tell him that she wants him to, that she wants him period. But all she can manage is one pathetic question.

‘’ Why not? ‘’

“Because you deserve better than that,” he says, raking his hand through his hair.

She stays silent, and he must take it as confirmation because he leaves the shower and grabs a towel.

For a moment, she is mad. He’s the one who kissed her, and she was right all along: they should have never crossed the line. Did the moment even matter to him?

She’s about to grab a towel herself but he beats her to it, wrapping her in a fluffy towel, rubbing at her arms in a failed attempt to warm her. She feels shy, almost like a child. His lips on her forehead are doing nothing to help the situation.

‘’ You won’t fuck me against a shower wall, but you’ll keep acting the way you do? ‘’

‘’ I am sorry, ‘’ He knows she is hurt.

‘’ Caitriona, look at me, ‘’ Both his hands are holding her face, forcing her to look at him. He sees the tears in her eyes but does not say anything about them. He knows her.

‘’ I know that everything that is happening is scary, that our lives may change, ‘’ He takes a step forward, his lips hovering over her ear much like before, his warm breath tickling, soothing, and somehow arousing.

‘’ I promise you, no matter what happens I’ll look after you. I’ll always be there. Some moments might be difficult for us, you may only be able to tell me pieces at a time. I can wait. You may never tell me everything, and that’s okay, too. But none of it will change the way I feel about you. ‘’

“Caitriona, I know this sounds daft, but I want everything with you. That’s precisely why I won’t just fuck you. I want all of it, and nothing will erase that desire. So, when you’re fully ready, I’ll be there.”

He presses a kiss to her cheek, and she reaches out to keep him from leaving. Her hands are almost shaking as they fist the towel on his waist.

“I don’t know if I can,” She whispers. Slowly, she lifts her eyes to his. “I am not sure I can be that person – ‘’

He does not let her finish her sentence, and she can see from the way Sam is fighting back something close to sadness that he understands.

“I know you are not ready,” he whispers. “But love, when you are, I’ll be there. One step at a time aye?” He gives her a small smile, hoping to lighten the mood.

She nods in agreement. He gives her a last kiss and wraps her in his arms.

It was supposed to be one simple shower.