For you, I would cross the line
I would waste my time
I would lose my mind
They say she's gone too far this time
Don't blame me, love made me crazy
If it doesn't, you ain't doin' it right
Lord, save me, my drug is my baby
I'd be usin' for the rest of my life
(Tobin & Christen - “Don’t Blame Me” by Taylor Swift)
How do you fall in love?
Harder than a bullet could hit you
How do we fall apart?
Faster than a hairpin trigger
Don't you say, don't you say it
Don't say, don't you say it
One breath, it'll just break it
So shut your mouth and run me like a river
(Tobin & Christen - “River” by Bishop Briggs)
Tobin winced as she swallowed her shot of tequila. The lime and salt hadn’t helped. Her eyes were stinging by the time she slammed her shot glass back onto the counter.
“Good job, Toby,” Ashlyn clapped Tobin on the back.
Tobin had been introduced to almost all the girls on UCLA’s team since Allie insisted that Tobin join them on their night out to celebrate spring break finally starting. They were in Ashlyn and Ali Krieger’s apartment, pregaming before a trip to a nearby club. Christen, her roommates, and Tobin were the youngest in attendance, but each of them was able to attain a fake ID or borrow someone’s that would work well enough to get through the front door.
“Another one!” Allie cheered.
“Harry, no,” Tobin groaned, already feeling floaty.
“It’s too expensive to drink at the club. You’re gonna want to pregame here,” Allie insisted.
“Or I could just stay sober,” Tobin argued, knowing full well that she was already tipsy.
“Come on, guys! One more!” Kelley cheered, patting Tobin on the back.
Tobin hadn’t meant to get cornered by the three wildest players on UCLA’s team, but as soon as she’d stepped away from Christen to grab a bottle of water from the kitchen, Kelley had grabbed her by the hand and insisted that she join them in taking a few shots.
Tobin lifted the shot glass to her mouth again, this time grabbing a cup of lemonade to chase the tequila with after. She winced again, hating the way her throat burned. Ashlyn, Kelley, and Allie cheered, clearly unaffected by the alcohol, but Tobin moved away from them, drinking her full glass of lemonade before finding a bottle of water and trying to down as much as possible.
“Harry, we’re doing another,” Allie insisted.
“No thanks. I’m good,” Tobin waved her off.
“Please, Harry? Just one more, and then I’ll leave you alone,” Allie begged.
Tobin didn’t even respond, just grabbing the shot glass from Allie and tossing it back. She was too tipsy to argue with Allie, and honestly, being a little drunk would make the club a lot more bearable. As she placed the shot glass down, her eyes inadvertently flitted to the living room, searching for Christen.
The green-eyed striker was deep in conversation with Crystal, both of them huddled close together. Tobin watched as Christen’s smile lit up her whole face, as she threw her head back in laughter. She was completely captivated by Christen, just like she always was. She was pulled out of her reverie by a full shot glass entering her line of sight.
“Bottoms up, buttercup,” Allie quipped. All Tobin could do was groan and take the offered shot glass.
Christen looked across the living room of the townhouse, eyes finding Tobin without difficulty. A small smile broke out across her face at the sight of Tobin taking another shot of tequila under the pressure of her teammates. The UCLA girls were definitely hazing Tobin just a little bit, taking their chance to pay her back a little for the trouble she’d caused during her freshman year.
With a smile, Christen looked back over at Crystal, who was eyeing her with quite a bit of doubt.
“Crys, it makes perfect sense!” Christen explained, her lips loose and her words a little slurred. She was already on her third vodka cranberry and was feeling no pain. “We’ve got to rebuild the friendship we had and get back to where we were so that maybe we can be together later.”
Crystal just shook her head, shooting the rest of her mixed drink. “I just don’t get why you can’t be together now. It seems like y’all are already closer than you were before,” she commented, eyebrow quirked in Christen’s direction.
“We are, but we’re still thousands of miles apart for most of the year. You didn’t see Tyler after Clint dumped her, distance never ends well,” Christen replied.
“Distance doesn’t work if you don’t make the distance work,” Crystal shot back, her words profoundly said.
Despite the truth she could hear in Crystal’s voice, Christen was still hesitant. “I just don’t want to lose her,” Christen admitted quietly, fingers flexing around her empty glass.
“Whoa, shit just got a little too heavy. Let’s lighten this back up,” Crystal said, slinging her arm over Christen’s shoulders. “Press? Why don’t you forget about the distance for tonight, she’s literally right over there and can’t stop staring at you.”
Christen’s cheeks burned as she looked up, making eye contact with Tobin.
“Wanna do some shots?” Christen found herself asking, wanting to be in the kitchen by Tobin’s side more than anything right now.
“I could flex with some shots,” Crystal replied, letting Christen pull her toward the kitchen.
Christen quickly abandoned Crystal with Megan, walking over to where Tobin was leaning against the counter. She smiled a bit as she leaned her hip against the countertop, a few inches away from Tobin.
“You take tequila like a pro,” Christen complimented, noting the glassy look already present in Tobin’s eyes.
“Really? Because I feel like I was just tequila-boarded by your teammates,” Tobin hiccuped, the shots going to her head much quicker than she’d expected.
“I noticed. I also noticed that they don’t teach Penn State students how to shoot tequila properly,” Christen quipped, her mouth lifted in a smirk.
“Oh? And what’s the proper way to get shit-faced, Ms. Press?” Tobin asked, cocking her head to the side.
“Hey, Krashlyn,” Christen called over her shoulder, knowing all she needed to do was challenge the couple and they would rise to the occasion. She wouldn’t be able to handle showing Tobin the real way to do a tequila shot, especially right now. She was dangerously close to drunk and she didn’t want to make any missteps, especially now when things were going so well.
“What up, Pressy?” Ali replied, looking over to where Christen and Tobin were standing in the corner of the kitchen.
“Tobs here doesn’t know the proper way to take a tequila shot. Wanna grab your girl and show her how it’s done?” Christen said, her green eyes dancing with mirth.
“Don’t mind if I do,” Ali smirked, turning around to get the necessary supplies, including a very befuddled Ashlyn.
Tobin watched, at first very confused as Ali handed Ashlyn a shot glass full of tequila. Ashlyn held it for her, smirking at Ali’s focused face. Ali held onto a slice of lime and a container of salt, and Tobin waited for things to start to make sense. She wondered if she were simply too drunk to fully understand what was going on.
When Ali leaned forward to kiss Ashlyn’s neck, Tobin averted her eyes. Suddenly she felt like she was intruding on someone’s private moment. Instead, Tobin looked at Christen and immediately regretted it. Christen held her bottom lip between her teeth. She wasn’t looking at Ali and Ashlyn either, her eyes glued to Tobin, in order to watch her reaction. Her pupils were completely blown and glassy, probably from the alcohol she’d already had but possibly because she was looking at Tobin. Tobin was sure her eyes looked the same.
“So, then you put the salt here,” Ali hummed, placing salt on Ashlyn’s neck where she’d just kissed her.
Tobin turned back to the couple. She watched as Ali placed the lime slice in Ashlyn’s mouth, the two completely enamored with one another. Tobin couldn’t help but wonder what it would be like to stand that close to Christen, to be in her space, touching her body, kissing her neck. She couldn’t bring herself to stop her thoughts, not after the shots she’d already taken, not with Christen standing so close that their arms brushed every few seconds.
Tobin watched as Ali licked the salt off of Ashlyn’s neck. She couldn’t help but imagine what it would be like to touch Christen like that, to taste Christen’s skin. She couldn’t help but wonder how Christen’s body would react to that. Ali took the shot quickly, a smirk on her face. Ali then leaned forward and took the lime out of Ashlyn’s mouth, sucking on it before dropping the rind onto the floor. She and Ashlyn turned around to look at Tobin, both of them laughing at the obviously turned-on look on Tobin’s face.
Tobin looked down at her water bottle, taking a sip to cool her flaming cheeks and neck. She couldn’t bring herself to look at Christen, not yet, not with all the thoughts running through her mind about Christen in that scenario.
“Who broke, Harry?” Allie laughed from across the room.
“I can’t decide if it was Pressy or us!” Ashlyn called back.
“At least if I break it, I buy it. Unlike that beanbag in Love Sac at the mall last weekend, right Al?” Christen quipped, throwing a smirk in Allie’s direction. Allie had been foolish enough to believe that she could take a flying leap and land on an oversized bean bag with no consequences. When the bean bag burst open, sending foam beads scattering all across the floor, Allie had high-tailed it out of the store, joining her chuckling teammates and racing toward the exit.
In hindsight, she probably shouldn’t have challenged Allie Long. It never ended well for anyone who did. But Christen was tipsy off of the vodka cranberries she’d drank and the intoxicating scents of pine and eucalyptus from Tobin’s soap or body wash or shampoo, so her mouth was not listening to her head.
“That so, Pressy? All right, pay up. Let’s see you do it with Harry now,” Allie called out, a mischievous grin on her face,
Christen blanched at the challenge, feeling suddenly very sober.
“Harry,” Tobin warned, trying to telepathically remind Allie of the promise she’d made not to intervene anymore. But Allie wasn’t getting the message.
“Do it, do it, do it,” Allie started, all the other players joining in on the chant as well. “Do it, do it, do it!”
Christen hid her face behind her hands for a moment to collect herself. She could do this. She could lick Tobin’s neck and take a lime slice from her mouth. She could totally do that. “Get real, Press. You’re about to combust just thinking about it. You really aren’t going to live to see 21 now,” Christen thought to herself.
But if there was one thing about Christen Press, it was that she never backed down from a challenge.
Tobin stared dumbly, her mind not fully catching up to what was being asked of them. She watched as Christen took a full shot glass, lime slice, and the salt from Ashlyn’s outstretched hand.
“Okay, okay!” Christen called out, silencing the cheers. She looked to Kelley, who was currently in control of the AUX cord. “Play something good, Kel.”
Kelley smirked before tapping her phone screen, the opening notes to “Like a Virgin” playing out of the speaker.
“K.O., you’re my hero!” Allie shrieked, cackling so hard that she had to lean over.
“Nope!” Ali Krieger said, feeling a bit bad for Christen and the situation in which she found herself, so she tried to help out in the only way she could. “Next one, O’Hara!”
Kelley grumbled then went back to her phone. After a few moments, she stuck her tongue out of her mouth, throwing her hand into the air.
“Got it!” she called out, pressing play on her song of choice.
Christen heard the opening notes of “Don’t Blame Me” by Taylor Swift and reminded herself to breathe. This song was just as suggestive as Kelley’s other choice, but the team didn’t seem to want to let Ali or Christen ask for another change.
“Don’t blame me, love made me crazy, if it doesn’t you ain’t doing it riiiight,” all of the UCLA girls sang.
As the song and her teammates' bad singing continued, Christen knew there was no escape. She took a deep breath, catching sight of Megan and Crystal standing near the kitchen island. They both shot her encouraging smiles and thumbs-up, Megan adding in a saucy wink. Christen offered them a weak smile before turning to face Tobin.
“I’ll be quick,” she whispered quietly, handing Tobin the full shot glass and the lime. “Right or left?” she asked, her voice shaking slightly with nerves, aware of all of the eyes on them.
“Huh?” Tobin asked dumbly, her hands shaking slightly as she gripped the shot glass and the lime. She looked like a total deer-in-headlights, and Christen felt horrible for getting them into this mess.
Christen pointed to her own neck, then at Tobin, and repeated her question. “Right or left?”
Tobin’s cheeks flamed. She’d felt so incredibly foggy and slow, just watching Christen move around her, and suddenly her head cleared long enough for Tobin to realize that Christen Press was about to lick salt off her neck. She was asking which side of her neck she preferred like Tobin would ever care where Christen wanted to touch her. She wanted Christen to touch her everywhere. Maybe not like this, with everyone watching them, but she wanted her to touch her.
“Left is fine,” Tobin choked out, pointing to the left side of her neck. “Your right, I guess.”
Christen smiled a soft smile. Tobin knew it was supposed to be comforting, but all she could think about was that Christen was about to lick her neck and probably would be able to feel her pulse beating rapidly beneath her skin.
Before Christen leaned forward, she hesitated, her fingers twitching around the salt shaker. She met Tobin’s nervous gaze.
“Breathe, Tobs. They just want a little show. Allie doesn’t like being outwitted,” Christen murmured, her eyes dancing between Tobin’s, her smile hopefully reassuring. “It’ll be over before you know it, then we can scheme on how to make her pay.”
Tobin gulped. She wished she could send everyone else out of the room. She didn’t need an audience for this. She hadn’t planned for things to happen like this. She’d imagined taking Christen on a date someday, buying her dinner, and driving her home. She’d fantasized about walking her to her front door and kissing her good night. Maybe things would get heated. Maybe Christen would invite her inside. Never in all of Tobin’s daydreams did she imagine that Christen would be this close, simply because of a dare from Allie Long, who was suddenly on her shit list.
Christen could feel the blush in her cheeks as she took a breath to prepare herself. This was going to cross so many unspoken agreements, so many lines, but there was no going back. Christen stepped into Tobin’s space, her breath quickening and her heart hammering erratically in her chest. She tilted her head to the right, her lips landing in the small hollow of Tobin’s collarbone at the base of her neck. Her tongue darted out to wet the warm skin, which was a total mistake. A guttural moan begged to be released from her throat, and Christen had to use every bit of willpower to keep it down. She screwed her eyes shut, trying to keep it together.
She had imagined this plenty of times, had even dreamt about it often these past few months. She’d pictured what it would feel like to have her lips, her tongue, on Tobin’s skin. This was better than anything her imagination could come up with. She never wanted to stop letting her tongue dip into the hollow of Tobin’s collarbone, letting her lips graze across the area gently. She knew she should, but she was powerless to resist the pull within her to continue.
Tobin’s breath rattled in her chest. She had to close her eyes, not wanting to see Allie’s stupid face when Christen’s tongue was on her neck. For a split second, Tobin thought she might let a whine slip from her lips. She had to swallow it down, forcing herself to stay quiet. Her heart thrummed rapidly in her chest, sending blood throughout her body and heating up all of her skin. She felt like she was on fire. Her skin tingled, and her lungs ached. She wasn’t breathing. She couldn’t, not when at any moment an unwanted sound could escape her lips. She wanted to pull Christen closer, to let the fire and Christen Press completely consume her. “Breathe,” Tobin reminded herself, sucking in a gulp of air and forcing it out again.
It wasn’t until she heard a few whoops and cheers from her teammates that Christen realized she should probably stop. She still had three more steps to go and she wasn’t at all sure she could complete them. Her knees felt wobbly and her head was foggy as she stepped back. She didn’t risk a look at Tobin’s face, preferring to focus on pouring a bit of salt onto the wet mark she’d left on Tobin’s neck. The only clue she had that maybe this was affecting Tobin just as much as it was affecting her was the ragged breaths hitting the side of her face, the strong grip Tobin had on her hip with one hand tightening ever so often.
“Any day now, Pressy!” Allie called out.
“Shut up, Harry,” Tobin practically growled, keeping her eyes tightly shut. She couldn’t face Allie or the rest of Christen’s teammates right now. She immediately regretted answering Allie, though. Her voice had sounded even more gravelly and husky than she’d imagined, her words wobbly and gruff, completely affected by Christen’s actions.
Christen chanced a quick look at Tobin, noting the deep flush in her cheeks, the way her eyes were tightly shut. She smiled at the look of concentration on Tobin’s face before leaning back in and licking the salt from Tobin’s neck in one swift motion. She couldn’t linger again, she wouldn’t be able to stop if she did.
Pulling back, Christen grabbed the shot from Tobin’s hand, noting the lime slice was still there. She stepped out of Tobin’s space, tossing the shot back quickly, hoping the tequila would chase away her desire to grab Tobin by the hand and drag her outside, or upstairs, or to the bathroom, and kiss her like she desperately wanted to. But tequila wasn’t made for that. If anything, it made the desire pooling low in her stomach that much more noticeable.
The tequila burned down her throat and Christen felt herself wince at the taste. She really hated tequila and she really needed the lime to chase away the taste.
Tobin opened her eyes slightly, enough to watch Christen toss the shot back. Heat pooled in her stomach, making her hands itch to reach out for Christen’s hips and pull her closer. She couldn’t help her eyes from focusing on Christen’s neck and the way it tipped back when she poured the shot in her mouth. Tobin suddenly had the urge to repay the favor, to kiss Christen’s neck, to taste her skin, to make her heart race. Instead, she put the lime wedge in between her teeth, letting a portion of it stick out for Christen to take from her. Tobin willed herself to remain calm, to keep her lips to herself. She watched as Christen looked toward her again, forcing herself to gulp down another breath of air before Christen approached her.
“Oh, boy,” Christen thought to herself. If she thought kissing and licking Tobin’s neck was challenging, now she had to get that lime straight from between Tobin’s lips. “Just do it quickly, you got this.”
Christen dropped a hand to the counter behind Tobin’s back, needing to ground herself, worried that she’d stumble and kiss Tobin if she didn’t have something to hold onto. She looked into Tobin’s eyes and saw the unabashed hunger she felt, swirling around within them. With a small smirk pulling at her lips, Christen leaned forward. She wrapped her lips around the tart lime slice, her teeth sinking slightly into it so she could pull it away from Tobin. She forced herself to pull back, knowing their lips had almost touched and not allowing herself to do something silly like actually kiss Tobin.
The lime taste exploded on her tongue, chasing away the tequila and Christen sighed in relief. Her teammates hooted and hollered around her, some even clapping her on the back in congratulations, but Christen paid them no mind. All she could do was stare at Tobin: her lips parted, her pupils blown, her chest heaving slightly.
Tobin stared blankly at Christen, her tongue moving to lick her lips and taste what remained of the lime. Her lips were tart, just like Christen’s likely were. Tobin watched as Christen’s eyes moved over her face, and Tobin wished for the hundredth time that they were alone. Maybe that would be a mistake, though. They’d surely cross even more lines if they were alone. Tobin released a ragged breath and leaned back against the counter. She was still having trouble wrapping her mind around the fact that Christen Press had just done that to her, that Christen’s tongue had been on her neck, that she’d had her hand on Christen’s hips. Tobin pulled her bottom lip between her teeth, holding back all of the impulsive things she wanted to say to Christen.
“Who wants to go dance?! Ubers are almost here!” Ashlyn yelled, earning her plenty of shouts in agreement. The rest of the UCLA girls were oblivious to the tension-filled stare between Tobin and Christen, all of them filtering out of the kitchen and the apartment quickly.
Christen swallowed thickly, her eyes stuck on the way Tobin was pulling her lower lip between her teeth.
“Want to go?” Christen asked breathlessly.
Tobin nodded dumbly, knowing her voice still hadn’t recovered from what Christen had been doing.
Christen slid her hand into Tobin’s and tugged her out of the kitchen, not entirely sure why she’d done that, but not finding it in herself to complain when Tobin interlocked their fingers and followed her out of the apartment.
The club they ended up at was a hole-in-the-wall with underpaid bouncers who looked the other way when the underage girls handed them their fake IDs. It was pretty packed, the group of them practically having to hold onto one another to weave through the crowded dance floor and claim a corner table. There weren’t really enough seats for everyone, but most of them didn’t want to sit anyway, choosing to head to the dance floor immediately.
Christen hadn’t let go of Tobin’s hand this entire time. She only did once she’d pulled Tobin to the table, sliding to the back of the booth and dragging Tobin with her.
Alyssa and Crystal also hung back, sitting on the other side of the table from Tobin and Christen.
“Anyone want something to drink? I’m going to get a bunch of waters and probably some beers,” Alyssa said, looking between the three sophomores.
“Beer sounds great,” Tobin choked out, knowing she needed to stay drunk, or at least tipsy, if she was going to survive this night.
“If I give you money, could you get me a vodka cran?” Christen asked, smiling at Alyssa.
Alyssa nodded, turning to get a drink order from Crystal as well. “I’ll go with you and help,” Crystal offered, getting to her feet to join Alyssa.
Christen patted her pockets, looking for the cash she’d put somewhere, but a hand on her arm stopped her.
“I got it, Chris,” Tobin said, handing Alyssa a twenty-dollar bill for both of their drinks.
Christen smiled at the gesture and sank back into the booth, running a hand through her curls.
“Thanks,” Christen murmured.
“Anytime,” Tobin awkwardly responded. She needed a beer quickly. She couldn’t stop the images of Christen’s mouth on her neck from flashing through her mind, and it was getting harder and harder to keep her hands to herself when Christen was so close to her, their thighs pressed together under the table.
Christen noted the tightness in Tobin’s voice and looked over at the brunette. Tobin sat ramrod straight in the booth. Despite their closeness, Tobin felt far away. She looked tense and uncomfortable and regret flashed through Christen. This was her fault, Tobin acting this way was her fault.
“Yeah?” Tobin answered, turning her head to look at Christen, their eyes meeting, causing Tobin’s heart to speed up and relax simultaneously.
“You okay?” Christen asked, cocking her head to the side slightly.
“Of course,” Tobin lied, reaching her hand out to squeeze Christen’s hand, which was resting on top of the table.
Christen scoffed and poked the tip of her finger against the spot between Tobin’s brows. “Tell that to your worry wrinkle.”
“My worry wrinkle?” Tobin laughed, her nerves starting to sink into the background.
Christen nodded, smiling a bit at the relaxation she could see in Tobin’s eyes now.
“It was pretty prominent a second ago, had me worried that you were upset or uncomfortable or something.”
“How could I be upset or uncomfortable with you?” Tobin whispered, hoping that the music was loud enough that her conversation with Christen couldn’t be heard by anyone else.
Christen’s face grew hot and she had to look away. God, they both were on a whole new level tonight. They kept getting further and further away from the safety of friends, sliding deeper into the gray area. Christen knew she should be responsible and take them back to safer shores. She should pull back and put some space between them. She should stop thinking about kissing Tobin or the way her skin had felt beneath her tongue. But there was something about the way Tobin was looking at her right now that had Christen throwing caution to the wind.
“Want to dance?” Christen blurted, not knowing where those words had come from.
“I’m not very good at it,” Tobin laughed.
Christen doubted that was true. Tobin was probably a wonderful dancer, she just didn’t know it. But she wasn’t going to say that.
“This is drunk, club dancing. Nobody’s good,” Christen replied, hoping to put Tobin at ease.
“Okay,” Tobin nodded, her brain already starting to spin at the idea that she’d get to touch Christen again. She’d get to be close to Christen again. She’d get to hold onto her and pull her close.
They left the booth and made their way onto the dance floor, Tobin’s hand pressed to the small of Christen’s back so she wouldn’t lose her in the crowd. The music was hypnotic, a deep thumping bass that invaded Tobin’s mind and had her instantly ready to dance. She followed behind Christen, unable to stop herself from watching as Christen’s hips swayed back and forth. She couldn’t wait to put her hands there, to watch Christen’s hips rock back and forth on the dance floor.
Reaching the middle of the packed dance floor and finding a small pocket of space, Christen reached behind her and grabbed Tobin’s wrist. She turned around, bringing them face to face, dropping Tobin’s wrist as she did so. She put her arms above her head and started to move once more, her hips swaying back and forth to the beat, her eyes silently asking Tobin to join her.
Tobin stared at Christen, unable to move. She watched Christen move her hips to the music, sending heat through Tobin’s body. Tobin tried to focus on Christen’s face, on the music, on breathing, but she couldn’t help but admire Christen’s body, the way her legs looked in her short dress and high-top Converse. Tobin started to think that maybe she could keep her hands to herself, that maybe she could keep her desire under control, but then Christen reached up, her eyes screwed tightly shut, and pushed her hands through her curly hair. Tobin reached out then, without thought, and cupped Christen’s hip with one of her hands, pulling her softly toward her.
Christen gasped softly in surprise at the touch, her eyes flying open. At the look of complete desire on Tobin’s face, she grinned and let Tobin pull her close. She dropped her arms to Tobin’s shoulders, letting Tobin take control, beyond ready to surrender.
Tobin watched as Christen’s pupils dilated, moving her free hand to Christen’s other hip and pulling her even closer, just wanting to eliminate all space between them. They’d waited long enough. There had been enough space, and Tobin was dying to feel Christen.
As Bishop Briggs’ song “River” started, Christen felt Tobin match the beat of this song with her movements, swaying them side to side. Their bodies moved together fluidly, completely in sync.
Christen wasn’t sure who moved first, her or Tobin. But suddenly, their foreheads were pressed together, their bodies even closer now. Christen wasn’t sure where she ended and Tobin began, their bodies moving as one on the dance floor. She kept her eyes closed, relishing in the simmering strength behind Tobin’s touch, in the quick pants of breath hitting her parted lips. She couldn’t open her eyes and run the risk of looking into Tobin’s eyes. She wasn’t sure what would happen if she did. So for now, she let herself be pushed and pulled to the rhythm, completely under Tobin’s control and loving every second of it.
Tobin felt a surge of confidence, her shots from earlier completely clouding her mind and making her more brazen than usual. She turned Christen around, just wanting to hear Christen’s reaction. Her hands stayed on Christen’s waist, pulling her close to her hips so that Christen’s back was pressed against Tobin’s front. Tobin leaned forward her lips nearly brushing against the shell of Christen’s ear. “You look beautiful,” Tobin whispered, almost like she was simply breathing out the words.
“Jesus,” Christen husked, feeling Tobin’s breath ghost across her ear. She fought off a shiver and dropped her head back against Tobin’s shoulder, trying to remember how to convert carbon dioxide into oxygen. “You do too. You always do,” Christen replied, her hands covering Tobin’s on her hips.
Tobin squeezed Christen’s hips, eliminating any space that was left between them. She started to move to the music, moving Christen against herself, despite a tiny sober voice in her head whispering that she shouldn’t.
“Is this okay?” she choked out.
Christen could only nod, not trusting her voice right now. She swallowed thickly, trying to formulate a response.
“Yes. God, yes,” Christen all but whined, her head lifting off Tobin’s shoulder, so she could lift an arm and hook it around Tobin’s neck.
“I’ve wanted to do this for a long time,” Tobin sighed, her bottom lip touching Christen’s ear.
Christen didn’t fight off the shiver this time, Tobin’s words hitting her low in the stomach. “Mhm, yeah,” Christen whispered, sinking into the feeling of Tobin pressed against her, of Tobin’s fingers flexing against her hips. She buried her hand into Tobin’s hair and tugged gently.
Tobin couldn’t hold back the moan that left her lips when Christen pulled her hair. Her hips faltered for a second, her entire body bracing for Christen’s reaction. The fog in her brain cleared for a split second, just enough time for Tobin to worry. If Christen could make her moan in a public club, just by pulling on her hair, Tobin had no idea how she’d ever be able to survive anything more with Christen, that is if her reaction hadn’t just scared Christen away for good. Tobin felt her fear deepen when Christen pulled away slightly.
Christen might be drunk, on her way to very drunk right now, but she knew a moan when she heard one and Tobin had definitely just moaned. It was just about the sexiest thing Christen had ever heard.
Christen pivoted out of Tobin’s grasp, needing to look at Tobin, needing to see her again. She flipped around and saw Tobin withdrawing into herself, away from Christen and away from whatever was happening between them.
“Sorry,” Tobin choked out, her eyes growing wider as Christen looked at her.
Christen shook her head, wrapping an arm around Tobin’s shoulders once more. With her free hand, she pushed a strand of hair behind Tobin’s ear, letting her fingertip trail down Tobin’s jaw.
“We say sorry far too often,” Christen replied. She dropped her hand to find one of Tobin’s that now hung stiffly at Tobin’s sides. She wrapped her fingers around Tobin’s wrist and moved Tobin’s hand back to her hip, keeping it there with a firm grip. Christen bent her head to catch Tobin’s eye. “Don’t say it now when you have nothing to say it for.”
“Did she not hear me?” Tobin wondered, knowing that was absolutely impossible since she’d basically moaned directly into Christen’s ear. Tobin swallowed softly, nodding her head at Christen and placing her free hand on Christen’s other hip.
Whatever fast-paced, club song that was playing suddenly halted, a slower track coming over the speakers.
Christen’s eyes held a question, asking Tobin silently if she wanted to keep doing this, now that the tempo had slowed and the fog had cleared, bringing them both back to their senses.
Tobin pulled Christen closer, her fingers squeezing Christen’s hips. She smiled softly at the green-eyed girl. Tobin didn’t want to stop dancing. She’d never loved dancing, especially not in clubs, but with Christen, she wanted to stay on the dance floor for as long as she possibly could.
Christen melted into Tobin’s arms, her eyes sliding shut as they began to sway much more slowly now on the dance floor.
Tobin moved her right hand to Christen’s back, letting her fingers trace small circles and designs against the fabric of Christen’s dress.
Christen felt her heart stop at Tobin’s touch, her arms tightening around Tobin. Their previous pace had been torturous, quick, and impassioned. They had moved against one another with reckless abandon, letting hot desire fuel their movements. But this pace, this slow and deliberate speed, was even more beautifully agonizing. They couldn’t blame what they were doing now on the alcohol or the heat of the moment. This was purposeful and calculated and wanton, and Christen reveled in it.
Tobin could feel Christen’s breath against her cheek, the way they were holding each other, possibly even more intimate than how they’d danced to the faster songs. It was intentional and sensual, not wild and hormone-fueled. Tobin could feel Christen’s hands caught in her hair and her shirt, holding onto her for dear life. She couldn’t understand what kind of decisions in her life had led to this moment with Christen, but Tobin was eternally grateful. She kept her hand on Christen’s back, lifting her free hand to push a strand of hair behind Christen’s ear, to clear it off of Christen’s face, just so she could see all of her. She couldn’t bring herself to move her hand away from Christen, letting it rest against the side of her neck, her thumb running along the bottom of Christen’s jaw.
Christen leaned into Tobin’s touch involuntarily, her eyes fluttering open. She suddenly realized how close they were. Just a little movement and their lips would meet. They’d found themselves in this situation, again, where it felt like the kiss between them was inevitable.
Christen’s breath caught in her throat as Tobin leaned in just a little, her movement slow. She found herself wanting to do the same, to surge forward and capture Tobin’s lips with her own and finally be done with it.
“Is this how you want your first kiss to be? Drunk and sloppy in a club?” a voice ran through Christen’s mind. Christen knew the answer, she knew it in her heart and her head, but she still hated that the answer wasn’t yes. She’d been dying to kiss Tobin for so long and it was within reach right now, but it wasn’t the right moment for them. She knew she would regret kissing Tobin now, with so much left unspoken and unsaid between them.
Christen blinked a few times and leaned back just a bit, a small smile on her lips. She could see the flash of disappointment in Tobin’s eyes, and she couldn’t bear to see it. Taking a short, stuttering breath, Christen leaned to the right, ghosting her lips across Tobin’s cheek, so close to Tobin’s lips that if she had misjudged the distance by even a millimeter, she would have kissed her lips.
Tobin’s eyes widened, her cheek tingling. She lifted her hand up to her cheek, brushing her fingers over the spot that Christen had just kissed. She’d originally been prepared for a real kiss, a kiss that she’d only dreamed about for more than a year. She’d been certain that they were about to kiss, that Christen was going to meet Tobin halfway, but then she’d pulled away, and Tobin’s heart had immediately sunk. “This was too much for her,” Tobin thought, worrying about Christen running away from this, from her.
Instead, Christen had returned, her perfect, soft lips brushing against Tobin’s cheek and warming Tobin’s entire body. That’s all Tobin needed tonight. In fact, it was what she wanted. Tobin wanted to be completely sober, completely clear-headed when she kissed Christen for the first time. She wanted to be able to talk to Christen, to know where they stood, to know how Christen felt before she really kissed her.
“Think our drinks are at the table?” Tobin said, angling her head in the direction that their table was in.
Christen recognized the out for what it was and found herself a bit thankful for it. There was too much-charged energy between them on the dancefloor and they needed a breather.
“Let’s go find out,” Christen replied with a smile.
Tobin curled into the warmth, her fingers fisting into the fabric of...something. She hadn’t slept this well, this peacefully, since she was a little kid. Her head had hit the pillow, and she’d completely sunk into a dream, one that included a certain green-eyed girl and a lot more than just dancing at a club. She’d thought the dream was the best part of her deep sleep, but this, waking up, was somehow better.
She hadn’t yet peeled her eyes open, the sunlight coming into the room too bright, even with her eyelids closed. Instead, Tobin kept her eyes shut, focusing on how incredibly comfortable she was. She was so warm, so so so warm that she wondered if she was even waking up or if she was in some weird space between dreaming and awake. Tobin didn’t care enough to find out. Instead, she moved her head on the pillow, making herself even more comfortable and gripping the fabric in her fingers even tighter, pulling whatever she was holding onto closer to herself.
It wasn’t until she moved her leg forward and felt two strong thighs on either side of her one leg that Tobin froze. Her leg was definitely in between someone else’s.
With that knowledge, Tobin slowly felt for more information, moving her fingers along the fabric to feel what she was holding onto. She moved her hands until she felt smooth skin, clearly having run out of fabric to touch. She heard a sharp intake of breath from whatever she was touching, too scared to open her eyes and see just who it was.
She knew without having to do that. She could smell the lavender shampoo and the citrus lotion. Tobin could even feel a few soft strands of curly hair against her cheek, pressed in between her face and the pillow.
“Oh my gosh. I have to take a picture,” Allie cooed from somewhere above Tobin.
Tobin quickly reached behind her, grabbed the pillow she was resting on, and whipped it in the direction of the voice she’d heard. She cracked an eye open and saw Allie holding onto the pillow, having caught it, a shit-eating grin on her face.
“Harry,” Tobin warned, trying to sit up and untangle herself from Christen as quickly but gently as she could, all without looking over at Christen or waking her up.
“You ruined the moment, Harry!” Allie complained, showing her the blurry picture she had on her phone of a sleeping Christen and a moving Tobin.
“You deserve it,” Tobin growled, pulling her leg out from between Christen’s as slowly as possible, the UCLA forward still completely dead to the world.
“She’s a really cute sleeper, isn’t she?” Allie mused. “Here, I’ll take another picture for you.”
“Dear God, just stop,” Tobin muttered, pushing Allie’s hand away. Tobin stood up from the floor, still in her black skinny jeans and black v-neck from the night before.
“Okay, okay, last one,” Allie muttered, taking another picture of Christen before standing up and following Tobin into the kitchen.
“Coffee?” Tobin practically grunted at Allie.
“DIY with the Keurig over there,” Allie replied, grabbing her mug from the kitchen island and taking a sip. She grinned at Tobin over the rim, biding her time before asking Tobin about last night.
“Where’s everyone else?” Tobin asked, noticing that the house was much emptier than it had been the night before.
“You don’t remember?” Allie asked, her brow furrowing.
Tobin couldn’t remember much of the night other than Christen. Her mind had been completely overtaken by the girl, and that was all she could and wanted to remember.
“Uh…should I?” Tobin asked.
Allie shrugged. “Almost everyone crashed at the sophomore’s place. Megan invited everyone over for an after-party.”
“Did we not go?” Tobin asked, her mind still fuzzy. “Jeez, was I that drunk last night?”
“You guys were dead set on coming back to Krashlyn’s place to make mac and cheese, and of course I couldn’t leave you two unchaperoned,” Allie grinned.
“Was the mac and cheese good?” Tobin asked, cracking a smile in Allie’s direction. So what if she forgot a little bit of last night. She remembered the important parts. She remembered taking shots with Christen and dancing with Christen and holding Christen. She remembered that Christen kissed her cheek and held her hand.
Allie laughed, conscious to keep it quiet so that Christen wouldn’t wake up. “No clue, I was given express orders to leave you two to your midnight mac and cheese party. Last I heard, you two were getting drunk on the leftover tequila and quoting She’s the Man back and forth to each other. It was kind of cute in a really weird way.”
“Ew, is that why my mouth tastes so weird?” Tobin mumbled more to herself than Allie. She grabbed a mug and pushed a few buttons on the Keurig, just wanting any type of coffee but having no idea how to actually work the machine.
Allie took mercy on Tobin and pushed the right buttons for her. As coffee filled Tobin’s mug, Allie hurried to finish up her own cup of coffee and grab her keys.
“I’m gonna get some breakfast burritos, you think you two could stomach some?” Allie asked, nodding in the direction of Christen’s sleeping form.
“Hell yes!” Tobin whisper-shouted, her stomach already growling. “You know how hangry I get after a night of drinking. I’ll take a steak and potatoes burrito with extra guac. Chris doesn’t like cheese on her burritos, and make sure the bacon’s extra crispy for her too, please.” Tobin gave Allie a big smile, forever grateful that her friend wanted to go out and get her breakfast.
“Sometimes I can’t handle how cute you two are,” Allie teased.
Tobin rolled her eyes, a brow arched in Allie’s direction. “Don’t think these burritos will make up for what you did last night. Challenging Chris like that?” Tobin warned, curbing her smile for a few seconds, remembering how Allie had pushed Christen to take a shot off of Tobin. “Do you realize how badly that could have turned out? I thought I told you not to intervene.”
“I’m sorry, okay? I was drunk and missing my job as your love guru. You have my word, no more meddling,” Allie replied, crossing her heart with two fingers. “Scout’s honor.”
Tobin pulled another mug from the cabinet and pressed the same button that Allie had pressed, pleased when the coffee machine started to work. “You think Krashlyn has oat milk here?” Tobin asked, already poking her head in the fridge.
“Ali’s weird about the shit she puts in her body, so probably,” Allie replied, sliding on her sunglasses.
“Sweet,” Tobin hummed, pulling a carton out of the fridge and pouring it into one of the mugs.
“I’ll be back shortly. Tell Sleeping Beauty I say hello when she wakes up!” Allie called out, walking out the front door and closing it behind her.
All Tobin could do was yawn, waving at Allie’s retreating form and then taking a sip of her own coffee. She moaned as the caffeine started to flow through her, pushing away any lingering sleep.
“Why does the world have to be so bright?” came a groan from the living room floor. “And why is there mac and cheese in my hair?”
Tobin chuckled lightly and grabbed the second cup of coffee. “Gooood morning,” she called from the kitchen, her voice much more chipper than Christen’s. Tobin walked back into the living room, eyes landing on Christen who was now sitting up amongst the piles of pillows and blankets that made up their pillow fort.
“Ugh,” Christen grumbled, holding a hand over her eyes. “Of course you’re one of those people who doesn’t get hungover.”
“I mean…I might be one of those people,” Tobin replied with a small laugh. “But I also made you coffee, so you can’t be too upset with me.” She offered Christen the mug with oat milk, hoping it would help her feel better.
Christen dropped her hand away from her face and cracked an eye open. At the sight of the steaming mug of coffee, a small half-smile made its way onto her face.
“My hero,” she mumbled, taking the mug. She continued to keep her eyes squinted, the light in the room almost unbearable. “Do you think you could-?” Christen asked, gesturing to the open curtains.
“Oh sure,” Tobin nodded, putting her own coffee mug on the coffee table and jogging to the windows to close the curtains.
“Never let me drink tequila again,” Christen grumbled, taking a sip of her coffee, hoping it would combat the raging headache and pounding behind her eyes. After Tobin closed the curtains, the light in the room was much dimmer, which allowed Christen to fully open her eyes. She looked around, noticing she was still in the short, black dress she’d worn last night. She was nestled amongst a pile of blankets and pillows on the floor, with no real recollection of how she’d gotten there.
“I mean was it the tequila or was it the volume of tequila?” Tobin smirked.
Christen shook her head, regretting it instantly. “Your smart ass is cute usually, but right now I kind of wanna hit you.”
Tobin moved her hand across her mouth as if she were zipping her lips shut and throwing away the key. She shot Christen a thumbs up and silently sipped her coffee, waiting for Christen to get a few sips of coffee and feel better before she spoke again. Tobin propped herself up on the coffee table, pulling her feet up and sitting cross-legged, enjoying Christen in all her beheaded glory.
Christen chuckled at the gesture then winced, her fingers massaging her temple. The two of them sipped their coffees in silence for a few moments, Tobin’s eyes on Christen, Christen’s eyes screwed shut.
“I don’t think I’ve ever been that drunk,” Christen admitted quietly, finally able to open her eyes again now that her headache was receding. She looked up at Tobin and realized that Tobin was also in the same outfit she’d worn the night before. She didn’t think about that too hard, not having the energy to process what it meant just yet.
“Really? What about when you won the NCAA Championship freshman year and sent me all those text messages?” Tobin probed.
Christen let out another groan, dropping her mug onto the coffee table and putting her face into her hands. “First I wake up with mac and cheese in my hair and now you’re throwing drunk texts in my face? What a way to start spring break.”
“You still look cute, even with mac and cheese in your hair,” Tobin laughed, loving the way that Christen looked and sounded in the morning. She had a sexy and adorable morning voice that made Tobin’s stomach do somersaults, and her hair looked even wilder and more beautiful.
Christen fought off a blush and focused instead on her confusion. “How did this get here anyway? How did we get here?” she asked, picking out the last few mac and cheese noodles from her hair with a shudder.
For the first time all morning, Tobin felt anxiety creep into her body. She wondered for a second whether Christen had remembered their time together or whether she’d forgotten the entire night. “You don’t remember last night?” Tobin asked, feeling out the situation to really gauge how much Christen actually did remember of the night before.
It came back in flashes. The kitchen tequila shot, the dance floor, the almost kiss, the return to Krashlyn’s apartment. Christen remembered mostly everything, except for a few insignificant details like the mac and cheese. But what she really remembered was how Tobin had tasted under her tongue, how Tobin’s hands had felt on her hips, how Tobin’s moan had sounded, how close they had come to kissing. She couldn’t forget any of that if she tried, not that she would want to. Last night might have crossed some lines, but Christen didn’t want to forget. She just wasn’t sure if she was ready to talk about it, especially if Tobin didn’t remember anything, but she didn't want to forget. She didn’t want to worry Tobin though, so she smiled, hoping her eyes communicated the things her words could not.
“I didn’t say that. I just don’t remember why we made mac and cheese when popcorn is clearly the better drunk food to eat,” Christen replied, her smile growing.
Tobin huffed out a laugh, her anxiety receding. So, Christen did remember some things, but it was clear from her answer that she didn’t want to get into it right now. Tobin couldn’t blame Christen for that, she didn’t really want to either. She knew Allie would be pissed that they were avoiding communicating, again, but right now, they were in this incredible little bubble full of happiness and hope and Tobin couldn’t find it in herself to pop it with questions like “What are we?” and “What did last night mean?”.
“Apparently you and I insisted on making mac and cheese and drinking tequila. We may or may not have watched She’s the Man, but I don’t remember that,” Tobin replied. “Harry filled me in on some things before she left to go get us breakfast burritos.”
Christen shared in Tobin’s laugh, noting that Tobin also seemed like she remembered the events preceding the mac and cheese, but was choosing not to mention them. Maybe they wouldn’t talk about it, this tension between them that had boiled over last night thanks to copious amounts of tequila and dirty dancing in the club. Maybe Tobin was going to choose to ignore it, and maybe so would she. Just like she’d told Crystal last night, she wasn’t going to lose Tobin to the perils of long-distance. They both deserved better than that. So if that meant ignoring the elephant in the room and biding her time, while feeling a little more confident in the fact that Tobin might return her feelings, that was what Christen would do.
“I hope she knows about my love for extra crispy bacon,” Christen said, grabbing her coffee mug once more.
“I told her, and no cheese, right?” Tobin nodded at Christen.
Christen hid her smile in her coffee. Tobin knew her so well, and sometimes it just made her want to throw caution to the wind. But instead of doing that, she sipped her coffee and then looked back up at Tobin.
“Right, thanks for remembering.”
“Always,” Tobin said, lifting her coffee mug toward Christen, winking, and taking a sip. “You know what I’m thinking?” Tobin asked, her face splitting into a huge grin.
“You’re dying to brush your teeth? Or is that just me?” Christen replied with a shrug.
“I am, yes,” Tobin nodded. “But that’s not what I’m predominantly thinking about.”
“Do tell, what predominates your thoughts,” Christen teased.
“I think...and tell me if I’m wrong, but I think this is the perfect time to... drumroll please,” Tobin played her own version of a drumroll by slapping her hands on her leg.
Christen’s brows lifted expectantly, unsure where Tobin was going with this and desperately hoping it didn’t involve moving from this spot on the ground.
“Watch my favorite movie of all time! The Mighty Ducks !”
Christen wanted to groan or complain or say no. But Tobin was giving her that look with those eyes and that pout, and Christen was weak. She couldn’t say no. So instead, she found herself nodding in defeat, loving the way Tobin’s face lit up.
“Yes! Best morning ever!!!” Tobin cheered, pointing the remote at the TV and searching for the movie. “Do you need more coffee, Chris?” Tobin asked, excitement spilling from her eyes.
Tobin’s sweetness and thoughtfulness were some of Christen’s favorite things about her. But there was something about the way those things came out in her words and actions this morning when Christen was feeling like dirt and Tobin was looking beautiful, that gave her pause. Her sweetness and thoughtfulness weren’t just Christen’s favorite things anymore, they were the things that had Christen realizing these feelings she had for Tobin were so much more than a crush. She was falling, falling hard, maybe even falling in love.
“Love? Get a grip, Press. You’re hungover and not thinking clearly,” Christen chided herself. But her head had nothing to do with the feelings swirling around in her heart, and try as she might to deny them, they were there. These feelings, these deep scary big feelings should scare her, but they didn’t. They just made her chest feel warm and her hangover recede to the background for a moment, allowing Christen to smile brightly for the first time all morning.
“I’ll take that smile and your silence as a yes, please Tobin get me another coffee?” Tobin asked, still grinning at Christen, her hand stretched out for Christen to give her the mug.
Christen could only nod, handing her mug over to Tobin, still reeling from the revelation she’d just had.
Tobin whistled as she made her way into the kitchen, ready to settle down with the coffees and have an amazing morning with her favorite person in the world. “Did you just think about Christen as your favorite person?” Tobin wondered, stopping in her tracks. She hadn’t consciously thought about how important Christen had become. Of course she knew Christen was important. Losing her for those two months wouldn’t have been as terrible as it was if Christen weren’t important, but Tobin had never put it into words. She’d never really thought about where Christen stood on the list of people she needed in her life. She didn’t dwell on the thought, not worried that Christen meant so much to her. “Of course she does. You’ve been falling for her since your freshman year,” Tobin shook her head, pressing the Keurig’s buttons and pulling the oat milk out for Christen’s coffee and the regular milk out for her own.
“Here you are,” Tobin handed the coffee over with a flourish before sitting down on the floor next to Christen and starting the movie.
Christen held the mug between her hands, feeling the warmth through the ceramic and realizing it was nothing compared to the warmth radiating off of Tobin beside her. She didn’t realize how cold she was until just then, shivering slightly and snuggling deeper under the blanket she was under.
“You want me to go steal something from Ashlyn or Ali’s closet?” Tobin asked, watching as Christen burrowed into the blanket.
Christen shook her head and scooted closer to Tobin, sinking down and laying her head against Tobin’s shoulder.
“I’m good,” Christen mumbled, eyes on the TV, a soft smile on her lips.
Tobin was dying. She was trying to figure out how to sit this close to Christen without acting weird. She couldn’t decide if it was appropriate to put her arm around Christen’s shoulders and hold her close or if it was better to just keep her hands to herself. The smell of Christen’s shampoo was overwhelming, and with her head on her shoulder, all Tobin could think about was how Christen had leaned back against her when they were dancing the night before, resting her head on Tobin’s shoulder and grinding against her. She had no idea how she was going to survive not talking about the night before, but Christen seemed completely content to avoid the conversation, so she kept her mouth shut.
“Will you stop thinking so loudly? I’m trying to watch some ducks be mighty,” Christen said softly, a teasing lilt in her voice.
“Sorry,” Tobin mumbled, scratching the back of her neck and laughing a little at Christen’s teasing.
“We say that too often,” Christen observed, feeling the familiar words leave her lips, so similar to the ones she’d said on the dance floor last night right before almost kissing Tobin. It was the closest she could come to admitting that she remembered everything, and she hoped Tobin would get what she was trying to say.
Tobin’s body tensed, immediately thinking back to when Christen had said those same words to her the night before, right after Tobin had moaned in public. Tobin could feel a blush spread across her cheeks. She was having trouble not replaying the entire event over and over in her head.
“I can’t enjoy this if you’re going to be all tense and uncomfortable to snuggle with,” Christen whined, her voice a little sleepy and distracted by the events on screen.
“Sor- I almost said it again,” Tobin sighed, trying to focus on the TV and the ragtag hockey team on screen, instead of the feeling of Christen pressed against her side.
“I’m glad you didn’t,” Christen replied, unconsciously moving a little closer to Tobin.
Tobin tried to relax. She crossed her arms across her chest and leaned back against the coffee table. She tried to ignore the warmth radiating off of Christen. She tried to stop comparing it to how warm Christen’s body had been last night, completely pressed up against her own, how warm Christen’s lips had been on Tobin’s neck, on her cheek, so close to her lips but just too far.
“Yeah?” Tobin muttered, pretending to be glued to the movie and not spiraling down memory lane.
“You have seriously questionable taste in movies,” Christen teased softly, giggling into Tobin’s shoulder, hoping her joke would help Tobin relax just a little.
“This is a classic!” Tobin argued. “You haven’t given it enough time to really make an impression! They have to bond, Chris. Team chemistry doesn’t just appear overnight,” Tobin sighed.
“I’m trying to keep an open mind, but I’m so distracted by the literal brick wall I’m leaning against to pay much attention to their team chemistry.”
“Well-” Tobin huffed, blowing a long stream of air from her lips. “How should I be sitting?” she finally asked, point-blank.
Christen sat up and set her coffee down on the table. She grabbed Tobin’s arm closest to her and held it up, burrowing underneath it and snuggling into Tobin’s side.
“There, now you can keep me warm and I can try and enjoy this movie,” Christen said, enjoying the weight of Tobin’s arm across her shoulders.
Tobin’s heart flipped in her chest at the even closer contact. “Okay, now watch,” Tobin whispered, trying and failing to keep her voice neutral. She couldn’t help but run her fingers along Christen’s arm and shoulder, drawing shapes and words, just like she had last night on the dance floor.
When Allie returned, forty-five minutes later, the Mighty Ducks were passing eggs around on the ice. She dropped the burritos off in the kitchen and then peeked into the living room, and the sight that met her eyes just about melted her heart. Tobin had her arm around Christen, Christen was tucked into Tobin’s side, the two of them were sleeping soundly.
Allie finally got her chance to take a cute picture, which she did, before having a little fun with them.
“QUACK QUACK QUACK QUACK!” Allie called, once she was done looking at her best friend and her lady lover.
Tobin shot up first, worried she’d slept through the best part of the movie, and Christen followed quickly after, missing Tobin’s warmth immediately when Tobin removed her arm from around Christen’s shoulders.
“Jeez, Harry! I thought you were the movie!” Tobin groaned from the floor.
“Why is she quacking at us?” Christen asked, rubbing the sleep from her eyes and scooting just a bit away from Tobin.
“They’re the mighty ducks, C.P. Not the mighty turkeys,” Allie laughed.
“It’s their cheer,” Tobin tried to explain, realizing that she sounded a lot dorkier when she tried to explain the movie’s plot.
Christen shook her head, her headache threatening to come back full force. “I’m gonna need that burrito if those kids are going to quack before every game.”
“Good thing I brought you some fooooood,” Allie cooed at her two friends.
Tobin shot up first, her feet moving faster than they ever did on the field. She ran into the kitchen and ripped the paper bag open, digging through the napkins and plastic utensils to find her burrito. She unwrapped it quickly and took a huge bite, her mouth completely full by the time Christen and Allie entered the kitchen.
“Save some for the rest of us, Harry,” Allie chided, elbowing Tobin out of the way so she could dig through the bag.
Tobin managed to snag Christen’s burrito before being shoved out of the way by Allie. She looked up at Christen, her mouth full of burrito, and winked, tossing Christen’s burrito at her. Christen caught it with a smile, holding in a laugh at the complete, adorable mess that was Tobin Heath scarfing down a burrito at an inhuman speed.
The three of them returned to the living room shortly, Allie lounging on the couch, consumed with texting Bati, while Christen and Tobin returned to the floor. Tobin sat down first, getting comfortable, and noticed Christen hesitating, unsure where to go. With a smile, Tobin lifted her arm up, a silent invitation. Christen huffed out a small laugh and crawled under Tobin’s arm, getting comfortable all snuggled up to Tobin.
As the movie continued to play on screen, both Tobin and Christen were completely content to be cuddled up together, any worries about what had happened and what had almost happened between them last night fading away.