Thirty-One and a Half Regrets Page 31

I grabbed his hand. “Come inside.”

He got out of the car and came around to open my door, pulling me into his arms and kissing me until I was lightheaded.

Why had I been resisting him for weeks?

Leaning back with a grin, he took my hand and dragged me up to the front porch. “Keys,” he mumbled before he kissed me again. When he lifted his head, he said it again, “Your keys.”

I stared up at him.

“Your keys? So I can unlock your door.”

“Oh.” But I still studied his face in a daze. Mason had literally kissed me senseless.

“If you keep staring at me like that, I’m liable to skip going inside, which wouldn’t be so great for my career given that your neighbor makes bi-weekly calls to my office to report indecent activity at your house.”

I laughed as I dug through my purse and found my keys. Mason took them from me and quickly unlocked the doorknob and the deadbolt. But instead of opening the door, he pushed my back up against it and kissed me again. One hand cupped my cheek while the other slid under my sweater and skimmed the bare skin of my waist, setting my hairs on end. I grabbed the back of his neck, clinging to him as my knees weakened. My heart pounded in my chest and my skin flushed.

Mason lifted his head, his eyelids heavy with lust.

“Are you coming in?”

He watched me for several seconds. “No.”

I blinked, certain I’d heard him wrong. “No?”

“I’ve waited for months, but you haven’t. I don’t want to push you into something you’re not ready for.”

“You’re not pushing me into anything. I want you.”

“I don’t want you to regret this, Rose. We have time. We can wait.”

“What if I don’t want to wait?”

His hand caressed my cheek. “If I can wait, so can you. I just want you to be sure. You only decided today to move on.”

I buried my face into his chest and groaned. I could see the sense in his words, even though I didn’t want to admit it. “I hate that you’re right.”

His arms wrapped around my back. “You have no idea how hard this is for me. I’m going to have to go home and take a cold shower.”

I looked up into his eyes and pressed my lips against his before I could stop myself.

He groaned and deepened the kiss as I clung to him. “Rose, you’re not making this any easier.”

“Sorry,” I mumbled against his lips.

“Liar.” He laughed and took a step back. “Go inside and lock the door. They have Crocker cornered, so you should be safe, but I’ll have the police do several drive-bys tonight.”

“Okay.”

“Will you meet me for lunch at Merilee’s tomorrow?”

“I should tell you no for being so mean.”

He kissed me again, murmuring against my lips, “I’m doing my best to convince you.”

“If you kiss me like this tomorrow, then definitely yes.”

His face lit up with a grin. “I have court in the morning, but it’s Judge McClary and you know how he likes his noon lunch recesses.”

“So noon? I’ll be working at a job site by myself tomorrow, so I might not be too pretty.”

“You’re always beautiful, Rose.”

I blushed.

“Are you building the retaining wall? By yourself? Can you get someone to help you temporarily until Bruce Wayne shows up?”

“I could ask David, but he hated working for me before. He only did it because I promised he’d earn recreational money.”

“Try him again. And maybe he’ll tell you more about Bruce Wayne while you’re working.”

“Okay.” I had to admit it was a good idea, although I suspected he’d be resistant, particularly since this would be even harder manual labor than what I’d hired him for the first time.

“Now go inside. I’ll call you in the morning and let you know that Crocker was officially apprehended.”

I opened the door and stood in the doorway for a moment. “Goodnight, Mason.”

He leaned over and gave me one last kiss, proving that meeting him for lunch was the best idea since the invention of the microwave.

“Goodnight, Rose.” He gently pushed me inside and closed the door behind me.

After flipping the lock I turned on a lamp and peered through the curtains as his car backed out of the driveway.

I leaned my back against the door and sighed as a strange feeling washed through me. I tried to put my finger on what it was. It was weird not having to let Muffy outside, but that wasn’t it. My body was filled with surging hormones and an unsatisfied craving, but that wasn’t it, either. I felt unsettled, as if my life were on a teeter-totter and I didn’t know where I was going to land. Was this what it was like dating someone else? Dealing with the uncertainty of the future?

With a tired sigh, I pushed away from the door. It was only nine o’clock, and I was nowhere near ready for bed. I put on my pajamas and called Neely Kate, filling her in on my day with Mason. When I told her about Mason kissing me, she squealed so loudly in my ear that I had to hold the phone away. “You’re going to make me deaf, Neely Kate.”

“Hearing is overrated. So he’s a good kisser?”

“Well, I don’t have much to compare it to, but when he finished, I was pretty fuddled.”

“Oh!” She squealed again. “I knew you two would have great chemistry. You’re a rising Scorpio and he’s a Cancer. You’re a perfect love match.”

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