Thirty-Two and a Half Complications Page 52

My breath caught in my throat at the sexual tension that erupted between us.

His hand slid behind my head, his fingers threading through my hair, and he pulled my face inches from his. “I love you, Rose, but I will not share you. I let you have your time and space to make a decision. I finally told you that I love you after months of wanting you, but those three words aren’t trivial to me.”

His breath was hot on my face and I ached to touch him, but I wasn’t sure that was what he wanted from me. “They’re not trivial to me either.”

“But you kissed him back.” It was a low rumble in his chest.

“I wish to God I could undo it, but I can’t. It didn’t mean anything to me, Mason.”

“I want to believe you, Rose, I swear that I do, but all I can think of is him kissing you.” His hand tightened in my hair. “And I have plenty of visuals from when you two were together to fill in the footage.”

I pressed my lips to his unresponsive mouth. I had to make this better. I couldn’t lose him. Not now. Not ever. “I love you, Mason. You.”

He hadn’t pushed me away, which I took as a good sign. I reached for the hem of his thermal shirt, but his free hand covered mine. “Stop.” He pulled my head back and stared into my eyes. A fire burned behind his gaze, a potent mixture of anger and passion. “I want you, Rose, more than the air I breathe. But I need to know that you want to be with me. I need to know you’re not going to change your mind and go back to him. Especially him.”

I shook my head. “I’m yours, Mason. Yours. I don’t want him. I want you.”

His mouth covered mine, and he kissed me like a drowning man hanging on for dear life. Grabbing my coat, he jerked it off and tossed it to the floor. I pulled his shirt over his head, taking in the sight of his naked chest. He kissed me again, and suddenly his hand was on my jeans, unbuttoning them with a frenzy he didn’t usually possess. I fumbled blindly for the edge of his sweat pants, but he moved my hand away. When he pulled down the zipper to my jeans, he pushed me onto my back on the sofa and tugged my pants over my hips, my panties right behind them. I stared up at him as he pulled his sweat pants and underwear down, but they caught on his brace and he growled in frustration.

A passion I’d never seen before filled his eyes as he took in the sight of me lying there, naked from the waist down.

I reached my hands up to unbutton my blouse, but he pushed them away, then grabbed the top of my shirt and jerked it open, ripping the buttonholes and sending the buttons flying. My chest heaved as my body ached for him with an intensity stronger than I’d ever felt.

His hands covered my breasts, his thumbs brushing the sensitive skin under my thin bra. “Which one of us do you want?”

“I want you, Mason.”

He moved a hand between my legs, watching my face as my back arched and my breath came in short pants.

“Who’s driving you wild right now?” he asked, his voice low, his eyes dark.

“You are.”

I was close and he knew it, so he slowed down the pace of his strokes. When I whimpered, he released a low guttural laugh. “Who do you belong with, Rose?”

“You. I belong with you, Mason.”

His hands began to move again. “Do you want me?”

“Yes,” I panted in agony of want. “I want you. I need you.”

He spread my legs and entered me in one deep plunge. I cried out, lifting up to him, but he couldn’t find the traction he needed with his leg.

Slipping an arm around my back, he pushed me into a sitting position. I straddled my legs around him and wrapped my arms around his neck, kissing him wildly as he grabbed my hips and began to guide my movements.

Within minutes, I was close again and he stilled me, pulling my body up and off of him so his mouth could find my breast. I squirmed, desperate, and tried to guide him back in, but he held me in place and turned his attention to my other breast.

“No,” was his gruff answer.

“Mason,” I begged. “Please.”

“Not yet,” he growled, his hand finding the spot between my legs that sent me climbing again. He tortured me until I cried for release. He looked in my face, his eyes dark with need. “Who do you choose, Rose?”

“I’m yours, Mason,” I whimpered. “I’m yours.”

He pulled me on top of him and proved it was true, taking me higher than I’d ever been before. I cried out when I reached my peak, Mason right behind me as he grunted into my neck. I collapsed against him, exhausted.

He leaned my head back to look into my eyes while he gently stroked my cheek. “I love you, Rose. I need you so much it frightens me.”

“I love you too, Mason,” I said through my tears. “I was terrified I’d lost you.”

His gaze was serious. “I’m giving you my heart, Rose Gardner. Please don’t destroy it.”

“I won’t. I don’t want to lose you.”

“As long as you love me, I’m yours.”

Then he pulled me down on the sofa and I fell asleep, cradled in his arms.

Chapter Fourteen

Mason was more reserved the rest of the afternoon, but at least he wasn’t avoiding me, not that I would have blamed him. I’d cheated on him. Joe could deny it all he wanted, but it was true. I’d betrayed Mason’s trust and he was handling it far better than I deserved.

While Mason worked in the office, I spent the afternoon going through more of Dora’s photos and papers, but my heart wasn’t in it. I was too worried about the future to think about my past. I put the things in a box in the closet and was about to head downstairs and cook dinner when the door to the sunroom caught my eye.

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