“Do we? Do we really?”
“Yeah.” I squeezed my eyes shut tight, trying to focus, to break out of the hold he had on me. Both internally and externally. “I need an intermission.”
He pulled back but didn’t let go of me. “Do I have to let go of you entirely? I really don’t want to.”
“Um…it would probably be easier for me to think if you did.”
“You scare me a little when you think.” He let out a big sigh, then inhaled deeply. “Especially because I have this awful feeling that you’re about to say that it’s nothing personal, but this isn’t going to work out.”
“Wow,” I said, unhappy he was right. “You’re good.”
“No. Good is what I think we could be. Together.” He paused, studying my face, his gaze moving from the eyes I’d just opened to the lips his had just released. “You’re serious. Fuck, of course, you’re serious.”
“Sorry.” I was trying to be smart and not get hurt, and the universe dropped him into my path. A test of strength I wasn’t sure I was up to.
“Don’t be sorry. Be…” He briefly dropped his head forward and then looked up again. “Before you tell me to go away, can I have a minute to make my case?”
“It’s not going to change anything.” Ugh. I’d never heard anything said with as much regret.
“Come on… I deserve one measly minute, don’t I?” He looked so sincere…and kind of needy. A big, beautiful man needed me. Not that I’d never seen need on a man’s face before, but everything about Declan was different. Not only did he want to sleep with me, he wanted to talk to me, too. Part of me actually thought he might still want to talk to me even if he were one hundred percent sure he’d never get to sleep with me again. That was definitely something I never thought I’d see.
“Only if you step back at least a foot.”
“A foot?” Even in the dark, his eyes shone with life and a little humor. “Is that at all negotiable?”
I grumbled under my breath. “Fine. Stay…six inches away.”
“If you really don’t want any part of me to touch you, there needs to be more than six inches between us,” he said, adjusting the erection stretching the front of his jeans.
I raised an eyebrow and put my hands on his chest. “Well, aren’t you cocky.”
“Yep. And, for the record? I’m a good inch, inch-and-a-half cockier than six inches.”
“Huh. Are you sure about that?” I teased. He didn’t need to know I thought he was selling himself short at seven and a half inches.
“Damn, woman.” Running a hand through his hair, he chuckled. “Are you this hard on everyone’s ego?”
“Just yours.” I pressed my lips together to stop myself from laughing. “I guess that means you’re lucky.”
“Not unless you let me kiss you again, I’m not.”