“I brought you here,” said Alan, “I was just going to tuck you in but thought I should remove your accessories first. I did that and was wiping your face to remove the make-up. Sorry, I woke you.”
Siana saw a damp towel in Alan’s hand. Siana was moved by his consideration and kindness. “Did you carry me all the way here from the carriage?”
“What do you think?” he said with a sly smile.
“I am not heavy?” asked Siana. She knew Alan was strong, but the house had a great many stairs.
“You are feather-light,” he said. Siana raised an eyebrow. It is quite a distance with said stairs from the front door till the bedroom. ‘Feather-light’ sounded like an exaggerated lie.
“No need to make that face,” he said, “You are nothing compared to the equipment I had to lug around during my training. D@mn, now those were heavy. Strained my muscles to breaking point. Do you want to see?”
Alan rolled up his sleeves to display his muscles. The sinewy, veined arms made Siana forget herself. She swallowed hard. Alan noticed her reaction. His eyes widened and she stared at him awkwardly. The silence seemed to have stretched for eternity when his hand found her face. He stroked her cheeks as his lips met hers. Siana didn’t push him away, she wanted him close to her. She could still smell the wine in his breath. She wrapped an arm around his neck and her fingers curled in his hair.
His kiss became frantic. Alan always was so sweet when speaking to her but his mouth on hers was wild. His tongue explored her deeper and his hands were everywhere. His hands had moved from her cheeks to her hair, and now it untied the back of her dress and her bust strap. Her shift slipped down her shoulders. She vaguely had a thought that her dress might get wrinkled, but his frantic kisses drove everything out of her mind.
His hands were on the bare skin of her back. It tickled Siana and sent a tingle throughout. She mo*ned and that was all the encouragement Alan needed. His touch became desperate. His straying hands dropped down to her bre*sts and caressed them. Heat rose between Siana’s legs and she whimpered. She was already parting her legs when she cried out as a sharp pain made itself known.
Alan stopped. “It still hurts…,” she stammered.
“I know,” said Alan softly, “I wasn’t planning to go all the way.” He nibbled gently on her lower lips as he said this. His breath was rough. “Can we stay like this for a little longer?” he asked, hesitantly.
Siana nodded. “Alright,” she said as she snuggled deeper into his arms. “Just a little longer.”
“Hmm,” he mumbled as he sucked on her neck. His teeth grazed her collar bone and made her shiver, a little m*an escaping her mouth. Alan licked her neck, and she grabbed him tighter by his forearms.
She could feel his pulse through his skin. It told her he was as stimulated as she was. Alan’s lips moved down over her chest and then to her bre*sts. He sucked them lightly. Siana mo*ned. Every time he licked them; she felt a pang of pleasure through her. The heat building between her legs. She felt dizzy and her body burned with yearning.
“Alan…,” she mumbled.
“Just a little longer,” he whispered hoarsely.
“How much longer, Alan?” she whispered back.
He smiled deviously. “Until you cry out and beg me to stop?”
“Mm,” she mumbled, “Why you little—” She looked into his eyes, blue and sly. It flustered her. She closed her eyes and leaned deeper into his arms, her heart thumping loudly. She waited for his caresses to continue. But they didn’t. She opened her eyes, surprised to see Alan straightening up her dress and tidying them up. She felt relieved but disappointed at the same time. She knew she couldn’t go through till the end, and he wouldn’t because he knew that it still hurt her. But still somewhere she wished that it would never end.
“Do you want me to tie them at the back?” he asked.
Siana was so lost in thought that the question Alan asked didn’t register. “What?” she asked, confused.
“The straps on your dress,” he said, “Do you want me to tie them all the way? Or are you going to change soon?”
“Oh,” she said, “It’s alright. Leave them be. I am going to go right to bed after a bath.”
She had planned to do exactly that. A nice hot bath and then straight to bed. But now, all drowsiness had left her because of the little incident. She was sweaty from walking around all day and Alan had got her heated up on top of that. Alan got off the bed and she stood up to go to the bathroom. She turned to him at the last moment.
“Do you want to go first?” she asked.
“It’s alright,” he said, “You go first. I am going to drop by the office for a moment.”
“At this time of the night?” she asked. It was already 9 o’clock. Granted it wasn’t very late, but people usually didn’t work at night.
Alan chuckled. “Work has piled up a little,” he said. She was going to ask about his work when she realized that Alan hadn’t left her side for two days, three, to be exact. He hadn’t had any time to focus on his work for the past few days.
Siana felt a little guilty that she hadn’t asked him before, and the thought hadn’t crossed her mind at all. An Earl must have a lot of work to take care of, and he had put everything aside to be with her. She felt bad for not noticing earlier. She resolved to be more attentive towards him.
“When will you be back?” she asked.
“Hm,” he said, “I am not sure. Just don’t wait up for me. Go to sleep, okay?”
“Alright. Don’t work too hard,” she said in return.
Alan nodded and smiled. He put on his jacket and gathered his things. She thought he was going to leave when he walked to her and took her face in his hands. “Sia,” he said, gently. She lifted her head to look at him. He dropped a soft kiss on her forehead. “Goodnight.”
Siana blushed. He turned and left. Only when the door closed behind him did she snap back to reality. It wasn’t something that hadn’t happened before. They had done much of the kissing and even beyond. It was just a chaste kiss on the forehead and still it set her heart thumping. She shook her head. I must be going crazy.
She walked to the bathroom with the image of his lips on her forehead lingering in her mind. It had felt so gentle, and kind and sweet that she blushed a deep red as she entered the bathroom to wash herself.
* * *
The next day when Siana woke up, she saw Alan on the sofa, reading the magazine. Again. The sunlight streaming through the windows made his hair dazzle. She hadn’t noticed him come back.
“Alan!” said Siana, “When did you get back last night?”
“When you were sleeping peacefully,” he said and smirked, “You were in such a deep sleep that I doubt you would have woken up even if I had blasted the music and danced around your bed.”
“I am not that heavy a sleeper,” she protested.
“Really?” said Alan, grinning, “Either it was a changeling I saw yesterday, or you haven’t met the Siana that I have.”
“It was because of the wine,” said Siana vehemently, “Alcohol always gets me sleepy.”
Alan chuckled. “I am only teasing,” he said, sitting near her, “I knew you were tired, so I didn’t wake you.”
He took his hand in hers. Siana was still groggy with sleep. She felt something slid down on her index finger. She looked down to find a beautiful ring, with an emerald in the middle, gleaming brightly in the sun.
“It’s already here?” she said excitedly looking at the ring on her finger.
“Yes,” said Alan, “They delivered it in the early morning, as promised. I put mine on, too.”
Alan held his left hand out to show her. A ring with a sapphire stone gleamed in the sunlight. It was the most beautiful thing ever.
“So very apt,” she said, “How is it that my birthstone matches your eyes and your birthstone matches mine?”
“Perhaps because we were always meant for each other,” said Alan with a warm smile.
“That’s just speculating too far,” she said, jokingly.
He touched the ring on her finger. She could feel his warm hands on hers and the coldness of the metal. But Alan was right. It did feel like it was fated all along. It felt magical. She looked at their rings and smiled.
“Sia?” said Alan.
“Hm?” she muttered. She looked up as Alan leaned down and touched his forehead to hers. His blue eyes gleamed in the sun. He was too dazzling to look at. But his eyes only looked at her.
“Can I kiss you?” he asked softly.
“What? Why all of a sudden?” she stammered.
“Because I want to,” he said, “You said yesterday that I could if I wanted to.”
“What? No, I didn’t,” she protested.
“You said that when I asked to hold hands,” he said, “Does that extend to kisses as well?”
“No, it doesn’t,” she said, “You need to get explicit permission for that.”
Alan backed away a little. He seemed disappointed and Siana heaved a sigh.