They hesitated, sharing a glance between them.
“No, hey, it’s cool,” I said, giant fake smile in place. “The new wife and I were just about to enjoy some newlywed sex, but, see, this is way better.”
“Look,” Bennett said, “we probably should have called first, but . . . Chloe.”
“Called first?” I laughed, clapping their shoulders roughly and pulling them inside. These dicks were getting so drunk they wouldn’t be able to walk home. “No need to call! You’re welcome to come into my house and hang out with me and my new bride in our underwear any fucking time.”
“First shots for these gentlemen,” I said, putting an arm around each of their shoulders. “They’d like to get these here festivities done started!”
Chloe followed George into the kitchen, while Sara went to the living room, hugging a still shell-shocked Hanna and putting on some music. An upbeat rock song filtered through the apartment, and they both came back to where the rest of us had gathered.
Hanna slipped her arms around my waist, meeting my eyes. “What just happened?” she asked me through a laugh.
In her expression I could see the question: Are we game for this?
And in truth, we had a lifetime of quiet Saturday nights together. The looks of excitement on our friends’ faces were hard to resist.
I bent, kissing her once. “I fear tonight is going to get out of hand very quickly,” I said against her lips.
She laughed. “I think you may be right.”
Coming out with a tray of tequila shots, Chloe handed one each to me, Hanna, and George, and two each to Bennett and Max.
Sara happily unscrewed the cap to her water bottle and Chloe ushered us all in closer. “Everyone get in here, raise your damn glasses.” A cluster of glasses clinked together. “To the newlyweds: Will and Hanna Sumner-Bergstrom. Get ready for a lifetime of being badass motherfuckers.”
The tequila warmed a path from my lips to my gut, and I glanced at Hanna, catching the first shudder as it made its way through her, followed by her disgusted wince.
“Then you just need to do more,” George said, jogging to the kitchen and returning a couple of minutes later with another round.
“This is madness,” I told them. “You got here five minutes ago and we’re standing in the hallway doing shots like a bunch of fratty idiots.”
Bennett agreed with a nod, but took his third shot anyway.
“You failed to be tortured on a stag night,” Max pointed out, lifting his glass. “Bennett had one in Vegas. You all held mine at that dive bar in the Meatpacking District.”
“An apt description, if memory serves,” Bennett added. “I think more than a few patrons had sex in the bathroom that night.”
“Besides, when was the last time we all got hammered together?” Chloe asked.
“I think never?” Hanna offered, tossing back the next shot before gagging and squeezing her eyes closed. “I don’t think I like tequila.”
I watched her—cheeks flushed, lips wet from the booze—and walked into the kitchen, grabbing a lime and the saltshaker.
“Oh, yes,” George cooed from somewhere behind us. “Only a few minutes in and we’re in body shot land.”
“Lick my neck,” I told her, and she was obviously already tipsy because she did it in front of our friends without hesitation. “Shake some salt there.”
I felt the cascade of salt down my bare chest.
“Lick the salt, take the shot, and suck this lime from my mouth.”
“Can we all please take note here that Will is still in only his boxers?” Sara called out from across the room, where she turned up the volume on the stereo. “Is anyone else a little uncomfortable?”
“My Snapchat feed is having a banner fucking day,” George mumbled, snapping a picture before I reached over and knocked the phone out of his hand.
Hanna’s mouth came up over my neck to loud whistles and clapping, and then she took the shot and leaned forward, sucking the lime wedge from between my lips.
She moved back and I watched her suck at the wedge, smiling at me with her eyes.
Pulling it away, she shook her head. “Nope, still gross.”
She kissed me and tasted like tequila and lime. I could taste her lips all day and chase her for more.
But she put a hand on my chest, pushing slightly. “Go put on some pants. You’re . . . a little into this.” Nodding to my boxers, she grinned up at me and I realized I was sporting half-wood standing in the middle of my apartment, surrounded by my friends.
“Fuck you guys,” I said, punching his shoulder before walking back to the bedroom.
In no time at all everyone but Sara was falling-down drunk. Even Hanna, whom I’d seen tipsy on but a few occasions, would only stop giggling when overtaken by a bout of body-jerking hiccups. The coffee table was covered with novelty straws, playing cards, shot glasses, and beer bottles. A bag of tortilla chips sat several inches away from a nearly empty bowl, and no one seemed to care that the stretch of table between the two was marked by frequent dollops of salsa.