Bank robbery and explosions, guns and testosterone? Exactly what I need to keep my eyes and hands to themselves.
I start the dishwasher while Lola heads into the other room. Grabbing the popcorn and a couple of beers from the fridge, I flip off the light with my elbow.
The previews are playing as I get to the living room. Both lamps have been dimmed, and the couch is huge, big enough for at least four grown adults. Lola is sitting squarely in the middle.
She pats the spot next to her. “Almost.”
My heart slowly melts into my gut.
I take a seat and after a moment of hesitation, she crowds a bit closer, tucking herself neatly into my side.
I go still, holding my breath before exhaling and molding into the shape of her against me.
Lola and I have always had what Finn and Ansel call a touchy relationship—lots of playful shoves, pinky swears, and high-fives—but cuddling on the couch? Definitely new.
“Do you want me to grab the ice cream?” Lola says, lifting her chin to look up at me.
I imagine her this close, eating ice cream from the carton and licking melted strawberry from the spoon.
That would be fucking catastrophic.
“In a while,” I say, and she nods, taking the popcorn and stretching her legs out in front of her. I think I hear her exhale in one long, calming breath.
She’s wearing a soft gray T-shirt that slopes off one perfect shoulder, a pair of black skinny jeans, and her bare feet rest next to mine on the coffee table. Lola is small-boned but tall, with curves that make my mouth water. I’d never describe her as delicate—and that may be primarily because she exudes a certain steely aura—but I’m so much bigger than she is, so much longer, and I’ve never been more aware of it than I am right this very moment.
Picking up her hand, I place it over mine, palm to palm. “You’re so small.”
Lola laughs, looking down at our hands. “I am not, you’re just a giant. Is that how all men are made in Australia?” She tilts her face up to mine. “I might have to plan a visit and go hunting.”
“You’re cheeky tonight,” I say, reaching with my free hand for the bowl of popcorn in her lap, and shift my eyes to the television.
But I can feel the way her eyes linger on me, and can’t resist looking back at her face. We’re so close, shoulder to shoulder. Out of the corner of my eye I catch the jerking rise and fall of her chest as she breathes.
“Still picturing me in my boxers?” I whisper.
“Is it that obvious?” she says. There’s a hint of a smirk on her lips, but her cheeks grow warm and pink. She clears her throat.
“Pipe down and watch the movie,” I tease dryly, feeling my cock tighten in my jeans. “You’ve already made me miss the first ten minutes—you know, where we really get into the nuances of Keanu’s excellent characterization.”
“I can tell how upset you are,” she says with a small laugh and sits up. Each point of contact we just shared cools and I use every ounce of my mental Jedi skills to wordlessly coerce her to sit back close again and touch me.
My skills are apparently far more powerful than I imagined because, after she takes a long pull from her bottle, she sets it on the table in front of us and swings her legs onto the couch so she’s lying down.
With her head in my lap.
I take a deep breath and keep my eyes on the screen, waiting with fire in my veins while she shifts around and makes herself comfortable.
After a moment she’s settled in and looks up at me with smiling eyes. “You’re so comfy. Is this”—she swallows—“is this okay?”
“Pretty comfy yourself,” I say, and try to set the bowl on her face, anything to keep my focus off the fact that her head is practically on top of my dick. Her ear is almost pressed against it.
She has to realize what she’s doing to me.
“Hey,” she says, stealing the bowl away from me. “Be nice or I’ll tell Harlow.”
Lola reaches for a handful of popcorn and goes back to watching the movie. Swayze runs by, along with the rest of his Ex-Presidents bank robber crew, and she laughs. “Why does that seem like something Not-Joe would get himself involved in?”
My hand wanders to her hair, innocently at first—just to brush it away from her forehead—and then with more intent as I smooth the strands back. If we’re doing this, I am fucking doing this. “Because if we asked him to sit in a running van at the curb while the rest of us ran into a bank, the only question he’d ask is if he could change the radio station.”
Lola tilts her head and looks up at me, and it would probably be best for both of us if she’d keep her head still. “Or to bring him a lollipop.”
We’re silent for a few more minutes and I twist a lock of hair around my finger, watching the way the light from the TV flickers across the strands.
“So things are good at the shop?” she asks, moving her hand to rest near her head on my thigh.
“Wouldn’t you know?” I ask. “You’re practically employee of the month.”
“That’s because I have a thing for Not-Joe,” she says, glancing back at me again. I shift minutely—trying to move her away or get her closer, I’m not really sure.
“Don’t ever say that to him or he’ll think you’re going to get married.”