I've never seen Caleb look so terrified. It felt like the air around us was suffocating. I knew I was crying but I didn't know what else to do. I held his hand and took it from my cheek. His eyes were locked onto mine. I stepped closer and kissed him gently. I shut my eyes as his lips caressed mine. He was shaking.
"Calm down," I whispered into his lips.
"I can't," he whispered back.
I wrapped my arms around his waist and put my head on his chest. I closed my eyes. He slowly held me back but he was still shaking. I held him tightly. His heart was racing and I was worried he'd pass out. His arms ran up my back and one went into my hair. He held onto me desperately.
"Yes?" he asked, his voice shaking.
"I love you, too."
His body froze. He didn't move or speak. I gulped and kept my eyes closed. I had imagined this is what made him so nervous at dinner but hearing him say it out loud had more of an impact than I thought it would. I kept crying; I wasn't sure what he was doing or thinking. I inhaled deeply, enjoying the smell of his cologne, while I waited.
"Are you telling the truth?" he whispered finally.
"Unfortunately, yes," I said.
"Unfortunately?" he asked and I could hear the frown in his voice.
"I'm scared," I admitted.
He pulled out of the hug and looked down at me. His face was incredibly pale but he smiled a bit.
"Does it help to tell you I'm scared, too?"
I laughed a little and nodded, biting my lower lip.
"I don't understand," he said.
"What do you mean?"
"Why in the world do you love me? I still can't believe you even like me in a romantic sense."
I sighed and looked down. "Honestly, I don't even know when it happened. I just- It just did. I was sitting there, eating ice cream with my mom, and I realized it. I didn't tell her, though.... And then, when you said we were going on a vacation, I thought: perfect time to tell him. I couldn't bring myself to do it so I just decided to ignore it for now...."
"But I'm an asshole," he muttered and I smiled at him.
"No, Caleb, you're not." He frowned. "You were before but you're not anymore. I've been telling you the truth. You're different. You're more mature. You're not as egotistical."
He shut his eyes. "Hearing you say that makes me feel... special, I guess."
I chuckled. "Well, you're pretty special," I teased and he laughed a little, too. "Seriously, though, I mean it all."
"So do I," he said and kissed me.
I wrapped my arms around him and stood on my toes. He deepened the kiss, burying his hand in my hair. He pulled me as close as he could and I bit on his lower lip, making him gasp. My body was immediately overcome by lust and I pushed him against the wall. He gasped into my lips again but didn't break away. I pulled his jacket off and began to unbutton his shirt.
"No," he panted and I looked at him, confused. "I- Not right now."
"Why not?" I asked. "It's-It's what you want. It's what I want."
He closed his eyes with an almost pained expression. He kissed me several times on the lips. His hands tightened on my waist as he kissed my neck. Slowly, his hands wandered up my body. He cupped my breast and sighed on my neck, his breath warm. I shut my eyes, leaning my head back, as he kissed up to my jaw.
"I want to be intimate with you," he whispered, letting go of my breast.
He kissed me lightly and took his shoes off. I frowned and he motioned for me to take mine off, too. He took my hand and led me to the bed. He pulled the blankets back and climbed in. He opened his arms and I climbed into them. I stared into his eyes and he looked back. He ran his finger down my cheek and my neck, stopping at my collarbone.
"I don't know what you want," I breathed.
"I want exactly what we're doing," he answered.
"But we're not doing anything," I said.
He smiled a little. "Yes, we are."
"We're just laying in bed staring at each other," I pointed out.
He pecked my lips gently. "Exactly, my dear."
I laughed a little. "Well, I guess it's my turn. I'm the confused one now."
He chuckled and pulled me to him.
"Just go to sleep, Mirela," he murmured in my ear.
"Okay," I said, closing my eyes.
I wrapped my arms around him and put my forehead on his chest. His shirt was still unbuttoned but I didn't care. I liked the sight of his chest. I nearly jumped him when he came out of the shower this afternoon.
We both sighed at the same time and I kissed his neck one more time.