Author: Kirsty Moseley He shrugged, picking up the TV remote and flicking through the channels because the movie had finished. I hadn’t even noticed because I’d been too busy staring at him and musing about things like his future girlfriend’s broken heart. “We just went with Peter’s suggestion in the end.” My ears pricked up, interested to know what the other suggestions were. “What were the other suggestions? Maybe we could change it?” “Well, Dean wanted Regan.” “Regan?” I frowned at the randomness. Ashton chuckled wickedly as he nodded. “That’s what the little girl was called in The Exorcist.” I gasped in outrage. “No! That asshole!” I cried, though laughed at the same time. “I thought it was pretty good,” he countered. “But I figured that would be hard to explain when we put in the paperwork with your dad.” He grinned at me, his eyes twinkling with mirth. I had to smile at that too. My father would have been less than impressed. “What about your suggestion, what was that?” I asked, still hopeful that we could switch it to something less pretty and delicate. His back stiffened as his hand stilled on my leg. “I didn’t have one.” I cocked my head to the side, watching as his jaw tightened and untightened unconsciously. He was hiding something from me. “You’re a terrible liar,” I stated confidently. “I bet Regan was yours, wasn’t it.” I narrowed my eyes, resisting the urge to pout. He shook his head in rejection; flicking through TV channels so quickly that you couldn’t even see what was on. “I’m not. That wasn’t mine, promise.” I nudged his leg with my foot to get his attention from the television. “Tell me yours then,” I prompted. He shook his head, smirking in my direction teasingly. My mouth popped open in dissatisfaction. I hated secrets. Pushing myself up onto my knees, I poked him in the ribs. Instantly he chuckled, gripping my hand, so I tried to poke him with my other hand instead. “Tell me!” I demanded, poking him again, watching as he squirmed. That was when I came to the conclusion that my near guard was ticklish. A grin spread across my face as I decided to use it to my advantage. I launched forward, fighting my hands free from his as I started a tickle war. It was pretty obvious within seconds though that I wasn’t going to win. In mere moments, I was pinned to the sofa with him hovering above me, laughing excitedly as he returned the tickling treatment, making me giggle and squirm under him. “Stop it!” I cried, struggling to fight free as I gasped for breath from all the laughing. My wrists were pinned to the sofa as he looked down at me with mischievous eyes. He finally stopped, hovering above me, grinning happily. The smile faded from his face slowly as his eyes met mine. The burning passion was back inside me. I saw it cross his face too; and I definitely felt it stirring against my thigh. I didn’t move. His restraining hold on my wrists loosened, but he didn’t let go or get off me. I grinned, trying to slow my breathing and calm my racing heart. I hadn’t laughed that much for years. It felt nice, kind of liberating. “Please tell me yours,” I begged. He sighed, and his eyes tightened. “You don’t want to know mine.” I pouted, even fluttered my eyelashes as I silently begged him. A long groan escaped his lips as he looked down at me and frowned, clearly uncomfortable. “Damn that face, that’s not fair!” he whined. Finally, he sighed. “Pacey. I wanted Pacey.” Not having a clue what that was about, I raised an inquiring eyebrow. “And what is Pacey? Some sort of sadistic killer?” I inquired. A smile twitched at the corner of his mouth. “No. Have you seen The Peacemaker?” he asked, biting his lip. I shook my head in answer. I’d never even heard of it. “It’s a movie, one of my favourites, in fact. There’s this girl in it called Pacey. She’s like a supreme being, perfect in every way, incredibly beautiful. She’s kind of a badass like you. She saves the world and then gets the guy at the end,” he explained. His eyes narrowed as if waiting for me to freak out or something. His words repeated in my head. Incredibly beautiful and perfect in every way. And he’d wanted to name me that? My heart stuttered in my chest as the hair on the nape of my neck stood on end. “Aww, that’s really sweet. Are you sure that wasn’t Dean’s suggestion?” I joked, trying to keep a hold on the sensations that were flitting through my system as if they were on a freight train. Ashton laughed uncomfortably. “Actually, yeah it was, I just wanted to steal his glory,” he replied, avoiding my gaze and playing with a strand of my hair. I smiled, watching him intently, loving how he looked so unsure and so vulnerable. “You’re cute when you’re nervous,” I mused. There was no sarcastic comment or anything, like I had expected; instead, his words made butterflies swoop around in my stomach. “What would you do if I kissed you right now?” He looked at my lips longingly. I gulped, shocked at the turn in the conversation. What would I do? I was pretty sure I’d kiss him back, but part of me was screaming at me to push him the hell off me and be true to Jack. “I’d kick your butt out of my apartment, and you’d have to sleep next door.” I said the words and tried my best to make them sound true. He shook his head slowly, his eyes never leaving mine. “No you wouldn’t,” he whispered, inching his lips towards mine. My breath caught in my throat. “Ashton, don’t,” I rasped. Ignoring my protests, he dipped his head and brushed his lips softly against mine. The kiss lasted barely a second before he broke it, but it was enough to send my body into overdrive as memories of his taste, his touch and his kisses flooded my brain. “Want me to sleep next door tonight?” he asked, his voice sounding husky. His lips brushed against mine softly as he spoke, sending a shiver of anticipation down my spine. Deciding to answer truthfully, I shook my head, never taking my eyes from his. He smiled and closed the small distance again, pressing his lips to mine harder this time. My eyes fluttered closed as I revelled in the luxury of his lips on mine. Not even having to think about it, I kissed him back. His resulting moan made my skin prickle with excitement. My hands tangled into the back of his hair, pulling him closer to me as the kiss deepened and changed into something more urgent and passionate. Shifting slightly, I freed my legs from under him and gripped his h*ps with my knees, pulling his body on top of mine harder. The weight of him on top of me, as his hands wandered my body, almost made me dizzy with excitement. My whole body was aching for more of him. A thought suddenly occurred to me – if kissing him was so wrong, then why did it feel so right? Just once more, I decided. I could make myself happy and give myself what I wanted, couldn’t I? I deserved to be happy just once, didn’t I? I ran my hands down his back and pushed them down the back of his jeans, feeling his firm buttocks. I moaned at the feel of it. I could picture it when I closed my eyes, and I wanted to see it again. I wanted to have him, just once more. But would I be able to stop at once if it happened, or would I become addicted to his body just as I had done his personality and smile? A knock at the door interrupted us, snapping us both back to reality. He broke the kiss and a little whimper escaped my lips as my grip tightened on him unconsciously, not letting him move away. A smile twitched at the corner of his mouth as he dipped his head again, pressing his lips back to mine as he cupped the side of my neck with one of his hands. The knock sounded again, more insistently this time. He groaned against my neck, so I knew the moment was over. Unclamping my knees from his hips, I turned my head to the side and gulped in fresh air as he pulled back, looking down at me with hungry, lust-filled eyes that made my insides clench in excitement. “I need to get that,” he whined, looking back over his shoulder to the hallway and front door beyond. I nodded, unsure if my voice would work if I tried to speak. He sighed, putting his hand to his hair, smoothing it down because I’d had my hands tangled in it so it now stood at all angles. A blush covered my cheeks as he shoved his hand down the front of his jeans, rearranging himself so that his arousal was less noticeable as he walked to the door. From the front door, I could hear him talking to someone, and then the voices got louder as they walked towards the lounge. I sat up quickly and smoothed my hair down too, praying my face wasn’t flushed. The person with him was Dean, and judging by the no-nonsense look on his face, it wasn’t a social call. Dean smiled awkwardly. “Sorry to interrupt. Ashton and I just need to go over a few things before school tomorrow.” I nodded. “And by that you mean, ‘get lost, Annabelle, we want to talk about secret agent stuff and you’re not invited’,” I guessed, rolling my eyes. “That’s fine, I’m just going to go and see if I can make my head spin and vomit pea soup.” Dean’s mouth popped open before he looked at Ashton accusingly. Chuckling and waving over my shoulder, I headed into the bedroom, deciding to take a long soak in the tub. After running myself a bubble bath, I stayed in the water until it turned cold. The whole time I was in there, I couldn’t stop thinking about that kiss with Ashton. Would I have had sex with him again if Dean hadn’t interrupted? I genuinely didn’t know the answer. After I got out, I found one of Ashton’s T-shirts hanging over the back of the chair, so I pulled it on, pairing it with some boy shorts. I sat on the bed and eyed the photo of Jack that sat on my bedside cabinet. I sighed and picked it up, running my finger over his face. He was so handsome, not in the totally hot way that Ashton was, but in the traditional, blue eyes, blond hair, type of way. I missed him terribly. Guilt built inside me because I had no right to yearn for someone else’s arms to comfort me, yet I just couldn’t seem to help it around Ashton. My sketch book and pencils were by the bed, so I grabbed them and sat against the headboard. I drew the thing that had been on my mind since I woke up this morning – the little girl from my dream. In my sketch, she laughed and smiled excitedly. On the corner of the page, I drew Ashton as he looked in my dream: gorgeous, happy, and loving.