“No, Rainey. Let me look at you. I love looking at you. Even when I close my eyes, all I see is you.”
I dropped my arms, my legs trembling. This was Rowan, the sweet, kindhearted boy I loved. Yet, in that moment I feared him. The adrenaline was wearing off and I was suddenly so cold.
His lips parted as he stared at me, those blue eyes I knew so well slowly taking in my body as heat blazed behind them. He’d grown so large, twice my size at least, and it had never occurred to me how strong he was until now. Nobody would pick on him anymore. Not without getting their asses handed to them in a fight.
“Can I touch you, Rainey?” His eyes lifted to mine. “Is that all right? For me to touch you?”
“Always,” I whispered, unable to put any strength in my voice. “You can always touch me.”
He stepped forward and I stepped back out of instinct. He would never hurt me. Not Rowan. But what I saw in him now was the predator that had always lingered just beneath the surface. He wasn’t a monster like his family or David. Not him. He was something else entirely.
Pain shot through his eyes when I moved, his hands fisting at his sides. “Do I scare you now?”
Shaking my head, I forced my mouth to move. “No. It’s just -“
“You’re different, Rowan. A man, I guess. You’ve grown.”
Blue eyes held mine, the darkness in them seeping away, but not entirely. His lips pulled into a tight smile. “You need a man. I’ve become exactly what you need. For you, Rainey. Not anybody else. Just for you.”
I drew in a rattling breath. “Touch me.”
Rowan moved forward and I held my ground, craning my neck to look up at him. He was shaking, his skin so cold that I knew I had to fix him somehow. “Rowan?”
“Will you kiss me?”