Saturday, March 2, 2013

A Welcome Surprise

Originally written for All Romance ebooks

I watched from the open doorway as he glided across the room, all sinuous grace and masculinity. No one moved quite like Jareth, with a controlled strength that drew all eyes to him. I’d never believed a man could walk like that outside a romance novel, but he was living proof that many of my fantasies could be made flesh and blood.

I stayed in the shadows as my eyes followed him from one group to the next, ever the attentive host. We were celebrating his birthday after all. The look of surprise on his face when he'd stepped into the room was worth every hour I’d spent planning the shindig behind his well-toned back. 

I was about to tear my eyes away from him and head in for a drink when he suddenly turned and spied me. Our eyes locked, and his face broke into the dimpled grin that always makes my knees weak. I thought I smiled back, but even now I can't be sure. My heartbeat sped up as he made his way toward me, and I found myself glancing around nervously for a means of escape.

"Hey, sweetheart, I believe I have you to thank for this gathering."

I looked up, to compensate for the difference between my petite five-two height as opposed to his six-foot frame. He was smiling at me and shaking his head slowly. “Lydia, you know I hate surprises. What on earth possessed you to do this?"

That's when I noticed the strain in his smile and the heat of his emerald gaze. He was not at all happy with me and a sudden pain flared within my chest at the realization.

"I'm sorry, Jareth. It's been so long since you've seen most of these people. I thought you'd be happy everyone could get together."

He sighed and ran a hand through his thick black hair. "I don't want to be with everyone tonight, Lydia. I just want to be with you."

All rational though fled as I tried to digest his words. We'd been friends for three years and he'd never shown a romantic interest...or so I thought.


“Come on,” he said as he grabbed my hand and led me toward my bedroom. “We need to have a discussion in private.

I heard the irritation in his voice more clearly and had to fight the sting of tears. All I wanted was to please him, but more often than not the things I did to make him happy only angered him, if he noticed at all.

“I’m sorry, Jareth.”

 He must have heard something in my voice, because he abruptly stopped and turned back toward me. He looked at my face for a moment before running a fingertip down my cheek. That’s when I realized a couple of tears had slipped out.

“Baby, why are you crying?  I’m not angry with you. I just had a bad day and I was looking forward to an evening alone with you, that’s all.”

“Oh. O-okay.”

I took a deep breath and tried to pull myself together. Suddenly I was in Jareth’s arms and his warm lips were pressed against mine. I sighed into his mouth, which he took as an invitation to explore while I melted against him. We moved backwards and suddenly were in my bedroom and he was blindly shutting the door. I heard the turn of the lock and my knees weakened.

“Jareth,” I whispered breathlessly, trying to convey all of my feelings in his name alone.

“God, Lydia. I want you so bad. If this isn't what you want, you need to tell me now. Once I see you naked I won’t be able to stop.”

I whimpered against his lips as he slipped his hands beneath my t-shirt.

“J-Jareth, your guests…”

“I don’t give a damn about them. If they notice us missing they’ll eventually get the hint and leave.”

He kissed a path down my neck even as he raised my shirt over my shoulders. I felt the loss of his lips as he moved away to remove my shirt. I shivered, but he pulled me back into his arms before the cold could penetrate. His warm skin against mine caught me by surprise and I gasped, shocked that he’d removed his shirt so quickly. He was kissing me again while unbuttoning my jeans. I was holding onto his shoulders for dear life. My knees were too weak to hold me up.

Within heartbeats we were both naked and I was more than a little self-conscious. I wasn't worried so long as he held me against him, but then he lifted and carried me to my bed, placing me gently in the center. When he moved back to admire the view, I immediately tried to cover myself with my hands. He chuckled and took my hands in his, pulling them away slowly as he looked over his prize. The desire in his eyes left me panting and I wanted to pinch myself to be sure it wasn't a dream.

“You’re so fucking beautiful. You have no idea how long I've dreamed of having you like this, exposed for my enjoyment.”

“I-I didn't know.”

He looked into my eyes and gave me a sweet smile I couldn't help but return.

“I know. I’m sorry if I seemed to blow you off, but I swear I've wanted you for a long time.”

Before I could ask him to elaborate, he covered me with his body and all rational thought fled. The sensation of his skin rubbing against mine brought tears to my eyes and I moaned into his mouth as he continued to kiss me. It felt like he kissed me everywhere, leaving my skin tingling from head to toe. My eyes tried to drift shut and I fought to keep them open, not wanting to miss a second of him on top of me. I ran my hands over his broad shoulders and down his biceps, reveling in the strength there. He was everything I’d ever wanted and thought I’d never have. 

“Jareth.” I moaned his name, still trying to convince myself this wasn't a dream. He smiled down at me while pulling one of my legs over his hip.

“Ready, baby? I need you so much, Lydia… I love you.”

I gasped as he slid into me with one smooth thrust. He took over my mouth again before I could respond to his declaration and his gentle thrusts quickened. Before long I was panting and grabbing at him frantically as he gripped my hips for his possession. I wasn't very experienced, but it had never been like this. My climax built like a freight train, with an almost frightening intensity. 

“Jareth, Jareth…” 

I panted his name like a mantra as the wave crested and I experienced the most intense orgasm of my life. Two thrusts later he growled before I felt his warmth flood me. We were both gasping for breath as he leaned on his elbows, his face buried in my neck. He inhale my scent and I rubbed my hands over his back, hugging him to me.

“Oh, that was…”

I was at a loss for words. He chuckled and I felt it reverberate through me.

“Amazing. Glorious. Mind-blowing. Earth shattering. Did I miss any?”

He raised himself up and looked down at me. The smile on his face was perfect. He looked happier than I’d ever seen him.

“I don’t think so,” I replied.

“Me either. Except perfect and unforgettable.”

This time I laughed. “Yeah, those fit too.”

“You are perfect and unforgettable. I’m sorry it’s taken so long for me to realize it.”

I blushed and looked away. “That’s okay. I’m just glad you finally did.”

He nuzzled my neck and sighed in contentment, making me feel warm and cherished. We were still joined intimately and I wrapped my legs around him. I opened my mouth to suggest a shower when someone started banging on my door.

“Jareth! You asshole, are you in there? Bastard! I heard you two in there. Everyone could hear you.”

I cringed at the voice of my nightmares, Pamela, Jareth’s ex-girlfriend. She continued to bang on the door as Jareth sighed and slowly pulled away from me. I wanted to cry, but settled for wrapping my blanket around me and turning to face the wall. I heard him pull on his jeans, but kept my back turned as he went to the door.

“Pamela, what the hell do you want? You aren't even supposed to be here.”

“Of course I am, baby, it’s your birthday. You know I always give you something special on your birthday.”

Jareth snorted and I heard a commotion, but couldn't bring myself to turn and watch. I imagined him following her into the hallway where she would wrap her perfect body around him. He would then shut the door and leave with her as if what happened between us never occurred. I was so convinced that would happen that his next words shocked the hell out of me.

“Hey, Bri, a little help? Thanks. While you’re at it can you tell everyone else the party is over? Thanks, man, I owe you one.”

“Jareth! Jareth, you can’t want to stay with her. I know you want me.”

Pamela’s screams became muffled as my bedroom door closed and Brian’s voice sounded in the hallway. Next I heard the lock turn, telling me Jareth was still in the room. My relief was so great, tears sprang into my eyes and I quickly wiped them away. I heard him walk into my bathroom and turn on the water in the sink. He shut it off and a few seconds later the bed moved.

“Come here, baby. Let me clean my mess.”

His comment startled me and I realized we’d forgotten something really important. I rolled onto my back and looked up at him.

“You didn’t wear a condom.”

He gave me a small smile and simply nodded as he pulled the blanket off of me. After wiping me quite thoroughly, he returned the washcloth to the bathroom. Then he sat on the edge of the bed and looked down into my eyes.

“Lydia, I’m sorry about Pam. It’s been over for almost a year. I don’t even know how that psycho bitch found out about the party.”

I smiled as the tightness in my chest eased. “That’s okay. I’m not worried about her.”

“Good. Now, I have something for you. I know it’s my birthday, but I brought you a present.”

“You did?”

I looked up into his mischievous grin with surprise as he reached into his pocket and brought out a small black box. This time I knew I wouldn't be able to stop my tears as Jareth got down on one knee on the side of the bed. I sat up, suddenly unmindful of my nakedness, and pushed the blankets out of the way to get to him. He opened the box and revealed the most beautiful diamond ring I’d ever seen. It wasn't a huge stone, which I hate, or so small no one would notice. It was absolutely perfect. 

“Lydia Jean Magill, will you do me the great honor of becoming my wife?”

I was already crying so hard I could barely see and my throat was tight with tears. I simply nodded and threw myself into his arms, sobbing like a baby.

“That’s a yes, right?” he asked with a laugh as he held me tight to his chest.

“Y-y-yes…yes, yes.”

He kissed me senseless again and I eventually calmed down enough for him to slide the ring onto my finger. We made love all night long and I finally confessed that I’d always been in love with him. He just smiled and said, “I know, I just had to be sure. You know how I hate surprises.”

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