by Katrina McDonnell

A little gasp escaped her lips as her spine hit the wall. His hands sliding up her thighs refocused her attention. "We should've just worn bathrobes to dinner."

"You should"--his words vibrated against her throat--"always dress up for your birthday."

"You just want to undress me."

"Don't know what gave you that idea," he mumbled.

With her skirt bunched up around her waist and his hand searching along the side seam of the bodice, she knew she'd have to derail--just a little--his planned course of action. But not yet. Not when the fingers of his other hand were slipping between her panties and skin.

His brain mustn't have been hazy enough and all movement stopped. "No zipper."

"Goes over my head." And she cursed herself for not sticking with her first choice of evening gown.

After moving his hands to rest on the wall either side of her, he pushed himself back two steps and frowned. "I'll let you take it off."

"Probably a good idea." She didn't earn enough to lose another designer dress to fumblings compounded by their differences in height. And why was it always easier to get a dress on than off. "Toby"--her voice was muffled--"help, please."

"You sure?"

"Do you want sex tonight?"

"Will there still be sex if something happens to the dress?"

She would've kicked him except for the fact she'd most likely fall over. "Toby!"

Two tugs freed her.

"Don't drop it on the floor." She took it from him, folding the dress and draping it over the top of the couch.

He followed her, one step behind, his fingers unhooking her bra and then her garter belt, before pushing her panties down to pool around her ankles.

Stumbling, she tried to help with the garter belt and stockings, but he pulled her hands away, rehooked the garter belt, and whispered, "Leave them and the heels on."

"Anyone'd think you had a kink." A moan as his fingertips stroked her inner thighs.

"Please try not to rhyme again."

Laughing, she twisted around to face him. It was time for her to make him moan.

"Leave the tux on," she commanded, her fingers surrounding him.

"You paying for the dry cleaning?"

"It's a kink of mine."

"And I thought--I knew them--all." His voice hitched on each stroke.

"Not even close. But you do know how to shut me up."


He'd inscribed the first sentence of the Constitution on the back of her hand during their second meeting.

And in the years since she'd never been able to bring herself to ask if she was his only notebook.

Her hand tangled in the curls at the back of his neck as she enjoyed the familiar strokings of his fingertip across her skin. "What's it about?"

His focus didn't stray from the area just below her breasts. "You."

Running her foot over his calf, she used the tone she knew he could never deny, "Read it to me."

"To me, fair friend, you never can be old; For as you were when first your eye I eyed, Such seems your beauty still."

She bit her lip, unsure how to react. Until he looked up at her. With a small grin and her voice trembling slightly, she asked, "So, I'm your friend?"

He tilted his head and pursed his lips. "Possibly."

Her hand slid from his hair to his cheek. "Come here." And she whispered, "Thank you," against his mouth.


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