“What the hell am I doing here?” Marcus asked himself for the millionth time as he sat in his car in front of his first love’s home. The fact that she was here…back in Charlotte..had thrown him for a loop. He’d thought that he would never see her again but now she was here and he was having a hard time not going to her. He couldn’t remember a time when he hadn’t felt that invisible current that pulled them together. It hadn’t been like that with anyone else..not even with his ex-wife. Trying to get over Sanaa, had never worked. As much as he’d tried to..and he’d tried pretty damn hard..it just never happened. Maybe because they had unfinished business perhaps? She’d left him high and dry fifteen years ago..no explanation…no letter…no phone call..just absolutely,positively, nothing. She’d never come back to visit or see him. For years, he’d wondered why she’d left him without any explanation. He still couldn’t figure it out to this day. He sighed. Well he wasn’t going to find out by just sitting here. He opened the door and stepped out of the car. Time to go face his past…He prayed that he would stay cool, calm, and collected but he had a nagging feeling that he wouldn’t.
Sanaa closed the curtain quickly before Mark could see her. She had been watching him for the last ten minutes as he sat in his car and now he was on his way to her door. She tried her best to ignore her racing pulse and the increase in her heart rate. It had been so long since she’d last seen him. What was he like now? Was he the same person she’d always known? She sighed as she thought about what had pulled them apart and made her leave Charlotte. Her father. He’d made her leave as soon as she’d graduated from high school. He’d threatened to cut off her trust fund if she continued seeing Mark. It wasn’t so much the threat of him cutting her off. It was the dangerous glint in her father’s eye that said he would do more to get her to stop seeing Mark and leave Charlotte if he had to. He wasn’t beyond getting violent. She didn’t want Mark hurt so she’d left him and all they’d had together. Her father had never liked Mark but he had never threatened him until that day. Her father was dead now which gave her relief instead of sorrow. He had been a sorry, lonely, and vindictive bastard and she’d wished he had been someone else’s father instead of hers. Her thoughts were interrupted when she heard him knock. Oh God, he’s at the door! Okay,okay, just breathe, girl. Don’t lose it. Taking a deep breath, she crossed the living room floor and opened the door.
She plastered a smile on her face that she hoped didn’t look strained. “Mark, what are you doing here?” Damn, he was sexy as hell. If it was possible to look even better when you were older, then Mark definitely had it pegged. He was taller than her five foot two inches..much taller…His hair was grayed at the temples but the rest was black and it hung at his shoulders. The shirt he had on allowed her an incredible view of his lean, hard body, and his jeans should be outlawed. They weren’t tight on him but she could see the outline of his powerful legs and his round backside. Before, she could catch herself, she groaned. Her eyes flew to his, for a moment she saw desire there but then in a flash it was gone.
He smiled although he wasn’t sure if it was genuine or not. He was all tied up in knots. “It’s good to see you. It’s been a long time, Sanaa.” His gaze traveled over body. She certainly wasn’t the skinny teenager he once knew. Her hips were now shapely and they flowed into a slim and taut waist. Her breasts…he averted his gaze. He didn’t even want to go there right now. He was having a hard time as it was thinking straight and he was so trying not to look at her navel piercing. His gaze came back to her face. She still had the same chocolate-colored eyes and honey golden hair..except now it was cut short and wavy. Hands down, she was still the sexiest woman he’d ever known.
“Yes, it has been a long time, Mark. How have you been?” She cringed at her lame attempt to get the conversation started. Hell,they weren’t distant friends that hadn’t seen each other in a while. It was more than friendship between them.
He studied her. She looked as uncomfortable as he felt. “Truth?”
She nodded. “Yes.”
Here goes nothing. “I have been okay but not the same since you left me and Charlotte without an explanation. I did my damnedest to find you but I always got stonewalled. No one wanted to tell me anything. So, tell me princess, where the hell have you been?” He couldn’t deny he was angry with her..Angry at how she’d left and took his heart with her….Angry at how she’d never tried to contact him or find him. How could she just forget about him so easily when he’d never forgotten her? “You know what, let’s just forget it. I shouldn’t have come here.” He slowly backed out of the door and then turned to go to his car. This was a mistake. A huge mistake. He didn’t get far before he felt her arms slip around his waist and he froze.
“Don’t go, Mark. Please, let’s talk. Okay?”
He felt himself relax in her arms despite the fact that he was angry. She always knew how to get to him. He use to love when she would hold him like this. He sighed and she tightened her hold on him.
“Now, you want to talk? After all these years, Sanaa? Why couldn’t you pick up a phone or something?” Dammit, he sounded like a whiny ass man. Part of him didn’t care because she’d always had him open like this but another part of him wanted to close himself off to these emotions. To not feel hurt.
“I..She trailed off.
“You what, Sanaa?”
“I should have a called or wrote. Year after year passed and it just got harder and harder to pick up the phone. I mean, what could have said that would have made this any easier?”
Hell, if he knew. “I loved you so much, Sanaa. And you just took that away.”
She blew out a breath and blinked back the tears that threatened to fall. “I’m sorry. I still love you, Mark. No matter what you may think of me right now, know that I never stopped.” She placed a kiss on his back through his shirt. It felt good to hold him again even if it was just for a short time.
He sucked in a sharp breath. He might as well have been naked. He’d felt the heat of her lips through his shirt. Damn, he was on dangerous ground here. There was so much he wanted to do and say.
“Mark, will you please look at me?” She pleaded.
Before he could stop himself, he turned in her arms to face her. “Tell me again.” His voice rasped.
“I never stopped loving you. How could I ever do that?” She swallowed and forced herself to continue. “I never wanted to leave you. I was forced to leave by my father. He threatened to take away my trust fund but I still refused to go. Then he sort of used you to make me leave. I didn’t want you hurt so I left to go to D.C. to college and that’s where I have been ever since. I’m so sorry that I hurt you. I thought I was doing what was best. I thought by now, you would have forgotten about me.”
He shook his head. “Never. I can’t believe you left so you could protect me. I know your dad didn’t like me but…wow.”
“Yeah. I know. Do you understand now?”
He nodded. “You should have come to me though. We could have left together. Didn’t you trust me?”
She sighed. “Mark, all I wanted was to protect you. My dad was an insufferable, lonely, vindictive bastard. He didn’t care about me or you. He couldn’t wait until I was eighteen so he could get rid of me. He just used you to get me away from here. I know that now.”
He clenched his jaw. If her dad was still living, he’d pummel the man for what he’d done. He pulled her into a tight hug. “I’m sorry, Sanaa. God, I-
She pulled back and placed a finger on his lips. She shook her head vehemently.”No. Don’t do that. It’s not your fault. Not. Your. Fault.” She repeatedly fiercely.
He nodded and kissed her finger. “I’ve missed you so much.”
She lifted his shirt slightly and slid her hands underneath it. She felt his muscles tense beneath her touch. She should have come back sooner to be with him. She should have fought instead of letting her father control her. She had to stop this. That was the past. They were here together now. Feeling more boldly than she ever had in her entire life, she rose on tiptoe to kiss him. He met her halfway, apparently having the same thoughts as she. His kiss was gentle, exploring the crevices of her mouth and lazily stroking her tongue. Her hands slid up his back and the kiss changed to one of need and hunger. She held on as he devoured her mouth. God, he tasted so good. Moans and pants filled the air. Before she knew it, she was being carried into her house. She held on tight as her body trembled violently. This would be her first time with a man. Sure, she’d dated over the years but never had she felt any man was worth giving up her virginity to except for Mark. She could tell he wasn’t one but it didn’t matter.
Somehow, he managed to find her bedroom. He couldn’t believe he was about to do this. They had planned to have their first sexual encounter graduation night but that had been ripped from them. Now, he would do everything in his power to make tonight special for her. He gently laid her on the bed. He had to fight the urge to rip her clothes off. If she kept looking at him like that he wouldn’t be responsible for his actions. Pulling her to the edge of the bed he removed her shirt and sports bra. Her shorts and panties followed shortly afterwards. For a moment he looked at her…she was so beautiful. Everything he could ever want.
“You’re still dressed, Mark.” She said huskily
He grinned. “That can be remedied.”
She scooted closer to him. “Lift your arms.” She whispered. She pulled his shirt over his head and took in the vision before her. She groaned. His body was hard and lean in all the right places. His arms were bigger than they were in high school. His six-pack was so beautiful, as if it was sculpted just right. She found herself leaning over to kiss it. She heard him hiss at the contact and his hands tunneled through her short hair. She licked and nibbled then circled his navel with her tongue. She slowly unzipped his jeans and pulled them down along with his boxers. Her eyes widened as she saw how big he was. How the hell was he supposed to get that into her? She wondered. She lifted her head and met his gaze. She saw as realization dawned on him that she was indeed a virgin.
“You’ve never been
She shook her head. “Not like this.”
“Why? Don’t get me wrong, I’m honored but what were you waiting for?”
She looked down. Suddenly, she felt embarrassed about being a virgin and the reason she was still one. She began to push him away but he caught hold of her arm and held her still.
“Answer me, sweetheart.”
“I was saving myself for you, okay? I didn’t want anyone else to take away my virginity. There. Now you know.”
He was truly stunned. He looked at her as she tried to avoid making eye contact with him. She was truly remarkable in every way. He put her arms around his neck and lifted her into his arms. He then sat down on the bed with her in his lap. “Are you sure you want to do this? Once, we start, that’s it. I’m not pulling away.”
She nodded. “Yes, I’m sure.”
“Good.” With that, he lowered his head to her breast and flicked his tongue against her nipple. When she moaned, he pulled it in between his lips and sucked.
“Mark” She whispered. She arched her back as he paid attention to her other breast. This was incredible and they were just beginning. When he touch the folds of her vagina, she nearly screamed. He slid a finger inside her and she moved her hips with it. She looked into his eyes and he increased the pace of his finger. Oh, she felt herself spiraling out of control as she undulated her hips. Her eyes closed and her lips parted as she felt herself quivering. She could feel the pressure building and at any moment it would burst. Oh my God, she screamed in her mind.
“Open your eyes for me, baby. Let me see you come.” He put pressure on her sensitive nub and she screamed. He watched the wonder that came across her face. She was like a kid that had gotten her first taste of candy. He felt her clinch around his fingers several times. He gave her a moment to calm down.
“Wow.” She said once she could catch her breath.
He smiled. “Yeah, well we aren’t finished yet.”
She put her arms around his neck and drew him closer. “Cocky, aren’t we?” She teased.
If he could stare into those chocolate-colored eyes for the rest of his life, he would be a happy man. Where had that come from? He wondered. “No. I call it confidence.” He lifted her again and placed her on her back on the bed. “This might hurt a little but I will do my best to make it hurt as little as possible, okay?”
She palmed his cheek. “I trust you, Mark.”
He nodded. He lifted her right leg and inched his way inside her, giving her time to just adjust to his size. Her eyes widened as he continued and he thought she might tell him to stop but she kept urging him on. God, she felt so good. By sheer force, he stopped himself from plunging into her but it wasn’t easy at all. When he felt the barrier, the one that would break once he thrust inside her, he kissed her deeply. The first thrust broke the barrier and he felt her stiffen beneath him and then relax. He moved slowly until she got use to the rhythm. Damn, she was a fast learner. She clenched him tightly and then let go, only to do it all over again. Then she wrapped her legs around his waist and titled her hips. Her moans of ecstasy were driving him crazy and before he knew it his thrusts became uninhibited and he was coming. Shit. He held on to her hips and continue to plunge into her wetness until he heard her scream and knew she’d gotten hers too. He rolled to the side and pulled her on top of him. For a while, their harsh breathing filled the air.
She laid her head on his chest. “I love you.”
His hand trailed down her back and he let it rest on her hip. “Love me enough to marry me, Sanaa?”
She raised her head. “Weren’t you married before?”
“And just how do you know that?”
She blushed. “I kind of kept up with what you were doing all these years.”
He drew her close until their faces were inches apart. “How?”
His thumb trailed across her lip. “She wasn’t you. It was a mistake. We divorced less than six months into the marriage. We both knew we’d married for the wrong reasons. So, are you going to answer my question?”
“We don’t know anything about each other anymore.”
“I know enough. But we don’t have to get married tomorrow.”
God, he is such a sweetheart, she thought. How could she not want to be his wife? She didn’t need to think about it anymore. “Okay. Yes, I will marry you on one condition?”
He smiled. ” And what’s that?”
She placed a soft kiss on his lips. “That we don’t get divorced. Love me even though sometimes I may want to do bodily harm to you for being cocky.”
He laughed. “Confidence.”
She smiled. “Whatever. Do we have a deal?”
“Oh yeah, we have a deal.” He rolled her beneath him.
“I love you, Mark.” She said softly as she gazed into his eyes.
“Sweetheart, I love you too.” He kissed her deeply. No more words were needed. He showed her just how much she had mended his broken heart.