“Dance or drink? Your call.” She tilted her head first toward her table, which was a few steps in one direction, and then the dance floor, which was about the same distance in the other direction. “We’ll keep you busy so no one bothers you.”
She was right. Everyone had gone back to their conversations, the brief interlude where he’d stood in the local spotlight had passed. Not unlike his career.
“Dance,” he said quickly. Not interested in being social just yet.
Or maybe he just really wanted to hold Mia in his arms and find out if his memory was as good as he feared it was.
The song changed as they approached the dance floor, and he spun her into his arms to the beat of the music. One hand clasped hers close to his heart, the other pressed against the small of her back. She smelled like suntan lotion and sandalwood.
The scent spun him back a decade, to a crowded riverbank surrounded by his friends and classmates. Back then, she’d been the one to take him in her arms, probably spurred on by the Booze he could taste on her lips when she’d kissed him.
Really kissed him, not those stage kisses their characters had shared.
She’d fit in his arms, but not in his plans. He was already packed and ready to go. And he knew Mia wasn’t just looking for a grad night good time.
So he’d let her down, as quickly and as nicely as he could manage, even though every cell in his body had urged him to take her up on her offer.
He’d tried to be a gentleman. But rejecting her in front of everyone hadn’t been his best move ever. He could still recall the stricken look on her face, and the way she’d fled as the whole crowd watched.
“Been a while?”
Her question, murmured right in his ear, snapped him back to the present. “Excuse me?”
She pushed at his shoulder with her hand, grinning up at him. “Usually, when people dance, they move a little. Or maybe this is some Hollywood trend?”
He realized with a start that they were just standing there in the middle of the tiny dance floor. Grimacing, he started to move. “Sorry. Lost in thought.”
“It’s okay.” She was quiet for a while, her face contemplative. “So you really hate that catchphrase, don’t you?”
He sighed. “That obvious, huh?”
“Why do you think I activated my damsel-in-shining-armor routine?”
“Thanks for that, by the way.” He turned her around to the beat of the music. “I didn’t always hate it. The catchphrase, I mean.”
“I did,” she said simply, which made him laugh.
“Oh, you did, huh? No love for the worst pun of all time?”
She wrinkled her nose, which just made her look more adorable. “Your character was so much more than a punch line, but that turned Hugh into a walking joke. I thought you deserved more.”
Reflexively, he pulled her closer. A surge of fondness swept through him. “Thank you,” he said.
Then he noticed her breasts were brushing his chest and his thigh pressed between her legs, and something other than fondness gripped him.
God, she felt good in his arms.
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