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Chapter 11 – The One

Cheyanne sniffled hard as she stumbled through the darkness of the woods, persistent in her decision to get as far away from the cabin as she could. She was furious with Kevin and Austin for being so disastrously inebriated, knowing the damage it could cause. But she was more furious with herself than anything. The vicious thoughts she had about her child. It frightened her. She wasn’t fit to be a mother nor was she fit to get herself bothered into a relationship with Howie. What would he do when she started showing? It was a horror waiting to happen, so it was best not to press matters. She should be in a reflective mood anyway, almost like a nun, repenting her sins. Sniffling harder as she wiped away her tears with a baggy sleeve of her shirt, she glanced up to see the moonlight scattering amongst the trees. She was already used to the woodland area, not bothered with being alone in the dark. Instead, she pressed the ear-buds closer to her ears while tucking the small MP3 player into the back pocket of her faded and torn jeans. Attempting to soothe her soul, she hit the button for the radio station – 99.3. She always enjoyed the DJ at night. His voice calm and soothing. She hoped that would settle the sickness raging inside her.

The song playing faded out, and the DJ spoke in his gentle tones. "We have a very urgent dedication. It seems there is this very sweet girl who listens to us religiously, y'all. And this sweet girl has captured the heart of this guy, who seems to me to be pretty much head over heels in love with her. He doesn't know everything about her, doesn't know what's caused the hurt he sees in her 'beautiful blue eyes'-- his words--but he wants to be the person to make her shine again. Here's Gary Allan's The One, going out to Cheyanne, with love from Howie."

Cheyanne stumbled over quite a large stone when she heard her name over the broadcasted station, causing her to wince as she reached to hold steady to a tree. She stamped her right foot repeatedly in her scuffed sneakers, trying to rid herself of the cramping ache. But, her pain dissipated as the sweet melody of Gary Allan’s song began to play in her ears and the DJ’s words formed concrete images within her mind. Howie had remembered the exact radio station she always listened to and dedicated a song to her. But, not just any song, a country song. He had been listening whole-heartedly to her since the beginning. Slowly, she stopped any movements she was making, leaning back against the large tree for support. Wrapping her arms around herself protectively, she felt sweet tears well into her eyes as she made sense of the lyrics.

No rush though I need your touch
I won't rush your heart
Until you feel on solid ground
Until your strength is found, girl

Standing a few paces behind her, Howie stopped on the trail, his hands in his pockets as he watched her lean against a tree, felt his heart in his throat. Was the song playing? Were he closer to her, without the incessant chirping of the crickets and the distant hooting of owls, he'd be able to hear what song she listened to so intently. The moon shone down on her, and he felt his heart do a double take when he saw the sheen of tears on her cheeks. They had to be playing the song now. The dedication had been an impulse, but it was the only way he could think of calming her down, perhaps opening her heart to him more. Kevin had played the song on the long car ride from the airport, and it had stuck with him. He'd thought then that it would be the perfect song for such an occasion. He hadn't expected then to meet such a wonderful woman as Cheyanne, though, and had assumed he would never be blessed with such an opportunity.

I'll fill those canyons in your soul
Like a river lead you home
And I'll walk a step behind
In the shadows so you shine
Just ask it will be done
And I will prove my love
Until you're sure that I'm the one

Feebly, Cheyanne reached with the cuff of her sleeve to continue to wipe away the tears that continued to race down her cheeks despite her efforts. She sniffled hard as a hiccup rose against her throat, making an uncomfortable pairing with the sob caught in the same place. She just wished that Howie hadn’t been so golden. He was making things so complicated for her. At first she had just thought this vacation would be simple and hopefully at some point she could confess her sins to Austin. But, Howie had stopped any chance of that happening, having her entire heart aching just to be near him. But she didn’t think he’d ever understand. After all, he still thought she was a virgin. She could be sneaky and blame the pregnancy on him after seducing his lustful thoughts. But she was better than that and she loved him more than that. She couldn’t betray him so. It would just be easier to say no. To say that he had to leave her alone. But the more she listened to the music, the harder she seemed to cry. She had no idea that Howie was lurking in the shadows, far too caught within the lyrics to think about such things.

Somebody else was here before
He treated you unkind
And broken wings need time to heal
Before a heart can fly, girl

Gazing at her, Howie moved closer, longing to touch her, to assure her he meant every damn word in the song. He wanted to tell her that his arms would always be there to hold her, that he would protect her from every hurt the world could send her way. Stopping just behind her, he closed his eyes, able to hear the song slightly now. Taking a deep breath, he whispered her name. "I love you," he murmured, sure she wouldn't be able to hear him, but knowing it needed to be said.

Trust in me and you'll find a heart so true
All I want to do is give the best of me to you
And stand beside you
Just ask it will be done
And I will prove my love
Until you're sure that I'm the one.

Cheyanne shook her head in sheer disbelief as the song ended, holding a sleeved hand to her mouth to keep the sob from breaking against the hiccups. Her mind already decided. She needed a chance to love him, because he needed her. He had confessed his darkest thoughts to her just mere hours before. She couldn’t leave him now. Not when he laid his entire heart open for her to see. Besides, she felt her entire body ache for Howie, knowing she couldn’t deny him after such a beautiful dedication. All his heart and soul had been pushed into that song. She could feel him within that song and taste the sweetness of his lips. Exhaling a shaky breath, she yanked the earbuds from her ears and tucked them in her back pocket, turning in order to rush back to the cabin. But, gasped softly when she found herself looking into his dark chocolate eyes. “Howie…”

"Did you get the message?" he questioned softly, lifting his hand to caress her cheek. Brushing her tears away with his thumb, he smiled slightly. She had, he could tell. "Just so you know, Honey, you'll never be rid of me. I'm afraid you're stuck with me forever." Her sweet smile made his heart soar, and he stepped closer, cupping her face gently in his hands. "I love you, Chey," he whispered, covering her lips with his.

Trust in me and you'll find a heart so true
All I want to do is give the best of me to you
And stand beside you


Kevin grumbled with a thick string of expletives as he tried to balance himself to pull off his pants, only succeeding in falling backward onto his bed. He jostled slightly with the springiness of the mattress, attempting to lie still now so the room would stop spinning. Taking so many beers, so quickly, on an empty stomach had been a grave mistake. He could only imagine the hard headache he would wake up to the next morning. Not to mention Howie had sobered him severely when he exploded into a hurricane of emotion and disbelief. He knew, in passing, that he had reacted foolishly with Cheyanne, but he would not apologize for what he said to Austin. He had been right, despite his foolishness. He had given Austin no reason to think that she wasn’t the only one in his life. Kristin was nonexistent beyond this point. He loved Austin like no other. And what was so wrong with having a bit of passion in their words? They didn’t always fight with one another. Did they? Kevin had only thought their fighting had fueled the passion they had for one another. Or, at least, that’s what he told himself as he slowly attempted to slide his pants off while lying on his bed, having no bravery to attempt to stand again.

The door banged open noisily, slamming almost immediately. Groaning, Kevin lifted his head to see Austin standing there, looking about as bad as he felt, wearing his Kentucky t-shirt and a pair of leggings. Her hair was pulled back into a loose knot, her arms folded over her chest, her brown eyes locked on him. At least, he supposed they were locked on him. The fuzziness in his brain clouded his sight as well, though he was damn sure he saw a hardened nipple pressed against the gray fabric of the t-shirt. "What do you want?" he asked blandly, flopping his head back.

“I want to talk to you.”

“Like that isn’t par for course.” Kevin scowled.

“Look, you son--”

“Hey! You came in my room, remember? Stop bitching at me!”

“You almost hurt my best friend!”

“Like you weren’t cock-blocking her from the fucking start--” Kevin gasped sharply when he felt his pants suddenly get yanked from his legs, causing him to fall on the hard wooden floor with a sharp slap to his backside. But worse was the jostle of his already throbbing head. “Fuck it all, Austin!”

"When will you get into that thick, stubborn head of yours that I was trying to protect her? Do you realize the shit she's been through? Her last boyfriend was the King of all assholes, Kevin. He even bypassed you with his pigheadedness. She had to put up with roaming hands and belittling remarks because she was a virgin." Swaying on her feet, Austin staggered, unable to catch herself before falling into his lap. "And I worry about her. She's the greatest thing that's ever happened to me, besides you, and I'll do my damnedest to make sure she's not hurt. Just like I'd do anything to keep you from getting hurt as well," she admitted, her words slurring slightly. Looking into his eyes, she opened her mouth to speak, only able to release a hiccup.

“The best thing that’s ever happened to you? Keep me from getting hurt?” Kevin repeated with a sharp snort, instantly regretting that decision as his head throbbed. But, he ignored that quality, pushing Austin toward his side and off his lap, reaching to hold his spinning head within his large hands. He couldn’t take this tonight. It was too much. Because he wasn’t going to play this game anymore. He didn’t want another Kristin in his life. He was tired of being used. “I’m your manwhore, remember, Princess?”

Stunned, Austin pulled her wobbly knees to her chest. "That was your word, not mine. I shouldn't have said what I did, but… Damnit, Kevin, you're the only man who has the ability of making me want to smack the hell out of you and kiss you at the same time. And you never gave me any ini--indi--incda--whatever the fuck the word is--that you wanted more from me than sex. Every time I've been in your room, you've just rolled over like you were through with me. Sure, sure, you asked me to stay, but the tone of your voice… I didn't feel very welcome, after I had finished." Sighing, she rested her forehead on her knees. "How the Hell did this get so fucked up?"

“I wanted more from you than just sex since the first time you flipped me on my ass,” Kevin confided softly, reaching with a shaking hand to run his fingers through her loosely tied locks. He then slowly let his hand drop, tenderly rubbing the back of her neck. “You just never gave me the chance to get to your heart. You always blocked me before I even had the chance. And, I figure… Despite the throbbing headache… That some guy really burned you in the past. But, damnit, Princess, I’m not him. I’m not.”

"He more than burned me, Kevin. He almost fucking killed me." Austin relaxed under his touch, moving closer to his warmth. Through the alcohol induced haze in her mind, she thought of Steven. "And I know you're not him. I… I'd really rather not talk about him right now. It's late, I can barely see straight, and I need to go to my bed and sleep for the next couple of days." Glancing up at him, she blinked back her tears. "Unless you want me to stay."

Kevin nodded slightly as he moved to wrap his arm around her hunched shoulders. She really didn’t have to go into details about her past lover. He was smart enough to pick up the subtle cues in her tones. She had been in a violently abusive relationship, which made sense considering some of the reactions she had to his temper. Not to mention how she and Cheyanne reacted when he accidentally knocked her down that evening. He suddenly felt a strong desire to find the man and beat the living Hell out of him. To think that someone would even touch Austin out of anger was disgusting. He wanted to kill him, but exhaling softly, he moved to place a gentle kiss on her forehead. “I’d like you to stay, but I can’t take you leaving in the middle of the night. I don’t want that anymore, Austin. It has to be all or nothing.”

Nodding, Austin placed a shaky hand on his chest. "I'll give you all," she whispered, resting her head in the crook of his shoulder. Unable to resist the warmth of his body, she slipped back into his lap, needing to feel him. The fact he hadn't pressed her for information comforted her, as she wasn't quite ready to delve into the dark moments of her history. "But… only if you'll give me all, too."

“Princess, I think I’m way too drunk to read into your words…” Kevin murmured with a light grin, his body adjusting to her weight as well as quickly responding to the warmth of her lower half. As if he were some hormonal teenager, his manhood instantly hardened to her, causing her eyes to widen in wonder.

"I'm drunker," she informed him with a smirk, sliding her hands to his neck. "After all, I totally had more than you. And you said I couldn't out drink you," she added with a soft giggle, squirming against his erection. "So you owe me."

“I believe the payment plan has sprung up…” Kevin trailed with a hard grunt, grasping her hips to lift her. The added pressure she was adding to his lap was making it quite difficult to concentrate.

"Can I draw out my payments over time?" she asked coyly, lightly scraping his neck with her fingers as she leaned close for a quick kiss. "I think, Pretty Boy, I'm getting addicted to you." Skimming her hands down his chest, she shivered when his muscles tensed. "Just… can we move our drunk asses to the bed? I mean, floor sex is great, but I have no intention of throwing your back out tonight," she teased before sucking on his bottom lip.

“Are you trying to say I’m too old for you?” Kevin grunted as she drew him into a standing position. Both swayed considerably given their states of drunken stupors, but Austin fixed the problem by pushing Kevin back onto the bed. He hit the softness in surprise, but moved to cover her as she fell, not wanting to be on the bottom any longer.

"Age is just a number," she informed him, her legs moving to cradle his body, drawing him close. "Unless you're fifty or something. That would be a little weird, considering my dad is in his fifties, and then I would be--"

“Your rambling isn’t cute when you’re drunk,” Kevin informed her, leaning down to capture her mouth against his in hopes to smother her incessant noise. She muffled some words at first, but slowly complied, eagerly matching his powerful tongue against hers. Noises erupted from the pit of her throat as Kevin tormented and teased, never realizing that his boxer-briefs were now completely removed by her skilled hands. Glancing down for a moment when she giggled, he rolled his eyes as he moved to undress her between the skilled kisses. “I care about you so much, Princess.”

"I care about you, Kevin." Austin nibbled at his bottom lip, her legs tangling with his as she moved one hand to grasp him. "So much it scares me," she whispered, her soft moans increasing as he cupped her breast. The sensation overwhelmed her suddenly, causing her to tremble beneath him, her mouth opening to his gently insistent tongue.

“I’ll be there to hold you through the fears,” Kevin promised softly, curling his free arm around her as she gently lead him to her opening point. Unlike their other encounters, this was soft and dedicated solely to arousing one another’s ecstasies through emotional sensations. It wasn’t based on who made the other cry out first, but coming together as one collected being. Kevin could actually feel the tears in his eyes as he moved against her, holding her as close as possible to his body while he tenderly caressed her breast. He made sure to find her mouth with his, closing his eyes as he offered such soft kisses that they felt like whispers of words.

This was what she'd been longing for, Austin realized as she wrapped herself around him, returning his delicate kisses. The pounding of his heartbeat next to her caused her to draw in a breath, wanting to memorize each sensation. "Kevin," she whispered, feeling the tensing of the muscles on his back. Smoothing her hands over them, she whispered his name again, loving the sound of his name on her lips. "God… Kevin, I love you," she murmured, burying her face in the warm curve of his neck.

Kevin smiled at her confession, immediately planting several kisses to the side of her face. “I love you, too, Austin. So much.”


Humming softly, Cheyanne snuggled closer to Howie, her hum turning to a soft sigh as his hand splayed over her back, lightly caressing her with his warm fingers. "I'll be humming that song forever," she mused with a sweet smile, tracing his cheek with her finger. Knowing that each time she hummed the song, she would think of him.

“We can do a duet, then,” Howie decided, reaching with his opposite hand to catch the finger against his cheek, bringing it to his lips for a tender kiss. He found it truly remarkable that the music that had doomed him into loneliness had also been the same to send him into salvation. Without the song, Howie would have been lost as to how to find Cheyanne amongst her dark thoughts. But, he had trusted his instincts, and now they were lying peacefully in his bed, just listening to 99.3 on the radio at his bedside. Both had kicked off their shoes, deciding just to cuddle before getting ready for bed. They had taken a long walk after he admitted to loving her, simply silently exploring each others emotions as they walked.

“Only if you think your voice could be as good as mine,” Cheyanne teased, squirming slightly as she reached for her feet, antsy to get her socks off her feet. When she wasn’t wearing her sneakers or her favorite cowboy boots, she was always barefoot.

"I'm sure I could pass." Chuckling, Howie watched her, reluctantly slipping away to undress, hurrying as he did, wanting to have her body next to his again. Forever. Smiling at the thought, he turned to look at her, slightly taken aback to see she was sitting up in the bed, staring at him. She held one knee to her chest, her gaily-painted toes wiggling against his sheet in a silent invitation. Tilting her head to one side, she gave him a sweet smile.

“It was a nice show,” she explained with a cute shrug of her shoulders, unable to hide the sweet smile that was naturally turning into an impish grin. She had first thought about looking away, completely oblivious to the fact he was undressing till she managed to pull off her socks. But, when she glanced up, she truly couldn’t help herself. His body was absolutely amazing. Trim, fit, and sculpted with a sleek musculature that would always keep her warm during the coldest, scariest nights. She loved him so much and he enticed her sexual fantasies unbeknownst to him.

Smirking, Howie crawled back into bed, pulling her down into his arms. Tickling her lightly, he nuzzled her neck. "You're wearing far too many clothes now, Honey," he murmured, smoothing his hands over her stomach. Breathing in her scent, he held her close, still amazed he had such a wonderful woman in his life.

"Howie!" Cheyanne squealed, wriggling away from him. "I am extremely ticklish! Stop!" she cried as his fingers continued their trek over her body. Each touch sent a shiver down her spine, completely unrelated to being ticklish. Gasping for breath, she turned to face him, covering his lips with hers unexpectedly.

Howie’s lips curved into a playful smile between the kisses, unable to deny how truly good it felt to be connected to someone again. To someone who seemed to fit so perfectly into his soul. And, because of his passion for her, he could hardly contain himself, working steady kisses against her mouth, listening to her giggle slightly as his tongue played at the corner of her mouth before seeking entrance to dance with hers. Soon, he was surprised to find that her giggles were turning into the softest of whimpers, seeming to beg for more. The whimpers fueled the heat pooling in his lower half, enticing his hands to softly roam down to her ripped and tattered jeans, easing them off her hips.

“I love you, Howie,” Cheyanne confessed softly as he allowed her a breath, moving his kisses to the side of her neck. She could feel his hands against her bare legs as he carelessly tossed her jeans toward the floor. She took several gulps of air then, tensing with delight as Howie guided his hands upward from her toes to the outside curve of her hips. His trail seemed to leave a burning map against her soft, prickled flesh. She bit down hard on her bottom lip, allowing her sapphire eyes to flutter open in hopes to catch a mere flicker of his dark chocolate eyes. She needed him to know truly. “I love you so much.”

"I love you too, Cheyanne," he murmured, meeting her eyes with his. One hand slid to cup her face, his thumb tracing her lips lightly. The desire he felt for her was so strong he could barely think straight, but he needed her to know his feelings. Fumbling for the words, he looked into her eyes for a long moment, still unable to believe she was his. "Welcome to my heart," he whispered before kissing her again.

The sweetness of his words touched her heart in a way that she would never be able to explain fully, but she was convinced that she could at least show him her gratitude. Show him how much she wanted to be loved by him. How much she just wanted to love him. Making love had never really seemed like something attainable in her life, especially when Noah just took her virginity as if it were a piece of candy. But, the taste of Howie’s sweetness and his words convinced her otherwise, causing her body to physically cry out for his touch. She had never felt such a hard fluttering sensation in her stomach before. As if every butterfly she had collected over the years was taking flight at the same time. And, when Howie pulled back suddenly to look at her, she gasped softly at the sudden chill it provided, though she heated just as quickly when she watched Howie’s eyes rake over her still clothed body. But, when his eyes lingered at her bikini briefs, she blushed. Austin had gotten her a set that read RN – Real Naughty for graduation. “Welcome to my underwear?” she stated with obvious question, hoping to be cute.

"You think you're cute, don't you," Howie stated, running his finger along the line of skin showing below the hem of her shirt. Feeling her shiver, he eased her shirt up, caressing each bit of skin as it was exposed. Lowering his head, he traced her skin with his lips as she sat up, allowing him to pull the shirt over her head. Dropping his lips to her shoulder, he gave her a winsome smile. "You? Naughty? I don't believe it. Not my sweet little Cheyanne," he murmured, sliding his hands up her sides, moving them forward to cup her breasts. His boxers were painfully tight, his heart racing at each stage of their foreplay, but he had to make sure she wanted to continue before he went any further. "Chey…"

“It’s okay,” she promised with a sharp gasp, still not prepared for the feverish sensations exploding inside her body with every move Howie made. She was in a haze of ecstasy, willingly falling into Howie’s arms despite the pains she felt. She just wanted to let him love her, so she could forget her troubles for just a few moments. Just so she could feel complete for once. She had never made love in her life and she didn’t know what to expect. When Noah left her, she had been bleeding and sobbing. She feared the implications of this night, but knew she couldn’t possibly deny Howie the pleasure. Nor could she deny the pleasure of having Howie. She trusted him more than she had trusted any man in her life. Biting on her bottom lip, she leaned forward to take Howie’s bottom lip into her mouth for a promising kiss. “I really want this. I really want you. Just you and only you. Please?”

Please. The word sent a shiver through him, making him long for her even more. No one had ever said the things she was saying. Then again, no one ever meant so much to him. Sliding his hands up, he guided the straps of her bra over her shoulders, quickly unclasping it and removing it, biting back a moan when her breasts were free. One hand slid to her neck in a gentle caress, the other straying to touch her breast. Cheyanne gasped, pulling him down for a kiss, arching her body next to his as her legs spread to cradle him. "Chey," he whispered against her lips.

“I love you,” she promised again and again as their lips broke, her arms reaching around him to caress the taunt muscles of his back. She shivered again when his lips move against her jaw, to nibble on her earlobe, back along her neck, down the center of her throat, and the rest of the kisses remained within the valley between her breasts. She could hardly control her breathing as her hands entangled within his short, dark locks, the passion consuming her taking her to the brink of madness. She bit down hard on her bottom lip, feeling his hardness growing between their layers of underwear, releasing the softest, most arousing moan Howie had ever heard.

Feeling her hands on the waistband of his boxers, Howie moaned softly, gulping nervously when her fingers slid inside. Dear God. He was certain he would explode if she-- "Chey," he gasped when he felt her warm hands on his rear.

“I got excited,” she attempted to explain sweetly as Howie pulled away slightly to catch her shimmering sapphire eyes. Slowly, her hands traced up from his backside to his back, then down his chest. She then smiled quite triumphantly as she held his boxers in her hands, almost as if it were some kind of victory. The smiles and laughs made it easier for her to let go of her past, knowing Howie would be gentle and loving.

"I've been excited," he admitted with a smile as his erection rested against her stomach. Cheyanne's mouth opened in a surprise 'o,' but was quickly replaced with a pleased smile. Tossing his boxers aside, she wriggled closer to him, wantonly hooking one leg over his hip. Did she have any idea that each move drove him crazy with desire? Covering her lips with his, he kissed her hungrily, his hands moving to the waistband of her briefs. In one fluid motion he removed them, heard her soft whimper as his arousal pressed against her. Sensibility set in, and he leaned back slightly. "Chey… I… I need something."

Cheyanne studied his worrisome face with confusion, watching him blush with obvious embarrassment. But she didn’t truly understand what he was talking about as her blonde brows furrowed in attempts to clarify the meaning of his words in her head. She could only fidget slightly, antsy to feel him inside her as the heat of his arousal pressed against her inner thigh, waiting quite impatiently for its permission to enter. Then, through some spot of clarity in her hazy world of passion, she realized what he meant and shrank back with disappointment. At first she wanted to tell him not to worry. That there was no way he could even possibly get her pregnant, because she was already with child. But, instead, she moistened her bottom lip with anxiousness, not wanting to push him. “Oh…”

Mind racing for possibilities, Howie could think of only one likely solution. Hating to leave her, he pulled the covers over her naked form. "Wait right here, Honey," he murmured, pressing soft kisses along her neck in hopes they would be enough to tide her over until his return. "I love you, and I'll be right back." Slipping his boxers on, he slid from the bed, praying fervently that Kevin would be sober enough to comprehend what he needed.

Uncomfortably, Cheyanne pulled the covers Howie had used tighter around her nude body. She felt her body strongly ache for Howie to return as she leaned back on the pillows, clasping her hands over her flat abdomen. She couldn’t help but think that possibly this might be her punishment for not telling Howie the truth. There had been the perfect opportunity, yet, she concealed the truth, making him dash for some protection that he didn’t even have to worry about. Bowing her head, she just looked at the sleekness of her tummy underneath the sheets, wondering what she’d look like as it grew. Wondering if she’d have Howie around anyway…

The door opened to admit Howie, grasping something in his hand. Shutting and locking the door behind him, he leaned against it, gazing at the sweet innocence laying in wait for him. Nothing like… Shaking his head to clear the images he'd just witnessed from his mind. Smiling triumphantly, he rejoined Cheyanne in the bed, sliding under the covers next to her. "Where were we?" he whispered, sliding one hand under the pillow, the other returning to her breast.

“We were close…” Cheyanne answered softly, leaning back as Howie leaned toward her. Only, he didn’t really seem to notice her hesitation, beckoning her close with his sweet cinnamon breath carrying her name. Slowly, she cleared away her pessimistic attitude, framing his face with her hands. Leaning, she worked soft kisses against his lips before slowly teasing his tongue with her own, knowing that she finally deserved to be loved by a man. That she deserved to be happy. Even if this was the last moment of happiness in her life. It would be well spent.

She heard the soft crinkle under the pillow, and, blushing, looked away as he reached between them. His hand landed on her inner thigh, stroking her gently, making her shiver and moan in anticipation. His arousal was there, pressing against her, and she held her breath, looking into his eyes as his hands slid to her hips.

“I love you, Cheyanne,” Howie promised softly, hesitating just at her opening as he steadied both of them. He noticed the flakes of worry crossing over her deep sapphire eyes, which caused him to slow considerably. He took several deep breaths, gently massaging her hips underneath his hold. He had to make sure she knew the depth of his adoration for her was far beyond any need for a physical connection. They could wait if she wanted. He would wait forever for her. No matter what.

“I love you, too,” Cheyanne agreed, reaching to wrap her arms around his neck. Drawing his body closer, Cheyanne helped Howie ease into her tight womanhood. It was a slow process and Howie waited patiently once he was fully engulfed. She whimpered slightly with pain at the sharp sensation of herself adjusting to his thickness, burying her face against the crook of his neck so tears wouldn’t break. “…Please be careful…”

"Always…" Howie knew he would always be careful with her. He couldn't imagine anything in the entire world that would feel greater to him than making love with his Cheyanne. The sensations rushing through him were almost overwhelming, and he had to hold onto her for a long moment, fighting to calm his racing heart. "Chey… Honey…" He needed her permission to continue. He had to be sure she was ready, he didn't want to cause her anymore pain than he already had.

“O-Okay,” Cheyanne whispered against his shoulder, softly kissing his warm flesh as she rubbed her hand against his back. She took several deep breaths as Howie laid her against the soft pillows of his bed, making sure she was completely comfortable. When their eyes met, she nodded for confirmation. “I’m okay. I promise.”

Sliding his hands to her knees, he gently pulled her legs around him, laying his entire body against hers as he began his slow, gentle thrusts. Her hands moved over his back, a soft moan escaping her as she did so. He could feel her slowly begin to relax, could tell by the way her lips traveled his neck that she-- "Chey," he growled when she nibbled on his earlobe.

God, Howie, please,” she breathed with disbelief against his ear, unable to hide the delighted smile as she accompanied his movements. It felt like large waves of ecstasy were washing over her body with Howie’s tender movements. Soft whimpers and moans mixed within her labored breathing, locking her arms around the back of his neck. Ducking her head, she moved her kisses back to his neck before nibbling hungrily at his throat, dipping even further to place her kisses on his chest, where his heart was pounding.

“Damn Honey,” Howie choked in shock as he glanced down at his lover, unable to explain the overwhelming tide of emotions that had crashed against his soul when she kissed his heart. It was a simple kiss. Just the brush of her lips. But the implications meant so much more. Especially as he brought himself closer to nibble on her neck, the process of his thrusts picking up as the heat began to accumulate between them into molten lava. He smiled as her whimpers grew just a tinge louder, telling him that she was getting closer to her explosion of fervor. “I’m going to keep you forever.”

“As long as you love me like this all the time,” she cried softly with pleasure, her impish streak finally beginning to peek as her arms tightened around his neck and her legs around his waist. She pulled him as close as she possibly could to her, rotating her hips to enhance the pleasures of the moment. Her body was screaming for release, but she wanted to prolong the sensations. To never let the moment stop.

"That's one promise I never intend to break," he breathed, dipping his head. Flicking his tongue over a collarbone moist with perspiration, he thrust deeply into her, crying out at the sensations. He wanted to scream, to laugh, to cry, so deliriously happy he could barely believe it. Closing his eyes, he moved his hands to her shoulders, wanting to feel as much of her body against his as humanly possible.

“Howie…” Cheyanne whimpered hard, repeating his name incessantly as the wall building against her climax started to quickly crumble. She accidentally bit her nails into his back in attempts to pull him closer, wincing when he cried out slightly with pain. Releasing his back, she reached to cup his face as they continued to move against one another, whimpering when she caught his bottom lip with her mouth. She suckled on it gently before bringing her lips up to kiss him passionately. To apologize. “I’m sorry, Howie… I’m so close…”

"I am too, Chey. So close… Don't hold it in, Sweetheart…" Tangling his fingers lightly in her soft curls, he held her mouth next to his. "Cheyanne…"

“I love you, I promise, with everything that’s in me. I love you,” Cheyanne promised yet again, arching sharply against his hot body when she finally allowed herself to release. It was like a tsunami of passion crashing against the shoreline, causing her entire body to quake beneath him. Reaching to offer him another kiss, she actually released a soft scream of enchantment inside his mouth.

Unable to form words, Howie sucked her tongue into his mouth, thrusting one final time as wave upon wave crashed over him. Collapsing against her, he struggled to breathe, barely able to shift to her side as he brought her to him for a gentle kiss. Holding her close, he smoothed her hair as she trembled. "I love you, Chey," he whispered against her lips.

“Don’t leave me,” she whimpered softly, curling as close as possible within his embrace while she buried her face against his hot, sweaty chest. She inhaled the musky air of his natural scent, her lips curling into a pleased smile. She loved him.

"Never," he whispered, pulling the covers over them. Tucking them carefully around her. Closing his eyes, he pressed a soft kiss to the top of her head. "I'll never leave you," he promised, wrapping his arms around her. "Never," he affirmed again.