Their Protector: An MC Outlaw Halloween Romance, page 65
“Sure,” I say, relieved that I’ll have time to change into something sexier than the jeans and t-shirt I’m wearing.
An hour later, we’re walking along the beach, and Ramsey casually reaches out to take my hand. Strolling while holding hands maybe be commonplace, but I haven’t done it for a long time. Not since Pete. And not since the very beginning with Pete.
Things were going downhill with Pete and me before I really realized it, and now I know I wasted precious time waiting for things to get better, when there was no real chance. I should have cut my losses and moved on.
But this thing with Ramsey is… confusing. It feels simple and right for us to have another night together, to act like lovers or even a couple.
But we’re not. And I have to remember that. There’s a reason I haven’t opened my heart to anyone after Pete, and Ramsey is certainly not the guy to change that. He’s made his expectations— or lack thereof— very clear, and so have I. I just need to keep that in mind, instead of allowing myself to fantasize about something more.
Even though he did fly all the way out here to play the guitar for me. Maybe his intentions have changed?
“This beach is so gorgeous,” Ramsey says, kicking sand up like a little kid. “I can’t believe it.”
I laugh at him, but then realize it is very different from New Mexico.
“I mean it.” He laughs. “I’m used to sand, but it’s like… desert sand. I go from the Southwest to the Middle East and then back again. I’m not used to having water with my sand.”
“Well then, I’m glad you decided to fly out and see the ocean,” I say.
“Very funny,” he says, looking at me quite seriously. “The ocean is just a bonus. You know it’s you who I came to see.”
I stare at him, breathless, wordless— until he lifts me up and kisses me. The wind blows my hair into our faces, and he does his best to hold back the unruly mane while he kisses me some more.
“If we didn’t have a nice date planned, I’d pick you up and throw you into the ocean,” he says.
“Well good thing we do have a nice date planned,” I laugh. “Because that’d be pretty cold, and I wouldn’t be very happy.”
But I know I wouldn’t care, as long as he picked me back up and carried me home. As if reading my mind, he says, “Maybe I’ll just have to give you a piggy back ride instead.”
I laugh and jump up, my skirt flowing in the wind as I wrap my legs around his strong back.
“You’re going to have to tell Becky that you got a ride from your prince,” Ramsey says, making me laugh again. “Where to, my Princess?”
“There’s a pretty nice restaurant just up the way,” I tell him. “If you like seafood. It’s called the Boathouse Landing.”
“I’m not very used to seafood— or at least not good seafood,” he says. “But there’s no better place or time to get more used to it. To the Boathouse Landing we go,” he says, marching resolutely forward, causing me to laugh yet again.
I can’t even remember the last time I laughed this much. I’m beginning to think it won’t be as easy to stay detached as I’d once thought.
Chapter 22 – Ramsey
The sun is beginning to set as Monica and I are seated. I don’t think the sunset is ever as beautiful anywhere as it is in Albuquerque, but I still think I have the best view, because Monica is here. It’s rather chilly, so I give her my jacket.
“What do you recommend?” I ask her, as I look at the menu, rather lost. I’m definitely not a seafood guy.
“We can try the seafood platter,” she says. “It should have something that even a landlocked person like you might like.”
“Very funny. But why not? Let’s do it. I’m feeling adventurous today.”
“You must be,” she says, “to have flown all the way here.”
I smile at her, but I’m kicking myself for not deciding to do it sooner. It’s silly that I have to fly back tomorrow, when I could have been with her all week, or even longer.
“You know,” I tell her. “My brothers wanted to take me on a ‘last hurrah’ trip to Vegas, but I wanted to come see you.”
She stares at me, a little confused, and I guess I don’t blame her.
“I’m saying that, because I wish I had more time to spend with you. I decided to come here, to Florida. I had no interest in Vegas. I just wanted to be with you.”
She smiles, and I reach across the table to hold her hand.
“I have a couple things I have to do back at home before I leave,” I continue. “Or else I would have come sooner. I found a place for my mom, but then my brothers decided on something different. But anyway. We’re going on a mini family trip in a couple days, and spending a little time together before Harlow and I leave. Otherwise I would stay longer.”
Monica nods, and smiles.
“Ramsey, I’m really surprised by your trip, and I’m just glad you came at all. Was it the soundtrack?”
I nod. “I can’t resist the pull of music.”
But really it was just my instinct, my crazy desires. I couldn’t go on deployment without seeing her one more time. As crazy as it sounds, listening to the music and remembering our time together, while knowing that was it, was just too unbearable.
I can’t tell her that, though. I have to respect her wishes. She doesn’t want a relationship. She doesn’t want commitment.
Our waiter approaches and asks if we’d like something to drink, or an appetizer.
“I’ll take a Jack and Coke,” I tell him. “And whatever the lady wants, of course.”
He smiles at her, but she just says, “I’m good with my water, thank you. And we already know what we’d like to eat.”
“Sure,” says the waiter, and she orders the platter.
I raise an eyebrow at her, because I haven’t known her to not order a drink. We definitely had our share of alcohol together in Albuquerque. And she seems a little rushed. Is she trying to hurry through our dinner date?
Stop overthinking everything, I tell myself. It’s a bad habit of mine. But I can’t help but try to bring it up.
“Taking it easy?” I ask her.
“What?” she says, looking as if I’d accused her of a crime.
“I mean, you don’t want anything to drink?”
“Oh. Yeah, I’m kind of going through a healthy phase.” She smiles, as if a bit embarrassed, and I feel stupid for putting her on the spot. Not everyone drinks on every date, I remind myself.
“That’s cool,” I tell her. “Do you have some more training coming up? A PT test?”
“No, not really.” She looks out towards the bay. “I just…”
I wait for her to continue, but she looks hesitant.
“Actually, since you’ve mentioned work,” she says, but then takes her hand away from mine and rubs it nervously on her glass. “I just, I’ve been thinking about whether or not to continue.”
“To continue?” I ask, as our waiter brings my drink.
Just in time, because I think I’m going to need it. I know she mentioned “work,” but I can’t help fearing the worst: that she’s somehow talking about us , about continuing to date me. Which makes no sense, since I’m about to be overseas, and we’re not exactly “dating.”
“In the Air Force, I mean,” she says. “With my career. I’ve been thinking about retiring.”
I look at her, trying not to let my eyes bulge. It just wasn’t what I was expecting.
“I mean,” She continues, “I’d still work for the Air Force in some capacity, but maybe as a civilian. Maybe I’d capitalize on the educational benefits and go on to get my PhD in engineering or something.”
“Cool,” I say, although it’s only because I’m at a loss for words.
I’ve never really considered retiring. I just figured that jumping out of planes would be something I do until I die, either in combat or as an old man.
“With everything that’s happened with my brother, and with seeing the daily toll it takes o
“Yeah,” I say, able to relate to that sentiment. “That’d be nice.”
I’d never even been to Florida, to such a beautiful place as this beach.
“I want to spend time with those I’m closest to. I want to re-assess everything I guess.”
“I can understand.”
And I finally do.
“You’re young to be thinking about these things,” I tell her. “Retirement. Death. You sound much older.”
“But I get it,” I say quickly, as an offended look passes across her face. “It makes sense, knowing the life we’ve both lived.”
It hits me then, how much we have in common. She’s been through many of the same experiences I’ve been through, or even worse. She’s flown a fighter pilot into enemy territory. Who knows what all she’s done and seen? She even lost her brother, whereas I only just almost lost mine.
I feel like she understands me in a way that no one else does. Not even my own brothers.
But I can’t say that, because that’s more like a Serious Relationship Discussion.
So instead, I just say, “I can definitely understand where you’re coming from. I’m not exactly in the same spot, but I can relate.”
And then our food arrives, a large platter that I’m afraid we’re not going to be able to finish.
“Here, try this fried shrimp first,” she says, lightening the mood as she dips a piece in cocktail sauce and then holds up it up for me to try. “I’m pretty sure that in the history of Florida, no one has ever not liked fried shrimp.”
She’s right. It’s delicious.
I eat more, and then I move on to crab legs, lobster tail, crawdad and even mussels— which aren’t my favorite, but I’m proud of myself for trying them.
“Please excuse me,” Monica says, mid-way through dinner.
She stands up to go to the restroom, with her hand on her stomach.
I sip my third Jack and Coke— glad that I don’t have to drive anywhere— and hope she’s okay. It was a sudden departure, and she had looked worried.
When she returns, I say, “Everything okay?” and she looks at me as if that’s an odd question.
“Oh yes,” of course, she says, sipping her water. “I just… I have a sensitive stomach. I have to watch what I eat, and drink. That’s part of why I’m on a health kick.”
“Oh okay,” I say, feeling a bit worried. “Well, I hope you feel better soon.”
“Well, now you have a big challenge in front of you,” she says, holding up an oyster.
“Oh my God. I don’t think I can eat that.”
“Oh come on. You said the same thing about the mussels, and you managed just fine.”
“Do you want me to join you in your illness?” I joke, but I slurp the center of the oyster, obediently.
There’s something sensual about the way she’s holding the oyster up to my mouth— and the way I’m taking it into my mouth like a lover, that catapults me right back into the romantic mood I had been in before Monica went to the restroom.
“Good job!” she says. “You make that look easy!”
I take another sip of my drink. “I can’t say I like that taste, but…”
“But I can’t say you were too much of a wimp to try it!” she finishes for me.
It’s late when we leave, and to my surprise we managed to eat most of the platter.
“See?” she says, after I pay the bill and come around to her side of the table to take her arm. “Now you’ve experienced a Florida beach, and authentic seafood, and you even liked it.”
“I certainly did.”
We walk back to her house and by the time we get there, no one else is awake. As soon as we’re in her room, I’m tearing at her clothes and kissing her entire body. God, how I’ve missed it.
“I want your pussy,” I say, my lips traveling down as I lift her skirt up. “I want to taste it.”
She spreads her legs for me and I lap at her clit and then suck at her juices, much the same way I did with the food at dinner. But I feel ravenous for her, kissing and flicking and touching and grabbing, until her hips are writhing underneath my mouth.
“Ramsey,” she calls out, softly, yet seductively. “You make me feel so good. I’m about to come…”
Her juices run out into my mouth and I eagerly suck them down. She quivers under my touch and lays back on the bed, still moaning and heaving.
I want to tell her I love her. But that would be ridiculous.
So, I snuggle up beside her and wait for her to be ready for round two.
Everything feels so perfect and right. But I tell myself it has to be too good to be true. What would I tell my brothers, and the other guys in my unit? I’d never live it down. Not to mention the professional ramifications we’d both face.
But I wouldn’t care, if she were into me. This could really work— even if it had to stay secret. It was supposed to be a fling, but isn’t that how many relationships start out? We seem perfect for each other.
Maybe we could be together when I get back. But I don’t know if this is real enough to last while I’m gone.
So, I just hold onto Monica in the dark, and enjoy the little time that we have left together. Whatever she and I might be, we’re experiencing the very best of it right here, right now, and I don’t want to take that for granted.
Chapter 23 – Monica
My body is tingling with delight at how Ramsey just made me feel, but my mind is spinning with questions. Why did he really come all this way to see me for just one more night? Was it really just for casual sex? He seems to be so into me.
He tugs me closer to him and I try to shut off my brain so that I can get back into the moment. I straddle him and he holds onto my ass as he enters me. Going down on me must have made him feel nearly as good as I feel, because his cock is hard and large.
I haven’t felt it from this position, and it hurts at first. But then I love how I can feel him all the way up inside me. I clasp my pussy around him, making it tighter, and he lets out a low groan.
“This feels amazing,” he says, reaching up to move strands of hair away from my face. He looks into my eyes and says, “I love the way you ride me.”
He kisses me, passionately and intensely. I move my hips up and down and he places his hands on them as he leans me closer to him and kisses my breasts. Then he sucks on my nipples. The rhythm of our bodies combined with the feeling of his mouth all over my breasts makes me come.
He pushes himself even further into me while pulling my hips closer to him.
“Oh my god, Ramsey, I feel so good. I’m coming so much.”
I lose track of how many times I come, as he pushes his big cock in and out of me and I feel the vibration throughout my entire body. Then I feel his cock stiffen as it gets even tighter, and the slow, now-familiar pulse courses through it.
“I’m coming,” he says, his breath warm in my ear. “I’m coming in your pussy.”
When he’s done, I lay on top of him, his hands still on my waist.
“That felt incredible,” he says. “Every time with you just gets better and better.”
What started off as a casual fling has definitely gotten more serious. I’m just not sure how serious. I feel physically tired— and completely satisfied— but my mind is still racing, and uncertain.
Does Ramsey even want to be a couple? He’s never mentioned it. But then again, how would that even work, with him being deployed for six months, so soon after we first met?
Maybe he’s taking things slow, and thinks it’s unfair to tie me down while he’s away. And maybe it is unfair.
But we both started off saying we didn’t even want a relationship or commitment. My line of thinking has certainly changed, but has his?
If I’m pregnant, I can kiss my military career goodbye, at least for a while. But I was already thinking of doing that anyway. And retiring would save me the professional conflict that Ramsey and I could face if it came out that we were a couple.
But a more pressing issue is whether Ramsey and I could even find a way to work out as a couple. I know I’ve become a lot more open to the idea since spending so much time with him, but what if he doesn’t feel the same? Could a love that started as a brief fling even end up lasting?
Chapter 24 – Monica
As soon as I wake up, I know that I can’t put it off any longer. I have to find out whether I’m pregnant— and, if so, then I have to tell Ramsey. It’s only right.
As usual, I wake up earlier than Ramsey, so I sneak off to take a pregnancy test in the bathroom while he’s still asleep. Still groggy, I squint my eyes at the smiley face that appears beside the blinking “yes” sign.
Yes?! Does it really say yes ?!
I don’t know whether to jump up and down, or start crying. I stare at the smiley face, wondering if they make a kind with an ambivalent face, or a “what the fuck?” face. Because I really don’t know how to feel about this.
I was so certain I couldn’t get pregnant. Even the doctor was certain. And here I am knocked up by a guy with whom I made an anti-commitment pact not so long ago.
I place the test in an empty toilet paper roll and wrap it up tight with paper towels. I bury it in the bathroom’s trash can, and then I add some more paper around it and on top of it, just to be safe. I don’t want Susan to see it. I can’t tell her until I’m ready.
Becoming extra paranoid, I remove the liner and all its contents from the trash can and wrap it all up tight. Even though the trash can wasn’t full, I’ll take the trash out just to be safe.