Lauren had never fought with Jake like that before. They had bantered back and forth over her messy habits and his over-protective nature, with an edge of truth behind the teasing. They’d sniped back and forth on a long car trip about her speeding and his inability to navigate. Once they’d raised their voices after a particularly messy discussion about her family’s disapproval of Jake.
But this was the first time he’d ever looked at her so distantly, and that she’d felt she couldn’t just go and take him in her arms.
She wondered why she hadn’t asked him to go. Brushing her teeth slowly, with the bathroom door shut between them, she wished she wouldn’t have to walk out there and face him.
He tapped softly on the door. “Lauren,” he said. “I’m sorry.”
She rinsed and spat before she answered. “What are you sorry for? I’m the one leaving a swathe of maimed would-be criminals through the city.”
“Would you just open the door and talk to me?”
She sighed, swung the door open, wiping her mouth with the back of her hand.
“I love you,” he said. “I love you even if you go missing in the middle of the night. I love you even if you babble on about Willow and visions. I love you even though you still have toothpaste on your chin, and I’m not going anywhere.”
“Well,” she said. She rubbed her chin, trying to get the toothpaste off. “I suppose you know that I love you too.”
“Madly, I imagine.”
“Madly,” she agreed.
He put out his arms first, but she didn’t hesitate for a second before stepping in. His lips were soft and tender on hers, and she squeezed her eyes shut, slipping her tongue tentatively against that pouty lower lip. His lips parted.
He always let her in.
1 hour ago