“You didn’t have to follow me here, Ainsley. I bought this place years ago so I wouldn’t have to stay in a hotel or relinquish my adult freedoms by staying with my parents. It’s less than a ten-minute drive from the clinic.”
He ignored her as he fell in step behind her to the front door of the small bi-level private house on Sutter Avenue and 80th Street.
“And risk both our mothers’ wrath should something happen to you. I’m not stupid. I like breathing.”
Her shoulders shook with conspiratorial laughter. She knew just as well as he did, he was speaking the truth.
“Well, after seeing me to the door, you can at least enjoy your morning off tomorrow instead of having to endure our mothers’ wrath. How do you plan to spend it?”
Earlier tonight, when her mother left the clinic and they were still an hour or so away from finishing the Kwanzaa decorations, Orisha had threatened to stick Zaire and Ainsley with all the problem patients if either of them showed up before noon.
“Considering I’ve been on my feet more in the last week than I have in the last year, I should be exhausted. The truth is, I have no idea what to do with my time off. What are your plans?”
She stood straighter, the easy smile on her face turning into something intense and sultry. “I plan to start my respite by going upstairs and taking a long shower. Then I’m going to jump straight into bed.”
Her voice was full and rough, and his body instantly responded to it. His muscles tightened, his cock twitched, and since he was wearing scrubs—the thinnest garments known to man—if he didn’t walk away right now, he was going to end up embarrassing himself.
“That sounds like a plan. As hard as you work, you’ve earned it.” He leaned in and placed a gentle kiss on her cheek. He thought it would be a way to quench the burning need to touch her without making things overtly sexual. But as always, when they touched, his body instantly craved more.
Fighting to control his need, he stood to his full height, giving her a courteous nod before turning back to head toward his car. As he took the first step, she called out to him.
“I plan to enjoy it. But I think I’d enjoy it more if you were here with me. Care to join me, Dr. Clay?”
Her voice slid over his skin like silk, making him close his eyes and inhale deeply to try to control the shudder of need vibrating through him.
He faced her again, stepping closer until the floral scent on her skin filled his senses, intoxicating him.
“Not that I’m complaining, but why? Is this just to scratch an itch? Because that’s not what I’m here for, Zaire. I’m here for us. Please understand, if you invite me inside and let me make love to you, there’s no going back.”
Her eyes tracked him carefully, shining bright in the night. “I’ll admit that I thought by putting you on the spot and making you work in the clinic, you’d give up. But every day you’ve been here you’ve reminded me more and more why I fell in love with you in medical school. You’re a pain in the ass control freak in most parts of your life.”
He had to chuckle because it was the truth. Ainsley needed everything aligned just the way he wanted it. Otherwise, he was out of sorts.
“But you’re a compassionate doctor who always listens to his patients,” she continued. “When we get visiting docs from more prosperous facilities, they always act as if they’re slumming. But the way you’ve treated our patients, especially that young father and his baby, that showed me I was wrong about you.”
That quizzical eyebrow went up again as he gave her a half smile. “You were eavesdropping on my conversation with my patient? Dr. Paige, that’s a HIPAA violation. You know that, right?”
She shook her head. “No, it’s not. The consent to treatment states when you’re treated at the clinic, all members of the medical team are allowed access to your treatment plan. Therefore, I’m untouchable.”
“Oh, I certainly hope that’s not the case. Because more than anything, I want to touch every inch of you.”
She raised her arms and attempted to place them around his neck, but he grabbed her forearms, staying out of her grasp. He couldn’t think with her hands on him, and he really needed to think about what they were about to do.
“Are you sure? Because if you accept the pleasure I can give you, you have to accept everything else, including my ring. I want nothing less than everything, Zaire.”
“I guess it’s a good thing I want to give you everything, then. I’ll marry you, Ainsley. Under one condition. We—” she stressed the plural pronoun “—build a life together. Together, Ainsley. Not you doing things for me without discussion. No making plans for the future without both of us hashing it out until we’ve found the solution that fits us best. I don’t want to be absorbed into the Clay legacy and forget all about my own. This week has taught me we both fit into each other’s worlds perfectly.”
He went to speak, to come clean about the plans he’d already made with his mother. But before he could, she touched her lips to his, and fire consumed him. In a flash, they were moving from the stoop to the foyer, to the stairs, until they were mostly naked in her bathroom.
Zaire’s body had always been a work of art. Her physique was a mix of hard planes and soft curves and he loved everything about it. She grabbed her shower cap, then quickly stepped out of the wispy straps of lace masquerading as her underwear.
“Knowing you wear such sexy bras and panties under your scrubs has always driven me to distraction. I don’t know how I learned anything in med school or residency with that thought running through my head all the time.”
“I did it purposely to trip you up. I had to use whatever means I had to stay ahead in the game.”
She lifted her brows as a wide grin spread across her lips. “I know.”
She stepped into the shower, and because he was completely enthralled by her, he stripped and followed her without a thought. By the time her water-slicked flesh touched his, the only thing his mind could focus on was finally having her back. The rest would have to wait until later.
If they hadn’t spent most of the day treating patients, they might’ve devoured each other as quickly as their need dictated. But they restrained themselves just long enough to quickly wash the day’s work away. They stood beneath the large rainfall showerhead, letting the pressurized spray get rid of the suds.
The last bubble circling the drain was like the crack of a starter pistol firing. In an instant, they were a heap of tangled limbs and grasping fingers. The pads of Zaire’s fingers slid against his wet skin, searing him, hotter than the water pouring down on him. When she closed her palm around his stiff cock, he had to brace himself against the titled walls of the shower stall.
“Careful,” he growled through clenched teeth.
“Don’t worry,” she cooed. “I intend to be.”
“We don’t have protection in here and my wallet is in the car.”
“No worries.” She tightened her hold around him, causing every muscle in his body to clench against the rising pressure of his need. “There’s still some left over from when we stayed here three months ago for my mom’s birthday.”
He remembered that trip and was grateful they’d been smart enough to stock up then. Zaire’s body didn’t do well on hormonal contraception, so they’d religiously used condoms throughout the course of their relationship. But the way he needed her tonight, he was sure if they didn’t have prophylactics, they’d end up creating a life.
She shut off the water and stepped out of the stall, throwing a nearby towel at him, then grabbing one for herself. They dried off enough not to leave a trail of water from her en suite into her bedroom. But as soon as they crossed the threshold, he pulled her to him, lifting her until her legs circled his waist.
He didn’t give her the opportunity to prepare. As soon as she was safely laid across the bed, he kneeled between her legs, spread her open and buried his face between her folds.
It had been so long since he’d had the opportunity to touch her like this, to worship at her altar, to slide his tongue across the sensitive nub of her clit down to her slick opening. The taste of her, the feel of her, had him painfully hard. He was desperate for satisfaction of his own, but pleasing her like this, hearing her moan his name and shake beneath his touch, it was too intoxicating to stop for any reason, even his own pleasure.
When she finally tipped over into bliss, tremors racking her as her entire body tightened into one spasm, only then did he concern himself with his need.
He stroked himself slowly as he stood, then rummaged through the drawer of her bedside table to find what he needed. He quickly sheathed himself and then climbed onto the bed as he watched her carefully stroke herself.
He hovered over her for a moment to watch her, before sliding inside her. Her sex spasmed around him and it was nearly his undoing before he’d taken his first stroke.
He gripped the back of her thigh for purchase as he began to move, increasing his depth and pace on each stroke. Soon, the familiar sound of flesh slapping against flesh commingled with their needy moans of pleasure, heightening his need and the sensation of her tight heat wrapped around him.
She cried out in ecstasy as she climaxed again. But this time, he sealed his mouth to hers, swallowing those delicious sounds, keeping them locked inside himself as they stoked his fire, inching him closer and closer to his own release.
And when his body ached from his muscles clenching and his need grew too powerful to be controlled, he finally let go, spilling every ounce of his being into the latex barrier between them.
He was so destroyed; he could barely speak as his lungs struggled for air and his heart pounded against the inside of his chest. He kissed her once more and whispered, “I love you,” before collapsing into the soft mattress next to her.
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