She doesn’t know who you really are.
You’re an imposter.
I clear my throat hard and stand, pacing out of the light cast by the campfire. For once in my life, I care who my lies are affecting. Cassie trusts me with her body and she should. But if I tell her and Miles that I’m a parolee on the run, will I lose my chance with her when I’ve only just found a place to belong?
“Sam?” Cassie says softly, joining me in the darkness. “Is everything okay?”
“Course it is, baby,” I manage, putting an arm around her shoulders. “You’re going to have to show me how to make a s’more.”
Her mouth falls open. “You’ve never had one?”
“No.” With those trusting blue eyes on me, some of my truth escapes before I can stop it. “We didn’t have campfires in juvie.” Even that partial confession makes some of the pressure in my chest ease, proving I have to tell Cassie the rest. I can’t make love to this girl without being completely honest. Without letting her know I’m beneath her. A felon. “Cassie—”
She stops my words with a kiss, intuition clear as day in her eyes. “Shhh.” Her fingers comb through my hair, turning my thoughts to mush. “Nothing between us tonight, okay? There’s nothing. It’s all outside noise.” Her head tips back, highlighting her features in moonlight. “Look how much smaller we are than the sky. Whatever problems you think you have are just as small. Smaller.” Miles chooses that moment to step out of the light, the front of his body pressing to Cassie’s side. “Together, though,” she whispers. “We’re something big.”
I’m so in love with her.
Out to sea, drowning, miles below the surface in love.
And I’m not the only one. That much is obvious when Miles catches my eye, his expression when he looks at Cassie one of wonder.
As if we can’t help it, Miles and I touch her, our hands roaming over every inch of her delectable body. Across her tits, squeezing them, down her ribcage, over her hips. We’re both breathing like marathon runners within seconds, but she dances away with a laugh. “S’mores first, gentlemen.”
Miles and I trade an ironic glance.
No matter how hard we try to take it slow with our virgin angel, I have a feeling there is going to be nothing gentle about us tonight.
We follow Cassie into the light and she hands us each a stick with a marshmallow stuck at the end. “Hold it over the flame, Sam. Like this.” She demonstrates. “When it’s just beginning to turn black, sandwich it between two graham crackers and a piece of chocolate.”
She tips her chin toward the plastic baggies she laid, which contain broken up chocolate squares and graham crackers.
“Where did you learn to make these?” Miles asks, holding his white confection above the fire. “I never let you go on any of the Girl Scout camping trips.”
“No, you didn’t,” she says, primly. “And I’m still salty about it.”
“You don’t go out of my sight,” he drawls. “Period.”
Cassie’s color deepens. “I know. I never really minded.”
Miles winks at her. “I know.” He transfers his gaze to me. “What about you? No Boy Scout trips in your past?”
I grind my back teeth. “Nah, I wasn’t really interested in merit badges.”
“What were you interested in?” Cassie asks, smiling at me. “When I first saw you, I thought maybe you’d been a boxer or something.”
I can’t help but smile at her perceptiveness. “You making fun of my crooked nose, baby?”
“No!” Her stricken expression fades when she sees I’m joking.
“Actually, you’re not far off. I was in a lot of fights.” My throat tightens up and I can feel Miles scrutinizing me. “Too many, actually. That’s all I saw at home and…” In a stroke of perfect timing, my marshmallow starts to catch on fire and I pull it back, wedging the stick between my knees while trying to assemble the rest of the s’more. “Anyway, you don’t need my sob story.”
“I want it,” Cassie murmurs. “When you’re ready, you’ll tell us the rest.”
With a lump in my throat, I nod.
“I didn’t have it easy growing up, either,” Miles says in his deep voice, surprising me. “Left home early and drifted. Drifted, until I found this place.” His attention strays to Cassie. “Found…a purpose.” Miles and Cassie both seem comfortable over Miles sharing that small amount of information, telling me he’s told her little about his past, too. In a weird way it makes me feel better.
“And now she’s our purpose,” I say, holding my s’more to Cassie’s mouth.
“Damn right,” Miles rasps.
We both watch enthralled as she moans into the bite, a look of ecstasy crossing her features while she chews.
An air of urgency descends and we move on her at the same time.
I mourn the waste of my marshmallow as I drop it into the fire.