A/N: 7 Comments?! All time high! As a reward, I bring you video. You've probably seen it, but I watched it so many times today I almost broke the internet.
This chapter is kind of short, but the next one is coming soon! Thanks for being so awesome.
I silently thank Steph as I get dressed – she helped me pick out some great work clothes on our shopping spree. I zip into new black pinstripe trousers and actually bother to wear heels. A white button up shirt gets rolled to my elbows and tucked in. Sassy work wear, something I’ve never really considered before.
“If you’d worn those pants from the start we wouldn’t have this problem,” Steph says over her coffee in the kitchen. I give her a hip check and head to work feeling pretty good. It’s going to be another busy day.
By afternoon I’m juggling ten tasks in various stages of completion and due at a flower shop to see some centerpiece options. Jon hasn’t called, but I still think we’re supposed to try on our costumes. Every time I think about seeing him, my stomach squeezes in on itself. He’s only been gone six days. I feel like a lot has changed, but how much can you really tell over the phone? The flirting, talking late at night - please be real, I think. Don't be in my imagination. I’m on my way to the florist when he calls.
“Checking out centerpieces at a place on State Street, then I’m done for the day.”
“What’s the address?”
I stand in front of a long table in the back room. It’s bare except for five flower arrangements – different colors, sizes and textures. My favorite is the fourth-smallest, not too big to see over, not too intrusive. It’s dark orange and green, russet and crimson, with bare branches stuck in. Definitely fall colors. The bell on the door jingles.
“Can I help… oh. Hello!” the owner says. “Can I help you?” I smile at the sound of Jon’s voice.
His footsteps stop just inside the room, behind me, but he doesn’t say anything for a moment. Then the owner bustles in, clearly flustered. She starts explaining the flower arrangements in a slightly manic voice.
“Hey,” he says. It’s as if I completely forgot what he looks like and now I get to see him again for the first time. He’s beautiful, I’ve always thought that, but his eyes are different – like he knows something I don’t know. I bet my eyes flash, giving away the firecracker exploding inside my ribcage. A tiny blush creeps up his fair, flawless cheeks.
“Hi Jon.” The air is thick with the smell of flowers, it seems liquid and still. I’m completely overwhelmed by the desire to kiss him, to press my lips to that soft, crooked smile. The owner chatters on, talking for me. I had planned to consider the options and negotiate, but suddenly my palms are sweating and I cannot spend one more second in this store.
“This one,” I point to the fourth. “This one is perfect. We’ll take them for all the tables.” The owner beams about her big sale and her surprise guest. She hurries around and takes my arm, leading me into the store. Jon catches my eye with that same taunting look. If not for her, I imagine we’d be making out on that table.
I fill out the paperwork while Jon wanders around the store. It’s small with low ceilings, made even smaller because it’s stuffed with scents and colors like the wizard’s closet in a kids’ movie. As she’s waiting for my credit card to process, the owner leans over a little.
“You hold onto that one,” she whispers. As I sign, she squeezes my hand.
Jon opens the door for me. I have to pass so close to his body that I fear I might not escape –he’s like a planet, exerting his own field of gravity. The fresh air helps me pull myself together.
“Welcome home,” I say. He holds up a single tiger lily, its huge orange blossom dusted with brown spots above two wavy, dramatic leaves. “You swiped me a flower?”
Jon gives me a look like don’t you know anything? “I left a ten on the counter.”
I lift my hand to take the flower, but he pulls it away. I laugh and try again. This time he steps in, so I fall against his chest. Before I realize I haven’t got the flower, he’s kissing me. His mouth is warm and gentle, but sure: there’s no hesitation in this kiss. I rise onto my toes to get as close as I can. Jon lifts his hands to my face and I smell the flower he’s still holding. I dimly wonder if the woman inside is watching us. What seems like a glorious, weightless lifetime later, we pause.
“Kat, I don’t want to pretend,” he says, his forehead almost touching mine. He looks so hopeful, so helpless that I just kiss him again. I pull him in by the neck and make a silent promise that I’ll never let him go.
“Me neither,” I whisper as he draws me into a hug. I want to cry, to dance, I want to do a freaking cartwheel but I definitely don’t want to pretend.
“But that night, at the auction, you said you didn’t want to kiss me.” Captain Serious, making sure.
I smile, “Stupid me,” and press my mouth back to his.
We walk to a restaurant nearby, holding hands and bumping shoulders. I feel giddy. Jon asks for a booth in the back and we spend the meal twisting our fingers together above the table and brushing our legs together underneath. We don’t talk about us, but I know we will. Jon is not one to leave unanswered questions. When we’re done, I follow him in my car.
“Steph, oh my God,” I say the second she answers the phone.
She just squeals. “Already?”
“Dinner, now I’m driving to his house.”
“Are you wearing the right underwear?”
Walking up to his house may be the craziest experience in my life. I have been here fifty times – laughed and ate and slept and maybe even thrown up once. How romantic. But this time, it feels totally surreal. On the other side of that door is the first time Jon and I will actually be alone, together. He fidgets with his keys and I know he’s nervous too.
I wander to the living room and toss my coat on a chair. He puts his keys on the table and stands still for a minute. Then he raises an eyebrow. “Costumes?”
I follow him upstairs, remembering how just a week ago I cried myself to sleep in the guest room. He doesn’t stop at that door, but goes right into his room. I’ve been here before – it’s a typical guy’s room: navy blue bed clothes, nothing on the walls but paint. His bookshelf is full, computer open and suitcase from the road trip still unpacked. He holds up two plastic bags.
“This one’s yours.”
I spin on my heel and head for the guest room – otherwise we will never make it into these outfits. When I open the bag, I close it quickly and crack up. Then I take it out: a sexy, bright orange prisoner costume with a plunging neck and little shorts, complete with a prisoner number on the left breast and COUNTY JAIL across the back.
Steph always calls Jon “Officer Toews” because he’s so straitlaced. It’s such the perfect nickname that I’ve used it too, but only in private. Initially Steph didn’t like him, called him a buzzkill. The first time she met Kane, she made the mistake of believing his stories about Jon cracking the whip on the team. Then Pat tried to molest her at a party and she softened up a lot on Jon. By the time we were in the playoffs last year, Steph had come around to everyone. But I didn’t think she’d ever told Jon.
“How did you know about this?!” I shout out the door.
“Know about what?” he calls back.
I strip off my work clothes and wiggle into the jumpsuit. It’s very tight and very short, but I turn in front of the mirror and think that I can totally pull this off. I’ll need boots. And a better pushup bra. The costume shows some cleavage, but not a scandalous amount. It’s a little more serious on the lower half, where it lands just a few inches south of my ass. Maybe I’ll wear thigh highs, since my legs are my favorite feature. I guess Jon definitely wanted to see me in a sexy costume. Confident I can make this work, I change back into my work clothes and sneak into the hallway.
Jon’s door is open a sliver. I can’t see anything peering through, so I push it another inch. Still nothing. My hand is up to push again when he pulls the door open, making me lose my balance and tumble in.
“Where is it?!” he demands.
He’s wearing a dark blue police uniform. The pants are tight – they’re probably a large, but he’s got the ass and thighs of someone who uses them for a living. The uniform shirt is short-sleeve and button down, tucked in behind a belt. Just below the belt… Stop. I force myself to look up. His arms bulge out of his sleeves, but he’s always been able to rock a t-shirt. A black tie is expertly knotted at his throat and a policeman’s cap is perched on his head. On his lapel is a name tag that reads: CAPTAIN.
“Woah,” I say because I cannot help myself. I thought I liked him in a hockey uniform. “You look like a stripper.”
“Oh yeah?” he says, hooking a finger into his tie and loosening it. A second later he opens the top two buttons on his shirt. I feel my tongue roll out of my mouth like a cartoon red carpet. Jon gets another button open then puts his cap on my head.
“You can surprise me with yours on Saturday,” he says, pulling me into a kiss. My brain is full of Pop Rocks and soda. This is the kiss from the auction, the real one: his tongue is in my mouth, his hands in my hair. The hat falls to the carpet. I run my hands over his arms and he flexes, hard, raising their definition beneath my palms and locking me tight against his chest. I can’t help but laugh.
“I knew this costume would work on you,” he says into my neck. “You’ve been waiting for me to tell you what to do.”
His broad shoulders are solid under my fingers and I trace them down his spine to the back of his belt. “I’ve been waiting for you to decide.”
His hand slides along my side, over my hip and onto my outer thigh like he’s measuring my body against his. “I decided when you let me kiss you for that first photo. I thought, if she would do this for me, I would do anything for her.”
I kiss him again, hard because I mean it. I would have helped him any way I could, a hundred times over, before I ever felt this way. Jon’s had a hard time trusting people since he rose to fame, and even more trouble believing there are people who don’t have ulterior motives.
“I would do anything for you,” I answer in kind. “Even before.”
“I know, Kat. I’m sorry I had to ask.”
My fingers move themselves up his thick chest and pull his tie off the rest of the way. Buttons open easily. I slide my hand inside his shirt and feel his smooth, heated skin. He pulls my shirt out of my pants and runs his fingers along the bare flesh above the waistband. My abs contract as he brushes a ticklish spot.
“I’m not sorry,” I say. “Are you sure you’ve had enough time? After Rachel?”
Jon pulls back and looks in my eyes – full Captain Serious face. “I know Kaner told you about this summer. I only saw Rachel a few times, and even then it was never right. We’ve been over for a long time, Kat. She has nothing to do with this.”
I nod, biting my lip. Jon wouldn’t lie, he doesn’t have it in him. So we kiss again, standing three feet from his bed. I know he’s thinking about it. If he barely saw Rachel all summer, I wonder how long it’s been since they were together. Jon wouldn’t cheat on her, no matter what; that’s just how he is. He slides his hands across my lower back and right over the rise of my ass then presses me flat against his entire body. The tight pants of his costume hide nothing, making the estrogen in my blood boil. I touch the divit at the center of his lower back right where his spine meets his hips.
“Kat,” he says. “I shouldn’t have started kissing you in here. I don’t think I can let you leave.”
The kiss is like a whirlpool, dragging us both down, spinning us faster and faster. Jon’s old-fashioned and I know he wants to wait, if just for propriety. He’s also got a serious hard-on pressing into my stomach.
“Officer Toews, you’re abusing your power over me,” I whisper into his ear. Ooops, nickname slip! I doubt he notices with my mouth on his earlobe.
“Does that mean you want to go?”
I get half an inch between us. I don’t want to go – I want to scream his name, soap him up in the shower, wake beneath his naked body and do it all again tomorrow. But the whole world has changed in two weeks and I know that’s awfully fast for either of us. We’ve only been together a few hours, really.
“I don’t want to go, but I will.”
Jon looks a little relieved, but he pouts for effect. I kiss those delicious lips, pinch his tightly wrapped ass and move into the hallway.
“I’m kind of in no condition to walk you to your car,” he says from inside. I collect my shoes and he leans out into the hallway, keeping his lower half behind the door. I get to smile at him like I know we’re both thinking about his dick. It’s one of the night’s top 10 moments.
I come in to excellent news at work - all the tables for the Fall Ball are sold and we’ve already raised over $20,000. Now I can concentrate on music and lighting and finding something these athletes can actually eat. How can you cook for 150 people without any butter? It doesn’t help that my phone beeps every ten minutes.
Jon: What are you wearing?
Me: I’m over my 200 texts - I’m sending you my phone bill this month.
Jon: Come down here.
Me: Work - literally feeding the homeless right now.
Jon: Movie later?
We go to the megaplex, Jon with a baseball cap pulled all the way down over his face. I buy tickets from the automated machine – we didn’t look at the schedule, so I get whatever is starting next. It’s a romantic comedy that’s been out a few weeks and the auditorium is almost empty on a Wednesday night. We sit in the back corner and make out the entire time.
“You’re killing me, Jon,” I pant. My bottom lip is still between his teeth.
“Tsk, tsk,” he scolds, hand up my shirt. “Patience.”
I slide my palm up his the inside of his thigh and his whole body tenses. I giggle into the kiss and stop just short of a home run. He’s having just as much trouble as I am.
We get hot chocolate – sugar free, of course – and walk down Michigan Avenue. It’s perfect fall weather, crisp and calm, the promise of winter blowing in off the lake. Jon’s hand is warm in mine. We take the longest possible route to the car, but I know Jon has practice in the morning. He starts the engine, then stops and looks at me. I have to look away, but he can see on my face that I’m about desperate for him to take me home. He tries to be cool, but ends up snorting a laugh. Then he drives toward my house.
“I’m going to watch porn and eat ice cream,” I announce when he pulls up to my building. “Then sleep naked. Tragically alone.” He puts his head back against the seat like he’s praying for strength. After a second, he unbuckles his seat belt. I reach over and stop him.
“Patience,” I tease. Then I slide as much of my body into his seat as I can and stick my tongue down his throat. It’s a delicious kiss, made even better by this tension we’re both playing with. Not that I can hold out much longer. When he’s gone, I take myself to bed and send him a text:
This ice cream tastes like you.
I skip the porn before I turn off the light – don’t need any help for sweet dreams tonight.
Thursday: three days until the Halloween party. I’ve promised myself that there’s no way Jon’s making it out of that night in those tight costume pants. Now I just have to get that far. Luckily work is jumping and it makes the time pass quickly. The Hawks have a home game and I am running late. I pull on a pair of Steph-approved jeans, ballet flats and a new sweater and sit next to Joanna, who's wearing a tank top. Only her.
She leans right in, giving me full view of the girls, with a conspiratorial whisper. “Have you heard?”
“What?” Jon doesn’t gossip, not that I’ve given his mouth a moment’s rest since he got home.
“Kaner’s back with Marie. He’s bringing her to the Halloween party.”
Oh great. Pat’s date hates me and she wants Jon. Why on Earth would he do that? But to be honest, Marie is hot and she’s not a stranger. The party is private, but photographers are allowed: if there’s any event all year that could get people in trouble, this is it. And Pat’s already had his fair share of that. If he thinks he can keep her in check, she’s a solid choice.
“Great. I’ll pack a taser,” I say.
The Hawks play well but just cannot get one past the Montreal netminder and lose 2-0. We tromp down to the lounge and when Jon finally turns up, he looks frustrated and annoyed. Then he sees me and his face lights up. Ashley’s right next to me – I haven’t told her that we’ve decided to go for it but she’s pretty quick.
“Fake my ass,” she snorts.
He comes close to me and I kiss his cheek. I can feel that he’s tired and it burns my body, making me want to lie with my arms around him and soak up that tension. But there’s really no time for that. The Hawks have a quick trip to Columbus tomorrow then back late at night. Saturday and Sunday, over the Halloween party, are honest-to-God off days.
“One more day,” I whisper when he puts his face into my neck.
“Fast forward,” he mumbles.
I show Steph my costume while we watch Friday night’s game on TV. She about faints.
“Did you tell him that I call him Officer Toews?!? Kat!!”
“I swear to God I did not tell him. Maybe he thinks of himself the same way!”
She stomps around like she doesn’t believe me – then drags out the perfect boots. They’re new and very trendy, coming right up over the knee and hitting my thigh. I’ve seen women around town wearing them, looking like dominatrixes in business suits. With my little orange jumpsuit they are killer.
“No stockings. You don’t need them. Jesus, Kat. I want to fuck you in that outfit.”
That sure is a lot of boot, I think. But he wanted it, he’s got it. I try out walking and dancing in them, and even jumping up and down when Sharpe scores a breakaway goal. The boots pass the test, though the shorts give me a few wedgies. The Hawks win 4-2 and Jon gets a goal and an assist. I leave him a message for when he gets on the bus:
Wait till you see my boots.
My phone rings late. I slap around my night table in the dark, knocking it into the bed and have to dig under the pillows. No point in looking at the number.
“Hey,” I mumble.
“Sorry to wake you. Just wanted to say goodnight,” he sounds tired too.
“No,” I shake my mind clear. “You wanted to say ‘put those boots on and come over here right now.’ Or maybe I wanted to say that. Do you have any boots?”
He laughs. “What were you dreaming about?”
Okay, sass. Flirt me back to sleep. “Those tight pants you’re wearing tomorrow night.”
“Kat, we actually have to get through the party you know.”
“Overrated,” I decide, pulling the blankets over my head.