“Would you hurry the fuck up?” I grumble, looking at my watch again as I lean against the counter in her apartment.
“Shut it! It’s not my fault I’m not ready, you should have been more specific about the time!” she yells back from her room. I watch from the kitchen as she pulls a navy blue hoodie over her head, covering a thin gray tank top. Good thing, I might not have made it to practice with skin like that left showing.
She sighs, pulling her unruly mane out. “Alright, let’s go,” she grumbles, grabbing her keys off the counter and her messenger bag of the bar stool.
“You sure you don’t want to wait another 10 minutes? Hell, half an hour and you can see me do suicides for being late to practice,” I grit out.
“Look,” she says whipping around before we can get to the elevator, those emerald eyes glaring at me, her hands on her hips, “Next time, tell me when you are going to show up at my door step! That way, not only will I be showered and decently caffeinated, I will be ready to leave!”
“Fine! I just assumed that you got up before 9:30,” I sigh sarcastically.
“Well, you know what happens when you assume,” she sighs, pulling a tube of Burt’s Bees from her pocket and releasing it’s minty scent as she applied it to her full pink lips. I look to her with an eyebrow cocked waiting for the answer, my eyes focused on those luscious lips, “You have to deal with me.”
I sigh and look over to her, as she presses the button for the elevator and stands with her arms across her chest and an annoyed look on her face. I had told her yesterday that I was taking her to lunch and that I want her to watch our practice. I, however, forgot to mention practice was at 10:30. When I came to pick her up at 9:30, I woke her up.
“Eh, seeing you in your pajamas was worth it,” I smirk, remembering her opening the door in a sleepy haze with an oversized penguins shirt and black rimed glasses on, her raven mane a mess of sexy curls.
“It was on the floor, it was the first thing I picked up!” She says exasperated, throwing her hands in the air.
After I told her she had 10 minutes, she rushed away from me to get ready, giving me a glimpse of the number 25 on it and my last name on top of her t-shirt. I gave her just enough time to change into a hoodie and worn out jeans and spend 5 minutes in the bathroom doing the essentials. She just had time to put in her contacts and I watched in the mirror as she swiped on a coat of mascara, making fun of her “make up face” as she did so. She looked almost like a college kid on her way to class, dressed in an old beat up Penn State sweatshirt, tattered jeans, well worn black pair of low top converse, and her leather messenger bag that looked like it had gone through the war. Perhaps I should have given her more time to get ready. But she looked damned sexy as is.
“So what you’re saying is that you sleep naked…” I grin, this was fun.
She lets out a small laugh, before that sexy siren smile splashes on her face and her green eyes deepen mischievously.
“Yup,” she replies, boarding the elevator
My eyes widen and I have to suppress a groan as she chuckles and pushes the button for the ground floor. I could just imagine that tanned skin and curves against her blood red sheets. It was enough to make my cock twitch.
I was kidding! I didn’t think she would confirm it!
“Jesus, Maggs,” I let out a groan, tugging on my hair slightly as I follow her.
She chuckles and looks up to me with a smile, “What’s the matter Talbot? You asked and I gave you an honest answer,” she smiles widening her eyes innocently. But by the smirk on those sassy lips, I could tell she knew what she was doing to me.
“You better watch it Maggs,” I warn taking a step toward her, backing her into the elevator wall.
“Or what Talbot? What are you gonna do?” she asks, taking a slight step forward and almost closing the distance between us.
She has to tilt her head to look up to me with those mischievous green eyes and her hands on her hips challenging me. I look down to her, feeling my eyes gravitate away from her emerald eyes, to the pink sarcastic smirk she was sporting. Her mint and pepper scent was clogging my brain from being this close to her. The warmth from her small body radiating into mine as one delicate looking hand touches my chest lightly, making me jump.
“That’s what I thought,” she replies smugly, pushing back on my chest and forcing me to take a step back, “You’re all talk,” she laughs shaking her head.
Suddenly, I find myself reaching over to flip the switch to hold the elevator and before she can react, my hands are on her hips, pushing her into the aluminum of the elevator wall. Her head whips up, her eyes holding shock and a very pissed off look.
“Or, Maggie Sutherland...” I smirk at her, bending my head down towards hers.
I stop just before my lips touch hers, as I can hear her inhale, holding her breath waiting for me to close the space. As temped as I am to do just that, I hold it together, moving my lips as they hover over her jaw line, before reaching up to tuck her hair behind her ear.
“... You are going to get a lot more than you bargained for,” I whisper in her ear, allowing my warm breath to help me in the temptation.
I watch as she looks up to me with a heat lusty stare before it slowly diffuses out of her and she glares at me. Then I move away and flip the switch back up on the elevator to turn it on.
She exhales quietly before gathering herself and rummaging around in her bag. I stand smirking as the elevator doors open, thinking I had stunned her out of a smart-ass comment.
The elevator doors ding open as she pulls what she was searching for out of her bag.
“Tic Tac?” she asks with a smirk, holding out the little plastic box with the tiny mints inside.
I just stare at her, my mouth hanging open, what a little bitch.
“Would you stop?!” I snap, batting his hands away from my neck.
“Your tag is out, I’m trying to fix it. “ he says frustrated.
“Maybe I want it that way,” I counter, shooting him a glare.
He stands in front of me and rolls his eyes, before reaching out again, to fix my tag.
“Stop!” I huff, stepping out of reach and pushing my tag back into my shirt again myself, “There happy? Now get to practice,” I growl pointing to the locker room door that is just a few feet away from us. Jimmy shaking his head and chuckling at our banter.
“I’m going, I’m going,” he grumbles, rolling his eyes at me, “I’ll call you as soon as I’m out of the shower. We’re going to the Pig and Fiddle for lunch, so be ready to go. And if some of the guys go with us, be nice.”
“When am I ever not?” I sigh dramatically.
He throws hid head back and lets his laughter echo off the walls of the arena. His laughter was kind of infectious, I think as I find myself smiling.
“See ya later, Maggs,” he says, pausing and looking down at me.
I look back up to him curiously; his blue eyes were a rather brilliant blue at the moment. I shake the feeling wondering if it was something on my face that was causing the look. I know I had gotten ready quickly; did I have toothpaste on my face? I was about to ask, when he suddenly bows his head down pressing his lips quickly to my cheek before walking off into the locker room. I felt the spot he his lips had brushed tingle and found myself trying to suppress a blush? What was that?! I resist the urge to touch the place where his lips just were and quickly brush it off.
“I hope you skate so hard you puke!” I clear my voice and call out to him sweetly, grinning at Jimmy before finding a place in the stands to watch the action.
I plop down in an arena seat situated higher up and looking directly at center ice. After balancing my coffee on the chair next to me, I pull my unruly curls back into a loose bun so that they were away from my face, I didn’t really have time to get ready today, but it wasn’t like I couldn’t handle it, to be honest I rarely had time to look gorgeous in the morning. My laid back attire was usual for my off days, like today, and not that different from my workdays. I pull out the new iPhone I had recently purchased (and one that I had been dreaming of on my stay in Egypt) and check my email for the day, reaching over to get my coffee and sipping it cautiously. Allowing my mind to wander.
What the hell was that in the elevator?! After we had gotten in the car, it was as if nothing had happened. But the warm spot between my thighs was a reminder that it had indeed happened. Max had been dangerously close, and I thought for sure he was going to kiss me. And the scariest thing was, I’m pretty sure I would have let him!
His blue eyes turned that stormy gray color and the musky smell of his cologne was a definite turn on. As soon as I put my hand on his solid chest I regretted it. The warmth of his skin through the flannel shirt he was wearing almost burned and the solid muscle made me want to sneak my fingers between the buttons. His lips ghosting along my jawline was enough to make my breath catch, and when his warm breath hit my ear, I almost lost my composure right there. Max Talbot was damned tempting.
I groan at my thought, they were wandering too much in the wrong direction.
I hated when he messed with me like that. I know I may have crossed over some line, but now that I knew where it was, I wasn’t going to cross it again. I couldn’t. Max and I were better off in the friend zone, and kissing was in a sure fire way to get kicked out of there. Besides, he was just fucking with me. It didn’t mean anything, right? I mean, come on, it’s Max! He can go get some chick at the bar if he wants a lay. He wouldn’t spend this time trying to get in my pants, right?
I sigh, trying to not let it get to me. I had to just put it out of my mind. God I needed to get laid. Get all this hormonal shit out of my system.
A few stands away from me I could see a group of girls that seemed to be only a few years younger than me. There were about 4 of them that had put a lot of effort into their appearance for today. Hair either perfectly straight or in tumbling waves, low cut shirts under winter jackets and jeans tucked into ugg boots. They weren’t fake, like the girl that was with Max the day I bumped into him at the pub. They were the perfect little snow bunnies, all bundled up to watch the boys practice. And although they were in an ice rink… it was the end of October, the winter apparel wasn’t needed. I watch as they all gasp and giggle with excitement as the boys take the ice, skating in circles to warm up their legs. Crosby takes the ice they all shriek with joy, causing my not fully caffeinated head to throb.
“Jesus Christ…” I murmur, pushing on one of my ears, those voices could break sound barriers.
I watch as Max skates out, a wad of bubble gum in his mouth. He looks up to the stands as he skates over to Crosby. He talks to him briefly, before pointing up in my direction and grinning like a buffoon. I just roll my eyes, choosing a small salute, thinking that flipping him off wouldn’t be very appropriate. He grins back before going to talk to his other teammates.
I see the girls giggle with excitement.
“Can you believe it?! Max Talbot looked up at us!” one of them gawks, the other girls squeal in excitement.
“Oy,” I groan as my palm hits my forehead, this was going to be a long practice.
Suddenly Flogging Molly sounds through the arena. I furrow my brows before I recognize the song, Swagger. I grin and pull my phone off the chair beside me, a picture of my second half and I looking back at me.
“Don’t know where I’m going. Don’t know where…” My ring tone sings.
“Paddy!” I grin excitedly into the phone.
Sid steps foot on the ice and I hear a loud shriek go up in the stands, I chuckle and step out after him. I look up to them, thinking as I chew the sweet pink bubble gum. 4 little budding puck bunnies. I chuckle, knowing the kid wanted nothing to do with the little tarts, he was tied down by his life, he had to watch where he lays… or with whom he lays. Wouldn’t trade him for the world. I grin still looking in the stands, thinking that maybe I could have one of those tonight. I look further into the stands and spot the spitfire who had accompanied me to practice. She sat rolling her eyes at the other girls and drinking her coffee, no doubt cursing them in her head… hopefully it wasn’t out loud.
Before I walked into the locker room, I took a risk, taking a step further and kissing her cheek. I walked into the locker room quickly, afraid that she would come to her senses and break my nose.
“Hey Crosby, I see your posse is here!” I chuckle skating over to him.
He smiles slightly, almost shyly, but not looking up to the stands, knowing that it would set of their squeals.
“You jealous Max?”
“Of you?! Pfft, you wish. I got my own onlooker today,” I grin, pointing up to the raven haired beauty, next to them.
“Maggie?!” he asks following my hand, as she gives a small salute, “I thought you didn’t do relationships.”
“I don’t, we’re just friends.”
“Uh huh, I could say that and it would be true, but when you say it, it just means you want to get in her pants,” he replies rolling his eyes and taking a lap around the rink.
“So Max,” Letang says, “If why you spending so much time on Maggie, eh? You never work this hard to get a girl for one night.”
“Because Tanger,” I chuckle, “This is one that is worth pursuing. And I need to check her off my bucket list.”
“She’s on your bucket list? Max, that’s gross,” Marc says next to me.
“Not a bucket list. Just the one that got away,” I laugh, pulling off my elbow pad and chucking it in my bag, “I need a bit of a challenge every once in awhile.”
I finish my shower, putting on a flannel shirt and jeans before heading out into the lounge to pick up Maggie.
I find her grinning wider than a Cheshire cat, bouncing excitedly on the balls of her feet.
“Hey Maggs, we have to wait for a few of the boys. You liked practice that much?”
“Eh, it was ok,” she waves off quickly, “But guess what?”
“What?” I ask grinning, her attitude infectious.
“Paddy is coming to visit!” She grins, almost bursting at the seams.
“Paddy?” I ask, furrowing my brow before they raise in surprise, “You mean your brother, Paddy?”
“Yup! He’s coming to see me for a few days next week! I told him you were living in Pittsburgh too and he said he wanted to see you,” she giggles, clearly excited.
I swallow the sudden anxiousness in my throat.
“He wants to see me?” I ask slowly.
“Yup! I know you have a road trip next week, but will you be back by Thursday?”
“Uhmm, I dunno Maggs, I’ll have to see…” I reply slowly.
The last time I saw Padraig Sutherland, he threatened to turn me inside out if I came near his little sister again.