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He let out a sigh. “I mean you know I love you, don’t you?”

There was that racing heart of hers. It was pounding so loudly in her chest that she wondered if he could hear it.

“I didn’t know it until you just said it.”

“Then I’m sorry I didn’t say it before. I’ve been trying to show it.”

“I guess I’m to blame too because I should have said it before now, but I was afraid to.”

“I don’t want you to be afraid of anything when it comes to me,” he said.

“I’m trying not to be anymore. Which is why I’m going to ask you to take me to your room.”

“Never be afraid to say that,” he said.He leaned down and picked her up.

“Whoa. What’s this about?”

“Cherishing,” he said. “I think I need to show you some more actions so you get the full effect.”

No one had ever cherished her before. Had put her first.

His mouth went to hers and started to kiss her slowly. Tenderly. Sweetly.

There was no way she had the breath to say a word and there wasn’t much to say either.

Thoughts went out of her head when he laid her on his bed and slowly undressed her until she was lying naked.

His mouth went to her breasts, one by one, kissing the puckered nipples, then sucking on one until she was squirming around.

“That feels so good,” she said.

“I want you to feel good. I want to be the one to do it to you.”

“You are the only person who has been able to do it so far,” she said. “No one has touched me the way you have.”

“Every man wants to hear that,” he said. “Every man wants to be that to a woman.”

Not in her world, but she’d never say that.

Maybe it just took this long for her to finally find it.

Or was it the lore and legend of this island? Fate? Love at first sight?

He slid down her body kissing and licking so agonizingly slow that she wanted to grab his head and push him to where she needed him the most.

But he knew what he was doing and he’d get there and did.

He spread her wide and started to kiss and suck on her there as he did her breasts.

“You taste so good,” he said.

“It can’t be nearly as good as it feels. Duke. I’m on the pill.”

He stopped what he was doing and looked up. “You are?”

“Yes. I’ve been on it for years. I just always had it as a form of backup. But I want to know what it feels like without that other layer of protection. Only if you want to. I’m clean. I swear.”

She’d never gone without a condom before. Maybe it was because she thought if she accidentally got pregnant she’d be a bigger disappointment to her parents than she’d felt at times.

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