Page 7 of Changing Grades

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Back in the day Sienna was unattainable, someone who would have never looked at me twice. She was gorgeous and everyone expected so much from her. I could see her still wrestling with what was expected of her when confronted with it at the reunion. It was clear she didn’t regret where her path took her because of her daughter, but that doesn’t mean it’s easy to swallow.

The way Sienna lit up when talking about Callie made me want to meet her little girl. Part of me wishes she would have wanted our date tonight to include Callie. But I’m also looking forward to seeing if the connection I’m feeling is true before bringing a child in to the equation.

I don’t have a problem with Sienna being a single mom. I know how hard it was for my mom and it only tells me how strong my woman is. I can only hope when I meet Callie everything clicks into place the same way it did when I saw Sienna again.

When the door swings open, I find myself staring at utter perfection. “Wow,” I mutter as I take my woman in. She’s not dressed up in some fancy clothes, but she doesn’t need to be. The jeans she’s wearing are molded to her legs and the top she’s wearing shows off her cleavage. “You look amazing, Starshine.”

“Thank you,” there’s a hint of shyness in her voice which goes straight to my heart.

We’ve talked a little in the few days since the reunion because I couldn’t hold off and I’ve learned a lot about my woman. She hasn’t dated since she had Callie, who is the most important person in her life. If she deems me worthy to have a little space in her life, I’ll count myself a lucky man.

Without thinking about it, I reach out and pull Sienna into my body, our arms wrapping around each other instinctively. She lets out a little sigh of pure contentment and I feel it reverberate through me.

My hand slides up her back until I’m gripping the nape of her neck and tipping back her head so I can look into her eyes. In the light, the hazel of her eyes seems to sparkle, and I hope I can always make them do that. I kiss her softly, needing to feel the connection between us, but I keep it short because I do want to take her out and show her what being with me will be like.

“Ready to go?” She nods slowly and I let out a heavy breath. “Good because if we stand here much longer, I won’t be held responsible for my actions.” I lean down and run my nose along the side of her neck, loving the way she shivers in my arms. “I want you, Sienna, but I’m willing to wait until you’re ready because once you give yourself to me, I won’t be letting you go.”

“Griffin,” my name on her lips is a breathy moan that makes me rethink this whole date thing.

I shake my head to get rid of the lust fog rolling in, stand up straight, and offer her my arm so I can lead her to my truck. The small giggle that comes out of her is fucking dancing starlight. Fucking perfection.

I ask a few questions about the last few days as we drive to the restaurant, one I was able to get a table at because I have a connection to the owners. I want Sienna to have a good time and great food. I want her to see she’s worth the effort.

After parking, I lead her inside and she blinks a few times before leaning into me, “I thought it was hard to get a table here. I hope you didn’t do anything crazy to get in.”

I chuckle and kiss my woman’s temple because she’s fucking adorable. “I know the owners,” I keep my voice mysterious, just for fun, loving the way Sienna narrows her eyes at me.

It’s hard to focus on the food during dinner because I can’t stop watching how my woman’s mouth forms words and how much I want to kiss them until our clothes have no other option than to melt away. I don’t remember ever wanting a woman as much as I want her.

“I really appreciate you not pushing me to meet Callie already,” her voice is soft, but there’s a weight behind it I can’t ignore, and I push aside all my lustful thoughts.

We’ve been getting to know each other all night, the conversation flowing easily between us, but this is more. I can feel it. I reach across the table, past the dessert we’re sharing, and cover her hand with mine because I need to touch her, to have the connection.

“I want to meet your daughter because she’s part of you, but we’ll go at whatever pace you feel comfortable with, Starshine,” I tell her gently and watch as her eyes get glassy with unshed tears. I can understand them, she’s been on her own, even if she had help from her parents, for a long time. “I never thought I would be interested in a ready-made family, but then I saw you the other night at the reunion and I knew you were always meant to be mine.” Her eyes round as she looks at me and I swallow past the lump in my throat. “I’m sorry I wasn’t there to help you when you needed it. I’m sorry it didn’t happen sooner.”

The smile that curves my woman’s lips is soft and sweet. “I think meeting you again, and actually talking to you this time,” she sasses me a little, “happened at the right time. I’ve been so focused on Callie and being a good mom who can give her a good life. I don’t know if I would have been ready to appreciate what you seem to be offering.”

“Oh, I’m offering,” I growl the words, my cock throbbing behind the fly of my dress pants and causing Sienna to laugh, the sound husky and not helping matters at all. I take a deep breath and let it out slowly before I go on, “I understand what you mean though. You’ve been so strong, Sienna, and I hope you’ll let me help with some of the burden from now on. I’d really like to be the man you rely on.”

“I’d like that too,” she whispers the words, almost too softly for me to hear, but I do, and they make my blood sizzle.

I give her hand a squeeze. “I know we’re done eating, but I don’t want the night to end.”

The smile she gives me this time is wicked, conjuring up naughty thoughts I’m not sure she’s ready for, no matter how much I wish she were. “How about you show me the house you renovated? We talked about it so much at the reunion and I’d love to be able to see it.”

I narrow my eyes at her. “I was pretty sure you tuned out most of that conversation, especially when I started talking about band saws and grout.”

She laughs and shakes her head. “You were so passionate about it; it was easy to get swept up in your pride and excitement. I’m not super handy, but I know the difference between a Phillips Head and a Flat Head screwdriver, and I’d love to see the masterpiece you’ve created.”

I stare at her, wondering if she knows what she’s really asking me. I’m not sure if I can take her to my place and not take her to bed. Her gaze is steady and sure, heating the longer we’re staring at each other. It’s all I need to see.

Getting out of the restaurant and home seems like it takes forever. I try and stuff down my need for my woman and remind myself I’m playing for keeps. There’s no need to rush anything. I should give her a tour of the house, the one I hope she shares with me, one day, along with Callie.

I should.

I know it.

The moment the door closes behind us, something breaks loose inside of me. I pin her to the door, lift her with a firm grip on her thighs, and groan as she wraps her legs around my waist. Our bodies are pressed together, but it doesn’t feel close enough. Will anything be close enough?