Page 61 of Eight Dates

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“You want some sweats or something?” Ben asked, realizing that Nova had come over with nothing.

Nova looked over his shoulder and smiled. “You want to see me in your clothes, don’t you?”

Ben flushed. He hadn’t really thought about it that way until Nova brought it up, but now he burned with the desire to put another mark on Nova—even if this one could be stripped off. “Is that weird?”

Nova dropped his towel, his movements far more confident than Ben had ever been. He preened a little as Ben stared and put on a little show as he bent over at the waist to rummage through the dresser. Ben wasn’t hard, but a low hum of desire sang under his skin as he watched Nova slip into a pair of his boxers, some black jogging pants, and a T-shirt.

“You look so good,” Ben rasped.

Nova smiled and ran a touch along Ben’s jaw. “So do you.”

Ben realized he was still in just a towel, and a quiet fantasy formed in his head of Nova keeping him naked all day long. That wasn’t something he was ready to negotiate just yet, but it was something he might be brave enough to mention soon.

Leaning in to take a kiss, Ben finally moved past his lover to get dressed in his sweats, and then he snagged Nova’s hand and pulled him to the kitchen. “I got a ton of stuff, but I also grabbed pastries from the little coffee bar in case we both felt lazy.”

Nova smiled and let out a happy hum as he tasted the latte. “Is there anything special you need to do today?”

Ben shrugged. “I’m off work. I should probably look over a few of my lesson plans, but—”

Nova rolled his eyes and stepped close, putting his hand at Ben’s waist. “I meant for the holiday. Since it doesn’t end until sunset and you get to be all mine for the last night. Day. Whatever.”

Ben laughed under his breath and shrugged. “Not really, no. It’s not a big ritual holiday or anything. Sometimes my mom feels like my brother and I are being neglected, so she’ll send gifts, but usually, we get a couple phone calls over the week and maybe some leftover chocolate that my cousins didn’t eat.”

Nova’s smile was soft. “So, not Jewish Christmas.”

Ben grimaced a little, but he didn’t feel his usual annoyance with the question. “Not Jewish Christmas. Jewish Christmas is Chinese food and the movies on December twenty-fifth.”

“Now, that sounds like my kind of holiday,” Nova said and kissed along his neck. “But you’re still mine for the day, aren’t you?”

“I’m yours for as long as you’ll have me,” Ben admitted. And maybe he should have kept that to himself because it sounded a lot like promising forever far too soon, but Nova just moved in closer and kissed Ben’s neck a little harder.

“Good. But I hope you realize that’s going to be a long time. I’m talking nursing homes, and mushy food, and oxygen tanks.”

“That sounds…” Ben said, then trailed off.

Nova pulled back and cupped his cheek. “What? Ridiculous?”

“Perfect,” Ben whispered. He wrapped his hand around the back of Nova’s neck and held him there for a long kiss with visions of their future. “It sounds absolutely perfect, and I’m going to hold you to that.”

Nova kissed down his neck, then whispered against his pulse, “I hope you do. Because I’m yours too.”

And God, Ben felt that. A surge of something like love that would take them from now until forever, where not even wild horses could drag them away.