Marissa has decided to live without sex, since it's brought her nothing but trauma. At twenty-three, she'd rather just be celibate, and not even her best friend, Caleb, will change her mind.
After spending his childhood touring as a concert cello prodigy, Caleb is experimenting with living a stable life. For years, he has refused to commit to anything except his friendship with Marissa, but his feelings for her have never been romantic. Until recently.
So now he has to show her that sex doesn't have to hurt.
“Go away,” she said, swatting Baron on the chest lightly. “I’m dancing with Caleb now.”
Grinning, Baron strolled off the dance floor, looking ridiculously pleased with himself.
Caleb watched him depart and made a sound in his throat, one that could almost have been a growl.
Something about the guttural sound made Marissa shiver.
“Caleb,” she began, positioning herself for their dance. “You really shouldn’t let Baron…”
“Shh.” He slid his arm around her waist and pulled her close to him. “No talking. Just dancing.”
Shrugging, Marissa decided that would be just as well. She had a lot to think about anyway.
Not that she was going to seriously consider that nonsense of Baron's. Really. Caleb couldn’t be interested in her that way. Not sexually.
Sure, he was acting rather bizarre, but it was probably prompted by the challenge Baron posed. It was just some silly, masculine, dominance thing. It wasn't actually about her. At least, not in that way.
Caleb’s gaze was mesmerizing in its intensity. It felt like his silver-gray eyes scorched every part of her body they focused on, and he seemed to be focusing everywhere—all over her body—as they went through the motions of the dance.
She shuddered again, and at her shudder he pulled her even closer, so that her breasts rubbed against his chest every time their hips swayed together.
She could actually feel her nipples. Feel them. Was suddenly scared that Caleb could feel them too.
They’d danced together before, but it had never been like this.
He’d never held her this close or stared at her this deeply.
Baron had said that Caleb looked at her like he wanted to swallow her whole.
Marissa tore her eyes away. That couldn’t be right. They were friends. Just friends. Had never been anything else. Why would Caleb all of a sudden want to change things?
It felt like she was burning up, and she knew her cheeks must be blazing red.
Her lips felt parched, so she slid her tongue out to lick them nervously. Tried to moisten them enough so they wouldn't feel so cracked. But then she caught a look on Caleb’s face—one she'd never seen there before—and quickly returned her tongue to her mouth.