*Excerpt from Escape the Doubt (unedited and subject to change). This is a memory of Josh and Riley's first kiss when they were freshman in high school (before life turned love to shit). SOMETHING SWEET & UBER YUMMY! enjoy ;)
Josh and I were babysitting the brats otherwise known as our little sisters. It’s date night for our parents, which hardly ever happens being that only one of those couples actually likes the other. We were alone which was not unusual. Even our parents saw us as innocent friends. If they only knew what I saw when I looked at him. How I craved him then they might not have been as trusting.
I was busy making brownies. Baking was something I did when I was nervous and needed to keep my hands busy. Usually I write in my journal but Josh was here so... baking it was. I was mixing like a mad woman. I felt like that. What was I supposed to say to that? My best friend, the boy I wanted to be mine, wanted to kiss another girl. Not just any kiss, it would be his first kiss. That’s a big deal right?
I could say… “Good luck, hope you do it well” or better yet I could say… “Hope it sucks and she slobbers on you and you hate it, maybe even bites you accidentally and scares you to never do it again”. Who was I kidding? Biting his lip would only make her the best damn kisser ever. Ugh! I could feel his grin and for the life of me I didn’t understand why he was grinning. None of what he said made me happy.
Stir stir stir.
I finally said, “I heard Josh. I mean… I don’t know what you want me to say or why you’re telling me this.” “I’m telling you because what you think matters to me,” he threw out there. Mix mix mix. Honesty? Yes I think so. “Well I think I don’t like Laiken. I think she flirts with all the boys in school. I think the fact that she has already kissed three other boys while y’all have been hanging out say’s something. I mean she is so fake. She laughs at everything you say and seriously you’re not that funny. Well, I mean you are funny but not like all the time.” I rambled and realized I had said way too much.
He threw his head back and laughed. God, I loved his laugh. It was the best sound. “You’re adorable when you are like this.”
I poured the brownie mix into the pan and bent over to place it in the oven. When I stood up, I noticed he was looking at my butt. I set the timer ignoring why he was doing that. I placed my hands on my hips and tilted my head. “Like what exactly Josh?”
He smirked like he knew something I didn’t and locked eyes with mine. “Like that. Like you’re jealous.” He gestured at my posture.
I grabbed the spoon covered in brownie mix and held it up in front of me like a gooey weapon. “I’m not jealous Josh.” I soooo was. “Why would I be?” That’s right, faking nonchalance.
I licked the chocolate goodness from the spoon. Brownie mix was the best. He cleared his throat and swallowed hard. His eyes narrowed and he asked, “I don’t know Riley. Why would you be?” His eyes watched my mouth nervously lick the chocolate like he wanted a taste.
I rolled my eyes. “I’m not. You want your first kiss to suck, and it will because Laiken isn’t the right girl for you, then go for it. Have fun.”
His eyes flicked between the spoon and my mouth and a smirk crossed his lips like he suddenly had an idea I wasn’t privy to knowing. “Oh I’m sorry did you want some?” I asked holding out the spoon for him. His eyes were telling me something, giving me a clue. I dragged my tongue along my bottom lip erasing any left over batter.
He nodded but didn’t move. I went to pull the spoon back to my mouth but he grabbed my wrist holding the spoon in between us both as a hostage. My mouth formed an O as he slowly licked a trail up the spoon… damn lucky spoon I thought. I couldn’t help but watch his mouth the entire time. “Hmm,” he moaned like he thought it was delicious. I thought his lips probably tasted delicious too. Chocolate and Josh would be the best mixture of sweet. All these thoughts about Josh like that took me by surprise but I couldn’t help it. Something in me was changing. Shifting.
The air changed. He didn’t let go of my wrist. He watched my eyes watch his mouth and damn if he didn’t wickedly grin at me. He pushed up close to me. So close in fact that his chest meshed with mine and I suddenly forgot how to breathe. “Um, what are you doing Josh?” I whispered breathlessly.
He smiled, “Shhh… it’s okay. You just have a little chocolate right there.”
“Where?” I asked embarrassed but then he lowered his head and… oh hell. He moved the spoon back to the bowl and leaned in, his tongue softly licked a spot by the corner of my mouth. I couldn’t help but shut my eyes and softly moan. My body fell limp against the counter. I braced my hands on the edge just to keep my balance. It wasn’t until I felt the loss of his warmth that I knew he had stepped back and when I slowly opened my eyes I found him watching me with my lips parted wishing for his tongue to enter my mouth.
I puffed out the breath I wasn’t completely aware that I was holding. He was studying my face with a satisfied look. “I got it.” He smiled crookedly. “So about that first kiss. I could think of a way to make it not suck.” Oh I could too. I so could picture lots of ways.
I looked away from him, feeling the blush creep up to my cheeks as the image in my mind blazed. “How is that?” He stepped back into my space and gently tugged my chin to him, forcing me to meet his gaze. I was trapped in his beautiful hazel eyes that I didn’t notice him reaching into the brownie bowl and dragging his fingers all through the chocolate. He laughed and stepped back tapping my nose with a chocolate covered finger. “Gotcha.”
I squealed, “Oh my God. You are so dead, Joshua Parker.” I reached in and coated my own fingers in chocolate and began to chase him around the island wiping my hand along his cheek when I caught him and I was laughing hysterically as I did. He grabbed my hand before I could run away. My heart was racing. My breathing was fast. And I knew he was up to no good by the sinful little twinkle that danced in his hazel eyes. No good at all. My laughter fizzled out as something else took its place. Something unfamiliar, yet wanted so badly.
He took my messy hand and placed my index finger into his mouth sucking the chocolate clean. I felt dizzy. I could feel his tongue swirl around my finger and something in my belly clenched tight. I stumbled back, my back hitting something hard. He let my finger go with a pop and we stared at each other for the longest time. Not moving just breathing.
He tucked a curl behind my ear. “That was fun.” He smirked and my toes curled. Did he not see how he affected me? What the hell was that?
“I um… yea… I should get a napkin.” I knew it was such a stupid thing to say. I should get a napkin. No I should attack your face and lick it clean that’s what I should have done. I moved around him and wet a paper towel in the sink. He didn’t move. He just watched me with an unreadable expression. I reached up on my tippy toes and started dabbing away the chocolate mess I had coated his cheek with. He was motionless with the exception to the way his chest was rising and falling. “All clean,” I said as I softly smiled.
He grinned and took the napkin from my hand and began to gently wipe the chocolate off of my nose. Once he was done he placed his hands on both sides of me caging me in between his hard chest and the kitchen counter. “I want to kiss you,” he blurted out. Wait! What?
“I thought you wanted to kiss Laiken?” Stupid Riley. Stupid, stupid Riley, I thought again. Just shut up.
He shook his head back and forth, “Nah, you were right she isn’t the right girl. There is only one solution to making my first kiss not suck and that’s if you let me kiss you.” His eyes never left mine. I wanted to kiss him. But truth was Josh seemed to not really know what he wanted lately. I wondered if I kissed him did that mean Laiken no longer existed? “Stop over thinking it Riley. Can I kiss you?” he asked permission again knowing me so well. I was over thinking it.
I nodded. “Okay.”
“Okay?” his breathe feathered across my lips as I nodded again.
I trembled in anticipation as he lowered his mouth to mine. A gentle, soft, sweet peck at first was what he placed on my lips. As my hands reached up around his neck to pull him closer to me and I tangled his dirty blond hair in my fingers he groaned deep in his throat and his tongue teased my lips to open for him, allowing him to deepen this kiss. I was nervous. What if I did it wrong? What if my kiss sucked and kissing Laiken would be better? “What ifs” filled my head as my body was humming. I willed myself to shut up and parted my lips allowing him in and it was like our mouths were made for each other. My tongue began to dance with his and I wanted it to never stop. He tasted delicious.
It did stop though. Definitely not saved by the bell. The doorbell rang and we both jumped apart panting heavy and staring at the other in shock. It ended way too briefly for my liking. I felt on fire. Tingling in a way I wasn’t used too.
“Riley, Dean’s at the front door,” Tatum shouted loudly from the living room.
Josh raised his eyebrows at me probably just as curious as I was about why he would be ringing my doorbell. Dean was a tolerable pain in my ass, but was a friend nonetheless. I struggled to slow my breaths. Josh had completely composed himself as though he was unaffected completely. Like nothing amazing just happened. He left the kitchen and walked to the living room to open the front door. I followed in a cloud of confusion.