Chapter 9

I was the first of us to wake up, the sunlight that had broken through the gap in between my curtains and had brightened up my entire bedroom.

There was something about the sun, it always put me in a really happy mood and the fact that I had the sexiest man I had ever seen fast asleep sprawled out next to me, just made me all that much more content.

At some point in the night we had somehow managed to kick the covers onto the floor.

My head was balanced on his chest, his hard, solid oh-so-sexy chest my favourite chest in the whole wide world and I could feel his warm breath fanning my forehead. At that moment I could have easily fallen into the easiness of contented sleep. But I resisted the temptation, I wanted to savour this moment of our first real morning after together.

I flipped over so that I was laying on my stomach and rested my head gently so not to wake him on his muscled arm. I quickly looked up to check I hadn't woken him, but he appeared to still be asleep, he looked so adorable I felt a strong urge to hug him tightly just prove to myself he was for real but I settled for sliding one of my legs over his air ruffled own.

I looked up again and he was still fast asleep, I felt a little annoyed because I wanted him to wake up now I reached up to lightly feel his light morning beard with my finger tips. I preferred him with the stubble, he looked real and raw and all mine for the taking.

His arms tightened around me in his sleep and snuggled in to better soak in his natural smell. My fingertips ventured to out to trace his lips I loved so much, the lips that had done wondrous things to me last night and I snuggled even closer to him reliving the memories. My leg rose to curl around his hips and his free slowly slid down my back to not so subtly rest on my backside.

"Ethan?" I whispered but he didn't reply. I sighed and decided he was still asleep it was just that his body had subconsciously responded to my touch. The thought made me feel all fluffy and could feel the heat in my cheek bloom and I was glad he hadn't seen it because he'd had just laughed and made me feel silly.

But then the hand that had rested on my behind tightened and I knew for sure he was definitely awake. I decided to be adventurous and push the boat a little bit.

I rose to straddle him slowly wearing a small teasing smile on my lips, he was still pretending to sleep and I would have believed that he really was if it wasn't that I could feel his entire body tensing as I settled on top of him.

I could feel myself evolving into the role of confident seducer and ignored my thoughts of insecurity pushing them to the back of mind mind. As I seduced my boyfriend I didn't want to feel frumpy I wanted to embody all that he would find sexy, all that had supposedly attracted him to me. He loved it when I acted confidently and surprised him so that was what intended to do.

I could see even his face was tensing at the prospect of what I would do to him. He looked like he was concentrating really hard not to give any signs that he was awake. His cover was blown of course I was onto him, mentally and physically.

I leant towards him and I heard his breath hitch softly, "I know you're not sleeping baby" I more or less purred my voice sounding slightly husky still from sleep

"Jas?" He said blinking his eyes open

"Oh quit the act" I said laughing and kissed him softly on the lips. His hands found my hips and squeezed gently but he carried on the pretence

"What act baby?" he said innocently

I stared at him questioningly for a moment and he stared back smiling a little.

"Whatever" I said airily "lets do it!" I said grinning

He laughed "Lets do it? Do what?"

I glared at him "Don't act like you don't want to. I can feel you want to. I've been feeling you wanting to" I said knowingly

"Mmm" he murmured unabashed. "I still feel a little sleepy actually" he said lifting me up off of him, I was so shocked I could only stare wide eyed. "5 more minutes hmm?" he mumbled distractedly and turned away facing away from me.

Alarm bells went off in my head and I felt my face grow intensely hot, I reached for his pillow making his head bounce on my bed "You're a jerk!" I said hitting him over the head with the pillow. I didn't stop until atleast the eighth time and I realised he was almost in tears from laughter.

I didn't get the joke though, it wasn't funny. My boyfriend had just rejected me, the morning after. Not funny.

I rose from the bed angrily and went to head for the door that lead to my bathroom. "Aw Jas, come on. I was just kidding" he said catching up with me. He caught my hand and pulled me against him. "Of course, I want you. I always want you baby" I sighed in relief and leant against him while he left kisses at the top of my head.

"I need to tell you something…" I said sighing; I had to be straight with him. I would never be able to keep up the charade that I was this self confident- self assured woman he most likely saw me as. I in so many ways lacked confidence, I needed assurance and I wanted him so much to take me as I was.

"What is it?" he asked softly speaking into my hair.

I turned around in his arms and looked up at him and met his gaze. "I know it's early-"

"Way too early" he said with a smirk brushing my wayward hair away from my face and combing them behind my ears with his fingers. I loved when he did that.

I smiled back unable to resist it "but I want to talk to you about something"

"Is something wrong?" he asked, frown lines appeared between his brows

"Well not really but um, yes kind of"

He reached for my hand and led me back towards me sleep roughened bed. We sat down and I looked at the floor feel silly for what I was about to tell him. He must have been able to tell I was getting increasingly worried by the minute because he reached for me as to sit me on his lap and it just made me feel worse.

"No Ethan" I said seriously and his frown deepened, he was getting increasingly worried. "Last night what we did, it was beautiful" I began reassuringly but he continued to frown "it was more than I hoped for, you are more than I ever hoped for, sometimes I look at you and I get so confused. I just don't get it, you're so perfect, you're sweet, funny and caring and I just don't understand ...why me?"

"What? J are you serious? You're perfect" he said incredulously

I sighed sadly "Look at me" I said pointing towards my face, my body.

"Perfect, beautiful" he said utterly perplexed

"Perfect are those skinny things you work with everyday-"

"No- no- no. Don't even go there Jas. Those girls are nothing next to you"

"You won't be saying that after a couple more weeks dating me. I'm boring. I'm nothing like you"

"You are just like me. I'm just like you"

"I've never been out of the United States, I don't speak French, Italian and Spanish, I don't-"

"That's enough Jasmine. If I wanted a carbon copy of myself sure we wouldn't be together. Sweetie I just want you" his eyes blazed that beautiful emerald colour that I loved. "Isn't that enough, isn't that good enough for you?"

"Yes, I know that, I knew that" I choked

"Then why were you trying to break up with me?" he said confused looking a little angry

"I wasn't I swear, I just um-want to tell you something, I want to come clean"

He held his hand up as if it to stop me. "Jasmine we all have a past" I frowned momentarily confused. What did he mean by that? I didn't have a past, not really, did he?

"No let me explain" I shook my head to arrange my thoughts and I waited a beat to decide the best way to put my emotions into words. "Okay see well, I was…involved with this guy back at university and well, he hurt me really bad. He broke my heart"

He was frowning again, he hadn't expected this "Before him there'd been no one else and after him there was no one else…until you. And although I can honestly hand on heart tell you I'm completely over him I still have a few scars. I can't help feeling self conscious and worried sometimes-"

"You think I'd cheat on you?" he asked and I winced at the harshness in his tone that let me know I had made him angry

"Um" I said uncertain of what to say, I wanted to be honest

"Are you kidding?!"

"I…uh, um?" I stuttered still uncertain of what to sayn

"You still think I'm this player who only wants to toy with you? JASMINE, ARE YOU FREAKIN' KIDDING ME?"

"No Ethan no of course not. I swear I don't think that" only half meaning the words but I didn't want to anger him further.

I didn't think he was a player and I didn't believe he was lying. I didn't trust that what we had would be enough for him, especially with him away all the time and not only away but away with beautiful models.

I rushed to assure him anyway despite all of my worries "It's just that sometimes I can get insecure and a little touché about some things"

"What kind of things?" he asked softly, his anger had disappeared.

I loved that, how he could be so mad one moment and you could give him little apology and he'd be back to normal again. He'd get over it, just like that, you'd be swiftly forgiven.

"Like when you push me away"

"I have never pushed you away!"

I couldn't help but blush a little feeling silly for even mentioning it "Right, forget it" I said ashamed of the annoying insecure voice chirping away in my head.

"You're so pretty Jas. When I saw you that day at the party, I just had to talk to you-"

"Ethan come on-" I whined feeling uncomfortable under his penetrating gaze

"You are pretty, your eyes your lips, your skin, your body" I went to interrupt but he shushed me by putting a finger to my lips "Sweetheart, it's not just the way you look it's the way you are. The way you move, the way you talk, the way you think, it all just pulls me in. And I could never get enough of you, just now you thought that was me pushing you away Jas?"

"Well…"

"Well I wasn't it was just a joke. I was just teasing you, believe this" he said grasping my shoulders and holding my gaze with his own "I want you all the time, I want you always. Baby you're freakin' hot, matter of fact last night was sizzling HOT"

I giggled at his dramatic enthusiasm and he leant in and kissed me softly. It was an earnest kiss and I knew he was reassuring me again letting me know he was for real. We flopped back on our backs bouncing a little on the mattress.

"So does this mean I'm not allowed to tease you anymore?" he said sounding a little sad

"No of course not, I was just being silly. I love it when you tease me, and I love teasing you too"

"Good, 'cause I'd really miss it…it's so us"

I couldn't help sighing wistfully at the mention of 'us'; me and him as an 'us', it sounded so official I curled into his side happily inhaling him deeply

"Why can't you be a sport photographer?"

He laughed surprised "Why would I want to be sport photographer?"

"You can't answer a question with another question" I hadn't meant to voice my thoughts but now that I'd let it slip I wasn't quite sure how to cover it up

"Who says?"

"I do"

"Oh well…"

I growled at his stubbornness "Must you complicate everything?"

But he only laughed and after a while said "Answer my question then"

"I asked the question first!"

"And I asked second!" he said high pitched mimicking me

"Are you serious?" I couldn't help laughing and hitting him on his hard stomach

He waited a moment before he spoke seriously "No I never considered sport photography."

"Okay" I said nibbling my lip hoping he wouldn't ask me why I'd asked

"Why did you ask me that?"

"I don't know…" I said unsure of what answer to give

"There must be a reason…come on J"

I tucked my head into his neck and curled into him again "It's just I wouldn't have to worry about beautiful models. You'd work with good looking, fit, athletic…men"

He was silent for a couple seconds "I was being silly ignore me, E" I apologised

"Jas, I do work with men not just women"

"I know, I know" I rushed to say

"You make it out like I'm completely surrounded by women 24/7 it's not true. And you have to stop worrying so much I promise I'll never cheat on you. I'd never intentionally hurt you like that. And I can see how much it would really hurt you if I did so I promise I won't. I'll never hurt you" I waited for the feeling of vulnerability at having him know how much his actions now affected me but it never came. I trusted him completely I could see it in his eyes, he would never intentionally hurt me like that.

I kept silent and I hugged him tighter not wanting to say something stupid again. I believed him, crazy as it sounded he really did want only me and out of all the girls he could pick, he chose me.

"Do you think I don't worry about you?"

"What do you mean?"

"You think I don't worry about you meeting other guys?"

"Huh?" I was confused, meet other guys where? I was completely blind to every guy right now

"Jas just because you don't see how beautiful you are doesn't mean no one else does. Jasmine, no more silliness okay? If this is going to work we have to trust each other" he said quietly

I sighed embarrassed "No more silliness…I love it when you call me beautiful"

"And I'm prepared to say it until the day you finally believe it because it's God's honest truth"

I sighed again "I'm going to really try and believe in it and I won't let what's in my past affect our future. I'm going to really try"

He said nothing, only hugged me closer, rubbing my back rhythmically. It felt so comfortable just laying with him, it felt like we'd been together for years. Our embrace and nothing to do with sex, just affection and I could feel myself falling for him.

Falling in love with him I had to admit to myself it had always been inevitability. I resisted the urge to pull back a little. Despite the feeling of naturalness I didn't know exactly how he was feeling about me, I knew he liked me, I knew he cared but I couldn't say how deeply those feelings ran through him and whether they were as deep as my love for him.

The thoughts began to torment my mind and I had to force myself to relax, he had fallen asleep and I wished to join him in the ignorance of sleep. I concentrated on the feel of his arms around me and the rhythm of his even breathing and before I knew it I had fallen asleep also.


A/N: Hiiii, I hope you enjoyed this chapter…or thought it was okay at least. I know it's a little short compared to the last few chapters sorry =/ ...I felt like the part that comes next would be best pushed to the next because it'd fit better.
There's a surprise to come because Ethan has a SECRET that will threaten their relationship.
Also I changed the rating, I didn't realise it was on 'M' before and I also changed the summary ...again. I don't think I'll ever be happy with it lol.
Next chapter up very soon I've been feeling a little skeptic about this story but I did some thinking and I kind of had an epithany about what I could do and boom, I'm excited again.