Do-Over My Second Thing
I thought I was SOOOO clever putting this puppy under a cut, but apparently my settings prevented A LOT of people from reading beyond the first paragraph. My apologies. I am re-posting it without the cut to see if that helps. Sorry for clogging the dash of all of those who have already read this. Thank you all for your support and sweet comments.
Three weeks had passed in a flash. Caitriona was packed and gone, leaving LA behind for another grand adventure, this time in Scotland. She regretted leaving Eddie, but until she was more stable and settled in Glasgow, she was travelling light, like she had in her modeling days. Maybe if they got a second season she’d think about putting down actual roots and Eddie could become a posh European cat. Right now Cait was holding on for dear life, trying to keep up with everything that came whizzing at her at lightening speed.
Was it really just three weeks ago that she spent a weekend cramming, trying to learn the basics of that book? And then the screen test. The stuff legends were made of, at least in her mind. Nothing could compare to that screen test. Sam Heughan had swept into her life like a raging storm and left her reeling. Everything since that day was a blur. It was like she was out of focus, or was a radio station just slightly ‘off’ on the dial. She couldn’t seem to settle. After their kiss, that intense, almost uncontrollable moment Cait had gazed into Sam’s eyes just as she would have after any screen kiss, but this time she was actually searching, looking to find the soul she had glimpsed so briefly during their encounter. As they wrapped that moment she was stuck halfway between her professional self, participating in a planned, intentional display of passion, and her private self, participating in something so wholly unexpected that she felt exposed and unmasked. She had lost her boundaries during that kiss, unable to determine where she stopped and Sam began. She was shaking and unable to control her breathing. They stood still, eyes locked, until Sam slowly lowered his forehead to hers and she felt herself relax into his calm center. She could have stood there for hours, merely breathing the same air as this man, and been content.
Shaking her head at the memory, Cait hurried to finish dressing, anxious not to be late. She was meeting Sam today for lunch. She hadn’t seen him since the screen test, although as soon as she was officially cast they had begun a lively and entertaining text exchange. She laughed more at his cheeky banter than she had with anyone in a long time. They had also discovered that they had several mutually favorite restaurants in London, and had agreed on sushi for today.
Caitriona approached the restaurant and saw that Sam was already sitting at a table outside, face deep in his phone. When he saw her approach, he immediately stood and greeted her with a kiss on the cheek. It shouldn’t have made her stomach clench like it did. She hadn’t realized how much she had wanted to feel his touch again. She held onto his hand for a moment as they exchanged greetings, and when Sam invited her to sit, he brought her hand to his mouth, grazing her knuckles with a kiss. Cait actually felt a little weak in the knees, and sat quickly, a little disgusted with herself that she was acting like a swooning teenager over the latest heartthrob. The thing was, she was pretty sure he was about to become the latest heartthrob. Sam wasn’t a widely known actor, but she was in London enough to have seen some of his stuff over the years, and she had to admit, those Tennent’s lager commercials had always made her laugh. She was pretty sure this man was about it hit it big.
They chatted and laughed their way through lunch, getting to know each other a little better, asking questions and enjoying opening up. Cait already felt like she knew Sam pretty well after all the texting they had done, but she was positively enthralled being in his presence. He had such an animated way of speaking. Eyebrows raising, mouth splitting wide with a grin, or opening ever so slowly as he unconsciously licked and sometimes bit his lip. Cait found herself unable to look away when he did that. Was he doing it on purpose? She didn’t think so but somebody needed to tell him to stop. It was positively lewd and rendered her absolutely unable to control her thoughts. The things she wanted to do with that lip… her thoughts trailed along thoroughly inappropriate lines. At least she felt they were inappropriate thoughts to be having about a coworker she would soon be spending nearly every day with, but she was having difficulty stopping. Well, to be honest, she wasn’t having any difficulty, because she hadn’t tried to stop.
After lunch, Sam suggested they go for a walk along the riverfront and Cait agreed, eager to prolong their time together. There were many things she should be doing in order to be ready for Outlander ‘boot camp’, but not yet. Not today. Today was about Sam. If Cait had anything to do with it, today was going to last as long as possible.
They talked first about their careers, comparing jobs, detailing favorite projects, laughing over bad experiences and speculating about the future. Talk moved next to childhood and family, the love, trauma and crazy baggage that everyone has. Cait felt a warm glow start in her stomach as Sam talked about his family, especially his mum. He was fiercely proud of her and more than a little protective. That was good. Sam had a healthy respect for women and the fact that he would show such devotion to the woman who had sacrificed so much of her life to make his possible showed that he had his priorities straight. The glow grew and started to spread.
Twilight loomed as they wandered in and out of shops, talking and browsing. Sam suggested that they stop for a drink and a bite. They found a cute little place and chose a secluded table where they could continue their conversation. As their drinks came, they naturally started sharing their plans for the future, their hopes and dreams. The conversation was moving from personal to downright intimate. Cait wondered at herself, sharing so much with a man that she had essentially just met. Except she hadn’t just met Sam. It seemed as if she had known him forever. When they kissed, and she caught that glimpse of his soul through his impassioned blue eyes, she felt as if her past and her future were colliding and then uniting in one eternal round. That nothing had ever existed before Sam, and nothing could now exist without him. She was intoxicated with the idea and felt desperate to touch his soul again, to connect with that calm center that made every nerve ending quiver and erased reason and sense from her mind.
She became aware that she was staring at Sam when he trailed
off mid-sentence and stared back at her, blue eyes deepened to dark pools of
emotion. He quirked an eyebrow in inquiry, and reaching, took her hand in his.
He held it, saying nothing, merely caressing her skin. Her quivering nerve
endings promptly exploded, and her heart sped up to such a rate that she feared
Sam could hear it beating erratically through her chest. She took a deep
breath, trying to think of something to say, when Sam murmured, “Are you ready
to go then, lass?” The slightest hint of his Scottish accent breaking through
his posh and urbane speech.
The question caught Cait off guard, so wrapped up in her own thoughts that she stuttered and stumbled for the briefest moment, before responding, “I’m ready to leave the restaurant, yes. But maybe not ready for the night to end?” Her eyes continued to bore into him, and she stood, beckoning him to follow. She walked out of the restaurant, not looking back, and felt Sam’s gaze on her. They walked, in unspoken agreement, in the direction of Cait’s hotel, holding hands, lost in their individual musings.
“I want you.”
That bold statement ignited the smoldering embers of her
body, fanning into full blaze the warm tendrils of fire that had accompanied
her all afternoon.
“It’s just that…”
Fear washed over her, extinguishing the flames, reducing them to coals, heavy and dark in the pit of her stomach. ‘But’, here came the excuse that he would use to crush her soul and walk away, leaving her a ruined shell. She knew that would be the result, even though she’d only known him for a few weeks, and only spent this one day with him. She readied herself to brush off his excuses with a flippant comment, to hold it together long enough to shut the door to her room and stumble to the bathroom where she could quietly fall to pieces.
Sam ducked his head not making eye contact, “It’s just that what I feel for you, I don’t just want you. I want to be with you, in every way possible. It’s too soon I know, and I know you’ll likely think me mad, but I’m in love with you. I’ve never felt this way before, never told a woman such a thing on what amounts to our first date, and I wouldn’t blame you if…”
Cait ducked her head below his so she could look up into his eyes. She saw fear, anxiety and desperation. But also determination, bravery and love. And without thinking, she reached up and cut him off with a kiss. Sam started in surprise, holding perfectly still for a moment. A moment longer and she felt his body respond, hands grabbing her and thrusting through her hair, pulling her mouth closer to his, pressing his hips to hers. The kiss went on for a long time, the fulfillment of the kiss they had had to surrender before. Cait felt the dampened tendrils burst in an eruption of fire and heat. She was losing herself again, surrounded by his body. Warmth and strength and tenderness all colliding in an urgency of need. She clung to the kiss, clung to Sam, willing him to understand through her body what she was feeling.
Sam eventually pulled away, eyes dark and stormy, lust and restraint warring in their depths. He took a deep breath, and Cait’s eyes were drawn to his mouth as his lips parted seductively. His tongue grazed over his bottom lip. She reached up and touched his lips, feeling the deliciously delicate skin. She leaned in for another kiss, and the softest groan escaped Sam’s lips before he swiftly claimed her mouth as his own. He grabbed Cait by the shoulders, stilling her. Holding her as if she would flee if he didn’t anchor her to this spot.
“Caitriona,” Sam panted, standing just inside her hotel room, “I’m not sure this is a good idea.” His body was pressed hard to hers, pinning her to the wall. “Not until we know what we want, until we know where this is going.”
All Caitriona knew was that she wanted to have his mouth on
hers. Consuming, being consumed, never stopping the swirling, dancing inferno going
on between them.