Дженнифер Ли Арментроут
If There’s No Tomorrow
He threw his head back and laughed so hard his baseball cap fell off. “You’re just jealous you don’t have the voice of an angel.”
“You’re delusional!” I swung my arm out.
He was wicked fast, catching my wrist effortlessly. “No hitting. Jesus. You’re like a five-year-old.”
“I’ll show you a five-year-old!” I tried to yank my arm free, but he pulled forward at the same time, and I was off balance. Somehow, and I don’t know and would never understand how, I ended up half on top of him, half on the grass. My legs tangled with his, I was nearly in his lap, and we were eye to eye.
Except he wasn’t staring at my eyes.
At least it didn’t seem that way. It felt like his gaze was focused on my mouth, and my stomach hollowed. Time seemed to stop and I became aware of every part of him that was touching me. His arm still circled around my waist, and his hard thigh pressed against mine. His thin shirt was under my palm, and I felt his hard chest under that.
“I’m delusional?” he asked, voice raspy.
I shivered. “Yes.”
He lifted his hand, and I held my breath as he caught the hair in my face and carefully, so gently, brushed it back from my face. He left his hand curled around the nape of my neck.
Seconds passed, only a few heartbeats, and he made a sound I’d never heard before. It was raspy and low and seemed to come from deep within him. And I was moving without thinking, lowering my head, my mouth...
And I kissed Sebastian.
CHAPTER SIX (#u5ea2a9f1-2ef1-567e-9ddc-a86525520662)
The kiss was so light, like a whisper against the lips, I almost didn’t believe it had happened, but it had, and his arm was still around me, his hand still on the nape of my neck, tugging on the strands of my hair.
His mouth was still close to mine, so close I could feel every breath he took against my lips, and I wasn’t sure I was breathing, but my pulse was thrumming wildly. I wanted to kiss him again. I wanted him to kiss me back. That was all I ever wanted. But surprise held me immobile.
Sebastian’s head tilted to the side and his nose brushed mine, and I knew I was breathing then, because I sucked in a shallow breath. Was he going to kiss me? Harder this time? Deeper?
He suddenly jerked his head back, and before I knew what was happening, I was on my butt, in the grass beside him. We weren’t touching anymore. I started to speak, to say what, I don’t know. My brain had completely stopped working.
And then it struck me—what had happened.
Sebastian hadn’t kissed me.
I kissed him.
I kissed him and...and for the tiniest moment in the history of all histories...I thought he was going to kiss me back. That was how it felt.
But he hadn’t.
He’d dumped me onto the grass beside him.
Oh my God, what had I done?
My heart lodged somewhere in my throat as a thousand thoughts rushed through me all at once. I opened my mouth even though I had no idea what to say.
Sebastian jumped to his feet, his face pale and jaw hard. “Hell. I’m sorry.”
I snapped my mouth shut. Had he just apologized for me kissing him?
He swiped his hat off the ground and pulled it down on his head. He wasn’t looking at me as he took a step back. “That wasn’t—It wasn’t supposed to happen, right?”
Slowly, I lifted my gaze to his. Was he seriously asking me that? I had no answer, because it wasn’t like my lips had slipped and fallen on his. Drawing in a shallow, burning breath, I focused on the bright green grass. My fingers curled into the blades as his words sank in.
A sharp slice of pain lit up the center of my chest, flowing into my stomach like a thick oil spill, coating my insides.
“I, uh, I forgot I’m supposed to meet up with Coach before dinner,” he said, turning sideways. “We’ve got to head back.”
That was a lie.
It had to be.
He wanted to escape. I wasn’t stupid, but damn, that hurt, because I couldn’t remember a time when he’d ever wanted to run away from me.
The pain in my chest moved up my throat, choking me. A prickly heat hit my face as deep-rooted embarrassment welled up.
I was going to face-plant in the lake and just let myself sink under.
Numbly, I pushed to my feet and wiped the grass off my shorts. We didn’t speak on the way back to the Jeep, and oh God, I wanted to cry. The back of my throat burned. My eyes stung. It took all my willpower not to break down right there, and my heart ached in a way that was far too real for it not to have cracked open.
Once inside, I buckled myself in and focused on taking deep, even breaths. I just needed to hold it together until I got home. That was all I needed to do. Once I got there, I could curl up in bed and sob like an angry baby.
Sebastian turned the Jeep on and the engine rumbled to life. The radio kicked in, a low hum of words I couldn’t make out.
“We’re...we’re okay, right?” he asked, his voice strained.
“Yeah,” I said hoarsely, and cleared my throat. “Of course.”
Sebastian didn’t respond, and for a few seconds I could feel his gaze on me. I didn’t look at him. I couldn’t, because there was a good chance I would start crying.
He shifted the Jeep into Drive and pulled off onto the road.
What in the world had I been thinking? Never once had I acted on anything I felt for Sebastian. For the most part, I played it cool. But now I’d kissed him.
I wanted to rewind time.
I wanted to rewind time to feel those brief seconds again because I was never going to get the chance to feel that again.
I wanted to rewind time and not kiss him, because it had been a big, huge mistake.
I knew that our friendship, our relationship, would never be the same.
* * *
By Wednesday morning, my temples ached and my eyes hurt, but I actually hadn’t cried yet. I thought I would, especially when I’d barely been able to force down the bread-and-onion-filled meatballs at dinner last night. Mom had noticed, but I sidestepped her questions by saying I wasn’t feeling well after the early practice in the morning. Later I couldn’t even read. I just lay in bed, curled on my side, and stared at the balcony doors, pathetically waiting for him to show up, for him to text—for something. Anything. And there was nothing.