His for Keeps(7)

By: Theodora Taylor

“It’s time for you to go.” His voice was barely above a feral whisper at that point.

He was right. I should go. I should run. But something inside of me still couldn’t give in.

“No!” I practically spat back at him. “You can’t make me.”

Something flashed across his face then, a look so mean, it made my heart go into free fall, and my mouth open to take back what I’d just said.

But then he kissed me. And the kiss was somehow scarier than him pinning me against the wall or the mean look that came before it.

It felt like I’d been unexpectedly pushed into a boiling kettle, and my whole body was instantly consumed by heat. I could feel him. Not just his lips, and hands, and thin body, but the stuff on the inside, too. All his rage and anger. All his sadness, as he dragged his lips over mine.

I could also feel his long length pulsating at my core, despite the layers separating our actual flesh. Feel it and want it like I’d never wanted any other boy’s thing inside of me before.

I suddenly found myself wishing my hands were free. I wanted to feel it for real. Wanted to feel him for real. I rolled my hips underneath his kiss, trying to get to the part of him I wanted inside of me. My new body had gotten so hot, so fast I couldn’t even remember to play it cool like you’re supposed to when it comes to boys.

I just wanted to. I just wanted him. I just wanted to with him…

“Dammit, Beaumont,” Colin said, his hand squeezing my wrists where he still had them pinned above my head. “This is crazy. We’ve got to stop.”

I tried to ignore him. Tried to catch his lips again. He wanted me. I knew he did, knew this couldn’t possibly be a one-sided thing.

But he ripped his lips away from mine.

“You’re one of Mike’s girls,” he reminded me. “And you’re from Beaumont. You don’t have any business being here, doing what you’ve been doing with Mike—what you almost did with me.”

“My mom needs this job, so this house is my prison.” He shook his head, and it was hard to tell if he was still talking to me or himself when he said, “But I’ve only got a year left on my sentence before I can go away to college. It ain’t worth it.”

Colin released my hands and drew back, looking at me like I was a pile of trash that had just walked out of a dumpster and tried to convince him to do it with her.

“You ain’t worth it.”

Those words, more than any he’d said before, cut me bad. So bad, I couldn’t answer. Couldn’t think of anything to say in my defense.

Then he drove the knife in even deeper, pointing at me, as he said, “You need to git.”

This time, he didn’t wait for me to say no again. Just wiped his hands on his threadbare jeans and headed up the stairs. Leaving me to stand there on that wall, still shaken to my very core by our kiss, still cut raw by his words, as I watched his stork-like body disappear.

The sound of his receding footsteps was soon followed by the slam of the back door. And I was left with no doubt whatsoever in my mind that I wouldn’t ever see the housekeeper’s son again.

But I was wrong about that.

I did see him again. Just a couple of years later, on my grandma’s 35” TV.

Turned on CMT one day, and there he was. At least, I was halfway sure it was him. The guy singing on my grandma’s TV looked like a suped up version of the one who’d kissed me on that hot Alabama summer night. His hair was no longer stringy, but fell in gorgeous waves that shone like spun gold underneath the studio lights. He’d put on quite a bit of muscle. I mean, he wasn’t muscle bound like Beau Prescott, but he definitely wasn’t a bag of sticks anymore either. I could see how well defined his body was under the long-sleeved Charlie Daniels Band varsity t-shirt he wore. He also still had those pretty blue eyes, and that good ol’ southern boy smile, both of which he unleashed on the audience as he sang.

Colin, the housekeeper’s son, was, I realized as I watched him singing on my grandma’s TV, drop dead gorgeous. The nerdy air he’d carried with him had completely disappeared, right along with his glasses.

And the song he was singing wasn’t bad either.

His voice, I figured, was just a little better than okay, but I had to give it to him for his lyrics. They were excellent. And for somebody who used to be in the Alabama Youth Symphony, he knew how to play one hell of a country guitar. But apparently he hadn’t completely abandoned his violin. Halfway through the song, he put down the guitar and performed the fiddle solo himself, which was not something a lot of country singers did. In fact, that’s what made Charlie Daniels a legend.