Copyright © 2012 Jess Dee
All rights reserved — a Samhain Publishing, Ltd. publication
“I’ve been working on a song,” he told Kaz. “One that isn’t coming together. Maybe you can help? Work out the next line?”
Kaz grinned in delight. “I have no idea if I can, but I’d love to hear the song.”
Seth grinned back. Then he looked up at Luke and sang the words to him. Again.
“Now, forever and always, we’re going nowhere.
“Quit dreaming, coz we’re already there.
“This is it, this will be all.
“If you think there’s more, you’re the fool.”
Luke glared at him. Seth’s heart pounded.
Kaz inhaled sharply.
He flicked his gaze back at her. “What do you think?”
“Um…” She bit her lip.
“C’mon. Out with it. Tell me the truth.”
“Fine. But I’m only telling you what I really think so you understand I’m treating you like a regular person and not a rock star.”
“Kaz, this evening alone, I’ve performed at a concert, been interviewed by two different radio hosts and spent half an hour with three fans who couldn’t see past the facade. I would love to be treated like a regular guy.”
“I hate it,” Kaz confessed with a big gulp of air. “It’s dark. Depressing. Almost like the words are shrouded in a mist of charcoal grey.” Her gaze met Luke’s, and Seth got a strong sense she’d made a connection between the words and the man. Perceptive woman.
Luke had picked up on it too. He shifted from one leg to the other, but his face remained impassive.
Seth tilted his head appreciatively. “Thank you for your honesty.”
“You don’t hate me for it?”
“Hell, no. If anything, I hate the song. I was explaining to Luke that it just didn’t work for me. Asked him to help me see it differently.”
Seth gazed at Luke. “He did. He has the knack. Always helps me to see things differently.”
“So, you have another version?”
Seth nodded. “But I’m stuck on the first verse, and Luke over here hasn’t had time to work on it further. I was hoping maybe you could help with the next one?”
“Go ahead, then. Sing it.”
Seth leaned forward, closed his eyes and plucked at the strings of his invisible guitar.
“Now, forever and always, we have each other.
“I am yours, and you’re my lover.
“This is it, you have my heart.
“We’ll build on it, it’s just the start.”
The verse was met by silence.
Seth didn’t open his eyes, but he knew Luke was glaring at him, just like he’d glared at him the last time he’d sung the words. With a mixture of frustration and desire and emotion Seth had not been able to identify.
“When I look in your eyes, I see the sun rising. A new day on the horizon.”
Seth’s eyes popped open.
Kaz hadn’t sung the words. She’d spoken them, but with each syllable, a shiver stroked up Seth’s spine.
He stared at her, and she stared back, seemingly as stunned as he was by her inventiveness.
“More,” he whispered.
Kaz’s tongue darted out to lick her lips, leaving them shiny and glistening. “Um…”
It was her turn to close her eyes. Seconds ticked by, minutes. Seth sat silently, waiting. Even Luke didn’t speak.
“You’ve been sent from up above,
“So paint my heart with colors of love.”
“Say it again,” Seth demanded.
Kaz repeated the whole thing.
Seth shook his head. “No. Something’s wrong. Something’s not gelling.” He had to get the words down. Had to look at them, see them in front of his eyes so he could work through them.
He grabbed the first thing he could find to write on—a paper napkin from the small pile on the coffee table. Before he could scramble for a pen, one appeared in front of him.
Luke. Of course. The man knew him better than he knew himself, anticipated every one of his needs. Seth almost kissed him in gratitude. Almost. But then didn’t for fear he’d get all horny and distracted and wouldn’t be able to concentrate for shit.
He jotted down the verse Kaz had just come up with. Most of it was perfect. There was just one line that didn’t work.
You’ve been sent from up above.
Seth drew a line through it. When it came to love, he’d given up believing in divine intervention a long time ago. If there was a God, he’d have slapped Luke on the head way back when and forced him to open his eyes to all the wondrous possibilities that lay before him if he just let Seth in. If he just shared Seth’s dreams.
Then there was the last line. The bit about “painting my heart with colors of love”.
Something about that line gave him the strongest sense of déjà vu. He liked it. Thought it fitted the song well, but what was it that jarred at his memory? Made him think instinctively of his grandmother?
And then he gave it no more thought as the verse untangled in his mind.
Yes! He had it. The third line.
Seth grinned like a lunatic and scrawled down the words. Then he sang the whole verse out loud.
“When I look in your eyes, I see the sun rising.
“A new day on the horizon.
“You’re the one I always dreamed of,
“So paint my heart with colors of love.”
Kaz’s eyes shone. “Perfect.”
“Perfect, indeed.” Impulsively, Seth leaned forward, placed his hands on her cheeks, and planted a huge kiss smack bang on her lips.
She laughed in delight. “What are you kissing me for, you idiot? It’s Luke you should be kissing.”
“Luke didn’t help with these lines, you did.”
“He gave you the pen,” Kaz pointed out.
“You gave me the verse,” he pointed out right back.
“Yeah, but he’s your inspiration.”
Seth didn’t stop to wonder how Kaz knew that, he just went with the flow, thoroughly enjoying himself. “He is, but Luke doesn’t want my kisses, and I need to kiss someone in celebration, so you’ll have to do.”
He placed another huge kiss on her lips.
“Rubbish,” Kaz insisted—a little breathless. “Of course he wants your kisses. Just look at his face.”
Seth looked. And there stood Luke, wearing a smug, satisfied expression.
His eyes didn’t seem smug. They were dark, molten hot, filled with desire, passion and…pain?
Seth blinked, taken aback, but when he looked again he saw only desire in Luke’s expression.
He turned back to Kaz. “His face is telling me he wants me to kiss you. I want to kiss you too. So that’s just exactly what I’m gonna do.” This time when he held her cheeks between his palms, he didn’t smack a huge one on her mouth. Instead he slowly lowered his lips to hers and pressed them gently together.
Her lips softened instantly beneath his, molding to their shape. She gave a soft sigh of surprise, and Seth took full advantage, dipping his tongue into her mouth for a taste. He gave himself a long, lazy minute to sample the subtle taste of champagne on her breath before he pulled away.
“Mmm. Nice.” His body hardened, his groin stirring to life.
Kaz blinked rapidly, and once again her cheeks blushed a becoming pink. “T-tell you what,” she stuttered. “You can give me as many…c-celebratory kisses as you like, if—”
Her gaze moved to Luke. “If you kiss Luke now.”