Paper Princess Page 70

“Reed.” His name shudders out as my surroundings fade. My brain shuts down. All I can do is let the soaring pleasure take over.

When I crash back to earth, he’s grinning at me, looking mighty pleased with himself.

I narrow my eyes, wanting to smack him for having the power to make me lose control like that, but that’s a stupid thought, because oh my God, that felt good.

But it wouldn’t hurt to level the playing field a little. I shove him so that he’s flat on his back again. Then I start kissing his chest. Every glorious inch of it.

Reed’s breathing grows unsteady. When my lips travel down to the waistband of his trunks, he tenses up. I lift my head to check his expression. It’s tight with anticipation.

My fingers shake as I toy with his waistband. “Reed?”

“Mmm?” His eyes are closed now.

“Can you teach me how to…um…” I mumble out a vague, “…you know.”

His eyes snap open. To my annoyance, he looks like he’s trying not to laugh. “Ah. Yeah…sure.”

I bristle. “Yeah, sure? I don’t have to if you don’t want—”

“I want.” He answers so comically fast that I’m the one laughing now. “I really, really want.” He quickly eases his board shorts down.

My heart pounds as I bring my mouth close to him. I want do to this right, but because I can feel him watching me, self-consciousness makes me want to run.

“You’ve really never done this?” he says hoarsely.

I shake my head. For some reason, he looks really upset by that. “What’s wrong?” My forehead creases when his expression grows even more tortured.

“I’m such an asshole. All the stuff I said to you on the yacht… You should hate me, Ella.”

“But I don’t.” I rub my hand along his knee. “Teach me how to make it good for you.”

“It’s already good.” His eyes are hazy, and he cups the back of my head, gently threading his fingers through my hair. His other hand reaches for one of mine and he slowly wraps my fingers around him. “Use your hand, too,” he whispers.

I give a little pump. “Like that?”

“Yeah, like that. That’s…good…”

Feeling bolder, I take the tip of him in my mouth and suck. He almost jerks off the couch. “That’s even better,” he growls.

I smile against him, enjoying the noises he’s making. I might not have experience but I hope my enthusiasm makes up for it because I really want to make him feel good. I want him to lose control.

He keeps stroking my hair and I get my wish sooner rather than later. He comes apart beneath me, trembling wildly, and when I crawl up his body afterward, he holds me tight to him and says, “I don’t deserve this.”

I want to ask him what he means, but I don’t get the chance. Loud pounding on one of the glass doors interrupts us.

“Little sis! Big bro! Banging time’s over.” It’s Easton, and he’s laughing hysterically as he hammers his fist against the glass.

“Get lost,” Reed calls back.

“Love to, but Dad just called. He’s on his way home and wants to take us out for dinner later. He’ll be here in five.”

“Damn.” Reed sits up and shoves a hand through his hair. Then he looks at our naked bodies and grins. “We should get dressed. Dad’ll shit a brick if he finds us like this.”

Will he? For the first time since this thing with Reed started, I let myself think about how Callum would react if he knew. My heart sinks to the pit of my stomach, because I think Reed might be right. I’ve been in Bayview only a month and Callum is already super protective of me. Hell, he was protective of me before he even knew me.

Callum won’t like this.

My gaze fixes on Reed’s bare butt as he stands up and yanks his trunks up his hips.

No, Callum will hate this.


“Ella!” Callum calls from the base of the stairs thirty minutes later. “Come down, I’ve got something to show you!”

I roll over and pull a pillow over my head. I don’t want to leave my bedroom. I came up here to change for dinner, but really, I’ve just been lying in bed reliving every awesome thing that happened in the pool house.

I don’t want to go downstairs and see Callum and worry about what he’d say or how he’d feel if he knew what Reed and I had been doing. I just want to stay in this pink cocoon and hug my memory tight. Because what we did in the pool house was good and right and nothing is going to ruin that memory for me.

But the insistent call for me to get downstairs is hard to ignore, especially when Easton is now outside my door, pounding on the wood. “Come on, Ella. I’m hungry and Dad won’t let us leave for the restaurant until you come down.”

“I’m coming.” I fling myself out of the bed and shove my feet into the deck shoes, which are becoming my favorite pair of footwear. They are so fricking comfortable. I wonder for a second if wearing boat shoes outside of a boat is a huge faux pas but then decide I don’t really care.

When I reach the second floor landing, all the Royals are waiting for me down below, wearing varying degrees of smiles, from a sly one on Reed’s face to a huge, ear-to-ear one on Callum.

“Can one of you stare at the ceiling?” I grumble. “You’re making me self-conscious.”

Callum makes an impatient gesture. “Come outside and we’ll all stare at what’s in the driveway.”

Against my will, I feel a swell of excitement. My car—or at least the car that Callum got for me to drive—must have arrived. I try not to run down the stairs but Easton is tired of waiting. He takes the stairs two at a time and then drags me down to the foyer and the rest of the Royals push me outside.

In the center of the driveway, at the foot of the wide tiled steps, sits a two-seater convertible. The interior is covered in cream leather and dark shiny wood. The chrome on the steering wheel gleams so brightly that I almost have to shade my eyes.

But none of that is as shocking as the color. Not pink. Not red. But a true royal blue—the same blue that adorned the plane that flew me here, the same one on Callum’s business cards.

My eyes fly to Callum and he nods. “Had it painted in our California factory. It’s Royal blue and the formula is patented by Atlantic Aviation.”

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