“You are magic.”
Tessa laughed. “You just like that massage book I read.”
“Read as many,” he groaned, long and low, “as you want. Oh, God, right there.”
She dug her thumbs into his smooth back. Freckles and sinewy muscle bunched and rolled under her hands. It was so hard to buy for a man like Jon. He had everything you could want, and what he didn’t have, he bought himself. So, she’d learned over the years to do little things like, learn how to do a deep tissue massage, to give back to him.
“Is there a class? Are there more books? Can I buy out the store?”
The bliss in his voice was thanks enough in her opinion. And the added bonus of having him pliant and relaxed was a very good thing. She knew just how crazy he’d been over the last few months. Between the promotional tour dates, the travel, and Habitat, he was doing his level best to burn himself out.
She leaned forward, the silk of her baby doll top quickly warmed as she pressed herself into his back. The low grumble of a moan buzzed through her. Here in the relaxed night with just the firelight to keep things cozy, it was her favorite part of the holiday. Both of their cell phones were stashed in the drawer and off until morning, they could stay up as late as they wanted, they could make love until dawn if they wanted. Tonight was for them.
Instead of the seduction she’d contemplated, she pressed a simple kiss between his shoulder blades. “I love you.”
He twisted until she was cradled into his arms. Instead of words, he kissed her slowly, the taste of him overwhelmed, even as it eased. The love was so obvious and as usual it filled her until she was sure she’d overflow with it. When she opened her eyes, he was watching her. His fingertips drifted down her cheek, his knuckle followed the line of her jawline and down the column of her throat. The blue of his eyes went dark and deep in the shadows of the little cocoon they’d become.
She cupped his cheek, the stubble scraped her palm as her thumb stroked the high curve of his cheek. “Can you believe we started here just three years ago? No matter what happens in our life, I’ll always be thankful for Christmas because it brought me you.”
The slow smile gleamed white and bright as he dipped in for another kiss. “My, you are getting mushy tonight Mrs. Bongiovi.”
“It must be the Christmas music I’ve been listening to all night.”
“Right, it’s the music.”
“Well, it’s not every day that my husband sings to me.”
“Do you want me to sing to you everyday?”
Quickly, a flash of Jon and his acoustic guitar on the stage came to her, then it was superimposed with their bedroom and him, just as he was now.
“I would you know. I see that glazed look goin’ on.”
She laughed. “I was picturing you naked with your acoustic.”
His eyebrow quirked. “And here I slaved over what to get you for Christmas and all it took was a song?”
She flipped him onto his back and straddled him. “You slaved? What’d you get me?”
He settled into the pillows, folding his hands behind his head. “What’d you get me?”
“Man, it was a good present. That means I get that back rub every day right?”
“Dream on, rock star.”
“Man, you used to be so generous.”
She leaned down, nipping his lower lip. “C’mon, don’t tease. You’ve been torturing me with this damn gift since you got home.”
“It’s not ready yet.”
She leaned back on his thighs. “More like you haven’t gotten it yet.”
“Would I forget?”
She climbed off of him and headed for her wardrobe. “Yes.”
“Hey! I haven’t forgotten a birthday, anniversary or any other gift day!”
The fact that he was utterly insulted ruined the laugh she was holding in. “I know, don’t get your sheets in a twist.” She opened her lingerie drawer and drew out a small box with a large blue and gold bow.
He sat up when she approached the bed. “I thought my massage was my present.”
“Shut up.” Kneeling on the bed, she handed over the gift she’d agonized over. She never knew what to get him. She’d been browsing a book on historical jewelry and tapped Tico for his contacts with Rock Star Baby to create something for him.
She hoped that the sentiment wouldn’t be lost on him. As sensitive as Jon was, he still was a guy. She sucked in her lower lip as he tore away the bow and shiny gold paper. He popped open the box.
“Tessa,” he said softly before he looked up at her. He unfastened the necklace from the velvet case. The heavy pewter cross was just over an inch tall and wide with an intricate Irish design. Both the square and circular knots symbolized protection, unity and eternity. She knew she wouldn’t have to explain that part of it. He’d taken her to
. She knew he felt an affinity for the people and the history there. Ireland
A trip through the hillside to the ruins of Glendalough had been one of the best days of their marriage. The loss and the beauty that was so much a part of
had touched them. The whirlwind day, loving in the open, and the quick rainstorm that had come out of no where made a lasting impression. She could see the memory there in his eyes. Ireland
“It’s gorgeous.” He leaned into her, the kiss light and without heat.
She cupped his face, brushed her thumb over his bottom lip. “Do you like it?”
“All I can think of is Ireland and your pale skin in the rain.”
She smiled, sitting back enough to trace her fingertip over the warm metal. “Turn it over.” A small, rectangular clock face filled the center of the back. One word etched below the time. Home-- in a scrawling script that flowed into two more eternity knots at each end. “So wherever you are this tour, you know what time it is at home.”
He fisted the cross, dragging her into him. The kiss wasn’t tender this time, it was as wild as the Irish hills that they’d loved on that summer day. She had no choice, but to hold on.
Evidently she didn’t have to worry about him getting what she was trying to say. The times apart were hard on both of them. She understood his need to go out and prove himself day after day. She even understood that he needed to busy—they were the same in that respect.
He’d learned to slow down a little, on the off times. The off times made up for the loneliness, and distance. Technology filled the gaps, and her own projects kept her from going insane on the long stretches of night.
But this was what made it all worth it. Helpless under the onslaught of his mouth, his hands and his passion—she held on as he showed her just how much he loved her and her gift. She sat astride him, taking him deep and slow. The undulating rhythm of their bodies drew her ever closer to him.
She stopped, in the middle and fastened the necklace between them. It fell just under his clavicle. She held her hand over it against his chest, his hand over hers. Watching, she felt him break. Her hand wandered lower to the crisp hairs and to the heavy beat of his heart, her fingers digging into his skin as the pleasure swamped her.
Her head tipped back, but he fisted his hands in her hair, dragging her up to meet his gaze again. “I love you,” he said fiercely.
Joined from hips to lips and everywhere in between, she felt it as much as she heard it in his voice. The words were trapped in the all consuming emotions of their joining, but she knew he saw it in her eyes.
She knew there’d never be another man on this earth that would make her feel just like this.