Totally Tormented
Author:Lucy Covington

“I’ve had worse.”


Something about the tone in his voice made me think he wasn’t just talking about physical pain. There were other things, other damage lurking beneath the surface, other hurt that I didn’t know about. I wanted him to tell me. I suddenly wanted to know everything about him, even if it was bad and horrible and scary.


I swallowed hard. A jolt of attraction moved through my body, and I imagined what it would be like to kiss him, to have him touch me all over, how it would feel to have his hands moving over my hips, my back, my breasts, between my legs. What would it feel like to have him moving inside me, slowly, while he kissed my face, my eyes, my mouth?


I took a step back toward the sink, turned away from him and grabbed another cotton ball. “We should clean the scrapes on your elbows, too.”


“Yes, Dr. Cramer,” he said dutifully. How could he stand there joking around like that when all I could think about was him doing things to me that I’d never let myself imagine before?


I took an extra second to calm myself before turning around.


“Ow!” he yelled as the cotton ball hit the scrape on his elbow.


“What?” I automatically pulled back, alarmed. “Did I hurt you?”


“Ha,” he said, grinning. “Just kidding.”


I rolled my eyes. “There,” I said, chucking the cotton balls into the trash. “That should be good, at least for now.”


He bent over the sink and looked at his cut in the mirror. “Looks good.”


“No, it doesn’t. But it’s the best we’re gonna do if you refuse to go to the hospital.”


“Hospitals are for the people who can afford them.”


“I met you at a hospital,” I pointed out.


“Yeah, because my coach made me. But guess what? That dude’s not my coach anymore.”


I wondered again if that was such a good thing, but I kept my mouth shut. I needed to get out of this enclosed space with him. We were standing way too close together. It was starting to get hot in here, and I needed to breathe. Of course, out there was the bedroom, which wasn’t much better.


But maybe we could find something to do, something that would distract me from his burning brown eyes and the hard lines of six pack. Maybe we could watch a movie or something, a cheesy comedy that would keep my mind off anything having to do with sex.


“So do you want to watch a movie or something?” I tried. “You should probably rest.”


“No. I don’t want to watch a movie. And I’m not tired.”


“Oh. Well, are you hungry? We could order from –”


He acted like he didn’t hear me, and instead, reached over and turned on the shower.


“What are you doing?” I asked in alarm.


He was opening the cabinet in the corner, pulling out two fluffy blue towels.


“Starting up the shower. I need to clean up a little.”


“Oh.” I thought that’s what we’d been doing. But I guess I could see his point. It wasn’t enough to just take care of his cuts -- he probably wanted to get his whole body clean.


He pushed the shower handle over so that the water was almost as hot as it could go, and steam began to fill the room. I was already feeling breathless, and so this made it even harder to breathe.


“Okay,” I said. “Well, um, I’ll just wait for you in your room?”


I started to move around him toward the door, but he stepped in front of me.


“Why?” he said. “Don’t you need a shower, too, Pip?” His finger reached out and traced my collarbone, moving the collar of my t-shirt over as he found the strap of my bra. He pushed it down my shoulder just a little, teasing me.


“Oh, no,” I said. “I’m not dirty. I mean, I’m clean enough.”


“You sure, Pip?” he said wickedly. “I think you’re plenty dirty.”


“I’m not showering with you.” But my voice didn’t sound convincing, even to my own ears.


“Why not?” He puffed his lip out in a pout, like he was upset that he wasn’t getting his way. It was so damn adorable I almost couldn’t deal.


“Because,” I said firmly.


“Because you don’t trust me?”


“And now why would I not trust you?” I asked sarcastically. “You’ve done nothing but prove yourself to be completely trustworthy.”


His face darkened for a moment, and I had the feeling I’d said something wrong.


He took another step toward me, his chest pushing against mine, my breasts flattening out against the hardness of his pecs. He grabbed my shoulders. “I would never do anything to hurt you, Lindsay. You know that, right?”


I nodded. But I wasn’t so sure. It wasn’t that I thought he would try to hurt me.


It was that I could feel myself starting to get consumed by him. I was giving him the ability to hurt me just by letting him get so close. It was like tying yourself to a train track, just waiting to get run over. It wouldn’t be the train’s fault if it couldn’t stop in time – but you’d get hurt anyway, because you’d be lying there, like a sitting duck.


“Come on,” he said, running his palms down my arms until he got to my hands.