I hadn't seen it, but Allison had watched me leave. Then she'd thrown her own trowel down in disgust and, ignoring Luke, followed me to the minibus. She said, "You need to tell Dr Smethwick. You shouldn't just let Luke get away with this shit!"
"That'd feel like running to teacher. I'm supposed to be a fucking adult."
"Rubbish! Dr Smethwick's your boyf- your boss. If you can't go to him, then who?"
"I can't. I just don't know what to do. Back home, it wouldn't be a problem, I just feel out of my depth."
Allison gave me a knowing look, "Less than you think."
"What do you mean?"
She sighed, "I mean, you fit in better than you suspect. You're better than you think you are... Anyway, are you going to tell Dr Smethwick?"
"I told you, I can't."
She stood up and snapped, "Fine! Then I will. This can't be allowed to continue."
All I could do was watch helplessly as she stalked toward the admin tent. I remained sitting in the minibus, unable to return to the dig and face Luke and even less able to face Nathan.
A short while later, Nathan appeared in front of me carrying two plastic mugs of coffee. He handed one to me, which I accepted silently. Then he sat down next to me and placed his arm across my shoulders, causing the usual tremor down my spine.
He said, "Midnight, why didn't you tell me what's been going on?"
"I was embarrassed."
"You have no reason to be embarrassed. And in fact every reason to be proud of yourself. Let's look at what you've done... You organised my life and made my workload so much easier... You make sure I'm where I'm supposed to be, on time and prepared... You're more than capable at covering the weekly briefings... Without you, my presentations would be complete crap," he gave me squeeze and grinned, "And now you've found a dinosaur. I should be your assistant!"
I couldn't help but laugh.
Nathan placed his hand on my cheek and gently turned my head to face him. His fingers felt so warm, I thought they would scorch my flesh... Until I realised that the heat was coming from me.
The touch of his fingers teased me, excited me and made my blood boil in my veins. I really didn't understand how he could affect me like this and not know he was doing it. He fixed me with his unblinking gaze.
Those eyes. Those fucking eyes!
He said gently, "Listen to me Midnight. There is no shame in asking for help when you need it. And I will always be ready to help you. Okay?"
Amazed at my own daring, I gave him a quick peck on the cheek and smiled, "Okay."
He looked quite startled and stammered, "I... Erm... Okay... I think you need to go back to your dinosaur and send Mr Iverson to see me at the tent please."
As I made my back to the dig, I glanced over my shoulder and saw Nathan touching his cheek thoughtfully as he walked slowly across to our tent.
I told Luke that his presence was requested at the admin tent and then settled myself back at my dinosaur and continued removing the soil. I could see that Luke had cleared away a lot of the soil going towards the tail, so I continued the motion, working to uncover it completely.
Allison was back in her square using a griddle. I looked across at her and said, "Thank you."
She grinned as she was shaking soil through the griddle and replied, "No problem. Maybe this will make the arrogant wanker change his attitude."
I giggled, "Not gonna hold my breath,"
About ten minutes later, Luke reappeared. He gave me a filthy look but didn't speak. He simply stalked past me, straight across the grid, and planted himself in the square labelled B1 next to Allison. I smiled sweetly at him and said, "Aren't you supposed to walk around the outside?"
His ears went red and I saw a twitch of anger travel along his jawline, but he didn't reply and concentrated on clearing his square. Allison continued sifting the soil, but I could see her shoulders shaking in silent laughter. That made me feel better. One point scored by the black wench with the big tits.
We continued to work in silence for a while. I was clearing what I think was the front right leg of my skeleton when I decided to ask Allison what she was doing. She placed the griddle carefully down and examined the contents. I saw her remove something with tweezers and place it in a resealable plastic bag. She said,"I'm not sure, but I think I'm finding eggshell fragments."
Luke's ears pricked up at this point and he exclaimed, "Can't be. That doesn't make sense."
Wearing a rather puzzled expression, Allison nodded, "I know."
"Why?" I asked.
Luke frowned and then looked at me, all animosity forgotten for the moment, "Well your dinosaur's a juvenile."
It wasn't lost on me that he'd referred to it as my dinosaur, but I decided it would be petty to draw attention to it, "So? Explain it as though I'm a complete novice."
Allison giggled, but Luke ignored her as he stared into space. His brow furrowed and then he spoke, almost as though he was talking to himself, "If this is a juvenile, then it won't be gravid, so there can't be any eggs... But... If there are eggs, then there shouldn't be any juveniles here... No parent Hylaeosaurus would allow any other creature near the nest... And if current thinking is correct... No eggs would be laid until the last of the previous batch of offspring had been completely driven away."
Allison nodded in agreement.
I scraped a bit more soil away from the leg I was working on as a thought occurred to me, "Maybe they're not connected. Maybe the eggs were laid and hatched and this fella died here later."
Allison nodded, then said, "Possibly... After all, I've only found fragments so far. We don't know if the shells were hatched, destroyed by predators or crushed by the layers of soil and stones that covered them."
Luke grinned, "Well if we find a complete egg then we'll know," he frowned, "And then we'll have more questions."
Allison looked around at both of us, "God! I fucking love my job!"
Luke looked somewhat pensive, "Manni?"
He replied quietly, "I'm sorry."
I smiled at him, "Ancient history."
Allison griddled a bit more soil and then said, "You know what Luke? You're much more attractive when you're not being such a monumental fuckwit."
He blushed fiercely and concentrated on his square with dogged determination. Allison grinned at me and then winked before returning to her eggshell hunt.
We continued in silence until presently, Nathan appeared at the dig carrying a large tarpaulin and some small metal stakes, he said, "Okay, let's get this grid covered and then we can have a washup meeting back at the tent."
Allison placed all of her eggshell samples in her griddle and moved it out of the way, whilst me, Luke and Nathan covered the grid with the tarpaulin and staked it down. As we were working, Diana and her team made their way past us on their way back to their own tent.
"How's it going?" she asked.
Luke grinned, "More questions than answers."
Nathan laughed, "Par for the course."
Once the tarpaulin was secured, we made our way back to the tent and discussed the events of the day. Nathan was particularly interested in the egg fragments and placed the bags on the trestle table next to a microscope. Nathan said, "Right! Tomorrow I want Allison to examine the fragments she found," he looked at Luke, "I want you to take over A1 and keep after eggshells, okay?"
Luke nodded and then Nathan directed his gaze to me, "And we will continue digging out your friend. You good with that, Midnight?"
I was excited, and not just because of what tomorrow would bring, but also because of the way Nathan was looking at me. My nipples became as hard as steel... I bet you knew I was gonna say that.
"Fine," I said.
That evening found our group sharing three tables pushed together for dinner back at the pub as we ate, drank and talked about our day. The CD player behind the bar was piping background music through the air, and added a mellow background to the conversations around the room.
The chat around table was lively and I was having a good time. One of Diana's students asked me, "Have you thought of a name yet?"
I was puzzled, "A name for what? Oh, you mean my Highly Wotsit."
The table erupted in good natured laughter. I giggled, "I dunno... Dennis?"
Diana asked,"So it's a male then?"
I had no idea and Nathan jumped in, "We don't know yet, but we should know tomorrow, " he smiled at me, "So Dennis for a boy, what if it's a girl?"
I hadn't really thought about it and Dennis for a boy was more a joke than anything. As I sat in silence momentarily, the tune playing through the speakers filtered over our table. Smokie sang, "Oh, I don't know why she's leaving, Or where she's gonna go, I guess she's got her reasons, But I just don't want to know, 'Cos for twentyfour years I've been living next door to"
"Alice!" I shouted.
Diana cried, "Looks like we had a Lucy moment!"
"A what?" I asked when the laughter around the table had died down.
Nathan then explained to me how the partial skeleton of a female Australopithecus had once been found in Ethiopia. Lucy In The Sky With Diamonds by the Beatles was playing on the radio at the time, so they had named her Lucy.
I grinned, "Well then. Looks like I'm following a fine tradition."
As the round-robin chat continued, I glanced over at Luke and Allison who were deep in a private conversation. She had one arm across his shoulders and was using the other to shake a finger in his face, as though she was both chastising and comforting him at the same time. She reached up at one point and gently stroked Luke's jawline.
Well! That was a surprise.
I also looked across the table at Nathan, who had lapsed into silence and was clearly deep in thought. His elbows were resting on the table and he was tapping the heels of his hands together. I coughed to get his attention and said, "Penny for your thoughts?"
His gorgeous eyes focused on me and his stare was one of the most intense he had ever delivered.
My panties were scorching!
And once again I was silently begging to know just how he could do this to me. A single glance and I was soaking. No man had ever affected me like this.
How the fuck does he do it?
He said, "I'm not willing to put my thoughts into words yet, but I may do tomorrow."
At the end of the evening, we all retired to our rooms and Nathan escorted me to my door. He said, "Sleep well, Midnight. Big day tomorrow."
It seemed like there was more he wanted to say, but he didn't. He simply turned on his heel and walked next door to his own room.
As I lay in bed that night I had to play with myself, thinking about Nathan and what it would be like to accept him into me. I was so turned on, I couldn't believe it. He had quite literally spoiled me for every other man and he had never even kissed me.
I'll be honest. I masturbated more than once before I could finally get to sleep. To dream... About Nathan, touching me, caressing me, fucking me... Loving me.
The next morning, we all headed back to the dig site. Allison planted herself at the microscope and started her examination of the shell fragments. I sat down at a laptop and worked my way through the emails. Luckily there was nothing of any urgency that couldn't wait and none of them required Nathan's attention. Suited me, I was eager to get back to my Highly Wotsit.
Nathan and Luke headed over to the grid. And when I joined them later, I found Luke sat in A1 griddling more soil, whilst Nathan was clearing soil from the neck end of the skeleton. I could see another large bone coming into view.
"What's that?" I asked.
He glanced up at me and answered, "It's the skull... It may answer a question and ask a few more," he nodded too the other end, "grab a trowel and start clearing the pelvic girdle please."
Which is what I did. We worked in silence until Luke cried out excitedly, "Dr Smethwick!"
Nathan looked up, "What is it?"
"I think I've found an intact egg."
I stopped what I was doing and examined the soil in front of where he was kneeling. I could see a domed shape slowly coming into view as he brushed soil away from it. Nathan stopped what he was doing and moved around the grid to take a closer look. He examined it carefully and then said, "Well done, Luke. Dig it out and we'll have a look at it."
Then he moved back to the skull and continued his own digging. I could see that he was deep in thought and watched him as he worked. He glanced up at me and I raised an eyebrow asking a silent question. He merely shook his head slightly and continued with his excavation.
I didn't mind too much. I knew he'd tell me when he was ready.
Over the course of the day, including a stop for sandwiches at lunch time, Nathan cleared most of the soil from around the skull and was clearing the top of it with a brush. I could see that several of the teeth were now in view. I had uncovered the pelvis bones and asked Nathan to have a look, "Can you see what you need to see?"
Nathan stared at the pelvic girdle. He took a tape measure from his pocket and measured the gap within the bone. Then he asked Luke for the dimensions of the egg. He nodded at the response and then examined the skull carefully. I could see him paying close attention to the top of it. Then he lay down and examined the teeth very closely.
He stood up, still staring at the skull and began tapping the heels of his hands together.
Eventually he said, "Luke. Could you ask Dr Pranaju to come down here please, if it's convenient. I'd like her opinion."
Luke jumped up and made his way up to the top of the slope.
"What is it?" I asked.
"I don't want to say anything yet. I need Diana to have a look at this, and find out if she sees what I see."
Nathan continued too stare at the skull as he lightly tapped the heels of his hands together, he replied, "Patience, Midnight."
A few minutes later, Luke returned with Diana in tow, "What do you need, Nathan?" she asked.
He replied, " Diana, take a look at this and tell me what you see."
"What am I looking for?"
Nathan shook his head, "I'm not going to say anything. I don't want to colour your opinion."
I glanced at Luke who shrugged, looking as puzzled as I felt.
We watched in silence as Diana began her investigation, she was speaking aloud as she worked, "Well it's definitely a Hylaeosaurus, but I'm still surprised to find one this far north. Probably juvenile going by the size," she looked at me, "The ones down south were about five metres long."
She accepted the tape measure from Nathan and asked me to hold the end of it at the nose.
Then she carefully measured the distance to the tail, "One metre and fifteen centimetres."
Her experienced eye travelled slowly over the skeleton from the tip of the tail to the snout and back again. Then she spotted the egg and she frowned. Carefully stepping around the grid, Diana squatted down and took the measurements of the egg, before returning to the pelvic girdle which she also measured.
She stood back and rubbed her chin before glancing at Nathan who remained strictly silent.
As she examined the skull, her eyes widened slightly. I could see that she was becoming more excited. Diana squatted down so that she could examine the skull closely, carefully running her finger over two lines in it. One ran from between the eye sockets to the back and the other was perpendicular, running across the skull. I could see they bisected directly in the top centre.
She murmured, "Fucking Hell," then patted her pockets and asked, "Has anyone got a magnifying glass?"
I raced back to our tent and grabbed one from a crate in the corner, returned and handed it to Diana. I didn't know why, but I was even more excited than when I had first found my Highly Wotsit. She accepted the glass and then sprawled down on the ground and spent long minutes examining the teeth individually.
Diana stood back up and brushed the soil from her clothing with her hands.
Nathan asked, "Well?"
I was almost ready to scream. The tension was palpable.
Diana regarded the skull for another long minute, she looked at Nathan, smiled and nodded. Then she said, "Let me get my boys and girls down here. They'll want to hear this."
She raced back up the slope, whilst Nathan shouted, "Allison. Get your arse over here!"
Allison's head popped out of the tent and then she came over, "Yes Dr Smethwick?"
"Wait a minute. Dr Pranaju's bringing her students down."
I was dancing from one foot to the other, "What is it Nathan? What's going on?"
He grabbed me by the arms, "Calm down, Midnight. let's get everybody here before I run through it."
His touch and his stare excited me even more and I could feel my stomach churning.
Once Diana had returned with her students, Nathan began his explanation, "Right. Everybody, can you all see..? Yes..? Good. As you can see, on first impression, this looks like the skeleton of a juvenile Hylaeosaurus. Now as you know, the only other specimens discovered were all at the other end of the country. And we know that they grew to a length of about five metres."
I looked around and could see from the facial expressions that this was very old news to everybody except me.
Diana took over, "However. If you look, this one is only about one metre long, but there is also an intact egg. Clearly the egg is too small, it's nowhere near the size of those found in the south east. I measured both the egg and the pelvic girdle of the skeleton... They matched. Leading to the proposal that this dinosaur possibly laid this egg. Obviously, we can't confirm it yet, but the measurements match up, and it is definitely female," she glanced at me, "Manni, meet Alice... Alice, Manni."
There was a ripple of laughter and one or two of the faces around me started to take on increasingly excited expressions.
Allison piped up, "I can confirm that the fragments I've examined are Hylaeosaurus type eggs."
Nathan nodded at her and then took up the narrative, "Now look at the skull. As you can see, the fontanelle is closed and the four quarters of the cranium have met and fused at the crown. Both myself and Dr Pranaju have examined the teeth and we have both arrived at the same independent tentative conclusion... Alice," he waved his hand at the skull, "Is a mature adult."
Several of the students, including Luke and Allison were staring at the skeleton. Suddenly there was a cacophony of voices all asking questions, but I was unable to make anything out. Nathan shouted, "Calm down! Quiet please!"
Once the babble died away, he looked at me and said, "Midnight, it's possible that you've just made the history books."
I was almost crying, "What? What is it? Tell me!"
Every eye was on me as Nathan said, "We may be jumping the gun, but Diana and I are 95% certain. You didn't just find a dinosaur, " he took my hands in his (I shivered) and he said, "We think... And this is still very much open to argument, but we think... you've discovered a new one."
"YOU ARE FUCKING KIDDING ME!"
The cheer was deafening and all around me I could hear the excited shouting of questions thrown from all directions at Nathan and Diana. I could dimly make out her voice through the cacophony, but Nathan simply stood mute gazing at me with those beautiful, blue eyes. Several students hugged me and patted me on the back. More than a few of the male students, including Luke offered a kiss to my cheek. But I only had eyes for Nathan... And he only had eyes for me. We had shared many long looks over our time together, both in the real world and over Skype. But none of them seemed to have lasted as long as this one and none had ever seemed quite so full of meaning.
I don't remember feeling my legs move, nor do I recall seeing him walk towards me, but somehow we were face to face only inches apart. Hesitantly I reached up and placed my hand on his chest. I felt his hand cover mine and hold it in place. The heat from his fingers almost burned me. My breathing became ragged and I closed my eyes briefly as sensations of pleasure radiated from my hand and up my arm. I almost moaned with the sheer joy of tenderly touching him.
I licked my lips to try and moisten them, I was suddenly dry throated and thought my voice would crack as I tried to speak.
"Really?" I asked.
"Really," he murmured softly in response.
Our faces drew even closer until our lips were inches apart. I was stuck between laughter and tears, both because of my discovery but also because I knew this was it. This was where I found out if Nathan had the same feelings for me that I had for him.
It was painful. The love I had for this wonderful man was like nothing I had ever felt before and I was so scared that it wasn't returned. But if I kissed him... Then I would know.
My lips parted slightly and then I felt a hand clap me on the back and I staggered slightly in surprise. Nathan moved as well and the face of one of Diana's students was thrust close to ours.
He shouted, "We gotta have a party tonight!"
Both of us snapped our heads round to face the interloper who was beaming broadly and the spell was broken. Nathan pulled away from me, I could see he was slightly flushed and he too flickered into a smile, aimed at everyone... Except me.
"Yes," he called out, "The first beers are on me tonight!"
Once again, the small crowd cheered.
Both disappointed and relieved, I looked around at all the smiling, happy faces. But my attention was drawn to Diana who was stood slightly off to one side. I could see that she was scowling at the student who had interrupted us. I saw her take a nip from her hipflask she kept in her coat pocket and then mutter, "Fuck sake!"
She saw me looking at her and then a smile gradually replaced the scowl, but I got the impression that it wasn't altogether genuine, at least to begin with. She walked towards me and gave me a big hug. When she released me, the smile she wore was both beaming and real.
Gradually the noise died down and Diana said, "We'll get Alice dug out and sent to the lab"
"In Hull!" interjected Nathan amidst laughter.
Diana joined in the laughter and then continued, "And if it turns out Alice is the first of a new species, then you'll get the honour of naming her."
Puzzled I replied, "She's got a name. Alice. Duh!"
"No. I mean a name for the subspecies. It won't just be Hylaeosaurus. You'll need to add to it for taxonomic purposes... Duh!"
"She'll need a Latin name."
"Oh. No problem, I'll just pull an EnglishLatin dictionary out of my magic arsehole, shall I?"
More laughter ensued until Nathan said, "If you don't mind, Midnight. Would you do me the honour of allowing me to give her a name?"
I smiled at him, "Of course you can. You know about this shit."
"In that case, I suggest Hylaeosaurus Mediam."
Diana rolled her eyes, "You soppy git! The committee probably won't allow that."
He bristled, "I'll bloody well make them!"
I looked from one to the other, "What does Highly Wotsit Medium, mean?"
Nathan once again fixed me in place with a look and said, "Not important. It's just a technical term to differentiate Alice from her cousins down south."
I could see his eyes were twinkling and Diana too had a cheeky glint in her eye, but for the moment I was willing to let it pass. I was simply too happy about finding Alice to worry. Although at the edge of my merriment was a tinge of regret. Our moment had been interrupted and I felt a little stab in my heart. Did Nathan feel the same way about me as I felt about him? I still didn't know, but now I was too scared to pursue it, just in case he didn't... That would kill me.
That evening found everybody back at the pub. Nathan had stopped off to talk to the Landlord about opening the function room for our impromptu party. I think he may have allowed his credit card to do the talking. After all, it wouldn't be cheap and extra bar staff would need to be drafted in. He even managed to organise some basic party food as well, so nobody bothered going down for dinner.
As I hadn't planned for a social event, my choice of outfit was limited. I eventually settled on a plain white blouse that had a rather plunging neckline and a thick, dark skirt that came to just above my knees. As it happened, I had packed a pair of black, court shoes as I didn't relish wearing boots in the evening if I could avoid it. I grabbed a quick shower, dressed and applied some makeup to beautify myself a bit. I also went to work with the straighteners and then my curling tongs to put a slight wave in my hair. I didn't want to have the usual ponytail tonight.
I made my way to the function room and found that I was the first one there. The bar was still being set up and one of the staff was fiddling around in the far corner with a basic DJ station, connecting cables, checking the disco lights and opening case after case of CDs. Two large tables were sat against the wall running under the windows and each had been covered with white sheet. Stacks of plates and a cutlery tray were already in place at the end nearest the bar, but as yet, no food had been set out. Several square tables were dotted around the room with four wooden chairs to each one on the carpeted area. And there was a polished wooden dance floor in front of the DJ booth.
I managed to sweet talk a glass of pineapple juice out of one of the barmen, even though he wasn't quite ready for service yet, and sat at one of the tables to wait for the others to get there.
After a few minutes, the sound of Come On Eileen by Dexy's Midnight Runners came out of the speakers that were dotted around the walls and one or two of the students drifted in.
A short while later, Nathan, Diana, Luke and Allison came in. They waved at me, grabbed drinks and joined me at my table. Luke snaffled a chair from elsewhere and shuffled it into place between Nathan and Allison.
We chatted amiably for a while, watching as the function room gradually filled, until everybody from the dig was there. By this time, Duran Duran were wailing on about Girls On Film.
"Christ!" shrieked Allison, "Does that bugger only have 80's Party Mix albums?"
Luke grinned, "Could be worse. He could be playing wartime hits from the 40's. You remember those don't you Dr Smethwick?"
Nathan was taking a pull of his beer and nearly choked. He laughed and said, "Looks like Mr Iverson doesn't want to pass this course."
Allison elbowed Luke in the ribs and snapped, "Pack it in! Get him angry and he might flunk me too!"
Then the two students shared a giggle with their heads together. We watched them indulgently for a moment and then Diana said, "We've got a Geophys team coming the day after tomorrow to scan the top field. When they're done, you want them to have a look at your area?"
My brow crinkled, "Geophys?"
Nathan said, "Geophysics. They use GPR... Ground Penetrating Radar to go over the terrain and help us identify buried structures and shapes, so we have a better idea of where to dig and what we might find."
I flicked my hair back and said airily, "Ah yes, you see. Some of us don't need such new fangled devices. We rely on our natural talents of blind luck and ignorance to find the booty."
Everyone laughed and then Nathan said, "Actually, might not be a bad idea. Saves me getting a team over from Hull. How's the settlement looking by the way?"
Diana sighed, "Not much so far. We've got a partial skeleton, some trinkets and some broken pottery. We thought we might have a stone structure, but it looks like there's only a small portion of it left. I think it must have been placed where the explosive blew rather than going north.
Hopefully the settlement, if there is one, is under the north field on top of the spur. If it went south from where we are..." she shrugged.
"What?" I asked.
Allison said, "If it went south, then it'll have been destroyed when they blew the up the site when they were digging."
"Oh." I said, "Well, here's hoping."
The conversation meandered, the wine flowed and the music played on. Eventually the DJ ran out of his goddamned eighties tunes and some better music started playing. Everything from Elvis and Bill Haley to Beyonce and Jessie J. He did attempt some Kajagoogoo later on, but he was told to fuck off and play something decent. Also the food appeared. A few hastily thrown together sandwiches and pork pies and large trays of roast chicken and chips. Basic stuff, but it was tasty, filling and it helped to soak up the alcohol.
The students were getting hammered... Of course they were, they're students. But I must admit that I stuck to pineapple juice and both Nathan and Diana were drinking in moderation. All three of us wanted to be fresh for the morning.
Or at least I think so. Once or twice I saw Diana eyeing up one of the barmen speculatively, she saw me watching her and winked.
As the evening wore on, a few people took to the dance floor. I watched as Allison dragged Luke up for a boogie and then DAve, one of Diana's students, grabbed my hand and pulled me over to the dance floor. I must admit I enjoy dancing and I'm quite good even if I say so myself. I know what you're thinking... I'm black, of course I can dance. But that's an urban myth I can assure you. I've seen several black blokes throwing shapes who looked more like they were having an Epileptic fit than dancing. Dave was white, but boy could he move!
Anyway, I was having really good time dancing with partner after partner. I don't know if I was a popular dance partner because of Alice or because my tits were bouncing about like rabid space hoppers. Either way I was enjoying myself. However, several times I got that familiar itch between my shoulder blades and I would glance across to see Nathan gazing at me. I would smile and wave him over, but he simply shook his head, give me that half smile and then return his attention to whoever was sat with him at the time.
Diana had planted herself at the bar and was deep in conversation with the handsome, young target of her affections. I also saw Allison and Luke enjoying a boogie together and taking it in turns to shout a conversation into each other's ears.
Time was marching on and it was getting quite late when the obligatory slow dances started.
Thankfully with a reduction in tempo came a reduction in volume, making conversation on the dance floor much easier. I smiled to myself when I saw Allison and Luke moulding their bodies together as they swayed slowly in time with the music. And it didn't escape my notice that Allison had her arms draped around his neck whilst he had a firm grip of her rounded buttocks.
My current partner started to pull me close when I felt the familiar itch between my shoulder blades and then a hand rested possessively on the small of my back. I tingled. Nathan smiled at the student and said, "Sorry, I've got rank and I'm pulling it," then he asked me, "Would you care to dance?"
I melted into his arms, "I thought you'd never ask."
His hands rested lightly on my hips and I placed mine on his shoulders. We moved together in slow circles and I was gratified to find him surprisingly light on his feet.
"You move well," I said, "I'm surprised you didn't join me earlier.
He grinned, "I'm not keen on the fast ones. This is more my style... As well as the waltz. I do like a good waltz."
"Maybe you can teach me, one day."
We danced in silence for the next couple of tracks. I must admit it felt wonderful to be in his arms like that, simply moving slowly to the music. With our bodies pressed close together, I could feel the heat rising and my nipples became so hard, I thought they might be drilling into his chest. I felt his hands slide slowly around my body onto the small of my back and he pulled me even closer against him. I rested my head on his shoulder and closed my eyes. My panties were damp with the sheer excitement of holding this man so close and I swear, I could feel something hard pressing against my tummy.
Thoughts and images flashed through my head. I saw with my mind's eye that we weren't dancing, we were naked and entwined in the act of love. Giving, receiving and sharing pleasure. I felt my pussy begin to pulse and a heat was building in my womb.
Fuck! I wanted this man so much! Not just for sex... I loved him. I loved him like I had never loved anyone. Ever!
Soon, the DJ announced the last track and the bell rang for last orders. As the music faded, we stopped dancing, still holding each other close. We looked around at the students, knocking back the last of their drinks and filing out of the room. I noticed that Diana was heading out of the door with a half bottle of Laphroaig in one hand and her hottie barman in the other. That woman is such a fucking outlaw!
I looked back into Nathan's eyes and whispered, "Well. That's it then."
We shared another long moment before he answered, "Yes. The party's over."
Neither of us made any move to separate.
I said, "I suppose we should head up to bed."
"Indeed. Busy day tomorrow."
"I enjoyed the dancing, Midnight."
Slowly, regretfully, we disengaged and then made our way upstairs to our rooms.
I paused at my door, turned to look at Nathan with my hand on the door handle and said softly, "Well... Night then."
Nathan's eyes burned into me as though he was looking deep inside my mind and reading my innermost thoughts, his expression unreadable. He replied, "Sleep well, Midnight."
He leaned down, pecked me on the cheek, then turned and started along the corridor to his own room.
That was the first time he had ever kissed me. My skin where his lips had brushed against me tingled and I carefully held my fingertips to my cheek, his brief touch had sent shivers through my body. I had the awful feeling that I was about to make a big mistake but I just couldn't help myself. I had to tell him, regardless of the consequences, I couldn't go another day without knowing if my feelings were reciprocated.
I had to know.
"Nathan, I need to say something," I called, unable to keep a quaver out of my voice.
He turned and came back, "What is it?"
Scared, I was unable to meet his gaze. I had never been so frightened in my life, even at the worst of times. I knew this could be a terrible mistake that would cause me more pain than I could endure.
I rubbed my right fist in my left hand and stared doggedly at them. On the verge of tears I couldn't help shivering as I blurted out, "I want you."
Nathan placed his finger and thumb on my chin and very gently tilted my head up so I had to look him in the eye, "What did you say?"
I was mesmerised by those eyes. Those fucking eyes. My expression was a mask of nervous fear as I murmured, "Need you."
Christ! I was so fucking terrified, I was shaking!
His face was an enigma, I had no idea what was going on behind those icy blue eyes, until he slowly moved his face to mine and lightly brushed his lips against my own. In hushed tones, he answered, "I need you too, Midnight," and gently kissed me again.
I thought my legs might give way beneath me. It had never felt like this! I was getting more of a thrill from a simple kiss than than I had ever experienced before. Still uncertain, I moved my hands up to cup his face and held him still so that the kiss could deepen. Our mouths opened slightly and I slipped my tongue between his lips, and let the tip stroke his teeth before sliding it across his tongue.
His arms moved to enfold me in a tender embrace as my hands snaked around to hold the back of his neck.
I didn't want it to end... Ever!
The singlemindedness that Nathan applied to his studies, his professional life, his mentoring of students, was also unconsciously applied to his kisses. And I could feel it transferring to me through the contact of our lips, tongues and hands. There was no rational thought, no cares over who might see us, no worry about how our heads moved to make sure we didn't bump noses, no thoughts about what to do with our hands, and whether we should allow our fingers to start searching out more intimate contact.
There was only... The kiss.
After what felt like a thousand years, it ended and we placed our foreheads together even as our embrace tightened.
Nathan sighed deeply and murmured, "I... I love you, Midnight."
My heart lurched when I heard those words. I pulled my head back so I could once again gaze deeply into his eyes. I could feel a single tear make it's way down my cheek as I replied, "Oh God! I've dreamed of hearing you say those words to me. I love you Nathan. I need you. I need you like I need oxygen... Please... Let me show you how much I love you."
I disengaged from his arms, took his hand in my own, opened the door to my room, and gently drew him inside.
END OF CHAPTER SIX
May 11, 2018 in romance