“So, I was thinking that there has to be the requisite discussion of past relationships if we are going to do this right.” Pacey glanced at her across the table after the waitress walked away with their menus, rubbing his hands nervously over his pants.
Joey raised an eyebrow skeptically as she sipped her champagne. “Do we really have to?” She made a face, cringing slightly.
“Of course – it’s part of the deal. People always talk about prior relationships on first dates.” He chuckled. “I’ll even start.” He cleared his throat as if beginning a speech. “I’ve had few steady relationships over the past several years and have found that I don’t know if I am really in a place in my life right now where I can balance a long term commitment to one person with the demands of my career.”
Joey blinked a few times, looking at him blankly before she laughed. “Do you actually have that written down somewhere?”
He laughed too. “Hey – I’m just giving you my standard first date relationship answer.” She shook her head and he smiled. “What? It’s perfect! It says that – yes, I have had real relationships, so I’m not some womanizer that you can’t trust – but at the same time it is telling them ‘don’t get your hopes up”. It’s brilliant.” He chuckled.
“So nice of you to let them down easy like that.” She grinned, still shaking her head as he nodded happily.
“So…” Pacey leaned forward now. “Your turn.”
Joey sighed, and began, her voice uncertain and hesitant. “Well, I guess there were a couple of guys in college here and there. Then I ended up getting into a serious relationship for a long time. He was going out to grad school in LA and that’s how I ended up there. I ended up going with him.” Joey shrugged.
“So…” Pacey said, looking at his glass in his hand but not picking it up. “That’s a big thing. Picking up and moving across the country to be with someone.” He seemed to pause as if he was going to say more, but then just raised his eyes to watch her.
“It was.” Joey said slowly as she looked at him, her eyes widening slightly in surprise at his question. Then she nodded as well, looking down quickly and then back at Pacey. “I actually almost didn’t go. I had a lot of second thoughts at the last minute.”
Pacey raised an eyebrow. “Really?” He said softly. “But you ended up going in the end…right?”
Joey sat there a long moment before she answered. She finally smiled sadly, brushing her hand quickly under her eye. “He told me that I owed it to him.” She held Pacey’s gaze, her eyes shining. “If I loved him, I’d go with him…too.” She almost whispered the last word, putting a quiet emphasis on her meaning.
A light of understanding slowly passed over Pacey’s face and he looked down, clearing his throat. “A summer is a little different than a lifetime, Jo.” He whispered, but when he looked up at her she was looking away.
“You’re breaking the rules,” She smiled, wiping her eye again.
He just looked at her for another moment, biting the inside of his lip. He sighed, tilting his head a little. “So, is that it – that’s your big relationship history? No one else you want to tell me about?” He threw his arms up in the air and his deep voice took on a playful edge.
Joey laughed and sniffed a little. “Well...”She drew out the words, “There was one other boy. In my senior year of high school.” She sighed and raised her eyebrows. “We were very young…”
“Ah, yeah – young love.” Pacey sighed as well. “What’s better than that?”
“It was pretty great…until the inevitable heartbreak that always comes with it.” Joey agreed and they smiled warmly at one another. “How about you – any big high school loves?”
Pacey chuckled. “Well, you have to understand that I didn’t really focus my energy on my studies, so I kind of had a lot of time to fill in high school.” Joey tried unsuccessfully not to roll her eyes and smirked at this. Pacey looked down, laughing a little. “There was this one girl, though.” He shook his head and sighed, his voice softening and taking on a far away sound. “Man…she was something.”
“And what happened to her? Did she break your heart, too?” Joey asked quietly, still gently teasing him.
Pacey smiled to himself, nodding. “Oh, yeah...” He looked down and his voice caught in his throat a bit as he brought his blue eyes back to hers. “Every time I looked at her.”
Pacey walked Joey slowly to the door of the B&B, just lightly holding her hand in his. “Well…this is it. The end of our official first date.” He smiled. “So – what do think? Do I have a shot a getting a second one with you?”
They were at the door now, and Joey just turned and smiled. “I think there might be a possibility of that, yes.” Her voice lowered a bit and she took a tentative step towards him.
Pacey was still holding her hand and smiled down at her, leaning in until his face was just inches from hers. He tilted his head, just barely brushing the tip of his nose along hers. “And I guess this would be the part where I kiss you good-night.” He whispered, his lips almost brushing against hers as he spoke.
Joey looked up at him, her wide eyes shining in the moonlight. She closed her eyes briefly and leaned her forehead against his, “I guess it is.” She whispered back. She felt his hand glide along her cheek and then he was bringing his other hand to her face as well. Tentatively, he barely touched his lips to hers, breaking contact only to kiss her again, this time with a little more confidence, gently taking her bottom lip between his for just a second before pulling back again. Joey had only two glasses of champagne at dinner, but she suddenly felt almost dizzy, like she was falling forward, needing to find his lips again. He met her kiss this time with more heat, parting her lips just slightly with the tip of his tongue. Joey opened her mouth to him, sighing as she felt the delicious familiar heat and warmth. Their tongues immediately fell into a tantalizingly slow, practiced rhythm, just sliding against each other, as she felt his hands move down her neck and over her shoulders. She reached up to wrap her arms around him, raising herself up a bit on her toes, as the kiss deepened even further.
Pacey’s hands had reached her waist and he was gently rubbing them over the silky material of her dress. Joey then felt his hand traveling back up and moaned softly into his mouth when it just glided over her breast on his way back to her neck. At the sound of her moan, Pacey pulled his mouth away from hers, immediately moving to her neck, assaulting the smooth skin there with hot, open-mouthed kisses. Joey moaned a second time as Pacey gently cupped the underside of her breast now and he ran his thumb across it, and then his kisses were moving down towards her shoulder.
Pacey felt as though he had been thirsting and she was water. He couldn’t get enough of her, the familiar taste and feel of her mixed with all the excitement of discovering someone as if for the first time. The soft, sweet sounds she would make whenever he sought out and found all the places he remembered so well were sending him quickly to the point of no return. He ran his hand down her back, feeling the curve of her backside under the silky material, and groaned, knowing he had to get a grip soon.
“Jo…Joey.” He gasped, pulling back. “We, ah…we should probably just, ah…” He took her hair in his hand, holding her face, trying to stop touching her. “We should probably stick to our plan to keep things…” He dropped his head, hoping that not seeing her face might somehow help him, but then realized what he could see of her from this angle wasn’t helping much either. “We decided to go slow.” He said more to himself than to her as he scrunched his eyes tightly shut.
Joey closed her eyes and sighed, leaning her forehead against his. “Okay. I know. You’re right.”
Pacey grinned a little, still playing with her hair. “After all…something tells me that you are not the type to put out on the first date.” He said, teasing her.
She smiled. “Yeah. I’m definitely more of a second date kind of girl.” She raised an eyebrow and looked at him in such a way that Pacey felt it go straight to his groin.
“Really?” He tried to chuckle as his voice cracked. “If that’s the case - when do you think I could call you again? Would tomorrow be too soon?” Pacey had moved his hands back to her waist, still not able to let her go just yet.
“Hmm.” She brushed her lips against his as she spoke. “No…tomorrow would be good.”
They leaned in for another kiss, slow and lingering, until Pacey pulled away. “Okay.” He sighed. “Tomorrow.”
They finally broke apart, Pacey reaching out one last time to run his hand down her arm, taking her hand in his as she stepped inside the B&B. She looked back with a smile, closing the door as he finally released her.
She shut the door with a long sigh, leaning back against it as she tried to gain enough control over her wobbly legs to walk across the house to her room. As she started to push herself off the door, she heard a soft knocking. She turned and opened it to find Pacey standing there leaning on the doorframe with a grin.
He motioned towards his watch. “It’s tomorrow. Want to go out with me?”
Joey smiled, stepping outside into his waiting arms and back into a kiss. He wrapped his arms around her, turning her and lifting her onto the porch railing. He moved in between her legs, running his hands slowly up her thighs and then just tracing small circles on her skin with the tips of his fingers just under the hemline of her dress.
“I like this dating idea…” She sighed as his mouth moved from her lips to her neck.
“Me too.” Pacey chuckled against her warm skin. “I’m so glad I thought of it.”
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