Xavier Cold

Page 19


“That’s not going to happen either.”
I furrow my brow. “Why not? Don’t you want me to see it?”
He unlocks the back door. “It’s not that, Anna.”
“Then . . . I don’t understand.” I’m completely confused.
“I never had a room. Not every kid had a room like you, Anna. I wasn’t blessed with a family who actually gave a shit when it came to me. I was lucky to be fed. Things like toys or a bed to sleep in weren’t things my grandmother thought I deserved.”
Pressure snakes around my heart, and I swear, it feels like it’s breaking. I know this might be crossing the line in regard to what he’s willing to say about his family, but I can’t stop my brain from wondering, and it will eat at me if I don’t get this out. “What about your mother? Didn’t she—”
“Anna . . .” he says my name with a bite to it.
“I’m sorry. This subject is off-limits—you’ve told me that so many times—but I want to understand you better. I want to know about your past.”
“My past is fucked up. You know that. You’ve seen the way it affects me, firsthand, so you should understand why I don’t want to talk about it.” He opens the door and stares inside the house. “Can we not do this right now? Talking about it and being here—I can’t do it.”
“I’m sorry. I shouldn’t have pushed. I’ll try to stop doing that.”
He sighs and turns to me. “I wish it wasn’t so damn hard to talk about my past. I want you to know me, but there are some demons that your goodness shouldn’t be exposed to. I don’t want God to look down at me, pissed that I tainted one of his angels with my darkness.”
My eyebrows knit together. “I’m no angel.”
“You are to me.” Xavier threads his fingers through mine. “Come on, beautiful. Let’s find a place to sleep.”
He reaches inside and flips on the lights to the kitchen. The cabinets are dated, and there’s a green-topped table with metal legs sitting in the middle of the small space. Like the living room, the chairs have plastic over them. We walk to the table, and I set the food down before we move into the living room. It’s the only other room I’ve seen in this house.
Xavier then leads me to the stairs, and we head up. My hand trails up the wood paneling as we reach the second floor. It’s no bigger up here than the first floor. There are three doors at the top of the stairs, and all of them are closed.
Xavier points toward the door directly across from the stairs. “Bathroom. It’s the only one in the house. The door to the right of that one is my mother’s old room, and the other door is Grandmother’s room.” He turns toward me. “The only thing I ask is that you not go into Grandmother’s room. I’ve never been in there, and that’s one door I want to always stay closed.”
My eyes wander over to the room in question, and I zero in on a padlock, sealing the door shut. “Is that why there’s a lock?”
Xavier shakes his head. “She put that on there. She didn’t want anyone in her room.”
“Were you curious as to why she kept it locked?”
“No,” he says flatly. “The thought of defying her never crossed my mind. I didn’t want to pay the consequence. Things were bad enough as they were. I didn’t need to create mischief to bring any more hell down on myself.”
I swallow hard. “She sounds horrible.”
“Yeah, but if you ask any of the neighbors around here about her, they’ll fucking sing her praises like she’s Mother Teresa.”
“They obviously didn’t know her.”
He nods. “You got that right. She put on a face for the public, for her church, but she was no sweet old lady behind these walls. Her true nature came out here, where no one else but me could see it.”
My eyes burn, and there’s no way I can stop the tears from falling from them. I sniff, and it catches Xavier’s attention. His eyes flit down to my face, and the corners of his mouth turn down.
He slides his thick index finger under my chin and then tips my chin up, so he can set his gaze directly down on me. “It kills me when you frown. You know I hate that.”
“What you must’ve gone through . . . I can’t . . . it breaks my heart.” I have a hard time getting all the words out.
“Don’t,” he whispers with a slight growl in his voice. “Don’t cry for me. I’m not worth it.”
“You are worth it,” I manage to squeak out between sobs. “You’re one of the best people I’ve ever known.”
He squeezes his eyes shut, like my words physically cause him pain. “Anna, I’m not. I’ve done horrible things.”
“It doesn’t matter. I’ve told you that. I love you for the man you are now. I don’t care about your past. I love you, Xavier.”
Without warning or permission, he crushes his mouth down on mine. Fire courses through every inch of me as I press myself against his sculpted chest. I claw at his shirt as he backs me up to the wall. His fingers find their way under my shirt, causing a shiver to run down my spine. His cock hardens beneath those tight jeans, and it presses into my belly as we continue to devour each other. His tongue probes my mouth, and I’m so turned on that I can’t see straight. Between my legs, I ache, and I know only having him inside me can give me any relief.
“God, Anna, you taste so good,” Xavier murmurs as he slides his hand down my thigh. Then, he hitches my leg up onto his hip.
I toss my head back and moan as his stiff length creates friction through my jeans. He kisses a trail down my chin, leaving fire in his wake, and then he licks the soft skin of my neck.
This man has the ability to turn me on with the slightest touch, and there’s nothing more I want right now than to feel every inch of his bare skin pressed against mine.
I grab the hem of his shirt and push up. He drags it over his head, making his hair a sexy mess. I thrust my fingers into his thick hair and kiss him. The taste of him dances across my tongue, and I can’t get enough.
Xavier’s fingers work quickly to pop the button on my jeans, and then he unzips them before his hand snakes inside my panties.
The moment his digit makes contact with my most sensitive flesh, I bite down on my bottom lip. “Xavier . . .”