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I was preoccupied our entire walk back to the house. Abby tried to engage me in aimless conversation, but I was too on edge to devote such attention to what she was saying, and for that, I felt like such an inattentive jackass. She wanted me to take her home, to take her to bed. To have her completely. I never wanted anything more in my life up until this point. My body was screaming at me to give in, ravish her, make her realize that once we were one, that we wouldn't go back. I couldn't; not with her. I wasn't even inside her yet and all I could think about was how different our connection felt from anything I had ever experienced before. I knew Abs felt the same, but I couldn't help my concern over being some sort of caveman and screwing things up before they even had a chance to begin. Wordlessly, I tugged gently on her hand and brought our steps to a halt just down the street from our place.

Farther from city center, the moon and the stars brightened in the sky, and standing here with Abby in the dead of night just down the road from our gorgeous house on O Street made me feel alive, like magic swirled around us. It was cliche as all hell, but having her in my arms almost made me think I needed to wake up from the dream I was immersed in ever since she said yes to my proposition. I'd spent so much time focusing on doing my job and not actively pursuing her that now, I had to shake that mentality and realize she wanted me as much as I wanted her, and perhaps we could have it all at the end of the day. Still, I couldn't help but feel hesitant when it came to the physicality of being together. If I were sensible, I would just do what my heart told me, and immerse myself in her. We were consenting adults, after all. I didn't want morning to come and realize that Abby had regrets, or that she wished we had developed our bond more before we rushed to climb into bed.

"Tell me what's bouncing around in that head of yours." Abby's eyes pinched slightly in concern as she stepped into me and reached up to stroke my temple. The gesture was so tender that I closed my eyes and leaned into her touch, relishing in the warmth of her delicate hand against a chilly night. We had barely crossed a line into new territory and I was already becoming terrified of the feelings I was developing for her. Perhaps they had been there all the while, building and simmering just below the surface throughout so many months in close quarters with one another. What I must have attempted to brush off as harmless attraction or reserved flirtation and friendship was rapidly morphing into something else entirely. Who knows exactly what I had been feeling this past year, but now that we were exploring a romantic entanglement, it was like someone set fire to my heart, and my emotions were suddenly burning out of control. All I knew in this very moment was that I was determined to do the best I could by her, by us.

"I won't lie, Abs, but I'm nervous. I know that seems absurd. I need to know you're sure. It wasn't part of my plan to have you this quickly, even though, God, I want to. I imagined being a true gentleman and taking my time to worship you in every way I could first. I want to be worthy of you-" She broke my thoughts with a kiss. It was slow, warm, and utter perfection. Initially, I was under the impression that when I took her, I'd be the one to ruin her for anyone else. It turns out, it was the complete opposite. The simple touch of her velvety lips against mine practically sent me spiralling. My fingers gripped her hips and dug into her flesh.

We continued our kiss as we stumbled clumsily a few doors down to our own front steps. I scooped Abby into my arms and her legs found their way around my waist as I carried her inside, tripping over my own feet but still connected to her mouth as we entered the foyer. Once the front door was shut behind us, I pinned her against it and she tore her lips from mine almost violently. Our breathing was ragged as we stared at each other for a minute. She inhaled deeply, as if to speak, but wound up biting her lip and bowing her head instead.

"What is it, sweetness? Talk to me."

"If I say something, will you promise not to think I'm crazy?" She blushed and I adored her so much in that moment that I thought I might perish on the spot.

"Never" I practically bit the words out. She looked to me in shock for a second before she took a deep breath and continued.

"Please tell me I'm not the only one here who feels this... intensity between us already. It's so ridiculous, I know. I've always thought on a linear trajectory, but since you've been assigned to me, I've been thrown and caught completely off guard. It feels like this shouldn't make sense so quickly, but, it just.. in my heart, it makes perfect sense" She trailed off, shaking her head as if the words she spoke was a silly notion. I pinned her body against the door with my hips, holding her in place while I grabbed her chin with one hand, making sure her eyes met mine before I spoke. I needed her to feel my words, not just hear them, so I had to make sure I was clear. I kissed her firmly and then replied with conviction, my breath warm on her face.

"I feel it too. Of course I do. I think we've been lying and denying ourselves and to each other for too long. It's the only explanation that makes sense. I can't be cordial and distant with you anymore. I want you, Abby, and more than that, I need you. I've needed you for a long time." I reached behind me to remove one of her hands from where it rested at my neck and moved to place it over my heart, holding it there so she could feel how quickly it was beating, Her breath escaped faster, her chest heaving rapidly when she realized the double-tempo strumming beneath her palm. "You. You've always done this to me. From the moment we were introduced, this is how I've lived. Now that you're in my arms, I can't imagine us any other way. That is why I need you to be sure we want the same thing before I carry you to bed and make you mine. I swear that no one will protect you better or adore you more, if you let me."

Tears welled in Abby's eyes and she nodded fiercely before she pulled me in for a long kiss, moaning into my mouth as she grinded her body against mine. I pushed her higher up the door in response, placing my hands on either side of her head and caging her with my body. I was aware that she could feel how ready I was to be inside her, because she pressed her core against my track pants in an almost aggressive manner as she continued to kiss me deeply.

"Bed!" Abby gasped as I attached my lips to her throat, sucking gently. "Roman, please. Take me to bed. Now." Her nails scratched at my shoulders until I relented and released her from the door. I set her down on shaky legs and made sure she had a minute to gather herself and was stable before I clasped her hand in mine. Her lips curled into a sexy smirk as she stepped around me and began leading me up the stairs to her bedroom, the sway of her hips killing me slowly the entire journey. 

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