Chapter 9 - It's a Dream

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I'd kiss you, Mia. I'd hold you in my arms right now, but I can't. Wait, come to think of it, we've never kissed, have we? We've been friends for so long, and we've never had any accidents?

For fuck's sake, Richard. Accidents, really?

But what is this? It doesn't help that I'm in nothing but my fucking underwear right now. I have to remember to tip Kate when she brings me my clothes later. World's best assistant. Maybe I should buy her a new purse or something, maybe...

Mia rolled over again, her body parallel to his. She continued her slumber, mumbling unintelligible sounds as she shifted under the blanket.

So. Beautiful. What I'd do to have you all to myself, I swear. Hands on your hips, in your hair, around your thighs. Everywhere. How the hell am I coming up with all this gibberish in my head? I'm a sinner. If I had a pound for every dirty thought I've had tonight, I'd be filthy rich. There must be a devil in the room, but there isn't. There's only Mia. She's probably the devil incarnate, taunting me with her charm.

And there's an Elvis song for that, right? No, I don't think I interpreted that very well.

"I can't sleep."

The nuts and bolts of Richard's mind stopped turning. He peered over at the groggy voice, hoping that she hadn't been hiding some kind of psychic ability from him.

I wasn't thinking out loud, was I?

Mia couldn't see Richard's eyes as her own tried to adjust their focus in the twilight. The window next to him was the only source of light, and it outlined his face and chest perfectly, like a painting. She admired the view, unsure of when she'd be able to see it again.

"Why are you still awake?" she said quietly.

She watched him as he turned to his side. When her vision finally recalibrated, she could see his bare chest, his defined arms flexed and folded under the pillow, supporting his head.

Wow, she thought. A masterpiece.

"I don't sleep much nowadays, if I'm honest." He inched closer. "And you?"

"I'm thinking about how much I don't want to leave." She pushed herself up, sitting against the headboard. She looked forward at her feet that protruded under the comforter. "Among other things."

Richard copied her every move, also sitting up. They stared at nothingness. "Then don't."

She chuckled, shaking her head. "It's not that easy, you know that."

"I do, but it's just a thought." He folded his arms over his chest to warm up as the soft sheets slipped away when he leaned against the headboard.

Mia looked at him. She noticed his jaw clenched; he looked stiff. But she also noticed something else, something that made her laugh.

She touched his chest with the palm of her hand, surprising Richard. A smirk spread across her face. "Your chest hair's gone!" she exclaimed, amused. "Movie?"

He let out a hearty laugh as he let the warmth of her hand sink into him. He held her wrist in response. "Just finished a show."

"Wow." She rubbed the bare skin a few times, applying just enough pressure to express her comedy. "You had to be naked, huh? Your bum makes an appearance, too?" She was in a playful mood now, sitting back.

Richard tried his best to keep his composure. It was funny because she actually guessed right, but he wasn't going to hand over the winning lottery ticket.

"'M'not spoiling," he said. "You have to wait like everyone else."

Mia looked away as she imagined him in such a role, without clothes. Completely nude. And although he had already performed in such a way before, across different projects, it still lingered in her mind, tauntingly. No, she thought. I can't.

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