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"I don't think a man ever cooked for me before," Ellen said.
"I'm the first?" Jonah asked.
"You're the first."
"Well, I don't know if throwing slabs of meat on the barbecue is really cooking," he said, looking up from slicing and dicing the salad ingredients. "But I'm trying to impress you here, so we'll go with that." He motioned to the counter in front of him. "And the mangling of vegetables, of course."
There was no mistaking his eagerness to dazzle her. The table set for two with candles and flowers, his frequent glances at the level of wine in her glass, and his constant awareness of her position in the room were heartbreakingly sweet.
She took a sudden left turn. "Jonah," she said impulsively.
"Yes." He stopped what he was doing to answer her.
With two and a half steps and all the courage she could muster, she wedged herself between him and the counter. "I'm already impressed."
No words could describe the subtle change in his expression that spoke directly to her heart, that seemed to welcome her home and promise an exciting adventure all at once. His gaze roamed slowly over her hair to her lips, across her cheeks and chin, deep into her eyes and inside her soul, claiming it all as his own.
"So am I. . ."