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The green light on the alarm system went on and Lacey Billings turned the key in the lock with a soft click. A small lamp on the foyer table lit the hall of the condo, but otherwise the place was dark, which wasn't too much of a surprise since it was close to midnight. Her flight had been late due to storms in Chicago, and the plane had sat on the ground for over two hours before the airline canceled her connection, and it was only a miracle she'd been able to nab a rental car at that hour and just drive down. The travel nightmare eased a little as she walked into the kitchen, dropped her purse on the counter and then flipped on the light. The sleek dark marble countertops gleamed, the stainless steel stovetop looked as clean as when she'd last wiped it off five days ago and to Ran's credit, there were no dishes in the sink. The place smelled just vaguely of oregano and garlic, and if she had to guess, that meant he had ordered in his favorite pizza earlier. Not a surprise. The man's idea of cooking was pushing the speed dial on his cell phone.
She'd missed him. After nearly a year of dating, shouldn't the excitement be slowing down between them? Instead, it kept getting better.
With that in mind, she carried her travel case toward the bedroom, skirting the collection of leather furniture in the living room with the ease of someone who was familiar with the territory even with no lights on. She wanted a bath pretty desperately, not to mention a close encounter with her toothbrush.
The bedroom was very dark with the door closed and drapes drawnand she could barely see him, just the shape of his rangy body sprawled, nude and relaxed, in the rumpled sheets. The faintest hint of his deep breathing drifted out as she closed the door behind her and moved quietly toward the bathroom. It was late and he sometimes put in more hours at the office when she was out of town, so she didn't want to wake him.
Lacey closed the door before she turned on the bathroom lights and started the water running in the jetted tub, hoping that wouldn't disturb him. Twenty minutes later, after a blissful soak, the tension in her muscles gone, she rose, grabbed a fluffy towel, dried off and in the act of reaching for her bag to find a pair of clean underwear left over from what she'd packed for the convention, she changed her mind when she found the black almost-not-there silk thong she'd planned to wear when she'd thought she'd be home much earlier. Yes, it was late, but...
Maybe she would wake Ran up. Considering the method she had in mind, she doubted he'd object. It always turned him on when she took the initiative in bed. They hadn't seen each other in nearly a week and what could be more relaxing after a stressful day than a little welcome-home lovemaking?
Her skin still slightly damp and warm from her bath, she flipped off the lights, eased the bathroom door open and walked to the bed, doing her best to not spoil the mood by stubbing her toe or falling over something in the dark. He didn't stir, not even when she eased back the sheet and slipped in next to him.
"Hi," she said softly, trailing a finger down his bare, muscular chest. His eyelids might have fluttered, but he didn't move. His face was turned away in the pose of a truly deep sleep, with one arm curled around his head. The outline of his profile was barely visible.
Should I let him sleep?
Hell no. Like he'll thank me for that in the morning. I know Ran.