The Demi finally whittled his laughter down to chortles and a couple whews, “I haven’t laughed like that in…”

“You laugh all the time.”

Both brows popped up, “The hell you say.”

“Oh, I say.”

“Kitten, my reputation as a surly bastard is well earned.”

“You want the list.”

“You know, I think I do.”

“Fine. One…”

“Ah, wait, Let’s see….” Damien slid down her body. There was a two second stop at her waist and another two seconds he was standing with her jeans and panties in his hand.

“What the hell?” Andie sat up, tugging his t-shirt down over her girlie bits. Not that he hadn’t already seen everything. But being bare-assed naked from the waist down while he was still fully clothed felt … odd.

With a charming as hell half-grin, he tossed the garments over his shoulder. “I want to be comfortable for this.”

Did he now? “How does removing my clothes make you more comfortable?”

“It’s my way.” The Demi deigned to explain with an enigmatic wave of his elegant hand, resettling himself on the bed, back against the headboard.

“Uh huh. I’m keeping the t-shirt.”

“Okay.” He took her hand and tugged, “Come here.”

“You’re up to something.”

“Kitten, I’m merely waiting to be enlightened as to my new propensity for laughter.” Damien said this with the strangest expression on his face. Eyes wide and face slack and… oh.

“Are you trying to look innocent?”

“Is it working?”


“I’ll work on it.” The charming half-grin returned and in a slick Demi-God move, he grasped her hips, lifted, and next thing she knew, she was sprawled on top of him.

Bracing her hands on his chest, she brought her knees up to straddle him, which brought her naked girlie bits right on top of the rock-hard bulge in his pants.

Coincidence? Not likely. “All comfy now?”

“I am.” The Demi nodded. His hands moving to rest on her thighs, his thumbs tracing light circles on her flesh.

She ignored the shivery goosebumps his touch raised. Really. She did. “May I begin?”

“You may.” The Demi said all smug and magnanimous, and sex on a stick sexy. She ignored that too. “That first morning, you were laughing.”

 “A lot happened that morning. Can you be more specific?”

Oh yeah, she could. “Double. Ovens.”

“Ah, I don’t believe I laughed about that.”

“You were laughing on the inside.”

“Does that count?”

“It does when your lips are twitching all over the place and your shoulders are shaking.”

“Ah. well, in my defense, kitten, if you could have seen yourself – your cheeks were puffed out, and your face was splotchy…”

“Splotchy?” Since when was a splotchy face funny?

“And then you fell over. I’d never seen anything like it. I’m only human.”  The hands on her thighs trailed up.

More shivers. More ignoring. And only human? Mr. Mount Olympus? That was a lie, if ever she’d heard one. “And the day you followed me around Georgetown University in your car.”

“The day the pumpkin mousse exploded?”

“The eggs exploded.” She corrected him, “The pumpkin mousse was a casualty.”

“As I recall, I did not find that funny.”

“Oh, I remember. However, later when you were trailing me around the greater D.C. area. I was angry at you for taking over my class.” She jabbed him in the chest with her index finger, “You were Mr. Chuckles.”

 He grabbed her finger and kissed it.

She continued with the ignoring. “And at the ball you were all chuckle-chuckle spin, chortle-chortle twirl.”

“Chortle?” He released her finger to press a kiss to her palm, “Surely not.”

And lest we forget, your falling-down laughing fit at the EverMay Open House.”

Nibbling bites to the tender skin on the inside of her wrist. Set off a cataclysm of shivery heat. Since when was the incide of her wrist an errongenous zone.

“I never used to laugh.”

“You’re making up for it now.”

“I am.” A grin spread over The Demi’s beautiful face. Then he chuckled, that led to some chortling. There was a hoot and what may have ben a “ha’ or possibly an “ah-ha”. It was hard to tell as at the same moment she was being tossed onto the bed.

Her back slapped the soft mattress. She blinked at the ceiling. What the fudgesicle?  Andie pushed her hair out of her face and sat up to see Damien pacing the length of the bed. He passed her.  He passed her again. On the fourth pass, she waved. He failed to notice. The pacing went on. And on. And on some more.

“Uh, if this is some new kinky sex thing, I have to tell you, I’m not getting it.”

At that, the Demi paused, turned at the waist, and announced, “I laugh.”  Like surprised the heck out of him

Okay. “You do.”

The Demi blinked, “A lot.”

Okay. As far as she knew, laughter wasn’t that big a deal, but the Demi looked a little freaked and a lot confused.

Maybe he needed some affirmation. “Yes, a lot.” As affirmation went, repeating his words back to him was kind of basic but confused Greek Gods with their rumpled clothes and mussed hair were hella’ distracting, basic would to have to do. And as he didn’t seem to hear her, it didn’t matter anyway. He’d gone back to pacing. Repeatedly.

Head. Foot.

Up. Down.

Back. Forth.

About every other pass he’d pause and mutter a few words which she would repeat. A pattern emerged.

Pace. Pause.Speak: “I never used to laugh.” Repeat. “You never used to laugh.”

Pace. Pause. Speak, “But now I laugh all the time.” Repeat, “You laugh all the time.”

Pace. Pause.Speak. “Because of you.” Repeat. “Because of…me” Andie risked breaking the loop, “Huh, I must be hell’a funny.”


“I’m not hella’ funny?”  She got the feeling they weren’t communicating. She should have stuck with repeating. Or possibly, she wasn’t using hella’ correctly. She’d never been sure about that one.

He made a full turn and faced her straight on, “I laugh because you make me happy.”

 “Uh… okay.” That was good, but she’d kind of liked the idea of being hella’ funny. But then, she could make a hella’ good caramel and as everyone knew, caramel made up for a lot.

“I’m…. happy.”

“Good for you?”

The Demi broke to a full-on stop, faced her, and threw his hands on his hips. It was a surprisingly good look on him, “How the hell did that happen?”

“Uh….” She hoped he wasn’t expecting her to answer. “How does happiness happen?” was an entire season of Through the Wormhole and she didn’t have Morgan Freeman on speed dial.

“Well, holy shit on a stick. I think I love you.”

“Huh? What? Say again?”

“I love you.”

“The hell you say.”

“Oh, I say.”