In spite of the pain in my leg, I woke with a wonderful feeling of anticipation. I was looking forward to seeing Edward again that morning and the thought of being looked after by him gave me a pleasant tingling inside. I trusted him to look after and care for me. In fact, I positively wanted him to.
So I was somewhat disappointed when I opened my door to find an unexpected grinning Ellis standing there in front of me.
“Ellis?” I hoped I didn’t sound too obviously dismayed, but I looked to his side anyway in the hope Edward would also be standing there beside him.
“Edward was still in bed when I left, and as I have a history lecture with you first thing, I told him I’d make sure you get there on time. He said he’ll meet us for lunch.”
“Thanks, Ellis, I really appreciate it.” I wouldn’t be able to get to college by myself. I could only hobble a few steps unaided.
He carried my bag, and his strong arms helped me down the stairs toward his car with ease. I leaned against him and wrapped my arm around his thick waist for added support. It wasn’t quite the same as clinging onto Edward—but needs must.
As we drove the short journey to the college parking lot, Ellis was obviously debating whether to say something to me. I wondered what he was thinking and hoped he planned to explain his unusual behavior with Edward the day before.
“You and Edward seem to have hit it off.” He focused on the road in front of him and came straight to the point without looking me in the eyes.
“Er… yes,” I admitted, not quite sure exactly what to say to him. “We seem to get on pretty well.”
“Look, Jayden, I’d normally wait to say this, but I want to mention it now before Edward gets hurt.” Ellis looked serious, concerned for his younger brother. “I want to tell you something about Edward’s past that may affect your opinion of him, and a little about Edward as well… so you’re not under any false illusions.”
That sounded ominous. I wondered what his true motive was, but waited to hear him out.
“When Edward was sixteen, something nasty happened to him. He was always popular in high school and people accepted him for who he was. One day when he was out walking alone, a group of men came across him in a meadow and well… they started making fun of him, but it all got out of hand and they ended up stripping him and one guy abused him. The others were going to join in, but Seb and some other guys managed to rescue Edward.” Ellis paused and glanced to see my reaction so far. I kept quiet so he’d continue.
“As you would expect, Edward was a quivering wreck and clung onto Seb while they waited for our father and me to arrive. We all became good friends afterwards because of this incident. In fact, Seb and Edward became an item soon after and were together for about three months. It didn’t quite work out between them, but they have remained firm friends since. Seb is still protective of Edward… we all are. We all want what’s best for him and will continue to look after him. Even though he gives off this aura of confidence, he is still quite insecure, Jayden.”
I wasn’t sure what Ellis wanted me to say or what he thought my reaction would be. I wondered if he was deliberately scaring me off and began to get irritated. After all, he was the one who introduced me to his brother and his friends in the first place.
“Edward seems to latch onto new guys, but he often ends up getting hurt. I must say, though, he has taken an exceptional shine to you, more so than normal. And you seem an okay sort of guy, who’s not just out to have your way with him.”
My jaw dropped. I was pretty taken aback by what Ellis said about Edward and what he assumed about me. He’d been very frank, but I was still uncertain why he’d told me all of this. I felt sorry for Edward, but wasn’t sure why he’d think this would affect my relationship with him.
“So you think I’m going to run off because he’s damaged goods?” I clenched my fists and gritted my teeth.
We were in the lecture hall by then and it was filling up quite rapidly, so our voices became hushed.
“I just wanted you to know because… because it has sent previous interested parties running and Edward was always terribly upset afterwards. I think he’d be hurt if you gave up on him. I wanted you to know this before things got too serious between the two of you.”
“I’m not going anywhere.” His words made me feel there might be hope for us after all.
“Just one more thing… please don’t tell Edward I told you any of this.”
I promised not to say anything and let what he’d told me sink in.
Ellis helped me to the cafeteria after the lecture and had me seated by the time Edward walked in. My attention focused on him immediately. He wasn’t dressed like a typical college student. He wore smart pants and a dark leather jacket with a bright pink jumper and shirt underneath. He held his head up high and flounced across the room packed with students. A few heads turn as he moved among the crowded tables, his good looks attracting the scrutiny of many eye-batting females. Surely, they knew they were wasting their time trying to gain his attention?
He didn’t look happy. In fact, he looked totally pissed off. I hoped it wasn’t because of something I’d done. However, he totally ignored his brother and glanced at me.
“How are you feeling today, Jay?” he asked rather coolly, but his kind green eyes gave his concern away.
“My calf is still painful and my ankle is swelling now. I can’t put my full weight on it yet and I’ll need to wrap some more ice around it as soon as I get back.” He looked at me intensely as I spoke. I realized Ellis hadn’t shown me half this much concern.
Edward fetched my lunch on a tray for me. We sat in relative silence with Ellis as we ate, the atmosphere still frosty between the two brothers. I hoped Edward was just annoyed about Ellis collecting me rather than being worried about what he might have told me.
“Well, I haven’t got any lectures this afternoon, so Jayden do you want a lift back with me now, or are you going to wait for Edward?” Ellis asked me, clearly giving me the option.
“I’ve got to see Mr. Butlin about my history research at two o’clock, so I’ll wait for a lift… if that’s all right with you, Edward?”
Edward smiled at me. “Of course it is, sweetie. I’ve an English literature lecture first, then I was going to practice in one of the music rooms for an hour or so, but I could give that a miss today to get you back earlier.”
“I’d like to listen to you play if that’s okay and even join in if there’s a guitar free for me to use.”
“Mmm… the thought of making sweet music with you, Jay, will make my day.” He smirked at his own joke and then blushed. Something I hadn’t really seen Edward do. Ellis became embarrassed as well and went to leave the table.
“I’ll see you later, Edward… and behave yourselves.” He looked at us and wagged his finger as if he were our father.
“Yes, Dad,” Edward teased him, almost reading my mind and seeming in a better mood now his brother was going.
Edward and I chatted for a few more minutes before he thought it was time to get me over to Mr. Butlin’s office. Having Edward’s arms around me, and gripping onto his lean body made me so much more comfortable than I’d been with Ellis.
“I’ll collect you in an hour when my lecture has finished. Wait for me on those chairs.” He pointed his long nimble fingers to where we were to meet.
I sorted out a few issues with my project. Mr. Butlin gave me some helpful suggestions as to where to research next and how to follow up my already completed essay.
Edward was waiting for me by the time I hobbled out of the office. Even though I was beginning to put more weight on the ball of my foot, I still couldn’t extend my leg so my heel could touch the ground. I knew this would take a few more days if my last injury were anything to go by.
“Right then, sunshine.” Edward greeted me enthusiastically. “Let’s pop over to the music practice rooms. I’ll carry your bag and you can lean on me again. Are you sure you’re all right? You still look like you’re in a lot of pain.”
“Edward, I’m fine really.” I wrapped my arm around his shoulder and pulled myself closer to him. He held onto me tightly and I relished the feel of his fingers as they grazed the skin around my exposed middle.
We were soon seated in a practice room that contained a small piano after Edward managed to locate a guitar for me to strum. I started tuning it as he began to play a soulful tune from memory on the piano. I stopped what I was doing and watched him, becoming absolutely mesmerized by his talent.
Shortly, his eyes closed. He seemed almost in a different realm, becoming engrossed in his music, a faint smile on his lips as he continued to play.
All at once, he stopped to look at me.
“That sounds beautiful… I’ve never heard it before. Keep playing it, please,” I all but whispered.
“No, you wouldn’t have done. I only composed it last night. This is the first time I’ve played it.”
“Wow, I’m impressed. What are you going to call it?”
He shrugged and his cheeks flushed again as he looked back down at the piano. “I’m not sure yet, hun. I wrote it while thinking about you.”
It was my turn to blush now and my gaze shot down to the guitar. I didn’t know what to say to that and thought Edward probably didn’t mean to say it aloud.
Edward played the song again, covering up the hushed stillness in the room, and I joined in with a few chords of my own. We played the song together several times, so by the end of our session, we had quite an accomplished piece of work and I beamed at him.
After that, we just messed about. I played a few songs I knew and sang a bit. He joined in when he could. The hour soon passed and we agreed that we should do this again sometime. “I have a couple of guitars in my room at home. You could always come over for supper one evening and we could put some words to our song,” he suggested tentatively.
I really liked the way he said ‘our’.
I looked at him and focused on his kissable lips. I was sitting too far away from him, but I wanted to lean forward and connect us. For a few moments, Edward appeared to be considering the same, but then he suddenly stood and took the guitar from me to put it away.
We packed up and headed towards Edward’s car so he could drive me the short distance back to my room.
As we drove, I mulled over Ellis’s words from this morning. Even though I promised to keep quiet, I wanted to say something to Edward, but in the end, I chickened out and decided not to say anything.
“You okay, sweetie?” He looked across at me. “You seem a little distracted.”
“Mmm… I’m fine. Thanks, Edward.” I diverted my attention to the windscreen.
When we got to my room, Edward helped me over to my small sofa and put my bag on my desk out of the way.
“I’ll get you some ice for that leg.” He left straight away and walked down the corridor to the shared kitchen. Within minutes, he was back with a bundle of ice wrapped in a tea towel. I rolled up my jeans and placed the pack where I felt the most swelling and pain. The soothing cooling effect was just what I needed.
“You really need to keep this leg elevated as much as possible tonight, Jayden.” Edward put on his serious doctor’s face.
I nodded because I didn’t feel up to much anyway.
“What had you planned for your evening meal? You didn’t eat a lot at lunchtime.”
“I haven’t really thought that far ahead,” I admitted, toying with a cushion.
“You’ve got to eat, sunshine. What do you have in the cupboard or freezer? Let me rustle up something for us.” Edward’s hands waved with a flourish.
I thought for a moment. “If we go to the kitchen, I’ll show you my cupboard and I can point out what’s mine in the fridge and freezer.”
Edward rolled his eyes at me, but made his way over and helped me to standing. I breathed in his fresh scent, cherishing how welcome it was. I grasped him a little too closely than I needed yet again, but he didn’t object.
I perched on one of the kitchen chairs with my leg resting on another as I pointed out my minimal supplies.
“Seriously, hun, when your leg is better we are going shopping together and I am going to teach you a few basic recipes.”
I flushed, embarrassed again, but I tried to argue that I’d not really had the chance to go shopping recently.
“You need to look after yourself, Jayden. You can’t live off junk food for the next few years while you’re at college.”
Edward went to take off his jumper before he set to work. As he eased up his arms and pulled it over his head, the shirt he wore rose up as well to reveal a toned slim torso. I received a full glimpse of his tattoo apart from the small section that was hidden by the top of his pants. I couldn’t avert my eyes even though I thought I should.
As he turned around, I noticed his belly piercing was missing, but instead he had a ring through his right nipple. Instantly, I longed to flick my tongue over it, and within seconds, my jeans felt tight as my cock hardened. I wanted to touch his skin and snake my fingers over his tattoo. I pulled the chair I was sitting on closer to the table so it would hide my thickening erection.
As Edward removed his jumper and adjusted his shirt, he caught my eyes taking in his sexy body.
“It’s rather hot in here,” he stated not too innocently.
“I’m certainly getting hot under the collar,” I thought and said aloud. Edward laughed at my joke although I didn’t intend it to be funny.
I watched him intently as he gathered everything he needed to make our meal. He seemed more relaxed today away from his brother and housemates.
Two other students came in and started to prepare themselves a drink and a snack. They stood on either side of Edward as he worked while they waited for their food to cook. Edward chatted to them and I couldn’t help but feel a little left out, and to be honest… jealous.
They asked him what he was cooking and he quickly explained his recipe—a tuna pasta bake. I watched him talking and moving and ran through all the things I liked about him. He was absolutely the best looking man I’d ever seen. No question about it. His body was great, too. He was talented in so many areas—an accomplished musician, an intuitive cook, a clever student. And I loved his personality. There was something about him that attracted me to him and I wondered what he’d be like in bed.
I wanted us to be a couple. I really did, but I was still hesitant about the next step. Jedd and my other boyfriends had made the first move. I always stood back and waited, and I was doing the same again this time. I worried nothing would happen between us if Edward was doing the same thing. Ellis seemed to imply that Edward threw himself at other guys. If anything, he was holding himself back with me.
“Would you like a drink, Jay?” Edward asked, distracting me from my thoughts but I realized I had been staring at Edward the whole time.
I nodded. “Please.”
The two guys sat at the table with me and ate their snack. We made polite conversation and every so often Edward’s eyes flicked over to me.
While our dinner was cooking, Edward washed and dried everything he’d used. He was so meticulous and tidy he put me to shame.
By the time our meal was cooked and ready to eat, the two other guys had left the kitchen. Edward served up the bake. It smelt and tasted delicious, but I didn’t expect any other.
“Mmm… this is really good,” I told him honestly as I took a bite. “And to think it was in my cupboard all this time.” I smirked.
“It’s a basic student recipe. I’ll teach it to you next time I come over and I’ll get you to do the cooking.” He slowly lifted his fork to his mouth.
I liked the sound of that. “Thanks, Edward. I really appreciate all you’re doing for me. You’ve been a great help and a good friend, and I’ve only known you for a few days.”
Edward stopped eating and stared at me.
I’d blown it. Trust me to push too far.
He sighed. “Apart from my house mates, I don’t really have many true friends. So I’m glad you consider me a friend already. I would like to spend more time with you, if that’s okay?”
This was the most serious I’d ever seen him. His dark eyes looked into mine and held my gaze. My legs weakened and my arousal pulsed back into life.
“I’d like that as well.” I beamed at him. He smiled back and carried on eating.
Edward washed up and put everything away neatly, then helped me back to my room.
I was disappointed when he said he’d better be going, but I knew he had work to do and I had some reading I needed to do for the next day.
“I’ll definitely pick you up tomorrow morning,” he said firmly. “We have the same lecture times, so Ellis can’t use that as an excuse this time.”
Edward leaned in and kissed me on the cheek. I desperately wanted to hug him and give him a proper kiss, but once more I held back.
“See you tomorrow, sunshine,” he said, heading towards the door, “and make sure you keep that leg rested.”
I flopped down on my bed and closed my eyes when he’d gone. I tried to remember the ‘pretend’ kiss he’d given me in the coffee bar the other evening. It had only lasted a short while, but it had been the best kiss anyone had ever given me. Just the thought of another kiss from Edward, especially if we were more than just friends, sent me reeling inside.
My eyes welled up and I choked back a sob. Tears started trickling down my face for no apparent reason. They soon became uncontrollable and for a few minutes, I was crying in my loneliness. When the tears subsided and I’d finished, I wiped my face with the palms of my hands. I now felt wretched inside and was missing Edward already. I wanted him to be lying by my side, holding me and kissing me to calm me down.
I took several deep breaths and admonished myself for being such a drama queen.
Aiming to focus solely on my reading for the next hour or two, I picked up the book I needed to get through by tomorrow’s lecture. As I became absorbed in the text, I managed to keep my attention on the content of the print for a while. However, after about an hour, I realized I’d been reading the last few pages but had not taken any of it in.
Closing my eyes briefly, I visualized Edward’s face and his sexy body in the kitchen this afternoon. I imagined running my tongue over his nipple ring and flicking at his hardening nub. As I pictured my hands rubbing over his firm torso, my own hands mirrored those actions. I stroked myself gently over my chest with one hand playing with my nipples, while the other hand moved down my abdomen towards the waistband of my jeans. I rubbed over my thickening cock and bucked my hips upward as the warm sensations spread throughout my lower half. I used both hands to undo the button and zip, and before I knew it, my jeans and underwear were rapidly being pushed out of the way.
In my mind, I was licking and palming Edward’s thick shaft while my hands were occupied with my own arousal. I cupped and kneaded my balls as I simultaneously stroked my dick slowly in long but tightening movements. My thumb spread the gathering moisture around the head and I began to alternate my strokes with rubbing my exposed slit with a slight twist of my wrist. My fantasy changed as I pictured Edward lying over me creating the deepening pleasure. His tongue licked around my balls before making its way along my now throbbing cock. As I imagined the feeling of him taking me fully into his mouth, I let out an audible groan. My hand moved rapidly, and within moments, I felt the wondrous tightening down below. My body tensed as I cried out his name and released ribbons of come all over my hand and stomach.
I lie panting. The warm aftermath of my orgasm continued to pulse around my body and it took several minutes before I felt I wanted to get off the bed to clean myself up.
The following morning, I was ready and waiting for Edward to collect me fifteen minutes before I needed to be. The swelling in my calf and ankle had gone down, and I felt substantially less pain now. I could almost place my foot on the floor when I wore my sneakers, but didn’t have the confidence to push off from my heel just yet and was still a little cautious of any sudden movement.
I used my few spare minutes to tidy my room and smiled at the good effect Edward was already having on me.
For a few seconds, I feared Ellis would collect me again, but as soon as I opened the door to Edward’s welcoming face, I relaxed. His beautiful smile made his whole face light up—from his bright eyes and his faint laughter lines to those pearly white teeth.
“Good morning, beautiful,” he greeted me and I jokingly turned round to look for this person.
“I don’t think he’s here,” I jested, “but I’ll say good morning to you instead.” We both grinned at each other and performed our ritual kiss on the cheek.
“Are you ready, sweetheart?” He nodded to the jacket and bag already in my arms. “I’ve got a surprise in the car for you.”
The surprise turned out to be a pair of crutches, which he’d got his father to send over to him the previous evening. “These should help you get around for the next few days, but don’t worry, I’ll still help you with longer journeys.”
Edward had difficulty finding a parking space close to the entrance of the college building, so he dropped me at the front by a bench and told me to wait for him while he parked up. He left the crutches with me, and while I was waiting, I tried them out. They really helped with keeping the weight off my injured leg.
“I’m impressed, hun,” he said as he strode towards me.
“Thanks, but I did use some last time I injured my leg.”
We walked down the main corridor together, but parted company as our first lecture rooms were in opposite directions. We both had a busy schedule all morning, so we didn’t plan to meet up again until lunchtime.
Despite having several interesting lectures and seminars, I kept looking at the wall clocks or my watch throughout the morning. As the time to meet Edward approached, I felt butterflies in my stomach. I found it quite difficult to keep my attention solely on my studies once again because I kept pondering whether to ask him out on a proper date. As usual, I decided to wait and see, and felt angry with myself for being such a wimp. I was frightened of rejection, plus I didn’t want to ruin our developing friendship.
When I finally got to the cafeteria, Edward was sitting with Ellis and the other guys at a long rectangular table. There was an empty seat opposite Edward, which I presumed they’d saved for me. As soon as Edward saw me, he walked toward me, taking my bag and jacket, and pulled out the chair so I could sit down. He perched the crutches against the end of the table and hung my bag and jacket on the back of my chair. I greeted everyone and responded to questions about how I was doing. I sensed Edward’s eyes on me and occasionally risked a quick glance at him. Every time I did so, his smile encouraged me.
After a few minutes chatting, everyone else headed over to buy something to eat. I volunteered to buy Edward’s lunch for him as a thank you for all of his assistance, but he waved his hand to decline the offer.
“It’s okay, hun. Don’t feel you owe me anything.” He followed the others to the food counters. I suddenly thought I could offer to take him out for a proper meal at a restaurant in recompense. That way it wouldn’t have to be an official date. I sat there chuffed with myself for coming up with the idea and tried to work out how to phrase the offer as a harmless question.
I still hadn’t decided by the time everyone was seated again. Edward came back with a tray containing two plates of food and let me choose the one I preferred. I went for the burger and fries, leaving him the healthier option. He raised an eyebrow at me, but then knowingly smirked in the sexiest manner ever. An arousing tingle rushed backward across my scalp and straight down my spine.
“I didn’t think you’d go for nourishing after seeing the junk in your kitchen yesterday,” he said, seemingly oblivious to my internal reactions to him.
Before I could reply, Zachary chipped in. “So, Jayden, when are you coming over to see us again?”
I gave Edward a quick look and shrugged. “Whenever I’m invited, I suppose.”
“Jayden, you’re welcome to drop by at any time. You don’t have to wait for an invite,” Ellis offered generously.
Edward bristled in his seat. “I was going to offer to cook you a decent meal tonight, Jayden, and then we could spend some time working on the song we started yesterday.”
I noticed that he didn’t say ‘our’ song this time. However, that would have required some explanation for the other guys.
“Thanks, Edward. That will save me having to go out shopping for food.”
I planned to do some research in the library while Edward had a class in the afternoon. We arranged to meet up later so he could drop me off at my room. We were both going to do an hour of studying before he came back to collect me again.
Even though I had the crutches, Edward said he’d help me to the library as there were several sets of stairs on the way and he didn’t want me to struggle with my bag.
We made our way and chatted easily. I eventually plucked up the courage to ask him out for that meal.
“Edward, as a thank you for all your help and kindness towards me, please can I take you out for a meal when I’m walking again properly?” I said quickly and took a deep breath, waiting for his response.
He stopped in his tracks, so I paused, too. “As a thank you?” He dipped his head as he spoke. “And not a date?”
“Ellis told me—” I started to say without thinking.
His anger burst out of him. “What? Ellis told you about that and you didn’t say anything to me?”
He dumped my bag at my feet, twirled around, and started to stride away from me.
“Edward, please, I need you,” I called after him. He halted immediately. “I need you to help me,” I added quietly, losing my confidence.
He stood with his back to me with one hand on his hip and the other on his forehead. Slowly, he turned around and walked back towards me.
“Forgive me, sweetie,” he said softly, touching my arm. “I shouldn’t have exploded like that. I’m cross with Ellis, not you. But you should have said something to me.”
“I promised Ellis I wouldn’t and it just slipped out, so I’m the one who should be sorry. I’d like to hear your version of the story sometime, Edward.”
“Can we talk tonight after dinner?” he said, looking a little uncomfortable.
“Only if you’re happy to.”
“Okay. I’ve got to go now as my lecture starts in five minutes.” He picked my bag up for me and helped me up the last staircase that led to the library.
Just before he turned away, he said, “And yes, sweetie, you can take me out for a meal as a thank you or even as a date, if you wish.” He smiled coyly and bounced down the stairs two at a time.
If I didn’t need the crutches to support me, I’d have leapt into the air with joy. Instead, I grinned all the way into the library and for most of the afternoon as well.