Again, I own nothing. And I wouldn't be continuing this if not for you guys. So keep reading and responding. It makes me feel important ;) Be advised, there is a lemon! Lots of love!

The rest of the bus ride was completely uneventful. I rearranged myself on Derek's lap so I was comfortable and laid my head on his chest. I hate to admit it, but I was completely exhausted. Now that the adrenaline in my body was quieting down, I was able to get the first good hour or two of sleep that I'd had in days. I guess I was just really calm and safe with Derek so close.

I hadn't even woken up when the bus stopped. Derek had to wake me. He pulled a strand of my poorly-dyed black hair away from my neck and gently kissed me. "Time to go," he whispered, giving my neck another quick peck before straightening himself again.

I grumbled, turning back into his chest. I was not ready for our little adventure to be over. Sure, I was ready to get back to a nice hot shower and a comfy bed, but that also meant dealing with Tori. And Simon. How could I face Simon after this? How could I tell him that I'd chosen his werewolf brother over him? I doubt he'd ever had to deal with that before.

"It'll be alright," Derek said, almost like he was reading my mind. "Come on, tiny."

He picked me up off his lap and set me on the floor of the bus in front of him. My legs were a little wobbly from sitting so long and they threatened to give out. Derek's strong hands remained firmly on my hips, which was both helpful and distracting while I tried to regain my balance.

He gave a short laugh, then stood behind me. Taking my hand, he led me up the aisle and out of the bus. The sun was just starting to show on the horizon and the sky was a deep crimson with puffy white clouds scattered in the atmosphere.

A movie scene played out in my head. Girl and boy exit bus. Girl and boy look to the sky. Girl and boy hold hands and walk into the horizon, never stopping to look back. Girl and boy live happily ever after. It sounded so wonderful and it was something that I'd been yearning for all of my life. Now, here with Derek, it might be a possibility.

Then I remembered that we were on the run from the Edison Group, that I was only fifteen, and that Derek and I only confessed our feelings for each other last night. Damn.

I felt Derek slowly stroking the back of my hand to calm me. The contact was very welcome, but it didn't seem to be enough for me. I went on worrying and wondering what our future might hold.

"You know, I hear if you keep making that face, it will stick that way," Derek joked as he cupped my cheek with his free hand. "What's wrong?"

"Nothing, I'm fine," I lied, dismissing him with a wave of my hand. I still had my worries, but I knew I had to hide them from him. If I didn't, he'd be all up-in-arms and I didn't want anything like that to ruin the last few minutes we had alone together. "Just thinking."

"About what?" he asked in his too-damn-sexy deep voice.

"Not about that. Although I must admit that that would be a very nice thing to be thinking about," I said, flirting back as best as I could.

Without warning, Derek scooped me up into his arms and carried me like a man would carry his bride over the threshold of their house. I felt so small in his arms. He was so big, tall, and strong and what was I? Small, bony, and weak. The definition of awkward. And useless. And he thinks that he's a burden, I thought, scoffing to myself.

"Do you think Simon and Tori will miss us if our little adventure took another, say, twenty-four hours?" he asked, looking down into my eyes.

"I don't know," I answered, even though they probably would. "Why?"

A small, devilish grin spread across his face, lighting up those forest green eyes that I loved so much, even when he was changing. "There's a little inn a couple of blocks from the house. It's nothing much, but Dad used to take me and Simon there when we were visiting Andrew. Maybe we could spend one more night together," he said, but quickly added, "If you want."

"Of course I want, Derek. But how would we pay for it? We barely had enough money to afford bus tickets out here and now we're flat broke," I said, hating to be the bearer of bad news.

For a second, he looked annoyed with me. But it's not like I wouldn't jump at the chance under normal circumstances. Well, okay, under normal circumstances, Derek and I never would have met and we'd certainly not be checking into a bed and breakfast together. That's beside the point.

"My dad has an account there. We just have to check in under his name and it'll draw from his account," he explained, his face softening again.

"Oh," I replied weakly. Not because I didn't want to go with him. Good god, I did. So bad. So, so bad. That's why it was weak. Because the moment I knew it could be a reality, I began picturing everything that we could do – and might do – alone together and it was beautiful.

"Oh?" he said, looking down at me skeptically. The light that was in his eyes a few seconds ago was gone, replaced with a dark, disappointed glow. "We don't have to if you don't-"

I put my finger on his mouth to stop him before he said anything completely idiotic. Of course I wanted to. I'd already told him that. "Oh as in, 'Oh my god, can you walk any faster to get us there?'"

The corners of his mouth once again tugged up and his eyes sparkling again, he began to walk faster. "Anything for you, Chloe," he chuckled.

"You know, you don't have to carry me," I said, laughing with him. "People might notice us."

"But this is much more efficient. You are rather slow," he retorted jokingly.

He walked us a couple of blocks from the bus station, but we had only passed a handful of houses. From the looks of it, this town was as spread out as it could be. People would have to walk five minutes just to get to their neighbor's homes. It seemed like a place with a lot of privacy, perfect for someone trying to slip under the radar of the Edison Group. Andrew Carson had good taste.

After a half hour of comfortable silence tucked into Derek's chest, we finally arrived at the inn. The three-story yellow house was surrounded by bushes that were covered in a layer of frost. "I wish you could have seen it in the summer. There's a lot of flowers, usually," Derek said. "I'm going to put you down now, okay?"

I nodded silently as he lowered my legs to stand me up. As soon as my feet were on the hard gravel driveway, Derek offered me his hand and began to walk toward the front door. I followed as soon as I gathered my wits about me. Catching up meant jogging a few paces, though, and me and jogging aren't very good friends. I took two steps and tripped over my own feet and fell flat on my face.

"Ouch," I said quietly, pushing myself up onto my knees, brushing the gravel off of the palms of my hands. They stung a little and upon further inspection, I realized that some of the gravel had broken skin.

"You're bleeding!" Derek said, immediately at my side. I'd hoped to avoid his notice and go on as if nothing was wrong. Yeah, that's not easy when Derek decides to go all wolf-boy. Supersonic hearing and smelling? Check.

"It's nothing. Just a little scrape," I insisted. He took my hand anyways, inspecting it for himself.

"Let's get inside. You have to clean this up before it gets infected," he said, walking with his arm around me, guiding me to the door.

The interior of the house was covered in light green floral wallpaper. It was pleasant enough, almost like a real house that people actually lived in, not one of those tacky themed places I'd heard about so many times. There weren't any random cuckoo clocks on the wall and there weren't any stuffed cats that I could see. Derek was right, the place was nice.

He was right about something else, too. As soon as we'd walked in the door, a middle-aged man greeted him with a booming voice. "Derek! So nice to see you! Are your father and brother unloading the car?"

"Hey Mr. Porter. Dad and Simon aren't actually here this time. I'm kind of here with a friend," he explained to the man. "But my dad said that I should just ask you to check me in under his name and to put it on his tab."

"A friend, huh?" the man said, smiling brightly, looking me over as he walked behind a counter. Then, under his breath, he added, "Oh, to be young."

A few clicks of the mouse later and Mr. Porter had found a room for us. He handed Derek the key, but not before winking conspicuously. Derek walked back at me and rolled his eyes. "We're in room 4. It only has one bed, I hope that's okay."

It was my turn to roll my eyes. "I thought that was the purpose of us coming here today, silly."

Trudging up the stairs, Derek led the way to the room. When he opened the door, I did not see what I was expecting to see. The king-sized bed lay on a silver frame and was covered by a sheer white canopy that hung from the ceiling. On the wood floor was a white shag carpet that matched the comforter, but nothing more. The rest of the room was covered with modern suede furniture and silver lamps and dressers.

"I think you booked us the honeymoon suite, Derek," I said, making fun of the situation a little as he gaped at the room in front of us.

"I'll kill him," he said quietly.

I walked past him and flopped onto the bed. "I don't know. I think I could get used to this."

"Oh, could you?" he said, finally able to laugh at what had happened. He shut the door behind him and dropped to the ground. He began crawling toward the bed on all fours, looking at me like I was his prey.

"Who's afraid of the big, bad wolf?" I asked, looking down at him as he continued to approach me on the bed.

"You should be, Chloe," he said, returning to the deep, husky voice that I had heard earlier. "You should be very afraid."

Finally, he pounced on top of me, his two arms above my shoulders and his knees on either side of my knees. I was caged in. He found my weakness and went in for the kill, kissing my neck very, very lightly.

Like last night, I moaned again under his ministrations. I'm ashamed to say that I continued to do so for the next five minutes as he kissed me. Wiggling a little underneath him, I realized that I was getting wet. Considering the only pair of underwear I owned at the moment was the pair that I was wearing, I didn't want to get them…dirty.

"Mmmm, Derek?" I said with much difficulty.

"Yes?" he asked, only stopping to say the word, then continued.

"Get off of me," I told him. Only, he took it the wrong way. He thought I meant that I wanted him to stop totally. He back up slowly with a cautious look playing across his face. I took his moment of confusion to flip him over. I needed to be in control now.

Because he's so much bigger than I am, I was able to straddle him without worrying about crushing him under my weight. Once again, I could feel that his friend was ready to come out and play, but he wasn't going to get off that easy. After a quick traditional peck on his lips, I turned my attention to his neck. Only I insisted that his shirt come off, first.

He chuckled quietly as I pulled the baggy t-shirt off. His muscles rippled under my inspection. I gave him a look full of worry. Was he about to change? "I'm fine. I'm just…excited, that's all," he explained with a small smile.

My kisses floated further and further down his torso, first his neck, then his pecs, then his abs. Finally, I found myself at the line of his jeans. I knew I wanted to go further, but I felt that I needed his permission. My blue eyes traced the invisible line that I had just made with my lips up to his face and found that his eyes were shut.

"Derek?" His eyes popped open when I spoke his name. "Can I…?"

Without a word, he simply nodded and my hands shakily found his belt. His eyes closed once more, but his hands covered mine, helping me take his clothes off. It seemed like within seconds, the only thing separating Derek's entire body from my view was his boxers.

Now, I know what you are thinking. This part was no big deal because I'd seen him in his boxers, right? Wrong. So, so wrong. I'd never seen him in his boxers, knowing how much we both cared about each other. I'd never seen him in his boxers so exposed emotionally. I'd never seen him in his boxers when he was ready to be intimate with me.

When I reached for the elastic to pull them down, his hand stopped me. "Not yet," he whispered, his eyes still closed. "You, first."

He flipped on top of me again, his forest green eyes seeing right into my soul as he unzipped the sweatshirt that he bought for me not very long ago. When that was on the floor, my shirt came next, then, my bra. I've always been self-conscious of my body because I'm so much smaller than everybody else, especially the girls in the chest department. I barely had any breasts at all, which was, at the moment, very embarrassing. I lifted my hands to cover myself.

"No, Chloe," he reprimanded me softly. "Don't cover yourself. You're beautiful," he said in the kindest, most loving voice I'd ever heard out of any mans lips in my life. He sounded so heartbreakingly honest that I couldn't help but believe him. I let my arms drop.

His lips traced a similar pattern down my torso as mine did his. He stopped for a moment on each breast, though, planting the softest of kisses on each, making me squirm out of pleasure. My pants came off in the same manner that his did, but when he slid them off, my underwear came with them.

Seeing me totally exposed, Derek sucked in his breath. I really, really hoped that was a good sign. "You're beautiful," he repeated, his voice shaking slightly.

I placed my hand lightly on his forearm, bringing his attention back to my face. "You are too, Derek," I reminded him. As much as I needed to hear him say those things, I think he needed to hear it more.

"I love you," I told him, slowly pulling him free of his underwear.

"I love you, Chloe," he said, not taking his eyes off of mine.

That night, I made love to Derek. And he made love to me. And it was beautiful.

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