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Our Secret Moments: Chapter 16

CONNOR - BIKINIS AND HOT TUBS

IF YOU HAVE two lawyers for parents, you get a massive mansion just outside of Denver with an infinity pool, a hot tub, six bedrooms, three storeys, a private estate and a fridge and pantry constantly filled with snacks.

Oliver Nayman is one lucky bastard.

The second we heard about his pool; the team begged to use it. Luckily Oliver doesn’t have many friends outside the team, so he was more than happy to let us use it, especially after a game.

Swimming is one of those relaxing things that doesn’t feel like too much of a workout and it still feels comfortable. I can let the water take me to where I want to go, knowing I’m doing something without doing too much. It’s a perfect sport to do alongside football and an ice bath is good for anyone. It took a while to get used to it, but now I’ve done it so many times it doesn’t feel like anything.

Most of the team ditched Oliver’s small get-together for a bigger party, despite the advice Coach relayed to the whole team at our meeting before our game today. Most of the guys scoffed and continued to talk about the parties they’re hosting this weekend and how many times they’re going to get laid. The playboy act is getting old and pathetic by now and it seems like me, Oli, Sam and Wes are the only people that have realised that.

After my fifteen minutes in the ice bath, I make my way into Oliver’s huge kitchen, needing another snack. Those freezing ice cubes make me so fucking hungry. Most of the time I just sit there, staring at the darkened night sky, silently waiting for whatever snack I’m going to find after my time is up.

I pull open a drawer full of every flavour of Oreo’s known to man and pick up a packet of the birthday cake flavour – my favourite. I hear the soft click of the door open and the gentle thump of shoes moving across the wooden floor before they stop. I ignore it, hoping it’s one of the guys that have realised that this kind of night in is much better than an overflowing bar full of men and their BO. I pull a carton of milk from the fridge, pouring some into a glass before downing it and pouring another one.

The footsteps finally pick up again, quieter and I give in to the curiosity.

No.

Fucking.

Way.

Catherine is standing before me in nothing but a purple bikini and a transparent cover-up. Her dark curly hair flows past her shoulders, glowing from the large French doors of Oli’s backyard. The coverup falls past her knees where her ankles cross as she pins her hands behind her back, showcasing her toned stomach and perky tits.

I might pass out.

Is that insane? Probably. This woman has completely bewitched me body and soul. Or whatever that guy from the cheesy rom com says.

She’s standing there, looking absolutely magnificent as she stares at me wide-eyed as if I’m the one in the wrong place. This is my friend’s house. My post-game safe space. Not hers. She didn’t even know Oliver until four weeks ago.

I forget about my precious Oreo’s and take three steps towards her as she still stares at me. When I reach her, she lifts her head up in challenge. “What are you doing?” she asks.

I almost scoff at her question. “What are you doing, Cat?”

She gestures to her outfit and now that I’m closer to her, I have to bite the inside of my cheek, curling my hands into fists at my side. I want to touch her. I need to touch her. She’s showing too much skin. Too much for me to see. Too much for me to want.

“What does it look like?” she teases. “I’m getting in the pool.”

“Not in that you’re not,” I say, the words leaving me in a gruff, deep tone.

“I am,” she relays. I wrap my hand around her waist, the skin to skin contact almost making me dizzy as I pull her away from the door where the guys could see her and press her against the wall in the kitchen.

She’s almost too much like this. She smells fucking fantastic – all sweet and fresh. Her skin is scorching despite the weather and part of me wants to believe it’s because of me. I don’t miss the way her eyes scan my naked torso right up to my eyes. I lean both of my hands above her head, caging her in.

“What do you think you’re doing?” I whisper again.

“Research,” she replies, and she has the fucking audacity to smile at me. She’s too cocky. She knows exactly what I mean, yet she wants to play with me.

I lean my head into the crook of her neck, dropping one of my hands to slowly slip off the shoulder of her cover up. When the soft mesh material falls, I pluck the strap of her bikini. A sharp gasp escapes her lips as the bikini strap slaps back against her skin.

“Research, huh?” I run my finger down her shoulder, revelling in the hungry feeling I get as I feel goosebumps arise across her skin. She nods, not replying. For someone who swears by words as if they’re the key to every problem, she doesn’t have much to say.

When my finger dips down her back, slightly tugging on the band of her bikini top, her back arches into mine. I have to suppress my groan, feeling just how badly I want her in my shorts. I slip my hand under the back of her bikini, feeling her bare skin beneath my palm as my breathing matches her desperate breaths.

“Connor…” she whispers, my name passing through her lips in a breathy and almost unsure tone.

I ignore her plea.

“Do you understand what you’re doing to me, hm?” I swear I hear a soft whimper leave her mouth and I almost lose my balance. I respond by pressing further into her so she can feel just how badly I want her, how badly I want her everything. “I’m not a jealous person, Cat. I never have been. But with you, knowing you’re about to go out there in front of those fucking vultures, you could say I’m a little jealous.”

Her hands finally gain some purpose as she curls both of her palms on my waist, her nails digging into my flesh as she pulls me closer to her. “Why? We’re– We’re just friends.”

Friends,” I bite the word out as if it has personally offended me in some way. “Is the very last thing on my mind when it comes to you, and you know that.”

She blinks up at me, those gorgeous brown deer eyes staring right into mine as her lips part. I watch her eyes dip to my lips, and I can’t help but run my tongue against the seam of my bottom lip before biting it. She’s about to say something, but I don’t bother to wait for a response.

“Just get in the pool, Catherine.”


If this is exactly what hell is like, I never want to die.

Every single thing about this is torture.

I walk behind her as she saunters in front of me to open the door to the backyard. Wes and Oliver are at one side of the pool while Sam is at the other, closest to the door. When they see the two of us, Sam and Wes’ faces light up with childlike joy.

“Catherine!” Sam calls when she gets to the edge of the pool. He holds out his hand for her as she walks down the steps, and she waits until the very last second to take off her cover up before she submerges her body under the water. “You came.”

I roll my eyes as I sink into the pool, putting some distance between us as she floats next to Sam against the edge of the pool where the water seems to overflow. “You invited her?”

Cat holds her head high, challenging me with those hypnotising eyes. “Yeah, they both did. Is that a problem?”

“No,” I say quickly, lying straight through my teeth.

“Really? Because it seems like your veins are going to pop out of your skull.”

Of course, my whole body might blow to smithereens because Catherine Fables is sitting two metres away from me in a pool in a purple bikini and I want to tear it off her. If it was anybody else, I wouldn’t care. But it’s not anybody else. It’s her and she’s all I want.

“So,” she says, looking at everyone but me. “Is this what you usually do after a game?”

“Pretty much,” Sam says. “We used to have a few more people and more drinks, but we’re trying to do better this season because someone is being such a grump.”

“Oh, I’m sorry I want us to get drafted,” I say sarcastically, rolling my eyes.

“You can relax sometimes, Connie boy,” Wes adds.

“This is literally me relaxing,” I say, spreading my arms against the back of the pool. I catch Catherine watching me again and I don’t think she notices that I can see her checking me out. She mutters something I don’t catch as she rolls her eyes tilting her head up to the sky.

“Right,” Wes says, clearly not convinced by my answer. “So, Catherine, is it time for your interrogation?”

“What?” she gawks, tilting her head back down.

“Yeah, you ask us questions, we ask you questions. It’s how we work, isn’t it?” Sam asks, grinning like a fool. They’re up to something. I don’t know what, but there is a strange and unsettling gleam in all three of their eyes and not the moonlight.

“Do you have a boyfriend?” Oliver asks.

I immediately tense up at the question, turning to her. The thought has never really crossed my mind. I know she likes to party, but she never goes home with anyone. Not since that breakup over a year ago. I can’t remember the last time I’ve seen her around any guys until she was assigned to work with us.

Catherine laughs and the sound instantly eases some of the tension in my body, but not completely. “That’s not exactly how this thing works,” she says.

“Maybe we’ll answer more of your questions if you answer some of ours,” are the words that leave my mouth. I don’t even know what I’m saying. Do I even want to know if she’s dating anyone or not? Probably not. For the sake of my own sanity.

She doesn’t even look at me when she starts talking. “Well, no, I don’t have a boyfriend.”

“Oh, yeah,” Wes says, dragging out the ‘yeah’ as he sighs. “He was the one who was crying outside your dorm that time, right? The video went viral.”

We all know what happened between Evan Branson and Catherine. No one knows the ins and outs other than the fact that his family is filthy rich, and his spoiled ass couldn’t deal with the breakup. Well, that’s what I heard anyway.

Their relationship was so public for the time it lasted; I wouldn’t be surprised if she’s been more cautious as to who she dates. It’s also known that we don’t bring it up. Especially after his family did everything they could to scrub the videos and pictures clean when he transferred to North University in Salt Lake only a few weeks into his first year at Drayton.

What an idiot.

She shifts uncomfortably at the memory, averting her gaze to the frosty backyard.

“What did you do to him?” Wes asks, his tone more serious. I don’t like this. I don’t like making her feel like that. I turn to her as I watch the light drain from her face. She bites her bottom lip, the dark flesh turning white.

“We grew apart,” she says quietly.

“That’s it? You just… Grew apart?” Sam asks, clearly not convinced.

“Yep, it’s that simple. Any other questions?”

The boys shake their heads and then Sam starts a rant about how the season is going so far and I welcome the distraction.

I try to keep my eyes on her, trying my hardest to see what she’s thinking but it’s hard to tell. I’m assuming she’s listening to what Sam is saying, storing the information to later add to her documents about the team, but I watch as her gaze slowly drops to the pool, to me and then back to Sam.

Everything she does is so fucking distracting. I can’t understand it. Before, I could crush on her from afar, dreaming of the what-ifs and the maybes, but now she’s right in front of me. The voice in my head quietens when I’m around her. She gives me something else to focus on. Something that is not my annoying ass brain or my overthinking.

I’m so caught up thinking about her and every glimmer of water on her skin, I don’t even realise the conversation topic has changed.

“Okay, let’s do two truths and a lie. It’s a good icebreaker,” Wes says. I have to blink a few times so my eyes don’t completely gloss over. “Connie, you first.”

I groan inwardly, knowing this is the very last thing I’m good at. I’m always comfortable with these guys more than anything, but there are still times where I don’t have the right words to say or the right way to say them.

“Uh,” I say, starting off very strong. “I have a cardboard cutout of Russell Wilson in my childhood bedroom, I’ve never peed in a pool, and I’ve not had sex in ten months.”

Fuck.

I was so nervous I had no idea what to say.

Wes snorts. “Well, that last one is definitely a lie.”

“There’s no way you’ve not had sex in ten months,” Sam adds.

Catherine shakes her head, trying to hide her smile. “Yeah, and you’ve definitely peed in a pool. Everyone does it.” I shrug, giving them my answer.

Ten months?” Oli gawks, his jaw wide open. I nod stiffly. “How the hell are you coping?”

“That’s why you’ve been shit on your passes. I bet your wrist is locked up,” Wes says, shaking his head at me like a disappointed dad.

“At least I’m not a manwhore like you,” I retort, a pathetic low blow. They all laugh at that, including Cat.

“Yeah, well, at least I’m getting some,” Wes says, and I roll my eyes.

“Sure,” I mock. “What are your two truths and a lie, asshole?”

He grins at the nickname. “I give killer massages. I love it when my nails are painted and the last time I had sex was in Connor’s bed when he wasn’t home.”

Sam crosses his fingers, closing his eyes as if he’s wishing on a star. “Please tell me the last one is the truth.”

“Wesley, for both of our sakes, you better be lying,” I bite out through gritted teeth. That fucker is an animal. I wouldn’t put it past him. He holds my stare and I’m this close to strangling him before he finally bursts out laughing and I sigh.

“You should have seen your face!” he guffaws.

“Wait, so you can actually do good massages?” Catherine asks curiously.

Wes wiggles his manicured nails in the air. “The best.”

Cat nods in understanding, smirking at me and then back to Wes.

She wouldn’t dare.

“What?” Wes asks when she doesn’t drop her gaze from his. “Do you want me to show you?”

I close my eyes, taking in a deep breath. She’s doing this on purpose, and I know for sure that she would not listen to me if I told her no.

She’s enjoying making my life a living hell and all I want to do is kiss her for it. What does that say about me?

I’m an absolute fool.

She swims over to Wes and his eyes are a little panicked, not sure that she would have actually agreed. I bite the inside of my cheek as she settles between his open legs as Oli moves out of their way and swims towards Sam and I.

Tonight is just getting worse and worse by the second.

After what feels like forever, Wes finally lowers both of his hands on her shoulders and he starts to move his thumbs and palms over her collarbones and her shoulders. She sighs softly and I would do anything to be the one making her sound like that.

“Is it good?” I ask thickly. This feels wrong. So fucking wrong.

“Mm hm,” she murmurs, closing her eyes.

This is going to completely destroy me.

What’s worse is that I know that she’s not lying just to put on a show. Wes can be an absolute idiot ninety percent of the time, but he somehow managed to inherit the smoothest and softest hands I’ve ever seen a man have. He’s given me a massage from time to time, mostly as a joke. And I would be lying if I didn’t say he has some sort of magical touch.

As I watch her completely relax into him as he finds his rhythm, my mind goes from innocent to filthy in seconds.

What would she do if it was me making her feel that way? If it was me behind her, caging her in with my thighs, my hands roaming her body and wherever she wanted me to. If it was me making her eyes roll back and her eyelids flutter closed. If it was my body her back was nestling into perfect as I dipped my hand lower and lower until I…

“Okay, that’s enough, Wes. Stop,” I demand, pulling myself out of my fantasies as my gaze locks with hers again.

“What? Why?” Wes asks, slowing his movements. “She’s clearly enjoying it.”

“I can fucking see she’s enjoying it,” I groan, running my hand down my face as she has the guts to smile at me, knowing exactly how much it’s messing me up inside. “Everyone get out.”

“Uh, no,” Oliver says, a little unsure as to what I just demanded. Hell, I don’t even know what I just said either. All I know is that I need to be alone with her and she’s looking at me like she wants me to. “If you two want to be alone, go to the hot tub. Don’t try to kick us out of my own pool.”

“Yeah, good idea,” I say, standing in the water and making my way over to her. I hold out my hand as she blinks up at me. What the fuck am I doing and why can’t I stop myself? “Catherine?” She looks down at my hand and then back up at me, considering it. “Don’t make me beg.”

Her mouth lifts into a smirk and she finally clasps her hand in mine. “Now, that’s something I would like to see.”

This woman is going to kill me.

I’m surprised I lasted the two-minute walk around the side of the house to the secluded hot tub without bursting into flames. She walked in front of me, showing me her perfect ass in that bikini before she sunk down into the steaming water with a sigh, resting her head back against the tub. I lowered myself beside her, not wanting too much distance between us, but not too little that she was uncomfortable.

“Next time you want a massage, you ask me, okay?”

She lets out a light laugh, closing her eyes as she tilts her head up to the sky, giving me the most fantastic view of her throat and side profile. “Why would I do that?”

“Because I don’t like the thought of other people touching you,” I admit.

She sighs, lifting her head up and turning to me. The view of her here, beneath the moonlight and the fairy lights in Oli’s backyard she looks fucking stunning. A true goddess. Still, as much as looking at her excites me, I can’t ignore the disapproving look on her face.

“You’ve got to stop doing that, Connor,” she murmurs.

“Doing what?”

“Clearing the area any time another guy is near me and acting like you want me all to yourself,” she says.

“Who said I’m acting?” I challenge. She barks out a laugh, rolling her pretty eyes at me. I shift in the seat of the hot tub, spreading my legs open a little. “Come here, Catherine.”

“Why? So, you can tell me how much you want me?” she mocks, tucking her wet hair behind her ear. Still, I can see the tiny movements she’s making to get closer to me. Her body wants this just as much as her brain does.

“No,” I say, shaking my head. “I want you to feel what you’re doing to me, sweetheart. Then maybe you’ll see that none of this is for show.”

I shred the space between us, wrapping both of my hands around her waist and I pull her into me, settling her right on my lap. Now, this view is fucking fantastic.

Her pretty, perfect tits are in my face now, straining behind the tiny silky material of her purple bikini. Her brown skin glimmers with droplets of water as I push her closer to me and she can feel exactly how hard I am for her. I buck my hips slightly, knowing my length will hit her core just right.

“Connor.”

The desperate sound of my name leaving her lips as she looks down at me is a sight and sound I’ve been imagining for years. I run my hands from her hips up her back until I reach her shoulders, smoothing my hands over her collarbone instead as she braces her hands on my shoulders.

“You see, Catherine, the difference between you and me is, I have a lot more self-control than you do.” I run my thumb over the material of her bikini, my thumb catches on her hard nipple and the sweetest moan leaves her lips. My dick twitches at the sound. “Do you think I’m wrong? Because I’ve spent weeks, months, fucking years, trying my hardest not to touch you and if I really wanted to, I could make you snap in an instant.”

She lets out another needy whimper when I graze my thumb over her nipple again. “You don’t know what you’re talking about,” she breathes out.

“Doesn’t it get tiring, pretending that you don’t want me?” I ask, lowering my mouth to her neck where her pulse is hammering. I’m so sick of this game – this back and forth.

I taste her, kissing across her neck as her body leans into mine, slowly shredding the pieces of control she has left.

Her grip on my shoulder tightens. “I’m not– I’m not pretending.”

I bite the sensitive part of her neck, my teeth sinking into her slightly and she gives me another sweet sound. “No?”

“You’re infuriating.”

I chuckle into her skin. “Tell me you’ve not thought about this. About me touching you, kissing you, having you so close to me that you can feel exactly what you’re doing to me.”

“Connor, I—”

“…Love you and that’s all I really know. I talked to your dad and…” We both freeze to see Wes who was loudly singing the Taylor Swift song he’s been obsessed with since we made that TikTok. His voice trails off as he sees us. Cat is still in my lap, my head was buried into her neck seconds ago, but of course, Wes has to ruin the moment. “Oh, my bad. I didn’t know you were–”

“Just leaving,” Cat says, climbing off my lap and stepping out of the water. I run my hands down my face, not knowing what to do or say.

“You’re coming to the game on Tuesday, right?” Wes asks and I’m grateful he can actually formulate words because all I think about is the woman leaving the tub.

“Of course,” she says before saying a quick goodbye and not giving me a second glance. Wes sighs loudly once the back door closes and slides in beside me.

“You’re playing a very dangerous game, Connie boy,” he says, shaking his head at me. “She’s your sister’s best friend. If she finds out, she’s going to freak the fuck out.”

“She’s not going to find out anything because nothing is happening,” I mutter.

“That’s not what it looked like to me just then. I’m not an idiot,” he says. Well, he is an idiot. “All I’m saying is to be careful with whatever it is that you’re doing because I will not be able to function if our system breaks down because of you.”

“What system?” I ask.

“You keep your hands off Cat and I stay away from Nora. It’s an unwritten rule.” See? He’s an idiot.

“Well, that’s bullshit because my sister has a boyfriend and Cat doesn’t,” I say, groaning.

“Right, so if Nora was single and I made a move on her you wouldn’t care?”

“She would never be single.”

“But if she was?”

“Then I’d be–”

“Pissed,” he finishes for me. I just blink at him, not knowing what to say. “Look, man. Obviously I’d never actually make a move on her, but I’m just saying she would throw that in your face if she ever found out. I just think you should think about it first, you know?”

I am already royally fucked.


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