Attraction...By Lea Anne Stoughton
He walks through the door.
The light reflects off the glass, flashes in her eyes. She looks up from her book, brows trying to meet, as she squints against the glare. He pushes his sunglasses up on his head, and his t-shirt pulls tight across his shoulder.
Her eyes follow him as he walks to the customer service desk. He asks a question. The clerk points at something across the store and smiles. She can see a dimple appear in his cheek as he smiles back. He turns around.
Her eyes drop back to her book. Her face is hot.
She looks at the page as he walks by, close enough that she tucks her feet further under the chair. She catches a faint scent, like pine cones and salt water and leather. His jeans hang loose on his waist. The shape of his wallet is worn into the fabric of one pocket, a crooked white rectangle. He turns a corner and she loses sight of him.
She bites her lip. The book laying open in her lap, seen but not seen. A minute passes. Two.
The book snaps shut. She drops it on the table next to the chair and, standing up, slides the strap of her bag over her shoulder.
The scent has faded but she follows its path, fingers trailing the shelves, lingering on a title here, another there. She stops at the corner where he disappeared. Hand still on the shelf, she leans her weight a little to the side and tilts her head.
He’s there, close, flipping pages of a hardcover. He cracks his neck—left, then right. She can hear the pops. He squats down to replace the book. She notices the blonde hairs curling around his watch, the rim of pale skin just visible inside the neck of his shirt, the stubble that catches the light along his jaw.
One of her hands finds its way to her hair, tucks a piece behind her ear.
He stands up with a paperback in his hand. He sees her and the dimple appears again. The corners of her mouth twitch. The paperback tumbles to the floor. They both bend down to pick it up, and the pine cone scent returns, stronger this time and warm.
Their fingers touch.
Her clothes feel tight. She is aware of the fabric moving against her skin as she breathes, the thickness of the seams in her jeans pressing into her thighs. A prickly tingle rises up her neck.
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