Warning: Excessive swearing and other mature themes. Story also contains ambiguous consent.

So tell me you love me
Only for tonight
Only for the night
Even though you don't love me
Just tell me you love me

-Wicked Games, The Weeknd

They are not lovers but they play the part.

Each night they fall into each others arms, spent from battling their demons from the day. And each night they find comfort in the warmth of each others' skin. Their curves and edges seem to fit together like matching lego pieces. Even their goosebumps fade away once their bodies brush over each other and they settle against each other.

But once daylight breaks through their threadbare curtains, they're already a strict ten feet apart. They leave hurriedly after that, as if scared to be caught together in the glare of the sun.

But once night falls, they cling to each other like they couldn't possibly breathe without the other.

They are not lovers but they play the part.

They first time they saw each other was at a party in their freshman year of college. He immediately caught her eye in all of his six foot three glory. He had the kind of hair that screamed sex and mayhem, and she was instantly drawn to him like moth to a flame.

The first thing he noticed about her, was her eyes. Electric blue. Like the glare of his brother's nightlight at two a.m. Her shoulders were thrown back in a show of practiced confidence, and his eyes fell down to her hips as she stalked towards him.

By the time they had their first kiss, half of their clothes were off and thrown haphazardly around the room. They left at five a.m. But she couldn't shake the thought that oh he was good.

And suddenly they were history.

They started meeting up at night in the cover of darkness, under crudely veiled pretenses which always ended with them between the sheets.

Three years later nothing has changed. Well, maybe some things have changed...

Their bodies moved in sync as they gyrated to the pulsing bass beat. She couldn't help but notice that their movements had a certain grace to it. The way their hips rocked together, and the way the girl's hands darted up and over the curves of his biceps; the edge of his chest imitated elegance and something else that was vaguely provocative.

Or perhaps Gia was just paying too much attention to the man that danced.

His black hair was cropped short on the sides, but grew out in a messy fashion at the top. Thick eyelashes framed deep brown, velvet eyes. A small trace of stubble covered his olive toned skin he received from his Caucasian father and Arabian mother. And his lips were quirked up in that stupid goddamn smirk of his.

Gia watched as his hands slid down lower to rest just above the curve of the girl's butt. The girl in question was tall and voluptous and blonde. Just his type, Gia couldn't help but notice.

She had to force herself to look away before she started grinding her teeth down to her pink gums. Fuck.

"Girl, I don't think Kaiden's going to notice you no matter how hard you stare at him," Sierra laughed, causing Gia to scowl fiercely.

"Shut up," she hissed as she regarded Sierra angrily. Sierra's dark brown hair was flipped over one shoulder, and the light brown highlights in her hair brought out the color of her green eyes. Like Kaiden, Sierra Tang was half Chinese and half Caucasian. They met in their freshman year of college in their first economics class; eventually, one thing led to another and they become dorm mates.

"God you're pissed. Here I brought you this," Sierra replied holding out a bottle of beer that Gia gratefully grabbed. She was going to need alcohol if she had to watch Kaiden Hawthorne dance with that girl for the entire night.

"Who the hell is she, anyway?" Gia questioned quietly, attempting to tamper down the jealousy that laced through her syllables. It was a failed endeavor since a caustic tone still managed to creep in to her voice.

"God knows. Kaiden just grabbed her and...that was that," Sierra answered decisively, her brow furrowing as she watched the pair of them rock their hips to the pounding beat. Something heavy and aching settled at the bottom of Gia's stomach; she thought she was going to be sick.

Well, shit.

That wasn't going to work, now was it?

Without another moment's hesitation, she left Sierra and bounded up to the next hot, willing, red-blooded male she could find.

And, oh, did she find one.

He had a better sense of rhythm than most of the guys she danced with. Gia closed her eyes, and leaned back against the hard angle of his chest while his hands came up to caress the strip of skin that peeked out from the edge of her top.

Heat spiked through her, and the music swelled with every circle of her hips. At one point he twisted her around, one hand keeping her firmly pressed against him at her waist, while the other dug into her arched back. One of her hands traveled up to fist in his hair, but she couldn't help but feel slightly disappointed.

Because while it was nice to dance with him, it didn't feel electric. Not like when Kaiden touched her.

With him, every touch was doused with gasoline, and lit a fire that couldn't die until his presence disappeared. He invoked something smoldering in her that always seemed on the edge of exploding.

He fucking ruined her for other men.

Gia clicked her tongue in frustration, and pulled away from the body pressed against her.

However, just as she was beginning to shy away, she was pulled back forcibly into a taller, broader, harder body.

She new instantly who it was.

"Hey! What the fu-?"

He practically growled at the guy she had been dancing with, snarling a low and curt, "Fuck off," before dragging her away.

Part of her wanted to yell and scream at him; assert her damn position as a strong, independent female that didn't need any man, much less him. He deserved as much with the way he treated her.

But she'd be a fucking liar if she didn't say that loved him like this.

His velvet brown eyes were slanted in anger, and the way he hunched over her lithe form screamed possessive and territorial. He had a certain countenance that commanded attention even in a darkened room like this. She noted at least five girls watch his broad frame stalk away with her, but they seemed to fade away with his close contact. She felt almost dainty, as he guided her with a wide, open palm.

Fuck, he was sexy. But she wasn't the type to let his shit slide so easily.

Once he led her to a small corner of the club, she turned on him. (How did he even manage to get her so far away from the dancefloor, before she said anything? He distracted her way too easily.)

"What the fuck was that?" Gia yelled over the music, tossing her black hair away from her face, and tilting her head up to glare at him.

Kaiden looked furious as he brought his beer bottle up to his lips. "What do you mean 'what the fuck was that'? That asshole was all over you, Gia."

She tried to ignore the shiver that shook through her body when his voice curled around her name.

"What do you care? I thought you had your own bitch to dance with," Gia replied all too casually, folding her arms and cocking her hip. No way was she going to admit that he was the only one in the entire club that she wanted.

At her words Kaiden smirked, crowding so far into her space that she had to press a forceful hand to his stomach to halt his movement.

"You jealous, babe?" he asked, eyebrow waggling arrogantly causing her stomach to flip and then constrict.

"Fuck off, Kaiden. You're the one that dragged me all the way over here-"

His hand came up to snag at her waist as he pressed his chest against hers. Her defensive palm stood no chance, and was crushed unpleasantly in between their aching bodies. She could almost feel each and every ridge of his abs...

"Maybe I missed you."

Gia forced herself to roll her eyes, ignoring the way her body seemed to tighten at his words. His voice had dropped an octave lower and it sounded distinctly like the voice he used with all of his sluts.

"Don't fucking touch me, asshole," Gia hissed more insistently, pushing against his chest with the hand pressed against him. If anything his hold on her hips and waist stiffened, and she squirmed against him.

His head dipped forward so his lips skimmed the top of her shoulder before moving to the shell of her ear. Meanwhile, his hands slipped beneath her sequined top, and she had to stop herself from gasping at his hot, hot touch.

"Hm, that wasn't what you were saying a week ago, Lancaster. In fact, I distinctly remember you begging-"

And there it was. The reason she was so frustrated.

"Shut the fuck up," Gia ground out quietly, pushing against his chest fiercely. Fuck. If he kept going, there was no telling what her tear ducts were capable of.

It seemed that her words got through to Kaiden this time; he let go of her slowly, allowing her to pull back hastily and look away from his laser-sharp gaze. To her shock and hatred, she noticed that her heartbeat had spiked up to a fierce cadence that beat a steady bruise against her sternum.

His eyes were digging into her figure, tracing over the curves of her shoulders, and down to her exposed legs clad in high heels. Gia desperately tried to remember why she was supposed to be staying away from him in the first place...

"The fucker ditched us again for Gia," Zander remarked.

Jay cracked up at this. "Hell, how does that guy do it?"

"The sluts just line up for him," Zander replied, shaking his head in both awe and disgust.

At this, Jay paused. "Gia's not-"

"But she'll end up like the rest."

She had overheard Kaiden's best friends talking about their complicated relationship one night on her way to Kaiden's apartment; it scared her enough that she walked right back to her own apartment. Gia had witnessed how the rest of Kaiden's long string of girls ended up, and it wasn't pretty. There was no fucking way she would regress into some needy, desperate girl that clung to Kaiden.

No way in hell was that going to happen.

Because Zander and Jay were right. At some point, Kaiden would get bored and the only person that was going to get hurt was Gia because she was the one stupid enough to get involved.

Before she could change her mind, Gia choked out a stiff, "I have to go," and turned swiftly in her heels to stalk away from him.

She barely moved three feet, when Kaiden caught her elbow and pulled her into his hard chest again and started peppering kisses on the side of her neck.

Gia was disgusted to say that she actually whimpered when his mouth found her hammering pulse up against her jawbone and he murmured heatedly, "Let's get a cab."

Fuck she was so weak.

"Kaiden," she protested weakly, but his mouth kept meandering its way down her neck, to the top of her collarbone, her shoulder, the beginning of her spine. She was putty in his hands.

And then the rest was a blur.

Gia remembered swaying on her feet towards a bright (too bright) yellow taxi cab. She remembered Kaiden guiding her and even opening up her door even though he had never been a gentleman in his life. She remembered commenting on this, and he shut her up with a kiss so hard it made her back crack. (So breathless it made her dizzy.)

She remembered following him up the stairs to his apartment and allowing him to pull down the zipper of her skirt. She remembered her shuddering hands skimming over the lines of his chest like that stupid fucking bitch did. She remembered rummaging through his drawers for protection before ripping the packet open; they were both impatient at this point. She remembered that they still had half their clothes on when they fell into bed...

Just as she was on the precipice of her desire, his head bit down into the long, thin column of her neck. Hard. She cried out just a bit louder, her back arching into him as they tumbled up and over one another. It felt like she was plummeting from the tips of the atmosphere like some kind of kamikaze warrior because god the way he made her feel would be her undoing.

Her head rested against his shoulder while he shivered beneath her panting breaths. She could feel his long fingers, easing down the length of her spine and she couldn't help but tremble ever so slightly under his touch. It was like he was trying to find the zipper to her shuddering body.

Just as she caught her breath, she was suddenly shoving him away, and glancing at the full length mirror beside his bed.

"What the hell is this?" she demanded, motioning to her neck while she reached for her shirt. She didn't know why she felt the need to cover herself when he had already seen her, but she needed some distance from him.

"What?" he said huskily, already dipping into sleep mode. His hair was tousled where she had yanked at it, and she could already see long, delicate lines across his back where she had clawed at him.

She fought the blush overtaking her face as her eyes traced over him. She was angry, goddammit.

"This," she hissed, pointing accusingly at the hickey that was painted so pointedly against her skin; it was so dark it looked like a blackberry stain. Words like territory and possession floated through her mind, and she fixed him with a fierce glare. It was like an unwritten rule that they didn't bite each other anywhere that could be seen. God.

"Why the hell does it matter?" he mumbled, head already burrowing into his pillows.

She could have kicked him, really. Instead, she just gave an sharp huff, that made him glance at her.

"What?" he ground out, as she collected her underwear, slipping on the silky material quickly and efficiently before making her way to the bathroom. She avoided her reflection once she finished; there was no need to see the evidence of their little arrangement.

"Nothing," she retorted once she came back into his bedroom. How ironic that he was supposed to be her stress reliever, but he was the biggest source of her stress as of late. Reaching down, she found her skirt and unzipped it. She was half on the bed, and he reached out and caught her hip.

"Are you mad?"

She wanted to shove him off the bed, but she was just so tired. Instead, she shoved his hand away from her hip, and turned away from him, continuing with her skirt.


He seemed somewhat satisfied with her response, and sank back down into the bed, his hand reaching up again to unconsciously rub a pattern into the skin of her hip.

"Why don't you stay," he mumbled, while she eased away from his touch. She shot him an incredulous look at his words and stopped trying to put her skirt on.

"Excuse me?" she questioned, half thinking that she had imagined him saying that.

"You heard me." His snarky tone was weakened by his sleepy voice.

She only continued to stare at him, and, as if he could physically feel her sharp glare, he blinked up at her and continued, "What? You're tired and we both know it."

Boy was he right.

"Fine," she replied gruffly, abandoning her skirt. Although his eyes were half-lidded, he regarded her with a narrowed, intense gaze that warmed her back as she climbed in beside him. His warmth immediately enveloped her, and she fought the blush that threatened to take over at his close, naked proximity.

Once she got settled, he threw his arm over her waist, and tugged her toward him. She let out a small squeal that bought out a chuckle from him. Until of course, she shoved his hand away and retreated to the very edge of the bed.

She wasn't interested in some post coital snuggle-fest between the two of them. They were just fuck buddies. Nothing more, nothing less.

Eventually, he closed the light and settled close to her. She could feel each exhale of his breath on the back of her neck, but he respected her wish to not maintain physical contact with each other.

Still, it felt stifling - like she was wrapped up with the heady scent of him, and he engulfed her completely.

The most unnerving part was that she didn't mind one bit.

He called the next morning just as she was getting ready to leave for her morning classes.

"Hello?" Gia greeted, her surprise hidden well behind her light tone.

"You fucking left," he stated blatantly. Almost accusingly. She imagined that he was in bed, blankets thrown haphazardly over his six-foot mass of muscles. He never did like mornings...

"I didn't know you wanted me to stay," Gia answered airily, her eyebrows creasing in confusion, trying to effectively erase the image of him in bed.

Gia heard him grunt on the other end. "I didn't."

She laughed. Liar. "Then baby, why are you calling?"

He managed to growl at her. "Shut up. Do you want to grab lunch with me or what?"

Lunch? Since when did they do lunch? They had sex. Hell, they had sex against walls, with half their clothes still on. It was undignified and messy and rough and there was absolutely nothing romantic about it. If Romeo and Juliet observed their fucked up relationship they'd be utterly appalled. They didn't take each other out to lunch like some kind of couple.

Gia, had to restrain herself from questioning his words. If he wanted to go out for lunch, they would go out for lunch. Somewhere in the back of her mind, Zander's nagging voice called to her, but it was too distant for Gia to notice.

However, she couldn't help but tease, "Like a date?"

"No. Like friends."

He hung up leaving Gia to wonder why his dismissal hurt so much.

They had a quiet lunch that was cut short when she had to go to the library to work on a project with a guy named Leon.

Gia didn't bother voicing any of this to Kaiden, knowing he would go all caveman on her until he met the guy. For a pair of people so insistent on being uncommitted, they sure managed to get jealous very easily.

Not that either of them would ever fucking admit it.

Kaiden had offered her a ride, but she was already striding away trying to remember why she wanted to stay away from him the first place.

Sometimes he could be so fucking charming, she forgot that he was even an asshole. Sometimes he opened doors for her and pulled her chair out. Sometimes he smiled genuinely at her (wide, white, and gleaming) and he even made her laugh.

But then the next minute, he was cussing her out and calling her a bitch. She couldn't fucking deal with the dichotomy of his personality because she knew that the minute she allowed herself room to fall, she'd be crushed under the weight of him.

And she didn't want to end up like the rest.

So she forced herself to step away from his life. She put up barriers where he put up doors, and she tried her best to stay away.

It worked for a week until he came barging into her life once more.

"What the hell? Are you fucking crazy? It's three in the morning, and I don't have any time for your horny ass," Gia snapped, refusing to let him even enter her apartment. Not to mention she was indecent at three in the morning. Her inky black locks were pulled up into a messy bun and she was only clad in a long shirt that reached her mid-thigh.

She realized belatedly that she was wearing his shirt.

Shit. So much for staying the fuck away from him.

Just his presence alone, and his intense, velvet brown eyes were enough to set her over the edge. And she wouldn't have that. She was already hanging by a thread for chrissake.

His shoulders were pushed back and his stance was aggressive. Normally Gia was never one to be intimidated by his height but she found herself retreating into the kitchen.

"Tea?" Gia asked in a much calmer voice, when he continued to assess her silently. It was killing her, the way he was staring at her with betrayed, cold eyes.

"What?" She finally snarled unable to deal with his choking quietness. He looked away, his mouth twisting and pulling into an ugly scowl. His gaze was hard as if he already knew the answer to his next question.

"Where the fuck were you?" he finally questioned in a low hiss. His voice rarely ever rose; instead, his voice quieted when his temper grew but it still managed to carry the power of one long, drawn out scream.

Gia shrugged noncommittally knowing it would piss him off even more. Throughout their relationship she had never been the passive-aggressive type, but ever since that overheard conversation with Zander and Jay, things had changed drastically.

"I was out."

She could practically hear him grind his teeth together.

"Sierra said you were with a guy," he pointed out with forced calmness. Was he talking about Leon? Her partner for her school project? Gia only noticed his voice was forced because of the way his knuckles turned white from clutching the counter.

Gia quirked an eyebrow, allowing her smile to turn up in a wide smirk. "Jealous?"

A muscle in his jaw jumped, and his eyebrows creased in the middle of his forehead. He opened his mouth once, than closed it abruptly and exhaled.

His face was blank and indifferent when he replied, "Like I give a shit."

She couldn't help but laugh at that, turning away from the boiling water to face him once more. "Then what the fuck are you doing here, Kaiden? Did you miss me?"

He snorted this time, his blank face turning caustic and sharp. "You fucking wish. I just wanted to make sure I wasn't going to get any STDs the next time-"

She inhaled sharply through her nose and her whole body tensed up. All of a sudden her easy-going demeanor was gone and replaced with hostility. "Shut up. Just shut the fuck up."

But he was far from being done; it seemed like he was intent on ruining her night.

His eyes glinted in response and he crowded into her space, causing her heart rate to spike up into faster tempo. His eyes seemed to harden at her tone.

"Who the fuck knows what you have. I heard oral herpes was going around. Been spending some time on your knees-?"

Her slap echoed when her hand connected with his face. It was a sharp staccato sound that scared the shit out of her; she didn't even remember lifting up her hand.

Her chest was heaving and it seemed to hurt with each breath she inhaled. She felt like shit. And, in that moment, she realized that Zander and Jay had been right in the end. She ended up like the rest of them.

Disgust rolled and swelled at the pit of her stomach, but she couldn't decipher if it was aimed at Kaiden or herself. Her voice punctuated the eerie silence that had settled in her tiny apartment. "I fucking hate you so much."


"Don't fucking start with me! I never fucking slept with the guy - or any guy for that matter, which is more than I can say for you and your pack of bitches."

"That was one time, Gia! For fuck's sake I got tested after that!"

"I don't want to hear it, jackass! In fact, get the fuck out of my house!"


"Now Kaiden. I'm so sick of putting up with your shit!" she shrieked acerbically, still maintaining a steady glare even when she wanted to collapse into a heap of sobs.

"Gia. I didn't mean-"

"Get out! Isn't this what you wanted anyway? Are you happy now? You finally got rid of the biggest bitch - oh wait, I meant slut - in your life. You can finally move on disease-free," Gia sneered, her lip curling with each sardonic word.

"Goddammit, Gia-" He made a move like he was about to touch her, but she immediately raised her hand up to stop his movements.

"Don't fucking touch me!"

His fisted hand closed around the air and he let out a slow breath, eyes blazing, before moving mechanically to the door. Gia stood stock still in the kitchen until she heard the door shut quietly.

And then she promptly burst into tears.

The sound of her crying was only punctuated by the whistle of her tea kettle.

Three weeks went by and she ignored every text message, call, and Facebook message he sent her way.

But three weeks took a toll on her.

To her immense displeasure, she always fell asleep around 4:30 AM no matter how tired she was. She would lie in her bed for hours, tucked carefully into her flower patterned sheets, just staring at the polaroid pictures taped haphazardly to her wall. She didn't have the hear to take down the ones with him in it. Thoughts of Kaiden kept her up at night, but, even more so, it was the unmistakable signs of his absence that left her tossing and turning.

Everything from the absence of his scent in her bed sheets to the missing clothes, phone chargers, and chapsticks that he would always leave in her apartment, sent a pang through her ribcage.

And despite every fucking thing he had said to her, she still wore his shirts to sleep.

Damn, she was pathetic.

Two days later, Sierra dragged her sorry ass out of bed to go to Zander's party. She complained the entire time Sierra helped her get ready. Partly because she was tired and lazy. Mostly because she knew that Kaiden lived with Zander so he was obviously going to be there.

But wasn't the whole point to show him that she was perfectly fine without him? Because she didn't need him one fucking bit. Nope. Not at all.

And maybe that's why she wiggled into her tight fitting black dress. The one with the short skirt that seemed to cling to her like a second skin. Just for a moment she felt a little bit like herself again when Sierra appraised her approvingly.

And then she immediately wilted, because what exactly was she trying to prove to Kaiden?

She voiced her thoughts to Sierra who immediately shut her down and proclaimed that she was a "sexy bitch no matter what Kaiden thought".

It was comments like this, which reminded Gia why she spent time around people at all. So she tossed her shoulders back and proudly entered Zander's house, noticing several guys trailing her body with their eyes; it made her feel powerful.

By the time she got alcohol running through her system, Gia was feeling pretty invincible. Perhaps it was this false sense of security that led her to Kaiden. She was poised near the keg when he spotted her.

Fuck. His expression just about killed her when he trailed his eyes down her figure. They seemed to darken when they pursued the outline of her legs; his expression was so severe it was as if he was tracing her body with the tips of his fingers.

"Hi," he greeted quietly, once he approached her.

Her body seemed attuned to him from the way her back arched towards his. His very presence was like a siren call and she could feel the pull of it at the base of her spine.

It was something Gia couldn't resist even if she wanted to. She could already tell that this was the beginning of a shipwreck. She could practically here the warnings of the sailors; in fact, they were yelling so loud she couldn't distinguish them between the crashing waves of her heartbeat.

All she knew was the fact that Kaiden was standing in front of her looking at her like she mattered. Like she was the only one that ever mattered.

Maybe it was the alcohol; maybe it was her heart, all she knew was that she was leaning towards him, closer to him, as if he were her salvation.

He immediately met her halfway, pouring everything into the kiss. One of his hands came up to tangle and thread through her soft mane, while his other hand curled protectively around her waist.

Unlike previous kisses, this one was slow and sweet and feverish it made her very toes curl. Just as she was bringing her hands up to clutch at his shirt, he pulled away from her gently.

His forehead rested against hers, and she felt a million miles away from the rest of the party. It was like they were the only two people in the room.

"D-Do you want to go up to my room?" Kaiden asked, tenderly, his hand lightly massaging her scalp. His sleepy, velvet brown eyes made her want to pull him closer, closer, closer until no space existed between them.

It seemed, however, that his words passed through some kind of inebriated filter that tampered down her anger. Instead of replying with something like, "Well that depends on whether or not you think I'll infect you," Gia found herself nodding slowly.

He shielded her away from the various catcalls of rowdy party-goers as they ascended the stairs up to his room. His presence behind her was hard and unyielding and she had never felt more safe.

Once they were in his bedroom, Gia's lips found his again in the darkness. Something about the absence of light, paired with her drunkenness gave her an enormous amount of nerve and freedom. She felt giddy without the weight of her inhibitions pressing down on her so hard.

Her lips descended against Kaiden's firmly, her tongue already darting out to lick its way across his full bottom lip before sucking it into her mouth. She thought he moaned at that. Or was it her? She couldn't tell. All she knew was that she wanted it to never ever end.

His hands grasped her hips firmly, pulling her into his warmth. She felt her blood spike at the change of position, and she nearly pulled chunks of his hair out in an effort to get even closer to him.

She wanted to feel all of him against her until he was pulling her apart, piece by fucking piece. She wanted to come undone over and over and over again.

In an effort to speed things up, Gia slipped her small hands under his shirt, trying to undo buttons with her fumbling fingers. God how many were there? She tried focusing on each individual button but they just seemed to double themselves in front of her eyes.

Somewhere above her, she heard a deep chuckle. Kaiden's hands grabbed her wrists, and she pouted up at him.

"So fucking impatient," he chided teasingly, rubbing his nose against her cheek while moving the both of them backwards, toward the bed. "Hell, don't you want to wait until we get in bed?"

"I thought we always fucked against the wall," Gia slurred in bleary fashion. Her words stopped Kaiden cold, and he immediately dropped her wrists and stepped completely away from her.

"You're completely shitfaced," he noted dully. Even in her drunken state, however, Gia could sense the underlying concern and sadness in his words.

"Yeah. So?" Gia replied, reaching out to clutch at his chest. He could not just fucking stand there with his shirt open like that. It was practically begging to be touched.

"So we're not doing this while you're drunk. You...You'll probably still hate me in the morning," Kaiden muttered darkly, while brushing her hands away. He glanced away, turning on his lamp, and moving to open up his drawers. Gia collapsed onto his bed sleepily, observing his movements.

For some reason she found it fascinating to watch the way his shoulder blades worked with the curves of his biceps and forearms. Her eyes trailed down to see his thick arms taper down to wrists and long knuckled fingers.

Gia yawned and replied, "I couldn't ever hate you, Kaiden."

He seemed to pause at her words, before resuming his searching. Finally he pulled out a plain gray t-shirt which he tossed to her, along with a pair of blue sweatpants.

"Here, you can change into these."

"Change?" Gia replied uncomprehendingly. She smoothed back a few strands of her dark hair, not catching the tender glance that Kaiden shot her way.

"Yeah. Change. Go on, I promise I won't peek," Kaiden said, with only a trace of a smirk playing on his lips.

Gia snorted in response, but complied nonetheless. Kicking her black dress into a corner of the room, she retreated back to the bed and crawled under the covers.

Kaiden watched her with an indecipherable expression before grabbing a pillow and sinking down to the carpet.

"What the hell are you doing?" Gia questioned wearily, her syllables still melding together in long slurs while she moved towards the edge of the bed to peer sleepily down at Kaiden.

He cracked one amused eye open before replying, "Sleeping. You should do that too."

"Well don't sleep on the damn ground. There's more than enough room up here."

"Gia, I don't think-"

"Kaiden," Gia countered dangerously. There was no room for argument; Kaiden simply moved to the bed again.

As soon as he got settled in bed, Gia squirmed closer to him. His outline seemed fuzzy around the edges, and she couldn't quite tell what that expression he was wearing meant.

"Are you mad at me?" she finally whispered.

That made both of his eyes shoot wide open. "Me? Why the fuck would I be mad. I'm the one who practically called you a slut."

"Is that why you let me sleep here?" Gia mumbled, fighting desperately to stay conscious.

"No. I let you sleep here cause you were fucking drunk. I-I don't...Gia...look I'm sorry, okay? I know you probably won't remember this in the morning, but I'm fucking sorry. I was an asshole to you, and...I'm just sorry," Kaiden whispered in a torn voice. His brown eyes bored into hers, leaving her breathless. His slow breaths kissed the planes of her cheek, and Gia smiled softly at him.

"Are you always this fucking serious?" Gia taunted, her hands moving to cup his jaw and turn him towards her. His eyebrows quirked in worry, and he carefully moved his arm to trace his thumb over her cheekbone. It was like he was scared of putting too much pressure on her, in case she broke away in his fingers. The action was so unlike Kaiden, that Gia regarded him bemusedly.

Instead of pushing her away, Kaiden allowed his hand to snake around her waist and tug her close.

His head ducked down to bury into the hollow of her neck, and when he spoke his voice sounded distant and strained. "Shit Gia...I-I feel like I'm losing you. God. This...this wasn't supposed to happen. This wasn't even supposed to fucking happen."


He pulled away from her slightly, and she tried to focus on his face, but she was incapable of doing so. She heard him laugh - a short, self-deprecating bark of a laugh that made the base of her throat constrict- before he returned back to his previous position. His chest was pressed up against hers and it felt so nice to lie with him like this.

"Fuck. You're probably not even going to remember this in the morning. Maybe it's better...I just...I can't lose you Gia. I can't."

His tone made her heart clench, and she fisted her hand in his shirt in order to respond with the same sort of fierce intensity his words held. "You're not going to lose me, Kaiden. I won't that let that happen."

"Promise?" He asked, his voice small and weak and vulnerable.


Gia noted that her words sounded too much like I love you.

She ignored this nagging thought when the night took her, and her eyelids grew heavier.

In the morning Gia woke up with a small, lazy smile on her face despite the gargantuan weight of her head.

A small snore rumbled in her ear, and she suddenly realized that she was not in her own apartment. No. In fact, she was in Kaiden's apartment.

Gia turned her head slightly, and the sight of his peaceful, sleeping face was enough to trigger the memories of last night.

Did he really admit that he felt like he was losing her?

As if he could feel the intensity of her gaze, Kaiden slowly blinked awake, and regarded her languidly.

"Morning," he grunted with an inscrutable expression.

Instead of replying, Gia winced at his words, and he immediately go up to fetch her a glass of water and an advil.

He returned promptly, and she felt awkward as she handled the glass with a small thank you. What was she doing in his fucking bed of all places after the screaming match that took place back at her apartment?

Gia wasn't sure if she was supposed to thank him for his hospitality, or try to escape without being noticed.

That plan was immediately shot to hell when he asked quietly, "So do you remember everything from last night or...?"

She narrowed her eyes at him and replied stiffly, "I remembered that you said that you couldn't lose me."

Instead of stammering out an answer like she half expected, he seemed to square his shoulders before roughly stating, "Then you remember that you're the one that promised to not let that fucking happen."

"I was drunk-"

"So you're dropping you're promise?"

"I-I'm not doing anything!" Gia finally stuttered out. How was it possible that he was the one that managed to get her all tongue-tied after everything last night?

Kaiden's gaze was heated and it seemed to cut straight down her middle.

"Then what are you saying?"

She felt like she was burning up from the force of his gaze, and he seemed so expectant, like she had to answer correctly or something. She closed her eyes briefly, remembering how vulnerable he had seemed in the dim light - like he was on the verge of saying something...

"I-I...I don't want to be fuck buddies anymore."

Instantly, his gaze dropped from hers, and the barriers came back up, full force. She almost felt like she was physically slammed back from the ferocity of his indifference.

But she fucking knew that it was all an act. She spotted the pretense so quickly because it was one she was so familiar with.

"Wait Kaiden, I-"

"No. You don't have to fucking explain. I get it."

"Would you just fucking listen to me?" Gia nearly yelled, shooting up from the bed to grab his elbow.

Goosebumps seemed to ascend up both of their arms from their point of contact, and Gia suppressed a shiver.

"I don't want to be fuck buddies anymore, because I want...I want something real Kaiden," Gia finally whispered, still too terrified to voice what she truly wanted.

"Like what we had wasn't real," Kaiden retorted almost inaudibly. He snorted derisively at her words and pulled away from her grasp.

"No. Kaiden. You know what I fucking meant," Gia countered, her expression both beseeching and fierce.

He ran a hand over his face, before asking slowly, "You think it could actually work between us?"

Gia lifted one shoulder, stepping closer to Kaiden, "I think if we try...?"

Her chest brushed against his, and Kaiden allowed his forehead to fall forward against hers.

"I expect you to keep your promise from last night," he said, his voice casual despite the serious undertones.

His velvet brown eyes had never looked so soft, so gentle. She shivered in his arms.

"Babe, you'll have a hard time loosing me when I'm always around you," Gia responded, her mouth widening into a brilliant smile.

Kaiden grinned genuinely at her words, his fingers working their way under her - oh wait, his - shirt, tracing the soft skin under her rib cage.

"Promise?" He asked while his hand traveled higher, eliciting a long gasp from her.

"Promise," she sighed back, her hands lifting up to tangle and grip his hair.

Their words sounded too much like I love you, but for once, neither of them minded.

A/N: Important note about the warnings: The actions/decisions of the characters do not reflect the actions of the author. I do not agree with having sexual encounters with anyone without full and informed consent. These are just the actions of the characters.

Hello my lovely pickle monsters! Hope you guys are doing well. The above song was the best inspiration for this story since it's the sexiest song I think I've ever heard. What did you guys think of the story? It was a lot different than what I normally write, and I had a ton of fun working with the characters. I hope you guys liked it too!

Oh! And for those of you who are done with school, lucky you. For those of you who still have to face the wrath of finals, my prayers are with you :P I'm in the second boat, but we will persevere together! Review Challenge: How do you procrastinate? Favorite study snack? Summer plans?

Honestly, I procrastinate by reading Fanfiction about my OTPs. You get extra brownie points if you're able to answer who my OTPs are in your review! :P Also, to those of you who read Tug of War, I will try to get an update in soon! But since school is ending that may have to wait a while :/

Thank you for being amazing as always,