By now, Chloe’s well aware that her boyfriend, the literal Devil, has tried every sexual act imaginable—and probably invented a few new ones.
After-all, even before they were together—before she had first-hand knowledge of his skills and talent and utter insatiability—she’d had a front row ticket to the stories of his sexcapades.
She still remembers the way her eye had twitched at the story of the pan flute and butternut squash, the way her jaw had clenched at the Tibetan singing pot and artisan honey, the hot flare of jealousy in her gut at the Vaseline and a car battery.
She remembers how nervous she had been on the ride up in the elevator, glitter still sticking persistently to her hair, the night she knew she was going to give herself to him for the first time. Incredible, the word had buzzed through her mind. Incredible that she was finally here, and incredible that it had taken her this long.
Staring at herself in the elevator console, the shine of lights glaring off the metal, she worried about not being good enough. Those pesky emotions—insecurity, inadequacy—crawled their way up from the pit of her stomach until they were choking her.
How could she possibly please a man like him, with all his experience? How could she tempt the man who created temptation?
As it turns out—Chloe needn’t have worried.
Because the Devil, despite his salacious talk of whips and chains and drug fuelled orgies and conch shells, happened to have a weak spot for kissing.
Now, the hands on the clock creeping to midnight and twisted up in his dark satin sheets, it’s all they’ve been doing for hours. Her lips are wet and swollen, and there’s a persistent burn in her lungs from lack of air, and does he even need to breathe the way she needs to breathe?
He’s on top of her, bracketed between her thighs, and they’ve been laying here for so long, her leg has started to cramp and her back aches, but there’s no way in hell she’s moving. She tilts her hips up instead and spreads her thighs a little more and he presses against her, just there.
She feels drunk, just from the taste of the scotch that drenches his mouth. He tastes like smoke too. Down the steps of his bedroom, a half-burned cigarette lays in his crystal ashtray on top of the piano, sending burning spirals into the night air. She knows it’s there because it’s where they began the night, her nestled in his lap as his hands drifted instinctively across the keys around her.
He changes the angle of the kiss, slanting his mouth over hers, pace quickening and desire mounting. He nips at her mouth and she opens for him, tongue sliding against his in mindless response. Catching his bottom lip between hers, she sucks it, feeling his pulse beat and quicken against her palm as she runs her hands up to his throat, tugging him closer. She likes his style and his ten thousand dollar suits as much as the next woman—"well, you're only human, my darling" she can practically hear him smirk—but she likes him naked more. She likes to feel his bare skin against hers, where he's almost human, where she can imagine it's possible to crawl inside him and expel the brimstone and ash that clings to his body—all the reasons he thinks he's bad and not worthy.
Eventually, her pesky human disposition gets the better of her. She laughs as she breaks away from his mouth, lightly panting and incredulous and deliriously happy.
“Wow,” she breathes, her face splitting into a dizzy smile, “you really like kissing, don’t you?”
She feels the curve of his smirk against her kiss-swollen lips.
“I really like kissing you, Detective.”
It’s embarrassingly predictable, but the words spread like warm sunlight through her chest.
“But don’t you want to…” she swallows, her eyes flickering down pointedly, and it’s quite ridiculous how much she’s blushing, given how frequently some part of him is between her legs, “you know.”
The corner of his mouth tips in amusement.
“Always, Detective,” he purrs, “but this is quite lovely too, don’t you think?”
She hums, her fingers threading through his black curls. Her other hand cups his cheek, feeling five-o’clock shadow under her palm, the pads of her fingers brushing over his lips.
“What do you like about it?”
“I like the taste of your mouth and the softness of your lips and the little noises you make.”
Her cheeks redden again, even though the words are nothing compared to the hot and heavy and dirty ones he sometimes croons when he’s inside her. She feels a persistent heat start to coil and flare low in her core and she shifts.
“I like the quiet,” he elaborates then, his voice softer as he brushes some hair from her face, “Darling, I just like being with you.”
She smiles at how he sounds almost embarrassed by the confession, redness painted high on his cheeks. She loves it when he’s vulnerable with her. She loves him.
He knew exactly what I wanted, his ex-lovers whisper in her ear, but did any of them ever ask what he wanted?
She has no desire to mojo him again, has no interest in smoke and mirrors, so she whispers her question into the hollow of his throat.
“But surely kissing me isn’t your fantasy,” she husks, “what have you wanted to do to me since we met? You can tell me. We’ve used my handcuffs,” she flushes at the memory, of the clank of steel against the headboard, the bite of them into her wrists as she whined and arched her hips and chased his mouth, “what else? Whips... ropes... toys?”
She feels, more than hears, his laugh—the shake of his shoulders and the movement of his Adam’s apple under her lips.
“Nothing so simple,” he murmurs, “what I desire… what I have always desired… is you. Just you. You kissing me. You wanting me. That’s what I want.”
She pulls back to look at him, strong and beautiful and half bathed in moonlight streaming in through the window.
He wants to be enough, she realises. He wants to be forgiven. He wants her to choose him, even though there was never really a choice to begin with; they're undeniable.
“Wish granted,” she says, “because I happen to want you very much—”
He smirks, his fingers dancing their way down her side. She shivers as his ring rasps against her skin and then he slips them between her thighs.
“I can see that,” he purrs.
Her eyelids flutter, her breath catching in her throat, and she whispers something else.
“—and I happen to love you very much.”
He pauses, swallowing heavily. It looks like it’s still a surprise to hear those words, even though it must be so obvious by now how she feels about him. He’s older than time itself, and yet, the words seem new.
Still, he no longer says “I do, of course I do,” and he no longer hides behind thinly veiled euphemism.
This time, he very clearly and very sincerely says—
“Not nearly as much as I love you.”
He’s wrong, it’s not possible to love someone more than she loves him, but she doesn’t correct him. Instead, she leans up and captures his lips in another kiss. He yields beneath her, his lips parting so she can slip her tongue inside. It slides against his, hot and slippery slick, and every lazy stroke sends heat licking between her thighs. He’s a good kisser because of course he is, but she wants more.
He abandons her lips, smiling at her soft groan of protest, and she feels the plush of his mouth against her throat. Pleasure shivers down her spine as his mouth opens and he sucks gently over her collarbone.
The meaning behind his confession, the weight of it, hits her square in the chest. It’s not that he likes kissing, per se—he just likes her. He loves her, as she loves him, so he’s happy just being around her, surrounded by her light. She’s happy she makes him happy.
They are inconsequential, she hears the Goddess, hidden in Charlotte’s body, say, you’re different. He’s different when he’s with you.
She thinks of his lovers again and feels nothing but pity for them.
The best night of my life, he gave them.
He gives her so much more.