“You’re probably right,” he said gently. “No one would blame me if I walked away now. Not even you.”
Nick hummed through a weak smile, the sound low and rumbling in the undercurrent of the restaurant.
Kelly kissed Nick’s fingers, shaking his head. “But I’m not going to do that, and we both know why. So how about you say that word again for me?”
Kelly could see the relief washing through Nick just as clearly as if it were an ocean wave. His grip on Kelly’s hand tightened and he closed his eyes, releasing a pent-up breath. “What word?” he asked, smiling tentatively when he opened his eyes again.
“You know which one,” Kelly said, dropping his voice to a growl.
Nick gazed at him for a few seconds, his entire demeanor relaxing when he offered a soft, “Mine.”
Kelly’s heart skipped a beat, and goose bumps rose on his arms, just like always. “I love the way you say that word.”
“Thank you for letting me keep saying it.”