Chapter 78 - Reece-Ringing In The New Year
When we were done with dinner, sipping our drinks and laughing together, I asked her if she was willing to accompany me to the music room. She didn't seem nervous, and thankfully she agreed right away. Taking her hand like I was becoming accustomed to doing, I helped her to her feet before lightly placing my hand on her hip and escorting her down the hall.
We had spent an hour laughing, talking, and getting to know each other over dinner, so it was after ten when we got to the music room. I was hoping that she might play something for me, and I something for her. And I had a stereo system set up so we could choose to listen if we wanted to dance instead of play.
She didn't seem skeptical or nervous, scared or angry, when we got to our destination. I saw that as a plus. She was smiling happily as she looked around the room for something that might be different.
"I see there is a fire in here today as well." She noted when we entered the room.
"I felt it would be fitting, it is winter after all."
"Do you often get cold?" She asked me jokingly.
"No, but especially not when I'm with you." I grinned at her playfully.
"What's that supposed to mean?"
"Just that you're warm and by association I feel warmer as well."
"Hmmm." She looked at me in disbelief. "I think you should just stick with you don't get cold." I laughed.
"Would you like to play something with me?"
"Time for games now?" She asked.
"No. That's not. I didn't mean." I stammered until she started laughing.
"It's fine. I know what you meant, just calm down." She was giggling at me, at my embarrassment.
"You like playing these games with me, don't you?"
"You're fun to mess with, I can't help it. As long as we're not arguing, you're fun to be around." Those words made me happier than I could describe. I felt as if I had just floated off the floor and was bouncing off the ceiling, bobbing around like a buoy.
"I love being with you. You're fun, intriguing, interesting. I'm definitely never bored when I'm with you."
"Not to mention things are bound to be exciting around me." She joked.
"I could do without some of that excitement." I sighed.
"You and me both."
I left her where she stood and sat at the piano. I looked at her with what I hoped was a warm and loving gaze as I beckoned her over.
"Come on, choose an instrument and play with me." She grinned at my word choice, an eyebrow raised, and a laugh barely suppressed.
"What kind of music do you want to play?"
"Well, I guess that depends on you, and what instrument you choose."
"Do you only play the piano and guitar?"
"No, I can play others as well." I answered her with a confident smirk.
"So, we're not limited to just one choice here." I smiled at her words.
"No, we can mix it up."
She went to the violin first and began playing the opening bars of Melodie for violin and piano by Tchaikovsky. The notes were hauntingly beautiful. I started in with the piano part, not missing a beat. I saw the smile on her face when she saw I knew the song as well.
"Did you think I didn't know this one?" I asked her with a laugh in my voice.
"I didn't know, but I hoped you knew it." She laughed as well. We finished the song together grinning like kids.
"What next?" She asked, excitement bubbled within her making her glow. I looked around the room and thought of the instruments she had told me she could play. I went to the oboe, and after some mild prep work, and thanking myself for preparing the instruments all in advance, I started to play another song. The first two bars were all she needed before she had the flute ready to go. We played Echo Duet, it didn't have the same history, and it didn't sound nearly as romantic as Melodie, but it was fun and seeing the happiness on my mate's face was enough for me.
We continued this for over an hour. We would each choose an instrument and a song trying to stump the other. We played songs that were new and old, songs that were classical and contemporary. We even played songs we had heard on the radio, though without having learned them before, those didn't turn out so well on anything other than the piano and guitar.
Little Bunny's musical skill was amazing. She played each instrument with the same amount of passion. I was glad that music was something that we could share. And when we played "A Million Dreams" with her on the piano and me on the guitar, she sang the lyrics. The sound of her voice, singing the word to only me, my heart nearly stopped. It went beyond beautiful, I didn't know if it was just me and my mate bond or not, but I could listen to her sing for the rest of my life and be a happy man. The sound of it even helped to soothe my overeager wolf.
It was nearly midnight, somewhere around eleven-forty-five when I asked her if she would dance with me instead of playing more music. She agreed almost instantly. We put on a random playlist and let the music take us.
The first song was upbeat with a fast tempo. I cared less about the lyrics or the song itself than I did about the feel of her in my hands, in my arms, pressed against my chest. We smiled at each other as we danced, song after song.
I had nearly lost track of time when, during a slow song, I noticed it was just a minute or two until midnight. I danced her toward the balcony and grinned as I opened the door.
"What are you doing?" She asked, her smile didn't fade.
"You'll see." I teased.
We only had to wait another few seconds before she saw what I had planned for her. We were facing out toward the compound, down the mountain. Now, in the sky between us and the houses was a massive fireworks display. I had never done this before, I could play it off as wanting to celebrate the pack, but I just wanted to surprise my mate and see her smile. The fireworks started to explode just at the stroke of midnight.
"So beautiful." She sighed as I held her in my arms, our dance completely forgotten.
"Happy New Year, Little Bunny." I smiled at her sweetly. She looked up at with me those innocent eyes that had earned her that nickname.
"I've never seen the pack do fireworks before." She said excitedly.
"We've never done them before now." I told her.
"What makes this year special?" She wondered.
"You." I saw her blush. My answer had embarrassed her.
"This is too much." She tried to downplay her role in the pack, in my life.
"No, it's not enough, but it's what I can do." She looked a little uncomfortable with the attention but still smiled.
"Thank you, Reece."
"Can I ask for something, Little Bunny?"
"Can I give you a New Year's kiss? I promise it will be a small one." I almost begged her. She looked down for just a moment before she shifted her head just a little, looking at me through her lashes again.
"Yes." She nodded as she spoke.
I lowered my head even as she raised up onto her toes. I steadied her with my hands on her hips. Gently, ever so gently, I pressed my lips to hers. The kiss was chaste and quick, but that didn't stop the desire from sparking in my wolf. He was now howling nearly nonstop inside my head, begging me to claim her. But I couldn't, not yet, now was not the time. I pulled away reluctantly, keeping to my promise to be on my best behavior.
"Happy New Year." I told her again, I noticed the darkening in her eyes, the hunger that was growing in her just the same as it was growing in me. If only I could get her to trust me.
"Happy New Year, Reece." She smiled sweetly as she said the words.
We finished watching the fireworks with her in my arms. She never once tried to pull away. When the display was over, I knew better than to push my luck and decided to walk her back to her room. I noticed she wore a contented smile the whole way there, that made both me and my wolf want to growl in satisfaction.
When we were outside her door, I kissed her hand gently but with a definite passion in my eyes. I know she saw that passion, but she also knows I did nothing inappropriate. If I was lucky, We would get over this hurdle soon.
"Good night, Little Bunny." I smiled at her.
"Good night." She disappeared into her room, as soon as she was out of sight I put on the biggest, most likely goofiest, grin I had ever worn. I couldn't have asked for this night to have gone any better. I sauntered back to my room, just barely managing to stop myself from whistling a jaunty tune as I went.