Later that evening, Sy stood in the steaming shower in her condo and peeked at Noah through the transparent curtain. He was standing at the opposite sink, his back to her, a towel knotted around his waist. He splashed hot water on his face, squirted bubbly white foam into his hand. Next he smoothed the whiteness over the lower half of his face.
And now? He was shaving. She had the knowledge of the task in her brain, but watching a gorgeous, mostly naked man perform the ritual was mesmerizing. Every motion was smooth and efficient. To reach certain whiskers, his face made the most adorable contortions.
“Are you about done?” Noah wiped a circle on the steam-fogged mirror. “I’m starving.”
“Let’s go. Get a move on.”
He scowled. “Don’t push it. I know where to find a bin of ice cubes.”
She turned off the water, wrapped one bath towel around her torso and circled another in a turban over her hair. She stepped from the tub and watched Noah grimace as he patted aftershave on his face.
“Would you really throw a bin of ice cubes on me while I’m in the shower?”
“Probably not. But I want to leave soon and you’re not ready.”
She moved closer and peered at Noah’s cheek. “Can I feel?”
She knew Noah granted her permission to touch his face with her hand. But in the dolphin gesture of affection and support, they’d rub bodies and faces. On land, the shore-shifters settled for just facial cheeks. She wanted this with Noah. Since they were both close to naked anyway, she discarded both her towels and moved to press her nude body against him. Curling her arms around his neck, she slowly pressed her cheek to his and rubbed hers up and down his smooth, fragrant one.
It was wonderful. All the more meaningful because for her, the gesture lacked any sexual intent. She sighed, stepped back, and glanced around for her towels.
Noah grabbed her arms. His face was flushed, and he stammered, “That was…hot. The hottest…what was that?” Confused, she glanced down. He was aroused, his towel sporting a tent in front.
He totally misunderstood the gesture, but how could she possibly explain? Never mind. This could be fun. Challenged to distract him from his dinner, she drawled, “Want to do it again?”
“It’s better if we’re both naked.” He dropped his towel, and this time when she squeezed him, he hugged her tighter and rubbed against her cheek. They held the embrace in silence for a long moment.
Noah kissed her softly on the ear and whispered, “Forget food. I’m not hungry any more. Let’s go fool around instead.”
“I’d love to.” See. It was all good.
He scooped her up in his arms and carried her into the bedroom.