A/N - So Ryan and Marissa were really tired from staying out late at the diner. And they're extremely deep sleepers. Work with me, people. Once again, Thank You to all who read and review.

~Sleeping Arrangements - Chapter 6~

There was persistent movement next to him, and the entire bed shook, jarring him from sleep. Seth was lying on his stomach with most of his face in the pillow, so he turned his head enough to see out of one eye. He watched, amused, as Summer fought to get out of the blanket she had somehow cocooned herself into. He was no expert, but it looked to him like the blanket was winning. He reached over and tugged on an end until it slid out from under her and she was able to unwrap herself. "The mystery of why you're always late for school has been solved," he whispered.

"Shut up, Cohen." She sat up and glared at the covers twisted around her. Seth was working furiously to keep a straight face, but when she glanced down at him, he couldn't help grinning. She hit him with her pillow, then finally giggled softly. "The stupid blanket was alive, I swear."

"Didn't you see the sign when we hit town? "Home of the Living Blankets"."

"I missed it." Her eyes traveled down his lanky frame. "Why don't you have any covers?"

"Either they crawled to your side of the bed, or you're a blanket thief."

She gave him a sheepish smile. "Guilty. Sweetie, I'm sorry, I didn't mean to." She looked past him to the couple spooning in the other bed. "Well there's a shocking development," she whispered dryly.

She looked down at his jeans, then back up to his t-shirt. "Aww. I'll bet you're freezing." She straightened out the bedding then crawled over him, carefully arranging herself face down on his back. "How's that, baby? Am I hurting you?"

"Mmmm. I am so cold; I'm probably gonna need you to stay there for a while. Long time. Yes. Cause I'm cold." He luxuriated in her body heat, and the comforting feel of her small body pressing him into the mattress. "You just called me baby again. With no effort to cause bodily harm. Progress has been made." She slid up a little and he felt lips on the back of his neck, then her whispered breath in his ear.

"I guess you taught me all about following through on warm and fuzzy feelings last night."

There were so many aspects of that statement that required more thought than he was capable of with so little sleep. He decided to go in order. The first verb was "taught". He taught her? If anything, he had learned about - stuff - from her. He closed his eyes and decided to go back to the source, realizing it would be lunchtime before he figured anything out by himself. "I did? How is - uh -? Would you mind explaining that?" He raised his shoulder until she slid off him, and then turned on his side to face her.

She pulled the covers back up over them and settled on her side. "What exactly do you want explained?"

"How did I teach you anything? I've never even kissed - " She stopped him with a finger to his lips.

"Shut it, Cohen. Your lack of experience didn't matter." She felt herself blushing as memories of a few particularly intense moments sprang to mind. "Trust me." He gave her a shy smile and it was so cute and endearing she wanted to hug him. Then ravage him. "The point was about follow through, though."

"On warm and fuzzies. Which would mean that you have them. About me." He couldn't help it. Abundant insecurity - of the sort that fondles sleeping women in the middle of the night in case it's the last chance - wanted to hear the answer.

She sighed and reached across to smooth down one of his curls. "Didn't we go over that last night? Of course I do." She looked away from him and pulled her hand back, suddenly uneasy. "And I followed through instead of being scared." Her eyes lifted to his, unsure. "In a way I never have before. Seth, this isn't just a big deal for you. It is for me, too."

Seth stopped breathing for a moment, then remembered it was necessary to sustain life.

He had assumed that she -. "You've never?" She shook her head no slowly. "That was?" She nodded. "With me?" She smiled.

Seth had a flashback of them holding each other in a quiet stunned tangle afterward. When his thought process had come back from it's fabulous, unprecedented vacation, he had worried about - well, his inexperience, and how he compared. But he was her first. He, Seth Cohen, was.

He reached for her and pulled her into his arms, hugging her close to him. "I'm sorry I thought - I didn't think you were, like, easy, but - you've had long-term boyfriends, I just assumed.... "

"I know. It's ok." She smiled against his chest. "A lot that happened last night was new to me."

He pulled back a little and looked down at her. "In no way am I complaining, perish that thought, but why - uh - I don't understand, Summer. How'd I get so, for lack of a less clich├ęd word, lucky?"

She looked up at him with a little smile. "It's like, I knew something was different. I've made out with others guys before, but it was so not like that with you."

"Not like what? Help me out here. I'm a man in a happy crisis."

"I don't really understand it myself. As the night progressed, I just felt more and more comfortable with you. That's not the right word. Safe, maybe. Something along those lines. And then I realized why. There was absolutely no doubt in my mind that you really cared about me. All of me."

"I do. I have."

"I know."

She thought back to last night. Neither of them had intended for it to happen. But the way he touched her. And looked at her. God. Summer had to close her eyes and take a deep breath just thinking about it. He had handled her like she was some kind of valuable treasure he'd discovered; the windfall he'd been waiting for his whole life. Every touch and kiss had been tender and sweet and sexy as hell; and no, there was no mistaking the looks he would give her. Even when he was just glancing up to see if she liked what he was doing, or checking to make sure he wasn't going too far, those looks were full of respect and something else that was definitely not lust. Summer had felt - well, loved. Adored, even. And freaking on fire for him.

"You didn't even have to say anything, Seth. You showed me. So I wanted to show you how I felt. Follow through. Do you understand?" She smiled at him.

Holly had slipped some condoms in her purse the day before, telling her to loosen up, find a man, and have some real fun while they were in Mexico, reminding her that what happens there, stays there. Summer had rolled her eyes and "whatever'd" her at the time, but last night she'd gone in search of her purse while making a mental note to send that girl flowers when they got home. She'd rejoined him in the bed and shyly offered it to him.

~~He sat up next to her, wide eyes flicking from the package in her hand back to her face more than a few times. He opened his mouth to speak, then promptly shut it again, closing his eyes. "Summer."


"We don't have to do this now." There was another voice in his head telling him to stop lying, he would surely die a thousand painful deaths if he didn't do this now.

"I know we don't."

"Look where we're at." He gestured around at the seedy room. The voice wondered rather loudly why he was arguing about this.

"Don't care."

"Ryan and Mar-" The voice was screaming at him to shut the hell up now.

She interrupted him. "They obviously wanted to be alone for the evening, plus I just locked that chain thingy from the inside."

"Are you sure? Because we just - "

Summer grabbed the hem of her gown and pulled it off over her head. She dropped it in his lap. "I'm sure. Believe me now?"

Even the voice in his head was shocked silent. He stared down at the silky material, then slowly raised his eyes, sweeping up her lithe, tanned body. Seth had been under the gown and down the front of it, which was good, but hey. No gown? Suddenly this crappy motel room seemed like the Taj Mahal, and, he quickly decided, really truly the best place he'd ever been in his life, now that it had a mostly naked Summer in it.

"Sweet Jesus," he said under his breath. "Believing now."

He took off his shirt while she unbuttoned his jeans. After he'd shimmied out of them, he hugged her, loving the feel of bare skin against his, and lowered her back onto the bed. ~~

"Seth." Summer rolled her eyes. "Signs. Hints. You are incredibly slow, Cohen."

"Hey. I'm a guy. We're notorious for not picking up on things girls are trying to tell us. Even when we're not expected to understand code or interpret psychic thoughts. For the record, when it doesn't have to do with females I am incredibly intelligent."

"Whatev. Do you understand what I'm not saying? What I showed you?"

There was silence as the pieces fit together in his head. He'd still been processing the fact that they'd had sex, and it was the first time for both of them. She was trying to tell him WHY it had been her first time. With him. Because it was him. Seth mentally slapped himself upside the head. She was right, he WAS slow!

"You showed me how you felt by, by - Damn. You really care about me." He kissed the top of her head and closed his eyes, breathing in the smell of her hair.

"Finally! And that means you can stop worrying about me changing my mind when we get home. And there's no need for you to pet me in the middle of night. Which was soo incredibly sweet, by the way. But you were acting like it was your last night before the gunfight at the OK Corral or something. I'm not going anywhere."

Seth's eyes snapped open. "You were awake?"

"Uh-huh. Just for the end I think. When you said that adorable thing about making me happy."

Seth groaned. "Oh God. I did say it out loud."

"It was totally cute. And Seth?"

He sighed, realizing that his middle of the night rambling was ammunition to be used against him in the very near future. But that how their relationship worked. "Yes, my queen?"

"I love you too, baby."