Chapter Thirteen

Three months passed…Jordan made a rapid recovery, to everyone's relief. Other than still tiring easily, she was out of the woods….back at work….doing remarkably well. Woody had been with her nearly constantly while she was at her father's house. Staying with her while Max was gone….often still staying with her while he was there. It was as if Woody thought that something awful would happen to her if she was out of his sight more than ten minutes.

She had laughed at his seeming paranoia over her. "Yeah, but you didn't see you bleeding out on the sidewalk," he retorted, all the while gently holding her close to him, careful not to hurt her injuries.

"I'm fine, Woody. I'm pretty much healed. Even Dr. Latham says so."

"You still get tired easily."

"That's to be expected…and I'll get over that, too."

"Well….feel like maybe dinner out tonight…movie at my place for a change of scenery?"

It sounded wonderful. Jordan had seldom left Max's house except to go to work. She would return home exhausted, often falling asleep on the couch, her head in Woody's lap. But today was Saturday and she didn't have to work…

He took her to an early dinner and then back to his apartment. The movie he had chosen was singularly boring…or so it seemed to him. Finally switching off the DVD player and the TV, he pulled her close. "That movie was so over rated," he complained.

"I thought it was just getting to the good part. Why'd you switch it off?"

"I'm not interested. I mean, it's me….you…alone…finally. You're feeling better. Your dad, though I love him, is nowhere in sight…and you want to watch a movie."

Jordan shrugged. "We could play Truth or Dare…That was always pretty interesting."

His mouth kicked up at the corners with a wicked grin. "So true…..do you feel up to it?"

"I think so."

"If you get tired, will you let me know?"

"Yes."

"Call it – head's or tail's," he said, pulling a quarter from his pocket.

"Heads."

It was tails. Woody won the toss.

"Okay…." He began, looking into her eyes. "Truth or dare….Are you really feeling better, or is this just an act to get your dad to let you move back to your apartment?"

"Truth," she promptly replied. "It's not an act. I do feel better. My turn." She thought for a minute. "Do you miss Kimberly?" she finally asked, smirking at him.

"Oh…..truth. No."

"Nothing about her?"

"Nope."

"You sure?"

"Absolutely. And you've asked more than one question. So I get two…What makes you ask and why?"

Jordan almost looked guilty… "Ah….well….I'm not sure if I should answer this or take the dare." She thought for a minute, her cheeks turning pink. Finally she said, "Truth….well….she's got some…..assets I don't have….obviously…..and I just needed to know if you were okay with that," she finished in a rush.

Assets….what the hell is she talking about….he thought. Then it dawned on him…Jordan was self-conscious about her looks… "Sweetheart," he began, pulling her into his arms, "believe it or not…that doesn't matter. When I saw you on that sidewalk, the only thing I thought about was you living to be with me another day….another week…. the rest of your life. You're beautiful. Don't let anything Kim said in the hospital worry you. She's just vindictive. She couldn't believe anyone would pass her over for someone else. She obviously has no clue just what kind of woman you are…how much of a woman you are."

Jordan held his gaze for a minute, finally satisfied he was being truthful with her. Snuggling closer, she said. "Okay. Truth or dare, Woody. Who kisses better? Me or her?"

"That is so not fair…."

"Come on. Tell me the truth….or take the dare." She could feel him laughing against her.

"A gentleman never kisses and tells…so I'll have to take the dare."

"Okay…but you're asking for it."

"Try me."

"Kiss me."

"That's the dare? Really?"

"Truly."

"Not much of a dare, Dr. Cavanaugh, seeing I had planned to kiss you several times before this night is over."

"Hmmmmm….but you have no idea how dangerous this could be."

He raised an eyebrow, clearly not believing what she had just said. So she clarified the matter. "When was the last time you really kissed me?"

His brow furrowed…."I guess it was back in that cabin in Virginia…."

"And how long ago has that been?"

"Nearly…." His mouth dropped as he began to see where she was going with this… "four months ago."

"Uh-huh….Sixteen weeks…one hundred and …."

"I get the point…."

"So….kiss me."

He slowly lowered his head to hers, lightly brushing her lips with his…only to have her arms go around him and pull him closer to her, quickly turning the gentle caress into one with a great deal more passion than Woody intended. "Jordan….you're still hurt."

"Dr. Latham says everything's fine."

"I don't want to hurt you…"

"The only way you'll do that is if you don't make love to me…"

He ran his hands lightly down her back, finally scooping her up in his arms. "Well…if we're going to do that….then let's get somewhere that you'll be comfortable." He deposited her on his bed, switched on the lamp on the night stand and began unbuttoning his shirt. She started on her own. "Wait a minute, that's my job," he grinned at her.

He sat down beside her and slowly finished unbuttoning her shirt, gently pushing it away. Her bandages were off, and her scars visible against her otherwise perfect skin. He lightly traced the offending lines. Jordan inhaled sharply. "This never should have happened," he said.

"It's over, Woody."

"But you should have never gotten hurt…"

"No one should ever have to be the victim of gunfire…but it happens. It's not a perfect world."

"Not you. You shouldn't have taken this for me."

She gently cupped his face then, bringing his face to hers. She softly kissed him. "It's okay….you'd have done the same for me. That's what this is about…that's what love is, Woody."

He nodded and pulled her to him again….making good his dare…kissing her deeply, not letting her his hands up her sides, brushing the tender undersides of her breasts with his thumbs. Hearing her moan…until he finally moved over her and loved her until she couldn't think anymore.

Later, brushing the hair out of her eyes and kissing her one more time, he said, "I think it's my turn now….if I remember correctly. So, Jordan, truth or dare …. Are you glad everything worked out between us….finally….any regrets?"

"Truth….yes…I'm happy…we're together. No regrets…Truth or dare. What about you?"

He hugged her close, suddenly thankful for the state of Virginia, unexpected snow storms….and an old high school game. "Truth….none….other than the fact that this didn't happen sooner…"

"Are we going to ever play this game again?"

He looked down at her and smiled…."Sweetheart, if all your dares are as interesting as this one was….probably at least three times a week."