Author's note: When I posted the other chapter last night, I really intended to end it there, but Evan wanted to give Aiden his reaction to her final words…so this little scene was born. If you don't want to know what happens after she passes out, don't read this.
Standard disclaimer—they don't belong to me—I'm not making any money—yada yada yada—go read it from the first chapter, I'm just not gonna repeat it at this point.
Aiden became aware of the pain in her head first; then the comforting weight of Evan's body beside her in bed. Finally, in a rush, memories of the prior night came flowing back. She groaned and rolled away from Evan, burying her face in the pillow. He grinned at her actions. "I'm gathering you remember last night?" he asked.
"Unfortunately," came her muffled reply. "I don't suppose you drank enough thatyou forgot?"
"Nope," he replied cheerfully.
"Augh!" she responded. "You're a fucking cheerful hung over person."
He pushed her hair away from her face so he could see it, but that only caused her to bury it deeper in the pillow. "I didn't drink enough to be hung over."
"I hate you," she muttered, although there was no real heat behind her words.
He grinned. "That's not what you said last night. How much do you remember?"
She pulled back far enough that he could see one blue eye peering up at him. "Everything. I am so sorry."
"For which part?" he asked, running a finger down her spine. "The raging nympho in the game room? Telling Deke I'm too vanilla for a three-some?" He leaned down and whispered in her ear, "Or are you sorry you said, 'Je t'aime' before you passed out?"
She groaned at his words. "I was really hoping the thing with Deke was a dream and not a memory."
He chuckled at her reaction, but noticed she didn't respond to his last question. "No, I'm afraid not. I think you actually managed to shock him."
"So how much damage did I do to our reputations?" she asked tentatively.
Not too much…for two reasons." He pulled her into his arms, not allowing her to roll away again when she tried. "One, you aren't completely to blame for your actions. The punch was spiked with an alien compound that lowers inhibitions and apparently makes you jump whoever's closest. Two, only Deke and I actually witnessed your actions and comments." He tipped her chin up, kissing her gently. "You passed out before I could respond to your revelation last night."
She struggled for a moment, trying to get away from him, but he held her tightly, only easing up when she stopped fighting him. "Let me go, Evan," she requested quietly when she couldn't break his grip.
"Nope. You're going to lay here and listen to me for a minute." He settled her more comfortably against him and allowed her to turn so she wasn't looking at him although he didn't let her leave the circle of his arms, sensing that she needed to look away from him as he spoke. "I told you, you passed out before I could respond to you last night."
"I'm sorry. I didn't want you to hear that."
"Didn't want me to hear it because you didn't mean it or you didn't want me to know?" Evan asked.
Aiden fiddled with the sheet. "You weren't supposed to know it. This was supposed to be a lark; just fun. Our hearts weren't supposed to get involved."
"Did you just use the word 'lark', Aiden? While you're hung over?" he asked in disbelief, ignoring for a moment what she actually said to him.
"My hang over doesn't affect my vocabulary," she grumbled. "Can you please forget I said it?"
"No," he told her, "because you passed out before I could tell you I love you too. I may not have told you before, but I have for quite a while."
She twisted around in his arms. "You do?"
"I do." He grinned down at her. "You still want to take it back?"
She shook her head, than reached up as if to kiss him. Just before their lips met, her face took on a decidedly green tinge. She clapped a hand over her mouth and scrambled out of bed, making a mad dash for the bathroom. Evan fell back against the pillow with a groan as the distinctive sound of retching came from the other room. It wasn't exactly the most romantic ending to a declaration of love ever, but about par for the course for them. He tossed the blankets off himself and made his way into the bathroom, intending to offer what comfort he could to his ill linguist.