:: ::

Laboeuf hadn't returned for a while, but he did keep his word. He arrived before evening's appearance.

Mattie felt her body tense as she heard the noisey spurs clink with every step he took to her bedroom. They were getting closer and even closer:

He turned the knob, and saw her, in a tight ball, back against the headboard, watching him, poke inside. "I keep my word, Ms. Ross."he smiled slightly underneath that mustache of his, and found his spot in that wooden chair at the foot of her bed.

XX

She smelled something funny. It lingered inside her nose, stinging on the way up. The aroma was so familiar.

Her nose wiggled, and found herself on her feet, walking toward the Texas Ranger in curiousity.

He stared at her as if she was crazy, furrowing his brows, and moving himself in the process: " s'cuse me Ms. Ross, but what do you think your up to?"he raised a dark fuzzy brow, continuing to stare; while she got closer, circling him as he fidgeted in the chair, Laboeuf let out a hand, and grabbed her arm; stopping her completely.

Mattie looked straight at him, eyes wide.

He stared a bit too long, and Mattie looked away, forcing her only arm out of his clenching grasp.

"You were drinking, Mr. Laboeuf?"she asked in a bellowing tone, standing before him;

Laboeuf coughed to himself in a hand, and removed one of his leather gloves. Mattie watched him suprisingly, feeling as if something was wrong when he stood up, way taller than her, and those spurs screaming.

"Why Ms. Ross, your such a nosey little girlie, ain'tcha'?"his deep southern voice crawled up her spine and back down, causing her skin to form those prickly goosebumps: She shivered and backed up.

:: :: :: ::

He smelled bad.

-like he took a swim in it.

Mattie shook her head as if to say no, but those lips of hers decided at that time, not to work.

"What is it your going to do, Mr. Laboeuf?"she looked terrified at his hands, but especially the bare one.

He didn't answer.

He dropped the glove on the floor, those boots screaming louder, and getting even closer:

"Mr. Laboeuf?"Mattie was scared becoming flustered, meanwhile being backed up into the nightstand beside the lumpy, wobbling mattress.

the small of her back hit it, and she knew that was as close as he was going to get. "Mr. Laboeuf. I demand you step away from me, please. I don't enjoy this much of your company."she mumbled in a small voice, using her forearm to block his way of getting closer. She didn't bother to look up at him, he had that same hard stare on her; and everytime she looked, she'd flush.

He breathed in heavy and hard:

she was so close, she accidently took in the air that escaped his mouth, and tasted the scent of alcohol on her tongue. She cringed, and then shoved him without thinking.

"Please."she whimpered softly, and kept her eyes closed unbareably tight.

Laboeuf didn't mean to frighten little Mattie, and stepped away.

::

He honestly thought she'd be excited about him being so near her.

"Ms. Ross, I apologize. I ain't the kind of man to scare ya'."he looked down at her small form, with the most guilty expression on his face as she looked up at him, finally opening those brown eyes.

Mattie didn't make a response.

She blinked a few times; Laboeuf still standing before her:

"I don't need your apologizes, Mr. Laboeuf...I am gett'n rather tired."she faked a yawn, and he backed up giving her room to move.

Laboeuf lift his hat, and scratch the sweaty locks; staring back at the youngster.

"I reckon I better get going then. Don't wanna' disturb your sleep."he said tiredly himself, and held his hat to his side. Mattie stared down at the mattress, before pressing her one hand into the quilt and jumping up.

Mattie nodded shyly.

Laboeuf put his hat back on and turned round right before she looked his way.

XX

His boots called out again as he moved toward the door, and grabbed the knob.

but he realized he was missing his glove. "Mr. Laboeuf. This is yours?"the young girl behind him so close, held high in her hand his glove.

His cheeks redened, and he stared lovingly into her eyes:

"Thank you, Ms. Ross...

he seemed almost out of breath after saying that to her in response.

Mattie smiled small and got even closer.

:::::

Laboeuf felt a bit awkward, watching how much she was growing before him: but it was her tip-toes that rose her so high, and gazing deeply at her, he didn't even realize her lips against his cheek, until the last moment.

Laboeuf gave her another one of his long stares, and removed his hat, putting it over top of her small noggin; it sliding down, and covering those eyes of hers.

Mattie giggled childishly and definately unaware of Laboeuf's close presence.
He leaned in close, hands at his sides, and kissed her tiny lips, barely even touching them. But the girl did feel something, and moved the hat up from her eyes with a thumb, looking at the man before her.

...

it was quiet for a while;

"I must depart for the night."he broke that silence, and took his hat from her head. Mattie still stared:

she licked her lips, and without even thought to it, she forced him down with a tug of the bandoiler round his waist, bringing his lips into hers.

It didn't seem too real.

His lips were so warm, terribly warm to be exact; but also chapped.

And that mustache of his seemed to tickle her in the process. His eyes gazed down upon her, and slowly shut, removing that hand from his belt, and held it tight in his own.

She was somehow trying to deepen the kiss, but she was an unexperienced kisser; and Laboeuf's lips seemed to take control of hers quite quickly. He had finally gotten the kiss he had been hoping to steal from her a while back;

and he was glad he did.

XXX

E/N: Will make a True Grit full-story soon! I hope this was a great ending to this Two-Shot!