Worth Waiting For


"We've brought some medicine for a miss Melanie Shore." Jed said when he realised that his big brother had become tongue tied.

"You'd better come in for a minute." The girl said softly as she opened the door wider to let them in.

As they stepped inside she studied the two of them. "Aren't you a little young to be doing this?" she asked more of Jed than Jon.

"Our father is the local chemist, and half of his staff is down with the flu bug, we stepped in to help out." Jon told her proudly.

Jed looked at her questioningly. "Aren't you a little young to be here on your own?"

"I'm sixteen." She sniffed in offence.

"And obviously not the sick Melanie?" Again it was Jed who asked the questions.

The girl looked up at the ceiling guiltily. "No I'm Claire her sister." She sighed softly. "Poor Mel, she's been feeling so rotten, and mum and dad had to go out tonight to see grandma who's not been very well, so I said I could cope for a bit."

"That was very good of you." Jon told her warmly and Claire blushed.

"Look why don't I put the kettle on and make us all a drink before you go?" she suggested shyly.

"That's very nice of you; thank you." This time it was Jon who leaped in.

Jed so did not feel like playing gooseberry to the two young lovers.

"And while you two go and do that I could take - Mel? Her medicine?"

Again Claire looked a little guilty at having forgotten her sick sister.

"If you could?" she smiled softly at him. "She's upstairs, the first room on the right."

"Have you got a spoon?" he asked dryly.


"For the medicine." He held up the little packet that contained a bottle.

So moments later Jed climbed the stairs with a spoon in one hand and a bottle in the other. He knocked on the door and walked in.

The girl who sat on the bed was tiny and frail; with a red sniffly nose, and spots everywhere, and watery eyes. Jed couldn't remember ever having seen anyone quite so pathetic, just as she looked up at the strange boy lurking in her doorway and all hell broke loose.


Mel sat opposite him in the little coffee shop the tears streaming down her face.

"You launched out of that bed like a lunatic!" Jed laughed with her. "You were on me in a flash, and your little fist bopped me right on the nose."

"And what did you do?" Mel asked as she caught her breath.

Jed looked at her with serious eyes, I, I fell in love with you, he thought to himself. He grinned at her.

"I manhandled you back into bed, and told you not to be so silly, that I'd brought you some medicine to make you feel better."

"Oh god!" she chuckled. "I am so sorry though for hitting you, and even more sorry that I don't remember any of it." She sighed regretfully.

"It should be me who's gutted." Jed protested lightly. "To be so dismissed and forgotten. It's very demoralising."

"A little humility is good for the soul." She told him loftily her eyes twinkling naughtily and wreaking havoc with Jed's equilibrium.

"I'll just have to make sure I'm not so forgettable in future." He threatened huskily.

Mel's cheeks flushed as she allowed her eyes to fall away from his.

It was time for Jed's eyes to twinkle mischievously as he leaned forward slightly.

"I wonder what I would need to do?" he murmured softly. "Maybe I should take you into my arms and kiss you until your head is spinning; maybe I should sweep you up and carry you off somewhere, where I can make mad passionate love to you."

The colour in her cheeks was so deep that she looked like she'd been drinking. Her eyes though when she dared to peep up at him, her eyes were so filled with excitement that Jed almost followed through on his threat.

"Come on you let's get out of here before they throw us out." He growled as he pulled her to her feet.

Hand in hand the two of them left the little coffee shop.

The two middle aged ladies behind the counter sighed dreamily.

"Oh what it is to be young and in love!" one of them said.

"Yes, and at this time of year too." The other agreed.


Chapter Four

Their walk back through the park was achieved in silence. The air was crisp and their breath came out in white clouds. Hand in hand they walked and Mel was on cloud nine. She sighed a dreamy sort of sigh and her companion glanced across at her.

It would be so easy to seduce her into his bed, and his blood warmed at the thought. He wanted more than that from Mel though, and to rush her could put the rest in jeopardy.

Patience had never been his strong point but with Mel that was what was required.

At her front door he stopped and she looked questioningly at him.

"I'm not coming in," he told her regretfully. "I've things I need to do and little time to do them."

She hesitated before speaking. "Is, is there anything I can help you with?" she asked uncertainly.

Jed smiled down at her and he saw that little flash in her eyes again. "Thank you, but no, I don't think so. I'm looking for a place of my own, but the estate agent isn't confident he'll be able to sort anything until the New Year. I thought if I go down there personally I might encourage him to try a little harder." His smile widened into a grin. "Besides, I'm pretty sure that you've got more than enough on your own plate?"

Her answering smile turned into a little grimace. "Yes, but nothing that I'm thrilled about."

He laughed and bent to kiss her lightly and was surprised when she reached up suddenly to deepen the kiss. It was the first time she'd instigated anything and his hopes increased tenfold.

"Can I see you tonight?" he finally asked huskily.

Mel pulled a little face, full of regret. "We're going to see grandma and granddad it's a family gathering, one where you can't not turn up without being ostracized."

Jed had to run through that sentence a couple of times before making sense of it. He laughed and hugged her to him. "What time does it usually finish?"

Her frown smoothed itself out. "Turning up is the main requirement, once you've done that there's no obligation to stay."

"So if I tag along with Jon and Claire maybe I could walk you back?" he suggested.

Mel grinned at him. "Are you sure you want to walk the fifteen miles?" she asked cheekily.

He looked at her in shock, "Where do they live?"

Mel laughed and took pity on him. "Actually they are only fifteen MINUTES away from here." She confessed. "But it was just the way you assumed without bothering to ask the crucial question."

Jed gave a little laugh as he ran his fingers through his hair. "I think I'll have to owe you for that one," he muttered softly.


Getting ready for the family gathering was easy enough, it was casual all the way and Mel opted for fitted jeans and a thick jumper to keep off the chill. She hooked in some dangling earrings that swayed softly against her neck.

There were already quite a few people there by the time Mel arrived with her parents. The lights were on all over the house and the buzz of conversation could be heard half way down the street.

The front door was almost permanently open as people arrived or left or just popped out for a quick fag.

They were greeted warmly by their relatives and Mel suffered the usual sympathetic "Not courting yet Mel? Never mind." And other such nonsense.

She smiled sweetly as she kissed cheeks and wished everyone a happy Christmas and absolutely refused to let the comments upset her.

Mel moved around the house catching up with those few who she'd not seen recently and avoiding all those she had.

At about eight o'clock she was sitting on the bottom of the stairs when Claire came in through the front door with little Mark in his pushchair, fast asleep.

"Hi there Claire how are you doing?" Mel called out happily as she looked behind her sister searching for Jed.

"Oh it's been frantic." Claire said with an expressive lift of her brows and a heartfelt sigh.

"How come you're so late?" Mel asked with a little frown as the doorway behind remained empty. "And where is Jon?" and Jed!

Claire looked for the first time less than impressed. "There was an accident, and the van that was delivering some of the prescriptions that Jon needed; overturned and spilled its contents. Jon had to stick around and sort through the mess that was delivered." She brightened slightly. "But Jed stayed to help and between them they should get it sorted pretty quick."

"Well I hope no one was hurt?" Mel asked concerned.

Claire had the grace to blush guiltily at her lack of thought, but hastened to reassure her little sister. "No, oh no, no one was hurt thank god; it just made a really bad mess on the motorway at a busy time."

"Well, never mind." Mel soothed gently. "Why don't you leave Mark with me while you go and say hello to everyone?"

Claire shot her a grateful look as she pushed the pushchair next to the stairs out of the way. "He's shattered bless him." Claire smiled fondly.

Little Mark slept through all the comings and goings and Mel was more than happy to sit with him and wait for Jed to arrive.

About an hour later she got her reward as first Jon and then Jed made their appearances. They both looked a little tired, but Jed looked happy as well.

"Hi Mel!" Jon exclaimed as he caught sight of her perched at the bottom of the stairs.

"Good evening Jon -- Jed." She smiled at the two men shyly and Jed grinned at her behind Jon, his eyes twinkling dangerously as he looked at her in her tight jeans and chunky sweater.

"Where's Claire?" Jon asked with a little frown.

"Oh she's circulating I think, catching up with people she hasn't seen recently." She stood up for a moment. "Why don't you go and find her?" she suggested.

"I'll do that." He started to walk through to the lounge, but turned back at the last minute. "Is Mark okay with you?"

"Yes of course. But I think things are starting to liven up and it might disturb him."

Jon smiled thankfully at her and went in search of his wife and a drink.

Jed came and joined her as she sat back down, the two of them shoulder to shoulder on the bottom of the stairs.

"Did you have any luck with the estate agent?" she asked softly.

Jed grinned a self satisfied little grin. "I think so yes. He's dug out a couple of empty places and I'm going to have a look tomorrow.

"That's good."

Someone handed Jed a can of beer and Jed opened it and sipped at it.

A little later Jon and Claire came looking for them.

"How's Mark?" Claire asked quietly.

"Oh, he's stirred a couple of times, but nothing more." Mel smiled. At that moment there was a loud roar of laughter from the other room and little Mark jumped in his sleep and whimpered softly. "Look you two; why don't I take Mark home and put him to bed for you?" Mel offered suddenly. "That way the two of you can relax and let your hair down a bit."

"Oh Mel would you mind?" Claire asked enthusiastically.

"No not at all, I've been here long enough to have caught up and I'm not really in the mood for drinking." Mel smiled

Jon frowned doubtfully. "It's very good of you to offer Mel, but I don't like the idea of you walking back on your own."

Before either of the sisters could respond, Jed spoke. "That's not a problem, I was just about to leave any way; I can keep Mel company for you."

And so it was sorted to everyone's satisfaction and five minutes later Mel was pushing little Mark whilst Jed walked beside her.

It was a short walk less than ten minutes and Jed was unlocking the front door using the keys that Claire had given to him.

Mel made short work of getting a very tired Mark ready for bed and then carried him up to lie him in his little bed.

By the time she came back down though; Jed had made them both a cup of coffee, and had put the radio on at a low volume, so that a soft gentle music could be heard.

He was sat on the sofa, and the two mugs were side by side on the coffee table in front of him.

Mel curled up beside him and sipped at the hot drink shyly.

They were only silent for a little while though as Jed started an easy conversation with her, meant to put her at her ease with him.

She turned sideways as she talked her eyes lit up and animated as she enjoyed the novelty of arguing a point with him.

He smiled as he listened to her point of view; suddenly he reached across to touch gently the earring hanging down. "These are very pretty." He said huskily.

Mel gave a little shudder as his knuckles brushed at her neck.

She looked at him, her eyes two pools of desire, and uncertainty; and with a little growl Jed reached for her to kiss her hungrily on the lips. As Mel responded to him his hand slipped beneath her jumper and glided up to cup at her breast.

Mel let out a shaky little gasp as she felt her nipples harden to his touch.

He pushed her gently so that she was lying back and lifted her jumper to kiss at her bare skin.

Mel was shaking as she felt his lips working their way up to those hard little buds.

It was the sound of a key in the lock that brought them both back to reality with a crash.

Mel gave a bewildered little sob as Jed quickly pulled down her sweater and moved away from her.

"I'm sorry." He whispered huskily as the front door was opened and Claire's happy voice could be heard.

How he managed to make casual conversation with the other couple Mel would never know. Maybe it was only her who had been so turned on and out of control?

She wished her sister and Jon a quiet good night and the two of them started the short walk home. Jed reached out to take her hand and Mel flinched.

"Don't," she whispered. "Please don't."

Jed heard the confusion in her voice and sighed regretfully, he'd moved too fast tonight, and Mel was unprepared for those feelings he incited in her.

"I'm sorry Mel." He said again. "I didn't mean for things to go so far so quickly." He gave a bitter little laugh. "But if you weren't so god damned sexy, I wouldn't have this problem keeping my hands to myself."

Mel looked at him in surprise, clearly not believing him.

"I mean it Mel, I'm not in the habit of accosting women I've only just met, and that's pretty much all I've done SINCE we met."

At her gate she stopped to look up at him, her eyes wistful and doubtful all at the same time.

Jed gave a little sigh and bent to kiss her; a deep searing kiss, that left her shaking.

"That's what you do to me lovely lady." He said as he pulled her against him and let her feel the effects she had on him.

She tensed in surprise, but didn't pull away and that was a small victory he notched onto his campaign.

"I'll try to go slowly Mel, wait until you're more comfortable with me. But it's hard going sometimes." He gave a twisted little grin as he moved away from her. "You should go in now." He said firmly.

Mel walked into her house in a dream like haze. Jed, the gorgeous divine Jed thought that she was sexy! She gave a happy little sigh. This was going to be the best Christmas ever!


Chapter Five

It was only days now until Christmas, and the festivities were gathering momentum.

Mel spent all of her free time with Jed; as he moved into the semi furnished flat that he'd been lucky enough to rent.

She helped him as he made it habitable; and the two of them between them, made it cosy and homely.

Their relationship was also developing nicely, as Mel blossomed under Jed's gentle seduction of her.

She never thought twice any more when he would casually sweep her into his arms and kiss her senseless. On occasion she was even brave enough to instigate it. But Jed always seemed to know when to put the brakes on things, not letting it get out of control.

She was to spend the evening with him; he was going to cook a meal for her as a thank you for her assistance with the flat.

Mel dressed carefully for her date with Jed, this was to be a special evening, and she wanted everything to be perfect. Her top was a soft snowy white jumper and her skirt was long and floaty making her feel feminine and pretty. As a finishing touch she hooked in the long dangling earrings which she had worn before.

She made her way over to Jed's flat and pressed the outside security buzzer.

"It's me." She whispered breathlessly, suddenly feeling terribly nervous.

She heard the clunk of the heavy door opening and went inside.

Jed was waiting for her at the top of the stairs. His dark eyes smouldering as she walked towards him.

"You look lovely tonight." He told her huskily as she lifted her face for his kiss.

By the time he released her she was shaking with desire for him.

"Thank you." She smiled mistily at him. "I wanted to look nice for your first evening in your new home."

He led her into his flat where the lighting was low and romantic, and the background music was soft and soothing. Jed closed the main door and stood leaning against it as he watched her looking around his home.

All the pieces were set.

All the moves had been made.

Hi campaign for Mel was all but complete.

Tonight he would seduce her body and soul.

The moment he had seen her tonight he'd known that she was ready for him; ready to go that final step and become his lover.

Mel became aware that Jed was still hovering by the main door. She looked over at him questioning.

Jed walked over to stand before her, his body tense and his manner serious.

"What is it?" she asked softly her eyes huge and her cheeks slightly flushed.

"I want you." He stated it abruptly, but his eyes burned her, the need in his very posture crying out for her to respond. "Do you want me?"

Mel had thought that she was ready for this. Her last few days with Jed, the happiest she had ever known.

The attraction between them was mutual, and although she was inexperienced, she was a normal healthy young woman -- with all the needs and desires that generated.

She allowed her gaze to drop from his and licked her lips nervously.

"Do you?" he pressed.

Mel nodded her head. "Yes," she whispered.

One little word that was all it took; as he pulled her into his arms allowing what he felt for her to show through at last.

His kiss was the kiss of legends, every young girl who had ever dreamt of being swept up by the handsome prince, - the promise of happy ever after and love undying.

Mel swayed slightly at the impact of his emotional onslaught, her head resting against his chest, in the security of his arms.

"I love you," she whispered softly.

She felt him tense in surprise and looked up to see his eyes shining down at her.

"You mean it?" he asked, his excitement sternly in check. "You're sure?"

She blinked up at him and nodded. "You ARE the love of my life."

He pulled away from her his breathing ragged and she looked at him in confusion. "I thought...." she began with a frown.

Jed gave her a long suffering sigh. "I want more than anything to make love to you right now," he told her through gritted teeth. "But I think we should wait until after we are married."

"Married!" she felt as if the floor fell away from her and dropped down onto his sofa. "Married." She gasped for a second time unable to add anything more.

Jed grinned down at her with a crooked little tilt of his lips. "You don't have to make it sound like such a threat." He told her dryly.

He tried to keep his manner casual but Mel was no fool she saw the tenseness in his shoulders and the look of doubt in his eyes.

He was as insecure as she was! She realised with a little start.

"Not a threat!" she hastened to reassure. "More of a shock, I'm just getting used to the 'us being a couple' thing." She smiled but it wobbled on her lips and her eyes couldn't quite meet his.

"You don't want to marry me?" He sat down next to her his whole persona dejected and rejected.

"I'd not even thought about it!" she exclaimed trying desperately to make him understand that this was happening way too fast for her.

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