He kissed her, very gently, upon the lips. Despite the cold, a shock of heat and electricity passed between them.
Liz wanted desperately to kiss him back. She had always been very liberated sexually, but right now, she couldn’t make herself respond.
“But I don’t know what I want yet?” she said. “I don’t know if I want to get married or-”
“Shhh,” Travis whispered, “I don’t know if I want that yet either. We still haven’t had our first date. In three or four months, if we’re still together, there’ll be plenty of time to start figuring out the longer term things like meeting families and living together.”
He kissed her again and it really felt nice. She’d have expected his lips to be dry from the cold but the scarf he had covered them with had kept them moist and healthy. The tip of his tongue pressed very gently against the seam between Liz’s lips and she tentatively opened up to him and felt his warm flesh flutter lightly just inside her mouth.
She slid her hand up his side at precisely the same moment Travis lowered his hand from her face to cup her hip through her ski suit. The space blanket crinkled noisily marking the movement and she began to kiss him back more fully, letting her tongue play butterfly wings against his.
She closed her eyes and began to relax against him as the intensity of their kiss began to build. Their lips pressed harder together as their tongues delved a little bit deeper into each other’s mouths. Her fingers dug into Travis’ woolly sweater scratching at the thin shirt beneath. His thigh pressed against her legs and slowly slid between them as he shifted his weight and leaned more fully against her body.
“JESUS CHRIST!” he shouted rolling back away from her and clutching his injured knee. “Oh God in Heaven!”
Liz scrambled to her knees and hovered over him, uncertain what she should do. Tears squeezed out of his tightly closed eyes and rolled down his cheeks. His breaths came in rapid shallow pants as he tried to get a handle on the pain.
Liz felt mortified to have indirectly caused such agony, but as the pain finally receded it was Travis who expressed embarrassment. “Note to self,” he gasped. “Do not put weight directly on the swollen knee.”
A chuckle escaped Liz. She didn’t want it to, but it slipped out past her lips just the same.
“Oh sure,” Travis said. Liz might be wrong but she was pretty certain he was struggling not to grin as well. “Make fun of the poor stupid injured man.”
Liz lost it as a big belly laugh guffawed out of her. “I’m sorry,” she wheezed, “but if you think about it—this really is funny. We can’t catch a break at all today, can we? We’re trapped in the snow a couple miles from anyone; you’re injured; you finally get me to warm up to you and now we can’t make out.”
Travis started to laugh as well. He eased back into a prone position and let it all out. “Oh, God, you’re right,” he said. “I can’t get you off my mind and then I finally get you in my arms and I can’t do anything about it.”
Now that the moment of crisis had passed again, Liz began to feel better about their situation. She ran her fingers in a circle on his chest down the wooly sweater, up onto the front flap of his ski pants where they covered his abdomen and back onto the sweater. “Well now, maybe I spoke a little too quickly,” she suggested. “It’s not as if we can’t do anything. It’s just that you can’t move around a lot, can you?” She unhooked the straps fastening the flap of his pants and exposed the rest of his sweater.
Suddenly Travis didn’t see anything funny in their situation. He grew quite still, every nerve fiber in his body apparently focused on Liz’s fingers as they caressed his chest through his sweater.