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After We Collided (After, #2) by Anna Todd Read Online (FREE)

His tongue skims my bottom lip and I’m slightly embarrassed when a moan escapes my throat. When I pull away, we’re both out of breath and my skin is hot and his cheeks are flushed.

“Thank you for giving me another chance,” he pants and pulls me into his chest.

“You act like I had a choice.”

He frowns. “You do.”

“I know,” I lie. But I haven’t had a choice since I met him. I’ve been completely gone for him since the first time we kissed.

“Where do we go from here?” I ask him.

“That’s up to you. You know what I want.”

“I want to be like we were before . . . well, how we were without all the other stuff,” I tell Hardin, and he nods.

“That’s what I want, too, baby. I’ll make this up to you, I promise.”

Every time Hardin calls me baby my stomach flutters. The mixture of his raspy voice, his British accent, and the gentleness behind his tone makes for the most perfect combination.

“Please don’t make me regret this,” I beg him, and he takes my face into his hands once more.

“I won’t. You’ll see,” he promises and kisses me again.

I know that Hardin and I still have things to sort out, but I feel so resolved now, so calm, so right. I’m worried about everyone’s reaction, especially my mother’s, but I’ll deal with that when the time comes. The fact that I’m not spending Christmas with her for the first time in eighteen years in favor of Hardin and me being together again will only make things worse, but honestly I don’t care. Well, I care, but I can’t keep going to war with her over my life choices, and it’s impossible to make her happy, so I’m done really trying.

I lean my head against Hardin’s chest and he takes the end of my ponytail into his hands and twirls it between his fingers. I’m glad that I got all of the gifts wrapped; it was stressful enough buying them at the very last minute.

Shit. I didn’t get Hardin a gift! Did he get me one? Probably not, but now that we’re together again . . . or sort of for the first time . . . I’m afraid that he did and will feel bad that I didn’t get him anything at all. Actually, what would I even get him?

“What’s wrong?” he asks and moves his hand to my chin, tilting my face to his.

“Nothing . . .”

“You aren’t . . .” he starts, slow and unsure. “You’re not . . . you know . . . changing your mind?”

“No . . . no. I just . . . I didn’t get you a gift,” I admit.

His face breaks into a smile, and his eyes meet mine. “You’re worried about getting me a gift for Christmas?” He laughs. “Tessa, honestly, you’ve given me everything. You worrying about a Christmas gift is ridiculous.”

I still feel guilty, but I love the confidence on his face. “You’re sure?” I ask.

“Positive.” He laughs again.

“I’ll get you something really great for your birthday,” I say, and he moves his hand back to my face. His thumb runs along my bottom lip, causing my lips to part, and I expect him to kiss me again. Instead, his lips touch down on my nose and then my forehead in a surprisingly sweet gesture.