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Just Water | an excerpt

Gracie sang a hymn with soft passion, her heart exposing a different kind of beauty. It was a moment so intimate, John wondered if he should slip away. 

Her eyes blinked open, and in an abrupt jumble of notes, the music stopped. 

The bench scraped against the floor as she stood and twisted her hands in front of her skirt. “I’m sorry,” she said, her voice breathless. She wiped at the tears on her cheeks and refolded her hands together. “I should have asked first.”

“No need to apologize. I, uh…” Why had he come? He cleared his throat. “I just came to get some water.”

Her eyes danced back and forth between his own and anywhere else in the room. “Oh, water.” She stepped toward him where he stood in the middle of the hallway. “If you will follow me to the kitchen, I’ll just…” She stopped in front of him, probably waiting for him to let her pass, but his feet were nailed fast. 

A remnant of tear still dampened her cheek. He ran his thumb below her eye, wiping it away. Her skin was soft as silk. Intoxicating. His thumb trailed down toward strawberry red lips. What had given him the idea that spending time with her would drown out the kindling of his desire? 

She let out a quick breath, and his eyes darted to hers. Tucking his hands in his pockets, he ducked his head and stepped aside. “I’m thirsty.” His voice came out huskier than he’d meant it to.

She blinked. “Yes, of course.”

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