He lifted me to my feet then, and bent his head to kiss me. It went on a long while, and his hands roamed downward, finding the fastening of my petticoat. It fell to the floor in a billow of starched flounces, leaving me in my chemise. “Where did you learn to kiss like that?” I said, a little breathless. He grinned and pulled me close again. “I said I was a virgin, not a monk,” he said, kissing me again. “If I find I need guidance, I’ll ask.” He pressed me firmly to him, and I could feel that he was more than ready to get on with the business at hand. With some surprise, I realized that I was ready too. In fact, whether it was the result of the late hour, the wine, his own attractiveness, or simple deprivation, I wanted him quite badly. I pulled his shirt loose at the waist and ran my hands up over his chest, circling his nipples with my thumbs. They grew hard in a second, and he crushed me suddenly against his chest. “Oof!” I said, struggling for breath. He let go, apologizing. “No, don’t worry; kiss me again.” He did, this time slipping the straps of the chemise down over my shoulders. He drew back slightly, cupping my breasts and rubbing my nipples as I had done his. I fumbled with the buckle that held his kilt; his fingers guided mine and the clasp sprang free. Suddenly he lifted me in his arms and sat down on the bed, holding me on his lap. He spoke a little hoarsely. “Tell me if I’m too rough, or tell me to stop altogether, if ye wish. Anytime until we are joined; I dinna think I can stop after that.” In answer, I put my hands behind his neck and pulled him down on top of me. I guided him to the slippery cleft between my legs. “Holy God,” said James Fraser, who never took the name of his Lord in vain. “Don’t stop now,” I said.