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A Breath of Hope

Chapter Nineteen

Their eyes hold each other's with every step that Maggie takes to close the gap between them until she is standing on the hardwood floor in front of him.

"Hi," He says softly, taking her hand and bringing it up to his mouth, pressing his lips to the back of it.

"Hi," she responds, her four inch silver pumps bringing her nearly eye level with him.

"You look amazing, Honey."

"Thank you for the dress. You clean up very nicely yourself." She places her free hand on his cheek, appreciating the nice layer of stubble still covering it. "I'm glad you didn't shave it all."

"Carol told me not to shock you."

"Smart woman."

"Shall we?" he asks, offering his elbow to escort her into the dining room.

Taking Rick's arm and following his lead, Maggie hears soft music playing and smells something delectable as they meet Kristy in front of the dining room where a cardboard sign hangs on the wall displaying 'The Landmark' written in neat Sharpie marker calligraphy.

"Good evening. Do you have a reservation?" The young lady asks the couple in a very professional manner.

"Yes, ma'am. Grimes, party of two."

Kristy scans her clipboard, pretending to look down a long list of names, "Yes, there you are. Right this way please."

They step into the room among candles flickering from every direction. "Oh, Rick. This is wonderful."

He pulls out the chair at the head of the table for her and then takes the seat to her right. Carl enters from the kitchen wearing a sport coat that is two sizes too big and carrying a round tray holding one bottle of Evian water and one bottle of orange soda. He lowers the tray so Rick can take the drinks.

"Oh, my God!" Maggie cries when Rick places the bottle next to her plate. "Where did you find that?"

"On a run a few weeks ago. I saved it for tonight - I hope you don't mind." He unscrews the cap and fills her cup with her favorite soft drink.

"No, I'm glad you did. It's perfect for tonight." She smiles at him and then notices the writing on the cup in front of her. "Hah - it's McDonald's!" she laughs, thoroughly enjoying her evening. "Hey, that was supposed to be our second date, after The Landmark."

"I know. But I don't think we'll be able to do this too often so I had to combine our first two dates."

Carl places his tray on the credenza and picks up a small note pad, turning back to the table. "Welcome to The Landmark. Tonight's specials are chicken, chicken, or um, chicken. What would you like to order?"

"We'll have the second chicken." Rick answers for both of them as he pours the Evian into his cup.

"Good choice, coming right up." Carl returns to the kitchen passing Tyreese on the way.

"Good evening, sir. Ma'am." Ty, wearing a sport coat that's at least one size too small for his large frame, puts his tray over the one Carl had left and serves them each a delicious looking salad and a basket of bread. "Your main course will be out shortly."

"Thanks, Ty," Rick tells his friend, feeling badly that they didn't have a larger jacket for the big man.

"I can't believe you did all this, Honey. It's amazing."

"It was a joint effort, believe me." He lifts his cup of water and holds it out to her, signaling for her to do the same. "To us."

"To us." She smiles at him affectionately and touches her cup to his before they dig into their first course.

Ten minutes later, Tyreese returns with a tray carrying two plates of breaded chicken breasts and green beans. Beside the plates are two McDonalds Happy Meal boxes filled with French fries.

"Oh, my God! This is the Best. Date. Ever. Thank you, Honey."

"You're welcome."

Halfway through their main courses, Carl returns with a plate of Chips Ahoy cookies. "Here's your dessert, and here's the check." He places a small slip of paper on the table in front of his father. "Don't forget to leave a good tip for your waiter." He jokes and runs outside to join the rest of their family for a barbeque in the front yard.

They enjoy their meal in easy conversation and comfortable companionship while the candles burn slowly, forming waxy stalactites down the sides. Maggie is finishing her second cookie when Garth Brooks begins to sing softly from the CD player. "Ooh, this is my favorite song." She closes her eyes to get lost in the melody, appreciating the sound of music so rarely heard these days.

Rick wipes his mouth and drops the napkin on the table as he rises from his seat, extending a hand to her. "May I please have this dance?"

She puts her hand in his, feeling faintly like a princess from a fairytale. He leads her a few steps away from the table and folds her hand against his chest while his arm wraps around her waist, pulling her closely to him as they begin to sway to the pretty song.

His stubbly whiskers tickle her cheek as he begins to sing softly,

"I'd go hungry, I'd go black and blue
I'd go crawling down the avenue
There ain't nothing that I wouldn't do
To make you feel my love."
"The storms are raging on the rolling sea
Down on the highway of regret
The winds of change are blowing wild and free
But you ain't seen nothing like me yet."
"There's nothing that I wouldn't do
Go to the ends of the earth for you
Make you happy, make your dreams come true
To make you feel my love.".

She closes her eyes, absorbing his voice with the words and wondering how she ever got so lucky. "God, Honey, I don't want this night to ever end."

"It doesn't have to." He kisses her temple and sinks down to kneel on one bent knee, taking both of her hands in his as his blue eyes bore into her green ones. "I love you, Maggie. More than you can possibly imagine. You are my light, my strength, my hope." He lets go of her hands to reach into his pocket and she chokes back a sob, her fists rising to cover her mouth as she realizes what he is about to do. He opens the small black velvet jewelry box to reveal the glittering round cut diamond ring inside. "Will you do me the honor of becoming my wife?" he asks solemnly as the depth of his feelings builds heavily behind his eyes.

"Yes," she whispers through a flood of emotion as she kneels on the floor at his level before giving him a chance to rise. She wraps her arms tightly around his neck as he lowers his other knee to the floor and pulls her securely against him. "Yes, of course." She leans back to kiss him soundly, tears seeping from the corners of her eyes. "I love you."

"Thank, Christ," he breathes against her mouth before angling his head to deepen the kiss.

She feels his growing arousal against her belly and pulls back after a minute of soul-searing kisses. "Maybe we should finish this conversation upstairs," she says breathlessly.

"Yes, but first things first." He collects her left hand from his shoulder and places it against his chest. "Don't move." He extracts the ring from the small box which will signify their engagement and brings it up to her hand. "Okay, let's make this official." Praying it will fit, he gently slides the ring over her knuckle to rest comfortably at the base of her left ring finger… a perfect fit.

Maggie stares at the ring, appreciating all that it means. "Oh, Rick, it's perfect."

"So are you." He presses his lips to hers briefly. "Come on, let's go up." He pushes himself up from the floor and then helps her to get to her feet. After extinguishing all the candles, he grabs the CD player to take with them.

"Should we bring some candles up?" Maggie suggests.

"Don't need to," he answers, smiling at her suspicious expression.

She leads him into the bedroom and he locks the door behind them. He sets the music on her dresser, now playing Kenny Chesney's 'You Save Me'.

"Wow, I guess somebody was busy while we were eating dinner." She stands in the center of the room, turning slowly as she looks at all the candles that had not been there when she'd left her room earlier. "I can't believe you organized all this," she says, astounded at his efforts to make this night special.

"Don't move." Rick kisses her cheek and picks up the lighter, proceeding to light every candle that Beth and Michonne had placed. The final one lit, he loosens his tie and steps behind Maggie, brushing the hair off her neck to gain access to the zipper of her dress. Her hands come up to hold her hair out of his way and he kisses her nape as he finds the small metal piece, pulling it down until it stops just above the curve of her rear end, revealing a long strip of unblemished skin divided by a black bra strap.

He slides the dress off her shoulders letting it pool around her heels, leaving her standing in his favorite bra and panties. His hands come up to caress her breasts, kneading them over the silky material, pressing her back against his hard body. One hand slips inside the soft bra to tease the sensitive bud, while his other hand skims slowly over her abdomen to cup her mound. She lays her head back on his shoulder and grips his thighs through the smooth fabric of his chinos, feeling the stiffness of his arousal pressing against her backside. He slips his hand inside the snug lace of her panties and inserts a long finger into her warm crevasse.

"Oh, God, I love you," she breathes as his lips press against the junction of her neck and shoulder while his fingers work wonders, weakening her legs.

She presses her ass against his raging hard on, causing him to bite softly into the flesh of her collarbone. He removes his hands from her heated body and takes a step back to sit on the cushiony mattress of their bed. "Come here, love."

She steps between his thighs and raises one knee to rest on the jumbled sheets next to his hip. She puts her arms around his neck as he deftly unhooks the clasp of her bra to slide the confining garment off her shoulders, letting it fall to the floor. Taking an exposed nipple into his mouth, he massages her curvaceous rear-end before returning a hand to the warmth of her center.

She groans his name when he skids over her G-spot, again and again. "Oh, Baby, I can't wait," she gasps, climbing over his lap to lie flat on her back, enticing him to join her. "I need you now."

He stands up to remove his tie and unbutton his shirt, slowing his movements when he notices the way she is watching him. Hungry. Starving…for him. He removes his shirt as she squirms on the sheets, eyes darker than he'd ever seen them. He climbs on the bed and holds himself above her, kissing her passionately, lips and tongues embracing in fervent rapture. She wraps her long legs around his waist, trying to bring his center down to hers, urging him home.

He breaks the kiss on a breathless whisper, "Not yet, Honey." He kisses her throat and trails his lips down her cleavage, dipping his tongue inside her navel and continuing on to taste the very heart of her. He hooks two fingers into the waistband of her panties and slowly pulls the lace down her legs and over her heels, baring her beautiful body to him completely except for the thin strips of skin beneath her four inch Fuck Me pumps. This night was supposed to be all for her, but he can't help feeling that he's the one being treated to a very special gift. Laying his chest on the end of the bed, he spreads her soft thighs with his calloused hands, massaging the pale skin as he dips his mouth to her opening. He licks and probes and sucks and nurtures until she explodes into a thousand brilliant sparks with her fingers tangled in his thick, wavy hair.

Standing up, he quickly removes the rest of his clothing along with Maggie's shoes while she tries to open a condom with trembling fingers. He positions himself between her spread thighs and she strokes him skillfully, drawing and twisting the way he likes before rolling the condom over his thick length. He fills her completely with one hard thrust and settles balls-deep inside of her. "I love you," he sighs into her ear.

Wrapping her arms firmly around his shoulders and locking her ankles behind his buttocks, she holds him tightly as he moves inside her.

"Hold on, Baby." Pushing himself up to lean back on his knees, he fastens an arm securely around her waist to keep them from slipping apart.

With her head tilted back in ecstasy, he latches onto her slender neck.His whiskers tickle her throat as she sets the rhythm, moving slowly on his lap as they grind together in erotic harmony.He buries his face in the crook of her neck and she cradles his head, her left hand lacing his curls, diamonds sparkling a message of hope in the candlelight as they lose themselves in each other.




The Viking The Viking

Deffinately not a couple that i had ever given thought to, but you write it very well and I actully really like the story :)

Jbmediazz Jbmediazz

LOVE your story!! Rick and Maggie are one of my favorite pairings, and you certainly do them justice! ;) Keep up the awesome work!


bluecrush611 bluecrush611

I really like this story - keep the updates coming!

LaurenJ LaurenJ