The first kiss is such an important milestone for romance couples. Most of them have been fighting their attraction to each other, or maybe even fighting with each other. When that first kiss finally occurs, it rocks their world, and often detours their plans for the future.
Even better are the unusual, out of the ordinary, what-the-hell-was-that? first kisses. Here are a few of my recent favorites:
In Loretta Chase’s Silk is for Seduction, the heroine Marcelline is trying to gain entrée to an important social event, so she can demonstrate her stylish dress and increase her dressmaking shop’s visibility. She agrees to a wager with the hero, the Duke of Clevedon: if he loses, he will take her to this exclusive ball, but if she loses, she will have to give him a kiss.
“A kiss!” She laughed. “A mere kiss from a shopkeeper. That’s paltry stakes, indeed, compared to your dignity.”
“A proper kiss would not be mere, madame, or paltry,” he said. “You may not pay with a peck on the cheek. You’ll pay with the sort of kiss you’d give a man to whom you’ve surrendered.”
She wins the wager, and that’s when he realizes the difficulty he’s put himself into, because he’s bringing a shopkeeper to the most exclusive ball in Paris. She forfeits her victory, to spare his dignity, but then he accuses her of being afraid. And she responds with something he didn’t expect:
It was no surrender, but a slap in the face of a kiss.
Her mouth struck and opened boldly against his, and the collision rocked him on his heels. It was as though they’d been lovers a long time ago and hated each other now, and the two passions had melded into one: They could fight or love, and it was all the same.
She held his jaw with a powerful grip. If she’d dug her nails into his face, that would have seemed fitting: it was that kind of kiss.
Instead she damaged him with her soft mouth, the press of her lips, the play of her tongue, like a duel. She damaged him, above all with the taste of her. She tasted like brandy, rich and deep and dark. She tasted like forbidden fruit.
She tasted, in short, like trouble.
How about a first kiss in a pitch-black elevator? In Hearts in Darkness by Laura Kaye, the hero and heroine have managed to get a glimpse of each other when they first step into the elevator, but then the contraption stops, and the power goes out, leaving them in total darkness. They talk and get to know each other while waiting for a rescue, and she tries to keep him distracted from his claustrophobia. But it can be tricky to know for sure if somebody wants to be kissed when there are no visual cues:
At first, he thought he imagined it: her fingers, exerting pressure against the back of his neck. But she continued on with the steady stroking...Please let me not be imagining that.
He licked his lips and moved his head forward just an inch or two. God, he wanted to kiss her. His fingers itched to finally thread their way into all that red hair. His lips fell open in anticipation of claiming her mouth. He wanted to taste her. He wanted to feel her under him.
“Makenna,” he rasped.
“Yes, Caden, yes.”
It was all the confirmation he needed.
He pushed himself across the carpet until his chest encountered her side. He slowly lowered his head so he didn’t hurt her in his blind impatience. His mouth found a cheek first and he pressed his lips against the soft apple of it. She moaned and wrapped her arms around his broad shoulders. His right hand landed in a pile of silky curls, and the satisfaction he felt at finally touching her hair made him swallow hard.
In Beauty and the Feast, by Julia Barrett, the couple’s first kiss happens soon after their first meeting. But it’s also long after they have gotten to know each other via phone conversations, and through the food prepared by the heroine.
Eva is a chef hired by Gabe, a rich winemaker, to prepare a seductive meal for a new woman in his life. The hiring takes place through the agency Eva works for, which is why they have not met, but after several phone conversations, Gabe realizes he is interested in the chef, not the woman he meant to impress. He cancels the date and then enjoys the meal by himself, enchanted by Eva’s culinary skills. When Eva and Gabe finally meet the next day, neither can deny the attraction that had started long before they were face-to-face:
The moment Gabe’s lips touched hers, Eva felt like butter left too long in the hot summer sun. At the same time, a tiny voice in the back of her mind reminded her that she really didn’t know the man at all. She’d been in his home, even in his bedroom. She’d strolled through his gardens, picked his herbs, cooked for him, tasted his wines, yet she truly didn’t know a thing about the man. The idea of pushing him away flashed through her brain, but her body decided not to listen. Her body responded automatically to the delicate touch of his mouth against hers. Before she knew what she was doing, Eva had licked his lips. Gabe’s body replied instantaneously. In fact, he practically burst into flame.
What are some of your favorite out-of-the-ordinary first kisses?