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"Good, glad that's settled. Now, you better run along to that quilting party and let me get some studying done. This stuff isn't easy you know, and I'm doing it for you…"

"Do I have to go, now?" she purred.

"I sure don't want you to go, but it might be wise. When I marry you in that beautiful white dress of yours, I want the wait to be worth it." Joe kissed the tip of her nose. Elizabeth had become such a temptation. The suggestion to run away and get married held merit especially when she kissed him back so brazenly. He'd been sweet on her for over a year now and her father hadn't once acknowledged the fact. Joe was a practical man and he wanted Elizabeth by his side, he'd been patient but it was wearing thin.

He looked at her, up and down, as though he could never get enough of just looking. "If you don't, we might have to get married tonight. A few more of those kisses and I'll have to lock you up and throw away the key."

From his expression, she knew he was serious and it delighted her, he expected from her grin.

"Maybe if you ask for my hand properly he'll say yes…," she sighed pulling away far enough to look into his face.

"I'll ask, but I think I know your father pretty well. He expects you to marry a man of means. A man of money. Not a poor working Sheriff who could get his head blown off at a moment's notice." Joe sighed.

"But that's not what I want…" she whispered, as her hand splayed inside his shirt for a moment. Joe shivered for a moment. He wanted her so bad; he knew she was too innocent to know how much. Kissing her was pure pleasure, but not having her was hell itself.

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