In Stephen and Denise's room, he pours her a glass of wine as she lolls on the bed in a little peppy-print dress. He interviews that he wouldn't have been happy if they'd been thrown out of the ranch, because he wants a little more time to get to know Denise before he decides whether to marry her or send her home, change his phone number, and get that restraining order. You can just tell there will be no in between. Denise and Stephen feed each other, and Denise interviews that she wants to remain on "this journey" with Stephen. I make a note to introduce a resolution at the next Chronic Reality Television Sufferers' Convention to ban the words "journey" -- and while I'm at it, "process" -- because enough is enough. Stephen remarks that the bed is comfortable, and Denise says, in a way that couldn't be less nonchalant if she actually licked him while saying it, "Maybe you should sleep here tonight." He murmurs somethig like agreement. In fact, this would be a good time for you to acquaint yourself with Stephen's Noncommittal Murmur, because it and you are going to spend a lot of time together in this next hour. Weirdly, the most impressive thing about that scene is how Denise is managing not to fall clear out of that dress as she lies on her side.
Later that night, Denise and Stephen lie in bed for the night-vision cameras, and she requests a kiss goodnight. They share a teeny little smooch, which she tries to parlay into something a little more intense. He shuts her down with a simple and discouraging mutter of, "Denise." "Goodnight," she says, wounded again, and lies on her back for a good pout. She interviews that intimacy is very important to her, and she's frustrated that Stephen isn't there yet. I have to say that I understand the euphemistic way she's using the term, but I'm not sure how much "intimacy" you can expect to achieve with someone you met three days ago, or how hard it is to understand that he might not feel quite prepared to display very much of it. Back in bed on the night-cam, Denise says, "Cuddling? Is that out, too?" She interviews that he responded that he wasn't ready, but indeed by the time we cut back to them, he's lying there with his arms around her, so apparently cuddling was not out. Nevertheless, she's still awake and unhappy. "Can I ask you a question?" she whispers. "Do you just not have the desire to kiss me?" The captioners inform us that Stephen replies, "No, I have the desire to kiss you," but what it sounds like to me is "Huuuuuuuuhhhnnph." Seriously, the guy is barely moving his lips. It's like he's a ventriloquist, but I shudder to think where the puppet is. "So then why don't you?" she persists. He goes back to the classic Murmur with, "Deniiiise." "I'm asking seriously," she says. "I want to know." The Murmur: "I just want to take it slow, Denise." Now remember, he's not conducting this conversation from across the room. He is, in fact, cuddled up to her in bed with his arms around her, so it's not as if he's refusing to go near her. As frustrated as I'm sure Denise is feeling, I wonder if she's not giving the guy a mental block about kissing her by going on and on about it like this. "Stephen," she says frustratedly, "if we take it any slower, we'll be going backwards." Heh. Okay, that was a little funny. "I'm your fiancée," she says. In an interview, a very uncomfortable Stephen says that he does feel sexually attracted to Denise, but the pushier she is about it, the more it turns him off. Back on night-cam, she complains, "I don't understand how you can go out with somebody for six dates and not kiss them." She goes on: "Stephen, if we went out on three dates and you didn't kiss me, I would have thought you were gay." Jeebus. She becomes more and more amused by this line of questioning. "I'm not kidding," she continues. "I would have been like, 'Oh, I like you, and you're my gay boyfriend Stephen.'"