A Perfect Ten

Page 31

“And there are many,” I agreed.

She grinned. “He’s always been one of the most loyal people I know when it comes to his friends. He’s gone above and beyond for them. And he’d never knowingly betray one of them.”

I gulped. “Are you trying to make me feel guilty?” Because it was working.

“No,” she was quick to say. “I just...I guess, in a way, I’m glad you did it this way, too. I want you two together so much. You both deserve love and happiness. I’m in awe of your...your...”

“Stupidity?” I guessed.

“Brash courage,” she corrected as she pulled into the parking lot across the street from the club. As she killed the engine, she turned to me. “But seriously.” She winced. “How exactly do you foresee this turning out?”

I cringed back at her and in a small voice answered, “Badly. Probably epically...disastrously...badly.”

I was so sure she’d nod and agree, but she chewed on her lip a moment before murmuring, “I don’t know. Maybe it’ll come out okay. I mean, I never in a million years thought Quinn and I would end up together when I first met him. So, maybe...”

I took her hand and squeezed it gratefully. “I love you. You know this is going to end as awfully as I know it’s going to end, and you think I’m crazy and probably stupid, yet here you are, supporting me anyway. Thank you.”

Zoey squeezed back, and looked out the window at the flashing lights of the bar across the street. “So, I know Ten’s working tonight. I assume we’re here to make sure no other woman gets her dirty paws on him, right?”

“Wow. You know me so well.”

She sighed and opened her door. “It’s scary, isn’t it?”

There was a line to get in tonight. After we bounded across the street and waited for a couple minutes in the warm evening, Harper, the doorman, shook his head when he saw us. “Ah, hell. I smell trouble brewing.”

“Always,” I answered happily and leaned up to kiss his cheek.

Harper grinned but swatted me away. “Hey, now. None of that. Your brother’s just inside. You want me to die a slow and painful death? Now, quick. Give me something to look at so it seems like I’m checking your IDs.”

We did and thanked him for letting us in without having to pay. Zoey grabbed my arm as soon as we started past him. She squeezed hard. “Wait. You didn’t tell me Noel was working tonight, too.”

I shrugged and immediately slid my attention to the bar, but damn it, there were too many people in my way. Didn’t they realize I needed an Oren fix, like, now?

“A minor hiccup.” I waved a hand at Zoey, letting her know I wasn’t concerned about my brother.

But she shrieked, “Minor?”

Muttering what sounded like a prayer under her breath, she took my hand and started to lead me toward the bar.

I resisted, accidentally jerking her off balance, and just as she turned back to me with question in her gaze, there he was. It was as if the crowd parted and the blue neon lights overhead beamed down upon him. My stomach muscles instantly convulsed with pleasure, and I squeezed my legs together. I was almost tempted to cover my throbbing breasts with my arms.

“What’s wrong?”

I couldn’t even answer Zoey’s question. I was too busy feeding the craving. But, wow.

I’d seen him nearly every day since we’d met a year ago. He was a frequent visitor at the Gamble house. My younger brothers treated him like their personal tackle mat—and speaking of tackle...I so wanted to tackle him right now.

It didn’t matter how many times I’d seen him before, though, or how familiar I was with his appearance; tonight he looked better than ever.

His perpetually messy hair appeared extra dark in this lighting and really lit up the fact that he needed to shave. I have no idea how he managed to groom himself so that he always seemed to possess a five o’clock shadow, but it looked good on him. It highlighted the masculine angles in his jaw and framed his full plush lips to perfection.

Damn. I wanted him so bad. My fingers curled, eager to run their way up his toned arms. My mouth watered, wanting to suck on his Adam’s apple.

You knew a girl had it bad when even a guy’s straight, dark eyebrows turned her on. And his definitely did.

“I think I’m going to come,” I told Zoey. My hand clamped down on hers as my breathing picked up.

She yelped, “Holy...”

“Shit,” I finished. My core tightened painfully. I couldn’t believe I was so turned on just from looking at him and remembering. “This is embarrassing.”

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