The Insiders

Page 75

“Fuck,” he bit out, catching my body as he slipped out.

He tucked and rolled us both so I was half sprawled over him.

He didn’t talk, just nuzzled into my neck, until he lifted me so I was lying completely on top of him. His arms tightened around me, helping me turn so I was facing him. My breasts were on his chest. Hips to hips. I felt him starting to stir, but he didn’t do anything else. His eyes were closed, head bent into my shoulder and neck, and he skimmed his lips there.

“Fuck, Bailey.” A soft groan from him. His head rested against his headboard, just barely meeting there, and he opened his eyes to see me.

Anguish looked back at me.

My breath paused.

Alarm raced through me, and I raised myself up, a hand pushing off from his chest. “What’s wrong?”

“Nothing.” He blinked, and when he looked at me again, the anguish was gone. He was focused solely and completely on me. He almost looked drugged, a contentment swimming deep in those cognac eyes.

“Hey.” I pressed my hand against the side of his face. “What’s wrong? You need to tell me.”

He didn’t speak for a moment, turning his head. Cupping the back of mine, he raised himself up until his mouth was on mine.

He didn’t tell me.

He didn’t say anything the rest of the night, instead rolling me back underneath him, and it wasn’t long before he was sliding inside once again.

We stayed in the rest of the day, that night, and for the next few days as well. Just him and me.

It felt perfect. But it wasn’t.

Kash wasn’t letting me in.



I don’t want to say we all hid after that, but we did.

We stayed out of the spotlight. Gone were his trips to try to find out what my kidnappers were doing, or what his grandfather was planning. Once it came out who Kash was related to, where he was, and that there was a clock running on him taking over his shares in Phoenix Tech, the buck stopped there. Something was coming. No one knew what it was, but everyone felt it, and because of that, we were tense.

I mean, everyone was pretending we weren’t, but we were.

Kash and I stayed at his place until press found out where he lived, and after that, even though we could go in and out with relative privacy because of his basement parking lot, there was a trapped feeling that came with them knowing what building we were in. He’d gotten a few calls from the lobby about people trying to come in under the guise of delivering flowers or gifts. Kash told me he’d never dealt with that anyway, so the fact that he was getting calls said a lot. If he got any delivery before, whatever it was had been signed for by the front desk and placed aside until he retrieved it in his own time.

Management had also called to let him know that his neighbors were starting to complain.

Kash’s response was, “Deal with it, or I’ll buy the entire building and kick them out.” The calls stopped after that, and really, were his neighbors actually going to move out? This would all die down. Eventually.


Kash didn’t want to wait. After a few neighbors had started to try to meet, chat, or “socialize” with him as we crossed the lobby, or when one of the guys approached me when I was using the exercise bike in the gym—

Yes, let’s all fall over in shock. I worked out. Once.

I felt fate was telling me to get my ass in running readiness.

It didn’t last.

Back to the guy, though, because it wasn’t that we were being rude. At first, I liked some of the neighbors trying to reach out and be friendly. I did; Kash didn’t. He wasn’t like that, anyway. He didn’t need to make friends. In that respect, I was the more outgoing one. And it’d been a nice change from the earlier complaints. But this guy had been too much. He was hitting on me the second he saw me, propositioning me so I could feel what a real stud felt like.

My relationship with exercising had been quick and brief. Just like how that guy got handled.

A quiet phone call occurred, after I told Kash about the guy, and the next morning I saw him carrying boxes to a moving van.

Kash got the guy evicted.

And that was also the time we went to the Chesapeake and stayed at his villa. I’d talked to my mom on the phone, so I wasn’t altogether surprised when we got there and found her, fitting in like she’d never not been there.

Matt was staying in his old bedroom, which was in its own section of the mausoleum.

Seraphina and Cyclone were ecstatic. They now had Marie, Theresa, and Chrissy and Matt full time there. Kash and I were back, and they were over the moon.

Cyclone wanted to celebrate by having a bowling party, so we had pizza and bowled that night. We used their private bowling lanes on the estate, which was connected to the bar.

Somehow, that translated into a party, and a few of Matt’s friends came over.

So that night I got the pleasure of meeting Fleur, Victoria, and the third friend all over again. They were a lot nicer now, knowing who I was in relation to Matt. All except Victoria. She was frigid, but I hadn’t expected otherwise. She came in with her nose wrinkled up, seeing Kash next to me, and her attitude only got worse. It might have affected another person, but not me. I was glad she kept her distance. The other guys in Matt’s group, not so much. They came over, treating me and Kash like we were long-lost friends.

Chester. Tony. I learned the blond guy was named Guy. It was a family name for him, too. He was officially Guy IV. And of the males, after Matthew, he was the friendliest. Or maybe he was the most easygoing. That was a better word to describe him. He didn’t seem affected that I was Matthew’s sister, or intimidated by Kash.

He was the first to come over, slap Kash on the back, and ask him for a loan.

That was followed with a wink, but it broke the ice. Everyone in this group already knew who Kash was, but now that it was out, they weren’t sure how to treat him. They came in cautious, but when Kash rejected Guy based on his credit, everyone relaxed.

Well, for them they relaxed.

Victoria was still pissy. Chester was still dirty. Tony leered, and Matthew had a restless edge to him, but that was just them.

It wasn’t the first night Matt had his friends over, but over the next month, it wasn’t a common event. They came over twice more, mostly to commiserate with Matthew after he did a new interview, fulfilling the publicist’s plans.

We got an update from Martha, and according to her, it was working … regarding me.

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