I blanched. Behind her were shelves loaded with free weights and equipment parts. Oh, hell no! Was this a fucking horror movie? We’d be slaughtered in here.
My stomach clenched. They wouldn’t. They know better.I held Sam’s hand while she stepped over the barrier, but the deck was empty. I will fucking kill them. Mom pointed to the edge of the banister, and I just…knew.
What a gorgeous view, Sam said, looking over the water as the sunset turned it an array of colors. Then she looked down. Whoa.Surprise! the crowd yelled from beneath us. There had to have been seventy people, all crowded onto the patio and the pool deck, hell, even the walkway to the beach. I swallowed and held Sam’s hand in a death grip, using her to ground me in the present. Happy Birthday! they shouted in unison.Every muscle in my body tensed, and my stomach contents turned over, threatening to make an encore appearance.
Sam looked up at me, her eyes wide and a little hurt. It’s your birthday?I let go of her hand and stretched out my fingers. I couldn’t hurt her. I had to keep in complete control. Space. I needed space. Then I turned to my mother, whose mouth had drooped slightly, understanding that her plan had failed.
I gave a swift shake of my head and walked back in the house before I devastated her feelings by saying something thoughtless.
The moment Grayson disappeared, his mother stepped to the banister and raised her arms. Thank you! Let’s get this party started!I wanted to collar her throat and force her to tell me what was bothering her.
I also wanted to slam her edible body onto the table and shove my cock deep inside her.It was a struggle not to do either of those things. I was obsessed, and I knew it. Knew that it wasn’t good, because I was always intense and aggressive in going after what I wanted. It was never good for someone like me to be obsessive about anything, to want something as badly as I wanted Ava Sanchez.
The reality was that I had absolutely no right to want her. I was tainted and jaded, had too many stains on what was left of my soul. Ava, with her cheery and mischievous nature, couldn’t have been more different from me. To be with her would feel like I was touching something I had no right to touch. Christ knew I’d tarnished enough things in my life.For a short time, it had made me hold back from her. But I was too selfish to be noble and self-sacrificing. I never denied myself what I wanted, and I wouldn’t deny myself Ava. Nor would I settle for a fling. No, we were going to be much more than that. Because I always held tight to what was mine. Whether Ava liked it or not, that was exactly what she was.