“Molly and I got back last night,” Fox said. “Want to come over for breakfast? I’ve been working on something, could do with your input.”
“On my way.” He wasn’t in any shape to be alone, and the drive would help clear his head, especially if he got on the Pacific Coast Highway, had the salt air and crashing blue of the ocean on one side as he drove.
Leaving Kit’s car in the garage, he got into the gleaming black of his fully restored 1967 Mustang convertible and headed out. Since the roads were no longer clear, he popped in a demo CD a hopeful group of musicians had sent the band through the mail. Might as well use the travel time for good. He, Fox, Abe, and David didn’t advertise it, but Schoolboy Choir had a policy of not simply blowing off the hopeful and the desperate. They divided up any demos that came in and reported back to the others.
Most of the stuff was, unfortunately, enthusiastic but uninspired. This one, however, had potential. Schoolboy Choir had been moving slowly into backing some up-and-coming talent, and he decided the four of them might have to listen to more from this band. The next demo made him wince and pull it out after a minute, and so it went.
Good or bad, the music was better than the madness in his skull.
Pulling into Fox’s drive after using the remote gate opener Fox had given him, he roared up to park in Fox’s garage, which his bandmate had left open. He slipped the Mustang behind the hot red Lamborghini Aventador the lead singer and his fiancée had taken on their road trip. Given its gleaming state, Noah had a feeling Fox had spent the morning cleaning and polishing his pride and joy.
The man had millions, but he trusted no one else to care for the Aventador.
The sheer normality of that had Noah grinning as he got out and walked through the open front door. “Hey, you two decent?”
“Damn it, Noah, your timing sucks!” Fox called out.
“Don’t listen to him, Noah,” countered a laughing female voice with a naturally warm timbre that reflected Molly’s personality. “He just ignored me for an hour while he fussed over Red.”
Noah walked upstairs and into the open-plan kitchen/living area to find Fox squeezing Molly from behind while she laughed, her brown eyes lit from within.
“Red, huh?” He took a seat at the counter, the couple on the other side. “I always knew your love for that car was unnatural.”
“Molly’s the one who named her,” Fox pointed out, pressing a kiss to Molly’s neck before releasing her and reaching out to bump his fist against Noah’s. “She and Red have a close personal relationship.”
“It’s true.” Molly moved around the kitchen as she grabbed the ingredients for what looked like blueberry pancakes, her pretty yellow-and-white sundress skimming her curves. “She’s a gorgeous beast, and it was incredible exploring the PCH in her.”
When she returned to the counter to place some eggs on it, he saw that her skin carried a faint hint of sunburn. Unlike Kit’s naturally bronzed complexion, Molly’s hated the sun. “You forgot your hat,” he said, thinking of his meal with Kit, of how her skin had glowed in the soft light from the paper lanterns.
“No, she didn’t,” Fox growled, dark green eyes focused on the woman he loved so much he’d had her name and claim to him tattooed across his heart. “She just kept whipping it off to sunbathe.”
“Worth it.” Molly’s expression was unrepentant as she blew Fox a kiss before returning to her breakfast preparations. “We’re going all out today,” she told Noah after using a hair tie she’d had around her wrist to pull back her silky tumble of black hair. “Fox and I stopped off at an all-night grocery store on our way home.”
“Blueberry pancakes.” The lead singer put a fresh mug under the spout of the coffee machine Noah still hadn’t figured out. “With fucking bacon.” He hauled Molly in for a kiss, his free hand sliding down to rest possessively on her hip. “Damn, but I love you.”
A little breathless, Molly scrunched up her nose. “Be still my heart.”
Fox’s grin exposed the lean dimple in his left cheek. Whatever he murmured to Molly had her blushing and standing on tiptoe to press a sweet kiss to that dimple.
Noah thought of the small, stark-faced boy he’d met the first day of boarding school, so alone and determined not to cry. He could see no trace of that grieving child in the strong, happy man in front of him, a man who was a brother to him in everything but blood. There were relatives, and then there was family. Fox was family.