What a load of bullshit. And yet he still couldn’t make himself kiss any woman on the mouth. He sometimes wondered what people would say if they knew Noah St. John, Bad Boy of Rock and King of the One-Night Stand, had never been kissed. “That’s the car,” he said to the women when there was a buzz on his phone.
Getting out of bed, he pulled on his jeans and then walked them to the door, because now that he’d managed to drain himself to numb emptiness, he wanted to sleep. He had to sleep. If he missed this window, he might not sleep again for days.
He hauled open the door. “Thanks for a nice time, ladies,” he said, because he wasn’t a total bastard. Not all the time anyway.
Pouts disappeared, replaced by sultry smiles. Placing one hand each on his chest, they leaned in as a unit. “Thanks, Noah. Anytime you want a good time, call us.”
Her friend took out a phone. “Mind if I take a photo of us together?”
Noah knew that photo would end up online or in the papers. Where before he wouldn’t have given a shit, now that Kit was back in his life, even if only as a friend, he found himself shaking his head. “No souvenirs.” He smiled, using it like the tool it was. “Be good and I might use those numbers you left by the bed.”
They giggled and waved before getting into the damn car at last.
Eyes so heavy he could barely keep them open, he nonetheless managed to get himself to the house, collapsing into bed thirty seconds after he entered the front door, his mind blanking out.
When he woke, dawn was pink on the horizon. A glance at the clock on the bedside table told him two and a half hours had passed.
A good night’s sleep.
Two days after the picnic with Noah, Kit walked out of a meeting with the director and the writer of Last Flight with a spring in her step. Their new project—still in the planning stages—sounded remarkable, and she was more than ready to be attached on the understanding that they’d negotiate a contract once Terrence and Jade got the financing sorted.
Kit knew her agreement would assist the duo to get the funding they needed, and she was fine with that. Without the risk the two had taken by casting her in Last Flight, she’d still be knocking on doors and attending open casting calls with a hundred other hopefuls. Kit wasn’t about to turn her back on them, especially with a script this poignant and complex.
“Kit, hold up.”
Turning, she smiled at Terrence. Tall, with shaggy black hair against olive skin and bright hazel eyes behind silver-rimmed frames, the writer was one of her favorite people in the industry. “You don’t have to give me the hard sell, Terrence. I’m convinced.”
“Excellent.” Putting his hand on her back, he smiled down at her, his features fine-boned and his camouflage green T-shirt sitting easily on a body lean with muscle. “In which case I can put my efforts into convincing you to have dinner with me tonight.”
Terrence shook his head. “Just you and me.” His expression softened. “What do you think?”
“Oh.” She fiddled with the bound copy of the script she held in order to give herself time to think. She’d always liked Terrence, but she’d never thought of him in a romantic way, mostly because she’d been hung up on Noah. She had to get over that. Why not with a man she respected and admired?
“Okay,” she said. “But not anyplace celebrity—I’d rather we go somewhere we can actually eat and talk.” As opposed to see and be seen.
“Us poor writers can’t even get into those celebrity places.” Terrence’s smile was wry as he thrust his hands into the pockets of his buff-colored cargo pants. “The maître d’s look at me like I’m some hobo who crawled in off the street.” A grin that reached his eyes. “I know a nice neighborhood Italian place.”
“Sounds good. Shall I meet you there?”
“I can pick you up if you don’t mind.”
She knew what he was asking. If he came through her gates, the paparazzi would start salivating and snapping; if not immediately, then soon enough. “That’d be lovely,” she said, her breath tight in her chest. “Six thirty?”
“Yeah.” Smile deep, he offered her his arm. “I’ll walk you out.”
“No, go back to Jade—I’m sure you two have tons to discuss. I’m heading next door to pick up Becca so we can grab a coffee together.” Her friend was working on makeup designs for her next gig. “I’ll see you tonight.”
As she left, she was aware of her heart thundering, her blood a roar in her ears. Terrence was a nice guy—a good-looking, smart, funny guy—but he wasn’t the one who’d provoked the raw emotional response. It was only Noah who got to her that deep. But Noah wasn’t for her.