“You don’t mean that.”

“I really do. What are you here for, Piper? Really?”

“You, I told you.”

“No, you’re after something. But, honestly, I don’t care. There’s nothing you can do to hurt me. Now, if you don’t mind, I have things to do.” I nod in the direction of the door.

“V, listen to me; the only thing I want is you. I want you back.” She’s in my space in seconds and presses her hands to my chest.

“Yoo-hoo! It’s me! You’d better be decent…or not…”


Charly’s soft laughter tickles my ears just as I’ve caught hold of Piper’s wrist to try to get the crazy bitch off me.

But, instantly, I know how this will look to Charly.

And it’s not good. Not good at all.

She looks frozen to the spot. The hurt in her expression is so clear and evident and like a punch to the chest.

“Charly.” I shove Piper aside.

She seems to snap back to attention, her face and eyes clearing of all emotion. “I just came to drop off your clothes for tomorrow.” She drops the garment bag in her hand over the chair by the door. “Sorry to interrupt.”

And, before I can say another word, she’s gone, back out the door.

I’m going to fucking strangle Piper.

“You.” I turn on her. “Out. Now.”

She laughs, her eyes going to the door that Charly just exited, and in this moment, I can’t see one thing that I ever saw in this woman. She’s a total bitch.

She looks back at me, a twisted smile on her face. “Her? Really, V? I thought you had better taste than that.”

“Clearly not because I dated your psycho ass for six months. And, for fuck’s sake, stop calling me V! I hate it. I’ve always hated it. And not that it’s any of your fucking business, but no, I’m not dating her. Even still, she has more class in her little finger than you have in your whole body. Now, get your bony ass the fuck out of my trailer before I pick you up and throw you out myself, and then you’ll really have a story to sell to the press.”

My chest is heaving. I’m raging. And I need to find Charly.

“Fine, have it your way, V,” she accentuates just to piss me off. “Have your fun with your little chippie. You’ll be crawling back to me soon enough when you get bored.”

I grab a T-shirt that was hanging over the back of the sofa. Not caring if it’s dirty, I pull it on. “Honestly, I’d rather chop my nuts off, fry them in a hot pan, and eat them than ever get back with you.”

“Fuck you!” she snaps.

“And there’s the girl I never loved.” I laugh, pushing my feet into my sneakers. “Now, get the fuck out of my trailer, and don’t ever come back, you crazy bitch.”

“You’ll regret this, Vaughn West!” she yells like a bad movie villain before slamming her way out of my trailer.

I grab my cell and call Charly’s number, but it just rings and then goes to voice mail.

I wait for a beat, making sure Piper is gone, before leaving to find Charly. I don’t trust Piper, and I sure as hell don’t want her following me to Charly. Knowing Piper, she’d take pictures of me with Charly and sell them to the highest bidder.

I head straight for the wardrobe trailer, hoping she’ll be there.

And she is, but she’s not alone. Ava’s there.

“Hey, Vaughn, what can we do for you?” Ava smiles at me.

Charly hasn’t looked at me. She’s over on the other side of the trailer, looking through a drawer.

“I just need Charly for a minute.”

“Oh, yeah, sure. Charly, Vaughn needs you,” Ava calls to her before disappearing into the back.

I see Charly’s body stiffen.

“Is it important, or can it wait?” she says without even looking up, her voice as rigid as her body. “I’m busy right now.”

Pretending to look through a drawer. Right.

“It’s important,” I say in a voice that means I’m not fucking around.

I won’t have her avoiding me and hurting over something that she thinks happened that definitely did not when I can fix this with a few words.

She pauses and then slowly rights herself before turning to face me. The hurt in her eyes that she’s trying to hide slays me.

“Fine,” she says tonelessly, her eyes narrowing, her hands going to her hips. “What’s so important that it can’t wait?”

If she wasn’t hurting and this wasn’t a fucked up situation, I’d be turned on right now.

Okay, maybe I’m a little turned on, but she’s hot as fuck. And, when she’s angry, she’s off-the-charts hot.

“I ripped my shirt,” I lie, knowing that Ava could be listening to what we’re saying right now.

“Okay, give it here, and I’ll fix it for you.” She sticks her hand out, knowing full well I don’t have a ripped shirt and that I definitely don’t have one with me.

“It’s in my trailer.”

“Convenient.”

I step closer to her, and she steps back.

I hate that so fucking much.

I grit my jaw. “We need to talk,” I say in a whispered voice. “And we can’t do that here with Ava listening.”

“Maybe I don’t want to talk to you,” she hisses.

“I don’t care if you do or not; you’re going to. I won’t have you thinking something that’s not true when I can clear this up for you right the fuck now.”

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