Page 15 of Anybody's Dad

"Come on, I'll buy you one of those energy shakes."

"I'd rather have a beer."

"That's your problem," Chase told him. "Besides, it's not even 10 a.m."

"You can really be a sanctimonious pain sometimes, you know," Tigh said as they left the court. Chase drained a bottle of water without stopping, then slung his gym bag over his shoulder and headed out to the car. Tigh was a little slower, stopping to flirt with a pretty woman whose only job was to hand out towels. She was helping him use one, Chase decided.

"That's jailbait," Chase said as Tigh caught up to him.

"Nah, she's twenty."

"And you're thirty."

Tigh looked at Chase and frowned, his features going slack as if he had just realized how old he was. He glanced back at the girl, smiled, then faced forward as they walked to the car.

"You were in Tessa's doctor's office yesterday morning," Tigh said suddenly as Chase unlocked his car door.

Oblivious to the censure in Tigh's tone, Chase's face split into a smile. "It was incredible, Tigh, to actually see my baby moving around inside her. My heart was beating so fast I thought I'd pass out."

Both men slid into the Jeep and buckled up. "You shouldn't invade her privacy like that, Chase. She could put a restraining order on you. It's damn close to stalking."

Chase scowled as he pulled into traffic. "My intentions are very clear. And she knows it."

Tigh eyed his client. "Is there something I should know about you and Miss Lightfoot? I don't want her sister slapping you with a lawsuit that I know nothing about."

"Dia would, wouldn't she?"

"Hell, yeah. She's a criminal lawyer first, pal. Everything to her is a fight to the last drop of blood, guilty or innocent."

Chase stared at the windshield. "She seemed so reserved."

"Reserved and a circling shark are often confused. Now, answer the question."

"I can't say, because there's nothing to tell."

"Bull."

"Tessa doesn't want to see this go to court and neither do I. We have our child's best interests to think about. So far, she tolerates me and I lust after her."

"You're kidding."

It was such a bland delivery that Chase glanced at Tigh as he pulled to a halt. "Crazy, huh?" He shut off the engine and left the car.

Tigh leaned over the gearshift and groaned. "For God's sake! Why do you pay me for legal advice, then go and do this?" He gestured to Tessa's Attic.

Chase leaned into the car window. "Because you're my kid brother's best friend and I used to protect you from bullies."

Tigh flushed red at the memory. "That smacks of tremendous confidence in my abilities, Chase. And I advise you to back off from her."

"Not a chance." Chase gestured for Tigh to join him but Tigh waved him off, sagging into the car seat. Chase straightened and headed through the door. Someone whistled softly and he looked up to see Dana leaning out over the counter, her gaze running the length of his legs.

"Not bad, Mr. Madison."

Somehow the compliment was lost with the mister tacked on. "Is she here?"

Dana inclined her head toward the rear of the store just as Chase heard a crash and a soft yelp of pain. He was in the back office in a heartbeat.

A blind was hanging precariously off the window frame as Tessa rubbed the top of her head. He strode to her, catching her by the arms.

"Are you all right?"

Tessa took one look at him in his shorts with brown muscles rippling everywhere and it set her teeth on edge. "Yes, dammit." She shifted out of his grip, touching her scalp and inspecting her fingers for blood. "I'm fine, the baby's fine and what are you doing here, again?"

He pulled the stepladder closer to the window and climbed up to reattach the blind. "I just came by to say hi."

Mentally, Tessa groaned. His taut behind was at eye level. This wasn't fair. Yet as much as he annoyed her by busting in, unannounced, the totally female side of her said, step back and inspect the hardware. She did. He had great legs and damned if he didn't look sexy, even sweaty, his hair sopping wet, his tank top marked with dampness. And those skimpy running shorts with side slits, good God, they clung. "Do I look like I have time to chat, or don't you work for a living anymore?" She managed to pull her gaze to a decent level when he hopped off the stepladder.

"Sure—" he leaned down in her face, smiling. "But I take time away, so I don't mutate into a psycho."

"I'm not—oh, never mind." It was useless to argue with him when he was grinning like that. She moved around to her desk and scanned invoices, not really seeing them.

"You need to relax."

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