We get in the elevator, and I feel the need between us charging. I plan to maul him when the elevator doors close, but just as they are about to, a hand comes through and Jordan stops them from shutting all the way. He hops in and looks at us, smiling. He has no clue that the sexual tension between us is so tight it’s about to snap this elevator in half.

“Get out,” Captain says, and I put my fingers in front of my mouth to stifle a laugh.

Jordan looks between us, and then slowly steps off the elevator. The doors shut, and Captain pushes a code, locking them closed and stopping us from moving.

He turns to me and slowly walks over, pressing me up against the wall. “You want me to take you right here? Because I’ll fuck you anywhere I want. And with the way you’ve been teasing me today, it looks like you’re begging for it.”

My breathing is shaky as his hardness rubs against me.

“If you behave through lunch, I’ll bring you back here and give you what you want. I’ll bend you over and take you hard, just how you like it. I’ll make you come on my dick and tell you all the dirty shit you love to hear. But don’t bait me, kitten. Because you and I both know that’s a dangerous game.”

He steps back and hits the button for the main floor, and the elevator moves again. By the time the doors open again, I’m still flustered, but Captain doesn’t have a hair out of place. He takes my hand and pulls me from the elevator as people step around us, trying to get on. Once we get outside and the fresh air hits me, I’m able to take a breath and get my head clear. Jesus, that man makes me dizzy.

When we get to the coffee shop, we walk inside and see Patrick at one of the tables off to the side. He’s wearing dark-rimmed glasses, and his hair is messy, but he still has the same smile from when we were kids. He’s still as skinny, but only now he has some facial hair. I walk over and start to give him a hug, but Captain steps in front of me.

“Hi, I’m Ryan, Paige’s fiancé. It’s nice to meet you.”

I’m shocked on so many levels. For one, because he cut me off like we were in traffic. Second, because when did I agree to marry him, and third, because I’m kind of melting that he did all of the above. God, what is wrong with me?

“I’m Patrick. Nice to meet you.” He gives Captain a genuine smile and meets his eyes. It’s friendly and nonthreatening.

I lean around Captain and wave to Patrick, and he waves back.

“I already ordered at the counter if you guys want to. Or you can sit and order later,” Patrick says.

“You sit, Paige. I’ll order.”

Captain watches me as I take my seat, and I swear he’s doing this so I don’t make a move to touch Patrick. I indulge his alpha tendencies and sit down across from Patrick. From where my seat is, I can watch him go get in line and wait to order our food. He keeps glancing over at me, and it’s kind of adorable.

“I’m really glad you came today. It’s been hectic with work, but I wanted to try and reach out,” Patrick says, taking my eyes away from Captain.

“Me, too. I’ve had a lot going on, and I completely forgot. So I was really happy you sent a text.” I glance back over to where Captain is and see that there’s a woman beside him in line. She’s checking him out, but he doesn’t look her way. The line is long and it’s moving slowly, so he hasn’t taken a step forward.

“So what have you been up to since the last time I saw you?” Patrick’s question pulls me back to the conversation.

“Wow, a lot actually.” I tell him about college, trying to keep it somewhat light and upbeat but I knew what happened to him. It’s been sitting on my mind all these years. “What happened to you when we were kids? You disappeared.” I want to know more about him. He was the one who up and vanished.

Patrick smiles at me. “I got picked up for shoplifting and then got put into foster care. But I got lucky. I was adopted by a really great family that helped me work through some shit and got me involved with the Big Brother program. That’s what I do now. I give back and pay it forward.”

“That’s a relief. I always thought something bad happened to you,” I tell him, glad to hear everything was fine.

“Yeah, we had it rough growing up, for sure,” he says, taking a drink of his tea.

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