I’m not good enough for you.
“All I wanted was him,” I whisper.
“I know, honey.”
I’m not good enough for you.
“I know, sis.
“What am I supposed to do?” I whisper, taking a wet rag that’s dangled in front of my face and pressing it to my mouth.
“Honestly?” Wes asks from behind me, and I nod, not lifting my head to look at him. “Don’t let him push you away.”
“It’s too late,” I breathe, feeling my heart pound and bile crawl back up my throat.
“Is it?” he questions softly, and I squeeze my eyes closed, knowing it is. It’s way too late. There is no way I would ever put myself out there again, not like that, not with him. He didn’t hurt me, he obliterated me.
“Maybe you could be his friend,” July suggests, and I look at her.
“I don’t think that’s possible.”
“You’re both hurting, honey. I…” She pauses, pulling in a breath, and looking up at Wes who reaches down, running his fingers along her cheek. I love that my sister has what she has with Wes, but as much as I love it for her, I hate the jealousy I feel when I see them together. “I want you to be happy,” she continues as her eyes drop to meet mine. “I don’t think you’ll be able to move on to your own happy until you figure out how to move past the hurt you feel.”
Even knowing she’s right, I don’t know if I will ever be able to do that.
“You can do this,” I whisper to my reflection in the rearview mirror. Moving my eyes to my lap, I mutter, “Why the hell did you let your sister Jedi mind trick you?”
Dropping my head to the steering wheel, I rest it there, resisting the urge to pound my head against it. July and Wes somehow talked me into meeting up with them at the compound. They said they were having a party and that I needed to get out of the house. I did need to get out of the house, but a party where Evan would be didn’t seem like something I needed to do. In fact, I’m pretty sure I need to do the opposite, but still, I’m here, parked outside with the engine off, trying to build up enough courage to actually get out of my car.
Running my hands down the front of my bright orange sundress, I deeply breathe, open the door, and put one beige, sandal-covered foot on the ground then the other, proud of myself for at least making it out of the car. Shutting the door behind me, I look across the parking lot and pull in another deep breath before heading for the door next to the large gate, which will allow me into the open court where the party is. As soon as I’m there and pull the door open, I’m bombarded with the sound of rock music playing in the background, people talking and laughing, and the smell of booze, cigarettes, and pot.
“This is a bad idea,” I whisper, scanning through the crowd of jean-and-leather-wearing men and barely dressed women for my sister or Wes.
“Pardon?” a deep voice asks from my side, and I jump and turn my head to search the dark. A man steps out of the shadows, causing me to back up. He’s not much taller than me, with blond hair that hits his broad shoulders. He’s pretty, in a masculine way, with a square jaw, full lips, and big blue eyes surrounded by thick lashes.
“Sorry, I was talking to myself,” I tell him, and he grins an eerie grin that doesn’t quite fit the way he looks.
“Do you do that a lot?” he asks, taking a step closer to me, and I instinctively take another step back, wanting to keep space between us.
“Um…” I look around again, praying I see someone familiar.
“What’s your name?” His eyes roam over me as he takes another step closer then reaches out and grabs a piece of my hair, wrapping it around his finger. Alarm bells are going off in my head, telling me to get away, but I feel like my feet have frozen to the concrete below them.
“I…” I pull my head back, taking my hair with it.
“I?” he prompts, tilting his head and taking a step closer.
“Jordan, back the fuck up.”
My head swings around, and my heart, that was beginning to race, topples over itself when my eyes collide with Evan’s. Closing the distance between us, he takes my hand as soon as he’s near.
“Aw, I was just gonna have a little fun with her,” Jordan says, and Evan tugs my hand, forcing me to collide into his side.
“Come near her and I’ll have some fun with you, the kind of fun that will leave you in the hospital,” Evan spits out, sounding serious and scary.