“Have you had a chance to talk to Brew?” Jax asks, and I close the fridge and move my gaze to him.

“That’s my next stop.”

“Could still be Lane trying to scare her,” Jax says, studying me.

“No, he wouldn’t do that. He’s not going to do anything to risk not having her back in his life. I read the letter he wrote her, and he believes he’s doing what he can to protect her. He said he broke up with her so she wouldn’t get swept up in his mess, and as much as that shit pisses me off, I believe him.”

“Does June know you read the letter?” Sage asks, and I pull my eyes from Jax and look at him.

“What do you think?”

“I don’t know. You seem to keep a lot of shit to yourself.”

“Sage,” Jax rumbles, and Sage moves his gaze from me to focus on his cousin.

“You know as well as I do that he”—he jerks his chin towards me—“hasn’t been honest. Who’s to say he’s not the one who sent someone to June’s to make a play at getting her back?”

“Seriously?” I ask.

“Just sayin’. It’s the perfect fucking play. Weeks ago, she wanted nothing to do with you, and now you’re suddenly sleeping in her bed, buying a dog, and getting domesticated.”

“Fuck you.”

“No, man, fuck you,” he says, coming off his chair, and Jax moves between us as I push forward.

“Stand down,” Jax orders, looking between the two of us.

“We’ve known Evan for over a year, and still don’t know shit about him,” Sage growls, and I move toward him, stopping when Jax’s hand hits my chest.

“You’re right. You don’t know me,” I say quietly. “You don’t know what the fuck I’ve seen or done. You’ve got no fucking clue.” I lean forward. “And I don’t need to prove shit to you.” I turn and leave the office, slamming the door behind me when I go.

Getting in my truck, I head for June’s block. Seeing Brew’s bike in his driveway, I shut down The Beast, hop out, and head across the yard so I can ask about the previous owner of June’s house, when what I really want to do is trade my truck for my bike and ride out.

Chapter 8


Looking at the bedroom door, I pull my legs under me to sit Indian-style and grab my lotion from the side table. As I squeeze some into my hands and rub them together, I let my mind run away with me while waiting for Evan to come into the room. Something is wrong. I don’t know what it is, and I don’t know what to do about it, but the second Evan picked me up from work, I felt it. I knew, without him saying anything, just from the look on his face, that something had happened.

When I asked him if he was okay, he just said, “Yeah,” then put his truck in drive and drove me home. I figured we could talk about whatever it was that was bothering him when we went to dinner, but when we got back to my house, he told me Wes and July were coming over to keep me company while he went to take care of business. When he said that, I asked him about dinner, and he told me we were going to have to reschedule.

It wasn’t long after that July and Wes showed up, and the second they arrived, Evan took off, giving me a short kiss before leaving. I didn’t like that. Since he pushed his way back into my life, he’s been just that, in my life and in my space, but I could feel the distance he was putting between us like a physical thing.

My sister noticed, but didn’t bring it up. Wes noticed too, and also, thankfully, kept his mouth closed, but I could tell they wanted to ask. Now, sitting on my bed, I feel my heart start to pound in my chest and nausea fill my stomach. I never imagined Evan and I would be together again, but since the moment he came back, my feelings for him came back with a vengeance—or maybe they were never gone to begin with.

Feeling the bed shift and Ninja nuzzle my hand, looking to where he’s lying near my hip, I run my fingers through his soft coat and sigh. I didn’t want a dog, but I can’t lie and say I don’t like having one. Ninja has stuck to me like glue since I got home, and his constant presence has made me feel not so alone. Looking from Ninja to the door, I see the lights in the living room go out then hear soft footfalls coming toward the room. Feeling myself brace for what’s to come, I sit up a little taller.

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