you’re angry about your girlfriend jerking me off, but damn, you don’t have to be petty about it.’” I drawled, “There are so many of them. I’ll just leave all of them alone and come back with a pretty simple one.”

I stared him down, letting the amusement fade away. He could see that I was serious. I’d waited long enough for Nate. It was time to get down to business.

I ended with, “You’re the only bitch I see here.”

It was a simple insult, but it worked. His anger went up a notch. It had been there, simmering with my light jabs, but it was like I’d hit him with a straight-up uppercut.

I showed him my teeth. My smile didn’t reach my eyes. “Come back at me now, bitch.”

A second uppercut. Right there. Right to the face.

The crowd was deathly silent. I had a feeling no one insulted Sebastian—at least to his face. The ass needed to really learn who the Kades were.

He kept quiet. Ah, he was thinking. He was doing that thing that Mason liked to do. I’d pushed him, but he was rallying back. He wanted to get his feet on the ground and take control of the confrontation.

I wasn’t going to let him do that, so I said, “You asked about my bitch before, but seriously, where’s yours? I’d like to meet your girlfriend.”

When he didn’t respond, I looked around, craning my neck. “I don’t see any chick who’s worried about you. What does she look like? Wait.” My hands went up, and I moved back a step. “Do you not have a girlfriend?” I moved a second step back.

Sebastian frowned. He noticed my retreat, but he didn’t get it. I wasn’t backing down. I was forcing Blaze and his pals to surround me. I wanted to draw Sebastian farther into this circle, farther away from his A-holes.

He stepped forward.

It was working.

I waited. He’d catch on if I took a third step backward. Blaze was to my right. His other friend, who had the pony keg, was on my left.

I asked Blaze, “Does Sebastian have a girlfriend?”

Blaze’s eyes lit up. He didn’t want to get drawn into this. Too late. I just pulled him in. That was the entire purpose of this venture. Sebastian thought he controlled everyone. He was ill-informed. I just needed to show him that he didn’t and that meant forcing people to stand against him.

Sebastian looked at him. I was willing to bet good money that he had no idea who Blaze or his group of friends were. In fact, I was willing to bet even better money that Sebastian didn’t know half the people at this party.

One match, one person—that was all it took to start a fire, so here I was. I was the fucking first spark.

Blaze couldn’t go against what he’d already proclaimed at his party. There were witnesses, and like he’d said, his friend was Sam’s RA.

Girls didn’t respect cowards.

If Blaze backed down, he’d be a coward.

Granted, this was plan B, and yes, I hadn’t thought of it until Blaze sauntered up to me at this party, but as agendas went, this was an even better one than my original idea. The crumbs were tossed on the ground.

I asked Sebastian, “Are you good friends with Blaze here?”

Blaze did a double take as I’d correctly said his name, but he looked back at Sebastian.

Sebastian was studying him, scratching at his jaw. “I don’t believe I’ve had the pleasure.” He glared at Blaze. “Who are you?”

“Uh…” Blaze shifted on his feet.

Yep, the kid didn’t do confrontations well.

He started to hold his hand out.

I tapped it back down. “No, no, no. This isn’t how you do it, Blaze.”

“What?”

Sebastian was staring at me again. His eyes were locked on me, a fierce scowl there. He was starting to feel the insults.

I came to his party.

I insulted him.

I hadn’t ran off.

I was continuing to insult him.

And, yes, I was still not leaving.

As he remembered this night over the next week, the sting of embarrassment would grow more and more.

Stages. Fighting a war took stages, and this was one of them.

“Enough thinking, Logan. Finish it.” Hearing Mason’s voice, I reminded myself about why I was there in the first place.

I hit Blaze on the arm and said to Sebastian, “Okay. All the jabs and jokes aside, you’re right, Sebastian. I am here for a reason.”

“I never asked why you were here.”

I ignored him, gripping Blaze’s arm. “My friend here, Blazer—”

“Blaze.”

I looked at him. “Really? Again?”

He scoffed, shrugging his shoulders.

I turned back to Sebastian, noting that his buddies crowded in more. They were right next to Blaze’s group, but feeling the threat, Blaze’s friends moved forward, too. They were starting to stand off against them.

I continued, “He was telling me at his party a while ago how proud he was of me and of my brother, too.”

“Oh, shit.” Blaze sucked in his breath. He shot looks to his buddies. He’d just been clued in as to where I was going.

I added, smiling widely because this was so damn fun, “And he was even thanking me for going against you. You see, here’s my public service announcement to you, Sebastian.” I cupped my hands around my mouth and whispered loudly so everyone could hear, “No one really likes you.”

Pause.

Wait a beat.

Let that sink in.

Now, keep going.

“Like all these guys.” I gestured to Blaze’s group. “They were all telling me how much they hate you. In fact,” I moved a step toward Sebastian, “I’ve had a lot of people tell me how much they detest you. They were all happy when your house was burned down. They even wanted to thank whoever did that horrible thing.” I winked at him. “So, I’m here,” one more step toward him, and I was within swinging distance, “to help you out, if you think about it. I’d like to know who my enemies are—unless they’re too much of a coward to stand their ground. But still, I’d at least like to know who the cowards are.”

I waited.

The seeds were dropped.

Sebastian’s nostrils flared. “You mean to tell me that you came here just to out these guys?”

“No.” I shook my head.

“What?”

“No, I didn’t come here to do that.” I grinned at him. “I came here to start a fight, to be honest, but, uh…” I skimmed over his brothers. “I’m severely outnumbered, and you know, I’ve got some smarts up here.” I pretended to knock on my head.

“Logan,” Blaze hissed behind me.

A small amount of disappointment flared in me. The guy was calling me by my first name. Last names, Blaze. Last names is how you do it. I’d share that golden nugget of dumbassness with him later. First, I needed to start with what was my original intent.

I needed to start a damn fight.

Ignoring Blaze, I held my arms out. The beer was firmly held in one of my hands. “Thank you for your hospitality, Sebastian, but I should get going.”

His eyes narrowed to slits. He started forward. They weren’t going to let me leave in peace, but that was what I hoped.

And I turned, as if I were leaving. Then I saw what I was waiting for—Blaze’s head snapped to the right. I felt Sebastian closing the distance between us, and I dropped down. His arm went over my head. I caught it with my arm. I jerked him forward and smashed my beer can on his forehead.

The fight was on.

A slammed door was my only warning for the impending arrival. Mason would be through my door in two seconds, and he wouldn’t care that it was locked. He’d kick it down or pick the lock. I sat up and held the girl still on top of me. I pulled her hips down and thrust up one last time. Yep, there it was. My climax came, and holy shit, it was a good one. It was still rippling through me.

I used that last second to enjoy it. My door burst open just as I finished, and I collapsed back o

n my bed.

The redhead yelled, diving for the bed sheets beside me, and covered herself.

Neither Mason nor I paid her attention. Instead, I was locked in a heated stare with my brother.

One of my eyebrows lifted. “Yes?”

He scowled at me. “What did you do last night?”

“What you couldn’t do.”

He knew what I meant and gave me the middle finger. “Fuck you, Logan.” He turned to go.

I hopped out of bed, but the girl cried out in protest.

Pressing a quick kiss to her lips, I patted her on the hip. “I gotta take care of this. Be a nice little lay, and get dressed.”

“You’re an asshole,” she seethed.

I grabbed some pants, and I paused as I considered it. I was. I shrugged. “I’m not trying to be a dick here, but I picked you up at a party where I’d started the entire brawl. What did you expect?”

She sat upright, her entire face flaming in red. “Do you even know my name?”

No apologies here. “One, you never told me last night. Two, I never asked. I don’t know what you expected when my exact words were, ‘Do you want to go to my place to fuck?’”

She sucked in a breath and her lips pinched together.

With a shirt in hand, I started for the door. I needed to smooth this over with Mason, but the chick was becoming more of a problem than I’d thought she’d be. I paused in the doorway. “We fucked. You stayed the rest of the night, and we fucked again. Both times were good, even though I’m sorry I couldn’t help you finish this morning.” I nodded toward the hallway. “I’d thought I’d have more time before he exploded in here.”

“Whatever.” She scooted to the edge of the bed and began searching for her clothes.

I waited as she furiously dressed. The jeans were pulled up. The zipper and button were left undone as she reached for her bra and her shirt. She drove here, following Nate and me in the car, so that I wouldn’t have to get a cab for her. She took her keys and brushed past me. I sucked in my breath, evading her elbow at the last second, and she cursed at me.

I followed her down the stairs.

She opened the front door and whirled around to face me. “You—” she sputtered. The redness traveled to her forehead and spread down her neck. She couldn’t talk. She was so angry.

She was hot.

Her tits strained against her shirt. Her jeans slunk down to showcase her hip bones. She wasn’t skinny. She had a nice amount of meat on her, enough where I could be a little rougher than normal, and she screamed for it last time.

Shit.

I knew I’d want another go with her.

When I laid my hand on her arm, her body tensed under my touch. She was getting ready to blast me, so I said softly, “I’m not trying to be a dick. I just need to make things right with my brother before his game today.”

She relaxed instantly and shook her head, rolling her eyes. “My god.”

“See?” I smirked at her, running my hand up her arm and curling it around her shoulder. I moved around her head. I cupped the back of her neck. “You don’t know my name either. I’m Logan, not God.”

She laughed but let out a different curse.

I drew her close and murmured, right before my lips touched hers, “I’m not the J guy either.”

“Oh my—”

I pressed my lips to hers, shutting her up. My mouth opened even wider, and I took control of the kiss, becoming more demanding, until she sighed into me and pressed against me.

“You gotta stop calling me that guy’s name.” I pulled back but pressed one last kiss before I stepped away. “I’m Logan, and I’d like to call you again.”

A rueful laugh slipped from her closed lips. “I must be out of my mind, but here you go.” She grabbed a pen from the table beside the door and wrote her number on my hand. “Call me before I regret this.”

I had every intention to, but once she was out the door, I hurried to Mason’s room. I paused right before his door. It was closed. I didn’t remember seeing Sam’s bag anywhere.

I wasn’t sure if she was still there or not, so I knocked and opened the door an inch. “You decent?”

Mason yelled from his bathroom, “She’s not here. I just got back from driving her to the dorm.”

“Oh.” I walked in, ignored the smell of sex, and held up my hands as he swung those accusing eyes my way.

Shit. My brother could kill someone just by looking at them. It hadn’t happened yet, but I knew it would. He’d have the best defense ever. No, Judge, he really only looked at the guy.

“Logan.”

“Right, right.” Not a good time to be distracted. “I went there to start a fight.”

He scowled. “Without me. What the fuck were you thinking?”

“To be honest…” I waited.

His scowl never lessened. He was waiting for my explanation.

I said, “The same thing since the beginning.”

“What are you talking about?”

“You can’t do anything, Mason. Your hands are tied. If you make one move against Sebastian, he’ll go to the board about it. You’ll get kicked off the team and expelled from school. I have nothing to lose. If I get expelled, so what? I’ll just go somewhere else. I don’t have a career in football that could be taken away from one punch. He’s got you by the balls.”

“You’re wrong. I do have something planned, but it’s going to take time.” He went back inside the bathroom and turned the shower on. He came back to the doorway. “Stay out of it, Logan.”

“No.”

“Logan.”

I held my ground.

Mason protected me. He planned out the best defeats, and we were firm together. He couldn’t this time, but he was refusing to see that.

I shook my head. “I can’t. Nate went with me. He went with me. If you could handle this fight, he never would’ve done that, and you know it. Nate’s always true to you first.”

“I—” Pain flashed across his face.

I didn’t like seeing that, and I knew it was killing him to admit this, but for once, my brother needed to be the protected one.

I murmured quietly, “You know I’m right. It’s why you haven’t done a thing against him yet.”

“You’re wrong.” But the fight was gone from him. Mason cupped the back of his neck and ran his hand up and over his head before letting it fall back to his side. “Can you just trust me? Something is in the works, but you’re right. I have to go slow, and I have to wait some stuff out. It’ll be worth it in the end. It will.”

“What are you planning?”

“I’m…” He hesitated. “I’m waiting on something. That’s all I can say.”

“This is bullshit. We’re supposed to be together on this. All of us—you, me, Sam, and Nate. The foursome fearsome, remember? What are you planning? And why can’t you tell us? You haven’t said a word to Nate about it, and I’m guessing you haven’t said a word to Sam either.”

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