“Yes. It was—it is—scary. We don’t know who did it.” I lean closer. “If it was Randall, tell me. It will give me peace of mind to know no one is coming for me again.”

“I don’t know, sis. I confronted him. He denies it. I want the same peace of mind. You need protection.”

“Jax hired a bodyguard, but I can’t walk around with a bodyguard all my life.”

“Glad as fuck he did. For now, you have to have protection.”

“I know,” I agree. “I know.” I scoop up some whip cream and take a big bite.

Chance laughs and scoops a blotch of it from my nose. “Still my silly, wonderful sister. I hope Jax appreciates how wonderful you are.”

“He’s good to me. Please find a way to be family with him.”

“You really are going to move in with him?”

“I am. I’m not sure how we make that work for my career, but I’m doing this. I’m moving to Maine.”

“Work from home. Or don’t. Be happy. I think that’s what we should all get out of this story. That’s our ending.”

“And are you happy?”

He roughs up his brown hair and then takes a drink before he says, “I’m considering a merger with Bennett Enterprises.”

“I heard,” I say. “Why?”

“They’re ethical. They’re good people. I feel like there’s dirty water that dad left behind blasting out of the damn ocean and washing over me, and I can’t get clean. We need shelter from those things.”

I don’t ask what dirt. I don’t want to know. “Have you told Bennett about the dirty water?”

“Not yet. They run an investment consortium as well. They sent me some trash dirty deal today. I know it was a test. They wanted to know if I would sell out for a buck.”

The setup, I think. Jax set him up. “And you turned it down?” I say, pride swelling inside me.

“Hell yeah I turned it down. I want in with Bennett to get clean, not dirtier.”

“But the brand. Do you want to lose the brand?”

“Sometimes being a part of something bigger and better is better. And hell, I need a moral compass like Grayson Bennett.”

“You know, maybe it’s actually a good idea.”

From there, we chat and laugh and lose track of time. We’re so deep in conversation that neither of us notice Jax’s approach until he sits down between us. I now have the two most important people in my life at one table, and my heart swells with the love I feel for these two men. “Jax,” I say, holding his hand. “Meet Chance. My brother who I love very much. Chance meet Jax, who I also love very much.”

Jax’s eyes warm on me. He offers his hand to Chance, and Chance accepts it. “I turned down that junk deal I know you had Eric Mitchell offer me.”

Jax’s brow lifts, no denial in him. “Did you now?”

“I did. That merger is about escaping my father’s imprint on our business and our lives. And then replacing it with something better. Grayson Bennett.”

From that point forward, the night is perfect.

We head into the restaurant, and over North Whiskey, I listen to them talk about business, my father, Hunter. Me. They’re both worried about me. We end the evening with another bear hug between me and Chance and a scheduled meeting with an attorney to sign the castle over to Chance and back to Jax. No, we actually end the evening with me walking into the hotel room filled with shopping bags.

“What is this?” I ask, scanning the bags that range from Chanel to Dior. “I didn’t think you’d want to go back to your apartment right now. Your computer and phone are on the couch as well. Savage got you a new number. He said it’s the safest move.”

I forget the “safest” word right now. I just can’t go down that rabbit hole tonight. I rotate to face him and find him already right there, catching my waist. My rock. My hero. The man who just spent way too much money on me. “About the money.”

“I have plenty of it. If you don’t get your inheritance, if you don’t want to work for Bennett, you don’t have to work ever again.”

My defenses flare. Money and men don’t work for me. They suffocate me. “I don’t need your money, Jax. I don’t want your money. I want you.”

“You’re sharing my life. What’s mine is yours, baby. I’m going to take you to the bank tomorrow.”


He kisses me to cut off my protest. “Yes. Then if you are willing, I’d like to go back to Maine where we can create those holiday traditions.”

I soften, the walls I’ve erected, falling away. I’ve let old demons step inside this room, and I mentally kick them right to the door. “I’d love that very much.”

“How would you feel, and no pressure, how would you feel about me having a mover pack up your apartment? Are you ready for that?”

Tags: Lisa Renee Jones Naked Trilogy Erotic
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