“That’s none of your business. I’m not on the clock and I’m a guest at the wedding.”

She turned to leave, but I grabbed onto her hand and spun her back around. “I don’t give a fuck about work. This is between you and me.”

“Hello, Joseph,” my mother interrupted. “Hello, Rachael. It’s so good to see you. Don’t you look stunning.”

I didn’t let go of her hand; in fact, I held it tighter then turned to my mother to address her. “Mother, I’m sorry, but this isn’t the right time. I need to speak with Rachael alone.”

“Joseph Thomas Middleton. You know…” I put my other hand up to stop whatever she was going to say. I’d always been a good boy and a damn good man, but this woman had taken my sanity and I wanted some of it back.

“Mother. Excuse me, I’ve got to get started on that horde of grandbabies you want.” I heard both of them gasp, but fuck if I was going to have this conversation with others around. I pulled Rachael to my body before lifting her over my shoulder and carrying her out the side entrance. It was a warm night outside.

“Put me down, you big jerk.” I set her down on her feet, but I didn’t loosen my hold on her waist. There was no way I was letting her go until I got some answers. And even then, I was tempted to keep her until she confessed that there was something between us.

“You need to tell me what the fuck I did wrong to make you hate me so damn much. Did your father tell you I threatened him? Was it the goddamn uniforms?”

“Threatened him?” she questioned. I supposed he hadn’t told her that I planned to destroy him if he tried to force my brother to marry Rachael. Well, I’d save that for another day because it didn’t matter. It wasn’t going to happen, even if Jacob hadn’t just gotten married.

“Never mind that. Tell me, damn it. I’ve spent the past three fucking months trying to figure out how to make you mine.”

“What?”

“Again, with a question. You heard me, Rachael. I’m not good at this, but I need you. I want you. Fucking hell, I can’t live without you.”

“What about Roxie?” I knew she had something to do with all of this, but I never knew what. Either way, that was about to be settled. There wasn’t going to be any reason for her to make that assumption again.

“What the fuck about her? You want me to fire her? Well, consider it done.”

“You’re going to fire her?”

“Yes. This whole time I thought it was everyone else going around making assumptions, but if she led everyone to believe we were fucking together, then she’s out.”

“Yes, she did.”

“I’m not, I’ve never have and I never will. I only want you, Rachael. I’m not a man who shows his emotions, so I don’t know what the fuck I’m doing, but I’m in love with you.”

“Oh, fucking hell. This whole time?” she asked.

“Yes, this whole time.” I nodded.

“Why did you wait?”

“Because…I’ve never done this before.”

“I’ve only fallen in love once, Joseph. And I haven’t stopped loving him for the past three years.” I was about to interrupt her because I didn’t want to hear another word about this guy. My heart had cracked the instant she said those words. “See, he came to my home and I took one look at him and I wanted to be his. But he was too old for me and he was walking with another woman on his arm instead of being my knight.”

It hit me. I was the knight. “Holy fucking hell,” I muttered, pulling her close and taking what belonged to me. It took a moment for her to slip her hands around my neck as I pressed my hands to her ass and ground my cock against her pussy.

“Excuse me,” Julian interrupted. I growled against her lips.

“Jules, it can wait,” I muttered, going back for another taste of her lips.

“They want some photos. Let’s take them and get on with it. I’m sure you’re not going to want to get redressed later for them,” he said, giving us a wink.

“I’m sorry, Rachael. He’s right.”

“I know.”

“Give us one minute,” I said to Julian.


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