He raised a brow at her, asking, “Do you want me to?”
The appalled look had him scowling, and for one moment Maximilian was tempted to kiss her anyway and show her that the world didn’t start and end with her stepbrother.
Realizing that she might have been too honest in her reaction and risked making the guy angry, Seri forced herself to say, “Sorry, I don’t mean to offend you. I’m sure you’re probably a good kisser and all, but I’d rather—-”
“Save your mouth to service your stepbrother?” he drawled cuttingly. He knew he was being a jerk, but he couldn’t help it. It bugged him like hell, thinking about how innocent she seemed and yet knowing reality couldn’t be any further from what he imagined.
“Why do you do that?” Seri demanded hotly.
“Do what?” He stared at her broodingly, still unable to stop thinking about how she could cry over kissing him even while she clearly had the guts to give her stepbrother a hand job outside the bedroom.
“You always make it sound like it’s something gross when it’s not,” Seri accused. “It’s not even incestuous or illegal—-”
“Then why do you insist on hiding it?”
She lifted her chin. “We have our reasons.”
Maximilian was unconvinced. “You mean, you’re okay with outing yourself but your stepbrother wants to keep you his dirty little secret, something to enjoy in private but—-”
“It’s not like that! It’s because—-” Seri managed to catch herself before Vassi’s name could slip past her lips. D’err mo. If she kept letting her emotions get the better of her, she might just end up saying something regrettable.
Forcing herself to take deep calming breaths, she glanced at the guy, asking shortly, “Can I trust you then?”
Maximilian shrugged, murmuring, “Even if I say yes, you won’t believe me anyway so time will just tell, don’t you think?”
Her teeth gnashed at his deliberately ambivalent reply. Mudak. Asshole. But cursing him just didn’t feel enough, and so she glared at him, saying, “Has anyone ever told you you’re an asshole?”
“A lot of times,” he assured her. “Mostly women, and always when we’re fucking because they hate how I’m so good at making them cum.” A pause, before he said tauntingly, “Unlike your stepbrother.”
She cried out, “I’m not joking around here, okay?” Seri started to say something else, but the door behind her suddenly opened, taking her by surprise as it propelled her forward and caused her to totter on her heels.
“Careful!” Seeing her start to fall, Maximilian automatically moved to catch her.
“Ah!” As the door behind her opened completely and someone stepped inside the lab, she stumbled towards the guy, her breasts flattening against his chest and her lips landing over his.
Bo zheh moy!
And then it simply got worse when she heard two distinctly familiar voices speak behind her.
Misha, Seri realized in shock.
“What the fuck?”
The four of them were locked inside Misha’s private office, a perk that was usually reserved for faculty members – as well as for special students like Seri’s older brother. It was decorated in warm tones of cedar and gray, but at that moment it looked more like an execution chamber in Seri’s eyes.
I’m dead, Seri thought miserably for the nth time. Everything just kept getting worse and worse. As it turned out, Max – she finally knew his name now, thanks to Misha – the guy who knew about her and Vassi also happened to be one of the new members assigned to Misha’s thesis group.
If Vassi ever found out that she had inadvertently let Max know the truth about them—-
Seri refused to even consider the consequences. I’m not going to think about that, she thought determinedly, because it’s just not going to happen. She glanced at Vassi, who was leaning against the wall, his handsome face unreadable. When their gazes met, she blurted out, “Why are you with Misha?” He was supposed to be in class, wasn’t he?
“The driver called me.” Vassi’s voice was coolly pleasant. “You forgot your bag in the car.” He nodded towards the couch behind her, and when she followed his gaze, she colored upon seeing her tote bag resting on it.
“I swung by your class to give it to you, but when you weren’t there, I figured this was the next best place to look for you – and I was right.”
Misha, seated behind his desk, frowned at his brother’s words, saying grimly, “But unfortunately, she wasn’t here because of me.”
Vassi’s lips curved in a smile that didn’t quite reach his eyes. “Evidently.”
Aghast at the direction their thoughts were taking, she protested, “It’s not what you think.”
“Isn’t it?” Vassi drawled.
Before Seri could answer, Misha had already turned towards his friend, his gaze narrowing as he said, “We’ve yet to hear from you, Max. Care to tell either of us how you and my sister know each other?”