Nixon (Raleigh Raptors 1) - Page 16

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His lips parted, true concern flashing in his eyes. “She has to get rid of it. And you can have your groceries delivered.”

“The fish tank weighs a crap-ton!” I laughed, shaking my head. “I will most certainly not ask her to get rid of it.”

“Fine,” he said, his solid chest rising and falling as if he’d been throwing practice passes as opposed to arguing with me. “Fine.” Something clicked behind his eyes, and I arched a brow at him. “Come stay with me.”

It was my turn to gape. “You’re joking.”

He shook his head. “I’m not. I have plenty of room and absolutely zero fish tanks.” His eyes scanned my crowded room again. “Nothing else can fit in this room. And you’re about to double in size—”

“I am not!” I cut him off, glaring at him.

A small, half-smile. “Okay, okay, bad choice of words.”

I rolled my eyes.

“Please,” he said. “I can’t focus when I’m worrying about you and the baby. And I really need to focus this season. You’ll be comfortable. And I won’t make you go to the grocery store.”

“This place is near campus. I can walk from here.”

“I’ll take you to classes,” he said. “Or, you can borrow one of my cars.”

One of his cars? God, who the hell had gotten me pregnant?

Oh yeah, Nixon freaking Noble, golden arm of the Raleigh Raptors and massive man-crush since he was brought on the team years ago.

I narrowed my gaze, noting how his face had switched from concerned panic boarding on anger, to a smooth, calm, and charming set of features capable of bringing any woman to her knees.

“Nuh-uh,” I said, pointing my finger at that gorgeous, Photoshop-worthy smile. “I see right through that charming bullshit, Nixon.”

The smile melted off his face in a blink, utter shock flaring in his eyes.

“What’s going on?” I asked. “The texts. You showing up unannounced. You seem way too concerned for a guy who didn’t trust me as far as he could throw me a couple of weeks ago.”

Another effortless smirk shaped his lips as his eyes trailed the length of my body, the gaze like a brand. “I could throw you pretty far.”

I bit back a smile, shaking my head. “Nope,” I said. “Not falling for it. Give me a straight answer. I haven’t asked you for anything, and I’m not going to, but honesty is a demand.”

His shoulders dropped a fraction, and he nodded. “I came here to talk,” he said, and rubbed at the back of his neck. “I know I’ve already said I’m sorry about my initial reaction to the news, but there is more to it than you know.”

My stomach dropped, and it had nothing to do with the baby—it was the look of betrayal on his face, the pain flickering in those dark brown eyes. Real, raw. Not the practiced look of the golden quarterback, but just a man who’d been hurt…badly.

“My ex,” he said, and I sucked in a sharp breath. Nothing good ever came from a sentence that started with those two words. “She told me she was pregnant,” he said, his tone sharp as a razor. “We’d been dating for three years, and I was just about to hit it big. We’d always been safe with sex because I hadn’t even considered marriage. But she demanded a wedding. Said it was the only way to raise the baby the right way.” I cringed. “And…” he sighed and stepped over a pile of clothes to sink onto the edge of my bed. I couldn’t help but gape slightly at the way his weight bowed the thin mattress as he left me standing there looking down at him. “She had paperwork drawn up, a date set, everything. She’d been meticulous with the prenup, and I hadn’t even bought her a ring yet.” He shook his head, his elbows on his knees. “I found out a few days before we were supposed to get married that it was all fake. The doctor she’d supposedly seen, the pregnancy tests, all of it.”

I gasped, my hand flying to my mouth.

“I pressed her on it, and after a long, brutal fight, she admitted she was going to say she’d lost the baby after we’d been married. Claimed it was because she didn’t want to lose me, but all she really wanted was a meal ticket for the rest of her life.”

Acid crawled up my throat, rage bubbling for a woman I’d never met.

Who could be so callous? Thousands of women all over the world suffered miscarriages or couldn’t conceive, and this woman wanted to use that tragic situation for what, money? Not to mention the emotional scarring alone from Nixon thinking they’d lost a child—

“So, that’s why I was such an asshole—”

“Hey,” I said, dropping to my knees before him. I reached for his forearms, my fingers gliding over the smooth skin wrapped over hard, corded muscle. I squeezed him gently. “She was a fucking cunt.”


Tags: Samantha Whiskey Raleigh Raptors Romance
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