In the Dark (The Rules 2) - Page 9

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No skin cancer for me, thanks. I’m not taking my chances.

I lay out on the lounger for a while, sunglasses firmly in place, eyes closed…most of the time. I keep checking to see if he’s watching despite my anger toward him. But he never makes an appearance and I fight off the disappointment that latches onto me, telling myself I’m being ridiculous.

Shivering when the breeze washes over me, I roll over onto my stomach, propped up on my elbows as I reach over toward the table next to the chair and grab the magazine I brought out with me. A gossip mag that’s delivered to the house, I would never pay so much money for such trashy goodness but it sure is a great way to kill a half hour.

I try to read the articles about the latest celebrity scandals but it’s so hard, what with the way Gabe distracts me. He lingers in my mind and with a sigh I glance up, staring at the ocean in the near distance. White caps top the water, seagulls busy flying in circles and dive bombing for fishy treats. I can’t help but wonder where Gabe’s at. Wonder what he’s doing.

A shiver steals over me as I remember the way he touched me last night, so confident, so possessive. His mouth had been a hot brand on my skin and when he kissed me, teased my lips with his tongue just before sliding it into the interior of my mouth, God.

My body lights up just thinking about it.

I shift around, trying to find a more comfortable position. My fat ass is on blatant display and I can’t find enough energy to care. I ate fruit for breakfast, skipped my usual cup of coffee and drank water instead. Walked my ass down to the beach, hung out with Sydney and then hoofed it back to the house, my thigh and calf muscles straining by the time I practically collapsed in the foyer.

I’m desperate to lose weight before I start up school in August. I hear how it is when you go away for college. I’m not a freshman but I could still pack on the freshman fifteen. And I already have an extra twenty on my frame I’d love to get rid of.

The reverent way Gabe touched me last night hits me full force and I wonder what he thinks about my curves. He seemed to like them. But they make me feel self- conscious most of the time. Really, the only time I felt confident and sexy is when I knew Gabe’s eyes were on me while I pranced around the pool for him.

I just couldn’t hold his interest while he kissed me. Now that’s embarrassing. I know it’s been a while since I spent one on one time with a guy but this is ridiculous.

Tossing the magazine aside, I push myself up and swing my legs over so I’m sitting on the edge of the lounger. I reach behind my head to pile my hair into a bun before I secure it with the band I wore around my wrist, getting it off my hot neck.

“Love it when girls do that.”

With a gasp I whirl around to find Gabe standing on the other side of the fence, much like he did yesterday. I glare at him, resting my hand over my chest, my heart thumping hard against my palm. “You scared me.”

“Sorry.” His smile is dim, as is his gaze. “I feel like I’m always saying that to you.”

I frown. “Saying what?”

“Sorry. And I am—sorry. For what happened last night. I know I already said that but I had to say it again.” He runs his hand through his hair, messing it all up, which I like. He’s always so perfectly coiffed, dressed, all of it. It’s distracting.

He’s also not wearing a shirt and that’s a total distraction. He’s one big giant distraction and that’s the last thing I need right now.

“You love it when girls do what?” I remember what he said in the first place that scared me, and his words made no sense.

“Oh.” He relaxes the slightest bit and waves a hand at me. “How girls put their hair up like it’s no big deal. You twisted that band around it so effortlessly. It was…sexy.”

My skin heats despite my irritation with him. Irritation I cling to because otherwise, I’m going to throw everything to the wayside and go to him. “If you think I’m so sexy why did you fall asleep on me last night?”

His cheeks color a faint red and damn it, it’s adorable. I should not think he’s adorable. “It had nothing to do with you. It was all on me.”

I rise from the chair and start walking toward where he stands, ignoring the warning bells ringing inside of me. “All on you?” I stop so only the fence separates us. We’re mere inches from each other and I let my gaze wander, drinking in his perfect features, his strong neck, wide shoulders, broad chest…

He clears his throat so my eyes shoot back up and meet his. “Definitely all on me. Let me make it up to you.”

I slowly shake my head. There’s a real thrill in torturing him. In making him wait. I bet no one has made this rich boy wait for anything his entire life. “You already made that offer last night.”

“Everyone deserves a second chance.” His expression is pure innocence. Like he wants nothing more in the world than to prove he’s worthy of that second chance.

I don’t know if he really is. I’m afraid spending time with Gabe might be more than I can handle.

And I’m starting to think he might be worth the adventure. Just for a few weeks.

Just for the summer.

“You think you deserve one? A second chance?” I cross my arms in front of my chest, plumping up my breasts. I note the way his gaze falls for the slightest moment, distracted by my ample cleavage on display and I can’t deny I did that on purpose.

But then his gaze is back on mine again, like nothing else matters but me and the crackle of energy that flashes between us is potent.


“Definitely. I want to make this up to you.” He nods, his expression contrite. “I fucked up,” he admits quietly.

“Can’t deny that.”

“There’s something between us I want to explore.”

His words make me go still and slowly, reluctantly I admit, “I agree.”

The crooked smile he flashes me is nothing short of glorious. “So are you saying I have a chance?”

“Maybe.” I shrug and start to turn, glancing at him from over my shoulder. For a moment, I forgot I was in the old one piece. I don’t know what’s worse, flaunting all my goods, tummy rolls and all in the bikini or looking haggard in the old, faded suit. “What do you have in mind to make it up to me?”

His face breaks out into a full grin. “Wait until you see.”

I’m seriously looking forward to it.

The doorbell chimes—and chimes and chimes—and I glance up from where I’m lounging on the couch, reading a book on my phone. I’m not expecting anyone to come over because trust me, no one comes over. I live like a hermit in this house. Interacting with Gabe and his sister was the first live action I’ve encountered since I’ve been housesitting.

Standing, I shove my phone into the pocket of my shorts and take tentative steps toward the front door. The doorbell chimes again, startling me and with a grimace I rush to the front door and peek through the peephole to see who’s standing on the other side.

Mr. GQ himself.

My heart tripping over itself, I undo the lock and throw the door open, getting my grip firmly on the door handle so I have something to hang onto. “What are you doing here?”

Gabe flashes me a brilliant smile and I’m thankful for the door handle. Otherwise I probably would’ve slid to the floor in a puddle. “I’m here to take you out.”

Tags: Monica Murphy The Rules Romance