Slow Play (The Rules 3) - Page 30

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“We just got home, baby.” He winks at her. “And now the party can officially start.”

“Where’s Shep?” She sends all of us a panicked look. The only ones remaining beside myself are Kelli, Lucy, and the girl who gave the demonstrations, Toni. And by the interested glow in her eyes, I can see she doesn’t mind Tristan stopping by at all.

“In the kitchen shitting his pants,” he says cheerily. “You scare the hell out of him I hope you know.”

“Fuck off, Tristan,” Shep yells from the kitchen.

Jade’s cheeks turn red and she rises to her feet. “Well, sorry to disappoint but the party’s over.”

“Hey Jade. Who’s your friend?” Toni asks as she gets up from the couch to stand beside her.

“Tristan,” he says, thrusting out his hand, one of those notorious charming smiles on his face. A smile I’d like to slap off if I could.

She takes his hand, shaking it slowly, not letting go. “I’m Toni,” she practically purrs. I swear she just batted her eyelashes at him. “Aren’t you delicious?”

Kelli starts to giggle uncomfortably while anger simmers in my veins. Fine, we’ve all been sipping on wine and munching on delicious food the entire night, talking about the dirtiest things possible. When a handsome man walks into the room, of course someone is going to start flirting with him.

It’s been an evening of revelations. I heard stories about Shep that I can never scrub from my brain. Lucy blushed so hard whenever someone asked her a question we just knew that Gabe does all sorts of dirty things to her. She even admitted she freaking loves whatever it is that he does, making all of us extremely curious—and a little jealous. Kelli shared a few escapades, Toni is dirty as hell and doesn’t hold back, Jade’s other friends spent a ton of money on various sized vibrators, heated lube and edible underwear. And I sat there like the most boring person in the world, keeping what few stories I do have to myself.

I had a great time.

And now the guy I’m interested in, the guy I’m hot for, who kisses like a dream and acts like a nightmare is flirting with some woman who’s at least ten years older than him.

What the fuck ever.

“I can be as delicious as you want me to be,” he says, making Jade growl and Lucy groan.

“I’m out,” Lucy says as she hops to her feet, grabs her purse and goes to give Jade a hug. “Thanks for a great time. Nice meeting you Toni.” She approaches Tristan and lightly pats his cheek. “You should go sleep this off before you do something you’ll regret.”

“Ooh, burn,” Kelli mutters under her breath as Lucy leaves the room. “I don’t know if that was directed at him or at Toni.”

I can’t help but watch as they chat each other up. Toni steps closer. Tristan smiles. Toni touches his chest. Tristan doesn’t stop her. They both laugh and I know I can’t stay here much longer and witness this bullshit that’s unfolding.

“Let’s go,” I tell Kelli, tugging on her sleeve.

“Way to ruin the party, Tristan,” Kelli says as she gets up from the couch and then offers me a hand. I take it and she pulls me to my feet. “You walk in and we all bail,” she calls over her shoulder.

“I’m not bailing,” Toni says innocently.

I bet she’s not.

“You guys.” Jade steps in front of us as we make our way to the front door, wringing her hands and looking completely stressed out. “You don’t have to leave yet.”

“Ah, I work tomorrow so I should probably get home,” I tell her.

“And since I’m Alex’s ride, I have to go too.” Kelli shrugs and smiles. “But we had a great time, Jade. Seriously. I don’t think I’ll ever be able to look Shep in the eyes again.”

Jade laughs, the tension seeming to ease out of her. Somewhat. “I should’ve never told you guys any of those stories.”

Kelli laughs along with her. “Yeah, you really shouldn’t have but still. It was fun.”

I’m not even sure if Jade realizes that Kelli isn’t joking but hey, it’s all good. TMI was the name of the game tonight.

Avoiding Tristan as best as I can, we walk past where he and Toni are still chatting. He never once looks our way and my dumb, ridiculous heart feels like it’s going to crack.

Stupid. I knew what I was getting into, dealing with Tristan the asshole Prescott. After approximately ten days of not seeing each other, he forgets I even exist. This guy doesn’t deserve me. I need to focus on the good in my life. School is going well, I have a job, I have friends and a nice guy who’s interested in me.

The last thing I need is Tristan.

We enter the kitchen, where Lucy and Shep are saying goodbye to each other. Jade practically runs into the kitchen seconds later, startling all three of us. “You need to get Tristan out of there,” she tells Shep, waving her hand in the direction of the living room. “I think he’s going to jump Toni at any second.”

Shep makes a frustrated noise. “He’s drunk and irritable. I’ll go get him.” He stalks out of the kitchen, Jade following after him.

Kelli turns to look at me, rolling her eyes. “He’s a dick.”

“Who, Shep? I disagree. I mean, according to Jade he has a big di—”

“No, not Shep. Please. Tristan.” Kelli rests her hands on her hips, her eyes flashing with anger. “Why would he ignore you like that? And flirt with stupid Toni right in front of you? She’s kind of tacky.”

“I thought she was nice,” I start but Kelli cuts me off with a wagging finger in my face.

“Don’t you dare defend her! She was coming on to him like a cat in heat. I think all that dildo talk she does for her presentations leaves her constantly wanting,” Kelli says bitterly.

I want to laugh but I don’t. My friend is mad on my behalf and I appreciate her so much. I never have anyone run to my defense. It feels good.

“I knew he was trouble from the moment I met him,” I reassure her, grabbing her shoulder and giving her a little shake before I let my hand drop. “He’s not worth your anger, trust me. I’m over it.”

Kelli studies me, her mouth turned into a little frown, her gaze full of disappointment. “Are you sure? I don’t want you to be all butt hurt over him. I know you kind of liked him.”

“I so didn’t like him. There’s nothing to like. He’s all flash and no substance, you know? Heartless and like a machine, always looking to find his next victim and use her up before he spits her out.” I press my lips together, shutting myself up a little too late. Bitter much? Ow.

“Tell me how you really feel,” Kelli says, arching one brow. She touches my arm and moves past me. “Let me use the restroom before we go. Gimme a minute.”

“No problem,” I tell her retreating back.

Blowing out a harsh breath, I go to the island and snag the last mushroom pastry puff that Jade made. They’re delicious, though not as good as they were when they were warm and fresh out of the oven. Still, it’ll hold me over until I get home.

Where I will drown my sorrows with a tub of ice cream, a giant spoon and a Sex and the City marathon on Netflix.

Ugh. Men suck.


Tags: Monica Murphy The Rules Romance
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