“Why? Who’s going to ask a question like that?”
“I don’t know, but someone could. And I’ll look like an idiot if I don’t know the answer to that question, especially since we’re supposed to have been—intimate with each other.”
“We could be like Russell Wilson and his new wife. Claim that we’re celibate until we get married. Reporters will eat that up.” I have my own feelings about Russell Wilson, but I won’t declare them out loud.
“Married?” All the air seems to have left her at my words. I think she might’ve even gasped. “That’s a little serious, don’t you think?”
“When the relationship is as fake as ours is, you can be as extreme as you want to be.” We’re already in this deep. What’s a little talk about marriage? Women usually love that sort of thing, though I should watch myself. I don’t want Sydney to get any ideas.
“Marriage is pretty extreme. Like, the most extreme that you can be.” She shakes her head. “Honestly? I’m not a believer. Marriage is more like a trap.”
I’m taken aback by her trap comment. She mentioned her parents’ marriage was pretty crappy. So maybe she’s thinking of that? If that’s all she’s ever seen, then yeah I can see why she wouldn’t believe in marriage. Hell, I’m not a big believer either. My sperm donor didn’t even bother marrying my mom. He knocked her up, stuck around until I was born and then jammed. Never to be seen or heard from again. “I only used it as an example,” I say, but she’s not even listening to me. She just keeps talking about it.
“I’m only nineteen. The last thing I want to be is married.” She practically spits out the last word, like it was something disgusting she ate.
“Same. I’m only twenty-two. My life is really just beginning.”
“So is mine.”
“Well, I guess we’re in agreement that we’re not ready to get married then.” I grin. This conversation—like our situation—is totally insane. “Did we just have our first fight, Sydney?”
“I think so. And we’ve already resolved it and everything.” She returns the smile, her gaze dropping to the menu in front of her. “Maybe it’s a good thing I’m changing up my usual type.”
“It’s always smart to stretch and expand your horizons,” I say as seriously as possible.
And maybe I’m starting to believe that too.
The candlelight from the votive on our table strikes Wade in the most perfect way possible. The flame constantly flickers, casting his face in various shadows that only highlight his features. The more I stare at him throughout our very intimate yet totally on-display dinner, the more I like what I see.
Ugh. I need some sort of warning alarm in my head to remind me what I’m doing is dangerous. Playing around like I’m in a relationship with Wade Knox is stupid. Maybe I was a fool to agree to this.
Too late to reconsider, though—I’m all in, whether I like it or not.
I’ve felt people watching us all night, and I hope they don’t recognize me. But then again, I’m supposed to want them to recognize me. The Naughty Nanny—that nickname is the freaking worst, I swear. I don’t want people to believe I’m the one who’s possibly breaking up the Callahan marriage.
Hence all this phony stuff, which feels surprisingly real right now—scary, I know. But I can’t help it. Wade is so nice, and nice to look at too. I’ve seen more than one woman stare at him as she passed by our table. I can’t blame them either. He’s so good looking. I don’t even think he knows just how attractive he is.
That makes it even worse.
“People keep looking over at us,” Wade says, his voice low as he quickly scans the room. I idly wonder if he’s a mind reader. “Think they recognize you?”
“I hope not,” I immediately say in return. “Maybe they recognize you.”
He scoffs. How he can make a scoff sound sexy, I’m not sure, but he just did. “No way. No one knows who I am, nor do they care.”
I like how he just used the word “nor”. Crap, I’m liking everything he’s doing tonight. I need that danger warning alarm sounding off, stat. “They’ll figure out who you are soon when you start playing in the regular season.”
He looks pleased by my comment, and I’m proud of the fact that I’m retaining so much of what Fable’s taught me about football over this last week. She told me she didn’t know squat about the game either when she first started dating Drew, but she wanted to know because it was such a big part of his life.
I’m only learning so I don’t sound like an idiot in case anyone asks me about my so-called boyfriend’s career, which isn’t quite the same as Fable’s intentions. But whatever. She knows a lot, she’s gone over the basics for me, so I’m fairly confident I won’t end up sounding like a complete imbecile if a reporter or whoever asks me about my “boyfriend” and what he does.
“I just want to stay on the team. That’s all.” Wade sets his fork on his now-empty plate. The man can put a lot of food away, though I guess I shouldn’t be surprised considering how large he is. “Tomorrow’s game is everything. I have to give it my best.”
Right. This game is the most important of his life. He’s reiterated that to me more than once. “We should probably leave early so you can get home and get some rest.”