It still blows my mind that I might play for the NFL. That football is my job. I’m a lucky son-of-a-bitch.
“Sydney, this is Wade Knox. He’s an old family friend,” Fable says, knocking me from my thoughts. I blink and look down to find Sydney smiling up at me, interest clearly showing in her gaze. Hmm. “Wade, this is Sydney.”
“Hey Sydney.” I shake her hand, electricity pulsing between us the moment our palms touch. She jerks her hand away from mine as if I burned her. Guess she felt it too.
“Nice to meet you,” she murmurs as she takes a step back. Like she needs the distance.
Even more interesting.
We make small talk for a few minutes before Fable takes Sydney back to the house, and the moment the door shuts behind them, Drew’s talking.
“The nanny’s cute,” he observes, his voice way too nonchalant.
“She looked at you like she thought you were cute, too.”
I roll my eyes. He never says stuff like this, so what’s his deal? “Cute? What are you doing? Trying to play matchmaker?” I send him a pointed look. “Give me a break. I don’t need the distraction.”
He shrugs. “Nothing like the love of a good woman to keep a man on the straight and narrow especially doing what we do.”
I am nowhere close to doing what he does, but I’m honored he’s lumped us together. That’s what I’ve always appreciated about Drew. He has never thought he was better than anyone else, and the guy always had reason to. He’s rich, he’s good looking, he’s a talented quarterback, his wife is gorgeous, his kids are cute. He is living the fucking perfect life.
If I could have one-tenth of the life that he’s had, I’d be happy.
And that’s the truth.
Two weeks into my job as the live-in nanny and sort of assistant to Fable and I’m freaking exhausted. Of course, I’ve never worked a job like this in my life ever (I’ve never worked a job ever, period), so that I’m still employed by the Callahans, especially after the last few days, is some sort of miracle.
Their children, while sweet and adorable and fun, are also a complete handful, just as Fable warned. Every single day, Autumn runs me ragged. She’s just so fast, zipping around the house, the yard, the park, the store, wherever we’re at. And she’s always getting into things. Jacob is kind of needy—but he’s a toddler, so I’m assuming all toddlers are needy. Plus, he really loves his mom. Like, he will full-on cry and demand to be with her the moment he spots her. When she’s not around, he’s content. But he catches sight of her and that’s it. He forgets all about me and cries for her.
He is definitely a mama’s boy.
But Fable steps in a lot and spends time with her children, just as I expected she would. She’s a good mom—gentle and patient and always willing to be with them as much as she can. Nothing like I remember my mom being when I was little. She wasn’t around much at all, and when she did spend time with my brother Gabe and me, it always felt like she treated us as if we were a burden, versus her actually wanting to be with us.
Even when I was a little kid, I could sense that.
I stopped acting star struck every time Drew came around pretty quickly. At first, I couldn’t help it. I’ve seen him on TV countless times, on the cover of Sports Illustrated—heck, both of them were on the cover of People magazine the year the Niners won the Super Bowl. It was hard at first to wrap my head around the fact that they’re real people who put their pants on one leg at a time, just like you and me. But they’re very real—and so nice.
Plus, Drew is just ridiculously good looking. The two of them together are such a striking couple. All I want to do is gawk whenever I see them. Their love for each other is so obvious. They kind of remind me of my brother and his girlfriend. Gabe and Lucy are totally in love and have no problem letting the world know it either. Thankfully I adore Lucy. Otherwise, the two of them would gross me out.
You know what doesn’t gross me out, though? How Drew always has his teammates over at the house when they’re not at practice. Big, hulking football players are constantly coming around, seeking advice on plays, about the coaches, how to handle the constant pressure to be the best. Most of them were looking for tips or just wanted to hang out. And Drew was always gracious. He never seemed to mind his teammates coming by.
Neither did I.
I had no idea I was drawn to big, beefy football players before. Those types of guys were never my thing. In high school, I didn’t pay attention to the jocks. I thought they were obnoxious jerks most of the time. But these guys who play on Drew’s team, they’re gorgeous. And they seem nice too, especially one in particular.
He’s at the house right now, sitting outside by the pool and chatting with Drew, their expressions deadly serious. I’m standing in front of the sink in the kitchen, rinsing out sippy cups before I set them in the dishwasher and staring out the window over the sink that faces the backyard.
Spying on them, I guess. I can’t help it. Wade is always around, yet I never really get a chance to talk to him. I only know a few facts, and these I’ve gleaned from Fable without being too obvious I’m digging for information. But I do know this:
He’s Fable’s brother’s best friend.
He’s twenty-two years old.
He’s a newly chosen wide receiver for the 49ers.