I can’t deny we have an attraction. Chemistry. Whatever you want to call it. Yes, we had sex. But lots of people have casual sex and then never actually get together all the time. This could happen between us. That’s the way it should happen. It makes more sense than us falling in love and living together, happily ever after.
Of course, look what Fable told me last night. She and Drew started out practically the same way. And when I think about their relationship, and how solid and passionate and perfect it seems, I’m blown away. They were forced to spend time together, yet they still fell in love.
Maybe there’s hope for Wade and me yet.
Or maybe I’m reading too much into this. Maybe he’s going to reject me and I’m going to end up looking like a fool.
My heart hurts just thinking about it. And so does my head. I can’t take it anymore.
“Do you mind if I go to bed?” I aim my question at Drew and Fable.
Fable sits up, turning to look at me, her expression full of concern. “Are you feeling okay?”
“Yeah.” I nod. “I’m just tired.” Not a lie. I’m worn out from Wade keeping me up the last two nights.
“Missing a certain someone?” The knowing smile Fable shoots my way makes me want to throw a couch pillow at her.
But I don’t. Because, you know, I want to keep my job.
“Yeah.” I shrug, feeling awkward. “Do you want me to put the kids to bed?”
“No, I’ll take care of them after the movie’s over. Thanks, Syd. Good night,” Fable says cheerily.
I stand and they all say goodnight to me, Autumn and Jacob running toward me to give me a quick hug and kiss before they resume sitting on the floor to finish their movie.
I leave the family room and wander toward the staircase. A flash of light suddenly appears through the mottled glass of the front door and I pause, wondering if someone has pulled up to the house.
Weird. Usually they get a call from the gate, unless whoever it is knows the password.
I’m about to head up the stairs when there’s a soft knock on the door. Frowning, I approach the door, checking through the peephole to see who’s on the other side.
And when I see who it is, I unlock and throw open the door so fast I’m breathless. “What are you doing here?”
Wade stands in front of me, his hands shoved in his rumpled jeans, his T-shirt wrinkled, his hair a mess, his face full of exhaustion. “I heard there’s a girl here who’ll give me a full body message. I’m hoping to collect payment.”
I don’t even bother containing my emotions. I throw myself at him, wrapping my arms around him tightly, closing my eyes to fight off the tears that threaten. I’m an emotional mess just seeing him, and I can’t explain why. I’m just so glad he’s back.
“I can’t believe you came back so soon. How’s your mom?” I ask, my voice muffled against his chest.
He runs a hand over my hair, then presses his lips to my forehead. “I can tell you all about it, but I’m hoping you’ll let me take a shower first?”
My poor, tired, dirty man. I pull away from him, grab his hand and lead him up the stairs, my entire body shaking. He’s here. I can’t believe he didn’t go straight home, that he came over to be with me instead.
I’m so glad he’s here. So happy he chose me first.
I direct Wade to my shower and make sure he has a clean towel and washcloth. Then I go ask Drew if he has some clothes to spare for him. Fable helps me dig up a pair of old, ugly red Niners sweats and a T-shirt, a knowing smile on her face the entire time.
“He came for you,” Fable whispers just as she hands me the clothes. “It’s a sign.”
“A sign of what?” I frown.
“That he cares about you. He was thinking about you. He had to come and see you first.” Her knowing smile grows even bigger. “You matter to him, Sydney. Don’t forget that.”
I matter to him.
Those words are on repeat in my brain as I drift back into my bedroom as if in a daze. I knock on the attached bathroom’s closed door and then open it, setting the clothes on the counter. I can see him through the shower’s glass door, his very muscular, very naked body covered in soap.
The stuff of fantasies, I swear.
I slam the bathroom door shut and then frantically change out of my clothes, throwing on an old T-shirt I wear to sleep and kicking off my shorts so I’m only in my pink cotton panties. Then I dive beneath the bedcovers and wait, the anticipation nearly killing me.
Ten minutes later the door finally opens, steam billowing out of the bathroom. I anxiously wait for him to appear and I sit up, holding my breath as I wait for him to make his appearance. When he finally walks out of the bathroom, I gasp.
And then I immediately start to laugh.
“What?” I glance down at myself, knowing that she’s laughing at the stupid sweats I’m wearing. First, they’re too tight. I’m bigger than Drew. Second, they’re bright red. Fire engine red. Niners red.
They’re kind of hideous.
“I knew those sweats would be ridiculous,” she says between giggles.
I grin at her. “You’re mean.”
“I can’t help it.” She starts giggling harder. “Red is not your color.”
“They don’t even fit me.” I walk toward the bed, grimacing as the fabric binds and stretches tight against my boys. I’m kicking these fuckers off as soon as I get in that bed with her, I swear.