Tangled Page 25

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“Are you f**king wasted?”

I don’t really appreciate his tone. Someone needs to teach him some f**king manners.

“Don’t start, Billy. I’ve had a bad night,” Kate tells him.

“A bad night? Really? As in having the biggest gig of your life and your girlfriend not showing up? Was it that bad, Kate?”

Gig? Did he really just say gig? She actually sleeps with this moron? You have got to be kidding me.

She pulls out of his grasp. “You know what…” She starts off strong—and then deflates. “Just…let’s go home.” She gets in the car and Bitch Boy slams it closed behind her. He glares at me as he walks around to the driver’s side.

Kate rolls down the window. “Goodnight, Drew. And thanks…for everything.”

I give her a smile despite my growing desire to smash her fiancé’s face in. “Any time.”

And the Thunderbird roars away. Leaving me, for the second night in a row, aching for Kate Brooks. I rub my hand down my face as a voice comes from behind me.

“Hey, cutie. I just got off. Want to get off with me?”

It’s Shot Girl. She’s decent-looking—nothing to write home about—but she’s there. And after seeing Kate take off with the spineless weasel she’s marrying, I refuse to spend the rest of the evening alone.

“Sure, baby. I’ll get us a cab.”

It’s a lousy lay. Some advice: Being as still and silent as a corpse when a guy is f**king you will never be remembered as a stellar sexual experience.

The other reason it sucks is because I can’t get Kate out of my head. I keep comparing Shot Girl to her, and the former, of course, comes up disappointingly short.

You think I’m a sleazeball for saying that? Come on—are you going to tell me you never imagined that it was Brad Pitt sticking it to you instead of your beer-bellied husband? That’s what I thought.

Still think I’m a scumbag? Then you’re in luck. I’ll be getting just what you think I deserve very soon.

Chapter 10

MY FATHER WAS NOT PLEASED with how I handled the Anderson situation. I’d been rash, unprofessional, blah, blah, blah. And because of my seniority, he held me more accountable for losing the client than Kate.

But the fact that I was on the shit list at the office for a while didn’t hit me as hard you’d think. Mostly because I have no regrets over how I’d reacted. If I had it to do all over again, I wouldn’t change a thing. So, maybe my father was disappointed in me, but to tell you the truth, by the time he got done reaming me out, I was pretty f**king disappointed in him too.

Also, in the four weeks following that disastrous meeting, things between Kate and I have continued to evolve. We still trade punches at work, but they’re more jabs to the chest, meant to sting, rather than right hooks to the jaw, designed to knock each other on our respective asses. We share ideas, help each other out. My father was right about that, at least. Kate and I complement each other, balance each other’s strengths and weaknesses.

Somewhere along the line, she’s become more to me than just a set of legs I want to crawl between. More than a pair of pants I desperately want to get down.

Now she’s Kate—a friend. A friend who causes my dick to stand at attention every time she walks into the room, but that’s my cross to bear, I guess. Because as much as I still want her, and as sure as I am a part of her wants me, Kate is just not the cheating kind.

At least not the kind who could live with herself afterward.

Now, I know what you’re thinking: But what happened? How did a self-assured, handsome, wickedly charming young man like myself become the flu-infected, sloppy shut-in you first met?

We’re getting there—trust me.

To show you the whole picture, there are a few more players you need to meet in the shit-pit soap opera that is now my life. You’ve seen Dirtbag Warren. He’ll be back later, unfortunately.

And now you’ll meet Dee-Dee Warren. She’s the jackass’s cousin. But you shouldn’t hold that against her. She’s also Kate’s best friend. I’ll show you.

“I saw you talking to the brunette with the nice rack. You go back to her place?” Matthew asks me. He, Jack, and I are having lunch at a diner a few blocks from the office. We’re discussing our most recent Saturday night.

“We didn’t make it that far.”

“What do you mean?”

I smirk, remembering what an exhibitionist the girl had been. “I mean that cab will never be the same again. And I think we scarred the driver for life.”

Jack laughs. “You’re such a f**king dog, man.”

“Nah, I saved doggie-style for when we were actually inside her apartment.”

Don’t give me that look again. We’ve been over this.

Guys. Sex. Talk.

Besides, despite the wild eagerness of Taxi Girl, the sex was sub-par. She wasn’t even Colgate. She was more like some generic brand of toothpaste they stock in low-grade hotel rooms whose name you can’t even remember after you brush with it.

“Hey, Kate,” Matthew says, looking behind me. I didn’t see her approach us.

We’ll stop here for just a moment. This is important.

See the look on her face? The thin line of her lips? The slight wrinkle of her brow? She heard what I said. And she doesn’t look too happy about it, does she? I missed this the first time around, but you should make a note of it. This moment will come back to bite me in the ass later on.

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