Tangled Page 52

Loading...

Not my best moment, huh? Yeah, I know—I’m an ass**le. Believe me, I know.

“So I said those things on purpose, so you would think you were nothing to me. That you were just another girl. But you’re not, Kate. You’re not like anyone I’ve ever known. I want to be with you…really be with you. Only you. I’ve never felt this way about anyone. And I know I sound like a freaking Hallmark card, but it’s true. I’ve never wanted all the things I want to have when I’m with you.”

She doesn’t say anything. She just stares at me. And I can’t take it anymore. I put my hands on her shoulders, on her arms. Just to feel her.

She stiffens, but doesn’t pull away. I bring my hands to her face. My thumb smoothes over her cheeks and her lips.

Jesus.

Her eyes close at the contact, and the lump in my throat feels like it’s strangling me.

“Please, Kate, can we just…go back? Everything was so good before. It was perfect. I want us to be like that again. I want that so much.”

I’ve never believed in regret. In guilt. I used to think they were just in a person’s head. Like a fear of heights. Nothing you can’t get past if you have the determination. The strength. But I’ve never had someone—hurt someone—who meant more to me than…me. And to know that I messed this up because of my fear, my f**king stupidity, it’s just…unbearable.

She knocks my hands away. And steps back.

“No.”

Kate picks her bag up off the floor.

“Why?” I clear my throat. “Why not?”

“Do you remember when I first started working here? And you told me your father wanted me to put together a ‘practice’ presentation?”

I nod.

“You said that because you didn’t want me to get the client. Right?”

“That’s right.”

“And then the night we met with Anderson, you told me that I was shoving my tits in his face because…how did you put it? You wanted to ‘get a rise out of me.’ Yes or no?”

Where’s she going with this?

“Yes.”

“And then last week—after everything—you made me believe that you were talking to that woman because you wanted to hurt me?”

“I did, but—”

“And now, now you’re telling me you’re in love with me?”

“I am.”

She shakes her head softly. “And why on earth should I believe you, Drew?”

I stand there. Silent. Because I’ve got nothing. No defense. No reasons that would make any real difference. Not to her.

She turns to leave. And I panic. “Kate, please wait…”

I step in front of her. She stops but looks past me—through me. Like I’m not even here.

“I know I f**ked up. Badly. The taxi-girl thing was stupid and cruel. And I’m sorry. More sorry than you’ll ever understand. But…you can’t let that ruin what we could have.”

She laughs in my face. “What we could have? What do we have, Drew? All we’ve ever had are arguments and competition and lust…”

“No. It’s more than that. I felt it that weekend, and I know you felt it too. What we have could be…spectacular. If you just give it a chance. Give us—me—one more chance. Please.”

You know that song “Ain’t Too Proud to Beg” by the Rolling Stones? It’s my new theme song.

Her lips fold against one another. Then she moves around me.

But I grab her arm.

“Let me go, Drew.”

“I can’t.” And I don’t just mean her arm.

She jerks away. “Try harder. You did it once. I’m sure you can manage it again.”

Then she walks out the door.

And I don’t follow her.

Chapter 20

OKAY. SO THAT DIDN’T GO VERY WELL.

You’re right—it was a goddamn disaster. You think I should have gone after her? Well you’re wrong. Have you ever read The Art of War by Sun Tzu? I have. It’s a book about military strategy. A good general knows when to attack. A great general knows when to pull back. To regroup.

I’ve told Kate what I needed to. Now I have to show her.

Actions win wars. Actions heal wounds. Not words. Words are cheap. Mine, in particular, have the combined value of pocket lint at the moment.

So…I have a plan. And failure’s not an option. Because this isn’t just about me, about what I want. Not anymore. It’s about what Kate wants too. And she wants me. Sure, she’s fighting it—but it’s there. Like it’s always been.

No one will ever be to Kate what I can be. And—before you take my head off—I’m not saying that because of my overdeveloped sense of confidence. I’m saying it because behind the anger, under the hurt…Kate is just as in love with me as I am with her.

Looking at her was like looking in a goddamn mirror.

So I won’t quit. I won’t throw in the towel. Not until we both have what we want.

Each other.

Hey—you know what else a great general knows how to do?

Call in the reserves.

Here’s a fact for you: Most men can’t multitask.

It’s true.

That’s why you won’t catch many guys trying to make a full-course Thanksgiving dinner. That’s the reason mothers all over the world come home to a disaster area when they leave their kids with the hubby for a few hours. Most of us can only really focus on one thing at a time.

Prev Next