That was a mouthful. Trinity had managed to get my complete attention with her long ramblings about Green. The two things she said that stood out most were that Green had been ignoring her all night and that she thought he was pretty. That was very interesting. Green was a nice guy, and if he’d met Trinity before, even drunk, I can’t imagine he’d ignore her. He never did that.

I studied her for a moment, and the pink in her cheeks told me she was embarrassed about her outburst of information. Did Trinity have a crush on Green? Surely not. He was not only too old for her, but she was Matty’s cousin. This would end very badly. Unless, of course, Green’s ignoring her meant he was fighting off any attraction to her. It was possible for Green to fall for a girl and change his ways. He was an easier bet than Krit before I came along.

“Green is in law school. He’s actually brilliant, and, yes, he’s very talented. But you’ll learn, if you’re around these guys very much, that musicians are an odd sort. They live life their own way. As for ignoring you, I wouldn’t read anything into it. He’s just focused because they’re onstage. He has his game face on, where he flirts with the fans and brings in the crowd. It’s what they do.”

Trinity looked very thoughtful for a moment, then nodded. “Okay. Yeah. That makes sense. Thanks, Blythe.”

I nodded in return and looked back at Krit, who was waiting on me to look at him. I grinned and blew him a kiss. He caught it and pressed it to his lips, then winked at me. I could just imagine the females swooning in the audience right now. I was one very lucky girl.


Two weeks later Blythe had sold a monthly total of twenty thousand books.

I had a paid-for diamond hidden under the bed.

All plans to propose were on hold.



I typed the last word of my second novel and dropped my hands into my lap. The sense of accomplishment and satisfaction that came with knowing I had written two complete novels was extraordinary.

There were still the edits and the rewrites I would need to do, but the story was complete. Within a month I could upload it and click publish again. The power that came with that surprised me. I hadn’t expected this feeling of triumph. Several times over the past month I had thought about calling Mr. Williams. Also known as the man who helped give me life.

I wasn’t sure what I would say, though. He did raise me, in the loosest sense of the word. Mrs. Williams, his wife, and not my mother had done most of it. The discipline and emotional abuse—Mr. Williams had just stood back and let it happen. He had only intervened when he thought he needed to.

Since I didn’t know he was my father until last year, there was no connection or love there. I didn’t find myself wanting to bond with him. To me, he seemed like a hollow old man who relied on the pulpit he stood on every Sunday and told people what Jesus wanted them to do. I had stopped listening to that a long time ago.

In my opinion, Jesus didn’t want parents to abandon their kids and let them grow up in a home without love or affection. So he’d failed miserably there. I wasn’t of a mind to forgive that.

Calling him and telling him about my book seemed pointless. And he wouldn’t approve of it if he read it. There were parts that I had changed and made very fictional, but they were still based on the life he let me grow up in. If anyone would catch on to that, he would.

I put Mr. Williams out of my mind. One day maybe I’d call him—or maybe I wouldn’t. He had made no effort to contact me. And I had a family now, and friends. I had the love he’d denied me.

Standing up, I stretched my back from sitting all day long at my desk and went to make a glass of sweet tea. Before I could get to the kitchen, there was a knock on the door. I opened it to reveal Green looking like he hadn’t slept in days.

“Green . . . are you okay?” I asked, worried he might be sick. He looked ill.

“No. God, no,” he said, running his hand through his hair, then cursing a streak. “I f**ked up, Blythe, and I know Krit’s not here, but I need advice. From a girl. Or anyone at the moment who I can trust and who isn’t an idiot. Then I may need you to lock me in a room and protect me.”

This did not sound good. “Come in. I was just going to get some tea. Would you like some?” I asked him.

He shook his head. “No, but lock that door. Bolt it too. Just in case.”

“You’re starting to frighten me, Green.”

He walked over, dropped onto the sofa, and buried his head in his hands. “He won’t murder you. Just me. He’s gonna kill me, and I f**king deserve it. But she’s just so . . . and her hair . . . and she smells . . . FUCK! What did I do? I swear to God I’m never drinking again.”

I sat down on the chair across from him. “Slow down. Let’s start with who is going to kill you.”

Green pulled his hair as he kept his head down. “Matty.”

Oh no. “Green . . . what did you do? Did you, uh . . . touch Trinity?” The fact that he was ignoring Trinity at the gigs for a week and a half, and then two nights ago he kept looking at her, then jerking his gaze away had caught my attention. But I decided it was harmless..

“She was a . . . virgin,” he choked out.

Was? Oh no. Ohno ohno ohno . . . “Green, please tell me she was willing . . .”

He dropped his head farther into his lap and groaned. “God, yes she was willing. I’m not a f**king ra**st. But she was so f**king willing about everything I did that I missed the signs. Until I was inside her, being squeezed to death by her tight pu**y.”

“TMI, GREEN!” I stopped him.

He lifted his head and frowned. “Yeah. Sorry, it was. But I didn’t know, Blythe. I seriously didn’t know. I was drinking, and Matty was passed out. She woke up and all that hair of hers was messy and she wasn’t wearing a bra. Then she smiled at me with this cute little sexy look, and she has f**king dimples so damn deep, GOD! I’m just a man, Blythe. I’m just a motherfucking man who f**ked his friend’s virgin cousin.”

He was really in trouble. Matty was going to kill him, or he was going to go to jail. “How old is she? Did you get her age first?” I asked, ready to go hide him if I had to.

“She’ll be nineteen next month. She’s legal. I already asked Matty her age back before things went weird with us. That’s her fault too, because she has that hair and she smells good and she smiles at me and watches me. When I catch her staring at me, she doesn’t look away, she just gives me them dimples. Did I mention her hair?”

I bit back a smile. “Yeah, you mentioned her hair a few times.”

Green shot up and went back to pulling his own hair with both hands. “I AM SO FUCKED!”

“Where is she now? I mean, did you take her virginity and run over here, or did you take care of her and clean her up and talk about it?”

Green dropped his hands to his sides and let his head fall back while he stared at the ceiling as if it had answers for him. “We . . . you know . . . both, uh . . . finished. And then I did clean her up. She was all dimpled smiles, and I was so pissed. But them dimples were f**king my head up. She said things like it was wonderful and like she’d always dreamed. Then she asked if she could tell Matty we were a couple.” He looked right at me with his eyes wide. “A couple, Blythe! She thought because we f**ked we were a couple.”

Uh-oh. This did not sound good. What had he done?

He sank down onto the coffee table this time and rested his elbows on his knees as he hung his head in what could only be described as shame. “I told her she should have told me that she was a virgin. That I’d never have slept with her. I blamed it on drinking too much whiskey, and then I told her I had too much going on in my life to be in any relationship. That I f**ked girls, I didn’t date them. . . . Then I left.”

Oh, Green. How could you?

“When did you leave her?”

“I came straight here. I needed a safe place to hide for when she tells Matty.”

He was right. And Krit needed to get home. I wasn’t sure how to keep them from destroying the place without Krit here to control them.

Poor Trinity.


I flung the door to the apartment open and stalked inside, ready to bash heads. I found Green pacing in front of the window and Blythe sitting in the recliner with her legs pulled up under her, watching him with a concerned frown.

She’d texted me that Green had slept with Trinity and Matty was going to kill him. Please come home. Green is here.

I told Dewayne I had to go and got the hell out of there. He asked if it was an emergency and if I needed backup. I had told him I wasn’t sure—I’d let him know if I did, though.

“You look like shit,” I told Green as I walked over to Blythe.

“I didn’t know she was a virgin. She was flirting and all f**king over me. And she has this hair.” He stopped and cursed.

“He has a big thing for her hair. He will mention it a lot,” Blythe whispered up at me.

I slid my hand under my girl’s hair and cupped it around her neck. “Is she even old enough?” Krit asked in disgust.

Green glared at him. “Yes! She is as old as Blythe was when you hooked up.”

“I was in love with Blythe,” Krit fired back.

“Not at first! You were obsessed with her. She was just one of your crazy addictions. The love came later.”

He was right, but it pissed me off to hear him blow off my feelings for her. “Watch it. Right now I’m the only thing standing between you and Matty.”

Green sighed and looked remorseful. “Yeah, I know. I’m just a mess. I can’t believe I did that. It’s that damn hair . . . and the dimples.”

Apparently, Blythe was right. He really liked the girl’s hair.

“Did she get mad at you and say she was telling Matty? I mean, is he even gonna find out?”

Blythe tilted her head back. “She thought that made them a couple. He said he f**ked, he didn’t date. Then he left her.”

Ouch. He was so getting his face bashed in.

“You can’t stay here in our apartment. I’ll make sure you get down to your apartment alive and get bolted in, though. Then we just wait. The girl may not plan on telling him. You don’t know her well enough to know if she will. Stay alive until our gig tomorrow night.”

Green looked longingly at the door that used to be his bedroom. “I’ll stay in that room. I won’t come out and bother y’all.”

I shook my head and went to the door, and I opened it for him so he could leave. “Not staying here. Give it up. Let’s go,” I said, pointing for him to exit.

Green glanced out the window again. He was looking for Matty to show up.

“While the coast is clear, you need to make a run for it,” I reminded him.

“Fine,” he snapped, and finally got the hell out of my apartment.


Before I moved in with Krit, I never made my bed. It was my one act of rebellion after being forced to make my bed growing up in a strict household. If I messed up while making the bed, I got lashed with a belt. So making a bed isn’t something I care for.

However, Krit likes a made bed. For a long time he would make it up in the afternoons when he got home. He never complained or brought it up. He just did it. He liked it nice and straight.

After watching him do this for a while, I decided I could do that every morning. He wasn’t picky about how tightly the sheet was tucked in or if the blanket was exactly straight. He just liked it to be neat.

The first time I did it, the grin on his face when he walked into the bedroom made it worth it. Now I do it just to see that smile. He likes that I do that for him. Because he knows it was something I hated before.

This morning I didn’t have classes. Instead, I settled in to do some deep cleaning. I was still waiting for Green to call for help. So far Matty hadn’t shown up or even mentioned anything. I didn’t think Trinity planned on telling him.

Getting on my knees, I pulled out the panties and socks that had made their way under the bed. Most of the time we throw clothes while attacking each other, so things go missing and end up all over the place. My favorite bra was lost for a month because it was behind the dresser.

I figured I would look for all our missing articles of clothing, then dust and vacuum. Several boxes stayed under the bed. They were Krit’s, and I never asked him about them. It was mostly CDs, from what I could tell, and keepsake items. I reached under to straighten them and check for anything that might have gotten stuffed between them and the wall.

My fingers brushed against a small velvet box. Confused, I wrapped my hand around it and pulled it out slowly. I knew what came in small velvet boxes, but Krit hadn’t mentioned marriage to me. Even though it was all I could think about at the past few weddings we had attended. I loved Krit, and I wanted forever with him, but he didn’t seem to be ready for that step. I was content getting to live together.

The small box was black. I held it in my hand while lying on my stomach beside the bed. I was almost afraid to open it. What if there was something in here I didn’t need to see? What if this was a ring from his past? Had he given Jess a ring?

No. I wouldn’t be jealous of this. I would not jump to conclusions. But there was dust on the box. Not a lot, but still, there was some.

Things could get dusty under a bed fast. After that little pep talk I opened the box.

Nestled in the satin was a huge diamond ring. Of all the things I expected to see, this was not what I had imagined. This ring was expensive. And very real. The inside of the box had the jeweler’s name pressed in black ink into the white satin.

Checking over my shoulder to make sure Krit hadn’t come home, I decided I was going to try it on. I pulled myself up to a sitting position on the floor and gently picked up the ring like it might break. Then I delicately slid it on my ring finger. It was a perfect fit. I tilted my hand from side to side to see the lights glimmer off the stone. Why did he have this? Was he saving it for me? Copyright 2016 - 2024