Chapter 21

Reagan’s entire world tilted on its axis. Oh my God, I’ve done it again. I’ve turned the man I love g*y. Trey’s body convulsed and he wrapped his hand around the head of his c**k as if to hide the evidence of his release. His extended, vigorous, and—if the look on his face was any indication—intensely pleasurable orgasm.

“Wha-what are you doing?” she sputtered.

He squeezed his eyes shut and turned his flushed face into the mattress. “Sorry. I couldn’t stand it any longer.” His voice was muffled by the comforter. “I… we need to talk.”

She didn’t want to talk. She wanted to flee. So she did. She backed out of the room and closed the door. She turned and collided with Ethan’s broad chest.

“What’s wrong?” he asked.

Why did those two words always make her cry? Light-headed and dizzy, she lifted a trembling hand to her lips. “Trey is g*y.”

“How do you know that?”

“I saw him… saw him in there.” She waved a hand toward the door behind her. “He was… getting off with…”


She nodded.

“That doesn’t necessarily mean he’s g*y, Reagan.”

She looked up at Ethan for direction. He would know. “It doesn’t?”

“No, that doesn’t make him g*y, but…” He lowered his eyes guiltily.

“Did he come on to you, Ethan?”

“No. I came on to him.”

“You bastard. How could you?” she bellowed at him. “I really like him.”

“I really like him too.”

Reagan shoved her fingers in both ears. “I don’t want to hear it.”

Strong hands landed on her shoulders from behind and she whirled around to face Trey. Even though she was thoroughly confused, her heart thudded with anticipation and that bubbly happy feeling she got every time he was near welled up in her throat. Trey took her hands and eased them away from her ears.

“I have some things I need to tell you. I thought I could ignore them, but…” He shook his head.

Her heart thudded faster and faster. She didn’t want to lose him. She’d rather not know if it meant she could keep him.

“Do you like my hair?” she said, touching the golden blond, face-framing strands. “They lightened it. I got a whole new wardrobe today. And wait until you see my new guitar,” she said. “I wasn’t sure if I’d like a floating bridge, I hear they’re really hard to keep in tune, but it sounds phenomenal. The third pickup—”

Trey covered her mouth with one hand and lifted his gaze to Ethan, who was standing directly behind her. “Can you give us a few minutes alone?”

“Yeah, of course,” Ethan said and stepped away.

“Trey,” she said against his hand.

“Hear me out, Reagan.”

She nodded and lowered her gaze. A dark cloud seemed to settle over her, making her skin cold and clammy.

He led her to the sofa and eased her down onto the soft cushions. When he sat on the coffee table in front of her and took her hands in his, she just wanted to wrap him in her arms and tell him it didn’t matter. She could pretend like she’d never seen that. Pretend that Ethan hadn’t verified her suspicions.

“I’ve been attracted to both men and women for as long as I can remember,” he said.

Well, that wasn’t what she’d expected him to say. She lifted her gaze to his. The sincerity in his eyes made her heart thud with a mixture of empathy and despair.

“Recently I decided that I didn’t want the complications that come with being attracted to men. I thought I could control those urges. Deny that they exist. I wanted to be faithful to you, Reagan. I have been faithful to you, but…”

“You didn’t do anything wrong, Trey. I’m sorry I freaked out. If that’s what you need, maybe I can help, or maybe you can—”

“Keep denying what I am?” He shook his head. “I can’t. I’ve always been very open about my sexuality. This trying to be something I’m not… I can’t do it anymore, Reagan. I love you, but…”

All the air whooshed out of her lungs. Did he just say that he loved her?

“I’m saying good-bye. I can’t make you happy. I’m just not cut out for a committed relationship. We’ll just end up making each other miserable. Either I’ll be sexually frustrated or you’ll be hurt when I eventually stray. It’s better to end this now before we become too attached to each other.”

His face blurred behind the welling of tears in her eyes. She was already too attached to him. Hot trails of moisture streaked down both cheeks. Dripped from her jaw.

“Don’t cry,” he whispered and brushed his lips against her temple. “You’ll be okay.”

She took a deep strangled breath and reached for him, but he climbed to his feet and held her down on the sofa by her shoulder.

“Ethan,” he called. When Trey released her shoulder, she leapt to her feet, but the arms that went around her, the shirt that absorbed her tears, didn’t belong to Trey. They belonged to Ethan.

“Take good care of her,” Trey said. When the front door closed behind him, she broke into wracking sobs.

Chapter 22

Ethan’s arms tightened around Reagan’s trembling body. He drew her closer to his chest, rubbed her back with both hands, and stared at the door that Trey had just exited. Ethan had never respected a man more than he respected Trey at that moment. Ethan wished he would have had the balls to have that conversation with Reagan. Wished he’d have been man enough to let her go and spare her feelings before he strayed with a man and crushed her heart. Wished he could have put her happiness first instead of doing everything in his power to keep himself in her life. He knew he was a selfish bastard, but even knowing that, he still couldn’t let her go. He loved her too much. Even if he did have to pretend he thought of her as a friend and nothing more substantial.

Ethan lowered his lips to her hair. He didn’t know what to say to her. Didn’t know if anything he said would make one bit of difference. He felt responsible for this entire thing. If he hadn’t been so attracted to Trey and tried to make a move on his best friend’s boyfriend—God, I’m such an ass—Reagan wouldn’t be sobbing right now. She’d be laughing. Smiling. Staring at Trey with the sickening look of love that ate Ethan alive. Copyright 2016 - 2024