Home > Reckless Hands (Joey and Adora Duet #1)(5)

Reckless Hands (Joey and Adora Duet #1)(5)
Author: T.L. Smith

“Yes, of when we’re getting married.”

“I don’t care about dates. Just text it to me.”

“It’s next week,” he states nonchalantly.

I swear my soul has left my body.

It’s drifting somewhere in outer space.

My mind has gone with it.

I thought I would have time.

Maybe get myself out of it somehow.

Some way.

But now I see that’s not an option.

When I finally look up at Joey, he’s been watching me, assessing me, as he waits for me to finally speak and when I don’t, he says, “The bridal shop has my card. Go there and pick what you need.” He moves to walk past me, but I stop him with a hand to his chest.

That was a mistake.

I realize it the minute my hand touches him.

I pull it away quickly, bringing it back to my side.

His brow scrunches at the brief contact.

“I don’t need your money.”

“Why?” he asks.

“I have my father’s. How do you think I pay for Abigail’s schooling?” I say, referring to my sister. “I probably have more money than you.”

“So why did Lucas need to buy into your little bookshop, then?”

I scoff at his choice of words, my little bookshop.

“I was still waiting for the money to come through when I met him, and it seemed like a good fit. Lucas is a good man.”

Joey throws his head back and laughs. His hands clutch his stomach as his laughter picks up and becomes louder and louder.

I cross my arms over my chest as I wait for him to finish.

I hate to say it, but his laugh is attractive.

How is that possible?

For a laugh to be attractive?

I’m not even sure.

I don’t like this man, not one bit. And if I had a choice, I would never marry him. I’ve seen what marriage does to people, and it’s not good, that’s for sure.

His gaze drops to find mine again, and his crystal-clear blue eyes narrow as his laughter abruptly stops. “Lucas is anything but a good man, even his girl knows that.”

“I like Chanel,” I remark, smiling.

“Seems you have terrible taste. Not in Chanel, but definitely in Lucas. Lucas is the worst of us, and that’s saying something. Stay away from him.” He steps past, leaving me standing there with my mouth hanging open in disbelief.

“You will not, not for a single second…” I seethe, stomping toward him, and as he stops and turns back to me, my finger jabs into his chest, “… think you can tell me who and what I can and can’t be around. You are not my father, and even if you were, look where that got him,” I add with a smile. “I’ll slit your throat in your sleep if you think you can tell me what to do.” I remove my finger and step back, gesturing toward the door. “You can leave now. Have a nice night, Joey.” A small smirk tugs at his lips, but he doesn’t move a muscle. “I said… you can leave now.”

“No. I have a better idea. Why don’t you come to mine so you can see your new room?”

“All the better to slit your throat in?” I taunt.

“See, the more you talk dirty to me, the more I want to fuck you.” The smirk he has firmly ingrained on his face hasn’t left, and I don’t know if he’s serious or not. “A little blood never hurt no one.” He shrugs, and my stomach flips. “Get a coat and let’s go.” He pulls open my front door and takes a few steps. When he notices I’m not following, he stops. “You have ten seconds, or I will spend the night here in your bed.”

I would like to say I think he’s joking, but I have a feeling he isn’t. So, somewhat reluctantly, I grab my coat and keys, then follow him out as I lock my front door. We walk down to his car, and he doesn’t open my car door for me.

Pig!

I scoff at him as I do it myself.

“What?” he says.

“You are no gentleman, Joey Rossi.” I get in, pulling the coat over me before I buckle myself in.

“And you ain’t no lady. So let’s not get too tied up in what we are now, shall we?”

It’s wrong to hit him in the head with my phone, right?

Or stab him in the neck with my keys?

I could do either and smile while doing it. Instead, I sit here, not saying a word, as he drives. And he doesn’t say anything either.

Asshole.

 

 

FIVE

 

 

JOEY

 

 

She smells like bubble gum with hints of cotton candy.

Why the fuck does she smell so good?

It makes me so mad.

No woman should smell that good.

Especially not her.

She sits rigidly in the passenger’s seat, her phone and keys clutched in her hand. I’m pretty sure she wants to stab me with them.

That’s not going to happen.

I pull up to my house, and her nose turns up.

“Does it have to be so flashy?”

I glance back at my home, a brownstone with three stories right near Keir’s.

“It’s not flashy. Now get out.”

She follows as I stride up the stairs to the front door. Her footsteps are heavy as I push the black door open. Adora comes in behind me, and I feel her scrutinizing glare taking everything in.

“You like the color blue,” she states.

“I do,” I reply as Adora walks into the kitchen and runs her hands over the white marble countertop with a blue backsplash. Black stools sit on one side of the counter and black pendant lights drip from the ceiling. The sliding glass door next to the kitchen leads out to a small outdoor sitting area.

Adora walks to the left and continues her investigation, stopping when she gets to the back of the house. I stare in fascination as her hands run along my books.

She glances back at me. “You need some romance in your life,” she comments as she looks over the titles. “This is all law and finance.”

“I enjoy them.”

She laughs under her breath, then gets to the white library ladder which sits in front of the blue shelving. She turns, sitting her ass on it, and looks up at me as the downlights highlight the books behind her.

“I hate it,” I can hear the lie as she says it.

“You can put your romance books there.” I point to a shelf, and she tries to fight her smile, but it wins.

“Really?” she asks.

“Yes.”

“What about the color?” Chocolate-colored hair flicks across her face as she glances behind her to the shelving.

“The blue stays.”

“I guess I can work with that.” She shrugs, then shoots me a glare straight from the pits of Hell. “I’m not fucking you. You having my body never was, and never will be, a part of this arrangement.”

“If you say so.” I lift a brow, smirking.

“I’m not joking. That’s a hard no.”

I refrain from rolling my eyes.

“You need to have a bridesmaid. Keir will be my best man.”

“My only friend is a guy. I guess he’ll wear a dress for me, though.”

I don’t even bother arguing with that statement.

“You can take me home now.”

“Wrong. This is your home now. Would you like to get your shit tonight or in the morning?” I ask, changing the plans.

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