Episode 384

“Please guys, open the door. Just open the door, please,” Kyle and Heather could still hear Kellen begging at the door pounding constantly with his fists. Standing up from the bed, Kyle watched as Heather fixed her blouse throwing her legs over the side of the bed once he made his way for the door. “Thank God.”

“Uh…,” Kyle went to say something once he had unlocked the door watching Kellen spill out onto the floor in front of him and Kyle shrugged his shoulders. Taking in a deep sigh he closed the door behind him watching Kellen get to his knees to lock the door. “I don’t think I even want to know.”

“Well…,” Kellen panted sitting on his behind on the carpet floor before letting out a small whimper looking up to see Kyle and what he saw automatically made him smile. Seeing Kyle’s shirt unbuttoned exposing his muscular abdomen just seemed to make just about everything else better. “I would love to know what happened with you and Heather.”

“We all would love to know a lot of things sometimes,” Kyle began moving back to the bed, getting in behind Heather to wrap his arms around her abdomen resting his chin against her shoulder. “Too bad we can never know everything.”

“You guys never play fair,” Kellen stood up from the ground and wiped off his pants, turning to make sure the door was locked and he let out a long breath of his own. “While you two were in here doing whatever it is that you do, I was in there being violated by your friend.”

“You’re kidding,” Heather saw Kellen let out an exaggerative expression before shaking his head slowly and she gasped looking back at Kyle. Moving in his arms more Heather glanced between Kyle and Kellen. “You never told me that Paul was gay.”

“Yuck,” Kellen muttered after him and Kyle both let out a disgusted noise and Kellen shook his head slowly. “No, nothing like that at all. He started to tell me about this adult video game industry he held and how he wanted me to be a model for it. He started looking at me weird, talking to me weird and my goodness, I’ve never felt so violated by a straight man in my whole life.”

“Well actually, wasn’t Kipp a straight man at first?" Kyle questioned feeling Heather smack him in the chest and he let out a long laugh. Kellen’s blue eyes stared out at him confused and Kyle let out a small chuckle squeezing Heather in closer to him. “What Heather? Doesn’t Kipp technically violate him all the time?"

“Kyle,” Heather still couldn’t believe what he said as she stood up from the bed hearing him laugh before following her step. “What Kellen does in his personal life isn’t anything important, we cant say things like that.”

“I do it with yours, so why not?" Kellen muttered out itching at his chin before pushing back his thick dark thinking about what Kyle said. “Anyways, he is kind of right once you start thinking about it and also kind of Ton…”

“Kellen,” Heather gasped seeing his eyes widen as he brought his hand in over his lips realizing that he made a mistake in mentioning the name of the very person that ruined both of their pasts. “Well…”

“Anyways,” Kyle moved forward toward the door knowing that they needed to get off subject as he opened his bathroom door motioning Kellen to follow him out into the hallway. “Get over here, we are going to go talk to Paul together.”

“Kyle no, Kyle I can’t do that,” Kellen rejected shaking his head over and over again before feeling Kyle grab him by his t-shirt trying to drag him out into the hallway. “Kyle, no. Kyle, he’s out there and I can’t go out there. I can’t do it.”

“Damn it Kellen,” Kyle grabbed Kellen by the loop of his jeans and finally mustered up enough strength to drag Kellen into the room with him. Hearing Kellen let out a small squeal pulling away from Kyle to fix his pants from being pulled on anymore before reaching out to smack Kyle on the shoulder lightly. “Ouch. Where did Paul go? It looks like he was the one afraid of you Kellen.”

“I highly doubt that, Paul is a horribly scary man,” Kellen pointed out hearing Heather let out a small laugh before resting her hands against his shoulders softly. “I’m not kidding Kyle, I was seriously feeling violated and…”

“Hey,” Paul walked in through the front door hearing Kellen squeal out before hiding in behind Heather and trying to avoid any eye contact with him at all. “Nice welcoming home, but I need your help Kyle. I got this call…”

“Yeah, sure. Don’t mind him, he is just an idiot,” Kyle frowned rolling his eyes at Kellen’s actions toward Paul before moving over toward his friend that started to push things around. “Paul, hey. What’s wrong man?"

“Kyle, which way do I go to the hospital?" Paul questioned looking into the worried hazel eyes before him seeing the way that Kyle watched him pace back and forth. “I got a call that Stacy was in the hospital and I have no idea where she is. I don’t know which way to go and…”

“You just take this road and take a right on the next street up,” Heather answered seeing Paul’s blue eyes staring out at her as he nodded telling her he got that down mentally. “If you keep going down, you can’t miss it. It’s on the right and it’s the big building.”

“Hey, do you need me to go with you?" Kyle offered up reaching for his keys on the table seeing Paul walk toward the door and shake his head slowly before letting out a long sigh. “I know where I’m going I can take you and…”

“No, I got this Kyle, thank you so much though,” Paul patted his friend on the shoulder before letting out a long sigh and shaking his head slowly. “You will hear from me as soon as I find out what’s wrong though, promise.”

“I’ll have my cell phone on me,” Kyle nodded seeing the way Paul headed out the door quickly leaving the three alone in the house with each other. “I really hope she’s okay. I’ve never seen him that worried before.”

“I’m sure she will be fine, that’s probably just why he was acting the way he was,” Heather shot Kellen a warning glare telling him to back off the subject for a while now that Kyle was worried about his friend and the daughter. “You have nothing to worry about Kyle, she’ll be okay. I know it.”


“Heather, I’m so sorry,” Kipp mouthed feeling her beside him, her mouth tapering off over his neck. He kept his eyes closed feeling a low rumble build in the back of his throat, “I never meant to say what I did tonight. I was just upset and…”

“Shh, it’s okay,” Becca mouthed with an inward smirk, sliding her lips over the center of his chest. Her long hair fell forward, tickling over his shoulder before her hand traveled down his abdomen.

“No, it’s not okay,” he shook his head letting out a groan. “I shouldn’t have blown up at you. I was…wrong…so wrong…”

“It’s okay,” Becca whispered pressing a small kiss over the center of his chest, “I forgive you Kipp.”

“Good,” Kipp smiled snuggling back into the pillows, “because I don’t want you mad at me. I never want you mad at me.”

“Because you love me?” she couldn’t help but ask watching him fall into a moment of contentment now that she hovered over him.

“Of course I love you,” he dropped his head to the side of the pillow, moving his shoulder ever so slightly when a sigh passed over his lips, “I’ve always loved you.”

“I’ve always loved you too Kipp,” her words buzzed from her lips sliding in over the warmth of his chest. She glided her naked form in over his, feeling his body respond to the contact her skin made against his. Teasing feathery light kisses over his body, she continued to speak up to him in a smooth and even tone, “You’ve wanted this since we split up, haven’t you Kipp?”

“I don’t want you mad at me,” he repeated acknowledging her words with a slight nod. “I hate…you’re mad…”

“I hate being mad too, but right now you’re making me happy,” she pushed the blankets off of his body, her hand pressing in over his thigh, tapering off over the soft warmth of his muscled form. She placed a kiss just over his hip, her hair falling onto his skin as she spoke up in a hot whisper, “I want you Kipp. I want you to make love to me.”

“Make love…” Kipp repeated in an unsure tone, feeling her reach out to touch him, her palm sheathing his manhood with a determined caress. He arched up into her touch before shifting on the bed beneath her, “no…I just don’t want to fight…”

“We’re not fighting anymore,” she promised placing kisses over his abdomen before positioning herself just over him to take him between her now parted lips. He let out a small groan before his body arched upward, thrusting towards her in such a fashion to give her exactly everything she’d been hoping for since she’d leapt into bed with him. She placed one hand on his thigh, the other easing over him with a steady movement that mirrored what she was doing now that she was tasting him.

“Kellen,” Kipp murmured lazily a hint of a smile teasing over his lips. His fingers fanned out over the discarded blankets. Reaching out he sought out his lover with a soft sigh of surrender, “I knew you wouldn’t stay mad at me for long. I’m sorry for what I said. I didn’t mean it. I…”

Kipp’s fingers reached out trailing down over the sheet to feel his lover’s shoulder, to beckon him for a kiss, when his fingers made first contact with the thick, long hair that splashed over his hip. His eyes snapped open as a moment of panic carried over him.

“Kellen,” he gulped suddenly very aware of the naked form in his bed. He started to pull himself up to take a look only to discover the long, blonde hair over him. He blinked a few times wondering if he’d imagined it when he thought to the strange dream he’d been having about Heather. Suddenly warning lights flashed in the back of his mind, “wait no…”

“You don’t mean that,” Becca felt him grab her shoulders pulling her up beside him on the bed. She scratched her nails over his chest before pushing him back onto the mattress again. She climbed in over him, wrapping her thighs around him before grinning down at him, “I was hoping you’d be awake to continue enjoying this with me.

“Get off of me,” Kipp gasped horrified as he shoved her to the other side of the bed. He sprung off of the mattress realizing that he’d been naked and as he saw that she was naked as well, he felt a full blown panic overtaking him. Placing his arm out as if the movement alone would keep her from reaching for him, Kipp spoke up in a labored breath, “What the hell are you doing here?”

“Kipp you invited me here. You asked me to come home with you because you wanted to make love,” she explained in a cool and even tone, bringing her arms up over the back of her head to show she had no shame in giving him a full glimpse of every inch of her. She saw his dark eyes widen and she squealed with delight uncurling her leg and using her toes to reach for him at the side of the bed, “Come back to bed Kipp so we can pick up where we left off with one another. You know that you want to.”

“No Becca, I’m pretty damn sure I don’t,” Kipp blurted out reaching for one of the pillows off of the bed in an attempt to cover himself now that he had to figure just how in the hell he’d wound up in such a tentative position with a woman he was pretty sure he never would’ve asked over to his home with him even if he was upset with Kellen.


“So are you going to tell me what that was all about?” Russ questioned carefully closing the door and locking it after Ken and Wendy had left the Denton home. He turned around to see Avery looking more relieved than she’d been all day now that their company was gone. Erin was down for a nap and Russ couldn’t help but sense there was more to the story than Avery was letting on after he’d found her speaking with Ken. He had seen that she’d cut herself, but after she’d cleaned herself up she’s been distanced from each and every conversation the group had with one another. “Honey what’s wrong?”

“I’m just tired,” she lied hating the way that keeping her feelings bottled up from Russ felt, but as she thought of everything she’d gone through with Ken--of all the things that were still eating away at her, she realized that she didn’t want to get into it with Russ. “It’s been a long day.”

“It has,” he nodded in agreement eyeing her closely as she circled around the living room adjusting the pillows, “but something tells me that you’ve got something else on your mind.”

“Why would you say that?” she questioned blankly looking over at him with a curious expression.

“Because I know you,” he reminded her reaching out around the corner of the couch to pull her into his arms, “Avery, I can see when something’s bothering you, so why don’t we just talk about it rather than keeping it bottled up?”

“Russ I really don’t want to…” she started feeling his strong arms around her. She turned around in his arms seeing his green eyes seeking out the truth from hers. Sighing she offered up a bit of the truth, “Ken and I just aren’t really close anymore after everything that’s happened over the last few months. We’re not friends like we once were.”

“I realize that and that’s part of why I invited him over here today,” Russ admitted pushing her long, dark hair away from her face, “I mean we’ve let so many facets of our lives be altered because Brant was a jerk, but that doesn’t mean we have to cut ourselves off completely from the world around us. We still have our friends and our life together and we can’t let Brant steal that as well. Brant might’ve done a lot of things, but Ken was always our friend. We can’t blame him for what Brant’s done. He shouldn‘t be held accountable for all of that.”

“He doesn’t have to be held accountable for Brant, but he should at least own up to what he’s done,” Avery shot back icily thinking about the raw emotion she’d harbored inside of her over the turning point in her relationship with Ken. “He’s not some innocent victim in all of this. He’s every bit as much an Ashford jerk as Brant is.”

“That’s kind of harsh, isn’t it?” Russ felt her pull away from him. She turned towards the kitchen attempting to put a distance between them as she fought for her words. “Ken lost the love of his life and I know it hurt him. I know how much Caitlin meant to him.”

“She meant so much that he started sleeping with Carly because he somehow blamed Dave for losing Caitlin,” Avery rolled her eyes before facing Russ again, “He was so misguided in his rage that he didn’t give a damn who he hurt as long as the world around him suffered. Time and time again he lashed out at anyone and everyone who tried to help him.”

“Wait are you telling me that he slept with Dave’s Carly?” Russ blinked back in surprise, “I thought she left town.”

“She came back to prosecute Grady of all things,” Avery shook her head remembering the trial that followed, “She was working for the D.A.’s office and trying to get back together with Dave from the sound of things. Only Ken took that opportunity to hurt Dave because it made him feel better about himself.”

“I can’t believe that,” Russ shook his head taking a seat on the edge of the sofa, “That doesn’t sound like Ken at all. Dave is his best friend.”

“Not anymore. Dave barely talks to him now that Ken did what he did,” Avery explained with a small frown.

“What about Carly? What happened to her?” Russ couldn’t help but ask seeing the way that Avery held her fury towards Ken. “I mean she’s every bit as responsible for what happened with Ken as Ken is for what happened with her.”

“Oh please,” Avery rolled her eyes at him, “Ken seduced her and lead her to believe that he was someone he’s not. He preyed upon her emotions and manipulated her to do his bidding.”

“Somehow I seriously doubt that Avery. Ken’s not like that,” he added with another frown.

“You’d be surprised what Ken is like,” she quipped in response feeling her body grow tight with tension, “However, Carly was smart enough to see his true colors and she split. Last thing I heard she and Dave were together--married even and they have a little girl.”

“Wow, a lot has happened since I’ve been gone,” Russ shook his head firmly, “I feel like I’ve stepped into this alternate universe where everything I knew and loved has changed right before my eyes.”

“That’s life Russ. Things change. People change,” she explained taking a small step over to where he was. “People betray their friends and all that remains is misery.”

“That’s a very bleak outlook,” he tipped his head to the side seeing something building behind her dark eyes.

“It’s just life Russ. Plain and simple,” she shrugged her shoulders before bringing her hand up through her hair. “You know I’m really tired. I think I’m going to hop in the shower and then meet you in bed.”

“Meet me in bed?” Russ arched a curious brow. “Are you sure?”

“Yeah,” she nodded quickly, “I just need some time to clear my head and right now if I don’t get it, I’m going to be miserable.”

“Okay, but if you change your mind…” he stretched his arm out towards her.

“I just need some air and some space. It’s been a long day,” she informed him again brushing her finger tips against his for a brief, chaste moment before turning down the hallway hoping to drown her concerns and frustrations in a long, hot shower now that her nightmare night with Ken and Wendy was finally over. If Ken was smart, he would listen to her warnings and then she would never have to face him again. That in itself seemed to be a small victory for the night--one that she could get very used to enjoying for the rest of her life should he wizen up to her caution.


“Erin’s beautiful, isn’t she?” Wendy questioned sliding out of her jacket as she and Ken entered the Ashford Estate. “She and Russ just have this bond between them that is do adorable. I mean just seeing them together is exactly what I thought I would see with Russ when he became a father.”

“Yeah, Russ is a great guy,” Ken replied thinking about what had transpired between him and Avery. He eased himself out of his jacket before turning to face her. “Dinner was nice.”

“We should do it again,” Wendy noted with a warm smile, “because I think it’s good for us to be around friends.”

“I suppose,” Ken shrugged turning away from her and returning to the silence that had carried over him from the moment they’d left Russ and Avery’s place.

“Ken, what’s wrong?” Wendy questioned stepping in behind him and sliding her arms around his waist. “What’s on your mind?”

“Nothing,” he lied trying to keep his voice neutral after he remembered Avery’s final warning before Russ entered the room.

“Ken, I know something’s upsetting you,” she paused a tension clear in the air between them. “Is this about seeing Russ and Avery with Erin?”

“What do you mean?” he replied turning around to face her.

“Were you thinking about what it would be like to be a father?” Wendy couldn’t help but ask. “About what it would be like to have a child like Erin?”

“I wouldn’t be able to deal with fatherhood at this point in my life,” Ken forced a small smile, “It’s not in the cards right now.”

“But what about later?” she tipped her head up to search his eyes. “What about after I…?”

“Don’t say it,” he pressed his index finger over her lips to silence her.

“Ken, I know you don’t want to think about it, but…” she began in protest.

“I have absolutely everything I ever could have wanted when I have you here in my arms Wendy. This is everything I ever could have asked for,” he leaned in to kiss her tenderly. “You’re my dream come true Wendy and everything else is irrelevant.”

“Now I know you’re lying to me,” she pulled away from the kiss. “Ken, I know how much you’ve wanted to be a father. I remember when we used to talk about it years ago.”

“I was a different person back then,” he revealed with a sudden honesty in his tone. “I’ve changed Wendy and with those changes I’ve found that there are different things in my life that are more important to me.”

“You can’t let me hold you back Ken. One day you’re going to have to find love again. You’ll want a family and…” she started to remind him with a frown.

“What I want is to hold you in my arms,” Ken curled his arm out towards her. His hand clasped around her waist and drew her in nearer to him. “I just want to keep you close to me and think about just how lucky we are that we have this time together now.”

“I feel very blessed that we were able to find our way to one another again,” she confessed burying her head in his chest. “I never thought we’d have this again Ken, but now that we do, you have no idea how much this means to me.”

“Not nearly as much as it means to me,” Ken whispered thinking about Avery’s words of warning. While he’d wanted to dismiss them in the hopes that Avery would be able to let go of the past, he knew better. His time with Wendy was limited and as he held her in his arms, he knew that he would have to find a way to make the most of it in such a way that they could truly savor each and every second together without any outside interference.


“So how are we holding up in here?” Brant questioned not really knowing what to expect when he reentered the game room to find Seth and Angela laughing wildly with one another.

“We’re doing great,” Seth stood up straighter grinning over at Blake with a small wave, “Angela was just telling me how she buried you on the video game earlier.”

“Really?” Brant arched a curious brow glancing over to Angela with a bright smile, “You were telling him all of that, huh?”

“Well he asked if you were any good at the game and I couldn’t lie,” Angela shrugged her shoulders before smiling over at Brant and Blake, “What kind of person would I be if I did that?”

“One that was trying to preserve my place as top dog around here,” Brant winked back at her before finally releasing a laugh.

“You lost that position a long time ago,” Blake swatted at her brother’s arm before looking to Angela, “I’ve beat him a few times too, but he always said it didn’t count since I’m his younger sister.”

“I did not,” Brant gasped eyeing her with a heavy look of shock, “I would never, ever pretend that you didn’t beat me if it were truth Blake. The fact to the matter is that you’ve never beat my record.”

“You’re such a liar, but I’m so not even going to touch that one,” Blake rolled her eyes before looking to Seth, “Brant’s such a big dork.”

“Gee thanks sis,” Brant curled his arm around her neck feigning as if he was going to put her in a choke hold before releasing her. “So much for family loyalty.”

“Sorry Brant, but even I’m not stupid enough to build you up just so you can impress a girlfriend,” Blake blurted out catching her mistake after what Brant had told her. She cleared her throat uneasily, “I mean a girl that’s a friend.”

“Right,” Brant nodded eyeing Angela again.

“It’s okay,” Angela waved her hand and smiled, “I could see why you might think I could be a potential date for Brant, but given that he and Ria are so happy together…”

“Ria,” Seth repeated with wide eyes still trying to comprehend everything that was happening around him.

“Yeah, um didn’t Ria tell you,” Brant rubbed his palms together nervously, “We’ve been seeing one another for a while.”

“No she didn’t mention it,” Seth replied realizing that there was a whole lot more than Angela’s thinking she was engaged to Kevin that was going on. “You would’ve thought that she or Kevin would’ve said something.”

“It kind of happened out of the blue. One minute Ria and I were practically strangers then the next she’s living with me. Who knew?” Brant shrugged his shoulders again.

“Certainly not me,” Seth exchanged looks with Blake before she stepped forward.

“You know I was hoping we could run into Augustus for a little while. I wanted to tell him all about the new house and hopefully he’ll be able to pay us a visit,” Blake reached out to Seth’s arm tugging on it while gently leading him towards the doorway. “You know you’ll have to come over and see it too Brant. Both of you actually. We’d love to have you over.”

“Great. I’ll tell Kevin and I’m sure he’ll be eager to check it out since Seth’s his cousin,” Angela decided brightly smiling over at the couple, “Oh and by the way congratulations on the whole being engaged thing. Seth was telling me how happy you are and I cannot even begin to tell you how rare it is in this world to find the right person. It’s something special that you should hold onto and never let go of. After all if Seth is anything like my Kevin, then he’s certainly a keeper.”

“Right,” Seth replied wearily feeling Blake practically yanking him out of the room with her.

“See ya,” Blake called back to him rushing down the hallway in the hopes of distancing her and Seth from the potential disaster that was waiting to happen the longer they stuck around Brant and Angela.

“She seems like she’s in a hurry,” Angela noted catching Blake’s quick exit.

“Well, she’s just caught up in the excitement of being in a new house and with a new love,” Brant tried to play down his sister’s reactions to Angela. “She’s young and head over heels in love. It’s got her really giddy and wanting to share everything with all of us around her.”

“Good for her,” Angela smiled back at him before looking around the game room. “I remember what it was like the first time I saw Kevin. I knew that he was the one from that very first moment.”

“You did?” Brant’s eyes widened before he tried to cover, “Hmm…I see.”

“Yeah, he was really amazing. You see my friends and I were at this boxing match that Kevin was fighting in. My father had this business meeting set up with one of his investors and when I saw Kevin walk out into the ring, oh my,” she sank into one of the chairs feeling her face grow hot at the memory, “he looked so sexy in his costume and he fought like nothing I’d ever seen before. He just had this smooth fluidity in the ring and the way he worked his hands, well I’ll be honest I couldn’t even begin to imagine just how good he would be when we were alone together.”

“I see,” Brant repeated behind clenched teeth, his level-headedness going slowly out the window at the way this conversation was starting to turn.

“I followed him around like a lost puppy dog after the match was over that night. I went backstage and saw him with his girlfriend at the time and I was crushed,” she sighed sinking further into the chair and closing her eyes at the memory. “I felt like I’d met the man of my dreams only to see him in the arms of someone else. It was devastating and I figured I wouldn’t ever have a chance with him, but then about a week later he was on my father’s payroll and the rest was history.”

“So Kevin was a boxer before he started working for your father,” Brant questioned thinking about the relationship between Kevin and Angela.

She nodded reopening her eyes, “My father thought he would be good muscle so to speak. He assigned him to me--to keep me out of trouble and I have to tell you it only worked for so long. Once I had my sights set on Kevin nothing was going to stop me from being with him. Granted I was younger than he was, but it was part of the thrill. Eventually he caved in and we started seeing one another. We would sneak around hoping that my father wouldn’t find us--that he wouldn’t know about what we were doing with one another. There were times when Franklin walked in on us and I swore that he was going to tell my father, but he didn’t.”

“Franklin?” Brant repeated arching a curious brow.

“He’s kind of our butler. He favors Cameron so to speak, but he’s been pretty decent with me. He wouldn’t dare tell my father about Kevin and I considering that he’s probably afraid that my father would kill him just for spreading the news,” her smile faded as she placed her hand over her abdomen, “Though I guess we can’t keep this a secret from my father forever, now can we?”

“Angela I…” he started remembering just how far back in the past she was stuck.

“My father isn’t going to be happy when he finds out about my being pregnant, but this was meant to happen. Kevin and I have something special and nothing can change that,” she continued in an impassioned tone, lost in her own contemplations, “I love him more than I’ve ever loved anyone else in my life and I know that this is a new start for us. Once we have our baby--or should I say babies I’m convinced my father will lay up on him and we can be together. We can finally have that dream we’ve been hoping for with one another and nothing will stand in our way.”

“Dreams change Angela,” Brant blurted out unable to mask his own concerns. “Sure, you might think you have it all figured out in your mind, but something happens and fate takes you charting down a new course.”

“Not with me and Kevin,” she shook her head firmly, “What we have is real and solid and I know that regardless of what happens he’s the only man I’ll ever want to share my life with. If I wasn’t with Kevin, then I would only be fooling myself into believing that there was something that could make me happy.”

“Something else might make you happy. You never know what is out there. You might meet someone one day who will show you a whole new meaning of the word love and…” Brant offered up trying to reach out to her as his heart ached at the mention of Kevin.

“No, never. I can honestly say that I would never, ever feel for anyone else what I feel for Kevin now. Besides, why would I want to? He’s given me absolutely everything in this world that I ever could’ve asked for,” she explained with a soft sigh, motioning to her swelled abdomen once again. “He’s the only man I could ever love and I wouldn’t trade what he does for me for anything else in the world. He’s truly my white knight so to speak.”

“Yeah, well I guess you’ve got it all figured out then, don’t you,” Brant muttered under his breath feeling completely out of place with her. “You really are happy with the way things are right now, aren’t you?”

“I’m happier than I’ve ever been in my life,” she nodded in confession before her smile faded, “but I’m not trying to rub it in Brant. I know that you mentioned that woman before that you were in love with and…”

“And the more I think about it, the less of an impact I’m starting to think I made in her life,” Brant let out an ironic laugh, “Here I’ve been trying to play by the book and do things the right way with her, but the more I think about it the more it seems as if I’ve lost her.”

“I’m sorry to hear that,” she stood up walking over to him. Reaching out she placed her hand on his shoulder gently, “Though maybe this is a sign that it’s time for you to put that part of your life behind you. Maybe it’s fate’s way of offering you a second chance with Ria--one that you maybe wouldn’t have given her before that other woman left your life. She seems to really care about you Brant.”

“Yeah sure,” he nodded stepping away from her. He cleared his throat again before looking to the doorway. “I think I’m going to go put some tea on or something. I’m kind of feeling the after effects of all of this game playing and I think I need a bit of a breather.”

“That does sound nice,” she replied seeing something flash behind his eyes. He took a step towards the door and she reached out to him snaking her hand around his arm to keep him from leaving, “and Brant?”

“Yes?” he glanced over his shoulder turning around to face her.

“I just…I just wanted to thank you. You know for what you’ve been doing to help Kevin and I. It really means a lot to me--to the both of us,” Angela smiled up at him thoughtfully, “Not many people would be so sympathetic to a love story like ours.”

“You’d be surprised to learn that I’m not like other people. Hell, I’m not even what you think I am because it’s clear that you and I aren’t even close to your seeing the real me,” Brant sighed opening his mouth to say something more, but thinking twice of it. Instead he turned towards the door and kept focused on the task at hand, “I’ll be in the kitchen if you need anything.”

“Alright,” Angela watched his retreat before turning to look out of the window. She couldn’t help but sense that something was wrong with Brant, but rather than pushing the issue, she kept her concerns to herself. Placing her hand over her abdomen, she thought to Kevin and his retreat with Don. Speaking up in a low voice, she glanced down at her abdomen again before casting a glance out over the estate grounds, “Where is your daddy?”

“He’s right here wishing like hell that you weren’t so far away,” Brant mouthed under his breath having returned to speak with her. Just seeing her in the window waiting for Kevin tore his heart into pieces and without hesitation he turned around to push the image of Angela’s unwavering dedication to Kevin out of his mind now that it was clear that with each passing day he was one step closer to losing her all over again.


“The point is I don’t care what you were doing Jewel. That isn’t important to me, but what is relevant to this conversation is what you weren’t doing and that’s being there for your daughter when she needed you,” Don’s voice echoed through the hospital hallway now that he’d found himself ready to lose his cool with the woman in front of him. “I don’t care what you think was important before because it doesn’t matter now. Your daughter does and you need to start growing up and acting like her mother instead of trying to relive some misguided return of your youth. You’re not a kid anymore, but you have one who needs you in her life now more than ever.”

“Don, I had no idea. The last time I’d seen Stacy she told me to go to hell. She ran out on me and…” Jewel offered up feeling completely flabbergasted by what Don was saying to her.

“I don’t care what she did. It was your responsibility as her mother to make sure that she was safe. Damn it Jewel do you have any idea what kind of situation I pulled her out of tonight?” Don continued to snap at her, shaking his head furiously. “If I wouldn’t have gone after her, then chances are you would’ve been getting a call after the police pulled her out of a ditch somewhere.”

“Don I…I just didn’t think that…” Jewel began stammering at what he was saying to her about Stacy.

“No you just don’t think, which is the main part of your problem,” Paul’s voice interrupted as he approached Don and Jewel. “You never put your priorities in check when you should be keeping an eye on our little girl. She’s supposed to be safe with you and…”

“You were supposed to be the one watching her,” Jewel snapped at Paul spinning on her heel to glare over at him, “I left her in your care and…”

“Whoa, no you don’t,” Paul shook his head firmly, “You are not going to pin this one on me considering that I’m sure you were off chasing some adolescent male that isn’t bright enough to see you for the cheap thrill you really are.”

“Oh please,” she rolled her eyes at Paul, “You know damn well that I’m more than a cheap thrill, but since you’re beyond the point of being able to get it up anymore, anything that is better than you doesn’t even register on the radar.”

“Oh so now we’re going to that huh,” Paul laughed in her face, “well I’ll have you know the only time I’ve had trouble getting it up is around you considering that the idea of what you truly are makes my skin crawl. To think about all of the men you’ve been with…”

“If you really want to start a count here, let’s talk about you and the stunt you pulled in Vermont when you were supposed to be watching Stacy,” Jewel stepped up in his face. “You left her all by herself while you were off on a ski weekend with those bikini beer girls.”

“And you were in Malibu shacking up with some rock star wannabe, so I don’t even want to hear it,” Paul hissed in response waving his hands around in the air, “This is your fault Jewel.”

“No, it’s not her fault,” Don interrupted stepping between the two estranged lovers.

“See, it’s yours,” Jewel stuck her tongue out stubbornly at Paul, feeling justified now that Don was taking her side. “It’s your fault Paul.”

“Like hell it is,” Paul snarled under his breath finally paying attention to Don for the first time since he’d arrived. He shoved his hand into the center of Don’s chest and glared up at him, “What are you supposed to be? Flavor of the week?”

“Hardly,” Don rolled his eyes before looking between the both of them, “In all honesty I can see why Stacy was at that party tonight. Neither one of you are acting like you’re any more mature than she is. You’re both so caught up in what you’re doing in trying to hurt one another, that you’re ignoring the major issue happening here. Whether or not you two are happy with one another, the fact to the matter is that you have a fifteen year old daughter who could’ve gotten really hurt tonight. She was at an unsupervised party with a man who was trying to hurt her. That in itself has me furious as a father and she’s not my daughter.”

“I appreciate your being there to help her Don,” Jewel reached out to touch his arm gently, sliding her fingers over his bicep and watching Paul glare.

“Yeah you’re the real hero,” Paul rolled his eyes back at Don, “and I’m sure that Jewel will give you your just reward later tonight as soon as she gets the chance.”

“You know what,” Don shook his head at the both of them, “Just grow up both of you. I don’t give a damn what you two are doing with each other, but I do care about your daughter. Someone hurt her tonight and if that doesn’t bother you enough to care, then you both don’t deserve her. You don’t deserve to be parents if you have that much blatant disregard for a child that you brought into this world. It’s clear that you’re both two self-absorbed childish people who only care about one thing and that’s themselves. Neither one of you have stopped to think about what’s wrong with your daughter or about what you should do to help her. You’re too busy taking potshots at one another and I’m tired of it.”

“Don, I was just…” Jewel blinked back at him feigning innocence.

“I know what you were doing,” Don frowned over at her before turning to Paul, “and the same thing goes for you. How long have you been in town?”

“What difference does that make?” Paul mouthed in response glaring over at Don.

“I’m guessing you’ve been here long enough to check in on your daughter, but then again to do that you might have to own up to the fact that you’re actually a father with real responsibilities and duties,” Don sucked in a sharp breath before trying regain a hold on his rage. “The fact to the matter is that you both need to grow up and stop acting like children. You both need to take care of your daughter before something worse happens to her than it did tonight because I’ll tell you right now if you think that this is bad, then you’re going to realize it would be a hell of a lot worse if you don’t step in and do your jobs in raising her. If she was my daughter I would give a damn before she ends up dead or worse…”

“Don, I’m sorry. I…” Jewel started taking a step towards him only to watch him put his hand up to keep a distance between them.

“Don’t apologize to me. Just find a way to make it up to your daughter before it‘s too late. Both of you,” Don finished giving them both one more look before leaving them to sort things out now that he found himself wanting to check in on Stacy again. Fearing that Stacy wouldn’t have anyone between her two parents, Don vowed that he would find a way to help her the best way that he could even if it meant enlisting the help of someone like Dave to do it.


Avery closed her eyes feeling the liquid warmth pour over her body now that she’d immersed herself in the long, hot shower. She raised her fingers up to rub the sponge over her shoulder. She sighed giving her body the chance to expel the tension that had conquered her most of the evening. Now in the solace of her home with no outsiders to distract her, she gave into the moment feeling the serenity of the shower beckoning her to sweet surrender. She turned towards the water, feeling it splash over her, licking over every inch of her body in a warm, comforting spray. It was like heaven--beyond any kind of relief she’d anticipated after the dinner from hell, but now she was loving every single second of it.

“Have room for one more,” she heard a voice whisper in the back of her ear. She felt the shower door close behind her and as she reached for the bar of soap dragging it over her shoulder she couldn’t help but smile.

“That would all depend,” she mouthed with a teasing grin, “What would I do with one more person in here?”

“I was hoping we could figure it out along the way,” he murmured sliding his arm around her abdomen. She felt a small squeeze over her hip before his thick hand pressed in over hers. “I know you said that you wanted some time to yourself, but I thought maybe together we could find a new way to enjoy this time together.”

“I’d hardly consider it a new way considering that we’ve done it just about every which way we can think of in here together,” Avery teased biting down on her lower lip before turning around to see the pair of familiar brown eyes behind her. She let out a horrified gasp before inching backwards.

“I’m sure we can find a new way that will tide you over until next time,” Ken smiled lecherously moving in to reach out to her again when Avery let out a pinched gasp.

“Stay away from me!” she ordered stumbling back out of the shower, nearly taking the door with her in the process. She reached for the towel ready to lash out at her uninvited guest when she realized that she’d been alone in the shower. Ken was no where near her bathroom let alone in the tiny shower stall with her. Quickly she wrapped the towel around her body feeling a shivering overtake her now that she was wet and soapy standing in the middle of the bathroom floor.

“Avery, what’s wrong?” Russ questioned rushing into the bathroom to find her in such a frazzled state. Instinctively he reached out to her, his warm chest pressing in against her wet body as he looked around the bathroom. “What is it?”

“Nothing,” she lied trying to contain the fact that her overactive imagination was playing with her head again. She was starting to see things that weren’t there--to believe things that couldn’t be and now as she stood in the middle of the bathroom feeling like a fool, she couldn’t help but chastise herself internally.

“I heard you scream,” Russ explained taking another look around the bathroom before returning to her. He placed his hand on her shoulder, searching her dark eyes, “What is it? What’s wrong?”

“I thought I saw a spider in the shower,” she lied again realizing that this was starting to become a habitual process with her. First she’d gotten on Russ about the fact he’d been dishonest with her about Angela, but now she was doing the same thing about Ken. Only it wasn’t the same thing. Russ had no idea who he was when he’d made love to another woman. Avery had made love to Ken thinking he was Brant, but given that she really hadn’t wanted to at the time…it put a whole new spin on the situation, hadn’t it? She tried to rationalize inside of her head, but as she felt Russ reaching out to her, her thoughts were jumbled again.

“A spider,” he repeated searching her dark eyes.

She nodded, “It was a big one.”

“Let me check,” Russ walked over to the shower inspecting the walls before looking down at the drain. He leaned forward nearly getting drenched by the shower in the process. Taking a step back he shook his head, “I don’t see anything. There’s no spider in there.”

“Maybe it was just a shadow,” she tried to cover hating that she couldn’t just tell Russ about what had happened. How would he react to the news? What would he say if she told him that she’d jumped into bed with a man she hadn’t wanted to be with in the first place? How would he respond to the news that she’d been keeping from him? She thought back to Grady’s advice and took in a small breath preparing to tell Russ about what was really troubling her.

“Are you sure you’re okay,” Russ questioned searching her eyes again.

“No, I’m not okay Russ,” she admitted with a heavy sigh, “I haven’t been okay in a long time and I think it’s something that’s really been bothering me for a while.”

“Okay,” Russ nodded reaching for her hand and squeezing it in his, “Avery if there’s something that you want to tell me, then you should know by now that I’m always here. Nothing is off limits between us. I promised you that and I meant that.”

“I know. It’s just…” she started to explain feeling the stickiness of the soap over her body. She took a glance at the mirror and realized that she still had thick, bubbly shampoo in her hair. “Oh my…”

“What’s wrong?” Russ searched the bathroom again, “Do you see the spider?”

“No,” she shook her head before letting out a small laugh, “but I see me. Look at how ridiculous I look.”

“Oh I don’t know if I would go that far,” Russ replied with a lazy smile, reaching out to her and bringing her hand up over his bare chest. “There is something to be said about seeing you standing there like that all covered in bubbles and next to nothing with only a towel on.”

“Is that right,” she couldn’t help but smile seeing a spark of mischief behind his green eyes.

“It kind of makes me feel overdressed if you get what I mean,” he shrugged his shoulders before leaning back against the wall and eyeing her from head to toe. “It gets me thinking about how dirty I’m feeling right about now.”

“How dirty?” Avery arched a curious brow unable to refrain from noticing the perfect lines of his chest. Her gaze swept over his strong arms greedily remembering only too well how good it felt to have them wrapped around her.

“Very dirty,” he mouthed in response his green gaze spilling over her hungrily. He eyed her intently seeing her step in closer to him while a smile teased over the corners of his mouth. “Avery, you have no idea how much I realize that I probably missed the boat a few minutes ago in not hopping into the shower with you.”

“Given that it’s been running for a while now, it’s probably cold,” she wrinkled her nose looking to the water that was still spraying in the shower stall behind them. She watched him reach out to test the water, his hand dipping in beneath the spray while her eyes cast out over the lines of his body. Her gaze settled in over his low riding navy colored sweatpants that accentuated the sexy indentations over his hip, leading her gaze lower to a place that she’d grown to know very well. Her pulse quickened, her breath catching in her throat as she remembered just how sexy he looked out of his clothing. She licked her lips involuntarily preparing to say something completely and utterly seductive when Russ let out a small wince.

“Damn,” he jumped back and away from the shower. He spun around to face her again with a sexy, boyish half smile, “Yeah it’s pretty cold in there right about now.”

“Hmm, well then I guess we’ll have to come up with another way to warm things up,” she replied breezing past him just long enough to stick her head into the shower. She ran the chilled water over her head attempting to get the shampoo out in a hurry before she stood upright and turned the water off. Spinning around to face him, she spotted him still where she’d left him, his green eyes taking in the view of her greedily. “How about handing me a towel?”

“You already have a towel,” he mouthed in response seeing her squeeze the excess water out of her hair before she stood up straighter.

“Alright, then how about handing me your pants,” she wiggled her brow suggestively seeing his green eyes widen at her suggestion.

“I don’t think you really need these,” he dipped his finger in beneath the waistband toying with her as she moved forward.

“Neither do you,” she declared boldly pushing his pants down just below his hips before licking her lips suggestively. “I’m giving you three seconds to get completely naked before I rock your world and give you a whole new meaning of passion.”

“With an offer like that,” Russ teased back kicking his pants off of his body before wrapping her up in his arms, “How could I refuse?”

“Given the nature of the proposal, you can’t,” she informed him reaching up on her toes to devour his mouth in a reckless, wild kiss now that it would seem her earlier moment of panic had transformed into something well worth holding onto between them.


Brant leaned forward in over the counter placing his hands down in front of him. Closing his eyes he thought back to what Angela had said to him--to how her words had cut him to the core now that it was clear she was looking right through him oblivious to the love that they’d shared with one another. It was like they were strangers living together, yet there was no emotion or feeling between them now that she was wrapped up in the idea of being with Kevin. Reopening his eyes he glanced over at the countertop thinking about when they’d had better days with one another.

“Promise me something Brant,” her voice had poured out into the kitchen after they’d made mammoth sized sundaes with one another.

“Anything,” he smiled raising the cherry from the top of the whipped cream and raising it to her lips.

“Promise me that even if things don’t turn out perfect for us that you’ll never leave me,” she spoke up, her dark eyes filled with worry and concern for their future. She leaned forward taking a bite of the cherry before placing her hand over his, “Promise me that this isn’t just some passing phase. That somehow we’ll be able to make this last forever with us.”

“I wouldn’t dream of anything less than forever for us,” he whispered tipping in to kiss her, wrapping her up in his arms as his promises found a way into her heart.

Now as Brant stood in the middle of his kitchen, he couldn’t help but walk over to the counter feeling the ghosts of the past haunting him after Cameron’s lies had taken her from him. They’d had the whole world ahead of them, but now, well, now all she wanted was a piece of the past that had been long gone--a piece that hadn’t been hers in a long time.

“I’m losing her all over again,” he whispered under his breath sliding his fingers over the top of the counter, his heart sinking at the realization that Angela wanted anything, but to share her life with him. At this point she was blinded by love for Kevin and it was that love that she believed she felt for him that would tear apart their future with one another. Even if Brant pushed the issue and told her the truth, after hearing how passionate her words were about Kevin, he feared that what they had would no longer make a difference. She would still be left longing for Kevin and wanting what it was she felt was the best thing that had ever happened to her.

“Brant,” Angela’s voice beckoned him from his thoughts. He turned around to see her standing in the doorway, shadows around her now that she watched him with curious eyes. She made a small step forward into the kitchen searching the room around her, “Why are you in the dark?”

“I guess I wasn’t in the mood to see things as they really are,” he replied with a heavy sigh, his words empty and hollow now that he’d felt as if his heart had been ripped out of him. “I’ve had enough reality for today.”

She said nothing, but rather took another step in closer to him, her dark eyes honing in on him. Finally she spoke up again, “Are you sure you’re alright?”

“I’d be lying if I said I was, but I’m not all about pity,” he forced himself to sound assured and confident even though he was anything, but those two things. “I’m fine.”

“No you’re not,” she shook her head firmly reaching out to touch the side of his face, “You’re thinking about that woman you were talking about earlier, aren’t you?”

“It wouldn’t matter if I was. She isn’t in love with me. I can see that now,” he replied with a heavy sigh, his heart hanging heavy in his chest. He closed his eyes for a brief moment feeling the faintest of touches from her carrying him to the brink of passion--to the first hints of desire that had overwhelmed him when they were with one another each and every time. He forced himself to look at her seeing the pity she’d felt for him behind her eyes.

“I wish things were different for you,” she whispered warmly, tipping her head up to see the sadness in his eyes. She eased her palm in over his shoulder squeezing it gently before speaking up again, “You’re a really good person and I wish that you weren’t hurting like this.”

“Love hurts,” he answered stiffly trying to cut off what it was that he was feeling for her. Just the intimacy behind her touch was making him remember all the times they’d spent with one another--the moments that they’d shared together lost in one another’s arms. “I knew a long time ago not to get wrapped up in the game. My father told me first hand if you open yourself to being vulnerable, then you stand to lose everything that’s important to you. I believed it for a long time, but then all the rules changed for me. I thought that I would rise above the curse, but we’ve all succumbed to it. We’re all meant to be damned for his sins.”

“I don’t believe that and deep down you don’t either,” she shook her head firmly dropping her palm flat in against his chest, “Brant you know full well that you have every right to find love in your life and hold onto it just like the rest of us.”

“Do I?” he arched a curious brow feeling her fingers tease out over the center of his chest, “I’m starting to think that I don’t because if I did, then the woman I loved more than anything wouldn’t be in front of me looking at me like I’m someone she never loved--like someone she never cared about. She wouldn’t be dreaming about a future with another man--about a family with someone who couldn’t possibly give her what I could.”

“What?” she blinked back up at him confusion carrying over her. “Brant, what are you…”

“Saying?” he finished for her feeling a moment of hopelessness carry over him, “I guess I spent far too many years hoping to find the perfect dream only to lose her in the end when what we had wasn’t strong enough to keep her holding on. She obviously had other dreams that didn’t revolve around us and our future--dreams that she would rather hold onto than the ones we were making together…”

“Brant, I…” she felt him step back seeing something flash over him before he stepped aside.

“I’m really tired. I’m going to go to bed Angela, but you can stay here until Kevin returns. I’m sure he’ll be home for you soon enough. You can watch a movie or play a game or…” he began feeling her reach out to touch his wrist, capturing it between her fingers.

“Don’t go. Please. Not like this,” she begged of him, feeling him stiffen beneath her touch. Tentatively, she eased her fingertips up over the smooth expanse of his arm, watching the way he seemed to tremble beneath her. She curled her fingers over his shoulder before stepping in behind him. “Brant…just…”

“Just what?” he questioned spinning around to feel her pressed in beside him.

“Don’t leave like this. Don’t go to bed feeling that way when I’m sure that…” she stopped herself, her dark, sultry gaze meeting his again. “This is crazy.”

“What’s crazy?” he couldn’t help but ask searching her dark eyes.

“I can’t help but feel that when you’re talking about the woman you love, that you’re talking about me,” she blurted out thinking about what had been troubling her since he’d walked out of the game room. “I feel as if when you’re speaking of her, you’re speaking to me--to my heart and it does something to me.”

“How so?” he questioned, his jaw flexed with tension, gripping frustrations carrying over him.

“I don’t know. I can’t explain it,” she shook her head clearly caught in a moment of turmoil. “I just…it’s just…”

“Just what?” he searched her eyes hoping for something more now that they stood with one another in the middle of the kitchen.

“Just that I don’t want you to leave me now. I don’t want you to walk away like this when…” she stopped herself unable to come up with the right words to say to him. Her dark eyes were strained with something she couldn’t quite vocalize and before she could spit it out, she leaned forward moving in closer to him. “Please just don’t go…”

“Angela the longer I stay with you, the more I’m afraid I’ll do or say something that could hurt you--that could hurt any chance of a future that I’ve been…” he started to explain only to feel her place her finger in against the center of his lips to silence him.

“If you walk away, then I’m going to lose my nerve. If you don’t let me just…” she started again finding herself at a loss. Frustrated she released him, taking a small step away and turning her back to him. She closed her eyes thinking back to what she’d felt earlier in seeing him in the bedroom--to what she’d found herself thinking about since this morning when they’d had the food fight. All of her daydreams had felt so real and inviting and…

“Angela, it’s getting really late,” he started again realizing it was futile to hope for some kind of breakthrough between them.

“No, it’s not too late. Not for this,” she blurted out spinning around with a newfound determination. She stepped forward reaching out to tease her fingers into his dark hair, her arm curling around his neck while she urged him in closer to her. She tipped her head up, her lips curled in anticipation and she closed her eyes. “Please don’t leave.”

“Angela are you saying that…” he blinked back trying to process what was happening between them.

“If you don’t kiss me then I know I’m going to feel like a fool,” she explained thinking about the hot fire that licked over every inch of her at the nearness of him. “I know it’s wrong but…”

Her words were interrupted by the feel of his arm curling around her waist. His lips caressed hers with a slow, sensual brush, sending tiny impulses over her. Her knees seemed to grow weak at the feel of his arm squeezing her in closer to him. His tongue darted out between his lips, meeting hers in sweet invasion, causing the temperature in the room to rise between them. She curled her fingers over his shoulder, feeling his body heat up to her touch now that their mouths met one another in an undeniably sweet invasion. It was the last thing she knew she should be doing, but as Brant kept her in his arms, it felt right--absolutely perfect like no other kiss she’d ever experienced before now or ever would again.


“So what do you think?” Seth questioned feeling Blake snuggle in against him after they’d found their way upstairs into their bedroom to explore their passion play with one another. As her fingers teased over this chest, a smirk spread over his handsome features as he kissed the top of her damp hair. “Do you see my point?”

“Oh I saw your point,” she couldn’t help but laugh feeling satisfaction carry over her body down to the tips of her toes, “This was so much better.”

“I told you that it would be,” he circled his fingertips over her spine lazily, “No pressure about timing or having to follow a rigid schedule. Just the sheer thrills of being together.”

“It’s so much more relaxing,” she paused pulling her head up to meet his eyes before offering up a sheepish expression, “well you know what I mean.”

“I sure do,” he tugged her in closer to him before speaking up in a low, sensual whisper, “I like the idea of putting you at ease before I set your world on fire.”

“And that you did,” she smirked leaning in to kiss him once again before falling back onto his chest, “You were right about one thing though.”

“Only one thing?” he arched a curious brow.

“Ok a lot of things,” she corrected herself, “life is so much better now that we have all of this on our own. It’s just so much more comfortable not having to have anyone lurking around. There isn’t anyone watching or following around waiting for their next big story. It’s just us together as it should have always been.”

“I hope that doesn’t disappoint you,” he replied feeling her swat him in the chest and he let out a small laugh.

“I’m trying to be serious here Seth,” she curled her lip in a pout. “I’m trying to tell you that this is everything I ever could have wanted and I owe that all to you.”

“We did this together,” he informed her with a small grin, “I wasn’t sure if this would be enough given that you were used to being with your brothers at the estate and…”

“This is perfect,” she explained pressing her index finger into the center of his lips before smiling, “This is the kind of life I’ve always dreamt of and now that I have it I don’t ever want to let go of it.”

“In that case, you can thank me with a kiss,” he arched up towards her ready to steal another kiss from her soft, swelled lips when she pulled away.

“Maybe after we get something to eat,” Blake announced springing off of the bed to wiggle her finger at him to follow her. “I think we still have some strawberry shortcake downstairs and right now I would really, really like to have some of that.”

“In that case bring it up here,” Seth curled his arms behind his head and grinned over at her, “I’m sure we can put it to good use up here.”

“How about I go and get it and then you use your keen sense of perception to find out where I took it to?” she wiggled her brow suggestively while bracing her hand on the doorway. “What do you say?”

“I say,” he drew out his words before finally nodding, “you’re on.”

“Don’t wait too long or else you might miss me,” she teased racing out of their bedroom as Seth couldn’t help but laugh. He shook his head before pushing back the sheet that covered him. Slowly, he trotted out of the bedroom ready to delve into the game that Blake had initiated between them. While she’d always been so focused and determined when they were together today was different. She was finally focusing on the fun side of romance and he vowed that he would find ways to make her see that things were going to be great between them from here on out.

“Ready or not here I come,” Seth announced leaping into the kitchen area only to discover Blake standing behind the island in the center of the kitchen with his apron pushed up in front of her chest. Curiously he gave her a once over before asking, “Blake, I didn’t think that you would be in here acting all shy when…”

“I don’t think she was expecting company and judging by your lack of attire neither were you,” a voice rumbled as Seth spotted Augustus seated at their kitchen table looking less than thrilled by what he’d walked in on between them. “Apparently you both forgot the invitation you’d tossed out for me to stop by for dinner.”

“I’m sorry. We were just,” Blake gulped looking like a deer in the headlights as she attempted to cover herself more with the apron.

“Lost track of time,” Seth finished moving in beside her keeping his lower half covered by the island in front of him. He exchanged worried looks with Blake before he gently nudged her behind him so that she had the chance to cover up more completely.

“We can get something going in a few minutes,” Blake promised from behind Seth, “Just let me run upstairs and get dressed and bring something for Seth to change into and then we can…”

“Of course we can,” Seth replied reaching behind him to offer a light squeeze of her arm before tipping his head back just enough to whisper to her, “Grab me a robe or some pants or something.”

“Will do,” Blake nodded her face red with embarrassment as she carefully rushed out of the kitchen to leave Seth to deal with Augustus.

“Look Augustus, I’m really sorry that we didn’t call you earlier and let you know that we were running behind. It totally slipped our minds that you were coming over and,” Seth paused trying to be casual about his conversation with Blake’s grandfather before clearing his throat again. “Come to think of it, how did you get in here?”

“The back door was unlocked, which probably wouldn’t be a good trend to continue given the nature of the media. The last thing you need is someone sneaking in here and spying on Blake in a private moment,” Augustus warned with a scowl as his eyes penetrated Seth with heavy disapproval. “Then again you might not want them around as well considering that it would speak volumes about how little you care about my granddaughter’s well being since it’s painfully clear she’s engaged in a very sexual relationship with a married man.”

“Look Augustus, it’s only by paper that Valerie and I are…” Seth tried to defend himself before feeling a moment of uneasiness pass between them.

“If it was truly just a matter of paperwork I would imagine it would have been dissolved by now,” Augustus sneered in response. “Seth, it displeases me to see my granddaughter’s virtue being put on the line.”

“I understand that sir,” Seth nodded accordingly.

“Good, then I would imagine that you won’t waste any time in doing what is necessary to ensure that Blake’s reputation isn’t tarnished by your laziness. You’ll deal with this problem quickly and as discreet as possible,” Augustus added standing up from the chair he was seated in. “I would hate to have any information about Blake’s relationship with you to be leaked to the press in a negative light.”

“I won’t let that happen sir,” Seth offered up in response.

“Pardon me if I don’t believe your assurances at this point in time,” Augustus replied with another disapproving glare before turning towards the back door. “Tell my granddaughter that we can reschedule. I have another meeting to get to anyways.”

“But she will be right down and…” Seth cleared his throat trying to find the right words to appeal to Blake’s grandfather.

“Right now I don’t think either one of you are in a position to be around anyone else let alone in a public setting. Tell Blake I’ll call her later,” Augustus waved dismissively not bothering to turn around and face Seth before he walked out the door.

Once he was gone Seth slumped over the island counter realizing that perhaps he’d just landed himself a place on Blake’s grandfather’s hit list. Closing his eyes he took in a breath and tried to come to terms with what had happened by simply writing it off as the shock of Augustus having to see him and Blake naked with one another. That wouldn’t make any father or grandfather pleased and Seth was well aware of that.

“I’m almost ready. If you just give us a few minutes, then…” Blake announced returning into the kitchen to discover that Augustus was no longer there. “Where did he go?”

“He had a meeting to get to,” Seth explained recounting the words Augustus left him with. “He said he would call you later.”

“Oh,” Blake replied biting down on her lower lip nervously, “so I guess that wasn’t at all what we were expecting, huh?”

“Not in the least,” Seth replied bringing his fingers through his thick, dark hair.

“I guess I should have remembered that he was coming over,” Blake shook her head and groaned, “I’ll never live this one down.”

“Trust me I don’t think your grandfather was upset with you,” he offered up reaching for the robe she’d brought for him. “I should have made sure that the back door was locked.”

“I should have called him,” she replied with a frown of her own before looking at him, “so much for us enjoying the night huh?”

“We can still enjoy the night,” Seth reached out to pull her into an embrace, “but maybe right now we should just get dressed and work on dinner for a bit.”

“Sure,” she agreed as Seth found himself wondering if he’d wound up agitating Blake’s grandfather in more ways than he’d wanted to. Somehow he had the feeling that today’s incident would not be forgotten and Augustus’s words were more than a warning that Seth had better take heed in listening to!


Moving down the winding stairs of the mansion, Ken knew that Wendy might be afraid if she woke up alone in his bed, but right now the thing he needed the most right now was some air. His mind was swirling, his thoughts going in a whirlwind as he thought about all the things that took place between him and Avery earlier.

“What have I done?" Ken grumbled to himself walking out the sliding door in the back toward the kitchen before moving out onto the deck. Sitting down on the last step leading out into the backyard, he stared out at the scenery around him before letting out a hesitant laugh. “If I wouldn’t have…”

His thoughts had lingered back to Avery and what he did to her in the moment of time when everything seemed to be going wrong. There were always thoughts of what he did, what he had done to her and how he had taken advantage of her. If he would have never done that, things wouldn’t have had to be so complicated.

“I’m sure that’s why she was how she was today,” Ken muttered to himself running his fingers through his messy hair before letting out a long, thought out sigh. “If I hadn’t screwed up, she would have never been hurt. She would have never had to go through of all this.”

Ken had pondered the past and how he had tortured her mentally about everything that happened, leaving her paranoid and it only led to more of his further downfall. When the thought occurred to him, he realized what happened to him when her best guy friend Kyle had found out.

“I almost died that night,” he hesitantly laughed to himself thinking back to the feeling of Kyle beating on him over and over again. Kyle was a good guy, a good friend and that’s why he did it. He knew that Kyle was like Avery’s protective older brother and if that’s what Kyle was willing to go through, he could only imagine what Russ would do once he found out what happened between him and Avery. “God, I don’t even want to imagine that.”

What if he had to though? What if after tonight Avery told Russ what happened? What would Russ do? How would he react and if he did react would he act like Kyle? Take it easy on him or act even worse?

“Oh shit,” Ken brought his hands up over his face in a moment of panic knowing that he was screwed if Russ ever found out what happened. If Russ knew what happened, Ken knew he was a dead man walking and nothing was going to change that. Feeling a hand press in against his shoulder, it sent him flying off the step and to the grass before noticing it was Wendy before him. “Honey, you scared me.”

“I’m sorry,” she frowned watching the way that Ken glanced around the backyard and she reached out for his hands seeing him move in closer to her. His warm hands enveloped hers as she felt him move up the stairs in closer to her. “I woke up and you were gone, I thought something was wrong.”

“I just needed some time to think,” he informed her with a small nod watching her smirk, reaching up to outline the tired features of his face. “I was thinking about things Wendy and if you aren’t up for this just let me know.”

“Okay?" Wendy eyed him over cautiously almost worried of what he was about to come up with next as she watched him shrug his shoulders and look back toward the house. “What is it Kenny?"

“I was thinking about things and I think the best thing that could happen for us is a trip,” Ken finally told himself after realizing that once Russ found out it could be the end of himself. That was the last thing he wanted right now and he would rather spend the remaining time he could with Wendy. Whatever time that held, he needed it and he didn’t want Russ to know where he was at that point in time. “I know a lot of things have been going on in life. So because of that, I think we should take a long trip. I was thinking maybe Paris. A place where no one can reach us, no one can find us. A place where it’s only the two of us. What do you say? How does that sound?"

Sure it was out of nowhere and it could be quite shocking, but what better place to escape to when trouble could be on the rise within his life. Hopefully she would just along with it with no problems holding them apart.


“You feeling better?" Ria questioned pushing back Stacy’s long blonde hair seeing Stacy’s blue eyes staring into hers before she nodded and let out a long sigh. Ria glanced to the corner of the room seeing Kevin hunched over in the chair, resting his elbows against his knees in a moment of pondering. “I’m glad.”

“Do you think my parents ever showed up?" Stacy questioned seeing the way that Ria glanced over at the door and she looked to Kevin seeing his brown eyes staring out at her. “I know it sounds a little ridiculous, but I was kind of hoping that they would be here.”

“It’s not ridiculous sweetheart,” Kevin hushed seeing the way that she stared out at him after he finally broke his silence. Letting out a long sigh he stood up from the seat reaching out to press his hand in against her shoulder softly. “I’ll go see, I’ll be right back kiddo.”

“No, I’ve got it,” Ria moved over toward the door seeing the way that Kevin stared out at her and nodded slowly before letting out a long sigh. “I’ll be right back honey, I know my way around the hospital more. I’ll find your parents.”

“Okay, thank you,” Stacy offered up a half smile seeing Kevin dip down to press a small kiss against Ria’s cheek before seeing Ria leave the room off to find her parents. “It will be a fat chance you know. My parents actually showing up.”

“I doubt that,” Kevin moved over toward the hospital bed and pull the chair in closer to the side of bed before taking a seat. He saw her blue eyes look out at him and he sighed knowing that from what he already knew her parents sounded like total jerks. “I’m sure they are coming for you, it’s just taking them a while.”

“I used to try and convince myself that, but I stopped believing that a long time ago,” she whispered seeing the way he frowned before reaching out to grip her hand in his softly and she let out a small noise. “If I had a father like you or Don, I think my life would be better without a doubt.”

“You’re a strong kid,” Kevin pointed out seeing her blue eyes look away from him as he held her hand in his tighter than before letting out a small sigh. “So, are you feeling better? You look like you are feeling a little better.”

“I’m feeling better, but I just can’t believe how stupid I was. I can’t believe I let this get out of hand,” she shook her head feeling her eyes tear over at the thought feeling Kevin move in next to her on the bed and wrap his arm around her. “I liked Caleb so much that I was willing to do anything to be with him. I just thought he was the most charming guy I have ever ran into. I liked him so much and to know that this happened…”

“Let me tell you something sweetheart,” Kevin began seeing the way her blue eyes look at him when he shook his head slowly at the thought letting out a long sigh. “All men aren’t worth it. None of them are good people and you should never let any man get to you like that. None of them are good people.”

“Well, you are,” she pointed out seeing the way Kevin smirked before shaking his head slowly and let out a long sigh. “So there has to be some chance that there are some good guys out there because you seem like a great one.”

“But I’m not,” Kevin added seeing the confusion behind her eyes when he squeezed his arm around her tightly thinking of what he could tell her from the heart. “Just know this, if a man is really worth it he would respect your choices and whatever it is you want to do. People at that party, you are never going to find a good person at a party like that.”

“I knew that deep down, I just thought Caleb was different,” she pointed out playing out what happened in her head over and over again. “He just seemed like everything that I wanted in a guy. He was handsome, charming, smart and…now I know I’m an idiot.”

“You’re not an idiot, everyone makes mistakes. Though, I do have one thought in mind that I think you should consider,” Kevin stated with a half smile seeing her smile once she saw him do the same. “I think you should honestly stay away from boys until you are at least thirty. You might have a chance at maturity around that age.”

“Oh gosh, my uncle Dave always says the same thing,” she rolled her eyes at the thought letting out a small chuckle before shrugging her shoulders. “At least I can say at least I’m half way there.”

“That’s a good way to go about it, thinking like that. Your uncle Dave is a good guy and he knows what he is talking about,” Kevin felt Stacy rest her shoulders further against his shoulder. “He’s a good guy and knows what he is talking about. Guys aren’t worth it this young, you don’t want to get involved in something so not worth it. You have your whole life ahead of you, make the best of it.”

“That’s a good idea,” she agreed seeing him nod before looking to his wrist seeing the way he looked out at her when she traced over one of the bracelets he had on. “What’s this design right here?"

“This one? This is the design of our family’s crest,” Kevin saw her moving her fingers in over it before letting out a long sigh. “It’s very important to our family, the other two I got from Hawaii when I went to visit some of my friends.”

“This one is really cool,” she informed him pressing her fingers in over it before seeing him adjust to take it off his wrist. Feeling Kevin grab her wrist in his hand gently he rolled the bracelet down her arm making sure it was tight enough. “It’s supposed to be a protection and I want you to wear it. I also want to give you something else.”

“Are you sure about the bracelet?" she questioned seeing him stand up to his feet reaching in his back pocket. Fingering over the bracelet she smiled before nodding slowly and letting out a small sigh. “I’ll never take it off.”

“Good, I hope you take care of it,” Kevin finished writing something down before putting something back in his pocket. Reaching for her hand he placed a small piece of paper in her hand watching her confused eyes stare up at him. “This is my number. I want you to know that whenever you need someone to be there for you and it seems like no one is there you can call me. Ria and I will be there whenever you need us when it seems like no one else is there.”

“I really appreciate this Kevin,” Stacy sighed wishing that her father could be as good as Kevin was with her as she felt his hand squeeze her fingers in his gently. “You will make a great father one day, I know it.”


“Excuse me,” Paul moved in toward the front desk after coming out of the elevators where the person had told him when he first came into the hospital. Pressing his hands nervously against the top counter, he let out a small sigh. “I’m looking for my daughter Stacy Flare. She came here earlier and…”

“Paul,” a voice called out from across the hallway as he turned to see his wife before him, her angry blue eyes staring out at him as she marched across the hall toward him. “Now you finally choose to show up.”

“I just got the call,” Paul felt an anger boiling up in his chest at the thought of her questioning him on when he showed up. Knowing that he was only worried about his daughter right now, he wasn’t ready to start a fight with his wife. “Listen, I just got the call and came here as soon as I can.”

“Right. And I’m supposed to believe that how?" Jewel snapped back seeing the way that Paul’s blue eyes looked to the corner and he let out a long sigh. “Our daughter has been hurt and now is the time you decide to show up? Now of all times.”

“Listen Jewel, I really didn’t know,” Paul began to explain remembering that he had been at Kyle’s for a long time and there was nothing he was really doing bad at all. Holding his hands up in the air he knew that having Jewel here probably meant that Stacy was alright. “I was at a friend’s house and no one called me. If I would have known I would have been here a long time ago.”

“Wasn’t she supposed to be with you anyways?" Jewel questioned seeing Paul’s nose wrinkle after the question and she folded her arms out in front of her chest. “I do believe you were the one in charge of her Paul, this is all your fault.”

“This is not my fault,” Paul snapped with a hiss feeling his blood boiling at the thoughts of her accusing him and he shook his head slowly. “I just got in town Jewel and you have been here so much longer than me.”

“Oh, so now this is my fault,” she began to raise her voice seeing the way that Paul rolled his eyes at her comment before shrugging his shoulders. “This should have never happened to our daughter. This is all your fault, if you would have kept a better hold of her then we wouldn’t be in this situation.”

“Honey, the two of us are both her parents, not just me,” Paul pointed out stepping in closer to his wife before throwing his hands up in the air. There was always a problem he was doing when it came to her and he was tired of it. Tired of her complaining, tired of her telling him what to do and tired of her blaming him over and over again. “Now that you are yelling at me about what I’m doing wrong. When all of a sudden did they only become my problems? She is your child too you know.”


“Get some sleep,” Kyle suggested pushing the pillow and blanket he’d collected from the closet over to Kellen. “You can stay on the couch tonight if you want to stick around since I’m pretty sure Paul will be busy for a while.”

“Thanks,” Kellen replied with a relieved sigh, “I know he’s obviously your friend, but the man scares me. He seems a bit demented and…”

“And it’s something we’ve all learned to ignore,” Kyle sighed thinking about how much had already gone down in one day already. “Paul is harmless.”

“Easy for you to say. He wasn’t talking to you about…” Kellen stopped seeing Heather emerging from the bedroom clearly in the aftermath of tears. His heart sank and he walked over to her, “Heather if you’re still upset about Kipp, then I’m sorry. This was something that was between us and if I would’ve just kept him away tonight, then…”

“No, it’s not that,” Heather shook her head wiping at her face in the hopes of somehow banishing the swelled redness that she was convinced had overtaken her cheeks. “I’ve just had a really bad day.”

“I know Heather babes and I’m sorry about that. Kipp was just fired up because we’d been fighting about Becca and,” Kellen sighed heavily hating to see his best friend so upset. “He’s not going to do anything you know. He might be big on talk, but he’s really just ticked at me. Tonight was just the thing that took him over the edge, but he’ll get over it. If anything he’s just upset with me.”

“It’s not Kipp really,” Heather glanced over at Kyle seeing the way his hazel eyes were fixed on her. Finally she took in a breath before explaining, “Kellen, it’s not about what just happened here, but more so about what happened at work--you know with the fax.”

“Oh,” Kellen’s blue eyes widened and he took a small step in closer to her touching her arm gently. He lowered his voice to a whisper, “We’ll deal with that one too. No one will have to be upset by that. I promise you that…”

“Kyle knows,” Heather cut him off before he could continue speaking. She tipped her head to the side to look at her husband before speaking to Kellen again, “He knows everything Kellen.”

“Everything,” Kellen practically gulped thinking about what the fax had contained. “Are you…are you sure?”

She nodded, “He saw one of the movies. He knows what we…”

“Oh God,” Kellen yelped with a horrified expression. He turned to look at Kyle and raised his hands in the air defensively, “Kyle, you have to understand it was a lifetime ago. Heather and I were stuck in this really bad situation and…”

“I really don’t want to get into it right now,” Kyle raised his own hand to silence Kellen’s words. “I just want to push this day behind us and wake up tomorrow to start over again. I know that someone’s been harassing Heather and that will be dealt with, but tonight I think we’ve all had our share of high drama here.”

“Yes we have,” Heather nodded listening for a moment to hear Charles in his crib clearly awakened by all of the commotion. She looked over her shoulder towards her son before turning to the men before her, “I’ll be right back.”

“Take your time,” Kyle nodded seeing her disappear into the room before his hazel eyes honed in on Kellen all over again.

“Look Kyle, before you say anything, I think I should just take the time to clear the air,” Kellen offered up knowing full well what kind of anger Kyle had to be feeling at a time like this, “What you saw--what we did it wasn’t anything more than a job. Granted, it wasn’t the kind of job you would expect but…”

“Kellen I meant what I said before, I don’t want to get into it tonight,” Kyle warned him sharply feeling a hint of tension coiling out over his body.

“I know that, but I still feel like I should offer up some kind of explanation. You see we were both in a bad place and…” Kellen started with a gulp, “We were staying with this creep and…”

“Heather filled in some of the details already,” Kyle interrupted seeing fear shine behind Kellen’s blue eyes.

“She did?” Kellen arched a worried brow before continuing, “Well, I’m sure she did, but well…it’s just that she was in this bad place and I was and I didn’t want someone to hurt her, so I kind of stepped in and…”

“Kellen I really don’t want to hear it,” Kyle warned him sharply, his jaw flexing with a sudden jolt of recall at the film he’d watched with Kellen and Heather in it.

Kellen seemed to notice the shift in Kyle because he took a nervous step backwards.

“You know I think now would be a good time for me to get going,” Kellen gulped his blue eyes shifting around the room in the hopes of finding the nearest exit.

“No, you can stay,” Kyle finally snapped out of his daze, his hazel eyes honing in on Kellen again, “because as far as I’m concerned I have nothing to worry about with you, do I?”

“Oh hell no,” Kellen blurted out quickly--perhaps too quickly before his nerves got the best of him, “I mean sure what you saw was probably pretty intense, but I have to be honest with you when I say that I’m gay--very, very gay. Beautiful women like Heather never, ever get a rise out of me. Well, I mean in that film it sure looked like I got a rise out of Heather, but it really was all illusions and it’s own smokescreen because to even get me hard I had to have this guy on the side that…”

“Enough!” Kyle snapped having heard more than enough. Kellen backed up a bit further.

“I’m just saying that if you were to put me in a room with Heather now, then I swear to you that nothing would happen. I’d have no reaction what so ever considering that I’m as gay as it gets. I can’t even imagine having sex with a woman let alone with Heather and…” Kellen brought his hands up in the air.

“Kellen stop!” Kyle snapped back at him watching Kellen lose his footing and stumble backwards tripping over the back of the couch. Kyle’s eyes widened when Kellen fell onto the cushions before hitting the ground in a heavy thud.

“I’m so sorry Kyle. I swear that I know it was wrong, but please…” Kellen whimpered bringing his hands up over his head worriedly, “Don’t kill me. I swear it wasn’t completely my fault and…”

“Kellen please,” Kyle rolled his eyes seeing the over the top dramatics that Kellen was pouring into his act now that he was hunched down over on the floor, his body trembling like he’d just found himself on the receiving end of a severe ass kicking.

“Kyle, I’m so, so sorry, but I swear to you that I’ll make it up to you. Whatever you want to do to me, just please get it over and make it as painless as possible,” Kellen pulled his head out from behind his hands long enough to reveal his now quivering lip, “and try not to mess up my face too badly because I promised to do some PR work for Heather this upcoming week.”

“I’m not going to kick your ass Kellen,” Kyle fought to repress the amusement he might’ve gotten from seeing Kellen in such a frazzled state, but the more he stood in front of Kellen seeing Kellen fearing for his life, the less he found himself enjoying the position he was in. “Look right now all I want is a little peace and quiet with Heather. I’m not going to beat you up or destroy your life because of that stupid movie. Today has been a really hard day and the last thing I want to do is spend anymore time thinking about what I saw. It wasn’t exactly at the top of my list of things to focus on today, so can we just drop it?”

“Really?” Kellen questioned wearily popping his head out to see that the anger had faded from Kyle’s face.

“Yeah, really. I would really just like to spend some time alone with Heather. She and I have a lot we need to talk about considering that she’s still upset,” Kyle informed him with a heavy sigh, “Do you think that you can give us a little privacy for a little while?”

“Yeah, sure if you want me to leave I can do that. I can just let myself out and…” Kellen motioned to the door once again.

“You don’t have to do that, but at least try not to come busting in through our bedroom door, okay?” Kyle suggested seeing Kellen more than willing to comply to his request.

“Absolutely. I won’t bother you at all. You won’t even know that I’m here,” Kellen promised pretending to zip his lips. “I’ll be so quiet you’ll think you’re alone.”

“Now I wouldn’t go that far considering I know how you are, but it sounds like a good start,” Kyle nodded turning to reenter the bedroom. He paused and glanced over his shoulder, “Oh and Kellen?”

“Yes?” Kellen pulled his head up from where he’d still been crouched down on the floor.

“We will have a talk in the morning, so you’re not completely off the hook yet,” Kyle warned one last time before going into the bedroom and leaving Kellen to wonder just what the future had in store for him now that Kyle knew the truth about his and Heather’s less than savory connection in the past.

Kellen whimpered hearing the door close and he brought his hands up over his own neck thinking about what Kyle could do if he was motivated enough. With another yelp Kellen tried to reason that Heather wouldn’t let Kyle kill Kellen--at least he hoped not.

“No, if he wanted me dead, he would’ve done it tonight. Wouldn’t he?” Kellen wondered aloud realizing that maybe just maybe he should do as Kyle asked and give Kyle and Heather all the space that they needed tonight so that it didn’t give Kyle anymore reasons to want to murder Kellen. “Yes space is good. Very good indeed.”


“Kipp, there’s no need to be shy about the situation,” Becca wiggled her brow suggestively while curling her finger towards the pillow that he had pressed in front of himself to shield his body from her. She pushed up on her knees and arched towards him with a catlike movement. Her grin expanded as her sculpted nails reached out to tug at the corner of the pillow he’d had in front of him, “Trust me you have nothing to be ashamed of. You shouldn’t hide your attributes especially when we were just getting rather accustomed to savoring them.”

“Becca stop!” he swatted at her wrist before drawing back and clenching the pillow for dear life. “I don’t know what you think is happening here, but it’s not. I realize I had a bit to drink, but there’s no way that…”

“That what?” she wiggled her brow at him before stretching out across his bed, “That you wouldn’t bring me home to ravish me? Oh Kipp, some woman must have done you wrong in the past because there is absolutely no reason why you would ever have to doubt those abilities of yours.”

“Becca, I know I’ve been drinking, but no,” he refused to accept her explanation of things. Bringing his fingers through his dark hair he tried to process how he’d gone from Heather and Kyle’s place to being in his home with Becca in his bed waiting for some kind of seduction that he knew full well was never going to happen.

“No?” she snorted with delight, “Kipp, I think it’s a little late for that now. You and I were just starting to really enjoy ourselves.”

“No, we weren’t,” he stated firmly searching the room for his clothing, but as he attempted to move, he realized that she was still watching him and he stood frozen. “Becca, you need to leave.”

“I’m not going anywhere anytime soon,” she pushed herself off of the blankets and curled her leg out towards him. Her toes teased over the center of his abdomen before she let out a small, sultry laugh, “and neither are you. Get that sexy bottom of yours back into bed.”

“No!” he stated firmly knowing only too well that the sound wasn’t doing anything to help the sudden swirling ache in his temple. He brought one hand up to touch his forehead before realizing that his pillow had slipped a bit. He dropped his hand again to keep himself covered. “You need to go home. Now.”

“No way,” she shook her head, “Kipp, you know as well as I do that this is something we’ve been building towards for weeks.”

“No Becca, it’s not,” he shook his head firmly. “I know that tonight I was upset and I might have done some stupid things, but there is no way that…”

“Oh yes there is,” she stood up directly in front of him, her eyes now filled with a sudden determination, “and there is no way that you and I are going to end this now. Not when we’ve got such electric chemistry between us!”

“Becca please,” Kipp started only to feel her move in behind him. She pinched his bottom and he let out a yelp. He spun around to face her while keeping himself covered and away from her groping hands, but before he could take control of the situation she leapt forward pushing him back onto the bed in the hopes of showing him that her way was the only way that things were going to go for them tonight. As he tried to comprehend how his mild and otherwise sane assistant had made her way into his bedroom, Kipp felt her lips plummeting upon his and he knew that one thing was sure to follow! Trouble!


...to be continued...