Later that night, mom called me over to set the table, anticipating her fiancé’s arrival. Dragging my feet, I left my comfortable spot between the twins and headed to the dining room.
The mouthwatering aroma of grilled meat met my nose as I walked in. Mom was cooking steak fajitas topped with Worcestershire sauce. She had warm flour tortillas prepared on a plate decorated with sautéed peppers and onions, just waiting for the marinated steak.
“Wow mom! This looks amazing!” I told her, running my tongue over my lips in hunger.
“I know, dear,” she said. “Why don’t you get out the wine and set the table before Lucas gets here?”
I sighed and nodded, grabbing the bottles of wine and the glasses before leaving them on the table. I was just placing the utensils in place when I heard the front door open. I winced at my mother’s glare when one of the forks dropped to the ground. Bending down to get it, I didn’t catch the hungry eyes devouring my exposed backside.
All of a sudden, I felt a hand on my back before I was jerked upright. I stared into Hayden’s dark blue eyes as he pressed a hand on the small of my back and ushered me out of the living room. I passed a smirking Lucas who winked at me in a way that made me want to be sick.
“What the hell are you doing?” he demanded hotly as soon as we were out of earshot.
“What do you mean?” I asked, confused.
“Bending over like that and letting him leer over your perky ass?” Hayden inquired, jaw clenched.
“I was picking up a fork,” I defended. “I didn’t even know he was in the room.”
He leant closer until his breath ghosted over my skin, arms still around me as he pressed me even closer to him. “Well, be more careful.”
It came out in a snap and I jerked away from him, scowling.
“What the fuck is wrong with you?”
His teeth gritted together. “Nothing’s wrong with me.”
“Then stop acting like a fucking jerk,” I exclaimed. “I didn’t know he was there. Do you think I would bend over willingly for him?”
“Well, you did for Fellony,” he snapped back again.
My mouth fell open. “This is about Drake again—?”
“What’s going on?” Hunter’s voice came from behind me.
“You know what?” I seethed to Hayden. “Go home. I don’t need you to stay here if you’re going to insult me all night.”
“Oh, you mean the truth?” he snarled back, his dark blue eyes furious.
“Kathy,” Hunter said gently, turning me around to face him. “What’s going on?”
“Your brother’s acting like a dick again,” I scowled.
“Oh I’m the one—” Hayden started only to be cut off by Hunter.
“Hayden,” he said firmly, giving his brother a dark look. Hayden shot him a glare and stalked off.
I frowned. “Whats going on?”
“He just doesn’t like the way Lucas leers at you,” Hunter sighed, ruffling his hair. “You know how he gets when he’s angry.”
“C’mon, let’s head back. I think I heard your mom calling.”
“But what about—?”
“He’ll be back in a few minutes,” Hunter murmured, guiding me back to the dining table. I made a face but took a seat at the round table. Hunter settled beside me, complimenting my mother like he always did.
“Oh, you’re always so sweet, Hunter,” Mom gushed, smiling wide. “Where’s Hayden?”
“He went to pick up a call,” Hunter smoothly covered for his brother. Dinner and chatter continued around the table over glasses of wine. I winced every time I had to step closer to Lucas to serve him his dinner. The desserts were coming out and Hayden still hadn’t returned.
“Do you think he went home?” I asked Hunter softly. He shook his head at me and then motioned for me to go check on him. I excused myself from the table and walked outside to the patio.
And there was Hayden, smoking a cigar, his head pushed back as he watched the night sky. I approached him slowly, my footsteps light.
He didn’t move when I stood beside him. I wrinkled my nose at the smoke and grabbed the cancer stick from his hand before stumping it to the ground.
“Those things will kill you,” I murmured.
The faintest traces of a smile broke out on his lips.
“You’re infuriating, you know that?” I asked, copying his position and looking up at the clear, starry sky. I was in awe. We rarely had clear nights around here.
“Right back at you,” he retorted, his voice soft.
“At least I don’t keep bringing up every single fuck you have ever had,” I shook my head.
“You know we could continue this for ages,” he said.
I cracked a smile. “Isn’t that why we are best friends?”
He shook his head at me and grinned that boyish grin that I loved. His arms curled around me and his head burrowed into my neck.
“I swear you only fight with me to get to wrap me in a bear hug,” I chucked, placing my own arms around his neck.
“What can I say? Your body warmth is addictive,” he smirked against my skin.
I wrinkled my nose. “Seriously?”
He laughed. “No.”
“You’re just a little fuzzy bunny with a tough guy front,” I teased, flicking his nose. He growled lightly at me and his hands gravitated to my sides, sending me into a fit of hysteria. “S-stop. Hayden, stop!” I laughed, trying to push away from me.
He held me closer and chuckled in that deep voice of his.
“What about me?” a pouty voice sounded from behind. I swiveled around in Hayden’s arms, who rolled his eyes at his brother, hands slipping to my waist.
“Well, get over here,” I laughed, holding my arms out.
“I swear you can’t ever let me have a moment with her,” Hayden grumbled and Hunter smirked at him, wrapping his arms around me.
The rest of the night passed uneventfully and before I knew it, I was already huddled in bed. Anticipating the next day, I slipped into the world of dreams with a smile on my lips, unaware of the conversation taking place on either side of me.
“Care was right. That Fellony kid is going to go all around school spreading nonsensensical tales,” a voice whispered.
“I still can’t believe she fucked Fellony,” the other muttered moodily.
“You would say that even if it had been anyone else,” he retorted.
Hayden scowled. “She’s too naive for her own good.”
Hunter groaned when I moved closer to him, hooking a leg around his hip as I pushed back my body to get comfortable.
“This girl is going to be the death of us.”