Chapter FIFTY THREE
. . s i x m o n t h s l a t e r . .
I haven't been able to take my eyes off Yevie all night.. I watch from the living room, dumbfounded by just how gorgeous she is, even more so when she's happy.. And tonight, she is overjoyed..
She looks like a classic Hollywood movie-star, in a glittery black dress that's so tight that I'm jealous of everybody who is seeing her in it... The fine sequins emit tiny glints of sparkling light with each of her delicate movements.. Her long caramel waves fall over one of her shoulders, shimmering each time she throws her head back with laughter as she chats merrily with Ellerie and Iris in West's kitchen..
"Have you met Paxton's rag-tag team yet?" West grins and nudges me in the ribs, I glance over to see him nodding his head towards a couple of familiar looking younger guys on the sofa talking with Ramirez..
I immediately recognise several of the tattoos on their arms to signify time spent in the Marines.. They probably served with Paxton, that would explain them choosing to put their loyalty in him over the CIA.. "Nah, there'll be plenty of time for that later.. Looks as though he'll fit right in though.."
Honey sidles up to me, her country style white dress is almost too cute on her.. She has to be the most cool and casual bride I've ever witnessed.. No freak outs, no drama.. West and Honey had a simple courthouse wedding, that only a handful of us had been invited to, but they were a little more open with the reception.. If you could call dinner and drinks at their apartment 'a reception'..
But it suits them to a tee.. The whole no stress vibe.. And I've never seen West looking so relaxed.. Honey tugs at the sleeve of my suit jacket.. "Please don't tell me you've chickened out, Paddy.."
I smirk at her.. She can read me like a book.. I'm nervous as hell as I sip my beer.. I slip my hand into my pocket and feel the small velvet box.. "I'm.. Definitely gunna' do it, Hon.. Jus' uh.. You're sure I'm not stealin' you guy's thunder here?"
West pulls Honey into his side and plants a kiss on the top of her head.. "We're good, brother.."
Honey giggles.. "You two are such softies! Patrick, if it feels right, then you should go for it.." She looks up into her new husband's eyes lovingly.. "Life's too short not to take chances.."
My gaze wanders until I find Yevie, who is now deep in discussion with the Paxton siblings.. Even still, it's as though she can feel me watching her, because her head turns and she looks right at me.. A peaceful smile on her perfect peach-painted lips.. "You're not wrong.."
I swear time slows as I take the first step towards the woman of my dreams.. I can feel my pulse thudding in my chest, climbing into my throat and roaring in my ears.. A prickly heat rises at the back of my neck and I have to suck in a few deep breaths to refocus myself..
She excuses herself from the conversation when she sees me approaching and begins crossing the living room floor to meet me in the centre..