“So we aren’t together,” Lucan says with a bite to his tone. He leans down to kiss me, but at the last second he pushes away from me and I whimper at the loss of contact.
“Lucan,” I sigh trying to figure out a way to dig myself out of the hole I’ve created for myself. “We talked about this.”
He paces the room clenching and unclenching his hands. “You’re right we did. Doesn’t mean I have to agree or like this.” He stops in his pacing to face me. “Obviously Hunter is picking up on the fact something is brewing between us. He was the major one you were concerned about finding out and obviously he’s okay with you and I being together.”
“Lucan,” I say gently. “There was more to my reasoning then just Hunter knowing. The major concern actually was the fact I didn’t know if we would work well together because all we do if fight.”
He rushes up to me and gathers me in his arms. “Sure we argue, but we always manage to work through our differences.” He’s not wrong in his assessment and this morning I had decided to cancel on my date, but the voice in the back of my head wouldn’t be silenced.
“Lucan I need time,” I tell him placing my palm on his chest and glance up at him.
He nods his head then kisses me forehead. “Take all the time you need. I’m not going anywhere.”
We break apart and he opens the fridge. Lucan loads my arms with the burgers along with his own. “Do you really think all of this is necessary,” I ask him. Sure since I was the one to go to the store for them I knew he had bought a bunch, but a part of me figured he would freeze some.
“There might be a few left over, but for the most part they will be gone,” he informs me holding open the door for me.
When we enter the kitchen Skylar and Aubree were the only ones inside. “The guys all let for the deck,” Skylar informs him stirring a bowl. She notices me watching her. “I saw all the ingredients on the counter and figured you were making potato salad so I threw it all together.” Her eyes dance with merriment when she adds, “but don’t worry Aubree only watched. She wanted to help but…” Skylar words trial off earning a glare from Aubree.
“Since you two don’t seem to want me in the kitchen I’m going to go join the guys,” Aubree says glaring at the two of us.
I set the hamburgers on the counter. “Why are you glaring at me? I didn’t say anything.”
“No, but your lack of words did,” she teases.
Lucan rolls his eyes at the three of us. “And so it begins we are starting to be overrun by women.”
Aubree pats Lucan on the shoulder. “About damn time there were more women around. Being the only one was starting to take a toll on me.”
“Hay what about me,” Skylar interjects throwing a piece of potato at Aubree.
“You are being a bully,” Aubree informs her.
“You basically just said Kinsley was being one too.” Skylar reminds her. Lucan watches us with annoyance.
We hear swearing coming from the back deck. “I should probably get out there before one of them manages to burn my house down,” Lucan says grabbing the rest of the burgers I had left on the counter.
“So you needed help carrying them from the garage, but not from the kitchen to the patio,” Aubree teases.
Lucan ignore her teasing and continues on his way to the back porch. When I turn to the two women they pounce without remorse.
“Care to explain whatever is brewing between you and Lucan,” Aubree pushes.
I sigh. “Nothing much to explain,” I disclose not wanting to go into any details about Lucan and my relationship.
Skylar tilts her head to the side. “Seems someone is in denial.”
“Gee wonder who she reminds you of,” Aubree says jabbing Skylar in the side with her elbow.
“I wouldn’t throw shade my way. If my memory is correct I wasn’t the only one running the other direction.”
My curiosity spikes. They are probably talking about their own relationships. I want to hear more, but am still too sky to outright ask them. Instead I sit back and listen in hopes they will elaborate. My patience pays off.
“If my memory is correct I believe the two of you almost weren’t a couple because of Keith,” Aubree reminds Skylar.
Skylar narrows her eyes. “I could say the same about Adam.”
Aubree puts her hands on her hips and glares daggers at Skylar. I kept waiting for her to burst into flames. “You are trying to compare applies to oranges. Unlike you I wasn’t seeing Adam,” Aubree states with such hostility I fight the urge to run and hide.
Skylar shakes her head. “Simmer down. Marely trying to state how we both had other men messing with our relationships.”
Aubree calms down and takes a seat at the island. “I need a glass of wine if we are going to continue this conversation.”
“Me too,” Skylar adds.
I step around the two of them and grab some glasses. A wine bottle magically appears and Aubree starts to pour the three glasses. We each take one and clink them together.
Aubree takes a long drink of her wine before beginning. “Basically what Skylar is eluding to is my ex Adam tried to break Ryder and me up.”
“He almost succeeded,” Skylar adds. “You were broken up for a while and almost remained that way.”
Tears glisten in Aubree’s eyes as she reminisces the past. She wipes at her eyes with the back of her hand. “Too many misunderstandings and too many dark paths taken.”
Skylar pats the top of her hand and says, “he’s in a much better place and will be coming home next week. Then the two of you can work on putting everything behind you and moving forward.”
A few tears escape and we both gather Aubree in our arms. “Thanks,” she tells us when she pulls away reaching for a paper towel to dry her eyes. “I miss him so much and am more than ready to have him home, but I also understand why needs to stay where he is.”
“Enjoy your last few days of freedom before he has you tied to his bed for who knows how long,” Skylar teases lightening the atmosphere.
“We should sneak in a girls’ night this week,” I add. “We are meeting Monday to discuss the program, but that still leaves the other days of the week for fun. Plus I would like to see more of what Nashville has to offer.”
Skylar stretches her arms above her head. “Don’t get me wrong I love going out with the guys, but drama seems to always follow wherever they go.” Excitement brightens her eyes. “Since Kinsley isn’t in the public’s eyes she wouldn’t need to dress in a disguise. But we could,” she exclaims clapping her hands together. “We could get some wigs to change our hair color and go somewhere the guys wouldn’t go.”
Aubree taps her finger against her lip. “Your plan may just work. Been a long time since I was able to go anywhere without the worry of the press. The only way they would let us go would be if we took Frank. Think he would be okay wearing a wig?” The two of them burst out laughing.
“I’m sure if we ask him nicely he might,” Skylar adds.
Aubree nods her head. “We could go bar hopping downtown to all the county bars. Other than that one bar we went to the guys aren’t really into county music.”
“Perfect,” Skylar shouts. “Let’s plan for Thursday because Friday you are going to want to make sure you are well rested for Saturday,” Skylar tells Aubree and sends a wink her way.
“I’ll make the arrangements. We could all meet at my place to get ready since I’m the closest to downtown. If you want we could even do a sleep over,” Aubree says.
“I’m in,” I tell them excited to be able to act my age for once. Lucan should be more than capable of keeping Hunter alone for one night.
“In for what,” a male voice asks wrapping his arms around Skylar. She turns in Dimitri’s arms and kisses him on the chin.
“Going out Thursday night,” Skylar tells him.
Another male’s arm falls across my shoulders and I freeze because the arm belongs to Tray. My eyes seek Lucan and find him glowering from the sliding door with eyes focused on Tray’s arm.
“Where are we going,” Tray asks. I step out from under him using the ruse I need to refill my wine glass. Lucan’s posture becomes relaxed when I’m not longer in Tray’s grasp.
Skylar pokes him in the chest. “If by we you mean only me, Aubree and Kinsley we are going downtown.” She waves her hands at the boys. “As for y’all I believe will be on babysitting duties.”
Tray crosses his arms and pouts. “But I wanna go with bestest best friend.”
She pats him on the cheek. “Can’t always get what you want.” He continues to bat his eyes in hopes of Skyler changing her mind, but she stands fast.
Dimitri and Lucan have a silent conversation with their eyes. Dimitri nods his head in agreement to whatever Lucan was silently telling him. “Take Frank with you,” Dimitri demands.
Aubree rolls her eyes. “I’ve already contacted him, but I highly doubt having him go is necessary.”
Dimitri raises his brow. “And why is that? Have you forgotten who you are dating?” Skylar elbows him the chest. Be nice she mouths glaring at him.
“We decided to wear disguises so people won’t know who we are,” she pauses for a moment. “Well Skyler and I are, but since Kinsley is still an unknown she doesn’t have to,” Aubree adds with a shrug.
Luan clenches his hands at his side. “Don’t care the three of you will have Frank. Hell might have him bring a few more. You two are dating famous rock starts and only have to worry about crazy fans, whereas Kinsley has had real threats made against her.”
Aubree nods her head in agreement while Skylar’s eyes grow bigger. “Threats,” she asks.
Aubree waves her hand. “I’ll fill you in later. Right now everyone is safe so how about we focus on having a great night tonight and everything else can wait for tomorrow when we are all hung over.”
Everyone agreed and the conversation changed to lighter topics. The guys mostly talked about the upcoming and how Ryder was returning the up coming weekend. Whenever Ryder’s name would come up in conversation Aubree would get stars in her eyes. I couldn’t imagine going through what the two of them where going through and still managing to stay strong. They must really love each other.
Lucan snagged the open seat next to me when we all sat down for a fire later in the evening. By this point everyone was well on their way to drunk. Lucan had already confiscated everyone’s keys and told them that had to options for the rest of the evening. Option one was call a taxi to take them home and option two was to crash on his couch.
Dimitri and Skylar decided at the end of the night they would hire a taxi to take them home and come back tomorrow for their car. Aubree decided her and I needed to have a sleep over so she would be crashing in bed with me. At the mention of me sharing my room with me Lucan whispered in my ear how she was ruing his plans for me tonight. I shrugged my shoulders and whispered back oh well. Tray and Mason decided on claiming the couches in the family room.
Hunter ended up falling asleep not too long after ten and Lucan put him to bed. Lucan returned to the fire and my eye started to grow heavy. I ended up giving in and resting my head on Lucan’s shoulder. Skylar and Aubree sent knowing smiles our way while the guys poked fun at the two of us. Lucan rolled his eyes and ignored their teasing.