Unedited. Subject to change. Last sample before release!
As I approached my house, I frowned at the flashy black Mercedes G-class parked in my driveway. It wasn’t Nate’s car – he knew I meant it when I said it was time to go – but it still made my jaw tight to see it. As soon as I hit the door, I went searching for the owner and found him in my kitchen, in my refrigerator, like he owned the place.
“Garrett,” I snapped, and he looked up, with a mouthful of the strawberries I’d intended to go with my breakfast this morning.
“Good morning baby,” he said backing out of my refrigerator with a grin. “You look… damn. You went running in that?”
I folded my arms, scowling as he made his way up to me with that goofy ass expression still on his face. “It’s a sports bra and running shorts. What’s the problem?”
“Nothing. Just wishing I could have seen it. That ass in these shorts? Ooh-wee,” he teased wrapping his arms around my waist.
“Why are you touching me?”
His lips twisted to the side. “You doing me like that? It’s a cold world when a man can’t even get close to his wife.”
“Ex-wife,” I quickly corrected him, since he – somehow – loved to forget that part. “What are you doing in my house?”
He tightened his hold around me. “You know what I’m doing here. Heard you’ve been stressed, so I thought maybe you needed a little… relief. Thought I could help you out this morning.”
“Oh you did, did you?” I laughed, pushing away from him to grab a bottle of water for myself. “Thought you’d drop off a lil’ something?”
“I don’t know about little, and neither do you.” I rolled my eyes as he approached me again, trapping me against the counter. “Don’t act like this wasn’t the best dick of your life,” he murmured into my ear as his hands moved to my ass. “You forgot or something?”
I bit my lip as I looked up, meeting his eyes. Garrett Brooks was, honestly, finer than fine. Once upon a time, he’d been everything to me, with his deep golden skin and curly hair and light eyes – Black 90s heartthrob material through and through, and he’d played me like a damn fool, just like on the sitcoms.
“No, Garrett. I haven’t forgotten that you used to be the best dick of my life.”
“Wait, what?! I know you haven’t been—”
“This looks cozy.”
I looked up to find my – our – sixteen-year-old daughter, Madison, standing in the doorway to the kitchen with a huge grin on her face.
“Do not get any ideas little girl,” I warned her, already knowing what that look meant. She’d been on a not-so-secret campaign to get us back together, and still hadn’t quite gotten the message that it wasn’t happening.
It was never happening.
“What do you mean?” she shrugged, playing innocent as I pushed Garrett off me.
I shook my head. “Don’t play. Grab something to eat while I get ready, and then I’ll take you to school okay?”
“Oh, no worries mom,” she said, stopping beside her father, who was still looking thrown off by my statement. “Dad is taking me to breakfast, and… he’s letting me drive!”
My eyes went wide. “Letting you—your Mercedes?!” I asked, looking at Garrett.
“She has her permit, she’ll be fine.”
I opened my mouth, then immediately closed it again, swallowing a petty, unnecessary reminder that he’d never allowed me behind the wheel of one of his luxury “babies”, even after I’d had his damn baby.
But if he wanted to spoil his baby… it was no concern of mine.
Mads was a good kid. Great grades, good behavior, excellent work ethic on the girls’ rugby team at her school, and when she did have her episodes of teenaged angst, they were never directed at me.
She deserved something to brag about with her friends – some of whom were already pushing their own “G-Wagens” with their fresh new restricted driver’s licenses.
“Just be careful please?” I asked, pressing a kiss to her cheek. “And wear your seatbelt.”
“Yes,” she squealed, practically bubbling with excitement. “I came to ask if I can borrow a pair of sunglasses?” My face must have registered confusion, because she amended, “The Gucci aviators.”
Why would she need to ask permission for the ones I’d grabbed at Target?
“I’m about to see you in a Mercedes wearing Gucci sunglasses on Instagram in about an hour, aren’t I?” I asked, bringing a sheepish grin to her face.
“Get the glasses girl,” I granted, shaking my head. “And they’d better find their way back to my room when you’re done with them.”
“Thank youuu!” she shrieked, giving me a quick kiss on the cheek before she raced off. I smiled after her, sending up a silent thank-you of my own for the life I had, of which that little girl was a huge part.
“Okay so let’s talk about this,” Garrett spoke up, reminding me that he was there.
I groaned. “Can we not? There’s really nothing to say. Aren’t you dating some Instagram model or something right now?”
“She’s a sports reporter,” was his dry response, and I raised an eyebrow.
“Yes, but that’s beside the point.”
My face wrinkled in confusion. “How?”
“We decided to cool things off.”
“She found out you were screwing somebody else, didn’t she?”
“What? No,” he insisted. “That’s really what you think of me?”
“Why would I think anything else, Garrett?” I asked, then took the last swig of my water. “You’ve been a hoe since the eighties, and my silly ass married you. You really are great in bed though, I’ll give you that,” I told him, with a pat to his arm as I started off.
Instead of letting me go, he grabbed me, pulling me close to him. “I am a changed man, Sloane. Why don’t you give me a chance to show you that?”
“Because I am not your type anymore and you know it, Garrett. You like twenty-year-old “sports reporters”, remember?”