At the close of the meeting, Siobhan stayed in her seat while Jake stood to shake hands with every committee member as they filed out. Closing the door behind the last one, he remained there, his back pressed to the wood, his hands stuck in the pockets of his dress slacks. He looked like a model in an advertisement for erectile dysfunction medication—too young to need the product but old enough men who did need it would see him and think, “Product X will make me look like him, then I’ll get any woman I want!”
Her heart still lay on the floor, too weak to resist if he chose to stomp on it again.
“You look beautiful today.”
“Shut up, Jake! You don’t have any right to say things like that to me anymore.” As she got to her feet, she clutched her new binder to her breasts as if it were armor. “Not after the way you ended things.”
“I’m sorry. I know I was an ass, but I’ve come to my senses. I love you.”
Oh no. No. No. No. She shook her head. “No you don’t. If you did, you wouldn’t have left.”
“I think I fell in love with you the night we met. I know I felt something when I sank my cock in your hot pussy. I remember because the feeling scared the living daylights out of me. I spent the rest of the time we were together telling myself you were just another good fu….”
A red haze glazed over her eyes. She understood how a person could commit murder. If she had anything sharper than a ballpoint pen, she’d be tempted to skewer him with it. She tightened her grasp on her notebook, flattening her breasts with it until she felt the physical pain. That was so much easier to deal with than the ache in her heart. She tapped her toe, unable to squelch her anger entirely. “Go ahead. Finish what you were going to say. Don’t leave me hanging. I was just another good…what?”
He pulled his hands from his pockets, fisting them on his hips as he straightened away from the door. “Fuck, Siobhan! I told myself you were just another good fuck. I knew it wasn’t the truth, but I wasn’t ready to admit you meant more to me.”
“You son-of-a-bitch.” She advanced on him. Whatever love she’d harbored for him since he’d cut her out of his life shattered the minute he confessed to using her for months. “I don’t know what hole you crawled into when you left here last month, but you can go back to it. I loved you, Jake, but I was nothing more than a good fuck to you. Well, go fuck yourself.”
With as much dignity as she could muster, she stormed past him into the corridor. Spying the stairwell door at the end of the hall, she stumbled in that direction, managing to descend a couple of flights before her legs gave out. Squeezing her eyes shut, she willed herself not to cry.
Never again. He’s not worth it.
She’d all ready spent too many hours dehydrating herself over Jake Tulleson. “Go to hell, you bastard.” Fumbling in her purse, she found a tissue to dab at the corners of her eyes. She blew her nose into the thin, soggy square. “You told him.”
Her voice echoed off the bare concrete walls, making her sound bolder than she actually was. “Why did you come back to torment me?” she asked the ringing silence. “Wasn’t breaking me in half once enough for you?”
She sniffled. She didn’t care what Ashley had to do between now and her wedding, Siobhan was going to dump the big-assed binder back in her lap then get the hell out of Dodge. Dallas. Whatever. Her friend had meant well, she was sure of it, but no way was she spending another minute in Jake’s company, much less be glued to his side for the three weeks until the Crystal Ball.
No. Fucking. Way.