Reckless (Chestnut Springs Book 4): Chapter 38

Winter

Present . . .

I’m lying on the couch, wishing I could teleport myself back to the filthy simplicity of that night. Summer’s presence draws me from the dream I can’t escape to, no matter how many times I wake up and fall back asleep. The dream where I want more—and I take it.

“I woke with a dog curled up between my feet and your kid trying to take my shirt off. It’s only five a.m.”

“Sorry,” I say flatly, in too much of a daze to react.

Summer approaches with Vivi slung on her hip. “What is happening with you this morning? You look terrible. Don’t worry about Dr. Douche, as Rhett calls him. His tantrum will end soon. Hard to argue with a DNA test.”

“It’s not him. It’s Theo. I can’t get a hold of him. I’ve been trying all night.”

“He’s not answering?” She pads across the room and joins me on the couch.

“It’s going straight to voicemail.”

“Weird.”

I scrub at my eyes. ‘Yeah, it is. At first, I thought he was banging some buckle bunny, but I know that he wouldn’t, so that fear has morphed into there being something really, really wrong. Like a car accident or something. I even googled to see if there are any active serial killers in Billings.”

Summer covers her mouth, pretending to conceal a yawn, but I know it was a laugh. “There isn’t a chance in the world that man so much as looked at a buckle bunny. Are you really oblivious to how gone he is for you?”

“I see it, but I don’t trust it. It feels too . . . perfect. Any time something feels perfect, it blows up in my face. A sister. A husband. A baby.” I drop my head back and close my eyes. “I don’t want Theo to blow up. I’ll never recover.”

“Ma.” Vivi reaches for me, and I take her. The squishy feel of her in my arms never fails to comfort me.

“I’ll call Rhett and see—”

“Yeah, could you call Rhett and ask him which hotel and room?”

“What?”

“Right after I looked up serial killers, I booked an eight a.m. flight to Billings so I could ream Theo out in person. Because over the phone just isn’t going to cut it after this shit.”

Summer’s eyes widen, but she recovers quickly. “Alright, I’ll pawn my clients off for the morning and drive you to the airport.”

Theo never backed down when I snarled at him.

And now I’m going to return the favor.

Because he and I? We’re more.

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