The Pucking Wrong Guy: Chapter 23

ARI

Two weeks. Fourteen long days. That’s how long it had been since Blake and I had stumbled into that tiny Vegas chapel and ended up married to each other. Of course, it had mostly been Blake stumbling. I’d been perfectly sober.

But I wasn’t going to miss out on a chance to tie that girl down.

Blake had barely said twenty words to me in those two weeks—I’d been counting—and most of them had been variations of ‘Get the fuck out.’

I mean, I could understand why she’d be a little upset.

I had taken advantage of her drunken state, married her without her clear consent, and then sent pictures of our wedding to my agent, who had promptly shared them with every news outlet in the country so that everyone knew we were married.

But I had really good intentions. I was going to make Blake happy forever, just like I’d promised.

We just needed to get past this little…speedbump first.

Or at least that’s what Lincoln kept telling me.

Practice had been a disaster today. My mind was a dark place, and it showed in my performance. I made sloppy mistakes, the kind that would have been laughable if they weren’t so damn frustrating. My coach had yelled at me to get my head out of my ass, and he wasn’t wrong. I was a mess, and it was affecting my game.

After practice, Walker had dragged me to a nearby bar. He knew something was up, and he wasn’t the type to let a fellow circle of trust member suffer in silence. We’d downed shots and beers like there was no tomorrow, and for a while, I’d almost forgotten how angry Blake was with me, how there seemed to be no end in sight. How my dick hadn’t been in her perfect cunt in what felt like forever.

But alcohol unfortunately wears off, and the reality of my situation crashed down on me.

I stumbled back to our home. She hadn’t called it ‘our’ house in weeks, and every night she attempted to sleep in the guest room.

But it was still our home.

Every night she would slink away to the guest room, and every night I would bring her back to our room.

Except tonight.

Tonight I sank into a chair in the room and just watched her sleep.

She looked peaceful, her features softened in slumber. None of the anger was there when she was sleeping. I could almost pretend things were normal.

Almost.

Her silence was deafening. I had expected anger, frustration, and maybe even resentment, but this cold, unyielding silence was something else entirely.

I missed her. I missed her voice. I missed her laugh. I missed the feel of her skin. The taste of it…

I missed fucking everything about her.

I was living with the ghost of her and it was excruciating pain.

My mind raced with thoughts of how I could fix this, but the one thing she wanted…was the one thing I couldn’t give her.

I couldn’t let her go.

It was never going to happen.

But if I didn’t get a look from her soon that didn’t freeze the sun, I was going to go insane.

As I sat there in the guest room, bathed in the pale moonlight filtering through the window, I couldn’t see the light at the end of the tunnel.

I felt hopeless.

The following days were a relentless cycle of despair and determination. I woke up each morning with a pit in my stomach, knowing that Blake’s frosty silence awaited me. But I still gave it my all. I made her favorite foods, I told all my favorite jokes…I even bought her a Maserati.

But nothing was breaking down those walls.

I found myself spending more time at the rink, throwing myself into practice with a feverish intensity. Hockey had always been my sanctuary, a place where I could lose myself in the game and forget about the world’s troubles. But now, even the rink felt like a battleground.

Lincoln and Walker were worried about me. The Cobras had lost three games straight and we were about to head into a road series.

I was going to have to kidnap her at this rate to bring her with me.

I couldn’t concentrate during practice because I was checking my phone every five seconds, staring at cameras in the house, and in her car, worried today was the day she’d try to leave.

Of course, I would go get her, but still…the worry was there.

It was raining today, and I was walking the streets aimlessly, waiting for her to be done with a shoot she’d had that day. I wondered if she missed me at all while we were apart.

Because I was a lovesick fool who wanted nothing more than to be with my wife every fucking minute of my life.

And she didn’t even want to be my wife.

My phone buzzed.

Lincoln: Any progress?

Me: You mean, does she hate me less than yesterday? Doubtful…

Lincoln: You want those cuffs yet?

I hesitated over the keyboard…sometimes I really couldn’t tell if he was joking or not.

But now was really not the time for jokes.

Lincoln: She’s going to forgive you. You guys are the real thing. She’ll remember that soon.

Me: You really believe that?

Lincoln: Pssh. I know that. And I know everything.

Me: Cocky.

Lincoln: Confident. There’s a difference.

I slipped my phone back into my pocket. But I did feel at least a tiny bit better. I would find a way to break through Blake’s fortress, to make her see that I was willing to do whatever it took to make things right.

But for now, I would wait outside her building like the obsessed husband I was…

And wait to follow her home like a lunatic.


I boarded the jet to New York with a sense of purpose. Blake still hadn’t forgiven me, but I at least could fix the problems she had outside of us.

The plane soared through the skies, and with every passing mile, I rehearsed the confrontation that awaited me in the Shepfields’ Manhattan lair. I’d seen a picture of it in a design magazine Blake had showed me once. Very glass castle-ish looking… It was kind of amusing that it was about to crumble around them.

Arriving in New York, I got an Uber and made my way to their penthouse, the weight of the documents in my bag a comforting reminder I still had control over some things. The elevator ride to the top floor felt like an eternity, each passing floor a step closer to the fun.

I took a deep breath and squared my shoulders as I stood before the opulent door. This was it, the entrance to the Shepfields’ sanctum. The mansion itself was the embodiment of swankiness, nestled high in a tower that reached for the heavens. I couldn’t help but feel like a penguin at a peacock party as I knocked, half-expecting the door to be answered by a butler in tails.

The penthouse door swung open, and instead of a butler, there stood a timid looking woman…wearing an honest to goodness black and white maid outfit.

“Can I help you, sir?” she asked snootily.

“Yep,” I said, slipping past her.

“Wait, sir!” she called out frantically behind me.

I wandered quickly around the place; it was so big, it echoed as she called after me. It was like walking through a palace, but instead of a red carpet, there was a gold-plated one that probably cost more than my first car. I turned a corner until I stepped into what I was pretty sure was called a drawing room. Lincoln had one of these. I always made fun of him for it. Paintings of naked women and baby angels adorned the walls, probably worth more than my entire contract, and a grand piano sat in one corner, gleaming under the soft lighting. Plush sofas and antique furniture completed the room’s décor, and I couldn’t help but wonder if they’d hired a team of interior designers or magicians. Thomas Shepfield was perched by the fireplace, a tumbler in his hand, like he was posing for Horse & Hound Magazine.

I laughed to myself. Blake would have gotten a kick out of that one if she was speaking to me. She loved the movie that was from.

I cocked my head as I studied him—somehow, he still hadn’t noticed me standing there. He definitely looked like the kind of guy who used ‘please’ and ‘thank you’ during sex though.

Maura Shepfield was perched on a lavish sofa, her blonde hair sculpted to perfection. She was wearing a citrine colored gown—which was really weird. I half-expected her to start speaking in iambic pentameter.

I slow clapped. Just because it seemed like the right thing to do with the scene before me.

Maura screeched and fell off the couch in surprise…and Thomas dropped his drink, knocking a gash in the real wood floor.

Delightful.

“What the hell are you doing here?” Thomas growled. There was clear recognition in both of their gazes…and hate. Especially in Maura’s as she picked herself off the floor.

‘Thomas…Maura.’ I gave them a little nod and a mocking smile as I stepped inside. ‘I knew you wouldn’t mind a visit from your new son in law.”

Maura sniffed. “If you’re expecting some sort of wedding gift, you’ll be sadly disappointed, young man. You and that good for nothing girl won’t get a penny from us.”

I snorted. “I can honestly say a “wedding gift” has not crossed my mind.” What did cross my mind was punching them both in their pretentious fucking faces for calling Blake a “good for nothing”.

“If you don’t want money, why are you here? You can have one second of our time before we call the police. We know you like a good spectacle, so maybe you won’t mind,” spat Thomas.

I couldn’t contain my smirk. ‘Mmmh. Yes, I do like a good show. But we’ll see what you think about the police after we’re done. Kay?”

I settled into one of their plush chairs, making myself at home. It actually was really comfortable.

I pulled out the envelope containing the damning evidence that my P.I. had unearthed before he betrayed me. I wondered what he thought about the money laundering charge he was currently defending thanks to Lincoln. It pays not to betray your best clients.

“Well?” Maura’s voice cut through the noise in my head. I tossed the folder onto the marble coffee table with a deliberate thud.

‘What is that?’ Thomas demanded, annoyance clear in his voice.

I leaned forward, my gaze never leaving theirs. ‘Allow me to enlighten you. I was really interested in finding out more about my new in-laws. I mean, it’s a big deal to marry into a new family. And ya know, the two of you are really fascinating people,” I drawled.

I reveled in the tension that filled the room bit by bit as I detailed their secrets. ‘Maura, did you know that your devoted husband had a rather torrid affair with your 18-year-old pool cleaner? Quite the scandal, I must say. I imagine it would be rather embarrassing for that to come out.’

Thomas’s face turned a shade of crimson, his forehead beading with sweat. Maura, however, didn’t seem surprised by the news at all.

‘That’s none of your business, boy!’ she snapped.

I raised an eyebrow, my tone dripping with sarcasm. ‘Oh, but it is, Maura. You see, you’ve made it my business by coming to L.A. and messing with Blake.’

Her face paled and she reached for a Chanel bag. “How much do you want, Mr. Lancaster?” she said calmly, obviously well versed in the art of paying people off. Hey, at least I’d upgraded from “boy” to “Mr.” This was getting serious.

“I would never take a penny from you. Especially knowing that all of this,” I gestured to the wealth around me, “is nothing more than a façade. In reality, you both live paycheck to paycheck, and you’ve been siphoning money from the very charities that Maura is on the board for.’

Now they both looked sufficiently terrified. Their veneer of icy poise had shattered, and pure fear was lurking in their eyes now. Maura was frantically gazing around the room, as if she expected hidden cameras to be recording our conversation.

‘Now,’ I said, leaning back in my chair, ‘here’s how this is going to work. You will sign these documents, effectively disowning any claim you have to Blake as her adoptive parents. You will promise to never contact her again, and you will ensure that she is left in peace.’

Maura stared at the documents, her hands trembling as she reached for a pen. ‘What are you going to do with what you know?’ she hissed as she frantically signed the document without a thought.

It wasn’t a surprise, but I hated how easily she could cast aside Blake.

Blake was priceless. Worth more than anything else in their pathetic life.

I chuckled darkly. ‘Stay away from Blake and you won’t have to find out.”

Blake was obviously over eighteen and no longer had to listen to the Shepfields. But simply having them as her adoptive parents legally, it was like a dark cloud hovering over her life.

Now she would be free.

I grabbed the documents, relishing in the sweet taste of victory. The Shepfields, who had once held so much power over her, were now at my mercy. And I had every intention of making sure they understood the consequences of ever crossing her path again.

Their faces were etched with defeat as I rose from my seat, leaving them to contemplate the ruins of their carefully constructed world.

Eventually I would leak all the information about who the Shepfields really were, let Blake relish the satisfaction of seeing the mighty fall…

But for now, it would be fun for them to live in misery.

Just as Blake had her entire life with them.

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