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|Strings of the Heart(Runaway Train #3) by Katie Ashley|
He brought his lips to mine for a passionate kiss. After he pulled away, he eased out of my body and rolled over.
When I started shifting away from him, Rhys grabbed my arm. “Where are you going?” he whispered.
He nodded and lay back against the pillow. Peeling back one side of the curtain, I peered down at Jake and Abby’s bedroom. The door was still closed, and everything seemed to be quiet. Thank God the twins had started sleeping through the night a few weeks back. Pulling on the hem of my T-shirt, I padded bare-assed across the aisle. After using the bathroom and getting cleaned up from my exertions, I tiptoed back to my roost.
My heartbeat began thrumming wildly in my chest when I pulled back the curtain to find Rhys still there. He held out the covers so I could slide inside. Once I was tucked by his side, I felt like my heart would explode right out of my chest. After lying there a few moments, I propped my head up to look at him. “Should you go back to your roost?” I finally whispered.
“Are you trying to get rid of me?”
I smiled up at him. “Never.”
He grinned. “I thought for a minute you’d had your way with me, and now you didn’t need me anymore.”
“I’m pretty sure it was you having your way with me.”
“Whatever. I didn’t take you for a ‘wham, bam, thank you ma’am’ kinda gal.”
“I’m not. I’d love for you to stay the night with me.” Thinking about Jake, I asked, “You think it’ll be okay?”
“Do you have your phone?” When I nodded, he said, “Just set your alarm about thirty minutes before the twins usually get up. We should be fine.”
“I’m always a man with a plan.”
I elbowed him playfully as I fumbled around on the shelf over my head. Once I’d grabbed my phone, I set it for five. The twins usually liked to get up around six, and I didn’t want to push it with just a half hour window.
After I put the phone back on the shelf, I snuggled back against Rhys and fell into a deep, contented sleep.
As per my usual morning routine on the bus, Jax and Jules’s hearty morning cries woke me up. Shifting in my roost, I bumped against something warm and hard. My eyes snapped open. Rhys’s body was spooned against mine with one arm snaked around my waist, cupping my breast through my T-shirt. “Shit!” I cried.
He slowly roused next to me. “What’s wrong?” he asked, forgetting to whisper.
Elbowing him, I hissed, “Shh!”
When he tensed beside me, I knew he realized we were in deep shit. It was morning, and he hadn’t gone back to his roost like he was supposed to. Now Jake and Abby were awake along with the twins.
“What happened to the alarm?” he asked.
“I don’t know.” I shook my head. “God, we are so screwed.”
“Look, I’ll just duck into the shower. They’ll never know the difference.”
“I hope you’re right.”
“Trust me,” he murmured, before bestowing a chaste kiss on my lips.
While I would have loved to have stayed there making out with him longer, I knew he had to get going. When his arm reached up to pull back the curtain, Jake’s voice caused Rhys to freeze. “Okay, I’ll heat their bottles.” Rhys and I exchanged a panicked look before the bedroom door flung open. As Jake’s feet padded down the hallway, I sucked in a breath. Just when I thought I was in the clear, Jake’s hand tapped on my curtain.
Oh shit. Oh shit. Oh shit. “Uh, yeah?”
“Your sketch pad is out here on the floor.”
“Oops, I must’ve knocked it out when I was sleeping,” I replied.
When Jake started to pull back the curtain, I screeched and blocked his hands. “No, no, I’m not dressed yet!”
“Jeez, I’m sorry. I didn’t realize you were so modest.”
“Yeah, it’s a bad character trait of mine,” I replied.
“Want me to leave it on the table for you?”
Once he was safely down the hall, I exhaled noisily. “That was a close one,” I whispered.
Rhys nodded. Drawing in a deep breath, he eased back the curtain and peeked outside. He then swung his legs out of the roost and hopped out. Just as I was about to sigh with relief, Jake’s voice once again scared the hell out of me.
“Dude, what the f**k?” he demanded.
Peeking through the curtain, I got a great view of Rhys’s bare ass as he stood outside his roost. Peering around him, I watched as Jake stared at Rhys in horror. “What’s the problem?” Rhys asked nonchalantly.
Waving one of the twins’ bottles around, Jake replied, “Oh, I don’t know. Maybe the fact you’re buck ass na**d in the middle of the hallway?”
Rhys shrugged. “You know I sleep in the buff—I always have. Can I help it if you caught me as I was about to get in the shower?”
“Have you forgotten Allison’s on this bus? I don’t even want her having to see your na**d ass this early in the morning.”
“Oh shit, man, I forgot. I guess I’ve gotten used to letting it all hang out with Eli and Gabe.”
Jake grimaced. “Try not to forget again. I don’t want Abby having to see you, either.”
Sweeping his hands to his na**d hips, Rhys asked, “Are you afraid of what might happen if she saw a real man naked?”