|Home > Samantha Young > On Dublin Street Series > Until Fountain Bridge (Page 7)|
|Until Fountain Bridge(On Dublin Street #3.5)(7) by Samantha Young|
“Because you would have beaten the shit out of Liam.”
I snorted. “Always fighting my battles for me.”
“With you, baby. With you, not for you.”
Liking that a lot, I turned my head and kissed him, loving the now familiar press of his mouth against mine. I pulled back and cocked my head in thought. “I thought the year you started to see me differently was the one after my eighteenth.”
“The one after…?” Adam’s eyebrows drew together in thought for a minute and then instantly cleared as he remembered. “The almost kiss.”
While he’d been reading the last entry, I’d found the entry I’d expected him to allude to as to the moment he started to see me as more than Braden’s little sister. I held the diary out to him and he took it with a small smile as the memories flooded him.
Friday, July 5th Tonight I had my first truly grown-up, sophisticated and, well, HOT, date. I’m just not sure who I had it with… As Christian helped me out of the taxi I had to wonder if this was going to be “it”.
Christian was handsome, charming, a total gentleman and he had class. He had yet to make me laugh but I was sure that would come as we became more comfortable with one another.
He smiled at me again as I pushed the hem of my black dress back down. It had shimmied up while I was sitting in the taxi. “You look stunning.”
I flushed. When he looked at me like that I felt stunning. I was wearing a plain black sleeveless dress that should have been somewhat modest considering its high neckline and mid-thigh hemline. However, the dress hugged every inch of my body leaving little to the imagination. It was a sophisticated dress with a splash of “hot”.
I’d bought it earlier that day specifically for Christian.
We’d met a week ago in the student union. Christian was pre-law, two years older than me and from an obviously wealthy and well-to-do family. They had an actual “estate” in the highlands. That had nothing to do with what attracted me to him of course. I was attracted to him and how he’d acted upon our first meeting— with a fresh and open honesty that really appealed to me. It made me feel like I could be just as open with him. It made me feel like I could be myself.
Christian had told me that although his family had the estate, they also had a home in Corstorphine, a busy suburb out in the west of the city. His parents had bought it when his sister had moved to Edinburgh and started popping out children. She was pregnant with her third and the entire family was living in Edinburgh to be closer to her. I thought that spoke volumes about them and was more than a little excited to meet them already.
To my delight, Christian had booked us a table at La Cour for our first date. I didn’t even get a chance to tell him it was Braden’s restaurant. He inherited it from our father. As we entered I opened my mouth to tell him but Christian started speaking about the menu and what he thought I should order. I was going to tell him I knew what I wanted to order, since I’d eaten at La Cour more times than I could count, when I heard Adam call my name.
Christian and I drew to a halt as the maitre’d led us to our table, and I turned my head to see Adam sitting in the center of the restaurant across a small table from a gorgeous brunette.
I ignored the flare of jealousy, squashing it, and reminded myself I was on a date with a fabulous man, and that the gorgeous brunette was just one of many sexual partners for Adam.
He was a manwhore.
But he was my manwhore, and I couldn’t help but walk over to him, Christian at my side, with a huge smile on my face, because as always I was delighted to see him.
Adam grinned up at me, his smile dimming slightly as his gaze flickered to Christian. He gave Christian a once over and then turned those beautiful eyes of his back on me. He perused me with a small smile and when his eyes hit mine they were full of tenderness. “You look absolutely stunning, Els.”
I didn’t just flush at his compliment, I burned. “Thank you,” I murmured and then gave his date a polite smile. “Hullo.”
She glared at me.
“Adam, this is Christian.”
Adam gave Christian a taut nod and then flicked his hand to his date. “This is Megan.”
“It’s Meagan,” she corrected him waspishly, pronouncing it like ‘mee-gan’ instead of ‘meh-gan’.
I saw Adam stifle a long-suffering sigh. Uh oh. His date obviously wasn’t going well.
“We better get to our table.” Christian gently pulled on my elbow.
I gave Adam another smile. “Enjoy your evening.”
“You too, sweetheart.” I moved to follow Christian but had only taken a step to walk away when I felt a tug on the hem of my dress. I glanced down, frowning, and watched Adam pull off the price tag. I blushed as he winked at me.
I closed my eyes briefly. I’d left the price tag on. I was always doing stuff like that. God, I hoped Christian hadn’t seen it. Opening my eyes I deliberately ignored Adam’s date and mouthed a heartfelt “thank you”. He grinned at me and I smothered a laugh at myself before hurrying to catch up with Christian at our table across the room.
“Who was that?” Christian asked casually as we were seated.
“My brother’s best friend,” I replied equally casually. “We grew up together.”
Christian nodded and then ordered us white wine. I preferred red.
We chatted as we waited for the waiter to return, and Christian told me all about a charity he was organizing. He stopped talking when the waiter came back and he began to order my food for me. Deciding to think this was charming rather than overbearing I informed him this was my brother’s restaurant and that I knew what I wanted. He was impressed that Braden owned La Cour and for five minutes I told him about Braden’s other businesses.
After that we were back onto Christian.
By the time the second course arrived, my hope for this being “it” was diminishing rapidly. Not once did my date appear to take any real interest in me, and the more I realized how self-absorbed he was, the more aware I became of Adam sitting across the room from me. Adam whose eyes glittered with interest every time I opened my mouth.
I had just picked up my fork to take a bite of my steak when a phone rang. Debussy.
Really? Even his ringtone was pretentious.
Yes, by this point the shine had definitely worn off.
Christian pulled the phone out of his pocket and answered it, his eyes going wide. “I’ll be right there.” He put the phone back in his pocket and stood up.
I stared up at him in absolute shock. Was he about to leave me here? In the middle of a date?
“My sister just went into labor,” he explained, and I watched as he threw a wad of cash on the table. “Stay, finish your meal.” He leaned down and pecked my cheek. “I’ll call you.”
And then he was gone.
I couldn’t exactly hate him because he’d abandoned me on our first date to go be by his pregnant sister’s bedside. At that thought I slumped against my chair. Christian was obviously a good person. He just also happened to be incredibly self-involved. It occurred to me he’d been the same way at the student union last week but I’d twisted it in my overly romantic little head and called it open and honest.
I looked at my food glumly.
A hand came down on the back of my chair and a shadow appeared above me. I glanced up to find Adam bending over me, a scowl on his face.
“Where the f**k did he go?” he growled.
God, I loved him.
“His sister went into labor.”
Adam relaxed but didn’t move.
“I’m okay,” I promised him. I wasn’t okay. I wanted to cry. And he knew it.
He straightened and called out to one of the waiters by name. “Can you move us to a larger table?”
“Of course, Mr. Sutherland.”
“Adam, no,” I protested. “I’m not crashing your date.”
He grabbed my hand and pulled me up. “You got all dressed up, sweetheart. At the very least you’re going to get to finish your meal.”
Holding my hand, Adam led me to the new table and gave a jerk of his head to his date to tell her to come to us. He sat next me as Meagan took the seat across from him, her green eyes flashing with annoyance.
“Ellie’s joining us,” Adam informed her, his tone brooking no argument “Sorry,” I mumbled apologetically to her.
“Don’t apologize,” Adam replied firmly. “You’ve nothing to apologize for.”
The waiters quickly brought over our plates and as we dug in Adam asked me about Christian.
“Well.” I sighed after swallowing a piece of tender meat. “Up until forty minutes ago I thought he was perfect. Forty minutes ago I didn’t know he’d try to order my food for me or talk incessantly about himself.”
Adam grinned. “Was it about his hair? I bet he could get a good forty minutes out of how long it took him to get that quiff just right—what styling mousse he uses and why, the amount he uses in order to get just the right amount of height and curvature…”
I was giggling like an idiot as he continued to tease me. It was true. Christian had a rather large quiff. Forty minutes ago I’d thought it spoke of his individuality and style. Now, I was guessing Adam was right. The man probably spent more time on his hair than I did and that was never a good thing.
Throughout the meal Adam made me laugh until I forgot all about my ruined evening. It wasn’t until the waiter came to take our plates away and offer us the dessert menu that I remembered Meagan was even there. She reminded us by scraping her chair back and glaring at Adam. “I just remembered I have an early morning. Thanks for dinner, Adam. I’ll see you around.”
Before Adam could say anything she’d turned on her designer heels and stormed out of the restaurant.
I instantly felt terrible. Adam and I hadn’t included her in our conversation at all. It was such a shitty thing to do.
Adam must have recognized my guilty expression because he shook his head at me.