Home > Misbehaving (Sea Breeze #6)(13)

Misbehaving (Sea Breeze #6)(13)
Author: Abbi Glines

Jason moved closer to me. “Place isn’t big enough not to use every available seat. It’s the way it works. Promise. Sit down.”

I did, and he pulled out the seat beside me and sat down. A waitress was there immediately, handing us two menus and asking what we wanted to drink.

I was too busy listening to the many conversations going on at our table to think about the menu. This was wild.

“I always get the Reuben. It’s my favorite. But all their sandwiches are good. Just huge.”

I watched as the waitress set an opened-faced sandwich down in front of the guy beside us. There was more meat piled up on the sandwich than I ate in a month. Holy crap.

“Want to share?” Jason asked with an amused smirk on his face as he watched me.

“Yeah, I like Reubens. That sounds good. I couldn’t eat a fourth of that thing,” I said, glancing from the sandwich up to Jason’s pretty blue eyes.

Our drinks and a bowl of pickles were placed in front of us. The pickles all looked different, and Jason explained their differences. I didn’t want to eat a whole one and started to cut off a slice when Jason picked up the pickle and held it to my mouth. “Take a bite, Jess.”

I did as he instructed. Jason watched me as I chewed it up, and then he took a bite before winking at me and reaching for another pickle. He held each one and had me taste them. Once I had found my favorite, he handed it to me and told me it was mine. “Eat it.”

The sandwich was the biggest thing I had ever seen, but I ate as much as I could. Jason finished off the rest, calling me a wimp.

After we left, he took me to Central Park and we took a carriage ride as he told me about different parts of the park. I felt like I had my own personal tour guide. He kept me tucked against him and played with my hair while he talked. Liking this too much wasn’t smart, but I couldn’t help it. I liked it a lot. I loved the way Jason made me feel.

Shopping on Fifth Avenue was another experience. The first thing I admired, Jason snatched up and bought me. I didn’t want him doing that. So I was careful not to touch or look at anything longingly again. He still managed to watch me closely enough to see my interest in a pair of gray leather stiletto boots. Even with me insisting I didn’t want to try them on, Jason somehow managed to get the lady to bring out my exact size. Giving in so I didn’t make a scene, I tried them on, and Jason’s eyes did that smoldering thing that made it hard for me to breathe.

“We want them,” he told the lady without looking away from me.

When she took them and walked to the register, I grabbed his arm. “You don’t have to buy those,” I whispered. I had seen the eight-hundred-dollar price tag.

“Yeah, I do,” he replied. “Trust me, that was a selfish purchase.” He turned to hand the lady his card.

“They cost too much,” I said through my teeth, not wanting people to hear me.

“Can’t put a price on the way your legs look in those boots,” he replied.

My face felt hot and my heart was doing funny things. When he said stuff like that to me, it was hard to remain calm. It also tore down more of my protective walls. The lady thanked him and handed him the bag and his card. Jason took the bag in one hand and then reached for my hand with his other one.

“What do you want to see now?”

“I don’t know. I never imagined I would come here, so I don’t know what to do.”

Jason pulled me close to his side as a crowd of people rushed by. “We have about two hours before we need to head to the party. How long will it take you to get ready?”

“An hour,” I replied.

“Then it’s time you saw Times Square,” he said.

We walked down the street, and I was careful not to look at items in the windows for fear he’d go in and buy them for me. I didn’t know if all rich boys did that or if it was just a Jason thing, but I didn’t want him to do it. He had already brought me here. That was enough.

JASON

I had been visiting New York City since I was a kid. Never once had I enjoyed it the way I had today. Jess had been so excited, and just watching her take everything in had been more fun than any other time I had been here. She was innocently amazed at things like the Gray Line bus and the Naked Cowboy—all things I took for granted. Whenever Jess saw something she wanted, I had needed to buy it. It was like some compulsion. I didn’t buy girls stuff. It wasn’t my thing.

Again, Jess was making me act out of character. She was all in my head, and I wasn’t sure how safe this was. I couldn’t forget that I wasn’t planning a relationship with her.

The bathroom door opened and Jess stepped out of it, draining all other thoughts from my head. She was wearing a short red clingy dress that was strapless and looked like it was made of silk. The gray leather stiletto boots I had bought her hugged her legs perfectly.

She did a twirl and smiled shyly at me. “Will this do?” she asked. I could see the worry in her eyes. I hadn’t considered the fact that she might not have something to wear, but she did. The dress she was wearing looked like icing.

“You’re gorgeous,” I replied honestly.

She beamed at me and reached back to twist her long blond hair up. “Should I wear it up or is it okay down?” she asked.

“Down,” I replied, walking over to her so I could touch her. She stepped into my arms easily. “I like it down,” I repeated.

She slipped her hands up my chest and behind my neck. “You look really hot all dressed up,” she said, staring up at me through her lashes.

“Mmmm,” I replied, tugging her closer to me. “We need to leave now or we won’t be going,” I said, letting her go and putting some distance between us. If I didn’t show up for this party, Finn would be hurt. But with Jess looking like the fantasy in every wet dream I’d ever had, it was hard to give a shit about Finn.

Jess took a deep breath, and I suddenly wondered just how secure that dress was. Her chest rose and fell, teasing me with the idea that her tits might break free. “Jess?” I asked, unable to take my eyes off her generous cle**age.

“Yes?”

“How sure are you that your tits are safe from being freed?”

Jess let out a small laugh and walked over to me. She slipped her hand under my chin and made me look at her face instead of her soft, firm, tempting-as-hell br**sts.

“Do you plan on tugging it down?” she asked.

I was real close to doing it now. I swallowed hard. “Not at the party,” I replied. But as far as the limo ride back, I wasn’t promising anything.

“Then I’m positive they’re safely tucked away.”

I hoped she was right. I didn’t want to have to kill anyone for seeing what was mine.

A bucket of ice-cold water couldn’t compete with the icy chill that went through me. What did I mean by “what was mine”? Jess wasn’t mine. I couldn’t begin to think of her as mine. I would be going back to Harvard in the fall. I had a life that Jess didn’t fit into. One I was currently trying to figure out. I didn’t need more complications.

I turned and headed for the door, needing to get away from her. I couldn’t talk right now, or think. I had to clear my head. This was a bad idea. I shouldn’t have brought her. She was getting under my skin in a way I wasn’t familiar with, and I didn’t feel safe. It was also unfair to her.

“Jason?” she asked. Her voice wavered nervously.

I closed my eyes and mentally cursed myself. I had to distance myself from her, but I couldn’t hurt her in the process. She was my date. She was in a strange city. Ignoring her completely was not an option, but I needed to remind her of exactly what we were. A fling. Just a summer fling.

I masked the panic on my face before turning to see her standing where I had left her. She was clutching her hands nervously in front of her. Damn. I couldn’t be an ass. I held out my hand. “Come on. Time to go party,” I said with a smile. She didn’t seem sure, but she placed her hand in mine and I focused on getting us the hell out of that hotel.

The limo was waiting for us, and Kane stood at the door.

I didn’t slide in close to Jess this time. Smelling her and feeling the warmth from her body was too hard to resist. I reached for a crystal tumbler and poured myself some bourbon before sitting back. Taking a long drink, letting it burn my throat and take the edge off, I remained quiet.

Jess didn’t say anything, and looking at her was out of the question. I needed more to drink first. The ride to the party wasn’t long, thankfully. When Kane parked in front of the building, I set my glass down and prepared myself for a very long night.

“Did I do something wrong?” Jess asked quietly.

I wanted to tell her that no, she had done nothing wrong. I had let this go too far. I hadn’t been careful. But instead I smiled and shook my head. “Of course not. We’re here,” I replied as Kane saved me by opening the door.

Chapter Thirteen

JESS

I had done something. I just couldn’t figure out what. Was he embarrassed by my dress? That was all I could think of. We had been talking about it when he had gone cold. I didn’t have designer clothing. However, this dress was one of my best pieces. I wasn’t talented at many things, but I was good with a sewing machine. When I had cried because I didn’t have a nice dress to wear to the homecoming dance my freshman year, my momma had gotten out the old sewing machine that her mother had left her. She had brought me several dresses of hers that she no longer wore and told me to stop feeling sorry for myself and figure it out.

It had taken me a week of staying up most of the night to figure out how to work the machine. The designing had come easy. I was good at it. Making it work was more difficult, but I had worn an original dress to that dance. Making my own dresses had become a hobby. I enjoyed it. Momma brought me costumes from the club that needed mending, and they paid me for it. I even started making new stuff for them too.

This dress was my favorite creation. If he was embarrassed by it, then he shouldn’t have invited me. I wasn’t one of these people, but I refused to feel like less than a person because my label wasn’t a designer one.

He was intent on not speaking to me, so I remained quiet. I’d asked him twice now if I had done something. He’d said no. I wasn’t asking again.

When we arrived at the double doors of what I assumed was a penthouse because it wasn’t a normal-size apartment, he rang the bell and the doors swung open almost immediately. The music was loud and the girl at the door looked like something out of a magazine.

“Jason!” she squealed, throwing her arms around him. “You’re here! We’ve missed you.”

I watched as he wrapped his arms around her and hugged her back. I would not care. Besides, she was probably the girlfriend of his friend who was throwing the party.

“Told you I’d be here,” he replied, stepping back and scanning the room. I was almost prepared for him not to introduce us. I wasn’t sure how I would respond if he didn’t. It wasn’t like I could leave. I had no money. I hadn’t brought my purse because it didn’t match this dress and wasn’t nice enough.

“Vanessa, this is Jess. Jess, this is Vanessa, a friend of mine from school,” he said, surprising me.

Vanessa’s appraising gaze made me nervous and angry at the same time.

“Guess it’s a good thing Jo isn’t here,” she replied, shooting Jason a look that made me cringe. “It’s nice to meet you, Jess.”

“You too,” I managed to choke out.

Jason placed his hand on my back and led me inside. That small touch helped ease my fear a little, but the moment we were inside he dropped his hand.

“Jason, you’ve been hiding,” a guy said. “Talked to Jax last night, and he said you were vacationing.” The guy shifted his gaze to me, and a slow grin touched his face. “And who is this?”

“Cameron, this is Jess. Jess, this is Cameron,” Jason said in a bored tone.

“Jess, huh? Well, Jess, how have we not met before?”

I wasn’t sure how to answer that.

“Because you don’t visit south Alabama,” Jason replied, taking a shot glass from a tray as a waitress walked by.

Cameron raised his eyebrows. “You’ve been hiding out at Jax’s summer place? Why no invite?”

“Been busy,” Jason replied.

Cameron’s eyes shifted back to me. “Yeah, I can see that.”

Jason glanced at me. “I need something more than this to drink. You thirsty? I’m going to the bar.”

Those were the first words he had spoken directly to me since we were in the limo. Startled, I just shook my head. Jason didn’t ask if I was sure or take my hand. He just walked off and left me there.

Cameron, on the other hand, didn’t go anywhere. “So, you and Jason been seeing each other long?”

I wasn’t sure if we were seeing each other now. “Not really,” I replied.

Cameron’s grin changed, and I knew that grin. The guys here might be wealthy, but they were still males. I knew how to handle men. I also knew that just because Jason was bored with me, standing back and playing the victim wasn’t my style.

“Since he seems to have left you,” Cameron said, glancing over at the bar, “and is now preoccupied, why don’t you dance with me?”

I looked over at the bar and saw a girl with dark brown hair pulled up in a classy bun, dressed like the elitist she no doubt was, curled up against his side. He wasn’t moving away from her and he seemed to be deep in conversation with her. Had I been the means to make someone jealous? A rebound?

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