Home > Misbehaving (Sea Breeze #6)(17)

Misbehaving (Sea Breeze #6)(17)
Author: Abbi Glines

“Bullshit! He screwed with your head. Then that motherfucker has the nerve to walk into this bar.” He started pacing again.

“Krit, get out here,” Green said in an aggravated tone as he stepped backstage.

“Leave me the f**k alone,” Krit snapped at him. Then he looked back at me and cupped my face. “You okay?”

“They want you, Krit,” Green yelled over the crowd.

“I said to back the f**k off,” Krit yelled back at him.

I put my hand on Krit’s chest. “Go. I’m fine. I just want to stay back here and watch until your break,” I told him.

Krit nodded, then pressed a kiss to my lips before walking back onto the stage.

The door behind me closed, and I turned to see Trisha standing there. “Did he go back on?” she asked me, and I nodded.

Trisha walked over to stand beside me, and we watched him as he entertained the crowd. “He loves you,” Trisha said.

He hadn’t told me he loved me, but after the way he had acted outside earlier, I was beginning to wonder. “Why?” I asked. I hadn’t done anything to deserve it.

Trisha grinned. “Because you’re you. He knows the real you. Not the wild party girl you show the world. But then, you’ve not been that girl since the beginning of the summer.”

I hadn’t been that girl since I met Jason. We were both thinking it, but neither of us said it out loud.

“He’s not ready for what he feels. He wants to be, but he’s not. He’ll let you down. He’ll mess up.” I looked at Trisha, surprised by her words. She adored Krit. “I love him. But I know him. He’s a free spirit, and for the first time in his life he’s got someone he wants to hold on to. He’s never had that before. But he isn’t ready for it. It will ruin you both eventually.”

“I can’t hurt him,” I told her just as Krit turned to look back at me. He winked and licked his lips, causing the crowd of females to squeal.

“He’ll hurt you if you don’t. He’ll hate himself for it, and I’ll end up having to protect him from Rock. I don’t want to say all this, because for the first time in a very long time I can see he is really happy. You make him happy. But it’s not going to last. He can’t keep this up. He’ll crack. The right girl will throw herself at him and not take no for an answer and he’ll have had too much to drink. Then he’ll hate himself.” Trisha stopped talking and sighed. “I hate doing this. But if there is anything to that guy out there and you, he’s your ticket out, Jess. He’s the one who will pull you out of the life you were born into. Don’t let that go.”

What was out there would hurt me more than Krit could ever hurt me. I looked at Trisha. “Jason has the power to destroy me completely. I can’t let him. He broke me once. I can’t chance that.”

“You love him?” she asked.

I wanted to say no and for it to be true. I couldn’t. “Yes.”

“Krit has a club full of females willing to soothe his broken heart. He loves women, Jess. You know that. He’ll be hurt, but he will get over it. The females who adore him will help him.”

“When he’s ready, I’ll let him go. I can’t love him. My heart’s already taken.”

Trisha reached over and squeezed my arm. “And you’re sure you don’t want to see if this thing with Jason deserves a chance?”

Jason wasn’t here to give anything another chance. He just happened to be in town with friends and saw me. He hadn’t come looking for me. “I’m sure,” I replied.

Trisha nodded. “Okay.”

She turned and walked back out the door. I thought about sneaking outside to be alone, but if Krit looked back and didn’t see me, he would leave the stage again. So I leaned up against the wall and waited.

Fifteen minutes later Krit announced a break and left the stage without talking to the girls hanging around for his attention. He came directly to me and grabbed my hand. “To the back. Now.”

I knew what this meant, but could I do it after seeing Jason again made me so raw? I started to follow him and stopped. “Wait,” I said.

Krit stopped and looked back at me. I could see the fear flash in his eyes, and I hated it. I couldn’t let him think this was because of Jason.

“I’m . . . vulnerable right now. My emotions are all over the place. I’m not in the right mind-set to go have a quickie.”

Krit let out a defeated sigh. “I can make you forget him. Just give me five seconds, love.”

“That’s not the problem. I just need more than a quickie.”

Krit walked back over to me and pulled me into his arms. His chest was damp from sweat. “Fuck, yeah. Okay. I get that.”

He didn’t get it, but he thought he did. I was just glad to get a reprieve.

“I’m gonna need a drink, then,” he said. “You good to go out there with me?”

I nodded. If I had him beside me, I could deal with it. Jason was probably gone by now anyway.

“The douche is still out there,” Krit said, opening the door and putting his arm around my shoulders as we walked into the crowd. I knew it was his form of showing ownership, and any other night I would have shoved it off. Tonight I needed the protection. My heart needed protection. Krit was supplying that.

We walked over to Rock’s table, and Dewayne was grinning at me as I approached. “If it ain’t the heartbreaker. Got all them boys lining up tonight, don’t you, Mess?”

Dewayne had been calling me Mess instead of Jess for as long as I could remember. He and Rock had been friends since elementary school, so there wasn’t a time in my life Dewayne wasn’t in it. That went for Marcus Hardy and Preston Drake, as well.

“Shut it,” I snapped at him, shooting him the bird as Krit pulled out a stool for me.

“Sit, love. I’ll go get you a whiskey,” Krit said before laying one of his claiming kisses on me. They weren’t meant for me. They were meant for everyone else in the club. When I had first agreed to him kissing me to keep other guys away while I nursed a broken heart, I hadn’t expected things between Krit and me to progress the way they had.

“Thanks,” I said when he pulled back, and he sauntered over to the bar. Krit had cornered the market on walking to draw attention. Girls stopped in midsentence to watch him. Something about his bad-boy charm and ego did it for the females. Then there was the fact that he could sing.

“We were wondering if Krit had chained you up backstage when he did that disappearing act in the middle of the song,” Dewayne said, leaning back with a taunting grin on his face.

“Leave it,” Rock warned him, but Dewayne just laughed.

“Amanda wanted to stay and check on you,” Trisha said, “but Preston was having a hard time keeping his hands off her. Their classes are keeping them apart this year, more so than before, and he’s not dealing with it well.”

“Dumbass needs to go ahead and marry her. They can move in together, and that will fix that shit,” Dewayne drawled.

“Oh, hell, Jess. Stone’s coming this way,” Rock muttered.

I knew looking was a bad idea, but I couldn’t help it. Surely he wasn’t stupid enough to walk over here. But then, he had no idea how badly I had been hurt. It had been a fling to him.

“It’s fine. He’s probably coming to say hello to everyone,” I said under my breath.

“Would have been smarter had he done that when you weren’t here,” Rock replied, shooting an annoyed glare Jason’s way.

“But it wouldn’t have been nearly as much fun,” Dewayne added.

Trisha slapped his arm and scolded him.

“Krit’s gonna go apeshit,” Dewayne said in a singsong voice.

“Shut him up,” I whispered to Rock.

Jason approached the table, and I did my best not to stare at him. I smiled. “Hey again.”

He didn’t look as easygoing as before. “Hey.” He turned his attention to the others at the table. “Rock, Trisha, Dewayne, good to see you,” he said, then looked back at me. “I was hoping we could talk.”

“Bad idea. Her man won’t deal well with it. Just let it go and save me the hassle,” Rock answered for me.

Krit’s arm settled around my shoulders again, and he set my drink down in front of me. His gaze was locked on Jason, but he lowered his head to kiss the side of my face. “Company?” he asked in a bored drawl, even though he knew exactly who Jason was.

“Krit, Jason Stone. Jason, Krit,” I said, unable to look at either of them. I glanced to Rock for rescuing.

“Jason, it’s good to see you again and all,” Rock said. “Hope life’s treating you well, but due to your past with Jess, this isn’t the best time.”

“When is a good time?” Jason asked, looking at me and ignoring the glare I knew Krit was directing his way.

“Never,” Krit replied.

This was not me. I didn’t hide behind men to protect me. How had I let this one guy completely change me? I was stronger than this. I grabbed Krit’s hand and made him look at me. I had been going to tell him to let me talk to Jason, but the look in Krit’s eyes stopped me. He didn’t deserve that.

“It’s okay,” I told him softly, then pressed a kiss to his lips to try to ease some tension from his body. Then I turned my attention to Jason. “We talked, Jason. You’ve said all you wanted to say to me before. Let’s just be friends and leave it at that,” I told him.

Jason started to say something else, but I shook my head and then stood up. I wasn’t arguing with him in front of everyone. I didn’t want him to say anything around them that would prove what an idiot I was. How I had taken something so small and made it much bigger. It was my humiliation. I wanted to keep it that way.

“Dance with me,” I told Krit.

“Gladly, love,” he replied, and I watched him cockily salute Jason as I pulled him toward the dance floor.

JASON

“She’s a hot little number. Completely blew you off, though, for the singer dude with the eyeliner,” Finn said as he leaned over in the limo, unable to sit up straight.

I wasn’t in the mood to discuss Jess with either of them. They didn’t know what had happened with us, nor would they understand.

“Don’t know why you didn’t dance with one of the many other babes who asked you,” Hensley said. “Hell, that redhead was hitting on you so hard she was about ready to crawl into your lap. Sucks that I can’t have a rock-star brother. That one group of girls knew you right away. They were squealing and shit, like you were the f**king rock god, not Jax. ’Course, I got to fill that girl up. When you weren’t showing interest, she moved on over and climbed into my lap. Sweet tits. Really sweet tits.”

I closed my eyes and tried to block the guys out. But then again, if I thought too hard, all I’d be able to see was that f**ker’s hands all over Jess like she was his. But then, she was his. I didn’t have any claim to her.

“I don’t know why we can’t take home those slutty ones. I woulda been getting lucky right now,” Finn grumbled.

“Oh, I don’t know, Finn, maybe because we’re staying at Jax’s summer place, and he doesn’t want rabid fans to know where it is,” Hensley replied.

“We coulda drove around and f**ked in the limo,” he complained.

“You need to sleep this off. No orgies in the limo. We aren’t that drunk,” Hensley said.

She had said that she’d hurt him for me. I had thought that meant she wanted me more than him. That she didn’t love him. But then she’d chosen him over me at the table. I couldn’t figure her out. Had she gone to the back and changed her mind? Was my f**kup in New York it for her? I had sent her home like she asked and not contacted her once. I had stared at her number enough times, thinking about it. But I’d never actually gone through with it.

“She was watching you when she thought you weren’t looking. When she was dancing with him, the rocker dude,” Hensley said.

I opened my eyes and lifted my head to look at him. “Jess was looking at me?” I asked, needing to make sure I hadn’t just imagined that.

“Yep. She looked at you a lot. But then the rocker dude caught her one time and she stopped. Then we left.”

Shit. This was all kinds of f**ked up. I needed to let this go. She had obviously moved on. I had to get back to school Monday, and staying in Sea Breeze to make something happen with Jess was impossible.

“Doesn’t matter. She doesn’t fit into my life,” I said, more to myself than anyone else.

“Yeah, you’re right,” Hensley agreed.

“Dude could sing, though,” Finn said with his eyes almost closed and his body leaned over so far his head was touching the seat.

Maybe I needed to get that drunk. Then I wouldn’t care.

Chapter Seventeen

JESS

Throwing myself back into school and work was the only thing that got me through the next week. Krit realized I was pulling away, and he was letting me. I wasn’t sure why, but he wasn’t holding on so tight after Jason’s showing up at Live Bay. Part of me felt like I should go apologize to him, tell him I was sorry about how I was acting, but I couldn’t. I needed time to deal.

When Friday night came back around, Krit called three times. I didn’t answer. I wasn’t in the mood to face Live Bay tonight. I had brought home some things to alter from the shop. Focused on that, I almost ignored my phone the fourth time it rang. But it could have been Momma. Glancing over at it, I saw Jason’s name flash on my screen, and I dropped the pants I was holding and grabbed my phone.

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