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Page 8 of Just Desserts (Holland Springs 4)

“Eight minutes to kissy face time,” Isabella announced, her face lighting up as her fiancé, Peter, joined them. “You’re here.”

Peter leaned down to kiss her friend on the forehead, and then he flashed a smile at Heath. “Aren’t you a little young to be out past eleven?”

“Shouldn’t you be in bed, old man?” Heath asked, with a shit-eating grin.

“Only if Isabella is with me,” Peter said. He held out his hand to Isabella. She took it, kissing Daisy on the cheek before she stood.

Heath’s jaw clenched and he muttered something intelligible under his breath. Maybe Heath wasn’t over Isabella like she’d thought he was.

“Don’t be alone at midnight,” her friend called out as she and her fiancé disappeared into the crowd.

Daisy nodded and then sighed thickly. “Awesome. I’m stuck with my cousin, on New Year’s Eve, and the ball’s getting ready to drop.”

Heath punched her lightly on the shoulder. “It’s not that bad. We can toast and hug, but I think someone else might want to get in on that.”

“What?” Daisy’s brow furrowed.

“Hi, honey,” a man said from behind.

“Glen,” she squeaked, turning around in her chair. “What are you doing here?” She wasn’t sure if she were happy or sad about seeing him. They’d broken up right after Thanksgiving, and the only time they talked was to arrange for their dog, Cici, to have visitation.

Heath grabbed his bottle of beer. “I’ll take that as my cue to leave.”

Daisy managed a faint good-bye. “I thought you didn’t like coming to places like this.”

Glen leaned down, his chocolate eyes all seductive. “It’s taken me some time, but I’ve come to the conclusion that wherever you are, is where I want to be. Even—” he made a face of disgust and she recoiled a little, “places like this. Besides, it’s not like you come here that often.” Actually she did. She, Haven, and Isabella had a weekly girls’ night out here, but apparently, that had escaped Glen’s notice.

“I think we owe it to ourselves to give our relationship one more try,” he added.

She looked at him skeptically, and he took her hand, kissing it softly. “I missed you, Daisy. Haven’t you missed me at all?”

Actually, she had. No matter his faults, she’d genuinely missed him. He’d been one of her best friends growing up, and she didn’t want to let go of that.

“Yes.”

“Give me another chance, honey. It’s almost a new year. Let me show you the new me.”

Caving, she stood and let Glen wrap his arms around her as the crowd began the final countdown. “Okay.”

Smiling, he lowered his mouth to hers right as the bar went crazy.

***

The smell of bacon frying woke Daisy. She sat up in bed and glanced around, just as Glen, wearing nothing but a pair of boxer briefs, walked into the room. He smiled at her, and her stomach dropped.

All at once, everything came back to her: the kiss, her drinking waaay more than she should have, the drive to her house, their clothes all tangled around them, his hands on her br**sts, and the room spinning…then nothing.

“Did we spend the night together?” she asked. “I mean, did we have sex?”

He sat down beside her on the bed, taking her hand in his. “Well, one of us did.” He traced her lips with a finger. “I’ve missed these lips, and what they can do.”

“So…I—you…were the only one—”

Letting go of her hand, he held his own up. “Hey, I’m not turning down a blow job.”

“But you didn’t return the favor?”

“You fell asleep,” he said and her stomach roiled. He’d used her and she’d let him. “Don’t pout. I guess I could return the favor now.”

Warning bells sounded in her head at the words guess and favor. Loving one another this way shouldn’t be about favors. It should be mutual. “Way to make me feel all special, Glen.”

“I shouldn’t have to make you feel special.”

Her reply died on her lips when he pushed her back on the bed and tore the sheet away. Who was this guy? Glen had always been a weird mix of timid and always-on-top missionary-style type of guy. Or maybe she didn’t inspire no-holds-barred sex. Maybe all that came to mind with her was quiet, reasonable, and placid sex. Nothing to share with your girlfriends or have to take a couple of aspirin in the morning, because you were amazingly sore from the attention.

Apparently, only Haven had nights like that. Isabella was saving herself for marriage. So that left Daisy firmly in the middle and firmly on the boring side.

Gah.

His kissed a path down her stomach, ever closer to where she began to throb, and all feelings of unease and self-doubt began to dissolve like sugar in hot tea.

“You’ve never wanted to do this before,” she said, breathless.

“First time for everything,” he said, breath hot against her hipbone.

The timer dinged.

He shot up from bed and she sputtered a protest, “No—wait…where are you going?”

“The cinnamon rolls. I have to get them, or they’ll burn.” He kissed her on the forehead and looked into her eyes. She could have sworn she saw relief in them, but maybe that was just her own insecurities. “Don’t be mad. I made breakfast for you.” He practically ran from the room.

Anticipation turned to ash.

“I’d rather have something else right now,” she called after him, grabbing a pillowcase and biting it. This was dumb. She never should have let him come home with her. She should have stayed the hell away and taken Haven’s advice by finding a guy to kiss at midnight who wasn’t her ex. She tossed the defenseless pillow to the side.

But she was weak. And he was Glen. Her first everything.

A few minutes later, Glen walked into her bedroom again. This time he had a tray, loaded with plates and glasses of orange juice and water. A small rose bloom sat in a vase. It was nice he remembered she loved roses.

He set it across her lap and smiled like a little kid who’d finally tied his shoes all by himself. “Here you go.”

“Thank you.” She picked up a fork and looked at her plate.

“Eggs over-easy and bacon extra crisp, just like you like it.”

Oh God. She didn’t have the heart to tell him that the eggs weren’t done at all, or that the bacon was burnt. This was the first time he’d ever attempted to cook for her, and for someone who cooked for others all the time, it was the sweetest thing ever.

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