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Home > Take Me (One Night with Sole Regret #3)(5)

Take Me (One Night with Sole Regret #3)(5)
Author: Olivia Cunning

Cursing at himself under his breath, he picked up the empty box, stuffed it into the pink bag with the crumpled tissue paper and hung it on the doorknob. Julie was farther from the door now, so he couldn’t hear what she was screaming, but there was no doubt she was still upset. Maybe he should do everyone a favor and get lost permanently.

Shade snatched his sunglasses out of his pocket and put them back on. He wasn’t sure how he was going to get home. He supposed he could call a cab. He turned to start down the driveway; he’d figure it out once he was far enough away that he couldn’t hear Julie’s crying. Because God, that sound was like a knife stabbing and twisting into his chest, and he knew Tina wouldn’t let him do anything about it. He felt so f**king powerless.

The door behind him opened.

“Jacob?” a gentle voice said from behind him.

He paused and turned slowly. He probably should’ve expected her to be here, but he was in no way prepared for his body’s reaction to her. His heart leapt, gut clenched, balls tightened. Her shoulder-length brown hair swayed gently in a warm breeze. Her hazel green eyes brightened as her lovely face broke into a genuine smile. Time stood still as he allowed his gaze to travel down her lean body. Those long tanned legs just might be the death of him. It had been a long time since he’d seen her.

“Amanda.”

Chapter 2

Amanda probably shouldn’t have watched Jacob’s private moments with his daughter through the window, but she couldn’t help it. She had wanted to open the window and listen to his gorgeous voice, but Tina had been pacing the room, calling him every lewd name she could think of, and he didn’t need to hear that. Amanda understood why Tina hated Jacob. He’d hurt her by cheating on her with another woman. Well, several other women. Amanda didn’t expect Tina to forgive him, but trying to keep him away from his daughter? That wasn’t right. Especially when it was so obvious that they adored each other. He needed that little girl in his life. And despite what Tina thought, Julie needed her father.

Amanda stepped out on the front step and closed the door behind her. She hoped their mom talked some sense into her sister so she’d let Julie wear her tiara. Jacob had done a wonderful job picking out something Julie would love. He obviously knew his daughter well and had put some thought into the gift.

“Once Tina cools down, she’ll let Julie wear it,” Amanda said. She wished he hadn’t put his sunglasses back on. He had the most beautiful blue eyes. And his short black hair, tanned complexion and thick black eyelashes made them even more striking. She had every inch of his handsome face memorized—sexy lips, straight nose, high forehead, strong jaw, stubborn chin. She’d wanted Jacob “Shade” Silverton for so long, she couldn’t remember a time when thoughts of him hadn’t flitted through her head constantly.

“I wouldn’t be so sure,” he said.

“How’s the tour going?” she asked. Small talk to keep him close for as long as possible. If Tina knew Amanda was out here talking to him, she’d have a coronary. That was the problem with being infatuated with your younger sister’s ex-husband. There was no way to make it work without someone getting hurt or someone going crazy.

Jacob smiled gently. “It’s going great. Music is the only thing that goes great for me.”

He glanced up at the big brick Georgian-style house. Julie could no longer be heard screaming. Maybe Tina had relented already.

“You don’t have a show tonight?” She knew damned well he didn’t. She bought tickets every time Sole Regret performed in Austin. She kept close tabs on the band’s touring schedule, because the next best thing to hanging out with Shade Silverton was watching him perform on stage. If Amanda hadn’t figured he was going to be in town today, she wouldn’t have bothered getting into a huge fight with Tina for not inviting him to Julie’s party. Instead of doing as Amanda had suggested, Tina had conveniently forgotten to tell him anything. So in the interest of her niece’s happiness, Amanda had meddled. She hadn’t told Tina that she’d sent Jacob a text about the party. While she sometimes felt compelled to stick her nose in other people’s business, she didn’t have a death wish.

Jacob shook his head. “We’re in San Antonio tomorrow, so we decided to stay the night at home. The drive between here and there isn’t bad.”

She nodded in understanding and glanced down the driveway looking for his sexy-as-sin, electric sports car. There was no Tesla Roadster in sight.

“Where’s your car?”

“Someone stole it.”

She gaped at his nonchalance. “Someone stole it?”

“Yeah.” He shrugged. “It can be replaced.”

“So how did you get here?”

“Owen dropped me off. I was just going to call a cab to take me home. I’ll be out of here in a few minutes.”

“I’ll drive you,” she offered much too eagerly. She needed to be careful, or he’d figure out how much she desired him. She didn’t want things to be awkward between them. It had to be impossible for him to forget that she was sister to the woman who made his life hell.

“That’s not necessary. You should go back to the party.”

“It’s over. All the kids are gone. I was just helping clean up.”

“Oh.”

“This will give me a great excuse to get out of washing pink icing off the walls.”

He grinned, and she melted. It was as if the man had some magical ability to remove her bones.

“All right,” he said. “As long as it helps you out.”

“I’ll go grab my purse and keys.” She darted into the house and found her mother in the rocking chair holding Julie. The little birthday princess was wearing her new tiara and fast asleep with her thumb in her mouth. Amanda melted. Julie must’ve inherited that magic from her father. God, she loved the kid.

“I have to leave,” Amanda whispered to her mother.

She nodded. “I’ll let Tina know. She’s upset about Jacob again.”

“She’s always upset about Jacob.” Amanda leaned over to kiss her mother’s cheek and then her niece’s temple before grabbing her purse and dashing back outside.

She found Jacob where she’d left him. He was staring up at the house as if in a trance. She wondered what he was thinking about behind those dark sunglasses.

“Julie’s asleep already,” she told him. “And wearing her tiara.”

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