The Unwanted


But it was the only thing in the world that had felt right in a very long time.

Opening for him, she shuddered as his tongue traced and teased her lips before slowly pushing deeper. The kiss was a seduction, in and of itself. Slow and sweet, like he wanted to take his time to learn everything about her all over again.

One hand skimmed up over her back and she whimpered, arching closer to him. Against her belly, she felt the hard, rigid length of his cock and the strength threatened to drain out of her legs. Hunger shot through her and she clutched him closer while the voices of sanity and need shrieked inside her head.

You can’t do this…did you forget what happened?

What are you waiting for, you stupid woman?

As she reached for the hem of his shirt, the voice of need all but cackled in glee and the voice of sanity moaned in despair and Destin just wanted to tell the both of them to shut the hell up.

His skin felt hot and smooth against her hands. Hot, smooth and the muscles of his abdomen were hard, rippling under her touch. She went to push the shirt higher and then Caleb caught her face in his hands.

The kiss lightened.


“Damn it, Caleb,” she groaned as he went to pull away.

“The phone,” he muttered against her mouth, pressing another kiss to the corner of her lips.

“Fuck the phone.”

He laughed and the sound was strained, tight.

“The phone is ringing, sugar,” he said, stroking a hand down her back.

And then the voice sanity started to sing. If Destin didn’t know better, she’d almost think it was the chorus to “Glory, Hallelujah”.


What in the hell was I thinking? She stared at him in a panic for one long second and then jerked away from him. By the time she reached her phone, it had already stopped, but it didn’t matter. The phone call had come at a crucial time. Right before she would have given in and done another stupid, thoughtless thing. Granted, this one only would have hurt her, but still. She didn’t do stupid thoughtless things any more.

She was careful.

She was patient.

She thought things through and she no longer responded simply to emotion. Or her body.

Staring at the phone, she said woodenly, “It was Oz. Probably wanted an update already. She’s impatient.”

“She always was.”

“Yes.” Closing her eyes, she pinched the bridge of her nose and then set her shoulders. She had to acknowledge what had happened, had to set things straight, make sure he knew it couldn’t happen again.

Slowly, she turned around and faced him.

And once more, that voice of need started to whisper, please, please, please…

He looked so good. Flags of color rode high on his cheeks and his eyes glinted with a wicked, hungry light. Caleb rarely let his guard down but when he did…

Her heart raced as she thought about what she was about to turn her back on. But she had to do it.

“That was a mistake,” she said quietly. “It can’t happen again.”

“Is that a fact?” He held her gaze steadily.

“Yes.” She licked her lips. The taste of him still lingered and when he dropped his gaze to follow the path of her tongue, she was tempted to tell that annoying voice of reason to take a flying leap. But she couldn’t. She’d lived by need and emotion and want and it had ended badly. Very badly. Now she lived by logic and reason. It was easier. Safer.


But lonely didn’t end with her heart broken, and lonely didn’t end with her costing somebody their life.

Lonely was better.

“I did trust you, Caleb,” she said quietly. She had to get that out there. “I trusted you more than I ever trusted anybody. And I trust you now…as far as the job goes, I know there’s nobody I trust the way I trust you.”

Turning away from him, she moved to the window, staring out over the pretty little town of Charlottesville. Even now, it was bustling with activity, young adults moving all over the place. “And I almost begged you not to leave. If I’d known…” Then she stopped, shook her head. “I never hurt so much in my life. But it’s over now and we’re different people. I can’t go back to who I was. You’ve got a different life now. That part of us is over and done.”

She blew out a breath and then forced herself to continue. “But you’re wrong…in the end, whether you left or not, we would have fallen apart, but it had nothing to do with you and everything to do with me. It’s myself I didn’t trust. I still don’t trust myself.”



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