Kissing Lexie was everything I thought it’d be. Warm, soft, and sexy as hell. I’d almost forgotten what I’d planned on telling her. I just wanted her. Unlike any other girl I’d been with.
Suddenly, she backed away and narrowed her eyes. “You’re Jenny,” she whispered.
This had the effect of ice water being thrown in my face. I just stood there, mind whirring, not knowing what to say. “I…uh…” Cocking my head, I shrugged. “Yeah. I…guess I am.”
She wrapped her arms around me again and smirked. “Well, I don’t care.”
This shocked me, but hell, I’d take what I could get. “You don’t? Really?”
“Yeah, if you don’t care about THIS!”
Out of the blue I felt a sickening punch to my groin. Fire erupted, sending pain shockwaves through my body and I crumpled.
“Oh, God!” I howled, wincing from the blinding pain of it.
I’d never been so enraged. All this time, he’d fucking lied to me. LIED! We’d been living with each other for weeks. It must have been a big joke to paper my room with his face and try to get me to date him. Oh. My. God! I dated him as Jenny being James. What a fucking stupid asshole I was for buying his charade! Could I be any more clueless?
I had to get out of there, away from him.
Tears streamed down my face.
How could I have trusted him? I thought Jenny was my friend.
“Lexie, wait…” James grimaced in pain, hunching over. “I can explain.”
I turned and spat, “You’ll explain yourself to a taxi. Now get the hell out!”
The pain in my groin was nothing compared to the pain I felt watching Lexie cry and run away from me. How could I be such a dick to her? I deserved a kick in the nuts for what I’d pulled.
I should have confessed. That very day in her room when she begged me to live with her, I should have told her who I was.
And now she hated my guts.
I’d lost her.
I ran downstairs, not caring who saw me bawling until I stopped in front of my parents.
“Lexie,” my father said, “what’s wrong? We heard shouting.”
Tears pinched the back of my eyes and I couldn’t hold it in. I didn’t want to tell them.
Shaking my head, I said through raspy tears, “It’s nothing.”
“Baby, I know it’s not nothing,” Dad said, his voice tinged with anger. “Did you have a fight with James? What happened?”
I cried on his shoulder for a minute, trying hard to get a hold of myself. Finally, I said, “He…um…” How could I say it? “He…He’s been lying to me. My roommate Jenny isn’t real. James had dressed up like that to fool me. I feel so…blindsided…so…used…”
The weight of what my daughter said to me boiled my blood. How could someone like James do that? The lead singer of the hottest boy band in the country. Didn’t he have everything? Money, fame, girls. What kind of sick bastard was he to pull something like this?
Lexie was beside herself in misery–it tore me apart. I was going kick the asshole out myself. “Beau. Take her home for me, please.”
“August…” Briar said, softly. “What are you going to do?”
But I didn’t answer.
I knew exactly what I was going to do.
I didn’t know why I stayed there. I was in shock. The most important woman in the world hated me, and I felt so low and depressed. Worse than when I came into Lexie’s life.
What a fucking loser I was.
And then I felt a towering presence shadow me.
“Get up.” Her father’s voice was low and scary.
But my body froze. I wanted to bolt. To avoid what I knew he wanted to do to me. But there was no way out.
When I didn’t move, he picked me up by the collar and punched my face, sending sparks before my eyes.
Before I knew what was happening, I was on the ground in seconds, flailing around, trying to avoid every agonizing hit.
My head grew woozy as he pummeled me with his elbows.
But then someone pulled his massive weight off.
“August, stop!” he yelled.
I heard a bit of scuffling, but I didn’t care. I moaned through the pain throbbing in my face.
It was like how I felt when I was punching out Daniel Fortner. I was crazy in the heat of it, anger surging. That asshole deserved every punch. “Let me at him,” I roared.
“No!” my brother pushed me back. “That’s enough! You’re going to really hurt him, August.”
“Do you know what that jerk did?”
“I don’t care. You need to calm down. It’s not worth it.”
Panting, I pulled back, staring at the idiot on the floor. He looked so small. After a moment, I took a deep breath. “Get that sick bastard out of here.”
James raised his arm and said, “This sick bastard would love to get out of here. Could someone please help me up?”