Breaking Ryann

By: Alyssa Rae Taylor

He promised to leave me alone, but that was a lie. I should have known he’d have this pull on me—seeping through my skin and into my bones, burning me from the outside in. It’s just like when we were kids, and I can no longer avoid him. I’ve accepted it, but what will it take to convince him that I am no longer his? Is that really what I want?

I told her I’d leave her alone. But who was I kidding? I’ve never been one to back away from a challenge. He stole my girl—my future—from me. I’m coming back with a vengeance. I’m taking back what he took from me. After all the secrets and lies, can we come back from this? Even if it breaks me, I’ll stop at nothing to protect what’s always been mine.

“Keep doing that,” Sean breathes, pulling my bottom lip into his mouth before releasing it.

I scratch my nails up and down his back, running my other hand through his golden brown hair. He’s got it cut really short, and I like it. “This?”

He switches to my top lip. “Yeah, it feels good,” he says, hungrily moving back and forth over my mouth. When he rocks against me, our tongues collide. I softly moan, enjoying the friction it brings. He squeezes my breast then glides down my quivering stomach, meeting the edge of my shorts. The familiar confusion settles in.

“Are you wet for me?” His voice is husky as his fingers slip inside of my panties. Desire pools in his eyes.

It’s all in your head, Reese. You can do this.

Meeting his gaze, he asks, “Do you want me?”

I feel conflicted, not wanting to hurt him. He senses my hesitation and rolls off me, rubbing the space between his brows.

“It still feels like we’re rushing things. I’m sorry.”

“Don’t worry,” he replies, clearly frustrated. “Give me a minute to lose this semi, and I’ll be fine.”

“I didn’t mean to get your hopes up.” I scoot back against the headboard and fasten my shorts. He lets out an exaggerated breath. It’s been a few months since we’ve called our relationship ‘official.’ He’s never pressured me for sex, but it’s clear my hesitancy is wearing on him.

“It’s your first time. You’re nervous,” he replies, looking straight ahead. I can tell he’s thinking into it. Ever since Luke’s return, I’ve sensed his insecurity. We haven’t spoken since the night he came back, but it doesn’t make Sean feel any better. He knows how much Luke meant to me.

“You’re leaving?” I ask as he climbs out of bed.

Grabbing his light blue polo, he pulls it over his head, and makes a weak attempt to cover his erection. “It’s late,” he says, tapping twice on the doorframe. “I should go.” He starts down the hall.

“Wait.” I jump out of bed, meeting him in the middle. “I love you. You know that, right?” We’ve said it before, but I want him to know that I mean it. “I’m just protecting my heart.”

His eyes soften. I hope that means he believes me.

“What’s up guys?” Logan calls from the other room.

We glance toward the couch, where he and Gia are spooning, the volume on the television set low. I purse my lips, unaware we had an audience, then my eyes move to the fresh bouquet of Calla lilies displayed on our table. A shot of fear bolts through me, and I try to speed things along, lightly pushing Sean forward. “Will I see you tomorrow, or will you be working?”

“Depends on what I get done tonight.”

“Well, you better get going then.”

“I’m goin’.”

I move him to the door, and he pauses and turns to Logan.

“Dude. You’re going to have to quit that.” He tips his head toward the flowers with a half grin on his face. “You’re making me look bad.”

I cringe, glancing at Logan. To say he looks confused is an understatement.

“The flowers,” Sean confirms.

Logan lifts his head. His eyes flick from me to the lilies before he relaxes against the pillow. He focuses back on the television. “Wish I could take the credit, man, but those aren’t from me.”

Gia silently apologizes with her eyes. Logan doesn’t know any better. It isn’t her fault. I’m the one who chose to lie to my boyfriend. Hurrying us out the door, I prepare for an argument.