Infatuation:A Rebel Stepbrother Romance(6)

By: Phoenyx Slaughter

Even though Summer didn’t intend to make me feel bad, I do. I’d been locked away at boarding school when Summer’s father passed away. It took me three days to arrange a way home. I arrived in time for the funeral. Lena had been the one there for Summer.

To lift away the sudden gloominess, Summer elbows me in the ribs and lays down a challenge. We race down to the water and dive in.

I’m a strong swimmer. As I’m moving through the salty water, there’s a tug on my leg. I shriek and suck in a lungful of brine. After thrashing around like an idiot, I realize—no, it’s not a shark—it’s Flynn.

Big hands settle around my waist and lift me out of the water.

It takes a minute of coughing and choking to catch my breath. The whole time I’m hyper-aware of Flynn’s hands around me.

“Shit, sweet stuff, I’m so sorry. I didn’t mean to scare the shit out of you.” The concern on his face, along with the old nickname, leaves me speechless. My head bobs up and down like a moron.

“I’m okay,” I finally sputter.

My hands settle on his broad shoulders for balance. We’re totally alone out here. Over his shoulder, I spot Summer on the shore talking to Lena.

“I got you.”

“Yeah,” my gaze strays to his lips.

“What happened up there, lil’ sis?”

“I don’t know.”

“Can we do it again?”

“I don’t know.”

“What do you know, girl?” he asks playfully.

“I know your ex is glaring daggers at us right now.”

My hands move from his shoulder to his chest, to push myself away, but I end up studying his ink and marveling at his muscles instead.

He’s holding me so tightly, I couldn’t get loose anyway.

“You know she and I are over, right? I never should have been with her in the first place.”

I’m surprised to hear him say it so bluntly.

“Does she know that?”

He sighs and finally lets me go. “I don’t want to make this weekend awkward for anyone. Even Lena. We’re here to celebrate Summer and Stu, but after the wedding, you and I need to have a serious talk.”

The last thing I want to do is rehash all the reasons we can’t be together. Without answering him, I swim away. As annoying as it is, I admire his desire to treat his ex with respect.

Lena greets me when I get out of the water. “You two looked cozy.”

“Well, he is my stepbrother.” Where the hell is Summer when I need her?

“I know. This time next year, you’ll be getting ready to go to our wedding.” She sweeps her gaze up and down the beach. “Maybe we’ll have it here too.”

“Is he aware of that?”

Lena glares at me. “We’re keeping it quiet until after the wedding. Not to steal Summer’s thunder and all that.”

“Oh, of course not.”

“Everything good, ladies?” Flynn asks as he settles an arm over each of us.

Of course Lena snuggles into his side, and I reassess my earlier opinion about him being nice to her.

I could choke Lena for her ridiculous, possessive display in front of Ella. The hurt on her face went straight through my chest.

“I think I swallowed too much saltwater. I’m going to head back,” Ella says, shaking my arm off her shoulders.

After she leaves the beach, I lay it out for Lena. “Knock your shit off.”

“What, you can’t seriously be interested in your sister?”

“She’s not my sister, and our relationship is none of your business. You and I are done.”

When I reach the boardwalk, there’s no sign of Ella. Room. She has to be in our room.

I catch up to her at the front desk. She’s chatting with the clerk—probably asking for a room switch.

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