Knocked Up by Brother's Best Friend(9)By: Amy Brent
“I can’t take this anymore,” I muttered, grabbing at the envelope and tearing it open in one rushed movement. I pulled out the thick sheaf of documents but it took me a moment to untangle the legal jargon that covered the crisp white pages.
“Well, what the hell does it say?” Jonah asked impatiently a moment before taking it from me and he nearly choked as his gaze skimmed the pages. “Holy shit.”
“What?” I leaned forward in the chair. “What is it? You snatched it before I could read everything.”
“It’s grandpa’s will. He left everything to mom when he died but it looks like it’s just sat there in limbo for nearly twenty years. I guess mom didn’t want the responsibility.”
“Yeah, no shit,” I muttered. Jonah gave me a look over the top of the documents before going back to reading.
“The property is on the outskirts of town. Bordering the woods. The Springs run right through it.” He cut off, his eyes widening and I leaned forward again.
“What? What is it, Jonah?”
“It’s over twenty acres.”
“It’s over twenty acres of land, Quinn.” Jonah shook his head wonderingly, “Plus the ranch itself. It’s got to be worth something. We can sell it, pay off some of this debt–.”
“Sell it? We haven’t even seen it yet, Jonah,” I paused, looking over at him, “We have to at least go check it out.”
Finally, he sat back, placing the documents back in the envelope and in its spot in the middle of the table. He grew silent again and it took every ounce of willpower not to pepper him with the million questions that were running through my head.
After several interminable minutes, he got to his feet and headed towards the door.
“Wait, where are you going?” I asked, tracking his movements with my eyes. He didn’t glance back, just tossed the words over his shoulder as he left.
“I need to think.”
“Well, can’t you think here?” But it was a useless question. There was no one else there to answer it.
I sat there for a long time, my thoughts circling, my chest heavy with a strange mixture of emotion that I wasn’t nearly ready to try and untangle. My feelings for my parents had always been complicated but now, everything felt even more confusing. They had been gone for over ten years, but now it was final. They really were gone.
And it was only then that I realized the tiniest part of me had always thought they might come back. Tell me it was all some big mistake. That they never meant to leave us. That they loved me.
“Hah!” I barked out a bitter laugh as I grabbed a cold bottle of beer from the fridge, swigging back half of it. The only thing John Moore and Becca Mayhew had ever loved was themselves, and the drugs. There was never any room for anything else. Or anyone.
I took another drink, then looked around the shabby apartment. It was still exactly the same as the day I’d left and for a moment it was as if the last three years hadn’t even happened. But they had. I was different now. Stronger. Better, even if Jonah didn’t believe it. Not perfect, not by any means, but better.
I knew what I wanted now. What I’d always wanted. I would just have to find another way to go about getting it.
My gaze landed on my backpack, still sitting in the same spot on the counter where I’d haphazardly tossed it earlier. Suddenly, Leo was there in my mind. The explosive chemistry between us. That’s what I wanted. Another hour to sink into bliss, where I didn’t have to think about anything but the incredible pleasure he could give me.
Don’t be reckless, a soft voice whispered in my head. It sounded suspiciously like Jonah’s. Don’t be stupid.
“I’m done with letting other people tell me what to do,” I said quietly to the empty apartment. Not my parents. Not Jonah. Not my professors. “It’s time to do what I want.”
With a deep breath, I walked over to my bag and fished out the crumpled napkin that had fallen to the bottom.
I took a sip of the amber liquid in front of me and grimaced as the fire caught at the back of my throat and burned all the way down. Fuck. I hadn’t been lying earlier. The whiskey at Lucky’s really was as caustic as motor oil. But it got the job done. By the second round, I was starting to feel the sweet buzz as the liquor got to work.
It didn’t seem to matter though. As much alcohol as I drank, it still didn’t help to banish the thought of her. Quinn. All I had to do was think of her name and her image appeared in my mind like a ghost.
Blond hair that curled like strands of sunlight past her shoulders. Those green eyes of hers that reminded me of searching for a lucky four leaf clover in the grass when I was a kid. Freckles were scattered carelessly across the bridge of her nose and swept onto her cheeks. And her mouth.