Fade Away Page 22


“Like the sleaziest things you can imagine.”

“How sleazy?”

“None of your goddamn business.” She stopped. She still had her back to him. Myron could see her shoulders quake. “Get out,” she said.

“Emily …”

“You want to help him, Myron.”

“I want to find him. There’s a difference.”

She shook her head. “You don’t owe him,” she said. “I know you think you do. It’s your way. I saw the guilt in your face back then, and I could still see it the second I opened the front door. It’s over, Myron. It had nothing to do with what happened to us. He never found out.”

“Is that supposed to make me feel better?” he asked.

She spun toward him. “It’s not supposed to make you feel better,” she snapped. “It’s not about you. I’m the one who married him. I’m the one who betrayed him. I can’t believe you’re still beating yourself up about it.”

Myron swallowed. “He visited me in the hospital. After I got injured. He sat and talked with me for hours.”

“And that makes him a swell guy?”

“We shouldn’t have done it.”

“Grow up,” she said. “It was more than ten years ago. Gone and forgotten.”


After some time had passed, Myron looked up at her. “Could you really lose your kids?” he asked.


“How far would you go to keep them?”

“As far as I had to.”

“Would you kill to keep them?” Myron asked.

“Yes.” No hesitation.

“Did you?”


“Do you have any idea why some goons would be looking for Greg?”


“You didn’t hire them?”

“If I did,” she said, “I wouldn’t tell you. But if these ‘goons’ want to hurt Greg, I’ll do all I can to help them locate him.”

Myron put down the lemonade. “I guess I better get going.”

She showed him to the door. Before she opened it, she put a hand on his arm. Her touch burned right through the material. “It’s okay,” she said gently. “Let it go. Greg never found out.”

Myron nodded.

She took a deep breath and smiled again. Her voice returned to its normal tone. “It was good to see you again, Myron.”

“Same here,” he said.

“Come back again, will you?” She was trying so hard to be casual. Myron knew it was just an act, one he had seen before. “Perhaps we can have a quick fling for old times’ sake. Couldn’t hurt, right?”

One last grasp at the shock. Myron pulled away. “That’s what we said last time,” he said. “And it still hurts.”

Chapter 10

“It was the night before they got married,” Myron began. He was back at his office. Esperanza sat in front of him. Her eyes were on him, but he didn’t know that. He stared at the ceiling, his fingers laced and resting on his chest. He had his chair tilted far back. “Do you want the details?”

“Only if you want to tell me,” Esperanza said.

He told her. He told her how Emily had called him. He told her how she came to his room. He told her that they’d both had too much to drink. He said that last one as a sort of trial balloon, but a quick glance at Esperanza blew that particular old balloon out of the sky. She interrupted with one question.

“How long after the draft did all this take place?”

Myron smiled at the ceiling. She was so damned perceptive. There was no reason to answer.

“I assume,” Esperanza continued, “that this little tryst occurred sometime between the pro draft and your injury.”

“You assume correctly.”

“Ah,” she said with a small nod. “So let me see if I got the true picture now. It’s your senior year of college. Your team won the NCAA finals—a point for you. You end up losing Emily and she ends up engaged to Greg—a point for him. The draft comes. Greg is the seventh overall pick; you are the eighth—a point for Greg.”

Myron closed his eyes and nodded. “You’re wondering if I was trying to even the score.”

“Not wondering,” Esperanza corrected. “The answer is obvious.”

“You’re not helping.”

“You want help, go to a shrink,” she said. “You want the truth, come to me.”

She was right. He took his hands off his chest. Keeping the fingers laced, he placed them behind his head. He put his feet on the desk.

“Did she cheat on you with him?” she asked.


“You’re sure?”

“Yes. They met after we broke up.”

“Too bad,” she said. “It would have given you a nice out.”

“Yeah. Pity.”

“So this is why you feel obligated to Greg? Because you slept with his fiancée?”

“That’s a big part of it, but there’s more to it than that.”


“It’s going to sound corny, but there’s always been a bond between us.”

“A bond?”

Myron’s line of vision traveled from the ceiling to his movie-still wall. Woody Allen and Diane Keaton were enjoying a Manhattan moment in Annie Hall. Bogie and Bergman leaned on Sam’s piano back in the days when Paris had been theirs. “Greg and I were once-in-a-lifetime competitors,” he said. “And there is a special bond between competitors. Kinda like Magic Johnson and Larry Bird. You become defined by one another. It was like that with Greg and me. It was unspoken, but we both knew the bond was there.”

He stopped. Esperanza waited in silence. “When I hurt my knee,” Myron continued, “Greg visited me in the hospital. He showed up the very next day. I woke up from some pain medication and there he was. Sitting with Win. And I instantly understood. Win must have understood too, otherwise he would have thrown him out.”

Esperanza nodded.

“Greg stayed around too. He helped with rehab. That’s what I mean by a bond. He was devastated by the news because when I got hurt, it was like a part of him was gone too. He tried to tell me why it meant so much to him, but he couldn’t put it into words. It didn’t matter. I knew. He just had to be there.”

“And you hurt your knee how long after you’d slept with his new bride?”

Prev Next
Romance | Vampires | Fantasy | Billionaire | Werewolves | Zombies