Where I Belong Page 40

He remembered.



* * *



Chapter Seventeen




She was perfect.

No other woman got to me the way Mia did. No other woman will ever know what I need without me having to ask for it. I want control but I also want her to take what’s hers. To tell me what she needs when I might hesitate to give it to her. To demand I fuck her harder, to bite her there, and to bare my soul to her.

And I almost said it.

I love you. The words were right there on the tip of my tongue but I swallowed them down.

I know she is waiting for my own admission before she gives me that heart of hers that she so fiercely protects. But once I have that last piece of her, I won’t be able to let her go. And how much of an asshole would I be if I asked her to choose between going back to Georgia to take care of her mother and having a life with me? Mia is mine, and she’ll be mine forever, but I can’t have her two hundred miles away from me. And my only other option is packing up my shit and moving to Georgia with her, but that means leaving Nolan behind. Because of my screwed up situation with Angie, I’ll never be able to take him with me. Which means that I am fucked.

Completely fucked.

Leaving her this morning was the hardest thing I’ve ever done. She was an angel next to me, curling up against my body as if she couldn’t get close enough. I loved how our bodies sought each other’s even in sleep. We were completely intertwined, one entity instead of two. It was hard to tell where my body ended and hers began. And still, I needed her closer. I wanted her with me at all times. Every second I spent with Mia, I fell harder. And fuck, I wanted to fall. I wanted to risk everything for something so unpredictable. Something I didn’t quite understand. Loving her was wild and I wanted more of it. I wanted all of it.

Figure out your shit, Kelly. Then make her yours.

My post Mia mood was tainted by the day I was having. Everything seemed to be going to shit and to top it off; I had a partner that was suddenly into sharing his feelings with me. By midmorning, I was very aware of the reasoning behind my sister’s tears the other night. And I couldn’t tell what bothered Luke more. The fact that he got dumped, or the fact that he had no fucking clue as to why.

“It was completely out of nowhere,” he informs me for the hundredth time today as we patrol downtown Ruxton. No matter what topic I brought up or what the hell we were doing, Tessa crept into the conversation. I can’t say anything though. I did the same shit the other day when I couldn’t get my mind off Mia. “I know you really don’t care to know the details of my sex life.”

“No, but that’s never stopped you from sharing before.” In fact, he overshared most of the time. Luke didn’t have a filter when it came to his sex life, even when it involved my sister.

He exhales exhaustively, dropping his head back to the seat. “I just don’t get it. She was insatiable that night, and the next morning. I don’t think I have any semen left.”

“Jesus, man. I don’t want to know that shit.”

“Sorry. But what the fuck? She goes from not being able to get enough of me one minute to dumping my ass the next. And she didn’t even give me a reason. I could fucking work with a reason.” He starts scrolling through his phone, no doubt debating on sending her another pleading text message. I’ve had to stop him seven times already today from embarrassing himself.

“Do I need to throw that out the window?”

He shoves it back into his pocket with pure aggravation. “She didn’t say anything to you?”

He was in deep. I knew Luke was infatuated with Tessa, but I hadn’t realized until today that he was in love with her. I don’t think he knows that though, and if he does, I doubt he’ll admit it. Especially after getting dumped for the first time in his life. I turn the receiver volume up on the radio before answering. “No, in the ten minutes it’s been since you last asked me that same question, she hasn’t said anything to me. The only thing I know is that she looked really upset.” I begin tailing a car that is going twelve over the speed limit. I’d normally let it go if we weren’t currently in a school zone and I wasn’t in a shit mood. Having a kid has made me stricter on certain things, and the asshole in front of me picked the wrong day to go a little heavy on the gas. We’ve already ticketed nine people today, all of whom decided it was in their best interest to give me an attitude. And once you argue over a driving violation with me, I’m not giving you a fucking warning.

Luke grips the back of his neck with both hands. “God damn it. How the fuck am I supposed to fix this if she won’t even talk to me?” He turns the laptop toward him and begins looking up the license plate information. I flip on the lights and the driver pulls over onto the shoulder, barely leaving me enough room to get behind him. That just annoys me further. “I’m not okay with being dumped without knowing what the hell I did wrong. If she doesn’t talk to me soon, I’m going to go fucking crazy.”

I grab the bottom of the mount that holds the laptop and turn it so I can see it. “Give me the fucking thing. Do you realize you just looked up my sister’s information in here, dick?”

Luke leans over, looking at the screen that displays every past address and speeding ticket Tessa’s ever had. He flinches before falling back into his seat. “Fuck me. I’m in deep, man.”

“No, you’re in love, asshole.”

And when he doesn’t argue with me, I don’t feel the need to say anything more. He’ll have a hard enough time dealing with that realization himself without me fueling the fire. But I do owe it to him to at least try and get some information out of Tessa. And I silently vow to do that.

I didn’t dare mention my sister’s name again while we finished patrolling. Luke had dropped all conversation involving her after he looked to see if she had a record accidently. And I wasn’t a glutton for punishment, so my conversations with him stayed as far away from that topic as possible. I didn’t even mention Mia because I knew that would just trigger him. And not talking about Mia was more difficult than I had anticipated.

I am mentally exhausted by the end of the day. The only thing I want to do is hold Mia against me and fall asleep with her. So you can only imagine the surge of disappointment that runs through me when I arrive at my parents’ house and she isn’t there. I grab my phone and dial her number, needing to at least hear her after the day I’ve had.

“Hello?” she answers in that voice that can drop me to my knees.

I smile against my phone and sit down on the couch, aimlessly flipping through the channels. “Baby, I’m at the house and you’re not. It kind of sucks here without you.”

“Oh God, is it after six already? I’m so sorry, babe. Tessa wanted to get our hair and nails done today and I completely lost track of time.” Muffled voices come through the phone and I can tell she’s in a crowded place.

“You called me babe,” I state. She’s never called me anything besides Ben, except for some profanity that I’m sure she labeled me with when she first discovered who I was. Or multiple profanities.

“Oh, yeah, I guess I did.” She laughs softly. “Is that okay? You call me so many different nicknames and I wanted to try one out. I liked babe.”

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