Breaking Love Page 13

“Dash. Wait.”

He seemed to notice my reluctance when worried eyes landed on me. The stress of being kidnapped and blackmailed along with seeing friends I had abandoned and the one person I couldn’t allow myself to love all at once was too much.

I collapsed right there with only the pavement under me and him to catch my fall.

* * *

“I sent the guests home. Do you think we should take her to the hospital?”

“Dr. Carson is on his way to check her over.”

“What happened?” Sheldon demanded.

“I’m not sure.” Dash sighed. “I offered her a ride and she collapsed.” I could hear the stress in his voice, and if I opened my eyes, I was sure I would see the matching lines on his forehead. It was just like him to worry so much over problems other than his own. He lived for others rather than for himself.

“Are you sure you only offered or did you demand that you give her a ride?” If I weren’t pretending to be asleep, I would have laughed. Sheldon was never afraid to interrogate when she felt the need arise.

“Does it matter?” His frustration was evident by his tone and growing by the second. “I didn’t expect her to faint.”

“Maybe she hit her head when she fell. She could have a concussion. Shouldn’t we wake her?”

Dash didn’t respond, but the next moment, I felt his lips on my ear, whispering. “But you’re already awake, aren’t you?”

My eyes popped open against my will, and sure enough, Dash was leaning over me. One hand rested on the far side of my head caging me in while the other fingered my hair as if he had the right.

I wanted to escape, but his body hovering over me prevented me from going anywhere, and he must have known judging by the smugness tugging at his thick lips.

“I need to get out of here.”

“Oh, for fuck sake, you’re okay!” Sheldon squealed, breaking the connection. Thankfully, she shoved Dash out of the way and hugged me, which caught me by surprise. I would have never expected her to speak to me much less hug me as if we were friends.

“I need to get out of here.”

I couldn’t handle it. Not the guilt.

I pulled away rather than push her away, but it didn’t mask my intent as I had hoped. Her eyes grieved our lost friendship.

She cleared her throat and looked away. I knew my absence hurt her, but my rejection would have stung even worse.

“H—how are you?” she stammered. She hadn’t fully gained her composure, and one look at Dash told me he noticed. He looked ready to rip my head off.

“I’m fine.”

“You don’t look fine.”

My attention followed the sound of the extra voice to the far corner of the room where Lake leaned against the wall wearing the same blank mask from before.

“Well, I am.”

“Hm,” she grunted.

What the fuck was her problem?

Oh, right, Willow. You left.

But not before she left me.

To be with him.

I’d never hated anyone in my life, but after she walked away from me, I truly couldn’t fathom any other thought or feeling.

A part of me wanted him dead even though I knew it was a little harsh. Lake and I were best friends, but they were in love. Unfortunately, the girl who believed in that sort of thing had been replaced by someone who wanted him to suffer, and after four years, the opportunity finally arose.

I reached for my jacket and realized I was no longer wearing it. My panic resulted in my scrambling. “Where’s my jacket?”

“Calm down before you faint again. It’s right here.” Dash lifted my jacket from a nearby chair and tossed it to me. I caught it in midair and shoved my arms into the sleeves.

“Where are you off to in a hurry?”

“Away from here.” My hand was on the doorknob, turning, when I heard, “The least you could do before you run away again is apologize to my sister for ruining her wedding. I’m not sure if you noticed, but she didn’t get married today.”

“No, Dash. It’s okay. Really.”

“The hell it is. She won’t even offer an explanation of how she got here in the first place.”

“I told you—”

“A real explanation.”

“We said our goodbyes a long time ago, Dash. I don’t owe you anything.” I faced Sheldon and ignored the suspicious stare from Lake. “I really am sorry, Sheldon. I never wanted this.”

I didn’t wait around for acceptance because I didn’t deserve it.

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