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Authors: K.I. Lynn,N. Isabelle Blanco

Take (Need #2)

BOOK: Take (Need #2)
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by

K.I. Lynn

&

N. Isabelle Blanco

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Take

 

Copyright © K.I. Lynn & N. Isabelle Blanco

 

This book is a work of fiction. Names, characters, places, and incidents either are products of the author’s imagination or are used fictitiously. Any resemblance to actual events or locales or persons, living or dead, is entirely coincidental.

 

This work is copyrighted. All rights are reserved. Apart from any use as permitted under the Copyright Act 1968, no part may be reproduced, copied, scanned, stored in a retrieval system, recorded or transmitted, in any form or by any means, without prior written permission of the author.

 

Cover image licensed by shutterstock.com/
©
Gabriel Georgescu

Cover design by L.J. Anderson/ Mayhem Cover Creations

 

Editor

Marti Lynch

Vanessa Bridges - PREMA

 

 

Publication Date: January 6, 2016

Genre: FICTION/Romance/New Adult

ISBN-13: 978-0692610312

ISBN-10: 0692610316

Copyright © 2016 K.I. Lynn & N. Isabelle Blanco

All rights reserved

 

 

 

Thank you to all our fans. Your support means so much to us.

As we said in Need, we fucking love all of you.

 

~K.I. Lynn & N. Isabelle Blanco~

 

 

 

 

Part 2

 

 

 

“Heav’n has no Rage, like Love to Hatred turn’d. Nor Hell a Fury, like a Woman scorn’d.”

- William Congreve
“And I’m ready to walk through that hell, a thousand times over if necessary. I’ll walk through it with no clothes on, let the flames singe every bit of flesh on my body. But I’m fucking getting my girl back, no matter the cost.”  - Brayden

 

 

 

 

April 18th, 2015

 

 

 

 

“Don’t you get it? You can make my body come against my will, a thousand times if you want, but that doesn’t change anything.”

It’s only been about an hour since I heard those words, maybe less.

It feels like they’ve been haunting me a lifetime already.

Or is this merely a taste of what’s to come? Is this anger and impotence swirling in my chest just the beginning?

It’s funny how a matter of a few minutes can completely change a person’s perspective. I was so sure upstairs. Grounded. Cocky, even.

But the words, man. They keep digging deeper and deeper with every minute that passes, burrowing past all of my beliefs. All of my common sense.

That’s the power of words, though. Isn’t it?

Did she mean them? Was that just her anger talking?

I don’t know what would be worse: knowing she meant them, or this sick speculation that twists over and over in my head.

“It’s too late, Brayden. Too. Late.”

I spent years playing a stupid game, trying to deceive myself. Always convinced that I was ready to let her go. Ready to move on and live without her.

Yet I always knew, didn’t I? I always knew I wasn’t really letting her go, that I wasn’t ready to do so.

That I never would be.

That’s why I kept coming back. Living without her isn’t a possibility, and subconsciously, in the pit of me where there was actually some truth, I’d known that.

This insane despair crawling up my throat right now, the dark rage that’s choking me slowly, one breath at a time at the thought of truly losing her is the final piece of evidence.

I was never going to let her go.

I can’t do it, no matter how much she asks me to, especially not now with the certainty infecting every cell in my body.

That’s why I’m here, back where I started out the night. Hiding in the shadows at the side of the house, a drink in my hand, my chest in slivers inside my leather jacket. I’ve probably had four drinks in the last ten minutes alone.

Am I trying to get drunk? Maybe. I shouldn’t, but I also can’t help but try to chase the feelings away.

I haven’t seen Kira again. I’m not sure a part of me wants to just yet. She had every right to slice me up the way she did, every right to continue doing so, but I’m too raw right now to face her.

Too hooked to leave her completely alone.

Even though I’m not staring at her—in fact, I have no clue where in the house she is right now—this is my way of keeping an eye on her. Making sure this party doesn’t get really out of control and she isn’t dragged into anything too sordid.

I know what she’d say if she heard my thoughts right now. How she’d throw in my face that, until recently, I was all up in the sordid, partaking like a true hedonist.

The thought actually makes me smile.

She’s right. I’m willing to change that now, to be better, for her, but it doesn’t change who I’ve been all these years.

Where I’ve been and what I’ve been up to.

That’s the real problem, isn’t it? Who I’ve been. It isn’t so much a matter of getting Kira to forgive me, it’s a matter of getting her to believe I’ve really changed. For her to believe I don’t want anyone but her.

I throw back the rest of my drink and take out my phone. I don’t know what I’m hoping for, or why I would even hope for it. After I changed my number for Kira, only she, Ryan, my parents, and a few of my college friends have it.

None of the girls I ever fucked in the past have it. Yeah, I did that shit on purpose. I meant it when I said I was closing that door permanently.

Not seeing a message hits me with disappointment. Especially because, despite all logic, I know what I was hoping for.

Time for another drink.

I retrace the same path I’d taken earlier, heading toward the front of the house. Someone set up a garbage bin right at the end of the path, obviously anticipating that some people would hang out where I’d been.

So far, it’s only been me. That I’ve seen anyway.

I deposit the red Dixie cup in my hand into the bin. One step in the direction of the front door and I see a metallic black BMW peeling down the road. The car turns sharply into the driveway and parks behind another black car.

I’m knotted inside, warped, but even on my best day I wouldn’t be able to stand the sight of that car.

The sight of its owner.

How fucking dare he?

I’m down the driveway in the blink of an eye, crossing the distance at top speed.

Austin exits his car, looking all determined and shit.

And what gets to me the most? What has me ready to
undo
him?

It’s that determination. The hardcore, no-holds-barred resolve on the guy’s face.

I kicked his ass for touching Kira. I made damn sure he knew that was why I was kicking his ass. So he knows why I’m enraged at the sight of him here. Why I’m coming at him the way I am.

The fucker is ready to meet me head on. Ready to take me and all my fury just so he can get close to my girl.

He slams his car door right before I get in his face.

He meets me, and we’re nose to nose, chest to chest.

Two men utterly in love with one girl and ready to destroy each other for it.

“What are you doing here?” I ask him slowly, because in the back of my mind I haven’t forgotten it’s Kira’s birthday. I’m giving him a chance to walk the fuck away so I won’t have to pummel him into the driveway and ruin Kira’s night further.

His jaw hardens. “You really didn’t think I’d miss her eighteenth, did you?”

I read every damn word behind that sentence. I swear to God, the subtext is too clear to ignore. Too blatant for me to stand it.

He came to do the very same thing I came to do now that Kira’s eighteen.

Claim her.

Both of my fists curl, tightening so hard I immediately start to lose blood flow.

And I don’t care. I don’t feel anything but the violent hatred pulsing through my veins. “You need to leave.”

He gives me this little sardonic laugh that makes me wonder if he realizes how close to killing him I actually am. “She’s eighteen. So what’s your excuse now, huh?” He tilts his head, light blue eyes narrowed. “Though that was a weak excuse, man. We both know that doesn’t really matter.”

Almost as if he’s goading me. Pushing my buttons. Looking for a specific response. And, suddenly, I remember something he spat at me the last time we fought, when we’d been rolling around on the ground and going at each other like two wild animals, hit for bloody hit.

“This isn’t about her being seventeen and you know it.”

I narrow my eyes right back at him, exhaling as slow as I can, trying to keep it together.

But a part of me wants to lay it all out in the open. Make him understand just how I feel about Kira.

How fucking far I’ll go to keep any man—especially
him
—away from her.

“I’m never going to forget how you took advantage of her, you fucking piece of shit.”

He throws his head back and barks out a laugh, and that’s when I realize his fists are clenched, ready to start breaking bones.

Just like mine fucking are.

“I didn’t take advantage of shit, Brayden. She. Came. After.
Me
.”

This motherfucking, good-for-nothing, pile of . . .

The image burns straight through my synapses, branding itself, adding to an already overbearing torment. All I see is Kira, searching him out, offering herself to him.

Him happily taking . . .

I don’t realize I’ve begun to pull my fist back until I hear my name being screamed behind me.

“Brayden! No! Stop!”

I jerk to a stop.

So does Austin.

Fucking hell. I won’t rest, I won’t stop, I don’t think I’ll even fucking sleep until I’ve broken every bone on his face.

“Brayden!” Kira’s little heels click on the driveway as she gets closer. And then she’s right there, maneuvering between us, her hands landing on my chest as she starts to push me back away from Austin.

The man she fucked.

The man she keeps claiming she wants to try and be with.

Her lips are still swollen from my kisses. Her hair remains a mess. The lights illuminate her hazel eyes. Her face.

She’s so damn gorgeous. All I want to do is wrap my arms around her. Hug her tight and breathe her in.

“Don’t do this,” she pleads in a low voice.

I’m letting her push me back, letting her stop me from doing the one thing I want to do more than anything. The one thing that’s my right to do considering she’s mine.

“I’m not.” My voice is shot to shit. Low enough so only she hears it. “Look.” I hold my arms out away from myself, motioning with my head down my body, drawing her attention to the fact that she’s in control right now.

She blinks, surprised, then looks down at where her hands are braced, right above my raging heart. Then she looks at the ground and the distance she’s put between me and Austin.

Her head turns in his direction and the apologetic look she gives him annihilates something inside me.

She faces me again, her expression hard, not at all soft like it’d been when she looked at him. “I asked him to come tonight. It’s my birthday. Don’t ruin it for me anymore than you already have.”

If she’d taken a knife and shoved it right in my chest, it would’ve hurt a lot less than hearing those words from her. “Is that what you want?” I hiss, fists clenched again as I fight the primal beating of every male instinct in my body. Will she ever know how much this is costing me right now? How hard it is not to grab her?

Is she aware that her hands are still on my chest, as if she can’t let go, despite what she’s saying?

“You want him here instead of me?” The words are nothing more than a whisper, meant only for her to hear, but that doesn’t mean I don’t hear the hurt behind them.

That she doesn’t.

Her eyelashes flutter, and she blinks up at me, surprised, like it’s fucking mind blowing that I’m aching over her right now.

Was I really that good all these years? I somehow managed to convince her I didn’t care this much?

“I . . . I . . .”

“Say it, Kira.” I lower my head just an inch, dying to lower it the rest of the way, to feel those pouty lips. To claim them in front of Austin. But I don’t. For her, I hold back, forcing myself to keep an appropriate distance, to only stare into her eyes. “Tell me you want him here instead of me.”

Her fingers flex on my pecs, and I can sense how hard it is for her not to grab onto me right now. “Will you actually leave without a fight if I do?” Her eyes flash as she waits for my answer.

A challenge.

I swallow back every selfish demand that my mind, heart, and body shout out, and nod at her. “If that’s what you want . . . “

We stare each other, and I can’t make out what I see in her eyes, but I do see one thing loud and clear.

She’s struggling.

Her chest shakes with her next breath, and even after her lips part, it takes her a few seconds to get the words out. “I . . . yeah. Go. I asked him to be here tonight.”

Holy fuck, this girl actually has me close to crying. “You asked him. But you didn’t say it. Do you want him here instead of me?”

Her stubborn little chin rises. I almost expect her to say it and I brace myself for the impact.

She doesn’t.

And in the silence that follows, somehow we end up an inch closer, and I have no clue if I made the move, or if she did.

We’re panting, breath for fucking breath, our bodies more in sync than they’ve ever been. I realize this, and with that realization comes a spark of hope. Hope that what’s between us will help her make the right choice.

That right here, right now, in this fucked-up moment, she’s feeling
me
, and that she gets the pain eating at my insides.

BOOK: Take (Need #2)
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