Secrets, tragedy, and deceit force Shane—and Megan—to make choices that will change their lives forever. Once Megan learns the truth, will she still want to be with Shane? Or will someone else be at the end of her broken road?
The doorbell interrupted my train of thought and Penny started her happy wiggle. I quickly put her in the mudroom so she wouldn’t charge the delivery guy and grabbed some money from my purse. I opened the door and was startled. Standing on my front porch was Shane, holding my dinner.
“Hey, trying to steal my dinner? Don’t make me sic Penny on you!” I joked, letting him in. Shane is gorgeous. Dressed in his usual attire of baggy jeans, a black long-sleeved shirt, and motorcycle jacket, my heart hurled into my throat at the sight of him.
“Oh what? Death by pooch?” he shot back, following me into the kitchen. He shook his head when I offered him money for the dinner. His six-foot-three, two hundred thirty pound hockey player frame fills my small kitchen.
Shane has this presence about him that always makes me feel safe and secure. That same presence makes me want to fold myself into his muscular arms. Shane gives fantastic hugs, I thought wistfully.
“I thought you were meeting Allison for dinner,” I asked, as I took the food out of the bag. Shane shrugged out of his leather jacket and hung it on the back of the chair, then opened the door for Penny.
“Yeah, we were supposed to meet her brother later on, but she said that she didn’t feel well.” He poked his head in my fridge. “What’s up with the rabbit food in here?” He asked, taking out a beer and sitting at the table.
I rolled my eyes at that comment. “You know my New Year’s resolution.” I smacked his hand as he inched toward my egg roll. “I’m trying to be healthier.”
Shane took a swig of beer and laughed. “Right. That’s why you have Chinese food for dinner, beer in your fridge, and a stash of candy up in the cabinet.”
“Whatever. That is my emergency stash. Every woman needs to have her emergency stash.” I said with an indigent huff. “Besides, you can’t complain about the beer, especially since you drink it. Here. You might as well eat this since you can’t find anything else.” I tried so hard to not act like a total idiot, but I couldn’t help the goofy smile on my face as I handed him a plate. Penny’s tail thumped on the wood floor as she looked expectantly at the food served.
We ate for a few minutes in silence. My heart raced a mile a minute; every time I looked up, his hazel eyes stared straight back at me. It was as if he could hear my heart skipping. “So what’s going on tonight?” I dumped my leftover rice into Penny’s bowl and put the plate in the sink. Shane tiredly rubbed his face and goatee. His brown hair looked like it had been weeks since he had last seen the barber. He stretched his long legs out in front him and yawned.
“I’m not sure. I’m beat. Adrian has had me working all night on this special project, and then I was running around all morning. I feel like I haven’t sat down all day.”
“That sucks. So then why you aren’t at home sleeping?” I replied, putting away the food.
Shane stood up and silently washed the dishes. Drying his hands on the dishtowel, Shane turned, looked at me. “Honestly, that’s the main reason I’m here. Well, to pick up the DVD, but something else, too. I need to ask you a favor. You remember Ben is getting married to Paige, right?” he asked. Ben is Shane’s roommate, who I’ve known for years. I nodded.
“Well, Ben has accepted a job in Baltimore, near Paige’s condo. So he’s moving in with her next week. The lease on the apartment is up anyway and since I’m practically broke, I need a place to crash,” he said, his eyes boring holes into mine.
It took a beat before I fully grasped the question. Holy shit, he wants to move in with me! The romantic, wishful part of me started doing a happy dance in my head, until the smarter, more realistic side smacked the other one down and told it to shut up.
“So, you’re asking to move in.” I said cautiously, as I walked into the living room and sat on the couch. Shane sat down at the opposite end, facing me. So that’s why he is here. I should have known. I must have a big sucker stamped on my forehead. I could never say no to him and he knows that.
“It will only be for a little while, until I can get my own place. Please?” He gave me a pleading grin. I chuckled, and then became curious.
“What happened? How did things get so screwed up?” I asked casually.
“It’s been building for a while. I lost my job at the dealership two years ago. At that point, I couldn’t find anything substantive, except for side jobs working with Adrian. I couldn’t keep up with the rent at the old place, so I was evicted and moved in with Ben. Credit cards were maxed out and I depleted my savings. But things are looking up. I’m paying off my debt a little bit at a time and I managed to get a full time spot at the shop. I’m trying to clean up my act, but I really can’t get a place of my own quite yet.” he said quietly, almost like he was ashamed. I felt bad for him. While I
was with Tommy, I didn’t keep up with my old friends as much as I should have. I had lost Shane for a while and never knew about these problems. My best friend Jen is practically his sister and told me a few times that he was having
some issues and just being a regular pain in the ass, but she never went into detail.
After three years, I’m still trying to catch up on his life. I felt a swell of pride for him; it took a lot for him to say that to me.
“I’m sorry to hear that. What about Allison? Why don’t you move in with her?” I replied, playing with the string on my sock. I wasn’t sure if I wanted to hear the answer to the question.
Shane gave a dry chuckle. “Yeah, we’re not on that page yet. Plus, her two roommates don’t really like me.”
I felt some relief. Then some slight apprehension. Could I block out these feelings? Yes, I resolved. I had to. Besides, he’s with someone else. We can be just friends… I hope.
“Yeah, sure, you can move your stuff in,” I said with a smile, “Only until you can find something on your own.” I pushed aside the doubt that had been looming. Shane and I are just friends, what could go wrong?
“Thanks Megs. You’re so great to me.” He surprised me by wrapping me up in a hug. I quietly inhaled his cologne and closed my eyes. This is going to be harder than I thought.
I let out a fake chuckle and pulled back. “So, when are you bringing over your stuff?” I asked. Hopefully, I had a few days to prepare. I had a comforter set in the laundry room that he could use for a while and would need to get more towels.
“Well, I figured you wouldn’t leave me out in the cold, so I brought over what could fit in the truck.” He practically bounced off the couch and gave me a knowing smile.
I swatted him in the leg. “You arrogant jerk! What makes you think I would have said yes? I could have said no!”
“Aw, come on. You can never say no to me. Don’t try and lie,” he said, calling my bluff. Shane laughed as walked out the front door. I sat on the couch for a minute, shocked at what just happened. I think Shane pulled a fast one on me. He’s moving in and I don’t think I had the opportunity to say no. I had to chuckle, he hasn’t changed one bit. Still uses his charm and smile to get what he wants.
While Shane brought in his pillows and trash bags of clothes, I made up his bed in the guest room. He added his toiletries to the bathroom and I got a pang of nervousness. This is going to be interesting. I watched him as he
came out of the yellow bathroom and into his new room. I only had one shower. The fantasies I used to have about the two of us in the shower came flooding back. I could feel my body blush and quickly turned my attention to an invisible speck on the comforter.
“So is Allison going to be okay with you living with me?” I spoke up, hoping my face was not as red as it felt.
He paused in hanging up a white polo shirt and winked. “She’s just someone I like to have fun with. We’re not serious, so she’s cool with it.”
“Ah…. Okay. Um. Good. I just wanted to make sure there weren’t going to be any issues,” I mumbled, as I headed back down the stairs. I had to get out and cool off. These feelings would need to be separated if this was going to work. I quickly pulled on my shoes and winter coat for Penny’s last walk of the night.
The temperature had dropped and the smell of snow lingered in the air. Penny and I quickly walked down the tree-lined street. I hoped she would hurry up and go already, but she took her sweet time. Twenty minutes later, we returned home to find Shane’s black Ford F150 gone and the lights off. I didn’t want to think of where he had gone off to. It’s none of my business. It’s none of my concern. I have to remember that, I told myself.
I unclipped Penny, put the leash on the rack next to the door, and walked into the kitchen. Stuck to the usually blank fridge was a note in Shane’s chicken scratch.
“Went to get my bike from Ben’s.”
I shucked off my snow boots and coat, locked the doors, set the alarm, and headed upstairs with Penny in tow. After peeling off my clothes, I paused. I normally sleep in my underwear. That would have to change with Shane living here. It could be awkward if he peeked in and saw me in nothing but my Victoria Secret panties. I put on a tank top shirt and cotton boxers and climbed underneath the cloud-soft down comforter. Penny climbed onto her large dog bed and did her usual routine of turning around until she got comfortable. This had been one hell of a day and I was over-exhausted. The last thing I remember was hoping that Shane came home alone.
Will Shane and Megan have their happily ever after? Or will that be another Broken Promise?
One thing that I loved most was them together. They are both stubborn and just wants best for their family. There chemistry for me was hot and it was real. Nothing is ever perfect and I like how Melissa was able to bring that through.
I couldn’t get to you fast enough. Every way I turned led me farther and farther away. I don’t how I made it back. The only thing that kept me going was hoping that you were all right. I love you so much. You don’t know … you just don’t know how you kept you kept me going,” he whispered and lowered his head
The feel of his lips, the heat of his breath, pulsed through me like a shot of lightning. I shrugged off my towel and threw my arms around him, responding with everything I had. The pain of losing him, the overwhelming joy of seeing him, the desire that had been suppressed for so long, all these emotions washed over me like a waterfall. I held onto him as if he would disappear at any moment.
His tongue caressed mine like a familiar dance partner. Breathtaking and sensual, my pulse raced. My blood boiled. Muscular arms held me against his body, as close as we could with this basketball between us. I mentally groaned. It became difficult to keep him close, and the more I tried, the more awkward it felt. Despite our emotions running high, we could no longer ignore the elephant in the room.
Melissa grew up in Maryland by the Chesapeake Bay, where her favorite memories took place near the water. Now she lives near Washington, D.C. with her
family, dog, and a lot of fish. In between the chaos of laundry, chasing after her three children and trying not to burn dinner, Melissa continues to find
her escape by feeding her addiction of reading and writing about love, suspense, and sarcasm.
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