Paper Princess Page 41

An unhappy bouncer crosses his arms. “No sex on the dance floor. Time to go.”

Easton throws his head back and laughs hysterically. The bouncer doesn’t crack and instead points to the exit. I look around but Reed has pulled his disappearing act.

“Where’s Reed?” I stupidly ask.

“Probably screwing Abby in the parking lot.”

Thankfully Easton’s distracted by a search for something in his pockets so he doesn’t see how much his words hurt. He finds what he was looking for and hands me a key fob.

“I’m too drunk to drive, sis.”

I track down Valerie, who says she’ll be able to get home by herself. She’s on her way up the stairs for another cage dance. Resigned, I take Easton outside. The alcohol must have caught up with him, because he leans heavily against me.

“Where’d you park?”

He points left. “There. No wait.” He shifts to his right. “There.”

I see his truck and we hobble over to it. Three spots down is Reed’s SUV. It’s…moving.

Easton spots the Rover, too, and slaps the hood. He lets out a sharp bark of laughter. “If the truck’s a rocking, don’t come a knocking.”

The knowledge of what might be going on in that SUV burns me all the way home. At least I don’t have to trade barbs with Easton, since he passes out about five minutes after we get rolling.

At the mansion, I help him out of the truck and up the stairs. He makes a turn into my bedroom and stumbles over to my bed, falling face down. After a couple of unsuccessful tries at moving him, I give up and go to the bathroom. By the time I get back, he’s snoring and drooling on my comforter.

I debate going to his room and sleeping in his bed, then decide I’ll just cover him up and sleep under the covers. I find an afghan and throw it over him. A yawn shakes my entire body as I pull off the scrap of fabric Val called a dress and let it drop to the floor. In just my undies, I crawl under the blankets and let sleep take over.

* * *

When I wake up, it’s to Reed’s angry face. I glance over to the side of the bed where Easton was, but he’s gone.

“I told you to stay away from my brothers,” Reed growls.

“I’m not a good listener.” I start to sit up and then clasp the bedsheets against my chest. I forgot I took my dress off and all I’m wearing are panties.

“Sex is sex,” he replies darkly. “If I have to fuck you so you don’t ruin my family, I’ll do it.”

Then he’s gone, shutting my door with a resounding click. I’m left sitting there in shock.

What the hell did he mean by that?

18

After that rude awakening, I have no shot at falling back asleep. I don’t bother hurrying after Reed to ask him to explain himself, because I know he won’t, but now it’s—I check the alarm clock—seven a.m. and I’m wide awake. Awesome.

I don’t work on weekends, so I’m dreading this day already. Knowing Callum, he’ll suggest a bunch of bonding activities for us to do and force his sons to come along. Kill me now.

I drag myself out of bed and take quick shower then throw on a bright yellow sundress I bought the day Brooke and I went shopping. From the sunlight streaming in through the curtains, I can tell it’s going to be a gorgeous day, and when I open the window, a warm breeze filters in and surprises me. It’s almost the end of September. The weather shouldn’t be this nice.

Is Gideon coming home today? Last week he came back on a Friday, so it’s unlikely he’ll show up at the end of the weekend, but I kind of wish he would. Maybe he’ll distract his dad and brothers and they won’t remember I’m here.

I leave my bedroom at the same time that Sawyer’s door swings open. The tiny redhead he’d been making out with at Jordan’s party steps out, and he follows her, his hands on her waist as he leans down to kiss her.

She giggles quietly. “I have to go. Gotta get home before my parents figure out I didn’t come home last night.”

He whispers something in her ear and she laughs again.

“Love you.”

“Love you too, babe,” he answers. The kid’s only sixteen and his voice is as deep and raspy as his older brothers’.

“Call me later?”

“Definitely.” Grinning, Sawyer reaches out his hand, tucks a strand of red hair behind her ear and—

Oh my God. That’s not Sawyer.

My jaw falls open. The nasty burn on his hand, the one he got earlier this week when he’d bungled dinner, is gone. But it had been there yesterday—I remember seeing it.

Which means the guy with Sawyer’s girlfriend isn’t Sawyer. It’s Sebastian. I wonder if the girl knows.

She laughs in delight when he kisses her neck again. “Stop it. I have to go!”

Maybe she does know.

As they break apart, they both notice me standing there, and the girl looks uncertain for a moment. She murmurs a hasty, “Hello” and hurries down the stairs.

Sawyer—no, Sebastian—glowers at me, then disappears into his—no, his brother’s—bedroom.

Okay then. Just minding my own business.

In the kitchen, I find the other twin eating cereal at the table. My gaze immediately goes to his left hand. Yep, the burn is there. Just to test the theory, I say, “Morning, Sebastian.”

“Sawyer,” he grinds out before shoveling more cereal into his mouth.

I swallow a gasp. Oh man. Are these boys pulling twin switches on Sawyer’s girlfriend? That’s ballsy. And twisted.

I pour my own bowl of cereal and lean against the counter to eat it. A few minutes later, Sebastian walks into the kitchen. As he passes the table, Sawyer murmurs, “Thanks, bro,” to his twin.

I can’t help it. The laugh pops out.

They both turn to glare at me. “What?” Sawyer mutters.

“Does your girlfriend know she slept with your brother last night?” I ask him.

His features harden, but he doesn’t deny it. Instead, he issues a warning. “Say one word about this and—”

I cut him off with another laugh. “Relax, little Royals. Play all the creepy sex games you want. My lips are sealed.”

Callum enters the kitchen, dressed in a white polo shirt and khakis. His dark hair is gelled away from his face, and, for once, he doesn’t look like he’s hit the liquor cabinet yet.

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