Reckless Love Page 30

He gave his sister a hug and she squeezed him back, her eyes shut tight and her lower lip trembling. And with that we left.

Twenty-Five

MacKenzie

Ian pulled into the gym’s parking lot and let the car idle. He’d hardly spoken since we’d left the doctor’s office. I’d expected him to be silent. What I didn’t expect was how unruffled and in control he was, considering what the doctor had just told him.

“This means no more self-defense classes until you’re back on track,” I said to break the silence.

He shook his head, but the corner of his mouth turned up, hinting at a smile. “If you think a bad report card from the doc will get you out of self-defense lessons, you are sorely mistaken.” He slid his hand around mine and wove our fingers together. “I’ll get myself back on track. Don’t you worry about it. It’s not your problem.”

“But it is. Why do you think I’m coming to work with you twice a week?”

“Because you think I’ll be good in bed,” he said in a husky voice.

I blushed at how true his words were, but it made me laugh. “Maybe, but that’s not the only reason.” I traced my finger along his arm and looked at him. “This is something you’ve worked long and hard for. I want you to win. I want you to succeed.”

He cupped my cheek with his hand, “I will win, MacKenzie. Anything you want.”

I laughed. “You can’t promise you’ll win.”

He shook his head. “I can. I’ll do it for you. I’ll win my fight. Promise.” His eyes held mine, and I knew he would do anything to keep a promise to me. The thought warmed me.

Ian winning his fight wasn’t the only thing I wanted. At that moment, I also wanted to straddle him and press my body against his, but I wasn’t going to do that in front of Chris’s gym. I still hadn’t broken up with him. “Maybe I should start coming over every day to work with you.”

“That sounds like a good idea.” His voice was low, and I wondered if he was only holding back because of where we were. “Come over tonight and we’ll…work on things.”

I felt a throb between my legs. God, I wanted him to work on me.

But then my eye caught movement behind him and I sat up straight, pulling away from him. He turned to look. It was just a mom walking down the street with a double stroller, but it was enough to remind us of one of the issues we had to deal with today.

“Are you sure you don’t want me to talk to Chris first?” he asked.

“No, it makes more sense if I let him down. If I don’t and he finds out we’re dating, it will be like we’re cheating.”

“We almost are.”

“But it will only hurt him to put it that way. Maybe we should give him a while too before we tell him about us. Just to soften the blow a little. I’ll talk to him today. And hopefully he’ll be true to his word, and I’ll still have a job.”

“Chris is a good guy. He’d never fire you for breaking up with him.”

Ian was probably right, but when Chris found out I was also dating his buddy Ian, I wasn’t sure it would all remain cool between us. And I really wished I didn’t have to test it out.

“Call me if things get intense and you need me to come get you.” He squeezed my hand. “I’ll come pick you up at the end of your shift so you don’t have to bus over.” He scanned the parking lot before leaning in, giving me a light kiss just below my jawline. I turned and took one last look at him before heading in.

In the fifteen seconds it took me to get to the front door, I’d determined that I was definitely going to talk to Chris first thing. Ripping off the Band-Aid seemed like the way to go. Besides, he deserved to know right away that it was over.

But by the time I’d made it through the gym to his office, I thought maybe it would be easier on him if I didn’t tell him until the end of the day. Because then he wouldn’t have to see me again until tomorrow. I was just spinning on my heel to get as far away from his office as I could when Chris called out to me.

“Hey, MacKenzie, did I see Ian drop you off just now?”

Every single muscle in me tensed. What had he seen? There was no way I would be able to act like nothing was going on. I was a lousy liar. If I was going to talk to him, I had to tell him.

I took a deep breath and turned back to the office. “Yeah, we just got back from his doctor visit.”

I took a step just inside the office, scared that venturing farther would cause me to freak out. I had no clue why I was so worried about this. I had broken up with guys before. Granted, with most guys it was just after a few dates.

Chris and I had been seeing each other for a month, which wasn’t long for most people, but it was nearing a record for me. And then there was that whole boss thing. I’d never dated a boss, and thus never had to break up with one before. Maybe that was why my stomach was wound up so tightly that puking didn’t seem out of the question.

“Well, come on in and tell me how it went,” he said, smiling and at ease.

He had no idea. Must not have seen anything. Thank goodness.

I shuffled in a few more feet, taking a seat on the edge of the couch.

“So, how’s our man doing?” He leaned forward, folding his arms on the desk. His giant body dwarfed the desk, making it look dainty.

“It could have gone better,” I said. “The doctor wants Ian to wait another week before he begins sparring again.” This was a serious blow. The fight was only three weeks away, and he needed to be working on his strength and sharpening his skills, but the doctor didn’t think he was ready.

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