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Authors: Angelita Gill

All Said and Undone

BOOK: All Said and Undone
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The unauthorized reproduction or distribution of this copyrighted work is illegal. Criminal copyright infringement (including infringement without monetary gain) is investigated by the FBI and is punishable by up to 5 years in federal prison and a fine of $250,000.

 

Please purchase only authorized electronic editions and do not participate in, or encourage, the electronic piracy of copyrighted materials. Your support of the author’s rights is appreciated.

 

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

 

All Said and Undone

Copyright © 2013 by Angelita Gill

ISBN: 978-1-61333-579-6

Cover art by Mina Carter

 

All rights reserved. Except for use in any review, the reproduction or utilization of this work, in whole or in part, in any form by any electronic, mechanical or other means now known or hereafter invented, is forbidden without the written permission of the publisher.

 

Published by Decadent Publishing Company, LLC

Look for us online at:

www.decadentpublishing.com

 

 

 

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Also by Angelita Gill

 

A Demon’s Lure

Hungry for Touch

Endless Affair

 

 

 

All Said and Undone

 

By

Angelita Gill

 

 

 

~DEDICATION~

 

 

To one of my best friends, Michelle, because you’re the reason I met my alpha male and because your friendship is kind of a big deal. I’m forever your wingwoman. Love, Angel

 

 

 

Chapter One

 

 

Grace Crandall’s spine tingled with an odd sense of foreboding as her friend April Schmidt sailed over, shoving a sweaty champagne glass in her hand. “Your husband is here.”

Other than a soft gasp, Grace exhibited no other reaction, while a thousand alarm bells sounded off in her head. With controlled poise, she searched the buzzing thrall of the invite-only party in a slow turn, not seeing him. As her heart pounded, she asked tightly, “Are you joking?”

April gave her a wry look, drawing an invisible circle around her face with her purple-polished fingernail. “Look at my face. All business. He just walked in.”

Grace knew her friend and coworker would never joke about Jack’s presence. Anxiety struck through her like instant, rapid wildfire. Suddenly, it felt as if the volume of the room had been set to mute and all she could hear was her heart throbbing. “What is he doing here?”

“Your guess is as good as mine. I’m clueless.” April raised a brow as she glanced over Grace’s shoulder. “Wow. He looks good. Er…sorry. But you gotta admit, he’s got the whole James Bond-ish thing going on. Except—blonder.”

She took a fretful gulp, ignoring her friend’s rambling. “How did he know I’d be here?”

“Repeat. Clueless.”

“Do you think he’s seen me yet?”

“He doesn’t need to. He knows you’re here. Why else would he come?”

Grace’s stomach fluttered as if the floor had sunk from under her feet; she knew her estranged husband’s eyes were on her at that moment. She shivered like a cold breeze had passed through. “I can’t believe this. Out of all the nights to show his face….typical Jack. Catching me off guard. In public, no less.”

“How long has it been since he moved out?”

Her chest felt heavy as she replied with a sigh, “Six months.”

Her friend’s eyes went wide. “It’s been that long already? And the last time you talked?”

“A few months ago,” she said quietly, lowering her gaze to the sparkling bubbly. “We had a brief and scripted conversation about filing taxes.”

“Yikes.”

Grace and Jack had not spoken since then, and she was beginning to believe more and more every day their marriage was over. He was never coming back. Amazing how one fight could change everything. Though she had to admit, it was the kind of argument she only wanted to experience once in her life. “Where is he now?”

April scanned the area behind her. “You’re safe for the moment, I think. He’s talking to the host.”

“Good. She’ll gossip him into a coma,” Grace said touching a hand to her stomach as it stirred in hot, and dreaded, anticipation.

Unable to stop herself from stealing a peek, she turned her head over her shoulder, thinking it would be safe to get a look at Jack while he was preoccupied. Her breath caught as she spotted him chatting with the petite party coordinator. Even from across the room, her husband had the ability to obliterate her hard-won strength. There was just something about him that stole the composure right out of her. More handsome than any law ought to allow, Jack Crandall possessed magnetic, sapphire-blue eyes, short, dark blond hair, a tall, toned physique. The way he held himself, and how he looked around with that half smile as if he knew everyone’s secrets, never ceased to draw her in. Not only was he attractive, but intelligent and charismatic, using those qualities to become very successful in business—and winning, and breaking, her heart. Physically she found him irresistible; reasons why she loved him went much further, deeper. And she loved him still.

He grinned at the young woman, showing his bright, killer smile against a light tan. As if life had been good to him. Not as if his marriage had given him any grief whatsoever. Her eyes stung as she tore her gaze away. “I want to sit down.”

“Whatever you do, act cool. Don’t let your emotions show.” April linked her arm in Grace’s and led her to the far end of the room, to an empty table. She then accepted a piece of cake from a server and slid it in front of Grace, gesturing for her to eat her anxiety away. “Need a minute alone? Maybe I should get something stronger, like tequila?” she suggested with a teasing smile.

Grace looked up and gave a weak laugh. “Thanks.”

Her loyal friend left her, and Grace fought for her bearings. She only needed a couple of minutes before she faced him. Because at some point, she would have to. That was the only reason he was here: to confront her. The familiar, crippling pain seeped into her blood, but she kept her head high, her back erect. No one need know, especially Jack, how seeing him always undid her.

A moment later, a shadow was on her table, at her back. Before she could turn around, her husband was leaning over her shoulder, his mouth close to her ear. “Hello, Grace.”

She closed her eyes briefly, suppressing the need to quiver. “Jack.”

His virile, acutely familiar scent seeped into her personal space, that cleanly masculine organic soap he used interlaced with hot, healthy, confident male. She inhaled as if annoyed, breathing him in, memories flashing in the back of her mind like a rapid slide show. Her head buzzed, her limbs trembled. An instant hot mess.

Reaching for a fork, he proceeded to slice off a bite of cake, eat it, and then toss the utensil on the table. “We need to talk. Now.” He grabbed her hand and pulled her out of the chair, taking her to the dance floor among a crush of others as a sexy, rhythmic song played through the speakers. With the party in full swing, no one paid them any attention.

“You could’ve called me. Can this wait?” she asked in irritation, the fire in her hand moving to her arm and down her legs.
Damn him
.

He slammed her body to his front. “No.”

She wiggled to place space between them. “What are you doing?”

“Hold still or you’ll make a scene.”

“It’s a little late, isn’t it? With you dragging me out here like some kind of caveman. How did you know I’d be here in the first place?”

“You. It popped up on my Google calendar as a reminder. You must’ve put it in there months ago.”

She remembered. Back then she’d been trying to organize more things to do together, most of which he’d turned down because of work. He always insisted he’d have more time for her later. Well, later never came. “Let me go. We can talk outside.”

Jack’s crisp blue gaze shot into hers as they danced, stiffly. “Can’t stand my touch anymore?”

She quickly looked away and blew out an exasperated breath. “What do you want?” Trepidation crept in at the blaze coming out of his eyes. If looks could burn, she’d be a pile of ashes right now.

His arm jerked her. “The boat. What in God’s name are you thinking, putting it up for sale? Without even bothering to talk to me about it?”

The old Grace would have buckled under Jack’s sharp tone, those faintly wounded eyes, not to mention she was pressed against his hard-as-a-rock physique. The new Grace met him straight on. “How did you find out about that? I just put the ad in the paper yesterday.”

“Does it matter?”

“You bought the boat for me. I can do whatever I want with it.”

His strong jaw flexed. “You
can’t
sell it.”

“It’s impractical to keep it anymore.” Her voice had a cracked a little, betraying her guilt.

“I didn’t buy it for practicality. Remember? I’d closed my first big account. It was my first real gift to you. Now I see how much it really meant.”

“I’m not using it,” she said through gritted teeth.

“That’s your own fault, working eighteen hours a day the way you do.”

She gave a dry laugh at his exaggeration. Well, it wasn’t too far off. Fourteen hours was the average these days, but how would he know? He was only guessing. “Look who’s talking! Since when have you ever had time for something like boating?”

“Since I met you,” he said in a low tone, looking at her mouth, then flashing narrowed eyes back to hers.

“Could’ve fooled me. You spent just enough time with me so I’d remember your name.”

“Good one. As I recall, when we
were
together, you didn’t complain.”

“No, you just didn’t listen.”

“And I’m being punished for not meeting your high expectations. What does it take to be your husband? I wish I knew. Or have you forgotten we’re still married?”

A sharp pang hit her stomach. “It crosses my mind from time to time,” she choked out.

“I’ll bet it does. You’re the one who wanted to separate, Grace,” he said, his voice soft but firm.

Same old Jack. Blame her, turn the argument around, and defend his actions with the whole “I only gave you what you wanted,” leaving her unable to fight back. “And you’re putting everything on me as usual. All these months apart and you still can’t fight fair.”

“What did I tell you the first week we met?”

Overwhelmed with emotion, she shook her head. “I can’t remember.”

“I remember everything,” he said matter-of-factly, his eyes never leaving hers. “I told you it’s all or nothing with us. Either I get all of you,” he splayed his hand on her back, fitting her snugly, perfectly against his solid form, “or none of you.”

She had to find the breath to say, “And now it seems you prefer the latter.” She was referring to his lack of communication, his lack of any motivation to bring them back together.

His lips thinned. Frowning, he gave her hand a squeeze. “What do you want from me? To guess? To beg? I won’t do either of those things and you know it.”

That was the problem. He hadn’t done anything! He’d accepted her tentative suggestion for a separation and walked out. She had asked for space, but never thought he’d give her so much, for so long. Now the divide between them was so wide she wasn’t really sure if she had married a man or an idea.

“I don’t want you to sell the boat,” he said.

Weariness filled her tone. “What’s the point in keeping it, Jack?”

He bit down on his jaw, his eyes cold as ice. “If I had known it would mean so little to you, I would’ve gotten rid of it a long time ago.”

“I told you. I don’t use it.” She reached for the next excuse that came to mind. “You know I don’t know how to sail.”

“That’s because I don’t recall us
using
it to sail.”

BOOK: All Said and Undone
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