Read From Now Until Infinity (2) Online

Authors: Layne Harper

Tags: #Contemporary, #Romance, #Sports

From Now Until Infinity (2) (4 page)

BOOK: From Now Until Infinity (2)
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We sit in silence while I watch his face pass through a variety of emotions. I’m preparing myself to sit like this all night when his eyes cut to the side and look down, “Please just let me go call Aiden. Then, I’ll come talk to you.”

I know that this is the best that I’m going to get so I stand up and walk into the bedroom. I holler over my shoulder, “I’ll close the bedroom door so you don’t have to go to the lobby.”

I shut the door quickly enough that I don’t hear his response. I’m upset. No. That isn’t the right word for it. I’m in turmoil. If this was about football, he would’ve told me. This is something having to do with his personal life which ultimately means me too. Why is he calling Aiden? What does Aiden have to do with this? I’m assuming that it’s the Aiden that I know that dated Rachael, but then again there are other Aiden’s in this world.

I walk into the bathroom and start fixing my hair. I take my frustrations out on the knots that I have because I didn’t bother to brush it after my earlier shower. Finally, I give up and decide that the only hope I have without my detangler is conditioner.

I turn on the shower and let the warm water wash over my body. I grab my bottle of conditioner that Brad packed for me and start working it into my hair. Then, I take my fingers and use them like a comb to make sure that the conditioner gets worked into the tangles. I know that I’m taking my frustrations with Colin out on my poor hair. As I step back under the running water, Colin comes into the bathroom.

Even though my eyes are closed, I can sense his presence. It’s almost as if instead of five senses, I have six. It’s the Colin sense and sometimes it’s the most annoying sense of them all. My body recognizes and gravitates to his aura which just further frustrates me. Why does my body have to be so traitorous sometimes?

I ignore him, and he doesn’t say anything to me. I allow him to watch me for as long as he wants. I reach behind me and turn off the shower. Colin walks towards me and hands me a white fluffy towel for my body and one for my hair. After all these years, he still remembers that I use two towels.

“God, you’re so fucking beautiful,” he coos.

I ignore him. He should know better than anyone that flattery will get him nowhere with me.

I wrap my hair in a turban and wrap the towel around my body and walk to the sink to start working on the tangles in my matted hair. They slip out much easier now that the conditioner has done its job.

I see him in the mirror and I swear that he’s aged ten years. The lines around his eyes that I thought were knowing are now deep and worry lines crease his forehead. He sits on the edge of the bathtub in the pose that I hate. He places his big forearms on his knees and leans forward dropping his head.

I want to run over and grasp him in my arms, telling him that everything will be okay, but I don’t know that it will be. He has secrets that he’s obviously uncomfortable with sharing. I need to know them even if it kills him to tell me.

Once I’ve successfully worked the knots out of my hair, I grab the hotel provided blow dryer and start working on styling my hair. Hell! At this point, I don’t know if we’re still going out, but I need something to do to distract me from my sullen Colin.

I turn the blow dryer off and decide to just give up on my hair. It might be a pony tail kind of night. I grab my toothbrush and start brushing my teeth. I can see in the mirror that he’s watching every move I make. I continue to ignore him.

“I hate when you’re upset with me. It makes me fucking crazy.”

I ignore him and continue brushing my teeth.

“When we landed in New Orleans, I had a text that there was a rumor going around that Sasha was doing an interview about me with
Talk Magazine.
Mark confirmed the rumor and has been able to get a copy of the reporter’s notes. The focus is on all of her failed relationships and why she thinks that she’s constantly being cheated on. The article will focus mainly on her and me and how I cheated on her with my old girlfriend, breaking her heart.” He drops his head even more and whispers, “I’ve read the notes. They’re really, really bad.”

I spit the toothpaste out of my mouth, gargle water, and wash my toothbrush. It gives me a chance to gain my composure before I have to talk about this. I put my toothbrush back in the travel case, and then, I walk over to Colin sitting next to him on the bathtub edge.

I rest my head against his shoulder and put my arms around him hugging him from the side. I know that his confession was very difficult. Colin is a fixer. It’s what a quarterback does. Colin finds a way to thread a football through an impossibly small chasm of air while allowing his teammate to catch the ball and keeping it away from the other team. I’ve watched enough tape with Colin to know that what he does is virtually impossible. However, I’m a fixer too. I repair broken bones and torn ligaments for a living. I want to fix this for Colin.

We stay like this until he barely whispers, “I’m so fuckin’ sorry. I had no clue that she’d do something like this, or that Sasha even felt that strongly about me for that matter.”

“Is there anything that Mark or Aiden can do?”

“Mark has a relationship with the magazine so he’s seeing what he can do on that end. Aiden and Sasha are friends. Aiden’s hoping that he can compel her to either retract the story or ask the writer to soften it.”

“Is this the Aiden that I know?”

Colin looks at me with a smirk. “Yeah! He’s my business attorney.”

“Oh,” is all I can think to reply. I have a ton of questions about Aiden, but now’s probably not a good time to do some digging for Rachael. “Why don’t you tell me what happened with Sasha.”

He shakes his head and replies, “She went bat shit crazy, Charlie. Sasha shredded my clothes that I’d left in her house and put it all in a black garbage bag. She was fucking crazy angry at me. Here’s the best part,” he says with a rueful laugh. “She kept calling me David Beckham and herself Posh Spice.”

I know that David Beckham is a famous soccer player. I have no clue who Posh Spice is. Next time I’m alone I’ll have to Google her.

“It made me see that she liked the idea of me more than me. Sasha never said that she’d miss me or anything. It was all about how she was going to look in the media getting dumped again.”

Ouch! I can’t imagine what it would feel like to realize that someone was using you for your job or social status. It’s got to hurt Colin more than he’s letting on. “Colin, Sasha’s not a good person. She didn’t care about you and now, it’s over. Can I read the reporter’s notes?” I ask holding my breath. I can’t make him let me read them, but I need to know what Sasha’s version of their relationship was for my own morbid curiosity. Plus, I want to know that the notes specifically say about me.

Colin looks at me with a horror stricken look on his face. “You don’t want to read that shit.”

“Yes. I do,” I reply. “It involves me. I should have the right to read them. Whatever she says, it doesn’t change how I feel about you.” I’ve got to make him understand that I’m not going to leave him because of Sasha. What I said in Los Angeles is true. I’m his for infinity... I hope.
Damn those “what ifs.”
“She has a right to be angry, Colin. You slept with me when she believed that you two were a couple.”

He tries to correct me, but I stop him. “I don’t care what you thought. Sasha’s a woman scorned. Whatever she says is her version of the truth. Thankfully, y’all weren’t married and there are no kids involved. I’m sure that she makes you look like an asshole. All we can do is put on a strong, united front and make sure that the media doesn’t have an opportunity to see any cracks in our relationship. Pretty soon, Sasha’s love life, and ours, will be old news.”

I’m being brave for him. This is what years of therapy have bought me. What I want to do is hide under the blankets and cry or run ten miles. The last thing that I was prepared for when I reconnected with Colin was to be branded as a tramp in the media. Part of me is furious at him for putting me in this position. The other part of me wants to kick my own ass. I should’ve known better. I should’ve asked Colin if he was seeing anyone before I slept with him. I know that how I handle this huge media hurdle is going to dictate whether or not Colin and I have a chance of making it as a couple. I somewhere find inner strength that I didn’t know that I have and put a determined look on my face.

Colin stands up and begins pacing the bathroom. “I was just hoping that we could’ve had some privacy before we had to go public with us.”

“Well, we can’t,” I reply very proud of myself for being strong. “Now let me read the notes while you get dressed for dinner.”

“I’ve lost my fuckin’ appetite.”

“That’s bullshit Colin. You put away an obscene amount of groceries. Go get dressed and let me read them.”

“Fine,” he says walking into the living room to get his iPad. I need to read the reporter’s notes, and he just has to get over it. I’m not a delicate flower who will wilt under the public spotlight. Maybe Colin and I both need a reminder that it wasn’t the media attention that bothered me last time. It was the whole mobbed in public thing that frightened me.

I sit down on the bed and wait for him to bring me his iPad. He walks into the room and hands it to me with great reluctance. “I love you, and I’m sorry to do this to you,” he reassures me.

“I love you to. Now, go get dressed while I read the latest Hollywood dish,” I tease trying to lighten his dark mood.

He gives me a halfhearted smile and walks into the bathroom.

I make myself comfortable and prepare to be shocked.

 

* * *

 

He’s leaning against the bathroom door waiting for my reaction. I do my best to keep my face as bland as possible. When I’m finished reading them, I hold up a finger and caution him away. “Give me a few minutes to process this, and then I want to read the notes again.”

He turns and walks back into the bathroom. I finally hear the shower water start to fall.

Damn. I knew it was bad, but I wasn’t prepared for just how ugly it was going to be. The highlights of the notes include Sasha accusing Colin of cheating on her the entire six-months of their relationship. I’m definitely identified as the other woman. She says that I stalked Colin and threw myself at him. The part that I find the most intriguing is that she believes that I’ve had some sort of hold over him that she could never get past. Sasha actually says that at some point you just have to know when you’ve lost the battle for a man’s heart. That actually makes me smile.

However, the best gem of the notes are when she accuses me of already cheating on Colin with JT Reynolds the football player that I met at the Clay South event. Then, she drops the bombshell that Colin’s secretly bought a home for a girl that he got pregnant in high school, and he ruined her life also. I know that Jenna’s the girl mentioned. I met her many years ago at Jennifer and Quinn’s home when she was making one last play for Colin. Colin didn’t get Jenna pregnant, but because he got his family and her family involved, she held him responsible for being forced to have the baby and giving it up for adoption.

I read the notes again and Colin has every right to be upset. His all American, good ol’ boy image is about to get dragged through the mud. Never mind the fact that I’m a home wrecker and slut.

I slide a beautiful green multi-print dress on and walk into the bathroom to finish my makeup. Colin steps out of the shower, and I take a long look admiring him in the mirror. The man’s devastatingly handsome.

He wraps a towel around his waist and walks up behind me placing a chaste kiss on my collarbone. “I’ll take the fact that you’re still here as a good sign.”

I look into his eyes in the mirror. “I told you that I wouldn’t leave you, and I’m not. Thank you for letting me read them. I’m sorry that Jenna was brought into this mess. Even though she’s not mentioned by name, have you warned her?”

He throws his head back laughing, “You mean you’re concerned about Jenna’s welfare after reading that crap?”

I turn around and grab his face directing his green eyes into my violet. “If you’re providing some financial assistance for Jenna, I think that’s very admirable. I think the article is going to be bitter, hateful, and petty. Actually, I’m most concerned about you because I love you. We’ve got each other. We can get through this together because we know the truth. We made a mistake by sleeping with each other before you officially ended it with Sasha. This’s our test to see if we can survive the media scrutiny, and I believe that we’ll pass with flying colors.”

Colin tries to interject but I cut him off. “However, I think that the article is most damaging toward Sasha herself. She’s a lover scorned, and I know that the majority of the people that read it will see through the accusations and ultimately pity her. She did herself no favors. The only part that I’d demand not be included is the part about Jenna. She doesn’t deserve to have to her past drug through the mud.”

Then, I pause because a terrible thought enters my brain.
Oh My God! Does Colin have a thing going on with Jenna? Still? Never stopped? Is she like a mistress?
“I’m assuming that Jenna is just someone that you feel that you need to help out and there’s nothing else going on, right?” I try to keep my face neutral when I ask the question, but I can’t look at him in the face. My insides are a mess as I wait for his response.

“Oh God! Yes, baby.” Colin says as he runs his fingers through his wet hair. He grabs my shoulders and turns me towards him and then he lifts my chin so we’re back to staring into each other’s eyes. “I paid for Jenna to go to college and get her nursing degree. I also bought her a house to live in. That’s it. Jenna means nothing to me more than a friend.” He confesses.

“Good. Then call Aiden and Mark and tell them that’s the only thing that you demand to not have included in the article. Let it run. Your sponsors aren’t going to be too pleased, but like I said, you didn’t leave Sasha with four little girls and run off with the head nurse at your practice that was already six-months pregnant,” I reply raising my eyebrow at him.

BOOK: From Now Until Infinity (2)
12.97Mb size Format: txt, pdf, ePub
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