Revenge is Sweet
“I thought I told you to go away,” I grumbled.
“I’m hungry.” Miles chuckled.
I snorted but turned around to see him leaning that long body next to me, amusement brightening his eyes.
“You invited me to dinner, and I didn’t eat lunch in anticipation of a delicious meal.”
“You heard Uncle Harry. He’s right, you know. You should be long gone by now.”
“I did hear him. I know he loves you and knows you better than almost anyone. And it’s nothing I didn’t already know and say to myself as I was contemplating canceling meeting you tonight.” He folded his arms. “But I also heard you this week. I know you loved Dan and how badly he hurt you. And maybe you didn’t have that swoony type of love for Lindsey, but you knew her a long time. I’m sure you cared for her, and you were friends. It’s like losing a piece of yourself when you’re blindsided by someone you’ve known and cared about for so long.” He blinked rapidly, his eyes shiny and the brightest blue I’d ever seen.
Was he crying? For me? That rocked me to the core. No one had ever shed a tear over my feelings. Scott, much as he cared, while angry over Dan’s cowardice, was pragmatic and matter-of-fact about the broken engagement. Even Uncle Harry, who I knew loved me, was easily able to put that aside and count my faults out one by one like jelly beans. Only Miles seemed to understand how broken and lost Dan’s behavior had left me. He took it to his own heart and felt my pain.
And somehow, despite my outburst, my plan hadn’t gone awry. It wouldn’t take much to get Miles in my bed, and I grew hard, imagining what I could do to him. How I would wreck him for anyone else. I brushed at my lashes, surprised to find them wet. Damn, I was a better actor than I thought.
“It’s so hard. Thank you for understanding. I don’t like how angry this has left me.”
“I believe you. And I didn’t want to leave you, knowing how alone you must feel right now.” He hung his head. “I-I know what it’s like to be used.”
His words cut through my dirty fantasy of having him naked in my bed. Curious, I tipped up his chin. “What happened?”
He pushed away from my touch. “It doesn’t matter. It was in college. A long time ago.”
My lips thinned. “My parents fucked Scott and me over left and right while we were kids. If it’s Tuesday, it must be home with Mother. If it’s Saturday, it’s time to be with Father. Oh, wait. He didn’t show. Back to Mother’s, but she’d already gone away with her new husband, so off to Uncle Harry’s we go. It was long ago, and yet I still think about coming home to find it empty, no one there, not even the housekeeper.”
It struck me then that all my life, the people who should’ve stayed had left me. Over and over again.
And Dan’s leaving me was the hardest to take of all.
“That must’ve been hard on you and Scott.”
Sympathetic big blue eyes met mine, and I wanted to kiss him. Not because of any plan of revenge or to make him fall for me. I wanted to kiss him because he was sweet and caring and understanding.
He was Miles, and I wanted to kiss him, but I shocked myself by not following through because it didn’t feel like it would be right for him. I wanted him to want me.
Steadier now, I managed to insert the key and open the door. “About that dinner. They can send it here. If you still want to eat with me.”
His smile transformed the sadness in his face into shy happiness. I guessed it was a rare occurrence because in all the years I’d known Miles, I’d never seen it. It beamed from him like a torch lighting the darkness. And I liked it.
“Yes. I do.”
“Good. Come on in.”
He gazed around my spacious office that had a large sectional couch, a big flat-screen television, and a dining table in the far corner. It was set up like a studio apartment, and there were many late nights before the wedding when I’d fallen asleep on the couch.
“So is this what people mean when they say they’re entering the lion’s den?” Miles joked. “Should I be afraid?”
I grinned. “I guess we’ll have to wait and see.”
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