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Lexi shakes the Advil bottle. The pills jingle like spare change.

“Reed, baby… I got you the ibuprofen you wanted.”

Baby! She calls him baby? I would start laughing if this wasn’t so traumatizing.

“He has a headache, and I know exactly how to take care of him.”

I need to walk away while I’m ahead and never come back. Maybe Brance is right. California might be the best place for us.

Holding my shoulders back, I can practically feel my mouth watering at the thought of telling them both to fuck off.

Instead I smile. “Good luck.” I pray I’m getting what Brance has because I’m not feeling so good. More than likely, it’s Lexi and her repulsive perfume. That and the visual of Reed’s dick inside her.

“Let go, Reed,” I hiss. I’m done. And if he doesn’t let me go, I may give in to my stomach issue and vomit on them both.

“Love your hair, by the way, Tess,” Lexi interrupts my attempt at freeing myself. “We could be twins, right, Reed?”

Please God, no, she is not going there! I look up at the blue sky, praying for divine intervention. I would even take an alien abduction over this.

Lexi pins me with her reptilian eyes.

I can’t help it. I back into Reed’s chest instinctively needing him. He wraps his other arm around my stomach from behind.

Lexi’s eyes narrow on us, and she taps the Advil bottle on her lips. I have to look away, willing myself to focus on the green lawn. Even the couple making out in the middle of it is better than her.

“Is that what you want, Reed?” She points at me. “You must have heard how he likes threesomes,” she sneers.

“Jesus, Lexi, what’s wrong with you?” Reed snaps into action. Lacing our fingers, he pulls me around the she lizard.

“I just want to please you. Don’t tell me you wouldn’t love it.” I can’t see his face, but she can, and she smiles at me.

“Look at her. She will never be able to keep up with you sexually.”

Reed turns around to her. “How would you even know what I need sexually?” His voice is cruel.

I can’t help but wonder if she is not right. I have no idea who this new Reed is or what his needs are. And suddenly I don’t want to know.

“Reed.” This time I do manage to free my arm. He goes to reach for me and I back away, hands up. “Don’t you dare touch me! I will make a scene none of us will live down.” Pointing at Lexi, I say, “This is your world. I neither want it nor fit into it. You said we needed to talk. Well, here it is… You are not the same boy I loved. And I need you to stay away from me.”

He steps back like I’ve stabbed him. And maybe I have if the pain in my heart is any indication of how he feels. His hand goes to his tattoo, and tears form in my eyes. I don’t know why. I can’t stand him. Everything he has become is not something I want.

“Go back to Jax. I need to talk to Lexi.” His hand drops. She slithers after him. I should feel victorious. Until I realize that my hand is touching my tattoo.REEDI can’t stop myself from turning around to look at her. Tess is still so fucking beautiful, my chest burns. My eyes follow her incredible ass in that bikini, which I will definitely be throwing away. The vanilla smell that is hers lingers, clinging to my skin. I vaguely hear Lexi talking to me. But I can’t look away from Tess. Hating myself even more for letting Tess go, I take a step after her, then stop. I have to get my shit together. The need to go to her, grab her, lock her in my room, and mate is overwhelming.

Tess is back!

And we are old enough so that nobody can dictate our lives. Like a stalker, I watch her cling to my twin. Like a sleeping lion, my anger awakens. I don’t care if she lies to herself. She can claim it’s over as much as she wants. Her words float in my brain: You’re not the same boy I loved!

Well, that may be true. But she’s changed too. My little kitten has grown some claws. Mine! I want to roar.

“Fuck me.” I run my hands through my hair.

What the hell was Jax thinking keeping Tess from me? I thought I was going to beat the shit out of him. Jax and I are evenly matched. But I have rage on my side, so that would give me an edge. Tess will be mine until one of us takes our last breath.

I’m all off and wish I’d never snorted that coke. I want to go caveman on Tess. Those fucking eyes of hers, like glittering sapphires. Shaking my head at her ridiculous lips, I smirk. Only Tess can get away with pumping shit into her lips and still looking hot. My cock’s getting hard. Great! Now, all I can think of is how unbelievable her lips will feel wrapped around my shaft. Shifting uncomfortably, I’m in board shorts, so being this hard with my size is not something you can hide. Turning, I walk into the house, needing to splash water on my face and put on some jeans and a shirt. Maybe I should take a shower.