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“Not sure we should be traveling across the country with that much cash on you. New change of plans. We’re driving as much as we can. Only stopping to eat, go to the bathroom, and sleep. That stays in your view or mine at all times, and Tinsley?”

“Yes, Leo?” I respond while nodding.

“That’s your money. You keep it. It’s your backup if something goes wrong.” His hand finds mine again after I zip the bag back up, placing it on the floorboard.

“Do you think something is going to happen?” I ask, my voice tinged with worry.

“Not if I have anything to do with it.” He brings my hand to his mouth, kissing my knuckles before placing it on his thigh. Leo’s hand on top of mine, holding it there as he gets back on the road and we head to our destination for the day.



Jesus, I can’t believe Tinsley has that much cash in her bag and carrying it around like it’s nothing. There must be close to forty grand in cash, no fucking lie. It puts a crick in my plans at finding the cheapest of the cheap motels. I’ll really have to look for a semi-decent one.

This just proves to me that Tinsley is more than meets the eye, more brains than beauty, but her fucking beauty already has me on my knees, ready to worship the ground she walks on. Tinsley doesn’t even know the effect she has on people around her, the way men would openly leer at her when she was walking in and out of her classes. How I had to put Dumb and Dumber in their place, to let them know she was off fucking limits. Holding a gun to Matt’s head while David looked on probably told them I was not screwing around. Shit, if Slade were here monitoring me on this case, I would have been in the same damn position as those two rent-a-cops.

“Might have a slight change of plans. We’ll more than likely travel through the night, sleep for a few hours at a hotel or truck stop, then get back on it. Your father hasn’t caught on yet, but he will as soon as you don’t show up to that event tomorrow evening, and I’d like to get as far away as we can. You okay with that?” I ask Tinsley. My only thoughts now are getting her back to my place. All of us who work at Nighthawk Security have the top-of-the-line alarm systems, thermal motion sensors that let us know if someone’s on the property, without night goggles. Keeping Tinsley safe is my number-one priority, even if that means hiding her from the Suttons.

“I’m good with whatever. We’ll need food soon though. I’m running on empty, and I’m definitely in the need-caffeine department.” She dances in her seat while she talks about breakfast and coffee. It’s a routine for her as soon as her feet hit the floor. I’d be in the sitting room waiting for her, she’d come out fully clothed, grumbling, ‘If were at my apartment making breakfast. Pajamas would be allowed. Not like when you’re in the Sutton household.’ Tinsley isn’t the dressed-up person if she doesn’t have to be.

“We’ll stop at a drive through soon. Looks like if we can make good timing, we’ll be in Virginia in about three days, four max. It’s not going to be very scenic though, lots of interstate driving.”

“That doesn’t bother me. This will give us time to get to know each other. If you want me to, I can drive. I know you’ll probably say no, but the offer is there.” I hate like hell she’s going through this. I see the brave face she’s putting on, and it makes me pissed as hell at her parents. No child should have to go through this. If my parents knew what Tinsley was going through, they’d swoop down and give her all the love she could handle. For that matter, so would everyone and their spouses at Nighthawk, including Bridger’s sisters.

“Tell me about Drake and Braxton?” It’s like she’s reading my mind.

“Drake was in the service, got out and partnered with Slade at Nighthawk along with Bridger. He and Giana are happy and living their best life. Braxton just bought a shop that services and repairs cars. He’s living and breathing it right now. Something all of us are keeping our eyes on. Though, to be fair, once we all set our eyes on our goals, we stop at nothing until it’s firmly in our grasp.” I take my eyes off the road to look at Tinsley, letting her know in more ways than one that I’m not going anywhere and that she’ll be mine.

“It sounds like you Martinez men know what you want. Was it the same way when your parents met?”

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