Page 10 of Marked With Love

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Louis ignores me. “Morgan, I’ll stop by your house tomorrow with food for you and your grams. Be prepared. I won’t take no for an answer.”

Morgan sighs heavily. “Louis, please. Your food is great, but this is embarrassing.”

Louis loses it. “You’re what’s embarrassing! You could’ve had me, but instead you’re throwing me away for some guy who holds a paint brush?”

“Some guy?” Now I’m fucking offended.

I march over to the far wall where my painting hangs and pull it off the wall.

“What the hell are you doing?” Louis yells.

“You don’t get this anymore.” I jerk my head at Morgan. “You coming?”

She hesitates, looks at Louis, and then walks in my direction.

“You can’t take that. It belongs to the restaurant.” Louis’ head is about to explode.

“Read the contract.” The painting is large and bulky, and I practically knock a couple people over as I carry it toward the door. Matty and Blake race ahead to get the car. They seem like a good pair.

“Sir! You can’t leave with that.” The maître d’ attempts to halt my progress.

I start to lower the painting across my knee.

Louis shrieks, “Not the painting. Leave him alone! Let him go!”

“Thought I was just some dude with a paintbrush,” I call. Satisfied, I march out with Morgan in tow.

“Can you really take that?” she asks when we reach the sidewalk.

“I did, didn’t I?”


“Louis is an ass and doesn’t deserve this.”

“It is a beautiful piece. The colors are vibrant. I’m usually not a fan of modern art because it’s often so cold, but this work has energy and warmth. Like I’m standing in the sun.”

I beam at her. “It’s yours then.”

“I can’t.”

“You better take it,” Matty advises. He’s arrived with the Rover. “Otherwise, we’re going to be here all night. He’s stubborn like that.”

“I get that.”

“Not dickhead stubborn like Louis, though,” I hurry to clarify. “Just regular stubborn.” That sounds dumb as hell. I clamp my mouth shut. I shove the painting in the back of the Rover and usher Morgan back into the car.

“Where to?” Matty asks.

“My place,” Morgan and I both respond at the same time.

“At the risk of sounding crazed, see how in sync we are?” I hold out my hand to Morgan. She smiles and places her fingers on top of mine. “You can drop us off at my place, Matty. Thanks for the invite. I owe you one.”

“I’ll drop by on Monday and let you know my price.”

I think everyone in the Rover knows I’ll pay whatever he asks.


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