The Sinful Seven Series
My phone vibrates with an incoming text and I roll over to see Caleb’s number. I’m hesitant to answer. I also know if I don’t he’ll worry and pace. Best to just rip off the Band-Aid right here and now.
Caleb: How are you feeling?
Me: Like I’ve been hit by a train. But I’ll be fine.
Caleb: Try to get some rest. I’ll drop your car off after work.
Caleb: What do you need, love?
You. Only you. How do you thank someone for saving you from the roller coaster called life? With all of its highs and lows. Swallowing the lump in my throat, I push on.
Me: Thank you for saving me when I never knew I needed rescuing. Sorry, I said and did all those nasty—
My phone rings and I know this is too deep for him to text. “Hey, Boss Man.”
“I didn’t save you, Willow. I was just the catalyst that guided you through. You did it all on your own, love. You don’t ever have to apologize for lashing out at me. I’d gladly absorb all of your grief if I knew you were pain-free. Now, get some rest and I’ll see you later.”
“Have I told you lately how bossy you are?” Caleb makes me smile, even with his dry sense of humor.
“Every time you call me Boss Man, so I’d say that’s a yes. I’ll grab us takeout so we can eat dinner together. Sound good?”
“I think you might be falling for me, Boss Man. Be careful, I’m a handful. See you later, and make sure it’s Thai.” Ending the call, I lie back down and realize that I’m the one who’s falling for him. Not the other way around. Caleb doesn’t need my crazy, but it sure would be nice to have someone who gets me.
“Let’s go out to eat for your birthday,” Mom said. “Just you and me. It will be lots of fun,” she said.
That was two hours ago and now I’m standing here ready to blow out the candles while everyone sings happy birthday. Mind you, not the patrons of the restaurant but my friends. Lucas, Jet and Trevor. Oh, and their significant others, Abby and Quinn. And could someone please tell me why Caleb’s here? Because I have no damn clue. He’s the owner of our record label, Morris Music. I suddenly want to slap myself on the forehead when I realize. He must feel obligated since he’s standing up with me at Lucas’s wedding next Saturday.
“Happy Birthday, dear Willoooooowwww, Happy Birthday to you! Now blow out the candles and don’t spit on the cake.” Trevor, he’s my cousin and he’ll never let me live it down. I was like seven years old, but he loves teasing me to no end.
Taking in a deep breath, I get ready to blow them all out in one shot, when Quinn screams, “Don’t forget to make a wish!” That’s when all the air rushes out of my lungs in one fell swoop. Now, I’m staring at this beautiful cake with pretty pink frosting. While I stare at the flickering candles through blurred vision. Did I mention I hate birthdays?
Absentmindedly, my hand seeks the locket around my neck for some much needed reassurance. Soon after, Jet blows out the candles and the room goes eerily quiet. It’s not Quinn’s fault.
She has no way of knowing…
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