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“Try me, motherfucker!” Raven spat through gritted teeth.
“You act as if I’m a stranger. As if I just kidnapped you,” Liam grumbled as they stood just outside the city limit.
“Damn right you did. No, I don’t know you anymore. And yes, you kidnapped me, Liam. You were supposed to drop me off at home. I know good and damn well you felt me pinching you.”
He forced himself not to smile.
Her eyes sparkled with daggers, as she backed away on the dusty road. “Take me h-o-m-e. I don’t need you!”
“Oh, that tone of yours tells me you don’t need shit, nobody! But bring your hard headed ass over here; I will correct you, beautiful.” Liam seethed with desire and anger. “Shit, you used to fight for me. It took me all of two seconds when we met at the mall, to see that you’ve changed—oh but you’re sizing me up for differences. Somewhere in there is that girl that doesn’t take shit. I don’t need that girl to fight anymore. I need her to wake the fuck up and live. See, I care about you enough to spank some sense into you!”
The rage left her. She didn’t quite return to the nonchalance that seemed to plague her these days.
“Don’t yell at me. Does it look like I ever got a fucking hero? I was crawling, fighting my own battles. You acted like hot shit, telling Deputy Frank your full name. Who the hell are you? I’ve known you since you couldn’t do one shitty ass push up, so check yourself.”
“Or what?!” Liam’s face was inches away from hers. The tension between them had flown down the highway. Sweet papaya wafted through his nostrils as the breeze sent more of Raven his way. Here she was, in the flesh, ripe for the taking. Her pink tongue dipped out and slid over her bottom lip. The sheer act he coveted, needing to touch her.
Then Liam looked into Raven’s eyes. Really looked. Those orbs were welling up with tears.
“Let me go home, Liam.”
“If there’s something you want, son, you take it,” Grandfather Pierre had said. Liam’s grandfather always used the “son” title for added affect.
His grandfather owned one of the oldest publications companies in the world. The newspaper company had been passed down from Pierre’s own grandfather. When electronic marketing hit, Pierre placed his money in other sources, such as renovating a Parisian hotel. Architectural design had always been his passion, more so than his family’s press enterprise company, which seemed to be a lost cause due to a wave of other new social outlets. The historical site became the first of many D-Hotels across the nation, then Europe, and now spanning every exotic land. Meanwhile, Pierre was able to designate funds from his first few D-Hotels to various publication sources as the Delacroix family legacy. They owned magazines, television channels from basic cable to premium movie channels, and the family’s newspaper company expanded to the internet. The Delacroix custom was branded in his brain. Yet, when it came to Raven, Liam would always cave.
She thought he was different. Yes, he was. But she’d changed too, and not for the better. Raven fucking hates me the thought consumed him persuading him to give up. Leave her alone.
No, she was the only untarnished thing he had in life. He loved her. She was like one of those antique dolls Pierre collected. A doll so intricately designed, with such godlike talent, that it was worth millions of dollars. Those dolls seemed so lifelike, sparkling eyes and all, but no, they couldn’t laugh. He’d give away his own burgeoning fortune to see her smile. Bet every penny she hadn’t smiled in a while.
Yeah, he loved her, he would save her.
Not now though. She was too damn stubborn for that.
He started toward the Ducati.