Authors: Scarlet Wolfe
Copyright © 2013 Scarlet Wolfe Books
All rights reserved.
This is a work of fiction. Names, characters, places and incidents either are products of the author’s imagination or are used fictitiously. Any resemblance to actual events or locales or persons, living or dead, is entirely coincidental. No part of this book may be reproduced in any form or by any electronic or mechanical means including information storage and retrieval systems, without permission in writing from the author.dpgroup The only exception is by a reviewer, who may quote short excerpts in a review.
To all the
music bands and sweet guys who don’t get the credit they deserve.
This novel is written from the point of view of
Dylan, Taylor, Hannah and Nate.
Do We Have To?
“Sorry, Dylan, but I told you four o’clock, and I meant it,” Bob says.
I impatiently tap my foot on the floor as I look at the clock on the wall of the electrical company I work for as an apprentice.
“Bob, we’re dead. That’s three more flippin’ hours.” Why have I wished college away? In about five months, I’m going to have to do this shit full-time.
“Yes, and we could get a call before then. Look, I have too much paperwork to do. If someone calls, you’re going on the run,” Bob says as he sifts through invoices on his desk.
“I’d like to go on a run right out of here,” I mumble as I dig my phone out of my pocket to call Brett.
“Brett, it’s Dylan.”
“Hey, man, what’s up?”
“My boss won’t let me out of here until four, so have Hannah send me the address, and I’ll drive down when I get off work.”
“Can do, my friend.”
He’s always in too good of a mood. “I know Hannah’s great and all, but I don’t know how you’re still this chipper after living with her for four months.”
“It’s love, man and a lot of sex.”
“Douche bag, total douche bag.”
“If you’d stop nailing and bailing, you’d be having lots of sex, too.” Brett laughs loudly.
“Like I’ve told you every other time you’ve given me shit about this, when I find the right girl, I will.”
“Like I believe that, man. Hannah wants to talk to you.”
“Hannah, what’s up?”
“Are you riding with us?”
“No, I just told Brett I’ll have to ride down this evening.”
“Well, how much do you love me?”
I instantly hear Brett in the background telling her not to ask that. He’s still so fucking jealous.
“Why? What do you want?”
“I need a huge favor. Can you give Taylor a ride here?”
“That would be a big fat no. I don’t love you that much.”
“Please, Dylan. She can’t come otherwise.”
“And that’s a bad thing? I thought I was having a break through with her at your housewarming party, but then she added chains to that wall of hers. I’m tired of Taylor acting like us guys are beneath her. She’s not like the rest of you girls.”
“I know you still like her, Dylan. She’s sweet. She just hasn’t shown you yet. I’m hoping she’ll lighten up if she spends this much time with all of us.”
“I do like her, but I’ve been trying for months to get over that damn woman, so I don’t need to be trapped in a car with her for almost four hours.”
“She planned to ride with us, but she can’t leave early, either. You both have to come at the same time, so please, please, please, Dylan? Do it for me, not for her. I’m renting an Escalade for you to drive, so you can’t tell me no.”
“You’re renting us a car?”
I can never tell Hannah no. I try, but it’s useless. She’s too sweet.
“Dammit, fine. What do I have to do?”
“I’ll text you her address and the address for where we’re staying. Just tell the guard at the gate that you’re there to pick up Taylor.”
“You owe me for this. She better not ruin our week.”
“You’re the best, Dylan.”
I can’t believe I agreed to ride with Dylan. He drives me insane. No guy deserves to be that hot. I’ll have to spend almost a week trying not to ogle him every minute he’s near me. I just know it’s bullshit under all that charm of his.
He’s the last man I should trust. I can’t even begin to imagine the number of girls that have dropped their panties for him, and if I hadn’t already wised up to the ways of men, I’d probably fall for his shit, too. This isn’t going to work. While packing my suitcase, I decide I have to call Hannah.
“Hello,” she says.
“Hannah, I can’t do this. I’ll just rent a car.”
“No, you need to ride with Dylan. It isn’t safe for you to drive all that way by yourself.”
“Hannah, I’ve lived in New York City. I think I’m capable.”
“I already rented the vehicle, and Dylan’s probably already on his way to your house.”
“Ugh. I can’t believe I have to be in a car with him for that long.”
“When are you going to see how great he is?”
“Taylor, you said you’d try to get along better with the guys. You promised.”
I sigh. “OK, sorry. I’ll try harder.”
“That’s my girl. We’re making good time, so I think we’ll be there in a little over an hour. We’re going to have a blast this week, so I’ll see you tonight.”
My sister walks into the room as I’m hanging up.
“Can I please go?” Tory asks.
“No way. I never get time like this with my friends. I’ll feel like I have to babysit you the whole time.”
“Sis, I’m almost eighteen. I don’t need babysitting.”
I love Tory, but I’m jealous of her social skills. She gets along with others almost too well. If she goes, she’ll make me appear even more anti-social.
“You can’t go. It’s going to be stressful enough dealing with Dylan.”
“How bad can he really be?”
I stop what I’m doing and look at her. “He’s dangerously charming.”
“You’re going to be in so much trouble when you start college, Tory. Help me finish packing.”
I pull up at Taylor’s mansion around five in the evening. How the hell is her house bigger than Hannah’s? Before knocking on the door, I take a deep breath. I’m certain the next several hours will be hell if not the whole week.
Hannah’s parents own a monstrous cabin in Gatlinburg, Tennessee. The town butts up to the Great Smoky Mountains National Park. Hannah and Brett invited our whole group of friends to stay there with them for five nights over our winter break from classes.
It’s been in the works for a couple of months, and all nine of us have been pumped about it. Actually, Taylor makes ten, but she’s probably dreading it. I don’t think that girl even knows the meaning of fun. A middle aged lady opens the door.
“Hello, I’m Brenda, Taylor’s mom. Come on in.”
“Hi, ma’am, I’m Dylan. It’s nice to meet you.”
“Please call me Brenda. Taylor should be down in a minute. Please take care of my girl for me, and tell Ms. Hannah to come see me soon. I need to get a look at that engagement ring of hers and meet her fiancé.”
“OK, will do, and I’ll do my best to get Taylor there in one piece,” I say, smiling.
If I don’t throw her out of the vehicle first. I can’t help but notice how attractive Brenda is. She has blonde hair and a great figure. I imagine she has the money to keep herself looking good indefinitely. I guess Taylor got her dark hair from her dad.
This mansion is immaculate, and the foyer alone is bigger than my living room. What do these people do to make so much dough?
I hear Taylor speaking loudly to another female as they both come around the corner. Taylor appears hurried and out of breath. She gives her mom and me a warm smile, and I’m taken aback by her friendly demeanor.
“Wow, who are you?” the girl with Taylor asks.
“I’m Dylan,” I say, grinning. This has to be a sister. She’s hot like Taylor, but she has golden blonde hair.
“I’m Tory, Taylor’s younger sister, but I’ll be legal in just a few months,” she says all flirty.
“Taylor, why didn’t you tell me how hot Dylan is?” Tory asks, not taking her eyes off of me.
Oh, this is going to be fun. I grin and look at Taylor.
“Yeah, Taylor, why didn’t you tell Tory how hot I am?”
Taylor rolls her eyes. “Sorry, it never crossed my mind.”
A response I’d expect from her. “Dang that was cruel. Is she always this ruthless?” I ask, pointing my thumb toward Taylor.
Brenda pats me on the shoulder. “You’re so funny and cute. You need to come over for dinner sometime.”
“Thank you, Brenda. I’d love to come for dinner.”
Tory stands up on her tiptoes and claps. “Yayee, I can’t wait.”
This chick has some energy. I glance to Taylor and see that her eyes are as big as silver dollars. I’m loving every minute of this.
“We need to leave. We’re already getting there late,” she says.
Her suitcase is by the door, and she has a large purse over her shoulder. Taylor gives her mom a hug.
“Bye, Mom. I’ll text you when we get there.”
I pick up her suitcase.
“You don’t have to carry it,” she says, reaching for it.
I quickly pull it away and look her in the eyes.
“Yes, I do.” I turn my attention back to her mom and sister. “It was nice meeting you both.” I flash them a big grin before I go out the door.
We’re in the Escalade, and it’s quiet for several minutes. I don’t know what to say to him.
“Your sister’s cute. Is she always that forward?”
I roll my eyes. I imagine I’ll be doing it a lot this week.
“Yes, she’s always the life of the party. Somehow my parents are oblivious to her ways. I can’t imagine what she’s going to be like in a few months when older guys can legally date her, and I’m sure she’ll start trying to get into bars if she hasn’t already.”
Dylan glances over at me. “Have you eaten?”
“Yes. Have you?”
“I ate a little bit when I went home to shower.”
The second we were in this vehicle I knew he showered. He smells delicious. Some of his wavy hair under his ball cap is still damp, too. There’s several more minutes of awkward silence.