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Forgive me callaway book.., p.13

Forgive Me (Callaway Book 2), page 13


Forgive Me (Callaway Book 2)

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  "You love her." The way Cole spoke, Drew knew he wasn't asking; he was stating a fact.

  "More than I thought possible. How did you know Jamie was it for you?"

  His brother's smile grew bigger at the mention of his soon-to-be wife. That was what Drew wanted in his own life, what he wanted with Amanda. "Shit, I knew the second I saw her when she pulled up in the driveway. It hit me like a freight train. I couldn't have stopped it even if I'd wanted to. When it happens, it just happens."

  "I can't believe you're getting married. Dad would be so damn proud of you." As much as it pained Drew to think that all of this was happening without him, he knew their dad had a front-row seat to their lives.

  Cole walked over to stand beside him. "I never believed Dad when he used to say that when he met Mom, he just knew she was it for him. But now, with Jamie, I know what he was talking about. I know we've all given you a hard time about some of the choices you made in the past, Drew, but I fucking love you, and I am damn proud of the man you have become. Dad would be proud of you, too."

  Drew battled his emotions as he listened to his brother talk. The urge to hug him, to cry, to laugh, everything was coming together like a wave he couldn't get away from. "Do you think he would have liked this new Amanda?"

  It was one of the hardest things for Drew, to wonder what his dad would have thought. Cole was the one who had the most time with him before their dad passed away, and no matter how much Cole was there for them, it was still hard to not have their dad to talk to.

  "She's beautiful, smart and compassionate, and she loves you. God knows why, but that girl loves you. That would be enough for Dad. He loved her dad like a brother, so I think he would be happy to see you with her. You guys were always together when you were kids, and Dad always loved her."

  "I'm thinking about asking her to marry me." The words spilled out of Drew's mouth before he could stop them.

  He could feel his brother's eyes on him, and after what seemed like an eternity of silence, Cole asked the one question no one else in the world, except his mom, would ask him. "Why haven't you asked her yet?"

  Drew was taken aback. "What do you mean?"

  "I know you, Drew. There's a reason you haven't asked her yet, so what's holding you back?" As much as he loved how they were moving forward in their relationship, there was still a part of him that was holding on to the past.

  He took a deep breath before voicing his fear for the first time. "What if she wakes up one morning and decides she wants more than owning a small-town diner, catering small-town events? What if she wakes up and realizes she can do better than all of this?"

  "Then she's a damn fool. Love isn't all about romance. It's fucking hard, and God knows Jamie can drive me crazy but I love her, and I know I would hate myself every day for the rest of my life if I let fear dictate how I love her. You can't love someone with one foot out the door, Drew. You need to be all-in, and that includes the chance of getting hurt."

  "Fuck me, you've turned into Yoda." They both started laughing.

  "Shut up. Hey, speaking of Amanda, you should go help her. And I need to give some love to my bride-to-be." His brother pointed to the driveway where Amanda's truck was pulling up, and Drew's heart was doing cartwheels already. Fuck, he was a lovesick fool, and he didn't care.

  He took the front porch steps two at a time. When he reached Amanda's truck, he was greeted by the most beautiful woman he'd ever seen. She had her hair pulled back in a ponytail, with just the right amount of makeup so she didn't cover up her natural beauty. The navy blue dress she wore showed off her curves, yet was subtle enough to make her look professional.

  When she saw him, she looked over every inch of his body. The appreciation he saw in her eyes made him want to forget all about the rehearsal dinner and just have her for his meal.

  "Hey, you look handsome." Her voice was like a balm, soothing every doubt he'd been having about not being enough for her. She pressed her body against his to kiss him and he dropped a hand on her lower back, keeping her like that for a little while.

  "You look beautiful. How am I supposed to keep my hands off you tonight?" And that was the God's honest truth. It was as if sleeping together had unleashed something in him. Since then, not being inside of her for more than a couple of hours at a time made him uneasy.

  She licked his ear and bit the lobe playfully as she whispered, "I promise I'll make it worth your while when we get home." Her palms were flat down on his chest, he loved how much she enjoyed touching him. Drew was a physical man. He loved a woman's touch and he worshipped Amanda's.

  He let go of the hold on her slowly, kissing her hard and fast before pulling away "Let me help you unload before I decide to cash in on that promise right now."

  She smiled at him, reminding him of how playful their relationship was. "How's everyone doing?" she asked as he helped her lower the tailgate to unload the trays of foods.

  He looked at her sideways and remembered how calm his brother had been, which meant the man was anxious as could be. Not that he blamed him, of course; he would be feeling the same thing if he was about to marry the love of his life. "I think Cole is about ready to lose his shit. He just wants to get married. All of this extra stuff is driving him insane."

  She covered his hand with hers. "Your mom really wanted to do this. He's the first one of her children to get married, so it's a big deal."

  To say his mom was happy about her oldest son getting married was an understatement. "Is Abby meeting you here?" he asked, desperate to change the topic of conversation. He needed to get as far away from marriage talk as possible before he dropped to one knee and popped the question himself.

  "Yeah, John offered to pick her up with in the truck since she had the cake and a bunch of other stuff. Whatever their hiccup was about, it doesn't seem to be affecting their relationship." She was laughing as she told him about his brother's plan to pick up Abby, and he couldn't help but join her.

  Whatever was in the air in Montana, the Callaway men sure seemed to be falling one after the other. "That one will use any excuse to spend time with Abby."

  "I think it's cute. Abby really likes him." She looked over her shoulder as she talked, and he couldn't help himself.

  He closed the distance between the two of them and kissed her nose. "I think you're cute." Her laughter in the wind was something he could get used to, something he would never stop chasing.

  It took them more than half an hour to unload the truck and by then, Drew was ready to blow. Watching Amanda sway her hips from side to side every time they did another trip or the way her sweet perfume filled the air around him was more than he could handle. He needed her, and he needed her right then.

  When Amanda dropped the last container on the counter, he grabbed her hand and spun her around so her back was to the counter. "You know what, I fucking lied. I can't wait until tonight."

  He leaned in and kissed her jaw, dropping his hands to her ass. Pressing her into him, he made her feel exactly how much he couldn't wait. "There are people who could walk in at any time." She probably wanted to sound convincing, but the way her voice shook let him know she wanted this just as much as he did.

  "Come with me. I have an idea." He grabbed her hand and walked them toward the pantry, needing to be alone.

  "Drew, you can't be serious right now," she said laughing.

  He walked them inside the pantry and closed the door behind him before pushing her back against it "Oh, I'm fucking serious all right. I need to be inside of you so bad. I need something to last me until tonight." His hand travelled up her thighs, teasing her clit over her panties.

  "Oh, God, don't stop," she begged, and he knew he had her right where he wanted her: crazy with need.

  "Never. I'm never going to stop," he said before claiming her mouth with his, reminding her they were permanent.

  Amanda could not believe she was about to have sex with Drew in his mother's house, where anyone could walk in and catch them. As he
kissed his way down her neck, licking and nibbling, she couldn't find the strength to stop him. It felt so good to be in his arms, to have his lips on her skin that the only thing she cared about was moving this along. Her emotions were still all over the place from their night at the hotel. For all the times she'd imagined her first time, nothing had come close to how amazing it had been to make love with Drew. He had made her feel so comfortable and at ease. It had been perfect, just like the stolen moment in the pantry.

  She felt his hands on the back of her thighs as he lowered the material of her dress down her breasts. His mouth was on her the second he pushed down her bra, sucking her nipples with just the right amount of pressure to make her beg for more. When she looked down, the grin on his face told her he knew exactly what he was doing. She reached for the button of his jeans and lowered the zipper before pushing them down around his knees.

  "You went commando?" she asked as his cock sprung free. The heat around them climbed as she was invaded by the memories of everything he'd done to her, and the anticipation of what he was going to do.

  "Don't look at me like that. I can't control myself," he told her, his voice hoarse as he fought for control.

  The last thing she wanted him to be right then was in control. She wrapped her hand around his hard cock and pumped once then twice, making him bite down on her nipple, sending ripple shocks down to her toes.

  "Fuck me, Drew." She had no idea who this woman was, but she kind of liked this newfound assertiveness. When he grabbed the bottom of her dress, lifted it around her hips and ripped her panties right off her, she was pretty sure he liked this side of her, too.

  "You want me to fuck you? Hang on then." He lifted her off the ground and she wrapped her legs around his waist. The heels of her shoes dug into his ass as he lowered her down the length of his cock, finally giving her what she desperately needed. "You feel so fucking good, Mandy," he told her before crushing his mouth down on hers as he fucked her hard enough to make the shelves rattle.

  He kissed her in such a possessive and primitive way, she wasn't sure she ever wanted him to stop. He was making love to her mouth as he fucked her into oblivion. This was a new intensity for them, almost like the waves of passion were burning hotter since they'd finally slept together, and she loved it. She dug her nails into his neck when he tilted his hips, changing the angle, making him go deeper. She couldn't talk, couldn't breathe; all she could do was feel everything as he kept fucking her.

  "I know you're close. I can feel it. Let me have it. I want to feel it." She barely registered his words before he lowered his face to her uncovered breast, sinking his teeth into her nipple as he thrust into her, sending over the edge. She buried her face in the crook of his neck, knowing she couldn't scream. He kept pushing her up and down his cock until he growled his release into her ear, slowing the rhythm as his orgasm took him over.

  "Fuck! Where did that come from? Not that I'm complaining." He leaned his forehead on hers, his heavy breathing matching Amanda's.

  She couldn't hold back the laughter. "I don't know. I guess you just drive me crazy," she finally told him, trying to catch her breath.

  "I love you." He softly kissed her lips, helping her down his body. Lifting his jeans, he tucked himself in, and she couldn't tear her eyes away from him. There was something so erotic about watching a man dress himself, and she didn't care if she was the only one who thought so.

  "I love you, too. We should probably get back out there before someone notices we're gone." She fixed her bra and panties then smiled when Drew helped her straighten the top of her dress. She re-did her ponytail, hoping she didn't look like someone who'd just had sex, but she knew she probably did.

  "I'll be around. Come find me if you need anything." He opened the door to let her out. She was halfway out when Becca turned the corner and walked into the kitchen, any hope she had about their little escapade remaining hidden vanished.

  She watched as Drew walked over to his sister to whisper something in Becca's ear, and she realized she was really nervous. This was the first time they'd seen each other since the barbeque, and the last thing she wanted to do was create drama on the night of Cole and Jamie's rehearsal dinner.

  Amanda walked over to the counter where her apron was and decided to break the ice. Becca was Drew's sister, and they needed to make things right. "Hey, Becca, how are you?"

  "I'm good. This looks great," Becca told her as she motioned over the containers of prepped food lying on the counters of Kathy's kitchen.

  "Thanks. I hope everyone likes the food," she replied honestly. It was one of the most nerve-wracking things about catering such an emotional event for people she knew, people she cared about.

  "You were always an amazing cook, Amanda. I'm sure people are going to savor every bite." Becca's comment surprised her, but she did her best to smile and not let her shock come through.

  "Thanks. I guess I'm just nervous to be cooking for people I know. This is part of Cole and Jamie's big day, and I want everything to be perfect. They'll remember this day forever." She poured herself a glass of water before walking to the kitchen stools where Becca sat.

  "I'm sure it will be. Plus, they're so in love, you could feed them grass and they probably wouldn't even notice."

  Amanda was surprised when they both started to laugh. The conversation almost felt like their old friendship. "That's probably true."

  She saw the conflict across Becca's face, but she didn't push it, giving Becca time to gather her thoughts. "Listen, I know I should have done this before, but I want to apologize for what I said at the barbeque. I was out of line, and it wasn't my place to interfere."

  Amanda let out a breath she didn't realize she'd been holding as Becca apologized. She took a hold of her emotions and spoke the truth. "It's okay. You love your brother, and you just wanted to protect him. I can understand that. If I'd been in your shoes, I probably would have done the same thing."

  "No, you wouldn't have. It's just you didn't see him after you left. It was like something was broken inside of him and to be honest, I don't think that piece of him got back together until you moved back to town. He's always loved you, and I guess I was just afraid you would leave again."

  She wanted to be mad at Becca for thinking she would do that, but deep down, she knew she couldn't be upset for something her track record supported. But that raised the question that if Becca thought that, who else did? Did Drew think she would leave again? "I'm not going anywhere, Becca. I love Drew. I've always loved Drew, and nothing could make me leave him again."

  "Maybe we could do a girls' night when I'm back in town. Cole has asked me to come back, and I'm thinking about it." Becca smiled at her and, for the first time in years, she felt like she had her best friend back.

  "I would like that very much." She hugged Becca and felt whatever tension had existed between them dissipate.

  Becca pulled away slowly, fixing her hair. "Okay, I should get back before they send in a search team." She watched as Becca struggled with the thought of going back outside, and that was when it hit Amanda.

  "Hey, Bec, how are you holding up with Josh being here?" she asked before Becca could step outside.

  When Becca turned around and Amanda saw the tears welling in her eyes, she knew she'd hit the nail on the head. "I'm counting down the minutes until I can leave."

  She looked at her friend with understanding in her eyes; she knew what it was like to try to avoid someone in a small town. "Well, you can always come hide in here if you need some space."


  Once Abby showed up, the rest of the prep time flew by. Everyone at the ranch was great about giving them the space they needed to get things ready. Even Drew had respected her wishes and managed to stay out of the kitchen, but only after one too many distracting interruptions. The staff she'd hired for the event was fantastic, and when the first course started going out, she took her first breath.

  She poured herself a glass of wine just as
Kathy walked into the kitchen, looking radiant. "Kathy, is something wrong?"

  "Oh, no, everything is just perfect, dear," she told her, kissing her cheek. However, Amanda had a feeling the night was hard on Kathy, without her husband to experience it with. It had been so hard on all of them, but Kathy and Cole were the ones who had been affected by it the most. Everyone else had been younger, but they didn't miss their dad any less. And after Kathy's heart attack earlier in the year, Amanda felt bad that she hadn't been around to help Drew and his family. But I'm here now, and that's what matters. Amanda told herself.

  "Oh, good," she replied, smiling and relieved at the same time that there wasn't a problem with the food.

  "I was actually hoping you might be able to come sit with us. You're a part of this family, too." For the first time since moving back, she didn't feel like an outsider anymore. She finally felt like she belonged.

  Kathy's request still took her by surprise, though. She hadn't expected to be asked to join them. This was their moment, but she had to admit it warmed her heart to know Kathy considered her family. "I have to ask Abby if she's going to be okay by herself. If she says she can handle it, then it would be my honor," she finally managed to say, despite her heart sticking in her throat.

  "I'm so happy you're back in our lives, honey." Kathy hugged her, making both of them cry.

  "Me, too, Kathy." After checking with Abby that everything was all right, Amanda joined the Callaway family. She was surprised to find an empty seat next to Drew. When he saw her, the smile he gave her made her heart skip a beat. She carefully looked at everyone else at the table, trying to see if anyone was upset that she had been invited. When she didn't find anything but welcoming looks, she took the seat beside the man she loved.

  It was past 1 a.m. when Amanda pulled up to her house, dead on her feet. As much as she loved catering, the killer hours and being on her feet all day were things she could live without. Drew's truck was parked at the side of the house, and all she wanted to do was take a shower, crawl into bed, and wrap herself around the man she loved. When she walked through the front door, Drew was right there waiting for her, looking sexy as hell, wearing nothing but those tight black jeans. "You didn't have to wait for me," she told him, kicking off her shoes before heading over to where he was sitting.

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