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Miah-1(Lane Brothers, Book 2)

By´╝ÜKristina Weaver

Chapter One


He’s staring at me again and it’s starting to drive me crazy. Not necessarily in a bad way. Miah Lane is hot and so magnetic that I’m surprised I haven’t had to crazy-glue my panties on to stop the things from sliding off and gravitating his way.

There’s something about this man. He just…gets my heart beating fast, and that’s with just a look. I won’t even go into detail about what a tool I made of myself when he shook my hand for the first time and sent me a flirtatious smile.

Of course, that smile was all just a tease, because the moment I smiled back and showed interest, he backed away immediately and started treating me like I had herpes.

That was a year ago. Now I am at a baby shower that’s everything Ellie wanted and a little more, thanks to her mother-in-law’s excitement about the first grandbaby.

After four years of my best friend being MIA, I finally feel as if I’ve found my family again. That’s what Ellie has always been to me. My rock and one of the reasons that after years of being with my ex and finally getting out of that dysfunctional relationship, I’ve uprooted my whole life and moved down here to New Orleans to start over.

It’s not easy being the new teacher in a new place, and even worse is the fact that my only real friend is pregnant and not able to show me around or hang out all that much.

But I’m dealing with the fact that if I want to meet new people and fit in, I have to put myself out there. So maybe hanging out at the same bar and spending half the night talking to Frank, the bartender, isn’t getting out there, but I’m taking a leaf out of Ellie’s book and doing this thing in baby steps.

It’s a waste of time, anyway, and I know it. It won’t matter who I meet or how great the guy may be.

“Hey, Clari? You okay?”

I snap out of it to see that I’m still standing in front of Ellie, her next gift clutched in my hands so hard, I’ve creased the paper and probably squashed the box to hell and back.

“Um, yeah! Here you go. This one’s from…Jude? Seriously, Jude, like how many gifts did you buy the woman?” I grumble playfully, smirking when the old girl turns a glowing shade of red and titters at poor Ellie.

What I wouldn’t give to have this woman be my mom instead of Patty Elms. Jude is sweet, kind, and fiercely protective of everyone she considers hers, and belonging to her would be like walking into a light-filled room instead of the dark cloud that is my own mother.

“Sorry, girls, I just couldn’t help myself when I saw this little thing. Now I know he won’t need it anytime soon, but…”

Everyone gasps when Ellie rips into the wrapping and pulls out a mini little cowboy hat in black suede and a pair of the smallest boots I’ve ever seen.

I actually feel my twenty-five-year-old womb fill with longing at the thought of a cute and cuddly little baby boy, and find myself glancing over at Miah before I can stop myself.

His blue eyes meet mine and I cringe at the hard look on his face before he turns away and stalks out of the room. Can I be more embarrassing and needy?

Jared Lane winces, throws me a look of compassion, and turns to follow his twin brother from the room. The blush I feel frying my cheeks at that look of pure pity has my heart sinking further than it did the time Jude invited me over for dinner.

Miah walked in, took one look at me, and left without a word, the roar of his bike the only indication that he’d left the premises without a backward glance.

If only he knew that running away is a waste, because as attractive and irresistible as I find Miah, chances are I wouldn’t do a thing about it past the flirting stage. I’m not looking for a relationship and commitment right now. In fact, I don’t know if I ever will be after what Nick did to me.

I went to college fresh-faced and convinced that my high-school sweetheart and I would always be together—one of those small-town fairy tales that no one but me believed in.

I was still attached to Nick, my young love, and committed myself so thoroughly that we did stay together all through college…unfortunately. To be fair to Nick, he never once strayed or even considered cheating on me—something I now regret with every fiber of my being, because if he had, I would have been free of him.

Instead, I got stuck with a man who was possessive. Once we graduated and moved in together, I soon learned that Nick was not who I thought he was. He wanted the little woman who stays at home and pops out like a million kids while he brought home the bacon and ruled his roost.

I, on the other hand, was just finding my feet and not at all impressed with his way of thinking, to the extent that I seriously considered ending a five-year relationship just so I could get out of that rut and avoid being moulded by the man.