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Sleeping With Her Enemy(3)

By:Jenny Holiday

And, indeed, her lips were bare. He’d never seen her without the signature scarlet pout. He’d always wondered what she looked like when she first woke up. He was a man, after all, and it was impossible not to. But he always came to the conclusion that Miss Self-Righteous Frostypants actually slept in her lipstick.

Something was wrong. Really wrong.

She swiped her hands across her face, which only smeared her ruined makeup more. She would never want him to see her crying. He should probably leave. Amy Morrison was a royal pain in the ass, to be sure, but it wasn’t any fun beating someone who was already down. He took a step back.

But then she spoke, her voice small and vulnerable when it was usually confident and, well, a little bit grating. “He left me. Mason left me at the altar.”

He hesitated. On the one hand, who could really blame the guy? But on the other…

“Well, fuck that asshole. He was never good enough for you anyway.”

Chapter Two

“Think about it. He looks at vaginas all day. Like, professionally. For a living.” Amy thunked her empty beer bottle down on the bar and turned to Dax. She was in that strange limbo where she was sober enough that she was still in her right mind but tipsy enough to say things she otherwise wouldn’t. “Do I really want a husband whose job it is to look at vaginas all day?” Dax opened his mouth, so she held up a finger. “I know what you’re going to say. I know what you guys call him.”

Dax signaled the bartender to bring them another round. “And were we so off the mark? It sounds like”—he paused, presumably for dramatic effect—“Dr. Vajayjay turned out to be not quite the upstanding paragon you always thought. You remember that time at your engagement party when he was showing pictures of scars from hysterectomies he’d performed?”

Mason had been unnaturally proud of his surgical skills. “What I remember about my engagement party is you showing up uninvited.” Her blood boiled just thinking about it. “And what was your gift? I can’t quite remember. Oh, wait. It was a pair of noise-canceling headphones for Mason and the business card of a divorce lawyer for me.”

He shrugged. “I thought that party needed a little livening up. Anyway, my point is that Mason was deadly dull.”

“Dax, in addition to having the mental age of, like twelve, you are so amazingly self-centered, it takes my breath away. How can someone who’s such a womanizer presume to criticize someone like Mason?” She braced herself for a snarky reply, for him to heap even more insults onto her fiancé.

Ex-fiancé. Whatever.

He just looked at her, though, for a long moment, like he was trying to decide something. When he spoke, his voice was low and controlled. “Like I keep saying, you’re better off without him.”

She didn’t know how to respond to a Dax who wasn’t fighting with her. And, God, how had she sunk to the point where Dax Harris was giving her relationship advice? “Oh, and you’re the expert on relationships?” she shot back, half hoping to fan the nearly extinguished flames of the little tiff she’d started. She leaned closer, bracing for battle. Battle would be distracting. And distracting was what she wanted right now.

Dax smelled good. She would have expected him to smell like…what? What did jerks smell like? Anyway, certainly not like sea air and a hint of coconut. He smelled like a beach, which was very…surprising.

And that was not the kind of distraction she was after. What was she doing? Oh, right. Battle. Bracing for battle.

He shook his head. “I’m about as far from an expert on relationships as you’re likely to find.”

The fact that he was so uncharacteristically unwilling to argue with her deflated her a little. She shouldn’t have said all those things about Mason. Had she no shame? Relationships were hard work. People were complicated. She would have liked to think she knew better than to trash Mason in front of a jackass like Dax, but apparently not. “Well, good, because you’re pretty much the last person the world I’d take relationship advice from. How’s….” She trailed off, casting around for the name of Dax’s latest model-girlfriend. They never lasted, so it was hard to keep track of them. “Shelly?”

“Shelby,” he corrected. “But Shelby and I have decided to go our separate ways.”

“I rest my case,” she said, aware that she was talking a little too loudly.

“Listen, all I’m saying is that Mason wasn’t the right guy for you. He was too nice.”

“He was too nice,” she echoed, incredulous.

“Yeah. Like if Martha Stewart had a DIY-boyfriend craft, she’d come up with Mason. Doctor, blandly handsome, boring. He probably had some lame-ass hipster hobby like brewing craft beer.”