But this time she didn’t melt into him the way she had in Galveston.
Maybe she hadn’t had enough tequila.
Maybe she’d been expecting it this time.
Maybe she really had chalked that all up to one crazy, stormy night, far from home.
Her hands came up to his chest and she pushed.
He stopped, just inches from her lips.
“Knock it off.” Her voice sounded choked.
He straightened immediately, letting go of her but not stepping back.
“Jordan—” he started. But his breath lodged in his throat. She was crying.
He’d seen Jordan cry before, but he’d never been the cause of it.
He shoved a hand through his hair, then tucked his hands into his back pockets. “I’m sorry.”
“Are you? For which part? For telling me that I shouldn’t go with Jason? For being angry with me for quitting teaching? Or for kissing me when I’m with someone else? Again?”
Fletcher swallowed. He should say that he was sorry for all of that. The truth was, he wasn’t sorry for any of it.
“For making you cry.”
She reached up and brushed the tears away. She sniffed, then blew out a breath.
“Tell your grandma I will send her that signed poster from Jason when I get back to Nashville.”
Fletcher sighed. It was bad enough that he was losing this woman to another man. But of course, it had to be a famous other man. And, of course, his grandmother had to be the president of the Autre branch of the Jason Young Fan Club. Literally. They met at her bar once a month and watched any interviews or acoustic performances he’d done in the past month on her laptop while eating loaded chili fries—Jason’s favorite thing at the bar and something Fletcher’s grandmother told everyone and even printed on her menu.
“I’ll tell her,” Fletcher finally said to Jordan.
That long pause was telling. He and Jordan talked and texted all the time.
But would he be able to handle hearing about her life on the road with Jason?
If she was happy, and he was a good friend, he’d be happy for her. But he was starting to think that maybe he wasn’t as good a friend as he’d thought.
Because the idea of her being deliriously happy with Jason Young while giving up all of the things she’d ever wanted made Fletcher want to punch something. And if he heard about how miserable she was on the road with Jason, that would also make him want to punch something.
But finally, he nodded. “You better,” he said.
Because, at the end of the day, no matter how painful it was, not hearing from Jordan Benoit would be much worse.
He was just gonna have to find something to punch.
One of his brothers would surely piss him off soon enough.
She took two steps towards her truck, but then turned back. “You know I love you, right?”
He nodded. He did know that. It just wasn’t the love he’d started feeling for her three years ago.
“I do. And you know I love you, right?”
He wasn’t sure if she knew that he was in love with her, but they’d always loved each other.
She nodded. “I do.”
Then she turned and walked away.
And Fletcher let her go.
Fletcher Landry’s life was about to change. Forever. Irrevocably. He was never going to be the same.
This was going to be the worst day of his life.
And his grandmother was throwing a party for the occasion.
Not only that, but she had threatened to cut him off from her gumbo for two weeks if he didn’t show up.
So now he was sitting at a huge table at the back of her bar with the rest of his family, bracing for the moment when everything went to hell.
At least there was lots of food. There was always lots of food when his grandmother was in charge. There wasn’t much that her jambalaya couldn’t make better.
It was a small comfort.
“Shut up! It’s starting,” his grandmother told the group.
Ellie Landry, the matriarch of the family, pointed the remote at each of the televisions in the bar, turning the volume up to he-couldn’t-ignore-this-if-he-tried level.
Fletcher groaned. Not only was this whole event going to suck, but he was going to watch it on television, with his whole family gathered round, with the volume set to blaring.
And he was going to have to listen to Jason Young sing as a warm-up.
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