Six of Hearts(9)

By: L.H. Cosway



Okay, hold on a second. How can he possibly know that? Even if it is true. I step inside the hallway, and he follows suit.

“When did you come to this conclusion?” I ask in a low, self-conscious voice.

“Do you really want to know?” He grins, leaning closer.

I stare at him for a second, and my heart stutters. He really is gorgeous, especially up this close. I’m thinking that if I say yes, I could be opening a whole can of worms, so I go for the safe answer. “No. I guess I don’t.”

His eyes sparkle with mischief, and I quickly walk forward to lead him up the stairs. “The room’s this way,” I call behind me.

I’m halfway up, and he’s so quiet that I have to turn to make sure he’s following. What I find when I do makes my heart stutter even harder, because those hypnotic eyes are unmistakably glued to my arse, and it looks like he’s enjoying the view. Tingles spread through my chest as his gaze travels up to me and his lips form a smirk. Oh, God. Before he can say anything, I turn back around and practically jog the rest of the way up.

When we reach the spare room Jay takes a look around. The only furniture is a pine double bed, a matching wardrobe, and a bedside dresser. The walls are painted a plain magnolia, and there are simple cream cotton curtains on the window. Jay has a happy look on his face as he steps inside the en-suite. He emerges a minute later, declaring, “The room is perfect, Matilda. Where do I sign?”

I almost stammer. “Oh, well, I’ll have to talk to Dad first. He probably has a few more prospective tenants he needs to show around before he selects the person he’s going to rent it to. He’ll also want to do a background check.”

Jay leans his arm against the door frame and eyes me. “Hmm, is she lying or telling the truth? I think she’s lying. You don’t want me living here, darlin’?”

“I’m not lying,” I state, crossing my arms defensively over my chest. “I’ll call Dad now if you like and let him tell you himself,” I say, shoving my hand into my bag for my phone. I can’t find it, though, and I let out a little huff of frustration.

Eyeing him suspiciously, I ask, “You didn’t happen to swipe my phone as well as my keys, did you?”

Two dimples deepen in each of Jay’s cheeks as he answers, “I never swiped your keys, Matilda. They fell out of your bag when you were leaving the car. I simply picked them up for you.”

Great, that means I’ve lost my phone and will probably have to fork out for a new one. I distinctly remember slipping it into my bag about twenty minutes before lunch. Did I drop it when I was on the street?

Jay pushes off the doorframe and takes a few steps toward me, stopping a mere foot away. As he tilts his head to the side, his eyes never leave mine. A second that feels like an hour passes before he shoves his hand in his pocket and pulls out an iPhone. “I’ll just call your Dad myself, let him know I’m interested.”

“Yeah, you go right ahead,” I reply, doing my best to sound breezy.

He’s silent for a moment as he holds the phone to his ear, then says, “Hugh? Yeah, it’s Jay. Listen, I’ve just had a look at the room, and it’s exactly what I had in mind.”

He pauses for a second as my dad talks to him down the line. I walk over to the window and glance out at the view of the houses on the street behind ours, my skin goose-pimpling. Jay was right when he said I liked him, and I don’t even know why I do, aside from his obvious attractions. There’s something about him that tells me he’s one of the good guys, despite what the little I know of him would lead me to believe. And yet, the idea of us living under the same roof has my stomach all a-flutter.

“Cool, cool. I’ll see you tomorrow, then, Hugh,” says Jay, hanging up the phone and bringing his attention back to me. The grin on his face says he’s won this round. I knew he’d managed to charm Dad earlier. “Your old man said there’s a copy of the tenancy agreement in the living room cabinet. He also said I could sign and move in tomorrow. He’ll take me on good faith for now and do the background check in the morning.”

“Right, I’ll just fetch the papers for you,” I say tightly, and move to go downstairs. As I walk by him, he catches my elbow in his hand to stop me. His fingers are warm on my skin, burning a fire right through to my veins.

“You okay with this, darlin’?” he asks, his voice pure gravel.

The way he says “darlin’” in that accent literally kills me every time. He says it like this: “dahlin’.” God. Stupid hormones. I swallow. “I’m fine with it. Do you mind if we stop here for a couple of minutes? I have a sandwich in my bag for lunch that I want to eat.”

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