Kane:Steele Brothers #5

By: Cheryl Douglas
Chapter One


“There’s one way to convince your ex you’re serious about not getting back together with him,” Kane said before sipping his fourth Jack Daniels.

“Oh yeah? What’s that?” After months of trying to convince Brendan it was over between us, that I wanted us to be partners professionally but not personally, I was willing to try just about anything.

“Go back to Nashville a married woman,” he said, grinning.

Damn, this man was sexy. I’d been crushing on him since I was seventeen. He was my future brother-in-law’s older brother and that alone should put the kibosh on all my naughty fantasies about him, but it didn’t. The more time we spent together leading up to Brody and Riley’s wedding, the more I wanted him.

“Yeah, sure.” I turned to face the casino after polishing off my third glass of wine. Since I was small, most people assumed I was a lightweight, but it would take at least one more to get me tipsy. Tapping my finger against my lip, I said, “Let’s see, who shall I choose? This is Vegas, after all. It shouldn’t be too hard to talk some poor sap into marrying me.”

We were here for Brody and Riley’s bachelor and bachelorette parties, but when they couldn’t keep their hands off each other, we’d all begged them to go to their room and put us out of misery. Since then, the large group we’d come with had dispersed, and Kane and I were the only two left at the bar which suited me just fine. There was no one else I’d rather spend a little one-on-one time with.

“Look no further.” He tipped back his glass. “I’m willing to take one for the team.”

I backhanded him across the chest. Damn. It was like hitting a brick wall. In fact, I’d probably hurt myself more than I’d hurt him. “Shut up.”

“Can you think of another way to get this guy to leave you alone?” he asked, propping his chin on his fist as he stared at me.

It was hard to think straight when he was looking at me so intently, especially since he’d been the star of every one of my fantasies since I broke up with Brendan two months ago. I blamed the fact that I’d been seeing so much of Kane lately, but I knew it was more than that. I had an itch only he could scratch, but how could I tell him that without sounding desperate and pathetic?

“We do have to work together,” I reminded Kane as I tried desperately to refocus on the conversation instead of letting my mind wander to all the things I’d like to do to him. “So it’s not like I can cut all ties with him. We write and perform together every night. Hell, we’re even opening for a few bands later this year, so we’ll be touring together for months.”

Instead of picturing Brendan, I was seeing Kane. Naked.

Would it be so terrible to have an innocent little one-night stand with my sister’s future brother-in-law? Yes. We’d have to see each other regularly for the rest of our lives. If we had sex, holidays and get-togethers would be awkward, making everyone else, including Brody and Riley, uncomfortable. That wouldn’t be fair to them. My sister had waited forever to marry the man of her dreams, and I wouldn’t do anything to ruin it for her.

Kane shook his head. “Look, Riley’s told me she’s concerned this guy hasn’t been willing to take no for an answer. I told her I’d talk to him, but she thought that might make you mad. The offer stands if you’re interested though.”

The bartender returned to refill our drinks, and he flirted with me shamelessly, as he had been all night. After I’d assured him Kane wasn’t my boyfriend, he slipped me his number and told me when he’d be off.

“Maybe he’d be a good candidate,” I said, admiring the bartender’s backside in a pair of fitted black pants.

He was cute, with a trim physique, sandy-blond hair, and green eyes. But these days I was more into tall, muscular guys with dark hair and blue eyes who walked around wearing a bullet-proof vest and a gun.

“For what?” Kane asked, glaring at the guy.

“You said I should get hitched in Vegas, you know, to get Brendan off my back once and for all. Maybe the hottie behind the bar would go for it.”

Even though the idea was ridiculous and Kane had been joking when he said it, it had some merit. My career was my top priority. If I couldn’t convince Brendan it was over between us but that I still wanted to be friends, I would either have to start all over as a solo artist or find another partner. The chances of success going either route were slim. Brendan and I finally had some momentum going after years of trying to break into the business, and I didn’t want to lose that.

“No way,” Kane said, his look menacing as he reached for his drink. “My brother would kill me if he found out I planted that stupid idea in your head. Forget I said anything. It was a dumb joke.”

“Maybe.” I scanned the room, wondering how many people had stood in this very spot and decided, after knocking back a few too many, to marry some hot stranger they’d been flirting with all night. “Maybe not.”

“What the hell are you talking about, Macy?” he asked, running a hand over his short dark hair.

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