Home > Forever and Always (Forever and Always #2)

Forever and Always (Forever and Always #2)
E.L. Todd

1

Sean’s arms were wrapped around me. The smell of his skin and the feel of his body against mine were almost unreal. I had never been so happy in my life. I almost didn’t believe it. Sean was mine. He came all the way to Seattle just to prove his love for me. It was so unexpected and so joyous that I thought my heart would explode. I didn’t care about the past anymore. As long as Sean was with me nothing else mattered. My greatest friend was my lover. There was no misunderstanding. Sean loved me. Me.

Sean pulled away from me and approached the table. “Hey,” he said to Ryan. They shook hands. “Is it cool if I date your sister?”

Ryan laughed. “Are you asking for my permission?”

“It’s just a formality.”

“Welcome to the family.”

I wrapped my arm around Sean and he held my hand in his own. Sean turned to Cortland. “I’m Sean,” he said. “It’s nice to meet you.”

Cortland nodded. “I’m Cortland. And the pleasure is all mine.”

Cortland and I shared a glance and I knew what he meant. Was I going to tell Sean about us? Since Sean and I weren’t together or even speaking when it happened, I didn’t see the relevance. It was none of his business.

“Now we have a double date.” I smiled at Cortland.

“Yes,” he said. “We do.”

Sean turned to me. “I’ve never been to Seattle before. Do you want to show me around?”

“I would love to,” I said as I kissed him.

“You’re welcome to stay with us,” Ryan said.

“I would hope so.” I smiled. “Since I’m paying the rent and feeding you.”

Ryan sighed. “There goes my sister again—being a brat.”

Sean nodded. “If you don’t mind,” he said to my brother.

“Not in the least,” Ryan replied. “How long are you staying?”

“Just for the weekend,” he said. “Then I’ll take Scarlet back home on Sunday.”

“What do you mean?” I asked.

“We are going back to New York,” he said.

I thought for a moment. This was a complication I hadn’t considered. New York used to be my home but it was no longer—Seattle was. I looked at Ryan, but he didn’t meet my gaze. This was something he already anticipated and he seemed to be fine with it—on the surface.

“I don’t have an apartment or a job, Sean,” I said.

“You can live with me,” he said. “We’ll be together all the time anyway.”

“I don’t know,” I said apprehensively.

“What do you mean?”

“You should go, Scarlet,” Ryan said. “New York is your home.”

I met my brother’s gaze and he was smiling at me, giving me his permission to leave. The idea of being away from him again made my heart ache. We had reconnected in such a strong way, and I didn’t want to lose that, but I couldn’t make Sean leave his job in New York. I wasn’t even sure where he would work in Seattle.

“We’ll discuss it later,” I said to Sean.

Sean stared at me for a moment, but didn’t say anything.

“Let’s drop off your stuff at the apartment and I’ll show you around.” I smiled.

“Okay,” he said.

“We’ll see you later,” I said to the two men. Cortland nodded and Ryan waved. Sean and I walked out the door and headed up the street, hand in hand, as we watched the Seattle lights in the nighttime air.

“It’s beautiful here,” he said.

“I know.”

“Do you like it here?” he asked. “I know this is where you grew up.”

“I do.”

“So, what are we doing about New York?” he asked as we approached the apartment building. “I need to buy your ticket before they are sold out.”

I sighed. “I don’t know, Sean.”

“What do you mean?”

We walked through the lobby and stood in the elevator, rising up to the fifth floor. Sean squeezed my hand as we left the elevator and made it to the door. “I’m not going anywhere, Scarlet. You are the one for me. Please don’t be scared.”

I smiled at him. “That’s not what I was thinking.” I inserted the key in the lock and opened the door. Sean walked inside and put his bag in the living room then looked around the apartment. He turned his gaze back to me and I reveled in how handsome he was. Somehow I had forgotten. Suddenly, I realized I was wearing gym clothes because Ryan and I played basketball for an hour. Sean seemed to read my mind.

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