Dirty Together (The Dirty Billionaire Trilogy #3)(9)


by Meghan March

Which means . . . he’s really gone.

Gone.

I stumble back from the window as the realization hits me.

Gone. I slide into a chair at the kitchen table that takes up the center of the room. My elbow smacks into the edge, and I wince at the pain shooting up my arm. My eyes sting with tears when I see the note that says simply:

Two words.

“What the hell?” I say to the empty room. “What does that mean?” I don’t know why I ask the question, because the ivy-printed wallpaper isn’t going to answer me.

Then it hits me. Two words. Each time I’ve left him, I left a note with two words: Good-bye, Creighton.

Is this just him being an asshole and making a point? I blink back the tears. I don’t have time for tears.

It’s then I see a guitar case leaning up against the wall in the corner, the same leather guitar case I left in the penthouse in New York. I push up from the table, my elbow still stinging, and take the few steps necessary to bring me to it. Crouching, I lay it flat on the floor, flick the latches, and lift the lid.

Inside is the Gibson, looking just as beautiful as it did the day it was delivered. But that’s all that’s inside the velvet case. There’s no note or any other indication of what Creighton was thinking when he left it here.

I drop to my butt, lean my back against the stove, and lift the guitar into my lap. After strumming a few chords to make sure it’s in tune, I begin to play.

The song I sing? It’s the one I’ve poured all my insecurities into, the self-doubt that was temporarily beaten back when I was singing in the shower. “Lost on Fifth Avenue.”

I slam my hand down on the strings midway through the second verse. Screw. This. I’m not going to sit in the corner and wallow in pity. I’m done throwing pity parties. Because what is that going to accomplish anyway? Not a thing. If I want to make something happen, I need to get off my butt and go do it.

I slide the guitar back into the case and shut it. Creighton and I need to hash things out, if it’s not already too late. And damn it, if he left—really left—then it’s my turn to track him down.

My purse is hanging off the back of the kitchen chair closest to me. I pull it down and dig around for my phone. It’s not dead, which is a win. Finding Creighton’s contact info, I hit Send. It rings twice and goes to voice mail.

Did he seriously hit Ignore? On me? What the fuck?

I call him again.

Rings once. Voice mail.

I text.

ME: Two words? Seriously? Two words?

I wait.

And wait.

And wait.

And nothing.

I’m being completely irrational; I know it. I have absolutely no right to be pissed about this. None. But knowing that doesn’t stop me from feeling this way.

So I text him again.

ME: I’ve got two words for you, Crey. Care to guess what they are?

As soon as I hit SEND, I’m wishing I had an UNDO button. Chill out, Holly. But that doesn’t mean I’m any less pissed.

A car door slams outside. Jumping up, I put down the phone and stalk to the door and yank it open. I freeze when it’s not Creighton.

It’s Logan, and he wastes no time nodding in greeting. “Good to see that you’re alive and kickin’ this morning. Was a little worried about you last night.”

“Maybe you should’ve cut me off before I drowned myself in tequila and regret.”

He smiles, not looking apologetic in the least. “You’re a big girl. Figured you could make your own decision as to when you’d had enough.”

“Thanks for the vote of confidence.”

“You made it this far. Didn’t think one drunk night back on your old stompin’ grounds would derail you too much. Besides, the pictures of you online look pretty damn good.”

“Pictures?” My voice comes out a little screechy. “Shit. I didn’t even think . . .”

“Don’t worry. The captions all say stuff about you having an impromptu concert in your hometown. Nothing scandalous.”

My mind spins. “Since when do you google me and read all that stuff?”

If I expected him to be embarrassed by my question, I would be wrong.

His smile widens. “Since before you showed up at my shop in that piece-of-shit Pontiac.”

Logan Brantley just admitted to stalking me online. I’ve entered the Twilight Zone.

“How long before?” I ask, my curiosity getting the better of me.

“On that one, I’m gonna have to plead the Fifth.” He leans against the big black truck. “Was surprised to see the Caddy in the parking lot of Piggly Wiggly this morning.”

Caddy? Piggly Wiggly? Those seem like two things that don’t belong in the same sentence.

My confusion must be obvious because Logan adds, “You don’t remember the Caddy? You damn near puked all over it. Barely got the door open in time. Karas’s rental bill would’ve been a little bit higher then, not that he would’ve probably cared.”

The picture is starting to come together, and sweet relief is flooding me. “Are you telling me that Creighton is at Piggly Wiggly?”

The mental image is comical. Creighton in a three-piece suit, pushing a shopping cart and picking up . . . what? Eggs and bacon?

Then what was with the note? Was that just a taste of my own medicine?

Logan shrugs. “That was my assumption, anyway.”

I’m still trying to absorb this new development when the deep purr of an engine catches my attention, and a shiny black Cadillac crunches over the gravel drive, stopping next to Logan’s truck.

The Caddy. Crey’s rental car.

The man in question puts the car in PARK and opens the door. I can’t read his expression when he steps out.

While we were on tour, I saw Creighton in jeans several times, but something about the denim clinging to his hips sucks IQ points straight out of my brain. The black thermal knit shirt hugging his broad shoulders and defined chest adds to the effect.

His diligence in keeping fit surprised me as well on tour. He and Boone bonded over weight lifting stuff that meant nothing to me. I was happy he developed an easy camaraderie with BT. It was another way he fit into my world that I didn’t expect.

He glances at Logan. “Brantley. You need something?”

“Nothing at all. Just stopping in to see how Holly is feeling this morning.”

Creighton nods and presses a button on the remote in his hand. The trunk lid pops open. “Might as well make yourself useful and carry in groceries before Holly tries to help.”