I Love How You Love Me (The Sullivans #13)(4)


by Bella Andre

She’d looked incredibly relieved when he’d told her he would do the story and cover. But her relief quickly shifted to a slight grimace as she said, “This story is on a pretty tight deadline, I’m afraid. They’ll need it and the pictures in four weeks.”

“I’ve got to head out to ferry a boat to a friend in Portland in an hour, but I’ll be back Friday afternoon.” He also had an upcoming trip to Australia for a major yacht race in a week and a half, but he planned to get to know Grace—and Mason—a heck of a lot better between now and then. “My mom will be making dinner on Friday for the family. Come with me and we can get started then.”

She blinked at him in confusion. “You want me to come to your mother’s house for our first interview?”

“You and Mason,” he clarified. Because even though he wasn’t going to make the mistake of freaking her out with his intentions, he also couldn’t resist speeding things up a bit by tossing her into the deep end with his family. Dylan just couldn’t see waiting…not when he knew. “If we get there early, she can watch the baby while you interview me. Unless, of course,” he deliberately added to confirm the one thing he needed to be absolutely certain about, “your husband or boyfriend can watch Mason while we talk.”

“It’s just us.”

Knowing it couldn’t be easy to raise a baby alone, he tried not to give a whoop of delight that she was single.

“Are you sure your mother will want to watch a little boy she’s never met before? Don’t you need to ask her first?”

“No,” he said with a laugh. “I definitely don’t need to ask her if she wants to hang with an awesome kid for a couple of hours. There are few things she loves more. Plus, this way you can ask my family questions for your story.” He wasn’t usually a steamroller with women—he’d never needed to be when they’d always come to him. But with Grace, he needed to know exactly when he’d see her again. “I’ll come pick you guys up at four on Friday?”

Grace stared at him for a few seconds, her expression unreadable, before she finally said, “Okay, that will be fine. And thank you for agreeing to work with me on this story. I really appreciate it.”

He didn’t need her thanks. Her mouth against his, however, he would gladly take. But since he knew he’d already pushed her enough for one day, he simply said, “I’m looking forward to it, Grace.” He liked the sound of her name, the way it felt on his lips. “There’s a pad of paper on my desk behind you so that you can give me your address and phone number.”

She moved toward the desk against the far wall, and he enjoyed every second of watching her hips sway as she walked in her heels. But halfway to his desk, she stopped and turned to face him. “How many times have you refused to be interviewed for stories like this in the past?”

He shrugged, making Mason giggle when he bounced slightly in Dylan’s arms. Bouncing the baby around more on purpose, he said, “Countless. Why do you ask?”

She looked between him and her son, her expression still wary…but also more than a little stunned, too. “I’m just surprised you said yes to me so quickly. Because I really do need to write this cover story about you. So if you’re only planning to mess around with me for a laugh—”

“I promise I’m not messing around with you. Not in the slightest.” He hoped that one day she’d look back on this conversation and realize that he’d been serious about her and her son even then. “You were right when you said I’d like the angle you’re going to take for the story. No one needs to read another story about the fastest way to hoist a spinnaker. But a story about a sailor’s heart? That’s what it’s really all about, whether you’re taking a Sunfish out on a Saturday afternoon or you’re racing an eight-million-dollar yacht for the World Cup.”

“I’m sorry, I didn’t mean for my question to come out like that.” He could see how tired she was now that she’d let her defenses down just a little bit. “Not when I really am grateful that you’re available to do the interview. I just need to be sure that you’re really on board with this.”

She didn’t need to say anything more for him to understand immediately that she’d been screwed over before and had a hard time trusting people when they gave her their word. Probably, it wasn’t too much of a stretch to guess, by the guy who had gotten her pregnant.

“I’m not a fan of phones,” he told her. “And I don’t much care for anything that falls under the category of running a business. But when it comes to giving my word to people? I was raised to stand by it. And I do, Grace. No matter what.”

For a few moments she stared at him as if she wasn’t sure whether it was safe to believe what he’d just said, before finally turning to head toward his desk again. By the time she returned from writing her address on the pad of paper, she was all business as she reached for Mason.

“We’ll get out of your hair now. See you Friday.”

It was nearly impossible to keep from dragging her against him for a kiss so that he could see her beautiful skin flush again. But just as he knew not to head a sailboat up into the wind before it was blowing hard enough to point him toward his true destination, he also knew better than to move too fast with Grace.

Not when something told him a far better plan would be to let both of them anticipate that kiss for the next several days, instead.

CHAPTER THREE

Thunder and lightning rocked the sky outside Grace’s apartment on Friday afternoon as she waited for Dylan to come pick them up. Mason had crawled over to the window and was clapping with glee every time the lightning flashed and thunder boomed.

Grace lifted him so that he could get a better view of the storm, one that felt way too close to the storm that had been raging inside of her for the past three days. Dylan had deftly maneuvered her into agreeing to do the interview at his childhood home, of all places. While it wasn’t at all unusual for a big name to call the shots with a journalist, the fact that she’d taken one look at Dylan and had wanted him in a way she’d never wanted another man had her worried.

Very worried, given that the one time she’d let the line blur between her job and her personal life had been a huge mistake.

She hugged Mason tighter as she mentally erased the word mistake. She would willingly have made a thousand mistakes all over again to have him here with her. But even though the two of them had made it through both her solo pregnancy and single parenting for the first ten months of his life, that didn’t mean she needed to make another, similar mistake with Dylan.