Home > Everything for Us (The Bad Boys #3)(10)

Everything for Us (The Bad Boys #3)(10)
Author: M. Leighton

“What about you? How was it for you after the accident?”

“A lot like it was for you, I guess. When I woke up, I was floating under the dock with my head banging up against one of the pilings. I doubt anyone even saw me. The cavalry was just on their way by the time I got out of the water.

“I had no idea what the hell had happened, so I called Dad. Took me a few minutes to find my phone. I guess it flew out of my hand when the bomb went off and knocked me into the water. It was lying on the dock a few dozen feet from where I was standing. Thank God it didn’t go in the water with me or we’d be screwed. Without those books, that video is all the leverage we’ve got to get Dad out of prison.”

Cash nods in agreement. “No shit.”

“Anyway, I took off to call Dad. I was the lucky one who got to tell him his wife had been killed.” There’s no keeping the bitterness from my voice on that point. “But the upside was that it gave him time to think. And to prepare a little, I guess. I told him about the video. That’s when he told me I had to leave, that it wasn’t safe for any of us anymore, especially me since I had the video. Too many unknowns. And I was the only witness. Well, you get the idea. So he told me where he’d stashed his getaway . . . stuff, had me go there to get the money and the passports, and told me to disappear.”

“How’d you end up on a smuggler’s ship, then?”

“I told you before that he sent me to his contact. Are you gonna let me finish?”

Cash nods, but says nothing. Makes me feel like a piece of shit for being so short-tempered, but I just can’t seem to help myself. It’s hard to give a damn after so long. And I’m not entirely sure I even want to. Caring just gets you in trouble. That’s how I’ve managed to survive all this time—the only thing I cared about was getting to the day I’d finally take my revenge.

“Sorry. Continue,” he says.

I sigh. “Along with the money and passports, there was a cell phone with a few contacts already loaded into it. There were also a couple of notes. One was to Mom. I guess it was his plan B, in case something happened to him. Just him telling her he loved her, and that he was sorry, and to do exactly what they’d talked about. I guess she knew what to do with everything, who to call. But then there was another note. It was to us in the event something happened to both Mom and Dad. It just said to call Dmitry. He’d know what to do. So I did. He told me to get to Savannah right away. Told me to hole up in a motel there and not leave it until midnight on the following Saturday. He gave me the address of a dive down near the wharf. Told me to meet him there, that he’d know me. And he did. Said I looked a lot like Dad.”

“Is he the one you . . . worked with?”

I smirk at his attempt to so delicately state that I was a gun runner. It’s nothing less than ironic that the more straitlaced of the two of us, the most likely to succeed in the corporate world, turned out to be the criminal. To this day, it leaves a bitter taste in my mouth.

“No, he’s just the one who set it all up. Evidently, if something had happened to Dad, he was supposed to get us out of the country, but only Mom knew what to do after that. If there was a place to go or money or whatever. All I had was the little bit of money that was in the bag and the clothes on my back. He did the only thing he could do, I guess. He got me a job.”

I know Cash wants to ask questions about what I was involved in, but his social skills have so much improved since we were younger that he shows restraint and keeps his mouth shut. Which is a good thing. I don’t want to talk about it. Not with him, not with anybody. I’m not exactly proud of the way I’ve spent my time over the last seven years.

“You had to do what you had to do, man. No one blames you. You were just a kid.”

My laugh is bitter. “Listen to you, trying to make your big brother feel better about giving in to the family curse.”

“You’re only older than me by four minutes, so don’t get too hung up on the ‘big brother’ thing. And what’s that supposed to mean? ‘The family curse’?”

“We have criminal blood. I always thought it was a choice, but I don’t think it ever was. I think it’s what we’re destined for. As a family.”

“I’m not a criminal. Don’t ever plan to be one, either.”

“Oh really?” I can’t keep the sarcasm from my tone. “And the shit you and Gavin were involved in to save Olivia, that was all perfectly legal, right?” I see his fingers tighten on the steering wheel. “Guess you just overlooked that little incident, is that it?”

He says nothing. Because there’s nothing he can say. I’m right and he knows it.

It’s miles and miles later when Cash finally speaks again. “Let’s just get through this so we can move on and live decent lives. Both of us. All of us.”

“If that’s even possible,” I reply pessimistically. But deep down, against everything I know to be probable, I feel a little glimmer of hope that something as preposterous as that just might happen.



I’m just gathering up my clothes to take to the cleaner when the doorbell rings. Even though it’s broad daylight and Olivia’s just on the other side of the condo, my stomach turns a nervous flip.

I chastise myself all the way to the door, where I lean against it to look through the peephole. My stomach reacts anxiously again, but this time for a different reason.

On the other side of the door, looking impatient as ever, is my father, David Townsend. He looks much like Olivia and her father, with his dark hair and greenish hazel eyes. But his demeanor gives him an elegance (and an arrogance) that shows in every smooth line of his entire body.

Even though he’s related to me, he’s still one of the most intimidating men I’ve ever known. He’s the reason I can hold my own with practically anyone in the corporate, legal, and judicial worlds. Cutting one’s teeth on David Townsend results in fangs. Long, sharp fangs.

I take a deep breath and throw the deadbolt, swinging the door open on my fake smile. “Daddy. What are you doing here?”

Without a word, he brushes past me in his thousand-dollar suit, carrying with him the faint scent of his nearly as expensive cologne.

He walks to the edge of the living room and turns toward me, his brow set in a line as stern and unyielding as his mouth. “Just what is it you think you’re doing, young lady?”

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