The Rottweiler in a death match with one gunman who"d been trying to stab the dog to get it to loosen its hold on his arm.
A second shooter whose gun had been pointed right at me.
And Brennan"s bloody body lying motionless on the floor.
Taking out the guy aiming at me had been easy. His bullet had flown past my head while mine had gone straight through his. After realizing I couldn"t shoot the second guy without risking hitting the dog, I"d gone to check on Brennan. And all I"d felt was relief when I"d seen his wide, glassy eyes staring up at me as he"d drawn in breath after heavy breath.
I was startled back to the present both by Brennan"s voice and his touch, and right after I looked up to see him watching me with his insanely bright green eyes, I dropped my gaze and realized that at some point I"d rested my hand near his on the bed and he was now stroking a couple of his fingers against mine.
I shifted my eyes back to his and could tell that he wasn"t one hundred percent aware of where he was and what was going on. With the almost dreamy way he was looking at me, I suspected he was both still half-asleep and on some heavy duty painkillers.
I didn"t respond to him and told myself to move my hand so I wouldn"t feel the sparks of electricity shooting up my arm from the spot on my hand where he was touching me.
"The 1970 AAR Cuda," he whispered.
I hid the smile that threatened and nodded. I"d told him about the sports car the day before, when his eyes had started to drift closed as the blood had continued to seep through my fingers where I"d had my hand pressed over his gunshot wound.
Brennan"s eyes slid shut and then slowly opened again. "You promised to let me drive it."
"I did," I finally said, keeping my voice low in the hopes that he"d drift off again. I"d come here to check on him, not to interact with him.
I couldn"t interact with him.
I couldn"t want him more than I already did.
"I thought you were a dream," Brennan whispered quietly and then his eyes closed as he fell back asleep. His fingers stopped rubbing against mine, but they didn"t fall away and the heat continued to spread throughout my entire body.
I needed to remove my hand to stop the sensation.
Because while I"d managed to keep Brennan talking until help had arrived, I"d ended up hearing the one thing that would keep me from pursuing the young man no matter what. He"d said it just before he"d started to struggle to breathe, and right after he"d asked me if he was going to die.
Tell Tristan"tell him I love him"tell him I"m sorry I never told him.
That message, which fortunately I would never have to deliver, had been the deciding factor for me. Because while I could have overlooked all the other things about Brennan that broke all my rules, including his young age, his obvious innocence and his inherent goodness, I couldn"t overlook that he wanted someone else. Even if he wasn"t in a relationship with whoever Tristan was, it didn"t matter in the least. Because when I set my eyes on someone, even if it was just for a few good fucks, there was one rule I never broke.
I didn"t share.
Even if it was a no-strings, quick fuck.
I didn"t do guys dealing with boyfriend drama or unrequited love or any of that shit. They were either focused on me one hundred percent for whatever amount of time we used each other to slake our needs, or they weren"t even in my orbit.
I forced myself to pull my hand away from Brennan"s and allowed myself one more quick look at the peaceful expression on his face, and then I turned away and left the room. Time to go back to what I did best and leave Brennan and his Tristan to whatever cute little white picket fence life they would dream of having together.
They"d figure out soon enough that there was no such thing.
I snapped my eyes up from the document I"d been looking at and stared in disbelief at the young man standing not ten feet from me. It had been almost three weeks since I"d last seen him and I"d been sure it had been the last time.
Fuck, he was beautiful.
I gave him a brief nod as I ignored the twitch in my dress pants. My cock was clearly remembering the young man as well.
I knew the polite thing to do would have been to ask him how he was feeling now that he was out of the hospital, but just being near him was fucking with my senses so I stepped past him to head to my car.