Banking the Billionaire (Bad Boy Billionaires #2)(4)


by Max Monroe

“Kelly!” Sheriff Miller yelled, startling me from my focus on the ground. “One phone call!”

I nodded with a polite “Yes, sir,” and got up from the bench in the holding tank to exit the cell. Sheriff Miller looked on while one of his young deputies opened the sliding door. His eyes held disdain, and I, frankly, couldn’t blame him. I’d caused him more than enough problems in the years before leaving Frogsneck, and now, my first night back after half a decade, I was his problem again.

Still, he respected my parents, something I couldn’t say for a lot of the small-minded people here, so I did my best to appeal to that. “I’m sorry about this, Sheriff.”

“Right,” he said through a chuckle. “I’m sure you are. I can’t imagine expensive suits are comfortable jail attire.”

I filed that away and kept my cool. His eyes changed when mine didn’t. A flicker of begrudging respect, perhaps. “No, sir. I’m just sorry I’m in here, keeping you busy in the middle of the night. No matter what somebody says, I should be able to keep my cool at thirty-five years old. That’s why I’m apologizing.”

“Margo’s a pretty big sore spot, I imagine,” he murmured, showing he knew the real reasons behind everything, no matter how much he actually witnessed. That’s what made him a good sheriff.

My high school girlfriend, Margaret—Margo to most—died on a weekend away with me. I’d been the only one there to witness the whole horrible thing. Honestly, I’d moved on from it. Not her death, and not what I’d witnessed, but the whole life-changing aspect of it. I didn’t carry it with me into everything I did, and I certainly didn’t spend my time worrying over something I knew I wasn’t responsible for. Small-minded people apparently had a lot more time on their hands.

But being accused of something so horrendous never becomes routine, and I still hadn’t figured out exactly how to keep it from besting my patience. That was why I usually stayed away.

I hated that my first trip back in years had ended so predictably.

“Yes, sir,” I answered honestly.

“Make your phone call,” he ordered, gesturing toward the lone pay phone.

Fuck. It was safe to say technology wasn’t helping me now. I didn’t know anyone’s number by heart other than my parents’. Well, I knew one. I laughed to myself at the reason I knew it.

“The last four digits spell out Cass now,” my memory of a single late-night phone call with a tipsy Cassie Phillips said in my head. “How fucking great is that?” Fucking ridiculous is what it was. But, yeah, that wasn’t happening.

“Sheriff—”

“What?” he snapped. Fucking great. We’d had our moment of mutual respect, and now I’d already ruined it. Fucking fuck.

“Would I be able to look through my phone to get a number? I only know one by heart—” I started on a lie.

“Then use it, Kelly,” he interrupted.

I cringed as I pressed on. “I’m sorry, sir, but that number is for my parents, and quite frankly, I’d rather sit in here for eternity than ruin their fortieth wedding anniversary.”

“Fine,” he agreed, and I breathed a sigh of relief.

But it was short-lived. “No phone call. Go sit down.”

Shiiiiit. The deputy opened the door again and waved me inside. As my ass met the cold bench, I leaned my head into the hard wall behind me with exasperation.

I was going to rot here. Sheriff Miller was going to make me stay here forever. Way to fucking go, big mouth. Johnny started to smirk at me from across the cell until he realized there weren’t any bars between us.

“Townsend!” Sheriff Miller yelled. “You’re up! Phone call.”

Johnny pushed himself up off the bench and walked out, wandering down to the phone without one word. Five minutes ago, I’d have said I was the smarter of the two of us, but now, I wasn’t so sure.

Closing my eyes, I tried to drift off to sleep or happiness, whichever came first. I thought I’d be thinking of a green-eyed girl, the one from my past who had given me so much grief tonight, but the eyes I saw were ninety degrees counterclockwise on the color wheel. Bright blue and fierce, I hadn’t seen them anywhere but my fantasies for an entire month. There had, however, been an exorbitant amount of fantasies.

Oh, fuck. Jail was not the place to start thinking about fantasies.

With a deep breath, one thought bled into the next as I fell into a fitful sleep.

“Kelly!” being yelled by Sheriff Miller woke me from my catnap. I shook my head to clear the sleep and glanced around the otherwise empty cell. When my gaze landed on him, his expression was amused, and two beefy fingers were gesturing me toward him.

When I stood in front of him, he opened the door and waved me out and toward the phone.

“Hopefully, that nap helped you remember a number. You’ve got one minute to think and three to call. I’d suggest you make the best of all four of them.”

Shit.

Still groggy from sleep and frustration, I didn’t waste time, scooting out of the cell and heading straight for the phone. If I didn’t go now, I had a feeling I wouldn’t get a third chance. I mean, the practical side of my mind knew he couldn’t actually keep me there forever just because I didn’t know a phone number, but after the night from hell, it sure felt like it. I tried to use the brain in my head, man up enough to call my parents, but the effort was fruitless. Any time I spent avoiding this call was nothing but a delay in getting out of here, and today was the last day I could afford to spend on piss-scented vacation.

A shrill ringing in the distance echoed in my ears. I stirred in my sleep, turning over to blearily glance at the clock on my nightstand. The blood-red numbers revealed it was half past two in the morning.

“Fuckin’ hell,” I mumbled to no one in particular, pulling the comforter back over my head to form a cave of covers.

But the phone continued to ring, vibrating across the nightstand and mocking my sleep-deprived brain. I loved my sleep. Loved. It. While most women daydreamed about Henry Cavill sexing them into oblivion while his Superman cape slapped them in the face, I split my daydream time between Henry Cavill, Channing Tatum, and my bed—and the men weren’t the majority of my fantasies.

I could only assume whoever was calling me must have lost a limb or literally been on fire because anyone who knew me understood not to interrupt my sleep time.