Banking the Billionaire (Bad Boy Billionaires #2)(9)


by Max Monroe

“Uh-uh-uh,” she hummed. The red of her nail almost hypnotized me as it ticked back and forth in front of my face. Since my only choices seemed to be to concede or die, there was really no choice at all.

“Fuck, you’re a lunatic, Fair Queen Cassie?” I ventured.

“Better.”

“You scare me,” I told her with a point of my index finger. “And that’s saying something.”

She shrugged. There were no fucks for her to give. Absolutely zero. I wouldn’t have been surprised if she’d turned her pockets inside out just to prove it to me.

As the next turn approached, I carefully considered how to tell her. “Did you ever hear the story about Wei Wang?”

“No,” she answered. Which was no surprise since I was making it up.

“Well, all the Wangs had a history of hanging right down the middle, if you know what I mean.”

“Maybe you do only talk about cocks.”

“But not Wei. He lived up to his name, hooking way to the left,” I rushed on as we approached the fork in the road.

“Huh?”

“Stay to the left, hook left, this is your next direction, Luscious Cassie,” I speed-replied as we barreled toward the divide.

“What the fuck?” she asked, but she did what I said. She did it at high speed and quite possibly on two wheels, but she did it.

“You wanted specific directions.”

“Those weren’t specific, they were fucking convoluted and ridiculous.”

It was fair to say she was upset, but she had also been distracted, and in that moment, while trying to get her to do something she wouldn’t want to do, that was the more important of the two.

“Why the fuck are we in a neighborhood?” she asked, realizing I’d taken her off course.

I could see the house I wanted, three down on the left, and appropriately timed my response. “Just pull over right here.”

“Are you lost?” she accused and came to a screeching stop. “I thought you said you knew where you were going.”

I climbed out of the car carefully, sighing in relief when my back cracked at the moment it reached full height. If it hadn’t looked so dirty, I might have considered kissing the pavement.

The glass storm door was the only one closed on the front of the small, light blue, cape-style house, and my favorite little handprints decorated the otherwise pristine pane.

“Come on,” I said, leaning down into the car. “We’re here.”

“We’re here?” Cassie shrieked. “What do you mean we’re here? What in the ever-loving fuck is going on?”

I rounded the car and opened Cassie’s door, taking her by the hips and pulling her out of the car and onto the sidewalk myself. “Sorry, honey, but I couldn’t miss my best girl’s party.”

Her face dropped, and I swore she was a hot second away from completely mutilating my nuts. It was stupid, but I never even considered moving my hands off her to protect the goods. There’s a reason natural selection is the way it is. When I was around her, I wasn’t sure I’d be the fittest in a survival scenario. But I didn’t think other men would be either. It had to be a biological deficiency.

“A girl?” she yelped. “You made me drive you to another girl’s party?”

It was dangerous, but I nodded anyway as Mila approached behind her. “Only girl I’d ever use you to get to is this one,” I promised. And just because I wanted to, with a quick move forward, I pressed my lips to hers. The warmth of her mouth on mine spread immediately to my chest.

When I pulled back to look at her face and the shadow of a girl cast out in front of her, it was safe to say she was gearing up to tear into me for kissing her again without permission.

Until Mila’s voice made her pull up short.

“Uncle Thatch!”

I felt like I could actually see her brain pump the brakes.

“There’s my girl!” I greeted, dragging my eyes away from Cassie’s slowly. The transition of my focus took just long enough that I caught the change on her face.

Mila’s officially six-year-old little legs wrapped as far around my waist as they could go, and she grabbed me by the cheeks. “It’s my birthday and you’re here, la la la,” she sang.

“You bet,” I told her before swinging her around and back down to the ground. “I wouldn’t miss your birthday for anything.”

Cassie shifted beside me, and I hoped the movement was associated with her thawing. Mila, Frankie’s daughter, noticed her for the first time.

“Who’s this?” she asked. “Is she your girlfriend?”

Cass’s eyes bugged out as I avoided the question. “This is Cassie.”

“Hi, Cassie!” Mila greeted with an overeager wave. “I like your shirt!”

Cass’s eyes shot to the pussycat, and I stifled a laugh, stating, “I like it too,” with a waggle of my eyebrows.

“Mila, come on!” Frankie yelled from the front door before he spotted me. “Oh, hey! Come on through, guys. Party’s out back.”

Mila took off, and Cassie slapped me on the back of the head. “That’s for bringing me to a child’s birthday party without any warning.” Before I saw it coming, she slapped me right in the dick.

“Ow!”

“And that’s for kissing me without my permission again.”

I cringed internally because I’d taken the first warning during the cat-sitting debacle seriously. “Don’t ever kiss me again without permission,” was a pretty easy command to follow. Or it should have been. From the seriousness of her scolding, I knew it meant something to her, but hell, I just hadn’t been able to stop myself. She had some kind of pull I couldn’t resist.

“All right,” I agreed. “No more kissing without your permission.”

“No, just no kissing,” she expanded.

“See,” I said. “That’s the problem.”

“Thatch—” she started seriously, turning to me. But I didn’t let her finish.

“Come on. You can yell at me later. Right now we have to go to Mila’s sixth birthday party.”

She stomped back to the open door of the car and pulled out her giant purse, grumbling about castrating me the whole way, while I opened the back hatch and grabbed Mila’s present out of my bag. Before I got arrested and changed everything, I’d planned to take a train early this morning. I’d actually thought it would be simpler than having to drive. Given the prison detour, it turned out to be a complication. When I glanced at my companion, I couldn’t find the energy to get upset about it, though.