"You want to know what I absolutely hate about weddings?" I said as I struggled into my long navy blue dress, "the fitting, the decor, the fucking napkins that need to have a specific folding, everything."

Poppy laughed at me, "I want to hear you say that when you get hitched."

I sighed exasperated and dragged myself into the embroidered part of the dress, "Woah, stop right there. I will not be getting married. In like, ever." One of the two younger girls helping us reached me and grabbed the top; she helped me wiggle into it. I smoothed the wrinkles out, marveling at the silk my sister had picked out.

"This is the third time I'm a bridesmaid and I love it," Poppy smiled, the navy dress fitting her perfectly. If this stupid dress made me look half as good as she did, I'd be quite a sight; of course, I'd probably have to do more than 20 years of volleyball if I wanted to look as well as Poppy did. An impossible feat for me, surely.

"Yeah well, the next time you have a wedding, don't count me in," I said, trying really hard to stop whining, "And maybe even worse. You'll be the bride and have all the planning to do and what not."

Instinctively, she tidied up small pins from her hair. She smiled at me; when was she not smiling anyways? The girl that was helping me finally stood up and said, with a few pins in her mouth, "You look gorgeous."

Poppy's eyes scanned me up and down, "You look real beautiful, JoJo."

I thanked her as I smoothed my hands over my dress. Poppy took a sip of her white mug that read 'bridesmaid' over it. "Darcy better be wearing her perfect make up already or I might have a heart attack."

Poppy laughed, "Look at you, going all MOH already."

I smirked, "I've been going through the MOH crisis ever since Darcy said 'Look sissy, I'm engaged'!" I remember that day very well. If I had known that all of this would happen, I would have never agreed to help my older sister get married. Who am I shitting? She would've dragged me into this mess anyway.

Moments later, in came my asshole brother into the room, and don't bother mentioning that he's hot he already knows it. He wore his Best Man gray suit perfectly. Poppy's eyes widened. He flashed us his trademark grin and I could detect the easy humor in his eyes, "Oh my god Carson, what the fuck are you doing in here? We were fucking changing just a few minutes ago you asshole."

"Jo sis, I love the way you talk, so ladylike. Poppy here has nothing that I haven't seen already and you, well, you're already changed right?" He placed his hands on his hips, smirked at Poppy whose face had paled. I felt sorry for her; my brother wasn't the most prudent person roaming the earth these days. But he was right about one thing, it was no secret my sister's best friend and my oldest brother hooked up a few years back. Darcy won't forgive him for it; Poppy cashed in her v-card with him. And him, well, he never misses a chance to bring it up.

"Shut the fuck up," I snapped at him.

Poppy stammered, "I-um, I think I'm going to go check on Darcy," she said quickly and left the room through the same white door Carson came in. Carson smirked at her retreating form, watching her disappear through the door. Poppy trying to put some distance between them.

"You are the most sensitive person I know," I said to Carson with a frown on my face.

Everything I said to him always came in through one ear and out the other, "Damn, she looked hot."

"Car, you can't do that to her. Especially her," I told him.

"40 bucks I get her to sleep with me tonight," he said. His face finally turned towards me with a complete grin.

I groaned, "You are hopeless."

Two seconds later, in comes another one of the oh-so-attractive groomsmen, the infamous Johnny Cartwright, with his gorgeous blonde curls and spectacular blue eyes. He looked like the first time I saw him, at Mrs. Laughlin's Annual Fourth of July party in New Jersey, wearing his red bowtie. He was the groom's younger and only brother. Johnny had this thing about him I never liked: he hated reading. Darcy has always had this fairytale fantasy that I would discover my undying love for Johnny-boy and run away into the sunset with him. But why the fuck would I date a guy that doesn't even read?

"Hey, Jo, you look amazing," he smiled at me.

Carson turned toward him, "Dude, 40 bucks that I get Poppy to sleep with me tonight."

"Poppy Abbott?" Johnny laughed, "You're so on."

I sighed. Men.

"Who are you banging tonight Jo?" Johnny asked me, I rolled my eyes.

Carson's smile fell, "My sister is not banging anyone tonight, right Jo?"

"I was thinking that any walking male within the radius that had what it took would be lucky enough to share my bed tonight," I said and watched Carson as I smirked, "That is, if my dearest brother decides to sleep with Poppy Abbott of course."

Carson laughed, "No can do, sissy. Have you looked at that woman's ass?"

"Why does everything have to be about sex with you? Don't you think the flowers are amazing? Do you know how long Darcy took to decide between white peonies or ivory roses?" In reality, we had decided a combination of both from the beginning but Carson wouldn't even pay the slightest attention to the mere detail.

They blinked at me.

"Car, bro, we got to leave this chick to her bridesmaid problems," Johnny said, in his stupid voice. His stupid voice didn't even match his fucking gorgeous face. He had the most stupid voice I had ever heard. It was the shrill sound of a dying squirrel followed by a slight smudge of boredom.

"I'm Maid of Honor you asshole," I told him with my hands on my hips. Carson agreed with him and they left, laughing and talking about how big Jillian Fox's breasts must look in her dress.

I glanced at myself in the mirror; my mascara could deal with a little retouching. Glancing at the clock, I noticed we still had a little more than an hour to go before the ceremony started. I wanted to check on Darcy first before I did anything else. I had to make sure that mother's dress was receiving the stitches it needed due to last night's fitting-gone-wrong where she accidentally tore a small fragment of the ends. Then, I had to make sure that the grooms' niece, the flower girl, and my 7 year-old cousin Zach, the ring bearer, were already taking their pictures. And, ugh… I had so many fucking things to do before the ceremony.

I almost cried when I saw Darcy; she had her wedding dress on, her hair was perfect and yet she still hadn't managed all of her make-up. "I swear I'm two seconds away from killing you, you better drag your ass back to your room and finish getting ready."

She was standing in the middle of the lawn with her dress bunched up in her hands and her bare feet pale and probably very cold due to the freshly sprinkled green grass. Darcy's eyes were wide, I grabbed her arm and started walking back to the country house, "No, wait, Jo, get this. You have a whole other problem on your hands."

"My hands? What am I? Jerry Springer? My only problem right now is you," she made me stop in my tracks. I tugged on her arm again. If one inch of that dress of hers was even remotely dirty, I would kill her first and then I'd kill myself.

"No, sissy, I'm serious," Darcy made me stop once more. She was walking around barefoot looking for me in her perfect wedding dress with half of her make-up done and she wanted me to stop. She was quite a sight. "Remember James told you about his best friend's younger brother? Well, um, he's um…"

My mind processed this. James, my sister's soon-to-be husband, had mentioned a few days ago that his best friend's younger brother, one of his fellow groomsmen, wouldn't be able to make it due to his quite occupied agenda in New York. I remembered it now as a comment I had dismissed. I even recall calling Carson out on it for being such a bad Best Man, "Wait, what?"

"Yeah, um, well, he decided to catch a flight this morning and he just arrived and he has no suit and I can't find Carson-" Darcy mumbled with nervous eyes. Her engagement ring glinted in the sunlight and I felt like screaming.

My jaw tensed, "You have to be shitting me, right?"

"Don't worry about it yourself, just go find Carson and tell the wedding planner we have one more guest, okay?" Darcy smiled trying to ease my sore (very sore) state.

There was only one thing I could hate even more than Johnny Cartwright, and that would be tardiness. Fuck Carson, I was finding this idiotic man right now and giving myself the stress outlet I heavily needed, "Darcy, go find mom and please finish your make-up as soon as possible. We only have one hour left for the ceremony and you still need to take a few pictures!"

She smiled at me, "I knew there was a reason I chose you as Maid of Honor," she started walking back to the house and tossed me a smile, "Love you, JoJo!"

I stared at the five men who were barely even dressed. Johnny smirked at me as he leaned on the white wall; he was the only one that was completely ready by the looks of it. Carson was nowhere to be found. Nicholas Matthews, who I used to be friends with in seventh grade, attempted to hide his heart-printed boxers as he struggled into his pants while Patrick Stevens, James' roommate back in college, walked around trying to kick a laugh out of me. I rolled my eyes at the sight of them.

"Where's my brother?" I asked.

Patrick shrugged and plopped down on the white couch that was covered in bow-ties and grey suit pants, "Probably with one of your sister's friends."

Apparently it was no secret how big of a playboy my brother was; his status was so overrated I wondered why women were even attracted to him in the first place. Sure, he had the looks and maybe even the charm, but my brother would never change. Not for a girl, not for anyone. As badly as I'd want a sister-in-law from his side, I would most likely never get one.

One of the other guys laughed, "With his hand down Poppy's dress, I'm guessing." He had brown donkey-like hair and his nose was a little pinched. I assumed this was one of James' stupid high school friends.

"Maybe even fucking one of James' cousins in a closet," Nick suggested. He pulled his white shirt on and started buttoning it up.

I groaned, "Then, would you mind telling me where can I find the guy that just got here, supposedly another one of the groomsmen?"

Patrick spread his legs on the couch, "Oh, Lionel's younger brother?"

He motioned to a guy that was tying his bow-tie around his neck looking into the white marble mirror placed in the back of the room. "Yes, Lionel's younger brother."

"Hey Jo," Lionel smiled at me, his hands on his neck struggling to get the knot right. Lionel Kingscott was one of James' and Carson's best friends. I was actually surprised when James picked Carson for his best man; he and Lionel go way back. In fact, first there was Lionel and James, then Carson, and they sort of broke down when James started dating Darcy, which was the time for break-down melt-down. Until Carson got his shit together and the three of them got back together again.

"Hey yourself," I made my way to him in between boxers and plaid white shirts, "Would you mind explaining all of that shit with your brother, which, by the way I didn't know your brother was even living anymore," I stammered.

Lionel glanced back at the mirror, "He managed to get a flight in from New York and just arrived a few minutes ago. I haven't seen him yet, he might be with James…" I sighed, forty-eight minutes to go and I felt like I was being squeezed through a blender. He tossed me a very weird glance and I wondered if I had any dirt or something on my dress.

"I'll look for him, thanks anyways," I said and Lionel nodded at me, a small smile on his face showing off his easy demeanor.

I stepped out of the room only to find myself face-first to James Cartwright who carried a silly smile on his face. His eyes had a special glint in them and his smile grew wider when he noticed who he ran into.

"Wow, look at you," I said to the fellow groom.

He pulled me into an embrace which I returned, "Future sister-in-law."

"You nervous?" I asked.

He shrugged at me, "A little, nothing I can't manage."

It made me extremely happy to know the man my sister was marrying, because unlike Carson, James didn't have a speck of playboy in him and he most certainly would keep it that way. To say that both of them were helplessly in love was an understatement, "Just wait till you see Darcy."

He started to grin at me and before I got the chance to ask him about the new guest, the door opened behind us and the boys hollered. They dragged him into the room and I was left outside.

I began to walk down the long white hall, groaning about all I had left to do and checking my watch to find forty minutes to go until I was doomed. Carson was impossible, Darcy wasn't ready and I still had to find the fucker that had just got here.

Unbeknownst to me, I had crossed paths with said man that exact moment. And if he hadn't woken me up from my daydream I would've surely passed by him without a word.

"Excuse me, could you tell me where the groomsmen room-"

I could recognize that voice even if I were deaf.

"Well, well, well… if it isn't Josie Pemberly herself," I could sense the smirk in his words and my eyes snapped at the said 'fucker'.

And what I found was surely not what I expected. Clear green eyes met mine and I tried to keep my tongue in check when I noticed just who exactly I had run into. The fucking devil himself. And when I say devil, I really mean devil, because no other man had the wit and coy to pull all the manipulative shit that Lucas Kingscott had done in his life. His hard chest and unkept dark hair could be easily recognized anywhere he went; and those fucking lips… God, I shouldn't even be talking about those lips. They were built for hell, I should know.

I had been clearly mistaken a few moments ago when I asked for Lionel's younger brother. I had carefully assumed that he meant Lawrence Kingscott, which was very stupid considering he's not in New York but currently working in Shanghai. Why the fuck did it have to be Lucas? Of all the men on this earth, it just had to be the one that absolutely made my blood boil...

"What the fuck are you doing here?" I asked, not even bothering to hide the venom in my voice.

The bastard wasted no time amusing himself from my current state, "I believe I was invited."

"I'm disinviting you right now. You can leave," I grunted. I placed my hands on my hips and I wanted to scream. I wanted to stick needles into this man's eyeballs and leave him scarred for life. Darcy would surely kill me, but she'd see clearly as to my reasons.

He was currently in a tidy black business suit and even though he looked a bit tired, I felt no remorse on sending him back the way he came from. "We'll have to ask James about that."

"We don't have to ask anyone anything," I spat out, "Maybe just American Airlines for a ticket on their next flight to New York."

Lucas grinned under very long black eyelashes, "I knew there was a reason I missed you."

Anger rose to my head and my hands felt even more clammy with each passing moment, "I do not want to see you again. Go back to where you came from."

"You made yourself pretty clear last time we met," that fucking smirk not disappearing for one single second and his comment did not go unnoticed. I pressed my lips together and clenched my jaw; if he wanted to play rough, I could play rough. Last time we met...

I almsot growled at him, "Apparently, idiots like you don't understand shit."

"Oh, I understood your message. In fact, I've been out of your hair for what? Three almost four years? It seems to me, we needed to stir up some trouble," I knew what he meant by trouble. Boy, didn't I know? Being a girl who was often called out for having 'trouble' as her middle name, there was a whole backstory to it.

"It might have been three years, but I am up to here," I raised my hand over my head, "with your fuckery. Go find Carson and get a groomsmen suit and don't bother staying for the reception."

I pushed myself past him, fuming as I stormed away. This man would be the doom of my existence. Lucas Kingscott was not a matter I would want to discuss, not now, not ever. And I thought that Darcy's dress would be the only thing I'd have to worry about today...

"Nan, come on," I said to the elderly woman I held on my arm, my hand grasping hers as she leaned into me, "At this pace, it'll be dark before we ever get to the reception,"

"I didn't bring you up to hurry an old woman like me," to prove her point, she smacked me on the right side of my temple with her handbag.

"Ouch!" I used my other hand to rub the dearly sore spot. She must be carrying rocks. The tent for the reception was still a few feet away and I only begged we weren't too late. It was being held a few yards away from the beautiful country house with a white tent over it. Tables littered the place and I'd say it was the most beautiful outdoor wedding I'd ever been witness to. The cold November air added to the combination.

Carson ran up to us, "What's taking you so long?"

He met my eyes and I only hoped he understood the meaning as I stared at Nan. She let go of my arm completely and headed towards Carson, "My favorite grandson, come here and help me. Your sister is absolute shit."

"Nan, don't talk like that," Carson told her but I knew what this was all about. Nan only appreciated another soul just as loud and wild as hers. Nevertheless, he held out his arm for her and Nan happily grabbed onto it; she loved hanging off of a younger male.

She really tried my patience and I noticed how the moment she latched onto Carson, she started walking faster. I started to walk beside them, "Jo, honey, I figured out why you're unhappy so much."

"Oh, really? Why am I so unhappy, Nan?" I asked but I sure knew what answer to expect.

"You aren't a slut," Carson almost peed his pants. His laugh was loud and irritating and as much as I loved him, that rock was looking like it begged to be thrown. Nan just smiled at me with that sweet, sweet smile of hers.

"Carson's a slut and look where that has got him," I stated and Carson's laughing ceased. He cleared his throat and threw me a look.

"Into every woman's bed and a very happy man indeed," Carson's laughing resumed and Nan joined in. I groaned, all you had to do was put these two together and you'd have a hard time dealing with it, "Am I right, my boy? Look at you, my pride and joy."

She pinched his cheek and Carson grinned at me, "You heard her, JoJo, be a slut."

"You can start right here, with him," she motioned to a dark-haired man with a broad back turned away from us. Luckily for me, this man turned around to greet someone and I almost choked. On my saliva. I was sure of it. "Look at him, he's a fine young specimen."

Lucas, I burned with anger. The ceremony had gone accordingly and not once had I had to glance at him. Darcy had looked beautiful, James was glowing and I had made everything go accordingly to the plan. I thought I'd told him to not bother staying for the reception.

"Yoohoo," Nan called out, "I'm talking to you young man!"

Oh no. Please no, "Nan, come on, let's hurry up so we can catch Darcy's bouquet."

That seemed to stop the hollering and I thanked God Carson hadn't noticed just who she was calling on and I let out a sigh of relief, "I'm only hurrying up because I want to, not because you told me to," she made it perfectly clear, "I want to see how many young men there are at the wedding."

"I heard that Mr. Cartwright Senior is a very nice man," I offered.

"Bah!" She smacked me on the side of my head once more, "The only Cartwright I have under my nose is that Greek God, Johnny."

I rubbed the spot. Man she was getting out of hand, "He's more than fifty years younger than you…"

Nan ignored my comment, "Surely, you'll introduce us, Carson."

Car grinned at me, "Of course, Nan, anything for you."

"See this Jo? I wish I could trade you in for ten more of Carson," I still had some hope that my grandmother might love me.

Carson opened his stupid mouth, "I wish I could trade my heart in for another liver, so I could drink more and care less."

"That's my boy!" Nan cheered him on.

I rolled my eyes, "Where'd you read that? Facebook?"

"Jo, honey, I mean to be rude when I say you are very shitty today," Nan said, "go find some man to fuck and then come tell me all the details. It's your sister's wedding!"

"The precise reason why I should be seeing to her needs not to mine," I stated flatly.

Carson frowned at me, "Enjoy yourself for a while sissy, it's been a long time since you haven't…"

I matched his frown, "Don't go there."

"I'm going to if I have to, it's been such a long time since-" Carson began and Nan stared at both of us, her scrutinizing eyes going from Carson to me and back to Carson.

"Shut up!" I threatened him, "You shut up or I'll tell Poppy about your little bet."

"Poppy? What bet?" Nan enquired, "What did you forget to tell me, Carson?"

"Nothing, Nan," Carson's tone suddenly unattached, "I bet Johnny 40 bucks I'd get Poppy to sleep with me by tonight."

Nan's face broke into a frown, "I thought you had already slept with her."

"I have, I just wanted one more time," Carson admitted shamelessly.

Nan's eyes widened and her grin returned, "50 bucks if you do it before dinnertime."

"Nan, you like Poppy! You know how hard Poppy has it right now," I tried to make her understand.

She flipped me off, "Nonsense, that girl has to get some sense knocked into her and when I say 'knocked into her' I mean-"

"I know what you mean!" I shook my head, "I can't listen to either of you anymore."

I started to walk faster to the white tent, putting some space between my oldest brother, my crazy grandmother and myself. Those two were fateful and they would be the death of me. Carson was out of his mind toying with Poppy like that and Nan was crazier cheering him on. It'd been a long time since Darcy and I both agreed Carson start to settle down. And not to mention Nan…

Outside the tent, I noticed a few of the groomsmen and bridesmaids talking. Johnny was there, Poppy too and, just my luck, sweet Lionel with fucking Lucas. Poppy smiled at me, "We were just talking about you, Jo."

I was definitely not in a good mood, "I'm going to find Darcy."

"She's taking some pictures with James," Poppy said. I stopped in my tracks and I could feel those very green eyes of Lucas Kingscott burning the back of my head. "Is that your brother helping your grandma?"

I noticed the awful hope in her voice and I prayed for her sake that she stayed away from him tonight. I turned to cast a glance at my brother and grandma just a few yards behind. Carson's laugh was hearable from miles away. "Yes, I warn you all to keep at least three feet away from her if you want to live."

Poppy laughed at my antics, "I rather love Nan."

Oh, God save her. She ran off to Carson and Nan, and if Poppy knew what was good for her, she'd run in the other direction. I noticed how she offered her arm to Nan and Carson stared at her with a look of hunger across his face. The beautiful blonde escorted Nan to us. And without a doubt, I knew why my brother wanted her so much. She was the epitome of perfect; she had long blonde hair that curled at the ends and a perfectly-shaped nose to be envious of. Her eyes made me jealous and I'd caught Carson staring at her lips for far too long.

She had a perfect body to match her face and Carson was not to be held guilty for wanting her as badly as he did. But he'd already caused enough trouble by having slept with her once. As they approached us, Nan kept grinning at me and she said loud enough for all of us to hear, "60 before 6 o'clock."

I understood and Carson did too. No way was he getting in her pants before 6 o'clock. Johnny stifled a laugh and Poppy stared at Nan with a weird expression on her face. "Deal," Carson said.

"Oh, JoJo, look at this young man right here," Nan detached herself from Poppy and Carson, and sauntered over to Lucas. Oh my God, please don't, "Since she won't do this herself, I'll have to do it."

"Nan," I stammered fast enough before she could open her mouth, "Darcy is waiting for us."

Lucas stared at me and then back at her, humor was shown clearly in his eyes and I hated him for this, "My granddaughter is too stubborn to know what's good for her. Would you mind doing her the favor of having some very-needed sex with her?"

"Nan," a blush covered my entire face and I swear I saw red. Lucas' smirk seemed to be glowing and I wanted to run, hide and die. Just let the earth swallow me. "Oh my God," I groaned.

Carson tensed up immediately, if only Nan knew who she was talking to… Lucas wanted to laugh. I know he did; which is why he began to say the following with obvious amusement in his voice, "I'd gladly do-"

"Nan," Carson said, "I think Johnny would like for you to sit next to him at the table."

Johnny's eyes went wide and Nan turned around. She grinned at him and held her arm out. Johnny wouldn't say no to Nan. He took her arm and headed inside. I let out the breath I was holding. The burden on my shoulders lessened but the blush hadn't vanished and I felt the tip of my ears go red.

Carson held his arm out for Poppy and she hesitated. Her hesitation lasted enough to make Carson's smile begin to fall. Lionel opened the tent to let her pass through, and she did, without bothering to glance back at Carson. Lionel was followed by Carson, who scowled at him. The snicker behind me made me stop before I followed them.

"I thought I told you to leave," I said, proud of myself for letting my voice become so cold.

Lucas taunted me, "Why? So I could miss out on all this fun?"

I turned around to face him and shrugged, "So you wouldn't disturb the peace."

"Peace?" he laughed at me, "I knew I was right about this wedding being filled with drama. You Pemberlys are full of it."

"Shut up," my eyes narrowed.

"I heard that the groom's brother slept with the bride's aunt and that Carson slept with the bride's best friend and don't get me started about your father-"

I was seeing red, he knew better than to throw all that shit at me.

"I heard your mother called your father out for being a complete drunk at the engagement dinner. Although your grandmother is quite refreshing-"

"You don't talk about my family like that," I said, fuming, "and you leave right now."

"It just makes me wonder, where the fuck is the Josie I know?" he asked the question that made me want to cut his throat, "The Josie that wasn't afraid, that was followed by trouble everywhere she went and didn't give a fuck about-"

I seethed, "You know where she is."

"I do? All I see right now is a young girl that isn't strong enough to deal with her family's shit and full of bitchiness herself," he had hit a nerve and he knew it. He fucking knew it.

I slapped him. I shouldn't have but I did and the memories of the last time I had seen him were burning in my mind. My hand burned and he brushed his hand over his cheek before his eyes burned into mine. Good, I angered him. "Stay away from me, Lucas," I said firmly and coldly, "and from my family too."

"I'd be glad to."

"You know, Darcy, as much as I am happy for you," I said to my sister, "it's going to be hell without you here."

Darcy and I shared a sisterly goodbye outside the country house, rocking on the old swinging bench we loved. She sat there in her white wedding dress and I held my knees to my chest in my navy blue one. We were both barefoot and holding a glass of wine in our hands. She glanced at me and she was glowing. That shit sort of happens when you get married.

"You were always the one that held it together and now…"

"JoJo, everything's going to be fine, you'll have Carson and Nan and Mom," she said this and I understood her completely. I'd be very happy if I was leaving this hellhole, too.

"Exactly. Carson's a total manwhore, Nan might be going cuckoo crazy and Mom hasn't stopped taking those damn antidepressants she takes," I sighed, I had very long months ahead of me.

"You know, you could always move in with Da…" she suggested.

I made a gagging sound, "And take care of that brat he calls his child?"

Darcy laughed, "We all have to give something up at some point."

We looked down at the white tent filled with music and laughter and light, "What did you give up to endure such happiness, poor little you?"

Darcy smiled at me and gave me a slight smack on my arm, "Believe it or not, I had my share of fights and breakdowns and a very angry brother, you know."

I agreed with her; she did have to go through some shit before she finally got perfect James and, might I add, the gorgeous children they could be having someday. "Everything's going to be absolute shit without you around."

"Just make sure Carson does his work, Nan keeps to herself and Mom takes her pills only once a day and you'll be fine," Darcy assured me, "You can handle this JoJo."

I sighed, "I guess I can."

She squealed and I laughed. She hugged me tight and spread her arm over me as we looked down at the party. She smelt like vanilla and a very floral scent, too sweet for my taste. We stayed like that for a few minutes before I remembered something that we had to discuss very urgently.

"Darcy, did you know Lucas Kingscott was coming?" I asked her, sliding from her embrace so I could meet her eyes.

Something flashed in them, "What? No. He came?"

"Yeah, apparently James invited him and he was one of the groomsmen," I said, wondering just exactly how much she had paid attention during the bridal party shoot we had shared and where I had most surely guaranteed she would notice the devil of a man.

"I'll have a word with James about that," Darcy said sternly, "I'm sure it was only because of Lionel and what else."

I shrugged it off, "I don't know but he certainly enjoyed my discomfort of the entire situation and when Nan said if he could do me the favor of fucking my brains out- her words, not mine-"

"Nan said what?" Darcy stood up and anger was evident on her face, "I'll have a word with Nan before I leave."

"Don't," I tugged on her hand, "She didn't know it was him and he got a kick out of it but he went away as soon as I asked him too."

Darcy was adamant about taking a seat but I insisted some more and she did.

She sighed and made me scoot over. She did look very beautiful in her dress, "You have fun on your honeymoon and enjoy it."

She smiled, "Speaking of which, let's go over a checklist of what you packed for me. Shorts?"


"T-shirts and blouses?"







"You mean more like lingerie."


"Double check."

"Hair comb, toiletries, toothbrush?"

"Check, check and- oh shit."

Darcy's eyes narrowed, "You didn't forget my toothbrush, did you?"

"Oh fuck," she had a deathly look and I began to laugh, "Guess you'll have to share James'"

"Like hell I'll share… I'll buy myself one at the airport," she shrugged me off.

The thought of losing her was making my heart ache. Not only would I be losing her for a month in the Greek Islands, but I'd be losing her to James completely. They'd be moving to London due to James' work transfer he'd managed to get and the graduate school Darcy would be attending.

Yes, I had very long months ahead of me indeed.